In lieu of a seemingly inevitable open-close tug of war, I'd like to put this question forward for discussion:

Which magic item of very rare or lower rarity is most useful to protect a group of ordinary soldiers?

Since its initial closure for being opinion-based, it has not been significantly changed.

In its current state (revision 3), it contains 5 objective criteria for narrowing down the space of possible answers, 1 subjective criteria for narrowing down the space of possible answers, and 4 subjective criteria for judging the quality of an answer.

Is this question about equipping ordinary soldiers with magical equipment (primarily) opinion-based? If so, (how) can it be fixed and reopened?

Ambitious answers may consider the following FAQs:


1 Answer 1


No, it is not opinion-based

The question is not primarily opinion-based, as the answers have shown. It fits in with a limited / bounded list approach, and has solid criteria for good answers included. And it's gotten at least one, if not two, good answers.

Erik's answer is particularly apt in that (1) he used a published source that not everyone (the asker included) might have and (2) showed how it would protect a group of troops as required in the question. The second most upvoted answer by Szega shows how some other items can meet some of the criteria.

The question is OK, some of the answers less so.


  1. Downvote the answers that aren't up to standards.
  2. Leave the question open
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ To be fair, there are two potentially helpful answers and 3 heavily downvoted answers. Often times, we've had to close questions when they don't draw the supported answers. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:05
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch As I see it, that's not the question's fault, it is the fault of the answers being of low quality or low effort. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Definitely, but we have closed many questions historically when the answers become low quality due to the requirements of a high quality answer for them. Just noting that such a decision is common historically. It's the "we can't have nice things" problem. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:08
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch IMO, we are in some cases doing it wrong. This is one such case. We do have viable and good bounded list questions with good answers. Let's lay the lumber on the poor answers like we should be doing. The good answers show that good answers to it can be had. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Fully agree with the poor answers and see how it continues. Just with 3/5 of answers being poor, closure ain't necessarily a bad idea. But I'm open to a potential reopen, but if we see more bad, it may need closure. I'm good either way, though. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch I don't see 3/5 being significant. We run into low quality input on a variety of answer to a variety of questions all over the map, and we clean out the dross. Take a look at Shog's comments in the meta on Protection for what I think illustrates the kind of scale that would warrant that. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, just thinking more about the past and that we've had to close good questions due to bad answers. \$\endgroup\$
    – NotArch
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:23
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch I don't know if we had to but sometimes we did, yes. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 15:24
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ While I generally agree, it may be worth editing the question or adding comments to try to shoo away bad answers, because yes if a question pulls mostly bad (as in not meeting site standards) answers it's legit grounds for closure. \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 19:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ Which is fair, but I'm not really sure what else I should add to my question to do that. \$\endgroup\$
    – Pahlavan
    Commented Oct 1, 2020 at 20:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @mxyzplk-SEstopbeingevil is this where we protect a question? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 13:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KorvinStarmast Protection would be a useful tool if it's specifically new or network users posting answers faster than our quality assurance processes (eg. up/down voting) can handle. If it's not that, protection doesn't do anything. \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil Mod
    Commented Oct 5, 2020 at 14:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ I've gone ahead and reopened the question and added post notices on the subpar answers. I'll be keeping an eye on it though (and may close it again if it continues to exhibit problems or there's a sway here). \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil Mod
    Commented Oct 5, 2020 at 14:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Someone_Evil yeah, and as I read through it, newbies weren't the source of the less than stellar answers \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 5, 2020 at 14:48

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