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If you are wearing Freedom armor (magic item compendium), do you ignore the maximum dexterity bonus that normally applies to armor?

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    \$\begingroup\$ What makes you think it would? \$\endgroup\$ – Matthieu M. Jul 2 '15 at 12:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ The freedom armor description says "as if affected by the freedom of movement spell" \$\endgroup\$ – thereasonforitall Jul 2 '15 at 12:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Related. Sometimes that Related column off to the right is a real slacker. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jul 2 '15 at 13:20
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Ask your DM

The spell certainly could be read as allowing you to ignore them. I’ve never played with anyone who did read it that way, but I can definitely see it.

Ultimately, freedom of movement’s claim that it frees you from all hindrances and allows you to always move freely no matter what, just cannot be literally true. That leads to you being completely incorporeal, which is generally a very high-level effect, not a 4th-level one. So there have to be limits on freedom of movement despite its basic claim that seems rather unlimited.

Where to draw the line? No one can answer that authoritatively; everybody has their own opinions, and it’s impossible, under the rules, to truly justify any given interpretation as superior to another.

Note that continual freedom of movement is really good no matter what you do. It’s pretty high on the list of must-have item effects.

But a +6-equivalent armor (including the mandatory base +1 bonus) costs 36,000 gp and change, while a ring of freedom of movement is 40,000 gp. I think the ring is a better choice here, because the options for armor/shield slots are better than those for rings. Between the ring of freedom of movement, and putting, say, heavy fortification on your armor and soulfire on your shield, you become immune to a lot of things. Since soulfire and heavy fortification don’t have ring options, I like the ring of freedom of movement more than than the freedom armor.

As for increasing maximum Dexterity, making an armor from mithral and applying the nimbleness property (a relatively-cheap +1-equivalent) increases an armor’s maximum Dexterity limit by 3, which is quite sizable.

If you have really high Dexterity, Races of Stone has an armor called “gnomish twist cloth” which has a +1 armor bonus to AC, no maximum Dexterity at all, and, if you take Exotic Armor Proficiency in it, you also get to apply its armor bonus to AC to touch attacks. The last is only a +2 bonus most of the time (native +1 bonus, then the +1 enhancement bonus), which is not worth a feat, but still kind of nifty. Various other very-high-maximum-Dexterity light armors exist, like nightscale’s +6 and spidersilk’s +8.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ @MatthieuM. True, but I did say “most of the time.” I don’t tend to assume that magic vestment is available, but AC bonuses are just not that valuable anyway. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Jul 2 '15 at 12:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MatthieuM. Since the needed +1 enhancement bonus does not stack with magic vestment, the total bonus in your comment should be AC 6. \$\endgroup\$ – Zachiel Jul 2 '15 at 17:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Zachiel: Ah! well, I cannot edit my comment... so I suppose I'll just delete it all. \$\endgroup\$ – Matthieu M. Jul 3 '15 at 6:21
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No

The freedom armor description says "as if affected by the freedom of movement spell"

A freedom of movement spell has three effects:

  1. You can move and attack normally even under the influence of magic that usually impedes movement (this does not include instantaneous magic due to how instantaneous works)
  2. You automaticaly succed on any grapple check to avoid grappling, as well as any grapple or Escape Artist checks to escape a grapple or pin
  3. You can move and attack (provided that the weapon is wielded in the hand rather than hurled) normaly underwater (but not breathe)

Ignoring the maximum dexterity bonus of armor is not any of these things

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  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to the site. If you haven't, take the tour. I fear that there might be some misunderstanding of the limits of the spell freedom of movement as the spell is complicated and open to a variety of interpretations (as can be seen from this question). Nonetheless, thank you for your participation and for helping strangers. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jul 10 '15 at 14:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ The part about "even" feels like unnecessary interpretation, and not in the spirit of RAW. \$\endgroup\$ – sisima70 Aug 15 '16 at 15:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ (Assuming you mean in the question linked to in the comment.) Why? The text says even. (And can you define the spirit of the rules as written? That sounds contradictory.) \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Aug 15 '16 at 15:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ What I meant with the spirit of RAW was the absence of interpretation (i.e. besides semantics), such as: ...drawing conclusions that are not logically neccesary ...adding "common sense" to (re-)definitions of words ...or to anything else for that matter This is what I thought was the game called RAW. The argument in the linked question looks like law, which is quite unrelated to RAW since it certainly cares about the intended meaning of a law (or, IIRC, to a lesser degree, a contract). \$\endgroup\$ – sisima70 Jul 22 '19 at 20:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ Honestly, I think this answer goes too far in a legalistic direction. Consider a reading like this: The freedom of movement "spell enables you or a creature you touch to move and attack normally for the duration of the spell" then everything after that introduction being examples of some things that the spell enables—including some specific interactions like grappling and underwater—, but the game leaving it up to the DM to define what other limits are to be placed on the spell. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Jul 22 '19 at 20:21

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