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Combat

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Combat is a big part of the Riddle of Steel, but not in the same way it is a big part of hack-and-slash D&D. In TRoS, combat is gritty and realistic. A single wrong move can spell an untimely death for a character just as easily as for an NPC. It is designed so that a combat is seen as a very serious thing. In real life, no one jut jumps into a gun-fight without a good reason, and the same goes for TRoS. Combat is serious and deadly. And, interestingly enough, because of its realism and deadliness, combat is seen far less often in the system than in other games, with many sessions going without any combat at all.


Contents

Time

Combat is broken down into time increments approximately 2 seconds long called "Combat Rounds" (or just "rounds"). Each combat round is then further divided into two 1 second increments, each called an "Exchange". Occasionally, a break in combat occurs for various reasons. This is called a "Pause".


Combat Pool

Almost everything a character does while in combat is done with Dice from his Combat Pool (CP). A character's combat pool for melee combat is an amount of dice equal to the characters Reflex plus the rank of the Combat Proficiency he is using. A character's combat pool for ranged combat is an amount of dice equal to the characters Aim plus the rank of the Combat Proficiency he is using.


Combat Phases

Combat follows the below combat phases in the listed order. When all phases are completed, a new combat round begins.



Check for Surprise

Any characters who were not expecting an attack must Check for Surprise on the first round of combat or else take a penalty ot their Combat Pool.


Check for Blood Loss

Any character who has a Total Blood Loss greater than zero, must Check for Blood Loss to see how it is affecting his Health.


Refresh Combat Pool

Each combatant Refreshes his Combat Pool by gathering up a number of dice equal to his Combat Pool and applies any necessary Combat Pool Modifiers, as well as Pain or carryover Shock.


Throw for Initiative

At the beginning of each exchange, a Throw for Initiative is required for anyone not already engaged in melee combat. When "Throw" is announced by the Seneschal, each player who has to throw for initiative must throw a red or white die on the table, red indicating an Offensive Maneuver and white indicating a Defensive Maneuver.

Make Terrain Rolls

After initiative is thrown, anyone who needs to Make a Terrain Roll does so. There are many reasons to make a terrain roll, such as fighting on difficult terrain (hence giving the "Terrain Roll" its name), bettering the odds against multiple opponents, standing up form being prone, and more. This is done by making a roll using any amount of combat pool dice against a target number determined by the specific terrain roll.


Declare Maneuvers

All combatants must now Declare their Combat Maneuvers and Dice Count for this exchange. First, everyone who threw red in the throw for initiative phase declares the Maneuver maneuver they intend to use in this exchange, as well as the amount of dice from their combat pool to be used with this maneuver, and any additional dice to be used in their Speed Check. Then, any combatants who threw white declare the Defensive Maneuver they intend to use in this exchange, as well as the amount of dice from their combat pool to be used with this maneuver.


Resolve Maneuvers

All speed checks are made, and the combatant with the highest speed check result Resolves his Maneuver first, and then so on down the line, until all offensive maneuvers are resolved. This is done by the attacker rolling his offensive maneuver against his opponent's defensive maneuver (if any). The winner of the roll then resolves his maneuver. If damage needs to be applied from the attack, it is then done so, after the location of the wound is determined. The wound is then recorded on the defenders character sheet.