The first item that gives armor bonus that comes to my mind is:
This item is more usable as a counter against nukes and late game melee heroes, than as an defensive item for heroes with low armor rating since its armor bonus is just 5 (well... it's cheap at least). So for armor, it's better to buy:
Nathrezim Buckler is cheaper, provides 5(7) armor and can be upgraded. Pretty good for armor bonus in the beginning, but the armor bonus is nothing after the game has lasted for a while. Therefore you probably will upgrade it to get Mekanism and its healing effect. In other words, not an item with armor bonus as main property, but better than blademail if you want to take less damage from attacks.
Next item is:
Yes, this item is good: Decent health bonus, hit-point regeneration and lower damage taken. But only for a while. Same thing as with Blademail, blocks attack in start but becomes less useful later on. It even has the same price. Although this item provides a health bonus to defend against direct nukes and attacks, it isn't very good later on for taking damage and even risk getting sold for something more useful!
The items that we have left to concern for armor bonus, and which could be decent replacements to earlier mentions are Shiva's Guard - 4700 Gold and Assault Cuirass - 5550 Gold. If you have the gold to buy either one of them, you will. Both items provide you with a high armor bonus and are very useful in their own ways once you get your hand on them, after, not before. Here are the problems involving Shiva's Guard
and Assault Cuirass
- Both requires you to venture both the secret shop and the fountain to complete the recipe.
- Assault Cuirass needs you to use very much inventory space before getting it or you need to save a lot of cash before getting it.
- With shivas you need to wait a long while for getting any kind of bonuses on the way to the upgrade (3300 gold can be a really long wait).
After considering all of this I ended up buying Ghost Scepter instead, since it proved much more beneficial bonuses towards lowering incoming damage and the long-term survival than all the others while also considering the price if 1600 Gold.
Then I got the Thought: "what if you could actually get armor in some way without having to buy something that doesn't really give you what you want?
" That's the moment I came up with the idea with Ghost Cloak (find me a better image if you can). Currently, there is no item that only focuses on the defense against attacks for your hero, maybe it's meant to be that way, but considering we have the items: "Khadgar's Pipe of Insight", "Boots of Travel" and "Buriza-do Kyanon" there is no way that can be true.
The reason greater ghost form can be turned off is simple:
- It's an upgrade and should be better than the previous items.
- You pay for an item that should block against melee attacks but not render you to vulnerable to other sources of damage.
Thank you for your time.