Armor Enchantments

Note: This is only here for a reference due to the Automatic progression bonus enchantment special abilities cannot be bought

Enchanted armor is one of the most important things an adventurer can acquire—for what good is wealth and power when a dragon claw rips through your breastplate?

In general, magic armor protects the wearer to a greater extent than non-magical armor. Magic Armor bonuses are enhancement bonuses, never rise above +5, and stack with regular armor bonuses (and with shield and magic shield enhancement bonuses). All magic armor is also masterwork armor, reducing armor check penalties by 1.

In addition to an enhancement bonus, armor may have special abilities . Special abilities usually count as additional bonuses for determining the market value of an item, but do not improve AC. A suit of armor cannot have an effective bonus (enhancement plus special ability bonus equivalents, including those from character abilities and spells) higher than +10. A suit of armor with a special ability must also have at least a +1 enhancement bonus.

Shields: Shield enhancement bonuses stack with armor enhancement bonuses. Shield enhancement bonuses do not act as attack or damage bonuses when the shield is used in a shield bash. The bashing special ability, however, does grant a +1 bonus on attack and damage rolls (see the special ability description).

A shield could be built that also acted as a magic weapon, but the cost of the enhancement bonus on attack rolls would need to be added into the cost of the shield and its enhancement bonus to AC.

As with armor, special abilities built into the shield add to the market value in the form of additions to the bonus of the shield, although they do not improve AC. A shield cannot have an effective bonus (enhancement plus special ability bonus equivalents) higher than +10. A shield with a special ability must also have at least a +1 enhancement bonus.

Activation: Usually a character benefits from magic armor and shields in exactly the way a character benefits from non-magical armor and shields: by wearing them. If armor or a shield has a special ability that the user needs to activate, then the user usually needs to utter the command word (a standard action).

Homebrew rule:

Magical Armor and Shield Enhancements market value

Bonus Value Additional Cost Hardness Increase Additional HP
+1 +1,000 gp +2 +10
+2 +4,000 gp +4 +20
+3 +9,000 gp +6 +30
+4 +16,000 gp +8 +40
+5 +25,000 gp +10 +50
  • An armor or shield can't have an enhancement bonus higher than +5. Use these lines to determine price when special abilities that count as additional bonuses are added in.

This games system

In this system, magic weapons, armor, and shields never have enhancement bonuses of their own; those bonuses are granted only through attunement. Any weapon, armor, or shield special abilities on attuned items count against a character's enhancement bonus from attunement.

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