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Armor in the new BRP


marcellus praxis

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Hi everybody,

Well, since i'm new on this forum, i assume i can ask a stupid beginner question :):

in the new BRP the armor may have a constant value ( ala Runequest ) value or a random value ( ala Elric/Stormbringer). Unfortunately these values do not correspond well to each other: for instance, 8 pt of constant protection ( plate armor ) corresponds to 1D10 random protection ( average value 5.5 ).

Traditionally, constant armor is associated with random hit location ( RQ2/3 ) and random armor with major wounds ( Elric/Stormbringer ).

However i intend ( for role playing in Middle Earth ) to use fix armor and major wound.

Do you have any advice on this?

Thanks.

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I've used fixed armour and a Major Wound-like variant in my homebrew for a number of years with satisfactory results.

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.

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However i intend ( for role playing in Middle Earth ) to use fix armor and major wound.

Do you have any advice on this?

Thanks.

That's the way I am designing and running my Middle-earth BRP game with my rpg group. It's working fine so far. I am also playtesting using a Critical Hit system that is a BRP version of the old MERP Critical charts. That's also proved a success amongst the group. I plan to add this as an optional rule within ME-BRP.

Cheers,

Fergo113

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Hi everybody,

Well, since i'm new on this forum, i assume i can ask a stupid beginner question :):

in the new BRP the armor may have a constant value ( ala Runequest ) value or a random value ( ala Elric/Stormbringer). Unfortunately these values do not correspond well to each other: for instance, 8 pt of constant protection ( plate armor ) corresponds to 1D10 random protection ( average value 5.5 ).

Traditionally, constant armor is associated with random hit location ( RQ2/3 ) and random armor with major wounds ( Elric/Stormbringer ).

However i intend ( for role playing in Middle Earth ) to use fix armor and major wound.

Do you have any advice on this?

Thanks.

I thought it was a mistake until I realized this: in the random value system helmets add a bonus. So, if you have a plate armor and a heavy helmet, you have a 1D10+2 protection (average value 7.5), which is nearer to 8. That makes more sense.

Grając zaś w grę komputerową, być może zdarzyło się wam zapragnąć zejść z wyznaczonej przez autorów ścieżki i, miast zabić smoka i ożenić się z księżniczką, zabić księżniczkę i ożenić się ze smokiem.

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Unfortunately, 8 point is without head coverage. Heavy helmet adds 2 points for a total of 10 (which is consistent with the NPC knight armor described in BRP).

Since i wish to convert PC from the game "Tiers Age" where combat is not very lethal, the use of random armor bothers me. I think I will use the fixed value armor along with the "aiming" rule which allows to ignore armor if you make a difficult combat roll.

In fact i don't really know if this aiming rule applies for creatures.

I remember a RQ borderland campaign where we couldn't injure giant frogs except by making a critical! A Nigthmare!

So, i think i will accept aiming against creatures....

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Unfortunately, 8 point is without head coverage. Heavy helmet adds 2 points for a total of 10 (which is consistent with the NPC knight armor described in BRP).

That's not correct. If you have a look at the armor table, you'll see that the locations a full plate covers are "all but head". If you want to know how much fixed protection a helmet gives (that is, if you want to use the "armor by hit location" rules), go to page 262. A heavy helmet gives 8 AP, and a light one gives 4 AP. At least, that's my interpretation of the rules. :)

Grając zaś w grę komputerową, być może zdarzyło się wam zapragnąć zejść z wyznaczonej przez autorów ścieżki i, miast zabić smoka i ożenić się z księżniczką, zabić księżniczkę i ożenić się ze smokiem.

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That's not correct. If you have a look at the armor table, you'll see that the locations a full plate covers are "all but head". If you want to know how much fixed protection a helmet gives (that is, if you want to use the "armor by hit location" rules), go to page 262. A heavy helmet gives 8 AP, and a light one gives 4 AP. At least, that's my interpretation of the rules. :)

Your interpretation of the rules makes perfectly sense using the hit location system. This is accuratly described page 260 under the helmet entry.

However, i would like to use a fixed armor system with no hit location. Since lacking a helmet implies -1 or -2 armor penalty, i think adding an helmet on an armour with no head protection ( for instance plate armor of page 259) will conversely add +1 or +2 to the armor value .

This is fully consistent with the armor value for the knight NPC of page 363 ( 10 armor described as full plate and heavy helmet ),ant that seems to confirm my analysis.

My original concern was to know if it makes sense to use fixed armor value without hit location system. Your answer may indicate that you don't recommend this.

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Yes, you can use fixed AP without hit locations and variable APs with hit locations.

The fact that the average AP of variable armour is less than the fixed AP is not a problem. The highest value of the roll is more than the fixed value, so it has the potential to absorb more.

