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Requesting Exalted Combat Tutorial/Example

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  • Requesting Exalted Combat Tutorial/Example

    I was wondering if anyone would be interested putting together a Combat Tutorial/Example for those of us who struggle with processing mechanics. What I have in mind is something like this:

    http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?...-2E-Combat-201

    The above link provided a nice easy to follow example of Exalted for 2E as it was coming out. Note: it does not need to be that elaborate. It began with heroic mortals, progressed to a new Solar engaged in combat with mortals, then advanced to more experienced Exalted fighting. Anyway, I and possibly others would appreciate the efforts of anyone who wanted to take on such a challenge. Thanks!


    Good night sweet Green Sun Prince: And flights of demons beat thee to thy rest...with billyclubs!

  • #2
    Sure, I'll throw something together. Should be posted in a few hours.


    Infernals - To Rule in Hell (complete first draft)
    3e Dragon Kings (complete)
    My martial arts (includes Eye of Heaven, White Veil, Obsidian Shards and more)

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    • #3
      Thank you. Looking forward to it!


      Good night sweet Green Sun Prince: And flights of demons beat thee to thy rest...with billyclubs!

      Comment


      • #4
        This is an actual fight I played out between two starting mortal characters, Elegant Breeze and Crashing Storm. Elegant Breeze is a high Dexterity, lightly armoured Thrown user, while Crashing Storm is a Melee fighter with medium armour and somewhat more balanced attributes. I won't be going into quite as much detail as the post you linked to, and I'll be assuming that you're familiar with previous editions of Exalted and therefore not explaining things like basic dice mechanics, but hopefully this is an informative post regardless.

        Elegant Breeze stalks her target through the streets of Nexus, flitting between market stalls and hiding behind passers-by to avoid his notice. Crashing Storm is an experienced soldier who never lets his guard down, especially in a city as treacherous as this one, but even his senses aren't keen enough to notice the assassin.

        She has 10 dice on her Dexterity + Stealth roll, scoring 5 successes. Crashing Storm rolls 8 dice for Perception + Awareness, resulting in a total of 2 successes. Elegant Breeze has the advantage of stealth in this fight.

        The Join Battle roll uses Wits + Awareness. Elegant Breeze scores a miserable 2 successes on her roll, while Crashing Storm gets a more impressive three. We add 3 to these rolled values to determine the starting initiative of the two combatants, putting Crashing Storm in the lead at 6 initiative and Elegant Breeze just behind him at 5. This makes Elegant Breeze's sneak attack much less effective - succeeding on your stealth roll and winning initiative is an ambush, which leaves your opponent entirely unable to defend, but losing initiative (or otherwise attacking someone who's aware of the danger) is only a surprise attack, which penalises their defence by 2 points. That's still quite a lot for mortals, but at least Crashing Storm has a chance. Since he has the first turn, he uses full defence to have a better chance of defending, boosting his parry by 2 and neatly negating Elegant Breeze's surprise attack. His defensive posture costs him a point of initiative, though, dropping him down to 5. He also moves one range band towards Elegant Breeze. Range bands are the abstracted movement system of Exalted 3e; rather than tracking exact distances you're simply at close range (can hit with a melee attack), short range (a short sprint away), medium range (far enough away that they can only hear you if you shout), long range (the maximum range of a bow) or extreme range (very, very far away). Everyone moves a flat one range band per turn, and while there are charms that let you exceed this they're very rare and have serious restrictions placed on them. Crashing Storm and Elegant Breeze were at medium range before Crashing Storm advanced, so now they're at short range. Next turn he'll be close enough to attack.

        It's Elegant Breeze's turn now, so she makes her attack - a decisive attack. Decisive attacks are the finishing moves that deal lethal or bashing damage (or occasionally aggravated) equal to your current initiative. It's important to note that soak doesn't apply to decisive attacks, nor do any of your or your weapon's stats, so without magic being invoked your damage pool is always going to be your initiative, with no other modifiers. Often you'll want to boost your initiative to higher than 5 before making a decisive attack, but Elegant Breeze wants to get a wound penalty onto Crashing Storm as soon as possible, to make the rest of the fight much easier. Decisive attacks are hard to hit with, though, as they don't benefit from your weapon's accuracy bonus, so Elegant Breeze spends a point of Willpower to boost the attack. Crashing Storm also spends a point of willpower, raising his parry by one point, to a total of 8. Elegant Breeze rolls 12 dice and adds a success, but only ends up with 5 successes and misses. Missing a decisive attack costs you two initiative (or three if you had a lot of initiative to begin with) as well as your turn, so Elegant Breeze drops down to 3.

