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Combat: Action Points

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Did Revolution D100 use 'Action Points' (as in Mythras) in combat?

I sincerely hope not as they have a tendency to unbalance fights. 3 AP v 2 AP can be overly significant 

Edited by Scout

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In designing the Advanced Combat rules, which are an evolution of the Legend rules (Legend is the OGL ancestor of Mythras, which Lawrence and Peter wrote for Mongoose Pub), we have addressed specifically that point. Like you, some other players, both here and on rpg.net, have recently highlighted this perceived issue as one of the few "weak spots" of a system which everyone tends to like a lot under most other regards. Of course, there are plenty of people who are still happy of having a combatant perform 50% more actions for a slight difference in characteristics, so it is a "weak spot" only in someone's mind.

The big problem we have identified is that the mechanics of "running out of action points" tends to transform a master fighter into a complete "sitting duck" even against a rookie who happens to have a single AP left. Going from "impervious to my blows" to "free target" in a split second is an event you would rather not expect in a real fight.

The solution we applied, in addition to the unification of Action Points and Strike Rank in one single variable, was that of applying a substantial Penalty (-30% under standard rules) to all attacks and defences performed without having the necessary Strike Rank to spend. An optional rule allows for incremental Penalties when you defend more than once without having the required SR, for those who want to enforce strict realism at the cost of a little more book-keeping. Acting without Strike Rank also costs Life Points (fatigue), so being outnumbered will also wear you down very quickly.

In practice, this solution has proved to work rather well. While you can still take down a better fighter by double timing, there is no guarantee that this tactics will work. Moreover, any combatant can use Keep Distance and Take Initiative at any time in the round to "eat away" at his opponent's Strike Rank, thus making things completely unpredictable and much more dependant on how the fighter performed in the initial exchanges of the round. At the end of the day, it is more often skill, and a bit of luck, rather than characteristic points, which determines which combatant ends the round with unspent Strike Rank and gets an improved chance of landing an unparried blow.

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One thing I've thought D100 could benefit from are things like 'Feats'. Perhaps not exactly like D&D but similar. Something other than skills to make one warrior different from another warrior. Does RD100 have this?

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Yes! They are called "Stunts" and work just like Traits, that is they are "refinements/specialties" of a general skill and your total score in the skill limits the total number of them you can know. Unlike Traits, though, they do not add to your overall % to use the skill but allow you to perform one or more specific manoeuvre that is otherwise impossible to anyone not knowing the Stunt.

For instance, the Dual Wield stunt allows you to perform one extra attack or parry at no cost with the secondary weapon. In a Japanese game, the Iaijutsu Stunt allows you to strike and unsheath your blade with a single action. In Robyn Hode, the Swim in Armour stunt allows your hero... well, just as it says, to swim while wearing armour.

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On 3/20/2017 at 2:19 PM, RosenMcStern said:

For instance, the Dual Wield stunt allows you to perform one extra attack or parry at no cost with the secondary weapon. In a Japanese game, the Iaijutsu Stunt allows you to strike and unsheath your blade with a single action. In Robyn Hode, the Swim in Armour stunt allows your hero... well, just as it says, to swim while wearing armour.

I like names that are clear. :)

Stunts are interesting, as they allow PCs to have abilities or techniques that are normally difficult to describe. So, in a SciFi game, HALO would be a stunt of the Parachuting trait of the Agility skill, allowing you to drop using High Altitude Low Opening. I am not sure how I would describe this using different rules, a Legendary Ability probably wouldn;t work, so it would be handwaved.

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