How Do Weapons and Armour Work in DnD?

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dnd weapons

In Dungeons and Dragons, there are different types of armour and weapons. That is why it’s important you choose the right one. Armour can be used as your protection, but you can’t just think “Well, which one will protect me most?”. That’s because the different armours have different qualities and weights that will affect other parts of your gameplay. For example, a heavy set of armour would cause extra noise when trying to sneak and would weigh you down when you run. Whereas Light armour would aid your stealth well and cause you no extra weight. In this article, we’ll take you through a list of different dnd weapons and armour, and you can choose which one sounds most promising to you!

DnD Armour

First of all, your character has to be proficient in the type of armour you choose. Certain classes do not suit certain armour. If you wear the wrong kind of armour, it can give you disadvantages on skill checks, saving throws or attack roles which would really hinder your game. But once you’ve picked an armour you’re proficient in, you can get to finer details like shields that boost your armour class by two. Now, let’s get into the types of DnD armour.

Light Armour

Light Armour is made of thin or light materials and is best for someone looking to be agile or stealthy. However, it doesn’t add so much protection. To determine your armour class, you add your dexterity modifier to the base number of your armour type.

Rogues, warlocks, or Bards are perfect for this armour type as they move a lot and it will allow them to do so. The different types of Light DnD armour are:

  • Padded – consists of layers of cloth to create thick padding;
  • Leather – breastplate, and shoulders are made of stiffened leather, but the rest is softer materials;
  • Studded leather – like leather armour, studded leather is a breastplate and shoulder plate reinforced with metal spikes and studs.

Medium Armour

Medium armour is a middle ground between light armour and heavy armour. It offers consistent protection but also hinders your movement a little bit. To determine your armour class, you add your dexterity modifier to +2 of your base number from your armour type.

Medium armour is perfect for Barbarians, Clerics, Druids, or Rangers. The Medium Armour types are as follows:

  • Hide – Thick furs and pelts, worn by those who don’t have the access to stronger materials like barbarians or evil creatures;
  • Chain shirt – made of metal chain mail, worn between layers of clothing, allows protection, but the sound can also be muffled by the layers of fabric on top and beneath it;
  • Scale male – coat and leggings of leather with pieces of metal on top looking a lot like a dragon or fish’s scales (Includes gauntlets);
  • Breastplate – Fitted metal breastplate worn with leather. It provides protection or vital organs but leaves legs unprotected;
  • Half plate – shaped metal that cover most of the body but does not provide leg protection beyond greaves fitted with a leather strap.

Heavy Armour

Heavy armour creates the best protection. They cover the whole body and will stop a lot of the enemies’ attacks. You must be proficient in the dnd armour type. The best classes for this armour type are Fighters and Paladins. Also, you cannot add your dexterity modifier to your armour class. The heavy armour types are:

  • Ring mail – leather armour with metal rings sewn in, helping to reinforce it against swords and axes. It’s the weaker of the heavy armour’s and is worn by those who cannot afford better;
  • Chain mail – intertwined metal rings worn atop a layer of regular cloth (Includes gauntlets);
  • Splint – narrow vertical strips of metal, sewn to leather worn over cloth padding;
  • Plate – shaped metal plates covering the entire body much like a classic suit of armour, fixed in place by leather straps.

The table below will help you to navigate the other properties of the different DnD armour types.

dnd armor

DnD Weapons

Like Armour, DnD weapons are also based on your proficiency. A Wizard can’t just wield a long sword, and it would be silly for a fighter to fight with a simple dagger.

The two categories for weapon proficiency are simple and martial – you have to find out which your character is proficient in. There are loads of types of DnD weapons to choose from and they all have different properties, such as:

  • Ammunition – a type of ranged attack that depends on how much ammunition. Every time you fire, you lose one piece of ammunition. DnD weapons include Crossbow (light), Short bow, Sling, Blowgun, Crossbow (hand), Crossbow (heavy) and Longbow;
  • Finesse – you can choose between your strength or dexterity modifier for attack or damage rolls. DnD weapons include Dagger, Dart, Rapier, Scimitar, Short sword, and Whip;
  • Heavy small creatures cannot wield these and are generally bigger and heavier. DnD weapons include Glaive, Great axe, Great sword, Halbert, Maul, Pike, Crossbow (heavy), and Longbow;
  • Light small and easy to handle, easy to wield two at a time. DnD weapons include Club, Dagger, Hand axe, Light hammer, Sickle, Scimitar, Short sword, And Crossbow (Hand);
  • Loading as this weapon takes time to load, you can only fire one ammunition from it at a time. DnD weapons with this property include Crossbow (light), Blowgun, Crossbow (Hand) and Crossbow (Heavy);
  • Range – this property means you can make a ranged attack – different weapons have a different range. You cannot attack someone beyond their weapons range. DnD weapons with range include Dagger, Hand axe, Light hammer, Spear, Crossbow (Light), Dart, Short bow, Sling, Trident, Blowgun, Crossbow (Hand), Crossbow (Heavy), Longbow and Net;
  • Reach – this property adds five feet to your range when you attack with it. DnD weapons with reach include Glaive, Halbert, Lance, Pike and whip;
  • Special – a weapon with special properties is an unusual one with unusual rules that are in the weapon’s description. Weapons with special properties are Lance and Net;
  • Thrown – if the weapon has thrown as one of its properties, it means it is not an ammunition weapon, but you can throw it for a ranged attack. DnD weapons that can be thrown are Dagger, Handaxe, Javelin, Light hammer, Spear, Dart, Trident and Net;
  • Two-handed – This weapon must be wielded by two hands. DnD weapons that are two-handed include Great club, Crossbow (Light), Short bow, Glaive, Greataxe, Greatsword, Halberd, maul, Pike, Crossbow (Heavy) and Longbow;
  • Versatile – This weapon can be wielded with one or two hands. DnD weapons that are versatile are Quarterstaff, Spear, Battle-axe, Longsword, Trident and Warhammer.

This table can help you find the perfect Dungeons and Dragons weapon:

dnd weapons

It is important to know the properties of certain DnD weapons when choosing your own. Perhaps you want a weapon where you can wield in one or both hands, and/or even throw? There’s something to think about!

We hope now you know which you would choose, and can start your adventure with the perfect weapon and armour set.

With the right weapon and armor set, perhaps you’re ready to beat the Monsters in Dungeons and Dragons!