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When a Grey Ooze hits metal armor, it reduces the AC by -1. When AC hits 10 then the armor is destroyed.

Does this destruction ignore any dex bonus that might be there, or include it? I assume the former, but I want to make sure I'm handling it right.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already and see the help center or ask us here in the comments (use @ to ping someone) if you need more guidance. Good Luck and Happy Gaming! \$\endgroup\$ – Someone_Evil Jan 29 at 15:59
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The trait reads as follows:

if the target is wearing nonmagical metal armor, its armor is partly corroded and takes a permanent and cumulative -1 penalty to the AC it offers. The armor is destroyed if the penalty reduces its AC to 10.

Sets of armor have a set AC and some of them allow the character to add their Dex to the final AC. What's important here is that the character wearing the armor has a Dex score, the armor doesn't. The gray ooze's attacks reduce the armor's AC directly, so it doesn't include any dexterity from the wearer.

This also prevents funny effects, like a set of armor being nearly destroyed on a character with dexterity, and then when he takes it off and gives it to a less dextrous character, suddenly falling apart.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm afraid this only makes me more confused. Can you give an example of when a metal armor that includes a dexterity bonus in its AC calculation is destroyed? Eg. a breastplate worn by a character with Dex 14. \$\endgroup\$ – sptrashcan Jan 29 at 17:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ Long story short, a breastplate (AC14 + dex up to 2) will always be destroyed in the same amount of hits by a grey ooze, four, because after four hits its AC will be reduced to 10. What Erik is saying is that the Dex bonus is something conferred by the the character wearing the armor, as opposed to the armor itself. Also remember that when calculating AC for a character not wearing armor, it is 10 + Dex. The type of armor you wear (light,medium,heavy) is basically telling you how much of your Dex you get to benefit from in addition to the armor. \$\endgroup\$ – Beninja2 Jan 29 at 17:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ On the other hand, if you feel like it would be funny, and you're in a wacky enough game, go ahead and roll with it. \$\endgroup\$ – Ben Barden Jan 29 at 18:30
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Erik's answer is correct, however an example was requested in the comments. So, assume a character with dex 16 (+3) is wearing a breastplate (AC 14, max dex +2). The character's AC is 16 (14 from armor + 2 from dex)

On the first hit, the ooze damages the armor to AC 13 (+2 dex). Character AC is 15.

On the second hit, the ooze damages the armor to AC 12 (+2 dex). Character AC is 14.

On the third hit, the ooze damages the armor to AC 11 (+2 dex). Character AC is 13.

On the fourth hit, the ooze damages the armor to AC 10, which destroys it. The character is no longer wearing any armor, and the character now has an AC of 13 from their dex bonus alone.

In short, the armor's maximum dexterity bonus is entirely irrelevant to how long it holds up against a gray ooze. This also becomes clear when the opposite situation is considered, where the armor is light or medium armor but the character has a large dexterity penalty instead. Assume the character is wearing a chain shirt but has a dexterity of 4 (-3 modifier). The character's AC is 10, but the armor will still take 3 hits to reduce its AC from 13 to 10 and be destroyed.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Note that there are some perverse cases where the character is worse off for wearing damaged armor than if they had none at all. For example, a 18 Dex char is better off in Chain (AC13+2=15) than in no armor (AC10+4=14), but the same character is better off in no armor than in chain that has been hit and damaged once (AC11+2=13). \$\endgroup\$ – Kirt Jan 29 at 22:01
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The emphasis on the trait is as follows:

if the target is wearing nonmagical metal armor, its armor is partly corroded and takes a permanent and cumulative -1 penalty to the AC it offers. The armor is destroyed if the penalty reduces its AC to 10.

That means that Dexterity is irrelevant.

In the case of Leather which is AC: 11. If the ooze hits the character the Leather receives a -1 penalty which reduces the the AC it offers to 10 which then destroys it.

In the case of Plate that is hit once by the ooze it now has been reduced from an 18 to a 17... if the character is hit another 7 times the armor is destroyed.

Again dexterity is irrelevant at least in this calculation... it obviously affects the difficulty to be hit of course depending on the armor worn.

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