Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Talk about any rules that don't directly fall under personal combat
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Agamemnon
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 06 Dec 2016, 14:05

dra wrote:
hector wrote:
The armpit does BL1 at a Level 4 wound - at this point, the fight is all but over anyway (TN9 is like losing approximately 80% of your die pool) and the blood loss, while concerning, is only life threatening if ignored for a significant length of time.
You got me than :D
No need for bloodloss ;)
Fair point. Having said that, metal armour often draws unwanted attention. The fact that you are wearing it screams that you are expecting trouble, and in an urban environment (the assumed setting for the game, even though most of the details remain vague), why would you be expecting trouble if you are not looking to start it?
You would not. You put your stuff for war. Having said that, if you want to be just and give players proper plate, it would be mighty annoying for them if they can't use that in combat because GM keeps making those "suprise moments" ;)
It's nice when you can predict a fight and prepare for one. That doesn't mean you will always have the luxury of doing so. At least in my games, open battlefield combat in full armor is relatively rare. Decisive, but rare. More often, players are skulking about, laying ambushes, and so forth. You could run a game based on the expectation that everyone is a knight in armor on a battlefield, but then the corollary is simply that they will need to learn to fight like a knight on a battlefield to overcome armor.
dra wrote:
Fair point. However, as thirtythr33 has mentioned, there are tactics for getting around that. For one thing, you cannot disengage if you attacked in the previous exchange or if you just threw red/white dice. This gives an attacker ample opportunity to grapple - either as a defence against an incoming strike, or as an attack. Grappling is an extremely effective means of taking down a heavily armoured opponent, since as mentioned, the more brutal attacks ignore not only armour, but in the case of Gouge and Strangle they ignore Stamina too (at least in terms of whether or not they will kill you - you can keep fighting with a crushed windpipe if your wp/steel roll is good enough, but at this point you're simply fighting to take the other bastard with you).
So yeah, let's pretend there is some vauge silly point in rules.
Ok, there are tactics to work around that and if you are experienced players and know your manouvers and grappling and can choose equipment every time fight arises, you can live with that.
My question is : why bother if it can be corrected at basic level.

My point is why create a fallacy and work around it using advanced mechanics if you can avoid it at all. From this point I keep repeating : from my perspective, Soak advantage of 4 or 5 is way to high for contest-based combat pool game.
The vague point in the silly rules is that the combat system was designed with armor and weapons working the way they were meant to. To use the combat system to its fullest requires some system mastery. We never claimed otherwise. On the other hand, if you don't want to have to grapple and fiddle with advanced techniques when fighting a dude in armor, bring a weapon that's meant for fighting a dude in armor.

As for soaking: assuming you're still on about the attributes, the only way you can have a soak advantage of 4 or 5 is if you've maxed out stamina and the other opponent has minimized strength. If you look in fiction, how likely is it that Sansa Stark is going to land a meaningful blow on The Mountain That Rides? It's way more likely she'll just piss him off.

Most combatants will have Strength/Stamina around 3. 4 is the high end for professionals. 5 is strong-man competition territory. These people would be exceptionally rare in a population. 6 is something that is generally only available to player-characters and beasts of burden, and can't be had at all by PCs unless they started with an top tier pick in Attributes at charater creation. That's a situation where you are straight-up a genetic anomaly. The majority of PCs and NPCs will have 3s or 4s unless "the big dude" is their shtick - in which case, they should have some kind of benefit. Most of the time then, the swing will be at most 1 or 2 points. If this still bugs you, feel free to house-rule it. It is going to hurt your PCs more than anyone, though, and the game is already pretty brutal.

And that's not what the word "fallacy" means.
dra wrote:Speaking of range (spear example)...
Do you find this fixed range advantage of +2CP as good enough for all kind of weapons? Is is better than TROS +1 per range band and additional disadvantage if fighting something too cumberstone at close range? I see its way simpler but does it work better?
Spears and Daggers actually give +4CP to represent the advantages they have when they control reach. Thus, spears are especially useful when you can control the distance and daggers are brutal when you can get inside the enemy's guard.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 06 Dec 2016, 17:17

Agamemnon wrote: It's nice when you can predict a fight and prepare for one. That doesn't mean you will always have the luxury of doing so. At least in my games, open battlefield combat in full armor is relatively rare. Decisive, but rare. More often, players are skulking about, laying ambushes, and so forth. You could run a game based on the expectation that everyone is a knight in armor on a battlefield, but then the corollary is simply that they will need to learn to fight like a knight on a battlefield to overcome armor.
Well, as i wrote, it's kind of similar in my games. When players have a task of dealing with some forest bandit problems, they will most likely find them clothed in leather bits and pieces. Maybe their leader would have some battered, rusty breastplate. But if the bandit problems are not natural but are orchestrated plot to create havoc in kingdom by duke Whatshisname and players find this bloke's trusted right hand enforcer shaking fellas up a bit... it would be unrealistic to have retainer of one of richest in the land to wear just gambeson, would it?
Regarding preparation - fights in my games, especially in tros based games are rare. Usually end of scenario, climax that comes after solid preparations. Would be silly of them not to use that stuff ;)
The vague point in the silly rules is that the combat system was designed with armor and weapons working the way they were meant to. To use the combat system to its fullest requires some system mastery. We never claimed otherwise.
I know and I think it's good and happy with that. Still, the fact, that BMW m5 can have over 500bhp and drives perfectly at high speed does not mean engineers can just ingore handling of a car at 30 miles/hour :D
On the other hand, if you don't want to have to grapple and fiddle with advanced techniques when fighting a dude in armor, bring a weapon that's meant for fighting a dude in armor.
It's not that we don't want to. It's just that learning of a new system works imho best if done in phases. Regarding mass weapons, yeah, great. No problem, except that problem does not dissapear :D. If anything, it only exasurbate it. If we nullify armor - we only have stronger iron skin in proportion to total damage reduction.

