4. Combat

This section is not written yet. What follows is the original design notes that were used for an early playtest group.

4.1 Hand-to-Hand Combat

Real life combat is fast and furious. Dekahedron seeks to model this. Everything should be fast. It should require minimal thought, and by extension minimal rules. A combat round should take just a few seconds to execute.

4.1.1 Bad Paradigms

We have some paradigms that I would like to break free of.

Paradigm 1: Whenever Character A swings at Character B, Character A may or may not hit based on Character A's skill.

I hate this. It's completely unrealistic. Give a sword to anyone--even a person who has never held a sword before--and ask him to hit a man-sized dummy. Or even something smaller, say a stuffed cat. That person will be able to hit that object 99% of the time. Ask him to close his eyes and he'll still do it. That's because it take no skill at all to hit something. Heck--try it yourself. Use a stick instead of a sword, and swing at a tree (which is considerably smaller than a human body, except height- wise, but you shouldn't be swinging that high).

Of course real opponents don't just stand there and let you whack them. They dodge and weave and parry and block. So what makes them difficult to hit is *their* combat skill. Of course, if you're better at fighting than they are then you're more likely to be able to penetrate their defenses and score a hit. So what's important is the relative difference in fighting skills.

Paradigm 2: Armor makes a person more difficult to hit.

Bogus. Totally bogus. Depending on your definition of hit of course. As I discussed above, the only thing that makes a person more or less difficult to hit is the relative difference in your fighting skills. Just because you're wearing a big bronze breast plate doesn't make me any less likely to get past your dodging and parrying attempts. It does mean, though, that I'm less likely to hurt you if I do hit.

Paradigm 3: Combatants take turns swinging at each other.

In almost every game I've seen, Character A swings to hit Character B, and then Character B swings to hit Character A. This is asinine. I've never been in a combat where I've said okay--I just had a swing at him, let me give him one now. Combatants are constantly attempting to injure that other combatant while simultaneously preventing the other from doing the same.

4.1.2 How Many Rolls?

It takes time to roll a die. Not a lot, but time just the same. So fewer rolls are better. Let's look at some other games:

D20 System: Character A rolls (1) to hit. Assuming he does, he the rolls (2) for damage. Character B rolls (3) to hit. Assuming he does he then rolls (4) for damage. Total: four rolls.

GURPS: Character A rolls (1) to-hit. Character B rolls (2) an active or passive defense. Character A (3) rolls damage. Character B rolls (4) to-hit. Character A rolls (5) an active or passive defense. Character B rolls (6) damage. Total: six rolls.

So there's only a difference of 2 rolls, yet in my experience d20 System combat feels faster than GURPS. So 4 rolls seems okay and 6 is on the high side.

4.1.3 The Proposed System

So we need a system that looks at relative difference between skills, takes fewer than six rolls to execute, allows simultaneous actions, and treats armor as a damage absorber rather than a to-hit modifier.

Easy enough.

Every character has a fighting skill.

Each combat round both combatants make a fighting skill roll. The combatant with the higher result scores a hit on the other. (In case of a tie, no one score a hit). The winner rolls damage based on his weapon type, and the loser rolls a damage resistance roll based on his armor type. If the damage exceeds the armor, then the full damage is inflicted on the loser, otherwise it is ignored.

There you go. 4 rolls. Fast. Furious.

4.2 Ranged Combat

4.3 Damage

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