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  • Hold action & clinch action

    So yes I know grapple rules always suck regardless of system. But I need a sanity check.
    Hold is a declared action you use to negate someone’s action.
    In a fight against an elder a player had two ghouls grab him while he attacked.
    Elder rolls to break the hold so he can fight back but the player says no he can’t attack cause he rolled all his dice to break free.
    Based on this logic grapple and clinches are the only way to go with a fight.
    Even blood buffing to max strength of 10 won’t work with this action economy. You have to split your dice twice (or more).
    I could just bum rush any elder with 2 ghouls and win every fight.
    Clinch is the same. Just instead you auto damage with strength but is dumb cause you’re not adding brawl to the dice equation.

    This seems broken or one or both of us are misinterpreting.

  • #2
    I may be wrong but I always handled the roll to break free as a reflexive action.


    So, this Zen Master walks up to a hot dog stand and says: "Make me one with everything!"

    Comment


    • #3
      I would count it as a reflexive action. However, it seems reasonable that a character would lose their action if all they did that turn was trying (and succeeding) to get loose.
      I would perhaps rule that unless a character rolls a net win of 3 or more successes they spend their turn trying to break free. They would still get out of the hold if they succeed on the roll but the rest of their (normal, non celecrity, non split) actions would be forfited as they tried to break free).
      If they succeed with 3 or more successes they got out of the hold so quickly that they were able to do an action of their own (like dodging a blow, shooting the person who held them, etc.).

      Seems fair to me at least.





      English is not my native language, so i apologize for errors in grammar or spelling.

      Comment


      • #4
        DAV20 p. 347:
        Hold: The attacker grabs and holds the target until the victim’s next action. When that action occurs, roll resisted Strength + Brawl actions. If the subject does not exceed the attacker’s successes, he remains immobilized, unable to take other physical actions.

        I read this as a reflexive roll on both sides. If the held character succeeds, he may proceed with his action(s), if not his action was trying to get free.


        So, this Zen Master walks up to a hot dog stand and says: "Make me one with everything!"

        Comment


        • #5
          Hold: This attack inflicts no damage, as the intent is to immobilize rather than injure the subject. On a successful roll, the attacker holds the target until the subject’s next action. At that time, both combatants roll resisted Strength + Brawl actions; the subject re-mains immobilized (able to take no other action) until she rolls more successes than the attacker does.
          The strength of holds and clinches has been noted in the past, hence the strength of Arms of the Abyss. It doesn't indicate the roll is reflexive (just resisted), and the description of reflexive rolls leads me to believe it shouldn't be RAW. But for the sake of balance, having it reflexive seems fine, at the very least. Honestly, I never liked it even when I first read this because the idea that one roll can so utterly disable someone as to 'take no other action' seems silly. And adjusting the rules for it seems appropriate.

          This is one aspect I think V5 does better.
          Grappling: A combatant can attempt to grapple, hold, tackle, or otherwise restrain a foe by rolling Strength + Brawl. If they get more successes than their opponent, they do no damage, but instead restrain the target, preventing them from moving and engaging other opponents, though the target can still act against the grappler as normal. In the next round, the grappler may engage their foe in a contest of Strength + Brawl. If the grappler wins, they can choose from the following options:
          ■ Damage the foe based on their margin of successes, as a normal attack;
          ■ Bite the foe (if a vampire) for two Aggravated damage (see Bite Attacks, p. 213); or
          ■ Hold them in place.
          ■ If the grappled combatant wins, they escape and can move freely the next round.
          Bite attacks against a grappled foe suffer no bite penalty to the attack roll.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Pnizzle View Post
            This seems broken or one or both of us are misinterpreting.
            After having spent many years in various grappling style martial arts (Aikido, Judo, and Jujitsu) I gave up on most RPG systems ever getting functional rules for grappling. So rather than make it a mechanical question, I turn it into a storyline question. Basically is the storyline and game better with this grapple working out or with it failing. Otherwise we start having to make checklists of what the characters know and can do to see if any given section of the rules apply.

            A good example of this is that one of the best grapples to do in real life is a form of a "rear choke" because it essentially puts a count down timer on the target, they have to get out of it or they go unconscious, get their neck snapped, or they die.

            That sounds all good except when you think about how a Vampire changes the math. They don't breathe so the entire count down timer aspect is null and void. Between spending blood, the ability to soak lethal damage, the potential for having disciplines like potence or fortitude, chances are that the muscles in the neck will be too strong or resilient to have the neck actually snap. So all a Rear Choke ends up doing is putting your arm within biting range of the target vampire and last I checked the side affects of a vampires bite can be rather disabling in combat, not to mention counts as Aggravated damage.

