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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:23 am
  

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Comment: Master of Dirk Diggler Style
I know this has been covered before but when I do searches I get WAY too many results or none that match my question. So link a thread if you think this has been covered elsewhere.....

Palladium's Hand to Hand fighting skills are frustrating when an attacker wants to aim for a specific part of an opponents body. While you can house rule the ranged called shots rule to hand to hand this seems to be a pretty bad substitute. I was wondering if any systems address this problem adequately and if so which ones.

Most systems seem to have you hit some unspecified non lethal part of the body and eventually if you hit enough you will kill him or knock him out. This isn't very realistic and a lot of times can sap the energy out of a game. A fight should be deadly and be over pretty quick. Not to mention the obvious fact that a trained fighter (or untrained, for that matter, in a lot of cases) should be able to hit whatever it is they are aiming for, provided they are not parried or dodged.

I am wondering if parries should be a lot higher or if they should be divided between non-lethal parries and lethal parries whereby something that can end your life quick should get a higher parry bonus. Or more difficult or all deadly attacks should have greater strike penalties. An assassin trying to slink his blade through a chink of full plate armor like under the armpit should be able to be attempted with some plausibilty of success. It should be hard to do but still....

Anyway, like i said the game systems i see don't seem to address this situation. I was wondering if there was one out there that does. GMing these instances is too arbitrary.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 10:05 am
  

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Sosyourfacist

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the problem with "Silver Bullet" attacks is once your players find them and use them successfully that's all they'll use in most situations. Which while realistic, who doesn't want to end a fight quickly? Can start to drag a game down faster then the cinematic fighting that is present in most games.

Personally Rifts characters are way too complicated for me, to have any sort of one shot kill system. I want high action, movie-like fight scenes, in my games, mooks and other non-essential characters can be one shot, and is very easy to do, just give them 1st level HP and no SDC bonuses, but 1 round fights are kinda anti-climatic in an action/adventure game. If I wanted realism, I'd go kick old Mr. Jenkins down the street and then battle my way through a gang of cops and then die in a hail of gunfire. But your mileage may vary. :P

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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 10:05 am
  

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Champion

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Palladium's combat system is deliberately simple.

You will have to make your own rules.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 10:43 am
  

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We use a natural 12 for all called shots. If the nat12 is not rolled bonuses are added to it but its not going to hit the target called(mainbody shot). This seems to work well, it levels the playing field with those that have insane bonuses to strike. they're still going to hit the opponents but at least they won't always hit the throat or the eye(favorite target at my table :x )


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 11:22 am
  

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Champion

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wolfsgrin wrote:
We use a natural 12 for all called shots. If the nat12 is not rolled bonuses are added to it but its not going to hit the target called(mainbody shot). This seems to work well, it levels the playing field with those that have insane bonuses to strike. they're still going to hit the opponents but at least they won't always hit the throat or the eye(favorite target at my table :x )

We do the same, makes the odds of inflicting that critical strike (we base criticals not only by roll but also by body location) about 40% which is actually really good

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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 12:18 pm
  

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cyber-yukongil v2.5 wrote:
If I wanted realism, I'd go kick old Mr. Jenkins down the street and then battle my way through a gang of cops and then die in a hail of gunfire. But your mileage may vary. :P

Or play RECON. :-)


