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  • Fantasy Setting Rules, feedback requested.

    I'm looking at a couple of setting rules to add to a fantasy setting I might run. Thoughts?

    Distracted Casting. The penalties imposed by the Strength Minimums of body armor also apply to any Arcane Skill roll. (This is meant to discourage armored casters to keep true to tropes.)


    Rituals (from Lankhmar): Allowed for Magic and Miracles. Use Occult in place of Knowledge (Arcana). (Because it's a useful inclusion)

    Swashbuckling Disarm. Disarm is based on an opposed Fighting roll rather than a function of striking a specific body part. Modifiers for weapon size still exist; the attacker has a -2 to his roll for most weapons, -4 for small items such as a dagger or wand. Success means the item in question is at the defender’s feet. He will need to use an action to recover the weapon. On a Raise, the attacker can choose to fling the weapon 1D6 inches in a direction of his choice or may have possession of the item if he attempted to disarm without a weapon. If the defender is wielding the item with two hands (not really possible with a small item), the attacker needs a Raise to disarm and another to fling or take the weapon. (Because I don't like the paradigm of "hit weapon hard." I want the action to be more skill-based, more finesse.)

    Tactical Acumen: The Command Range of Leadership Edges is figured as a Derived Statistic equal to half the character's Battle skill die plus 2". (Because I want Battle to matter more and serve a similar role to the similar skill in L5R and the like)

  • #2
    These all sound pretty good. I especially like how Distracted Casting emulates the armor restrictions in other games in a way that makes a bit more sense than how Savage Pathfinder is handling it (not that SWPF is handling it badly per se).

    Comment


    • Red the Second Hand
      Red the Second Hand commented
      Editing a comment
      Haven't had a change to read SWPF yet. How does it handle it, then?

    • werenimal
      werenimal commented
      Editing a comment
      Spellcasters get a flat --4 penalty to arcane skill rolls when they wear armor heavier than a certain threshold (which varies based on class).

  • #3
    Okay, but you asked for 'em.
    Originally posted by paladin2019 View Post
    Distracted Casting. The penalties imposed by the Strength Minimums of body armor also apply to any Arcane Skill roll. (This is meant to discourage armored casters to keep true to tropes.)[/FONT]

    Rituals (from Lankhmar): Allowed for Magic and Miracles. Use Occult in place of Knowledge (Arcana). (Because it's a useful inclusion)

    Swashbuckling Disarm. Disarm is based on an opposed Fighting roll rather than a function of striking a specific body part. Modifiers for weapon size still exist; the attacker has a -2 to his roll for most weapons, -4 for small items such as a dagger or wand. Success means the item in question is at the defender’s feet. He will need to use an action to recover the weapon. On a Raise, the attacker can choose to fling the weapon 1D6 inches in a direction of his choice or may have possession of the item if he attempted to disarm without a weapon. If the defender is wielding the item with two hands (not really possible with a small item), the attacker needs a Raise to disarm and another to fling or take the weapon. (Because I don't like the paradigm of "hit weapon hard." I want the action to be more skill-based, more finesse.)

    Tactical Acumen: The Command Range of Leadership Edges is figured as a Derived Statistic equal to half the character's Battle skill die plus 2". (Because I want Battle to matter more and serve a similar role to the similar skill in L5R and the like)
    Distracted Casting - I like it. It's a good setting rule to limit "wizard in plate" to "wizard-knight in plate".

    Rituals - I haven't studied the Lankhmar ritual rules enough to have an opinion at this time. Though my current fantasy campaign has ritual rules I posted around here.

    Swashbuckling Disarm - Disarms are now effectively impossible. An Opposed roll at -2 (or -4) makes it virtually impossible. This also removes the possibility of disarming a foe by removing his arm, for Bloodthirsty characters.
    By contrast, the existing rules allow disarms by either attacking the limb (cutting the hand / arm) or by attacking the weapon directly (using leverage against the defender). The static TN makes the attempt a calculated risk with a predictable chance of success. The Scale penalty of the target discourages this technique from being used by the inept or against similarly skilled foes.
    For a cinematic 'weapons sailing through the air' attack, I would suggest making Disarm a trapping of nonlethal damage. Disarm the thug, sending his blade to stick comically in the ceiling, and leave him flabbergasted and fearful as your hero strides forth. Or disarm the pirate captain, explicitly taking him alive and having a game mechanic (Incapacitation) that explains why he does not immediately escape.

    Tactical Acumen - Meh. The Support rules allow Battle to matter in every fight; mastery of tactical command is always an appropriate way to aid allies in combat. Add in the new Inspire Edge and Battle is great.
    If you do keep this around then you'll need to revisit the Command Presence Edge (maybe change the edge to 4 + Battle die type; you get the same radii at d6).

    Good luck!
    Last edited by ValhallaGH; 04-13-2021, 09:09 PM.
    I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

    Comment


    • SeeleyOne
      SeeleyOne commented
      Editing a comment
      Lankmar rituals are very close to the Horror Companion rituals

  • #4
    Originally posted by paladin2019 View Post
    Swashbuckling Disarm.
    Disarm is based on an opposed Fighting roll rather than a function of striking a specific body part.
    The use of "rather" implies this is a replacement mechanic and not an alternative addition. As an option, I'm okay with it, but it doesn't make a lot of sense to remove the core mechanic entirely. Severing tendons or causing nerve paralysis are extremely viable ways of causing an opponent to drop a weapon.

    I get it if you want to replace the brute-force "smack weapon really hard" approach with a more skill-based tactic, but as Valhalla pointed out, it's going to be fairly difficult with those penalties. Making it an Opposed roll adds a lot of variance, all in the defender's favor. Sure, they can roll low, even CF, but they can also spend Bennies to reroll. That's not something an aggressor needs to worry about with a static TN.

