Last week I asked you all what mechanic you’d be interested in exploring next, and the general consensus was that Stun would be a good choice. Players new and old alike can occationally be surprised by stun, as the mechanic was reworked in patch 1.9 and functions fairly differently than it used to. Without further ado, let’s discuss the mechanic:
Stunned: The unit can’t attack or block next turn.
Above is the official in-game tooltip for Stun, and to be honest it really doesn’t tell the whole story. Most stuns in the game are temporary, with Permafrost being the primary exception. First, let’s take an in depth look at what actually happens whens a unit becomes stunned by a temporary stun like Flash Freeze.
When a unit is stunned, it becomes exhausted and has a special stun VFX applied to it. The stun effect lasts for two turns, during which the unit cannot attack, block, or exhaust itself and will not ready on the opponent’s turn. At the start of the stunned player’s turn, the stun effect will decrease by one level. When the stun reaches 0, the unit is no longer stunned and will ready, ready to attack or block. While the unit is stunned, it is considered exhausted.
There are three cards in the game that permanently stun units: Permafrost, Ice Sprite, and Rimescale Draconus (through creating Permafrosts). Permanent stuns have a different VFX from temporary stuns and have no turn timer. Currently, all permanent stuns are tied to another card, at this time either a curse or another unit in play. If the card that is stunning the unit leaves play or loses its effect due to silence, the stunned unit will ready itself immediately.
Stuns vs Endurance
The Battle Skill Endurance is the ultimate counter to Stun. A unit with Endurance cannot even be targeted by a stun effect, and will be excluded from mass stunning effects (like Crystallize). If a stunned unit gains Endurance (usually through a weapon or relic) the unit will no longer be stunned, and will ready itself automatically. Temporary Endurance also breaks the stuns comepletely, permaent stuns lose their link and temporary stuns go away forever. Endurance banishes the stunned status entirely, rather than simply suppressing the stun while the unit has Endurance.
Since permanent stuns are tied to external cards that are in play, it makes sense that silencing those cards would remove the permanent stun. Interestingly, it is also possible to silence temporary stuns off of units. While it doesn’t say anything on the card, the noticable VFX make it quite clear when a unit has been stunned. If you silence a stunned unit, you will get rid of all its card text as well as the stun. The unit will ready and be able to attack or block immediately. This can be helpful for attacking through an Eye of Winter or Permafrost, or for a surprise block in conjunction with Desert Marshal. However, this also applies to your opponent’s units – be careful when playing with Eye of Winter!
Stuns during Combat
Exhausting a unit while it is in combat will remove it from combat (with some notable exceptions that will be covered in a later mechanics article). Functionally, stunned units are considered to be exhausted, so stunning units mid combat will remove them from combat. This works on both your own, as well as your opponent’s units.
Combat is a section of the game that will need to be examined in more depth in the future. Stun is not the most complex mechanic, but the tooltip does little to hint at the functionality of the mechanic and there are plenty of different VFX to get used to. Did you know that you can execute ALL of the units pictured in the Basic Function image? Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this article and its given you some insight into stun’s functionality. If you have a Mechanic you’d like Explained next, don’t hesitate to let me know!