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OD&D/AD&D Flexible Combatby Scott Ludwig
Just started thinking about this today and wanted to get some feedback--before I possibly go too far down a blind alley
I'm hoping to create a combat system that is relatively simple and retains the flavour of traditional D&D, yet still manages to add a bit of excitement, variety, and derring-do to the whole affair.
Combat Pool: 10 + Combat Bonus from level(ex. Fighter +1/lvl(AD&D), +2/3lvls(OD&D))
Base AC: Armour Points + Dex Mod
- (Melee) Str Mod
- (Missile) Dex Mod
- (Thrown) Str Mod + Dex Mod
Each round the points in the Combat Pool are secretly assigned to Attack and/or Defence(AC), after targets are declared. This is probably most easily handled by each character having two dice, one for attack and one for defence, with the number showing on each being the relevant bonus for the round.
Open-ended To Hit/Attack Roll: 1d20 plus Attack Bonus gives AC hit. On a roll of a natural 20 roll again and add to total, repeat until something other than a natural 20 is rolled. A natural 1 always misses.
Extra Damage: For every X points by which the To Hit roll exceeds the AC of the target, make an additional damage roll for the weapon used (strength and magic bonuses do not apply to the additional damage). The X can be set to whatever level is suitable given the desired lethality of your campaign--4 to 6 seems about right.
Beginning HPs: Constitution Score + HD (Con Mod is not included at 1st lvl). Monsters receive a flat +10 to their HPs (unless you want to go to the trouble of giving them constitution scores).
Feint: A character may switch his declared target after Combat Pool points are assigned, but before these selections are revealed. The new attack is made at a -4 penalty. Furthermore, the new target is allowed a REFL saving throw, if he succeeds he may reassign the points from his Combat Pool in any manner he desires.
No Multiple Melee Attacks, Regardless of Level
Thorvald (Hum/Ftr5, S+2, D+2, HP39, 6APs, 15CPs, Sword) is set upon by 3 Orcs (2APs, HP17, 11CPs, Swords) at dusk as he is returning home.
Things look desperate as Thorvald is surrounded, and he declares he will attack Orc1.
The secret CP assignments are as follows...
- Orc1 concentrates on defence, placing all of his CPs in AC--Attack +0, AC: 13(2APs+11CPs)
- Orcs2/3 all out attack while their buddy is distracting the foolish human--Attack: +11, AC: 2
- Thorvald, beset by three foes, concentrates on defence--Attack: +2(Str), AC: 23 (15CPs+6APs+2Dex)
But Thorvald is nobody's fool, he feints at the first Orc and pivots swiftly, the point of his blade seeking the stomach of one of the Orc's charging companions.
The second Orc fails his save, and is startled by Thorvald's sudden manoeuvre--if he loses initiative he'll be in trouble, being left with a pathetic AC of 2!
The luckless Orc loses initiative and Thorvald generates a 13 total on his attack roll (15+2Str-4Feint), allowing him 2 extra damage rolls for his sword (X being set at 5). The last sight the Orc has is of Thorvald's wicked grin, as his blade slides between his ribs--delivering a massive 19 points of damage ((7+8+2)+2Str).
One down, two to go...
The first Orc is left needing a natural 20 plus a roll of 3 or more--needless to say, he fails miserably.
The third Orc needs a roll of 12 or better to hit--he rolls a 13, striking Thorvald for 5 points of damage. Such a trifling scratch does nothing to diminish Thorvald's grin.
The Orcs' eyes shift nervously as they begin to re-think their tactics...
Note: For large combats you can always simply have everyone involved assign 10CPs to AC, and the rest to Attack--which gives you the "normal" D&D combat system.
Also, having both the Dex and Str Mods apply to the Base Attack for thrown we
The Extra Damage range got me thinking...
The X could vary by weapon type,
- PIERCE: X=4
- CUT: X=5
- CRUSH: X=6
- NATURAL WPNS: X is 1 or 2 pts worse than nearest equivalent
I'm working on some weapon tables using the following assumptions...
