Ambush in Torchbearer

I’m am wondering, cause it never happen in my current (and first) campaign, how do you guys handle ambushes but, from the player’s perspectives. Let’s say my group wanted to ambush a group of cultists. They want to surprise them and kill them, or even drive them off… Could you speak from experience or give me advice and/or suggestion?



Well, it should start with a Scout roll. If they succeed, they have the element of surprise. Let them choose the conflict type, give them a +1D of they met or just barely exceeded the Ob on the Scout test. For exceeding it by two or more, +1s.

If they have a really good idea for the ambush or do very well on the scout test, you might even consider giving them the first attack in the conflict for free. That would be huge, but for some ambush situations huge is appropriate. Plus it’s not without precedent, if they script well they can get undefended attacks, and the owlbear gets a free attack when it goes down (if I remember correctly).

I like to give +1 or +2D to the side I feel has an advantage in the fiction. Stuff like better position, surprise, ambushes, you know.

Like Kai notes, give them a bonus to dispo +2D or +1s or whatever. Or allow them some other delicious effect: cut off the victims from helping one another, catch them so they’re unarmed for the first round, or that they haven’t had time to put on their armor.
Since there are no guns in play, an ambush is going to be a fight (or flight). Slaughter takes work in a world of swords and bows!

Nice! Merci everybody, this is what i was looking for. Btw Luke, cutting the victime from helping each other is really awesome.

Yeah, that’s a particularly nice touch. I kind of want to fold that into a successful Scout test’s margin of success or build factors for these kinds of effects.