In other words, if he has armor, he is a tank. If he doesn't or weapon ignores much of armor properties, his high stamina is deadlier than if he had in comparison to smn with low stamina.
As for soaking: assuming you're still on about the attributes, the only way you can have a soak advantage of 4 or 5 is if you've maxed out stamina and the other opponent has minimized strength. If you look in fiction, how likely is it that Sansa Stark is going to land a meaningful blow on The Mountain That Rides? It's way more likely she'll just piss him off.
Seriously? :D
Swinging a sword at someone is going to only piss them off cause they are mountain of the man?
And that's not what the word fallacy means.
Fallacy : a failure in reasoning which renders an argument invalid

In my opinion there is a serious failure in reasoning in considering human skin so tough against attacks.
Most combatants will have Strength/Stamina around 3. 4 is the high end for professionals. 5 is strong-man competition territory. These people would be exceptionally rare in a population. 6 is something that is generally only available to player-characters and beasts of burden, and can't be had at all by PCs unless they started with an top tier pick in Attributes at charater creation. That's a situation where you are straight-up a genetic anomaly. The majority of PCs and NPCs will have 3s or 4s unless "the big dude" is their shtick - in which case, they should have some kind of benefit. Most of the time then, the swing will be at most 1 or 2 points. If this still bugs you, feel free to house-rule it. It is going to hurt your PCs more than anyone, though, and the game is already pretty brutal.
Yea I get that. I will not ask for permission to house-rule sth that I do not like. It's not the reason why I wrote. Neither is PC, they know world is brutal and if you live by a sword you would sooner or later die by it. We never really had any problem with Toughness in TROS either until we read about it. They are not newbies, they understand idea of balance and regard powerplaying as poor fun. Reason why I wrote about it is you seem to be asking for feedback so here it is. It is a poor rule. It works in 90% of cases. It might work in 100% cases if we run the game in few selected beta testing groups. But if you have (and I read sth like that) an ambition to go out to the world with this system, you should try to avoid potential cheesing of any kind. So no, just because most of PC or NPCS will have St of 3-4 does not mean it is not a mistake in creation.

The issue is not about this or that group of players. Issue regards abstractive rule that can be misused. The question is wheter weak dude can take a sword , swing at extremly stron dude and blade bounces of his skin because he is so muscular. And no, it does not matter wheter you can grapple him (which sounds way worse for this weak bloke to wrestle Andre The Giant), wheter you or him can use armor and keep him at distance with spear. Issue is physics-related so to speak.

So yeah, you wrote "how likely is it that Sansa Stark is going to land a meaningful blow on The Mountain That Rides? It's way more likely she'll just piss him off". I think that's the core of the problem.
St 1 according to Chapter 04 is strength that allows you to lift 70 pounds off the ground no problem. If you want to power clean same amount of weight (roughly 30kgs) it is considered ob5 very hard difficulty.

Well I can relate to that. I went to the gym at age 17 and I had problems bench pressing just olimpic bar (20kg). I never tried powercleaning than but seriously, it would be rather doubtfull in my case. Even lifting 63kgs off the ground (dead lift) which is ST2 requirement would most likely be a painfull failure. Powerclean of 63kgs would most likely kill me outright. So even if I was slightly stronger than ST1, I was deffinetly not ST2 material. Now after decade and a half dusting off gym equipement I would do deadlifts (OB3) with ST 6 weight IN SETS. My point?

I could of course kill a man with axe now. But as easily I would do the same with ST 1. I was not some disabled kid, I run a lot, played football, snowboard and as every normal boy of this age beat the shit (and get beaten shit out of) of other boys. I could chop wood with an axe just as easily as now. Same goes to slabs of meat and bone (animal of course). There is no way that if I decided to throw an axe into Andre The Giant I would just "piss him off". Sure, I would not cut his head off but he would deffinetly not shrug it off :D

Why?
Because axe is sharp. And dredfull. And has center of mass that allows me to greatly enhance my own strenght. And I never used a sword on meat but than again, I assume that weapon that become very popular in different ages and different parts of the world didn't become so because of lack of deadliness.

Having said that, at 17 (or now) I'd never ever would go into wrestling with Andre The Giant...
dra wrote:Speaking of range (spear example)...
Do you find this fixed range advantage of +2CP as good enough for all kind of weapons? Is is better than TROS +1 per range band and additional disadvantage if fighting something too cumberstone at close range? I see its way simpler but does it work better?
Spears and Daggers actually give +4CP to represent the advantages they have when they control reach. Thus, spears are especially useful when you can control the distance and daggers are brutal when you can get inside the enemy's guard.[/quote]

How about Zweihander vs Gladius?
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by higgins » 06 Dec 2016, 18:34

Hi, Dra.

You seem to be forgetting that we're modelling fiction, not reality. This might seem like a cop-out, but we've really taken this to heart. If not, you'd see much, much more extensive infection rules. And a comprehensive disease section. And how personal hygiene and dental care are paramount in you making home from the battlefield, etc.

I'm guessing nobody would play such game though.
dra wrote:Now after decade and a half dusting off gym equipement I would do deadlifts (OB3) with ST 6 weight IN SETS. My point?
St6 (420lb/190kg) without a convenient handle -- lift off the ground Ob3.
St6 (420lb/190kg) WITH a convenient handle -- minus one makes it drop off the table; yes, you can lift that weight above your head without a roll.
St6 (840lb/380kg) without a convenient handle -- lift off the ground Ob5.
St6 (840lb/380kg) WITH a convenient handle (which a bar definitely is) -- lift off the ground Ob3.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by thirtythr33 » 06 Dec 2016, 23:24

Oh boy. Here we go.

So I am seeing 3 slightly different objections to STAM being so high. They are:
1) It is unrealistic that flesh be so resistant to sharp steel.
2) Such a large variation of toughness is not represented in fiction.
3) It is unbalancing to the mechanics of the game, or is overpowered.

1) This is a fairly valid criticism. If we were being as realistic as possible, stamina would have almost no effect on actually resisting physical damage done to the body. Willpower would more or less take the role of stamina in measuring the ability of a combatant to take blows and keep fighting, but it wouldn't actually resist physical damage, rather keep you able to continue functioning well in spite of the damage you have taken. However, given the creators stated design goals of "modeling fiction, not reality" this criticism is like complaining that you can't eat steak with a spoon.