As for lethality, variable armour is more lethal than fixed armour, hit locations are more lethal than no hit locations and variable armour with hit locations is the deadliest option of all.

I use fixed armour and hit locations, so not quite the most lethal but neither the least.

Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

www.soltakss.com/index.html

Jonstown Compendium author. Find my contributions here

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Whereas I use fixed armour and no hit locs - what a softie! :o

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.

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Variable armor with hit locations is explicitly discouraged in the rules. The roll should represent the chance of hitting a less armored area when you are not using hit locations, but if you use them all you need do is figure where the character is armored and where he is not.

Proud member of the Evil CompetitionTM

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Over the years, Chasoium has used pretty much every combination of fixed/variable AP and general HP/hit locations (with or without major wounds), so it's all fair game.

As soltakss pointed out, different confrontations have different degrees of lethality. The is worth noting as it will have an impact on the style of the game. Variable armor makes combat a bit more "flukey" since you can always "zero out".

Hits locations increase the chance of someone being taken out of a fight with a single hit. I'm not sure if hit locations are really more lethal than general HP, though. With hit locations while the chance for an autokill is increased, so if the chance of disabling a foe instead of killing them outright. I suspect that hit locations probably are less lethal, since I had a lot more PCs and NPCs survive lsing battles in RQ than in Strombringer or MAgic World.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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Yes, you can use fixed AP without hit locations and variable APs with hit locations.

The fact that the average AP of variable armour is less than the fixed AP is not a problem. The highest value of the roll is more than the fixed value, so it has the potential to absorb more.

The problem is, the degree of gust shows no relationship to the fixed values; some gust up much higher than the fixed values, some barely exceed it, and if I'm remembering right, at least one can't even gust as high.

Honestly, the two systems don't even look like they were put together in reference to each other; if I'm remembering Jason's comments, that's because he was trying for reverse compatibility with some of the values from Stormbringer and the like, which crammed the value of, say, leather armor much closer to chain than the fixed value systems normally do.

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Hits locations increase the chance of someone being taken out of a fight with a single hit. I'm not sure if hit locations are really more lethal than general HP, though. With hit locations while the chance for an autokill is increased, so if the chance of disabling a foe instead of killing them outright. I suspect that hit locations probably are less lethal, since I had a lot more PCs and NPCs survive lsing battles in RQ than in Strombringer or MAgic World.

How common was healing magic in those setting though? I'm not saying you don't have a certain point (there's certainly more capability to go down without dying in RQ than those BRP games I've seen using major wounds) but there's also a lower threshold where you can die outright (torso or head impales for example), so I wonder if other aspects of system setting don't perturb that in those cases.

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Your interpretation of the rules makes perfectly sense using the hit location system. This is accuratly described page 260 under the helmet entry.

However, i would like to use a fixed armor system with no hit location. Since lacking a helmet implies -1 or -2 armor penalty, i think adding an helmet on an armour with no head protection ( for instance plate armor of page 259) will conversely add +1 or +2 to the armor value .

This is fully consistent with the armor value for the knight NPC of page 363 ( 10 armor described as full plate and heavy helmet ),ant that seems to confirm my analysis.

My original concern was to know if it makes sense to use fixed armor value without hit location system. Your answer may indicate that you don't recommend this.

Regarding the knight example, I stand corrected. You were right, according to the official rules a helmet adds points to armor*, which means that fixed armor and random armor don't match very well, since using the fixed armor rules without the hit location rules is clearly more advantageous.

Going back to your question (does it make sense to use fixed armor value without hit location system?), I'd say yes, it makes sense, but with the caveat that fixed armor without hit locations offers more protection than the other rules (I think this is wrong, but it's the official rule). I'd houserule it, so that wearing a helmet doesn't add armor points, but that's me.

By the way, where did you see that not wearing a helmet gives a -1 penalty? Maybe there lies the explanation.

EDIT *= I don't know whether it's in the rules, but that's what one can infer from the knight NPC example.

Edited by Claudius

Grając zaś w grę komputerową, być może zdarzyło się wam zapragnąć zejść z wyznaczonej przez autorów ścieżki i, miast zabić smoka i ożenić się z księżniczką, zabić księżniczkę i ożenić się ze smokiem.

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Claudius,

it is on page 260 of the BRP rules, under the helmet entry.

Well, after your replies and some thoughts i will probably, for my Middel'Earth conversion of the "Tiers Age" game:

- use the fixed armour rule with no hit location

- use the optional rules HP=SIZ+CON

- use fate points rules

...to reduce the lethality of the game.

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May I suggest HP = SIZ/2 (but not dying until under -CON) ?

I use that and it keeps some players scared of how few HPs they have (though in reality, of course, they have more than standard). Major Wound type effects kick in at 0hp, which seems more natural, too.

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.

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