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Thread: Mage Armor

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    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Default Mage Armor

    Tired of your arcane master getting hit every day, well Mage armor is here for you!

    new name suggestions are welcome

    type light (special*)
    Armor Bonus +2
    Max Dex +6
    Check Pen +0*
    Spell failure ^
    Speed M
    30 S 20
    Weight
    10 lb

    *classes that can't cast arcane spels this has -3 check pen
    ^ this armor is a robe made or leather

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    1) Is it a magical effect, or simply a reinforced robe?
    2) Cost?
    3) Do mages need proficiency in light armor to use it?

    It looks, essentially, like a faintly stronger version of standard padded armor with no spell failure.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    1) no, it is a leather robe
    2)20 Gp
    3)Yes

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    I see. So your basing it more on leather armor then padded?

    Remember: Leather armor grants its armor bonus because it is stiff, hardened leather. I assume the leather used to make up this robe is more flexible, like what they use for studded leather?

    I'm imagining a leather robe with steel or hardened leather braces riveted along the length of the robe, resulting in a free-flowing yet slightly reinforced garment.

    I still fail to see why non-spellcasters would take a -3 armor check penalty with the robe.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    a loose flowing robe is not what a fighter is used to.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Light armor proficiency implies they'd be able to adjust to it without any problems.

    I think what your looking for is something along the lines of an exotic armor proficiency feat, which was originally introduced in Underdark and then further modified in Races of Stone.

    You could specify that arcane spellcasters are automatically treated as if they had the appropriate exotic armor feat, and are there-fore not affected by the armor check penalty.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    ...or use the Gnome Battle Cloke also presented in the Races of Stone, but thats an exotic shield... Gnome Twist Cloth then...?

    Hey, if your tired of having your mage getting hit in battle, why not cast mage armor? or better yet, PULL HIM OUY OF MELEE!

    A mages power at high levels is balanced out with the fact that untill some serious magic items are bought, the mage is flat out trying to break the AC 20 barrier, introducing armor for primary arcane casters is like giving rouges the ability to cast as bards: overpowering.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    That pretty much sums it up. Though I've found some nice combos for armor/shield and other books that one can use to get a mage SF-less non-magic AC:

    Mithral+Feycraft or Githcraft (DMGII)+Thistledown Padding (RoW) Chain Shirt= +4AC, no SF or check penalty. 1,700gp-ish.

    Mithral+light shield or buckler= +1AC, no SF or check penalty, everyone knows about this one. 1,000gp-ish

    Feycraft+ light wooden shield or githcraft+ buckler= +1AC, no SF or check penalty, waaay cheaper than mithral. Something like 600-700gp.

    Githcraft+ mithral+ heavy (steel) shield= +2AC, no SF or check penalty, 1,700gp-ish, might have problems if your DM doesn't let you use the hand holding the components do the somatic component at the same time (though the rules don't seem to deny it).

    Between mithral, githcraft, thistledown padding, and the good old twighlight enhancement, you can get -30% ASF to metallic medium or heavy armor.
    Last edited by Fizban; 2007-01-04 at 03:53 AM.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    You could just give him some Bracers of Armor. You can get from +2 to +8 armor bonus.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    I believe the idea is to emulate the classic "robes as armor" theme of video game spellcasters. The thing is, they all had robe versions of bracers of armor. You really can't get a base armor with no ASF; the whole point is that mages don't wear armor, which is why you have to use splatbooks to get it (twighlight, item templates, and thistledown padding are all splatbook sourced, mithral is DMG).
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    +1 Twilight Mithril Chain Shirt. No ASF, No check penalties, and +5 armor bonus with a max dex bonus to AC of +6. All for around 5k.

    Mage Armor? Who needs that?
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    *Ah-hem* +1 Thistledown Padded Mithral Chain Shirt. No ASF, No check penalties, and +5 armor bonus with a max dex bonus to AC of +6. All for around 3k.

    And I'll keep repeating it until people start taking notice.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Edit: +1 thistledown mithral shirt would have a spell failure of 5%. Mithral shirts have a spell failure of 10%, which would be reduced by the thistledown suit to 5%.
    Last edited by Danu; 2007-01-02 at 04:38 PM.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Quote Originally Posted by Danu View Post
    Edit: +1 thistledown mithral shirt would have a spell failure of 5%. Mithral shirts have a spell failure of 10%, which would be reduced by the thistledown suit to 5%.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Granted, even a 5% chance of arcane spell failure would be quite handy.

    How about a +1 twilight thistledown mithral breastplate? +6 armor, -2 armor check, max Dex +5, no arcane spell failure, 15 lbs. 8,600 gp.

    Personally, as a mage, I'd suck the armor check and the cost just for that nice armor bonus. And the fact I can cast any of my spells? Even better.
    Last edited by Danu; 2007-01-02 at 05:06 PM.

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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Why would I want this over casting mage armor (which is hours per level and twice the bonus?)?