        Round two begins with Crashing Storm in the lead still, on 5 initiative, and Elegant Breeze trailing behind him on 3. Crashing Storm moves in to close range, so he can now make melee attacks. In particular, he wants to make a withering attack. Withering attacks do factor in your weapon's accuracy, making them much easier to hit with than decisive attacks, but they don't deal actual damage to the enemy's health levels. Instead, a withering attack steals initiative from your enemy, making your subsequent decisive attacks much more potent. Crashing Storm swings his sword with 13 dice, getting an impressive 9 successes against Elegant Breeze's 6 evasion. The base damage of his attack is 12, with his three threshold successes raising this to 15 damage. (Threshold successes boost the damage of withering attacks just like they would increase a 2nd edition attack's damage, but they have no effect on decisive attack damage.) Elegant Breeze has 6 points of soak, which does reduce withering damage, so the final damage of Crashing Storm's attack is 9. He scores 6 successes on his damage roll (which benefits from double 10s, although decisive damage rolls do not), taking 6 points of initiative from Elegant Breeze. This brings Crashing Storm to 11 initiative and Elegant Breeze to -3. However, landing a withering attack gives the attacker a bonus point of initiative whether or not they scored any damage successes, so Crashing Storm picks up another point and reaches 12 initiative. Finally, reducing an enemy to 0 or less initiative - a state known as Initiative Crash - gives the attacker a potent 5 extra initiative, so Crashing Storm's final initiative value is 17. This is enough that he could kill Elegant Breeze in a single hit, so she's in a lot of trouble.

        Elegant Breeze wants to escape from Crashing Storm's blade, but she also wants to land a withering attack of her own in order to reduce Crashing Storm's impressive bank of initiative. In order to do this, she'll need to flurry a withering attack with a disengage action. Flurrying can only be used to combine two different actions - no flurrying two attacks, for instance, or taking more than two actions in one turn. You take a -3 penalty to the dice pools of both actions, and take a -1 penalty to your defences until your next turn. This makes flurrying a bit of a desperate move, but it can pay off. She rolls 13 dice for her withering attack even with the flurry penalty, scoring 8 successes against Crashing Storm's parry of 7. She has 11 base damage, plus on threshold success, minus Crashing Storm's eight soak, giving her a final result of 4 damage. Elegant Breeze scores two successes on the roll, taking Crashing Storm down to 15 initiative and getting back to 0 herself. She then attempts to disengage, rolling Dexterity + Dodge (with the -3 penalty) against Crashing Storm's Dexterity + Athletics. Knowing how important this roll is, Elegant Breeze spends another point of willpower to boost it, and gets 6 successes to Crashing Storm's 3. This allows her to move back to short range, too far away for Crashing Storm to attack her. You can't move away from a close range enemy without succeeding on a disengage action, which makes tough melee fighters very potent at locking down enemies. You also lose two initiative when you attempt to disengage, so Elegant Breeze drops down to the negatives again, on -2.

        The third round begins, and Crashing Storm wants to move towards Elegant Breeze so he can attack her again. However, if you escape someone by disengaging from them and they attempt to move towards you, you'll automatically bounce one range band backwards, to stay the same overall distance away from your pursuer. In order to close the gap, Crashing Storm needs to succeed on a rush action. Rushing is the counterpart to disengaging: if you beat your target in an opposed Dexterity + Athletics roll, and they attempt to move away from you on their next turn, you immediately move one range band towards them to keep up in addition to the range band you moved during your turn. This is how you catch up with a fleeing target or elusive ranged attacker. Crashing Storm has 9 dice to Elegant Breeze's 10, so he's going to struggle a bit to keep up with his more lightly armoured foe, but it won't be impossible. He rolls 5 successes against Elegant Breeze's 6, so he's failed the rush this round and will have to try again later.

        Elegant Breeze knows that she's in trouble, so she decides to take advantage of her range to reduce Crashing Storm's initiative pool by a bit before re-engaging. Ranged weapons don't have set accuracy values, instead basing their accuracy on how distant the target is, and thrown weapons are most accurate at close range. But for now she'll stick to making less accurate attacks and keeping her distance. She makes a withering attack, scoring a nice 10 successes against Crashing Storm's 7 parry, and deals a total of 3 initiative damage. She's now on 2 initiative, which is still a pretty poor value, but she's dropped Crashing Storm to a less terrifying 12 points. She then moves backwards a range band, so she's at medium range from Crashing Storm.

