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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Short Question About Dodging

Which of these rules for dodging seem simpler? Which seems better?
  1. Just like Trollsmyth's "Shields Shall Be Splintered!": give players to skip their attack to avoid damage from one successful hit.
  2. Skip attack, but instead of automatically avoiding just one attack, players can avoid any damage that is less than their movement rate.
  3. Skip attack, but make a d6 roll for each successful attack, +1 if faster than that attacker; if result is higher than damage, attack was dodged.
The second might be too foolproof if using d6 only damage, though, so perhaps it should be Move/2 or Move/3?


  1. Surely dodging is already covered by the to-hit roll?

    In reality it's impossible to dodge and stay in engagement distance.

    What about giving some characters the option to retreat out of combat in the face of a successful attack, forcing the attacker to roll to hit twice?

  2. Isn't dodging the part of the hit points that don't represent physical damage?

  3. Technically, yes to both questions: characters are assumed to dodge as a part of normal combat, hence the single attack roll per minute, and hit points represent the ability to turn deadly blows into superficial or dodged blows.

    But people seem to want a dodge roll or ability of some kind, and it does seem reasonable to have a "dodge only, no attack" option.

    @zornhau: the second two ideas use movement rate specifically because they model the dodge as a form of retreat. I actually did write something once about withdrawing, to allow characters to move out of the reach of opponents and make weapon length more important.

  4. #2 is near the mark, but - and this might make for poor gaming experience so please ignore - but weapons damage is really all or nothing, and disengaging is more about timing than movement speed.

    (You have to hit with the right part of the weapon, so if the other person moves at just the right moment, you miss and you get a moment to try to escape.)

    I would simply allow a dodge to add to the defence if in response to an initial attack, and add less to the defense in mid melee.

  5. Personally, (realizing you didn't ask for options) my initial reaction, should a PC want to Dodge during a game, would be to allow an exchange like such:

    DM - The first Goblin connects for... 4hp...
    PC - I Dodge!
    DM - Fine, your AC and next To hit are penalized by 4. The second Goblin goes for your legs as you dodge... hit... 3hp of...
    PC - Dodge!
    DM - Fine, but now you have a penalty of 7 to your AC and Attack next round...

    Some data tracking required, but I could live with it and the PC could just forgo an attack next round if the penalties stack up so that he would miss anyway. He could run for the hills as well...