Monday, December 28, 2009

AC Combat Styles: Detailed

The last bit (I think) on Action Cards combat system. Next post will be a game year in review and then I hope to finish out this revision throughout January. I'm more behind than I'd hoped I'd be at this point.

COMBAT STYLES (Optional, Detailed)
The basic Combat Styles system allows players to abstractly add effects and options to their combat actions. Gamemasters who wish a more detailed and specific set of options may want to break down maneuvers into sets with very specific effects. These rules assume the use of dice based damage. In this case players learn Combat Styles which have specific elements. A character may apply elements to their actions-- some work with attacks and others with defenses-- to enhance them. In the beginning, a character may apply one element they know to any applicable attack or defense action.

These kinds of style can be used to simulate genre or to balance out the available options between classic warrior types and those using magic in a fantasy campaign. This option does add a level of complexity and option tracking for the players which may slow combat down.

In this option, players may learn additional styles and may eventually raise the cap on the number of elements they may add to any individual attack or defense. If the campaign uses the Profession Tracks option, then new styles and the increase on the cap for elements will have to be bought through those tracks. If using a straight point based system, then each Combat Style costs 10 points. Raising the cap to two elements costs 10 points and raising the cap to three costs 20. The GM may want to limit which combat styles a player may buy or how many they may know. They may also limit when players may raise those caps.

A character can change what they're adding to which action from round to round or action to action. There's no additional skill roll required, no spending of fatigue or focus. Primarily these elements are intended to add color and provide a broader range of choices without detailing all the possible martial arts or having individual rules for maneuvers. Some elements apply strictly to attack, some to defense, and some to more particular forms (grappling, unarmed, ranged attacks, and so on). Combat Styles apply to both Armed and Unarmed combat, some can apply to Ranged Attacks as well.

If a character has learned the same element from more than one style, they may double up the effects-- the exception to this is Enhancements to Dodge, Block or Parry which may not be doubled unless conducting a Full Defense. Some effects, like Trip, substitute for dealing damage.

Gamemasters may simply list the four or five elements (depending on the genre) for any particular style or they may add descriptive names for the elements within the style to add color to the game.

Defensive Combat Elements
Attack Awareness: Negate Gang-Up penalties to defense
Enhanced Block/Parry: +1 to Blocks/Parries.
Enhanced Dodge: +1 to Dodges.
Escape: +1 to contest for escaping grapples
Evasion: If targeted in melee, reduce chances of being hit from randomization
Missile Parry: May parry ranged attacks
Riposte: If defense is successful, lower attacker's Defense pull by -1 for your next attack.
Roll with Blow: If defense fails, add +1 to your DR.
Root: Gain +1 to resist being knocked down, tackled or moved
Turn Blow: May parry normally unparryable attacks-- i.e. a battle axe with a dagger.

Offensive Combat Elements
Accuracy: +1 to attack pull
All-Around: May attack any target in surrounding area without penalty
Armor Destroying: Successful attack reduces the target's DR 1 for the duration of the combat (min 1). Some armor may resist.
Armor Piercing: Halve target's DR vs. attack
Beast-Slayer: +1 die damage and attack versus animals and monster creatures
Breaking: Enhanced strength for breaking inanimate objects.
Called Shot: +1 bonus to offset difficulty for hitting a particular location..
Choke: May attempt to KO a held target- target must make a Physical resistance pull. Must follow grab.
Clinch: May grapple with one hand, keeping other hand free.
Coordination: When attacking with an ally, target has a -1 penalty to defense pulls
Critical: Switch one successful damage die to a ten.
Crush: +2 dice damage when inflicting a crush in a grapple
Damage: +1 die damage
Disarm: +1 bonus to disarm contests
Feint: Successful attack means target suffers a -1 penalty to defense pulls on following round.
Grappling: +1 bonus to Physical contests to hold target in a grapple
Ground Fighting: No penalty to attack or defense while prone.
Knockback: Target makes test or be knocked back
Lock: Grappled target takes damage with unsuccessful breakout attempts.
Mook Killer: If attack hits a Mook, KO Mook
Precision: Always hit chosen target when firing into melee.
Running Strike: +2 dice damage if full move made before attack
Sharpshot: Reduce Range penalties
Silent: Attack makes no noise.
Stun: Successful attack forces Stun test on target.
Subdue: Gain bonus when attacking to subdue/KO without injury
Surprise: Gain +2 dice to damage when making a surprise attack
Sweep: May target up to three adjacent targets with an attack-- cumulative -1 penalty.
Throw: +1 die damage when throwing a target. Greater control and distance for throwing.
Trip: Successful attack forces target to make check or be knocked down instead of damage.
Unbalance: Target must make Physcial check or lose either their Move or Standard action on following round.
Weapon Lock: May attempt to grapple target's weapon.

Advanced Combat Elements
Area: Attack affects a mega-hex
Blind: Target makes Physical check or be blinded (or deafened) on following round.
Cone: Attack has a short, cone area
Create Weapon: May create a magical or makeshift weapon instantly
Disrupting: Target check or suffer a Physical result penalty for the combat
Explosion: Attack explodes out from character with diminishing damage
Flying/Leaping: Move action with Attack/Defense may be vertical without test or penalty.
Range: HTH may be made at range
Tracking/Trick: Ranged attack ignores cover
Unhealing: Damage takes double time to recover or must be healed with magic

Example Styles (From a more wushu style setting)

Storming Master’s Form
Lightning: Attack Awareness
Thunderous: Armor-Piercing
Whirlwind: Accuracy
Rain-touched: Precision
Hurricane: Silent

Seeking Pilgrim’s Style
Reaching: Enhanced Block
Collapse: Attack Awareness
Directed: All-Around
Center: Running Strike
Distant: Beast-Slayer

Way of the Waters
Ocean: Enhanced Dodge
Cascading: All-Around
Tidal: Armor Destroying
Wave: Sharpshot
Depths: Breaking

Taunt of the Monkey
Lashing: Escape
Gift: Enhanced Block
Endless: Armor Piercing
Echo: Silent
Crying: Called Shot

Secrets of the Earth
Splinter: Evasion
Rippling: Armor-destroying
Pressure: Beast-Slayer
Stillness: Stun
Unconquered: Choke