Shields Shall Be Fiddly

50% cover should be +4AC
Been hankering to build another shield in all this free time i ain't got. Maybe see if I can get something weildable, rather than just ornamental.

Either way, in contemplating this, I took to reflecting on the time I spent fighting with a shield, and let me tell you, the dang things are equalizers. Many a time I held off a better fighter long enough, just cause my left arm was attached to a giant board that negated everything on that side. Switching arms confused the hell out of them. They're also the source of all my concussions, but that's another story.

I figure this sort of thing warranted more than just a +2 to AC. See the above picture, that's at least 50% cover, but +4 seems too much, also boring. Sure, it's the quick and done route, but what follows is more of a hassle! </selling_points>

Medium Shield
+0 to AC vs melee, +2 to AC vs range
Special: Once per round a non-magical, non-ranged attack the wielder knows about has a 2-in-6 chance of being blocked completely. For fighters, this applies to every attack, rather than once per round. Obviously if the character loses their Dex bonus (unaware, tied up, etc) they lose this save.

If using Shields Shall Be Splintered rule, then this can be activated after a failed Shield save.

Small Shield, i.e. Buckler
As Medium Shield, but +1 to AC vs range, and 1-in-6 chance.

Large Shield; i.e. Tower Shield
As Medium Shield, but +4 to AC vs range, and 3-in-6 chance.

"But...doesn't this make shields must have equipment?" Yes. Because shields are must have equipment if you don't want to get hit. That's sort of their deal. That's why they were made.

However, there's a few ways around it.

Successful attack vs AC alters shield block roll by -2 for the attack

Successful block by the shield incurs damage to the shield, eventually breaking it. Requires item endurance system to work.

Bearded Ax
Successful attack against AC, and unsuccessful Shield save allows the attacker one of two options: 1) Do attack damage as normal or 2) pin the shield in the ax's beard for the round. Pinning the shield removes AC bonus, and disallows for Shield saves.

Successful block by the shield incurs a strength related save. Failure means shield wielder suffers half of the would-be attack damage from the hammer.

Pistols and Muskets
Where pistols and muskets ignore armor, they also don't care about shields. No AC bonus, no Shield save.

Magic Missile
Also doesn't care.

Lightning Bolt
Wood makes a poor conductor, and would probably offer some protection. Steel however is an excellent conductor. -2 to Touch AC, no Shield save.

Area Effects
Shields provide no alteration to saves and subsequent damage, unless using Shields Shall Be Splintered.

So, there we are. Future players, I hope you're looking to play test this when I get back to into things. One potential issue: Bogging down combat, especially when fighters go at it. Maybe limit based on level? Something to chew on.

"Listen, listen, listen. I'm just saying: You put Runes of Eye Implosion on a shield, and call it a day."

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