Every thrust of Rangidil's spear was blocked with ease; Every slash of Rangidil's blade was deflected away; Every blow of Rangidil's mace was met by the shield; Every quick arrow shot could find no purchase For the Monster's greatest power was in his dread blessing That no weapon from no warrior found in all Of Morrowind Could pass the shield of Abernanit.
If the Glass Cannon believes that the best defense is a good offense, the Stone Wall tries for the reverse. His offense is nothing to write home about, if it even technically exists. But he's tough. Really, really tough. And if anything can put him down, odds are he's quick enough on the recovery to get right back up for round two.
Depending on the game, a Stone Wall may use one or any of three basic strategies:
Berserking — Throws himself at the enemy without a thought for defense. Relying on his inherent toughness to keep him alive, he uses suicidal tactics to improve his dismal attack power. This is especially common for Stone Walls whose toughness is completely automatic, rather than something they need to work at.
Turtling — The complete opposite tactic. Does nothing but defend, defend, defend, with maybe the occasional attack when the enemy least expects it. The fight becomes a patience game — either a battle of attrition to see who tires out first, or a waiting game until the whistle blows. If his defense is something he physically constructs and builds, he can win a fight by slowly expanding outward until he leaves the enemy without a foot to stand on. Often has defensive buffs and minor healing magic, in which case you're dealing with a "Paladin Tank."
Tanking — A teamwork strategy. Interposes himself between the enemy and an ally, typically a Glass Cannon that can take care of dealing damage while the Stone Wall takes care of defense. By keeping the enemy occupied, he allows allies with greater attack strength but poorer defense to kill the enemy without getting killed. Characters who do this are called "Meat Shields" or "Party Tanks." Often have moves designed to force attention to themselves ("pulling aggro"). Sometimes called "Control Tanks".
Distinguished from the Mighty Glacier in that the Stone Wall trades off offense for defense, whereas the Mighty Glacier trades off speed for strength (which can include offense, defense, or most often both). The Stone Wall is much stronger on defense than on offense, and in extreme cases, may only deal Scratch Damage. The direct inverse of Glass Cannon. This is someone who can take it better than they can dish it out.
This trope partly takes its name from a real-life example: Confederate General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson won the battle of Bull Run due to his strategy to not retreat from his line, no matter how bad things went for him. And for a while things went pretty bad.
A subtrope of Competitive Balance.
Turtling is Signum's preferred strategy as well, though unlike Yuuno she's not limited to Stone Wall tactics. As seen in her duel with Nanoha, she prefers to wear the enemy down until she can catch them off guard, then lay into them with everything she's got.
Victoria Dahlgrün is a Mighty Glacier, but her defense is that of a Stone Wall. She combines the berserker type with the turtling type, but is more the former. She just stands still until she decides to kick ass.
Vandread - Jura, a crab-like mech with astronomically powerful Deflector Shields. It can shield an entire planet against a far bigger and more powerful warship.
Alternativly, it can encase itself and it's allies in a shield and simply bash it's way through an enemy formation.
Yakumo of 3×3 Eyes is a berserker type meat shield (emphasis on the 'meat'), as all he has is the amazing power to not die; his job is to stand in front of attacks and be dismembered. He later learns how to fight effectively.
Zushi in Hunter × Hunter is able to form barriers to soften truck-force attacks to where he's unharmed by them (he can still be knocked down, though he can also soften the impact upon landing), but he can barely fight otherwise. The barrier is invisible to an untrained eye, so from the point of view of a Muggle, it looks like the boy is impervious to damage.
In YuYu Hakusho, Kuwabara clearly takes this role in the main team, with Yusuke being the damage dealer, Hiei as the speedster and Kurama having the sharp mind. Kuwabara doesn't have highly damaging moves like the Spirit Gun or Dragon of the Darkness flame. However, you know you have good durability if you managed to still get up after being in a tug-o-war with Byakko's tigers, repeatedly thrown down to the stone stadium floor by Rinku and stabbed in over 10 different areas by the Elder Toguro.
Rurouni Kenshin: In comparison to some of the higher tiers of the series, Sanosuke can come off as this; his attacks aren't always the strongest (at least in comparison to Saitou or Kenshin), but his endurance is one of his most outstanding traits.
In Risk, there's always at least one person who will always conquer Australia and then just sit there and build up troops while everyone else weakens each other. Since Australia only has one path in and out, massing all the troops on one territory makes it almost impossible to conquer without using every last one of your available armies. You have to take out Australia within the first few rounds or you're screwed. (No wonder Lex Luthor wanted it.) However, it also only shares a border with Asia, which very few players go for, meaning that it is logistically difficult for an Australia player to put their troops in a position to accomplish much on offense.
In Chess, the concept of prophylaxis could be described as this. Rather than playing to improve your attacking chances, a prophylactic move is one that limits the opponent's opportunities. Former world champion Tigran Petrosian is probably the best example; while he had less wins than other world champions, he had almost no losses, even going through 1962 without losing a single tournament game.
In Yu-Gi-Oh!, the Rock-type is mainly geared toward Turtling play, as rocks tend to have low attack and high defence, as well as quite a few of them having the ability to flip into face-down defence position. There was even a Rock-type structure deck at one point built entirely on building an uber-strong defence. Formerly shown above was Labyrinth Wall, which does nothing to most other monster cards on its own, but has 3000 defence, meaning it can shrug off even an attack from Blue Eyes White Dragon.
However, there are also cards like Spirit Reaper (Zombie) and Marshmallon (Fairy), who simply can't be killed in battle, but have some of the worst stats in the game (though they both have some damaging effects, with Spirit Reaper's attack-and-your-opponent-discards effect, and Marshmallon doing 1000 damage when attacked face-down).
Walls and other creatures with Defender in Magic: The Gathering are essentially this — by the very definition of the ability they can't attack and many deal little or no damage to enemy attacking creatures that they block. On the other hand, they can be very tough for a relatively low cost; the actual Wall of Stone card is a good example. It's worth noting, though, that the game also features a number of subversions and that these may be becoming more common since the defender ability was formally introduced and divorced from the 'wall' creature type (the original rule being simply that 'walls can't attack').
Among creatures that can actually attack, this is the defining trait of treefolk. Indomitable Ancients is the most extreme example: It can dish out 2 damage but can take up to 10 and has no other abilities. The card Doran, the Siege Tower is specifically designed to invert this and turn such creatures into powerhouses by making all creatures deal combat damage equal to their toughness instead of their power, a windfall for most treefolk.
