A Few Questions

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  • #2772
    Caldreas
    Participant

    1. Do you use sneak attack?
    (It seems redundant with Twist the Blade)

    2. Do you use a flank bonus?
    (It seems redundant as enemies just run out of MP anyway when they are ganged up on)

    3. Question regarding Distance Fighting: Does the free die include the weapon or shield defense bonus? For instance, my fighter has an Active Defense of +8 using his weapon and +4 for just voiding.
    Do I roll 2 dice and add 8 to each one, or do I add 8 to the actual “parry” and 4 to the “dodge” when the character steps away?

    4. Do you give two-handed weapons the 1.5 strength bonus? For instance, in Pathfinder my weapon is 1d8+4 in one hand or 1d8+6 in two.

    5. Question regarding Bind: The text states “This means the physical die roll, not the modified die roll?” Could the modified die roll count as a bind, too? For instance, would a modified die roll of 17 versus a passive defense of 17 count as a bind?

    #2773
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    We like to keep Codex highly customizable and it’s meant to be fine tuned to your own campaign, players, and personal preferences as GM. So take below with a grain of salt, remembering Rule Zero for Codex is “Use Common Sense / Go with your preferences.”

    1. Do you use sneak attack?
    (It seems redundant with Twist the Blade)

    Don’t use it, though aside from ‘Twist the Blade’ we also have a Sucker Punch MF and an Ambush Special Ability (see Players Guide) which confers extra damage.

    2. Do you use a flank bonus?
    (It seems redundant as enemies just run out of MP anyway when they are ganged up on)

    We don’t use it, as you said running out of MP is already a major problem. To alleviate that we have MP like Situational Awareness etc.

    3. Question regarding Distance Fighting: Does the free die include the weapon or shield defense bonus? For instance, my fighter has an Active Defense of +8 using his weapon and +4 for just voiding.
    Do I roll 2 dice and add 8 to each one, or do I add 8 to the actual “parry” and 4 to the “dodge” when the character steps away?

    You roll both dice, decide which one you are using and discard the other, and then apply the bonus for weapon and / or voiding, shield etc. Whether you void or not is up to you, but extra distance also makes parrying a lot easier.

    4. Do you give two-handed weapons the 1.5 strength bonus? For instance, in Pathfinder my weapon is 1d8+4 in one hand or 1d8+6 in two.

    No, the extra damage for TH weapons is basically already factored in. We do have the Wrathful Strike rule as well. One of the major advantages with two handed weapons though is you gain a Free Dice in any bind.

    5. Question regarding Bind: The text states “This means the physical die roll, not the modified die roll?” Could the modified die roll count as a bind, too? For instance, would a modified die roll of 17 versus a passive defense of 17 count as a bind?

    The normal default rule is that it’s the ‘natural’ die roll, meaning you rolled a 15, so before you do any math see if your opponent rolled a 15. It is also the Die That Counts, so if you used two dice, and rolled a 15 and 14, and both would qualify as hits but the 15 will also be a bind and you don’t want a bind for some reason (like maybe you have a light staff and he has a halberd), you could choose the 14.

    There is an optional rule however that says you can use any tied die roll to call a bind, and MF like Fuhlen which also confer that ability, and Sprechfenster which makes any attack into a bind.

    #2775
    Caldreas
    Participant

    Thank you for the quick response. I’ll probably come up with some more questions but I don’t want to overwhelm you.

    You mentioned “One of the major advantages with two handed weapons though is you gain a Free Dice in any bind”. I don’t see that listed anywhere in the rules, can you elaborate?

    #2776
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    I’m sorry, I take that back – that bind thing is a house rule we have used in playtesting but it’s not published (yet).

    There is a small table in the Core Rules (bottom of page 52 in the current version) which lists modifiers for using weapons one vs two handed, conferring +1 damage to using a one handed weapon in two hands, for example, and penalties to speed and defense for using Hand and a Half (HH) and Two Handed (TH) weapons one handed.

