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Level Up (A5E) Level Up Playtest Document: #18: Combat

This is a big one, folks. If any playtest document needed playing rather than just reading, this is it. What we are giving you here is the entire combat chapter. You can use this chapter in your regular 5E combats (or you can use our previous playtest documents, like Combat Maneuvers); it’s the same game you know and love, the same system you’re familiar with, but with upgrades and tweaks. We can’t wait to find out what you think of it!

Take this and use it on your 5E games. Then come back and tell us how it went. Thank you!


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The survey is here!


Please take a moment to fill it out. Thank you!
 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Argyle King

Legend
"When it is your turn, you can move a distance up to your Speed and take your actions."

I can't see how you can read that in a way that suggests you can't move and take your actions, whatever your level of experience. It's the exact opposite of what it says.

Now read the second paragraph.
 

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Kinematics

Explorer
The 5-foot square that a Medium orc
commands cannot be passed through by other
Medium creatures unless the orc allows them to.
I like this phrasing. There are allies you may want to block (eg: charmed ally, or clashing personalities that both want to claim the "best" spot), and enemies you may want to let through (draw into a trap, or just allow to escape). This is more likely to come up in non-combat turn-based action.

Likewise, the space determines the limit to the
number of creatures that can surround it; the orc
can be surrounded by a maximum of 8 Medium
creatures, or 4 Large creatures.
This, combined with the table, is slightly confusing. Having a medium creature surrounded by 4 large creatures makes sense. Geometrically, you can surround a 5'x5' block with 4 10'x10' blocks. However the table shows that tiny creatures (2.5'x2.5') can be surrounded by 8 creatures, and that only makes sense if it was surrounded by 8 tiny creatures. Medium creatures would have the same geometry relative to tiny creatures as large creatures have to medium, and thus only 4 should fit.

That in turn implies that the table is showing how many of the same-sized creature can surround a given creature, but that doesn't make sense when you get to larger creatures, where it looks like you're putting medium creatures around large+ creatures.

So, please clarify what size "surrounding" creatures are, relative to the "surrounded" creatures, on the table, and verify that the numbers are correct for your methodology.

If you are knocked prone, you make a DC 10
Dexterity saving throw or fall off prone in a
space adjacent to the creature you’re riding.
Awkward phrasing. "fall off prone" should probably just be "fall prone", or "fall off, and land prone".

If you’re riding another creature that you have
control of, you use its Speed instead of your own.
Remember that mounting or dismounting costs half
your Speed when choosing to move after you’ve
jumped onto or off the creature.

Suppose you have 30' move speed, and you mount a horse with 40' move speed. Mounting uses half your speed (15'). When you ride the horse from that point on, do you have 20' (half the horse's speed) or 25' (40' - 15') of movement remaining?

You can also drop prone as a reaction
to being targeted by a ranged attack you can see.
Nice.

While you are prone: Your only movement option is to crawl
(every 1 foot of movement while crawling
costs 1 extra foot) until you stand up.
Can you crawl into a body of water and switch to a swim speed? Is that affected by a 'prone' state? What happens if you get knocked off a pier and land in a lake? Are you considered prone, and have to spend half your movement to reorient yourself before you can start swimming?

Attacking From Above - If you are at least 5 feet above your target and you
aren’t grappled or restrained, you gain an expertise
die on melee attack rolls made against it.
This doesn't really make sense, for melee attacks. Are you directly above, like falling down on the target? In that case, sure. But otherwise it feels like you're adding 5' of range, which mostly means you can't hit the target, or at least would be disadvantaged, similar to if you were 10' away and attacking a prone target.

As long as neither you nor
your ally move, your passive Perception is increased
by 2 until either the start of your next turn or when
one of you moves.
Saying it ends when one of you moves is redundant with saying that you only get the benefit as long as neither of you move.

Flanking - When you and an ally are on direct opposite sides
of a target, you gain an expertise die on your actions
against that target. You and your ally cannot flank
for one another if either of you are incapacitated.
Can you clarify what "opposite sides" means when you're trying to flank a large+ creature? Does a line between the two attackers have to pass through the center of the creature's area, or does it merely have to pass through two opposite edges?

Half cover provides you with a
+2 bonus to AC, saving throws, and ability checks
made to hide.
It's nice that cover provides bonuses to attempts to hide.


Misc:

Love the environment stuff. Love the countdown. Appreciate the simplification of multiple summoned creatures.
 

Stalker0

Legend
The survey is live!