2) This is so obviously false that I am not even going to list examples. Given their design goals and the fact that it has to be represented in the form of a streamlined and elegant rules system with as few rules exceptions as possible, I think the designers have done a remarkable job.

My only comment is that given the rules of the game, the design goal seems to swing back and forth between being realistic and replicating fiction. For example, in 99% of fiction swords cut through plate armor like butter, yet it doesn't in BoB because "it's not realistic". But the thing is, it is going to be a mix of some realism and some fiction since if you were to make a game that is 100% of either one you would have a terrible game. It seems to me BoB's true design goal is more like "emulate the majority of medieval low fantasy fiction in as realistic and elegant a way as possible". Obviously, compromises have to be made. I can't think of any good ways to emulate Conan, Guts or Barbarians in general in a better way than it has been (Take STAM6, WILL5 and the Frenzy edge and go shirtless).

3) Not at all. Is taking Tier 5 attributes and taking 6 stamina good? Yes. Do you know what else is good?
  • Taking Tier 5 Social class and being a Duke with 50 knights at your command
  • Taking Proficiency at Tier 5, Cun5, Agi5 and having a Brawling combat pool of 22
  • Taking Edges at Tier 5 and taking Major Network, Major Contacts and Major Status to be the leader of a 200 man thieves guild with eyes and ears in every important place
  • Taking Skills at Tier 5, Soc at 5 and Manipulate at 6 so you have 11 dice to use to manipulate NPCs or PLAYERS
Really, the STAM6 fighter is obviously weaker than a Duke who can order him dead for any reason, an entire thieves guild that could poison any cup in the kingdom or a diplomat so convincing the fighter would willing work for him. Considering that the whole role of "big tough fighter" can be filled by the Major Retainer Edge, having STAM6 is really one of the weaker choices you could make in this game. It is literally good for nothing except 1 vs 1 duels to the death. That is it. The fact it makes you so hard to kill is kind of pointless since you can always just spend 3 SAs on "Not Quite Dead Yet" anyway.
dra wrote:Is grappling OP than?
Maybe, I guess?
Is it extremely good at brutally killing characters? Yes.
Is it extremely good at killing people in real life and fiction? Also yes.
It is so effective in fact, that things like groin strikes and eye gouging have to be banned in every single combat sport.
My only concern about the grappling rules is that the dagger strikes in a grapple aren't effective enough since the rules don't model the ability slip through tiny gaps in armor (which should be easy to do when you are holding your opponent).

Almost anything you do in BoB is OP. Grappling is OP. Spears are OP. Wrap is OP. Plate is OP. Stamina is OP. Manipulation is OP. Social Class is OP. SAs are OP. The list goes on and on. But all of the above have their own weaknesses.

That's actually what is so great about it. All 5 people can sit down at the table and be convinced that they have the best character. And they are all right, in different circumstances.
dra wrote:How about Zweihander vs Gladius?
See the sidebar on p46 for how you can use weapons with alternative styles.

If you are using your Zweihander with the Longsword style, you get only +2CP Reach but you also get Advantage when attacking from the Wind and can use the Mastercut maneuver.
If you are using your Zweihander with the Spears style, you get +4CP Reach and no additional benefits.
Similarly you could use your Gladius with any of the Sword & Buckler, Messer or Dagger styles.
You simply pick which style you are using at the start of each combat Phrase. It locks you into the maneuvers that are available to BOTH that weapon style AND are reasonably available to the weapon you are holding. You also have to be partially proficient in a style to access the Emphases.

So if you were holding your Zweihander like a spear, you would lose access to: Murder Stroke, Half-Swording, Hook and Mastercut and would not gain Reverse Grip, Bind & Strike and Deflect & Strike. You would gain the 4CP if you had atleast 1 point in Spears style.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 07 Dec 2016, 04:42

higgins wrote:Hi, Dra.

You seem to be forgetting that we're modelling fiction, not reality. This might seem like a cop-out, but we've really taken this to heart.
You gotta admit, it really is arguable.
You are modelling fiction. As in emulating fantasy stories. I flashed few of most memorable fiction fights in my head and could not find any memorable duel ending with combatants falling on the ground and grappling ;]. It's obviously one of hema imports, original TROS's influence. As is quasi damage table, realistic blood loss, healing armor and basically almost everything concerning combat.

If it's too cumberstone to portrait realisticly, it is left to abstractive narrative tests. Terrain roll/Positioning. Chaos of Skirmish. Dice were thrown, something happened , we just leave result to GM's description.

Stamina is neither.
If not, you'd see much, much more extensive infection rules. And a comprehensive disease section. And how personal hygiene and dental care are paramount in you making home from the battlefield, etc.

I'm guessing nobody would play such game though.
It's not so much about realism I guess, it's about unnecessary rules. There is no point in having a rule for disease after battle if it does not affect story in any way. Stamina however is already included in rules. Just could be done better I guess.
dra wrote:Now after decade and a half dusting off gym equipement I would do deadlifts (OB3) with ST 6 weight IN SETS. My point?
St6 (420lb/190kg) without a convenient handle -- lift off the ground Ob3.
St6 (420lb/190kg) WITH a convenient handle -- minus one makes it drop off the table; yes, you can lift that weight above your head without a roll.
St6 (840lb/380kg) without a convenient handle -- lift off the ground Ob5.
St6 (840lb/380kg) WITH a convenient handle (which a bar definitely is) -- lift off the ground Ob3.[/quote]

Ok than, I would be ST 5 than. That would still make my argument valid. As a 17 year old ST1 character I could kill anyone to splinters with axe if he had no armor ;)
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 07 Dec 2016, 05:22

thirtythr33 wrote:Oh boy. Here we go.

So I am seeing 3 slightly different objections to STAM being so high. They are:
1) It is unrealistic that flesh be so resistant to sharp steel.

