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Tequila Sunrise
2010-04-07, 05:08 PM
RAW: Druids can't wear metal armor because it violates their tree-hugger principles too much. The restriction isn't mentioned under animal companion rules for the same reason that blaster spells suck: the designers assumed that we would all play the game as they did, and so it simply never occurred to them that a player might want their druid's pet to wear armor. Or at least, it never occurred to them that a player might try to rules-lawyer their way around the druid's armor restriction for their pet.

RAI: Druid pets can't wear metal armor because of common sense. The druid is largely responsible for the pet in much the same way that a parent is responsible for a child. A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that murder is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm ordering you to commit murder." Any sane DM would penalize a druid for dressing his pet in metal armor, just as if the druid had dressed himself in metal armor. (Assuming RAW, that means loss of spells. But a blanket "Screw this armor restriction!" for both the druid and the pet is cool too.)

I'm in the mood to get flamed, so go ahead and tell me why I'm wrong!
(Or throw in your support, as you see fit.)

Flickerdart
2010-04-07, 05:11 PM
If it was RAI for this to happen, it would have been mentioned in one - any one - of 3.5's many splatbooks. As it hasn't, and Druids are not forbidden from owning metal armour or barding, there is nothing to support your argument.

Starbuck_II
2010-04-07, 05:24 PM
I repeat:
That doesn't even fly if you taped a bad eagle to it.

The animal has not taken the oath: punishing it for your oath is a bad parent.

Even if you were a bad parent: your analogy is incorrect.
I'll redo it for correct-ness and good parenting:
A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that killing is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm allowing you to kill if neccesary."

ericgrau
2010-04-07, 05:29 PM
Given that there are specific rules for barding animals of any kind, I wouldn't call it something the designers didn't expect. As for the metal armor thing, ya, that does seem like a bit of an oversight. Still, there's always dragonscale.

PinkysBrain
2010-04-07, 05:35 PM
RAW: Druids can't wear metal armor because it violates their tree-hugger principles too much.
They don't wear it because it interferes with their tree-hugger class abilities too much. They have no problem with metal in general, good old Vadania seems to like her metal scimitar just fine.

jiriku
2010-04-07, 05:36 PM
You've got to think like the caricature of an environmentalist. Humans are inherently unnatural, and must avoid wearing metal armor in order to "get back to nature" (although metal jewelry, belt buckles, buttons, and weapons are apparently fine). Unlike humans, animals are inherently in tune with nature, and wearing metal barding won't interfere with their intuitive animalness.

OK, more seriously, 1st Edition AD&D druids had both a mechanical thing going (druids have worse AC than clerics as a balancing factor) and a flavor thing going (druids won't use manufactured weapons or armor; they basically were restricted to wielding a sickle, sling, or any weapon that was essentially a wooden stick). They also had no animal companion, so the question of barding never came up. Time flies, editions are written, and the weapon restrictions for druids get relaxed are the same time clerics move from "only blunt weapons" to "only simple weapons". The animal companion shows up, but he's originally conceived of as a pet, not a mount. More time, more twisted player ingenuity, and now you have this issue. It's just well beyond the scope of what the designers considered when they wrote this stuff. They just didn't think of it.

Superglucose
2010-04-07, 05:39 PM
The animal has not taken the oath: punishing it for your oath is a bad parent.

It's more like punishing you for an oath your animal didn't take.

In any case, here's why you're wrong:

Is it wrong for me, the party druid, to pick up some full plate and hand it to the fighter? By your argument I should lose my powers if anyone in the party has any armor with so much as a touch of metal on it. If I can hand full plate to the party fighter, why can't I hand it to an animal that happens to be following me around?

RAW, animal companions are not familiars. One of them is an animal that is bonded magically to you, and the other is an animal that follows you around.

The Dark Fiddler
2010-04-07, 05:40 PM
I repeat:
That doesn't even fly if you taped a bad eagle to it.

The animal has not taken the oath: punishing it for your oath is a bad parent.

Even if you were a bad parent: your analogy is incorrect.
I'll redo it for correct-ness and good parenting:
A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that killing is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm allowing you to kill if neccesary."

Only problem I'm seeing with that analogy is that the animal companion (usually) can't put the armor on itself.

Although I'm rather neutral on the issue.

Toliudar
2010-04-07, 05:54 PM
I will side firmly with the argument that druids don't have any problem with using metal. They use metal weapons. They can use manacles. They can drape themselves in iron jewelry. They just can't wear metal armour. Reading into that restriction "and they can't put it on other creatures either" is just silly.

KaganMonk
2010-04-07, 06:08 PM
Think of it more as the metal disturbing the flow of natural energies around them. They didn't take an oath, it's just that that much worked metal completely surrounding them disturbs their abilities.

cattoy
2010-04-07, 06:12 PM
By this logic, it would be perfectly acceptable for a Paladin's mount to kill helpless prisoners.

Starbuck_II
2010-04-07, 06:14 PM
By this logic, it would be perfectly acceptable for a Paladin's mount to kill helpless prisoners.

Well, the Mount is good so while it could: the mount might lose its alignment. And then no longer be able to a special mount.
Also, remember: "nor will she continue an association with someone who consistently offends her moral code."

That includes the mount.

The Designers made sure that no one can kill prisoners (helpless doesn't matter) around Paladins sight.

Flickerdart
2010-04-07, 06:18 PM
By this logic, it would be perfectly acceptable for a Paladin's mount to kill helpless prisoners.
By itself, yes. If the Paladin didn't order it to, he wouldn't fall if his horse decided to off some guys. However, the Paladin's Code is more encompassing than the Druid's armour restriction: a Paladin falls for committing an evil act. The Druid does not fall for giving things metal armour, only putting it on himself.

tyckspoon
2010-04-07, 06:19 PM
Paladins have a moral obligation against killing prisoners (killing them is both non-Lawful and usually non-Good) regardless of who does it, and they have a particular obligation to not allow the Mount under their direct control to do it. Druids do not have a moral objection against metal unless you force one on them- what they have is powers that don't work when they wear large quantities of metal. If you want your Druid to object to metal, then go ahead, and he can avoid putting metal on his companion all you want. But it's not a necessary part of the class the way a Paladin's Code and LGness is.

