Some miscellaneous questions about combat

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

Post by EinBein » 09 Dec 2016, 11:58

dra wrote:As far as I understood it also affects low tier armors as well, doesn't it? So unless you don't have even simplest leather garment or "winter clothes/thick robes etc" you would not spot the difference.
Currently, there is no such thing as very light armor. If you don't wear armor in the sense of at least leather (which is mostly present in fantasy settings) or gambeson, you're screwed. Clothing doesn't qualify as armor.
dra wrote:OF course I can. It's exactly what I did with naked dwarf syndrome in WFRP. It's working around a problem though, not tackling it which should be aproach at the design stage of game. Just because I worked around it did not make it any better mechanics.
At least I see it not as a bug, but as a feature. I would anyways describe it according to my first example. If you have "Superhuman!" Sta, you're supposed to shrug such hits off. There's no need to think of iron muscles for me...
dra wrote:
EinBein wrote:Why would Sansa's player be disappointed when the character he made failed at something he never inted her to succeed with? Would it "annoy hell out of you" when your brute with Soc 2 and no Manipulation failed to sweet-talk a noble lady?
Because as a player I set up a trap, executed it, used common sense to try to make out my strategy to kill this dude and ... I failed.
You made your hair, bought flowers, wrote a poem and chose a warm night with clear view of moon and stars, confront the noble lady from the garden below her balcony, roll Social (two dice, but advantaged due to your preparations)... and fail? This is what happens when you do things that are out of the scope of your character. If I as a real person would be asked to stab Wladimir Klitschko in the back with a dagger, I suppose I'd fail too. I don't know where exactly to stab, have not the physical power (and most important: motivation and training) to stab hard enough and maybe would fail at Stealth in the first place... I would never think this unrealistic. And I'm close to 2m tall and far away from being crippled. As the player of Sansa - or of any weak bodied character - I'd definitely try to find other ways to kill the Mountain that suit my set of skills. If I tried it anyways, I'm not entitled to be sad about it imho...
dra wrote:assassin type [...] Would you ask him to roll along with game system mechanics?
First: Maybe I wouldn't ask him to roll an attack, but more like an opposed Stealth check or something like that.

Second: Even if this assassin needed to attack and had only Str 2, he'd have good Reflexes (like 7 for example), a reasonable proficiency with daggers (some 9) and he'd have not a basic kitchen knife, but a suited dagger. Then he'd perform a Draw Cut, invest all his dice (incl. +4 CP for optimum range) in an advantaged roll (maybe even + 0 to 5 from a firing SA) and I see not the least chance for the Sta 6 sleeping victim to survive this attack. But this assassin is meant to do such things.

Unlike Sansa (or any other complete non-fighter), who would have something like Reflexes 4 + proficiency or defaulting... 0 to 4? + optimum range 2 (or 4, if proficient in daggers) + SA 0 to 5 = something between 6 and 17, which still gives a reasonable chance rules-wise if rolled advantaged (sleeping victim) to kill the Sta 6 guy. Even with Str 1. So why complain anyways?

In a fight, when king Conan can roll against Sansa, she'd have no chance whatsoever... But that is by design.
dra wrote:Onan can claim he has balls of steel
Sta 6 is "Superhuman!" this is fantasy and fiction already... Don't forget this in your examples for realism...
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 09 Dec 2016, 12:02

EinBein wrote:
thirtythr33 wrote:...
Very good, once again :!:
Agreed. I only wish I had the mathematical prowess and eye for detail that man possesses. There's a reason he was promoted to Inquisition.
EinBein wrote:
Agamamnon wrote:Though, you might just stick around until the beginning of the year. There are some overhauls coming anyway.
:shock:
:twisted:

EinBein wrote:
33 wrote:The most reasonable solution to all of this would be to slightly bump up DR and AV ratings. Currently AV ranges from 2 to 6 but could easily be bumped to 3 to 7. Similarly, weapon damage ranges from 0 to 3 could be bumped to 1 to 4.
For my personal taste, BoB keeps the balance between realism and fiction in its current state just right. With the proposed adjustment, you slightly increase the necessity to run around in armor and make suprise fights in backalleys more deadly. Anyways, I think this can easily be applied as a lever by anyone interested. Good idea.
Technically, the thing runs from -1 to +4 currently, with most one-handed weapons doing +1, and most two-handed weapons doing +2. Given that any weapon can instantly up its DR by 1 with a Hard Swing, and curved blades can Draw Cut for +2, and Mass Weapons can get +2 by Hard Swing, that brings the range of existing damage from -1 to +6, which is in line with our armor as it stands. We could up both sides across the board to keep them even, but then you create a situation where most weapons will just insta-gib someone. A sword is sort of the default weapon in a game like this. It's generally going to be Str+1. That means on an MoS1 against an unarmored opponent (Assuming equal stats), you have a level 2 wound - enough to be a useful result, but not enough that the thing is already over. An MoS3 is a level 4 wound -- the fight is all but over. That seemed about right for our tastes, and you could already be getting a heavy, curved sword that has base +2c and throw in a draw-cut to get +4c. Your MoS1 has now lopped an arm off. We could tweak armor/weapon values to be higher, but even if we keep them in parity we quickly create the situation where unarmored combat is so deadly that no sane person would ever engage in it. This is of particularly issue when you look at the settings one might pursue where full body armor wasn't the norm - antiquity, age of sail, etc.
EinBein wrote:
dra wrote:As I said, there is no argument to that. If that's the stories you want in your games, cool. I understand.
So here we are at the root of the problem. We can't discuss about taste. But let's take a step back, think about the power of narration and compare two similar "wounds":
  • A noblewoman (Str 2) slaps her husband (Sta 2) in the face with the back of her hand (she rolled two successes, he rolled none). The man flinches and covers his face in order to avoid further punishing (level 1 "wound").
  • A hulk of a man (Str 5) slams his similarly built opponent (Sta 5) in the face, swinging his gargantuan fist in a powerful wide arc (he rolled six successes with Striking emphasis, the opponent rolled five). The hit brute takes the blow unflinching, but has to take a step back in order to not lose his footing (level 1 "wound").
If we take a step back from the unduly pictures of blades bending at the contact with steeled muscles on the one side and blades fully immersing in the flesh of brutes without effect on the other, we all agree that we apply double standards when describing the circumstances and outcomes of a hit, like in my above two examples, right?
You have experience as a GM as it seems, so you can describe different outcomes than bent daggers, I believe. Even if you say that the dagger got stuck within two ribs and failed to immerse any deeper than a finger's width, I think that's enough narration for the attack and can easily be ignored with superhuman Sta of 6...
It's worth noting that this whole "iron skin" concept is a projection onto the game, rather than something within the game. Check out the actual descriptions - in this case, of a piercing wound to the ribs, since this is what we're talking about:
Image
Nowhere in there is the implication that someone flexed a muscle and your attack was ignored. It's how well placed your attack was, and thus what they hit. The only difference between a level 3 wound and a level 5 narratively is how well aimed your thrust was.
EinBein wrote:To sum it up: Everyone draws the line of narration somewhere. Based on the general tone of the campaign, the taste of the players at the table and some other constituting elements. If authentic fiction weighs more than heroic fiction at your table, I think you can easily skip the choice to create characters with attributes of six altogether, because this is described as "Superhuman!" anyways. And in an instant, you have only +/- 2 in fighting context (attributes of 3 of trained fighters against max. 5 with super-athletes).
This is one of the bigger points, I think. Dra argued for a +/-2 result. You shouldn't encounter any Strength or stamina 6 human NPCs in the first place. That's a player thing. Even 5s are basically the defining feature of that character and should be extremely rare. You should be prepared, even in-character, for the 5 strength/stamina NPC simply by virtue of the GM describing how massive they are. You should, in-character, feel "oh shit, that dude is huge. I don't know if I want to be in hand-to-hand combat with them." I would not want to get into a physical altercation with Eddie Hall, even if I did have a melee weapon.. because if the first blow doesn't take him down, I'm toast. That puts the effective range at 1-4. The only time then that you fall outside of that +/-2 range is if someone is a physically handicapped or a child.