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 1:05 pm
  

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Dungeon Crawler

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For my games I do the Nat 12 thing too and if they fail on the called it defaults to a main body attack if its still high enough to hit. After that its the GM that gets to have a little fun, detailing what actually happens, just because the PC aimed for the eye doesn't automatically mean they blind the attacker. It could denote a slash across the eye and a nasty scar with some negatives etc even if they say they are stabbing for the eye they might just stab the socket and not the actual eye. As a GM you get to have some fun and throw some interesting details in mix, you get to tell the story and have some fun too. A Nat 12-15 in my games hits the mark but may not get the desired effect 16-18 and I usually give basically what was desired and for Nat 19+ gets the crit plus the desired effect. Also using the eye as an example after that attack my villain would most likely flee to return another day, not stand and fight to the death (depends on the villain to be honest though), when he does rear his ugly head again, he would most likely have a nasty scar, possibly be blind in that eye or even have a cybernetic replacement. Either way that special attack on him will have an impact that carries into the next encounter (adding realism) and the villain will most likely try to inflict a similar wound on the character that did it to him in the first place! Remember if you allow for your PC's to attack this way your NPC's should be able to as well, or at least thats how I do it. Its only fair, for players to assume they can attack this way but their attackers can't is very unrealistic, so discuss it with your players if you are thinking about using it and explain that its a 2-way door if they are allowed to attack in this manner you will be too! I never do it to them unless they do it in an encounter first though, but once they make an aimed deadly or debilitating attack (successful or not) the combat gets a little more interesting ;) after that combat ends its like hitting a reset button and I won't use called shots in the next encounter until they do. In other words if they use called shots like that in the first encounter of the night but don't do it in any other encounters of the night, I will use them in the first encounter but not for the rest of the night either. I probably didn't answer any of your questions I just wanted to share how I do it myself to give you ideas and maybe help you devise your own way of doing it for your games, its much like a couple other responses up there only a little more detailed. I think it adds realism but you have to decide that for yourself :ok:

As for parry's I just leave them the way they are. One reason you might think to give bonuses to parry is because those are vital areas and most combatants try to protect those areas more than others, but my thinking is that, yes its harder to hit those areas because of that, but since you are trying to hit them with a called strike it negates the bonus or negative so to speak. The defender wouldn't get a bonus to parry the attack because it is specifically targeted by the attacker.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 4:03 pm
  

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Hero

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Comment: Fortune favors the bold.
Don't forget to add the damage bonuses for the called strike, otherwise why bother making it in the first place?

To vital areas like the eyes, throat, kidneys, etc. damage should be direct to hit points, or at least doubled.

I like to double SDC damage to target areas like joints (elbows, kneecaps)

And do direct damage to hit points for lethal areas (kidneys, throat, neck snaps, etc.)

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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 4:10 pm
  

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Champion

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Or scrap SDC.

Hm. Noticing a trend here.. :-)


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 4:25 pm
  

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Hero

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I simplify my life considerably and let it be known that the only called shots I allow in melee are holds and disarms.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 4:28 pm
  

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demos606 wrote:
I simplify my life considerably and let it be known that the only called shots I allow in melee are holds and disarms.

I like that.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:16 pm
  

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wolfsgrin wrote:
We use a natural 12 for all called shots. If the nat12 is not rolled bonuses are added to it but its not going to hit the target called(mainbody shot). This seems to work well, it levels the playing field with those that have insane bonuses to strike. they're still going to hit the opponents but at least they won't always hit the throat or the eye(favorite target at my table :x )


same here.... bit i do like the part about double sdc and or hit points as well as i also won't do a called shot on them untill they do it to my npc's but like you i also warn them before doing so


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:45 pm
  

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Champion

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Combat can be fatal.. :)


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 7:27 pm
  

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Hero

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Combat *should* be fatal but my players learned a long time ago, I fight dirtier than they do. They start focusing on head shots, I start using more ambushes with magic and psionics - they spend more time creating characters than playing. What led to the ruling that only disarm and holds can be called in melee was a player deciding they wanted to focus on "instant kill" abilities... After the 20th new character joined the party to replenish the fallen the other players promised severe bodily harm if the "instant kill" artist didn't find another sthick. Sadly, he didn't listen; they asked if we could adopt a rule that called shots not exist in melee the next week.

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What a cruel thing is war: to separate and destroy families and friends, and mar the purest joys and happiness God has granted us in this world; to fill our hearts with hatred instead of love for our neighbors, and to devastate the fair face of this beautiful world. - R E Lee
People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. - G Orwell


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 7:34 pm
  

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Champion

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20?

