Saturday, June 18, 2011

Trollslayers - Combat Example

Been busy with other things, but it's time to get back to working on Trollslayers.  Let's detail a sample character or two, and see what sort of mayhem we can put them through...

Drogo is a human Expert whose profession happens to be that of a Thief.  He likes to think of himself as a charming rogue, but at this point he's pretty much just a thug with ambitions.  He recently reached 2nd level (improving his END from 7 to 8 in the process), after being the sole survivor of a dungeon expedition, and at the moment is pretty much broke.  His relevant stats are as follows:

STR 12 (-)      DEX 14 (+1)     END 8 (-1)       KNO 12 (-)      OBS 11 (-)       PRE 16 (+1)
HEALTH 15     ENC 7              MOVE 16         DEF +3           INITIATIVE +2

His combat talents are Sword +1, Dagger +1, and the recently acquired Dual Attacks +1.  His other talents include Stealth +1, Lockpicking +1, Climbing +1, Seduction +1 (also recently acquired), and Ambidexterity.

He carries a sword (DV 7, +1 to DEF) and a dagger (DV 3, no DEF bonus); he often uses both to fight two-handed style (no penalty for attacking with his left hand due to ambidexterity, and he only suffers a -1 penalty to attacking with two weapons due to his Dual Attacks +1 talent).  He also has a spare dagger.  He wears leather armor, effectively reducing his DEX to 13 (which doesn't change his attribute bonus), adds +1 to his DEF score, and gives him an AR or 2 vs Cutting and Blunt attacks (AR 1 vs Piercing attacks).  His total DEF score is +3 (+1 for using his sword vs melee attacks, +1 for the leather armor, and +1 for his DEX attribute bonus - the bonus from the sword would not count against missile attacks, and the bonus from the leather would not count against piercing attacks).  As a Player Character, he has 2 Hero Points he can use during any given gaming session.  One of the few benefits of his recent poverty is that he is Unencumbered (2 ENC for his sword, 1 ENC each for the two daggers, 2 ENC for the leather armor, and 1 ENC for the thieves' tools he carries equals 7, which is equal to his base ENC score).  He has a Serious Wound Threshold of 5 (2/3 of his END).

Drogo's player tells the GM that he wants to prowl the city in hopes of finding an easy target for robbery, so that he can acquire some quick money, and hopefully won't have to sleep under the open stars tonight.  After several hours of searching the streets, he finally finds a suitable target: a fat merchant with a belt pouch full of coin, and too much alcohol in his belly.  As it turns out, a very negative reaction roll means the drunken merchant actually attacks the thief.  Drogo's blades make quick work of the foolish man, leaving the merchant a bloody corpse in the back-alleyway.  Drogo would have preferred to take the man's money without resorting to violence, but what's done is done.  He takes the merchant's hefty coin purse and ties it to his own belt, preparing to leave the alleyway and find an inn where he can acquire a room, some food and drink, and perhaps a prostitute.

Unfortunately for Drogo, a random encounter check means a town guard just happens to be passing by.  Pulling out a random member of the guard from a stack of 3x5 index cards with various NPCs listed on them, the GM determines that the guardsman is none other than a man named Kedrick, a 1st level human Warrior:

STR 13 (+1)     DEX 15 (+1)     END 14 (+1)      KNO 8 (-1)      OBS 13 (+1)     PRE 11 (-)
HEALTH 21      ENC 8              MOVE 14           DEF +6           INITIATIVE +1

His combat talents are Spear +1 and Shield +1, and he has Sharp Eyes +1 as well.

He carries a spear (DV 6, +1 to DEF), which he usually uses one-handed, so that he may also use a Medium Shield (DV 4 if used as a weapon, +3 to DEF, with an additional +1 because of his Shield talent).  He also has a dagger as a back-up weapon, but he rarely uses it.  He wears chain mail (his prized possession) for his armor, effectively reducing his DEX to 12 (dropping his attribute bonus to nil), giving him AR 5 and +2 DEF vs Cutting attacks, and AR 2 and +1 DEF vs Piercing and Blunt attacks.  His total DEF score is +7 vs Cutting attacks, and +6 vs other attacks.  As a NPC, he has no Hero Points.  His total ENC score from his spear, medium shield, dagger, and chain mail is 12, which makes him lightly encumbered, reducing both his MOVE and his DEX down to 11.  He has a Serious Wound Threshold of 11 (half of his Health score).

