Jump to content
Marty Jopson

Help me sell RQG to my players

Recommended Posts

3 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Do you really feel that training with a sword and shield is less effective in terms of how quickly you learn than training with just a sword? I can't see why that should be the case.

Do you wonder why, historically, anyone ever bothered with shields?

I'm speaking of the impact of rules changes in RQG, not historical fighting techniques.

I completely agree with you that training with sword and shield should not take longer than training with just one sword.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
 
 
On 6/21/2019 at 8:09 AM, Jeff said:

The single skill for Attack and Parry comes from everyone - Greg, myself, Steve, Sandy, Jason - and everyone I know who has ever done martial training, and even my own limited experience in Chinese staff and straight sword training.

We actually had a lengthy discussion about the single skill change during our last session and we came to the conclusion that it doesn't reflect reality. We will likely house-rule separate % for attack and parry.

Defense is something you need to train individually. If you just hit things with your sword, you won't get better at parrying, and you will likely never be as good at parrying with a dagger or an axe as attacking with one. 

My personal experience comes from martial arts, and I promise you blocking a punch or a kick with your hands is its own skill.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My personal experience comes from the martial arts as well, and at my temple at least, when you are practicising forms you don't practice attack OR parry as discrete skills, you perform it all together. You can certainly do what makes more sense to you, but as far as I am concerned, the mechanics are resolved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Jeff said:

My personal experience comes from the martial arts as well, and at my temple at least, when you are practicising forms you don't practice attack OR parry as discrete skills, you perform it all together. You can certainly do what makes more sense to you, but as far as I am concerned, the mechanics are resolved.

I think giving starting bonuses as a single skill (ie to both skills equally) could work if you consider that they were both equally trained/practiced together, but when it comes to experience checks I feel they should be separate since you are clearly only succeeding in either attacking or parrying.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Jeff said:

My personal experience comes from the martial arts as well, and at my temple at least, when you are practicising forms you don't practice attack OR parry as discrete skills, you perform it all together. You can certainly do what makes more sense to you, but as far as I am concerned, the mechanics are resolved.

Back in my RQ2 days, I liked the separation of Attack and Parry.

It matched my own martial arts experience:  while I might generally be about the same skill as someone else, I'd find it easier (or harder) to manage to get a blow past some people's defenses.  They were worse (or better) at parrying.  Similarly, they might be a bit better (or worse) at getting through MY defenses -- better at attacking.  Now... if they were harder to hit, AND harder for me to block... well then... they were better than me, and my calling them "about the same skill" was just vanity on my part.  🤫

HOWEVER, RQ2-style skills, with completely decoupled Attack and Parry, can lead to absurdities like someone with 90%Attack and only Base skill at Parry.  I've seen some arguments to that end on this forum, and found them... unconvincing.  The 2 skills should REALLY remain somewhere close to parity, and should mostly go up together (barring spells like Parry or Bladesharp).  The obvious and simple solution is to make them a single skill.

Which, frankly, suits my desire for elegant and simple rules!

OTOH, it leaves me with this gap where my experience doesn't match the RAW.

It leaves me wanting something like a non-heroquesting "gifts" system. "Minor Gifts" or some such...

  • "Skilled Defender" = Choose "Dodge" or "Parry."  Treat one as if your skill is 1.2X your written skill.
  • "Knack for Languages" = When rolling an experience-check, you gain 1% to the skill on a failed roll!
  • "Eye for Beauty" = when evaluating art/etc, when Dressing To Impress, when creating or looking at any display... treat any relevant skill as 1.2X the written skill.
  • etc...

Of course, THAT leads to issues of how-many-gifts, what about anti-gifts / minor-geasa, quirks/flaws... a whole new subsystem.  NOT great for "my desire for elegant and simple rules!"

 

Edited by g33k

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
46 minutes ago, g33k said:

Of course, THAT leads to issues of how-many-gifts, what about anti-gifts / minor-geasa, quirks/flaws... a whole new subsystem.  NOT great for "my desire for elegant and simple rules!"

 

I wanna play a gifted rich duck... Can I?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

I wanna play a gifted rich duck... Can I?

Take it to the munchkin thread.

