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Old 06-30-2007, 01:30 AM   #4
vicky_molokh's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Kyv, Ukraine
Default (u)FAQ: COMBAT


If I have a Reach-1 weapon, and I'm attacked by a Reach-C enemy, can I Parry...
...while Retreating?
...while the enemy enters my hex?

Yes and yes. Otherwise, somewhere in Martial Arts there is a passage that allows Parrying Reach-C attacks with Reach-1 weapons at a penalty even while in Close Combat.

How do I scale weapons for large creatures?
Originally Posted by Kromm
We'll probably cover this in a future book, but our math at the time we were writing the Basic Set 4e made it clear that there were no simple rules. The problem is that the same SM can give very different surface areas, and SM doesn't reliably have a whole lot to do with ST and arm length. Thus, we'd need a set of rules that could cover many body morphologies and builds, which would be far too complex for something called the BASIC Set.

A quick-and-dirty approach for armor might be:

1. Find height in yards from SM using the table on p. B19.

2. Assume that minimum ST for that height is 5 x height in yards, as is done for Growth on p. B58.

3. Work out the Basic Lift (BL) for this minimum ST.

4. Since ST corresponds to height, ST^2 corresponds to area. Because BL is simply a multiple of ST^2, you can scale armor -- which covers your area -- with BL. Simply multiply armor cost and weight by BL/20, where "BL" is the BL for the minimum ST above and 20 is human-average BL.

Example: An SM +1 creature is on average 9' tall; that is, three yards tall. Minimum ST for that height is 5 x 3 = 15. BL for ST 15 is 45, so armor cost and weight scale by a factor of 45/20 = 2.25. A $500, 18-lb. breastplate becomes $1,125 and 40.5 lbs.

Weapons are more troublesome, because they don't all scale the same way and because materials limit useful dimensions. Still, if you naively assume that a weapon has to scale with its user in all dimensions -- so that it can deliver his full striking force -- then a really dirty way to treat weapons is to scale with (minimum ST)^3/1,000, since ST scales with height and normal human ST^3 = 1,000.

Example: Our 9' creature has minimum ST 15, so his weapons scale by a factor of 15^3/1,000 = 3.375. A $500, 3-lb. broadsword becomes $1,690 and 10.2 lbs.

The ST stat of weapons should just scale with the minimum user ST. For instance, a normal broadsword needs ST 10, so a big one like this needs ST 15. It also requires SM +1 or it's going to be too overbalanced to use. That's not a ST issue but an issue of hand size. A ST 15 man would need to use two hands! Remember that the maximum effective ST to use a weapon is three times its ST stat, so our example sword maxes out at ST 45 instead of ST 30.

Damage is hard to judge; most of the extra damage comes from the user being really strong. And of course with a higher ST stat, the maximum effective ST can be a lot higher, too. Still, some damage comes from weapon weight. I'd cop out and just add (scale factor - 1) to damage. So that broadsword would get 3.375 - 1 = 2.375, or +2, damage. That's swing+3 cut/thrust+3 cr.
If a character is firing a ranged weapon at a target below them how do you figure out the range penalty?
Specifically, is it is just the range penalty based on linear range-(height/2) (min. 1/2 linear range) or do you also apply the penalty based on the difference in height?
Originally Posted by Kromm
Linear range minus the height factor, subject to the listed limits. I'd
say that half height is the minimum range, if you're shooting straight

So how many attacks can a character make in a turn, maximum?
Originally Posted by Kromm
Number of Attacks = 1 + Extra Attack Level +1 if All-Out Attack (Double)

E.g. 1: A human with no Extra Attack has 1 + 0 + 0 = 1 attack normally, or 1 + 0 + 1 = 2 attacks with All-Out Attack (Double).

E.g. 2: A dragon with Extra Attack 3 has 1 + 3 + 0 = 4 attacks normally, or 1 + 3 + 1 = 5 attacks with All-Out Attack (Double).

In addition, one can swap one and only one of those attacks for either a Rapid Strike (or Combination) or a Dual-Weapon Attack.
Note that Altered Time Rate effectively provides you with extra turns for the purpose of the above calculation!

Q: How obvious are negative status effects, such as being stunned, to opponents in combat?
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
The following results in combat are obvious without any dice rolling:
  • Knocked back.
  • Knocked down.
  • Stunned; the heart attack mortal condition; and the agony, choking, daze, and ecstasy incapacitating conditions.
  • Crippled.
  • Hallucinating incapacitating condition.
  • Retching incapacitating condition.
  • Seizure incapacitating condition.
  • Dead; unconscious; the coma mortal condition; and the paralysis, sleep, and unconsciousness incapacitating conditions.
However, it would require a Concentrate maneuver and a skill roll to distinguish between two conditions on the same line above in a fight (stunned vs. daze, dead vs. merely unconscious, etc.). Ditto to distinguish between two causes of the same condition (knocked down by failed HT roll vs. knocked down by failed DX roll, mental vs. physical stun, etc.). And ditto to identify shock (the penalty due to injury), irritating conditions (coughing/sneezing, drowsy, drunk, euphoria, nauseated, pain, or tipsy), or wounds (missing 1 HP vs. missing 4 HP, etc.).

I would allow several skills to work here. Diagnosis is obvious, but other possibilities might be Body Language (to notice shock, tell types of stun apart, etc.), Physiology, Streetwise (to spot drunk, euphoria, etc., and to distinguish ecstasy/daze due to drugs from combat stun), and anything else the player convinced me made sense. For instance, I'd let a boxer make a Per-based Boxing roll to assess the results of his beating. The important part is the turn spent scrutinizing the target, not the skill. I'd probably give a bonus equal in size to the largest relevant penalty to notice irritating conditions and shock, too; drunk, with -4 to self-control rolls, would be +4 to spot, compared to +2 for tipsy. Likewise, -4 in shock would give +4.

However, the simple answer about stun is, "Yes, it's obvious when somebody is stunned." In general, if somebody wants to fake still being stunned (or any other status above), the onus is on him to win a Quick Contest vs. observers' IQ or relevant skill.
Q: How do Darkness and general Vision penalties affect Active Defences?
A: By RAW basic rules, they don't. However, if you prefer to change that, here's a less official but still coherent way to handle them:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
[ . . . ] Darkness penalties amount to DX and Per penalties for tasks with a vision component, and DX penalties affect DX-based skills. Thus, if you're at -N to DX, you have -N to combat skills, which means -N/2 to defenses. I'd also apply this to Dodge, for consistency's sake.
Vicky 'Molokh', GURPS FAQ and uFAQ Keeper

Last edited by vicky_molokh; 12-10-2019 at 02:56 AM. Reason: How obvious are negative status effects, such as being stunned, to opponents in combat?
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