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  • LokiRavenSpeak
    started a topic Did i encounter a rules loop?

    Did i encounter a rules loop?

    So i was running my WtF game a few days ago and we were doing one of my players tribal initiation.

    The situation was that the PC was fighting at the top of a mountain against a flock of eagle Claimed (it was a Storm lords initiation), the pc had nowhere to go and was completely alone in the top, he enter Gauru and fall into "Basu-im" (the hard rage) and for expedience's sake i decided to use "Down & Dirty Combat".

    The sort of loop in question was they both rolled and the spirit won and per the rules on "Down & Dirty Combat":

    Originally posted by WtF Core, pag 165;
    "Failure: The opponent wins the contest. If the opponent used a combat pool, deal damage equal to the difference in successes plus weapon modifier. Also, the opponent escapes unless he wants to press the combat."
    So the PC take damage.....and then it gets confusing because in Gauru form the character regenerates all lethal damage each turn, the spirit for his part had a dicepool of 5 (8 with willpower) so he would never (unless lots of exploding dices) overflow the lethal track and finally as the character was in Basu-im it meant that he had unlimited turns in the form.

    This resulted in that we were trapped in roll after roll with the spirit winning each round, damaging the werewolf, said werewolf regenerating and rinse and repeat until the player finally, 8 rolls in, got more successes.

    So my question is, did i get something wrong with the rules? Because we notice after the game that "Down & Dirty Combat" is kinda an automatic i-win-button when you are in Gauru with no real possibility of failure. Rolling and rolling until the werewolf wins.
    Last edited by LokiRavenSpeak; 04-14-2017, 04:38 PM. Reason: Confused Ridden with Claimed

  • Charlaquin
    replied
    Originally posted by LokiRavenSpeak View Post
    I am not versed enough in D&D 3.5 to comment of what exactly is that wrong on that example aside from the second one being an incredibly time consuming way to shoot for an army. On the first one though? If the goblins are loosing their turn recharging the crossbows i dont see the exact problem. Aside from that reloading crossbow should be a standard action.
    I've lost interest in this argument, but I think the point Aleksay is making has to do with the amount of in-game time a turn represents. The first example is a valid strategy for an army to get their crossbows fired and reloaded in one turn. The latter is the same rules being used to allow the entire army to fire the same crossbow repeatedly over the course of six seconds. An even more extreme application of this logic is the peasant railgun. Get a line of peasents a mile long and pay them to hand an object from one to the other down the line. Since each can use their action do this on the same round of Combat, by the end of the line it will have traveled a mile in 6 seconds, and be traveling 3,600 miles per hour - about Mach 4.6. The last guy can use his action to throw it and good luck calculating the damage that thing will do to whatever it hits. You can theoretically do this in pretty much any RPG system, since rounds represent a finite amount of in-game time and there's generally no limit to how many turns are allowed to occur in a round. Point being, most GMs have the good sense to look at that and say "no, that's obviously against the intent of the rules, therefore it doesn't work despite being technically allowed by RAW."

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  • Darksider
    replied
    Originally posted by LokiRavenSpeak View Post


    First of all kid, i have 14+ years dming, but unlike you i can recognize a poorly written rule when i see it.
    You've also been a member of this forum community long enough to know this type of disrespect isn't OK.

    ​I don't like the tone I'm seeing this thread starting to take on, everyone cool it or the thread will be closed.

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  • LokiRavenSpeak
    replied
    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    That's the main point of combat system of 2nd ed. Always be sure what each participant tries to achieve in the combat. And yes, "killing the opponent" is not rearly an aim. It's like a war for any State or country. Not just random violence, but a violence as a tool. The war were almost never used to just destroy opponent's army, but to get the resources. Land. Gold. Oil. Influence. The CoD system takes a lot from new-style systems like Apocalypse World, in which rules are oriented to describe not the phisical abilities of characters and their actions, but their roles in the story.
    In werewolf the way spirits are written, "i wanna kill him and eat his essence filled bones" is a valid goal all things considered for a spirit. Also, i might be wrong about this, but claimed spirits dont die if they physical form are torn to shreds (they just reappear on other side) so that might be 0 reason for the claimed to be "afraid for his life".