1) This is a fairly valid criticism. If we were being as realistic as possible, stamina would have almost no effect on actually resisting physical damage done to the body. Willpower would more or less take the role of stamina in measuring the ability of a combatant to take blows and keep fighting, but it wouldn't actually resist physical damage, rather keep you able to continue functioning well in spite of the damage you have taken. However, given the creators stated design goals of "modeling fiction, not reality" this criticism is like complaining that you can't eat steak with a spoon.
As I wrote above, I agree you can't have too much realism if it makes your game too rule-heavy. But STAMINA IS already included in rules. So no, it's not about eating a steak with a spoon , it's preference of one, sharper knife over blunt one supplied.

When we played WFRP we did not care. Dwarfs were strong warriors. Who cared that armor wasn't too realistic. We had our orcs and our elves, battleaxes, bows and tons of fun. But than we discovered CP2020 and suddenly, "naked armored dwarf" started to be quite annoying. AFAIR (it was ages ago) CP2020 had stats of 1-20 and damage modifier of Budy compostion was in range of 1-3. And that was with damages of weapons like 3d6 or 5d6. At the same time, you had tests of keeping you awake after hits. So yea, if you were tough as nails (mentally) you could recieve hit after hit and even half dead you could still to some extent fight before you went down.

So we had cookie and ate cookie. There was some minimal advantage in having muscles and strong body (sometimes it was difference between life and death), yet it wasn't game changer. However some epic scenes were possible with characters of steel will. The further we go in development of rpg a genre of entertaiment the further we go from naked dwarf. And than bam, It's 2016 and it's back with a vengence.

In BoB we have realstic damage, realistic manouvers, realistic weapon reconstruction. All this hard work of you guys MIGHT be affected by "iron skin dude"

2) Such a large variation of toughness is not represented in fiction.

I don't think I claimed anything like that.

However argument of "it's just fiction" is kinda weird from guys who took a system that require a phd to run smoothly and made a custom succesor of it. And ficiton can include your Nazguls or Aragorns as well as your Ivenhoe. It is really wide spectrum.
3) It is unbalancing to the mechanics of the game, or is overpowered.

3) Not at all. Is taking Tier 5 attributes and taking 6 stamina good? Yes. Do you know what else is good?
(...)

Really, the STAM6 fighter is obviously weaker than a Duke who can order him dead for any reason, an entire thieves guild that could poison any cup in the kingdom or a diplomat so convincing the fighter would willing work for him. Considering that the whole role of "big tough fighter" can be filled by the Major Retainer Edge, having STAM6 is really one of the weaker choices you could make in this game. It is literally good for nothing except 1 vs 1 duels to the death. That is it. The fact it makes you so hard to kill is kind of pointless since you can always just spend 3 SAs on "Not Quite Dead Yet" anyway.
Perhaps it is.
Most of the 50 knights or 200 thieves are kinda narrative effects. It all comes to what GM rules as of results of the test of how he structures story. Sure, you can have 50 knights but what help are they if you are captured at the battlefield and plan an escape? Do you travel with 50 of them? Perhaps only few armsmen? And what if anyone wants to further the plot by trying to assasinate you on some hunting expedition? Would he do it as a lone fighter or would he bring overpowering group? And your retainers are hold up in a fight and than? And than it's good to have 6 stamina ;)

Seriously, many times I had players who were very influential in game world and never had I encountered problems regarding their status. In fact it only made stories richer. Especially in TROS since it's so holywood in style of mass combat. I however had encountered problems with iron skin in systems where it was possible.

dra wrote:How about Zweihander vs Gladius?
See the sidebar on p46 for how you can use weapons with alternative styles.

If you are using your Zweihander with the Longsword style, you get only +2CP Reach but you also get Advantage when attacking from the Wind and can use the Mastercut maneuver.
If you are using your Zweihander with the Spears style, you get +4CP Reach and no additional benefits.
Similarly you could use your Gladius with any of the Sword & Buckler, Messer or Dagger styles.
You simply pick which style you are using at the start of each combat Phrase. It locks you into the maneuvers that are available to BOTH that weapon style AND are reasonably available to the weapon you are holding. You also have to be partially proficient in a style to access the Emphases.

So if you were holding your Zweihander like a spear, you would lose access to: Murder Stroke, Half-Swording, Hook and Mastercut and would not gain Reverse Grip, Bind & Strike and Deflect & Strike. You would gain the 4CP if you had atleast 1 point in Spears style.[/quote]

4cp to spears or 4cp to greatsword?
What about defense disadvantage when figthing too close ?
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 07 Dec 2016, 05:32

If you find grappling being OP when it comes to beating a tougher opponent, you could use it I believe:
Agamemnon wrote:
nemedeus wrote:How about just granting advantage to the character who's got the higher Feat of Strength?
That, or give disadvantage to the guy with lower Feat of Strength.

And if you have more than twice the other guy's FoS, apply both.
Early on we actually talked about giving a reach-like bonus to the character with the higher strength with the logic that reach represents some measure of control and the character with higher strength would have a similar control in a grapple. We dismissed that as being perhaps too fiddly.

The advantage/disadvantage thing works better, I think. I'd change it just slightly though:
You get an advantage if:
* You have a higher Feat of Strength than the other guy
* You have the Large trait and the other guy doesn't.

Your opponent gets a disadvantage if:
* You have both of the above
* Or you have double the opponent's Feat of Strength.
The actual size of a dude matters quite a bit just in terms of leverage, even if you're of similar strength. If he's significantly bigger than you and stronger than you, physics just isn't on your side.
thirtythr33 wrote:1) This is a fairly valid criticism. If we were being as realistic as possible, stamina would have almost no effect on actually resisting physical damage done to the body. Willpower would more or less take the role of stamina in measuring the ability of a combatant to take blows and keep fighting, but it wouldn't actually resist physical damage, rather keep you able to continue functioning well in spite of the damage you have taken. However, given the creators stated design goals of "modeling fiction, not reality" this criticism is like complaining that you can't eat steak with a spoon.
Well maybe it's not about being as realistic as possible, but just reasonably realistic. Under the rules and with common Attribute scores, you can have a situation like this:
stab to the belly
weaker character (ST2) stabs a tough soldier (SM4) and deals a level 1 wound
strong character (ST4) stabs a priest (SM2) and with the same MoS it's a level 5 wound
So that's a whole different world. A knife in your belly should generally always suck.
Question is, is it OK for your game - or not? If not, the only solution I'm afraid is to stop using Strength and Stamina for calculating wounds - entirely. Unless you have a better solution, DRA?
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 07 Dec 2016, 06:26

Korbel wrote:If you find grappling being OP when it comes to beating a tougher opponent, you could use it I believe:
Thanks for that. For grappling I reserve judgment until we run some serious testing.