dra wrote:
33 wrote: For my personal taste, BoB keeps the balance between realism and fiction in its current state just right. With the proposed adjustment, you slightly increase the necessity to run around in armor and make suprise fights in backalleys more deadly. Anyways, I think this can easily be applied as a lever by anyone interested. Good idea.
As far as I understood it also affects low tier armors as well, doesn't it? So unless you don't have even simplest leather garment or "winter clothes/thick robes etc" you would not spot the difference.
See above. You can do this sort of thing, but it means that your character can never not be unarmored in a fight. For a setting like Rome (where bare legs and arms would have been common on soldiers) and age of sail (where armor was very often not worn at all outside of perhaps a padded doublet. Not even that, if we start going into classical pirate territory), I think it would be so deadly as to be no longer fun.
dra wrote:
EinBein wrote: Why would Sansa's player be disappointed when the character he made failed at something he never inted her to succeed with? Would it "annoy hell out of you" when your brute with Soc 2 and no Manipulation failed to sweet-talk a noble lady?
Because as a player I set up a trap, executed it, used common sense to try to make out my strategy to kill this dude and ... I failed. Not through my planning but through poor mechanics. As a player I do not have to know rules. GM told me that it is realistic combat system. I read in beta pdf that wounds are deadly. And than whole world physics shatter.
As EinBein pointed out, Sansa's player intentionally decided she was not a character who was all that physically fit and not particularly skilled in combat. She has plenty of other abilities that the combat-monster meat-wall in the group very likely does not. If Sansa were in such a position that she thought her absolute best plan was to try to jump a dude with her knife, then she's already in the worst of all possible worlds. It's a desparate situation, not one she went into assuming it should work.

Now your rebuttal. You, as a player, out of character, tried to use a common sense strategy to kill a dude. And you failed. What I don't think at fault here are the mechanics. If you went and made a strength 2 girl with little to no CP, it means you've made the statement "she isn't strong and has at best the barest idea of how to fight." Whatever you might know about fighting out of character, she's shit at it. By design. You made her that way. If you want to invoke realism, realistically a ninety-pound girl with little-to-no combat experience doesn't jump a dude three times her weight in raw muscle and instantly kill him with a single thrust. In real life, it's incredibly rare for even trained combatants to kill someone with a single thrust with a knife. In real life, it's extremely difficult to instantly and cleanly just end someone with a knife. In real life, it's not uncommon for the victor to also be mortally wounded because it took a while for the blood loss to take their opponent down. Knife fights are fucking brutal. Rather than "whole world physics shatter," a realistic combat system should render a result where a waif of a girl with no real knife-fighting experience to speak of shouldn't be able to go Assassin's Creed on a far larger, tougher, and better trained opponent.
dra wrote:Imagine one of your players is a sneaky assassin type of dude. And we are not talking here about any particular system, just general fantasy. He sneaks into castle, avoids guards to get into chamber of his target. Target is sleeping. Good. He takes a knife and...

Would you ask him to roll along with game system mechanics? Or just inform him that he sliths target's throat and that's it. If you do ask him to roll, how idiotic is a situation where he fails to do significant damage due to target's natural toughness and knife's poor damage. You spoke about meta game discussions breaking immersion. How about burst of outright laughter from all players except our assassin?
In my book, that's not a fight. The combat mechanics are meant to represent fights. If I have your Stamina 6 PC tied to a chair and I decide I'm going to beat you to death, there is no roll to be made. I'm just going to do it. In our rules, rolls by definition require conflicts. If you simply can't resist me, I win. I can beat you to death with my strength 2 fists because you can't stop me. It might take me all damn day to do it, but I will eventually succeed. The only way I would ever need to roll in that scenario is if you had a rescue party on the way and the question was "can I beat you to death with my bare hands before your friends show up." Then I might just make it an opposed roll between my Strength+Brawl and your Health. On the other hand, slitting your throat is instantaneous. So is bashing your skull in with a mallet.

To more directly deal with your specified scenario, that is a conflict, but it's still not a fight. Instead, I'd make it a stealth roll vs the guard's passive perception to see if the assassin can do the deed without the guard waking up. If the assassin wins, then he kills the guy. If he fails, then the guard wakes up and we treat the thing like an ambush -- which, if the assassin is any good at their craft, they will probably still win. If, on the other hand, it's established that there is effectively no chance of the guard waking up (we know that he's passed out drunk or was drugged) then there's no real conflict to be had. The assassin just kills him.

..Huh. There used to be a side-bar specifically talking about the use of the stealth roll to make assassination attempts, but it seems to have disappeared. That needs to be fixed, clearly.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 09 Dec 2016, 12:30

Agamemnon wrote:Rather than "whole world physics shatter," a realistic combat system should render a result where a waif of a girl with no real knife-fighting experience to speak of shouldn't be able to go Assassin's Creed on a far larger, tougher, and better trained opponent.
OK, let's say she has the chance to ambush three characters. Her targets are of the same skill (CP), just different STAMINA. First is Stamina 2, second - Stamina 4, and third - the Mountain with Stamina 6.