    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    As for "bad rules" and field of applicability. Imagine the army of 100 orcs in D&D3,5. They stand behind the tower shilds and hold crossbows. Shoot with standart action, drop with free one. Then goblins behind them take the crossbows with move action, reload, drop with free action. The next turn. Orcs lift crossbows with move actions, shoot with standart one, and drop again. Repeat. RAW nothing contradicts. But this is the edge of the applicability of the rules of D&D actions.

    And now imagine it's ONE crossbow, moving along the army each turn for the whole round. That's also RAW-possible, but there the DM should say "stop; that shouldn't be that way".

    Loops exist not only because rules are bad. If rules don't work properly outside their fields of applicability, that's fine. They shouldn't. Rules are bad only if they're inconvinient in this field. If they're bad tool for what they're intended for.

    I don't find Down and Dirty Combat such a rule. It works fine where it should work.
    I am not versed enough in D&D 3.5 to comment of what exactly is that wrong on that example aside from the second one being an incredibly time consuming way to shoot for an army. On the first one though? If the goblins are loosing their turn recharging the crossbows i dont see the exact problem. Aside from that reloading crossbow should be a standard action.

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  • LokiRavenSpeak
    replied
    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    I've got 20. Are we here for phalometry?
    I dont know are we? You were the one that bring up experience in a condescending way like you had some kind of authority or breakthrough reasoning your clearly lack

    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    I was such a hair-splitter when I started being a DM a long ago. I thoroughly followed the letter of the rules, and that always went wrong. Always. So, try not being such a pedant, and rules will never restrain you and lead to foolish situation against the common sense. The rules are the helpful basis for your games, not the jail.
    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    Yes. It still doesn't say that opponent can kill the werewolf in Down-and-Dirty.
    Okay but i am not arguing that the NPC should be able to kill the PC in one roll but that the rules says "When failure occurs, PC takes damage and the opponent can run away or press combat" it doesnt say what happens after if the NPC wasnt to press said combat which can result in the loop only on werewolf because of its regeneration. And is incredibly vague, you on the other hand have put meaning that it wasnt there.

    If the rule read:

    Originally posted by WtF;
    ""DOWN AND DIRT Y COMBAT
    The Storyteller might decide that your character can get what she wants without focusing on the details of the fight. Maybe she’s picking on people weaker than her, like a Gauru werewolf faced with a mob of normal people. Maybe she’s internalized the mechanics of violence. This should only be used against NPC who dont stand a chance against the Gauru. If that’s the case, the Storyteller can opt to use a Down and Dirty Combat. This system resolves the entire fight in a single roll. Storyteller characters might deal some damage, but they’re never able to initiate a Down and Dirty Combat.

    Failure: The opponent archives his intent. If the opponent used a combat pool, deal damage equal to the difference in successes plus weapon modifier. Also, the opponent escapes.
    Then we wouldnt be having this conversation, the rules would be clear on when and how and the follow up through of this rule but they arent written like that arent they?
    Last edited by LokiRavenSpeak; 04-24-2017, 12:57 PM.

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  • Aleksay
    replied
    As for "bad rules" and field of applicability. Imagine the army of 100 orcs in D&D3,5. They stand behind the tower shilds and hold crossbows. Shoot with standart action, drop with free one. Then goblins behind them take the crossbows with move action, reload, drop with free action. The next turn. Orcs lift crossbows with move actions, shoot with standart one, and drop again. Repeat. RAW nothing contradicts. But this is the edge of the applicability of the rules of D&D actions.

    And now imagine it's ONE crossbow, moving along the army each turn for the whole round. That's also RAW-possible, but there the DM should say "stop; that shouldn't be that way".

    Loops exist not only because rules are bad. If rules don't work properly outside their fields of applicability, that's fine. They shouldn't. Rules are bad only if they're inconvinient in this field. If they're bad tool for what they're intended for.

    I don't find Down and Dirty Combat such a rule. It works fine where it should work.
    Last edited by Aleksay; 04-24-2017, 12:20 PM.

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  • Aleksay
    replied
    First of all kid, i have 14+ years dming,
    I've got 20. Are we here for phalometry?

    but unlike you i can recognize a poorly written rule when i see it
    And unlike you I can see the field of aplicability this or that rule; see what are they intended for and where their applicability ends. Does your GM-slyle let you have Sir-Bearingtons and PunPuns as PCs just because RAW rules don't contradict it?