Mark Hall
2010-04-07, 06:22 PM
Is it wrong for me, the party druid, to pick up some full plate and hand it to the fighter? By your argument I should lose my powers if anyone in the party has any armor with so much as a touch of metal on it. If I can hand full plate to the party fighter, why can't I hand it to an animal that happens to be following me around?

Because it's not "just following you around." The abilities of Link and Share Spells show that it's got a link, specifically with you, by which it takes part in your power. To say nothing of its increased learning capabilities... it gains HD and learns tricks far beyond what a creature of its type is capable of.

Irreverent Fool
2010-04-07, 06:38 PM
The original post's analogy reminds me of Dexter. That is, Dexter the psycho, not Dexter the Child Genius.

I think the fighter analogy has the right of it. As far as the Druid is concerned, his animal companion is likely just another member of the party. Since he has no problem with his other companions being in armor, I see no reason why he would have a problem with his animal companion being in armor. However, I imagine most druids would have to be convinced to specifically get armor for his pet.

Honestly, if a player tried this in a game I was running, I'd commend them on the cleverness (before brutally murdering their characters in-game, but that's my job anyway).

obnoxious
sig

Mark Hall
2010-04-07, 06:59 PM
The original post's analogy reminds me of Dexter. That is, Dexter the psycho, not Dexter the Child Genius.

I think the fighter analogy has the right of it. As far as the Druid is concerned, his animal companion is likely just another member of the party.

Can he can range "You" spells on the fighter?

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-07, 07:11 PM
I can't believe I'm having this discussion again; I thought the problem was just that WotC munchkin. Serves me right for bringing it up. Anyway, here's the rub:

RAW: Druids can't wear metal armor because it violates their tree-hugger principles too much. The restriction isn't mentioned under animal companion rules for the same reason that blaster spells suck: the designers assumed that we would all play the game as they did, and so it simply never occurred to them that a player might want their druid's pet to wear armor. Or at least, it never occurred to them that a player might try to rules-lawyer their way around the druid's armor restriction for their pet.

RAI: Druid pets can't wear metal armor because of common sense. The druid is largely responsible for the pet in much the same way that a parent is responsible for a child. A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that murder is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm ordering you to commit murder." Any sane DM would penalize a druid for dressing his pet in metal armor, just as if the druid had dressed himself in metal armor. (Assuming RAW, that means loss of spells. But a blanket "Screw this armor restriction!" for both the druid and the pet is cool too.)

Where are you getting this from? The PHB only mentions metal in relation to druids twice:



Druids avoid carrying much worked metal with them because it
interferes with the pure and primal nature that they attempt to
embody.
(bolded by me)


A druid who wears prohibited armor or carries a prohibited shield
is unable to cast druid spells or use any of her supernatural or spell-like
class abilities while doing so and for 24 hours thereafter.

It has nothing to with a druidic code or believing that metal is somehow evil, it just interferes with their casting. If you think that druids shouldn't use metal because it's 'not natural', then they shouldn't be able to use any magic items either, 'cos they're a heck of a lot more unnatural than metal.

You are viewing RAI as "Rules as I interpret them" and forcing your opinions on others. I see nothing in the PHB that says anything other than the fact that metal somehow prevents druid casting. It's never even explained.

Please actually respond this time.

deep_well
2010-04-07, 07:19 PM
Druids avoid carrying much worked metal with them because it
interferes with the pure and primal nature that they attempt to
embody.

to reiterate let's pretend that putting metal on something (else) would in fact prevent you from being in tune with nature, then the five seconds it takes to do you can't be in tune with nature whoop-de-diddle-do :smallsmile:

ericgrau
2010-04-07, 07:35 PM
Hmm, I assumed there was a section on animal barding but there's only mount barding. So I wonder, are animals proficient with any kind of armor? If not, do they get a penalty on their attack rolls when wearing it?

EDIT: Ah, nevermind, I found the rule. Animals (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/typesSubtypes.htm#animalType) are proficient with armor if trained for war. Animal companions don't start this way, but handle animal can teach them it.

Optimator
2010-04-07, 07:59 PM
They don't wear it because it interferes with their tree-hugger class abilities too much.

Wrong. It's their vows.

John Campbell
2010-04-07, 08:02 PM
RAW: Druids can't wear metal armor because it violates their tree-hugger principles too much. The restriction isn't mentioned under animal companion rules for the same reason that blaster spells suck: the designers assumed that we would all play the game as they did, and so it simply never occurred to them that a player might want their druid's pet to wear armor. Or at least, it never occurred to them that a player might try to rules-lawyer their way around the druid's armor restriction for their pet.

Your alleged "RAW" has an awful lot of unsupported opinion and things that aren't actually written or even implied anywhere in it.

Here's the actual RAW:

A druid who wears prohibited armor or carries a prohibited shield is unable to cast druid spells or use any of her supernatural or spell-like class abilities while doing so and for 24 hours thereafter.

That's it. That's all. Everything else you said there is not RAW; it's just something you made up.

And it doesn't say anything about the druid's animal companion there. Only the druid herself.


RAI: Druid pets can't wear metal armor because of common sense. The druid is largely responsible for the pet in much the same way that a parent is responsible for a child. A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that murder is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm ordering you to commit murder." Any sane DM would penalize a druid for dressing his pet in metal armor, just as if the druid had dressed himself in metal armor. (Assuming RAW, that means loss of spells. But a blanket "Screw this armor restriction!" for both the druid and the pet is cool too.)

Druids don't fall for wearing metal armor. They don't become ex-druids for it. They lose the use of some of their druidic abilities - spellcasting and the Su and Sp abilities - for a day. They don't lose the Ex abilities - so they keep the animal companion, they keep Nature Sense, they keep Wild Empathy, they keep Woodland Stride, they keep Trackless Step, they keep Resist Nature's Lure, they keep Venom Immunity, they keep Timeless Body, even if they spend all day every day stomping around in adamantine full plate. The only things they lose the use of, in fact, are spellcasting, wild shape, and A Thousand Faces. And even those come back automatically after a day, without any atonement or other special treatment.

