|This article is about general information on armor. For specific armor art and function types, see Armor types. For skill and equipment effects mentioning the word "armor", see Armor (rating).|
Unlike most other RPGs, the effects of different pieces of armor do not simply add up to reduce damage. Each piece of armor protects a specific body location. When a particular body location is struck by damage, only the armor worn there is used to calculate the armor effect. Thus, wearing a super sturdy helm is not going to help you much when an attacker stabs you in the chest.
Each body location has a certain probability to be struck by damage. As crafting material requirements (from the same crafter) for armors of different body locations always have a fixed ratio, rumor has it that this ratio also correspond to the relative probabilities of each body location being struck by damage.
The five body locations and their "crafting material percentages" are:
- Head - 12.5% (1/8)
- Chest - 37.5% (3/8)
- Hands - 12.5% (1/8)
- Legs - 25% (2/8)
- Feet - 12.5% (1/8)
The stats of an armor piece can be broken into the following components:
- Basic armor - All armor sets have basic functions (or stats) for each profession, which are available on every set of armor. Depending on profession, basic armor stats includes Energy, Energy recovery, Health and Armor.
- Insignia bonus - All pieces of armor, except the max AL ones obtained from collectors, allow for an Insignia to be added. Insignias can increase Armor, Health, Energy and damage Absorption or other beneficial bonuses.
- Attribute headgear bonus - Inherent bonus available on most headgear. The bonus increases Attributes and stacks with Attribute bonuses from runes.
- Rune bonus - All pieces of armor allow for a rune to be added. Runes can increase Attributes, Health, Energy and damage Absorption or reduce Condition duration. Most rune bonuses do not stack with other runes of the same type.
- Infusion bonus - This bonus can be gained only in Prophecies campaign, but non-prophecies armors can be infused too. Infusion is the process of imbuing a set of armor with magic that shields against Spectral Agony, used by the Mursaat, Jade Armors, and Jade Bows. Any piece of armor can be infused, including Headgears and Festival hats. Once acquired this bonus cannot be replaced or removed.
In general, the bonuses on armor sets are completely independent of the armor's art.
When armor does not matter
There are certain situations where a character would lose the same amount of health whether she or he is wearing the best armor a developer can create or is standing naked:
- Damage from certain sources do not strike at a specific body location, but directly make the victim take damage. They are characterized as armor ignoring damage, see footnote 1 of damage type for more details.
- Certain effects remove health without causing damage at all, and thus are not lessened by armor. Some examples include health degeneration, life stealing, sacrifice, as well as any skill description that says "lose health" without using the word "damage".
- Certain effects place a limit on the amount of damage the victim may receive. It is often in the form of percentage of the victim's maximum health. Protective Spirit and Shelter are among the two most prominent examples.
All armor is customized for their owners, thus armor received in a trade cannot be worn (unless, of course, the armor you are getting was once yours). Even if you put an armor piece in storage, delete the character, and create a new character with the exact same name and profession, that new character will not be able to wear the old armor.
- New PvE characters receive starter armor that cannot be salvaged or sold to a merchant.
- Armor crafters sell armor for gold and crafting materials.
- Armor collectors trade armor for collectable drops.
- Festival hats can be acquired during certain special in-game events.
PvP characters can create and change their armor anytime they are in a town or outpost via the PvP Equipment panel. A PvP character's armor cannot be placed into storage. You can get new armor skins with reward points gained from automated tournaments
Each piece of crafted armor can be upgraded with one insignia and one rune. When the armor is upgraded this way, its name is changed to <Insignia name> <Armor name> of <Rune name>, thus the insignia defines armor prefix, and the rune defines the armor suffix. For instance, if a pair of Primeval Gloves are upgraded with both an Aeromancer Insignia and a Rune of Superior Fire Magic the name will change to Aeromancer's Primeval Gloves of Superior Fire Magic. To upgrade armor with runes or insignia, doubleclick with the mouse on the rune or insignia and then choose approprate piece of armor to apply to.
Once upgraded, runes and insignias can be replaced with another in the same way (the armor will remain intact but the old upgrade will be lost). They can also be salvaged from armor, but this may result in the armor being destroyed.
Note: Armor obtained from collectors can not be upgraded with insignia. Runes may be added and salvaged as normal.
In Prophecies, armor can also be infused. This is required to defend against the Spectral Agony skill used by some monsters in the Prophecies campaign. This is the only armor upgrade that is applied by an NPC.
There is also class of prestige armor art, often called Elite Armor. There is an elite version for almost every armor art type. Elite armor is only available at maximum AL. Elite armor does not provide more protection from damage than normal maximum armor; players craft them purely for the looks and prestige. Elite armor is very expensive, normally requiring 15 and many Crafting materials and Rare crafting materials per piece.
- The sum of all armor buffs gained from skills and effects cannot exceed +25. However, if one or more effects add more than +25 armor by themselves (for example +40 from Physical Resistance), then the largest of these effects counts as the total buff, even if it is larger than +25.