Jump to content

Mounted Combat rules - HELP!


thom99

Recommended Posts

OK, so my group has rhino and bison riding barbarians-who love to charge things! According to the BRP rules, "...a charge attack occurs at the end of a full movement..." SO...let's say they don't kill the foe they just charged-now what??

1) Are they now considered engaged, so they must drop their lance and pull out a weapon to fight with? (or use the lance as a 1H spear as in the old RQ2 rules).

OR

2) Do they just ride merrily on at the start of the next combat round and turn around and charge again? If so, does their foe get a free attack?

It's a shame but I can find absolutely no rules for this! A pity that D&D (a much inferior system) has way better rules for this type of combat (as my ex D&D players keep pointing out!) :-/

Any help would be much appreciated!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK, so my group has rhino and bison riding barbarians-who love to charge things! According to the BRP rules, "...a charge attack occurs at the end of a full movement..." SO...let's say they don't kill the foe they just charged-now what??

1) Are they now considered engaged, so they must drop their lance and pull out a weapon to fight with? (or use the lance as a 1H spear as in the old RQ2 rules).

OR

2) Do they just ride merrily on at the start of the next combat round and turn around and charge again? If so, does their foe get a free attack?

It's a shame but I can find absolutely no rules for this! A pity that D&D (a much inferior system) has way better rules for this type of combat (as my ex D&D players keep pointing out!) :-/

Any help would be much appreciated!

I'd go for option 2. AFAIK one of the advantages of being mounted is that footmen can't really keep you engaged. You simply ride up strike and keep moving. In some cases, they may not even have an opportunity to attack AND parry. Just one pr the other.

BRP is not as rules bound as D&D. Think about what seems reasonable in any situation and go for it.

Likes to sneak around

115/420

Link to comment
Share on other sites

SO...let's say they don't kill the foe they just charged-now what??

Based upon real world logic ...

Since a charge usually happens at the riding animal's full speed, and the animal

cannot simply reduce its speed to zero immediately after the charge, animal and

rider will continue in a straight line and end up almost certainly behind their ene-

my after the charge, and now have to turn around and move back if they intend

to attack again.

If the charge did not kill the enemy outright, he can counterattack the charging

rider or his animal while they pass by, and if he has a missile weapon he could al-

so target the rider's back once he has passed by and before he can turn the ani-

mal around - one of the serious disadvantages of a charge is the possibility to be

hit in the back by an arrow or crossbow bolt.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Based upon real world logic ...

If the charge did not kill the enemy outright, he can counterattack the charging

rider or his animal while they pass by.

I take issue with this point. At the moment that the mount is passing next to the target at full charge, I would allow one action possible to the footman given how quickly everything is happening. He can either choose to defend against the charge or he can try to attack himself. Not both. Not enough time is available to do both. Think of it as one Strike Rank or Dex rank.

Ofcourse, if the footman is armed with a long spear, he can set it against the charge and that will be his action.

Likes to sneak around

115/420

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I take issue with this point. At the moment that the mount is passing next to the target at full charge, I would allow one action possible to the footman given how quickly everything is happening.

Give the footman a shield to protect him from the rider's weapon and a weapon

with a sufficient reach to hit either the riding animal or the rider, and I see no

problem why he should not be able to defend and attack at the same time - left

arm with the shield to defend, right arm with a weapon to attack.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Give the footman a shield to protect him from the rider's weapon and a weapon

with a sufficient reach to hit either the riding animal or the rider, and I see no

problem why he should not be able to defend and attack at the same time - left

arm with the shield to defend, right arm with a weapon to attack.

I'm coming at this from RQ3 perspective. Normally it is not possible to both attack and defend on the same strike (or Dex) rank. By the time, the foot man could act for a second time, the horse will be long gone.

Therefore it is an unfair advantage to treat the combat of mounted v foot as a normal foot v foot. The mounted has the advantage of superior position and speed.

Likes to sneak around

115/420

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The mounted has the advantage of superior position and speed.

True, plus the effect of the mass of his riding animal behind the initial attack.

However, real world history shows that charging cavalry was quite often slaugh-

tered by steadfast infantry that did not break in the initial impact of the charge,

and that even successful charges through enemy lines usually resulted in a num-

ber of riderless horses.

One of the reasons is that it is far more difficult for the charging rider to hit the

footman than it is for the footman to hit the rider or his animal - the rider has

to deal with his own movement and a smaller, more mobile target, while the foot-

man knows for sure that the rider and his animal will move in a straight line and

present a rather big target if their initial attack can be avoided.

So the rider is at a huge advantage in the first phase of his charge, but at an al-

most equally huge disadvantage if this attack fails to shock, break, disable or kill

his opponent, because now he is in the position of someone fleeing, with his back

to the enemy and unable to defend against anything coming at him from behind.

In a way, the charge consists of a very powerful attack of the rider, followed by

a comparatively easy counterattack of those footmen who avoided this attack,

kept their cool and have a missile weapon at hand.

I am in no way sure how to handle this with BRP rules, I would just want to point

out that a charge is in no way an easy affair with few risks for the rider, history

shows that prudent commanders who wanted their cavalry to survive the day ra-

rely ordered it to charge anything but an already weakened or retreating infantry.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that confusion is arising from thinking in terms of massed unit combat rather than as single units.

