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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 158 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: First Contact (And combat question)  (Read 2285 times)
murazor
Member

Posts: 20


« on: May 02, 2003, 01:06:56 AM »

And so I've finally made my first tentative steps into the world of TRoS, when I yesterday gathered two friends to create characters.
I'm setting the game in France 1567, just before the outbreak of the second civil war of religion (there was eight between 1562 and 1587). The gensystem and SAs worked like a charm. I 'suggested' that they both belong to the protestant side (and so both have Faith), and from there we ended up with; One baker who has become substitute father for the count's young daughter, and an English spy, with an illicit love affair with the daughter of the intelligence minister, who's working as a fencing teacher in Orleans.
This, of course gave me an excellent opportunity to stage a fight between the teacher and one of his students, and hence introduce the combat system. None of the players knew the first thing about the system. I explained the basics as we went along, so they were going into it blindfolded, so to speak.
Predictably, both threw red and charged at each other, thrusting with full combat pools. They tied their Reflex contest and stabbed each other full in the gut, resulting in shock, pain and internal bleeding for both. With CP spent they both spent next round gasping, before gathering themselves and charging at each other again.
This time the teacher came up short at the Reflex test and hit the ground with a level 5 thrust to the groin. Even blunt practice swords (Cut&Thrust at -1 DR) can be deadly.
With that as a starting point I explained the intricacies of combat a bit further, and they were intrigued but some questions remain.

One comment was that the system seems to be interesting only when the opponents are closely matched, and that is something I've been thinking about myself. How do you defend yourself against an opponent with twice your CP? Or rather; What are the worst odds people here have defeated, and how did you do it?
This can be turned the other way too, of course. Though you can't shrug of hordes of henchman like in D&D, 7th Sea... etc, common mooks can still be virtually chanceless one on one. (Which is of course the way it's supposed to be)

Another thing; What about maximum damage? What if you want to hit/tap your opponent, perhaps to knock out or humiliate, but not kill. Can you just set your own limit?
The other side of the issue is the lethality of the weapon. Let's say I attack someone with a rolled up newspaper and deliver a 10 MOS hit to the head?
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Mayhem1979
Member

Posts: 81


« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2003, 01:53:42 AM »

Well on the last question... for pulling your blow I'd suggest doing an agility check and for every success you get (tn is tn of weapon used) you can adjust the damage level down one.
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Draigh
Member

Posts: 151


« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2003, 06:57:10 AM »

Quote
Murazor asked: "How do you defend yourself against an opponent with twice your CP?"


Run... Or, have a couple of friends nearby to help you, or have alot of SAs to pour into your combat pool.



Quote
Murazor asked: "Another thing; What about maximum damage? What if you want to hit/tap your opponent, perhaps to knock out or humiliate, but not kill. Can you just set your own limit?"


I allow my players to call a maximum number of successes that they're willing to accept.  For instance: Smashy McBlargass has been challenged by his buddy Sir Slaysalot.  Now Smashy and Slaysalot have been friends for years and Smashy doesn't want a little thing like wenching the same wench that Slaysalot was trying to wench to come between them... So Smashy calls the duel to First Blood.  Therefore Smashy's player says "I won't accept more than one success over my opponent."  Even if he rolls fourty dice, his MOS is one.  I might make Smashy make an reflex test or something like that, and perhaps some weapons such as a flail or maul would seriously complicate the matter, but in general I've found that that works.

Quote
Murazor asked: "The other side of the issue is the lethality of the weapon. Let's say I attack someone with a rolled up newspaper and deliver a 10 MOS hit to the head?"


You'd be surprised by what you can do with a tightly rolled newspaper...  Just ask a practitioner of Escrima.  Granted, it wouldnt be as lethal as an iron bar, but it could still hurt like hell and maybe even break skin or bone.
(in the hands of someone who really knew the intracacies of beating people up with a rolled up newspaper, i guess.)
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Ashren Va'Hale
Member

Posts: 427


« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2003, 07:52:45 AM »

I once fought a mug with a cp of 60 with my PC's piddily cp of 18. I won. I did so by using teamwork and cheating and knowing what maneuvers to use.

