02 November 2018

On Armor as Damage Reduction in DnD


I'm a medieval weapon nerd. I used to regularly do HEMA and can technically instruct folks in longsword, pollaxe, dagger, and ringen, in and out of harness. But I'm out of practice and as I learned more I realized that trying to make D&D model it 'perfectly' was chasing the dragon. Especially in light of the range of interpretations and focuses within HEMA alone. Once you add in decades of warped popular expectations, larpers, and the SCA, everybody has different opinions on what is "correct."

Combat isn't like diplomancing or seductifying. We don't have much firsthand experience with medieval combat, even those of us who do shit like hit each other with things in armor. Every form of medieval "combat" practiced today is to more and less degrees an approximation.
Anyways, halfswording is actually what started dragging me back into D&D armor as AC is A-Ok with me. You're trying to stab someone in gaps with a 3ft needle because armor, bizarrely, makes it hard to batter through in a "I would like you to die" way.

At one time I thought about both making armor as dr and including a feat similar to weapon finesse that allowed you to ignore the dr with piercing weapons with the downside of having to beat full AC.
I said to myself "this is too much. You're adding dr, then adding a way to ignore dr so you still have to track both ac and dr." This was 2006-7 3.5 era. I did use the armor as partial dr rules from Unearthed Arcana, and watched the PCs mow through NPCs at first level. Which is great if that is what you want.

It looks like I also tried armor as DR again in 2014, but it must have been fruitless or I would remember it.

The combat round is long enough, even 6 seconds is a long time in a fight, and the system is so coarse that folding the protectiveness of armor with increasing hit points and ability score modifiers together as armor class works out. This isn't a roll for each discrete blow, parry, and riposte, even if many folks describe it thusly, system.
If you don't like the way D&D does things either change it or change games, but fucking shut up about how D&D 'should' do things.


30 October 2018

It was my birthday and the gods smiled down upon me

The box is beat to hell, but looks like all the contents are here and look fresh as fuck. It even has the advert stuff (not pictured).






29 October 2018

Blog Posts I Found That I Think Are Cool

It's the end of the month and with the slow death of G+ there's been a push to once again do the blogosphere thing which includes collecting RPG blogs into OPMLs for reading in feed readers, something I have never done before. Now while there are several bloggers who I will no longer read, mostly because they play ACKS and I don't really even want to deal with that shit, and there have been the occasional flaming asshole grognard post, it's been a pleasant experience overall.

So some cool posts in no particular order, and they may or may not be recent posts. I've been pretty far back in time thanks to feedly.

Methods & Madness did several posts on taking the different ways on Dark Souls weapon and how damage scales with attributes, something that never occurred to me to port over. It might even placate my deep hatred for 'finesse' weapons. He also did some rules on combat maneuvers that use damage to influence the success, similar in concept to what I've recently written up.

Into The Wyrd & Wilds is doing some cool forest stuff like Wild Elves and treating the forest something like a dungeon. Creepy spooky magical forests are something that I personally like to do, and have had one been a continual fixture in my constantly mutating setting.

Weird & Wonderful Worlds has some weird and cool weapons.

Remixes and Revelations has something on uniquifying orcs, which I like because orcs.

Joe Banner has some cool ideas on restating orcs as ogres to fit with the current conception of them as fantasy klingons. Which again I am sucker for, and also have thought about.

Trey of From the Sorcerer's Skull made a sword & planet name generator, and is working on a sword & planet setting, Zarthoon. I'm also a sucker for science-fantasy settings.

Meandering Banter made a thing that automates rolling on a list you input.

Michael Prescott at Tirlemma Adventures explains Powered by the Apocolypse for old school d&d players. He's also been working on a pbta mecha game. Not that I need another mecha game, but...

Emmy Allen of Cavegirl's Game Stuff finished The Stygian Library, a procedurally generated pointcrawl thing that's a sequel to The Gardens of Ynn. The subjects of both, creepy extradimensional library and extradimensional decaying gardens, really strike a Chris with me. I'm planning on starting a solo Gardens campaign for my spouse soon. You can find both here.