    Look if you wanna contradict rules on terminal velocity to say "lol you die, screw the rules" thats your prerogative as a DM not an universally accepted one.
    I would never let NPC in Down-and-Dirty Combat have an intent of killing the PC. But if you somehow stated it, then follow it, find the explanation. Sometimes rules just cannot be applied. For example shot to the head of mortal in CWoD with TOTAL soak of all damage. Rules should not be applied out the field of their applicability.

    So can a Gauru survive a fall from a mountain? Per the rules sure he can, he might get some aggravated damage but the per the rules he can and i, personally, dont see any "Story first" reason he shouldnt, specially for pcs.
    If you let opponent have "kill the werewolf" intent in Down-and-Dirty-Combat, you should somehow find the way this intent succeeds. But I repeat, that's outside the field of the rule.

    Failure: The opponent wins the contest. If the opponent used a combat pool, deal damage equal to the difference in successes plus weapon modifier. Also, the opponent escapes unless he wants to press the combat.
    Yes. It still doesn't say that opponent can kill the werewolf in Down-and-Dirty.

    Why not just say "you transform and everyone dies" and save yourself a roll but if you wanna say they could escape then thats whats the chasing rules are for so that another no.
    That's the main point of combat system of 2nd ed. Always be sure what each participant tries to achieve in the combat. And yes, "killing the opponent" is not rearly an aim. It's like a war for any State or country. Not just random violence, but a violence as a tool. The war were almost never used to just destroy opponent's army, but to get the resources. Land. Gold. Oil. Influence. The CoD system takes a lot from new-style systems like Apocalypse World, in which rules are oriented to describe not the phisical abilities of characters and their actions, but their roles in the story.
    Last edited by Aleksay; 04-24-2017, 11:33 AM.

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  • LokiRavenSpeak
    replied

    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post

    It contradicts the Golden Rule of "Story goes first". When the RAW rules cotradict to common sense and story drama, they should be set aside. That's stated in all the manuals. And didn't I say sharp rocks? They can be long and sharp like stone teeth (or stone spikes if you wish) that add a lot to the damage.

    I was such a hair-splitter when I started being a DM a long ago. I thoroughly followed the letter of the rules, and that always went wrong. Always. So, try not being such a pedant, and rules will never restrain you and lead to foolish situation against the common sense. The rules are the helpful basis for your games, not the jail.
    First of all kid, i have 14+ years dming, but unlike you i can recognize a poorly written rule when i see it. Secondly "common sense" doesnt really apply to what a mutant shapeshifting wolf-gorilla that regenerates bullet wound it seconds can or cant regenerate from. As for the stone teeths the rule mention that the surface in which you land can improve the damage from bashing to lethal. Look if you wanna contradict rules on terminal velocity to say "lol you die, screw the rules" thats your prerogative as a DM not an universally accepted one.

    So can a Gauru survive a fall from a mountain? Per the rules sure he can, he might get some aggravated damage but the per the rules he can and i, personally, dont see any "Story first" reason he shouldnt, specially for pcs.

    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    And of course Down and Dirty Combat rules should NEVER be applied to the combat where the opponent wants and can kill the PC. Well... the enemy CAN want to kill the PC, but it's real intent (as a game-mechanic element) is a bit different cup of tea, and ST should understand it. The D&DC is only for the situations where the opponent cannot kill the PC. So even if the enemy wants to kill your character, as he belives, the real wages here are if he survives or not (if the PC's intent is to kill; usually it isn't). And if the NPC wins the D&DC, then he understands it and... maybe runs away... or even manages to steal something important from your character, ot survives long enough to get the reinforcement, but he doesn't kill your PC, for if he can do it somehow, the ST shouldn't apply to the D&DC rules. Dixi.
    See that? That is you pulling a definition from thin air because is sure isnt any part of the write up that say "the NPC shouldnt have any chance to kill the PC"

    Originally posted by WtF pg 165;
    "DOWN AND DIRT Y COMBAT
    The Storyteller might decide that your character can get what she wants without focusing on the details of the fight. Maybe she’s picking on people weaker than her, like a Gauru werewolf faced with a mob of normal people. Maybe she’s internalized the mechanics of violence. Or maybe the fight’s not the important thing going on with regards to the character’s intent. If that’s the case, the Storyteller can opt to use a Down and Dirty Combat. This system resolves the entire fight in a single roll. Storyteller characters might deal some damage, but they’re never able to initiate a Down and Dirty Combat.