Throughout Magic's history, there have been entire decks dedicated to turtling, creating an impenetrable defense that allows them to win through Scratch Damage or by forcing an opponent to run out the clock by running out of cards to draw. Snow White and Project X both sought to gain absurd amounts of life through combos, ensuring your opponent will never take you down to 0. The classic UW control decks had hardly any win conditions, but tons of removal and permission spells to keep them alive. And then there's...
Turbofog, everyone's least favorite Lorwyn-era tourney deck! It had very few creatures, defensive or otherwise, but stuffed itself with damage prevention, counterspells, control, life-gain, and just a few cards to recycle itself and increase its runtime. Its only win condition was to last so damn long that the opponent's deck ran out of cards, an instant lose, or more likely that the opponent simply lost patience and accepted his (eventual) defeat.
The Pokémon Trading Card Game originally had Mr. Mime, who prevented any damage greater than 20, though he had pitifully low HP. More recently, Shedinja made a Stone Wall not out of itself, but the player: Shedinja did not count towards the 6 Pokémon to knock out to win a game, so someone packing a deck full of Shedinja would force the opponent into a war of attrition.
Superman: When I don't want to be moved, nothing on Earth can move me.
This was the main hook of C.F. in Deadpool. Supposedly standing for "Cannon Fodder" (although a strong argument can also be made for "Cluster Fuck"), he's... well, he's... incredibly malleable, with skin that's impossible to penetrate so much as stretch. He's hurt just as easily as anybody else, but no real lasting damage is done; he once proudly showed off a scar he received when he took an RPG to the stomach.
Compare Butterball/Boulder, a fat young man whose power of being completely invulnerable to harm also makes his body immutable; he can't lose weight (except with a near-starvation diet), can't build muscle, doesn't get tired, and will never be able to develop any actual combat capabilities. He washed out of Camp Hammond and landed in the Shadow Initiative with minor league villains.
Turtle from the latest Legion of Super-Heroes continuity is incredibly durable, almost completely invulnerable to harm. However, his total lack of extraordinary offensive capabilities hardly wowed the Legion when he tried out, landing him and his Glass Cannon pal Sizzle in the Legion Auxiliary with the hope that they'll develop moves to compensate for their weaknesses.
Diamond Lil, associated with Alpha Flight (as both hero and villain), was pretty much invulnerable, but not super-strong. She was a fair fighter and not at all slow, but wouldn't be much of a problem for true heavyweights because she just couldn't hit that hard.
Brit is a comic book character created by Robert Kirkman who is an average-sized man of about 60 who is completely invulnerable to harm, thanks to a serum created by his father. Unlike many other invulnerable characters in the Image universe, he has no other abilities, having the strength of a 60-ish-year-old man who works out.
Violet of The Incredibles; Near-impregnable defense, but she'd be hard pressed to actually do anything to the aggressors.
In Kick-Ass, the titular character is a Badass AdorableAction Survivor with no training for actual combat, but has metal plates in his bones as well as a fucked up nerve endings that gave him a very high tolerance for pain.
The Pharaoh from Soon I Will Be Invincible. Though pathetic by most measures, he was something of a nuisance because his power (activated by his hammer) was complete immunity to injury. Even taking an artillery round head-on did nothing more than push him into the ground a few feet.
The Great Ship from Robert Reed's Great Ship universe. It has a hull made of a nearly indestructible material, dozens of kilometers thick. When the ship was attacked by an alien fleet who wanted to seize control, the Great Ship's crew simply closed all the spaceports and waited until the enemy ran out of fuel and ammunition as they futilely tried to penetrate the ship.
The lightsaber style of Soresu is essentially the Turtling variant of this trope, created to defend both against multiple blaster-wielding foes and single opponents. However, it requires both the endurance and the concentration to last until the opponent (finally) showed a weakness in their defense, or else it would merely delay the inevitable. Obi-Wan Kenobi was acknowledged in canon as the ultimate master of this technique, and is said to be able to protect himself from up to twenty strikes per second in the novelization of ROTS.
The Sun Crusher is a Lightning Bruiser against a planetary target, packing torpedoes with the ability to cause a sun to go supernova. Against other ships it is this trope; its hull is invulnerable, but since its ship-to-ship weapons protrude from the hull, they tend to get taken out early in any given fight leaving it with no method of dealing damage save ramming.
Walker, Texas Ranger: The fifth-season episode "Warriors," where a supremacist plans to rule the world by creating an army of these. Just the prototype is seen, and his apparent invulnerability is due to special "rapid healing" DNA that a scientist had been forced at gunpoint to share. Initially, everything that Walker throws at the enforcer is shaken off – even his patented roundhouse kick and a spray of bullets to the chest and head. This later is averted when the scientist is able to get free and finds the enforcer's weak spots.
Unit19G is nearly impossible to make flinch (to the point where he can withstand 5000 degrees centigrade), but he isn't too great on the offense.
The art of the No Sell, when done correctly, results in a wrestler becoming effectively this – an unbeatable individual who can withstand all punishment and put his opponent off-guard.
During his run in the WWF to create interest in the 1989 movie No Holds Barred, Tiny Lister reprised his role as that movie's Zeus – an unbeatable man-monster who could withstand all offense from the world's best wrestlers without so much as flinching. This was the idea for awhile in matches but it would be averted as eventually, by taking enough punishment, Zeus would be worn down and set up for defeat, although in in-ring confrontations prior to Summer Slam 1989, the trope was fully enforced.
The Undertaker, especially during the early 1990s, was especially adept at being a stone wall.
In Cricket, the traditional role of the opening batsmen was to play defensively and hang around and blunt the initial barrage of the opposition's fast bowlers in order to set up the team's innings, often scoring quite slowly. (In)famous "stonewallers" include Bill Lawry for Australia and Geoffrey Boycott for England. However, in recent years, ODI and Twenty20 cricket especially have featured more aggressive openers, as the strategy has been to exploit the fielding restrictions that are in place early in the innings.
Making something of a comeback in Test matches: England in particular have capitalised on the "dropping attention span" of some of their opponents: witness the efforts of their current top order, Andrew Strauss, Alistair Cook and Jonathan Trott. Though granted, all three of them score faster than Boycott did.