- Piercing weapons do lower base damage but are more likely to score extra damage
- Thrusting attacks are weaker but gain an initiative advantage
- Unbalanced swinging attacks have a higher base damage but suffer high penalties to initiative
- Crushing attacks do lower base damage (though this is often offset by being heavily unbalanced) and are the least likely to score extra damage
- The base damage is related to the size of the weapon
- The wieldiness of the weapon is affected by the relationship of its size to that of its wielder
- Light weapons do less base damage and are prone to breakage, but they do receive a bonus to initiative
- The length of a blade is not as important as its width when determining the damage from a piercing attack
I'm probably forgetting a few
Anyway, when all is said and done, I'm hoping to distil all of this so the weapons will fit into the following format...
Weapon: Base Damage / Extra Damage / Initiative
So, for example, the entry for a standard sword might look something like this...
I suppose I should note that this, as well as the new combat system, totally replaces the weapon mastery tables found in OD&D.
Here's a tentative working list of melee weapons...
- Dagger: d4/4/+3
- Shortsword: d6/4/+2(thrust), d6/5/+1(cut)
- Broadsword: d8/5/0(cut), d6/4/+1(thrust)
- Warsword: d8/5/-1(1H), d10/5/-1(2H)
- Greatsword: d12/5/-2(2H)
- Scimitar: d6/5/+2
- Rapier: d4/4/+3(longer than broadsword)
- Tomahawk: d6/5/0
- Hand Axe: d8/5/-1
- Battle Axe: d10/5/-3(1H), d12/5/-3(2H)
- Broad Axe: d12+1/5/-4(2H)
- Club: d4/6/0
- Mace: d6/6/-1 (+1 To Hit vs Chain or Plate)
- Warhammer: d8/6/-3(1H), d10/6/-3(2H), (+1 To Hit vs Chain or Plate)
- Maul: d12/6/-4(2H; +1 To Hit vs Chain or Plate)
- Mace & Chain: d10/6/-4(double chance of fumble; +1 To Hit vs Chain or Plate)
Note: Spiked versions of crushing weapons do +1 step damage, but bonus damage remains at 6.
- Pick: d8/4/-1
- Mattock: d12+1/4/-5(2H)
Note: On any hit scoring bonus damage, roll vs Str or lose weapon.
- Javelin: d4/4/+1
- Shortspear: d6/4/+1
- Spear: d6/4/0(1H), d8/4/+1(2H)
- Longspear: d8/4/-4(2H)
If you want to generate the stats for a weapon scaled to a certain creature...
Small: -1 step dmg, 1/2 wt.
Large: +1 step dmg, +50% wt.
Giant: +2 steps dmg, double wt.
So, for example, a Halfling Broadsword would be: d6/5/0(cut), d4/4/+1(thrust), and would weigh half as much as a Human Broadsword.
Note: The weapon with the greatest reach always strikes first in the opening round of combat. (Thus explaining the allure of Rapiers and Longspears
Well, here are some rough rules for missile weapons...
Initiative: -1 per point of the base 10 from the Combat Pool applied to the attack.
Range Penalties: S(-5)/M(-10)/L(-15)
Weapon: base damage/bonus damage/range
- LONGBOW: d6/4/7-14-21
- HORSEBOW: d6/4/6-12-18
- SELFBOW: d6/4/4-8-12
- SLING(BULLET): d4/5/5-10-15
- SLING (STONE): d4/6/3-6-9
- JAVELIN: d6/4/2-4-6
- SPEAR: d8/4/1-2-3
- LT MELEE: by wpn/by wpn/1-2-3
- HVY MELEE: by wpn/by wpn/0-1-2
- 2H MELEE: by wpn/by wpn/0-0-1
LT MELEE: Applies to melee weapons that are intended for throwing: daggers, throwing axes, light hammers, etc.
HVY MELEE: Applies to one-handed melee weapons that are not meant for throwing.
2H MELEE: Applies to two-handed melee weapons.
(Still have to give crossbows some more thought