Yes, you would gain the bonus hits for medium armour, plus the metal pieces will block impale if the blow hits them. (Reminder: Only if the blow hits the armour physrep itself. Having metal vambraces does you no good if shot in the upper arm, leather chestpiece, or other locations not clad in metal. For ReasonsTM, aluminium does not count as a real metal. All arrows/bolts do Impale automatically.)
I’d say no. “To count as armour, the phys-rep must be a phys-rep of a suit of armour.” It’s a beautiful bandoleer, but it doesn’t really look like it’s intended to be protective. It might be a suitable part of a set of Mage Armour, especially if paired with a single pauldron.
(Disclaimer: I am not a ref. I am reasonably confident in my knowledge of the rules, but a definitive answer can only be acquired off the field from emailing email@example.com )
Thanks for the answer. That is one thing that irks me, to be honest, is that if you pick mage armor you get the option of more hit points with more leeway as to what you are allowed to wear in combination for those hit points.
On the other hand, mage armour stops nothing.
But you’re right, a suit of mage armour is lighter and more flexible than a suit of light (leather) armour, for the same +2 hits.
Don’t quote me on this but I think the coverage has to be 2/3rds of your chest. A bandolier doesn’t count because it’s… well, it’s not armour.
Also, aluminium doesn’t count as heavy because it’s mostly based on weight. Poly and aluminium and butcher’s chain are real light, whereas steel will weight you down.
This is true, but mage armour cannot block cleave/impale, or be combined with armours that do.
(Of course, if aiming to block cleaves or impales, more coverage is clearly desirable.)
One thing I missed on my previous reply was that torso + vambraces is not sufficient coverage for the hits bonus, as vambraces only cover half the arm. You need torso plus full coverage of one other location. Helm, full arms, full legs, or a half legs/half arms combo (very popular, vambraces + greaves) are needed to gain extra hits.
The easiest way to work out how many hits you get from armour is to think about taking it off: if you remove each piece of armour you’re wearing in turn, from the lightest to the heaviest, one piece will be the one that means you’re no longer wearing enough armour to claim hits. The grade of that piece is how many hits you get.
As for mage armour, remember that it costs four character points to be able to wear. Normal armour is free to wear.