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galafrone

100+ in a combat skill

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Tonight our Humakti for the first time has used his Divine Sword Trance, enhanced with 10 magic point, raising his 1h sword skill to 185%

We have read the rule and they arent very clear (for me at least)

if none of the opponents has 101 or more, his 85% over the 100 can be used to reduce both Attacks and parries to ALL the foes in melee with him ?

i hope this isnt the real ruling… how do you deal with this situation ?

thanks for your opinions

tommaso

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That is the real ruling - one opponent will receive an almost impossible to parry attack, and  the attacks of the first four people in melee with this character will likely have an effective 5% chance to land a hit.

The solution how to deal with this (short of using Dispel Magic 2 to get rid of that 1 rune point Sword Trance) is to attack the Humakti with missiles - ideally missiles he may want to parry, reducing his parry when the melee attacks with full damage bonus come in to values below 100%.

Casting a Slow on the Humakti or Glue on the soles of his shoes may slow him down enough that all combatants can leave melee range, and his trance can only be used for parrying missiles. Demoralize and/or Befuddle are great against such foes, and Lunar Madness or Mindblast is even better as neither can be dispelled.

 

Generally I would allow the Humakti to wade through a sea of blood and chopped limbs once and maybe twice before the opponents get wise upon this tactic (let him gain reputation for the first times) and start to take him or at least his sword trance down with extreme prejudice, and from a distance. His fellow party members can of course buff him up magically, with Protection on top of Shield and perhaps some more stuff.

Engaging him in spirit combat with a controlled spirit, sicking elementals on him, multispelled Disruption - all of these will make his life a lot more interesting.

There will be fights that the Humakti can breeze through.

But then, one day, he will face an opponent with similar weapon trance, and their skills above 100 will cancel each other out.

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so that's the rule.

well, in my glorantha it will not be. 

i was thinking to avoid this kind of involution of the combat simply allowing that % over 100 to be deducted as he wishes against his opponents, but when that x% is over, for that round he can't use it anymore. So, basically he can subtract it in multiples of 5 on opponent's parries or Attacks against him.

or to allow up to 8 opponents to attack the humakti and giving him penalties to parry behind himself and bonuses to the opponents (like using a squares grid).

But this will ask for a flood of enemies all the times, and it will not Always be possible, if i want to keep up a consistency with the setting 

Also, the swordtrance thing is a thing all humakti can have and it is a fact that many will know. Since the humakti will go around flashing his runes, anyone will understand the very chance that attacking him will cause a sword trance breakthrough… so it can also be a deterrent

thanks Joerg for the input

 

Edited by galafrone

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2 hours ago, galafrone said:

Tonight our Humakti for the first time has used his Divine Sword Trance, enhanced with 10 magic point, raising his 1h sword skill to 185%

While a small consolation, bear in mind that it means the spell only lands at SR 11, so at least there’s one turn without it...

Edited by Akhôrahil

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2 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

While a small consolation, bear in mind that it the spell only lands at SR 11, so at least there’s one turn without it...

that was another thought we had, so the "boosting" will be pushing the execution past SR1, right ?

and this is true for ANY MP boosting of a divine spell ? (like vomit acid of cacodemon or else ..)

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14 hours ago, galafrone said:

that was another thought we had, so the "boosting" will be pushing the execution past SR1, right ?

and this is true for ANY MP boosting of a divine spell ? (like vomit acid of cacodemon or else ..)

Yes, one additional SR per MP boosting (but not for extra Rune Point spends).

Edited by Akhôrahil

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2 hours ago, galafrone said:

so that's the rule.

well, in my glorantha it will not be. 

i was thinking to avoid this kind of involution of the combat simply allowing that % over 100 to be deducted as he wishes against his opponents, but when that x% is over, for that round he can't use it anymore. So, basically he can subtract it in multiples of 5 on opponent's parries or Attacks against him.

or to allow up to 8 opponents to attack the humakti and giving him penalties to parry behind himself and bonuses to the opponents (like using a squares grid).