That's RAW. That's not opinion or "common sense"; that's what is actually written.

What this tells me - and this is RAI, my opinion on RAI - is that the ban on metal armor for druids isn't a moral thing, like a paladin's code of conduct. It's a practical matter... metal armor interferes with them channeling nature's power into their casting and other outright magical abilities, so it's not a good idea for them to wear it. It's more like ASF for wizards or sorcerers, or the armor restrictions on a ranger's combat style or barbarian's fast movement.

If a wizard's familiar wears armor, does the wizard take ASF from it? If a ranger's animal companion wears medium or heavy armor, does the ranger lose the use of his combat style? Answering "yes" to either of those questions is obvious nonsense, and I'm willing to assert that a druid's animal companion wearing metal armor causing the druid to lose spellcasting makes no more sense. And it's certainly not in the rules.

And I'll point out again that the ranger gets an animal companion, that "functions like the druid ability of the same name", and the class levels even stack for the purpose... and that the ranger is perfectly free to wear metal armor. Does your "common sense" tell you that his animal companion nevertheless forbidden to?

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-07, 08:15 PM
Wrong. It's their vows.

Source? Where did you find that?

El Dorado
2010-04-07, 08:21 PM
From the Druid class description in the PHB, under Characteristics:

"The armor of a druid are restricted by traditional oaths to the items noted in Weapon and Armor proficiency (below),All other armor is prohibited. Though a druid could learn to wear full plate, putting it on would violate her oath and suppress her druidic powers.

Druids avoid carrying much worked metal with them because it interferes with the pure and primal nature that they attempt to embody."

So RAW and RAI are in harmony regarding druids and their use of armor.

Whether or not the druid encourages her animal companion to don metal armor is a different story. There is nothing in the RAW to disallow it. Some DMs and players may feel it is out of character; others might encourage it, looking for any way to protect a valued companion.

ericgrau
2010-04-07, 08:30 PM
Hmm, druids don't even fall for wearing metal armor. Even if they wore it for weeks they technically wouldn't violate any of their principles. It might loosely fall under "ceases to revere nature", but I could also think of plenty of situations where that would not be true. So now the big question mark is why don't they wear metal armor? We're not given much explanation

Here (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20050107a&page=2) it says the armor restriction is part of a druid oath. EDIT: Ninja'd with better reference. That would suggest that giving metal to his animal companion may not break the letter of the oath, but it's still questionable. And no, the animal companion is not the same as a party member. It would be more like having a follower who couldn't care less about nature, which would also be a bit weird. Though the whole thing becomes moot later on when you can get dragonscale armor and ironwood.

MachineWraith
2010-04-07, 08:40 PM
If a wizard's familiar wears armor, does the wizard take ASF from it? If a ranger's animal companion wears medium or heavy armor, does the ranger lose the use of his combat style? Answering "yes" to either of those questions is obvious nonsense, and I'm willing to assert that a druid's animal companion wearing metal armor causing the druid to lose spellcasting makes no more sense. And it's certainly not in the rules.

This is probably the best way of framing the topic I've seen in the thread so far. The Druid should not be penalized for the way his companion acts.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-07, 08:40 PM
From the Druid class description in the PHB, under Characteristics:

"The armor of a druid are restricted by traditional oaths to the items noted in Weapon and Armor proficiency (below),All other armor is prohibited. Though a druid could learn to wear full plate, putting it on would violate her oath and suppress her druidic powers.
.

Doh! I can't believe I missed the oath part! Still, that is literally the only place where it talks about the oath that I can see. It seems more like a monk having a follower who used armor and weapons to me, which I think everyone agrees is totally fine. He can't use most of his abilities while wearing armor, and is counter-active with his own principals of perfecting himself. Would you make a druid's animal companion deal only non-lethal damage if the druid had vow of non-violence?

BTW, what the general reaction last time you brought this up? Was it a bunch of people saying "that's ridiculous" and you dismissing them as munchkins who had no common sense?

ericgrau
2010-04-07, 08:52 PM
I thought those with a vow of non-violence couldn't stand those around him being violent either :smalltongue:.

The monk is about self perfection, he couldn't care less about what others do. Don't forget about how metal interferes with the druid's bond with nature, so that's why he carries a minimal amount (keyword is "minimal", so that's how he wears rings and so on). Along the same philosophy I'm sure there are a lot of druid spells that work against metal.

IMO there's no technical rule against the companion wearing armor, but you'd have to jump through hoops to try to justify it philosophically. After all the druid is the one who equips his companion not the companion itself. Maybe "Look I can't afford dragonscale and his very life depends on having full plate. I don't like this arrangement but it'll have to do for now. At least I can stand a few feet away so I don't need to be near the metal." Light or medium metal barding for 1 or 2 more AC would be harder to justify IMO.

Leon
2010-04-07, 09:00 PM
Hmm, I assumed there was a section on animal barding but there's only mount barding. So I wonder, are animals proficient with any kind of armor? If not, do they get a penalty on their attack rolls when wearing it?
[/I]

They do, but Masterwork and/or Special Materials can make the penalty less of a issue (for lighter armours at least)

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-07, 09:29 PM
I thought those with a vow of non-violence couldn't stand those around him being violent either :smalltongue:.

The monk is about self perfection, he couldn't care less about what others do. Don't forget about how metal interferes with the druid's bond with nature, so that's why he carries a minimal amount (keyword is "minimal", so that's how he wears rings and so on). Along the same philosophy I'm sure there are a lot of druid spells that work against metal.

IMO there's no technical rule against the companion wearing armor, but you'd have to jump through hoops to try to justify it philosophically. After all the druid is the one who equips his companion not the companion itself. Maybe "Look I can't afford dragonscale and his very life depends on having full plate. I don't like this arrangement but it'll have to do for now. At least I can stand a few feet away so I don't need to be near the metal." Light or medium metal barding for 1 or 2 more AC would be harder to justify IMO.

