Copyright © 2001 by Robert J. Hall
Created by the master of the mists, Sha-le Hu, this sleek outfit is a light, comfortable garb that provides some protection against weapons in combat but is especially effective against energy-based attacks. The jerkin and matching pants are made from a fine, double-layered silk that has been dyed a pale scarlet with golden yellow trim. The only distinctive marking on the garb is the silhouette of an exotic bird on the back of the jerkin.
In addition to normal protection, the wearer of this garb gains some control over the elements of mist, clouds, and steam. He is able to summon a cloud of obstructing vapors at will, and can change into a mist-like form that bestows healing benefits. The armor will also enable the wearer to float through the air like a bird, although the task is much more exhausting in dry conditions. Finally, he can sense many subtle changes and movements within a cloud of vapor, allowing him to pierce the mists and detect his foes.
In ancient times, this round shield was crafted by the famed armorer Guidon Halviner to serve his young duke Tenar Nacobi in the defense of the crown. It initially possessed no powers beyond those of a normal shield, but served the duke well and undoubtedly saved his life many times during the long civil war. The shield was kept in the royal lineage for many years thereafter, and was well enchanted by the court magi to further protect the ruler. It was finally buried with the great King Argosa upon his mysterious death, and remained in his crypt for many centuries. By the time the shield was uncovered by tomb robbers, it had become corrupted into a barbaric instrument of slaying.
The shield is covered in the hide of a black bull, and banded with polished steel. Nine small curved horns project outward from this band, and serve as sword catchers. At the center of the shield is a prominent steel cap riveted about the edge. A bracer and steel handle serve as holds on the back of the shield. Two eerie eyes have been worked into the hide, and appear almost to glare at any foes. These are said to be the ever watchful eyes of King Argosa.
Bear Claws (6)
These heavy leather gloves are covered on the back side with a thick matte of black hair. Claws protrude from the ends of the fingers, aiding the character while climbing, and also serving as weapons when no other is available. In addition, the Strength of the character is greatly increased when performing a grab.
This superb heater shield was crafted by the Wizard Hermetridus for his champion of justice. The front surface is made from highly polished silver, and displays the bas relief image of a lion and unicorn guarding a city portcullis. The back of the shield is covered with an exquisite leather made from an extinct beast. There are two large clasps of polished bronze lined with the same soft leather.
The defender shield glows with a soft, silvery light that illuminates the ground for a short distance. When the bearer is attacked, the shield seems to shift of its own accord, blocking attacks from the front. The shield can also be used to block slow projectiles, and will ward the owner from debilitating magic. While light for a shield of its size, it will also deliver a respectable blow from a shield rush. Finally, the wielder gains a special combat ability that allows him to fight even in darkness.
This magnificent blood-red metal breastplate has the fluted image of a dragon in the center. When used in combat, the armor constantly drips with blood, a sight that drives all but the most self-controlled opponents berserk with rage. This can sometimes have unfortunate effects if the warrior is fighting with comrades, so the armor is best worn by solitary champions. Any physical contact with the armor can cause bleeding wounds to appear on the flesh of a foe. The armor is light and extremely tough and durable, resisting all but the most extreme blows.
Elfin Chain Mesh (6-18)
This exquisitely constructed chain mail armor is made from a fine, blue steel mesh that will never rust. The armor is unusually light and flexible, with a weave that resembles knitted wool. Unlike normal armor, this chain will rarely make a sound while worn, allowing stealthy movement in dangerous territory. This armor protects all parts of the body, save for the head and neck. Elfin Chain Mesh is very comfortable, and can be worn under normal garb.
The manufacture of this armor is a tightly held secret of the elven society, and a suit is rarely given to outsiders. Those who earn the armor, however, will be treated with much honor and respect among elves.
Golden Dragon Armor (3-18)
This magnificent suit of scale armor is made from fine leaves of golden- hued metal that are shaped as a wide, veined dagger. The armor provides excellent protection from normal opponents, but was specifically designed by its makers to battle the dragon-led armies from the Coradon Empire. For this purpose, five full sets of Golden Dragon Armor were commissioned at enormous expense. Each suit was worn by the greatest heroes of the realm, and the armor served its purpose admirably in helping to defeat the Coradons.
By drenching the golden scales in perpetual fire, the armor has been magically endowed with the ability to withstand intense heat. Indeed, the only safe means to don this suit is to place the hands inside the gauntlets, then use the protection of the gloves to handle the remainder of the armor. Once the armor is in place, the wearer can enter regions of severe heat without suffering damage. In cooler realms, the armor radiates a steady heat that is sufficient to melt nearby ice or snow. The heat is sufficient that anybody attempting to touch the outside of the armor without heavy gloves can suffer nasty burns.