    #2777
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    The rule is that in a bind, if one person is using a weapon in two hands (usually a TH or HH weapon) and the other has a weapon held only in one hand, the former combatant gets a Free Dice. We use it as a house rule but we thought it would be a little too much to remember for people learning the game, so we didn’t include it in the published rules (yet). It might appear in a future suppliment. The Free Dice applies to any action that exploits the bind, including the various Martial Feats like Winden, Mutierin etc., but also things like breaking the other weapon.

    #2778
    Caldreas
    Participant

    Thanks for the info, I’m still trying to get the hang of some of those Martial Feats 🙂

    Couple more questions:

    1. Do you play with a grid?
    (It seems like it would be easier without a grid. Onset could have a little space between figures, Melee would have bases touching, and Grapple would have bases overlapping.)

    2. Question on Failer:

    Make a powerful strike or chop attack at your opponent, which must be a 2 die attack (or more). If they do not actively defend, then carry out the attack as normal against their Passive Defense.

    If they do actively defend, then you may attempt to Feint them using a Bluff skill check.

    Does this Feint check require another MP?

    #2779
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    Hey Caldreas.

    Sorry for the slow response again. Hurricane recovery here has been a bit, “challenged” I guess is the word. Our internet went out again 2 days ago and there’s no indication as to when it’ll be back so I’m responding here on my phone.

    Codex was designed specifically not to need a grid or miniatures. We developed it before the proliferation of some of these new online tools like Roll20, one of our playtester groups for monsterberg used that. I don’t know the details of how they coded it in their system but onset means everything up to the outermost striking range for a handheld weapon. Therefore it would actually be a different physical distance depending on the weapons you had, the base for 3.x OGL as I understand it would be two 5 ft squares for a reach weapon or one 5 ft square for an ordinary ‘melee’ weapon. In codex a pike or lance could be twice that. It just depends how granular you want to get.

    The general rule of thumb on skill checks is that if you’re rolling a “one die” skill check, it costs no MP. You can spend an MP to add an extra die to a skill check like to give yourself advantage in 5e terminology. A feint is kind of an interesting outlier or special case, because the assumption is that you’re making some kind of physical effort to trick your opponent into thinking you’re attacking.

    The Failer is kind of an ” Attack Feint” you make an attack, it’s intended to be a feint but if they don’t defend, you will probably hit them. If they defend overzealously you can trick them. Their focus and momentum shifts in one direction and you attack in the other. I’ll post a pretty good example for some tournament footage it’s super fast so it’s hard to see what’s happening even in slow motion but if you wanted a couple times you’ll get the idea.

    So for the failer no there’s no extra MP cost for the feint. The initial attack is the feint. It’s definitely an advanced technique which requires good timing and proprioception (which is basically covered by the CHA modifier in OGL). If done properly it’s extremely effective. In practice it’s a little bit like the Zucken, but with more emphasis on the bluff and less on the fuhlen, since ideally you won’t even make contact with their blade (you might, but probably very lightly).

    #2780
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    The first exchange in that video which they show twice once fast and once a little slower, is a failer. Anton, the guy on the right, probes with his sword on his opponents left (Antons right). His opponent strikes at Anton’s sword to fend it away (parry),but somewhat overcommits. Anton’s already in mid-air and switches over to the other side avoiding contact with the blades, and hits the guy real hard on his right (Anton’s left).

    #2781
    Caldreas
    Participant

    You don’t need to apologize, no worries. I don’t want to flood you with too many questions anyway. Thanks for the info. I thought the Feint check for that Feat shouldn’t cost anything.

    I hope I can get my players to go along with it. Combat is quite different and very challenging at times. A battle can go on a long time. Even a 1-on-1 duel can take many rounds. I often notice in my playtesting that you are just waiting for an opening.. or a lucky critical. Evenly matched sides can be quite a battle, but when one side outnumbers the other just a bit the tide changes. In many of my tests I just decided one side would give up. I even played around with a pack of wolves and that was pretty interesting. I definitely feel the battles are more realistic… had one guy lose his sword because he rolled a 20 in response to his enemy rolling a critical. Sword was destroyed. The guy pulled out his dagger but the opponent just kept keeping his distance and finally slammed him.

