I didn't really seen any normal armor in game.
In 5e STR fighter have Basic Chargen Option to take chainmail - which is only avable in lategame close to very end EA. That's just frustrating.
Ringmail - nice i never seen any single on board player who wearing this crap. Chainmain itself worth 75 gp. base cost only.
Breastplate(literally best option for rangers) - never seen one.
First studded leather avable when you find dead drow near bruning building. Same nearly end option.
Splint - never was noticed by anyone.
Plate - not really point of arguing but still.

Loot system and starting gear need to be tweaked.

Many character builds just made for making players suffer?

Pain only be passing, you should survive the process.