Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

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Korbel
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Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Korbel » 10 Feb 2017, 09:56

They say the combat system in TROS was influenced by a polish RPG Dzikie Pola. If anyone of you is interested in the mechanic used in this game, read on...
(I do only own the second edition, from 2005, I'll use that)

Quick summary: in combat characters use two basic scores, Initiative (calculated from Attributes) and Combat Points (equal to their Proficiency in a given weapon, usually 5-20 or something). The fighter with a higher Initiative score can declare his Maneuver first. Combat Points are used to perform Maneuvers.

Maneuvers can be offensive or defensive. They all have a listed cost in Combat Points (1, 2, 3 or more), some of them will also modify your current Initiative score, the damage dealt, or the Defensive Roll.

In the most basic scenario, one character attacks - declares his Maneuver, and the second defends with his Maneuver. You do only roll for defense, and that is d20 + your Prof score (when defending with a weapon) or d20 + Initiative score (when dodging or widening the distance), against the attacker's Prof score. If the Defense Roll fails, the attack was successful and deals damage.

You do only roll for attack when you're wounded, tired, or aiming at specific part of the body. Target Number set by GM.

Anyway, after this the roles are usually switched and the defender can declare his offense. And you repeat, until someone is dead, or both characters run out of Combat Points - at this point they take a break, catch their breath and then start another round with their pools replenished. But what if you have zero points, and your opponent still has them? Then you can only defend (and at a -4 penalty) until he burns all of his points.

One must always keep in mind his current Initiative score. As Maneuvers can change it, your slow attack (let's say, with a -3 penalty to Initiative) can be preempted with a quick or even normal attack. Then you are forced to defend, or let your opponent attack without you defending, and then respond - if you survive.

Another interesting thing is the Flurry of Blows. If you have a high Initiative score, you can choose to press the attack. Every following attack gets a cumulative -1 to Initiative, so you can repeat your offensive Manuevers until your current Initiative drops so low, that your opponent is able to beat you. But this flurry is tiring (if you burn all your CPs in the Round using Flurry, your basic CP pool is reduced by 1 until you rest for half an hour).

Obviously, there are many many various Maneuvers. There is a most common cut at your foe's weapon arm - quick, cheap and with low damage. And there are thrusts, power swings, lunges (as distance between combatants can change), counter attacks, and some crazy stuff I don't even fully understand (like preempting your opponents preemption, or dodging it and quickly responding)... anyway, everything you could expect.

The system focuses on fencing with sabres, or with rapiers. When it comes to other forms of combat, it's not as complex as Band of Scoundrels.

------

As you can see, the core of this system is using Maneuvers. And that's exactly the idea that inspired Jake when working on TROS. I guess.
Last edited by Korbel on 13 Feb 2017, 09:50, edited 2 times in total.
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Benedict
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Benedict » 10 Feb 2017, 11:20

Korbel wrote:As you can see, the core of this system is using Maneuvers. And that's exactly the idea that inspired Jake when working on TROS. I guess.
Well, the oldest naneuver-based combat system I am aware of is the World of Darkness: Combat expansion. (1996).

I'm talking about 130+ maneuvers based on seperate skills, a host of martial arts armed and unarmed, and a multitude of combat related gear.

Dzikie Pola sounds interesting. Are there any English translations out there?
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Korbel » 10 Feb 2017, 12:01

Benedict wrote:Well, the oldest naneuver-based combat system I am aware of is the World of Darkness: Combat expansion. (1996).
Well, there may be more and older games with such systems... But as the legend is Jake was influenced by Dzikie Pola, I thought that maybe you might be curious, what does this game look like.
Benedict wrote:Dzikie Pola sounds interesting. Are there any English translations out there?
I've never seen any translations. Unfortunately.
(Ooooh man, if there ever was an English version, there would so much controversy... The authors keep making jokes about rapiers calling them skewers, and their users are usually gay Frenchmen..., yeah, it's pretty colourful and heavily stylised, after all it's supposed to promote polish tradition celebrate our golden era, XVI to XVII...)
(well OK, jokes aside, rapierists are respected as formidable opponents... and while duels between Poles usually result in wounded arms or scarred faces, a "skewer" will usually find it's way to the torso and finish the man)

What was I... ah yes, well, they say that MAYBE there will be a third edition (looks quite unlikely, but maybe) - that could potentially be an opportunity to write the rules in English too. Maybe.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by dysjunct » 10 Feb 2017, 21:00

