Wearing multiple pieces of armor that all give the same elemental resistance does not stack, but certain different types do:
- Weakness + Halve = Normal damage
- Halve + Absorb = Absorbs half
There are no equipment that absorb Ice (besides the Gendarme), but wearing the Ice Shield in conjunction with Adamant Hat or Vest, which make the wearer weak to Ice, results in the wearer taking normal damage from Ice instead.
In the original PlayStation 2 version, the Ice Shield is bought for 2,500 gil in Jahara after visiting Eruyt Village, Mt Bur-Omisace, and in Rabanastre after defeating Judge Bergan. It is found in a treasure in Paramina Rift's Icebound Flow (two treasures may have it; one has 60% chance to appear, 40% chance for gil, 10% chance the item treasure is Ice Shield with the Diamond Armlet equipped; and the other has 40% chance to appear, 50% chance for gil, 50% chance the item treasure is the Ice Shield without the Diamond Armlet equipped), and rarely drops from Redmaw in Henne Mines (1%) and Stilshrine of Miriam (3%).
It is made in the bazaar in the "Burnished Protectives" set by selling two Wyrm Carapaces (from Dragon Aevis among others) and Quality Hides (from Pythons, among others), as well as four Earth Magicites (from various enemies, e.g. Treant).
In the updated Zodiac versions, the Ice Shield can be bought for 2,500 gil in Jahara and Mt Bur-Omisace. It is found in a treasure in Tomb of Raithwall's Southfall Passage (30% chance to appear, 80% chance for gil, 50% chance the item treasure is the Ice Shield without the Diamond Armlet equipped), Paramina Rift's Karydine Glacier (75% chance to appear, 40% chance for gil, 50% chance the item treasure is the Ice Shield without the Diamond Armlet equipped), and Stilshrine of Miriam's Walk of Mind (always appears), as well as in Trial Mode Stage 57 with the Diamond Armlet equipped.
Ice Shield is still made in the bazaar in the "Burnished Protectives" set with the same items as before.
The Ice Shield is a mid ranked shield that helps evade physical attacks and also halves Ice damage to the wearer. It has the same evade stat as the Golden Shield and the Flame Shield, thus always eclipsing the former and the usefulness compared to the latter depends on which elemental protection matters more in the moment. Due to the shield's Ice-protection, it can be a good equipment piece to keep around even later into the game. It may be useful against Ice-elemental elementals and entites, and against Mateus. In the Zodiac versions, it can be used by the jobs Red Battlemage, Knight, Foebreaker and Shikari.
Another use can also be to offset the Ice weakness from the Adamant equipment. This is more practical in the jobless PlayStation 2 version, as only Shikari can equip both Ice Shield and Adamant equipment in the Zodiac versions. However, in The Zodiac Age, each character can unlock two License Boards.
An alternative to Ice Shield is to equip the Lamia's Tiara, or the Tourmaline Ring or Cat-ear Hood in the Zodiac versions, which also halve ice damage. Half:Ice is the best ice-protection available in the game.
The Ice Shield can be equipped by characters with one-handed weapons or no weapon in their available hand. It adds to the wearer's physical evasion. Shield Block augments also add +5% to physical evasion per augment purchased. Equipping a shield negates the Brawler augment, even if the character is still attacking bare-handed. Some enemies, especially all the toughest bosses and marks, have Ignore Evasion as a passive ability, which causes their attacks to ignore all blocking and parrying.
The chance to block granted by gloves and shields and Shield Block licenses is checked separately to, and before, the evade from one-handed weapons. If the shield block fails, the game checks for the weapon block, and if that fails, the game checks for parry.