    Failure: The opponent wins the contest. If the opponent used a combat pool, deal damage equal to the difference in successes plus weapon modifier. Also, the opponent escapes unless he wants to press the combat.
    If you take that definition from there kudos to you but dont tell me thats the obvious one because it isnt. One could read it as time saving measure but no where i read explicitly that the opponent should not have any chance of killing the PC, at best you can do a generous reading like yours is in the bolded parts. However the failure condition still seems to indicate a possibility of the opponent pressing combat which them the system throws its hands up in the air and doesnt follow through on what happens then. And this raises a question, if the NPC can never hope to kill the PC nor wound it per the gauru form rules then whats the point? Why not just say "you transform and everyone dies" and save yourself a roll but if you wanna say they could escape then thats whats the chasing rules are for so that another no.

    Or if the opponent is meant to run away if the PC fails then why add that line on "unless the wants to press combat"

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  • Aleksay
    replied
    Originally posted by Heroofthemists View Post
    What? A pen would count as a improvised weapon. those have rules for them, this is not relevant to the discussion whatsoever.

    Of course a pen can be used, just like in real life, how does that detract from my argument about Down and dirty combat?
    But are there IRL weapon laws against writing-pens? Do I need a lycense to use a pen? No! I don't. Because it would be ridoculous. Because almost nobody IRL uses a pan as a weapon. It is intended for the other purpose.

    The down and dirty combat is too intended for the other purpose. To resolve combats not threatening the life of the PC, and not worthy the time spent on them in proper combat rules.

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  • Heroofthemists
    replied
    Originally posted by nofather View Post

    It's entirely possible to die during gauru. That's the point of it, the fear of it. It's not an instant I-Win button.
    Of course it is, no one said it isn't But it is not a likely thing against a human, especially one who is armed with nothing but fists. Not even mentioning other forms which will level unarmed humans as well (Urshuls weaken the prey for instance). Not even metnioning possible gifts like hit and run, or slaughterer, etc. A unarmed human is not much of a threat to any supernatural, much less a werewolf who has taken the killing form.

    Originally posted by nofather View Post
    In this case, I'm guessing you are probably disagreeing about what you consider an experienced boxer, stat-wise. Technically 2 Strength and 3 Brawl and 1 FS Merit makes for an experienced boxer. But so does 5 Strength, 5 Boxing, Specializations and Fighting Styles maxed out. The former is more in the vein of a 'lesser opponent' while the latter is more of a serious threat.
    I do not disagree with this. My example was specifically using a boxer with 6 dice however. My point was to show how ridiculous the interpretation of the down and dirty rules were with the previous posters.

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  • Charlaquin
    replied
    To be fair, in the example in question the boxer was stated to have a dice pool of 6. That was of course compared to the werewolf's 4, and I was going by dice pool size without taking things like regeneration into account. Either way though, I just don't see that character having "kill the 300 pound death machine" as a goal.

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  • nofather
    replied
    Originally posted by Heroofthemists View Post
    Of course a pen can be used, just like in real life, how does that detract from my argument about Down and dirty combat?
    It's entirely possible to die during gauru. That's the point of it, the fear of it. It's not an instant I-Win button.

    In this case, I'm guessing you are probably disagreeing about what you consider an experienced boxer, stat-wise. Technically 2 Strength and 3 Brawl and 1 FS Merit makes for an experienced boxer. But so does 5 Strength, 5 Boxing, Specializations and Fighting Styles maxed out. The former is more in the vein of a 'lesser opponent' while the latter is more of a serious threat.
    Last edited by nofather; 04-23-2017, 07:09 PM.

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  • Heroofthemists
    replied
    Originally posted by Aleksay View Post
    It is possible to kill a person with a writing-pen. It doesn't matter why, only that anyone can. So why the writing-pen is not in the list of deadly weapons and isn't the subject for weapon-control laws? Because it is intended for other purpose, and very rearly it is used for killing. The same is for the rules of Down and Dirty Combat. They are made for another reason, and should be used for it, not for breaking the game-mechanics. Not for the reason to kill PC.

