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Flip flop combat rolls

brp combat opposed rolls superworld

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#1 carldot34

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 05:36 PM

I am thinking of incorporating two rules into my BRP Superworld game, one from BRP Central forums and one from Yogsothoth.com but I would like people's input into how the two are likely to combine. Both changes are to speed up combat and reduce calculations by the players.

1) Opposed rolls do not go to the person with the highest level of success but to the person with the highest roll which is still a success.
E.g. 80% attack vs 60% dodge. Attacker rolls 61%, dodger rolls 10%, attacker gets higher roll and hits. This ignores special rolls, levels of success etc on contested rolls.

2) I'll quote part of the forum entry:
"But if you want more predictability and less failure, just roll percentiles but allow the player to choose which die to take as tens, and which as units. This would give your character with 60% Drive only a 16% chance of failure or thereabouts. A relative beginner with 30% skill would have about 50:50. Won't suit everyone, but might be worth considering."
Much better chance of succeeding but player has to decide which is it better to use. Example above, attacker would get a special result if he reverses his attack roll (uses 16 instead of 61) but runs the risk of opponent dodging the attack more easily.

The roll becomes a curve with successes enhanced and failures reduced, suiting a Superworld type game.

Opinions please?

#2 Baragei

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 05:52 PM

On 1) You might want to take a look at Mongoose's RuneQuest, and the games that followed it. All use the blackjack-mechanic you're describing here, and keeps a single critical range to 1/10 of skill. I like that mechanic, and while I can't see a reason why your take on it wouldn't work, I can say that Mongoose's opposed rolls are one of the things they got right.

2) Flip-flopping every roll is pretty darn powerful. But if you can oppose it with a defending roll, it kind of evens out.

You might be on to something here, carldot34

#3 carldot34

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 06:41 PM

I have Mongoose's Runequest on my shelves but haven't ever used it (I have a lot of full shelf space!) That's a great suggestion.

I wanted a roll that FELT suitable for Superworld without resorting to hero/action points etc.

Thanks for your support, Baragei.

#4 filbanto

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Posted 28 January 2014 - 08:18 PM

1) Opposed rolls do not go to the person with the highest level of success but to the person with the highest roll which is still a success.
E.g. 80% attack vs 60% dodge. Attacker rolls 61%, dodger rolls 10%, attacker gets higher roll and hits. This ignores special rolls, levels of success etc on contested rolls.


This is the mechanic used in Pendragon - you're just using a d100 instead of a d20. It works great! Here are some things to think about:
  • It is hard to include a mechanism for catastrophic failure (a fumble).
  • You will still have ties when two players roll the same number on a success. Chances are this won't happen often.
  • You can include a Critical success mechanism when you exactly equal your roll or perhaps come within a certain (5?) percentage of your skill.


#5 Canis latrans popus

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 01:07 AM

This is the mechanic used in Pendragon - you're just using a d100 instead of a d20. It works great! Here are some things to think about:

  • It is hard to include a mechanism for catastrophic failure (a fumble).
  • You will still have ties when two players roll the same number on a success. Chances are this won't happen often.
  • You can include a Critical success mechanism when you exactly equal your roll or perhaps come within a certain (5?) percentage of your skill.

What I would do if using d100 instead of d20 and using Pendragon as a model:
Rolling over is a failure
96-00 is a fumble
Rolling between the skill rating and 5 less than the rating is a critical success
Highest roll that is a success wins in opposed resolution

Or just use a d20 so it's:
20 is a fumble
rating is a crit
highest success wins.
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#6 TrippyHippy

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 01:57 AM

They use flip-flop rolls in Unnown Armies, albeit only for selected 'obsession' skills. I think it adds about 10% or so to the odds of success.

#7 MatteoN

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 07:57 AM

They use flip-flop rolls in Unnown Armies, albeit only for selected 'obsession' skills. I think it adds about 10% or so to the odds of success.