That's Vow of Peace. Vow of non-violence only makes people feel bad if they kill someone who is completely helpless.

The book also never expands onto what exactly the oath is, why a druid takes it, or what else it entails. To me it seems like the oath is circular in nature. It exits because metal interferes with druid class features, and that is why they take the vow. If the druid oath is because they feel metal is unnatural, or evil, or whatever, it never says that.

A druid''s animal companion isn't a lifelong companion either. For the animal to wear barding in the first place, it had to be war-trained, and therefore fight for other people, and wear metal armor then. If the companion is going to wear armor before and after it's time with the druid, and is used to doing that, why is the druid intentionally making his companion less safe?

Eldariel
2010-04-07, 09:36 PM
Druid's whole "dislikes metal"-thing is really weird 'cause Scimitar is the best Druid-weapon dating back to AD&D; Sickles, Scimitars and generic curved metal blades have always been the heavy hitters in a Druid's weaponry and things that specifically set them apart from Clerics (who could only use bludgeoning weapons). It's not hard to find wooden equivalents so this makes me believe it's a very specific issue with metal armor in specific, and only that worn by himself.

As an extension, I don't think he really thinks of it one way or another when equipping the animal companion; at least I'd prioritise the animal companion's survivability over my personal oaths. After all, the animal hasn't taken the said oath and it's reasonable it's not even capable of such, but it might care about being alive. It in no way intervenes with the animal's powers or functioning so...I don't see it being any form of problem for the Druid himself.

ericgrau
2010-04-07, 09:43 PM
This again? Yeah, they can use metal weapons, metal rings and so on but


(Player's Handbook)
"Druids avoid carrying much worked metal with them because it interferes with the pure and primal nature that they attempt to embody."
There's that and the druid oath not to wear metal armor, and the running anti-metal theme in multiple druid spells. So it's a fuzzy philosophical thing with only one concrete requirement. While there's no technical restriction on the companion, it's not an issue that the druid should brush off as nothing. Maybe it's worth it in his mind, but the issue is not nothing.

Eldariel
2010-04-07, 09:49 PM
This again? Yeah, they can use metal weapons, metal rings and so on but

There's that and the druid oath not to wear metal armor, and the running anti-metal theme in multiple druid spells. So it's a fuzzy philosophical thing with only one concrete requirement. While there's no technical restriction on the companion, it's not an issue that the druid should brush off as nothing. Maybe it's worth it in his mind, but the issue is not nothing.

Yes and the big question is, why is a Druid allowed to use metal weapons when there's no real reason or need to? Wooden equivalents would do just as well, but yet Druids specifically learn to use a variety of metal weapons.

Maybe worn metal just intervenes with the bond worse or something? Iono, but it seems pretty hard to buy the allowance of using metal weapons while still taking the restriction as written seriously. Either way, as I understand that refers to the supernatural bond a Druid has to the nature; I've never heard of Animal Druids so chances are they don't have the same bond and as such, I don't see why the metal should bother either the Druid or his Companion; since the Druid is not carrying it, it's not intervening with his bond with the nature and since the Companion is not a Druid, it doesn't care either way.


As I read it, it's not a matter of principle but concrete disruption that's the problem and if Druid could use metal armor without being subjected to said disruption, he would; as I read it, he's not principally opposed to metal, but worked metal just so happens to be unnatural and thus he's unable, not unwilling, to efficiently use it. Since his AC has no such limitations, I don't see any issue there.

TheMadLinguist
2010-04-07, 09:50 PM
Druid spells are heavily magnetic.

This is the obvious explanation.

Caewil
2010-04-07, 10:20 PM
In that case, bronze armor would be okay. Good houserule idea. Bronze armor has 1 less AC or something.

Optimator
2010-04-07, 10:46 PM
In that case, bronze armor would be okay. Good houserule idea. Bronze armor has 1 less AC or something.

Bronze is actually superior to iron in most ways. Steel, not so much. I would rule bronze armour has 1 more armour check penalty.

A lot of the Druid oath stuff is clearer in 2nd Edition and earlier. Sickles, scimitars, and the like are also harvesting tools. Also, there was some sort of moon connection.

Irreverent Fool
2010-04-07, 10:51 PM
Bronze is actually superior to iron in most ways. Steel, not so much. I would rule bronze armour has 1 more armour check penalty.

A lot of the Druid oath stuff is clearer in 2nd Edition and earlier. Sickles, scimitars, and the like are also harvesting tools. Also, there was some sort of moon connection.

Bronze is statted out somewhere already. But why in the world would it have 1 more check penalty?

obnoxious
sig

Magugag
2010-04-07, 11:36 PM
While I don't think barding on your animal companion violates the letter of the rules, I would say it definitely violates the spirit of the class. There's no rule specifically stating that a Lawful Good Paladin can't carry around an evil holy symbol with him/her, but I don't think anyone would argue that that's hardly how the class is intended.

Toxic Avenger
2010-04-07, 11:40 PM
Think of it more as the metal disturbing the flow of natural energies around them. They didn't take an oath, it's just that that much worked metal completely surrounding them disturbs their abilities.Yep, I was about to post this almost word for word, but I see someone beat me to it long ago.

Carry on, folks...

martyrX
2010-04-07, 11:46 PM
There is no right answer here (RAW fails to address it), but my house rule is: when a druid's animal companion is wearing metal armor, it loses its share spells ability. It regains this ability 24 hours after removing the armor (much like the druid regains spellcasting). Simple, and in keeping with the 'no magic + big metal for druids' idea.

This problem begs the question - how much metal affects a druid's spellcasting? Can she cast while the paladin in full plate is giving her a hug? Can she cast while sitting in a tin box? Can she cast while pierced by 10 swords? Can she cast while immersed in molten iron?

