[PnP] Armor construction and repair

J Hooten jhooten at binary.net
Thu May 13 22:06:00 CEST 2004

Real life examples are good for people to see but most gamers wont want 
to use them. An example is weapons, Katana could take a year to make. 
But that is a very fine weapon, lower grade could be done quicker. The 
point there is quality is porportional to time to some extent and for 
game terms this becomes higher AV higher WSB higher fatige etc.
Then you get to magic grade requirements. To be enchantable it should be 
of finest quality and thus may require more time to make?
Thus you may need to decide on a quality system. ie 
poor,normal,superior,enchantable or something similar and there may be 
surperior grades beyond that needed to enchant. This is useful in a low 
magic world as rich people will want the surperior weapons and armor. 
Stronger fighters will want the weapons that wont break so easily.
And there is no reason someone could not make a weapon specifically for 
certain factors. Like resistant to breakage, even though it may loose 
out in other areas like sharpness. To a strong fighter WSB is not as 
important as restance to breaking. One good deadly hit could break a 
weapon if I recall the rules. I seem to remember a character that did so 
often and started to carry alot of spares, but it has been years and I 
may have misunderstood the rules.
And finally you get to economics. If magic armor and weapons cost alot 
then better grade nonmagic becomes more sellable even if the craft 
person has to spend months making it. The cost of labor is fairly low 
when compared to the cost of magic.

Now back on topic-- repairs
Real life says repair should be cheaper than new, but there is a point 
beyond which repair is not cost effective. At some point you have to fix 
so much that the item is practically salvage. Also serious damage that 
has been repaired may look very nasty even if it is effective. Weapons 
can be reforged and must be to fix some things but metalergically you 
can do only a few things quickly, welding can fix minor things but a 
broken sword cannot be welded and work as good. Also back to Katana, 
they cant be fixed by reforging because the metal grade is changed by 
doing so! You will infact be making a new sword and the metal may not be 
the correct grade to do so. Katana used a soft iron core that was 
chemically carbon hardened on the cutting edge making it curve. It was 
also made by repeated folding which makes it flexible and hold a very 
sharp edge. It had only one edge because that backbone was its strength 
making it harder to break. As you can see a weld would not match the 
layers around it and always be a flaw that will break on that same line. 
This will be true of many types of swords. Thus only the poorer grades 
can be repaired cheaply, nicks can be ground out a few times on quaility 
weapons but there are limits. The crude fast weapons may never notice 
quick fixes as they were junk from the start. A weld may be stronger 
than whats arround it. So my point here is limited weapon repairs are 
possible without magic.
Armor is commonly made in sections so those sections can be more easily 
repaired or replaced and thus porportional repair time is valid. As the 
pieces get larger as in plate the size of the repair gets larger until 
that piece needs replacing which takes higher time. A hole through your 
breastplate can be patched and look ugly as well as be less comfortable 
or weaker but otherwise you would have to replace a large part of the 
armor. Dents can be hammered out a few times without serious weakening 
but eventually the armor becomes of lower grade.
The result is....fast repairs may lower effectiveness in AV WSB Fatige 
etc or in single areas. Replacing sections is done at no losses.

I hope that helps and maybe someone can use it to codify a system that 
is more 'real'

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