I am left speechless.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 7:43 pm
  

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Hero

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Was a group of 7, had as many as 5 rolling up new characters at once.

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What a cruel thing is war: to separate and destroy families and friends, and mar the purest joys and happiness God has granted us in this world; to fill our hearts with hatred instead of love for our neighbors, and to devastate the fair face of this beautiful world. - R E Lee
People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. - G Orwell


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:05 pm
  

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most of time with these insta-kills... i remind my players they are HEROES. course that only works in certain aligned games


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Unread postPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:12 pm
  

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Champion

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demos606 wrote:
Was a group of 7, had as many as 5 rolling up new characters at once.

Must just like rolling up characters, because that does not sound like a good time to me. Hehe.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:59 am
  

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i require a roll of 16 or higher to hit with half your hit bonus (rounded down) for a called shot in melee. a miss is a total miss.

to decide if it worked against a regular guy/mook/minion i just go by the damage roll. if its higher than half of its max then the move works. technically any sword is capable of cutting off your hand as long as it gets a clean shot, and if a dagger is long enough to make it to your heart it can kill you in one shot too, even though the damage is only d6.

against big, supernatural, high level, boss type enemies i try to quickly figure out his hit points per area and see if the attack did enough that way. (roughly 15% hp per arm and leg, 35% for the torso and 5% for the head/neck). if the guy cuts half way through a limb i add bleeding damage for the following rounds and if he wants to hit that spot again he has to roll 16+ to hit with no bonuses.

my players find this fair, and it makes combat fairly lethal as the enemies try to do it to them too. we have a psi-healer to patch us up (whenever possible) so hes always busy. i also let the psi-healer (who is highly trained in regular medicine/surgery etc) make a surgical:diagnosis roll in combat to try to figure out a good called shot to make (for example, a rock crawler likely has a tiny brain and could be virtually immune to having an iron spike hammered into it, but roll him over and attack his soft underbelly...)


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Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2007 12:46 pm
  

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D-Bee

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damn demos that is bad ass. i never wanna **** you off.

but yeah in my games i give it open riegn IF they can hit it. i apply negs out the ass to keep them from doin it.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2007 1:15 pm
  

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Hero

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<--- allows elbow/knee breaking and neck-snapping through light MDC armor.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:23 pm
  

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Champion

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Ouch! :)


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Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 12:55 pm
  

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Hero

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I'm a big fan of the Steven Seagal- type martial arts/commando stuff. So I like to see my players (who have that type of training) be able to execute disabling attacks.

My general rule is that knee/elbow/neck snaps will only work on light MDC armor (nothing above a -10% prowl penalty, or over say 75MDC)

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Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:04 pm
  

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Lucky wrote:
I'm a big fan of the Steven Seagal- type martial arts/commando stuff. So I like to see my players (who have that type of training) be able to execute disabling attacks.

My general rule is that knee/elbow/neck snaps will only work on light MDC armor (nothing above a -10% prowl penalty, or over say 75MDC)


I can see the neck snap on light armors- nice :D

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Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2007 5:50 pm
  

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Would neck snap fall under Death Blow?


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2007 6:03 pm
  

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I agree with the person who said that the combat system is deliberatly simple....I throw out system as not being realistic and use my own.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 7:40 pm
  

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My players discovered the called shot to the head. Which as most of you know makes a game boring real fast.I countered this by having all of their antagonists doing the same. After a few lucky called shots it stopped them cold.

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 7:43 pm
  

lather wrote:
Would neck snap fall under Death Blow?
No, it appeared in Land of the Damned 2: Eternal Torment.


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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 7:57 pm
  

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General Disarray wrote:
My players discovered the called shot to the head. Which as most of you know makes a game boring real fast.I countered this by having all of their antagonists doing the same. After a few lucky called shots it stopped them cold.