El Dorado
2010-04-07, 11:54 PM
In 2E, druids were allowed only natural (leather) armor and wooden shields. Their weapon selection was similar to the current list. To my knowledge, the reason for the armor restriction was never made explicit. My opinion is that the druid's weapon and armor selection were chosen to be distinct from the cleric's while maintaining some game balance (if clerics have bludgeoning weapons and heavy armor then druids get good weapons and light armor).

The Druid handbook (again 2E) stated that most of their weapons resembled tools used in herding, hunting and farming, or held some symbolic meaning to the druid. The curved scimitar represented the sickle of the harvest and the crescent moon, which stands for birth, death, and rebirth in the cycle of nature.

So, like many things in 3.5E, the druid's armor and weapon selections are a matter of legacy. The bit about interfering with their primal nature seems more philosphical than mechanical.

As has been mentioned, druids didn't have animal companions before 3E. I think any decision about your dire bear's armor selection is going to be based on ethos rather than a strict reading of the rules.

kamikasei
2010-04-08, 02:24 AM
Repeating my post from the original thread:


There's no penalty for giving your AC metal barding. There's no penalty for hanging out with an iron golem or living in a house made entirely of mithral. The penalty is for one specific thing: wearing or using metal armor or shields. The other things are just probably out of character for the average druid. (RAI, it doesn't seem likely the designers expected you to give your AC even leather barding.)

If you want to argue that it's thematically inappropriate for a druid to give his companion metal barding, you're welcome to. I wouldn't do it, personally, and I think it's a bad assumption to make in an optimization discussion. But there is no rule against it, nor even the suggestion of a rule, and it's not rules-lawyering to point that out.

Sinfire Titan
2010-04-08, 02:45 AM
Odd that a druid can't wear metal armor, but +1 Defending Spiked Guantlets are fair game...

paddyfool
2010-04-08, 04:00 AM
If a druid player was to want armour for his AC because "armoured bears/elephants/whatever are awesome!", I would chuckle and go with it, although applying the usual mark-up for getting armour to fit an unusual shape (I think there's something along those lines, right?)

If they wanted it purely to minmax-cheese out their fleshraker, it'd be just one more reason to make sure that said abomination died horribly. Or work out an excuse to double the usual mark-up, either way ("you have to pay over the odds to persuade the terrified blacksmith to even take the measurements").

Killer Angel
2010-04-08, 04:07 AM
A druid's pet running around freely with metal armor would be like a parent saying "I feel that killing is wrong, so I refuse to do it. But son, you're not me, so I'm allowing you to kill if neccesary."

Is more "I feel eating flesh is wrong, so I eat vegetables, but I don't see a reason to negate that to my dog".
A druid makes a vow based on his personal convintion; he don't force these convintions on his friends, especially because he cares for his pet's health.

Leon
2010-04-08, 07:22 AM
Bronze is statted out somewhere already. But why in the world would it have 1 more check penalty?

obnoxious
sig

Arms and Equipment Guide

Eldariel
2010-04-08, 07:28 AM
Arms and Equipment Guide

Also, Dungeon Master's Guide, page 144 covers Bronze Age equipment in the Bronze Age-section; Bronze Breastplate is the only statted out armor tho (doesn't lend itself well to chain armor or fullplates, I suppose) which is basically just a medium Metal Chain Shirt stat-wise.

The Glyphstone
2010-04-08, 07:37 AM
Is more "I feel eating flesh is wrong, so I eat vegetables, but I don't see a reason to negate that to my dog".
A druid makes a vow based on his personal convintion; he don't force these convintions on his friends, especially because he cares for his pet's health.

Alternatively, if it's not a sworn oath but the wishy-washy "worked metal messes with spellcasting energies", then it become "I'm lactose-intolerant, so I can't/won't eat ice cream, but I don't see a reason for my best friend to not enjoy a fudge sundae."

Vizzerdrix
2010-04-08, 08:11 AM
ROC says that animal companions can, and indeed MUST (http://www.wackyowl.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/armored-animal-4.jpg)be put into metal (http://neatorama.cachefly.net/images/2006-08/edouard-martinet-animal-sculpture.jpg)armor (http://farm1.static.flickr.com/145/403981784_5da06c87bf.jpg?v=0), depending on relative coolness.


Indeed, the speed in witch some animals must be put into metal armor is why most druids aren't running around with dinos (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_vY8I5HvOvk8/SVqo2TRP0LI/AAAAAAAAA1I/dwB1oQUV7A0/s400/DinoRiderTrexARMORED.jpg)and bears (http://th07.deviantart.net/images3/300W/i/2004/103/a/a/Armored_Polar_Bear.jpg), as the CF would be so high that you'd need to put them in to BEFORE you actually got the animals.

Tequila Sunrise
2010-04-08, 02:19 PM
{Scrubbed}

Starbuck_II
2010-04-08, 02:30 PM
Here's why your analogy is wrong: A child might kill someone with no guidance from a parent; he might even do it accidentally. But an animal can't wear armor unless someone specifically trains them how to, and then actually makes the animal wear it.

A druid putting metal armor on his pet is him saying "I swore an oath not to wear metal armor because I'm such a big tree-hugger, but I'm okay with you wearing even though in many ways you're a part of me."


That is kinda creepy for the druid to saying. I'm pretty sure the animal is not part of him (except in metagame reasons). Otherwise, he has issues.

Studded Leather is metal armor, but masterwork versions have no ACP. So an Ape companion can put it on without proficiency by itself.

ericgrau
2010-04-08, 02:39 PM
Still a close bond. It'd be like a cleric teaching an evil cleric to be a better cleric as his follower. Maybe won't make him fall, but that all depends and it is questionable at least. And it's very much different from tolerating an evil party member.

The whole thing is that it's a very fuzzy philosophical restriction with little or no meta-game impact. Heck, the druid may quite intentionally use small amounts of metal and it's far from the end of the world. In fact it is required for possible essentials like slashing damage, certain magic items, etc. It's something the DM and player should decide, but they better have at least some RP reasoning to justify it. And at mid to high levels you give the companion dragonscale and the whole issue becomes moot anyway.

