Each race makes their own type of armor. Anyone can wear anyone else's armor. Players and NPCs can wear armor and use weapons when not skilled in them, but they must be taught the skill before they can start using them efficiently and gaining skill points in the related skill. Armor always affects encumbrance, unlike in many other games. Players cannot swim in heavy armor, they have lower balance regeneration the heavier their armor is, and they move slower the heavier their armor is.
Armor also alters how the player is affected by the elements. Wearing chainmail in freezing cold will have damaging and debuffing effects on the player, possibly even resulting in death. Similarly, wearing full leather and plate in the hot sun can break even the strongest fighter over time.
Weapons have very specific effects, especially in relation to armor. For example, a hammer is useful for crushing people in armor, it's extremely slow to swing, but it can knock over players or knock them off balance. If a player was fighting another player on a bridge and wielding a heavy hammer, the player could crush that player over the side of the bridge with the hammer. They would knock them off, and if the falling player were wearing plate they would sink in the water below.