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Author Topic: 10 Assorted Rules Questions  (Read 5694 times)
Darren Hill
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Posts: 861


« on: June 10, 2003, 08:09:18 AM »

After my first session, a few questions came up. Hopefully, people have answers to one or more of these questions.

1. Hard Armour
Certain weapons get a damage bonus to 'hard' armour. Does this mean rigid armour (rigid armours such as plate, the lorica segmentata, and rigid leather such as curbouilli), or is it meant to apply to metal armour (which would then include plate and chain, but not hardened leather), or is it specifically a late armour thing?

2. Use Terrain
What difference does it make if you cange your move rate in combat? According to the terrain modifiers table, you can crawl, move at normal speed, hurried, or sprinting, and conduct attacks and defences as normal. I suspect I'm missing something.

3. New Combatant
Say you alone and fighting an opponent, but then a second enemy (or ally) enters the fray during the round. How would you decide what happens to inititiative?
Or, more conveniently, it is a new combat round. In the last exchange you gained initiative over your single opponent, but a second enters the fray. After Terrain rolls, you find yourself facing both of them - who has initiative?

4. Another Multiple Opponents question
You are facing two opponents, and make the terrain roll to face just one. In round 1, you win initiative against opponent A.
In round 2, after succeeding the terrain roll, you decide instead to face opponent B - do you still have initiative? Does this count as a pause?
In fact, when facing multiple opponents, can you select which of the opponents you face (this strikes me as a good use for multiple successes on terrain rolls), or do you rely on random chance, or does the enemy get to choose?

5. Half Sword Defence
In the weapon manoeuvres section (p..66), the Half Sword is described as having excellent defensive properties, and refers you to the counter move. Does this mean a sword held in a Half-Sword grip can only be used to counter (i.e. a normal parry isn't possible)?

6. Doppelhander Half Sword
In the errata on the website, a question is asked about the half-sword stats for the Doppelhander; the answer decsribes the stats as accurate and says essentially that the doppelhander is different from other swords in this use - it is more of a spear.
Does ths mean you can't use the Half-Sword manoeuvre with it, and thus can't get the ATN5, +3 damage bonus, or am I reading too much into that?

7. Two Weapons and Length
When using, say, a Sword and Dagger, when using the dagger to attack do you still suffer the length penalty? I could see an argument for ignoring them after winning initiative due to a successul defence - your defence set the attack up. But I could aso see reach still applying.
But more importantly, does it apply when perfroming a Double Strike?

8. CP and SA's
Destiny is described as adding to your Combat Pool. The other SAs apply to individual actions.
So, in a combat in which,say, you Drive 5 had been triggered, would you get the full bonus in both exchanges of each round, or is it just added to your CP at the start of each round?

9. Pain and SA's
If the pain your are suffering is in excess of your base CP, but your Destiny (or other bonuses) increase the CP, do you still ge to act?

If the asnwer to question 8 is that Drives and so forth add to the dice committed in each exchange, and shock or pain elimnates all your combat pool, do you still get to act?
For example, a character has CP 12, and Drive 4. He is suffering Pain 14, and thus can't act. But his Drive is triggered - is he still disabled?

10. Pain and CP
It strikes me as a little odd that the amount of pain you can take and still keep fighting is based on Reflexes (and your CP) rather than on, say, Endurance and Health.
Is anyone else bothered by this? (I can be a little anal at times, I know.) Are there other affects in the system that already take this into account? (I don't consider Toughness to be one, since it reduces the actual injury, not the level of actual pain.)
One house rule I'm considering is a pain modifier equal to Reflexes-HLT. So, a character with 6 HLT and 4 REF has a Pain modifier of -2. The first two points of pain don't give him a penalty. If he had 6 REF and 4 HLT, and Pain +2, the first blow taken that caused pain would be increased by 2 levels - no further blows would be affected.
(I'm also considering that this effect should come in only when remaining CP drops below Reflexes.)


I also have another question (about non-damaging moves like Toss) which I'll ask in another thread.
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2003, 11:01:22 AM »

Wow, lots of stuff. Let's see...

Quote from: demiurgeastaroth
After my first session, a few questions came up. Hopefully, people have answers to one or more of these questions.

1. Hard Armour
Certain weapons get a damage bonus to 'hard' armour. Does this mean rigid armour (rigid armours such as plate, the lorica segmentata, and rigid leather such as curbouilli), or is it meant to apply to metal armour (which would then include plate and chain, but not hardened leather), or is it specifically a late armour thing?


Anything but padded, furs, or other clearly "soft" armors. If you wouldn't want to fall on a pile of it, it's not soft in my book.

