DnD One Heavy Armor Master Feat Guide

The Heavy Armor Master Feat is one that wasn’t necessarily a must-take for martial characters, but it was up there. Unlike Pathfinder, there are very few mechanics that were in D&D (especially 5E) where damage reduction was a thing, especially outside of being a Barbarian. However, heavy armor master gives an extra boost to the strongest armor in the game, but is it worth using up a feat in One DnD (aka 6E)?

The Heavy Armor Master Feat in One DnD allows players to pick a +1 to either STR or CON, and every time they are hit by an attack that causes slashing, bludgeoning, or piercing damage they can subtract from the hit damage equal to their proficiency modifier.

This is a great standalone feat and it’s a great followed up to the heavily armored feat, and adds to the idea that you are a complete master of the heavy armor. So is it enough to use a feat over?

heavy armor
Master of deflecting damage in heavy armor – AND looking stylish. Who could ask for more?

Let’s dive in and find out!

Heavy Armor Master Feat DnD One Review

The best way to break down a feat is to check out the exact wording.

From Unearthed Arcana:

4th-Level Feat

Prerequisite: Heavy Armor Training

You can use your Heavy Armor to deflect strikes, granting you the following benefits:

Ability Score Increase. Increase your Constitution or Strength score by 1, to a maximum of 20.

Damage Reduction. When you’re hit by an attack while you’re wearing Heavy Armor, any Bludgeoning, Piercing, or Slashing Damage dealt to you by that attack is reduced by an amount equal to your Proficiency Bonus.

Unearthed Arcana, Expert Classes

Now let’s break every one of these benefits down individually to really see how each section of this feat contributes to a character build.

Benefit #1: Increase your Strength Core Stat or your Constitution Core Stat by +1 up to a maximum of 20.

Basic half-feat choice, but this is a good one as Strength and Constitution are pretty much the most important core stats for classes that are going to need heavy armor and be wading into combat.

The fact that these are the same potential choices from the Heavily Armored means with some planning you could go from even number to even number – getting all the bonuses that heavy armor can give while avoiding any odd numbers in those core stats.

Benefit #2: The player receives damage reduction, meaning every time they’re hit by an attack of bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage while wearing heavy armor the damage dealt to the player is reduced by their proficiency bonus.

This is a huge bonus, as damage reduction is very rare in D&D and being able to reduce damage from common weapons (or even magical weapons doing the basic damage types), claws, teeth, or the swing of a giant’s club is very useful. Especially since the damage reduction comes from each hit, and at high levels 6 points each really adds up.

This is an excellent benefit, and it fits both with flavor and mechanics.

How Does Heavy Armor Master Feat Measure Up?

This is an excellent feat that does exactly what it’s meant to do and adds serious flavor to heavy armor mastery in addition to easy to understand mechanics that get the job done.

If you are going to be a heavy armored Fighter, Barbarian, Paladin, or Cleric wading into combat then you will want these benefits. Extra strength, extra health via a better Constitution score, and the ability to deflect damage are serious benefits. For front liners these can be game-changing.

While many feats have been disappointments in the game, this is one that delivers on its promise. A true master of heavy armor will see serious benefits that come out in-game and no player build that spends one of their limited feat spots on this one will be disappointed.

Heavy Armor Master Feat: DnD One Vs 5E

The One DnD Heavy Armor Master Feat is actually very close to the 5th Edition version, but there are some differences worth comparing and contrasting.

Related Article: 5E Heavy Armor Master Feat Guide

The biggest changes come with the half-feat where a +1 Constitution can be picked instead of just a +1 in Strength like in 5th Edition, and then in damage reduction.

In 5E the damage reduction was a flat 3 points, while in One DnD it is tied to proficiency bonus which means most of the campaign you will have the same bonus or better. In this case it was a good feat in 5E but to keep pace with the number of feats that were made much better with One DnD, Heavy Armor Master was also given a boost.

The One DnD version of Heavy Armor Master is much better than the 5E version.

Who Should Take the Heavy Armor Master Feat in DnD One?

This feat is a no-brainer for Fighters. Ditto for Paladins. These are heavy armor frontline units who need to be able to give and take hits. They are built to tank, and this feat helps them do that.

This is a good feat for Clerics with heavy armor, although because Clerics need to focus on magic, there might not be space for it depending on whether or not you roll well or start with standard point array in DnD, which doesn’t allow for lucky rolls to super boost your character build.

This also works for other builds with heavy armor or frontliners but they are less common with other classes.

DnD One Heavy Armor Master Feat Final Grade

The Heavy Armor Master feat is a high B to a low A. Heavy Armor is already the go-to, so the ability to add a +1 to either Strength or Constitution and then actually get damage reduction is huge. Not many enemies are going to hit, and several of the upper level enemies are dangerous because they have multiple attacks.

In the off chance several of those hit, being able to reduce damage on multiple hits can really add up fast. This is an improvement to the feat and is one that should definitely be towards the top of the feat list for Paladins and Fighters who are going to find themselves in the middle of the fray. It’s an excellent feat and one worth pursuing.

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