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3.5 GM's Closet for the CONAN RPG

Water Bob

Villager
SKILL: INTIMIDATE


USE: DEMORALIZE OTHER







I've tried to use this in the game several ways. I've spoken about this several times before. Here is how I've come to use it, and I think this is the best way to use Demoralize Other in your games.


First, make a simple change. The description says that Demoralize Other can only be used on a target that is threatened in melee combat. It's a standard action to attempt Demoralize Other. Not many players are going to give up an attack for the entire round in order to attempt to demoralize their opponent.


I suggest that you change the range to 30 foot. That's the range of evil eye. It's also within Charge Range. In making that one change, you make the use of Demoralize Other very useful to your players.


Take this scene from the 1982 version of Conan The Barbarian....


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z3kBWP231hI


Skip that video to about 2:38. Valeria has just ended a combat round by killing one of the new guards. She spins around to face two more in her way, and she looks at them and slaps her hand on her bloody sword blade.


Obviously, Valeria has initiative, and the foes are less than 30 feet away.


Valeria uses her standard action to Demoralize her foe. She wins the toss, so the enemy is demoralized until just before their second action (all through this action to just before they get to move again).


The GM, playing the guards, has the NPCs hesitate (wait action).


Valeria then uses the Combat Maneuver, Use The Battlefield, with her Tumble skill, to kick off the wall and come down on one of the foes. She moves about 20 feet, tumbles off the wall, and comes down with an attack. She gets +2 attack because of the successful Use The Battlefield tumble, and the foes are -2 to attack her--because they are demoralized.










The Re-Try wording of the Intimidate skill is a bit confusing, but what it means is this: You can keep attempting to use your Intimidate skill every round until your foe is successful in ignoring you. Then, the foe auto-wins any Intimidate attempt.


So, you've got to roll every time you use it. And, it is a standard action every time that you use it. If you ever fail to use it, then your foe can no longer be intimidated by you in that way.


Example, you do what Valeria did. You successfully use Demoralize Other on round one. On round two, you attack, using Use The Battlefield, which is a free action--you can combine it with other actions, like the Move/Tumble that Valeria does, coming down with your attack (and the +2 bonus).


Round three, you attempt Demoralize Other again, but your foe wins the toss. You are unsuccessful.


Now, you're done using that particular use of Intimidate on that particular foe at this time.


I would definitely allow a bonus in the Demoralize Other attempt (a +1 or +2 modifier) if the character attempting to Intimidate is wearing some fierce war paint or some hideous great helm (and so on, etc).
 

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