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 Post subject: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:36 am 
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The Expert Parry skill, as written in DW book 4, page 42:

Expert Parry
Knowledge of this skill gives the Knight greater proficiency in the use of a shield. For any blow that would otherwise hit him, he rolls d10. On a roll of 1 or 2, he catches the blow on his shield, negating it.

Using percentile rules, this would translate to increasing the skill from 16.6% to 20%: an increase of 3.4% - not exactly a “Skill of the Mighty”. The trouble is, increasing the dice one step further (to a roll of 1 on a d4) makes the skill very powerful indeed – as all blows would be blocked 25% of the time.
(Or is that really too much? Is blocking 1 blow in 4 actually workable for a high-rank Knight? What does anyone think?)

I was thinking of retaining the rule as written, but adding that the skill would also give the Knight a +1 to DEFENCE.

Thoughts? Suggestions?
(Has this cropped up before & I missed it?)


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:28 am 
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In some yahoogroups discussion I thought that shields should give trained individuals arrow cutting plus a bonus to EVASION for indirect spells and javelins. You want to duck behind cover and having a shield sure helps in avoiding javelins. Might be more involved than a d6 roll but that suits me.

Maybe for large shields, a bonus to EVASION and arrow cutting for missiles. And for buckers just a bonus to DEFENCE. Some variations there.

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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 12:12 pm 
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I'm happy to run some scenarios in my simulator if you want to test different permutations of expert parry.

Cheers,

-Kyle


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 1:17 pm 
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Quote:
I'm happy to run some scenarios in my simulator if you want to test different permutations of expert parry.

Cool. I'll have to come up with some first, of course... :D


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 7:16 pm 
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Starkad wrote:
The Expert Parry skill, as written in DW book 4, page 42:

Expert Parry
Knowledge of this skill gives the Knight greater proficiency in the use of a shield. For any blow that would otherwise hit him, he rolls d10. On a roll of 1 or 2, he catches the blow on his shield, negating it.

Using percentile rules, this would translate to increasing the skill from 16.6% to 20%: an increase of 3.4% - not exactly a “Skill of the Mighty”. The trouble is, increasing the dice one step further (to a roll of 1 on a d4) makes the skill very powerful indeed – as all blows would be blocked 25% of the time.
(Or is that really too much? Is blocking 1 blow in 4 actually workable for a high-rank Knight? What does anyone think?)

I was thinking of retaining the rule as written, but adding that the skill would also give the Knight a +1 to DEFENCE.

Thoughts? Suggestions?
(Has this cropped up before & I missed it?)


If a character has a shield, I just give them +2 DEFENCE, so maybe Expert Parry gives +2/3 DEFENCE and 1 on d6/1-2 on d10 block in addition to this.

Thoughts?


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:08 pm 
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Quote:
If a character has a shield, I just give them +2 DEFENCE, so maybe Expert Parry gives +2/3 DEFENCE and 1 on d6/1-2 on d10 block in addition to this.

Sounds very similar to what I'm suggesting, except you've started with a bonus to DEFENCE and them move on to the blocking dice roll (1 in 6 or 1 in 5). From what you're saying, perhaps I should be considering +2 to DEFENCE rather than just +1?

When I started running DW, I offered my players the chance to have a bonus to DEFENCE rather than their shield only being effective on a 1 chance in 6 basis. They refused. Their reason? The 1 in 6 is the only thing that will block a Critical Hit. In the years since then, that 1 in 6 has saved more than one character's life and, conversely, has been the cause of frustration as the monster/npc managed to block the characters' hits with a shield of his own...
(As a result, I would prefer to retain that die roll for the shield - which, as far as I know, is unique to DW - but I feel the "Skill of the Mighty" version needs improvement. As it stands, it's very much the skill no-one picks.)


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:45 pm 
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Starkad wrote:
Quote:
If a character has a shield, I just give them +2 DEFENCE, so maybe Expert Parry gives +2/3 DEFENCE and 1 on d6/1-2 on d10 block in addition to this.

