Appendix 4 - Armor and Shield Descriptions in The World of Cartyrion | World Anvil

Appendix 4 - Armor and Shield Descriptions

Following are descriptions of the various armor pieces and shields that can be worn and carried by characters in Laurels & Loot. Throughout history, there have been hundreds of variations on armor design; and players are encouraged to "dress up" the descriptions of their armor to add uniqueness and personality to their characters - but the basic properties of whatever you come up with should parallel these basic armor and shield types for game mechanic purposes.


Similar to, but a bit more supple than the boiled leather breastplate, this piece is also designed to protect the upper frontal torso. Thick leather with metal bands or scales sewn on provide a bit more flexibility and style, but more importantly add to the durability of the piece. Brigandine provides some protection to shoulders, and also includes a protective skirt for the lower torso and upper legs. These make it incompatible with wearing pauldron and cannon or tasset and greaves. (NOTE: This category of armor is intended to include any/all names for armor that involved attaching bits of metal to leather. Players are free to use alternate names for their armor of choice (e.g. studded leather, banded mail, scale mail) but they are mechanically all the same under the rules.)
Chain Shirt
This is a heavy shirt made of small interlocking rings (typically iron or steel), and pulled on over the head. It can be worn under a tunic or breastplate for added protection. While a chain shirt does not limit mobility in any way, it can be noisy; any attempt to move stealthily while wearing one suffers a -1 penalty on the DEX check.
Leather Breastplate
A thick piece of leather is boiled, beaten into shape, and allowed to harden. The breastplate protects the front part of the upper body from shoulders and neck to the waist. Leather straps over the shoulders and back affix the piece.
Leather Pauldron and Cannon
Designed to protect one shoulder (pauldron) and the upper and lower arm (cannon), this piece consists of sections of hardened leather with flexible joints at the shoulder and elbow. Often only one is worn (on the sword arm), but two can be. If a breastplate is also worn, these must be strapped on first. While this equipment offers additional protection against damage, it also limits dexterity somewhat. Characters wearing these must modify their DEX bonus for non-combat checks to half their normal bonus, rounded down. (If DEX bonus is already negative, no adjustment is made.) (NOTE: For purposes of describing your character, you may choose to be wearing either one or two. Either way, only one inventory slot can be devoted to leather pauldron and cannon, and only 1 Armor Point is granted.
Steel Curiass
These carefully shaped pieces of plate steel protect the entire upper torso. It consists of both a breastplate and backplate strapped together at the shoulders and sides. It is far more durable than its leather cousin, and offers better protection.
Steel Helmet
Headgear is fashioned of steel and lightly padded inside to protect the head. There are as many styles of helmet as there have been cultures and kingdoms, but all provide the same basic benefits. They also all provide the same drawback - when wearing a helmet, all perception checks or other checks associated with awareness of surrounding suffer a -2 penalty.
Steel Pauldrons and Cannons
Protective plates of steel connecteed with leather joints at the elbow and shoulder, these provide the same protection as their leather counterparts. Unlike the leather versions, however, these can only be worn if a Steel Curiass is also worn, as they are designed to strap onto the shoulders of the curiass. These are almost always worn on both arms. Like their leather counterparts, wearing these modifies the DEX bonus for non-combat checks to half the usual, rounded down. (If DEX bonus is already negative, no adjustment is made.)
Steel Tasset and Greaves
This is a protective skirt of steel (tasset), and flexible leather joints connected to plates which cover the upper legs (greaves). Tasset and greaves require that the wearer be equipped with a Steel Curiass, as the tasset is affixed to the bottom of the curiass. While flexible, this equipment does hamper the movement of legs somewhat. Characters wearing these have their movement rate is reduced by 5ft (1.5m), and their DEX bonus for contribution to Defense Points in combat is halved, rounded down.


Steel Buckler
A disk of steel, usually not more than 1ft (30cm) in diameter, a buckler is small shield strapped onto one forearm - usually not the sword arm. Intentionally built to be lightweight and non-restrictive, they offer protection, but usually not for long.
Steel Medium Shield
These are much more durable cousins of the wooden shields. Like them, they are usually decorated in some custom fashion by their owners.
Steel Tower Shield
Tower shields built and worn in a similar fashion to their medium cousins. Usually about as wide as a medium shield, these are much taller - often 4' (1.2m) or even 5' (1.5m) in height, allowing their bearer to crouch behind them in full concealment.
Wooden Medium Shield
Fashioned of wood with a hardened leather or steel loop and grip to affix it to the forearm, this shield can be round or polygonal, flat or curved. It is typically no more than about 2-3ft (60-90cm) across in any dimension. More durable than a buckler, but not by much, these will eventually splinter and break if under constant assault. These are often painted with symbols, coats of arms, or other designs favored by the owner.


The Laurels and Loot Rule System is published by Bob O'Brien
It is available to all in accordance with the Creative Commons (Attribution) license
(Creative Commons 4.0 International License)

Laurels and Loot Rules are derived in part from the following sources:
Knave 2.0 TTRPG System Rules published by Ben Milton
in compliance with
(Creative Commons 4.0 International License)

The banners on these pages was composed with art attributed to:
b0red from Pixabay (treasure chest image)
Gordon Johnson from Pixabay (laurels image)

The side panels are composed with art attributed to:
Evelyn Chai from Pixabay (dungeon passage)


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