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Old 07-13-2016, 07:24 AM   #31
Varyon
 
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
I see this come up a lot, but Edge Protection is a spectacularly bad rule. It's too complex and it punishes well known armor-piercing weapons like axes and polearms.
The problem isn't so much complexity as it is incompleteness. Basically, no guidance is given on how to resolve cases of armors that have reduced DR against crushing. It seems easy enough to me to just use the crushing DR when the attack is converted to crushing, normal DR otherwise. Against Cheap Light Mail or Cheap Reinforced Medium Leather (both DR 2/0*) there's a bit of a problem, as cutting attacks of 4 (4 cr penetrate) and 5 (3 cut penetrate) damage do the same injury (4 HP), but as the latter enjoys the special effects of cutting (bleeding, disease, etc), this is probably fine. At higher TL's, things do become a bit more complicated, as DR 12/3 kevlar sees 21 HP injury from a cutting attack of 24 damage, but only 19 HP injury from a cutting attack of 25 - if this happens to come up, just going with the greater injury isn't that difficult, so against that Kevlar you maintain crushing damage up through 29 damage, but switch over to cutting at 30. If you're in a campaign where this is likely to matter, replace the generic "2xDR" with an armor-specific value, like the 30 for DR 12/3. You'll ideally want to use a spreadsheet, but that shouldn't be much of an issue, as this isn't something you'll need to adjust for on the fly.

Note here I assume you're talking about Low Tech's "Blunt Trauma and Edged Weapons" rule; the various houserules bouncing around may or may not address this particular issue.

As for axes and polearms, those shouldn't really be able to easily cut through armor either. Their historical performance against armor typically comes down to either using impaling damage (typically at Chinks/Gaps) or relying on blunt trauma. Dan Howard has repeatedly stated he would have preferred to give such weapons more base damage, which would have helped cover the blunt trauma issue.
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:30 AM   #32
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Default Re: Swords and plate

The general issue, which has already come up in this thread, is conflating so called evidence with so called common use and forcing those subjective conclusions into quantitative rules. Because GURPS has several constraints already built into this search for quantitative synchronization of your chosen pet theory, where you start will dictate where you will end up. The old saws and tired platitudes in support of these various positions are exhausting in and of themselves, before you even start with the rules as such. Suffice to say, realism cannot be achieved until you square what reality it is you want with the rules as they exist.
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:41 AM   #33
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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The general issue, which has already come up in this thread, is conflating so called evidence with so called common use and forcing those subjective conclusions into quantitative rules. Because GURPS has several constraints already built into this search for quantitative synchronization of your chosen pet theory, where you start will dictate where you will end up. The old saws and tired platitudes in support of these various positions are exhausting in and of themselves, before you even start with the rules as such. Suffice to say, realism cannot be achieved until you square what reality it is you want with the rules as they exist.
I agree, conversion into playable game rules is always going to be a hurdle to be cleared. Although I notice that there seems to be little difficulty in coming up with ways for either position to clear that hurdle* So the point of contention here doesn't seem to be what's possible to express in game terms.

But as to your points about "so called evidence","old saws" and "tired platitudes"! what's your evidence for your claim that axe blade were regularly used to cut through plate armour?

It seems to me not all positions are equally supported by evidence?



*Such is the adaptability of GURPS, I guess!

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Old 07-13-2016, 07:44 AM   #34
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Default Re: Swords and plate

Axes and polaxes, halberds, glaives, etc are historical weapons used again armored foes. The surviving manuals indicate they were used in armored combat. Did they slice through armor like a hot knife through butter? No, and I don't suggest so. What I do think is the ultimate issue is not armor DR by mm or damage by ST but misunderstanding wounds and the vagaries of HP. A 1" wide and deep wound sounds quite small, but where that wound is matters quite a lot. Further, and this is also important and overlooked, is that bleeding probably also counts for FP loss, too. Further, armor damage should reduce DR, channeling blows into damaged areas, reducing the glancing attributes of armor, etc. The complexity of the whole system really prevents us from modeling much of it in a game rules set assuming we don't start with the same point in mind. Screaming about "evidence" is really not going to get you anywhere in and of itself.
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:47 AM   #35
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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Originally Posted by Varyon View Post
The problem isn't so much complexity as it is incompleteness. Basically, no guidance is given on how to resolve cases of armors that have reduced DR against crushing. It seems easy enough to me to just use the crushing DR when the attack is converted to crushing, normal DR otherwise. ...
I'd keep the higher DR though out personally

1). it seems bit odd to reduce the DR when applying a rule that's designed to show how bad cutting attacks were against DR.

