A well-armed fighter marches solemnly through the dark wood. His mithral breastplate gleams in the light of the full moon as he stalks his prey.
Suddenly, a figure appears on the road: half-man and half-beast, it bares its fangs and charges. The fighter readies his sword, thanking the gods for mithral armor.
An uncommon material, mithral is known for its durability. Difficult to craft, mithral is expensive but highly flexible, making it an excellent choice for champions and fighters.
Those who can afford it find mithral armor offers more than ample protection against the dangers waiting in the world of Golarion.
What is a Mithral Breastplate in Pathfinder?
Adventurers covet Mithral items. A Breastplate made of Mithral requires less strength to use, offers a reduced armor check penalty, and increased movement speed. Lighter and more flexible than iron or steel, it’s easier to move in Mithral. A mithral breastplate weighs roughly half as much as a normal one.
Mithral Breastplate Stats
Usage worn armor
Mithral armor is 1 Bulk lighter than normal (or light Bulk if its normal Bulk is 1, with no effect on armor that normally has light Bulk). It’s easier to wear than normal metal armor, reducing the Strength score necessary to ignore its check penalty by 2 and reducing its Speed penalty by 5 feet.
Source: Core Rulebook pg. 556
|Armor||Price||AC Bonus||Dex Cap||Check Penalty||Speed Penalty||Strength||Bulk||Group|
|Breastplate||8 gp||+4||+1||-2||-5 ft.||16||2||Plate|
|Mithral Breastplate||1,600 gp +160 gp per Bulk*||+4||+1||-2||一||14||1||Plate|
*Price for standard-grade mithral armor.
Mithral is renowned for its lightness, durability, and effectiveness against a range of creatures including devils and lycanthropes. It has the same sheen as silver but a slightly lighter hue. Mithral weapons and armor are treated as if they were silver for the purposes of damaging creatures with weakness to silver.
Source: Core Rulebook pg. 579
What Is Mithral?
A precious metal, Mithral is valued for its unique properties. In ancient times some rulers used Mithral for trade. But its strength and lightness make it desirable for other purposes.
Mithral has special properties that make it excellent for forging armor. Like silver, lycanthropes and devils find mithral painful to touch. These creatures are likely to think twice before attacking anyone wearing a breastplate of pure mithral.
Can Anyone Wear a Mithral Breastplate?
Characters will need training in Medium Armor before they can wear a mithral breastplate. And while a mithral breastplate is easier to wear than one made of iron or steel, only those with a Strength of 14 will be able to take full advantage of it.
Characters without the necessary strength will have difficulty using any breastplate一including a mithral one一and receive a -2 penalty on Strength- and Dexterity-based skill checks.
Mithral breastplates are in the plate group. As a result, they provide extra protection against blades. When wearing a breastplate, you’ll have resistance to slashing damage. How much resistance depends on the value of the armor’s potency runes, if it has any.
Who Needs Armor Anyway?
Not all classes are suited to wear armor. It takes training to learn how to wear a breastplate properly. Some characters gain this training from their Class. Others can learn to use armor as a result of taking feats.
If your party stumbles upon a mithral breastplate, you’ll want to make sure to give it to the right player. Wizards, for example, won’t get much use from such an item. Give it to someone with a sword or battle axe.
Defenders of all that is good and holy, Champions are usually on the front line of any battle. With unmatched bravery, champions are quick to throw themselves between allies and danger.
Even when the odds are dangerously against them, the champion doesn’t back down. While brave, this strategy doesn’t always work out. It’s a good idea to wear the best armor you can find and keep it in excellent condition.
Most champions rely on strength, but some choose to focus on agility. The lightweight mithral will make it easier for these characters to move on the battlefield while offering additional protection against devils.
Trained knights and mercenaries, fighters can wear almost any armor, including a mithral breastplate. Most fighters prefer to get up close and personal with their attacks, so a strong defense is necessary. With a +4 AC bonus, a breastplate will keep you from getting skewered or smashed.
Because mithral is lightweight, it gives fighters more mobility than heavy armor. While full plate male offers solid protection, it also slows you down. And chain mail is even worse! Not only does it penalize your speed, but it’s also noisy. Good luck sneaking up on anybody in chain mail.
Sometimes, a little extra movement is all you need to clench a fight. With mithral, your fighter will be faster and more agile in encounters while still gaining the benefits of wearing plate armor.
While cloistered clerics are typically better at reading scrolls than crushing monsters, the warpriest cleric is a different story. These clerics are no strangers to conflict. Each train in a militant doctrine. Fonts or divine justice, these heroes and heroines seek battle against the forces of evil. Mithral is the ideal armor for clerics.
Warpriests train in defensive techniques. They can wear Medium Armor and have access to healing magic. These clerics gain the Divine Defense feature at higher levels and become experts in armored defense.
Where To Buy a Mithral Breastplate
Difficult to craft, adventurers will need plenty of coin if they hope to purchase a mithral breastplate. And not just any blacksmith will be up to the challenge of forging one. Only a blacksmith of sufficient experience will have the skill necessary to complete the job.
To find items made of mithral, your party will probably need to find the nearest trading port or city. Mithral armor and weapons may be available in areas that cater to the needs of adventurers and pathfinders like yourselves.
Crafting Mithral Armor
If you can’t find a mithral breastplate一or refuse to spend the gold一you can try crafting one yourself. Doing so isn’t easy, however. Your character will need to be at least level 12. You’ll also need to know the formula for a breastplate. Finally, someone will need to loan you a workshop for at least four days.
Assuming you meet these requirements, you’ll be in an excellent position to forge mithral. But before you can fire up the forge, you’ll need to make sure you have the proper materials. To craft an item, you need to supply raw materials worth half the item’s price. For a mithral breastplate, you’re looking at nearly 1,000 gp worth of mithral just to get started.
Mithral armor comes in two grades: standard and high. A standard-grade mithral breastplate has the same HP and hardness as one made of steel. It takes an expert to craft high-grade mithral armor, but players will find that it’s much tougher than a standard item.
Finding Mithral Ore
As a precious metal, mithral may not be easy to find. Depending on your location in Golarion, hunting down enough mithral to craft a breastplate might be a challenge in itself. If you happen to be in Cassomir or another trading hub, you might find mithral without any trouble.
You’ll need to talk to your GM for details on crafting items or finding mithral in your campaign. Procuring the necessary raw materials to craft mithral items may not be possible depending on local factors. Wars, politics, and natural disasters can affect the price and availability of precious metals and other goods.
Pricing Mithral Items
Items made with mithral are more expensive than those made with steel or iron. A single mithral ingot can cost a smith as much as 5,000 gp. As hard as steel, mithral takes skill to work. If you want a custom-made mithral breastplate, you’ll need to look for a blacksmith with years of experience.
Ultimately, the price of goods in Pathfinder is determined by the GM. If you’re shopping for a mithral breastplate, our best advice is that you carry plenty of gold and learn to haggle.
It’s not easy to stay alive in Golarion. Pirates roam the seas, and bandits stalk the roads. Ogres and worse hide in the wilderness. To complete your quest, you’ll need more than rusty armor and courage.
If you’re lucky enough to find a mithral breastplate, hand it to the player with the biggest muscles. They’re going to need it. Sometimes the best defense is a few inches of precious metal on your chest.