When fighting in close combat, a good suit of armour may mean the difference between life and death. The finest armour in the known world is made in Dwarf forges, where the secrets of steel and fire are well understood. Hardened leather jackets are often worn by the hunters of Osterland, while city soldiers prefer mail coats and steel breastplates. The forges of the Empire have many skilled smiths capable of forging fine armour, for the humans learned this craft from Dwarf master smiths in the early days of the Empire.
In Mordheim, only the most wealthy and powerful are able to afford the luxury of owning a suit of armour (the less well-off have to make do with leather tunics and occasionally helmets and wooden shields). The richest leaders of the most successful warbands wear suits of high quality armour and a good suit of armour is just as much a symbol of wealth and power as it is protection against weapons.
Armour, called barding, may be purchased for a warhorse. It adds a further +1 bonus to the model’s armour save, but subtracts one from its Movement. A normal horse may not wear barding. A barded warhorse is only killed on a serious injury roll of ‘1’ if the model goes out of action.
Bucklers are small, round shields designed for parrying or deflecting blows. They are usually made of steel for they need to be tremendously durable to survive the brutal blows of hand-to-hand combat. Using a buckler requires great skill, but a nimble warrior can protect himself from blows which would otherwise cripple him.
Parry: A model equipped with a buckler may parry the first blow in each round of hand-to-hand combat. When his opponent scores a hit, a model with a buckler may roll 1D6. If the score is greater than the highest to hit score of his opponent, the model has parried the blow, and that attack is discarded. A model may not parry attacks made with double or more its own Strength – they are simply too powerful to be stopped.
Chaos only, Border Town Burning supplement
Chaos Armour is a suit of strangely-worked and unnatural metal. It is the mark of a Dark God's favour. While most suits of Chaos Armour are received as Gifts from an Infernal Patron, they can be acquired, though only from Chaos Dwarfs in an exclusive exchange for many captives or perhaps some impossible deed to further their interests.
Rarity: When searching for Chaos armour a warrior gains +1 on his Rarity roll for each model he took out of action in the previous battle.
Cost: The cost for found Chaos armour is decreased by 1 gold crown for each Experience point the Hero has.
Gift of Chaos: Chaos armour is a gift from the Dark Gods to the worthy warrior. A Hero who has successfully purchased a suit of Chaos armour will never give it away to another warband member but put it on himself immediately. Chaos armour becomes fused to the body of its wearer. It can never be removed.
Save: A warrior that is wearing Chaos armour has a basic D6 armour saving throw of 4+.
Spellcasters: Chaos armour does not hinder its wearer from casting spells or rituals. It can be worn by spellcasters but they cannot combine it with a shield or buckler without appropriate skills.
Gromril is the rarest and strongest metal known of in the Old World. Only a very few Dwarf smiths know the secret of forging gromril, and a suit of armour made from it fetches a huge price.
Gromril armour gives the wearer a 4+ basic save, and does not slow him down if he is also armed with a shield.
Typical heavy armour is made from metal links and is called chain mail. Forging chain mail is a laborious and time consuming process, as the blacksmith must put together hundreds, sometimes thousands, of metal links. This makes chain mail expensive, but this type of armour provides excellent protection for anyone who can afford it.
There are other types of heavy armour as well, of which the best known are the steel breastplates and greaves worn by the foot knights of the Templar orders.
Save: A warrior that is wearing heavy armour has a basic D6 saving throw of 5+.
Movement: A warrior that is armed with both heavy armour and a shield suffers a -1 Movement penalty
From the shining steel helmets of Bretonnian knights to the leather caps of the Skaven, all sensible warriors try to protect the most vulnerable part of their body – their head. Even the most vain fighters still use a helmet, as it can be festooned with plumes, horns and other decorations.
Helmets come in varying shapes and sizes, but their basic function remains the same.
Avoid stun: A model that is equipped with a helmet has a special 4+ save on a D6 against being stunned. If the save is made, treat the stunned result as knocked down instead. This save is not modified by the opponent’s Strength.
Ithilmar is a silvery metal which is as light as silk and stronger than steel. Elves are experts at fashioning weapons and armour from ithilmar, and the Elven kingdom of Caledor is the only place in the world where this metal can be found.
Ithilmar armour gives the wearer a 5+ basic save, and does not slow him down if he is also armed with a shield.
Light armour encompasses a wide variety of materials from hardened leather tunics to chain shirts forged from steel. It does not offer complete protection against arrows or swords, but it is better than having nothing at all. Light armour does not inhibit movement.
Armour saving throw
Save: A warrior who is wearing light armour has a basic D6 saving throw of 6.
Chaos Dwarfs only, Border Town Burning supplement
The Curse of Stone comes to all Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers, gradually transforming them to rock from the feet up. Engineers have crafted machines which can transport their Priests as they begin to pay the price for working dark rituals.
Chaos Armour: A Mechanical suit counts as Chaos armour and rules that would affect Chaos armour affect the suit as well.
Suited and Booted: A Sorcerer equipped with a Mechanical suit receives +3 to Movement.
Ye Old Curiosity Shoppe, Mordheim Annual 2002
A pavise is a huge shield commonly used by regiments of warriors in battle to defend themselves from the arrows of their enemies. It is a weighty item and little use in a long protracted combat but excellent against shooting.
Cover/Save: A warrior using a pavise counts as if he is in cover against missile attacks (- 1 to hit). In close combat, The pavise counts as a shield (+1 armour save) but only if the warrior was charged to his front. Because the Pavise is so heavy and cumbersome, the bearer moves at half pace.
There are two types of shield common to the warriors of Mordheim: the first is made of wood, occasionally reinforced with metal plates. This basic type of shield, although strong, does tend to splinter, but this can sometimes save the user’s life as his enemy’s weapon can get trapped allowing him to strike back whilst his enemy struggles to free his weapon.
Metal shields are heavy and cumbersome, but last much longer and can take a battering. A typical Empire shield is either round or triangular, and carries the emblem of the province or city of its owner.
Armour saving throw
Save: A model with a shield has a basic save of 6 on a D6.
Opulent Goods, Mordheim Annual 2002
Expert leatherworkers are able to turn leather coats into armor (after a fashion) and those with limited funds often favor these jackets and coats as armor is very expensive. Covered with crusted salt, alcohol and other less savory materials, toughened leather is hard to penetrate and offers some protection in combat.
Toughened leathers work exactly like light armor, giving the wearer a 6+ Armor save, but cannot be combined with the effects of any other armor except a helmet or buckler (so not a shield). Toughened leathers cannot be sold back at the Trading Posts; the stench alone is enough to drive away even the most desperate of buyers!
Opulent Goods, Mordheim Annual 2002
In Middenheim it is still considered to be the feat of a true man to slay a great wolf single-handed. Warriors who accomplish such a deed will command the respect of their peers, and their cloaks will be blessed by the High Priest of the Cult of Ulric, the god of winter, war and wolves. Middenheimers only.
To acquire a Wolfcloak, a Hero must pay 10 gc (to represent the expense of traveling to Middenheim and taking part in a hunt). In addition, the Hero must roll equal to or under his Strength on a D6. If successful, the Hero finds and slays the wolf and can wear its cloak as a mark of his skill and prowess. Note that Middenheimers may buy Wolfcloaks when starting their warband without making a test for availability. A model wearing a Wolfcloak will gain +1 to his armor saves against all shooting attacks.