combat tactics

Discussion on game mastering Earthdawn. May contain spoilers; caution is recommended!
Tattered Rags
Posts: 266
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:04 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Tattered Rags » Thu Feb 07, 2019 8:23 pm

Something that came up in a conversation with coworkers, one of which was my wizard player, was the idea of someone ignoring the guarding player. I think I'll add the option for the opponent to force past a guarding player, but the guard gets 1 standard action as a free action that can only be used to with the declared talent or skill just as if they had reserved the attack triggered by the opponent entering the first threatened hex. The opponent is treated as blindsided for that attack, and a successful hit automatically triggers a knockdown test. If they still make it past, they are considered harried.

Thoughts? I've got lots of criticisms in my head, but I really want to make it painful trying to push past without dealing with the guard while still leaving the option available.
Adventure I'm running:
Under the Stars

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Under the Stars Postmortem

Telarus
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 1:16 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Telarus » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:27 pm

Yeah, that's exactly the thing I was trying to avoid. If you want to "push past" the defender, hit them with an Attack to Knockdown action (which probably uses the attacker's Standard Action). _Then_ you get a free shot at the target while the defender pulls themselves to their feet.

But you only have 6 seconds, and if I'm waving my sword in your face (literally pointing at your eyes every time you come into range), you ain't getting past me unless you give me a WIDE birth. Or you could try to push past/bowl me over, but at that point, _I'm_ your target for the round.

Tattered Rags
Posts: 266
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:04 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Tattered Rags » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:54 pm

That's a fair point.

I'll think on it and run it by my players tomorrow. Might even be able to try out some of the mechanics, too.
Adventure I'm running:
Under the Stars

Adventure GM post-mortem:
Under the Stars Postmortem

Telarus
Posts: 214
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 1:16 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Telarus » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:58 pm

Playtesting is where the rubber hits the road. :) Let us know how it goes!

ChrisDDickey
Posts: 383
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2016 10:02 pm

Re: combat tactics

Post by ChrisDDickey » Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:37 am

Interesting discussion, but there are a lot of house rule proposals on a topic that I am not sure deserves them.
Mostly the advantages people are proposing house rules to deliver can be achieved just by having a character Reserve an action to perform a Shield Bash. So what is wanted can be achieved without any new rules. The various house rules just make it easier/cheaper to get the same effect.

My random thoughts on the subject.
  • In restricted terrain, such as a corridor, it is reasonable that you can keep several (but possibly not many) people from pushing past you.
  • In open terrain with no choke-points, it is not reasonable for anybody to keep more than one person from simply going around them (a reserved action lets you move to and attack one person, everybody else just moves around the new location).
  • All the Earthdawn glass cannon types have things they could be doing to protect themselves. If they are not using movement enhancers (flight spells for example), Avoid Blow buffs, Etc. in situations where their allies can't form a battle line to protect them, then their being squished is on them.
  • It should not be very common for opponents to all rush past the big guy with the axe to swarm the skinny guy with the wand. If they do, the big guy with the axe should turn around and bash their skull in, thus demonstrating how ignored he feels. The skinny guy should run away (or better yet, fly away).
  • When outnumbered in open terrain where you don't hold a maneuverability advantage, there is (nor should be) any way to keep some of the enemies off the squishiest. Its going to happen so just make it a point to kill the ones on them first.
  • Sure every force wants to protect their artillery. But if you find yourself in a situation where you can't, it is not because life/rules are unfair. It's because your artillery was in a poorly chosen location. Possibly the site of the battle was poorly chosen by you.

Tattered Rags
Posts: 266
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:04 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Tattered Rags » Sat Feb 09, 2019 6:41 am

Quick update: players liked Guard Stance but agreed that the "rush by" option may overcomplicate things. The warrior almost used it, but he decided just straight attacking made more sense since he was fighting a bear.
Adventure I'm running:
Under the Stars

Adventure GM post-mortem:
Under the Stars Postmortem

Slimcreeper
Posts: 592
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: combat tactics

Post by Slimcreeper » Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:42 pm

Thanks for telling us how it worked! Feedback is like precious carbuncles in the eyes of a maiden or dude who’s super into carbuncles.

Dougansf
Posts: 313
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 4:14 am

Re: combat tactics

Post by Dougansf » Thu Feb 21, 2019 7:29 pm

My solution was to make every hex around an active (and aware) combatant cost double movement for enemies to leave that hex.

Also, entering or leaving a hex "threatened" by someone allowed the threatening party a free rotation (once per round).

No need for special stance. No need for a die roll.

So the Thief can still sneak up and Surprise Strike to the Blindside, if they successfully used Stealthy Stride, or if they timed things right with their allies to take up the targets free rotation that round.

Similarly, an enemy charging past the Warrior to get to the Magician would be slowed by the process at least 4 yards, possibly more. And now the Warrior can rotate and is (likely) ideally positioned for a Blindside attack.

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