Bowlers can also be Stone Walls, looking more to dry up runs and pressure batsmen into making mistakes than take wickets through attacking bowling. In an inverse of the situation in batting, this type of bowler is more popular in T20 and ODI than in Tests.
"Turtle-balling" is a common tactic in American Football, in which the offense does just enough to gain a lead of more than one score, then uses a combination of stifling defense and a relentless running game to prevent the opponent from catching up. Bill Cowher, Pittsburgh Steelers coach in the 1990s and early 2000s, perfected the technique; when his teams built a lead of 11 or more points at any point in the game, victory was practically guaranteed. In such situations, his teams lost once and tied once... and won 102 times.
Many defencemen in sports (again, soccer and hockey are examples) play without any offensive drive. For example, the Buffalo Sabres' Robyn Regehr.
The goalkeeper, in any sport that uses one (soccer, hockey...)
William Felton Russell. He didn't score much and his shooting percentages were mediocre, he is an 11x NBA champion, 5x MVP and widely considered the greatest defender in NBA history.
Pitchers in the National League. The pitcher generally has a very low batting average (though some have one that rivals other position players), and often a low speed, too, but they are the standard bearer for the defense to the point of being analogous to a goalkeeper. The position is so specialized that the American League has a rule that you are permitted to have one designated hitter to hit in place of one defensive player without taking him out of the game, and everybody chooses to bat for the pitcher.
Several teams have far better pitchers than they have hitters, being able to only a handful of runs in a match but making sure the other team gets NONE.
Catchers are generally either this or a Mighty Glacier, because squatting so much tends to ruin your knees, making them rather slow on the bases, so their offensive capabilities tend to be limited to raw power. Defensively, the catcher is The Lancer to the pitcher, because the catcher must catch (or at least secure) strike three in order to complete a strikeout, pitches that are not fouled off by the batter are live (and so runners can attempt to advance before, during or after a pitch) and because the catcher's job is to guard home plate. Pitchers get credited for wins like goalkeepers, but catchers look the part because of the protective gear.
The rope-a-dope strategy in Boxing, as best seen in the Rumble in the Jungle between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. Wait against the ropes, guard face, taunt during clinches, throw occasional jab to opponent's face. Repeat until opponent is tired, then start delivering beatdown.
Boxing has also seen a number of fighters over the years who specialize in defense to the point of being all but untouchable, and only need to use a minor amount of offense because their opponent simply can't land anything on them. A few such fighters include Willie Pep, Niccolino Locche, Wilfredo Benitez, Pernell Whitaker, and Floyd Mayweather. Muhammad Ali was this at times, mostly in his youth, and even Mike Tyson, who was most famous for his power, showed some of this ability as well.
The tactic of "flooding" in Australian Rules Football is a version of this, having so many players around the ball and likely opposition targets that the opposition can't get a clean possession. The Sydney Swans are noted exponents of this, while in the 2013 Preliminary Final, Fremantle did it well enough to beat Sydney at their own game.
Anyone making use of a one-handed weapon and a held shield in D&D is a lesser example of this trope regardless of their class, suffering a substantial loss of offensive power compared to a two handed weapon. (D&D is also subject to the Armor Is Useless trope, thereby negating the point of such an approach.)
The Knight class from the 3.5 Player's Handbook II is a meatshield type- they have offensive and defensive abilities comparable to a Fighter, but have the Knight's Challenge mechanic, allowing them such tricks as forcing all moderately-powerful enemies to attack the Knight in preference to any other party member or cause all less-than-moderately-powerful enemies to cower in fear.
The Crusader class has a damage sink that delays a portion of their damage, and heals by hitting people. Against a high level Crusader you need to do 70 points of damage every round just to break even. To compensate for this, their disciples (Devoted Spirit, Stone Dragon, White Raven) are geared mainly towards defense and support. Nonetheless, they're still quite capable; they're really only "trading offense for defense" in comparison to warblades.
Arguably, Lunars in Exalted have become the Turtling or Tanking variety as of the 2.5 edition update. While their offense isn't terribly impressive compared to most of the other Exalt types in the game, a properly built Lunar tank is an absolute nightmare to take down, boasting the highest soak and health out of all the splats, cheap persistent regeneration, and if that wasn't enough, they can put off taking damage or even realizing they're supposed to be dead for a frighteningly long time.
ROB from Super Smash Bros. Brawl could count as this. Thousands of Smashers already complain about ROB players' campy styles, throwing projectiles around, using a quick damaging move when the enemy gets close and using the time gained to switch to the other side of the field and repeat. He even has a back-aerial attack with considerable strength that can punish anyone trying to pursue him. Unlike monsters like Toon Link, he doesn't have great strength and speed in most of his standard moves and can't outrun most characters, while being very heavy and having an extremely good recovery move.
Before there was Q, several Fighting Game characters made use of Counter Attacks to act as pseudo-walls, usually to make up for otherwise bland movesets.
Advanced Variable Geo 2 gave us Judoka Kyouko Kirishima, whose normal attacks were very conventional and lacked the punch of those of the other characters. However, she took somewhat less damage than most characters, and was balanced out with an array of high-power counters.
Another four years later saw SNK make a true "Counter Wall" in the form of Seth. Even more defensive than Kasumi Todoh, Seth's low-output, unimpressive normal and special attacks was made up for by a noticible amount of defensive and high-output counters... Among which is a counter-based Limit Break which hits hard.
Exdeath is one of the most extreme cases, in Dissidia: Final Fantasy, given that his moveset revolves mostly around Counter Attacks. Could possibly also be considered a Mighty Glacier as a result of his incredibly slow movement speed. (Though probably unintentional, this lends itself to a pun, in that he renders his enemies attacks null and VOID.) Essentially, what an Exdeath player wants to do is stand in one place and nullify or deflect anything the opponent throws at him, using a non-counter move only if the opponent tries not attacking him or as a finisher. Think Wobbuffet placed into a 3-D fighting game context.
Sub-Zero from Mortal Kombat was probably the Trope Maker for turtle fighters. Sub-Zero players were widely known and often reviled for assertively setting up damaging Ice Clone traps and waiting for their opponents to make their move. This was especially true in MK4, where Sub-Zero had most of his other tactics nerfed, but this one was left untouched.
Good Gods in Black & White 2 are these. Fitting of their 'Good' nature, these Gods use strong walls to discourage (and, because of the AI, utterly stop)) enemy militaries from attacking. The downside of this is the (general) inability to kill said enemy troops, but the occasional Fireball doesn't dent your Good Rating.