    I can only see this useful for the first four levels at most and even then a very limited usefullness... So this should be cheap. However, then they would get it from first level on.

    So why not just houserule that level 1-4 mages have +2 ac and get over with it, as it is what this does with far less logic (fighter not being able to fight in robes because they are... flowing? comfourtable? what?)
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Quote Originally Posted by Danu View Post
    Granted, even a 5% chance of arcane spell failure would be quite handy.

    How about a +1 twilight thistledown mithral breastplate? +6 armor, -2 armor check, max Dex +5, no arcane spell failure, 15 lbs. 8,600 gp.

    Personally, as a mage, I'd suck the armor check and the cost just for that nice armor bonus. And the fact I can cast any of my spells? Even better.

    What is the benefit of that over casting greater mage armor (third level spell, +6 armor, -0 armor check, max dex +x, no arcane spell failure, 0 lbs. and was it like 25gp per casting?)?

    Remember that for unproficient character, ACP comes to ranged touch attack rolls too!
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Quote Originally Posted by Danu View Post
    Edit: +1 thistledown mithral shirt would have a spell failure of 5%. Mithral shirts have a spell failure of 10%, which would be reduced by the thistledown suit to 5%.
    Gah, I left out the feycraft part, but If you'd read my post above that...

    +1 Feycraft Thistledown Padded Mithral Chain Shirt. No ASF, No check penalties, and +5 armor bonus with a max dex bonus to AC of +6. All for around 3k.

    Comboing with breastplate or chainmail will only get you +1 AC over chain shirt, much better to go with +1 Twighlight Mithral Githcraft Thistledown Padded Full Plate, for 5% ASF. Check penalty of -4 though, so don't go making any attack rolls.

    Chain shirt is always going to be the best non-full plate armor out there, it's the way the game works.
    Last edited by Fizban; 2007-01-04 at 03:57 AM.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    ...hell, I've played a mage with just a plain ol' mith chain shirt (it may have even been masterworked). Armor check penalties apply to STR and DEX based skills... I had STR -3, DEX +4 or so... armor check penalties were the least of my worries and the 5% ASF brought me up to line with the fighter (a natuarl 1 is a miss... thats 5% of the tima...)

    If ya want a mage in armor, there's a PrC... Spellsword I think... in... Complete Warrior...? Complete Arcane...? I forget... well i think it reduces the ASF... someone help me out here...

    yep Complete Warrior p79... by lvl 9 ignores 30% ASF, 10% at first. Perfect for the Fighter/Wizards... thats Fullplate and a towershield (mithed and padded as suggested above) with no ASF...
    ...is it still wise to be in melee with a d4 hit die? No. Anyone who hits, hits for damage. Odds are the dragon that just ripped though your now very large AC can easily ripp through your still very small HP.
    Last edited by magic8BALL; 2007-01-04 at 06:59 PM.
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    its Cwar. spellsword is its name (although it could be spellaxe or any other kind of weapon.)
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Well, everyone needs a least a little AC, and wearing armor just feels better than using bracers of armor. Since it gets you an extra 4 AC, it's a good idea if you have enough str to wear it. While just about any melee enemy has a good chance of hitting you, +4 AC means an extra 20% chance to miss (unless you have really, really bad AC).
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    Default Re: Mage Armor

    Arcane Apron
    type light (special*)
    Armor Bonus +2
    Max Dex +4
    Check Pen 0
    Spell failure -
    Speed M 20 S 15
    Weight 20 lb


    My modifications are above. The reasons for them are as follows:
    1. Leather is heavier and less flexible than cloth. That begs to incur either a dex penalty or a spell failure chance. Since we're eliminating spell failure, the presumption is that the arms and hands are free-moving but the overall garment prevents the kind of spry maneuvering an unarmored character could make. This also limits a caster to an overall armor class bonus from armor and dex of +11 (2+5+4) rather than the "normal" +15/16 (16 for mith full plate only, of course), which means that for dex over 18 (easy for a caster to achieve at high levels) there's still a niche for the bracers to fill. Because at their price, they've GOT to have a solid niche or they're naught but museum pieces. Nobody pays 64k for unenchanted full plate, you can bet on that.
    2. As a robe, it should interfere with movement to a degree commensurate with its weight. As leather, it should be substantially heavier than a normal cloth robe. Again, this helps offset its lack of arcane failure in balance terms.
    3. Its ACP should be the same for any character; any non-mage who wears the stuff could be more profitably equipped in studded leather (or, ideally, the mith chain) anyhow.

    The movement rate may be arguable, but essentially I'd modify leather armor to eliminate the 10% failure rate, at the expense of -1 to the max dex for each 5% reduction. Alternatively, if it's based on a specific creature in your campaign, it may be available but hideously expensive in a lighter form.

    If you really want an armored blaster, take a warlock and give him Battle Caster, medium proficiency and a mithral full plate.
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