Splint Mail and Half Plate - why bother?

Looking for some feedback here.

I’m currently working on loot and it seems to me there’s no good reason at all to have magical splint mail and half plate even exist.

Characters with certain levels of dexterity are actually better off wearing lighter armor, but splint mail and half plate allow the same maximum dex bonus as full plate; 1. For this reason it seems to me the only thing that half plate and splint mail has going for it is the lower price tag compared to full plate.

This is a good enough reason for the non-magical versions to exist so that low level characters can buy them before they can afford full plate, but this still leaves magical armors. Assuming the process of enchanting magical equipment is expensive, why would anyone bother enchanting splint mail or half plate at all when full plate exists?

As it is, I’m pretty set on simply removing splint mail and half plate from the loot tables, but I want to make sure there isn’t something obvious I’m missing…

Could also just remove full plate…

Also, maybe the magical splint/half offers something the full doesn’t. Would you rather have splint +1 with regen 10 and mind affect immunity, or full +2?

If we are talking about NWN implementation then you are correct for the most part, a lot of armors are weak or useless, especially in modules where player can forge items and especially at epic levels.

The only two situations where these armors would be better than half/full plate or even ligh armors are:

  • low dex barbarian without heavy armor proficiency feat
  • specific magic armor of this type that grants advantage that might be more useful to you than higher AC (this is quite common in SP modules and campaigns)

However this is for most part because of poor implementation of DnD rules where some armors have:

  • little bit different values that makes them more balanced
  • speed decrease penalty
  • and overally full plates aren’t that common as they are in NWN

Most PWs are solving this issue either by:

  • special AC bonus to ranger using light armor/barbarian using medium armor
  • doubling the dex bonus of armors
  • granting damage resistances to armors

Thanks for the feedback.

I’m trying to keep magical items simple and streamlined. The things I might put on the weaker heavy armors (immunities, bonus feats, damage resistance) are things I don’t want granted from items to begin with, so I think I’ll just keep the non-magical versions as cheap newbie armors and refrain from adding magical versions to loot tables.

I also want dropped scrolls to be unidentified, wands of all possible kinds to drop and both to be usable only by the correct classes (IE. the classes that can already cast the spells) which means I have the enjoyable task ahead of me of creating every single scroll and wand (and potion) in the game. At least I’ll be able to to use this for as many modules as I like. :smiley:

uh in your loot-table, would something like this work

if (isScroll)

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similarly the class restrictions can be added on the fly as well, though all scrolls with few exceptions already has them and except rod of ray frost all rods wands and staves also has them…

In NWN most “arcane” wands can be used by bards, sorcerers and wizards. According to the rules as I know them the only classes that are supposed to be able to use them (same for scrolls, but not rods, staves or potions) are the classes that can already cast the spell in question.

Thus, bards should not be able to use wands of fire or lightning, nor should sorcerers and mages be able to use healing wands just because a bard crafted them. I’m remaking them one by one and pasting the spell descriptions from the scrolls onto the wands while I’m at it.

I also think prestige classes should be able to use corresponding items, as they originally are capable of actual spellcasting, so assassins will be able to use improved/invisibility items, blackguards bull’s strength, inflict, etc. as if their powers were spells.

I don’t know if setting the loot to unidentified in the loot scriptwould work, but it seems like something that increases overhead and I want to have the base items made so that crafting a wand or having one drop from a monster will simply call a resref instead of messing with it after spawning it.

oh right that… you know maybe you heard something about community patch?

I’m building in 1.69 - that’s community patch right?


basically everything you named: bards unable to use scrolls of non-bard spells, class limitations on crafted wands, prestige classes able to use scrolls of the spells they have as spell-like abilities that is all there already with one exception - all scrolls are identified (since 90% of scrolls in vanilla is, i simply made the remaining 10% follow same rule), crafting related it also fixes some inconsistencies such as warcry scrolls non existing, prices of some scrolls (for exampe due to the wrongly calculated cost, scroll of mestil sheat can be used by lvl 1 character) and it has even some extra features such as enhanced selection of craftable spells if you change the max lvl limits, possibility for builder to specify custom blueprint for each spell-crafted potion and wand and material component for making potion/wand. It also enables to dynamically raise the limit of the crafting if you wish so and that is module wise (for everyone) or for specific player if you want (could be used for something like feat that lets player brew potions of lvl4 etc.).

Of course. This is about the crafting. And you might not want to have fixed anything else, so you will not like it. Your choice. I am just stating that all this work was already done by someone in past and it is not needed to waste time reinventing the wheel.

Thats actually the opposite, for example the class limitations on crafted wands you specifically named are added in script. Crafted potions and wands doesn’t have blueprints they are created via script on the fly. So you can’t actually even do what you want to do.

As for spellscrolls, just making each scroll unindentified via script after you spawn it is the easiest and simplest way to do that especially because you want to edit vanilla scrolls - which is not that easy as it looks like.

Can’t I control the items which are generated when crafting wands/scribing scrolls? And what is the issue with scrolls? I’m making custom copies of everything… Is there some issue with inscribing custom scrolls into spellbooks or something?

Depends what you mean, again, crafting potions and wands doesn’t spawn potions and wands from blueprint but instead creates the item on the fly via scripting from empty potion/empty wand. Therefore, the only controll you can have over this is via changing the craft script.

Community patch allows to specify for each spell used in crafting a blueprint for potion and wand. So you can with this feature actually give player specific potion/wand with custom description, caster level, number of charges etc.

Well basically, you either must be bit experienced and know how to retrieve the vanilla scroll blueprint, how to modify them and how to put them into module, or you must make custom copies. But if you use custom copies then you must:

  1. compile a list of the resrefs of these custom copies
  2. replace original vanilla resrefs in loot system by the custom copies resrefs (well if you use a resref-based loot system anyway)
  3. replace original vanilla resrefs in crafting system by the custom copies resrefs, without this the scrolls created by crafting(scribing) will produce vanilla ones

no that works flawlessly no need to worry about that

Okay that seems reasonable. I was planning on editing the craft scripts and making custom loot scripts anyway. For now I just need to create the items the way I want them and make sure I follow some kind of intuitive system for naming them.

I’m thinking of having brew potion be able to make special potions that you apply to materials so that craft armor/weapon can then be used to craft the actual magical equipment, since the “enchantment” would be done beforehand to the material itself via the potion. It seems like an easy way to make craft skills viable.