The Engineer in Team Fortress 2 has relatively low firepower, but can quickly construct sentries that, while poor-to-decent on their own, can be continually healed by the Engineer, as long as he has metal. He can also construct dispensers that give him an effectively infinite supply of metal. This allows an entrenched Engineer supported by the rest of his team to whittle enemies down to nothing in seconds, creating an immobile obstacle that's basically impassable unless the enemy has a good Spy, Demoman, or a Medic with an Ubercharge.
It in fact depends alot on the location. All classes can take out an engineer position. It's only strong with adequate team support, for which the teleporter is quite handy. One versus one, any class can take out most engineer positions. For example scouts can use their speed to peek around a corner, take a few shots, get back in cover, let the sentry reset, repeat. It takes a while but it is possible. A scout can also use bonk and get past the sentry, sometimes even in such a way that the engineer gets shot to bits by his own sentry. Snipers outrange the engineer his sentry and a wellplaced huntsman shot can one-shot an engineer that's crouched behind his sentry. Which classes can or can't take out a set up in a specific location is very dependant on the map and the setup it's exact location and construction but in a game where respawning as another class costs nothing, after the first failed attempt, the set up is doomed if there are no teammates around to help the engineer. Often the dispenser or teleporter is what is holding the line by pure teamsupport. The sentry is too weak to be the main defense. Too many classes have received damage and utility buffs with new items while the engineer is stuck with a sentry with a hitbox that's twice as big in volume then the sentry's actual size and it aims with it's middle, making it usually fairly easy to shoot at it without it even noticing you.
The Engineer did receive a few item upgrades over the years, although not nearly as many as the other classes. One of the major ones was the Wrangler, which allows you to manually aim the sentry gun, increasing the distance it can shoot, and also raises the armor level quite a bit. However, this also introduces its own problems, as any inattention on the part of the Engineer will almost certainly kill him (via Backstab or Headshot), which will in turn disable the sentry for 2-3 seconds. It also eats ammo a lot faster than before.
For the Meat Shield version, a Heavy Weapons Guy with Natasha equipped can be one of these. For the price of lower firepower, any caught by these boolets will get slowed down, resulting in anything between a minor annoyance to a complete death trap depending on the circumstances. Add a Medic into the equation, constantly healing the Heavy from any damage he might pick up from a lucky shot, and you've got a solid wall.
A heavy carrying the Fists of Steel and being healed by a Medic can be almost unkillable, but is reduced to melee attacks if he wants to keep the protection.
Tanks in Mann Vs. Machine don't have any offensive capability other than inching towards your base carrying a bomb, but they take impressive amounts of punishment. To get the achievement for killing it withing 20 seconds of it spawning, the recommended method is five wrangled sentries pointed exclusively at the thing.
The AAV 7 A 1 AMTRAC in Battlefield 3. It has a weapon virtually useless against armor that has an extremely sluggish rotation rate. However it has extremely good armor that can withstand 5 packs of C4 being detonated at once (other vehicles are fully destroyed with 3) and can function as a spawn point for the entire team which allows it to indirectly take down Tanks just by getting the tank to focus on it while the endless spawning team mates focus on taking it down.
In City of Heroes and City of Villains, one defensive choice for Tanker/Brute is Stone Armor. There's a power in that set called "Granite Armor", which turns you into a special character model (a living stone statue type of thing). While you have that active, you have somewhere between 15% and 25.2% Defense against all but Psionics, 37.5% and 63.7% damage reduction against all but Psionics, and high resistance to all status effects. The tradeoff is that you do 30% less damage, take three times longer to recharge across the board, run less than a third your normal speed and cannot jump.
The basic playstyle no matter the powersets for Tankers (and some Brutes, and a few particularly crazy Scrappers)) is the 'Shielding' variant of this. Since Tankers can take darn near anything thrown at them, their abilities are geared towards getting the attention while the Squishy Wizard and Glass Cannon shoot from behind. Most Scrappers (and all the other Brutes) don't care.
Paladins from Final Fantasy XI fit this trope to a T, although "berserking" is normally only seen in merit parties. Ninjas are Fragile Speedsters that can (and do) function as turtling Stone Walls through evasion and illusion. Warriors don't actually count, as they possess significant attack power right out of the box (though their attacking power doesn't go up quite as fast as other classes).
Dedicated tanks in World of Warcraft fall into this category, including Protection Warriors, Protection Paladins, Blood Death Knights, and bear-form Druids. Their role is to distract the enemy while other players kill them. While some tanks can deal a fair amount of damage, particularly whoever Blizzard recently overbuffed for threat, this is usually done through low-damage area of effect attacks directed against all available enemies at once. As such, when the tank starts dealing more damage than some of the designated damage dealers it's a sign that either your party is taking way too long to kill their enemies, the tank greatly outgears the damage-dealers, or the tank class is unbalanced.
As of the Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria expansions, the dynamic has changed. Tanks no longer have over double the health of anyone else (more like 1.5x at best), and can now deal a great deal of damage themselves thanks to the Vengeance mechanic. Relatively speaking, they have been converted from Stone Wall into Mighty Glacier.
EVE Online Drakes....just Drakes, for shield tanking (80k+ regenerative). While Domis are pretty good for armor with reppers.
For those not in the know, Drakes receive a bonus of 5% per level of the battlecruiser skill (Max Level 5) to shield resists. Therefore, all base resists to all damage types are boosted by 25% with max skill. 6 mid slots allow for propulsion mod, warp disruptor, web, and 3 shield mods. It has the fitting to boost shield capacity with large shield extenders and resists boosters even further. So you can wind up with 80K shield points with a minimum of 70% resistance to all damage. Mission runners in drake can have 75%-80% resists to the specific rats in the mission. Add to that the boots to natural shield regen certain rigs and modules give and you can be regenerating those shield at something like 100 - 200 pts per second. That said, your damage sucks.
The recent patch to Mining Barges and Exhumers has transformed the Skiff into one of these. While all Exhumers grant a 5% bonus to shield resistances per level of Mining Barge (which you need to have at Level 5 just to fly an Exhumer), the Skiff takes it one step further by also adding a 5% bonus to Shield Hitpoints per level of Mining Barge. It also has more mid-slots than any other Exhumer, and since it only has to equip one mining laser, has the most extra CPU and Powergrid for fitting shield modules. This allows the Skiff to fit a buffer tank that can exceed 90,000 effective hitpoints. However, since it is a mining ship, it has poor handling and virtually no offensive capabilities other than drones.
