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Author Topic: Still not sure about shields  (Read 9861 times)
Callan S.
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Posts: 3588


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« on: March 12, 2003, 09:36:10 PM »

I did a search for shields, couldn't find more info, so...

I'm not sure what benefits larger shields give. Bucklers and medium round shields are different, but heaters and kite shields only give higher armour values. And given that it's unlikely you'll get through a medium shields 6 AV, increasing the value seems to be overkill.

Any ideas? Even if one rules that the larger ones cover more of the body, opponents are still going to just work around it...a bit less exposed body, but does it matter.
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Philosopher Gamer
<meaning></meaning>
Durgil
Member

Posts: 306


« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2003, 04:57:07 AM »

There seems to have been a discussion that I have missed, and if I understand Noon's argument, I think he has a valid point.  The AV of a shield should, IMO, be determined by the matterials that it is fabricated from (i.e. wicker, softwood, hardwood, metal boss, metal rim, leather boiled in wax, etc.).  The size should only determine what areas are generally covered.

Something else to think about though is that during the middle ages, shields became smaller and smaller, so they had to have some kind of advantage thaty some how needs to be taken into account in the rules.

Personally, I would think that using a kite shield must have been much more exhausting than the smaller heater that came around later.
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Tony Hamilton

MrGeneHa
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Posts: 52


« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2003, 05:20:09 AM »

From what I've read, larger shields were used by people with less armor.  Long narrow shields were used by people without enough armor on their legs.

Long shields were especially useful when going up against an enemy with ranged weapons.  If you've got to cross 100 yards while getting shot at the whole way, that big shield is a huge comfort.

Smaller shields were used by people who had good armor or who needed to run.  Knights in full plate sometimes felt free to have no shield at all.

There are obvious exceptions to this rule, but that's the general idea behind big, clumsy shields.

Gene
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Sneaky Git
Member

Posts: 169


« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2003, 05:20:23 AM »

Quote from: Noon
I did a search for shields, couldn't find more info, so...

I'm not sure what benefits larger shields give. Bucklers and medium round shields are different, but heaters and kite shields only give higher armour values. And given that it's unlikely you'll get through a medium shields 6 AV, increasing the value seems to be overkill.

Any ideas? Even if one rules that the larger ones cover more of the body, opponents are still going to just work around it...a bit less exposed body, but does it matter.


They also cover more area.  And when you've got people taking pot-shots at you with nasty missile weapons, that's a good thing.

Chris
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Molon labe.
"Come and get them."

- Leonidas of Sparta, in response to Xerxes' demand that the Spartans lay down their arms.
Lance D. Allen
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« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2003, 07:24:05 AM »

My experience with shields has been entirely on the attacker's end.. IE, my opponent has one, and I don't.

Smaller shields: Better for quicker, more proficient people, because they don't encumber or get in the way of your own swings. Their disadvantage is that you have to work harder to make them effective. A buckler is almost essentially a way to block with your hand or arm without losing it.

Larger shields: A lot less skill is needed to use these, which is why, in the SCA, most new fighters start off sword-and-shield. A full-sized heater, kite or "door" shield can make for a very hard target. If you are a more mobile fighter (like me, with my long bastard sword) you can get make them concentrate on hiding behind it rather than striking at you, but you'll be hitting shield a lot more often than body. It generally leaves only a few open areas, dependent on stance: the lower legs (illegal hit in the SCA for safety purposes, I suppose) the sword arm, and the head. The only way to hit elsewhere at all is to make them move the shield out of the way. A feint to the head then a quick cut to the legs is one way, or (if using an axe or somesuch) hooking the shield down, then thrusting. Likewise, maneuvering around the shield and striking before they can get it back into place.

Err, rambling, sorry. Either way.. in a TRoS sense, if you only strike at non-protected areas, they're eventually going to know where to defend, and you bring in the optional rule about attacking the same location repeatedly. So more coverage is immensely useful.