But this will ask for a flood of enemies all the times, and it will not Always be possible, if i want to keep up a consistency with the setting 

Also, the swordtrance thing is a thing all humakti can have and it is a fact that many will know. Since the humakti will go around flashing his runes, anyone will understand the very chance that attacking him will cause a sword trance breakthrough… so it can also be a deterrent

thanks Joerg for the input

 

There are some other disadvantages to Sword Trance.  It's not spelled out in the spell description, but I believe Jason commented on this somewhere.  Maybe the Core Rules questions thread?  Or there might have been a thread on Sword Trance.  You might try searching the forum for "Sword Trance". Basically, like the Arrow Trance( described in the Bestiary ) spell, when you cast this on yourself you go into a trance, and you can ONLY do sword related things.  So, you can attack and parry, but only with your sword.  You can move to get to another foe to attack.  You can cast sword related spells( Bladesharp, for example ), but NO other spells( like Healing ).  So, there are a few ways to deal with a Tranced foe( Axe Trance, Sword Trance, Arrow Trance ).  If you happen to know Dispell magic at a high enough level, that would be the first choice.  If not, but you have Rune Points left, a Dismiss Magic works( common spell, known by all Initiates or higher ).  Failing that, pepper him with arrows, which can't be parried. 

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3 minutes ago, Marc said:

There are some other disadvantages to Sword Trance.  It's not spelled out in the spell description, but I believe Jason commented on this somewhere.  Maybe the Core Rules questions thread?  Or there might have been a thread on Sword Trance.  You might try searching the forum for "Sword Trance". Basically, like the Arrow Trance( described in the Bestiary ) spell, when you cast this on yourself you go into a trance, and you can ONLY do sword related things.  So, you can attack and parry, but only with your sword.  You can move to get to another foe to attack.  You can cast sword related spells( Bladesharp, for example ), but NO other spells( like Healing ). 

This would be an excellent house rule.

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50 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

This would be an excellent house rule.

I also remember that thread on weapon trance and IIRC it's not a house rule -- and it explains why the rules say it doesn't combine effects with Berserk or Fanaticism. At least that's how I'm going to play it. After all, it's called "trance" for a reason... the PC has to be in some kind of trance!

2 hours ago, galafrone said:

that was another thought we had, so the "boosting" will be pushing the execution past SR1, right ?

That's how I understand the rules too, but I know some people on the forums interpret the "Rune magic always fires on SR1" rule as a catch all, regardless of MPs invested in the spell. AFAIK there hasn't been an official word on the matter.

3 hours ago, galafrone said:

i was thinking to avoid this kind of involution of the combat simply allowing that % over 100 to be deducted as he wishes against his opponents, but when that x% is over, for that round he can't use it anymore. So, basically he can subtract it in multiples of 5 on opponent's parries or Attacks against him.

That's an interesting house rule... so if I understand this correctly, it's actually a superset of RAW? That is, the Humakti might choose to apply the whole penalty to one opponent (useful when facing one dangerous boss NPC), just as per RAW, but against multiple opponents he would have to split his penalty (for example: -50%, -20%, -15% against 3 opponents, assuming they have <100% skill), the same way you also split your attack against multiple opponents? I really like this -- apart from the small inconvenience of slowing down play for the player to choose and declare how to split their penalty, it scales elegantly, is backwards compatible with RAW, and calls back to another similar mechanic.

Edited by lordabdul

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15 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

After all, it's called "trance" for a reason... the PC has to be in some kind of trance!

It makes all kinds of sense; it just isn’t a rule in the rulebook.

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51 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

That's how I understand the rules too, but I know some people on the forums interpret the "Rune magic always fires on SR1" rule as a catch all, regardless of MPs invested in the spell. AFAIK there hasn't been an official word on the matter.

 

I had interpreted the rules as "Rune magic always fires on SR1".  Then, I was about to post a question about it on the Core Rules Questions thread, when I found, on page 194, in the section labeled  "Magical Attacks and Strike Ranks",

Rune magic spells always take effect at strike rank 1. If
more than 1 magic point is used to boost a Rune magic spell,
or otherwise increase its effects, 1 strike rank is added for
each additional magical point after the first.

Which makes it pretty clear that, yeah, sometimes, Rune Spells DON'T go off on SR1.

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10 hours ago, lordabdul said:

That's an interesting house rule... so if I understand this correctly, it's actually a superset of RAW? That is, the Humakti might choose to apply the whole penalty to one opponent (useful when facing one dangerous boss NPC), just as per RAW, but against multiple opponents he would have to split his penalty (for example: -50%, -20%, -15% against 3 opponents, assuming they have <100% skill), the same way you also split your attack against multiple opponents? I really like this -- apart from the small inconvenience of slowing down play for the player to choose and declare how to split their penalty, it scales elegantly, is backwards compatible with RAW, and calls back to another similar mechanic.