Many of the prime or once-prime farming strategies in Guild Wars revolve around adjusting certain characters' HP until Protective Spirit (reduces damage to 10% of the character's hit points; a powerful defensive buff) meshes with various healing skills, making the character difficult to kill. The player then aggros as much as is feasible and has various Smiting buffs deal damage back to the opponents each time the player is hit.
Paragons even moreso. Warriors are loaded with defensive skills, but their offense is at least halfway decent. Paragons, however, have armor that's on par with a warrior, can carry a shield for extra defense, and are absolutely packed with defensive skills and partywide defensive buffs. Killing a Paragon who knows what he's doing is an exercise in frustration. They aren't very dangerous though, and their offense is mildly annoying at best.
In Phantasy Star Online, the RAcaseal has the highest Defense, second to high HP, and pretty high Evasion. The result of this is being a godly tank. However, their damage output is nothing to write home about...
The Ice School in Wizard101 is the only class that can equip gear with resistance to all attacks other than crowns gear. Even tough later gear allowed other schools to equip similar gear ice still has the best resistance. Also ice has the weakest attack spells and many defense based spells and can even steal defensive charms and slow healing effects from enemies.
Mario's Tanuki suit has a mode that turns to stone. You can't be hurt, but you can't act.
Olaf of The Lost Vikings is a very basic example of the Shielding variety (with an actual shield, no less!). He can't attack at all, but he can block any attack. Simply place him in front of an enemy to absorb all of its attacks while Baleog takes it out.
In Command & Conquer 1 and Red Alert 1 games, the Armored Personnel Carrier has heavy armor, but is only has a light machine gun. Though it is meant to carry troops around the field, it is almost always used as a stone wall unit.
In Red Alert 2, the war miner, though mainly a resource harvester, is armed with a small machine gun, but has enough armor to defeat tanks on a one on one battle. Same with slave miner in the Yuri's Revenge expansion pack. Also in the YR expansion, the Allies have access to the Battle Fortress, which is the the most heavily armored unit in the game and is armed with a light machine gun, though it can be garrisoned with five infantry, who can shoot out of the vehicle, making it one of the best units in terms of armor and firepower, hence turning it into a Mighty Glacier when fully loaded.
The Allied Assault Destroyer in Red Alert 3 is heavy, slow, and packs a not-terribly-impressive gun for its cost. However, it has impressive armor to begin with, and its special ability both increases its durability and redirects projectiles from nearby allied units to the destroyer, at the cost of not being able to shoot at all. (It can, however, still crush things, including many light vehicles.)
Defense of the Ancients: All-Stars vividly demonstrates the downside of Stone Walls. Heroes of this type, like Centaur Warchief or Treant Protector, have one key team-aiding skill and lots of health. However, when said skill runs its course and the enemy team is still in good straits, they will proceed to target the more dangerous Glass Cannon rather than the tank that poses little threat, defeating the purpose of being a tank. In earlier versions buying the Radiance item allowed them to provide meaningful DPS, but with the Metagame shift towards shorter game lengths and further encouraging ganking, Radiance has become harder to get. Not to mention that some heroes have percentage-based skills that deal more damage to targets with more health, and you see how hard Stone Walls in DotA have it.
Similarly, League of Legends has a few of these, with the most well-known (and often hated) ones being Morgana and Yorick. In fact, Morg is one of the most frequent bans due to her nature as a counterpick-only champ, which makes counterpicking her extremely difficult to do without screwing up team comp, and the absolute futility of trying to force her out of her lane.
Rammus is a popular stone wall, in that his passive, combined with items, can make it incredibly difficult for Attack Damage focused champions to kill him. By equipping a special item that inflicts a percent of damage he receives back at his attacker, meaning people can literally kill themselves trying to kill him. Which he can literally make enemies do with his special taunt ability.
There are many other Stone Wall type characters that are more conventional, often referred to as Tanks. However, your choice of items can allow them to do signifigant damage instead of increasing their damage soaking potential, and vice versa for other character types. The more effective Stone Walls tend to come with support abilities and crowd control spells that either draw attention to themselves, assist their teammates, or present easy kills to their damage dealers on a silver platter.
Netstorm has several towers whose only function is to absorb the enemy shots. Technically, any building would suffice, but the towers automatically switch the attention to themselves and usually have higher HP. The Bulwark takes the trope Up to Eleven (and the price is appropriate).
In Ancient Domains of Mystery, the Ancient Stone Beast is an example of this. Though it's the boss of the Earth Temple, it deals far far less damage than its slaves, the earth elementals and stone grues. Being a Stone Wall, it has a PV note Protective Value, a number which is reduced from all damage done on it, short of Magic and specific weapons of 60, and over 1k HP.
There are also literal living walls. There are a lot of them in the minotaur maze.
100 Rogues has the White Knight monster class. While upgrading a certain skill makes its damage output better, almost its entire skill tree is dedicated to making it tougher than before.
In Dwarf Fortress, you can equip your dwarves with dual shields. This gives them two chances to block any attack. In adventure mode, it is possible to wield hundreds of shield at a time, making the adventurer nearly impervious to attacks.
The Metal Slimes from Dragon Quest. Spins the trope slightly by making them extremely fast — a rare combination of Stone Wall, Fragile Speedster, and Glass Cannon. In the Mons spinoff games, Metal Slimes on your team do not run, making them excellent healers, mages, — extremely fast, great MP, immune to offensive magic, and takes almost no damage from physical attacks. This is balanced by the fact that Metal Slimes have almost no HP, and even in the Mons spinoffs, never gain very much, so that if they are consistently hit by an attack that pierces their nigh-invulnerable armor (Metal Slash, usually), they will be defeated in short order. They also have absolutely no evasion.
The Paladin class of Dragon Quest IX are this trope. Their attack is merely passable, but ye God is their defence high. Past level 45 they'll only take Scratch Damage from physical attacks, and if you teach them the shield skill Magic Mirror they'll be completely immune to magical attacks, which means if you use their Forbearance ability — which takes damage for the entire party — your adventuring party is nigh untouchable. Even before they learn all those high level abilities they're exceptionally useful since they learn the defence-boosting Kabuff spell and magic defence-boosting Magic Barrier spell at fairly low levels. They are defensive beasts.