Nice write up, thanks!
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by higgins » 12 Feb 2017, 05:16

That was a cool read! :) I do believe Jake was influenced by the first edition, but even the second doesn't sound a whole lot dissimilar to what we're doing here as far as the basic concepts are concerned. Except we simplify a lot more, which actually seems to have worked towards a more realistic approach over all, as generalization allows more flexibility (we're unlikely to be dated by new HEMA theories) and it lessens any unintended bias towards the fighting styles we're more intimate with.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Korbel » 12 Feb 2017, 06:32

higgins wrote:Except we simplify a lot more, which actually seems to have worked towards a more realistic approach over all, as generalization allows more flexibility (we're unlikely to be dated by new HEMA theories) and it lessens any unintended bias towards the fighting styles we're more intimate with.
I though that simplification was needed mostly for creating a set rules which can be used to portray a vast number of styles and weapons. You know, Dzikie Pola is very specialized in fencing, sabers or rapiers. From my perspective, it does a wonderful job. And it serves the game, as its focus is on XVI century Poland. But when you try to use an axe, bow or something else in this game, it's not that cool anymore (not that I say it's bad, but it's just not so great as fencing).
And more simple rules (as far as we can call TROS or S&S "simple") are generally better for gaming. Probably.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Agamemnon » 12 Feb 2017, 14:47

This is some cool stuff. Having heard the TROS origin rumors, I've always wanted to see what Dzikie Pola actually had going on. Sadly, I'm just not willing to learn Polish to read an RPG book. Hrm, though that would also let me look into The Witcher RPG...
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by higgins » 12 Feb 2017, 15:05

Korbel wrote:I though that simplification was needed mostly for creating a set rules which can be used to portray a vast number of styles and weapons. You know, Dzikie Pola is very specialized in fencing, sabers or rapiers. From my perspective, it does a wonderful job. And it serves the game, as its focus is on XVI century Poland. But when you try to use an axe, bow or something else in this game, it's not that cool anymore (not that I say it's bad, but it's just not so great as fencing).
I can't compare us to Dzikie Pola, as I haven't read the actual rules. With the simplified approach ending up more realistic, I was speaking of the evolution of our own drafts. I can understand why that was unclear from how I worded it. It's been a looooong weekend at school. Please forgive.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Korbel » 12 Feb 2017, 17:10

Agamemnon wrote:This is some cool stuff. Having heard the TROS origin rumors, I've always wanted to see what Dzikie Pola actually had going on. Sadly, I'm just not willing to learn Polish to read an RPG book. Hrm, though that would also let me look into The Witcher RPG...
Eh, Polish is quite easy, you'll learn in a minute ;)
I did some googling and forum-reading, but I'm afraid there is not such a thing like English translation of Dzikie Pola in existence. I'm sorry.
But really, I'm pretty sure only the combat system is really worth the interest, the rest of the ruleset is... well, just some basic stuff. Attrbiutes in the range of 1-20, skill rolls are: HALF OF THE ATTRIBUTE + PROFICIENCY SCORE, rolls generally are d20+modifiers vs set number (I'm talking about 2nd edition here, 1st was based on percentile dice). Combat chapter is not that long, I could translate it in my spare time.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Agamemnon » 12 Feb 2017, 18:27

Korbel wrote:Combat chapter is not that long, I could translate it in my spare time.
Ha. That would be really cool, if you chose to take it on as a project. I wouldn't mind having a look at it. Maybe we'll even learn something.
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by higgins » 14 Feb 2017, 04:48

Korbel wrote:Eh, Polish is quite easy, you'll learn in a minute ;)
Dziekuje
Kurwa
Pianka

The rest comes naturally :D
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by Korbel » 14 Feb 2017, 06:09

higgins wrote: Dziekuje (thank you)
Kurwa (most popular swear word)
Pianka
Pianka?.. :D
How do you even know this word? That means "foam", like shaving foam or foam diving suit, or something. I can't wrap my head around, where did you learn this word? I mean, do you use foam on international tournaments? For what? :D
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Re: Combat system in Dzikie Pola (Wild Plains) RPG

Post by higgins » 15 Feb 2017, 11:19

Korbel wrote:I can't wrap my head around, where did you learn this word? I mean, do you use foam on international tournaments? For what? :D
Marshmallows ;)
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