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  #1  
Unread 17th of November, 2005, 07:29
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Melee Weapon Design Rules

This is still pretty rough, but hopefully workable.
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File Type: doc d20 Modern Melee Weapon Design Rules.doc (39.0 KB, 3 views)
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Last edited by The Hive Custodian; 7th of April, 2007 at 16:40.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 07:48
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Okay, the current proposal is this:

Revised Coup de Grace: If an attacking character can move into a targets square (requiring something of a touch attack or something akin to that), and is armed with a weapon capable of doing lethal damage, the attacking character may hold the weapon to a vital area of the target and keep the target pinned. The target must make a will save at a DC of 10 + (half?) the weapons max unmodified damage to attempt to break free of this hold. To break free, the target must make a Reflex save with a DC of 10 + Attackers Dex Modifier. If the target fails this save, the attacker can reflexively attack the target, scoring a critical hit that does max damage. The target must make a Fortitude save with a DC of 5 + Damage Taken to remain standing and aware. If the fortitude save fails, the target is knocked unconcious and begins bleeding as if he had sustained negative hitpoint damage.

I'm going to think more on this before posting more. However, keep in mind this section from the MSRD in msrddeathdyinghealing.rtf:

Originally Posted by MSRD Massive Damage
Any time a character takes damage from a single hit that exceeds the character’s massive damage threshold, that damage is considered massive damage. A character’s massive damage threshold is equal to the character’s current Constitution score; it can be increased by taking the Improved Damage Threshold feat.
When a character takes massive damage that doesn’t reduce his or her hit points to 0 or lower, the character must make a Fortitude save (DC 15). If the character fails the save, the character’s hit point total is immediately reduced to –1. If the save succeeds, the character suffers no ill effect beyond the loss of hit points.
Creatures immune to critical hits are also immune to the effects of massive damage.
If we want to push toward a somewhat more "realistic" damage system, I would recommend that first the flat Fortitude DC be changed from "15" to "damage dealt". (Getting hit by a 120mm tank cannon is not DC 15.)
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 11:15
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Coup-de-grace: Tne Target needs to be unaware, and yuo need to make a melee touch attack. If you suceed, the target is (effectivly) pinned. (You would do exactly as the man says if you have a knife to your throat.) The target may try to break free, but if they try to, the attacker gets a, immidiate free AoO, auto hitting, and dealing max crit damage. Then, the attacker must make a DC (Damage Delt) Fort save or fall unconsious. Another little cool addition is that if it was knife to the throat hit, they can't talk, and if it was gun to the head, it puts them at -9. (I don't know any one who has survived a gunshot to the head at point blank.)
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 12:31
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No. Why? A simple melee touch attack to deal maximum damage and critical hit? That's one of those too deadly, too easies. If you're grabbing them, a grapple should be in order. Immagine, for a moment, I'm using my old amish paladin, only level 2 and temporarily bereft of morals. You're walking by, I come out from around the corner, catching you by surprise, and get you. The melee touch attack on an unaware target (you) is a granted (I hit on a 4) You have the options of diying or of taking 38 damage or dying. So, in other words, if my hide beats your spot, you die. Does this sound ballanced to you, cuz it sure doesn't to me.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 13:08
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Coup-De-Grace:

The target must be unaware of the coming attack. Roll a contested Reflex (attacker rolls d20 + melee att. bonus vs. d20 + Reflex save from the defender). If the defense is successful, the coup de grace fails, and the defender gets a free attack of op. or five foot step (his choice). If attacker is successful, the attacker now has a weapon to the head/throat/whatever of the target, and gets a free attack against his target. This attcak automatically hits. The defender then gets a Fortitude save DC 10 + max. natural (non-crit) damage of the weapon being used against them. If this check is successful, he takes half maximum critical damage, and is entitled to a retaliatory attack of op. or a five foot step. If the damage would put the defender below zero HP, he is at zero HP instead. If the check fails, the defender automatically goes to -1 HP, falls unconscious, and is Dying.

Once again, it's time for realism and simplicity to butt heads.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 13:42
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Why not just use grapple rules? Or assume that funky manouvers like this is what "sneak attack", the arterial strike feat cover?
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 14:11
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For the record, anything decided will come into effect next adventure.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 14:33
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My proposal: Absorb coup de grace into the other rules.

1. Standard coup de grace rules no longer exist.
2. Massive damage rules changed to the following:

Any time a character takes damage from a single hit that exceeds the character’s massive damage threshold, that damage is considered massive damage. A character’s massive damage threshold is equal to the character’s current Constitution score; it can be increased by taking the Improved Damage Threshold feat.
When a character takes massive damage that doesn’t reduce his or her hit points to 0 or lower, the character must make a Fortitude save (DC = damage dealt). If the character fails the save, the character’s hit point total is immediately reduced to –1. If the save succeeds, the character suffers no ill effect beyond the loss of hit points.
Creatures immune to critical hits are also immune to the effects of massive damage.