2). If you don't you end up with a win/win situation in some cases for swords, which again seems to be counter to the point of the rule

Last edited by Tomsdad; 07-13-2016 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 07-13-2016, 08:16 AM   #36
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
Axes and polaxes, halberds, glaives, etc are historical weapons used again armored foes. The surviving manuals indicate they were used in armored combat.
Yes and how they were used in such situations has been gone over, none of which relied upon them having their current ability to penetrate armour (especially if you remove edge protection)


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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
Did they slice through armor like a hot knife through butter? No, and I don't suggest so.


The first sentence in your first post in this thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by safisher View Post
I see this come up a lot, but Edge Protection is a spectacularly bad rule. It's too complex and it punishes well known armor-piercing weapons like axes and polearms. ....
you then in response to a post that amongst other things included: "You poke holes in armor not cleave in twain"

you said: "Basically none of this is true."



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Originally Posted by safisher View Post
What I do think is the ultimate issue is not armor DR by mm or damage by ST but misunderstanding wounds and the vagaries of HP. A 1" wide and deep wound sounds quite small, but where that wound is matters quite a lot.
That would seem to be a matter of injury location, which GURPS already covers separately


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Further, and this is also important and overlooked, is that bleeding probably also counts for FP loss, too.
Sounds OK to me (although since I use Last gasp it's less of an issue for me). But again that's a matter of bleeding rules and not relevant to the weapon getting past armour in the first place

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Further, armor damage should reduce DR, channeling blows into damaged areas, reducing the glancing attributes of armor, etc.
Again there are rules for that (armour damage rules in LTC2 I think)? But again not relevant to weapon getting through armour in the first place.



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The complexity of the whole system really prevents us from modeling much of it in a game rules set assuming we don't start with the same point in mind.
And yet your examples all seem to already be covered in the system, and as I pointed out the various solution's don't seem to be that much effort being generally speaking adjustments to what's already there.



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Screaming about "evidence" is really not going to get you anywhere in and of itself.
I'm not asking you to support your claims in order to help with coming up with gamable rules. I'm asking you to provide evidence for your claims because you are making not just an unsupported claim, but a claim that runs contrary to the evidence we do have.

Basically you came in questioning the very premise of the thread*, telling people they're wrong, but putting up no support for why you are right and we're all wrong.

Now if you want to have game playability as the metric to assess all this by and not historical reality**, then OK you don't need historical evidence for axes chopping though plate for that. But instead you need to cite evidence that improving DR vs. melee weapons somehow fails the playability test.

Oh and screaming, really? requesting evidence for assertions is screaming now is it.



*not a problem, I hasten to add.

**despite the fact that you certainly seem happy to argue over what historical reality was

Last edited by Tomsdad; 07-13-2016 at 09:12 AM.
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Old 07-13-2016, 10:03 AM   #37
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Default Re: Swords and plate

You know other posts in this thread make me question some assumptions.

I've always thought as axes and halberds as armor piercing weapons...

Its more appropriate to call them armor effective weapons, in reality ( I think) these weapons, as well as crushing weapons such as a mace, were used not to pierce armor but just to crush or otherwise bludgeon a person to death.

Causing extensive broken bones and internal injuries.

Now this is because axes hit harder than swords, as well as maces. Causing more compression force.

So with that, I think ill use a modified version of the edge protection.

It'll only be effective for metallic armors, and only against swords. To compensate ill make it easier for swords to target chinks.

I believe standard is - 10 to hit ? and for the estoc -8 ?

I might turn that into -8 and - 6 respectively

Swords vs. Leather or cloth has no effect
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Old 07-13-2016, 10:14 AM   #38
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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Now this is because axes hit harder than swords, as well as maces. Causing more compression force.
You'll want to give +1 damage to everything in the axe/mace family in this case, because RAW one-handed axes hit no harder than swords, plus they're unbalanced. And if you bring one-handed axes up to sw+3 cut, there's no reason in the world to use a mace with sw+3 cr, so that should be sw+4. It's up to you whether or not to adjust the swing damage of things like staffs and polearms in this case.

The Great Axe is sw+4 cut and the Maul is sw+5 cr, compared to sw+3 for two-handed swords, so maybe those don't need to be adjusted. But if two handed weapons are only dealing one more point of damage than the one-handed version, why bother?

This may seem like a lot of damage buffs to be handing out, but if you're buffing armor, it should balance out.
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Old 07-13-2016, 10:43 AM   #39
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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That would seem to be a matter of injury location, which GURPS already covers separately
<sarcasm>It does? Why, I had no idea that the rules included hit locations! Thank you for pointing out the obvious flaw in my thinking.<sarcasm>

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But again that's a matter of bleeding rules and not relevant to the weapon getting past armour in the first place
See it's this sort of pedantry that makes the conversation more difficult than it should be. Armor piercing is not just the function of getting through armor in any way whatsoever, but in doing damage through the armor. So yes OF COURSE how much damage you do and what type matters very much. Is it likely that axes and so forth caused 12" rips in plate? No, I don't see support for that.

