Author Topic: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?  (Read 97249 times)

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Mixster

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #281 on: January 21, 2011, 04:37:51 PM »
How about a 2 AC jump from light to medium, a 4 AC jump from medium to heavy, and the "Half the AC is DR instead" rule from UA?

This would make fullplate something to be reckoned with as it and a tower shield would give impressive protection, to the tune of 14 AC and 6 DR.

Math:
12 AC Fullplate becomes 6 AC fullplate with 6 DR
8 AC tower shield stays where it is.


BTW, this is only for fighters, as a "good stuff" for one of his dead levels.
http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=10638.msg363851#msg363851 ;-)

I think something like this would work best, If you jack up armor to the point where it will be relevant at high lvls, It will be far too good at low ones. The only way to make it scale properly seems to be to use BAB.

I like the idea of making the different materials better, but getting SR from it seems odd to me. Maybe a bonus on reflex saves? The armor protects your body better from the fireball than the wizard's robes? (Not that fireballs are particularly relevant, you can usually just shrug them off anyway, but it seems a touch more realistic than non-magical armor granting SR)

Edit: Maybe just make adamantine's DR better? Maybe scale with BAB?

How about even simpler:
Heavy armour gives extra AC equal to your BAB, Medium armour gives extra AC equal to half your BAB, and Light armour equal to one quarter. Exotic armour could give 1.5 times your BAB perhaps?

Would make your AC pretty high, but I don't think that's a bad thing entirely.

As long as you still have something to make it more resistant to spells.
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Nytemare3701

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #282 on: January 21, 2011, 04:39:59 PM »
That might be a little TOO high. Level 20 wearing nothing but a cloak (it's an exotic armor in races of stone) gets +30 to AC just because.

archangel.arcanis

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #283 on: January 21, 2011, 04:43:26 PM »
How about a 2 AC jump from light to medium, a 4 AC jump from medium to heavy, and the "Half the AC is DR instead" rule from UA?

This would make fullplate something to be reckoned with as it and a tower shield would give impressive protection, to the tune of 14 AC and 6 DR.

Math:
12 AC Fullplate becomes 6 AC fullplate with 6 DR
8 AC tower shield stays where it is.


BTW, this is only for fighters, as a "good stuff" for one of his dead levels.
http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=10638.msg363851#msg363851 ;-)

I think something like this would work best, If you jack up armor to the point where it will be relevant at high lvls, It will be far too good at low ones. The only way to make it scale properly seems to be to use BAB.

I like the idea of making the different materials better, but getting SR from it seems odd to me. Maybe a bonus on reflex saves? The armor protects your body better from the fireball than the wizard's robes? (Not that fireballs are particularly relevant, you can usually just shrug them off anyway, but it seems a touch more realistic than non-magical armor granting SR)

Edit: Maybe just make adamantine's DR better? Maybe scale with BAB?

How about even simpler:
Heavy armour gives extra AC equal to your BAB, Medium armour gives extra AC equal to half your BAB, and Light armour equal to one quarter. Exotic armour could give 1.5 times your BAB perhaps?

Would make your AC pretty high, but I don't think that's a bad thing entirely.

As long as you still have something to make it more resistant to spells.
At that point I'm getting +1 armor with lots of other features added to hopefully protect from spells. Or spending all of my gold on other items to protect or attack and leaving my armor to just MW.
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Littha

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #284 on: January 21, 2011, 04:49:07 PM »
Cold iron is noted for its magic nullifying properties, it makes perfect sense for it to give SR to me...

Pimpforged

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #285 on: January 21, 2011, 05:01:13 PM »
Cold iron is noted for its magic nullifying properties, it makes perfect sense for it to give SR to me...

Maybe I'm just biased against SR  :shrug
If it's too low, it's irrelevant and if it's too high, it causes more problems than it solves
And having a spot on your palm for friendly party members to cast on seems odd to me.
Maybe if it provoked an AOO on the armor wearer or something? (I know this sort of screws him over if he's trying to get healing but I just don't see the monsters standing around waiting while the fighter presents his palm to the cleric for healing)

Littha

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #286 on: January 21, 2011, 05:03:19 PM »
That is more a problem with SR being pointless than an argument against why armor wouldn't give it. I usually rule you can drop and regain your SR as a free action while I am DMing, it makes it at least a little more worthwhile.

Pimpforged

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #287 on: January 21, 2011, 05:07:51 PM »

How about even simpler:
Heavy armour gives extra AC equal to your BAB, Medium armour gives extra AC equal to half your BAB, and Light armour equal to one quarter. Exotic armour could give 1.5 times your BAB perhaps?

Would make your AC pretty high, but I don't think that's a bad thing entirely.

As long as you still have something to make it more resistant to spells.

This seem a tad bit TOO high maybe cut those numbers down to 1/2 or 1/3 and add them to the original armor value?
Otherwise med. armor does nothing until at least level 2 and even then gives a lowly +1 AC
Light armor is even worse, you would have to be lvl 16 to get the benefits a chain shirt gives now.

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #288 on: January 21, 2011, 05:11:09 PM »
The medium armor feat itself needs to scale, as does heavy armor.

