[   studded leather armor   Studded leather armor.png
Appearance studded leather armor
Slot body armor
AC 3
Cost 15 zm
Weight 200
Material leather

Studded leather armor is like leather armor, but one AC point better, providing three instead of two. It also provides MC1. Despite the studs, studded leather armor does not rust, but it does, however, rot. Studded leather does not inhibit spellcasting, so it's a common body armor choice for early wizards.


Studded leather appeared in the first edition of AD&D, where it was described as "... is leather armor to which have been fastened metal studding as additional protection, usually including an outer coat of fairly close-set studs [...]"[1]

Studded leather was one of the stock armor types in the original Rogue, where it provided two points of AC reduction[2], rather than three, as in NetHack; this was the same as in D&D.[3]

Studded leather did not exist in Hack121, but has existed as far back PDP-11 Hack, and was included in the Hack 1.0 release.


Armor comprises 10% of all randomly-generated items in the main dungeon, 0% in containers, 12% on the Rogue level, and 20% in Gehennom. There is a 72 in 964, or ~7.47%, chance that a randomly spawned armor object will be studded leather armor.[4]

Studded leather armor is one of the protective items that can be spawned of certain eligible monsters—including all of the Yendorian army, as well as watchmen and watch captains.[5]


Reconstruction of 15th century brigandine armor

Studded leather armor did not exist in history. However there are many extant garments that may have inspired the idea.

This is a carry-over from D&D, the inspiration behind many fantasy games, as NetHack, and is seen in many, many games. This misinterpretation is most likely based on seeing medieval artworks of brigandine armor[6]—which has highly visible rivets on the outside layer of velvet—but is another type of armor entirely not even typically consisting of leather. Most extant pieces of the garment we have today consist of velvet, canvas, and metal plates.