Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Discussion on playing Earthdawn. Experiences, stories, and questions related to being a player.
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Slimcreeper
Posts: 763
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Slimcreeper » Fri Feb 22, 2019 3:32 pm

So I vastly prefer theater of the mind, because I find that once you make a map, people tend to stay on the map. But I do want a tactical positioning element. So: inspired by Classic Marvel RPG, here is my work in progress:

Space
Rather than measuring out everything to the nearest yard, space is measured out to the nearest Space. A Space is an abstract unit of measure about 10 yards by 10 yards. Within a Space, the GMCs and PC can move around as imagination requires without cost or penalty.

Movement
A character can move into another Space as a Simple Action. A character can make a Movement test (10) to move into a second Space for another Simple Action. Alternately, a character can just use a Standard Action to move into a second Space. A character’s Movement step is equal to his or her racial movement in yards minus any Initiative Penalty.
A GM may also call for Movement tests when characters are in some sort of race or pursuit.

Range
There are 4 range categories: Close, Skirmish, Short, Long.
Close: Melee & Unarmed Combat.
Skirmish: Within the same Space. Missile Weapons are at -2 to attacks at Skirmish range.
Short: Round off all weapon and spell ranges to the nearest 10 yards. Divide by 10. The result is the range of the weapon or spell in Spaces, in which it can attack without penalty.
Long: Round off all weapon long ranges to the nearest 10 yards. Divide by 10. The result is the Long range of the weapon or spell in Spaces, in which it can attack at -2 to Attack and Damage.

Guard Duty Combat Option I
A character may decide to spend a round protecting another. The character uses close combat abilities to control movement within the Space. The character cannot move into another Space. He or she takes -2 for any ranged attacks or spellcasting tests. However, any hostile character attempting to get into Close combat range with the protected character must make an additional Movement test in order to do so. If not successful, the hostile character instead enters into Close Combat with the one taking the Guard Duty Option. This can be combined with Reserve Action to attack a character that enters the Area, as well as other options such as Aggressive Stance.

Guard Duty Combat Option II
A character may decide to spend a round protecting another. The character Reserves an Action to defend another. This choice is obvious to all concerned. If an enemy targets the protected character, the one using the Guard Duty Option can attack, benefiting from Blindside. Blindside offsets the Reserved Action penalty.

The idea is that you can even use minis if you like, but you only need to draw out the most rudimentary map, if you even choose to do so at all.

FrozenVomit
Posts: 40
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2018 11:21 pm

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by FrozenVomit » Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:33 am

Seems complicated...

We role play every battle or movement, no map, rules, no figurines. Anyway we don't have place for that on the table, our beers are in the middle of the table...

We just ask the DM: "I jump on that ok?" "I put myself between them to take the hit" "Can I reach that archer with that spell?"

The trick is to refill the DM's glass with beer while asking the question. It pass or not, the DM decide...

Slimcreeper
Posts: 763
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Slimcreeper » Wed Feb 27, 2019 1:31 pm

I have a group that I play with semi-regularly that really likes the tactical stuff, has a ton of minis, props etc. so I’m trying to accommodate that.

My other method is to let them have their minis but just use the minis for very proximal positioning and hanging status effect markers.

The Spaces method works pretty well in Marvel - the call them Areas.

lanir
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Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2018 11:23 am

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by lanir » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:21 pm

I think you might get more mileage out of making static range categories rather than doing math at your table every time someone casts a spell or uses thrown weapons or missile weapons. Then just tell people their weapons or spells let them target at short range up to whatever range they can reach without penalty but the next range up gets penalties. Then you can pretty easily hand everyone a range chart and be done with it. This method essentially front-loads the work so you do it at the time a player writes down a weapon or spell on their sheet. From then on you can either wing it with distances or refer to the chart if you're using the max range option below.

Example range chart in yards...

Skirmish: 0-2
Short: 3-12
Medium: 13-32
Long: 33-60
Extreme: 61+

The above is based on glancing at the throwing and missile weapon charts. It will allow the PCs to sort of get away with some stuff with some weapons but if you wish you can add a hard max range from the book as well. So you might say an elven warbow has a range of "Long 96" because it's max short range in the book is 48 which is in Long range and it's max is 96 yards. As an alternative you can also put a cap on Extreme range and add more range categories beyond that. Perhaps these could model siege weapon ranges if you're using anything like that and give you one chart to refer to for all ranged matters.

This is loosely based on my memory of playing the Star Wars tabletop RPGs a year or two ago. The version with the funky dice. Also the standardized spell ranges in D&D editions 3+

Slimcreeper
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Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Slimcreeper » Thu Feb 28, 2019 1:24 am

The players would write down the weapons' and spells' ranges in Spaces when they were added to their sheets. I was hoping to not rewrite a bunch of weapon and spell charts!

Telarus
Posts: 249
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 1:16 am

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Telarus » Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:09 am

I'm using 20 yard hexes for large scale mass combat experiments. Easy to convert yds to hex, knock off the last digit and halve it.

Dougansf
Posts: 314
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 4:14 am

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Dougansf » Mon Mar 11, 2019 3:58 pm

How would you deal with facing, and thus Blindside and Surprise Strike?

Slimcreeper
Posts: 763
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: Space and Time (Mostly Space)

Post by Slimcreeper » Mon Mar 11, 2019 6:10 pm

In a word: narratively. I might call for dex vs danger sense in edge cases.

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