Lysander
2010-04-08, 02:56 PM
A more practical concern is whether the animal is suited to wear armor. Animal Companion horse with armor makes sense. Animal Companion hawk with armor, or wolf with armor gets a little unrealistic. I don't know the rules for non-standard barding.

Starbuck_II
2010-04-08, 03:02 PM
A more practical concern is whether the animal is suited to wear armor. Animal Companion horse with armor makes sense. Animal Companion hawk with armor, or wolf with armor gets a little unrealistic. I don't know the rules for non-standard barding.

Actually, wolves in armor aren't just fiction:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3457/3218639925_944fc4d87c.jpg

ScionoftheVoid
2010-04-08, 03:21 PM
Why should the Druid be punished if their companion (who is abnormally loyal, but otherwise not bonded to the Druid in any meaningful way) breaks an oath that the Druid made? A Wizard doesn't gain ACF if they have a raven familiar in padded armour and a Wizard's familiar is literally part of them.

A Druid may gain power from something not even sentient (like "nature"), let alone sapient, that would not care at all if they violated the spirit of their oath, if not the letter. Anything sapient capable of granting a Druid power is probably not going to bother with gimping someone for something against the spirit of a rule (a god revoking power from a Cleric is an active thing, requiring a free action IIRC, so I doubt this would be any different). That the action of better protecting a valued companion with something more effective than what is allowed by a Druid's oath is probably not against the spirit of said oath does not help the case for this houserule (it not being in the rules at all, not even as a suggestion or variant certainly makes this one).

Anyone objecting to this on the grounds that the player using the option is a "munchkin":

1. Probably does not know the commonly accepted definition of the term (in short; a player who tries to win, regardless of the fun of the other player(s), the rules, whether or not winning is possible and any other constraints. Often used only for somone successful at overshadowing the other players, or otherwise ruining their fun in some way)

or

2.Thinks that a few points of Armour Class (gained entirely through the rules, without abusing rules or using anything which would be expected to be run past the DM) are enough to make someone a munchkin and their playing a Druid at all (let alone using a companion of size enough to use metal armour) is not (despite it gaining a creature roughly as powerful as a Fighter, the ability to become creature roughly as powerful as a Fighter multiple times per day for hours/level, full spellcasting with a varied and potent list and more and more useful class features than a Fighter even without the aforementioned three. Fighter was used throughout for simplicity and accuracy). They'd probably think core was balanced if it weren't for that Monk hogging the spotlight, too.:smalltongue: Seriously, a few points of Armour Class (which has been noted to be perfectly viable through slightly more expensive means) are going to break your fun? Are you sure you're capable of balancing a game containing a Druid, commonly noted as one of the most powerful classes in the game at all levels?

Basically there is no reason to do this by RAW, highly debatable reasoning to do this by RAI, no reason from a balance point of view and highly debatable reasoning from a fluff point of view (and refluffing is usually easy enough anyway, particularly in this case when arguing that the companion is bonded to the Druid to an extent that the Druid loses power because the companion breaks the Druids' oaths (which the AC did not and could not take) is already heavily refluffing anyway. Actually change that to "no reason from a fluff point of view"). So a total count of one point in four, and that's debatable using the existing fluff (which can easily be changed) and the rules on the matter (which say that the Druid only loses power if they stop revering nature or break their oaths, not if any other creature does so). That this being RAI would similarly restrict another class' animal companion, when that class does not have said restrictions, almost topples the side completely.

If I've missed anything or been needlessly cruel somewhere please tell me so that I can correct the issue.

Moriato
2010-04-08, 03:23 PM
I don't really see a problem with metal barding on animal companions.

Just because a person makes a vow not to do something doesn't mean they hate that thing, or are morally opposed to it. Often times it's a sacrifice, meant to show devotion or gain power in some other area, but it's a personal thing.

After all, if that same druid took a vow of celibacy, that doesn't mean he should expect his animal companion to never mate.

The decision to put his companion in metal armor doesn't even have to be the druid's decision. The Speak with Animals spell makes it easy for a druid to simply ask his companion if it would like to wear metal barding, or not.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 03:28 PM
{Scrubbed}

You don't know anything about the oath though. That's where your argument falls down. There is literally one line in the proficiency section about, and you're saying that your interpretation is obviously the right one, and all of us have way less common sense than you because we can't see it. What about an oath that says they will not don metal armor because it conflicts with their connection to nature. Completely druid specific. The only reason a druid would view it as bad to give their animal companion armor is if they thought is was evil somehow, which they clearly don't as they use scimitars. And an animal companion is not part of you. You can't even speak to it telepathically or otherwise.

Mark Hall
2010-04-08, 03:45 PM
Why should the Druid be punished if their companion (who is abnormally loyal, but otherwise not bonded to the Druid in any meaningful way) breaks an oath that the Druid made?

Share spells. Again.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 03:51 PM
Share spells. Again.

The first time you said it it wasn't exactly clear what you were talking about. A wizard and his familiar are far more linked than a druid and his companion. Do you use ASF when a wiz shares spells with his armor wearing companion. And again, it is never stated how metal interferes with druidic casting. If he can wield a scimitar, I think he can share spells with a companion wearing barding.

ScionoftheVoid
2010-04-08, 04:05 PM
Share spells. Again.

You mean that meta-game thing representing the two training together because they are basically close friends? The ability is Extraordinary, not Supernatural or Spell-like so it could not represent the two being deeply bonded. Even if it did the rules have no objection so refluffing should be easy enough.

If a Druid got married and their partner wore metal armour the Druid would not lose their power, so again, why would the Druid lose power through the actions of a loyal but otherwise unexeptional pet?

The Druid may only lose their powers if the same Druid violates their oaths. This is the rules. A Druid and their companion, bar a few edge cases, are no more parts of each other than close friends are. For the purposes of the rules they almost definitely do not count as the same being for the purposes of violating the Druid's oaths (in general, specific exceptions are the reason for the words "almost definitely").

If you wish to use the same ability as an excuse again please give an explanation along with it.

