WOIN Encounter Building Guidelines
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  1. #1
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    Encounter Building Guidelines

    I get asked this most every day, so a sticky thread seems appropriate. I'll continue to edit this thread as things occur to me.

    Things To Remember
    WOIN is a tactical game. It assumes that you and the monsters will be using tactics. Using tactics can make a weak opponent decimate a powerful one.
    • This means using cover, crossfires, aims, feints, LUC dice, higher ground, exploits, exchanging damage dice, etc. If you don't use those (or worse, if one side does and the other doesn't) then you're going to struggle in combat. Using tactics can make a weak opponent decimate a powerful one.
    • Attack weak DEFENSES, not strong ones. Most monsters have at least one weak DEFENSE. If you're attacking a brute in melee or shooting at a speedster, you're doing it wrong. The game requires you to think about how to attack your foe.
    • Remember, your max dice pool is the maximum size of your initial ATT + SKILL + GEAR dice pool. Your exploits, positioning, LUC, etc. are all applied on top of that.
    • Don't forget to exchange dice for damage, and to get damage upgrades when you can.


    Maximum Dice Pools (MDP)
    MDP gives you a rough guide to a PC or monster's power level sans tactics. This isn't your PC's grade, it's their maximum dice pool. As a rule of thumb:
    • Equal total MDP on each side makes for a medium encounter; unlikely a PC will die. However, a single monster 3 MDP higher than the party is deadly. Including that in the mix will turn that encounter into a deadly one.
    • Monsters lower than the party MDP are trivial. Use when you want PCs to show off and heroically dispose of bad guys with ease. If you ant your PCs to feel awesome for a bit, do that.
    • One MDP higher is medium. The PCs will win, use some resources, but won't die.
    • Two MDP higher is difficult. Use for a leader with some lower monsters.
    • Three MDP higher is deadly.
    • As always, tactics completely sway this.
    Last edited by Morrus; Monday, 11th June, 2018 at 01:11 PM.

  2. #2
    Thanks for this. As a beginner GM I appreciate having these reminders on hand.

  3. #3
    Super helpful, looking forward to the continued edits as things occur to Morrus. One question, how do numbers of foes typically affect these broad MDP guidelines? For example, how does a PC team of 2 competent special forces types (e.g. grade 10, 7d6 MDP, akin to Stonebridge and Scott in Strike Back) stack up against high numbers (6,8, 10 or more) of lower MDP foes (say 5d6 MDP)? I know you stated that tactics count, but might you have a broad rule of thumb that suggests the impact of numerical superiority sans tactics? Thanks again for any advice you can give on a tricky subject for fledgling GMs like me.

  4. #4
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    In my experience, if the foes are 2 or more MDP below the PCs, they will have a very hard time being effective without really using a lot of tactics (higher ground, cross fire, etc.)

  5. #5
    Reading this again as I prepare for running my first ever WOIN game tomorrow. I now see something I missed before: "Equal total MDP on each side makes for a medium encounter." My emphasis added, I missed that I should be adding all of the total MDPs together. Therefore a boss villain at 8d6 and his 4 henchmen at 5d6 that equals 28d6 vs. my PC team of 4 x Grade 10's (7d6 each) equals 28d6 is the evenly matched scenario, which means a medium encounter. And as long as the totals of MDPs are closely matched this is a medium encounter. But if I were to modify my prior example by adding one additional 5d6 MDP henchman or just making the boss villain an 11d6 instead of an 8d6, the PCs are facing a deadly encounter. Just want to be sure I've got the concept right. Thanks for reading (and hopefully setting me straight).

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by hirumachico View Post
    Reading this again as I prepare for running my first ever WOIN game tomorrow. I now see something I missed before: "Equal total MDP on each side makes for a medium encounter." My emphasis added, I missed that I should be adding all of the total MDPs together. Therefore a boss villain at 8d6 and his 4 henchmen at 5d6 that equals 28d6 vs. my PC team of 4 x Grade 10's (7d6 each) equals 28d6 is the evenly matched scenario, which means a medium encounter. And as long as the totals of MDPs are closely matched this is a medium encounter. But if I were to modify my prior example by adding one additional 5d6 MDP henchman or just making the boss villain an 11d6 instead of an 8d6, the PCs are facing a deadly encounter. Just want to be sure I've got the concept right. Thanks for reading (and hopefully setting me straight).
    5d6 monsters vs 7d6 players are trivial. The match total assumes the MDPs are roughly equal.

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