Even More Corrections To Explosions
Small but important distinction: according to my reading of B400 and B414, a character uses torso armor against an explosive that actually hits them. An external explosion is a large-area injury, which still works like a torso hit, except the DR is calculated differently.
The idea is, you look at the hit locations that are vulnerable to the blast, and pick out the worst DR among them. Then, you average that with torso DR. So, if you’re (say) a barbarian wearing scale armor (DR 4), a fur loincloth, and a smile, and you’re caught by dragon’s-breath or too close to an exploding demon-child, you’ll apply 2 DR against the damage. Torso is 4, and your worst available location is any one of your naked bits, so (4+0)/2 = 2.
For that matter, if you’re a knight in full armor, you might want to avert your gaze. If you’re looking at the source of the damage, one of the available locations is your unarmored eyes…
I find this to be a nice wrinkle to the rules, since it gives characters a good reason to do things like bowing their heads and turning their backs on the high-tech door openers, or diving for cover with their hands laced over their heads. That, and it just reinforces the advice in the title.