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Author Topic: Sneaking Around  (Read 6072 times)
Foltor
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« on: June 21, 2002, 11:17:39 AM »

My crew is starting to get some pretty low Sneak SRs, so combined with a high AG, that means, in game terms at least, that one guy is freakin' invisible.

Problems:
*With an AG of 7 and Sneak at 2, on an average Sneak check he's going to have 6 successes.  An average guard has a Per of 5, so there's NO WAY he can match that.  Even on a bad day, it would take a lucky/very alert guard (since even under the best of conditions the guard's base TN is a 5) to spot him.

*In RoS you only botch if you fail a roll -AND- have two ore more 1's.  In WEG Star Wars RPG, 2nd ed, there was a 1/6 chance of botching.  In d20 system, 1/20.  In RoS, with a Sneak at 2 and AG at 7, he has a 1/10,000,000 chance of botching (he rolls all 1's).

Questions:
*What modifiers should be added for multiple opponents to opposed rolls in general?  (Rather than rolling for each opponent, which gets tiresome after the 14th guard, and hoping that someone spots this guy)
*What else can be done?  Recommendations?  Because IMO you can be good, but there should be a reasonable limit.
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Valamir
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2002, 11:44:43 AM »

What I've used for other dice pool games, and which I assume would work for RoS is to roll once not per guard but for each significant segment of the sneak (accross the courtyard, down the hall, etc).

Start with the average pool for the average guard and then add dice to that for each additional guard, place where the sneaker could get tripped up.  I'd use like 1 die for a casual guard, 2 dice for an alert one, 3 for a particularly adept one...something like that.

That way, sneaking across the street is still nearly automatic.  Sneaking all the way through a large castle is not.  Even though the individual parts are easy the pool itself gets built up to a point where its still a risk.

If the roll fails, how close it was to succeeding is a proportional indicator of how close the character got to the final objective.  So "almost making it" means your discovered deep within.  Missing by a lot means you were discovered right away.  

In this way the mediocre sneak is nearly always caught at the front door, the best sneaks make it, and the ones who were "almost" good enough, get busted with their hand in the cookie jar.

I've used the same proceedure for disguises also.
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Ace
Member

Posts: 204


« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2002, 11:50:07 AM »

Quote from: Foltor
My crew is starting to get some pretty low Sneak SRs, so combined with a high AG, that means, in game terms at least, that one guy is freakin' invisible.

Problems:
*With an AG of 7 and Sneak at 2, on an average Sneak check he's going to have 6 successes.  An average guard has a Per of 5, so there's NO WAY he can match that.  Even on a bad day, it would take a lucky/very alert guard (since even under the best of conditions the guard's base TN is a 5) to spot him.



Thats is not a mistake. With skills at that level Ninjas come to train with this guy. He is among the quiest and sneakiest people on Weyerth

A more resonable "stealthy guy' would be AG6 Sneak6 , thats only three sucesses on average. This guy would be though of as cat quick and a master hunter

Regular Joes are like Ag5 Skill7 thats an average of two sucessess.

A stanard aleart guard would be Perc 5 Skill7- about the same
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Brian Leybourne
Member

Posts: 1793


« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2002, 12:56:59 PM »

Isn't the maximum skill level 3 as well? You can't get to 2 - that would give him a 2/10 chance to fail with each die instead of 1/10.

Plus, don't forget situational modifiers. The guards are extra vigilant tonight because they've been hauled over the coals for letting someone sneak in last week (bonus dice for them), plus they have sprinkled pebbles on some of the smoothest floors (penalty to dice for the sneaking character), brought in extra lamps to light the darkest areas (penalty to skill level for sneaking character), and they have a couple of sniffer dogs (who get to roll per/4 to sniff out the character regardless of how well he sneaks).

Or whatever. You get the idea.

Brian.
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Brian Leybourne
bleybourne@gmail.com

RPG Books: Of Beasts and Men, The Flower of Battle, The TROS Companion
Jaif
Member

Posts: 327


« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2002, 03:36:17 AM »

Best skill is 3, not 2.  It does change things.

I also want to stress situational modifiers - at a certain point, you can't sneak by people no matter what.  For example, I read once that one police department did manage to beat Houdini's challenge that he could escape from any jail - they bound him, tossed him in the center of a cell, and surrounded him with guards.  Houdini stayed the night.

