Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Whole Shields Thing

The Problem: Shields only give a +1 bonus to Armor Class

The Solution: ???

So, here's the deal. Shields are super important in combat, but not very important in the D and the D. My first thought is --- is this really that big a deal. Let's assume it is. So, what do we do about it? The most obvious choice is to bump the armor bonus from a shield. If you're going to do this, though, you should probably discount the armor bonus from everything else. Thus:

Leather armor: -1/+1 to AC
Chainmail armor: -3/+3 to AC
Platemail armor: -5/+5 to AC

Shield: -2/+2 to AC

Since that solution is simple, reasonable and easy to implement, I feel as though I'm ripping people off with this blog post. As a penance, please enjoy some unarmored, two-weapon wielding cheesecake by RGUS.


Side Note - Is anyone out there running a play-by-post with the DCC RPG beta rules? If so, let me know. I'd be interested in trying it out.


Side Note II: The Quickening - I should post a Megacrawl 3000 update later today, more Yun-Bai-Du (with a map) tomorrow.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Best one yet! (+4 to AC, as others propose, unbalances choices too far in the other direction, but this feels about right.)

  3. No, dammit! Shields shall be complicated!

    Really, there are two options: either redesign the combat system from the ground up (in which case you really have to write a whole new game) or come up with some simple compromise like this that retains the structure of D&D.

    After some head-scratching I have not been able to come up with a mechanism that distinguishes between small shields and big ones, that does not always lead to big shields being better, so I reckon this pretty much nails it.

    Funny how we all object to shields being a flat +1 but don't object to Plate being a flat +8, or the specific and arbitrary numbers fixed for leather, chain, scale etc.

  4. Maybe we should defy expectations:

    Platemail -1 [+1]
    Chainmail -2 [+2]
    Leather -4 [+3]
    Shield -6 [+5]
    Chainmail Bikini -8 [+8]


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