Yes it was meant to be that, you read it correctly

In my mind the idea of mine 185 that allows me to subract 85 to all Attacks and parries to potentially up to 8 opponent seems ludicrous, more in the light of a simple 1 point rune spell (even if boosted with 10 mp). It's just a raise to the (1h sword) skill that gives me more options to perform better in a combat situation and gives me more sense to the Whole picture i have in my mind of a man with 185% in a combat skill. He has options, but hasnt entered godmode

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2 hours ago, galafrone said:

In my mind the idea of mine 185 that allows me to subract 85 to all Attacks and parries to potentially up to 8 opponent seems ludicrous

Whether it's ludicrous or not is hard to tell because the percentage system is only deceptively linear -- in truth, a few things (like for example the >100% rules) make skills scale non-linearly, where someone with 200% is a lot better than 4 times better someone with 50%. So I don't know about that.

However, remember that attacks and parries are not behaving the same, and you don't get to subtract willy-nilly like this!  Assuming all 8 opponents have below 100% in their attack and defense skills, then:

  • When attacking, your Humakti can either:
    • Attack one of the 8 opponents at full skill (-85% to that opponent's defense)
    • Attack two of the 8 opponents at partial skill, with one attack above 100... like, say, one attack at 120% (-20% to the opponent's defense), and one at 65% (no penalty to the opponent)
    • Attack three of the 8 opponents at partial skill... say, 55%, 60%, 70% (no penalties to any opponents)
    • The Humakti can't attack more than 3 opponents because he can't go below 50% for any attack. And he might run out of SRs anyway.
  • When defending, your Humakti can either dodge or block or parry.
    • Assuming he has "normal" (below 100) skills in Dodge and Shield, doing that won't affect the opponents' attack rolls.
    • If the Humakti chooses to parry, remember that subsequent parries are at a -20% penalty. So if 8 opponents attack him:
      • First opponent gets -85%, most probably gets parried and even hurt (or his weapon broken).
      • Second opponent gets -65%.
      • Third opponent gets -45%. These guys are really just here for the attrition.
      • Fourth opponent gets -25%.
      • Fifth opponent gets -5%. He might get lucky.
      • Six, seven, and eighth opponents don't get any penalty, and the Humakti's parry dips below 100%, at 85%, 65%, and 45% respectively.

So yeah, it might take more than 5 or 6 warriors to take down a Humakti in a Sword Trance, assuming zero magical support in favour of the opponents. That doesn't seem too ludicrous to me narratively/cinematically speaking.

Edited by lordabdul
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lordabdul, what i got from the RAW is that mine 185 humakti imposes a 85 penalty to ALL of them in both attack and defense (that's what Joerg also confirmed in his first post).

so even if it's true he can attack only 3 of them, all of them have by RAW -85% on their parries and when all 8 of them attack him, he has all of their Attacks reduced by 85% without even considering the parries…  (assuming all of them are under 85, that is the great great majority of RQG encounters)

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4 minutes ago, galafrone said:

lordabdul, what i got from the RAW is that mine 185 humakti imposes a 85 penalty to ALL of them in both attack and defense (that's what Joerg also confirmed in his first post).

so even if it's true he can attack only 3 of them, all of them have by RAW -85% on their parries and when all 8 of them attack him, he has all of their Attacks reduced by 85% without even considering the parries…  (assuming all of them are under 85, that is the great great majority of RQG encounters)

I think you've misunderstood, then.  Only the first attack is reduced by 85%.  All following parries add a cumulative -20% modifier to the Sword Trancer's Sword skill for the purposes of parrying, meaning that the penalty shrinks with each consecutive attack targeted at the Sword Trancer.

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5 minutes ago, galafrone said:

lordabdul, what i got from the RAW is that mine 185 humakti imposes a 85 penalty to ALL of them in both attack and defense (that's what Joerg also confirmed in his first post).

I don't think so, I'm sure it works like @lordabdul detailed.