Well maybe it's not about being as realistic as possible, but just reasonably realistic. Under the rules and with common Attribute scores, you can have a situation like this:
stab to the belly
weaker character (ST2) stabs a tough soldier (SM4) and deals a level 1 wound
strong character (ST4) stabs a priest (SM2) and with the same MoS it's a level 5 wound
So that's a whole different world. A knife in your belly should generally always suck.
Question is, is it OK for your game - or not? If not, the only solution I'm afraid is to stop using Strength and Stamina for calculating wounds - entirely. Unless you have a better solution, DRA?
Stoping using it would be even more unrealistic ;)
I would opt for blade style resolving of damage. There is just one attribute there for physical aspect of things but it's adabtaple to two as well. Damage dealt :

1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV

So with scale of 1-6 the biggest physiques modifier goes from -2 to +2 instead of -5 to +5. For most cases scenarios of battles/duels it would be however -1/0/+1. It is advantegous to be stronger but emphasis is back on how well you hit.

In the above example you would have 2nd lvl wound to the soldier and 4rth lvl wound to priest. Still we see more powerfull character does more damage with pure brawn but it's not difference between "just a scratch" and "instakill"
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Benedict » 07 Dec 2016, 07:05

I don't really grasp the argument here dra. You are saying that Stamina should not be used for calculating damage because it's unrealistic?

1. We are talking about fiction here, not real life.

2. Any attribute of 5 is the peak human condition. 6 is the stuff of legends or genetic anomaly.

3. There are ways to go around stamina and armor all together. Grappling maneuvers is one. I'll give you an analogy from myth. Hercules went on to kill the Nemean Lion. A beast birthed by the gods with a hide so tough that no weapon could pierce it. In BoB that lion would have Sta6 and its hide would be AV6 with Metal and Rigid properties. Herc is armed with a big club and has Str6. So, how did poor ol' Herc killed the brute? He crushed it with his tree log? Nope. He choked it to death, pure and simple. And then skinned it to wear its hide as armor. :lol:

4. If you picture Stamina as simply skin toughness there is a problem. No matter how hard your skin is, a knife in the gut is always bad news. Saying it bounced off your six-pack is obviously problematic. I prefer to view Stamina as a combination of bodily toughness and survival instict. Yes, the assassin did hit you with that knife in the gut. Or so it seemed. As Howard would have eloquently wrote "your wild barbarian virality pushed you to lengths unknown to civilized men and that stab that would have slain any mortal man just broke your skin and bounced off your rib leaving you bloodied and very angry". Here's your fiction equivalent of Sta6. I guess it comes down to context and reasoning.

5. Finally, as thirty33 rightly points out Sta6 is useless against a host of knights. Or a thieves guild. Or the orator with Social6 who convinces you that his well being is your highest priority.

As for your last question:
What about defense disadvantage when figthing too close ?
Define too close.

As In grappling-close? It's covered by the rules.
pg 53 wrote:Any time you see Grab as a maneuver, it’s restraining.
pg 54 wrote:Grappling is a condition initiated by a successful Grab maneuver. Grappling allows access to grapple-specific maneuvers, limits the use of weapons, and renders
regular defensive maneuvers useless. All weapons are limited to Swing, and Thrust maneuvers only, along with their respective augmentations. The Discharge maneuver
can be used with firearms, but no weapon can be thrown.
Close reach weapons work normally, but Short or longer reach weapons are limited to using pommel strikes only. Weapons that require two hands cannot be employed
at all. All grappling uses some version of the Brawling proficiency, and all offensive grapple maneuvers are considered to be restraining. Grapple maneuvers are all
universally available, and are considered basic maneuvers for all purposes. Finally, favoring (see chapter 10) is impossible in a grapple.
Armed combat? Again, covered by the rules. That's what Reach Control is for.
pg 104 wrote:Compare the weapons being used. If both combatants have weapons of equal reach or are locked in a grapple, ignore this step. In the case of a reach mismatch, one of the char-
acters has a benefit over the other in the form of reach control. This translates to +2CP (+4CP if they are benefitting from the emphasis of the Spears or Daggers proficiency).

At the start of the fight, control goes to the character with the longer weapon by default. Should the character with the shorter weapon score a hit (regardless of whether or not it
results in a wound), they gain control over reach at the next refresh. Should the character with the longer weapon score a hit after that, they regain control and so on.
+2CP if you have Reach Control, +4CP if you use Daggers (too close) or Spears (far enough).

Apart from that remember it's still Beta and that as a GM you can call rulings based on context.

Let's say you're armed with a great axe and face off someone armed with a dagger in a very narrow side alley. Rules don't cover that on paper. On the other hand nothing prevents your GM to rule that only Thrusts can be made in such close quarters or that any weapon Medium or longer imposes a Disadvantage on the user unless he passes a Positioning Roll.