The alleyway is about 10 feet wide, and perhaps 50 feet long.  The moon is clear and bright overhead, so there are no darkness-related penalties for this combat.  The walls at the end of the alleyway (where Drogo and the corpse are) are about 25 feet high, as they are all part of two-story buildings.  Drogo could try to climb up the walls to escape, but he knows it would probably take him at least one round, maybe two, to get up over the walls, and he would either have to take a round to sheath his now-bloody weapons, or drop them and leave them behind before he starts climbing.  Not relishing the idea of the guardsman getting a few chances to poke him in the back with that spear while he would be climbing up the wall (possibly causing him to fall), Drogo sighs and instead prepares himself for a fight with the guardsman, hoping to end it as quickly as possible.

At this time, the GM reminds Krogo's player that the coin purse is fairly heavy, and counts as ENC 1.  This is enough to give Drogo a total ENC rating of 8, making him lightly encumbered; this reduces his MOVE to 12, and more importantly lowers his DEX to 12 as well, which means his attribute bonus would drop from +1 to nil.  Drogo's players mutters several obscenities regarding the GM's ancestry.

Round one:  Drogo rolls a total of 5 for initiative, and the GM roll a total of 3 for Kedrick.  The GM declares that Kedrick will advance forward slowly, yelling out for his fellow guardsmen, standing in the middle of the alleyway to best block Drogo from running past him.  Drogo's player declares that he will be throwing his spare dagger at the guard (this will reduce his encumbrance score, so that if nothing else he will be unencumbered again), while also advancing forward slowly.

Both characters move; Drogo winds up being just a few feet outside of Kedrick's spear range, so the guardsman gets no attack this round.

Drogo throws his dagger.  His target number to hit is 8, plus Kedrick's DEF score of 7, is 15, which is what he needs to roll on two dice (including any doubles) to hit.  Drogo doesn't get any DEX bonus this round, and gets a +1 to hit because of his skill with daggers.  That means he needs a total of 14 or better to hit, which means he has to roll doubles to succeed.  He rolls a 9; the dagger bounces harmlessly off Kedrick's shield, landing off to the side of the alleyway. 

Round two:  Drogo rolls a 6 for initiative, while Kedrock rolls a 4.  Kedrick stands his ground (he knows that time is on his side; the longer things goes on, the better chance another guardsman will show up).  Drogo will step forward and attack.

Because of the length advantage Kedrick has with his spear, he gets a free attack as Drogo closes in.  Even though Drogo has the initiative, Kedrick gets his free attack before Drogo can act.  Kedrick gets a +1 to hit because he is a Warrior, and another +1 because of his spear talent, giving him +2 to hit.  Drogo (whose effective DEX is back up to 13) has a DEF score of +2 (remember his leather armor doesn't give a DEF bonus vs Piercing attacks).  This means that Kedrick needs a 8 + 2 -2 = 8 to hit.  He rolls a 6 and misses.  Drogo draws his spare dagger, and attacks with both his sword and dagger.  He has a -1 penalty for attacking with two weapons in one round, and suffers a -1 penalty with the dagger because he is attacking with it the same round he unsheathed it (there's also a -1 penalty on initiative for this, which means his dagger attack goes at 5 instead of 6).  He needs a 14+ to his with his sword, and a 15+ with his dagger (climbing up that wall now sounds like it may have been the better option).  He lucks out and rolls a 17 on his sword attack.

Because he exceeded the needed attack roll by 3, the DV for his sword attack is increased by +1 to 8.  Kedrick's armor absorbs 5 points of damage, so 3 points of Cutting damage gets through, leaving Kedrick currently with a Health of 18.