Many, many Pokémon, in varying degrees - not only between offense and defense, but the game's special and physical attack classifications.
Currently, Shuckle has the highest Defense stats, but its typing and lack of recovery hurts it. When it comes to Defense in Pokémon, the last two matter almost as much as raw numbers.
There's quite a few Pokémon who have good defensive stats all around and lackluster offense. When they do attack, it's often with a type advantage, a move with high base power to make up for the low Attack stat, or as a filler move. Included are Aggron, Probopass, and Bastiodon, who look as if they were designed to be Stone Walls, but whose Steel/Rock typing leaves gaping holes in their defenses. Come X and Y, however, and Aggron averts this with its Mega Evolution. Not only does it lose its rock-typing (and thus the weaknesses that come with it), gain an ability that decreases supereffective damage, AND bolstered defenses, but its OFFENSE skyrockets as well, turning it into a Mighty Glacier. Drop a speed-boosting move on top of all that like Rock Polish or Automatize, and Aggron becomes a full-blown Lightning Bruiser.
And a Pokémon doesn't have to have high defensive stats to be a Stone Wall if their type, ability, or movepool lets them compensate. Just one example is the ability Prankster, which makes the Pokémon with it have priority on any non-damaging move.
The best-known example is Blissey, who has absurdly high Hit Points (the highest in the game, in fact, with a maximum of 714 points) and Special Defense, as well as healing moves. The item Leftovers, which heals 1/16 of the holder's maximum HP each turn, is incredibly effective here, as well as the move Softboiled, which restores up to 50% of the user's maximum HP. Even with her abysmal Defense stat, Blissey's enormous HP lets her take a few physical hits - as long as they aren't Fighting-type, but even then it typically takes a strong STAB Fighting-type move for Blissey to succumb to a one-hit knockout. And forget about status moves - not only can Blissey heal them with Heal Bell or Aromatherapy, her ability Natural Cure removes any status when she switches out. Finally, the moves Double Team and Minimize, which increase the user's evasiveness, can compound Blissey's defensive strategy even further and make her even harder to hit.
Some Pokémon have good physical bulk, but fall over if a special attacker so much as looks at themnote The inverse, high special defense and low physical, is rare in comparison for true Stone Walls.. These are usually Rock or Ground (or Rock/Ground)-type Pokémon, as well as a few Steel-types like Skarmory and outliers such as Cloyster (a Water/Ice-type). The Steel-type resistances are numerous and the Ground-type is considered to be a decent defensive type, but the Rock-type is seen as a shoddy defensive type (Cloyster's Ice-type takes this Up to Eleven). Since Pokémon of these types are almost always slow, they're not too hard to stop - if you can hit them with a special attack. Players who use these Pokémon will combine them with teammates who can compensate for this weakness, leading to an infamous combo: SkarmBlissnote Skarmory and Blissey used in tandem.
It is possible to win a pokemon battle without attacking in any way, simply by using pokemon as a Stone Wall. Pokemon moves can only be used a certain number of times in a battle, and each pokemon only has four moves. Once they run out, pokemon start struggling, hurting themselves in the process. If you form an impenetrable defence, you don't have to attack at all; just let the enemy waste their moves doing scratch damage, and then faint from Struggle recoil.
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon has a quirk where a species that normally receives one of two Abilities receives them both. Pokémon Mystery Dungeon's Bronzong therefore has no weaknesses and many resistances. There are only six types that do standard damage to it.
Red's Snorlax and Whitney's Miltank act as this in-game.
Any Pokémon that is capable of raising both defenses can function as a Stone Wall, although Pokémon that have to rely on one move for each stat (e.g., Amnesia and Iron Defense, like Clamperl and evolutions) do use up half of their moveset for these purposes. Cosmic Power and Stockpile (although only half as effective) affect both defenses, however, and either is an effective choice to turn nearly anything that learns them into one. The reverse can also happen, if you give a wall the opportunity to set up its attacks.
There is a total paradigm shift for what constitutes a Stone Wall when battling in an environment other than single battling though: As switching is far less common in these other modes, a Pokémon can have substantial weaknesses and do fine if the opponent can't capitalize on it (either because they're not present at the moment or because every Pokémon capable of hitting for weakness has been knocked out). In addition, as more than one Pokémon is out at a time, the Stone Wall can take all the damage while the attacking Pokémon ravages the opponent relatively safely. Registeel is a good example of this, with Stone Wall type stats and the highly resistant Steel-type, but it deals little damage and is more about removing the opponent's options. It can't do much on its own, but disabling the opponent's Pokémon makes its partners' job incredibly easy. And, of course, said Pokémon mentioned above with gaping holes in their defenses can be covered by their partners in double and triple battles, allowing them to function more as intended.
If you're playing Pokémon Colosseum, you start with a Glass Cannon and a Stone Wall in your party. Umbreon is the latter, and is hugely underrated in this role. It has high Defence and Special Defence, and makes up for its low Attack and Speed with its use of status effects. It gets Confuse Ray naturally, and gains the TM for Toxic very early onnote one means the opponent has a chance of damaging itself with its own attack, while the other does Poison damage that increases the longer the affected Pokémon is in play. Add to that the fact that Confusion can be used alongside Poison, and it causes a situation where many tricky Pokémon, especially those which give status effects if you directly attack them (Venus's Delcatty comes to mind), can be stalled to death by using both Confuse Ray and Toxic on them. Being instrumental in Snagging Pokémon also (Secret Power is naturally weak, and causes paralysis in most situations in Colosseum), you can't go far wrong with keeping Umbreon on.
Starter Pokémon Blastoise, Meganium, and Serperior have Stone Wall traits.
In Skies of Arcadia Gregorio is known as old Iron Wall, sporting a massive shield, although we never see him fight. His fleet sports high defense and is often more reserved when it comes to firing the cannons, saving up for ram attacks.
Then there is the boss fight in Yafutoma where the player must fight against a literal turtle, which has a high defense count already but also has a special skill that renders all attacks down to 1HP damage and allows it to heal every turn. The only saving grace is that it can't attack in this form allowing you to focus on gaining SP to preform your own special attacks when his defense drops.
While having some decent offense, Big is best used as a tank in Sonic Chronicles. Second highest armor value in the damn game (only Omega is better) + Taunt + Feel No Pain = that tickles!