EDIT
dra wrote:1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV
Why on Earth do that? :shock:

All attributes range 1-6. If one of ST or SM ranged 1-10 there would be a point to divide and round down. Otherwise its redundant.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by thirtythr33 » 07 Dec 2016, 08:28

dra wrote:I flashed few of most memorable fiction fights in my head and could not find any memorable duel ending with combatants falling on the ground and grappling ;]
These are literally the 3 most memorable fight scenes I know:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEdG-cwFg4k
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tr6VrmOQY1M
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2P2ByOtOOs
dra wrote:Most of the 50 knights or 200 thieves are kinda narrative effects. It all comes to what GM rules as of results of the test of how he structures story.
Saying the 50 knights or 200 thieves are narrative effects is as stupid as saying that a "fine suit of proofed plate armor" is a narrative effect. It literally says in the rules that the GM can't screw you out of NPCs created through Edges. p93 says: "Several edges allow the player to both create an NPC and establish a specific relationship that NPC has with their character. As this is an arrangement that has been purchased (either at character creation, or acquired through advancement) it is more than just an in-character agreement between those individuals. It becomes an arrangement between the player and the GM. The specific type and limitations of the relationship are specified by the edge itself, but so long as the player upholds their end the NPC will honor it."
dra wrote:Sure, you can have 50 knights but what help are they if you are captured at the battlefield and plan an escape? Do you travel with 50 of them? Perhaps only few armsmen? And what if anyone wants to further the plot by trying to assasinate you on some hunting expedition? Would he do it as a lone fighter or would he bring overpowering group? And your retainers are hold up in a fight and than? And than it's good to have 6 stamina
Saying the GM might structure the story such that you can't use your henchmen (like being captive) is equally applicable to any aspect of a character, including stamina 6. Why put points in Manipulation when the GM might just attack you with wolves? Why put points in Stamina when the GM can just attack you with arqubus and people with Str 6? I could come up with equally many contrived scenarios where being a Duke would be HUGELY more important than having stamina 6. It is the GM job to make sure that every character is included in the story at some point. If a GM is screwing you out of Edges you purchased, he is playing the game wrong. This is a character and player driven game; not a GM story time game. Again, it is literally in the rules of the game. p7 "Players are given mechanical incentives not just to participate in the story, but to take an active role in driving it forward based on their character’s goals and convictions." and p87 "The GM’s job is to set up scenes where the characters SAs are challenged. The player’s job is to meet those challenges with vigor. When you are playing to your SAs, they support your character in the trials they will face."
dra wrote:I however had encountered problems with iron skin in systems where it was possible.
Honestly, I am still failing to see what is so terrible about a player being able to make a character that is hard to kill. At best it is just saving you a handful of SAs you don't have to spend on "Not Quite Dead Yet". It's like you have forgotten that the players are supposed to win the majority of fatal encounters they get into. If this were strictly a PVP dueling game, you might have a point.
dra wrote:4cp to spears or 4cp to greatsword?
What about defense disadvantage when figthing too close ?
If you are using a greatsword using your Spears proficiency you would get +4CP to use with your greatsword.
There is no defense disadvantage when fighting too close in BoB. It is represented by instead giving a bonus to the shorter reach weapon (+2 or +4CP). Yes, it is not as realistic as giving a penalty to your enemy but it makes the game flow much easier with minimal mathematical difference.
dra wrote:1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV
I already said this earlier. BoB attributes scale from 1-5. TROS and BotIT scale from 1-10.
IT IS EFFECTIVELY ALREADY HALVED EXACTLY AS YOU DESCRIBE, COMPARED TO THE OTHER GAMES YOU KEEP MENTIONING.
Or are you suggesting to use 1/4 of what is used in TROS/BotIT?

99% of fights will take place between combatants with STR-STAM ranges of 2-5. So the realistic damage range is +/-3. Play a game of BoB with normal STR and STM ranges of 2-5 and see if it is as overpowered as you think.

Not to mention that using 1/2 ST or 1/2 SM leads to "dead levels" which are stupid to include.
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This is thy sheath; there rust, and let me die."

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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 07 Dec 2016, 09:49

Benedict wrote:I don't really grasp the argument here dra.
It's either :
1. my level of english is poor which I apologize for but does not render my case invalid
2. you did not read what I wrote really, which might be the case since I answered some of those points above.
You are saying that Stamina should not be used for calculating damage because it's unrealistic?
Negative. There should be some modifier included that let strong, seasoned warrior to soak up some damage better than frail, old man. What I say is at this point, it's way to high.
1. We are talking about fiction here, not real life.
Yes and...?
How on earth does it affect ability of game to "simulate fiction" if stamina soak is -2/+2 instead of -5/+5. Especially comparing to later arguments that "it only affects genetic freaks and is more balanced most of the time".

Besides, fiction is so broad a word. Fiction includes Hercules and Robert Langdon. You can't have game answering both group of players who want to experience such adventures. Once, my friend run his custom system where we played detectives in medieval Europe. For whole combat (both ranged and meele) there was just one stat. At least dozen stats were in range of different aspects of Finding Clues. Every stat had a dice (either d6, d8 or d10). It decided about succesess or lack of theroff. And it was great game.

Why? I assume you heard about P19 questions? What is your game about? How does system support what is your game about? TROS (and Bob as far as I can see) is narrative-simulationist kind of mixture of rpg. Narrative compund features heavy in system. But some parts, mainly combat is one of most simulationist pieces of rpg I have ever seen. So yeah, consider what sort of fiction does system simulate.
2. Any attribute of 5 is the peak human condition. 6 is the stuff of legends or genetic anomaly.
So what?
Seriously, what does it affect players at all? Can you make this genetic anomaly ? Yes you can. It doesn't even require Karma which is something that I never use as it smells with D&D and monster slaying to me. So yeah, if player can create such character, it doesn't matter what sort of statitical anomaly it has. It can affect gameplay.
3. There are ways to go around stamina and armor all together. Grappling maneuvers is one. I'll give you an analogy from myth. Hercules went on to kill the Nemean Lion. A beast birthed by the gods with a hide so tough that no weapon could pierce it. In BoB that lion would have Sta6 and its hide would be AV6 with Metal and Rigid properties. Herc is armed with a big club and has Str6. So, how did poor ol' Herc killed the brute? He crushed it with his tree log? Nope. He choked it to death, pure and simple. And then skinned it to wear its hide as armor. :lol:
I answered it already? Just because you can fix it with some advanced mechanics does not mean it can be swept under the rug. And every time you use such an argument , ask yourself this: in what way making this unrealistic imbalance going to make those advanced mechanics less valid?
In exactly none. You can still use Gouge and choke smn to death.
4. If you picture Stamina as simply skin toughness there is a problem. No matter how hard your skin is, a knife in the gut is always bad news. Saying it bounced off your six-pack is obviously problematic. I prefer to view Stamina as a combination of bodily toughness and survival instict. Yes, the assassin did hit you with that knife in the gut. Or so it seemed. As Howard would have eloquently wrote "your wild barbarian virality pushed you to lengths unknown to civilized men and that stab that would have slain any mortal man just broke your skin and bounced off your rib leaving you bloodied and very angry". Here's your fiction equivalent of Sta6. I guess it comes down to context and reasoning.
Yeah, of course. You can describe everything with narrative.
We might even go to simple combat to get it off our head at all. Why have all those pesky manouvers after all, why bother with weapon DRs? Let's just play narrative combat and describe what happened.