Please take a moment to fill it out. Thank you!
hehe my "survey of surveys".... I think the survey does not push on the fatigue mechanic nearly enough. I think there is underestimation on how much fatigue might change the standard gameplay, and so I think more polling around that will be needed. I don't think survey really captures that areas very well at the moment.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
hehe my "survey of surveys".... I think the survey does not push on the fatigue mechanic nearly enough. I think there is underestimation on how much fatigue might change the standard gameplay, and so I think more polling around that will be needed. I don't think survey really captures that areas very well at the moment.
You haven't seen the fatigue rules. Given that, any feedback on fatigue at this stage would not be useful to us. We'll look at fatigue and strife later. These surveys are pretty specific in the info we're trying to gather at any given time. :)
 

Faolyn

Hero
Argh! I just thought of this. You should have a section in actions in combat about using skills in general. Many times my table has wondered if you can use something like Arcana in combat to figure out a fact about the thing they're fighting, and does that count as an action or bonus action. A definitive ruling on this would be useful.
 


Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Just to clarify - if you sprint for 30 seconds and roll bad on your saves, not only do you die, but can't be brought back to life by "normal" means?
Good catch! And this is why we playtest! That is certainly not intended. :)
 



Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Maybe make it so you can only get one level of Fatigue from sprinting by making it so you cannot Sprint while Fatigued?
We're still finalizing the fatigue and strife charts, but not being able to sprint is in there somewhere. Not sure offhand what level it's at. So you'll never be able to run yourself to death.
 

Horwath

Hero
We're still finalizing the fatigue and strife charts, but not being able to sprint is in there somewhere. Not sure offhand what level it's at. So you'll never be able to run yourself to death.
You should be able to sprint while fatigued. As it can be done. But speed and max duration could be reduced.

Also, you should be able to run yourself to death, or at least into unconsciousness.

maybe adding -5 ft to speed per level of fatigue would be a good description.
 




merrymayhem

Villager
Dragging An Ally
While adjacent to a willing ally, you can use your reaction to grab them by the hand and pull them along with your movement even if they’ve already expended all of theirs. While doing so, every foot of movement costs you an additional 2 feet of movement, and the ally cannot use their reaction. This movement provokes opportunity attacks as normal.

I am not sure this should be a reaction. I view reactions as actions you take during other teams, not one you use during yours. If it's a reaction, does that mean that before I mob can move up to attack an ally, I could use my reaction to drag them away? Maybe make it a bonus action?
 

GKEnialb

Villager
Maybe make it so you can only get one level of Fatigue from sprinting by making it so you cannot Sprint while Fatigued?

We're still finalizing the fatigue and strife charts, but not being able to sprint is in there somewhere. Not sure offhand what level it's at. So you'll never be able to run yourself to death.
I like that solution a lot. Only thing is that the playtest rules state, "The effects of fatigue gained during combat are only felt after the encounter in which they were inflicted has ended", so that would have to be tweaked as well.
 

Steampunkette

Shaper of Worlds
Supporter
I like that solution a lot. Only thing is that the playtest rules state, "The effects of fatigue gained during combat are only felt after the encounter in which they were inflicted has ended", so that would have to be tweaked as well.
Those are "Suffering Fatigue" not "Gaining Fatigue" as a general rule. They're put on you by the pain and trauma you're suffering from taking a Crit or dropping to 0hp. Or taking a crit -while- at 0hp. Those ones only come into play after the fight, once the adrenaline has worn off.

That said, it should definitely be clarified that the Fatigue being referenced is fatigue based in Suffering rather than Fatigue gained from Activities.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I wouldn't normally do this, as designing in real time isn't our process. But I thought I'd share where the designers are at re. Sprints. This may get rephrased or bullet-pointed out or whatever, but this is where the thinking is right now.

Sprint
When you take the Sprint action, you focus all your effort on moving as fast as possible. You may not take any other actions, bonus actions, or reactions other than your move Speed for the turn. If you are unencumbered, your Speed is quadrupled for one turn; if you are encumbered or wearing heavy armor, your Speed is tripled for one turn. You must Sprint in a straight line each turn, although you can change direction each time you Sprint. You may Sprint for a number of turns equal to your Constitution modifier. Each turn you Sprint after that, you make a Constitution (Athletics) check (DC 10 + 1 per previous check made in the last minute) or you suffer a level of fatigue from either tiredness or a minor sprain or injury. You recover fatigue suffered from sprinting at a rate of one level per minute. You cannot Sprint if you are suffering from one or more levels of fatigue.
 

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