The increment to the chance of success is indirectly proportional to its base value, for example it's +80% (of the rating) with a rating of 10 (actual chance of success is 18), +48% with a rating of 50 (actual chance of success is 74), and +9% with a rating of 90 (actual chance of success is 98%).

carldot34, if I'm not wrong this flip-flop mechanics is not easily compatible with skill ratings going over 100.

#8 pulpcitizen

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 10:16 AM

I read flip flop combat rolls and had a whole different thought buzzing around my head; fighting in loose fitting beach footwear. :)
Sorry. I'll get my coat. :)
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#9 carldot34

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 12:49 PM

I am trying out the #2 idea (flip flop rolls) because I am trying to get away from math at the table as some players find the calculating 1/5 skill and 1/20 skill awkward. Not because I find the math hard but because just mentioning math puts some players off! Lol.

This is how I deal with different difficulties and with calculating criticals, specials and fumbles.


I like the 7e solution of showing the different skill percentages on the character sheet but when you start adding in and subtracting percentages, you have to recalculate the break points. My play test solution is entirely die based. Some of my other house playtest rules have prompted this. For example, in Superworld, I have defined, for my home games only, attacking in brawling (fists only) as always being an easy skill roll, as I want to encourage hand to hand to simulate the comics. All other attacks (using the projection skill) are average as usual.

Instead of doubling or halving skill percentages I have started testing the following: (I have a Monograph for Chaosium for BRP part written, but it has a number or changes to encourage heroic play).

Easy skill difficulty, roll % die, use lowest die as tens. If HtH combat skill is 50+, attacker can make one attack at easy or two attacks at average. (the logic is an easy skill roll of +50% gets doubled to over 100% and so allows two attacks). Combat skill of 75+ allows one attack at easy or 2 at average or 3 attacks at hard. Combat skill of 100+ gives one at easy, two at average or 4 at hard.

Average skill difficulty, roll %, use die as normal.

Hard skill difficulty, roll %, use highest die as tens.

A special result is scored if the skill is a success and there is a '1' showing on either die. That gives just about the right % based on 20% of original skill.

A critical result is scored if the skill is a success and there are doubles on the dice (11, 22, 33, etc). This gives about the right % for criticals

A double 9 or double 0 is always a fumble and for some difficult-to-use weapons, possible double 7s and double 8s as long as 77 and 88 are not successful rolls. A high base skill reduces the chance of fumbling with difficult weapons.

E.g. Dodge is 63 %. Average roll of 41% is a special, roll of 55 is a critical dodge, roll of 71 is a failure (cannot flip dice on average skill difficulties). No working out of %s needed.

Hero A (brawling 40%) who has some advantage over villain B, punches the foul fiend. Hero has 40% + 30% (for advantage) gives 70% (two attacks this round due to advantage). Attacks once and rolls 83%, reverses dice and hits with a 38%. If hero A had taken two attacks, that first one would have been a miss.

I am not convinced yet that I have worked out the percentages correctly but it IS quick at the table.

#10 RosenMcStern

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 12:54 PM

It is still quite complex.

Try the following: if the ten dice is higher than the unit dice, it is a special success. Special trumps normal. On an identical level of success, higher roll wins.

#11 Atgxtg

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 02:19 PM

Some possible options:

1) Use the bump mechanic from HeroQuest. Basically, if the skill is over 100% the character subtracts 100 from his skill and rolls against the remainder, but "bumps" up his success by one level. You can subtract another 100% for another bump at 200% skill and so on. That will let you handle skills over 100%.

2) If you want a simple way to keep special successes without doing math, on any roll that is successful, if the character rolls either a five or a zero on the "one" die, it is a special success.

3) If you want a simple way to keep critical successes without doing math, on any roll that is successful, if the character rolls an odd doubles (11, 33, 55, 77, 99), it is a critical success.
Smiley when you say that. :P





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