Monday, October 28, 2013

Notes from Yesterday's DF Game Session

Just a few things from yesterday.

Martial Arts is Chuck's Playground - Yet again, Chuck busted out some cool martial arts move by Jump Kicking a golem. It didn't work, and didn't backfire on him (it could have, since it was automatically a Committed Attack), but still. He really takes advantage of all the stuff we wrote.

Faith Healing and Mortal Wounds - The way the Healing power works in the RAW is that you roll IQ to heal, IQ-6 to heal a crippled limb (even if it's just a temporary, HP-only cripple), and it says nothing about stabilizing mortal wounds. I think it's a bit much to give a -6 to heal something someone could fix with a really good First Aid roll or a Minor Healing Potion (or a Major Healing spell). So how I do it is this:

- Rolls to heal injuries, even crippling injuries, are a -0.
- Rolls to heal lasting crippling injuries (non-permanent, non-amputation) are at -6.
- You can attempt to stabilize mortal wounds (which takes 1 minute, instead of 1 second), are at -10.
- You cannot heal permanent crippling injuries (although this is perhaps a good spot for an Enhancement). But thinking it over, I'd allow a roll at -10 to put a limb back on if it's right there and intact.

So in yesterday's session, Father Hans has IQ 12 and Power Investiture 4 (he's unusually good). That gives him a base 16 with Healing. He can heal a regular, HP-only crippling injury (such as Chuck's Leg) with a 16 or less. He could heal a broken limb with a 10 or less. And he can stabilize a mortal wound with a 6 or less.

A more generous version would be -6 lasting crippled and mortal wounds, and that's what I was thinking yesterday, but I ruled it a 6 or less (I think I forgot the Holiness/PI modifier) and thus a -10 modifier. I think I said -6 after the session, and maybe that's more fair. I'm not sure - right now, as worded, only Surgery can stabilize a mortal wound. Not even a quick Great Heal spell to heal all HP damage will do it. I'm not sure that's fair, but I also don't like the idea that you can fail your HT roll vs. death and then get fed a potion or two and spring back up. Another option would be -6, plus -1 per -1xHP. So it's -7 at -1xHP, -8 at -2xHP, -9 at -3xHP, -10 at -4xHP, and you're dead automatically at -5xHP so it doesn't matter. What do you think, folks? -10, -6, -6 with modifiers, it's just damage?

TG Would have Been Nice - When Raggi got stomped down by a triger (a three-headed tiger! Mwoar!) I ruled he was basically pinned and helpless. Because he should have been - grappled by the neck with a bite, and being rended by a heavy tiger who is standing on him. This was a ruling, though, because technically the tiger needed to pin him first. Had we been using Technical Grappling, I bet the tiger would have been just as easily able to do this by the RAW. Bite the neck and the body twice (establishing a lot of CP) and forcing Raggi down via a tackle (hard to bite someone three times without a tackle), then just standing on him while he was face down. Doug and I have been talking about this kind of thing, so it was an easy ruling to make, but we've also talked about a lighter version of TG for these kind of "minimal options and fast rules" games that I run. TG has a lot of detail, more than I need for this game, but it has some details I think I would really like.

Setup Attack, Too - Vryce minced a lot of golems with Feint and Attack, using Rapid Strike. This is fine, but one thing about Feint is that it can make for lopsided fights. The golem-armor swordsmen had serious skill (in the high teens) but Vryce's 26 skill made that a joke. They couldn't reciprocate. Setup Attack (from Pyramid), even as I've proposed simplifying it (it's just a delayed-effect Deceptive Attack) makes for a more interesting situation - the high skill guy can trade off against the lower skill guy effectively, but the reverse is also true. This would make for an interesting fight dynamic instead of feint. Have to game that out sometime.

Enhanced Parry - sold for 4 points! - Vryce bought a level of Enhanced Parry (Two-Handed Sword) yesterday, and he was glad because he made a few parries exactly. I'm glad because it suggests my price point might be okay.

XP Awards - the group took home a solid profit (since we don't count expending potions, etc. - just cost of living and item recharge), and ended up with 5 xp each. Vryce was MVP for his defensive rolls and gained +1 XP. Gort got a vote from Dryst's player for being funny, but Vryce got two votes and won out.


  1. Stop Bleeding will also heal a mortal wound. It's one of the reasons every cleric in my game has taken it if able!

    1. Since we're not using bleeding that one gets overlooked a lot. It's weird, though, that you can't stabilize one otherwise. I may have to also rule that Great Healing will do it, if you otherwise heal all other HP.

    2. For 10 times the cost. I'm quite sure that with a bit of "Thaumatology" and "Powers" I could devise a suitable penalty to Faith Healing for stabilizing mortal wounds, but I don't care that much. I'd just use the -6 for "healing a wound more complicated than lost HP," for simplicity's sake. Less exceptions/rulings to remember.
      Alternatively I'd compare it to Surgery:
      - repairing lasting crippling injuries is basic Surgery or Healing-6
      - stabilizing a mortal wound is also basic Surgery, thus Healing-6, unless:
      a) the patient is at -3×HP: Surgery -2 or Healing-8;
      b) the patient is at -4×HP: Surgery -4 or Healing-10.
      I'm complicating things for me again. I should be preparing my own session now...

    3. Well, I use some nasty bleed effects (not the actual bleeding rules, but instead have monsters that cause bleeds when they hit), and so stop bleeding is always useful. Still, it could be called Stabilize Mortal Wound and my players would still take it every time.

    4. Calling all of it a -6 is probably not a bad idea. It would have been a 10 yesterday, not a 6, and that 7 would have meant Shieldbearer Zed lived.

      Oh well! The Good God called him back, it couldn't be helped. But I might go with -6 next time with gnomazgames's logic.

    5. It's apparently a long running tradition in Bruno's Ottawa gaming group, that his since migrated to Nate's and my online games, that Stop Bleeding should really be calling Coup de Grace - apparently one of their PCs had cast it on 3 different occasions, critically failed each time, and the patient bled out. Words to the effect of "well, the bleeding stopped..." were said.

      I think having Great Healing (it costs 20 FP! One Try Only!) or Faith Healing-6 stabilize mortal wounds is reasonable.

  2. I will get on my part of our discussions on TG this week. I'm finding that a lot more fun to dig into than fixing my weapon breakage/crafting rules article. :-)

    And yay team for Setup Attacks. I will admit I like that rule.

    1. I really want to try that as a substitute for Feints at some point, even if only the simplified version I've discussed before. But then again, it is DF, and the PCs get to kick serious ass right up until I roll a 3 or 4 and then the hammer comes down. Totally fair to let them give people a -12 or -15 to defend if they really want to.


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