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Armor and Infection and Shark-tooth Spears

I expect this topic has little to do with most people’s games, including my own, but I found an interesting passage in John Maddox Roberts’s novel King of the Wood. Roberts has written many Conan novels, too, which I’m eager to read, now, after some of the descriptions in this book. The following boat battle presents a very “Conanesque” picture.

A few of the men were donning jackets covered with scales of horn, but Hring had little faith in such protection. His mail shirt would drag him to the bottom if he should fall in. Except for his helm he wore only his sailor’s loincloth. He knew that, unless armored, it was unwise to wear a shirt or trousers into a fight. A cut from a sharp blade was likely to be clean, but if bits of cloth or leather were carried into the wound, it would fester.

I expect this consideration could be “gamed” with Complications or Doom.

Bonus description of “Carib” cannibal spears:

The spears had stone heads, and along the sides were rows of shark’s teeth, set in pitch-filled grooves and laced with rawhide thongs, pointing backward. Those teeth could drag a man’s guts out when the spear was withdrawn.

Carib Spear, Reach 3, 4#, Unbalanced, Vicious 2 (too much?), Fragile


Maybe (but it would be a new quality) something like this:

Spear, Reach 3, 4CD, Unbalanced, Cruel (New quality: if the weapon hits and deals damage, you have to withdraw it vigorously (or you lose your weapon) with the expenditure of one Momentum you may make another attack on the same round -essentially, retrieving your weapon- at a +1 difficulty. If successful the weapon becomes Vicious 1, Piercing 2 and Intense when dealing these extra damage).

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I believe the Khatian Knife already has a quality related to a similar effect.