Optional rule just came to mind: If an attack is directed to the same region twice in a row on a person armed with a medium to large shield, even if the shield would not normally cover that zone, the defender may choose to have the shield automatically covering it, offering the passive AV to that region. This would reflect the defender's conscious or unconscious shift of the shield to cover a region already threatened. It could also open up other regions to attack which might have been otherwise protected, which is why it is the defender's choice.

And to conclude, one last attempt at coherence.. A man with a small shield on full defense will be difficult to hit, but still possible, with a large region of uncovered body. A man with a large shield on full defense will be exceedingly difficult to hit, due to a very selective region of coverage.
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~Lance Allen
Wolves Den Publishing
Eternally Incipient Publisher of Mage Blade, ReCoil and Rats in the Walls
Mokkurkalfe
Member

Posts: 340


« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2003, 08:02:20 AM »

Quote from: Wolfen

Optional rule just came to mind: If an attack is directed to the same region twice in a row on a person armed with a medium to large shield, even if the shield would not normally cover that zone, the defender may choose to have the shield automatically covering it, offering the passive AV to that region. This would reflect the defender's conscious or unconscious shift of the shield to cover a region already threatened. It could also open up other regions to attack which might have been otherwise protected, which is why it is the defender's choice.


That is a frickin' great house rule! If it works not only in theory, that is...
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Joakim (with a k!) Israelsson
Callan S.
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« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2003, 05:53:38 PM »

Thanks for all the ideas, everyone.

Primarily though, the thing I want to raise is that, after a medium shield, DTN's don't lower anymore and increasing AV's are of little use (a medium shields AV is more than enough).

I think its been stated that the advantage is supposed to be lower DTN (which is better than melee weapons, clearly). And the other advantage is the moves you can do.

But DTN doesn't lower after a medium shield, and what moves can/can't I do with the larger shields that can/can't be done with a medium one?

The question I pose is, why should I ever use a kite or heater shield?
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Philosopher Gamer
<meaning></meaning>
Ashren Va'Hale
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Posts: 427


« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2003, 06:39:27 PM »

More coverage. The covering of more area. They are bigger. and by bigger I mean they cover more area. yeah. I also hear they are big.
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Philosophy: Take whatever is not nailed down, for the rest, well thats what movement is for!
Lance D. Allen
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« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2003, 06:47:01 PM »

Quote from: Noon

Primarily though, the thing I want to raise is that, after a medium shield, DTN's don't lower anymore and increasing AV's are of little use (a medium shields AV is more than enough).
quote]

THe AV is enough, you say... If I happened to be fighting against something other than a human, I'd be loathe to say any AV is ever enough..

"The dragon makes a huge swipe at you, but you manage to block it with an astounding number of successes with your shield, however, it managed 1 success more than you did, all the same. Calculating damage.. Hm. Seems like you still died. Cumulative 12 AV didn't quite do the trick, it seems. Well, you've still got Insight... "
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~Lance Allen
Wolves Den Publishing
Eternally Incipient Publisher of Mage Blade, ReCoil and Rats in the Walls
Callan S.
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Posts: 3588


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« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2003, 07:19:46 PM »

Ashren, yes, but the enemy just tends to poke around where it doesn't cover. It'd be nice if the larger ones could be used to cover the head as a target, but I'd imagine that wouldn't be very practical.

Wolfen, not to mention when they don't attack the areas that the shield covers. Besides, I'd rather have no penalty when fighting a dragon...if its strike got in by one, was it because your shield gave you a 1 or 3 CP penalty?

The thing is, the DTN is nice, but it doesn't lower for bigger shields (its probably a little insane to have a lower DTN anyway) and those bigger shields have a CP penalty. What do I get for this penalty...well, I get a passive defense on part of my characters body. I think it's quite likely most enemy will go for the bits that aren't covered.
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Philosopher Gamer
<meaning></meaning>
Ashren Va'Hale
Member

Posts: 427


« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2003, 07:50:57 PM »

ok, heres where a big shield just kicks loads of arse, my Character is being shot at by 20 archers, so he puts the shield up to cover his head and upper torso as well as part of his legs  and that extra AV and coverage made it so that although 20+ arrows hit him (his shield) hetook no wounds beyond a few level 0's. That is why big shields are good, in melee they might get beaten around a bit but thats a lot of coverage and a good DTN to work with, the best part of big shields though is that they are BIGGER!!! and as we yanks know, bigger is always better!!!

