Would a mountain dwarf druid trained in dwarven armor use metal armor?

6 thoughts on “Would a mountain dwarf druid trained in dwarven armor use metal armor?

  1. All I see is a restrictive (and arbitrary ) rule that has been carried over from the past. This is an anomaly. Similar rules have been scrapped when the game was simplified. Now wizards can wear armour,fighters can cast spells (magic initiate),and barbarians can use magic items,and all characters can easily multi class to get around any other restrictions (except this one). I have yet to read a good reason why this rule was kept.

  2. Shawn P says:

    True that! For those who might not know, Barbarians used to distrust if not seek and destroy magic, and armor of any sort would instantly short-circuit casting. And don’t forget that clerics were once forbidden to have edged weapons. Just because Druids practice the old ways doesn’t mean they have to be stuck in them. I find it strange and hypocritical as well that Druids would prefer to kill and then wear animals, in one light an antithesis to their calling, instead of inanimate minerals harvested from the Earth.

  3. Sbeebles says:

    I mean, I don’t care TOO much about all this…

    …I’m just laughing that druids can’t use metal armor but can start with a scimitar

  4. D. Walker says:

    If you’re going to have a taboo against metal, it needs to extend to everything – no metal armor, no metal weapons, no metal coins, no metal tools, nothing. It doesn’t make any sense that druids would ritualistically reject metal only when used in armor.

    Of course, that’d be an extreme choice that would be deeply unpopular with players – both those playing druids, and those with druids in their parties. It would be a terrible idea to implement that as a full blown rule.


    Personally, I like the flavor of druids having a taboo against metal – but I’m of the opinion that it should work like in real life, and that it varies from group to group and individual to individual.

    Some druid circles might observe the taboo, while others do not.

    Two different circles who both observe the taboo may differ in where they draw the line and make exceptions – one might allow handling metal, but not allowing it to touch bare skin; another might allow handling of coins and tools, but not of weapons or armor; yet another group might forbid any kind of contact with metal whatsoever; still another might only forbid it at certain times and places.

    And once the taboo is broken, the appropriate response to “fix” things might differ. One circle might see metal as something that taints a person who handles it, and require a ritual cleansing after handling it. Another circle might argue that only the metal itself is “unclean” or “impure”, but it doesn’t somehow make you dirty by handling it, it’s just distasteful. Et cetera.

    Also, even within a circle that observes the taboo, it should be up to the individual whether they choose to follow the taboo or not. They might face negative social responses from being discovered breaking the taboo, but that should be the character and player’s choice – the rules should NEVER dictate how a player’s character feels about something like this.


    Compare to real world faiths which have varying levels of observance to taboos within each religion. Muslims aren’t supposed to drink alcohol, and yet it’s incredibly common. Christians are supposed to not eat meat on certain days, particularly during Lent, and yet that doesn’t stop many of them. There are plenty of Jews who aren’t bothered by eating shrimp or bacon. Et cetera.

    I’ve actually willingly played a druid who had an extreme taboo against touching any kind of metal with bare skin, and who was highly uncomfortable even just carrying money in a pouch and handling it with leather gloves. But that sort of thing absolutely shouldn’t be the default rule for all druids – it should always be up the player what sort of background they come from, and whether they agree with their upbringing or not.

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