In no way Stamina is described as subcouncous ability of zen combat. If anything, AG + CU would be that and it is included in CP which...decreases MoS and lowers Wound Level. Yeayyy. It's already in. Whats the point of doubling it up if you can fix it with no effort and make it responsible for what it really supposed to be responsible?
5. Finally, as thirty33 rightly points out Sta6 is useless against a host of knights. Or a thieves guild. Or the orator with Social6 who convinces you that his well being is your highest priority.
And I already answered that there is nothing unrealistic in that. Yet can be remedied if a story requires.
As for your last question:

Define too close.

(...)
It's not about defining too close.
It's about range mechanics in general. In TROS you had -1CP difference while attaking every range band longer. So if it was 3 ranges , you had to spend 3cp only to try to close down. If you managed to sneak in and land a hit, opponent had a problem of -3cp both to attacking too close as well as additional -3cp to defending. Which was some sort of tradeoff for short weapons. You started disadvantaged but once you entered range, you were much stronger than your opponent would be keeping you at bay.
dra wrote:1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV
Why on Earth do that? :shock:
1. It's simple
2. It does not affect any math in game
3. It does not affect ability of game to "simulate fiction"
4. The only thing it does is make game more realistic in places where it matters...
5. ... and fix some inbalances.

Question should be rather: why on Earth not do it?
All attributes range 1-6. If one of ST or SM ranged 1-10 there would be a point to divide and round down. Otherwise its redundant.
Really, what's the difference it they range 1-6, 1-33,333 or 1-100. What's an issue is knife to the guts with same MoS that kills one dude outright and tingles another one. Attributes in game system are not problem. In CP2020 attributes were 1-20 and still modifier of body compostion was lower than in BoB. What matters is not parts of the equastion , it's the result of it affecting gameplay.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 07 Dec 2016, 09:55

dra wrote:1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV
Yes, probably closer to realism. Most definitely less elegant, "dead" scores and all.
dra wrote:For most cases scenarios of battles/duels it would be however -1/0/+1.
If this is what you aim for, you could do this with Edge (Tough - all wounds reduced by 1) and Flaw (Fragile - all wounds increased by 1). No math, no "dead" scores for Stamina and Strength. Maybe Tough should require the Large Edge, so this whole thing has more impact and is more expensive, instead of becoming a no-brainer for every fighter.

After some consideration...
Forget it. Such an Edge (Tough) should rather be integrated in the existing Large. Just now instead of "Strength and Stamina are less expensive for you", you apply this damage reduction. Should be good.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by thirtythr33 » 07 Dec 2016, 10:07

Korbel wrote:If this is what you aim for, you could do this with Edge (Tough - all wounds reduced by 1) and Flaw (Fragile - all wounds increased by 1). No math, no "dead" scores for Stamina and Strength. Maybe Tough should require the Large Edge, so this whole thing has more impact and is more expensive, instead of becoming a no-brainer for every fighter.
That's one way to do it. But you still can't throw away STR and STAM entirely, because a whole bunch of skills, infections and strength checks means you still need to have STR and STM scores even if they don't do anything in combat. Then STR and STM will be dump stats.

Instead of changing it to 1/2 STR or 1/2 STM I would rather just treat it like a 1 point bonus that goes to whoever has the higher STR/STM. It means you don't have dead levels. ie "If your STR in higher than your targets STM, you do +1DR. If it is less, you do -1DR. If the same, +0DR." That way 5 STR is still better than 4, because it means you will get +1DR vs 4 STM.

Or better yet, just do STR-STM but cap it to 2 max.

All this might be rather pointless though; I suspect that Agamemnon's hints at a rewrite might seriously change some of the basic skill/attribute systems given his dissatisfaction with how SAs don't apply to skills, attributes and combat pools equally.
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This is thy sheath; there rust, and let me die."

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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 07 Dec 2016, 10:27

thirtythr33 wrote:But you still can't throw away STR and STAM entirely, because a whole bunch of skills, infections and strength checks means you still need to have STR and STM scores even if they don't do anything in combat. Then STR and STM will be dump stats.
Well, even if Strength and Stamina don't apply to wound calculation, you still need them in combat. Strength for bows and dragging your wounded buddy, Stamina to resist KOs.
thirtythr33 wrote:All this might be rather pointless though; I suspect that Agamemnon's hints at a rewrite might seriously change some of the basic skill/attribute systems given his dissatisfaction with how SAs don't apply to skills, attributes and combat pools equally.
I'm looking forward :D
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 07 Dec 2016, 11:29

thirtythr33 wrote:
dra wrote:I flashed few of most memorable fiction fights in my head and could not find any memorable duel ending with combatants falling on the ground and grappling ;]
These are literally the 3 most memorable fight scenes I know:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEdG-cwFg4k
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tr6VrmOQY1M
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2P2ByOtOOs
I only watched first episode of GoT. I read few books ages ago. They were ok I guess but nothing that kept me awake at night. But it seems to be popular in here.
Some cool fighting scenes.