Edit: On Druids and their use of metal: I'm fairly sure there is a rule that carrying enough metal also violates the oath, 1/5 or 1/10 of the Druid's body weight, I think? I could just be making this up, but I'm sure I read it somewhere. This seems, to me, to suggest that carrying or wearing excessive amounts of metal interrupts the Druid's casting, rather than the oaths being moral or philosophical in nature. Quite a few character concepts would be choked out if all Druid's objected to metal, Dwarven Druidic auriphiles (spelling?) not least of them.

Mark Hall
2010-04-08, 04:12 PM
The first time you said it it wasn't exactly clear what you were talking about. A wizard and his familiar are far more linked than a druid and his companion. Do you use ASF when a wiz shares spells with his armor wearing companion. And again, it is never stated how metal interferes with druidic casting. If he can wield a scimitar, I think he can share spells with a companion wearing barding.

Truthfully, I've never run into a wizard who mundanely armored his familiar. However, I think a major difference would be that a wizard's power source (magic) doesn't have a particular aversion to metal... just that it is hard to cast in it. Thus, an armored familiar won't interfere with their wizard casting.

A druid is a different case. Share spells shows that the link between a druid and his companion is deeper than that of a druid and his fighter companion... the druid is able to treat the animal as if it were himself, even if the animal would normally be unable to be affected by the spells. While it's not the link that wizards share with their familiar, it is a pretty deep change. While it's never stated how metal interferes with druidic casting, the fact that it lasts 24 hours after the armor is taken off, and affects Su as well as spell abilities, makes it pretty clear that it's a supernatural effect, not a magnetic one.

RAW, an animal companion should probably be allowed to wear it. However, I'd file this one under "designer overlook" rather than being rules as intended.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 04:15 PM
Truthfully, I've never run into a wizard who mundanely armored his familiar. However, I think a major difference would be that a wizard's power source (magic) doesn't have a particular aversion to metal... just that it is hard to cast in it. Thus, an armored familiar won't interfere with their wizard casting.

A druid is a different case. Share spells shows that the link between a druid and his companion is deeper than that of a druid and his fighter companion... the druid is able to treat the animal as if it were himself, even if the animal would normally be unable to be affected by the spells. While it's not the link that wizards share with their familiar, it is a pretty deep change. While it's never stated how metal interferes with druidic casting, the fact that it lasts 24 hours after the armor is taken off, and affects Su as well as spell abilities, makes it pretty clear that it's a supernatural effect, not a magnetic one.

RAW, an animal companion should probably be allowed to wear it. However, I'd file this one under "designer overlook" rather than being rules as intended.

But what about the fact that a druid can wear all sorts of other metal as long as it's not armor? That whole 'oath' thing was probably a last minute thing thrown in there to prevent them from taking 1 level in fighter, or a feat, and casting like a cleric.

Mark Hall
2010-04-08, 04:35 PM
But what about the fact that a druid can wear all sorts of other metal as long as it's not armor? That whole 'oath' thing was probably a last minute thing thrown in there to prevent them from taking 1 level in fighter, or a feat, and casting like a cleric.

The simple truth is that it's a horribly thought out rule, a kludge to keep druids out of metal armor, without considering the impact of the rest of the rules. Had they put in some actual numbers (say, capping a druid at about 10# of metal-bearing equipment, even if metal wasn't the whole weight), then it would be easier to dance around. But it's just a badly thought out and worded rule.

Starbuck_II
2010-04-08, 04:52 PM
The simple truth is that it's a horribly thought out rule, a kludge to keep druids out of metal armor, without considering the impact of the rest of the rules. Had they put in some actual numbers (say, capping a druid at about 10# of metal-bearing equipment, even if metal wasn't the whole weight), then it would be easier to dance around. But it's just a badly thought out and worded rule.

Wait, but aren't coins equipment...

Flickerdart
2010-04-08, 04:59 PM
Money is hardly "natural" after all. Accepting monetary rewards makes Druids fall! :smallbiggrin:

Coidzor
2010-04-08, 05:08 PM
Yes, druids can only be paid in gems and magic items.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 05:59 PM
Yes, druids can only be paid in gems and magic items.

Magic Items? Since when are they naturally occurring? Actually this pretty balancing houserule for druids, they have VoP, and get no benefits!

Flickerdart
2010-04-08, 06:03 PM
No, they could be paid in...herbs. :smallwink:

TheMadLinguist
2010-04-08, 06:03 PM
Also, gems are unnatural because they're cut from the living rock.


It's not just metal, either. Rock armor is often called out as violating druid oaths as well. For some reason.

Personally, I blame the drugs.

PersonMan
2010-04-08, 06:17 PM
Also, gems are unnatural because they're cut from the living rock.


It's not just metal, either. Rock armor is often called out as violating druid oaths as well. For some reason.

Personally, I blame the drugs.

With that logic...Well, you don't find clothes lying around in nature, do you?
Also, you don't find cloaks of leaves, leaf clothing etc. in nature, either...

Then again, trees and wolves don't naturally cast spells, so those are unnatural, too...

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 06:19 PM
With that logic...Well, you don't find clothes lying around in nature, do you?
Also, you don't find cloaks of leaves, leaf clothing etc. in nature, either...

Then again, trees and wolves don't naturally cast spells, so those are unnatural, too...

Idk about clothes, but this is a setting with natural magic, so many things would be available naturally.

Tequila Sunrise
2010-04-08, 08:26 PM
I'd like to continue this discussion, but it seems someone is offended by my post. It's a shame, but I'm not in the mood to retype a lengthy post just for the benefit of the faint of heart. Maybe someday I'll have this discussion somewhere where people won't tell the mods on me for saying bad words.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-08, 09:19 PM
Since Tequila Sunrise has copped out, does anyone apart from him share his opinions?

(and I mean really, we have all the relevant points in quotes anyway. There is no reason not to continue)

Ashiel
2010-04-08, 11:28 PM
IIRC, even in previous editions (2E for example) a multi-class druid/fighter was entirely capable of wearing metal-armor, but not a strait druid. At least, that's the way it was in Baldur's Gate.

