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The armor rules can look intimidating at first glance but it can be boiled down to a few simple rules that allow you to interact with the armor system in combat.
Armor stops hits by losing points in the location it is hit. Once a location is out of points the armor doesn’t stop hits anymore and the player is hit. All hits remove a single point from the armor in the location struck unless the strike is Armor-Breaking or Armor-Destroying. The three most common Armor-Breaking strikes are from an arrow, a great weapon swung two-handed, or a strike from a Barbarian. Armor-Destroying strikes are much rarer.
Armor-Breaking strikes will reduce the armor to zero in the location struck unless the player struck is wearing more than three points of armor in that location. That can only happen if they are playing Warrior, Paladin, or Anti-Paladin.If the player struck has more than three points of armor in the location struck, then all hits to their armor remove a single point until they are at three points or less and then it behaves as stated earlier.
Armor-Destroying strikes will reduce armor to zero in the location struck regardless of how much armor remains.
Keeping track of your own armor is simple. If you are playing any class other than Warrior, Paladin, or Anti-Paladin then each hit removes a single point of armor unless it’s one of the above types of strikes, which reduces your armor to zero. If you are playing a Warrior, Paladin, or Anti-Paladin and wearing more than three points of armor then all Armor Breaking strikes do one point in the location struck until you get to three points, and then it behaves as above. An Armor-Destroying strike gets rid of all of the armor, period.
Determining the approximate amount of armor worn by a player is easy to do at a glance:
There are a few more magical effects and abilities that interact in different ways with armor, but this covers the vast majority of the situations encountered on the field of play. If you want more information read the Magic and Abilities sections. If you run into a situation you are not sure of you can always ask a reeve or the player who affected you.
Material such as vinyl, naugahyde, ABS plastic, etcBase Armor Points: 1
This fabric armor offers minimal protection from penetration and impactBase Armor Points: 1
This animal skin or fur armor offers minimal protection from penetration and impactBase Armor Points: 1
This thick leather armor provides some amount of protection from impact and penetrationBase Armor Points: 2
This flexible armor is comprised of a tight weave of interlocked metal rings that provides good protection against penetration and some protection from impact. The standard weave for chainmail is 4-in-1 European. Weaves containing less metal qualify as inferior constructionBase Armor Points: 3
Armor comprised of numerous steel plates butted together within sewn pockets, attached to a backing, linked by cord or chain, or by some other method. This armor is flexible with numerous seams and joints between plates. This armor will deform locally when struck rather than spreading out impact over a large area. It provides fair protection against both penetration and impactBase Armor Points: 3
This armor is created by overlapping many metal plates which are attached along only one edge. Individual scales are not held into rigid contact with the others, thus providing less protection from penetration and impact than other overlapping metal armors. Scale offers fair penetration and impact resistanceBase Armor Points: 3
This armor is constructed from numerous plates connected to each other in an overlapping fashion by cord, chain link, or similar methods. Unlike scales the plates of this type of armor are firmly connected to each other in such a way that they resist penetration. Lamellar armor differs from other rigid metal armors in that it is not shaped to fit the body or articulated; mobility is instead provided by the small amount of flex and slack in the attachment between the individual plates. This armor provides good protection from both impact and penetrationBase Armor Points: 4
This armor is constructed from numerous shaped and fitted overlapping metal plates solidly connected along one edge to an exterior shell of heavy cloth (such as canvas, denim, or velvet) in such a way that when worn all plates are held together firmly without any gaps between them and follow the general contours of the body. This armor provides good protection against both impact and penetrationBase Armor Points: 4
Plate armor is the pinnacle of medieval armor and offers excellent protection against both impact and penetration. Plate armor armor forms a solid metal shell over the protected areas that spreads impact over a large surface area to mitigate concussive force. The individual metal pieces of plate armor are shaped and fitted to articulate together and follow the contours of the body. Plate armor will not deform locally when struck, but will instead behave as a single contiguous wholeBase Armor Points: 5