Quote
2. Use Terrain
What difference does it make if you cange your move rate in combat? According to the terrain modifiers table, you can crawl, move at normal speed, hurried, or sprinting, and conduct attacks and defences as normal. I suspect I'm missing something.


See p. 77, bottom right hand side.

Quote
3. New Combatant
Say you alone and fighting an opponent, but then a second enemy (or ally) enters the fray during the round. How would you decide what happens to inititiative?
Or, more conveniently, it is a new combat round. In the last exchange you gained initiative over your single opponent, but a second enters the fray. After Terrain rolls, you find yourself facing both of them - who has initiative?


Keep him out of the fray until the end of the round. Time in a round is relatively immaterial, and it keeps things organized. If that doesn't work for you, then they can come in half-way through with a full pool and with or without initiative, at GM discretion. That's pretty mean, though.

Quote
4. Another Multiple Opponents question
You are facing two opponents, and make the terrain roll to face just one. In round 1, you win initiative against opponent A.
In round 2, after succeeding the terrain roll, you decide instead to face opponent B - do you still have initiative? Does this count as a pause?
In fact, when facing multiple opponents, can you select which of the opponents you face (this strikes me as a good use for multiple successes on terrain rolls), or do you rely on random chance, or does the enemy get to choose?


I would require a new terrain role to re-position oneself. As for "who," I usually go with the player's choice or with the opponent with the highest Move score (because he's the one that's able to keep most "in" the fight.

Quote
5. Half Sword Defence
In the weapon manoeuvres section (p..66), the Half Sword is described as having excellent defensive properties, and refers you to the counter move. Does this mean a sword held in a Half-Sword grip can only be used to counter (i.e. a normal parry isn't possible)?


Yes, you can do a regular parry, but the counters from half-sword are more concentrated and therefore "better" than counters from a regular position.

Quote
6. Doppelhander Half Sword
In the errata on the website, a question is asked about the half-sword stats for the Doppelhander; the answer decsribes the stats as accurate and says essentially that the doppelhander is different from other swords in this use - it is more of a spear.
Does ths mean you can't use the Half-Sword manoeuvre with it, and thus can't get the ATN5, +3 damage bonus, or am I reading too much into that?


When using the doppelhander, use secondary stats instead of half-sword bonuses. However, if you're defaulting from DH to Greatsword, then you both have the maneuver and you get the bonuses.

Quote
7. Two Weapons and Length
When using, say, a Sword and Dagger, when using the dagger to attack do you still suffer the length penalty? I could see an argument for ignoring them after winning initiative due to a successul defence - your defence set the attack up. But I could aso see reach still applying.
But more importantly, does it apply when perfroming a Double Strike?


Range issues still apply. That means that if you successfully strike with your dagger you're at dagger range and your sword is less usefull (but the enemy may be wholly unprepared for close combat). On a double strike you pay the range penalties as neccessary (so if you're at dagger range, you pay for the sword--if at sword range, you pay for the dagger).

Quote
8. CP and SA's
Destiny is described as adding to your Combat Pool. The other SAs apply to individual actions.
So, in a combat in which,say, you Drive 5 had been triggered, would you get the full bonus in both exchanges of each round, or is it just added to your CP at the start of each round?


I've done it both ways. The rules as written say that SA's apply to every roll. That's a lot of dice! Go with what you like. "Every roll" is in the rules, and is very generous (it also really motivates players to activate SAs). Adding them to the CP is easier to remember and manage, but less beneficial. Choose what fits your group.

Quote
9. Pain and SA's
If the pain your are suffering is in excess of your base CP, but your Destiny (or other bonuses) increase the CP, do you still ge to act?

If the asnwer to question 8 is that Drives and so forth add to the dice committed in each exchange, and shock or pain elimnates all your combat pool, do you still get to act?
For example, a character has CP 12, and Drive 4. He is suffering Pain 14, and thus can't act. But his Drive is triggered - is he still disabled?


Um, yes... SA dice are added to any roll, assuming you have the right to make a roll, even if you are out of dice. This makes them very powerful, especially against multiple opponents. (Think Inigo Montoys vs. the 6 mooks in the palace at the end of Princess Bride.)

If the CP is negative for some reason, the SA dice should pay off the debt first, though. In your above example with Pain 14, CP 12, and Drive 4 the character would have 2 dice to act with (12 - 14 + 4 = 2).

