The heavily armored feat is an important one that many players are going to need to get the Barbarian, Cleric, or Artificer build of theirs to a place where instead of having to fall back on a Medium armor build, they can move to heavy armor. This mechanical feat is probably one of the most important of its type because there is such a huge jump from medium armor to heavy armor.
The One DnD Heavily Armored Feat allows a player to gain a +1 to their Strength or Constitution and gain the ability to use heavy armor without excess penalties.
So is the One DnD’s version of the heavily armored feat worth taking?
Let’s dive in and find out!
Heavily Armored Feat DnD One Review
The best way to break down a feat is to check out the exact wording.
From Unearthed Arcana:
Prerequisite: Medium Armor Training
You have trained to use Heavy Armor effectively, gaining the following benefits:
Ability Score Increase. Increase your Constitution or Strength score by 1, to a maximum of 20.
Armor Training. You gain Heavy Armor Training.
Unearthed Arcana, Expert Classes 2022
We can’t know how good a feat this is until we dive into each benefit more deeply, so let’s take apart the Heavily Armored Feat and see what we get!
Benefit #1: Increase your Constitution or Strength by +1, to a maximum of 20.
This is a nice addition. Originally the player could add +1 Strength as an ability score improvement, which makes sense, but also being able to ad Constitution makes this a bit more flexible or desirable, and takes into account that a player might have an even Strength score or maxed out Strength score already (hello Barbarians) and giving Constitution as another option just makes sense within the system.
Benefit #2: You gain Heavy Armor Training, allowing you to use heavy armor without penalty.
Going from Medium Armor to Heavy Armor can mean a huge boost in a player’s AC, and being able to make that jump for a build, especially for those Clerics who start with Medium Armor proficiency but are expected to wade into battle, those few extra points make a huge difference.
How Does Heavily Armored Feat Measure Up?
Heavily Armored isn’t a feat that is here to a super charge a build, it’s here to give medium armor users the ability to go to the next level of armor, which can be a considerable difference in AC, especially with a low Dexterity score. This is a mechanical feat that opens up build potentials for those versatile classes that can do a lot of things and give them more options.
The feat does what it needs to, and the +1 to STR/CON is good enough that some of the sting of having to use a feat in order to pick up an armor type goes away.
If you have a full build in mind that takes the jump from Medium to Heavy then this isn’t too costly a take to make those work, which is what you want from a mechanics-based feat like this one.
Heavily Armored Feat: DnD One Vs 5E
This is a pretty easy call. Basically Heavily Armored 5E and Heavily Armored One DnD are the exact same feat with one minor exception. In the One DnD version of the Heavily Armored Feat, a player can take a +1 CON improvement instead of being stuck with only a +1 STR improvement. It’s either/or in the new version.
Related Article: 5E Heavily Armored Feat Guide
Aside from that change the two are the same which is why the One DnD version is clearly the superior one.
Who Should Take the Heavily Armored Feat in DnD One?
Anyone stuck wearing medium armor who wants to upgrade to heavy armor. There are some classes that will generally not want to do this. Classes like Ranger or Rogue, where even if they are close combat built, will want stealth and have high Dexterity scores…which means Light Armor is the better option. A +2 Studded Leather Armor can do some serious work for those classes.
These are the classes or popular builds that are most likely to get use from the heavily armored feat:
- Cleric sub-classes starting with medium armor proficiency instead of heavy armor
- Artificers looking to level up their armor
Warlocks and Bards start only with light armor proficiency while Fighters and Paladins start with all armor proficiencies, which is why these classes are not going to be looking at heavy armor feats. The latter two examples don’t need them, the first two aren’t likely to grab two different feats just to get heavy armor when they can use those for much better feats and builds.
This limits who will want this feat, but it’s also worth noting that by starting out as a Mountain Dwarf, the one race that gets armor proficiency as a starting bonus (assuming your DM allows this 5E-compatible outlier in a One DnD/6E game), can add these traditional light armor starting classes into the mix of diving into heavy armor.
So a Mountain Dwarf Hexblade Warlock build could go to heavy armor with relatively little pain.
DnD One Heavily Armored Feat Final Grade
This is the definition of a C grade feat. Heavily Armored Feat isn’t going to set any worlds on fire but it does what it is supposed to do and opens up the possibility of training in heavy armor. This is an average mechanical feat, but you don’t expect miracles out of the Heavily Armored Feat, you just want it to do what it’s supposed to do.
And with that as the grading standard, Heavily Armored passes as a wonderfully average mechanical feat that is perfect for the very low number of builds that need to upgrade armor to make it work.
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Proud to embrace the locally created moniker of “Corrupt Overlord” from one of the all time great Lords of Waterdeep runs, Shane is one member of the Assorted Meeples crew and will be hard at work creating awesome content for the website. He is a long-time player of board games, one time semi-professional poker player, and tends to run to the quirky or RPG side of things when it comes to playing video games. He loves tabletop roleplaying systems like Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, Werewolf, Fate, and others, and not only has been a player but has run games as DM for years. You can find his other work in publications like Level Skip or Hobby Lark.