        Rounds four and five are eerily identical - Crashing Storm moves in to short range again and fails a rush attempt, Elegant Breeze tosses her war boomerang, dealing one point of initiative damage, and moves backwards to medium range. After round four she's built up 6 initiative, while Crashing Storm has been whittled down to only 10. On round six he finally beats his speedy opponent in the rush roll-off, so Elegant Breeze is going to have to face her foe in a fair fight once more. In an attempt to cripple him before he can move in to close range, she tosses another decisive attack, but flubs the roll with a mere 2 successes and simply loses two points of initiative for her trouble.

        In round seven, Crashing Storm advances to close range and launches a vicious withering attack, getting 7 successes on 8 damage dice and putting Elegant Breeze back into initiative crash. Being crashed doesn't affect her too much - the main consequences, other than obviously being unable to launch decisive attacks without any initiative to power them, are that being crashed negates your hardness and prevents you from using certain charms, but as a mortal she has neither of those - but the five bonus points of initiative that the aptly-named Crashing Storm gained by putting her into the negatives mean that Elegant Breeze is once again in danger of being killed outright. This time he has 21 initiative, even more fearsome than before. Rather than risk trying to flee again, Elegant Breeze stands her ground and throws a withering attack, which misses.

        Over the course of the next two rounds we see a succession of whiffed attacks, with Crashing Storm missing two decisive attacks in a row (and losing three initiative for each, since being at 11+ initiative increases the initiative lost by failing a decisive attack), although Elegant Breeze has slightly more success. She hits a solid withering attack, scoring a huge 7 successes on 5 damage dice, but then misses the decisive attack she attempts in the next round. This leaves Elegant Breeze on 3 initiative and Crashing Storm on 10. In round ten something quite unpleasant happens to Crashing Storm - he misses yet another decisive attack, dropping down to only 8 initiative, then Elegant Breeze connects with a withering attack that deals 4 damage. She's now at 8 initiative, while Crashing Storm is only on 4, so when the next round begins Elegant Breeze goes first, effectively getting two turns in a row. This is especially important because of onslaught penalties - rather than being something that only applies to attacks during a flurry, every attack aimed at you reduces your defence against all targets by 1 until your next turn. Because Elegant Breeze gets to make a second attack in a row before Crashing Storm's next turn, he's at a -1 defence penalty, giving Elegant Breeze the best chance she's had all fight at landing a solid 8 damage decisive attack. It's unlikely to end the fight outright, but Crashing Storm would likely dip into a -2 wound penalty, which would cripple his chances in the fight. Unfortunately she misses by a single success, and Crashing Storm retaliates with another vicious withering attack, crashing Elegant Breeze for the third time and bringing him up to 18 initiative. Round twelve begins, and this time it's Crashing Storm who gets to make two attacks in a row. He also attempts a decisive attack, trying to take advantage of the onslaught penalty that Elegant Breeze suffers from, and finally connects. With 18 initiative, he manages to roll 10 damage successes even without having double 10s, and cleaves Elegant Breeze in twain.

        This was a bit of an odd fight, with a tremendous number of missed decisive attacks dragging out the battle until one high-damage decisive suddenly ended the fight, but it was quite tense to play out. Crashing Storm had the advantage for most of the battle, thanks to his higher strength and better soak giving him a big edge in the initiative war, but if any of Elegant Breeze's decisive attacks had landed the subsequent wound penalties could have turned the fight around on the spot. If you want any more information about the specifics of the characters or how the fight played out, ask me and hopefully I'll be able to answer. I kept a pretty good record of all actions taken, so I should have the info saved. Next up I'll be Exalting both these characters and having them fight it out a second time.
        Last edited by Lanaya; 10-25-2015, 03:10 AM.


        Infernals - To Rule in Hell (complete first draft)
        3e Dragon Kings (complete)
        My martial arts (includes Eye of Heaven, White Veil, Obsidian Shards and more)

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        • #5
          When Elegant Breeze crashed herself through disengage, shouldn't Crashing Storm have gained the initiative?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by TGUEIROS View Post
            When Elegant Breeze crashed herself through disengage, shouldn't Crashing Storm have gained the initiative?
            She didn't crash herself - you're still crashed while at 0 initiative, so she only went deeper into crashedness. Also, you can't gain a crash bonus against someone on the round they come out of crash or the round immediately afterwards, so even if she had popped into the positives and then gone back down from her disengage he wouldn't have gained initiative from it.


            Infernals - To Rule in Hell (complete first draft)
            3e Dragon Kings (complete)
            My martial arts (includes Eye of Heaven, White Veil, Obsidian Shards and more)

            Comment


            • #7
              Ah, cool! Thanks!