Quote
10. Pain and CP
It strikes me as a little odd that the amount of pain you can take and still keep fighting is based on Reflexes (and your CP) rather than on, say, Endurance and Health.
Is anyone else bothered by this? (I can be a little anal at times, I know.) Are there other affects in the system that already take this into account? (I don't consider Toughness to be one, since it reduces the actual injury, not the level of actual pain.)
One house rule I'm considering is a pain modifier equal to Reflexes-HLT. So, a character with 6 HLT and 4 REF has a Pain modifier of -2. The first two points of pain don't give him a penalty. If he had 6 REF and 4 HLT, and Pain +2, the first blow taken that caused pain would be increased by 2 levels - no further blows would be affected.
(I'm also considering that this effect should come in only when remaining CP drops below Reflexes.)


Sounds like a lot of work for minimal return. Here's the build up on Pain. Pain is reduced (via the wound level) by TO initially and in the most permanent way. Pain is then reduced by WP (which is what's really overcoming the pain--not one's state of health or endurance, though endurance and PW IRL have a lot in common). Pain then reduces your capability to fight, which is composed of natural ability (Reflex) and training (Proficiency). Health is then involved in the Healing process. I wouldn't really add endurance in the equation, though. Did you see UFC #1 (1993)? There's this big, tough, fat kickboxer that can take a beating like no other (high WP, high TO), but he would get exhausted a minute into the fight (low EN). His exhaustion didn't make him less capable of taking the punishment, just less able to protect himself and deal out his own punishment (i.e. Fatigue rules). His health would then put him back together for another fight at a later date.

Whew...I must have been in a good mood! I hope that helps.

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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Darren Hill
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Posts: 861


« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2003, 11:34:43 AM »

Thanks for that excellent response, Jake. I'm glad you were in a good mood, and I'm going to try to capitalise on it with another question or two :)

Quote from: Jake Norwood

When using the doppelhander, use secondary stats instead of half-sword bonuses. However, if you're defaulting from DH to Greatsword, then you both have the maneuver and you get the bonuses.


This means, then, that the raw damage you can do with the bastard sword and estoc (in half sword mode) actually exceeds that of the doppelhander in its most damaging use (very long, swing): ST+5 v. ST+4.
Is this realistic? (I'm not assuming it isn't, I just don't know - the doppelhander is obviously pushing the limits of what's possible to wield effectively so I could understand it being inefficient.)

Another half-sword related question:
Say you have a longsword, reach Long, and are fighting someone with a longer weapon - say a pike. You hit, thus your opponent now suffers a -1CP penalty if he attacks you.
But on your next attack, you switch to a half-sword grip. Do you treat the range as Long, and thus suffer a -1CP, until you hit (at which it will be medium or short)?
Or because you gained initiative, can you just decide to drop from Long to Short and suffer no penalty. Lets say you are parried, your opponent wins initiative, and attacks back: is he at -1CP or -3CP?

Final half-sword question (for now!):

Since the half-sword manoeuvre involves gripping and using the weapon like a spear, why is it so much more effective than an actual spear?
Could you choke up a spear and get a similar benefit?
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2003, 11:47:45 AM »

And the good mood continues...I think I'm avoiding real work or something.

Quote from: demiurgeastaroth
This means, then, that the raw damage you can do with the bastard sword and estoc (in half sword mode) actually exceeds that of the doppelhander in its most damaging use (very long, swing): ST+5 v. ST+4.
Is this realistic? (I'm not assuming it isn't, I just don't know - the doppelhander is obviously pushing the limits of what's possible to wield effectively so I could understand it being inefficient.)


Yeah. Getting stuck with a sharp pointing this is worse than a cut. Several historical masters really got into this question. Both will kill you, but one kills you with a little less effort.

Quote
Another half-sword related question:
Say you have a longsword, reach Long, and are fighting someone with a longer weapon - say a pike. You hit, thus your opponent now suffers a -1CP penalty if he attacks you.
But on your next attack, you switch to a half-sword grip. Do you treat the range as Long, and thus suffer a -1CP, until you hit (at which it will be medium or short)?
Or because you gained initiative, can you just decide to drop from Long to Short and suffer no penalty. Lets say you are parried, your opponent wins initiative, and attacks back: is he at -1CP or -3CP?


Good question! Um...
I's say that properly it's the first that "...you treat the range as Long, and thus suffer a -1CP, until you hit (at which it will be medium or short)..." The massive (maybe too massive) bonuses for Half-sword will off set this, and your advantage will continue to increase as his range gets worse.

Quote
Final half-sword question (for now!):

Since the half-sword manoeuvre involves gripping and using the weapon like a spear, why is it so much more effective than an actual spear?
Could you choke up a spear and get a similar benefit?


So you're one of those snobs that spells maneuver with an "o," huh? Punk.

