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Old 02-05-2010, 10:57 AM   #1
Figleaf23
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Default Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

Hello, maybe this is obvious, but I have somehow been unable to ascertain it -- is parrying with a Brawling weapon (e.g. cestus) considered an unarmed parry?

Also, a related question -- can you use the Block maneouver with objects other than a shield or a cloak?
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Old 02-05-2010, 11:18 AM   #2
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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Originally Posted by Figleaf23 View Post
Hello, maybe this is obvious, but I have somehow been unable to ascertain it -- is parrying with a Brawling weapon (e.g. cestus) considered an unarmed parry?
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Figleaf23 View Post
Also, a related question -- can you use the Block maneouver with objects other than a shield or a cloak?
If it's sufficiently shield-like or cloak-like to count as an improvised shield/cloak, then yes (perhaps at a penalty).
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Old 02-05-2010, 09:07 PM   #3
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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Yes.


If it's sufficiently shield-like or cloak-like to count as an improvised shield/cloak, then yes (perhaps at a penalty).
This makes me wonder how these conceptual lines are drawn. What makes a small buckler or a cloak capable of Blocking, but a big steel mit can't do something very similar.
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Old 02-06-2010, 12:38 AM   #4
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

Method of use/skill used perhaps? I had a long running... issue with one player who insisted that his character was "blocking" with the karate skill. While he may have been perfectly correct from a real life point of view he never seemed to accept that in GURPS, blocking with an unarmed or melee skill is a parry. That aside, if you think blocking with a cestus is logical assign it some DR and note that a successful "block" pretty much means the attacker automatically hits the defender's hand/forearm. Natural consequences apply.
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Old 02-06-2010, 02:05 AM   #5
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

Parrying is deflecting harm out of the way. Blocking is placing something in harm's way, taking the brunt of the blow. It seems counter-productive (though possible) to block the pointy end of an arrow with your arm, thus damaging it, to save yourself when you could've parried it.
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Old 02-06-2010, 02:09 AM   #6
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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Parrying is deflecting harm out of the way. Blocking is taking the harm in your place. It seems counter-productive (though possible) to block the pointy end of an arrow with your arm, thus damaging it, to save yourself when you could've parried it.
Yes.

Note that in the real world, one often does not have the speed and skill to reliably parry pointy and sharp objects with one's bare hands, but one may have the skill to interpose an arm so that the wound is painful, potentially crippling, but not mortal.

See Harsh Realism for Unarmed Fighters in GURPS Martial Arts for unarmed parries which are more like blocks and consist of interposing the arm rather than deflecting the blow.
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Old 02-06-2010, 02:14 AM   #7
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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Originally Posted by Figleaf23 View Post
Hello, maybe this is obvious, but I have somehow been unable to ascertain it -- is parrying with a Brawling weapon (e.g. cestus) considered an unarmed parry?
It is. You may get DR on your hand or arm for the weapon, though.

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Also, a related question -- can you use the Block maneouver with objects other than a shield or a cloak?
Certainly. Anything that could be used in a similar manner can be used as an improvised Shield or a Cloak.

Canonical examples include chairs, for example. If the item in question cannot be found on lists of improvised weapons, the GM assigns a penalty. If the character likes to pick up random objects and use them to defend himself, he should look into the Improvised Weapons perk, which can certainly cover Cloak or Shield.

Note also that with a Perk (Unarmed Parry, PU: Perks p. 8) it would be possible to use any weapon skill in place of your unarmed skill with a Parry. This doesn't make your parry 'armed', but it's handy if one weapon skill is higher than your unarmed skills. The GM should only allow this when it makes sense, for example for styles which teach off-hand parrying with a thick glove with Rapier skill and suchlike.

I don't see a problem with allowing this for Shield skill, though, so that one could Block with a large gauntlet. It's neither unrealistic nor unbalancing.
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Old 02-06-2010, 03:15 AM   #8
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

IIRC, the Persians didn't use shields, but a specially reinforced scale armor on the arm to block the enemy's weapon instead.
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Old 02-06-2010, 11:41 AM   #9
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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IIRC, the Persians didn't use shields, but a specially reinforced scale armor on the arm to block the enemy's weapon instead.
Key words here being 'specially reinforced'. @:-) It's ok to parry a sword with your arm when you've got DR8 or so on it...
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Old 02-06-2010, 09:04 PM   #10
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Default Re: Unarmed Parrying - Brawling Weapons?

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Originally Posted by Seamonster View Post
Parrying is deflecting harm out of the way. Blocking is placing something in harm's way, taking the brunt of the blow. It seems counter-productive (though possible) to block the pointy end of an arrow with your arm, thus damaging it, to save yourself when you could've parried it.
I'm not sure that's a completely reliable distinction. For example, the overhead cross parry in sabre/cutlass fencing (can't remember what the number is -- tierce?) seems pretty 'blocky' rather than deflecty. Suppose a culture had a signature weapon composed of a small round disk held by a handle in the middle of one side. Defensively, would they block with it, or parry?
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