Attacking Armor without hurting the armor wearer

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Attacking Armor without hurting the armor wearer

Postby Luca C. » Sat Jun 01, 2013 7:31 am

1st question:
Maybe somebody else already asked it....anyway, reading the rules I think I've understood that you can attack the armor directly without wounding the armor wearer.
Have I misunderstood it?
It sounds too odd to me!
If you wear a chaimail shirt and I try to rip it with my axe/sword/etc I feel that your belly underneath that shirt should suffer at least a few hp from scratching/bludgeoning/chopping damage...
Am I wrong?

2nd question:
I was not able to find any rule for damaging armor due to a very powerful blow, or maybe I have not looked carefully through codex pages.
I explain myself.
If I hit you with a very strong hit (maybe a critical) and I deal a lot of damage to you, and that damage passes armor DR, I feel the armor should be damaged.
In the (unfortunately dead) Mongoose Conan d20 if I deal 20 pts of damage to you, your armour will suffer a diminition of 1d4 pts of DR since it has been severly pierced/smashed, etc...
Do we have anything similar in the Codex?
Luca C.
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2012 7:05 am

Re: Attacking Armor without hurting the armor wearer

Postby Galloglaich » Sun Jun 02, 2013 2:12 am

The idea of attacking armor in the codex has to do with taking it apart, either slashing through textile elements, bashing plates, or cutting straps and so on. In the case of a mail shirt, this is hard ... but mail has a pretty high toughness rating (6 or more) making it fairly hard to hurt.

You are right though it's probably hard to hurt a mail coat without affecting the person underneath it (though they would typically be wearing a gambeson beneath which would offer them some protection). But there is only so much granularity in the game. I think for the most part armor will be attacked when it's effective but fairly easy to damage (High DR, low Hardness), like Brigandine or Lamellar, or some of the Japanese armors.

Similarly, when armor is catastrophically pierced, I do tend to cause some damage to it, though I do this on a 'DM fiat' basis, my rule of thumb has been the loss of 1 point of DR and 1 HP of damage to the armor for every 5 HP of damage that got through (as opposed to around) the armor; but this is more of a house-rule thing for me, I haven't included it in the codex because I hadn't really thought it through for inconsistencies yet. It could be made into an optional rule. The tricky part of course is that it would vary by attack type and armor type. An arrow could wound you badly through a coat of mail while only leaving a very small hole in it; an axe which caused 15 points of damage through a cuirass has very likely destroyed it.

So again, it's a granularity thing. I prefer to just leave it up to the DM. Maybe I should put a paragraph about that in the book.

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