A suit of light partially-powered armor, designed to permit quick movement. Lightweight plasteel-weave plates block attacks without compromising mobility, and neuro-memetic assistors in the lower body allow a human to wear the armor and still move easily. Armor like this is often used by imperial scout troops and glitterworld police forces.
- Insulation - Cold
- 32 °C (57.6 °F)
- Insulation - Heat
- 9 °C (16.2 °F)
- Armor - Sharp
- Armor - Blunt
- Armor - Heat
- Torso, Neck, Left Shoulder, Left Arm, Right Shoulder, Right Arm, Left Leg, Right Leg
- Middle, Outer
- Required Research
- Recon armor
- Skill Required
- Crafting 6
- Work To Make
- 45,000 ticks (12.5 mins)
Recon armor can be crafted at a Fabrication bench once the Recon armor research project has been completed. They require 80 Plasteel, 10 Uranium, 3 Advanced components, 45,000 ticks (12.5 mins) of work, and a Crafting skill of 6.
Overall, recon armor tends to be overshadowed by the flak vest + over-garment combination. Thus, many players like to skip recon armor and just build the heavier power armors instead. But if move speed is of utmost importance, such as for kiting tactics, then recon is the best for the job.
Compared to flak vests
Flak vests are the primary competitor to recon armor. They are significantly cheaper, require less research. And, unlike recon armor, vests can be worn with duster, jacket or flak jacket for extra protection. A vest becomes significantly better when paired with dusters of strong materials such as devilstrand or thrumbofur.
- Sharp: A flak vest alone is better at protecting the torso, vital organs, neck, and shoulders against Sharp attacks - the most common type of damage. This only becomes better with any sort of outerwear.
- Blunt: Flak and duster is slightly inferior than recon against Blunt attacks. However, the qualitative and quantitative disparity between the armor sets is small. At most, this is a 4% - 5% armor difference. In any case, even recon doesn't offer much Blunt armor, relative to the AP of blunt weapons likely to be faced.
- Heat: When worn with any duster better than cloth, dusters provide roughly equivalent Heat armor to all body parts. Devilstrand or hyperweave dusters offer massively more Heat protection to all body parts.
As the vest doesn't cover the limbs, recon armor will always protect natural arms and all legs against Blunt and Sharp attacks, regardless of duster material. While the limbs impact combat performance, they aren't "vital" to a pawn's life, unlike the heart, liver, or neck protected by the vest. If an arm or leg happens to be shot off, then it can be replaced for 15 Plasteel, 4 Advanced components, assuming there is a surgeon with decent Medical skill available. Note: Artificial arms (prosthetic, bionic, and archotech arms) attach at the shoulder; their installation allows the vest to protect the full arm. Installation of two such arms limits the benefits of recon to only the legs.
Also note that flak vests provide a −0.12 c/s move speed, while recon does not slow the user at all.
Thus, while not necessarily outright superior, flak vests and a suitable outer layer are often a better choice for their more focused protection and significant cost effectiveness.
Compared to other power armors
Recon armor is the lightest of the three power armors, the other two being marine armor and cataphract armor. Compared to the others, it is notably cheaper, requires less research, and doesn't slow move speed, but offers the least protection. The recon armor is roughly equivalent to marine armor one quality level below (e.g. a Normal Recon armor ~= Poor Marine armor), or cataphract armor two quality levels below.
Generally speaking, if the full body protection of recon is valuable enough to warrant its use despite its cost, upgrading to at least marine armor is also worth the extra cost. Exceptions exist however, such as when recon is all that can be acquired or when a set of particularly high quality is available.
Compared to locust armor
Locust armor is a sidegrade to recon armor. Locust armor has −5% Sharp and −5% Blunt armor, before quality. It also costs 40 plasteel, 3 components, and 100 chemfuel more than regular recon. A jump pack, which gives a functionally equivalent jump, costs 30 Plasteel, 3 Components, 100 Chemfuel, so this is only a 10 plasteel difference. Note that a full set of locust armor must be replaced when destroyed, while a jump pack will never degrade when worn.
In exchange, locust armor (and jump packs) allows for up to 5 jumps at once, each costing 20 chemfuel. You are invincible during the jump, but have a small warmup and cooldown, as mentioned in the locust armor page. Jump distance is variable by quality, but a normal quality locust armor can jump up to 23.9 tiles. Unlike the jump pack, locust armor does not take up the utility slot, meaning you can wear a shield belt or other item with it.
Overall, if you would be using recon armor for mobility, then you should use either jump packs or locust armor as soon as Jump packs have been researched. The jumps give more options for movement, which helps with mobility. If you have any other item you'd like to equip in the utility slot, then use locust armor; the net 10 plasteel cost and armor penalty is negligible. If you have no other uses for the utility slot, then jump packs are slightly cheaper and are functionally the same. However items like smokepop packs and firefoam pop packs are cheap and can be very helpful in certain scenarios.
For the full effects of qualities, see Quality.
Note: Lower on the graph is better.
Every set of Recon armor found on an Imperial Janissary will be black.
- 1.1.0 - Added
- 1.1.2647 - No longer meets the clothing requirement of nobles, replaced in that role by Prestige recon armor
- Locust armor - a slightly less protective variant of recon armor with an integrated jump pack.
- Prestige recon armor - a variant of recon armor that both pleases nobles and improves psychic ability.