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              • #8
                That's awesome!


                When all the world was very young
                And mountain magic heavy hung
                The supermen would walk in file
                Guardians of a loveless isle

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                • #9
                  Not many new rules show up in this fight, so I don't explain many new concepts, but there's a good look into the CCG-ish nature of combat, with lots of interesting charm interactions and potent counters going on.

                  Elegant Breeze's wounds should be fatal, so Crashing Storm leaves her bleeding out on the ground and goes about his day as though nothing had happened. However, she refuses to let herself die and eventually recovers thanks to swift medical intervention, and later goes on to Exalt as a Night Caste, with supernal Dodge. Crashing Storm's adventures continue, and he himself Exalts as a Dawn, with supernal Melee. Elegant Breeze hunts down Crashing Storm, eager for revenge. Crashing Storm wields a mighty daiklave, but Elegant Breeze has yet to find any artifacts and makes do with her trusty war boomerangs.

                  Elegant Breeze sneaks up on Crashing Storm again, rolling 12 dice against Crashing Storm's 7. She easily goes undetected, rolling 8 successes to 2. Using an Excellency, she rolls 17 dice for Join Battle and scores 10 successes, for a total of 13 starting initiative. Crashing Storm also uses an Excellency, and scores 6 successes with 14 dice, putting him at 9 initiative. This time she successfully ambushes her opponent, since she both beat his Perception + Awareness roll and won join battle, so she opens up with a potent decisive attack that Crashing Storm cannot defend against. Unfortunately her 13 damage dice give her a disappointing 3 successes, and Crashing Storm's daiklave blurs as he activates Heavenly Guardian Defence, spending three points of initiative to cancel out the three points of damage. Because Elegant Breeze hit with a decisive attack (even though it ended up dealing zero damage), she resets to base initiative, which is 3 points. She has launched her ambush from medium range again, so Crashing Storm walks to short range. At the end of the round each combatant recovers five motes.

                  Round two begins with Crashing Storm, who has 6 initiative left after activating Heavenly Guardian Defence. He advances to close range and makes a mighty withering attack, putting 8 motes into an Excellency and activating Excellent Strike. Excellent Strike rerolls out all the 1s in his attack, not only making it more accurate but also countering Elegant Breeze's potent Rumour of Form, which reduces the successes of an enemy's attack based on the number of 1s they rolled and allows the user to reflexively enter stealth. Elegant Blossom invests into a full Excellency herself, increasing her evasion to 12, but Crashing Storm scores a mighty 16 successes thanks to Rising Sun Slash and hits. His attack deals 7 initiative damage, crashing Elegant Breeze in an uncanny mirror of their previous battle. The attack leaves Elegant Breeze on -5 initiative, and Crashing Storm on 19. Elegant Breeze responds with a withering attack of her own, using Precision of the Striking Raptor to reduce Crashing Storm's parry value. He decides against spending essence to boost his defences, since his armour should protect him from most of the damage, and is struck for 3 damage.

                  Round three begins, and Crashing Storm decides to end the fight here and now. He uses Iron Whirlwind Attack enhanced by Invincible Fury of the Dawn to make a six-attack flurry. First he divides his 16 initiative amongst the six decisive attacks, then he adds six initiative spread across the attacks however he wishes. He opts for a balanced mix, dealing three damage with the first two attacks and four damage with the rest. Iron Whirlwind Attack allows him to enhance all six attacks with only a single activation of Excellent Strike as well as Fire and Stones Strike, a damage-enhancing charm, which makes this a very accurate and powerful flurry while remaining relatively inexpensive. Elegant Breeze knows she can't let these attacks connect, so she activates Seven Shadow Evasion to perfect evade the first attack, then activates Hundred Shadow Ways. Hundred Shadow Ways can only be used after a successful evasion, and makes the user immune to a single charm used in the attack they evaded until they are crashed or the scene ends. By activating her precious Seven Shadow Evasion against a weak attack, Elegant Breeze has given herself a chance to effectively remove Excellent Strike from her enemy's charm list. She then evades the second attack using Rumour of Form, since Crashing Storm can no longer reroll his 1s, and in doing so reflexively enters stealth, causing the final four attacks of the flurry to fail. Crashing Storm attempted six attacks and scored no hits, causing him to lose 12 initiative, and Elegant Breeze's Force-Stealing Feint takes away another two initiative for the two attacks that she dodged, reducing Crashing Storm to only two initiative. Elegant Breeze, hidden in the shadows, takes a moment to aim. Aiming is a combat action that cannot be flurried, so it takes up your entire turn. It gives +3 dice on your next attack against the target, and is also required to make ranged attacks at long distances. In this case, Elegant Breeze is aiming so she can be sure that her withering surprise attack connects, since Crashing Storm is currently very close to being crashed himself.