Using the 33's example, the Mountain has a good chance of not getting any significant wound, the guard with Stamina 4 will probably suffer a significant wound (level 2, 3, or 4 - he will probably lose the ensuing duel because of this), and a noble with Stamina 2 will probably die from the first strike.

The question is: why? The Stealth check was the same, the attack was equally skillful - just the target was so much tougher. So, as a GM, you must start looking for possible explanations... Was the Mountain so much more lucky? But how many times can you be lucky?

Even if the targets were Stamina 2, 3 and 4 (quite common range I would say), the results are quite drastically different still. Every single wound level means so much!
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 09 Dec 2016, 13:18

EinBein wrote:
dra wrote:As far as I understood it also affects low tier armors as well, doesn't it? So unless you don't have even simplest leather garment or "winter clothes/thick robes etc" you would not spot the difference.
Currently, there is no such thing as very light armor. If you don't wear armor in the sense of at least leather (which is mostly present in fantasy settings) or gambeson, you're screwed. Clothing doesn't qualify as armor.
Whatever works. :)
Walking clad in leather is cheap, comfortable enough to bring it even to breakfast at inn common table and would be sort of adventurer's basic outfit in most cases scenario. So that's a win - win imo ;). You get more realism, mortality doesn't really rise.
You made your hair, bought flowers, wrote a poem and chose a warm night with clear view of moon and stars, confront the noble lady from the garden below her balcony, roll Social (two dice, but advantaged due to your preparations)... and fail?
Sure. Do you pick up chicks every time? :D It's ok. You are poor socially, you tried. Did your best, you failed. Physics of the universe stayed untouched. If you put a knife into someone's back, that supposed to hurt at least a little. It might not affect you in sense of disabling your fighting prowess or killing you outright. With enough will/toughness/tanacity you may ignore stinging in your back and proceed to attacking. But you will get some bleeding, some damage to tissue, and so on.

Of course it's just a roll and you can interpret it in 100 ways. Yet why should you if you don't have to?
This is what happens when you do things that are out of the scope of your character. If I as a real person would be asked to stab Wladimir Klitschko in the back with a dagger, I suppose I'd fail too. I don't know where exactly to stab, have not the physical power (and most important: motivation and training) to stab hard enough and maybe would fail at Stealth in the first place... I would never think this unrealistic. And I'm close to 2m tall and far away from being crippled.
We can agree to disagree than ;)
As the player of Sansa - or of any weak bodied character - I'd definitely try to find other ways to kill the Mountain that suit my set of skills. If I tried it anyways, I'm not entitled to be sad about it imho...
And that should by all means be included in the difficulty of the task. Advantages, disadvantages, combat pools... If you however did the impossible,... I would be pissed off if GM said that marble floor softened under warm sun, became gluey like and stopped my impetus with the knife enough not to kill someone. Unless of course magic's involved, guy is a demon playing around with my hopes or gods decided to make my life miserable. But if nothing unnatural happened, I would like to know that putting knife into someone's guts is painfull proposition.
First: Maybe I wouldn't ask him to roll an attack, but more like an opposed Stealth check or something like that.

Second: Even if this assassin needed to attack and had only Str 2, he'd have good Reflexes (like 7 for example), a reasonable proficiency with daggers (some 9) and he'd have not a basic kitchen knife, but a suited dagger. Then he'd perform a Draw Cut, invest all his dice (incl. +4 CP for optimum range) in an advantaged roll (maybe even + 0 to 5 from a firing SA) and I see not the least chance for the Sta 6 sleeping victim to survive this attack. But this assassin is meant to do such things.
Disregard system, mechanics, born-to-do-that-kind-of-shitness and so on.
The question is what happens when skilled assassin cuts sleeping target throat and due to rolls, he fails. It's just parody. Isn't it?
So for me same parody goes to Sansa vs Mountain stab attack.
dra wrote:Onan can claim he has balls of steel
Sta 6 is "Superhuman!" this is fantasy and fiction already... Don't forget this in your examples for realism...[/quote]

Or lack of therof ;)
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 09 Dec 2016, 13:21

Korbel wrote:
Agamemnon wrote:Rather than "whole world physics shatter," a realistic combat system should render a result where a waif of a girl with no real knife-fighting experience to speak of shouldn't be able to go Assassin's Creed on a far larger, tougher, and better trained opponent.
OK, let's say she has the chance to ambush three characters. Her targets are of the same skill (CP), just different STAMINA. First is Stamina 2, second - Stamina 4, and third - the Mountain with Stamina 6.

Using the 33's example, the Mountain has a good chance of not getting any significant wound, the guard with Stamina 4 will probably suffer a significant wound (level 2, 3, or 4 - he will probably lose the ensuing duel because of this), and a noble with Stamina 2 will probably die from the first strike.

The question is: why? The Stealth check was the same, the attack was equally skillful - just the target was so much tougher. So, as a GM, you must start looking for possible explanations... Was the Mountain so much more lucky? But how many times can you be lucky?

Even if the targets were Stamina 2, 3 and 4 (quite common range I would say), the results are quite drastically different still. Every single wound level means so much!
There's a quote, I believe it's attributed to Socrates somewhere along the line "the beginning of wisdom is the definition of terms." I don't necessarily see an ambush and assassination as the same thing in every circumstance. I don't need to be a particularly stealthy guy to be waiting around the corner of an alley. An assassination is a situation where you can kill someone without them resisting. The "Stealth take-down" we see all over fiction.

The second and more pressing issue: what are the stakes in this? What is your character trying to accomplish, and how important is the thing? Simple Combat (pg 59) exists explicitly because not every fight is worth breaking down into a blow-by-blow things. If it's not really a fight to the death, the outcome isn't all that important for whatever reason (friendly bar brawl), or the thing seems remarkably foregone from the start (a trained knight in armor subduing an untrained peasant), I'd just make an opposed roll and move on. (As an aside, I'd actually ignore the particulars of the mechanic when determining outcome. Rather than fool with figuring out wound levels based on MoS, I'd just set the stakes beforehand, namely, what happens to the loser - embarassed? Badly beaten? Killed?)

Moving closer to what you're asking: in any conflict, the GM should be asking themselves how important that conflict is. Tracking a werewolf through the forest is going to be a Survival roll to find the thing, a stealth roll if you're trying to creep up on it or get a good line of sight with your silver-armed matchlock, and then a ranged combat roll to see if you can bring it down in one shot. Compare this with getting a deer for supper. The actual actions being simulated are identical in all but trappings (silver bullets are expensive to use on deer and deform nowhere near as well as lead), but the situation isn't that important. The stakes aren't nearly as high, and the action just isn't as interesting on-screen. As a GM, I'd call for a Cunning/Survival roll and be done with it.

