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Old 10-31-2009, 06:59 AM   #1
Greg 1
 
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Default [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

What might you throw at an average party of 250 point DF adventurers in a single encounter?

How tough would you make a single monster if only one was to be encountered?

What about if there were two?

Four?

Eight?

Yeah, I know most GMs tweak to suit the party, but give me your ballpark.
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Old 10-31-2009, 07:51 AM   #2
Groslon
 
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

You can use the probability chart on B171 to adjust your party's adversaries to an appropriate level. Generally speaking, you want to make your bad guys a threat, but not overwhelming, so adjust their skill levels to match.

In general terms, skill 12 is the absolute minimum for a credible combat threat. You can hit reliably with skill 12, but any sort of penalty will quickly render you inept. Skill 14-15 are solid performers that can make a few called shots, and handle small penalties. Skill 17-18 bad guys are usually quite dangerous since they can reliably hit your PCs in the head or vitals, or make Deceptive Attacks to foil your PCs defenses. 20+ is worse because they can do both at the same time.

When dealing with groups of enemies, if you don't want to change the threat level to your party, then adjust the enemy's skill downwards.
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Old 10-31-2009, 10:08 AM   #3
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

My experience is that delvers can take about twice their number in moderate skill minions (say orcs/goblins with Weapon and Shield skill 14) and triumph with little or no damage. Four times as many minions as delvers results in a difficult, but probably beatable fight, with 1-2 delvers critically wounded and needing to rest for a few days.

If there are fewer monsters than delvers, the monsters need to be pretty hard-core. Crushrooms and Acid Spiders from DF2 are monsters of this sort: high skill, high ST critters that can take a hit or two and still attack. A group of ogres with skill-16 or another band of PC templates is also generally a match.

Single or double foes generally need to be very powerful. Peshkali, stone golems, siege beasts, and sword-armor golems from DF2, or heavily layered PC templates with lots of power-ups are good examples. The monster needs multiple strong defenses, lots of HP, and good armor to be a credible threat.

I hope that helps.
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Old 10-31-2009, 08:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Well lets take a simple case.....

A Barabarian, a Cleric and a Wizard walk into a bar.....how many of the Local guard will it take to get them out?

Guard in full Plate(DR7), With Spear(12:1d+2 Imp), Defense(BPD) = 0-9-9, HP:10.

Barbarian in Fur(DR1) with Bastard Sword(17:4d Cut), Defense(BPD)=0-12-9 (Includes ComRef), HP:22.

Cleric in Mail(DR 4:2) with Mace(14:2d+1 cr) and MedShield, Defense(BPD) = 12-12-10(Includes DB), HP:12.

Wizard in Robes (DR1) with Staff(14:1d+2), Defense(BPD)=0-12-9, HP:10.

NOTE: Before we get started, this is a very tactical situation and i Dont claim to be able to evaluate all possible decisions/strategies etc. This is meant to be a ballpark.

EDIT: Changed to include these Values for greater accuracy
(Chance to Hit)(Expectation fo Damage beyond DR on that Hit)(Wounding)
Cleric = (.574)(1.56)(1) = .9 per turn
Barbie = (.70)(7)(1.5) = 7.6 per turn
Wizard = (.574)(.1667)(1) = .10 per turn

Guard
1 v Wizard = (.574)(4.5)(2) = 5.2
3 v Barbarian = (.206+.47+.47)(4.5)(2) =10.3
2 v Cleric = (.206 + .38)(1.67)(2) = 1.96


So lets look at the tale of the Tape

Barbarian v Guard
Barbarian Offense
(Likelyhood of a Hit)(Likelyhood of Damage)
(17 v 9)* (DMG v DR)
71.8*98.8= 70%
Damage Dealt Expectation per turn = (.70)(7)(1.5) = 7.6 per turn beyond DR

Barbarian Defense
Parry : 100-(12v12) 20.6 = 79.4%
Dodge: 100 - (12 v 9) 47 = 53%
3 v Barbarian = (.206+.47+.47)(4.5)(2) =10.3

Damage Absorbed Expectaition per turn = (3.5+2-1) = 3 v Barbarian = (.206+.47+.47)(4.5)(2) =10.3 Beyond DR

So for 2 opponenets there is a 67.6% chance the Barbarian will get hit, For 3, hell get hit once and some change.

