Split Cosmetics and Stats for armor

I’ve been semi-ranting about how armor visuals and stats should be split up in various threads for a while, and thought it time to write my ideas more coherently. I realize it’s not the first time someone has thought of this, but none of the threads I’ve seen exactly hit on what I’d like, so here goes.

In a nutshell, do away with the link between armor visuals and the stats they provide. Have the components determine stats, and then have the visuals entirely cosmetic. I’m NOT talking about being able to change the cosmetic on the fly, or even at all. I like that you build armor to fulfill a role, and you can’t just switch out a part and now it does something completely different.

It would also make additional DLC easier to produce and balance, as it would make it just a matter of “skins”. Apparently that’s not technically possible at the moment though, so asking for it is perhaps pointless - but still.

One piece of armor consists of four choices (including the slot you’re targeting, ie chest - arms - legs etc):


1. Slot (Base Item)

  • Head
  • Chest
  • Legs
  • Arms
  • Feet

2. Attribute bonus. Call it “harness” or “core” or something. I’m sure someone smarter than me can come up with the perfect word.

  • Strength
  • Agility
  • Vitality
  • Accuracy
  • Grit
  • Endurance
  • Survival
  • (potentially others, don’t want to pollute my main point with details)

3. Temperature: Lining/padding (btw: make naming consistent. Why have two names for the same thing?). This can be

  • Thick Light (for protection against cold)
  • Thin Light(for protection against heat)
  • Thick Medium (for protection against cold)
  • Thin Medium(for protection against heat)
  • Thick Heavy (for protection against cold)
  • Thin Heavy(for protection against heat)

4. Cosmetic “surface”. This is entirely visual in nature and has no stats. Whether it should still be limited based on weight class (light/medium/heavy) is sort of either/or to me. Personally I’d say no, but I can totally see why you’d want the visuals to at least indicate what effects it has. I disagree that you should necessarily be able to tell exactly what a given armor does just by looking at it though. I realize (some) PVP’ers might disagree with this, given that it influences their strategy, but I think some level of uncertainty adds to immersion.

Combine a “Head” Base Item with a Strength Core, a “Thick Medium” padding and an Aquilonian Infantry cosmetic for a medium helmet with protection against cold that provides a bonus to Strength.
Combine a “Head” Base Item with an Agility Core, a “Thin Light” padding and an Aquilonian Infantry cosmetic for a light helmet with protection against heat that provides a bonus to Agility.


This would be great!
Not looking like i just left a S&M Darkroom in my Heavy Strength Armour would be awesome! But i would stlll distinguish between the weight of the armor. So you know what to expect of an enemy player.


According to the interview of Joel with Firespark, there is upcoming DLC that will be skins. There will be pet skins and weapon skins (from what he said during the interview), so that should inevitably lead to armor skins and Vanity Slots that so many have asked for. The Fashionist mod is so popular that it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if they incorporate something similar into the base game. :grin:



Yeah, I get that. It’s probably a reasonable compromise that weight class retains at least some meaning as far as the cosmetics go.

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One can only hope so! Though what I took away from that interview was that they sorta “coded themselves into a corner” as far as cosmetics/vanity slots go (basically, the idea occurred to them too late), and getting out of there is not a small task.

Well that would definitely work, too, heh. I haven’t used that mod myself, but it seems to offer complete freedom.


I wonder if this is the reason why they are currently coming up with the pet system despite the AI not working flawless, probably try to expand on their DLC marketability, but if it is skins I am fine with it anyway, not that I need it.

I like this idea and in another thread discussing this topic I proposed something similar, the plating giving temperature protection that is, so I would be really looking forward to an implementation of your idea. :+1:


Guild war 2 has this down to perfection. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFU_b4e2bxU start watching at 8:10 mark this is the crafting panel that Guild war 2 did. Basically you dont know the recipes but when you discover it you have made a new item of that type. Such as Boot of life or boots of death. etc.

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