You can often resolve the same physical actions in multiple ways depending on how interesting or important said action actually is to what's going on in the game. Generally speaking, the more important it is and the higher the stakes are, the more you want to zoom in it and see the details.

So let's get back to our assassin. Who is her target? If it's just Guard Number 4 who presents a minor obstacle on the way to infiltrating the fortress, then it does pose some interesting stakes (she could potentially get caught), but it's not the primary conflict we really care about. The important conflict is whatever she's trying to get into the fortress to achieve to begin with. Roll stealth to make the assassination attempt. If she wins, she takes him out. If she loses, he has the opportunity to make noise or whatever and they actually fight. If she's any good, she'll probably still kill him (it was effectively an ambush) but he has the chance to make noise before he dies.

Trying to assassinate an important character is something you want to resolve in more detail on-screen, but it's still subject to circumstance. This is a gut call for the GM. What are the NPC's chances to react? If a successful stealth roll gets her in a position to cut The Mountain's throat in his sleep, he's dead. I don't care what his stamina is. If on the other hand, she's trying to sneak up behind him at a pub and shove a knife in him there is a pretty meaningful chance he'll get to respond. That's when the ambush would be more appropriate.

Historical accounts are littered with tales of people who have survived pretty gnarly wounds. Look at how much carnage it took to kill Blackbeard. According to Maynard, it took five musket balls and about twenty cutlass and dagger wounds to bring the big bastard down. He was 6'5 and about 220lbs. Sounds like high strength/stamina to me. If you want to look at better-documented accounts, go skim through some Matt Easton videos or pick up the book he will inevitably reference at some point Swordsmen of the British Empire. A point he will repeatedly make (and cite sources for) is that the body is very resilient and even a mortal wound more often than not doesn't instantly disable an opponent. For shits and giggles, I just googled man survives huge number of stabbings. It's amazing what you can live through and how much trauma the human body can take.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 09 Dec 2016, 13:39

Agamemnon wrote: Technically, the thing runs from -1 to +4 currently, (..._We could tweak armor/weapon values to be higher, but even if we keep them in parity we quickly create the situation where unarmored combat is so deadly that no sane person would ever engage in it.
You don't have to sell me the idea, I'm already convinced :P
It's worth noting that this whole "iron skin" concept is a projection onto the game, rather than something within the game. Check out the actual descriptions - in this case, of a piercing wound to the ribs, since this is what we're talking about:
Image
Nowhere in there is the implication that someone flexed a muscle and your attack was ignored. It's how well placed your attack was, and thus what they hit. The only difference between a level 3 wound and a level 5 narratively is how well aimed your thrust was.
That's slightly misleading since CP is supposed to be responsible for how well aimed your thrust was. ST or STA seems poor choice for that.
See above. You can do this sort of thing, but it means that your character can never not be unarmored in a fight. For a setting like Rome (where bare legs and arms would have been common on soldiers) and age of sail (where armor was very often not worn at all outside of perhaps a padded doublet. Not even that, if we start going into classical pirate territory), I think it would be so deadly as to be no longer fun.
I guess that's true enough.
Having said that, it's just 1 MoS. :)

As EinBein pointed out, Sansa's player intentionally decided she was not a character who was all that physically fit and not particularly skilled in combat. She has plenty of other abilities that the combat-monster meat-wall in the group very likely does not. If Sansa were in such a position that she thought her absolute best plan was to try to jump a dude with her knife, then she's already in the worst of all possible worlds. It's a desparate situation, not one she went into assuming it should work.
I didn't invent Sansa example. I just run with it :)
She overcame all obstacles to execute her assassination, she placed thrust well (MoS) and she did nothing.
Now your rebuttal. You, as a player, out of character, tried to use a common sense strategy to kill a dude. And you failed. What I don't think at fault here are the mechanics. If you went and made a strength 2 girl with little to no CP, it means you've made the statement "she isn't strong and has at best the barest idea of how to fight." Whatever you might know about fighting out of character, she's shit at it. By design. You made her that way. If you want to invoke realism, realistically a ninety-pound girl with little-to-no combat experience doesn't jump a dude three times her weight in raw muscle and instantly kill him with a single thrust. In real life, it's incredibly rare for even trained combatants to kill someone with a single thrust with a knife. In real life, it's extremely difficult to instantly and cleanly just end someone with a knife. In real life, it's not uncommon for the victor to also be mortally wounded because it took a while for the blood loss to take their opponent down. Knife fights are fucking brutal. Rather than "whole world physics shatter," a realistic combat system should render a result where a waif of a girl with no real knife-fighting experience to speak of shouldn't be able to go Assassin's Creed on a far larger, tougher, and better trained opponent.
Noone says it's supposed to be instakill. The argument was, it's supposed to be at least noticeable.
In my book, that's not a fight. (....) The assassin just kills him.
Exactly!
If it's important scene I would do several rolls sneaking past guards, climbing around them, listening to them, opening some locked doors to avoid often checked corridors. If it's possible I would let other players run some support rolls. Maybe guy with apothecary wants to make a strong stomach empting medicine and dude with Impersonation wants to pretend he is a new cook and throw it into soup before dinner. Maybe some streetwise dude can orginise some ladies to entertain guards that night. But when he enters chamber, that's it. He just slit target's throat.

How would you feel if GM took dice in his hand and after a roll declared that, yeah, you kinda slit his throat but dice says damage 3 . Your opponent wakes up and slaughters you. I would say "fuck it, this game is lame, let's play something else".