I find shields are best for for blocking arrows, bolts and rocks and other missle weapons since parrying those sucks and bigger means less area fro the arrows to hit and with strategic positioning of the shield you can remove yourself as a valid target altogether.
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Philosophy: Take whatever is not nailed down, for the rest, well thats what movement is for!
Mokkurkalfe
Member

Posts: 340


« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2003, 02:19:59 AM »

In the real world, was a big shield preferable to a small one for anything else than blocking missile weapons?
Reasons I can think of is that they are great as very cheap armor, and that you can make a shield wall. I really can't picture a shield wall of bucklers...

My house rule is:
If in a shield wall, you get passive protection from the shields in every zone except cuts from above (IV & V), head thrusts and attacks to the forelegs. Kite shields provide cover for the forelegs as well. If you also have a helmet and some greaves, your'e pretty much covered. Coincidently, isn't that the armour the hoplites used?
A shield wall requires a Defensive stance and probably a few Battle rolls as well, e.g. to keep it together or maneuver around.
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Joakim (with a k!) Israelsson
Jaeger
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Posts: 73


.
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2003, 02:21:56 AM »

Ashren is right, the extra area afforded by the bigger shields is an advantage.

  In my efforts to kill one of Ashren's charactors I was shooting at him from above with about 100 archers. The problem was that they were all about 100ft directly above him (it was a pit type area), and he got the notion that holding his round shield over his head would protect him. Through logical reasoning, and being forced to stick to my own setup. I deduced that although his shield now looked like a pincushion, the archers really didn't have a shot to an exposed area due to thier limited angle of fire: i.e. straight down.

   Had he been carrying a buckler, his notion would have met with much less success.
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I care not.
Callan S.
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« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2003, 10:13:50 PM »

Bucklers and round shields already are differentiated adequately, IMO.
When it gets beyond the round shield, there is no change (except in AV, which I tend to think is overkill)

I mean, Kite shields and heater shields existed in the past. I don't think they existed because it was common to be in a pit with 100 archers above you. There must be another reason and I'd like it reflected in the mechanics.

Now I can cook up house rules, no prob, if there is no other difference between round and larger shields to be told. But the I'm basically looking for the right direction to go in. I've seen good ideas above...but they seem a little too specific to the situation, as compared to the roles the larger shields would have filled in the past.

I'd basically like to keep the CP penalty (hey, when a system is built quite well like TROS, one is a bit lothe to kick away stuff at the drop of a hat). But what direction to take to make that CP loss really worth it (compared to just using a round shield), is the new question then.
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Philosopher Gamer
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Ashren Va'Hale
Member

Posts: 427


« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2003, 10:50:14 PM »

ok, this is from jaeger as well, now imagine there are a a hundred archers IN FRONT OF YOU (AAAAGH) want a buckler now?

Me, Ill take the kite or tower shield, bigger the better.... have we grasped the concept yet?
if you still havent grasped the concept we can do a play by email/post demo of the concept, have a character equiped with a round shield or buckler and one with a kite shield and then we will test out the theory using 20 archers and see what happens and what you think of more coverage after this little experiment. or if you prefer get some neighborhood kids to throw some rocks at you while using home made shields of various sizes and then let us know what you think of more coverage when missiles are zeroing in on your noggin and you will begin to see that shields were made for specialized purposes such as personal sword to sword (buckler or round shield) or big tower shield for formation or battlefield combat when you are being shot at. Thats how they worked dig?
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Philosophy: Take whatever is not nailed down, for the rest, well thats what movement is for!
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