Risk of Rain 2 Tougher Times: Things You Should Know

Miracles Happen When Tougher Times is With You!

Risk of Rain 2 is about looting the best gear to survive the breeding monstrosity at Petrichor V planet. You, as a player, will need to control one out of eleven playable survivors. Of course, each playable class comes with a unique variety of skill sets, which sets each of them apart. That is why utilizing each survivor’s skills matters, as not all of them are easy to master. Our Risk of Rain 2 tier list breaks down all the attributes and playstyles each survivor offers. However, when it comes to fighting monsters head-on and outliving the scum of Petrichor V, playing with the best class is not the only go-to solution. You need to have the best loot items so that you can defend yourself. So, if you want to block most, if not all, attacks, we think you should eye for the Risk of Rain 2 tougher times defense item.

Tougher Times is a returning item from the first Risk of Rain. However, the first version was titled ‘Tough Times’. The second game’s item is a derivate of the first one, indicating a greater reliance on the item in Risk of Rain 2. You can use the item on all survivors, and it scales well with each one of them except for Mercenary. More on that later here.

Things You Should Know About Tougher Times Item

Tougher Times in Risk of Rain 2 is a defense-oriented item falling under common rarity. It means the chances of it spawning from random loot chests are pretty high. Getting your hands on Tougher Times item is much easier in Risk of Rain 2, and you do not have to wander in environments like Abyssal Depths to find it. Furthermore, before the item could spawn in your game, you will need to complete the ‘Learning Process’ challenge. It requires you to die five times in Risk of Rain 2 – a relatively easy feat to pull off.

Once you complete the challenge, the ‘Tougher Times’ item will start to rain in your pool of item drops. The official description states that a survivor receives a 15% (+15% per stack) chance to block incoming damage. However, that is not easier said than done. More on this later down in the guide.

Risk of Rain 2 tougher times
Tougher Times Item Description

Additionally, whenever the item triggers the block damage, you will hear a sound and a message “Blocked” will pop up instead of damage numbers on your survivor. It will indicate that the item effectively served its purpose of defending you from an attack, which can be a single small or heavy hit.

Times When ‘Tougher Times’ Does not Work

  1. Mercenary: While playing with this survivor, using his utility skills, which involves dash attacks, does not trigger the block damage perk of Tougher Times.
  2. Void Reaver: The spawn from Hidden Realms lands a death implosion attack which instantly kills anyone caught in it. Since it does not directly hit damage, the ‘Tougher Times’ item does not block this kind of attack.

Times When ‘Tougher Times’ Work

  1. Rex: This class is infamous for sacrificing your own health to initiate skill-based attacks. Once again, you will receive an advantage if you equip ‘Tougher Times.’ It is a relief to have this item in your inventory as Rex passively drains its health to damage enemies with its skill attacks.
  2. Void Fields: Whenever a survivor enters this part of Hidden Realm, a permanent modifier ‘Suffocate’ is applied. It slowly takes away health at a moderate pace. If you have ‘Tougher Times’ on you, your survivor will benefit from the perk of blocking damage. The item comes in handy while you are venturing inside the Void Fields.
  3. Hellfire Tincture: This lunar equipment can ignite a survivor along with allies and enemies in a 15m radius for 12 seconds. So, triggering the equipment grants immunity from the fire as ‘Tougher Times’ grants your temporary hit defense.
  4. Shrine of Blood: This type of shrine in Risk of Rain 2 takes away a portion of a survivor’s health whenever it is activated. In this case as well, ‘Tougher Times’ blocks the incoming damage.

How Stacking Tougher Times Works

Theoretically, the item description of Risk of Rain 2 Tougher Times item says a survivor will get a 15% chance to block incoming damage. Moreover, each stack adds a 15% chance of triggering the defensive mechanism frequently. However, in reality, that is not how the ‘Tougher Times’ item works in Risk of Rain 2. Most of the items work in a more linear fashion of stacking but not this one. Stacking ‘Tougher Times’ to increase the rate of frequent damage block works in a hyperbolic way. To grasp the idea of ‘How Tougher Times really works,’ take a look at the image here.

Risk of Rain 2 tougher times
Tougher Times – Hyperbolic Stacking

Figuratively, if you have just one ‘Tougher Times’ item in your inventory, you have a 13% chance to receive a complete damage block, as opposed to the official 15% number. Furthermore, suppose you add one more stack of the said item. In that case, the number does not multiply to 26% because the stacking is not linear; it’s hyperbolic. So, stacking two ‘Tougher Times’ items gives you nearly a 23.1% chance of blocking incoming damage in its entirety.

It is why players who want to create a build focusing on blocking incoming damage with a 90-100% chance of rate need to understand first how it works. Knowing the information will broaden your horizons to see a bigger picture. It will also allow you to assimilate the idea that it is nearly impossible to stack, say, 60 ‘Tougher Times’ items to receive a 90% rate of chance. We are not suggesting that pulling this off is unthinkable. It is just that you will need to be extremely lucky to receive ‘Tougher Times’ as the most dropped item (from Rusty loot box or otherwise) while doing runs. Also, you will need to find a 3D printer to get more of the said item. Walking down this road may seem a bit impractical, as you may waste a lot of your time. It will add more reason to your frustration other than beating monsters to death and visiting wrong shrines like the Shrine of Order.

Our Analysis

Based on our playthrough while managing to find and equip 10 ‘Tougher Times’ items, we think it is straight-up a solid loot item to hold in your inventory. We were getting a 60% rate of a chance to block incoming damage. Even though this may not seem a significant number, the frequent triggering happens on the fly while you remain engaged in encounters. The early stages proved more valuable than near-to-end game environments. It is because as you progress further in Risk of Rain 2, the difficulty increases. So, that is when you start to notice that no matter how many stacks of ‘Tougher Times’ item you have, they are not much helpful. But hey, it is still a relief to block a heavy attack of Elite Lemurian like Kjaro or Runald or a Twisted Scavenger while farming lunar coins.

Now that you know everything about the Risk of Rain 2 tougher times item, are you going to do a test run with it? Let us know more about it in the comments section here below.


Irfan Ansari


With four years of Video Game Journalism and Tremendous love for Gaming, Irfan loves chatting and writing everything about video games.
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