Armor items are protective items worn by characters to improve their defenses. Armor items are classified as light armor, heavy armor, or shield. Equipping light armor or heavy armor, other than unenchanted cloth armor, improves a character's armor class. Equipping a shield improves a character's armor class and Reflex defense, if the character is proficient with the shield.
Armor comparison chartEdit
This chart lists the basic, unenchanted items. Enchantments are listed separately. Magic items are covered in general terms in the armor enhancements page and are not covered here.
|Cloth armor (basic clothing)||PHB||+0||-||-||1||4 lb.|
|Leather Armor||PHB||+2||-||-||25||15 lb.|
|Hide armor||PHB||+3||-1||-||30||25 lb.|
|Scale armor||PHB||+7||-||-1||45||45 lb.|
|Plate armor||PHB||+8||-2||-1||50||50 lb.|
|Light shield||PHB||+1||-||-||5||6 lb.|
|Heavy shield||PHB||+2||-2||-||10||15 lb.|
Magic armor Edit
At higher levels, magic armor provides a better armor bonus than the base armor. [HotFL:344] This replaces but does not supersede the masterwork armor originally described in other books.
Masterwork armor originally appeared for experienced adventurers, providing better protection than the comparable armor. Such armor was crafted from specific materials. Starting with Essentials, magic armor no longer requires esoteric materials, and can be reinforced during the enchantment of the armor in question.
If masterwork armor is manually chosen, note that it might not provide as much protection should the enchantment on the armor be upgraded.
Masterwork armor is based on an existing armor type. If you're proficient with the regular version of the armor, you can use the masterwork armor.
Masterwork armor costs the exact same amount as the magic ability it's enchanted with. However, such armor has a minimum enhancement bonus required for the magic item.
|Name||Base||Source||Armor Bonus||Minimum Enhancement||Check||Speed||Weight|
|Feyweave armor||Cloth||PHB||+1||+4||-||-||5 lb.|
|Starweave armor||Cloth||PHB||+2||+6||-||-||3 lb.|
|Feyleather armor||Leather||PHB||+3||+4||-||-||15 lb.|
|Starleather armor||Leather||PHB||+4||+6||-||-||15 lb.|
|Darkhide armor||Hide||PHB||+4||+4||-1||-||25 lb.|
|Elderhide armor||Hide||PHB||+5||+6||-1||-||25 lb.|
|Wyrmscale armor||Scale||PHB||+10||+4||-||-1||45 lb.|
|Elderscale armor||Scale||PHB||+13||+6||-||-1||45 lb.|
|Warplate armor||Plate||PHB||+11||+4||-2||-1||50 lb.|
|Godplate armor||Plate||PHB||+14||+6||-2||-1||50 lb.|
A character must be proficient, or trained, with armor and shields to avoid penalties when wearing them.
There are eight armor proficiencies corresponding to the eight types of armor and shields:
|Light armor||Heavy armor||Shields|
All published classes include cloth armor proficiency as a class trait, but other proficiencies must be granted as a class trait or by a feat. Wearing light armor or heavy armor without the corresponding proficiency incurs a -2 penalty to attack rolls and Reflex defense. Wearing a shield without the corresponding proficiency negates the shield's armor class and Reflex defense bonuses.
Equipping light armor or heavy armor takes at least 5 minutes, for example, during a short rest.
Equipping or stowing a shield is a standard action.