            So that leaves grappling onto the limbs or the torso in an attempt to hamper either mobility or combat potential. But once again this depends entirely on the who has what training. Because with a bit of training the scenario of having 4 individuals grappling one target is at worst a 50/50 chance of the target getting out of it while simultaneously crippling the attackers.

            Of course one could argue that such techniques are unusual or are not representative of the general population, but the rules would have to account for what training like this means in the game. Also it is worth noting that similar techniques existed in greek Pancration and several European fighting systems so this isn't restricted to the random vampire who took a martial arts class in the modern day.

            So yeah, after looking at it from a mechanical and technical stand point, I went with a storytelling approach as the best answer.

            Comment


            • #7
              So, with your experience in grappling and Storytelling, what was the best answer?
              RAW?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Illithid View Post
                So, with your experience in grappling and Storytelling, what was the best answer?
                RAW?
                I think it boils down to a few key things.

                If you know about how something works you tend to maker smarter decisions when that information is used in a game. The ST will be aware of the nuances and thus either allow players gain better bonuses or create worse pitfalls for them to get into trouble with. With aware players this means they will be a bit more tactical in execution or already be aware of those pitfalls and when conveying their actions they already account for them. With this in place you can use very basic dice rolling because everyone involved is already so into the scene that it is more or less playing it self out.

                Where RPGs run into trouble is that the rules have to account for people not knowing how stuff works. Thus a player will look at the rules, focus on the mechanics and then declare an action in game. No thought of tactics, no storytelling their actions to flank the target or which part of the body to grab, etc. Just rules and a dice roll = result.

                I guess this is a long winded way of saying it depends on your group and who knows what. Beyond that it just depends on the needs of your game. If this is a center piece moment in the game, you want it as epic and powerful as possible. If this scene is just a throw away scene and people get bored with crunch, you just hand wave it and make things move along.

                A far more difficult question to answer is if a female gamer casually threatens to put you in a triangle choke, is that a challenge to some impromptu MA sparring or given the body positions involved, flirtation/foreplay?

                Yes, my RPG groups had some very odd people in them.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Here's what I don't understand. If two ghouls grapple you in the fashion described, according to V5, you could proceed to punch/shoot/stab normally? Despite your arms being restrained?

                  I just want to make sure im reading right. Mostly because the site I play on is combat heavy, and characters die all the time.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Pnizzle View Post
                    So yes I know grapple rules always suck regardless of system. But I need a sanity check.
                    Hold is a declared action you use to negate someone’s action.
                    In a fight against an elder a player had two ghouls grab him while he attacked.
                    Elder rolls to break the hold so he can fight back but the player says no he can’t attack cause he rolled all his dice to break free.
                    Based on this logic grapple and clinches are the only way to go with a fight.
                    Even blood buffing to max strength of 10 won’t work with this action economy. You have to split your dice twice (or more).
                    I could just bum rush any elder with 2 ghouls and win every fight.
                    Clinch is the same. Just instead you auto damage with strength but is dumb cause you’re not adding brawl to the dice equation.

                    This seems broken or one or both of us are misinterpreting.
                    Yeah, the rules are unclear at best whether trying to get free is your action for the turn. Clear combat rules have never really been a strength of the WoD.

                    Also, the V5 rules for splitting actions without Celerity suck. Take the other version (first action at full pool -[total number of planned actions], every following action gets worse by one die) and Celerity becomes much less of a singular gamebreaker - and of course, elders without Celerity can make better use of their humungous dice pools. An elder with a size 12 pool of Strength+Brawl could split into three actions: Dislodge the first ghoul with 9 dice, dislodge the second with 8 and do something nasty and elderish with the third action at -5 dice.

                    Originally posted by Talvas View Post
                    Here's what I don't understand. If two ghouls grapple you in the fashion described, according to V5, you could proceed to punch/shoot/stab normally? Despite your arms being restrained?
                    No, both Clinch and Hold say that you can't take any other actions than those they describe (except that on the very same page, Bite requires a successful Clicn, Hold or Tackle beforehand...).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Talvas View Post
                      Here's what I don't understand. If two ghouls grapple you in the fashion described, according to V5, you could proceed to punch/shoot/stab normally? Despite your arms being restrained?

                      I just want to make sure im reading right. Mostly because the site I play on is combat heavy, and characters die all the time.
                      According to V5 you can punch/shoot/stab your grappler normally. I think conflating grapple with 'arms being restrained' is the confusion. Basically that you're struggling with them and able to ensure they can't get at anyone else. But it is a struggle still. You just cannot move towards or engage other targets.


                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Thoth View Post
                        Where RPGs run into trouble is that the rules have to account for people not knowing how stuff works. Thus a player will look at the rules, focus on the mechanics and then declare an action in game. No thought of tactics, no storytelling their actions to flank the target or which part of the body to grab, etc. Just rules and a dice roll = result.