    Anyway, thanks for the responses!

    #2784
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    I don’t mind answering questions I love talking about all this stuff! Just mentioning the situation in case there’s a long delay in replying (like if my phone service loses internet too) and to apologize in advance for typos and weird conversions that my phone does changing words when I’m trying to use voice to text.

    If you’re having long, inconclusive fights then something’s wrong.

    Armor can skew the lethality a little bit, but the key to the system is really stacking up your dice. In other words, instead of waiting for a critical you kind of force it to happen. You do this through gaining Free Dice from Martial Feats and circumstances in the rules.

    For example using Martial Feats like Meisterhau in attack or Distance Fighting in defense (better yet with a buckler). Always using an aiming support like a wall or a tree limb every time you shoot your crossbow or your arquebus gives you a Free Dice. Many of the Martial Feats combine together. A 6th or 7th level character can be very lethal if they leverage their capabilities. Combat in a lot of RPG systems is set up to interfere with min-maxing, but codex actively encourages it. Harness that instinct to apply the system as well as you can, customize your fighting strategy to your character, and that’s how your PC becomes powerful rather than just having 300 hit points or a Power Word Kill spell.

    That said, really good armor can still be very protective. It becomes necessary to use special armor piercing weapons and rely on grappling. It’s also recommended to use the hit point ceiling 2X or 3X the Constitution is good threshold. Also take advantage of the rules like twist The Blade, Artful Strike, Charge etc.

    When you’re introducing new players to the system which of course can be a challenge since it’s quite different, I have two recommendations. First start simple- you don’t have to apply every single rule at first. Get them used to how the Martial Pool works. You can layer in new rules as they run into problems that sort of beg for them if you get my drift.

    Second do a “session zero” and let them fight a few opponents that aren’t too tough. That should give them a taste for it. I have run games with Hema people who kind of naturally grasped the ideas, and I’ve run them with hardcore gamers that were not used to anything like this and have probably never been in a fight in their life. I found it wasn’t too hard to get people into the system. Obviously it helps a lot if you know it beforehand. Doing little solo battles is a good way to figure it out.

    #2785
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    Check out some of the Martial Feat archetype packages starting on page 45 in the core rules. These represent 6th 7th maybe 8th level characters (with a martial bent). The combination of their feats work together to make them really dangerous.

    If you have monsterberg 2 in particular there’s another 10 characters that are somewhat “optimized”, which can maybe give you ideas.

    Did you have a sense of what was causing some of your fights to go slowly or end up in stalemate?

    #2786
    Caldreas
    Participant

    I bought the Monsterberg 1 and 2 adventures but the included character sheets are blank. I was hoping to get those character stats. I’ve played around with the included enemies in little skirmishes.

    The “stalemate” fights were typically guys with Shields and Distance Fighting. So they were blocking with 3 dice every time. (That is right, isn’t it? One extra die for the shield, one extra die for the distance fighting). I know Murtieren and Fuhlen would break that up a lot. And maybe just jumping into grapple range (but that’s scary and dangerous). I’ll take some notes in the future and get back to you.

    #2788
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    Yes distance fighting and shields is very potent on defense. Try some pole arms against that.

    #2789
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    Those character sheets are filled out it might mean that you need a different version of acrobat or something maybe? I don’t know we should look into that. I think we can send you a text file or something with the data. But we should drill down into the details of that a bit. I think you should be able to open the PDf.

    #2790
    Hans Hellinger
    Moderator

    We have confirmed that there’s a problem with the character sheets apparently drive thru RPG is filtering them out. We will figure it out with them and / or come up with an alternative ASAP. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

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