    Also, your rule specifies "Fighting" as the skill used, meaning ranged disarm attempts are inexplicably excluded.

    Swashbuckling Disarm sounds like it would live better as an Edge. Something that maybe allows a fencer to automatically disarm on a success, instead of dealing damage. But then again, Valhalla's suggestion of just making it a Trapping of non-lethal damage is blindingly insightful and very likely the best approach (unless of course you WANT the target to be able to continue the fight).

    Comment


    • #5
      Alternatively, a Swashbuckling Disarm could be the result of scoring a raise on a Fighting test instead of the victim being Shaken.

      Comment


      • #6
        "Disarms are now effectively impossible. An Opposed roll at -2 (or -4) makes it virtually impossible."

        These are the same penalties the attacker would normally suffer, it's just an opposed roll rather than vs the defender's Parry. What I don't like mechanically in the current Disarm rules is the attack --> damage --> STR roll. I like the idea of an opposed Fighting roll more. Currently, Disarm is also inherently better than Breaking Things; if you attempt to break the wand the wizard is holding you have to deal enough damage to break it, but if you attempt to Disarm, if you don't break it, the wizard still has to roll to keep ahold of it. All for no increase in difficulty. It also doesn't account for any increased difficulty in Disarming a two handed weapon vs a one handed one.

        For attacking a limb to Disarm, that's again just better than a called shot. Most significantly, a Called Shot to a limb has no additional effect though a Disarm can cause the STR roll to be made. Again, at no additional difficulty. And the rules don't specify that a Called Shot is a severing attack, either.

        Comment


        • #7
          Originally posted by paladin2019 View Post
          "Disarms are now effectively impossible. An Opposed roll at -2 (or -4) makes it virtually impossible."

          These are the same penalties the attacker would normally suffer, it's just an opposed roll rather than vs the defender's Parry
          And that change is why it becomes effectively impossible.
          The odds of success on an Opposed roll are a bit lower than the 50% to hit equal Parry; combined with the attacker penalty and the defender's ability to Benny rerolls after the attacker has locked their result and you get a system that heavily favors the defender. To the point that the attacker should not bother to disarm; the attacker should just stab them in the face, or eat the -1 to make it nonlethal if taking foes alive matters.

          Originally posted by paladin2019 View Post
          What I don't like mechanically in the current Disarm rules is the attack --> damage --> STR roll.
          Fair.
          That implies that you should change from a Damage side-effect to a Test-style. Maybe attack -> Fighting Test; this allows swashbuckling characters to disarm low-skill brutes, and allows the wand using wizard to rely upon Agility to hang onto the magic stick.

          Good luck.
          I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

          Comment


          • paladin2019
            paladin2019 commented
            Editing a comment
            You said a Fighting test resisted by AGI? That's something I hadn't considered. Thanks!

        • #8
          I may be missing something, but only see the big, flashy version of telekinesis in the rules. Here is my take on reducing the power level to minor stuff while still allowing it to scale up to normal power.

          Telekinesis has the following changes:
          • Rank: Novice
          • Power Points: 1
          • The power’s Strength is d4-3
          • Modifier: Mental Strength (4): The power’s Strength equals Spirit, +1 die type on raise
          Are there any examples of Power Modifiers being restricted based on Rank? I think Mental Strength may need to be Seasoned to keep the full power usage inline with the base Power.

          EDIT: Because it was mentioned, I probably need to add that with Tactical Acumen, Command Presence doubles Command Range rather than setting it at 10".
          Last edited by paladin2019; 04-16-2021, 06:08 AM.

          Comment


          • Deskepticon
            Deskepticon commented
            Editing a comment
            As an aside, how much weight can d4-3 lift?

            Considering Str d4 can lift 20 lbs without encumbrance, would it be safe to say that each die step back halves that amount?
            So...
            d4-1 = 10 lbs (max 40)
            d4-2 = 5 lbs (max 20)
            d4-3 = 2 lbs (max 8)
            Str 1 = >1 lb (max 1)

            Or something else entirely?

            _____
            Edit.
            Thinking about this, these figures seem "about right," D4-3 is the Strength of a house cat, and my cat can push around a 5 lb dumbbell.
            Last edited by Deskepticon; 04-16-2021, 08:33 AM.

          • ZenFox42
            ZenFox42 commented
            Editing a comment
            I was going to comment on your d4-N strengths, but when I went looking for the progression from d4 to d12, now I'm confused by your limits in your first comment. SWADE encumbrance is up to 20 pounds for d4, and up to 100 for d12. SUPERS strength d4 can lift 20-80 pounds, and d12 can lift 60-240 pounds. Where did you get your numbers in your first comment from?

          • Deskepticon
            Deskepticon commented
            Editing a comment
            ZenFox42 From the Encumbrance Table in Adventure Edition, p67. And just above that, "The maximum weight a character can lift or carry is four times the listed weight."

        • #9
          I would probably just make minor Telekinesis as a Support / Test roll that possibly at GM discretion would require the Telekinesis Power.

          Comment


          • paladin2019
            paladin2019 commented
            Editing a comment
            That doesn't really support doing minor telekinetic things like no touch juggling or getting your goblet from across the room. 5 PP and d10 STR is overkill for that.

          • Aristarkos
            Aristarkos commented
            Editing a comment
            I mean, you can probably wing it. You roll your Arcane Skill and just say you are doing a minor trick with it such as allowing someone's arrow to fly harder (a Support roll) or use minor telekinesis to slap tons of pebbles, dust and debris in someone's face (a Test roll).

            This would not even have to cost anything since it is such a minor effect, but anything more than 1 Power Point is too much in my opinion. It would also be up to the gamemaster to allow it with or without the character first possessing the Telekinesis power.
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