7. Equipment (5)
It is rather advisable to wear some kind of armor when entering battle.
Armor can reduce the damage a hit by your opponent effects on you, and that might be the difference between surviving a battle and dying in it.
Unfortunately there is a clear disadvantage to wearing armor at all times (and even in battle), since most types are rather heavy and unwieldy, not to mention hot. Furthermore they require a lot of maintenance (keeping leather armor supple, for instance, or keeping the joints of plate armor mobile); without it they lose their effectiveness or become impossible to wear.
In the RPG we use a few values to describe each type of armor’s effectiveness. They are listed below.
Armor offers protection which is indicated by this value. The opponent has to deduct the AP from his attack value (cf. 8. Combat) and may only then roll the dice for his attack.
(An example: The opponent of a PC uses a longsword, on which he has achieved an attack value of 80. The PC wears a field plate armor with an AP of –65. Therefore the opponent has to subtract 65 points from his attack value (80 – 65), which leaves him with an attack value of 15. The attack roll consists of a percentage check against the attack value; the opponent has to roll less or equal than 15 in order to hit the PC. In the latter case, the PC would have to parry; if the opponent’s roll is higher than 16, the PC doesn’t suffer any damage.)
Although a good armor offers good protection, it carries the disadvantage that the character cannot easily move while wearing it. That also means that his agility suffers.
The DP reduces the agility bonus. The bonus can fall to 0, but never below.
(A character with a normal agility bonus of +7 who wears field plate armor with a DP of –10 has now an agility bonus of 0 – instead of –3.)
As tough as the armor might look, it hardly is indestructible. Each successful hit of a character is also suffered by the armor (logically, since it has to be pierced before the character can be). Once the SP reach 0, the armor has been destroyed and offers no protection anymore (cf. 8. Combat).
Table 18: Armor
Following are brief descriptions of the various types of armor.
Metal strips are horizontally overlapping
Small metal plates have been sewn onto simple clothing, like shirt. Covered by leather.
Small metal rings have been worked together
Large metal plates, with metal joints; i.e. the classic armor of a knight
One of the simplest kinds of armor, it is fashioned from the hide of a beast (not cured leather)
Breast armor of cured leather, the rest is enhanced leather or padded cloth
Several layers of leather and padding are arrayed over each other
Large metal plates protecting chest, arms and legs. There are no metal joints, the wearer has to make do with leather or chain mail joints, which offer less protection
Large metal rings sewn onto a leather base
Overlapping metal plates, like fish scales
Variant of Banded Mail; here the strips are arrayed vertically
Supple leather armor, onto which many metal studs have been sewn
This type of armor is rarely employed. Native Americans used to create a richly decorated breast armor from pieces of bone. Armor of this category can also be fashioned from tree bark.