Armor Rules FAQ

This page provides a compiled version of the Core Rules Questions maintained by Clint Black on the Pinnacle Forums. To ask more questions or to get the latest official Core Rules Questions, please visit the SW Official Core Rules Questions Forum. Thanks to Erik A. Dewey for the initial work on compiling the rules FAQ from the forums.

Q: How does Heavy Weapons and Armor interact with normal damage.

A: Heavy Armor allows you to ignore normal weapon damage, but not Heavy Weapon damage. Heavy Weapon is just a designator of what can affect Heavy Armor.

So the breakdown is...

Normal damage vs. normal armor does damage normally
Heavy Weapon vs. normal armor does damage normally
Normal damage vs. Heavy Armor does NO damage
Heavy Weapon vs. Heavy Armor does damage normally

Q: Natural Armor shouldn't stack with Gear Armor, correct? If a Mantid Warrior puts on a Breastplate, he should only get +3 Armor, NOT +5.

A: Correct. Natural armor does not stack with gear armor. You only get the best of the two.

Q: Do helmets (motorcycle helmets for instance) offer a general +3 Toughness modifier or only protect against Head Shots (...hence, Called Shots).

A: Yes, helmets only protect the head. The notes in the equipment list refer to the total coverage. So helmets that say "50% chance to protect the head," only offer that protection and nothing else.

And just to clarify, it's +3 Armor, not +3 Toughness, a slight difference.

Q: Am I wrong, or does heavier armor not penalize dexterous tasks, something akin to (dare I say it) d20's Armor Check Penalty or Max Dex Bonus.

A: There are no penalties from wearing armor per se, but the encumbrance might cause you to suffer penalties.

Q: Does natural armor add with regular armor? What about the armor spell?

A: Armor almost never stacks, it doesn't matter the source. You get the best armor value from a single source for a location hit. Thus the Armor Spell does not stack with worn armor.

Armor from magic can stack with "mundane" armor.

Q: How does the range protection work for shields? Do you add the armor bonus to the target area armor or just take the best?

Example: Infantry with Chain and Medium Shield is hit with a bow shot.

Target: Torso: Armor +2 or +4?

A: Page 38 of SW Revised. "...but add the Armor bonus of the shield to the character's Toughness in the affected area (it acts as an obstacle)."

So yes, it would be +2 normally and +4 against missiles fired from the appropriate side.

Q: In our Sci-Fi game, the most common armor on Extras has been "Battle Vest" and "Battle Helmet" which is a home brew version of the Infantry Battle Suit that just covers torso and head, but which only weighs about 15 pounds total (i.e., we allow a 5 pound savings in weight in exchange for leaving legs and arms exposed).

One player uses the "Blast" power a lot and argues that an area of effect weapon such as Blast (or grenades) should ignore the Armor value of the vest and helmet. I've been unable to find a rule anywhere in the book that says armor must be total in order to provide protection vs. Area of Effect weapons.

So what is it? Does the main torso armor protect against AoE or does only complete protection apply?

A: Armor only protects the location covered. Area of Effect attacks affect everything in the area.

So the second it correct. Only complete coverage armor protects against an Area of Effect attack.