5 minutes ago, galafrone said:

so even if it's true he can attack only 3 of them, all of them have by RAW -85% on their parries and when all 8 of them attack him, he has all of their Attacks reduced by 85% without even considering the parries…  (assuming all of them are under 85, that is the great great majority of RQG encounters)

No, you split the skill and then apply negatives if appropriate. So if he attacks one at 110% and one at 75%, the first one gets -10% against a 100% attack (-10 to both) and the second gets a normal skill parry against the 75% attack.

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6 minutes ago, galafrone said:

lordabdul, what i got from the RAW is that mine 185 humakti imposes a 85 penalty to ALL of them in both attack and defense (that's what Joerg also confirmed in his first post).

I'm not sure that's what Joerg said. He said: "one opponent will receive an almost impossible to parry attack" (emphasis mine). He also said "the attacks of the first four people in melee with this character will likely have an effective 5% chance to land a hit", which was actually a bit over-estimated... as per my example, the 3rd opponent probably gets a better chance than 5%, but probably still a shitty chance (-45%).

Oh and yeah, as I'm writing this, other people's replies are coming in :) 

 

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Let's see what the rules say:

"If the adventurer has a skill above 100% and that
skill is opposed by another skill lower than the
adventurer’s skill, the opposing skill is reduced by
the amount that the adventurer’s skill is above 100%.
Thus, a troll with a 75% shield skill who tries to
parry an attack from an adventurer with a 120%
sword skill has only a 55% chance of parrying the
sword. Alternatively, a troll with a 75% one-handed
mace skill who tries to hit an adventurer with a
120% shield skill has only a 55% chance of hitting."

So first off, it's clear that it happens to attackers against an opponent with superior defence.

However, this is counting all modifiers, so for instance once parrying starts to suffer penalties, this means that the attack penalty will not be reduced as much, as lordabdul stated. And you only get a penalty to your defence when you actually have to use it. And again, since all penalties and bonuses applies, once you start to attck multiple opponents, they get less to no penalties as your attack is now so split up. In order to give them all the same huge penalty to defence, you would need some kind of funky weapon that attacks multiple opponents at the same skill (for instance, if you use your Dwarven Cannon 350% against a bunch of clustered opponents).

Edited by Akhôrahil

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so i didnt understood Joerg's answer correctly. 

If the 85% surplus applies only to 1 opponent (the example dont give us the chance to split on more than 1 opponent toh), that 85 can  be used ONLY to the parry of the defender (as implied in the rules) or on the parry of the incoming attack from the same opponent or on both ? (by rules isnt really clear at all)

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19 minutes ago, galafrone said:

lordabdul, what i got from the RAW is that mine 185 humakti imposes a 85 penalty to ALL of them in both attack and defense (that's what Joerg also confirmed in his first post).

so even if it's true he can attack only 3 of them, all of them have by RAW -85% on their parries and when all 8 of them attack him, he has all of their Attacks reduced by 85% without even considering the parries…  (assuming all of them are under 85, that is the great great majority of RQG encounters)

One such attack per melee round, vs. a whole number of attacks starting with 185% but reduced by 20% per parry. It doesn't matter where the attack comes from, as long as it can be parried (i.e. no arrows or sling stones, but thrown javelins, axes, or melee attacks).

Which is why I advise to use javelins against such an opponent. Can be parried, may be lethal when ignored, and happen before any melee attacks take place. If you send an earth elemental to trap him, you don't even have to enter melee.

Edited by Joerg

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6 minutes ago, Joerg said:

One such attack per melee round, vs. a whole number of attacks starting with 185% but reduced by 20% per parry.

Which is why I advise to use javelins against such an opponent. Can be parried, may be lethal when ignored, and happen before any melee attacks take place. If you send an earth elemental to trap him, you don't even have to enter melee.

And importantly, if he foregoes parrying, you get your full attack roll. This is one reason why you need to know if opponent parries before you roll attack.

(Also, against shield users, a hail of javelins is just murder for the shield once the Impales start rolling in. This may be the only game I have ever seen that manages to model the Roman style of javelin combat, which is really impressive.)

Edited by Akhôrahil

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I say:  use the RAW.  Let your Humakti have his so-called GodMode, and positively WADE through the enemies.

This is a warrior of the God Of Death, channelling his deity, wielding a physical symbol of Death as his weapon.  Of COURSE he will be bringing carnage, and out-classing (most) other melee fighters.