It has to compete with Full Casters and their metamagic feats.
(well , it doesn't have to)

It's more a problem of feat balance and class balance / tiers , etc ...

wotmaniac

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #289 on: January 21, 2011, 05:19:04 PM »
more generally speaking, I have often thought about linking base AC to BAB .....
... the best that I've been able to come up with is use the better of 10 or BAB.
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Pimpforged

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #290 on: January 21, 2011, 05:19:30 PM »
That is more a problem with SR being pointless than an argument against why armor wouldn't give it.

True

I usually rule you can drop and regain your SR as a free action while I am DMing, it makes it at least a little more worthwhile.

I do as well, but I know a lot of DMs, including my current one  :shakefist, don't.

back to the topic, if you give special materials the ability to confer SR based off its armor as it stands now, it will suffer from the same problems armor does now.
At extremely low levels it will be good, at low lvls it will be decent, and at mid-high lvls it will be useless.
If you use some sort of armor scaling system based off BAB however and couple that with what JaronK described, it may be worthwhile (assuming the DM allows SR lowering/raising as a free action  ;))

If you do this however, I would strongly advise reevaluating the price (I don't know it off the top of my head, but I'm sure it's far to low for an item that grants  SR, particularly if it actually scales)
« Last Edit: January 21, 2011, 05:23:35 PM by Pimpforged »

weenog

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #291 on: January 21, 2011, 06:14:11 PM »
I don't know.  SR is good, but it's not that good.  What with spells like Assay Spell Resistance and True Casting, it's not that hard (though it does cast you actions, daily resources, and possibly long term resources if you're a caster with a limited spell list like Sorcerer) to be able to beat SR, unless it's very very high.  And there are plenty of spells (mainly conjurations) and indirect spell-based attacks (telekinesis to throw heavy things, etc) that don't allow SR at all.

It's certainly better to have SR than not to have it (assuming you can lower it to receive friendly spell effects when needed), but unless you have something like SR 30 + ECL it's not an I Win button against enemy casters.  Even if you do have SR that high, it's still not an I Win button (maybe against idiot evokers), it just requires them to be more picky about what they come at you with, and probably buys you some time.

Cold iron is already pricey, and at present it doesn't do jack except beat DR.  I don't think a major price hike is necessary nor appropriate for allowing cold iron armor that naturally helps its wearer defend against spells.  (The price, btw, is that it doubles the base cost of the item, and any magical enhancements cost an additional 2,000 gp.)  Maybe a small price hike, but I wouldn't call a price of 30,000 GP "far too low"  for a suit of +5 full plate that gives you a lot more than just +13 armor bonus to AC, excluding touch AC.  If you go by the standard WBL tables you can't afford that at all until ECL 9.  If you're not willing to spend more than half your wealth on it, it's pushed back to ECL 11.  If you really have your head on straight and understand that there's a lot more to adventuring than being mobile difficult terrain, and you're not willing to spend more than 1/4 your wealth on a single defensive item, your suit of plate isn't available until somewhere between 13th and 14th levels.

Of course you could just get a +1 full plate and hang special effects on it, and use Magic Vestment to boost its enhancement bonus to +5.  That would bring the price of the suit down to 6,000 gp (just out of reach for a 4th level character, and a dangerous amount of a 5th-level character's wealth), and each separate special effect you add would cost an extra 2,000 gp.  Trouble is you'd probably have to beat the armor's SR to cast Magic Vestment on it in the first place, and even if you didn't, all you're doing anymore is dragging spells in as the only real defense against spells, which is exactly what cold iron armor is trying to avoid in the first place.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2011, 06:24:48 PM by weenog »
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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #292 on: January 21, 2011, 06:42:26 PM »
...Here we go again...

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I'm not sure having AC scale with level is entirely appropriate.  Maybe using some variant on the Class Defense system in UA.  That way, armor gives an up-front bonus to AC to make characters less likely to be hit at low levels, and then the enhancement bonuses, special material bonuses, and class defense bonuses make AC as a whole scale, with the special materials having a greater impact with heavier armors.  For example, a Cold Iron suit of armor might give benefits like...

Light- SR 6+HD
Medium- SR 9+HD
Heavy- SR 12+HD

Also, ACP should be re-worked so that it's lower for characters that are proficient, but higher for those that aren't.  I like the idea of armor restricting movement if you don't know how to wear it effectively, but it's trivial to reduce a suit of armor's ACP by 3, and with investment you can likely drop it by 6 or 7.  Note that Full Plate has an ACP of -6, meaning that you can eventually make a suit of Full Plate that there's no penalty to wear without proficiency.

Bloody Initiate

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #293 on: January 21, 2011, 06:45:32 PM »
Cold iron is noted for its magic nullifying properties, it makes perfect sense for it to give SR to me...

Maybe I'm just biased against SR  :shrug
If it's too low, it's irrelevant and if it's too high, it causes more problems than it solves
And having a spot on your palm for friendly party members to cast on seems odd to me.
Maybe if it provoked an AOO on the armor wearer or something? (I know this sort of screws him over if he's trying to get healing but I just don't see the monsters standing around waiting while the fighter presents his palm to the cleric for healing)

You're making the mistake that WotC made all along that screwed the fighters while empowering the mages.

