Some Fight questions

  1. If you are in defensive stance and script a counterstrike, can you put the +2D bonus in either pool? It seems to go against the spirit of the rules to put them in the attack pool, but I’m not sure. Similarly, does the Ob penalty from Aggressive stance apply to both pools, or just the defensive one?

  2. Is it the weapon length or the actual weapon that determines whether you’ve ‘switched weapons’ and thus ceded advantage? That is, if you’re wielding a knife and script a Charge, do you lose advantage for changing weapons (to hands), or are you already at the ‘hands length’ and thus still advantaged for the charge?

  3. Can you position with a throwable weapon with the intent to throw, thus treating it as the ‘Missile’ length? Or does it always position as a weapon of its length?

  4. The rule about using the +2D bonus from stance to the position roll has me a bit confused. I’m assuming that you must be in the stance before crossing over to the next exchange, whereupon you declare your intent to use the bonus to Vie for Position. Doing this comes at the cost of not getting to use the bonus dice to the indicated actions. However, you can then immediately script a new Change Stance at the beginning of the next exchange to side-step this downside. Is this thing kosher?

  1. It doesn’t really matter where the dice from Def stance go. They benefit the whole pool one way or another.
    1a. The ob penalty applies to both sides of the action. It’s brutal, but it’s the only fair way to do it.

  2. When you Charge, you’re using the hands/knife length and your opponent has the advantage. If you fail the charge, your opponent keeps that advantage. If you successfully Charge, you retake the advantage. Basically, you have to get by your opponent’s weapon to successfully charge.

  3. You can.

  4. Correct. The stance-switching might work in a board game or something, but fortunately we have smart people playing the game. The rule is clear. No stance bonus dice for action if you use stance bonus dice to vie for position.

Thanks for the swift reply (as always)!

I wouldn’t worry about giving Counterstrike a raw deal. As far as I can tell, it’s already one of the best actions out there, with it being unaffected by disadvantage and weapon speed. And if the bonus dice can be used in either pool, it seems only reasonable that the penalty should apply to both as well.

  1. When you Charge, you’re using the hands/knife length and your opponent has the advantage. If you fail the charge, your opponent keeps that advantage. If you successfully Charge, you retake the advantage. Basically, you have to get by your opponent’s weapon to successfully charge.

Just to make sure I completely understand this: even if I already hold the advantage at the shortest/hands length and Charge, I still lose it and have to win it back by succeeding at the charge? And it makes no difference if I hold the advantage with a knife or with my fists?

As I understand it, the primary tactical application of a charge is to gain advantage if you don’t already have it.

I can certainly see that, and yet it does come with some big risks if you’re on the defensive. If you fail the charge you hesitate for the next action, which is probably worse for someone who expects his opponent to attack mercilessly, than it is for someone who expects his opponent to stay back and script mostly defensive actions.

Jais, you are correct. It doesn’t matter what weapon you start with. A failed charge yields the advantage.

If you change weapons you cede the advantage even if your weapons are the same length.

So if you have advantage with your knife and you charge, you cede advantage.
If you have advantage with your bare hands, you do not need to change weapons and so do not need to cede advantage.
There is also an exception in the charge rules that says you don’t need to change weapons if you have the advantage with your shield.

Thanks for the help, everyone! I have a new question:

  1. The rules for using a haft/hilt say that using such an attack shortens your weapon length by 1, making it easier to hit someone with a shorter weapon if they have the advantage. What happens after this? Following the hilt strike, are you then assumed to be at one length shorter from then on? If so, I assume non-weapon actions like Assess and Intimidate would also benefit from the lowered disadvantage penalty. Or is it rather the case that you ‘switch back’ to your original weapon length immediately after the hilt strike?

I think I’ve got the last question - it came up in our game one time. We ruled that you effectively “switch weapons”, much as if you would start using your crossbow as a club, which was the analogy we used. This would of course also include ceding advantage, but that seems to be a moot point in almost all cases since you wouldn’t attack with your haft/hilt if you had the advantage to begin with (usually, though I can think of a couple of exceptions - hidden poison spike on the pommel, you need bashing damage to crush a skeleton or some such).

Great, that’s my take on it as well. And in order to switch to a hilt, I’d rule that you have to make a Strike of some kind with it - no using a hilt to make a Beat or an Assess, for example.

I can see scripting Beat with a hilt - but not Assess, no. That sounds odd.

As I understand the official rules:

[ul][li]You can switch weapons at any time, but it always cedes advantage and changes your weapon length.
[/li][li]Disadvantage penalties apply to ALL skill tests, and are determined by the length of the weapon you are currently engaged with.[/ul]
Thus, if you switch WL to your hilt, you have to switch back to your blade later on, unless you intend to pummel your opponent with your pommel all day.

And yes, non-weapon actions like Assess also benefit from changing weapon lengths. And to the naysayers, I say, “Why not?” If someone had you at a disadvantage with his fists and you shift your grip on your sword to make your pommel more dangerous than the blade, he’s gonna notice. He’ll take a step back perhaps, or shift his body a bit to take the new threat into account. Could be just what’s needed to give you a quick opening to glance around and try to spot the exit.

I apologize if I wasn’t very clear on this: I have no problem with disadvantage affecting actions like Assess and Intimidate. What I’m not sure about is whether you truly can change weapons ‘at any time’.

For example, let’s say you’re holding a sword and are disadvantaged against a knife fighter. You script a Strike. In this case, you can choose to strike with your sword (no change in disadvantage) or your hilt (change in disadvantage). So far, so good. If you script an Assess instead of a Strike - and you were disadvantaged for your sword - can you choose to Assess with your hilt, thus reducing disadvantage? You say yes, but I’m not so sure that’s intended. Of course, if you had scripted a strike with your hilt prior to the assess, then I’d have no problem using the hilt-disadvantage for the assess. I therefore think that in cases like this, your current disadvantage should reflect your last weapon action. Off-hand weapons are exempt from this. Now, you may say “but shouldn’t a hilt always count as an off-hand weapon?” To this, I don’t know. But I think it gets hairy if you go down this route, as you could then equally argue that one should be able to assess with one’s fists, as they are always an available off-hand weapon. Thus, if you’re disadvantaged against a knife fighter, you could then immediately neutralize this by simply stating that you’re Intimidating, or Assessing or whatnot with your hands.

In sum, I’m still a bit confused about this part in the rules.

I think the old “you must use the weapon you position with; you may also use other weapons” is still a useful guideline for this circumstance. I’d suggest something like the following: You may Assess with your fist or hilt if and only if you use said fist or hilt for a weapon-skill-testing action during the exchange.