I call it "so-called" because it's VERY limited.  He'll still fall to volleys of arrows.  He'll still succumb to spells, spirits, elementals, etc.  He's in a trance, so won't react appropriately to what's going on; e.g. taking cover vs. bow-fire, taking a moment to heal, cast mobility, mount or dismount, stop-drop-roll if hit with flaming oil, etc etc etc... if it isn't an act of swordsmanship, he won't do it, not even a single step to get out of a line-of-fire from a 8d8 mostali arbalest or cannon-cult gonne.

 

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2 hours ago, g33k said:

I say:  use the RAW.  Let your Humakti have his so-called GodMode, and positively WADE through the enemies.

This is a warrior of the God Of Death, channelling his deity, wielding a physical symbol of Death as his weapon.  Of COURSE he will be bringing carnage, and out-classing (most) other melee fighters.

I call it "so-called" because it's VERY limited.  He'll still fall to volleys of arrows.  He'll still succumb to spells, spirits, elementals, etc.  He's in a trance, so won't react appropriately to what's going on; e.g. taking cover vs. bow-fire, taking a moment to heal, cast mobility, mount or dismount, stop-drop-roll if hit with flaming oil, etc etc etc... if it isn't an act of swordsmanship, he won't do it, not even a single step to get out of a line-of-fire from a 8d8 mostali arbalest or cannon-cult gonne.

 

And so achieve a suitably heroic death.

He's not just wielding Death, he's accepted that every day is a good day to die, but THIS day is extra special. If he survives it's the will of his god.

g33k is describing a profound act of worship. 

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14 hours ago, Joerg said:

One such attack per melee round, vs. a whole number of attacks starting with 185% but reduced by 20% per parry. It doesn't matter where the attack comes from, as long as it can be parried (i.e. no arrows or sling stones, but thrown javelins, axes, or melee attacks).

Which is why I advise to use javelins against such an opponent. Can be parried, may be lethal when ignored, and happen before any melee attacks take place. If you send an earth elemental to trap him, you don't even have to enter melee.

Yeah, cuz LOTS of cool creatures I'd like my PCs to run into use javelins, bows or have dispel magic....the over 100% rule can't be defended.  It should be house ruled out.

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1 hour ago, Pentallion said:

Yeah, cuz LOTS of cool creatures I'd like my PCs to run into use javelins, bows or have dispel magic....the over 100% rule can't be defended.  It should be house ruled out.

There is nothing to stop you from house-ruling limitations on these weapon trance spells, or on the rules dealing with skills beyond 100%. As long as you are the GM and the players are told of these house rules, you have full control over this.

If you come as a player to a table that uses the RAW, you can of course submit the suggestion to house-rule that before insanity arises, but there is no obligation on behalf of the established (or establishing) table to humor your suggestion. If it is the only game in town, you have the choice to suffer this, or remain abstinent.

This goes for any house-ruling, whether weapon trance limits, modifications to how combat between characters with skills of 100+ are resolved, variant movement rules, variant Strike Rank or initiative systems, whether to have sorcery and if, how exactly, etc.

As long as you remain in your agreed environment, arguing from and about house-rules may be done with authority. When you enter the open field like convention games, online games or a forum like this, being used to a house rule is an acceptable excuse for trying to apply a mechanic other than RAW, but other than a critical success in Fast Talk to convince the GM to give the house-rule a try won't get you the experience you prefer.

 

We have had a number of cases where different people have read the RAW differently than intended. Weapon Trance without the trance effect for instance. The need to learn the Magic Rune as a sorcerer. (If you haven't learned it, can you substitute it with any other rune? Will that double the MP cost? Or do you need the Magic Rune to cast Neutralize Magic?)

 

I have caught flak for being a spoilsport against Humakti earlier, and now I am pouring out suggestions how to limit this extremely unbalanced cult again. I happen to like more balanced games as those lend themselves to a campaign game, and to add a building game on the side - become a wealthier and more influential member of your society, or take on a new and higher responsibility (e.g. in Apple Lane or the Long Home), or rise to the inner circle of Argrath, pushing him aside when something hugely heroic has to be undertaken (that will be credited to Argrath anyway). That means that balance-breaking characters may experience the see-saw effect of likewise unbalanced response, which may make playing a one-trick-pony Humakti or a dedicated Trickster a less fulfilling experience under my story-telling, world-building and GMing.

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