Estelle from Tales of Vesperia is a mix of this and White Mage, having arguably the highest defense (and worst offense) in the game. Many of her skills focus on defense and healing. This may be because she was the only playable character who thought to bring a shield.
Mix her defensive abilities with this equation: Force Field + Eternal Support = Invincible
The Eternal Support + Force Field is actually an oversight/glitch that wasn't intended to work that way in the original game, since once it kicks in it essentially means you've won the fight - you can set the other characters to auto and Estelle will eventually win the fight, even if she's simply plinking away for one damage. This was thankfully fixed in the PS3 remake. Karol is actually a better example of a Stone Wall when you get his Steel Defense skill - when his health gets low, he takes only 1/10th the damage from all attacks. Coupled with his naturally high HP and defense stats, he's often the only one to survive Mystic Artes on Unknown difficulty. Unfortunately, the skills Karol needs to be a really useful member come really late in the game, meaning he's not as good on a first playthrough as in subsequent ones (assuming you carry over the skills).
There is an enemy in the game AdventureQuest that is simply a giant rock. It has thousands of Hp and, when weakened, it attacks by allowing chunks of its rocks to fall on you.
This is the default strategy for Peco in Breath of Fire3. He has the highest natural HP and second highest natural Defense totals in the game, with average attack and low magic. Oh, and he recovers about 5% of his max HP every combat round. So he's already very difficult to kill, and most people will apprentice him to Fahl (who gives the best level up gains for, as you might guess, HP and Defense), making him Nigh Invulnerable. The fact that Peco starts at level 1 and can therefore give himself the aforementioned level up gains right off the bat helps a lot. Also, place him at the point of the attack formation and at the cost of a noticeable decrease in defense (33%) he gains a 75% increase to attack and an increased reprisal rate, which starts out the highest of any character (50%), along with a higher chance of enemies attacking him. Game Breaker anyone?
Though he's generally better off being played as a Lightning Bruiser with a little less lightning, it is possible and in some cases advisable to play Paladin!Cecil from Final Fantasy IV as a shielding/turtling Stone Wall in the somewhat-more-customizable DS remake. Start with his already excellent defense and HP stats, give him some Infinity Plus Or Minus One Armor (which generally only he can equip), and give him an ability set including Draw Attacks, HP+50%, and Brace. Draw Attacks means that every monster with a single-character-hit move will use it on him instead of the other, less-well-defendedcharacters, HP+50% is Exactly What It Says on the Tin, and Brace, when active, reduces all incoming damage by 75%. For the remaining slot, you can give him an offensive option with Counter, which will automatically attack any critter or boss dumb enough to use their physical attack on him, or you can stick him with White Magic, which allows him to cast buffs on himself and heal the damage the takes. As if this wasn't enough, you can also stick him in the back row, which will reduce his offensive output if you care to go that direction, but will also even further reduce the damage he takes. Combine all of these and the man is Nigh Invulnerable, which can be quite useful as that game can be Nintendo Hard, especially in the endgame or bonus areas.
Final Fantasy III had the Viking job, which could be played as a Turtler; put the Viking in the back row, dual wield shields, and use Provoke over and over. The Knight job also has some Stone Wall elements; they have very high defense, an improved 'Guard' command, and will take an attack for a party member with low health.
Shale, the DLC party member from Dragon Age: Origins, is one when using Stoneheart, which eschews offence for effective Turtler/Shielder abilities instead.
Alistair, and any other Warrior character following the Shield skill tree, is likewise the party's defensive expert: only one skill branch is offensive, the other two buff up his armor and make him immune to knockdown, flanking, backstabs...
Let's not forget the Arcane Warrior, a heavy armor wearing mage/tank hybrid. Their abilities allow them to either nullify or greatly reduce all damage, and they have access to any regular mage spell, such as heals and crowd control. If built correctly, they can resist all spells, as well. Add poltices into this for when mana gets low, and the Arcane Warrior can be nearly invincible. The only catch is their abilities use so much mana that all they can really do is auto-attack and occasionally heal, making battles take a long time.
Final Fantasy X has Lulu. Initially your party's Squishy Wizard / Black Magician Girl, she starts off with depressing speed and attack power, but an impressive amount of defense...and the highest evasion stat in the game. Teach her Guard from another character's grid, and you'll be the next best thing to completely immune to physical attacks until the end of time.
Final Fantasy XIII brings us the Sentinel role. Initially learned by Fang and Snow, it draws enemy fire with abilities like Provoke and specializes in blocks and counters.
Etrian Odyssey has the Protector class for the first two games. While their offense will sometimes be the weakest of the front row, most Protectors will simply laugh at hits that would have overkilled other characters a few levels higher than they. They have skills that further increase their/ally's defense, attract enemy attacks towards themselves, resurrect themselves automatically once per battle, take hits for other, squishier units, and nullify, to add insult to (non)injury, physical attacks. Add in their one, though admittedly rather useful, offensive skill and you have the epitome of a Stone Wall.
The third game has the Hoplite, which has a major focus on defense. Most of their skill tree is dedicated to improving their ability to take hits, shield others, recover from damage or status effects, and even nullifying damage. If you subclass into Ninja and put a focus on the evasion tree to learn how to dodge, you get something that's increadibly hard to kill. Unfortunately, because all your skill points are bound up in defense and avoidance, the character is reduced to Cherry Tapping when they do attack.
In Super Mario RPG, the Lazy Shell armor would turn any character into a Stone Wall, causing their Defense and Special Defense stats to skyrocket but dropping their Attack and Special Attack. Equipped on Toadstool, it could make a party nearly unstoppable.
If you know what you're doing, the A-10A is a reasonably effective air-to-air combat plane, and even has a couple of weapon loadouts that include air-to-air specialties. Considering the tank-plane has the highest armor rating in the game, and can withstand significantly more damage than even it's closest competitor in armor, it's a viable option.
Even worse in the Air Force Delta series, which has RPG-like stats on any difficulty mode except the hidden one. Much like the 3.5 example above, unless you're escorting ground units, it's best just to ignore A-10s. It takes anywhere from 6 to 11(!) missiles to down ONE.
Mech Warrior Living Legends has the Hephaestus (better known as "Hepatitis") hovercraft. It's fast, has pathetic weaponry, but has the armor of a 60 ton main battle tank. One of the most infuriating vehicles to fight - the player in the Hepatitis can simply spin around the enemy slowly whittling them down while laughing off most damage.