Evlyn of La Chaudron Chromatique took a drawing she did of a mole princess and turned it into enough material someone could start a campaign with it. Also, Undersoil is so good.

15 October 2018

Real World Weapons - I guess I should have houserules edition

Pollaxe - 1d8/1d6 It can used from the second rank as a spear doing 1d6 damage or in close melee as a mace/axe/hammer for 1d8 or as a spear for 1d6. It can be used to make trip attacks against foes in close melee with a +2 to hit dealing minimum damage (still roll damage though) and needing a save vs paralysis/petrifaction with a penalty equal to damage rolled or fall prone.

Longsword/bastard sword - Can be used to halfsword allowing it to be used in tighter quarters and giving a +1 to hit vs plate mail or better armor. It can also be used to make trip attacks like a pollaxe but with no bonus to hit.

Greatswords/zweihanders - Can be used make a single attack to all, friends and foes, in front at -2 to hit each for 1d8 damage. While fighting defensively do not include any additional penalties.

One-handed flails/axes (other than pollaxes) - Can be used to make trip or disarm attacks as a polleaxe with no bonus and dealing no damage.

Real World Weapons - Zweihander Edition

I was thinking about ways to make larger weapons, greatswords in particular, different and worthwhile without giving them a bigger damage die. As I did this bit by Giacomo di Grassi popped into my head
The two hand Sword, as it is used now a days being four handfuls in the handle, or more, having also the great cross, was found out, to the end it should be handled one to one at an equal match, as other weapons, of which I have entreated. But because one may with it (as a galleon among many galleys) resist many Swords, or other weapons: Therefore in the wars, it is used to be place near unto the Ensign or Ancient, for the defense thereof, because, being of itself able to contend with many, it may the better safeguard the same. And it is accustomed to be carried in the City, as well by night as by day, when it so chances that a few are constrained to withstand a great many.
 Which made me think somewhat of the way shotguns are portrayed as 'Street Sweepers' and the like, and how suppressive fire works. Simply put, a person with a large sword can stand against many lesser weapons. A large space can be covered with one if one were inclined to made broad sweeping blows.

Aside from doing something boring like a bonus to fighting defensively, which could be done I guess, I thought about the reason why it can withstand against many. It threatens to delimb anybody in reach, ignoring attacks of opportunity style rules (which if you aren't using might be cool to allow with greatswords and similar weapons when used defensively), I've considered treating them similar to a shotgun or automatic fire, attacks against everyone in reach at a penalty (-2 sounds about right).

Summary:

Large swords cover a large amount of space and were used to defend areas because of that.
Possible extra bonus when used defensively.
Possible free attacks when entering and leaving the zone of death.
Recommend "shotgun" style attack all in front at a penalty (-2) for reduced damage.

14 October 2018

Real Word Weapons - Flail Edition

One-handed flails may or may not have actually been weapons.

Yeah ok, whatever, in the context of reenactment or HEMA that matters. But this is D AND FUCKING D, so whatever.

Alright.

I fucking hate flails. Not because they aren't sick as fuck (THEY ARE). Not because they probably weren't real (Dragons anyone?). Because you always get some nerd that wants special powers for their flail, and since like a dumbass you didn't scrub it from the available equipment list you now have to make up some fucking rules for flails.

Ok.

Treat them like axes, only shitty because they can't chop wood. That means axes and flails should both be able to do shit like tripping, hooking, disarming and shit like that.

The End.

PS let Flail Snails do that shit.

29 September 2018

Elemental Airships part the Fifth: Shitpost Edition

 Some ideas on how far the whole elemental binding for motive force can go.

First, the extrapolation of the fire magic engines from PC2 as a recreation of the elemental binding techniques, then updated as the old techniques are rediscovered through old tomes and recovered technology. The props become the supports for the elemental ring, but is smaller because the gnomes are cheating using wings for lift.

Second, either the continued development on the base technique of elemental binding to capital ships, in this case a supercarrier starship, or a prior civilizations sufficiently advanced technology. Or both because I do what I want.

 

And finally, a warforged/robot/whatever with an elemental ring because it can transform into an elemental airship. Spawned by this tumblr post.