Speaking of stealth missions : lack of Dexterity among Atributes is ... questionable. Especially if you think what Agility gives you all over the board.
Historical accounts are littered with tales of people who have survived pretty gnarly wounds. Look at how much carnage it took to kill Blackbeard. According to Maynard, it took five musket balls and about twenty cutlass and dagger wounds to bring the big bastard down. He was 6'5 and about 220lbs. Sounds like high strength/stamina to me.
Sounds like crazy Will Power to me :D
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 09 Dec 2016, 13:54

Agamemnon wrote:Historical accounts are littered with tales of people who have survived pretty gnarly wounds. Look at how much carnage it took to kill Blackbeard. According to Maynard, it took five musket balls and about twenty cutlass and dagger wounds to bring the big bastard down. He was 6'5 and about 220lbs. Sounds like high strength/stamina to me. If you want to look at better-documented accounts, go skim through some Matt Easton videos or pick up the book he will inevitably reference at some point Swordsmen of the British Empire. A point he will repeatedly make (and cite sources for) is that the body is very resilient and even a mortal wound more often than not doesn't instantly disable an opponent. For shits and giggles, I just googled man survives huge number of stabbings. It's amazing what you can live through and how much trauma the human body can take.
But I'm not talking about insta-killing someone. What I'm trying to say, if you ambush someone with a dagger, you should be able of dealing a significant wound no matter his Stamina score. After all, flesh is flesh. If you drive a dagger in, it's generally gonna suck for everybody. How can your Stamina save you? Reflexes, Perception, luck - of course, but Stamina? Those three targets (Stamina 2, 4 and 6) should suffer roughly the same wound, just their chances of survival will be different. But it's still a dagger in their back... Muscles are no armor. Sure they can protect your vital organs, especially if you're very muscular, but if your muscle is pierced (let's say on your back), it's gonna be very painful no matter the exact location, and hampering almost all the movements you can make.

(LOL, ninja'd by DRA again... no wonder if it takes me so much time to write a comment... I'm getting old)

So, if Sansa can murder a Stamina 2 person (she can get a reasonably high MoS on ambush, drives the dagger in), what makes her unable of doing the same against the Mountain?
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 09 Dec 2016, 14:19

dra wrote:
Agamemnon wrote:
It's worth noting that this whole "iron skin" concept is a projection onto the game, rather than something within the game. Check out the actual descriptions - in this case, of a piercing wound to the ribs, since this is what we're talking about:
Image
Nowhere in there is the implication that someone flexed a muscle and your attack was ignored. It's how well placed your attack was, and thus what they hit. The only difference between a level 3 wound and a level 5 narratively is how well aimed your thrust was.
That's slightly misleading since CP is supposed to be responsible for how well aimed your thrust was. ST or STA seems poor choice for that.
If we are following that logic, then strength or stamina shouldn't modify damage at all. That works fine until you have to deal with something like a grizzly bear. Then you have to introduce some other way to model its resilience. You either have to expand the wound charts so that tougher creatures have more than 5 wound levels, or you have to introduce some kind of natural armor property to them.

If you do the latter, you've created another problem. Grizzly bear claws are six inch daggers, effectively. If they only do +0c or +1c (because there is no strength influence) one grizzly will never overcome another grizzly's defenses. It's dragon tap in reverse. So now every creature needs its own claw and bite damage separately rated to take into account the creature's mass. Which means you are right back where you started but in an even more complicated way.

Id much rather decide that the grizzly had strength/stamina 8 or something and move on.
dra wrote: Exactly!
If it's important scene I would do several rolls sneaking past guards, climbing around them, listening to them, opening some locked doors to avoid often checked corridors. If it's possible I would let other players run some support rolls. Maybe guy with apothecary wants to make a strong stomach empting medicine and dude with Impersonation wants to pretend he is a new cook and throw it into soup before dinner. Maybe some streetwise dude can orginise some ladies to entertain guards that night. But when he enters chamber, that's it. He just slit target's throat.

How would you feel if GM took dice in his hand and after a roll declared that, yeah, you kinda slit his throat but dice says damage 3 . Your opponent wakes up and slaughters you. I would say "fuck it, this game is lame, let's play something else".
As now repeatedly stated, that's not how the rules in bastards work, as written or as intended. If he did that with our game, he's doing it wrong. End of story. I can only opine on what our rules instruct you to do. If you or your GM isn't using them, I can't help you. I can offer clarifications, which we have. "What it the GM isn't following the rules?" Is beyond my purview. Take it up with your GM.
dra wrote:Speaking of stealth missions : lack of Dexterity among Atributes is ... questionable. Especially if you think what Agility gives you all over the board.
I don't know or many games that bother to separate agility v manual dexterity. As it is, I'm already considering rolling Speed back into Agility. The more attributes you have the less weight any single attribute has and the less obvious it is what task is related to which.
dra wrote:
Historical accounts are littered with tales of people who have survived pretty gnarly wounds. Look at how much carnage it took to kill Blackbeard. According to Maynard, it took five musket balls and about twenty cutlass and dagger wounds to bring the big bastard down. He was 6'5 and about 220lbs. Sounds like high strength/stamina to me.
Sounds like crazy Will Power to me :D
We will have to agree to disagree. Shrugging off wounds in the middle of a fight is a thing generally associated with the size of the opponent and their fitness, rather than their mental fortitude. Otherwise, we wouldn't associate wizards with frailty and big barbarian dudes with toughness.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 09 Dec 2016, 14:34

Agamemnon wrote:
dra wrote:
Historical accounts are littered with tales of people who have survived pretty gnarly wounds. Look at how much carnage it took to kill Blackbeard. According to Maynard, it took five musket balls and about twenty cutlass and dagger wounds to bring the big bastard down. He was 6'5 and about 220lbs. Sounds like high strength/stamina to me.
Sounds like crazy Will Power to me :D
We will have to agree to disagree. Shrugging off wounds in the middle of a fight is a thing generally associated with the size of the opponent and their fitness, rather than their mental fortitude. Otherwise, we wouldn't associate wizards with frailty and big barbarian dudes with toughness.
As an afterthought, even if we all collectively decided that it was crazy willpower and switched the stat around, we'd be having this exact same conversation except that someone would be complaining "what, do they use the force to absorb the damage?" At least high stamina directly implies muscle - and the more meat you have, the more trauma you can generally withstand in real life as well. There is a reason that Nato 5.56mm is not a rated for bear hunting.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 09 Dec 2016, 15:48

Agamemnon wrote:
Agamemnon wrote:
dra wrote:
Sounds like crazy Will Power to me :D
We will have to agree to disagree. Shrugging off wounds in the middle of a fight is a thing generally associated with the size of the opponent and their fitness, rather than their mental fortitude. Otherwise, we wouldn't associate wizards with frailty and big barbarian dudes with toughness.
As an afterthought, even if we all collectively decided that it was crazy willpower and switched the stat around, we'd be having this exact same conversation except that someone would be complaining "what, do they use the force to absorb the damage?" At least high stamina directly implies muscle - and the more meat you have, the more trauma you can generally withstand in real life as well. There is a reason that Nato 5.56mm is not a rated for bear hunting.
Ok, let's see.
If 210 pounds 6,5" of Blackbeard is supposed to be any indication of his tougness, I should be a superman.
I have only 6 feet (181 cm) but atm I weight 93kgs (in the morning after taking a dump ;)) which makes 205 pounds. I have to confess however I am in middle of a cut. I started cutting weighting 100kgs (exactly 220 pounds). Having said that I have to admit the most I weighted was 106,5 kgs (234 pounds). That's with relative low BF of 20-22% (at the time it was not considered so fat as today :D). Long story short - blackbeard is taller and skinner than me.

