In the Dungeon Master's Basic Rules, one of the monsters that was featured is Animated Armor. I was disappointed that they did not address the possibility of intelligent animated armor attempting to lure a PC into trying to wear it and then taking control of said PC. So when I brought home my shiny new Monster Manual on Saturday, I was even more disappointed that this was still not addressed explicitly, forcing me to come up with my own mechanics.
My desire is to use Animated Armor as a trap; My players are smart enough to cast detect magic on fancy new treasure and have the resident spellcaster carefully inspect things that appear too good to be true, but they are also greedy and "completionists." Despite their caution, they can never resist a shiny piece of treasure. I want to exploit this behavior by having a suit of Animated Armor lie in wait and allow one of them (hopefully the party tank) to put it on.
- Should the Animated Armor's control over the PC be implemented via the grapple mechanic? Is that technically feasible? If so, I feel like either the PC should get disadvantage or the Armor should get advantage. Is there a significant difference statistically in the outcome depending on which one of those I choose?
- If the grapple mechanic is used to implement this tactic, would it be unfair to grant the Armor the "Damage Transfer" property of the Rug of Smothering? I feel like attacks directed at the armor should also harm the wearer, but effectively granting the armor complete damage resistance (allowing it to only take half damage from virtually all attacks) seems pretty brutal.
- While the Armor is controlling a PC, should the "combined creature" (combination of PC and Armor) attack using the PC's attributes and attacks or the Armor's attributes and attacks? For example, take a fighter who wields a Pike who has been taken over by a suit of Animated Armor. Can the Armor make attacks with the Pike using the fighter's Strength, or is the Armor forever fated to only be able to use it's default Slam attack with its own Strength score?
- Similar to #3, should the combined creature use the PC's AC or the Armor's AC? For example, assume a fighter wielding a shield and a Ring of Protection +1 straps on the Animated Armor and loses his grapple check, his total AC would be 21 (base 18 from Full Plate Mail, +2 from the shield, +1 from the Ring of Protection). Should attacks against the PC+Armor be targeted against an AC of 18 (for just the Armor) or 21 (for the PC)?