In House of the Dead, fat zombies tend to fulfil this role; they usually don't do any more damage than their skinnier counterparts do (occasionally less, because they don't hit as many times as a skinnier zombie would before you put them down), but they can also usually take more shots. In House of the Dead 2, a hefty zombie can take an entire clip or more of handgun bullets to the torso before dying.
Ashley's Armor alternate costume from Resident Evil 4 has her be completely invulnerable to any damage, and she can not be picked up by enemies and carried away other than when the plot calls for it. She can not do any damage to anyone except for when you are playing as her and use the lamps.
Super Robot Wars Original Generation gives us the Giganscudo, a Super Robot piloted by Tasuku Shinguji. While the Giganscudo has a reliable offense, it's really nothing special compared to other Super Robots like Dygenguard or the SRX; its true strength lies in its massive defensive power and Tasuku's Defense Support skill, which allows him to cut in during an attack and take hits for adjacent allies. The mech is most infamous for being the Immovable Object that stopped the Unstoppable Force of Sanger Zonvolt'sZankantou, proving that yes, there is something the Colossal Blade cannot cleave.
In Battle for Wesnoth, the Dwarvish Guardsman line has pretty poor attacks, but good resistances and an ability that doubles their resistances on defense. User created content provides an even more extreme example; the Steppe Shieldbearer line from the Extended Era is unable to initiate combat, but has very high resistances.
The Dragon Laguz are probably the closest thing that Fire Emblem has to a Stone Wall; their breath weapon doesn't impress, but they have a frickton of HP and aren't so much as tickled by anything other than Thunder magic.
It's also common practice to strip the Crutch Character or the Mighty Glacier of their weapons so that they can draw enemies to attack them for little to no damage without killing them with a counterattack, making them function as literal walls and nothing else.
Marty of Fire Emblem Thracia 776 has very low accuracy and speed growth thus making it unlikely for him to hit. You'll often mistake him for an example of Muscles Are Meaningless until you look at his incredibly high constitution, HP, and defense growth. These traits make Marty ideal for rescuing and capturing.
Knights from Soul Nomadandthe World Eaters. They struggle to do any decent damage in battle owing to their mediocre attack stat and low accuracy, but they make fine shields for squishier characters like Pyremages and Archers.
They work even better in groups of three, when they'll occasionally cast a pre-combat buffer that boosts their entire squad's Defense by 20%.
Although a party game with several mini games in it, Mario Party 3 has Whomp in Duel Mode, whose main purpose is to protect the main player with his good defense and requires a salary of 3 coins for each turn. However, he cannot attack the main opponent or his/her partners when they are in front.
Civilization V has a few of these. Due to how it is possible to win a game peacefully, without going to war with other people, the stone walls in this game are very good for winning a peaceful victory while deterring anyone who tries to invade.
Korea. It may not have any special abilities related to defense, but it has two unique units that nobody else has acess to. First is the Hwacha, a replacement for the Trebuchet that is about 62% more powerful than the Trebuchet, but lacks a offensive bonus against cities, making it excellent for defending but not that great at bombarding enemy cities. The other is the Turtle Ship, which replaces the Caravel. It has about 55% more combat strength than the Caravel, but it is unable to travel into deep oceans. Similar to the Hwacha, it is great for defending your own coastline, but not very good at going on the offensive.
The Shoshone. All of their units get a 15% increase to combat power when fighting on friendly territory. Due to how all of their cities get an extra 8 land tiles around them the moment they're founded, the Shoshone have a lot of extra friendly territory to be more powerful on.
Morocco. When the game starts, they are usually placed within a desert, and if they stay in the desert, they are very hard to invade. They are able to build the Kasbah improvement on desert tiles instead of Forts. Unlike normal forts, which simply provide a 50% defense boost to units in them, the fact that they also provide boosts to gold, food, and production boosts transforms deserts from comparatively useless terrain to something that keeps Moroccan cities growing, while still having the 50% extra defense to units in them, so invaders have to go through them before they can get to the cities. Their special unit, the Berber Calvary, which replaces the normal Calvary only increases this, as they become more powerful when fighting in friendly deserts.
Ethiopia. If someone else has more cities than Ethiopia, all Ethiopian units get a 20% combat bonus against them. Their special unit, the Mehal Sefari, which replaces the Rifleman, only increases this, as it can get up to a 30% combat boost the closer it is to the capital. And these stack, giving Ethiopia up to a 50% combat bonus while defending, making them very hard for some big bully to take down.
Phil from Yosh!! He has an amazing ability to recover from injuries and Anti-Magic, but doesn't actually know how to fight.
Achilles from Grrl Power. His only superpower is that he's invincible. The 'can shrug off attacks that would destroy matter on the subatomic level' kind of invincible.
In the Simpsons episode "The Homer They Fall", Homer is revealed to be a Stone Wall, with Dr. Hibbert noting that his brain has a fluid cushion around it that acts like a football helmet. He can withstand constant blows from his boxing opponents, but is a very weak fighter. He won fights only by waiting for his opponents to become exhausted, and then pushing them over. However upon confronting Drederick Tatum this tactic fails as the Tyson Expy is heavyweight champion, and easily capable of hitting hard enough to knock out Homer.
This is actually Truth in Television to an extent. Joe Grim was infamous for being nearly impossible to knock out despite his terrible boxing ability. He didn't push them over after they got tired, though.
Homer can also take a cannonball to the stomach as seen in "Homerpalooza", though obviously in that situation it's not really possible for him to fight back.
Achilles from Fate Nuovo Guerra is Nigh Invulnerable (save the Achilles' Heel), has a mystical shield, and possesses high speed. Her spear, on the other hand, is nothing special outside a curse that creates unhealing wounds, and though her strength is superior, it's nothing special compared to other heroic spirits like Mordred and Uther.
Ellis Nineveh from the Fire Emblem original universe Skylessia's first generation was a waifish young man so physically unimpressive that even at 3rd Tier, he was incapable of lifting a Battle Axe. He was also such a Determinator that when a demon ripped his dominant arm from his body, he got back up and beat said demon to death with it.
Joe Grim, oh boy. He could barely box like a true profesional, but could take a beating from nearly any boxer. In fact, he won his matches by letting his opponents wail away at him until they get too exhausted to fight any longer & punching them out with all his might. Research also showed that his skull was twice as thick around the brain as an average human skull.