(but I believe not -- under the RAW, there is no way to achieve Scrooge McDuck levels of wealth at the start)

(OTOH, it's probably possible to get there in play.  If you must.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with @Jeff in that, from my limited experience with practicing martial arts, it's not like you train attack or defense separately -- you always do both, whether it's while doing a kata, or while sparring with someone. The difference in people being better/worse at attacking/defending probably has more to do with them choosing a more offensive or defensive stance, or otherwise choosing how to use their skill from one round to the other.

If you want to get crazy (and I sometimes do want to get crazy! I own GURPS Martial Arts and I'm not afraid to use it! :D ) you could apply different penalties/bonuses for different situations, so that you get more strategic choice to the players, and get, indeed, different percentages for attack/defense more often than not. For instance, here are a couple of completely-made-up-on-the-spot house rules (which are, unsurprisingly, inspired by GURPS):

  • Offensive stance: an offensive stance lets you get bonuses to attack or damage, but gives you penalties to defense because you're spending all your energy and focus on attack (useful when you're desperate, or when the enemy is temporarily incapacitated).
  • Defensive stance: don't do anything this turn except move and defend, get hefty bonuses to defense. Might be useful for moving to a more strategic position on the battlemat or something, I don't know (this kind of rule is more useful in GURPS where you have "shock penalty" when you get hit).
  • Feints: take a penalty to attack, and give a proportional penalty to the enemy's defense (useful when you're skilled, super useful when you're clearly better than your opponent.. it would probably decrease the "RQ combat is deadly even when fighting some random bandits" factor because it makes the "hero fights random thugs" combats shorter).

Another option is to also make different skills based off the main skill, like, say, you can train more specifically for defense, or for some specific technique like disarming or beheading or leg sweep, and that's cheaper to increase (although now you need to come up with rules for improving sub-skills), but it's still based off of the "main skill" which will increase all its specialty skills when you raise it.

Either way, one thing to remember is that, ideally, most characters should have a roughly equivalent number of skills to manage (as in: spend points in). If you double the number of skills that fighter-types need to spend points in at character creation, that might not be fair compared to other character types. So whatever separate attack/defense skill house rule you come up with needs to take that into account.

Edited by lordabdul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/25/2019 at 6:30 PM, Jeff said:

My personal experience comes from the martial arts as well, and at my temple at least, when you are practicising forms you don't practice attack OR parry as discrete skills, you perform it all together. You can certainly do what makes more sense to you, but as far as I am concerned, the mechanics are resolved.

I agree, and I'm always bothered by rpg rules where the melee skill only adds to attack rolls, such as it was the case in first edition of "new World of Darkness", or in most D&D editions.

But still, my feeling is that for characters that use shields as their main defensive tool, it's the shield's parry chance that should benefit from experience or training, not the main weapon.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Mugen said:

But still, my feeling is that for characters that use shields as their main defensive tool, it's the shield's parry chance that should benefit from experience or training, not the main weapon.

I have been thinking of both gaining, what do you think? That is treat (Any) Sword and Shield like (Any) Sword attack and parry. One's (Any) Sword attack is the same as one's Shield parry.

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
 
 
 
7 hours ago, lordabdul said:

I agree with @Jeff in that, from my limited experience with practicing martial arts, it's not like you train attack or defense separately -- you always do both, whether it's while doing a kata, or while sparring with someone. The difference in people being better/worse at attacking/defending probably has more to do with them choosing a more offensive or defensive stance, or otherwise choosing how to use their skill from one round to the other.

I agree that you usually train offense and defense at the same time... At least for more advanced martial artists (boxing and kickboxing often teach strikes before slips/parries/bob&weave/etc.). This is why, as I mentioned previously, starting skill bonuses could be equal if you want to consider that they stem from training or equal attack/defense opportunities while doing your job...

But it doesn't explain experience checks. You will often have the opportunity to get check in both attack and parry, but not always. And I don't see a reason why succeeding in a jab should improve your bob & weave.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Mugen said:

I agree, and I'm always bothered by rpg rules where the melee skill only adds to attack rolls, such as it was the case in first edition of "new World of Darkness", or in most D&D editions.

But still, my feeling is that for characters that use shields as their main defensive tool, it's the shield's parry chance that should benefit from experience or training, not the main weapon.