    What? A pen would count as a improvised weapon. those have rules for them, this is not relevant to the discussion whatsoever.

    Of course a pen can be used, just like in real life, how does that detract from my argument about Down and dirty combat?

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  • Aleksay
    replied
    Originally posted by Heroofthemists View Post
    Regardless, it doesn't matter why the boxer does it. Maybe he knows this particular werewolf killed his wife and family and is resolved to fight it to the bitter end. Maybe this boxer was placed under mind control by a mage or vampire and is fighting not of his own volition. It doesn't matter why, only that the mechanic is broken if he can.
    It is possible to kill a person with a writing-pen. It doesn't matter why, only that anyone can. So why the writing-pen is not in the list of deadly weapons and isn't the subject for weapon-control laws? Because it is intended for other purpose, and very rearly it is used for killing. The same is for the rules of Down and Dirty Combat. They are made for another reason, and should be used for it, not for breaking the game-mechanics. Not for the reason to kill PC.

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  • Heroofthemists
    replied
    I don't see how this is a counterpoint to my argument. I never suggested that Down and Dirty should be used when the PC doesn't have the upper hand.
    It lends credence to the idea that the NPC who is at a disadvantage does not kill the PC due to a unlucky roll.

    It has a list of what happens when a character making a Down and Dirty Combat roll fails the roll, dramaticlly fails, etc. including that success means the character achieves their goal. Both the PC and the NPC are making that roll.

    Lets put aside the PC/NPC dichotomy for a moment. Assiming both combattants are PCs, what happens under your interpretation if the weaker PC wins the contested roll? The stronger PC?
    The purpose of down and dirty combat is the PC attempting to end the fight quickly and effectively against lesser NPC's. I would not allow a PC's to use down and dirty combat against each other in the first place but, assuming i did, I would treat it like any other roll or power which is PC centric to the one who initiated. Just like two vampires who have dominate, if one Kindred with the power fails to dominate the other kindred, his failure doesn't turn into success on dominate for the other one, it simply fails.

    I don't agree that the reason the Brawl rules are formatted this way is that the other way of formatting Contested actions is meant to only apply to one side of the contest. Rather, I assume it is done because this phrasing flows better in the context of the surrounding text. Chronicles of Darkness is big on natural language and not so big on uniform technical formatting. The way the results of rolls to resist Frenzy in Requiem are formatted similarly to grappling, writing out what happens on each potential result instead of listing them in the
    Dramatic Failure:
    Failure:
    Success:
    Exceptional Success:
    format. I don't assume that implies anything about Breaking Point rolls, which are formatted more traditionally.
    This is patently untrue. You can't honestly assume I meant the layout can you? Even in frenzy the success failure format is still there!

    From VtR Pg. 104 "Dramatic failure on this roll results in frenzy, and the character cannot end the frenzy until she reaches a breaking point. If the Beast gets its desire, choose a new one. Failure means the character succumbs to frenzy. Success means she resists the Beast, but gains the Tempted Condition (see p. 307). Exceptional success means she not only resists the Beast, but regains a point of spent Willpower, and any Willpower she spent fighting the Beast during the scene."

    I agree that this situation makes no sense.
    First of all, the skilled boxer is not a lesser opponent than the werewolf who has no experience brawling, as evidenced by his higher dice pool, so Gauru form should not force Down and Dirty Combat, only deny the boxer his Athletics to Defense (or Brawl to Defense if he has Defensive Combat.) Second, why the hell was this unarmed human's instinct to kill the eight foot Wolf monster instead of to run the fuck away from it?
    .
    The skilled human boxer is a equal opponent to the titanic monster that regenerates even the mightiest blow the boxer can dish out? K

    Regardless, it doesn't matter why the boxer does it. Maybe he knows this particular werewolf killed his wife and family and is resolved to fight it to the bitter end. Maybe this boxer was placed under mind control by a mage or vampire and is fighting not of his own volition. It doesn't matter why, only that the mechanic is broken if he can.

    I purposely picked such a ludicrous situation to show why the mechanic would be useless if it was used the way you intended.
    Last edited by Heroofthemists; 04-23-2017, 02:42 PM.

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