TL;DR: I don’t think the mechanics of the clumsy tag match the fiction, and I think it should be changed or scrapped.
The Clumsy tag.
Clumsy: It’s tough to move around with. -1 ongoing while using it. This penalty is cumulative.
-1 ongoing, to everything, seems like a pretty hefty penalty for wearing armor. I can see arguments for keeping the hero wearing it from moving quietly, from doing anything acrobatic or athletic, or crawling through tight spaces, but I don’t see how wearing armor could interfere with ‘spouting lore’, ‘discerning realities’, or even casting spells unless you are extremely weak. But come on, they’re heroes!
And what about weapons that are clumsy? It’s under ‘armor tags’ by why shouldn’t a war maul be clumsy?
‘ Reworked Clumsy’: It’s tough to move around with. You take -1 to your rolls when you try to move quickly while using this item.
What do you think?
Have you used clumsy armor without ignoring the tag?
11 thoughts on “TL;DR: I don’t think the mechanics of the clumsy tag match the fiction, and I think it should be changed or scrapped.”
Have you ever worn full plate or a full suit of kevlar?
Why clumsy is difficult with spouting lore – The character, in full armor, is attempting to consult his notes. With gloves on, he’s trying to flip through the pages of his journal, adjust the candle for better light, and read through a helmet.
I could keep going, but I think the point stands. One of the cool parts about being a fighter is that you’re naturally gifted at wearing armor, so you get to ignore this. The wizard, meanwhile, is going to find it gets in the way of everything.
As for why armor has it and weapons don’t, you can set a weapon down without much fuss. You can’t easily remove armor.
I see what you’re saying, but the tag makes wearing any kind of armor for anyone other than barbarian and fighter a really stupid idea. I guess it feels somewhat limiting to character diversity.
As for ‘consulting notes’ for spout lore, ‘consulting notes’ isn’t ‘spouting’ . I can see a helmet being more of a problem with discern realities, but helmets aren’t really mentioned as parts of suits of armor, and despite the weight and the heaviness, the armor doesn’t actually impair your mental functions.
I won’t dispute the fact, that, in real life, doing things in heavy armor is difficult despite my lack of experience in that area. That’s neither here nor there though, Dungeon World is fictional and fantastical.
The tag is ‘clumsy’
When I think ‘clumsy’ about an object, I think physically difficult to move in, and the tag itself describes it as that, however I feel the mechanic doesn’t fit the fiction.
“the tag makes wearing any kind of armor for anyone other than barbarian and fighter a really stupid idea.”
Not true, any class can wear leather and chainmail with no problem. Or carry a shield.
The problem with your rewrite is that it gives a pretty significant incentive for classes that won;t be hindered by it much, like the wizard or the druid, to wear heavy armor. That kind of clashes with their archetype and seems like mechanical overkill because both of those examples ready have moves that give them bonus armor (Arcane ward, Barkskin.)
Wearing heavy armor should be a big deal, both as a mechanical bonus and as character trait. Making it easier for everyone to wear it cheapens it as both.
I’ve got to agree with the others here, Harrison s. Those classes that are expected to wear heavy armor can without any penalty, and if any of the other classes want to wear it like that, they can use a multiclass move.
I like to think that wearing clusmy armor is so difficult for people who aren’t trained to do it, it makes it harder to even think straight.
Thanks for responding guys. I guess it’s more of a pet peeve than really a problem with the system, or even an inconsistency. I’m currently working on the starts of a hack,so I’m going over every little detail.
Can you spout state capitals when you are on a treadmill? Probably not as good if you were not exerting yourself.
As a guy who has wandered on foot wearing 40+ pounds of body armor, it quickly starts affecting the clarity of your thinking, and the extra heat and exertion can make memory access more difficult.
I would buy “charisma” style hindrances too – ever see someone in a dirty suit, or one that’s clearly the wrong size for them?
Sean Fager I bet you also start to stink after a while. My experience carrying gear is during backpacking, and it definitely generates a sweat-funk quickly.
Guy in a huge, sweaty suit of armor: “Hey ladies, my Charisma is unhindered.”
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