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Old 11-19-2016, 04:38 PM   #6
aesir23's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Vermont
Default Re: Thoughts on some house rules?

Originally Posted by TheOneTrueClockWorK View Post
As for the main-gauche skill, I wanted it to fit more of an arnis style of knife fighting, as I feel that would be more appropriate for those who might use a knife as a back-up or even primary.
Okay, so you wanted a skill that had the bonus to retreating parries and reduced penalties to multiple parries, but still has the -2 penalty for parrying with a nice and off-hand parry penalties. Sure, I can see that as a viable middle ground between knife and Main Gauche. The problem for me is that, if I want to use a parrying dagger with my rapier, it's now more expensive--and it was already more expensive than it should be for the scant benefits.
Originally Posted by TheOneTrueClockWorK View Post
Creating the main-gauche or fencing skills via a perk is interesting. How would this fit into a fencer who has only ever trained in that style of fighting, though? For example, if someone learns to use a smallsword, and that's all they've ever learned, they need an extra point for a perk, and can apparently switch their stance into a more military way of fighting, despite that being a very different style? Or am I misinterpreting something?
Well in reality, the differences aren't that great (although, to be fair, I know next to nothing about smallsword). I train in, among other things, Italian Rapier and Scottish Broadsword. There are good reasons for the different style associated with the different weapons, but, in a pinch, I could absolutely use Rapier Fencing techniques with Broadsword and vice-versa. In fact, I don't own a broadsword, so when I want to practice my broadsword techniques at home, I just use my rapier (with a slight adjustment in grip). The Rapier has better reach and will therefore thrust better, the Broadsword is better at cutting, but that doesn't matter because both styles teach how to cut and how to thrust.

So, if you have a character with One-Handed Sword and the perk Fencing (one-handed sword), the simplest thing to do would be to say, "you only get the bonus to retreating parries and the reduced penalties on multiple parries if you are using a fencing weapon and are unencumbered."

Originally Posted by TheOneTrueClockWorK View Post
Would allows a Fencing stance with the One-Handed Sword skill not be weird? That would imply that those with military, battlefield training can use and easily understand the stances and tight footwork of a fencer.
Meh, my opinion is that the defensive superiority of fencing weapons is greatly exaggerated in GURPS (especially the rapier, which weighs as much or more than most of what GURPS calls broadswords). Any fighter could realistically enjoy superior ability to safely retreat and parry multiple attacks by fighting with their weapon extended between themselves and their opponent. The realistic pay-off is that cutting well is very difficult from that position. (17th century Rapier master Nicoletto Giganti teaches a couple of techniques where the sword is held up by the ear to facilitate powerful cuts at the sacrifice of some protection).

If you were to go this route, I'd suggest getting rid of the Fencing/Non-fencing distinction entirely and simply replace it with a note in the Style descriptions (e.g. "Italian Rapier practitioners fought almost exclusively in a one-handed defensive stance and favored the thrust over the cut.")
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