From the example given in terms of 2 mounted PC's versus your typical NPC enemy squad, I was looking at it as mounted versus single opponent.

I grant you that disciplined spear men or better still, Pikemen could break a charge, but this is more due to a tightly packed unit of set spears several ranks deep (with no dodge or parry) than to active defence and counterattack.

In a duel between a horeman and a footman, it would be difficult for the footman to halt the horse (without injury to it) and engage the horseman without allowing him to move off.

I haven't got books here, but I'd guess that RQ3 would be better reading than BRP in this instance.

Likes to sneak around

115/420

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What I have always applied in my RQ3 games:

After the attack of the rider and his mount, if the on-foot warrior is still standing, she can try to counterattack, but with a penalty of -25% due to the speed of the mount.

You could decide that if the on-foot warrior dodges the attack, she can't counterattack, only if she successfully parries.

Also, if her weapon is not long enough, the on-foot warrior can only damage the rider's legs or abdomen (or only the legs if the rider rides a high llama!).

(And then, there are the pike rules).

I'd be interested to know how other GMs handle this. And also how do they handle it when an archer fires against a mounted warrior and they don't specify if they're targeting the rider or the mount, but rather the whole mass.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of the reasons is that it is far more difficult for the charging rider to hit the

footman than it is for the footman to hit the rider or his animal - the rider has

to deal with his own movement and a smaller, more mobile target, while the foot-

man knows for sure that the rider and his animal will move in a straight line and

present a rather big target if their initial attack can be avoided.

This difficulty was the reason that mounted combat was limited to the lower of the weapon skill or the ride skill in RQ 3. Much of this is incorporated into BRP in the Spot Rule on p. 227.

So the rider is at a huge advantage in the first phase of his charge, but at an al-

most equally huge disadvantage if this attack fails to shock, break, disable or kill

his opponent, because now he is in the position of someone fleeing, with his back

to the enemy and unable to defend against anything coming at him from behind.

Not so much. Charges are such that if facing a single opponent in the open, the Rider will be well away from the target in most circumstances. If the target is equipped with a spear and Sets it to combat the oncoming charge (before the rider reaches him obviously), or if the target is equipped with a missile weapon, then the Rider may have a chance of being hit.

The only other instance that I might allow the target to strike back is if their Dex/Strike Rank were higher than the oncoming rider, AND they have specifically delayed their action, AND they have a shield or second weapon to parry with.

In a way, the charge consists of a very powerful attack of the rider, followed by

a comparatively easy counterattack of those footmen who avoided this attack,

kept their cool and have a missile weapon at hand.

OOPS, should have read a bit further. :D See above.

SDLeary

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like the Pendragon decides this. If damage roll is an odd number, the horse is hit. Simple.

This is nice and simple, thank you. I may use it in my games!

A further twist: what if you are targeting a rhino and its rider? The rhino is huge, so I'd say there's a 3/4 chance of hitting the rhino. Maybe in this case I'd just roll 1D100: under 75%, the rhino is hit, over 25%, the rider.

Something else: what if you target the rhino rider, but miss? There is a chance that you miss the rider but hit the rhino, right? :P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First off, Thanks everyone who's responded so far!

Now, I'm inclined to agree with Merak, in that the RAW don't allow the target to defend and attack in the same Strike Rank. But SDLeary has a pretty good idea how to handle this; so I'll have to check with the group and see what they think!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am in no way sure how to handle this with BRP rules, I would just want to point out that a charge is in no way an easy affair with few risks for the rider, history shows that prudent commanders who wanted their cavalry to survive the day rarely ordered it to charge anything but an already weakened or retreating infantry.

Hmmm, sounds like, rather than giving much of a combat advantage, in reality cavalry has more effect on morale... (which BRP doesn't handle, does it?)

Britain has been infiltrated by soviet agents to the highest levels. They control the BBC, the main political party leaderships, NHS & local council executives, much of the police, most newspapers and the utility companies. Of course the EU is theirs, through-and-through. And they are among us - a pervasive evil, like Stasi.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmmm, sounds like, rather than giving much of a combat advantage, in reality cavalry has more effect on morale...

As far as I understand it, morale is at least a very important part of it, perhaps

even the most important part.

To quote Wikipedia:

Historians such as John Keegan have shown that when correctly prepared

against (such as by improvising fortifications) and, especially, by standing

firm in face of the onslaught, cavalry charges often failed against infantry,

with horses refusing to gallop into the dense mass of enemies, or the char-

ging unit itself breaking up. However, when cavalry charges succeeded, it

was usually due to the defending formation breaking up (often in fear) and

scattering, to be hunted down by the enemy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charge_(warfare)

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmmm, sounds like, rather than giving much of a combat advantage, in reality cavalry has more effect on morale... (which BRP doesn't handle, does it?)

True, but in my experience, it works somehow if you tell the player who's receiving the charge that if s/he does not dodge or parry, s/he will suffer weapon damage PLUS the damage modifier of the mount. A lance and a rhino can mean: 1D10+1+2D6 or even 1D10+1+3D6. Now make them pray the charger does not get a critical... ;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As far as I understand it, morale is at least a very important part of it, perhaps

even the most important part.

To quote Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charge_(warfare)

Again this is talking about massed unit combat. It would be different at a skirmish scale or as a one on one.

From the OP I take it its just two riders and perhaps half a dozen of antagonists at once.

Likes to sneak around

115/420

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...