In your book that should make me Sta 6 character , endure many musket shots and cutlass cuts. I can assure you, I am no sissy but by no means I feel brave enough to try :D. Even less I feel tempted to mauling my nuts with mace ;o. Having said that I remember funny injury from high school times (I was 17, neraly 6 feet tall and entire 60 kgs/132 pounds on me :D). During street basket game I hit a steel pole with my hand. It was painfull but I played on. We even won. Than I went home, took shower, changed clothes, ate something and went into afternoon english classes. When I came back home hand started to get really swollen. So I had to travel to hospital where they found out entire wrist was broken. I could hardly move a hand a finger at that time. Somehow without muscle mass and size I managed to overcome serious pain and play basketball with broken wrist.

FBI statistics speak a lot about shot wounds. Sometimes a cop takes a lot of them and keeps going until his brain gets the message that bloke is dead. And other times one shot from low caliber into a foot resulted in death. We are talking about 80's cops , before steroids-for-everyone era and bodybuilding mania. So more guys like:

Image

than

Image

There is a cool thing about it in any documentary regarding Navy Seals. They pick only best of other armed forces. Than they run them through extreme physical training. It's more an issue of dropping them rather than passing certain threshold. For example they pick up a tree trunk and hold it above head in freezing ocean. Who drops, goes home. Only toughest of the tough remain. You can see they are young man in good condition but by no means they are he mans:

Image

But than again, those fellas are people, who do shocking feats. There are comendations for valour in combat when they pick their wounded fellas out of fire with broken legs, shot multiple times and survive. I am not shitting you, they are really computer games material. There was a movie about it recently https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lone_Survivor. Worth watching, kind of realistic and based on true events.

So to recap... will power is the only realistic attribute decreasing effects of strain of combat (not actuall damage to organs, blood loss or wounds)
Agamemnon wrote:
If we are following that logic, then strength or stamina shouldn't modify damage at all.
Negative. Force is mass times acceleration. F=ma. As you can see it's raw power + how fast can you move it. Weak characters do not have same punch as strong ones.
Regarding stamina... For example roman gladiators were overfeed to give them good muscles and some fat tissue to soften the blow. So I guess there is size modifier to some extent.
That works fine until you have to deal with something like a grizzly bear. Then you have to introduce some other way to model its resilience. You either have to expand the wound charts so that tougher creatures have more than 5 wound levels, or you have to introduce some kind of natural armor property to them.

If you do the latter, you've created another problem. Grizzly bear claws are six inch daggers, effectively. If they only do +0c or +1c (because there is no strength influence) one grizzly will never overcome another grizzly's defenses. It's dragon tap in reverse. So now every creature needs its own claw and bite damage separately rated to take into account the creature's mass. Which means you are right back where you started but in an even more complicated way.

Id much rather decide that the grizzly had strength/stamina 8 or something and move on.
I'd say animals should have different rules than humans, that's correct and does not clutter game.
As now repeatedly stated, that's not how the rules in bastards work, as written or as intended. If he did that with our game, he's doing it wrong. End of story. I can only opine on what our rules instruct you to do. If you or your GM isn't using them, I can't help you. I can offer clarifications, which we have. "What it the GM isn't following the rules?" Is beyond my purview. Take it up with your GM.
It's not about this or that game mechanics or GM... Example is about feelings of a player when something ridiculous happens.
I don't know or many games that bother to separate agility v manual dexterity.
WFRP

Does it matter what has it?
At this moment if you create a pro warrior with 6 agility he is excllent at picking locks or pick pocketing.
As it is, I'm already considering rolling Speed back into Agility.
Gods bless ya
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Korbel » 09 Dec 2016, 16:17

Agamemnon wrote:If you do the latter, you've created another problem. Grizzly bear claws are six inch daggers, effectively. If they only do +0c or +1c (because there is no strength influence) one grizzly will never overcome another grizzly's defenses. It's dragon tap in reverse.
No, why?
Let's say you give them "natural" AV of 2 (thick fur, thick skin) and maybe +1 to AV from the sheer size (as I suggested before, the Large/Tough Edge gives you this wound reduction). So the total is AV3 (probably the biggest number you can expect, they're mammals after all).
Their claws deal +1 DR (well it's not +1, just 1... we're not adding Strength anymore... whatever).
In this scenario you only need a MoS of 4 to deal a level 2 wound. Totally possible, especially if one bear ambushes the other (or if you use alternative grapple rules, where higher FoS gives advantage... they just go into grapple and the stronger will probably deal a wound sooner or later). Level 2 wound means TN shift, so it becomes easier to get higher MoS - the end of the fight.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Benedict » 09 Dec 2016, 16:18

Before we redefine the meaning of words.

Cambridge Dictionary definitions
Stamina (noun) the physical and/or mental strength to do something that might be difficult and will take a long time
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... sh/stamina

Willpower (noun) the ability to control your own thoughts and the way in which you behave
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... /willpower


Band of Bastards definitions
Stamina represents the general health and physical ruggedness of the character’s physique. Stamina governs everything from the ability to resist damage or toxins, to the capacity for healing, recovering from illness, and length at which a character may undertake strenuous activity before experiencing adverse effects.

Willpower represents a character’s mental fortitude and self-discipline. It plays a key role in many resistance or discipline based checks, as well as some skill rolls.



And a question. How would you model this?

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/australia-t ... h-ballina/
The shark struck from behind and bit across the board’s fins as the boy lay on the board paddling. The shark’s lower jaw tore into the fiberglass as its upper teeth clamped his right hip and thigh, Wright said. “The shark lacerated his leg in three or four places fairly deep,” Wright said. “Luckily the lifeguards were on duty and got down there quickly.”

“He should be OK. It was very close to his artery,” Wright added.
The shark had low CP or rolled 1s? A shark's bite has lower DR than a battleaxe? The board acted as armor? The boy had SM5? A huge WP? A huge CP pool and an SA5 "Survive shark attack"? Any of the above? None of the above?

I'm really cuious, since some are trying to be as realistic as possible here regarding wounds.