I find that cheating (ie backstabbing, throwing crap and terrain usage) are the best way for the outclassed guy to win.
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Philosophy: Take whatever is not nailed down, for the rest, well thats what movement is for!
Bankuei
Guest
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2003, 09:09:35 AM »

My rules for pulling strikes are 1 CP/die of damage reduced.  This way, it does cost you(usually 1-2 dice) but also can result in "accidents".  If you're using weapons that are designed for practice, it costs 1 CP flat.

Chris
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murazor
Member

Posts: 20


« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2003, 06:55:31 AM »

Sage advice. Overwhelming force, evasion or trickery - the true ways to victory.
Well, I knew allready that TRoS isn't about fair fights and 'balance'; It's written in plain text in the books. And know from my brief experience with fencing that it doesn't take much difference in skill for a match to be uneven.
But to clarify myself; What I'd like to know is at what point the odds start to tilt. With an even playing field, how close - in CP - would you say two duellists have to be for it to be a even match?

As for my newspaper question.. apart from the fact that it was incomplete - I noticed that I forgot to finish it - I guess it was just a bit too pointed. To put it bluntly (pun intended), I'm wondering if anyone have an objection to damage caps. I can evision several things that it's possible to hurt people with, but very hard to kill with. Things that, for instance would break before the head it strikes can still be .. useful. And this goes for both improvised and subdual weapons.

Good suggestions for pulling punches. Especially the second one.
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Vanguard
Member

Posts: 71


« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2003, 04:55:30 PM »

one way of handling dmg caps would be to restrict certain weapons in specific ways.  

Rolled-up paper, for example, would not inflict BL. U could theoretically kill someone with a lvl 5 wound to the head, but that could represent a cunning blow crushing the larynx, or a stab through an eye an (somewhat tenuously) into the brain. But an enemy is not gonna die from a battering, not even from thirty blows about the person, not unless you acquire that ninja-deathmaster perfect strike (hard to achieve with low DR and maybe high TN - papers aren't designed for combat).

Expandign on this: A monomolecular weapon (for that dirty cyberpunk feel) might not inflict shock or pain for example. Bits of you might be falling off all over the place, but you would hardly feel them dropping.


By the way, I love your rendition of that session.  Sounded both appropriate for TROS and laden with potential.  And I think you handled introducing the PCs to TROS perfectly - giving the PCs a margin of error and freedom in which to understand the system.


Take care
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What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger - or a cripple.
Tywin Lannister
Member

Posts: 95


« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2003, 02:20:47 AM »

Where can I find weapon statistics for blunt (training weapons), like wooden swords?
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Jake Norwood
Member

Posts: 2261


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« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2003, 12:56:44 PM »

Use the stats for a club, with a slightly better DTN. The TROS club isn't a baseball bat, but rather just a uniform stick.

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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Brian Leybourne
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Posts: 1793


« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2003, 01:19:21 PM »

I would have thought that a really good training sword would be weighted and balanced to have the same feel as the real thing (otherwise you're throwing yourself off by training with it).

That being the case, I would keep ATN, DTN etc the same, and simply convert the damage to blunt swing and/or blunt thrust, probably dropping the rating a couple of points as well (so Str+2c and Str+1p becomes Strb for "cutting" attacks, and Str-1b for "thrusting" attacks.

Brian.
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Brian Leybourne
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RPG Books: Of Beasts and Men, The Flower of Battle, The TROS Companion
murazor
Member

Posts: 20


« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2003, 02:33:56 PM »

That's what I did, but I only lowered the damage by one. One too short I found. For the next training session I would also recommend a decent amount of padding. Training fatalities are such a nuisance.
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Jake Norwood
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Posts: 2261


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« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2003, 05:13:57 PM »

Well, now, a training blunt will be almost identical to a sharp, but with less cutting damage (not a lot less, though...by the time of the American Civil War all swords were blunt, and they beheaded just fine...). A wooden sword really is just a club shaped like a sword (I speak from pretty extensive experience on both of these). Training fatalities could be reduced by either using less dice, or more simply by spending one die off the top of the CP to "pull" blows, as has been discussed here. A botch would mean that the hit wasn't pulled, or something of the sort.

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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