                        I guess this is a long winded way of saying it depends on your group and who knows what. Beyond that it just depends on the needs of your game. If this is a center piece moment in the game, you want it as epic and powerful as possible. If this scene is just a throw away scene and people get bored with crunch, you just hand wave it and make things move along.

                        A far more difficult question to answer is if a female gamer casually threatens to put you in a triangle choke, is that a challenge to some impromptu MA sparring or given the body positions involved, flirtation/foreplay?
                        Yes, my RPG groups had some very odd people in them.
                        I'm not going to Google a triangle choke at work, but I think I can imagine it...

                        Narrating a Combat and rolling for the actions can unfortunately contradict each other, but I enjoy adding it to combat instead of just rolling it all out (though I try to avoid exalted level 3 dice stunt descriptions every time) Ultimately, I think that this applies to most combat - brawling, guns, swords, grapples, Kailindo, or what ever other supernatural craziness you can bring to the table

                        As to deciding on realistic responses to the specific grapple (or other skills in general), I think letting the dice decide is the best way to do it; Your skill represents your knowledge of what can be done, and the successes show how well you can apply the maneuver at that time.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          As a ST, this is how I usually do it:

                          I make my players describe their actions only in terms of fluff. Then I decide what kind of action they have described, and tell them what they need to roll.
                          This lets me have more control over what crunch is involved, and lets me account for my absurd amount of house rules.


                          Furthermore, I believe Carthage should be destroyed.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Here are the rules that I've use for our games for the last 18 years or so -- note that we use an entirely homebrew system, and the mechanics are fairly different. They involve treating dice pools as scores, and then adding (typically) 1D6 to determine the winner of a contest. (All rolls are contested.) Combat is accomplished by contesting Combat Totals (CBT) and perhaps contesting Damage Totals (DMT) against Soak totals.

                            Nevertheless, I suspect anyone even passingly familiar with how RPG mechanics work can get the gist and could adapt these mechanics (or whatever portion of them strikes your fancy) to whatever system they were using.

                            9. GRAPPLING

                            Grappling is combat at extremely close quarters where at least one of the combatants has actually grabbed hold of the other and is attempting to maintain physical control of the fight. Grappling is the best way to accomplish the ubiquitous “I stop him from doing that,” action that shows up in RPGs with such alarming frequency.

                            A. ENTERING A GRAPPLE:
                            If both combatants agree to enter a grapple, a grapple will begin automatically and normal attacks may be made; nobody is in control for the first round. But when one character wishes to grapple and another does not, the grappling character must succeed in a combat contest (just as if making a normal attack) using his or her Brawl CBT (i.e., Dex+ Brawl), giving away Advantage. If the grappler either wins or ties, no damage is inflicted, but the combatants are “in a Grapple”, and for the first round the character who initiated the grapple is “in control”.

                            B. FIGHTING IN A GRAPPLE:

                            THE GRAPPLE CHECK: Once the combatants have entered a grapple, an additional step is added to the combat round: a “Grapple Check” is made at the beginning of every combat round to determine the state of the grapple — either one character is in control, the other is in control, or neither is in control (ties). If there are multiple combatants in the grapple, then both sides use the highest Grapple CBT they have, but the side with more people gets Advantage. Whichever side gets the highest total is “in control”. This contest is made using the combatants’ Grapple CBT (i.e., Str+Pot+Brawl).

                            ALLOWED ATTACKS: While in a grapple, only the following attacks may be made:
                            • Brawl and claw attacks
                            • Fang/Feeding attacks (see below)
                            • Small weapon attacks (i.e., knives)
                            • Immobilization: A character “in control” may attack using his or her Grapple CBT to simply maintain the grapple.

                            SPECIAL CONDITIONS: Several restrictions and conditions apply to grappling.
                            • Evade and Escape cannot be used.
                            • Soak values never include Dodge while in a grapple
                            • While grappling, the character “in control” receives Advantage on both CBT and DMT for that round, and receives Advantage on the next grapple check.
                            • All damage inflicted in a grapple is (net) reduced by one.

                            C. ENDING A GRAPPLE:
                            A grapple continues until one character breaks it, or both characters release. To break a grapple, a character must declare his or her intention prior to the Grapple Check, and then win the Grapple Check at the beginning of the round. (If the character lost the Grapple Check last round, he or she gives away Advantage as noted above.) If he or she wins, the grapple is broken and no damage is inflicted. If both characters wish to break the grapple, the grapple is broken automatically and combat continues as normal for the round.

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                            • #15
                              That's good system. What is the current V20 compared to V5 and how does throwing a person or werewolf fit into the system? Does throwing require a grapple first?

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