EDIT:
dra wrote:
Agamemnon wrote:I don't know or many games that bother to separate agility v manual dexterity.
entire WoD
Sorry to burst the bubble. 10000% False. :lol:

Old WoD
Strength Dexterity Stamina
Charisma Manipulation Appearance
Perception Intelligence Wits

New WoD
Intelligence Wits Resolve
Strength Dexterity Stamina
Presence Manipulation Composure
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by dra » 09 Dec 2016, 16:53

Benedict wrote:Before we redefine the meaning of words.

Canbridge Dictionary definitions
Stamina (noun) the physical and/or mental strength to do something that might be difficult and will take a long time
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... sh/stamina


Willpower (noun) the ability to control your own thoughts and the way in which you behave
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... /willpower
Conclussions?

Band of Bastards definitions
Stamina represents the general health and physical ruggedness of the character’s physique. Stamina governs everything from the ability to resist damage or toxins, to the capacity for healing, recovering from illness, and length at which a character may undertake strenuous activity before experiencing adverse effects.

Willpower represents a character’s mental fortitude and self-discipline. It plays a key role in many resistance or discipline based checks, as well as some skill rolls.
And?
And a question. How would you model this?

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/australia-t ... h-ballina/
The shark struck from behind and bit across the board’s fins as the boy lay on the board paddling. The shark’s lower jaw tore into the fiberglass as its upper teeth clamped his right hip and thigh, Wright said. “The shark lacerated his leg in three or four places fairly deep,” Wright said. “Luckily the lifeguards were on duty and got down there quickly.”

“He should be OK. It was very close to his artery,” Wright added.
The shark had low CP or rolled 1s? A shark's bite has lower DR than a battleaxe? The board acted as armor? The boy had SM5? A huge WP? A huge CP pool and an SA5 "Survive shark attack"? Any of the above? None of the above?

ROTFL
Low level of MoS meant low wound level, "no organ or arterie damage". Pure luck.

EDIT:
dra wrote:
Agamemnon wrote:I don't know or many games that bother to separate agility v manual dexterity.
entire WoD
Sorry to burst the bubble. 10000% False. :lol:

Old WoD
Strength Dexterity Stamina
Charisma Manipulation Appearance
Perception Intelligence Wits

New WoD
Intelligence Wits Resolve
Strength Dexterity Stamina
Presence Manipulation Composure[/quote]

That's correct. My mistake.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Benedict » 09 Dec 2016, 17:27

dra wrote:
Benedict wrote:Before we redefine the meaning of words.

Canbridge Dictionary definitions
Stamina (noun) the physical and/or mental strength to do something that might be difficult and will take a long time
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... sh/stamina


Willpower (noun) the ability to control your own thoughts and the way in which you behave
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/diction ... /willpower
Conclussions?
Band of Bastards definitions
Stamina represents the general health and physical ruggedness of the character’s physique. Stamina governs everything from the ability to resist damage or toxins, to the capacity for healing, recovering from illness, and length at which a character may undertake strenuous activity before experiencing adverse effects.

Willpower represents a character’s mental fortitude and self-discipline. It plays a key role in many resistance or discipline based checks, as well as some skill rolls.
And?
dra wrote:So to recap... will power is the only realistic attribute decreasing effects of strain of combat (not actuall damage to organs, blood loss or wounds)
Congratulations on redefining the meaning of the word willpower. :lol:

Because this
For example they pick up a tree trunk and hold it above head in freezing ocean
sounds as a combination of ST, SM, and WP.

Also thanks for the 3rd grade physics lesson:
Force is mass times acceleration. F=ma. As you can see it's raw power + how fast can you move it.
Don't forget however, its not the force that does the actual damage, its the collision that does it. You have to calculate the mass of the object receiving the strike as well. also the area and angle of impact. Otherwise we'd be decapitating our enemies using DR+0 bananas. just saying. 8-)
dra wrote:ROTFL
Low level of MoS meant low wound level, "no organ or arterie damage". Pure luck.
So, the shark rolled 1s, I stand corrected.

Also
dra wrote:WFRP
Haven't played a single WFRP session, just some 40k ones. In my mind Warhammer Fantasy was and is a war game, not an rpg, but that's me. :)

If memory serves me right.

1st Edition:
Movement, Weapon Skill, Ballistic Skill, Strength, Toughness, Wounds, Initiative, Attacks, Dexterity, Leadership, Intelligence, Cool, Willpower, and Fellowship

2nd Edition:
Weapon Skill, Ballistic Skill, Strength, Toughness, Agility, Intelligence, Willpower, Fellowship

Yeah, right.
dra wrote:cyberpunk
Is that Cyberpunk2020? Which edition?

CP2020/Interlock:
Intelligence, Reflexes, Cool
Technical Ability
Luck, Attractiveness
Movement Allowance, Empathy

CP2020/Fuzion
Constitution, Strength, Body
Intelligence, Willpower, Presence (or Personality, or Cool)
Technique, Reflexes, Dexterity
Movement

So, only Fuzion fits the bill (Reflexes, Dexterity). Or does it? Is Reflexes Agility?



What do we have in BoB?

Agility is a measure of a character’s nimbleness, balance, and hand-eye coordination.

Speed represents the character’s ability to project fast-twitch muscle force and how quickly their body responds to and can carry out commands.

Reflexes (Speed/Cunning): Reacting in time to a sudden surprise. Reaching for a object before it hits the ground. Getting out of the way of a trap.
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Re: Some miscellaneous questions about combat

Post by Agamemnon » 09 Dec 2016, 17:51

dra wrote:FBI statistics speak a lot about shot wounds. Sometimes a cop takes a lot of them and keeps going until his brain gets the message that bloke is dead. And other times one shot from low caliber into a foot resulted in death.
Show me a statistic giving a significant chance of instant, fight-stopping death from a low-caliber wound to the foot. Otherwise, I'm going to have to assume those deaths are due to complications from the injury, and not the injury itself, which is entirely beyond the scope of this discussion.
dra wrote:Negative. Force is mass times acceleration. F=ma. As you can see it's raw power + how fast can you move it. Weak characters do not have same punch as strong ones.
Regarding stamina... For example roman gladiators were overfeed to give them good muscles and some fat tissue to soften the blow. So I guess there is size modifier to some extent.
If you're going to argue that strength impacts damage, then you can't also argue that the strength 1 or 2 person should be as deadly as the strength 5 character, nor can we argue that someone who is 90lbs can take as much physical damage as a three hundred pound linebacker.