You're hitting the fighter with the reality bat, and you're requiring NO such explanation from the caster.

It seems odd to you that full plate actually isn't metal all around (it ISN'T) yet it doesn't seem odd to you that casters can summon hentaicles on a whim to gang rape said full plate guy?

If mundanes are going to have nice things, they need as much freedom as casters were given.

Also I said "reality bat" but what I meant is "your-perception-of-reality bat" because you're feeling odd about something that's 100% real and 100% reasonable. Gauntlets were rarely pure metal gloves, they were often just plating on the outside so that the person wearing the armor could still grip things.

Since it's a free action to take your hand off your weapon and a free action to put it back on, it's perfectly reasonable that a fighter could take his hand off his blade to high-five his caster buddy.

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #294 on: January 21, 2011, 08:16:17 PM »
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weenog

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #295 on: January 21, 2011, 08:19:39 PM »
If you insist on having the last word, at least try to make it one worth reading.  You're like a 10 year old thinking he rules the playground because he was able to spout nonsense longer than anyone else.
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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #296 on: January 21, 2011, 08:56:35 PM »
I don't like pumping the AC bonus of armor too high, because AC is mostly targeted by the very people we want to help: melees.  The Cold Iron thing, however, is awesome: it makes life harder for casters and makes melees (slightly) more effective against casters.  That's solid.

I also like the idea of the categories of armor themselves giving bonuses, as it makes having proficiency better and makes Mithral not as ridiculous.  I'll start with my original idea, and then add in more inspired by (or stolen wholesale from) this thread.

1:  Medium Armor gives DR/Adamantine or Precision equal to half its total AC bonus (including Enchantments, Magic Vestment, etc).  Heavy Armor gives DR/Adamantine or Precision equal to its total AC bonus.  DR from all sources stacks, though it may be partially bypassed (so a creature with DR 5/Adamantine and DR 5/Lawful would ignore the first 10 damage from most attacks, 5 damage from Adamantine or Lawful attacks, and no damage from Adamantine Lawful attacks).  DR can never reduce damage below 1 (this is mostly to avoid 3rd level Full Plate guys being invincible).  The Precision thing is so Rogues aren't horribly screwed... they're sneaking past the armor.  Since most monsters don't deal precision damage, this should be too bad. 

2:  Medium Armor grants a +2 bonus to reflex saves against area effects such as bursts (similar to the cover bonus).  This does not work against spread effects.  Heavy Armor grants a +4 bonus to reflex saves against the same.  Heavy Shields increase this by one step, giving Medium a +4 and Heavy a +8 with Improved Evasion (yay for making shields more useful).

3:  Adamantine (and Starmetal) armor changes the armor DR to X/Precision.  Gives DR 1/Precision to Light Armor, increases the DR of Medium Armor by 2, and increases the DR of Heavy Armor by 3.

4:  Cold Iron armor gives SR equal to twice its total armor bonus, which the wearer can chose to ignore when touched by the caster of a spell.  It also gives a +2 to saves vs spells, spell like abilities, and supernatural abilities on Light armor, +4 on Medium Armor, and +6 on Heavy Armor.  With those bonuses it might even be worth the doubled enchanting cost.

You can give similar type scaling bonuses to other special materials and generally boost what these materials do, so for example Flame Touched Iron might give a +3 Resistance Bonus on saves vs the spells, spell like abilities, and supernatural abilities of Evil Outsiders for Light Armor, +6 for Medium, and +9 for Heavy.

And if you then sped up mundane crafting times so people could craft stuff quickly, Fighters could actually build half decent gear for themselves (to an extent).

JaronK

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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #297 on: January 21, 2011, 09:01:15 PM »
Hmm, how about this instead.

1) All armor grants DR/adamantine instead of AC(as a base)
2) Only Medium and Heavy armor grant AC(again, as a base), before adjusting for mithril
3) Characters proficient with an armor gain armor AC based on their BAB
4) Enhancement bonuses to armor increase the AC.
5) Armor bonuses from spells become DR instead at the same(unfavorable) rate. This mostly means Mage Armor is now DR 4/adamantine instead of +4 AC.
6) Adamantine makes the DR become Hardness
7) Cold Iron armor reduces the CL of spells by an amount depending on armor weight for the purpose of determining effects on the armored character. It also grants a save bonus.

EDIT:
Well, ffff, ninjaed by JaronK
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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #298 on: January 21, 2011, 09:20:40 PM »
EDIT:
Well, ffff, factotum'd by JaronK
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Re: What is the point of medium and heavy armor?
« Reply #299 on: January 21, 2011, 10:41:59 PM »
If you insist on having the last word, at least try to make it one worth reading.  You're like a 10 year old thinking he rules the playground because he was able to spout nonsense longer than anyone else.
I was thinking 8-year-old ginger... or perhaps the real Sunic Flames lent his BG account to his special needs nephew or something.