Some Random Tables for Detailing OSE Equipment [Part 1: Armor and Shields]

Hello. Newcomer here; I was pointed here by a user on reddit, and it looks like I’ve found the right place to share the various OSR-isms that pulsate in my brain. My current project is going through the OSE Classic Fantasy equipment list and providing little description tables for them. What exactly does that damned longsword look-like? Leather armor - but from what animal? What’s up with your shield? Fleshing out descriptions of equipment and giving them a bit of evocative personality is something I enjoy a lot. Strongly inspired by Rakehell’s excellent tables. Some assumptions to clarify: Armor types are interpreted along the lines of Leather = Light, Chainmail = Medium, Plate = Heavy. All this assumes a slightly dark gritty type of dungeon fantasy with no strong singular historical period as its base.

Use and modify as you see fit.

And let me know if I can help you, yes you, out by writing some thematic tables for the equipment in your campaign. I enjoy helping out, and I enjoy writing tables.

1d10 Types of Leather/Light Armor

  • 1: Long-sleeved tunic of tanned buckskin, lined with grey sheep’s wool. Stitched patterns of brown and black horsehair criss-cross across it.

  • 2: A ragged poncho fashioned from the hide of many wolf cubs, their skeletal remains of their mother serving as helmet.

  • 3: A once-beige gambeson, now slightly browned, ill-fitted to almost any wearer. Its bronze buttons resemble cockatrice heads.

  • 4: Leather scale armor of military make, with matching corselet. A tattered tabard bearing the leonine heraldry of some long-gone mercenary band is sewn in place over the dark brown scales.

  • 5: A black gambeson, fashionably tight around the hips. Mountains of white wool specked with black make for its impressive “pauldrons”.

  • 6: A sealskin coat, its sewing defying the ideal of the straight line, and its torso reinforced by a row of patterned narwhal horns carved to curvature.

  • 7: A one-piece cuirass of hardened leather integrated into an otherwise dashing white shirt with loose sleeves. A layer of brass scales arranged to resemble a superior type of armor covers the cuirass’s abdomen.

  • 8: A coat of hardened leather attached to black cloth, integrated with a heavy hood of matching color.

  • 9: A jumble of belts and patches of form-fitting leather betray the original purpose of this body armor: to display a gladiatorial physique in all its grimy, blood-stained glory.

  • 10: Ragged black leather held together by chains and harsh rivets. Face protection in the form of tall, triangular collar.

1d10 Types of Chainmail/Medium Armor

  • 1: A great shirt of interlocked steel links, ragged and uneven at the edges, with an integrated leather collar sporting bird-skull decorations.

  • 2: A set of black brigandine, studded with silvery metals. A heavy scarf in shades of blue complete the picture.

  • 3: Steel scales cover most of the torso and upper arms over a layer of light dark red leather. Simplistic steel pauldrons provide additional protection.

  • 4: A tight-fitted shirt of awkwardly layered pieces of fine mail, held together by brass links resembling grinning faces.

  • 5: A reinforced black brigandine cuirass with sleeves of mail armor. The visored helmet is directly connect by riveted-in aventail, and sports a single black feather on its domed top.

  • 6: A coat of hardened leather scales studded with steel. A wide-brimmed piece of leather headgear more reminiscent of a wizard’s hat than a helmet is part of the set.

  • 7: A shirt of linked chain, size adjustable by a series of built-in leather straps around the belly and at the shoulders, with trousers and sleeves of fuzzy black bear skin.

  • 8: A dark iron cuirass of insectile motifs and a spiked gorget over a shirt of brass chain. The domed helmet covers whole face, though has only one large central eye-hole.

  • 9: A studded leather breastplate, with etching to suggest a snarling wolf, is attached to a set of iron pauldrons resembling paws and a loose shirt of steel rings.

  • 10: Vertical bands of steel with matching tassets over a shirt of chainmail. A high gorget and a sallet helmet provide facial protection.

1d10 Types of Plate/Heavy Armor

  • 1: Black lacquered steel with highlights in gold make up this set of plate armor. Its helmet is beaked and horned.

  • 2: The linothorax of this set in dark steel is decorated with etchings of basilisks performing mating rituals. The edges of the set are lined with thick bear fur.

  • 3: This set is topped with a lofty steel helmet sporting a glorious red tail of dyed horsehair. Bands of pale steel are obscured beneath a heavy cloak in the same shade of proud imperial red.

  • 4: Smooth black steel. Small spikes on every surface. A heavy helmet resembling the face of a grinning madman. Cumbersome and fearsome.

  • 5: The helmet of this set of heavy blackened lamellar resembles the screeching head of a vulture. The gauntlets sport decorate black feathers.

  • 6: A crude breastplate of cured basilisk hide complete this set of sturdy scale mail. The bones of the once-fearsome creature support the pauldrons, and its skull serves as codpiece.

  • 7: Thick, vertical bands of battered steel over heavy chain mail. The visored helmet is otherwise featureless.

  • 8: The fluted armor of a noble warrior, its green-tinted surfaces covered with etched calligraphies of chivalric poems. A serrated tear in the heart region of the breastplate has been hastily mended with molten bronze.

  • 9: This suit is made primarily of two layers of heavy chain separated by a buffer layer of silken cloth. Its flat-topped steel helmet is covered in runes promising protective power, and has a full-face visor.

  • 10: The curved aesthetic of this bronze-steel plate suit make its wearer look rounder and paunchier than they really are. The domed helmet’s shape can best be likened to that of an onion.

1d10 Types of Shield

  • 1: An antique wooden scutum, covered with symbols of mating snakes under a starry sky.

  • 2: A dark red kite shield, the boss sporting brass decorations of abstract geometry. The top edge shows human bite marks.

  • 3: A large heavy buckler in battered steel, the sculpted skull motif on its front barely recognizable.

  • 4: A round wooden shield painted blue. An assortment of bird bones and feather trinkets dangle from it.

  • 5: A heater shield with a gilded handle. The battered front shows a black cockerel on a yellow background. Scratching the paint will reveal four additional layers of petty noble heraldry.

  • 6: An oval wood shield, painted grey and sporting the symbol of a rearing black wolf.

  • 7: Several weasel hides are stretched across a wooden shield-frame.

  • 8: A rectangular shield in faded black iron. The top has a small indentation for supporting crossbows.

  • 9: A crescent-shaped metal shield, carrying the symbol of a forgotten king and show the signs of centuries of neglect.

  • 10: A sturdy round wooden shield, black in color. The image of a bull head, rendered in flat steel, decorates the front, and the horns extend beyond the shield’s edge.


These are great! Welcome to the pit.

This one is my favorite.


Thank you! I look forward to spending more time here in the pit. And I’m glad you this little description, which I just realized had a terrible typo. Decorative.