Friday, December 11, 2009

They may have broken my nose, but my barbed wit has scarred their ego for the rest of their life!

One of the mechanics that is great fun in Piecemeal (and one of the few bard combat powers), is the Scathing Remark and its brother the Witty Retort.

These abilities allow a bard to cause luck point damage to the recipient. So while they have no use against minions or monsters (as they cannot do physical damage), they can be useful against villains and their trusty lieutenants.

The scathing remark functions very similar to an attack roll. A d20 + bonus + skills, with an additional bonus for the quality of the comment. If this "connects" you cause the target to lose a number of luck points, equal to the roll of one of your luck dice. Thus for an average bard it would be for a d6 luck, for an insanely lucky bard it could be as high as a d12. Note this is a one time per combat event. A bard also has the option for taking a "High Brow", "Normal" or "Low Brow" approach. The idea being taking one extreme lets you re-roll the attack die and choose the better at the expense of re-rolling the luck die and choosing the worse result and vice-versa for the other extreme.

A witty retort works as a defensive mechanism, you try to beat the "attack" of the scathing remark, and if you succeed you launch your own "attack" in the same manner.

Why is this good? The first major benefit is that great lines can make for great memories, and anything to encourage it is a good idea in my books. It also keeps another stat as useful for Bards, meaning they can't really consider any stat a dump stat easily.

Why is it bad? In some campaign themes, the witty banter may not be appropriate. A scathing remark can just as easily be curses to the twelve gods, or condemnations (the same with retort) if you wished to tweak it in that manner to fit theme.


  1. Hi,

    Only bards can perform this action?

  2. Anyone who has at least one pie piece in bard or who has taken one of these actions as a cross class skill could use this action.

    The nature of the class system in Piecemeal means this doesn't mean a character has to be purely bard.