                  Elegant Breeze opens up round four by throwing a withering surprise attack at Crashing Storm. He attempts to parry with a full Excellency (which costs only one willpower thanks to Perfect Strike Discipline), but fails and takes 3 damage, knocking him down to negative initiative and giving Elegant Breeze a large amount of initiative. Currently she has a significant initiative advantage, but she's been spending more essence than her foe throughout this fight and is running low on motes, while Crashing Storm still has more than half of his remaining. Fortunately she has the charm Reed in the Wind, which, when enhanced by the scene-long Flow Like Blood, allows her to spend a single point of initiative to increase her evasion by 1, and once per round she gains a mote for dodging an attack with Reed in the Wind. This allows her to become extremely mote-efficient in cases like this, spending 5 points of initiative to gain an evasion boost that would have cost her 10 motes, and gain one free mote on top of it. She uses Reed in the Wind to dodge Crashing Storm's fully Excellencied withering attack without spending a single mote herself, which evens up their essence pools considerably, although it leaves Elegant Breeze with only 7 initiative.

                  In round five, Elegant Preeze strikes Crashing Storm with another withering attack, picking up another 6 initiative in the process. He attempts to strike her back, scoring 9 successes against her evasion of 8, but is thwarted by a combination of Rumour of Form and Drifting Leaf Elusion. Attacks normally hit on a tie in 3rd edition, but Drifting Leaf Elusion allows you to spend one mote after the attack is made to evade a tied roll. By removing one success with Rumour of Form to reduce Crashing Storm's roll to only 8 successes, Elegant Breeze can dodge the attack with Drifting Leaf Elusion and reflexively re-enter stealth in the process. She then retaliates with a 14 initiative surprise decisive attack, which hits for 4 points of damage. Crashing Storm attempts a powerful withering attack, throwing 24 dice against a mere 7 evasion, but rolls poorly and is thwarted once more by the combination of Rumour of Form and Drifting Leaf Elusion. However, activating these defensive charms has cost Elegant Breeze most of her remaining essence, and she is now running dangerously low on both motes and initiative, since she landed a decisive attack this round.

                  Elegant Breeze spends her turn aiming again, hoping to land a powerful withering surprise attack to regain the initiative advantage and to stall out the battle for a time so she can regain motes, but unfortunately makes a poor roll to remain unseen and is spotted by Crashing Storm. He spends half his remaining essence to throw another large withering attack at Elegant Breeze, and this time rolls well. The attack connects, dealing 7 damage to Elegant Breeze and crashing her. Being crashed ends the effect of Hundred Shadow Ways prematurely, so now he is able to use Excellent Strike again. Round eight begins with Crashing Storm well in the lead for initiative, so he immediately launches a second Iron Whirlwind Attack before Elegant Breeze can recover her essence or strike him with a withering attack. Unable to break the flurry with Rumour of Form this time, and without any initiative to fuel Reed in the Wind or motes to power her other defensive charms, she takes four solid hits, narrowly killing her. Crashing Storm is victorious once more, and this time makes sure that Elegant Breeze really is dead.
                  Last edited by Lanaya; 10-25-2015, 04:18 AM.


                  Infernals - To Rule in Hell (complete first draft)
                  3e Dragon Kings (complete)
                  My martial arts (includes Eye of Heaven, White Veil, Obsidian Shards and more)

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                  • #10
                    This was extremely useful for helping me better understand the combat engine. Thank you.

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                    • #11
                      I found the basic combat system surprisingly intuitive, but this has shown me quite a few things I hadn't considered yet. Thanks for the effort


                      3EX Martial Arts basic overview (Weapons, Armor, Attributes & Abilities)

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                      • #12
                        Keep in mind if you press A you get the advanced editor and can format the text to be more legible.

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                        • #13
                          Thank you. That was exactly what I had in mind. It definitely makes more sense to me to see it all put into effect. Thanks again for doing it.


                          Good night sweet Green Sun Prince: And flights of demons beat thee to thy rest...with billyclubs!

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                          • #14
                            Anybody want to do a Social Influence Tutorial? My players have the Combat System down, but seem to be struggling with the Social Systems.

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                            • #15
                              Wow. That fight was beautiful.

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