Barbarian is Dishing out Avg 7.6 ( a Major wound) Every turn.

So to really challenge the Barbarian, well have to put at least 3 guys on him.

3 guys will do about 10 damage a turn, 4 would do 14.23, 5 would do 18.23.

EDIT:Changed from earlier.

Seeing these new numbers, and knowing that the Barabrian has 22 HP, Ill up my original estimate by One guy :) to 4 on the barbarian.

Sounds like a lot, but hes got 22 and the odds that any single attack will do enough to serriously wound him are slim. (HP/2)

Those guys wont last long even in plate though against that 4d sword! They should have brought shields!

Cleric v Guard
Cleric Offense:
(14v9)(2d+1v7)
(57.4)(58.3) = 33%
(Hit %)(Damage Expected)(Wounding)
Damage Dealt per turn = (.574)(1.56)(1) = .9 per turn Beyond DR


Cleric Defense
Block:12v12=>100- 20.1% = 79.9%
Parry: (not likely with the mace, But possibel) Same as Block
Dodge: 12 v 10=> 100-38% = 62%
Damage Absorbed per turn = 2 v Cleric = (.206 + .38)(1.67)(2) = 1.96 Beyond DR


Well assume that the cleric is an active participant, and that the parry is unlikely. so if there are 2 on the cleric they have about a 58% chance of getting a hit.

The Cleric Deals out almost a point past DR per round, but compared to the almost 2 coming in, this aint enough.

If we drop down to one foe, its only .68 points per turn past DR, which may not be challenging enough.

This is a clear testament ot the value of a Shield and Armor! The Barbarian should take a lesson!

The Cleric will be here all day against these 2 foes and is at a disadvantage. The Cleric will likely have to take AOD, or simply forgo his attack to parry.

note that If the Cleric has Spells that can neutralize the attackers AND has time to get them off scale them based on the liklihood that those attacks will succeed.

Sleep Spell for example:
Cleric has Sleep (either spell or Affliction ablility). If the likelihood is less than 50% that the opponent will resist it, Dont count that opponent.

So if our guards have will of 12 and HT of 10:
Then 2 levels of Affliction(Sleep), or the Sleep Spell at 13 will be enough to negate one of the Guards

Wizard v Guard
Wizard Offense
(14v9)(1d+2 v 7)
(57.4)(16.7) = 9.5%
Damage Dealt =(.574)(.1667)(1) = .10 per turn Beyond DR

Wizard Defense
Parry = 12v12 = 100-20.1 = 79.9 %
Dodge = 12 v 9 = 100-47% = 53%
Damge absorbed = (.574)(4.5)(2) = 5.2 Beyond DR


For a wizard with Burning Touch 3 for example the balance shifts DRAMATICALLY because it nulliifies the effects of the shiny PLate Mail Armor.

Taken as is however, this is NOT a good place to be!

The Wizard will be taking around 5 dmg per turn which is more than HP/2. The ONLY options for the wizard is take AOD Parry,retreat or cast somethign amazing! A stand up fight however, is not for him.

So In Conclusion:

Based on these rough numbers,
at least 4 for the Barbie, 2 for the Cleric, and 1 - 3 for the wizard depending on his spells.


