Librium: Combat Basics

So things are not going as well as you planned. It was suppose to be just a delivery run to another slum in Thromgarde, but you stumbled into gang territory and they don’t like Lagamo. They’ll let you go, but they want whatever it is you’re carrying. Medicine and supplies for a clinic that needs them. Your auralei accomplice tried talking your group out of the trouble, but her words go over there heads. Hell, you’re willing to give up the supplies to save your own neck, but your volkmyr friend refuses. The krothgar in charge of the small gang of brigands is getting angry and still wants blood.  They draw their weapons and your group quickly takes cover.

Before we determine if you make it out of here alive, lets look at how you prepared.

Defenses, Endurance, and Conviction

Every character has certain important values that help keep them fighting. The most important of these values is their Conviction. Your base conviction is five times your insight, so expect to average 10-20. Your armor and equipment will increase your conviction as well. As you take stress from attacks or overexertion, your conviction and willingness to keep putting yourself in danger drops, impairing your ability to fight. For every 20% your conviction drops below its maximum, you gain an impairment. This impairment applies -1 outcome to all skill checks making it more difficult to perform. Alternatively, whenever you gain an impairment you choose become incapacitated. Being incapacitated means you are no longer part of the fight, but enemies will not attack you anymore. The exact effects of incapacitation varies depending on the situation; You may go unconscious after a heavy blow to your body, or be rendered so embarassed you can’t speak by the baroness at her party. If you ever reach 0 or less conviction, you are automatically incapacitated.

You can take a few blows before you start to waver, however, and most adventurers wear armor to protect themselves from physical harm. The protection is your endurance. Whenever you would take stress, subtract it from your endurance first. While your conviction takes hours or days to recover, spending a few minutes catching your breath without taking stress will allow your endurance to recover. If you do not take any stress for 2 rounds, you begin recovering 15 endurance at the end of each of your turns.

Your last line of defense, which is technically your first line of defense, are your defense values: fortitude, reflex, and resolve. Nearly all attacks against you will target one of these defenses and they serve as the difficulty to determine how hard you are to hit – the defense is subtracted from the outcome of the attack. Each of these defenses is based off your attributes: Your fortitude equals the average of your strength and constitution, your reflex equals the average of your intelligence and wits, and your resolve equals the average of your charisma and insight.

Attacking, Damage Types, and Armor Types

So you’re ready to throw down with the krothgar and dish out some damage of your own. When you make an attack, you are simply rolling a skill check against your opponent’s defenses. In most cases the skill will be related to whatever you are using as a weapon – all weapons have a skill associated with them. The weapon itself serves as the compliment for your weapon skill. For magic, engineering, and other techniques, you get the compliment from a relevant tool of the trade. As an example, Makenna the gnome infiltrator is using a dagger against a vespa. She is rank 4 in daggers and using a +4 potency dagger, so she will roll 8dS for her attack.

The stress you deal with an attack depends on how successful your attacks are. All weapons have a stress value, which is how much stress the attack deals for each point of result. So against this vespa, whom has a fortitude of 2, Makenna rolls +6 outcome ending up with a +4 result. Her dagger has a stress of 2, so she will deal 8 stress to the vespa.

All attacks have damage types that are especially effective against certain targets. For example, magic damage is effective against opponents that are armored or already worn out. impact damage is good against opponents that are unarmored or tenacious. When a damage type is effective against a target or their defense, it gains +50% bonus to the final damage. With her dagger dealing 8 piercing stress to the vespa, it deals an additional +4 damage since it is hardened. If the vespa was not hardened it would only take 8 stress instead of 12.

That covers the basics. But don’t pull out your sword and start swinging wildly yet. We’ll discuss more advanced combat next Friday.

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