I agree. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

I have been thinking of both gaining, what do you think? That is treat (Any) Sword and Shield like (Any) Sword attack and parry. One's (Any) Sword attack is the same as one's Shield parry.

Cheers

I'm not sure I understand what you mean...

A relatively simple solution would be to have skills like [Broadsword and shield] whose % would define the chance to attack with the broadsword, and the chance to parry with the shield (and that's perhaps what you had in mind ?).

Attacking with the shield or parrying with the sword using that skill would obviously be possible, but with a negative modifier (quite like when you attack with an off-hand weapon and use half the skill in your main hand).

I would personally use something more like in Revolution D100, with a base Melee skill that is used as a base for every melee weapon, and bonus for people trained in the use of certain weapons. For instance, a typical fighter could have Melee 45, and the following trainings : attack (sword, main hand), parry (shield, off-hand). If he uses a sword to attack with his main hand or a shield in his off-hand to parry, he'll gain a bonus to his skill. He could later train in attacking with a shield in his off-hand, or parry with his main hand sword.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, Mugen said:

A relatively simple solution would be to have skills like [Broadsword and shield] whose % would define the chance to attack with the broadsword, and the chance to parry with the shield (and that's perhaps what you had in mind ?).

Correct, like one weapon rolling an attack and a parry with the same skill percentage as per usual,  a pair of specialized weapons built for the purpose, i.e. a sword and a shield in this circumstance can attack and parry also with one and the same skill percentage. To me it just makes sense.  I'm surprised this was not done in RQ G. 

As to Revolution that's Rosen McStern's baby is it not?  Not familiar with the game, I will have to poke my nose in that door one day and look around. 

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Mugen said:

Attacking with the shield or parrying with the sword using that skill would obviously be possible, but with a negative modifier (quite like when you attack with an off-hand weapon and use half the skill in your main hand).

 

3 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

Correct, like one weapon rolling an attack and a parry with the same skill percentage as per usual,  a pair of specialized weapons built for the purpose, i.e. a sword and a shield in this circumstance can attack and parry also with one and the same skill percentage. To me it just makes sense.  I'm surprised this was not done in RQ G. 

Because unless the rules are written right, it means you wouldn't get the same benefits from the shield if you have to use a different weapon, e.g. Mace or axe. 

Hence the LH shield RH sword as separate skills mostly works. (Mostly, because in training with shield, you rely on it to parry - not the sword parry. And, shield attack... Not a common and effective skill most of the time (especially with spear)).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, Shiningbrow said:

Because unless the rules are written right, it means you wouldn't get the same benefits from the shield if you have to use a different weapon, e.g. Mace or axe.

That's what happens in Pendragon, where a knight with Sword 20+ is guaranteed to succesfully use its shield when he has a sword and a shield equipped, but only manages to do so 50% of the time with his Mace 10 skill.

Nevertheless, I would consider that a character with a (Weapon X/Weapon Y) skill would still be able to use it to attack with Weapon X or parry with Weapon Y, even if he has another weapon in the other hand.

Edited by Mugen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The single skill for parry and attack for weapons makes sense to me. Ultimately, in the guise of realism we can craft very many systems on how to break real combat down into statistics/operations and the different systems will have different weaknesses and advantages. None of them will ever be the truth, just like the map is not the territory. For a game with a bit of a simulationist bent like RQ, you're gonna want it feeling realistic though. The single skill certainly accomplishes this. 

You could separate parry and attack. You could also separate left side parry, right side parry, low parry, and all those for the attack. Realistically, my skill with doing each of those in simulated armed combat  is a little bit different. Is this relevant for the game? Maybe, but the primary factor in translating realism to game mechanics by far IMO is the overall skill with a set of weapons (ie. single sword, sword-and-dagger, sword-and-shield, etc).

My skill with the set I am using is the primary determinant of success, along with the interplay of the sets that are engaging each other - usually a mostly forgotten factor in most game systems, which is still hugely important in real life (RQ strike ranks go this way, but are so-so if a full simulation is the goal).

Also, I guess it is obvious and it only becomes even more obvious with experience in martial arts, but defense is of primary importance in armed combat. Hitting someone is relatively easy. Hitting someone without getting hit yourself is difficult. This is the core dynamic and that'd be idea around which I'd create any RPG combat system involving melee. 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Mugen said:

A relatively simple solution would be to have skills like [Broadsword and shield] whose % would define the chance to attack with the broadsword, and the chance to parry with the shield (and that's perhaps what you had in mind ?).