Drogo rolls a 6 on his second attack with his dagger, missing badly.  Kedrick then gets his normal attack for this round.  He needs a 8+ to hit, and rolls a 8 exactly, which is a graze.  His base damage with the spear is a DV of 7 (base 6, +1 for STR mod).  This is halved to 4 because it's a graze.  Drogo's armor reduces 1 pt of damage against Piercing attacks, so Drogo also suffers a 3-pt wound this round, leaving him with a Health score of 12. 

Round three:  Kedrick rolls a 6, Drogo rolls a 4 for initiative.  Knowing that the odds of winning a straight-up fight is pretty slim, he will attempt a feint this round, with the description of trying to draw Kedrick over to one side of the alleyway.  Kedrick will continue to fight normally.  Kedrick rolls a 6 on his attack roll, and misses this round.  Drogo's 'attack' roll for his feint has the same +2 modifier to the roll, but his chances of success are much better, as Kedrick only has a +1 DEF against this maneuver (+1 for OBS attribute modifier, no mods for armor or shield).  He needs a 7+ to succeed, and rolls an 11, giving him a +2 to his next attack roll.       

Round four:  Kedrick and Drogo both roll a 6 for initiative, so their actions are simultaneous.  Drogo wants to use All-Out Defense (foregoing any attacks, giving him a +2 to DEF this round), and add the +2 bonus from last round's feint to his DEF instead of his attack score (the GM rules that this is acceptable, but notes that if Drogo tries to break free while engaged in combat with Kedrick, the latter will get a free attack), while darting past on the opposite side of the alleyway that he maneuvered Kedrick to last round.  Drogo's total DEF score this round is +6.  Kedrick needs an 8 -2 + 6 =12 to hit this round; he rolls an 8 and fails.  Drogo sidesteps the guardsman and begins to sprint down the alleyway.

However, Kedrick gets a free attack before Drogo can completely escape out of range.  Not only does Keedrick lose his +1 DEF bonus from his sword (since he's facing the other way), but Kedrick gets a +2 attack bonus for attacking from the rear.  Drogo's total DEF bonus is +5, Kedrick's attack roll is at +4; Kedrick needs a 9+ to hit.

Rolling doubles, Kedrick rolls a total of 16 to hit.  Becasue he made his attack roll by 7, not only does he add +3 to the damage (for a total of 10), but he can also target a limb as well; the GM declares that Drogo's right leg was hit.  Drogo's armor stops one point of the Piercing attack, but he still suffers 9 points of damage (reducing his Health to 3); this is a Serious Wound.  Not only is Drogo stunned, but he must make an END roll of 11+ (base 10+ because the damage exceeded his END score, -1 for END attribute mod) to avoid getting his leg impaled.  He rolls a 9, failing the roll by two.  Drogo then spends his 2 Hero Points to make the roll a success.

Because he was running, got stunned, and had his leg injured, the GM makes Drogo roll against his DEX to avoid falling down.  He needs a base roll of 8+, and gets a +1 for his DEX.  He rolls a 7 and barely succeeds; he stumbles, but does not fall. 

Round five: The GM declares that if Drogo wins initiative he can make his way out of the alleyway before Kedrick can attack, but if the guardsman wins initiative then Kedrick can get another attack at the fleeing thief.  Kedrick rolls a 6, and Drogo rolls a 7.  Drogo turns the corner and runs for all he's worth,  Kedrick follows, but more slowly.

     *     *     *

A couple of minutes later, Drogo crawls into an abandoned house, in hopes of escaping the town watch.  Because of the serious wound he suffered, he's been losing one Health point per minute from the bleeding.  Knowing he is about to pass out, he rips off a piece of his shirt and tries to bandage the wound to his leg (i.e. an unskilled First Aid roll).  He roll well and manages to succeed.  He then passes out, confident that his Health score won't drop any further while he is unconscious.

     *     *     *

Several hours later, Drogo wakes up, not in abandoned house, but instead in the town gaol.  It seems that blood trail wasn't that hard to follow...

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