Yes, I know that's "escape" rather than "sneak", but it gets the point across.  Sneak isn't invisibility, it's only as good as the opportunities available.  There comes a point where your players have less opportunity (lose dice from their pool), and/or the opposition is better prepared.

On the subject of guard dogs, I once asked Jake about the three sneaking skills.  Here's the Q & response:

Quote
Quote
I was uncomfortable with the animal-guise/camoflauge/sneak skills. I think I prefer something like warhammer's "concealment urban, rural" split better. This is my initial reaction, we'll see where it takes me.
 


I'll try to explain why and what-for these skills are in my head, and maybe that'll help.
AG-this is an extreme tracker sort of skill, for getting close to animals, dragons, etc without being sensed (ie: smelled or seen)
Camo-this is hiding "in plain sight" using foilage, rocky areas, or (in urban areas) trash and the like; either way this is a mostly rural/woodsman sort of thing.
Sneak-this is not being noticed by not being seen or heard at all. This is good everywhere.

I envisioned hard-core stalkers and trackers with all 3, generic wood-folk or rural warriors having the second 2, and Urban types having only the last. Does that make sense? It might be splitting hairs, but hey... ;-)


So it's not always sneak, especially if you do bring guard dogs into the arena.

Bottom line, skill minimum is 3 (changes odds dramaticall), and start assigning situational modifiers when they make sense.

-Jeff
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Ben
Member

Posts: 55


« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2002, 10:31:14 AM »

Also, Agility is not the most acurate attribute for makeing any of the various sneaky checks. As someone who has done quite a bit of sneaking, I have to say PER covers by far most of what is going on during the various sneaks. EN is also a good subsitute when stalking up on animals, but would probably be better to mitigate a tie in such a case.

Also note that if the guard's post is fairly quite, he will have a base TN of 5 which can be modified by his degree of alertness up to -2 giving him a TN of 3. That evens the odds up a bit but if there isn't a good reason for them to be on alert they shouldn't be. You're players will just start resenting you if all your doing is bubble bursting. But it is possible to work it into the story, say the guards had good intell... from a traiter in the party's midst, ooohhhh. Just make it seems to the player like they knew he was coming. should be fun.

ANy way I'll stop rambleing and go now. Just make sure you're not trying to penalize your players for having good skills. It'll just frustrate them and make them say "what's the point at being good at anything". There are always other ways to lean on players.  :)
Also, I still can't find where it says in the book that skills cap off at 3 (I must be failing my PER rolls, except for the last time when I got a papercut, must have botched that one). Can someone who knows(as opposed to someone who doesn't?) give me a page number.
Ok, I going for real this time.
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Be Seeing You,

   Ben
Ben
Member

Posts: 55


« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2002, 10:40:51 AM »

Quote from: Foltor
"Roll MA/Seneschal to avoid paying for pizza."

BTW, I nearly burst my gut laughing at that, It's funnier than hell (but come to think of it, most things are, hell's not that funny) any way...
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Be Seeing You,

   Ben
Lyrax
Member

Posts: 268


« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2002, 01:41:28 PM »

I disagree.  Soc/Seneschal makes much more sense.
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Lance Meibos
Insanity takes it's toll.  Please have exact change ready.

Get him quick!  He's still got 42 hit points left!
Jaif
Member

Posts: 327


« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2002, 10:45:36 PM »

Sorry, but it's WP.  For the record, I made the roll tonight (well, technically yesterday) and snuck out of pizza payments for the first time in my GMing career. :-)

-Jeff
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2002, 12:07:59 PM »

And people mocked me for putting it in the book...

Jake
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"Civilized men are more discourteous than savages because they know they can be impolite without having their skulls split, as a general thing." -R.E. Howard The Tower of the Elephant
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Lyrax
Member

Posts: 268


« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2002, 09:56:34 AM »

Hmmm... WP is a good stat to use, but I've only got a 3.  I want to try to use that 6 in Soc or the 6 in AG as much as possible.

:-D
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Lance Meibos
Insanity takes it's toll.  Please have exact change ready.

Get him quick!  He's still got 42 hit points left!
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