Wednesday, February 14, 2018

A little on armor in my DFRPG game

We swapped the armor in my game- partly - from DF to DFRPG. Mostly so I could just say, "Go look in Adventurers."

I proposed some switches a while back:

Armor Options for Our DF-to-DFRPG Conversion

We settled on one option, which I quietly noted here:

More DF-to-DFRPG switches in my game

What we have now is a hodge-podge of both old and new.

Old Armor

The old stuff is grandfathered in, but it's not replaceable. Also, we no longer stack Fortify enchantments, due to the easy access to lighter, better armor. It's excessive to have both.

This lets the players:

- mix and match if they like what they have (or part of it);

- put off re-equipping until they can get what they want.

The lets me, the GM:

- leave NPCs as-is;

- leave monster stats from the original DF books and the DFRPG unchanged, even when they clash a little bit in gear;

- not worry about PC armor conversions.

New Armor

The new armor has been sliding in rather quickly. New PCs bought the new sets, which means they're mostly more heavily weighted and less armored than other starting PCs (or traded more points for cash.) It also means they're even more keen than usual to upgrade.

It also means:

- armor is simple - just look in Adventurers for gear;

- the rules are as written except that I still require a cost positive prefix for enchantment;

- it's easier to get higher DR.

How has it worked?

It's worked okay. There is some confusion, sometimes, but less and less each session. There are some changes, though;

- plate-armored guys have no weak points. Where they'd have lower DR hands and feet before, now they're encased in DR 12+ and ignore most area damage spells and fodder attacks.

- enemy armor is potentially worth a lot more. It's more expensive and lighter. I enforce the wear and tear house rules on gear, and I don't allow Repair to work without missing pieces. Pieces are always missing on damaged gear.

- DR is up overall. Weight was restricting DR, followed by cost. With weight going down on a per-DR basis for metal, metal armor is becoming more common for everyone.*

- low-damage attacks are becoming less and less relevant. Low-damage area attacks will probably need to start having non-injury effects accounted for - like being on fire for 10+ seconds not being good for your potion belt, your backpack, those spell stones you have ready on delver's webbing, etc. But that's a post for another day.


Overall, it's been a good change. It's easier, which is a plus. The mixed bag of grandfathered stuff doesn't bother me so much, and it seems like it'll start to go away over time. I'm sure one or two suits will hang around forever, passed from one PC to another, with new PCs who just happen to be the right size for Vryce's old plate armor or the wizard's weird mystical scale armor, but that's not too bad. I can live with that.

* This leads to another issue - the "everything is vital" syndrome. Some players start out with lightly-armored PCs, but then want to armor up specific locations. This usually starts with a good helmet. Then torso armor from the front . . . well, and I might get hit int he back. Add back. Then "well, my arms are also important." Add arms. "And legs, because if I get crippled I can't flee when I need to." Add legs. Everyone has boots. Then gloves, you need gloves. And face armor, because you don't want to get shot in the face.

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