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Combined actions in combat question


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The Knight charges and breakes his lance against the enemy, who dies.

Another enemy comes towards him so he has to get his sword.

Does he have a -5/+5 in this round and he is able to use the sword? Or does he have the -5/+5 BUT he has to use the shield defense (DEX roll instead of sword)? Also could he put himself in a defensive attitude for the +10?

Could he use the attack with the shield (STR roll) while he takes his sword?

Thanks in advance!

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18 minutes ago, The Wanderer said:

Another enemy comes towards him so he has to get his sword.

Does he have a -5/+5 in this round and he is able to use the sword? Or does he have the -5/+5 BUT he has to use the shield defense (DEX roll instead of sword)? Also could he put himself in a defensive attitude for the +10?

Could he use the attack with the shield (STR roll) while he takes his sword?

1. Yes and yes: he can pull his sword and fight with it in the same round. That is what the -5/+5 is there for.

2. No, he can attack with his sword. In our houserules, he can also decide not to draw his sword and just protect him with his shield, using his highest 1H weapon skill (Sword, most likely) with +10 for Defensive. The downside of this is that even if he wins, he doesn't get the sword out (since he didn't do a combined action) nor does he do any damage (since he was Defensive, and also because he didn't have a sword in hand).

3. This is what our PKs usually do: rearm with Defensive for a total of +5/+5, with the downside of not doing damage on a win.

4. Brawling attack? Sure, but he would suffer -5/+5 because of combined action. So why not use his Sword since his skill is better and the damage is higher.

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1 hour ago, The Wanderer said:

The impossible has happened, and both the attacker and the PK (in defensive mode) have rolled critical... How is it resolved now? 😂😂🤦🏻‍♂️

Both critical = tie. So nothing happens, as per KAP 5.2, p. 113.

Greg used a house rule that both do 1d3 damage (past armor) if it is crit vs. crit, so you could say that the Defensive one takes 1d3 damage (past armor) but doesn't cause any damage in return because of Defensive.

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3 hours ago, The Wanderer said:

I was asking because on the rules of combined actions it does explicitly says that a combined action for rearming could be used using shield defense. But I think I misinterpreted it!

Hmm. As I said, we house-ruled it so that you can use your highest weapon skill regardless. However, here is how I interpret the shield defense rule (p. 139): You can simply defend yourself with your shield using DEX+10 (counting as a Defensive tactic) even if you are not armed with a weapon. If you want to use Defensive and re-arm at the same time, then you use DEX+10 for Defensive and -5 for rearming, for a total of DEX+5.

Whether this suggests that you cannot use Defensive while re-arming with your Weapon skill is up to debate. Admittedly, the whole point of using DEX would be useless if you can use your main Weapon Skill instead, since your main Weapon Skill is likely much better than your DEX. But if the choice is between rearming and fighting back with Weapon Skill -5, or rearming and Defending with DEX+5, then there would be a niche to fill with this shield defense.

I don't recall off the top of my head if Greg said anything definitive on this one in any forum posts. He may have. I'd have to go and look. We have played with "rearm+Defensive with Weapon Skill +5" so long that it is frankly a reflex already.

EDIT: OK, the shield defense says explicitly that even if the GM normally doesn't allow Defense tactic, since it is an optional combat tactic, it should be allowed with the shield defense. That might be the reason of it, but it could be explained better, I feel. I have not seen anything that would say that you cannot use Defense tactic whilst rearming with a weapon, but that might be one of those GM judgement calls to make. I can definitely see the game being more deadly, especially with high skills, if it is disallowed. Also, as I said, personally I prefer using the Sword skill even without a sword: a knight with a Sword skill 25 doesn't suddenly forget how to use his shield (DEX 10) even if he drops his sword!

EDIT2: 4th edition is clear that rearming and fighting uses your combat skill at -5 (and +5 to the enemy skill). Again, there is no reason why Defense tactic would not be allowed by the knight rearming, since it makes total sense that he would be backing away while getting his sword out and focusing more on defending himself. Also in 4th edition, what to do if you lose your weapon due to a fumble: "In that case, to block incoming blows with the shield, the character who fumbled may still make the roll of the weapon lost, though he cannot damage his opponent. " We did interpret that to include, for balance's sake, that you could still do Defensive, but of course if you are not using a weapon, the opponent can just do an Uncontrolled attack and hence make it back to Skill vs. Skill with you unable to hurt him. I don't know why 5th edition decided to change that to just DEX and nerf shields that way.

Edited by Morien
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1 hour ago, Morien said:

Also, as I said, personally I prefer using the Sword skill even without a sword: a knight with a Sword skill 25 doesn't suddenly forget how to use his shield (DEX 10) even if he drops his sword!

This makes a lot of sense!

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