I have actually used that; you're right it does stop them cold. :)

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Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 02, 2007 7:59 pm
  

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Kuseru: Was the Net Martial Arts site yours? I really appreciated the work done with it so if it was thank you

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Unread postPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2007 12:29 am
  

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Kuseru Satsujin wrote:
lather wrote:
Would neck snap fall under Death Blow?
No, it appeared in Land of the Damned 2: Eternal Torment.


I'll have to look that book up then. But normally all this kinda stuff I would infact stuff under 'death blow'.

Also as some one mentioned breaking up SDC/HP (or MDC) by hit location somewhere, burried away in all the books is infact a suggestion of doing just that. I dont quite recall the percentages suggested however.

It's also similar to an HR I wrote up once, that also had pass through damage for MDC armor, before it appeared in one of the rifters. My system was slight more involved in that it took the type of damage into account. Kinetic damage for example could cause broken bones and such through armor. So just because that 100 MDC deadboy armro suit saved your life from that AP missile didnt mean you instanly got back up again (Often enough you'd at least risk having snaped ribs or some such similar injury)

Also my system was... abi tmore lethal for pass through. Though no player died from the pass through damage. But I did find it made them considerably more cautious. Also alot of players.. actually seemed to like it.

I dont quite recall how I managed the SDC though. I think I wound up giving main body the 100% value, head/Arms got 25% and legs got 30% or so. HP remained as one flat pool as it would represent damage from blood loss etc. So it was entirely possible to still have plenty of SDC left, but die from HP loss (Because you got shot in the head, bled to death etc)


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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2007 1:56 pm
  

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Called shots in my game are far from simple, it is one action in melee combat, have to roll a modifide 12 or higher to strike a general hand, arm, leg, foot, helment. Spacific targets, groin, eye, temple, jugular, etc.. need a natural 12 or higher and above a modifide 18 to strike.

Ranged called shots with a rifle costs 2 actions as per normal rules specific targets are 3 actions. Called shots with a rifle between 15 feet and 35 - 40 cost 1 action specific targets are 2 actons.

Called shots with a pistol within 20-30 feet is 1 action for general head, arm, leg, hand etc. Specific targes is two actions(same numbers as melee attacks above) Aimed shots with a pistol up to about 200-300 feet is one action anything furthur than that is two actions to aim shot. and normally I don't allow a called shot to hit with a pistol at greater than 300 feet (unless the natural roll is high)

(also take into account modifiers and such so this is just an outline of how combat and called shots work in my game.)

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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2007 2:24 pm
  

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U.S.Advanced Recon wrote:
Called shots in my game are far from simple, it is one action in melee combat, have to roll a modifide 12 or higher to strike a general hand, arm, leg, foot, helment. Spacific targets, groin, eye, temple, jugular, etc.. need a natural 12 or higher and above a modifide 18 to strike.

Ranged called shots with a rifle costs 2 actions as per normal rules specific targets are 3 actions. Called shots with a rifle between 15 feet and 35 - 40 cost 1 action specific targets are 2 actons.

Called shots with a pistol within 20-30 feet is 1 action for general head, arm, leg, hand etc. Specific targes is two actions(same numbers as melee attacks above) Aimed shots with a pistol up to about 200-300 feet is one action anything furthur than that is two actions to aim shot. and normally I don't allow a called shot to hit with a pistol at greater than 300 feet (unless the natural roll is high)

(also take into account modifiers and such so this is just an outline of how combat and called shots work in my game.)


My called shots with a rifle get tougher depending on the body part; the head and 'center mass' have to be at a natural 14 or higher otherwise they miss completely.

Groin, hands anf the like are harder targets so a higher natural number is needed.

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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2007 7:33 pm
  

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I used to think the same thing about natural numbers but then what is the point of bonuses? if you can't use your bonuses then why have the skill? so I lowered my natural rolls to the standard 12 but made my modifier rolls higher 18.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2007 1:01 am
  

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Dungeon Crawler

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U.S.Advanced Recon wrote:
I used to think the same thing about natural numbers but then what is the point of bonuses? if you can't use your bonuses then why have the skill? so I lowered my natural rolls to the standard 12 but made my modifier rolls higher 18.


