Opposed Combat Rolls?

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Banesfinger
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Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by Banesfinger »

Has anyone created an "opposed" combat mechanic, instead of using pools.

I know the designer (Dan Cross) mentioned some of the pitfalls to this approach, but our group can see some potential advantages as well:

- No defense pools to keep track of, or refresh.
- Unlike pools, where the defender is on the ‘top of his game’ against the first few strikes, this opposed approach is random each round (can have lucky hits, or lucky defenses).
- May keep narrative approach if different defense Ability dice chains were used.

- (Disadvantage) More dice rolling.
- (Disadvantage) Combat could go on for a long time between evenly matched opponents.

Our group would really like to hear from anyone if they have tried such an approach (including failed drafts from the original designers).
dancross
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by dancross »

Hello
Banesfinger wrote:Has anyone created an "opposed" combat mechanic, instead of using pools.
You can do that, but it would require a restructuring of the Abilities, and a change in rules for how ability dice chains are formed (as in allowing for more combinations of ranks between ability branches).

Palladium Fantasy's combat is based on opposed combat mechanics...

ERP would not feel like the same game to me if I were to change it's action system so dramatically, but I suppose one would expect me to say that.

If, on the other hand, you feel the system lends itself to flexibility to that degree, I'll take it as a compliment. 8)
dancross
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by dancross »

Banesfinger wrote:Has anyone created an "opposed" combat mechanic, instead of using pools.
Okay, I admit it, ERP works with this too!

Let's see...the term "potential-harm" would be something of a misnomer in such a system. But, yes, it would work and without too much fuss.

EXAMPLE: Fighter one rolls Melee+Bludgeons+Mace, and gets a 10. Defender 1 rolls his Melee + Swords + Long Sword and gets a 10 as well. Defender takes 1/2 damage in a tie (my idea). If defender rolled 11 or greater, the attack is stopped. If defender rolls less than 10, he must absorb the 10 points of damage. Reduce by armor roll, then apply to toughness.

Mage casts lightning bolt, rolling Arcanum D8 + Primoridal D6 + Elementalist D4. He rolls a 12. Target rolls Speed + Agility (dodge) to avoid the bolt, and gets a 10. Oops, poor guy, fried! Damage goes straight to toughness. Drop Resilience as a defense pool and sub with opposed rolls.

Harm Spells vs. Dodge (Speed + Agility ADC).
All other spells vs. Willpower and/or Resistence

In all cases you can allow mixing ability-ranks as it fits the situation, adding specializations and masteries when it makes sense. Also, if rolling a specialization or mastery, you must have rolled at least the basic rank if a specialzation, and the specialization rank if a mastery. So one could combine three basic abilities, so long as the GM thinks it makes logical sense to combine them, in some situations. Or, you go the more "by the book route" and roll the basic > speicalization > mastery dice chains. The only restriction is that no more than three dice can be rolled in a single ability-dice-chain. So one could roll Agility + Speed + Reflexes. Or Reflexes + Agility > Gymnastics. Combine to your hearts' fulfilled!

Weapon Attack (opposed):
vs [weaponry] Melee + specialization + mastery (choose one ADC)
vs [Evade] Reflexes + Agility + Puglism
vs [deflect] Melee + Shield .

Ranged Attack (opposed):
vs [dodge] Speed + Agility
vs [Evade] Reflexes + Agility
vs [deflect] Melee + Shield .

Unarmed Attack (opposed):
vs [weaponry] Melee (risk of taking damage here)
vs [Evade] Reflexes + Agility
vs [deflect] Melee + Shield.
dancross
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by dancross »

Update: If you're using optional rules for opposed rolls in action scenes (mainly combat), I'd reccommend using a hybrid system when PCs are fighting non-full fledged creatures (fodder to exceptional). So when the PCs hit the monsters, use "Potential-Harm" and describe as you normally would. When monsters attack PCs, use opposed rolls. The reason is that the players shouldn't feel the difference here (because there's nothing for them to kee track of on the part of the monsters), and the GM gets to avoid adding extra stats to every creature encountered just to simulate all of the possible opposed roll dice combinations.
Banesfinger
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by Banesfinger »

dancross wrote:If, on the other hand, you feel the system lends itself to flexibility to that degree, I'll take it as a compliment. 8)
It is exactly your answers (in the posts above) that show the flexibility of this system! :D
Our group loved the Action resolution system (chapter 2) and said "wouldn't it be great if that mechanic was unified throughout the whole game (re: combat)". Your examples (posts above) now give us that - and we are extremely excited to test them out. We'll post to this thread and let you know how they work!

Thanks so much!
dancross
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by dancross »

I can anticipate one snag right away, and thats most defences are already at 3D while many heroes will not have the opposing dice-chains to match on the attack. That gives PC defenders the advantage, which is I guess a good thing. If you follow my advice by using only Potential-Harm against most to all monsters, rather than allowing defending NPCs and critters opposed rolls, you should be okay.

It will be interesting to see how this optional system tests.
Banesfinger
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Re: Opposed Combat Rolls?

Post by Banesfinger »

dancross wrote:I can anticipate one snag right away, and thats most defences are already at 3D while many heroes will not have the opposing dice-chains to match on the attack. That gives PC defenders the advantage, which is I guess a good thing. If you follow my advice by using only Potential-Harm against most to all monsters, rather than allowing defending NPCs and critters opposed rolls, you should be okay.
Yes, as you anticipated, PC defenders gain a huge advantage, especially against minor monsters like goblins (TR: 1d6 melee). Even with high rolls, they never seemed to get past the PC defences.

So we added "gang-up" rules: if more than one creature is attacking the same target, they can ADD their potential harm together.

Example: Dax has melee (d6) > swords (d8). He faces three goblins (d6 melee each). One lone goblin would rarely get past his weaponry defence, but three goblins might. The goblins each attack, rolling: 5, 4, and 2. Since they are all attacking the same target, we add their threat together = 11. Dax's sword swings wildly to parry the lunging goblins; he rolls a total of 7. The goblins win!

We are starting to experiment with using the difference between the Threat and the defender's roll. (In the example above, the goblins won by 4 (11-7) so Dax would remove 4 from his passive defence).
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