The Truth About Armor - Shields
by Panthera Pardus of Pacific
Grandmaster Blacksmith / Merchant

Here's some info on how shields and parry skill work, and how they affect your armor rating....

Since the UO Renaissance publish, shields are much more difficult to calculate for effectiveness. Although OSI has changed the way shields work, they did not update the "displayed AR" for shields. This makes figuring out their changes all the more difficult. The following table is a close estimate for the chance to parry for each shield type. This is based on GM parry.

 Shield Type  Damage
 Exceptional Parry (GM) Parry (50)
 Buckler  7 8.4 (+2.6) 86% 52%
 Wooden  8 9.6 (+3.2) 83% 
 Bronze  10 12.0 (+4.0) 78% 
 Metal  11 13.2 (+4.6) 76% 
 Wooden Kite  12 14.4 (+6.0) 71% 
 Metal Kite  16 19.2 (+4.6) 63% 42%
 Heater  23 27.6 (+2.4) 51% 
 Order  30 N/A 39% 
 Chaos  32 N/A 36% 

Basically, parry skill now affects both your chance to parry and the damage absorbed, while the shield also determines your base parry chance and damage absorbtion. Overall, shields are much more effective than under the old system. One drawback to this is how quickly shields are destroyed. Repair them frequently. I will update this when I have more information.

Shield Info from Old Combat System

A shield will absorb damage from 50% of melee attacks. This means that approximately 1 out of 2 attacks will get past your shield, thus continuing on to whatever armor you are wearing. 100% of archery attacks will hit your shield, however, making them especially useful against archers. Your parry skill is directly related to how effective you are with the shield in that you only gain an effective AR equal to your parry skill percentage of the shield's AR. Therefore, if you are GM parry using an Order shield against an archery weapon (bow, crossbow, or heavy crossbow), you gain the full 30 AR on every attack. If you have GM parry with the same Order shield against melee attacks, you only gain the 30 AR on approximately 50% of the attacks, thus giving your shield an effective (and displayed) AR of 15. So if you were wearing full GM plate mail (AR 36) with an order shield and 100 parry skill, your displayed AR would be 51 (as the displayed AR is based on melee attacks, not archery). With the same armor and shield but with 50 parry skill, your shield would still be effective against 50% of melee and 100% of archery weapons, but have an AR of only 15 (50% of its full AR). So with GM plate, an Order shield, and 50 parry, your displayed AR would be 43 (it would actually calculate out to 43.5 but is rounded down on the display).

To try to simplify things: against melee weapons your shield's AR bonus is half of your shield's AR times your parry skill as a percentage - this is your displayed AR. Against archery weapons your shield's AR bonus is the shield's AR times your parry skill as a percentage.

Shields by type (calculated AR is for exceptional shields where applicable):

 Shield Type  Standard Exceptional Melee AR
(50 Parry)
 Melee AR
(GM Parry)
 Archery AR
(50 Parry)
 Archery AR
(100 Parry)
 Buckler  7 8.4 (+2.6) 2.1 4.2 4.2 8.4
 Wooden  8 9.6 (+3.2) 2.4 4.8 4.8 9.6
 Bronze  10 12.0 (+4.0) 3.0 6.0 6.0 12.0
 Metal  11 13.2 (+4.6) 3.3 6.6 6.6 13.2
 Wooden Kite  12 14.4 (+6.0) 3.6 7.2 7.2 14.4
 Metal Kite  16 19.2 (+4.6) 4.8 9.6 9.6 19.2
 Heater  23 27.6 (+2.4) 6.9 13.8 13.8 27.6
 Order  30 N/A 7.5 15.0 15.0 30.0
 Chaos  32 N/A 8 16.0 16.0 32.0

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