It seems obvious that the mechanism of injury would have been some combination of: 1) concussive damage to tissue, including to bones deep beneath the tissue struck, 2) tears or cuts in the tissue under the armored area, possibly including bleeding injuries sufficient to debilitate an armored man down over time, 3) mechanical damage to the armor, and or the musculature or skeleton system of the target sufficient to compromise mobility, 4) strikes capable of stunning or addling the target.

To what degree any of this is cutting damage in GURPS is not clear. Does it seem likely, *** for tat, that a blow from a hammer would do less damage than that of halberd? That's hard to say. GURPS makes those assertions. Reality does not.

Quote:
not relevant to weapon getting through armour in the first place.
That's actually not true. Getting through the armor is only part of the equation. The damage and DR are simplistic systems intended, of course, to be integrated with the injury system. Effectiveness, as a metric, has many variables.

Quote:
And yet your examples all seem to already be covered in the system, and as I pointed out the various solution's don't seem to be that much effort being generally speaking adjustments to what's already there.
You've given your subjective conclusion. Thank you.

Quote:
I'm not asking you to support your claims in order to help with coming up with gamable rules. I'm asking you to provide evidence for your claims because you are making not just an unsupported claim, but a claim that runs contrary to the evidence we do have.
I've explained that these weapons were used in armored combat. I pointed to fighting books from the period supporting that assertion. You still want evidence. I'm really at a loss as to what it is will satisfy your demands.

But, let me try. I'll give an example from history, the battle of Morgarten. This is an actual battle in the early 1300s involving peasants with halberds (that is, yes, swing cutting weapons) slaughtering knights in armor. There are many interesting bits about this battle, but for our purposes, here's the key information:

"The penned-in knightly forces could do nothing to protect themselves from the mad onslaught.95 Some of the confederates rammed their long halberd spikes right through enemy chain mail, mercilessly impaling knights on their iron tips; others swung the enormously heavy axes slashing apart body armor, and then splitting open the exposed flesh.96 Knight and horse fell together at the pitiless onslaught of the massed halberds. The rout was so complete that John of Winterthur felt:
It was not a battle, but a mere butchery of Duke Leopoldís men; for the mountainfolk slew them like sheep in the shambles; no quarter was given, they cut down all without distinction. So great was the fierceness of the Confederates that scores of the Austrian foot-soldiery, when they saw the bravest knights falling helplessly, threw themselves in panic into the lake, preferring to drown rather than to be hewn about by the dreadful weapons of their enemies.
"
You can read the dissertation about Swiss Halberds here.
https://etd.ohiolink.edu/ap/10?0::NO...:osu1244264028

Ultimately the Swiss will evolve from pikes and halberd formations, to longer and longer pikes. Nevertheless, they did use halberds and did defeat armored knights in battle.

Now, if you insist that we have a History Channel video, or some fat duffer on Youtube swinging a cheap reproduction halberd against an even cheaper reproduction armor as "proof," alas, I know of none.

I can only point to primary source material from the period to back my assertions that swing cut weapons were used in armored combat. That, sadly, ought to be enough to tender the suggestion without ridicule, but I'm quite sure the medieval combat experts on these forums will have none of that, which is of course because so many on these forums are veterans of actual live steel medieval battles.
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Old 07-13-2016, 11:30 AM   #40
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Default Re: Swords and plate

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As for axes and polearms, those shouldn't really be able to easily cut through armor either.
Easily cut through, and cut through, are not the same. Low-Tech says "Realistically, itís extremely difficult for a blade edge to cut through any sort of armor." Which is a fabulous assertion without evidence to back it. Cutting edges and armor have existed on the same battlefields for centuries. You'd think we'd know from primary sources that this was a lame type of weapon to use against, you know, an armored foe. But outside of Howard's exaggerated claims, we don't really hear that. Much like his assertions about bronze swords being equal to the best steel (here) and what Alan William's conclude about armor (here), there's much lacking there in interpretation.

Quote:
Their historical performance against armor typically comes down to either using impaling damage (typically at Chinks/Gaps) or relying on blunt trauma.
I'd actually like to see where you get this, from a historical point of view. What we do know is that pole edged weapons were used in combat against armor. We know in some cases those weapons were effective against armored foes. I'd like to know where we hear that these weapons never, under any circumstances, penetrated armor.

Quote:
Dan Howard has repeatedly stated he would have preferred to give such weapons more base damage, which would have helped cover the blunt trauma issue.
Dan's understanding of GURPS is pretty limited. He wanted to increase armor DR, and increase weapon damage, too? For what purpose?
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