If you're going with absolute realism as the bar, then you have to contrive some system where your strength's effect is relative to the weapon you're using. Your ability to punch someone is radically different based on strength. Your ability to stab someone with a knife is slightly less so. Your ability to kill them with an axe significantly less so. Likewise, you'd have to make a similar table of how stamina's impact changes based on the kind of force encountered and the scale of it. Hitting someone with a fist is different than hitting someone with a mace, so the strength v. stamina table is going to have to be different for each weapon depending on its weight and what kind of damage it does. The difference in strength and stamina is going to be one way for someone throwing a punch, slightly less important for someone with a mace, significantly less important for someone trying to stab someone, and almost negligible when we get to something like a sword which is realistically going to ignore most of your natural resistance.

Someone else is welcome to come up with such a system. We'll even host it on the forums somewhere as an optional rule. For my part, however, I'm not interested in designing or playing with such a table. We've got too many fiddly bits as it is.
dra wrote:I'd say animals should have different rules than humans, that's correct and does not clutter game.
Your definition of "clutter" is different than mine. The more individual sets of rules I have to have in a game to represent a situation, the more cluttered it is going to be to me. Speaking of clutter:
dra wrote:Cyberpunk
WFRP
entire WoD

Does it matter what has it?
At this moment if you create a pro warrior with 6 agility he is excllent at picking locks or pick pocketing.
Vampire the Masquerade had:
Strength, Dexterity, Stamina, Charisma, Manipulation, Appearance, Perception, Intelligence, and Wits.
I couldn't tell you about the new one, but your claim was "entire WoD" so that suffices to disprove it.

WHFRPG 1st edition had:
Movement, Weapon Skill, Ballistic Skill, Strength, Toughness, Wounds, Initiative, Attacks, Dexterity, Intelligence, Cool, Willpower, and Fellowship.

2nd edition had:
Weapon Skill, Ballistic Skill, Strength, Toughness, Agility, Intelligence, Willpower, Fellowship.

3rd edition had:
Strength, Toughness, Agility, Intelligence, Willpower, and Fellowship.

Cyberpunk 2013/2020/3.0 had
Intelligence, Reflex, Tech, Cool, Attractiveness, Luck, Movement Allowance, Empathy, and Body type.

At a certain point, you have to define the scope of what you care to model. When you try to break down "everything that attributes can model" the chart comes up something like this
Image
Right now everything in that left-most cluster is a function of either Agility, Speed, or a combination of one of those with something else. As it stands, I'm probably folding Speed into Agility again. Is it worth it to split Dexterity out of Agility? Coordination/control is either stat, which is not great design. Manual dexterity is obviously dexterity.. but everything else int hat is either agility, or a product of agility and some other stat. Is it worth it to add an attribute whose only use is "add to lockpicks, pickpockets, and maybe some trade skills?"

For a similar reason, I've been considering throwing Strength and Stamina into one stat as well simply because.. well. Look at the chart. Out of all the things listed, Strength represents exactly one of those - Physical strength. By quirk of the rules, however, it doesn't even govern that. You are required to have Stamina to use Strength for strength-based rolls anyway, but I digress.

I don't think the benefits of Dexterity being separate are worth its inclusion.
dra wrote:It's not about this or that game mechanics or GM... Example is about feelings of a player when something ridiculous happens.
Something ridiculous that isn't how our game is written. It is beyond the scope of my power, influence, responsibility or even interest level to help you in situations where your GM may or may not do something that isn't how we've written the game to be played.. which brings us to:
dra wrote:Ok, let's see.
If 210 pounds 6,5" of Blackbeard is supposed to be any indication of his tougness, I should be a superman.
I have only 6 feet (181 cm) but atm I weight 93kgs (in the morning after taking a dump ;)) which makes 205 pounds. I have to confess however I am in middle of a cut. I started cutting weighting 100kgs (exactly 220 pounds). Having said that I have to admit the most I weighted was 106,5 kgs (234 pounds). That's with relative low BF of 20-22% (at the time it was not considered so fat as today :D). Long story short - blackbeard is taller and skinner than me.

In your book that should make me Sta 6 character
And with that, I think I'm done with this topic.

If you ask questions, I'm happy to answer them. If you offer feedback or critique, I'm happy to consider them. I'm always willing to explain why we chose to do something, and people who have hung out here long enough know that I'm happy to fix something if it breaks or adopt new ideas if they work better than what we're doing for the purposes we're using them.

On the other hand, you made your point on page 2. You registered your criticism. By page 3, I'd responded to it. It's now page 6. You admitted early on that you weren't all that familiar with the rules, and you keep arguing points that are directly contradicted by the rules -- such as the above "what if my GM.." and now the fact that attributes actually mean something beyond simply being a bigger number.

We can talk about the pros and cons that come with different design choices, but there is no such thing as a game that is perfectly and completely realistic. Even with a computer, you would be hard-pressed to create an engine that perfectly replicates every possible combat outcome that happens in real life. Even scratching the surface of such in a tabletop game would be an unweildy chore to play and certainly require a far more granular system than we have. You would need way more than five wound levels and three damage types to actually account for a 1:1 match with the reality of damage on the body.

We chose where we wanted to put the balance point between simulation and abstraction for ease of play. We may further fine-tune it in the future, but I'm not unhappy with the thing now. Even you admit the thing is only an anomaly at the furthest ends of the spectrum and all of the proposed solutions seem less desirable from a playability standpoint.
Korbel wrote:Let's say you give them "natural" AV of 2 (thick fur, thick skin) and maybe +1 to AV from the sheer size (as I suggested before, the Large/Tough Edge gives you this wound reduction). So the total is AV3 (probably the biggest number you can expect, they're mammals after all).
Their claws deal +1 DR (well it's not +1, just 1... we're not adding Strength anymore... whatever).
In this scenario you only need a MoS of 4 to deal a level 2 wound. Totally possible, especially if one bear ambushes the other (or if you use alternative grapple rules, where higher FoS gives advantage... they just go into grapple and the stronger will probably deal a wound sooner or later). Level 2 wound means TN shift, so it becomes easier to get higher MoS - the end of the fight.
Bears, as a rule, don't ambush other bears. They challenge them for territory. And then, again, look at the way different rules would interact. Do you expect Sansa Stark to do as much damage with a kitchen knife as a 1200lbs grizzly bear? if both are just MoS+1c, then mechanically she will. If you're still on the fence, should there be a difference between 100lbs Sansa punching you in the face and a 395lbs Hafthor Bjornson punching you in the face? What about a silverback gorilla punching you in the face? At what point do we need to start making separate fist damage by weight class?
Sword and Scoundrel: On Role-Playing and Fantasy Obscura

Arrakis teaches the attitude of the knife — chopping off what’s incomplete and saying: "Now it’s complete because it’s ended here."
Collected Sayings of Muad’Dib, the Princess Irulan
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