In all honesty though, this nonsense about druids loosing their spellcasting and abilities because they put Sparky the Dog in chainmail instead of hide armor is just silly. It's exaggerating a small restriction to the druid itself into something that it isn't; nor do I believe was intended to be.

Personally, I've always assumed the reason for their restriction (and the affects it causes on them) was related to the same lore that makes fey vulnerable to cold iron; the idea that worked metal is somehow unnatural. Wearing armor, I figured, prevented them from channeling their magic or whatever. Their "oath" isn't even a major one apparently, since it doesn't actually cause them to fall or become ex-druids or anything; merely loose connection to their magical power for a while.

Seriously, I think some people are pushing this a bit far. I'd definitely never try to force some of this junk on a player if I were DMing, that's for sure.

cattoy
2010-04-09, 01:49 AM
Issue of whether or not it clashes with their religious beliefs aside, do animal companions even have the proficiency to wear armor anyway?

Vizzerdrix
2010-04-09, 02:43 AM
Issue of whether or not it clashes with their religious beliefs aside, do animal companions even have the proficiency to wear armor anyway?

You don't need prof. to wear armor. You need it to not take a penalty. Big difference.

Ashiel
2010-04-09, 02:48 AM
More specifically, animals can be trained with proficiency in all types of armors with the Handle Animal skill; and actually comes as part of the fight and combat riding packages if I recall correctly (maybe the guard package too, but I'm not certain). That being said, the only drawback to wearing armor is you suffer your armor check penalty to your attack rolls; so everyone and their neighbor can comfortably wear leather armor, or MW studded leather.

In fact, it's a good idea to stick your animals (mounts, pack animals, pets, etc) in at least leather armor or studded leather if they either have proficiency in armor or you don't plan to have them attack (such as them not being trained for fighting); that when combined with the +2-3 natural armor most animals have, can lead to very respectable ACs for your pets - especially at low levels.

Altair_the_Vexed
2010-04-09, 06:13 AM
I have a tried and tested solution to any druidic quandries - throw out the druid class.

*shrugs*

Ashiel
2010-04-09, 08:20 AM
I have a tried and tested solution to any druidic quandries - throw out the druid class.

*shrugs*

Good idea. This shows wisdom that we haven't seen before. While we are at it, we should throw out the other problematic classes.


Fighter.
Wizard.
Sorcerer.
Bard.
Cleric.
Rogue.
Paladin.
Ranger.
Barbarian.
Adepts.
Experts.
Any splat-book class ever.


That should solve all the problems that will crop up over class. Now race on the other hand... :smallamused:

Mark Hall
2010-04-09, 12:41 PM
What's problematic about the expert?

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-09, 12:47 PM
Issue of whether or not it clashes with their religious beliefs aside, do animal companions even have the proficiency to wear armor anyway?

If they are war-trained they do. A riding dog is a classic example of a non-horse wearing barding when war-trained.

mikej
2010-04-09, 12:57 PM
I have a tried and tested solution to any druidic quandries - throw out the druid class.

*shrugs*

You know some people actually may enjoy the class for more than it's power. So just discarding it because it makes the guy that plays the Fighter pout is a little extreme. ACF like the Shapeshift can tone it down a bit but to me that's like kicking someone in the groin. At least a better than just "thow out the druid class."

As for the "real" topic. I tend to play lot's of Druids. I never have put armor on my pet but I wouldn't since I try to stay true to the class. The DM may look at me strangely, as my Druid who can't wear metal armor is suiting up it's pet in that metal gear. Although, find away to apply Dragonhide and it seems to please both sides.

DragoonWraith
2010-04-09, 01:26 PM
I just have this great image of the Fighter helping the Druid's Bear companion put on metal barding, when the Druid shows up and is all pissed off. And the Bear just looks at him and says "What? I didn't take your stupid vow against protecting yourself in combat. We're fighting shard, pointy things, and I'd much prefer some metal between me and it. Thanks."

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-09, 01:39 PM
I just have this great image of the Fighter helping the Druid's Bear companion put on metal barding, when the Druid shows up and is all pissed off. And the Bear just looks at him and says "What? I didn't take your stupid vow against protecting yourself in combat. We're fighting shard, pointy things, and I'd much prefer some metal between me and it. Thanks."

Celestial bears ftw! Seriously, why wouldn't a smart animal companion want to wear armor? And one that would, (war-trained) wouldn't mind it in the slightest.

Eldariel
2010-04-09, 03:15 PM
Celestial bears ftw! Seriously, why wouldn't a smart animal companion want to wear armor? And one that would, (war-trained) wouldn't mind it in the slightest.

And if they're not, just give them an armor that does not bother them like Mithril Chain Shirt or some such. Honestly now, if anyone complains about this I shall invoke my right to bear arms.

Vizzerdrix
2010-04-09, 03:56 PM
Oooh! A St. Bernard, but instead of a barrel of rum around his neck, it's a barrel containing Tesselated armor!

tyckspoon
2010-04-09, 04:07 PM
Honestly now, if anyone complains about this I shall invoke my right to bear arms arm bears.

Relevant correction.

Eldariel
2010-04-09, 05:11 PM
Relevant correction.

Bear arms. As in, armament on bears. Thy correction was unnecessary.

Tinydwarfman
2010-04-09, 05:34 PM
Bear arms. As in, armament on bears. Thy correction was unnecessary.

I can't believe we're actually discussing this, but you said you were invoking your right, which would only work if you yourself were a bear.

Vizzerdrix
2010-04-09, 05:36 PM
Maybe he is? :smalleek:

Eldariel
2010-04-09, 05:36 PM
I can't believe we're actually discussing this, but you said you were invoking your right, which would only work if you yourself were a bear.

...I'm Finnish, what did you think?

hamishspence
2010-04-09, 05:38 PM
If bear arms were a delicacy that was banned against the wishes of the people, might they protest "We have the right to bear arms"? :smallbiggrin: