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Old 11-15-2009, 01:53 AM   #31
The Benj
 
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Originally Posted by Rev. Pee Kitty View Post
When facing a foe with no head armor, you can instead use All-Out Attack (Determined) and Telegraphic Attack for the same net +1 to hit the skull.
+3. The Skull's only -5 from behind.

So you may well be well off using a Telegraphic AoA(Strong) for a total -1 but +2/+1 per die damage (which will help get through that skull DR.

Or, if you're not worried about the skull DR, Double.
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Old 11-15-2009, 02:01 AM   #32
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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It should be noted that if you want to take out your target *quietly*, you may have to add Grapple (targeted attack: face/ throat so as to cover the mouth) just before the attack to vitals/ throat.

If that sentry makes his consciousness/ death checks and yells for help you just might be SOL no matter how good your initial attack is.
Hard to yell at any volume through severed vocal cords.
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Old 11-15-2009, 02:03 AM   #33
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Also as an option you could use a poisoned blade of course - toxic follow-up attack... (not all assassins are strong... ;-)) Combined with a hit to the lungs or the neck/throat (or the brain) that should be an relatively easy and deadly greeting... [IMO it should hold off the victim from crying, too...]
Realistic toxins generally don't work that fast, but for a cinematic game, sure.
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Old 11-15-2009, 04:36 AM   #34
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Originally Posted by Crakkerjakk View Post
Hard to yell at any volume through severed vocal cords.
True, but GURPS damage system doesn't really take that into account (unless it's on the head blow critical table). Throat cuts are a little tricky from behind too.

The spine however is right there as a target if you are using a crushing weapon.
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Old 11-15-2009, 04:45 AM   #35
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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True, but GURPS damage system doesn't really take that into account (unless it's on the head blow critical table). Throat cuts are a little tricky from behind too.
No harder than from the front.

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The spine however is right there as a target if you are using a crushing weapon.
Or indeed Cutting, Impaling, Piercing, Tight-beam Burning...
Yet still much harder to hit (-8) than the neck (-5).
And has DR, which the neck doesn't.
What are you getting at?
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Old 11-15-2009, 07:41 AM   #36
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Hard to yell at any volume through severed vocal cords.
Which doesn't mean that people with their throats cut are quiet.

I seem to recall reading that thrusting the knife into the larynx and leaving it there is much quieter than cutting the throat which can actually be quiet noisy.

Of course, I have no personal experience with either technique....
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Old 11-15-2009, 08:21 AM   #37
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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No point in not stacking the deck as much as possible, though...

Evaluate for 3 turns, for +3 to hit.
Telegraph the attack, for +4 to hit (opponent would get +2 to defenses, but because it's an attack from behind and he doesn't even know you're there anyways, he can't defend and the bonus becomes a moot point).

If you've got a base skill of 16, this provides +7, enough to counteract the penalty for a Brain hit while still reasonably minimizing your chances of a critical failure (not so good for your chances of a critical hit, but if you're looking for a guarenteed horrible ending, rather than gambling on Luck, ignore critical HITs for the moment).

If your swing damage is at all better than your thrust, use a swinging attack rather than a thrusting one - for brain hits, once differing DR types vs damage types are dealt with, damage type itself doesn't matter so go for the biggest amount of damage possible. Once you penetrate the skull, you're looking at x4 damage AND a Stun/knockdown check even if only one point penetrates. If you do a Major WOund (usually if you do 2 points of base damage it's enough to force a major wound) then the stun/knockdown check is at -10, and almost guarenteed to critically fail.

This is less of a back stab and more of a head-smashed-in, but it's hard to argue with results...
Ah assassins with mauls...
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Old 11-15-2009, 11:43 AM   #38
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Which doesn't mean that people with their throats cut are quiet.

I seem to recall reading that thrusting the knife into the larynx and leaving it there is much quieter than cutting the throat which can actually be quiet noisy.

Of course, I have no personal experience with either technique....
There's a lot of fairly violent gurgling and flailing. Most sentry removal techniques (all that I know of) involve a grapple to restrain this.
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Old 11-15-2009, 11:48 AM   #39
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

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Originally Posted by Crakkerjakk View Post
There's a lot of fairly violent gurgling and flailing. Most sentry removal techniques (all that I know of) involve a grapple to restrain this.
Most "backstabs" I see in video games and movies actually involve a grapple first, followed by much stabbing.

I think the notion of a single, highly lethal stab is an abstraction that comes from D&D, and has perpetuated out to any number of more abstract RPGs (like MMOs), rather than any relation to reality. It's not life a thief slashes at your back and you die.

I imagine the "Grapple the mouth from behind and STAB STAB STAB" would work as well in GURPS as it does in real life, and the one-second-per-turn would handle it well.
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Old 11-15-2009, 12:09 PM   #40
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Default Re: [Fantasy] Assassin Backstab?!

I agree.

AoA from surprise with a grapple and repeated stabbings seems like it would work fine.
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