That's how the Loz/Nash system works (MRQ2, RQ6, Mythras), not sure about MRQ1.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

That's how the Loz/Nash system works (MRQ2, RQ6, Mythras), not sure about MRQ1.

MRQ1 had one skill per weapon type, and I think you used the same skill with main hand and off-hand.

Shields, and all weapons held in off-hand gave either one additional parry, or a bonus attack with -20% chance, on top of your regular Combat Actions.

Edited by Mugen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Grievous said:

Maybe, but the primary factor in translating realism to game mechanics by far IMO is the overall skill with a set of weapons (ie. single sword, sword-and-dagger, sword-and-shield, etc).

 

2 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

That's how the Loz/Nash system works (MRQ2, RQ6, Mythras), not sure about MRQ1.

I'm mostly agreeing... Except when you lose the shield, your sword parry isn't crap, because even w/o the shield you're still using the sword to parry regularly... (as well as the occasional shield bash).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

That's how the Loz/Nash system works (MRQ2, RQ6, Mythras), not sure about MRQ1.

We considered that and rejected it. You are welcome to home rule that in your game, but that's not how it is presented in RQ.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ultimately:

1) we're all more or less speculating.  Some of us have some experience in martial arts, some in SCA (or it's more savage descendants Armored Combat League, etc) but let's face it: I'm pretty confident to say that there is nobody in this forum who has routinely relied on medieval melee weapons for their daily trade of war. (IIRC Sven alluded grimly to having been in pretty dark melee situations in military service so he's probably the closest but again...probably not a ROUTINE thing).

2) the goal in this system (other systems, and houserules etc may have different goals) is to be reasonably realistic AND PLAYABLE.  Vague words like 'reasonably' and 'playable' are indeed subjective and open to individual interpretation.

3) personally, I LIKE the separate attack/parry skills (but not completely unlinked), but one thing I've never harshed on RQG for is the overall simplification of a single combat skill for a weapon.  Makes sense to me, and is 'close enough' to my (speculation) of the real circumstances that I'm ok with it.  Personally, I think it works well enough.  Certainly still craptons better than D&D.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Jeff said:

We considered that and rejected it. You are welcome to home rule that in your game, but that's not how it is presented in RQ.

Jeff, could you give us insight as to how that decision got made, no attacks just curious minds and all (I must be a Yinkin). It would help to rule decisions i make and better envision the RQ G combat meta-concept. I would like to get as comfortable with this system as I used to be with RQ 3.

That would be why; using Shield and any weapon for attack and parry would not be similar to any weapon attack and parry in the RAW. That is one percentage for both.

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

Jeff, could you give us insight as to how that decision got made, no attacks just curious minds and all (I must be a Yinkin). It would help to rule decisions i make and better envision the RQ G combat meta-concept. I would like to get as comfortable with this system as I used to be with RQ 3.

That would be why; using Shield and any weapon for attack and parry would not be similar to any weapon attack and parry in the RAW. That is one percentage for both.

Cheers

In playtesting, that approach quickly got clunky and confusing for many players. People had no trouble with the idea of using the 1H Spear skill for attacking and parrying, but viewed using their Shield as a separate thing.  Some people like using their shields to parry with, some people like using their attacking weapon to parry with. 

Getting rid of separate attack/parry skills solved a BIG problem in RQ2/3 where folk had an absurd imbalance in those skills (it also effectively DOUBLES the number of weapon skills characters have). I'd rather have players play around with more minor, character-defining skills like various Lores or Communication skills than double the number of weapon skills. It also added additional complexity to character generation, etc. 

 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Jeff said:

In playtesting, that approach quickly got clunky and confusing for many players. People had no trouble with the idea of using the 1H Spear skill for attacking and parrying, but viewed using their Shield as a separate thing.  Some people like using their shields to parry with, some people like using their attacking weapon to parry with. 

snip

Thank you for the designer's insight, That kind of stuff, as you know,  is gold to hobbyist and much appreciated.
Let me digest that, Jeff.

Cheers

Share this post


Link to post
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.

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...