My GM told me that if you wear armour it weighs half as much as if you carry it. Is this part of the official Pathfinder rules, or is it a houserule?

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ It might make more sense if you use the term "encumbrance" instead of "weight". A suit of armour is more encumbering stuffed in a sack or backpack than it is draped correctly around the body, where shoulders and hips can share the weight. As posted below, I'm vaguely sure this was an AD&D 1st ed rule (but not sure enough to post as an answer). \$\endgroup\$ – Greenstone Walker Nov 19 '13 at 0:18

The only figure I can find for half weight in the pathfinder source reference document is about armor fit for small creatures (which is smaller to start with and thus weights half as much as a medium-sized one).

No official rule exists to my knowledge about halving weight by donning armor (and I'd be surprised if it existed).
As SevenSidedDie points out, that rule used to exist on AD&D, and I suspect D&D 3.x got rid of it when they introduced load equivalents for wearing medium and heavy armor. Wearing armor is still more cumbersome than just having it in the backpack, but not because of weight variations.

(On a side note, it looks like D&D 3.x smiths are unable to craft decent-fitting armors. Since they weight the same and they're better balanced when worn, they must limit your movements because they are bulky and uncomfortable to wear.)

  • 7
    \$\begingroup\$ As a (now-deleted) guessing-answer noted, this is a rule in AD&D. My guess is that the GM has carried it forward as a house rule, possibly without remembering that it is a house rule. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Nov 18 '13 at 23:29
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ Worth noting: that armor for small creatures doesn't suddenly start weighing half as much when a small creature puts it on. The armor itself is already small and weighs half as much as a result. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Nov 19 '13 at 1:04
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Zachiel "Wearing armor is still more cumbersome..."? From experience, I'd much rather wear 20kg of armor than carrying 20kg of armor, since a decent-fitting armor is easier to move around while wearing than it is when it's in a bag you are carrying. That doesn't change the rules-as-written, though. \$\endgroup\$ – Vatine Nov 20 '13 at 16:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Vatine I'm talking about the rules. In the game, it's easier to carry a complete armor than to swim or run in it. \$\endgroup\$ – Zachiel Nov 20 '13 at 22:55
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ My understanding of the RAW: Human (30ft move) with 17 STR (86lb light), unarmoured, walking carrying a 50lb set of full plate has a Walk move of 30ft. Same human wearing the same armour has a Walk move of 20ft. You're right, it is easier to carry it than wear it. Strange. \$\endgroup\$ – Greenstone Walker Nov 21 '13 at 22:54

The only logical answer I can conceive is that an armor's effective weight is reduced due to being worn over a large area of the body and thus spread out fairly evenly and thus for the purposes of encumbrance would be treated as half weight compared to holding it in a large bag slung over one shoulder.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.