Nymdok

Last edited by Nymdok; 11-02-2009 at 06:18 AM.
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Old 11-01-2009, 04:38 AM   #5
Greg 1
 
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Thank you! Very helpful! :)
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Old 11-01-2009, 10:45 AM   #6
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Just a quick note on the damage values: You treat DR unusually with the "chance to get through DR". For high values you can simply subtract the DR from the expected values for a good approximation (like the 4d vs DR 7 is 14 - 7 = 7 on average, and this is 100% precise if even the lowest damage is equal to DR), but for low damage that approximation is a bit too pessimistic. The Cleric does expected damage 2d+1=8, so he should hit for only 1 after DR using the approximation, but it is actually more like 1.6 each hit. (Reason: A 2d+1 vs DR 7 does not do -4 damage when a 2 is rolled, and similiarly for 3,4,5.)

So, assuming a hit, the average damage that penetrates the plate armor is:
Barb: 7.02 cut (*1.5 = 10.5)
Cleric: 1.56 cr (*1)
Wiz: 0.17 cr (*1)

The guards deal 4.5 imp (*2) penetrating damage to the barb and wizard, but only 1.67 imp (*2) vs. the Cleric's Mail (on average, assuming a hit).

Furthermore, with the not so high hit probability of the guards, the defenses of the PCs would be more effective than in your calculation, at least for the cleric. (The barb always dodges, so this is easy to calculate, and the wiz has only one enemy.) The cleric would block the first successful hit (if it comes from the shield side ... arggh) and then dodge the rest. But that's not the same as assuming that the 1st guard is up against the block and the 2nd and 3rd against the dodge. Probably the error isn't that great (it only happens when the first guy misses), but it would be quite pronounced if the guards had skill 10 or so and the clerics block was even higher. But I don't have the precise numbers for the cleric just yet ...

And yeah, overall the numbers seem good despite these slight inaccuracies.

Regards,
Ts
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Old 11-01-2009, 02:18 PM   #7
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Sorry! Another long post with numbers.

And another thing ... the overall results of these fights. The barb needs just one hit to take out a guard (let's just assume that for simplicity), the cleric needs about 3 hits to get the guards down to half HP (when they might flee), and the wizard needs ... maybe 30.

The barb hits 64.8% of the time. So one guard drops roughly every 1.5 rounds (1 / chance is the expected time for one hit).
The cleric hits 57.4% of the time, so one guard leaves a fight roughly every (3 hits * 1 / 57.4%) = 5.2 rounds.
(Let's just ignore the wizard. He needs about 150 rounds to get a guard to half HP ...)
A guard can hit the barb 47.0% of the time, and the cleric 20.5% for the block and 38.0% for the dodge.
Wounds from the guards is as above: 9 vs barb and wizard, 3.3 vs the Cleric.

So, the barb takes about 47% * 9 injury / round / guard = 4.5.
For the cleric (Blocking simplified, like in Nymdoks post) it's only 0.67 vs the block and 1.25 vs the dodge.

The phase with 1 opponent will last about 1.5 rounds for the barb and 5.2 rounds for the cleric. That's 6.75 and 3.5 damage to barb and cleric, respectively.

For two guards: 9 dmg / round vs. the barb, and roughly 2 vs. the cleric.
This phase lasts 1.5 rounds for the barb and 4.2 for the cleric (who got initiative over the guards, so saves 1 round of being hit).
That's 13.5 and 8.4 damage.

For three guards: 13.5 dmg / round vs. the barb (and 3.25 vs the cleric).
This phase lasts 0.5 rounds for the barb because he's got initiative and might drop someone before he got attacked the first time, so that's 6.75 dmg for the barb.

In total the barb spent 5.5 turns and lost 27 HP. The cleric spent 9.4 seconds and lost 12 HP. Ouch.

So, what does this tell us? Three guards bring a barb down to -5 HP and the cleric down to 0 HP, assuming everyone just "attacks". However, if the barb survives, he would probably kill the cleric's 2nd attacker quickly about the same time the cleric dropped his first oppenent to half HP. Then the fight is over and the cleric actually took a little bit less damage than assumed above, around 7 HP only.

