Resistances in Expeditions: Rome refer to bludgeoning, piercing and slashing resistances, as well as fire and poison resistance. This is limited to 50% for all Classes at the start, but there are many items and skills to increase that to up to 94%. When the specific limit has been reached, a white square will appear around the resistance score.
This mechanic adds a way of resisting damage, but instead of armour, resistance determines the chance that bludgeoning, piercing or slashing damages becomes a glancing blow instead, instead of a normal or a critical hit and reduces incurred damage significantly to 1-5 points of damage and prevent status effects from being inflicted.
When it comes to fire and poison resistance, these resistances determine whether the character is being burned by fire or being poisoned. Higher resistance reduce the chance of either a direct cause (attack, like fire or poison arrow) or indirect cause (hex on fire or poison cloud). Princeps and other heavy units, as long they have a shield, they can't receive damage or status effects such as fire and poison directly.
Resistances from physical damage comes from the following sources. Fists, shields and staffs are the common weapons with bludgeoning damage. Arrows, daggers, and pikes deal mostly piercing damage, while swords and spears have a combination of slashing and piercing damage weapon skills. These three resistance do not directly limit or reduce the amount of damage dealt, but higher resistances increase the chance of glancing blows, which are attacks which deal between 1-5 points of damage and don't inflict. When equipment mentions All resistance, this refers to these three types of damage.
There are some advantages to be gained from higher resistance possible than the current limit. It allows the character to have some reserves for leg and torso wounds, but also for Tactical items which cause the intoxicated effect.
Interesting items for resistances
- Dumnorix's Shield (offers between 35-65% piercing resistance)
- Gladiator's Trident (only weapon which offers some resistances)
- Mithridates' Crown (double resistances for the wearer)
When an item has bonuses to maximum resistance, it will increase the highest resistance beyond the usual limit of 50%. This usually offered by heavy armour at the start, and strong body armour starts offering these bonuses from rank II.