Aye I run with the same sort of line of thought. I may assign a target number to hit a specific target, but it can be a modified number. Otherwise all those lovely bonuses to aimed shot you've been building up for that sniper character are almost meaningless.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2007 12:19 pm
  

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WOW did I actually find a thread where someone agrees with me?? :eek:

sweet. 8)

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2007 1:23 am
  

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captramses wrote:

My called shots with a rifle get tougher depending on the body part; the head and 'center mass' have to be at a natural 14 or higher otherwise they miss completely.

Groin, hands anf the like are harder targets so a higher natural number is needed.


This to me doesnt seem to make alot of sense on it's own. If you miss a called shot, by the rules at least it hit the main body. You dont ever have to make a called shot just to hit the center mass. Only if say.. your trying land your shot into a specific vital organ, such as firing a stake into the heart of a vampire.

Also the head is considerably harder to hit than the center mass, personaly I allways make that about a 16 with modifiers on size (Much like fleet battles. It's increadibly easy to hit a battleship, but not so easy to say.. hit a shuttle)

The groin/hands etc thing I'd agree with as yet again their smaller still.

I also tend to take into account movement modifiers and facing. Mind you I have recently started HRing the use of a random hit location die for 'standard' shots. Meaning a centermass shot would infact be a called shot in a way. Though the dice I think has 3 sides that come up 'body' tHe rest head, hand, feet, legs

I just like to use that to represent snap shots, random burst/supressive fire etc. I do also take into considerating things like how usually a called shot will miss entirely especialy if its' at an extremity. Called shots to.. say the heart though still will land, just not where you wanted it to.

I should try to find and dig up all the ranged combat HRs I did up and see what folk here think of em. It takes a little bit of getting used to, but most of the work is GM side and honestly doesnt take long at all to roll up.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2007 6:30 pm
  

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I think this is mostly up to player discipline, and the old "playing in character" thing. Sure, we all want combat to end quickly, but it is far easier for us sitting around a table to think about called shots and precise moves than it is for a person in the heat of battle. In my BTS2 group, we use called shots cinematically, or to accomplish some very specific logical goal, but none of us tries for them all the time.

First example - we enter a warehouse, and find it is filled with a mix of deaf, somewhat sedate, zombies, and very active vampires. We get in a brawl - shooting, slashing, and slamming things left and right. None of those were called shots. Then one of my friends, armed with a silver bladed chainsaw, manages to sneak up behind one of the deaf zombies crouching behind a box. Now he's making a sneak attack, time for a cinematic called shot. He requests a called shot to the back of the neck, Gladiator execution style. He makes his roll, and zombie bits go flying.

Second example - in the final showdown of an adventure, we find ourselves "jousting" against baalrog-type demons. Our partners and ourselves are in vans (all but driver strapped in and shooting out the windows/doors), and the demons are on foot, using their fire whips and magic. The fire we were unleashing was general fire, no called shots. Then one of the demons grabs me to try and rip my character out of the vehicle while we're making a tight turn and low speed around it (the door next to my character had been lost in combat). With my free hand, I empty my silver-loaded pistol at him, requesting a called shot to the demon's arm. I make my roll, and the demon roars in pain and lets me go - I stay in the van.

Could we make called shots other times? Sure, we could try, but our characters probably wouldn't do so. Called shots are a very "player" thing to do, in most circumstances, and we try to do "character" things instead. When your character is under fire, stopping and taking the time to carefully aim is not the first thing on their mind - putting down counter-fire and suppressing the target is!


Edit: It is also, as somebody mentioned before, an alignment thing. We play good folks :-)

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Jeremiah Lionheart (Evan Cooney)
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