Sunday, July 29, 2012

Streamlining Combat Options in NGR


So some months ago I was running a Constantcon game of NGR with the esteemed Kyrinn and a situation arose in which she wished to slash at a the legs of a petty hired bandit.  I couldn't figure out a good mechanic on the fly and just flubbed it (an overall shitty call on my part),  and it also showed a rigidity I wasn't happy with in NGR.

Thinking on it over the months I thought about the critical hit system and maybe giving that some more options beyond double damage (in this case damage on a hit, damage and knockdown on a critical),  but just a rough idea at that point.  I do like choices after all.

I've been mulling on it more though and though and though about how clunky some parts of conflict (all types) are at this point when cleaning up some typos on stealth conflict for next years printing (start early).  And I thought about collapsing a lot of things in with each other, in much the same way I did with the "action" system for the 2012 printing.  Definitely inspired by a google+ post from Zak about dungeon world I think it was?

I'll use combat as an example.  I'd roll up double damage, power attacks (the effect of doing max damage), knock downs and grapples into just "plain old attack".   On a hit you choose one option. If the attack was a power attack you can choose one more, if its a critical hit you can choose one more.

- Roll the weapons damage
- Double the weapons damage
- Count the damage rolled as maximum (requires a roll to modify)
- A knock-down check
- A strength die of stun damage (blunt only)
- A disarm (requires 2 slots)
- A grapple (requires 2 slots)
- A unique situation dependent effect (also known as "other" or "misc.")

Similar things could be used in stealth:
- Roll an awareness die of suspicion
- Double the suspicion scored
- Count the awareness die as a maximum roll(requires a roll to modify)
- Other options?

Or Social Conflict:
- Roll an intelligence die of influence
- Double the influence scored
- Count the intelligence die as a maximum rolled
- Etc

Initial tests (one game) have gone well.  This may end up going into the 2013 printing or it may end up being dropped.  I have a nice mix of players in my home game of people who are casual, ludicrous and exceedingly good at manipulating and exploiting systems.

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