|Spell Type||Unit Enchantment|
|Grants the target unit +10 and +10 against any effect or direct damage from Nature and Chaos sources.|
Elemental Armor is a Rare Unit Enchantment from the Nature Realm. For 175, it may be cast on a friendly unit on the overland map to give it two transient bonuses: +10 against Unit Curses and ill effects associated with the Nature and Chaos Realms; and +10 against all direct-damage attacks from the same Realms. This benefit can be maintained with a 5 per turn Upkeep Cost.
Alternatively, a cheaper version of the same spell may be cast for 35 during combat, in which case it will temporarily bestow the same bonuses on a unit for the duration of the battle (with no permanent effects or Upkeep Cost).
Elemental Armor protects a unit against specific types of magic. It bestows two separate bonuses of the same magnitude, both of which apply conditionally against attacks associated with either the Chaos or Nature Realms. However, neither bonus is cumulative with those granted by the similar, but significantly weaker, Resist Elements spell.
Resistance Bonus Edit
The first benefit of Elemental Armor is a mighty +10 bonus. This applies every time the unit, or its figures, are making a Resistance check to avoid an enemy Nature or Chaos spell, or Special Attack. This makes it almost certain that the unit will avoid the following ill effects:
|Stoning||Item Power (Touch Attack)||Petrify||Combat Instant|
|Stoning Touch||Touch Attack||Shatter||Unit Curse|
|Stoning Gaze||Gaze Attack||Warp Creature||Unit Curse|
|Destruction||Item Power (Touch Attack)||Disintegrate||Combat Instant|
Defense Bonus Edit
The second benefit is a powerful +10 bonus, that applies whenever the unit is targeted by any Conventional Damage attack associated with Chaos or Nature. Naturally, this only works if the attack allows a Defense Roll (i.e. is not a Doom Damage attack). It's also worth noting that this bonus can be halved by Armor Piercing, or negated by Illusion, if applicable. Otherwise, it grants 10 extra dice on the Defense Roll, making it much more likely that the enchanted unit will suffer less, or even no damage from these attacks.
The spells and attacks that trigger the Defense bonus of Elemental Armor are listed below. Sources marked with an asterisk deal Armor Piercing Damage, and will thus reduce the effectiveness of the spell to a bonus of only +5; in other words: 5 extra Defense dice.
- All Ranged Magical Attacks, except those of Aerie the Illusionist and Zaldron the Sage;
- Fire Breath, Lightning Breath*, and Immolation;
- The hidden Conventional Damage component of Stoning Gaze;
- Call Chaos (Fire Bolt effect), Call Chaos (Warp Lightning effect)*, Chaos Rift*, Fire Bolt, Fireball, Fire Storm, Flame Strike, Lightning Bolt*, Magic Vortex (adjacent unit damage)*, Meteor Storm, Wall of Fire, and Warp Lightning*;
- Call Lightning*, Ice Bolt, and Ice Storm.
Elemental Armor may be cast both overland and in combat, for the basic Casting Costs of 175 and 35 respectively. If the casting is successful, the game will prompt for a friendly unit to be selected as the spell's target. On the overland map, this typically requires clicking on the army stack that contains the unit which, in turn, brings up a list view of all units in that stack, allowing for the target to be picked individually. Only units not already under the effect of Elemental Armor may be chosen. Once the spell is cast, a glowing green outline appears around the unit (unless it is overridden by a stronger enchantment); and Elemental Armor, along with its icon, will be displayed in the unit statistics window when inspecting this unit.
The overland version of Elemental Armor has an Upkeep Cost of 5 that must be paid at the beginning of every turn to keep the spell in effect. This is automatically deducted by the game from the owner's Mana pool as long as the enchantment remains in existence. If there is insufficient Mana in the pool to pay for the spell, then it will dissipate, ceasing its effect immediately. It may also be cancelled manually by left-clicking its name in the unit statistics window of its target unit. However, this action can only be performed outside of combat, during the caster's own turn.
The combat version of Elemental Armor does not carry over to the overland map: it will disappear automatically as soon as the battle is over. As such, it has no Upkeep Cost; but at the same time may not be manually removed by its caster either (as enchantments can not be cancelled during a battle).
As a Rare Spell of the Nature Realm, Elemental Armor may become available to any Wizard who acquires at least 2 Spellbooks. With any less, the spell can not be learned during the campaign. This is the minimum requirement for it to be traded for, appear in Treasure, or be found in the spoils of victory when conquering the Fortress of a rival Wizard who already knows it.
The base chance for Elemental Armor to be researchable (at some point) in the campaign is roughly 10% (with 2 books), which gradually increases with the amount of Nature Spellbooks possessed or found during gameplay. With 10 or more, the spell is certain to show up sooner or later, unless acquired from another source. It has a Research Cost of 880, although its research is quicker for Wizards possessing the Sage Master, and/or Nature Mastery Retorts; or a bookshelf containing 8 or more.
Elemental Armor may also be selected as a starting spell by players who allocate all of of their picks into Nature books when creating their Wizard. In this case, it will be available for casting as soon as the game begins.
Item Power Edit
Elemental Armor can also be duplicated as an Item Power and imbued onto a Magical Item. This requires the Create Artifact spell, and has the advantages of being non-dispellable, and requiring no Upkeep Cost. While enchanting Elemental Armor onto an item can't be done unless the Wizard possesses at least 4 Spellbooks, knowledge of the actual spell is not necessary. Selecting this Power increases the item's total value by 500.
Elemental Armor can be enchanted onto any type of Magical Item. Naturally, this means that it is available to any Hero, as all of them possess at least one miscellaneous Equipment Slot. If an item with this Power is created and given to a Hero, then they will benefit from the effect described above for as long as they keep the item equipped. Since Elemental Armor is present on 18 pre-fabricated Magical Items, it is also possible to occasionally find an item already imbued with this Power in Treasure, or be offered one for purchase by a wandering Merchant.
Elemental Armor is an excellent protective spell against enemies that use either Ranged Magical Attacks, or some form of petrification. Its Defense bonus is high enough to afford significant reduction even on Armor Piercing Damage. As both its Casting- and Upkeep Cost are fairly high however, Elemental Armor is typically not worth maintaining unless going up against opponents that either use Chaos magic, or have a large amount of Ranged Magic- or Fire Breathing units.
Unfortunately, its combat Casting Cost is also quite high, making it unlikely to be usable on a situational basis; which means that when faced with enemies against whom it does work, it's often better to cast it overland despite the costs. This is especially true if the player is usually the attacker in the battles, as the defenders will always get to shoot first, possibly destroying a would-be target before the spell could be cast.
The Resistance bonus is enough to make a target practically immune to every effect against which it triggers. It takes multiple different penalties to lower the resulting score to a level where these have any chance of working again. That is, the only way of accomplishing this would be through the use of Mind Storm, Black Prayer, or -Spell Save Magical Items.