3. A sneak attack is any attack that would be eligible for sneak attack damage, whether the attacker has the sneak attack class ability or not.
4. The DC of Fortitude saves against massive damage increases by 5 against sneak attacks, and you must attempt a Fortitude save against massive damage even if the damage dealt is below your massive damage threshold. If you are helpless, the DC increases by 10 instead.
5. Attacking a helpless character is the same as attacking an object.
6. Any hit against a object is a critical threat. (If the attack automatically hits, it automatically scores a critical hit. Note that objects are immune to critical hits but characters usually are not.)
7. If you are adjacent to or in the same space as an opponent who is denied their Dexterity bonus against you and ready an attack against that opponent with "if the opponent makes a move" as one of the triggering conditions, that opponent is denied their Dexterity bonus against the readied attack.
8. In a grapple, you are not prohibited from using a light weapon on an opponent you are pinning. Pinning lasts until the opponent escapes, not just for 1 round. If you attempt to pin an opponent and fail, the opponent gets a retaliatory attempt to pin you (you cannot get a retaliatory attempt on this retaliatory attempt). Note that a pinned character loses their Dexterity bonus.

Reasoning:
1. Standard coup de grace rules are longer necessary due to #6 and #7.
2. More damage = more shock.
3. Just a definition.
4. If your ability to dodge is restricted, enemies hit you where it hurts more.
5-6. A helpless character is essentially an object.
7. If you get the jump on someone but ready an action to attack instead of attacking immediately, you still have the jump on them.
8. You can grab them and put a weapon to their head/neck.

So, if you sneak up to someone and plug/stab them (or ready an action and then plug/stab them), they make a Fortitude save against massive damage at DC = damage dealt + 5. Makes it more lethal, but not to the point of "Spot check or die". Also, flanking becomes more important (lead pipe to back of head when they're looking at your partner = Fortitude save against massive damage at DC = damage dealt + 5).

Okay, here's the question: At current class Defense bonuses apply even to helpless characters and characters denied their Dexterity bonus. Should we deny class Defense bonuses to helpless characters, or helpless characters and characters denied their Dexterity bonus? The latter option will make sneaking up to someone more or less an automatic hit after low levels.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 14:36
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I'll wait for more input on all of these ideas, however, I still frown upon massive damage in general, but I am considering this variant.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 15:21
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I'd like to suggest that assigning the dodge bonus from dodge makes you immune to non-class sneak attack effects (the part 4 effects) from the target of the dodge, as you are giving extra attention do defending yourself against that opponent. Makes dodge soooo much less pathetic a feat. Other than that (and that's only a minor concern, really. More to help dodge than to lessen the rules effects) I think this is a great comprimise.
And, while on the topic of massive damage, I was always on a "WTF!?" basis with the massive damage thresholds of D&D (50 for a humie). If you take 50 damage from one hit, you're probably at a lot lower than -1 hit points if a DC 15 fortitude save means anything to you. Please excuse the digression.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 15:26
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I just hated losing a level 17 ranger to a lucky sneak attack & crit strike with a magical dagger that took less than half his hit points. And I hated getting blamed for the TPK afterwards.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 15:46
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I keep forgetting this is a d20 game at heart.

I just don't like the fact that you can get stabbed in the neck and survive. I come from a Shadowrun background, where the GM suggested you make a backup character to speed play if you got iced.

As for Doomsmiles comments on my knife example in the previous thread: stabbing someone in the kidney is easy. Lower back. Done. And nothing was said about moving - we assumed the attacker in question was coming out of the shadows.
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Unread 17th of November, 2005, 15:50
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That reminds me, if anybody wants to make a second character and put him or her on a back burner, that might be a good measure.

I'm trying to make this game one where you still may survive if stabbed in the neck, so to speak, but you probably will not live, and no interference will affect the roll of the dice.

And I agree, stabs are fairly simple. I can manage it, and I haven't used a knife effectively in years.
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Unread 19th of December, 2005, 21:45
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Originally Posted by stealthbanana I just don't like the fact that you can get stabbed in the neck and survive. I come from a Shadowrun background, where the GM suggested you make a backup character to speed play if you got iced.
Well... actually, I would like these guys to have second characters for that purpose, but it was hard enough getting one out of each...

S_L left, DSB is... well, gone. I can't put pressure on the others.
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