Things that are missing from this: Extra effort and better defense stuff like retreat, if that is possible. Other attack maneuvers might not help much. (All-out-attack, for example, increases the hit rate of the guards by 1.5, but also how much they get hit by about the same factor, assuming the PCs always change their target to an AoAing foe, which is less of an option for the cleric ...) And hit locations, telegraphic / deceptive attack, etc. to optimize average damage compared to simply hitting the torso, if there is potential. Oh, and disarming and crippling and stuff ... Anyway, most of this isn't in favor of the PCs, because each group of guards has 2-3 weapons, while a PC has only 1 ...

So, if healing potions are available, all of this shouldn't matter that much, the fight might simply take a bit longer and the guards will eventually die. Without healing, the PCs might both fall unconcious, in particular if even more guards attack the barb first (they have reach 2, I guess, and can stab "through" their fellow guards). On the other hand, if the PCs barricade themselves and take out one guard at a time in a doorframe like one would do it in a CRPG ...

I guess the lesson is:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
Multiple combatants are indeed a place where things get sticky, fast.
Oh, and also for a real challenge that encounter was a pretty good guess.

Regards,
Ts

PS: These numbers come without any claim of correctness, other than that they seem to make sense and my computer said that they are okay.
PPS: Edited because I assumed 3 guards attacking the cleric (the fight ended at -10 HP for him).

Last edited by Ts_; 11-01-2009 at 02:28 PM. Reason: only 2 guards attack the cleric
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Old 11-01-2009, 06:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ts_ View Post
Just a quick note on the damage values: .....
Yeah, I had set the model up originally for another purpose what i susbstituted in was sloppy.

(Chance to Hit)(Expectation fo Damage on that Hit)(Wounding)
Cleric = (.574)(1.56)(1) = .9 per turn
Barbie = (.70)(7)(1.5) = 7.6 per turn
Wizard = (.574)(.1667)(1) = .10 per turn

Guard
1 v Wizard = (.574)(5.5)(2) = 6.3
3 v Barbarian = (.206+.47+.47)(4.5)(2) =10.3
2 v Cleric = (.206 + .38)(1.67)(2) = 1.96


Ill go back and edit that post in just a sec.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ts_ View Post
The cleric would block the first successful hit (if it comes from the shield side ... arggh) and then dodge the rest. But that's not the same as assuming that the 1st guard is up against the block and the 2nd and 3rd against the dodge. Probably the error isn't that great (it only happens when the first guy misses), but it would be quite pronounced if the guards had skill 10 or so and the clerics block was even higher. But I don't have the precise numbers for the cleric just yet ...
Facing is one of those tactical questions. If there are 2 on the cleric, at least one of them is on his shield side, assumning the cleric is facing them. The hit proabability seems ot iron out the rest.

Nymdok
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Old 11-01-2009, 06:11 PM   #9
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ts_ View Post
Sorry! Another long post with numbers.

And another thing ... the overall results of these fights......


PS: These numbers come without any claim of correctness, other than that they seem to make sense and my computer said that they are okay.
PPS: Edited because I assumed 3 guards attacking the cleric (the fight ended at -10 HP for him).
Dont apologize, All improvements in the model (and for the sake of the OP, the scenario) are most defineately welcome! The expectation of the fight is actually one of those things that Ive been wrestling with.

Heheheh Ive mad egregious math erros in a thread that is thus far only 6 posts long, Im not sitting in judgement one anyone :)
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Old 11-01-2009, 06:46 PM   #10
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Default Re: [DF] Suitable Dangerous Encounters

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nymdok View Post
Barbarian v Guard
Barbarian Offense
(Likelyhood of a Hit)(Likelyhood of Damage)
(17 v 9)* (DMG v DR)
71.8*98.8= 70%
Damage Dealt Expectation per turn = 9.8 or just 10
Ok, you lost me. Where are you coming up with these percentages and numbers? The above is just an example, but I'm trying to understand the math behind this, so I can calculate this for myself.

Thanks,
Tim
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