Armor cost

One of the changes from the strange or numenera is how armor cost works, but I have a question on the explanation.

p.184 of the book states that 2 levels of effort is 7 cost, 3 for the first level, 2 for the second level and 1 from light armor. this adds up to 6, not 7. Unless that's a penalty on each level of effort which it doesn't explicitly state. Typo or Rule?


  • edited July 2015
    Edit: I initially thought it was a typo but I now believe I was wrong.

    On p.184 it says the the armor cost is added *per level* of effort (in the brackets), not for each time effort is used. So 2 levels of Speed Effort while wearing Light Armor would be 3+2+2=7. 1st Level Effort (3) + 2nd Level Effort (2) + Light Armor cost per level of effort (2). Then you subtract your Edge (if you have one) from the overall total.

    Woe betide you if you're not practiced in armor either, because that adds another 1 cost per level of Effort on top of that. So in the example above it would cost you 9 Speed points!

    I can see where the confusion could arise as the example is a little misleading. I'm not sure if I prefer this to how Numenera did it, where being untrained in armor would reduce your Speed pool and slowly leech your Might. In Cypher your armor doesn't impede you at all until you utilize Speed Effort but it can be a doozy if you're untrained in it.

    Edit 2: Oddly this actually makes Speed focused characters better suited to wearing heavier armor rather than Might based ones. I doubt The Flash would *like* wearing full plate, but he'd do better than The Hulk. :)

    This also makes a bit of a disconnect with using Speed Effort in ranged attacks in my mind as well. "I'm wearing heavy armor, I *really* need to make this shot...whoops I nearly passed out." Even if you're Practiced in Armor, expending 2 Levels of Speed Effort while wearing Heavy Armor is 9 Speed points. If you're untrained in Armor its 13 Speed points!

    Edit 3: So unless I've missed something, you are *always* far better off taking Trained Without Armor and having a decent Speed Edge rather than wearing armor:

    Bob Tier 2: Practised in Armor (-1 to Speed cost when wearing Armor), wearing Heavy Armor, Speed Edge 2. Expends two levels of effort to dodge a blow. Difficulty lowered by 2 Steps. Costs 7 Speed Points. (3+2+4-2=7)

    Beth Tier 2: Trained Without Armor, wearing no Armor, Speed Edge 2. Expends one level of effort to dodge a blow. Difficulty lowered by 2 Steps. Costs 1 Speed Point. (3-2=1)

    Both manage to dodge the blow, but Bob has spent a lot more speed pool to do it. Beth mocks Bob for being out of condition and Bob takes a quick breather for a Recovery roll. The damage reduction you receive from armor, especially at later levels and against more powerful creatures, just doesn't seem worth, if you'll pardon the pun, the Effort.
  • I see that now, per level of effort.
  • To be honest, I'd be sorely tempted to swap in Numeneras approach to Armor, seems a lot more straightforward. Can't see it being game breaking.
  • I'm more partial to this version, I don't like the whole might cost per hour.
  • To be fair, you can also spend your first 4xp on reducing armor costs as one of the other options in advancement. So by tier 1 you could have all armor penalties reduced by 2, by tier 2 you could have it reduced by 3.
  • That is a very good point! Not the first time I've had no idea what I'm talking about and probably not the last. :)
  • You didn't have ~no~ idea. A few points you brought up I'd never thought of.
  • Excellent, if even one small gem of wisdom can be gleaned from my yammering, it's a good day. :D
  • While it CAN be better not having armour, and making it easier to avoid an attack, should you be hit the damage reduction is helpful. Also, if you have a character that has more a focus on might, you may not have an edge high enough in speed anyway.

    Maybe I missed it, but where is the actual armour value listed?
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