Sounds very similar to what I'm suggesting, except you've started with a bonus to DEFENCE and them move on to the blocking dice roll (1 in 6 or 1 in 5). From what you're saying, perhaps I should be considering +2 to DEFENCE rather than just +1?

When I started running DW, I offered my players the chance to have a bonus to DEFENCE rather than their shield only being effective on a 1 chance in 6 basis. They refused. Their reason? The 1 in 6 is the only thing that will block a Critical Hit. In the years since then, that 1 in 6 has saved more than one character's life and, conversely, has been the cause of frustration as the monster/npc managed to block the characters' hits with a shield of his own...
(As a result, I would prefer to retain that die roll for the shield - which, as far as I know, is unique to DW - but I feel the "Skill of the Mighty" version needs improvement. As it stands, it's very much the skill no-one picks.)

The shield mechanic is unique to DW, as far as I know, but it's also clumsy - an extra die to roll every time the character is hit. The +2 Defence is more elegant and can be applied after splitting Defence when facing multiple opponents to retain its usefulness against multiple opponents, but it has that problem of no longer being effective against critical hits.

I prefer faster combat resolution as combat already consumes an inordinate amount of table time compared to the story elements of role-playing games. And with the best will in the world to make combats more narrative, they eventually just end up in a dice-rolling grind as most players run out of creative ways to narrate how they skewer their opponent with their blade (or fail to).

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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:49 pm 
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Starkad wrote:
When I started running DW, I offered my players the chance to have a bonus to DEFENCE rather than their shield only being effective on a 1 chance in 6 basis. They refused. Their reason? The 1 in 6 is the only thing that will block a Critical Hit.


The other thing is the shield roll is made against all attacks against a character, even those against which he is offering no active defence. This makes a shield particularly valuable when facing a horde of enemies and the relatively small improvement brought by Expert Parry actually becomes statistically significant against, say, 6 enemies. A simple increase to Defence would not have the same effect. Whether you want to replicate this behaviour is another matter; from a simulationist or narrativist point of view I'm not sure what the existing shield rule is actually meant to represent.

Cheers,

-Kyle


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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 9:53 pm 
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WodenKrait wrote:
... A simple increase to Defence would not have the same effect ...

Unless you apply the +2 Defence bonus after you split your Defence. You could, even though I probably wouldn't go this far in my own game, apply the bonus to any target against which your character assigned zero Defence (i.e., the character always has at least 2 Defence against any incoming melee attack).

That could even be the difference between the basic rules and the Expert Parry skill.

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 Post subject: Re: Expert Parry
PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2018 10:05 pm 
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Quote:
Unless you apply the +2 Defence bonus after you split your Defence.

Ah. Now that makes it interesting...

Quote:
You could, even though I probably wouldn't go this far in my own game, apply the bonus to any target against which your character assigned zero Defence...

If applying this to Expert Parry, I wouldn't go that far. If the character is not actively defending (zero DEFENCE), then he doesn't get to use is expert skill either. Although I would still allow the 1 in 6 with zero DEFENCE simply because the shield is there.

Quote:
The other thing is the shield roll is made against all attacks against a character, even those against which he is offering no active defence.

Which is very useful. I don't allow shield rolls for attacks made to the character's rear - the character has to be able to allocate a defence - even if he chooses not to.

Quote:
The shield mechanic is unique to DW, as far as I know, but it's also clumsy - an extra die to roll every time the character is hit.

Personally, I've never found it an inconvenience and my players seem to like it. Some have taken to rolling for their shield at the same time as I'm rolling to see if they're hit (which speeds things up)...

Quote:
And with the best will in the world to make combats more narrative, they eventually just end up in a dice-rolling grind as most players run out of creative ways to narrate how they skewer their opponent with their blade (or fail to).

I suspect that, unless you eliminate dice rolling altogether, this will always be the case.
(I've tried "Amber" diceless role-playing for a year; I didn't like it much.)


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