;-)

In truth it's probably a little off in TROS rules, but it's a real slippery area, and hard to pin down. The half-sword does have certain advantages, though. It's shorter, making it meaner close in--there's no "back portion of the spear" haning out and messing things up for closing actions and winding the blade all over the place. The other is the hilt, expecially the cross guard, which allows bindings and deflections that a spear can't do (hence the improved DTN).

Don't get me wrong, though--you could add some half-sword style bonuses to spear use if you so desired, and that wouldn't really be too far off.

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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Darren Hill
Member

Posts: 861


« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2003, 12:12:58 PM »

After my tricky reach question, the work-shy swordmaster wrote:
Quote from: Jake Norwood
I's say that properly it's the first that "...you treat the range as Long, and thus suffer a -1CP, until you hit (at which it will be medium or short)..."

Great, that was my favourite solution (notice I also spend favourite correctly, too). ;)
Quote

The massive (maybe too massive) bonuses for Half-sword will off set this, and your advantage will continue to increase as his range gets worse.


Aha! I take it, then, with that massive comment, that you wouldn't consider it unreasonable if I reduced the bonuses for half-swording a little? At present it does seem something of an uber-manoeuvre.
The method I'm leaning towards is halving armour rather than +3 damage (so it's still as effective against plate), and giving an ATN of 6 rather than 5.
The reason for the latter is that I find it hard to believe that a greatsword used in a short group will be as wieldy as a shortsword at the same range, but I've never wielded either so I may be wrong. Does the great/longsword have an advantage over the shortsword at this range?

On to the spear:
Quote
The other is the hilt, expecially the cross guard, which allows bindings and deflections that a spear can't do (hence the improved DTN).
<snip>
Don't get me wrong, though--you could add some half-sword style bonuses to spear use if you so desired, and that wouldn't really be too far off.


So, something like a boar spear, with a crossbar to stop a boar from running up the spear to attack the wielder, might be eminently suitable for this?
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2003, 12:31:16 PM »

Ah, British. Now I get it. Noah Webster had it right.    ;-D

Reducing HS bonuses is fine, though I just allow the damage bonus to apply to hard armors only (basically anything above 4 AV).

The Half-sworded greatsword or longsword would have a definite advantage over a gladius-length shortsword, I think, but probably not as much so against an arming sword, where the full range is more important. Half-swording is certainly more "weildy" than a single-handed sword, though that's assuming I understand your meaning.

As for the spear...

A boar-spear has the cross up front, making it usable for hook and hammer manevuers, but not in the same was a cross guard on a sword.

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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Darren Hill
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2003, 01:00:13 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood
Ah, British. Now I get it. Noah Webster had it right.    ;-D


Pah! Give me hide-bound tradition over simplicity and innovation anytime. Okay, maybe not. ;)

Quote

Half-swording is certainly more "weildy" than a single-handed sword, though that's assuming I understand your meaning.


I was assuming that the longer swords, used at short sword range, would be less manoeuvrable and slower than the shortsword at that same range, if only due to the extra size/mass of those bigger weapons. They would still be effective weapons, but the short sword might have the 'edge' in speed and manoeuvrability, so to speak.
I am happy to stand corrected if this is not the case.

Quote

As for the spear...

A boar-spear has the cross up front, making it usable for hook and hammer manevuers, but not in the same was a cross guard on a sword.


That sounds reasonable.

This discussion of half-swording makes me wonder if there could be other manoeuvres specific to other types of weapons. Things like an axe wielder being able to strike over a shield, and so on. Any ideas? :)
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2003, 02:21:14 PM »

There certainly are many such "tricks" and techniques to overcome all sorts of problems, but the bulk of historically attested principles come out in TROS.

As for Half-swording, try this experiment:

Take 2.5-foot stick and strike a tree with it from lots of angles (or, better yet, a friend). Then take a 4.5 foot stick with one hand 5" from the bottom and the other 18" from the tip and do the same. You'll find your angles of attack limited, but your accuracy and power increased.

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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Darren Hill
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« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2003, 02:27:28 PM »

Quote from: Jake Norwood

As for Half-swording, try this experiment:

Take 2.5-foot stick and strike a tree with it from lots of angles (or, better yet, a friend).


Which makes me wonder how many friends you might have ;)
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Jake Norwood
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« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2003, 02:31:57 PM »

Now that you mention it...
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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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Eamon Voss
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« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2003, 05:57:43 AM »

This is an awesome thread.  You uys have put to gaming words what I have tried to get across to some of my players for some time.  Thanks!

P.S. Patriot Games is this weekend.  Woohoo!  I'm running two TROS games there!
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Realism in a melee game is not a matter of critical hit charts, but rather the ability to impart upon the player the dynamism of combat.
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