Jack of Thieves (9-14)
Created in the third century by the mysterious Sorcerer-Priests of Ky'alun Tier Tower, this reversible leather jacket has been bestowed with powers of stealth, misdirection, and escape. The outside of the jacket is lightly tanned and bears the emblem of the Tier craftsmen. When turned inside out, the jacket is a dull black with no reflective surfaces. The powers available to the wearer are determined by which side is outward, so the owner must choose wisely as it can require several precious moments to turn the jacket inside out.
Mercury Armor (7-13)
Like a glistening hide of silver, this tough armor will wrap itself around its owner upon a single word of command. The armor bestows upon its wearer a wonder of different powers that enhance his speed. The character can not only maneuver and fight quicker, but run up the sides of walls, dodge incoming missiles, and run like the wind.
The origins of this wonderous armor is unknown, but it has long served the guardians of the winds, a band of elite warriors that protect an ancient temple on the heights of Mount Guidan. The speed and prowess of these warriors is the stuff of legend, and more than makes up for their lack of numbers.
Originally the creation of the crocodile cult of Llragwyth, a few of these dastardly gloves survived the sack of the marsh temple by the royal guards of King Holdairn. Those seen possessing one of these items by the King's guards will be immediately branded a cultist and put to death by the sword.
When slashed by the talons of these crocodile hide gloves, a numbing paralysis will creep over the victim. Fortunately for the guards, this weapon is relatively ineffectual against an armored foe, unless a lucky hit is scored.
Phantom Armor (3-18)
This mysterious suit of dull grey, crystalline armor is permanently trapped between two different dimensions, so that it has an almost ghostly appearance when viewed from one of the planes. The origin of this armor is a mystery, although there is some speculation that it was a product of a wizard's dimensional portal that went awry.
Anybody wearing this crystal plate will be partially drawn into the ethereal plane, significantly reducing the effectiveness any non-magical blows suffered. (However, the effectiveness of this otherwise fine armor is also reduced by this multi-dimensional effect.) The wearer is also becomes capable of striking desolidified beings, although not if the foe is an undead or spirit. Finally, attempts to entrap the wearer will be less successful, since material objects seem to readily slide off the armor and he can easily make his way through obstructions.
Shadow Armor (3-18)
Magically crafted from wisps of shadow stuff, this lightweight, charcoal black armor will fit snugly to its wearer. The powers of this armor are especially useful for combat in low light conditions. While moving through shadows, the armor makes the wearer all but invisible. The visor of the helm enhances the sight of the wearer so he is better able to distinguish objects in dim lighting. The black armor also has the ability to absorb energy from light or fire-based magic. Finally, the sight of the wearer is protected from brilliant light by the heavy visor. When the armor is being worn, it will draw energy from any creatures in the vicinity, so his allies will need to maintain at least a body-length gap, or they will experience a sudden chilling sensation.
Shark Hide Armor (3-5,7-14)
The origin of this unusual armor has been lost to the sands of time, although it is rumored to have been created by a race of beings that dwell beneath the waves. The flexible hide made from a great white shark, and can be worn like a snug-fitting garment that protects the limbs, body, and head. The helm is built from part of the skull of the shark, and bears an impressive ring of fangs that protect the eyes. Much like a shark, the outer surface of the armor is rough to the touch. However, the inner hide is very smooth and is comfortable enough to wear next to bare skin.
In addition to protecting the wearer from attacks, this armor also provides certain benefits that are especially useful while underwater. The wearer is able to breathe underwater much like a fish, although the experience is very uncomfortable at first. The hide also greatly increases swimming ability, although not enough to match a shark. Finally, his hearing and scent abilities are much enhanced, so much that he can hunt and catch fish and other prey.
Wolfskin Armor (10-13)
Legend holds that the famed wilderness hero Draken Holder once fought the great white wolf for the carcass of a deer. The prowess of Draken was so great that he mortally wounded the immortal creature, but grew so mortified at his deed that he carried the body of the large beast across the ice wastes to a magical pool set deep within a great ice crystal cave. However, the wolf was too far dead to be healed by the magical waters of this fountain. Yet the spirit of the wolf honored Draken's deed with the gift of his hide, enchanted with further magical powers that he may protect the wolves of the north.
This fine wolf skin hide will cover and protect the shoulders, torso, and head. While the wolves head cap is being worn, the wearer gains the ability to locate and communicate intimately with wolves. He is protected from the cold and his bodily recuperative abilities are markedly improved. Finally, if he can summon sufficient will, he can change his form into that of a wolf, and vice versa. While in the form of the wolf, the armor merges into his body and all other possessions fall to the ground.