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Tinkering with a homebrew game, looking for 'attacks vs fortitude'

I'm trying to create a homebrew combat system, maybe to adapt as a full RPG, maybe to tweak into a board game. One element I'm trying to include is interesting martial combat options, using a mix of strikes for damage and other things that modulate the narrative of the fight and change your opponent's calculus on their turn.

Like, you get two actions per round, and only one can be used to deal damage. The other might be to grapple, trip, or throw sand in their eyes (classic 3rd edition/PF 'combat maneuvers'). Or you might distract someone with a Deception check, cow them with Intimidate, learn details of their fighting style with an Insight check, or undermine their confidence with a Persuasion check (verbal combat tricks). Or you might take an action that telegraphs your intention for next round, setting you up to get a cool bonus, but giving your foe a chance to react before you can benefit; the simplest option is Defend (you can make opportunity attacks if people move past you), but there's also Commit (you get a bonus to hit next turn against a single foe with a single specific weapon), and Bind (you pick one weapon an opponent has and you give them a penalty if they use it while you're within range).

Basically, every round you're posing a new dilemma to your opponent.

However, one gap I'm trying to fill is that I want characters with different stats to be vulnerable to different types of attacks, so you won't always use the same tricks. If you fight a clever guy, don't try to feint him; maybe grapple him instead. Don't try to trip the stout guy, but maybe you can throw sand in his eyes.

I have interesting things you can do that target Reflex and Will, but I'm looking for attacks that target Fortitude. Any ideas?
 

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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Well...Fort attacks are things like toxins, diseases, drains and the like. You’re attacking someone’s health. Looking at other systems, you’re inducing systemic shock. You’re stunning someone, physically or mentally, which may inhibit their ability to act quickly, precisely, or coherently.*

Some of that overlaps with HP damage, but not necessarily all of it.





* For instance, if you’re experiencing frostbite or heat stroke, not only are you being damaged physically, your brain malfunctions. The worse it gets, the harder it is to control your body. The harder it becomes to think straight.
 
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Voadam

Legend
Stunning is the one that pops immediately to mind.

Possibly a fatigue inducing attack.

Intense pain from a nerve strike might be a fortitude targeting attack.

Some penalties for fortitude attacks could be slowing or fewer actions or penalties as a consequence.

The poison and disease attacks would be more monster special attacks in general, though a PC can get their hands on poison blades.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Stunning is the one that pops immediately to mind.

Possibly a fatigue inducing attack.

Intense pain from a nerve strike might be a fortitude targeting attack.

Some penalties for fortitude attacks could be slowing or fewer actions or penalties as a consequence.

The poison and disease attacks would be more monster special attacks in general, though a PC can get their hands on poison blades.
In a 3.5Ed homebrew, I had planned on using the game’s fatigue mechanics as a substitute for the usual ones for undead life energy drains. The math was simpler, and everything was easier to run. I never used it in anything besides a playtest, however, because:

1) I never got around to reworking all the stuff (spells, artifacts, etc) that used the level drain mechanics, and

2) 4Ed hit the shelves.
 

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
Daze - you hit the opponent with a blunt subdual attack (eg using the shaft of an axe or flat of a blade) which causes them to be dazed and lose actions in the next round

Winding - you strike your target in a way that knocks the wind out of them, causing a level of fatigue

Dead Arm - your strike causes your target to lose sensation in an arm. The PC only has use of one hand for the remainder of the combat

Knock Back - Your blow causes your opponent to be knocked back 5 ft but remain on their feet

Nausea - Your strike causes your opponent to vomit
 

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