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Old 10-14-2015, 08:48 AM   #1
Koningkrush's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2014
Default Rapid Strike Fix

Rapid strike never really felt right with me, especially for unarmed attacks. With the way the rules are set up, unarmed combat just feels like drunken 'tards lumbering back and forth with clumsy wide swings. If it really takes a whole second to complete a single punch, with two hands, then there's a problem.

First of all, to show what I mean, watch this video:
This guy obviously must be Trained by a Master to pull this off by GURPS standards, and shouldn't even exist in reality.

Martial Arts covers this issue, but it requires you to be cinematicly trained by some mystical master fighter. I think Rapid Strike should be limited by a combination of ST and DX, similar to how DX and HT limits dodge.

First off, you can perform any number of strikes in one second limited by DX and HT. Add HT and DX together, then divide by four rounding down. An average fighter has 5 Rapid Strike Points (I'll explain what these are below). Small weapons like daggers can also be used this quickly. If your weapon is like a lever with at least Reach 1, or just uses swinging in general to hit your target, then half this number rounding down (2 Points).

Secondly, now for penalty changes. Instead of -6, the penalty is now -2. This penalty is cumulative rather than across all strikes (0, then -2, then -4, then -6, etc.) Multiple attacks aren't insanely more difficult to hit with pertaining to skill; it's just hard to physically pull them off.

If you alternate between your arms, each strike uses up one point. Someone with two hands can throw 5 punches. (right, left, right, left, right).

If you use the same limb twice in a row without alternating, it uses up a cumulative extra point. (Right 1 point, Right 2 Point, Right 3 Point). You couldn't throw the third punch with the same limb since it would cost 6, and with 5 Rapid Strike Points, your limit is 5. A person with a sword couldn't even attack twice with a sword in one hand unless he had 6 Rapid Strike Points which reduces to 3.

If you attack by swinging with a weapon at reach 2 such as a spear or maul, then double the penalties. You obviously cannot alternate, unless you are strong as hell and wield two mauls. The penalties would be (Attack 1, Attack 4, Attack 6, etc). You would need a total of 10 Rapid Strike Points, reduced to 5, to swing a weapon with that much leverage and weight twice in one second. If you are dealing with some inhumane wtf creature with tons of ST and DX, then triple, quadruple, etc. based off the reach of the weapon (reach 3, triple penalty. reach 4, quadruple penalty.)

Finally, only your first attack can benefit from something like All-Out Attack (Strong), the rest are more about speed and less about force to benefit.

Options to Increase Rapid Strike Points:

Speedy Hits: Reduce damage for each attack by a doubling cumulative amount for each extra Rapid Strike point. (1 extra point, -1 for all hits; 2 extra points, -2 for all hits; 3 extra points, -4 for all hits; 4 extra points, -8 for all hits; etc). This allows low dexterity people with huge ST to sacrifice their brute force with speed. Technically, there is no limit for this. However, you will eventually just be rapidly tapping them with your finger doing no damage, or even just vibrating your hand on their chest with each twitch being a technical "hit". There would be absolutely no point in going that far though.

Extra Effort: Spend a cumulative 1 FP to gain an extra Rapid Strike Point, up to a maximum set by the GM. A realistic limit would be 1 or 2, while a cinematic limit might be 3 or 4. This could be used in tandem with Flurry of Blows.

Now, these rules actually just remove Dual Weapon Attack. It just seems dumb to me, and if you want it, just describe your alternating attacks to be happening at the same time rather than with short intervals.

What I think works out best for these rules is that unarmed combat is actually feasible to use now in settings with guns or swords. If you can get in close to a guy with a broadsword, and you know what you're doing alongside with being just a general bad ass, you can pummel his face in before he even knows what happened. Otherwise, who would give up cutting damage and reach just to throw punches at such a huge disadvantage?

Last edited by Koningkrush; 10-14-2015 at 09:06 AM.
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combat, house rules, rapid strikes

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