Magic Armor and Shield Special Abilities

Most magic armor and shields only have enhancement bonuses. Such items can also have the special abilities detailed here. Armor or a shield with a special ability must have at least a +1 enhancement bonus.

Acid Resistance: A suit of armor or a shield with this enchantment normally has a dull gray appearance. The armor absorbs the first 10 points of acid damage per attack that the wearer would normally take (similar to the resist energy spell).

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Animated (shields only): Upon command, an animated shield floats within 2 feet of the wielder, protecting her as if she were using it herself but freeing up both her hands. Only one shield can protect a character at a time.

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Bashing (shields only): This shield is made to make a shield bash. No matter what the size of the attacker, a large bashing shield or bashing riot shield deals 1d8 points of damage; a small bashing shield or bashing buckler deals 1d6 points of damage. The shield acts as a +1 weapon when used to bash. (Impromptu shields cannot be bashing shields.)

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Blinding (shields only): A shield with this enchantment flashes with a brilliant light up to twice per day upon command of the wielder. All within 20 feet except the wielder must succeed at a Reflex saving throw (DC 14) or be blinded for 1d4 rounds.

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Catching (shields only): A shield with this ability attracts ranged weapons to it. It has a deflection bonus of +1 versus ranged weapons because projectiles and thrown weapons veer toward it. Additionally, any projectile or thrown weapon aimed at a target within 5 feet of the shield’s wearer diverts from its original target and targets the shield’s bearer instead. (If the wielder has total cover with respect to the attacker, the projectile or thrown weapon is not diverted.) Additionally, those attacking the wearer with ranged weapons ignore any miss chances that would normally apply. Projectiles and thrown weapons that have an enhancement bonus higher than the shield’s base Defense bonus are not diverted to the wearer (but the shield’s increased Defense bonus still applies against these weapons). The wielder activates this ability with a command word and can shut it off by repeating the command word.

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Cold Resistance: A suit of armor or a shield with this enchantment normally has a bluish, icy hue or is adorned with furs. The armor absorbs the first 10 points of cold damage per attack that the wearer would normally take (similar to the resist energy spell).

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Damage Reduction (armor only): This suit of armor grants the wearer damage reduction of a specific type:

Damage ReductionPurchase DC Modifier
5/+1+1
10/+1+2

Electricity Resistance: A suit of armor or a shield with

this enchantment normally has a bluish hue and often bears a storm or lightning motif. The armor absorbs the first 10 points of electrical damage per attack that the wearer would normally take (similar to the resist energy spell).

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Fire Resistance: A suit of armor or a shield with this enchantment normally has a reddish hue and often is decorated with a draconic motif. The armor absorbs the first 10 points of fire damage per attack that the wearer would normally take (similar to the resist energy spell).

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Fortification: This suit of armor or shield produces a magical force that protects vital areas of the wearer more effectively. When a critical hit or sneak attack is scored on the wearer, there is a chance that the critical hit or sneak attack is negated and damage is instead rolled normally:

Fortification TypeChance for Normal DamagePurchase DC Modifier
Light25%+1
Moderate75%+2
Heavy100%+3

Ghost Touch: This armor or shield seems almost translucent. Both its enhancement bonus and its armor bonus count against the attacks of incorporeal creatures. Further, it can be picked up, moved, and worn by incorporeal creatures at any time. Incorporeal creatures gain the armor or shield’s enhancement bonus against both corporeal and incorporeal attacks, and they can still pass freely through solid objects. Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Glamered (armor only): A suit of armor with this capability appears normal. Upon command, the armor changes shape and form to assume the appearance of a normal set of clothing. The armor retains all its properties (including weight) when glamered. Only a true seeing spell or similar magic reveals the true nature of the armor when disguised.

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Shadow (armor only): This type of armor is jet black and blurs the wearer whenever she tries to hide, granting a +5 competence bonus on Hide checks (essentially a bonus for an extremely favorable condition). This bonus does not stack with obscuring or blinding-based Hide check bonuses. (The armor’s armor check penalty still applies normally.)

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Silent Moves (armor only): This armor is well oiled and magically constructed so that it not only makes little sound, but it dampens sound around it. It adds a +10 competence bonus on its wearer’s Move Silently checks. (The armor’s armor check penalty still applies normally.)

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Slick (armor only): Slick armor seems coated at all times with a slightly greasy oil. It adds a +5 competence bonus on its wearer’s Escape Artist checks. (The armor’s armor check penalty still applies normally.)

Purchase DC Modifier: +1.

Sonic Resistance: A suit of armor or a shield with this enchantment normally has a glistening appearance. The armor absorbs the first 10 points of sonic/concussion damage per attack that the wearer would normally take (similar to the resist energy spell).

Purchase DC Modifier: +2.

Spell Resistance (armor only): This enchantment grants the armor’s wearer spell resistance while the armor is worn.

Spell ResistancePurchase DC Modifier
15+1
19+2
23+3

Sponsorship: This suit of armor or a shield is emblazoned with corporate logos, emblems, and advertisements. The armor gains no special benefits but is cheaper to purchase.

Purchase DC Modifier: –2.

Screen printing