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Old 09-24-2017, 10:13 AM   #9
VariousRen
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Default Re: Segmented Plate - Low Tech II what am I missing?

My gaming groups tend to favour TL2 settings, with a little bit of TL3 sprinkled from high tech manufacturers and hub cities. The two armour designs we commonly see happen to be: Segmented Plate and Chainmail.

First, light mail vs light segmented plate on the torso:
Weight: 4lb/DR vs 5.3lb/DR
Cost: $167/DR vs $200/DR

So for the lightest versions of both, we've got light chainmail coming out ahead on both fronts. Chain is also faster to put on and harder to spot. A very important thing to consider is that mail takes a -2 against crushing damage. Against crushing, it's suddenly:
Weight: 12lb/DR vs 5.3lb/DR
Cost: $500/DR vs $200/DR

Crushing weapons tend to be the most effective weapons on the battlefield against heavily armoured opponents (high base damage lets them hurt through armour, even if the wounding modifier isn't great), so this alone might be enough to swing your choice in favour of segmented plate. Now if we go up to the heaviest armour offered in Low Tech Instant Armour, here's what we get:
Weight: 3.6lb/DR vs 6.4lb/DR
Cost: $240/DR vs $240/DR

So our price per DR is now the same, with segmented plate weighting an extra 2.8lb/DR. In exchange for the extra weight you get 2 more DR than chain against crushing damage. In our games we tended to see our front line, bulky fighters pick up segmented plate, while our backline wizards and archers wore chainmail of some sort.

There's one final thing to consider in favour of segmented plate: it can be made heavier. The "Heavy Plate" rules on Low Tech pg 109 apply to segmented plate as well. If you want heavier chainmail you're stuck layering suits and sucking up the -1 to DX.

Looking at all of that, the armours are fairly competitive with each other. Chainmail wins out on weight, and offers equal protection against cutting and impaling attacks, which makes it a strong choice for back line combatants who worry about ranged attacks more than melee. Segmented Plate wins out on protection at the expense of weight, making it more useful for high ST front line characters who are more likely to encounter crushing weapons.
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