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Have a question on the shield parry rules on page 52 of 7e Cthulhu Invictus, under Defending with a Shield. It says the Shield user gains the Shield's armor rating even if they lose the bout of combat, and the shield can possibly take damage. Then on page 53 under Life of a Shield, it says when a Shield successfully blocks an attack, the shield itself takes damage. So my question is, what's the difference? It sounds like whether i successfully parry or not, my shield armor counts and my shield may take damage.
Greetings, OQ2 explorers I thought you all might find a House Rule mod my players and I cooked up concerning shields interesting. Trying to be mindful of OQ2's simplicity, we still felt our game needed some shield tweaks. Weapons including shields are designated light, medium, heavy, and huge in the Close Combat Weapons table on page 45. The term “huge,” however, is only used in relation to shields and can be problematic as it is truly a size designation, in contrast to the light, medium, and heavy designations which seem to describe weight. This dichotomy is further exacerbated by use of the term “Large” in the passage on page 60 which reads: Shields with a size of Large or Huge (i.e. Medium and Large Shields) provide a cover modifier to the ranged attack of the attacker -25% and -50% respectively against arrows, sling shot and cross bow bolts. As there is no “Large” size designation in the table's Size column, “Heavy” is what was obviously meant, which is again more a reference to weight than size. After discussing further shield category concerns and rather than rename the column Weight, my players and I felt a re-designation of shield size was in order. Thus it was decided that, small shields (buckler, targe, etc.) would be sized “Light” rather than Medium; medium shields (heater, round, etc.) sized “Medium” rather than Heavy; large shields (scutum, hoplon, etc.) should be sized “Heavy” rather than Huge; and truly enormous shields, such as the pavise, should be termed “Huge.” Thus the above excerpt was revised in our game version to read: “Medium, Heavy, and Huge shields provide extra protection from arrows, sling shot and crossbow bolts. Archers, crossbowmen and slingers suffer a -25%, -50%, and/or -75% modifier to their attacks against targets armed with Medium, Heavy, or Huge shields respectively.” In addition to the above, it was decided to modify the Ranged Attack Situational Modifiers table and “Cover” section on page 59 to better reflect the House Rule addition and modification. The RAW passage reads: “For missile attacks the defender benefits from the best of the shield modifier in the table above and the cover modifier below,” but there is no “...table above.” Our version reads: “Against missile attacks, the defender benefits from the best of the shield modifiers in the table below...” To the “Target Visibility” section, we then added three rows: Target is armed with a Medium sized shield -25% Target is armed with a Heavy sized shield -50% Target is armed with a Huge sized shield -75% Sorry about the huge table there...something exploded in the translation from word processor to forum :-( A reminder of these penalties was suggested as an additional note under “Range” in the “Ranged Weapon” section on page 47. We also decided an addendum to Newt's excellent “Taking out Life Insurance” advice on page 54 would be in order: On Shields “Your shield is your friend. Regardless of character concept, get a shield and use it. It will prolong your character's life.” For new players, we wrote the following House Rule summary: Small shields sized Light, such as bucklers and targes, will block all incoming damage from Light weapons with a successful parry. Small shields will only block half the incoming damage from a Medium sized weapon and no incoming damage from a Heavy sized weapon.They offer no protection against archers, crossbowmen and slingers. Medium shields sized Medium, such as heater or round shields, will block all incoming damage from Light and Medium sized weapons with a successful parry but only half the incoming damage from Heavy sized weapons. Luckily, there are no Huge sized offensive weapons. Medium shields offer greater protection from arrows, bolts and sling-stones, levying a -25% modification against such missile attacks. Large shields, such as scutum and hoplon shields, sized Heavy will block all incoming damage from Light, Medium and Heavy weapons with a successful parry. They offer even greater protection from arrows, bolts and sling-stones, levying a -50% modification against such missile attacks. Huge shields, such as the pavise, levy a -75% modification against missile attacks. Nearly stationary and deployed for siege or large scale battle purposes (both offense and defense), they cannot be used in the quick of Close Combat situations like the above sized shields can. And don't forget: "Shield-carrying characters may attempt to Parry hand thrown missile weapons (daggers, darts, hatchets, rocks, etc.) if the target is aware of the attack" (58). Cheers!
So how would you use shields with the 7e rules? I'm converting some of the Invictus scenarios to 7e and not quite sure how to address this since combat is an opposed roll with the better roll winning. I dont think dodge would be appropriate because i'm not dodging. I mean sure, i'm trying not to get hit, but with a shield i am purposely putting an object between myself and the attacker, and possibly moving to not get hit as well.
Again, as a disclaimer I'm a newcomer to BRP about to run my first campaign, so apologies if I'm just missing a key point in both of these areas... But far as I can tell, the only benefit to using a shield as opposed to any other parrying "weapon" is the durability in HP (re: fumbled parries leading to broken weapon) and protection from missile fire. I guess you could throw in the knockback attacks. Otherwise a player's main weapon will be just as effective defensively, and probably moreso as they can concentrate their skill points there. What's the deal with that? I mean, for a combat system that's relatively realistic ("relatively" being the operative word here) this doesn't make sense. Attacking and parrying with a longsword alone, or attacking with a longsword and parrying with a shield - IRL that is a huge difference. Along those same lines - although I'll probably discourage any dual-wielding in my campaign - fighting with two weapons seems to be based on the same exact mechanics as striking twice with one. There's no real advantage. Is this just lazy mechanics? Or is there a subtlety that I didn't get the first few reads through? If the former, are there variants (I'm especially thinking of shield use here) that make a little more sense?