I would add something better known maybe:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-DeI3ohVbY
or smth less ancient
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yHqdESArkqU
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTmlYKiLBHI
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzsfyxACV7M
from my experience more remembered than
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQ62frK74u0

and something taken from inspiration simillar to game designers?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbMJU9IftCo

in my country, everyone knows this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tFXZn9qNhg

grappling as in rolling on the floor doesn't fit into it somehow
Saying the 50 knights or 200 thieves are narrative effects is as stupid as saying that a "fine suit of proofed plate armor" is a narrative effect.
Funny you mentioned that. That was one of arguments above ("you don't always wear armor") :D
It literally says in the rules that the GM can't screw you out of NPCs created through Edges. p93 says: "Several edges allow the player to both create an NPC and establish a specific relationship that NPC has with their character. As this is an arrangement that has been purchased (either at character creation, or acquired through advancement) it is more than just an in-character agreement between those individuals. It becomes an arrangement between the player and the GM. The specific type and limitations of the relationship are specified by the edge itself, but so long as the player upholds their end the NPC will honor it."
Where do I screw him? I embrace his Edge. We have a thief in the team and there is an important part of the story where he sneaks behind guards to open up gate. Than we have lord who realeases can of whoopass with his 50 armsman waiting in bushes for them. Chaotic battle starts. In semi directed skirmish an important NPC is saved by amazing shot by team's bowman. And than our lord sees that his archenemy runs into escape corridor with few man. He grabs few of his armsman and follows. Fighting ensues in tight spaces where his knights make some room for him by keeping mooks aside. And than he has his chance. Escape corridor widens into huge cave with enormous hole in the ground. Duke catches his opponent on feeble rope bridge...

Where on earth do I rape a contract with a player?
He has 50 knights. He uses them not just to stand around looking epic, they are important part of climax. Every player has a certain role to play. At the same time , thief is trying to free up his loved one by fighting her guard, bowman is trying to save as many knights as he can by running a sniper duels with crossbowmans on the walls and our duke...our duke gets into dance with his archenemy.

I sure hope as hell he does not have stamina 1 :D
Saying the GM might structure the story such that you can't use your henchmen (like being captive) is equally applicable to any aspect of a character, including stamina 6.
Exept in being captured you still have st 6? :D
Why put points in Manipulation when the GM might just attack you with wolves? Why put points in Stamina when the GM can just attack you with arqubus and people with Str 6? I could come up with equally many contrived scenarios where being a Duke would be HUGELY more important than having stamina 6. It is the GM job to make sure that every character is included in the story at some point. If a GM is screwing you out of Edges you purchased, he is playing the game wrong. This is a character and player driven game; not a GM story time game. Again, it is literally in the rules of the game. p7 "Players are given mechanical incentives not just to participate in the story, but to take an active role in driving it forward based on their character’s goals and convictions." and p87 "The GM’s job is to set up scenes where the characters SAs are challenged. The player’s job is to meet those challenges with vigor. When you are playing to your SAs, they support your character in the trials they will face."
And I agree completly with above.
As you can see I just structured a climax to the story playing to players strenghts, giving them satisfacion of being important part of the story. If I had social monster, I'd let him sell some BS story to archenemy beforehand so he moves his vast army away, co they can create this whole mess and so on so on. I think I do understand how SAs work, thank you :D

And no, you don't have to tell me I can work around 50 knights or stamina 6. I read carefull "Listen up dumb screwups" 40 times over ;). Was my favoruite literature at some stage.

- My players are getting too strong. What to do?
- Send an elephant.
- My players killed an elephant!
- Send another elephant. I have plenty of elephants

;)))

Silly as it is, that dialouge should be read to any powergamer before he creates a character.
Honestly, I am still failing to see what is so terrible about a player being able to make a character that is hard to kill.
Nothing in games, that system supports heroic fantasy type adventures. It is even sought after. Realism does not play to game there, often it is distruptive.
In games where simulationist part is very heavy , it is playing against system strenght.
At best it is just saving you a handful of SAs you don't have to spend on "Not Quite Dead Yet". It's like you have forgotten that the players are supposed to win the majority of fatal encounters they get into. If this were strictly a PVP dueling game, you might have a point.
Yet than again, if you would like to run tough sessions (which I like) and players would face physical challanges that can be their demise if they do not pay attention and prepare yourself... it kinda sucks that one player is constantly burning SA and another one, next to him, just shrugs off anything other than MoS 9 or sth.

Speaking of MoSs...
In Tros it was quite rare to have huge advantage with simillar CPs. Yet we had different TN for weapons there...I don't want to play a wizard and predict how often it will happen here but I'd say, it might be rarer.
There is no defense disadvantage when fighting too close in BoB. It is represented by instead giving a bonus to the shorter reach weapon (+2 or +4CP). Yes, it is not as realistic as giving a penalty to your enemy but it makes the game flow much easier with minimal mathematical difference.
So it's mainly to improve game flow. Thanks.
dra wrote:1/2 ST (rounded down) + DR + MOS - 1/2 SM (rounded down) - AV
I already said this earlier. BoB attributes scale from 1-5. TROS and BotIT scale from 1-10.
IT IS EFFECTIVELY ALREADY HALVED EXACTLY AS YOU DESCRIBE, COMPARED TO THE OTHER GAMES YOU KEEP MENTIONING.
Or are you suggesting to use 1/4 of what is used in TROS/BotIT? [/quote]

What I am suggesting is it does not matter wheter they are halved, quaterd or put into some very complicated formula. Idea is to have it somewhat realistic and not creating new , unnecessary rules that would slow up play. Imho range of modifiers +2/-2 is way better for MoS kind of pool game than +5/-5 which is better than -9/+9 ...
In blade you also have stats 1-5 and this system works there great. Would you risk an opinion that blade does not emulate fiction fantasy?
99% of fights will take place between combatants with STR-STAM ranges of 2-5. So the realistic damage range is +/-3. Play a game of BoB with normal STR and STM ranges of 2-5 and see if it is as overpowered as you think.
And I agreed with that already. I said my players didn't create PC so overpowered and in most cases scenarios, this system will work fine. However, if this game should be released, it is shooting yourself in the leg.
Not to mention that using 1/2 ST or 1/2 SM leads to "dead levels" which are stupid to include.
What's a dead level?
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