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Let's say I'm a wizard with a hedgehog familiar from the DMG guide (page 203). It says, "Master gains a +1 natural armor bonus." What kind of bonus is this?

Is it enhancement bonus, dodge bonus, deflection?? I want to make sure with what the bonus stacks.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 18 down vote accepted

"Natural armor" is its own bonus type, which has its own fairly uncomplex stacking rules -- most importantly, it stacks with "armor" bonuses, and does not apply to touch AC.

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You said it yourself: "It provides me with a natural armor bonus of +1."

"Natural armor" is the bonus type.

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As stated in other answers, the Natural Armor bonus is its own type. In terms of stacking bonuses, the general rule is that bonuses of the same type don't stack and only the highest is applied.

So if you have the bonus from the hedgehog familiar and you buy an Amulet of Natural Armor +1, the bonuses do not stack and you still only have a natural armor bonus of +1. If you buy an Amulet of Natural Armor +2, it will override the bonus from the familiar and you will now have a natural armor bonus of +2.

Other bonus types do stack, so casting Mage Armor will give you the +4 armor bonus on top of your +1 natural armor bonus from the familiar.

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2  
-1: Amulet of Natural Armor is not actually a "natural armor" bonus, rather it is a "bonus-to-a-bonus" item, specifically an "enhancement bonus to natural armor". Therefore, if you have a hedgehog familiar and the amulet +1, the hedgehog would give you a +1 "natural armor" bonus to AC, then the amulet would give you a +1 "enhancement" bonus to that "natural armor" bonus, increasing the "natural armor" bonus from +1 to +2. This effectively amounts to them stacking. A better example would be to replace the amulet with the Beast Shape I spell, which does work as you describe. –  Matthew Najmon Apr 14 at 19:36

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