Tactical Narrative Combat Modules in D&D Next




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  1. #1
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    Tom LaPille's 0 for 2 so far.

    The tactical subsystem basically amounts to called shots - a darling of early 90s D&D knockoffs and as far as I know the only game really using them still is GURPS.

    Seriously. -5 to hit to give a knockdown effect? In a system with bounded accuracy and only 5ft of movement to stand back up? And everyone gets power strike? From a 4e perspective I find this ... disappointing.


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    Yeah, sounds like 2E's called shot system. Which wasn't too bad until fighters hit about 7th level (and then it just became too easy to do this kind of stuff, especially with multiple attacks - disarm or trip your oppponent, then kill him while he's defenseless; rinse and repeat every round). Perhaps with the flattened math it won't run into the same problems that plagued my 2E game with called shots, but I'm not betting on it.

    I'm not sure how I feel about the presented module. Its simple, but maybe too simple.
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    ° Ignore mlund
    With a bounded accuracy system that's designed to have damage scale instead of attack rolls this is antiquated thinking that suggests someone isn't really on the same page as someone else. Back to the drawing board with you, good WotC blogger. Maybe you can learn from that guy in your comments section who suggested trading off Damage for Effects.

    Sheesh, -5 to hit penalty for attempting to trip my eye. :P

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  4. #4
    This system sounds fine to me, though obviously the math needs to work. What I don't get is, how is this "narrative combat?"

    Also:
    Knockdown (–5 or –10)
    (You bowl your enemy over, knocking him down.)
    Effect: The target falls prone.
    Penalty: This action has a –5 penalty if the target has two legs, has a –10 penalty if the target has three or four legs, and cannot be attempted if the target has more than four legs. You can attempt this action only against a creature of your size or smaller.
    Should mention flying, hovering, and swimming creatures. As written, there's no penalty for 0-legged creatures, so any successful melee attack automatically bounce-passes a Beholder. Which... actually, that kinda makes sense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GX.Sigma View Post
    What I don't get is, how is this "narrative combat?"
    My take is narrative combat involves actions the players can simply describe their character taking without resorting to a battlemat. It's called "narrative" because it sounds cooler than "gridless"
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    Quote Originally Posted by GX.Sigma View Post
    This system sounds fine to me, though obviously the math needs to work. What I don't get is, how is this "narrative combat?"
    I get the impression he means narrative as opposed to mapped/gridded - the maneuvers being mentioned are just stuff the player says he will do, takes the penalty, bam special attack. - if you take it to the extremes it could just be a sample list of possible specials, and anything the characters come up with can be tried - the "Yeah you can do it at a -10 " school of tactics.

    So it can be used in TotM (hence narrative) but it adding complexity, and tactical options by knocking people down, or back, or such - so narrative tactical module.
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    ° Ignore CasvalRemDeikun
    -5 to hit for a minimally effective attack? No thanks. Why wouldn't you just murder the **** out of it with a regular attack? If they wanted to make the knockdown occur without a negative to attack, but a minus to damage or something. Like others on other forums have said, with bounded accuracy, these attacks just aren't worth it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CasvalRemDeikun View Post
    -5 to hit for a minimally effective attack? No thanks. Why wouldn't you just murder the **** out of it with a regular attack? If they wanted to make the knockdown occur without a negative to attack, but a minus to damage or something. Like others on other forums have said, with bounded accuracy, these attacks just aren't worth it.
    The Knockdown effect is on top of your normal Damage.

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    ° Ignore mlund
    If they are going to do some sort of "Called Shot" or "Raise" system in combat and keep scaling damage while flattening attack and defense then the bid process has to be Damage Based rather than Attack Penalty Based. Status-effect maneuvers will need to have their bids scale up with enemy Hit Dice (it's harder to trip an experienced Gladiator than it is to trip a 1st level character, even if the Gladiator has worse AC).

    If you miss, you miss.
    If your damage penalty from the maneuver bid reduces your damage to 0 or less the maneuver fails.

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    ° Ignore Ratskinner
    Quote Originally Posted by mlund View Post
    If they are going to do some sort of "Called Shot" or "Raise" system in combat and keep scaling damage while flattening attack and defense then the bid process has to be Damage Based rather than Attack Penalty Based. Status-effect maneuvers will need to have their bids scale up with enemy Hit Dice (it's harder to trip an experienced Gladiator than it is to trip a 1st level character, even if the Gladiator has worse AC).

    If you miss, you miss.
    If your damage penalty from the maneuver bid reduces your damage to 0 or less the maneuver fails.

    - Marty Lund
    I'd have to say that this makes more sense to me...have to playtest the damage limits, etc.

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