Weapons+shields

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Ben
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Ben » Fri Aug 24, 2012 7:24 pm

Can I remind people of this:

If you're wielding a weapon and buckler (or shield for that matter) in the same hand you can't apply any damage grades to the blows from that weapon for a) system balance and b) an attempt to apply some comparision to what would happen.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Chee » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:38 pm

If you're wielding a weapon and buckler (or shield for that matter) in the same hand you can't apply any damage grades to the blows from that weapon for a) system balance and b) an attempt to apply some comparison to what would happen.


Is this meant to be 'Damage grades from Weapon Proficiency' or just all damage grades? I.e. Does this mean Enchanting your weapon for +1 dmg or having a +1 sword will have no effect when wielding a buckler and the damage grade will always be a single.

A follow up to that question. Does this mean that a melee character at legendary or even ultra would still only be able to do singles while using a buckler?

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Chee » Thu Oct 11, 2012 1:05 am

Also in response to the earlier part of the thread, i think the power of a buckler is being over estimated. Ive been using my buckler for just under two years and i have tried it in a load of different situations. It has a very small niche where it is actually useful, the rest of the time it just impedes your fighting style.

2 Handed weapons. 2H Sword, Spear or Staff/Buckler: Bad. Fighting with a staff/spear requires a lot of hand movement to control a fight. A combatant that doesn’t/cant change the range of their fighting style will find that a enemy will quickly recognise their weakness and close the gap, moving in for close combat. Normally a staff/spear/2H sword would still be fine to parry with at short range and even to attack with to some degree but a buckler completely destroys the handling of a 2H weapon at short range, meaning that it is even harder to compensate for the weapon which is usually bad a short range. Also, the only situation the buckler would be used would be short range. At spear length the 2H user should have the advantage of reach. Its basically swapping a bad short range defence for a worse short range defence.

Sword/Buckler + Small Shield: Ok-ish. With smaller shields your defensive fighting style requires more movement, distance and speed. With your offensive arms impeded wrist movement attacking with a sword is slower with predictable movement patens that are harder to feint and get through an enemies guard. When using small defences it is not a good idea to encumber yourself with weight or impractical equipment.

Sword/Buckler + Large shield: Brilliant. This is by far the best weapon application for a buckler. With larger shields your opponent is often forced to come in close to try and get past your large shield. When parrying at close range it is hard to react in time to attacks but having a buckler allows you to present a defence to both your upper and lower body and limbs. This however works both ways and the enemy is at such close range that they also have the same difficulty reacting and defending themselves from close range attacks. Thus, even though your weapon swings are impeded by your buckler preventing proper wrist movement, your attacks still have a good chance of landing as the extreme close range is to your advantage and not the enemies.

Just 1 sword (with buckler on sword arm). Bad: Although you might think this is a good fighting style having your forward arm protected, its actually really bad. A buckler is very small when compared to the entire body. It helps guard your arm but due to its position on your arm its hard to parry low hits aimed at the legs or very high hits especially on the opposing side shoulder/head area. The problem occurs when you realise that although you now have a well protected arm, the lack of wrist movement greatly diminishes your ability to parry or move the sword around. This means that areas like your legs or your opposing body side are more difficult to defend. Unfortunately these are also the areas the buckler has the most trouble defending, so it leaves huge openings in your defences. As soon as an enemy realises you cant block an area, they will go for it repeatedly and there is very little you can do to counter.

Bow + Buckler. Strongly Not recommended(Safety): Although it is possible to have a buckler on your bow arm and then to pull a sword during melee and still hold the bow, it is just a bad idea. It does allow you to evoid having a shield slung on your back for combat but by trying to parry with a buckler on your arm and a bow in you hand you suddenly have a high tension piece of wood in your hands with two very unsafe pointy ends that your waving around in the way of incoming attacks. I have personally poked myself in the face doing this and lucky it wasn’t an eye (or someone else’s for that matter). Also, if an attack hits the bow instead of the buckler, it could damage the bow or the string or easily knock the bow string out of its grove, risking the bow snapping back and hitting someone with considerable force and possible injuring them. In short, its just not a good idea to use a bow as melee tool. It also is very bad for trying to shoot a bow as the buckler often interacts with the bowstring and messes up the shot.

In conclusion, the buckler is a strong tool in the right situation. It is definitely not an 'indestructible Limb'. It takes time and practice to get used to a buckler and even then it has its weaknesses. A smart warrior tries his best to make sure he doesn’t put himself in those situations. Its also an uncomfortable piece of equipment to wear and cumbersome making moving around/interacting with things/picking things up, etc very difficult. I have got stuck in bushes before now because my buckler was attached to a tree.

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Huw » Thu Oct 11, 2012 1:45 pm

Is a shield the size of a barn door not enough of a defense already?

The point seemed to be that with a buckler on your sword arm you couldn't effectively wield a weapon with any strength. I haven't tried it, but I'm guessing a solid wood or metal shield and a solid metal sword on the same arm would mean that arm was weighed down and very slow.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Chee » Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:40 pm

...or a sword with extra weight attached to it would be slower to swing around but do a load more damage as it has even more force behind it. Much like a two handed weapon does addition damage both in real life and in game due to its 'real world' weight and size.

Its the 'firing multiple arrows' question again. I can easily fire three arrows from a bow both in game and in real life, doing considerable more damage to a target but for game balance hitting a target with 3x eight, Knockdowns simultaneously is game breaking so a ruling is put in place for game balance, not realism.

The question is, what is the best balance for the ruling on bucklers, making them a viable choice for a warrior while ensuring they are not over powering. A warrior who can only call singles is fine at 10-30 skill but beyond that a 'tank' character will likely just get ignored by the monsters as his damage is so insignificant. Should it be the loss of damage due to prof or a set amount of damage reduced from the attack?

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Stevie » Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:50 pm

I would say something of a compromise like 1 damage grade per threshold. So a max of Quad.

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Ben » Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:33 am

A bit of shield history

From the earliest known examples used by the Greeks nearly 3000 years ago all the way up until the Middle Ages, shields tended to be held in one hand rather than strapped on. They started small and got larger and larger until the use of plate armour lead to their popularity decreasing. Although there are exceptions, most tended to be made from wood.

After the medieval period, bucklers became popular and were much smaller than the medieval shields, were made from metal and once more they were held in one hand (the name comes from the French 'boss' rather than because it was buckled to the arm)

I believe the only place where a buckler is strapped to the arm in order to use the hand for something else is D&D. However, just because there is no historical precedent for strapping a shield to the arm and using it for something else, doesn't mean we won't allow it in LRP which is (after all) a game.

However, it all comes back to game balance. Strapping a shield somewhere so that you don't have to use a hand for it means that you gain indestructible plate armour.

I think we have several possible rulings:
1) If the shield is not wielded in a hand then it counts as plate armour with the appropriate amount of hits.
2) If you have a shield strapped to your arm then you can only call X damage (singles? 1 per threshold? half damage?)
3) If a shield is strapped to your arm, you count as if you don't have proficiency with it (take half damage from all blows that strike it)
4) Something else...


On the subject of firing multiple arrows. My knowledge of physics isn't amazing but I assume that the power used to draw the string would be divided amongst however many arrows are fired from it. In RL you may have 3 holes in you from the 3 arrows but in game terms if you could call 6 with a single arrow and you tried to fire three simultaneously, each would have a third of the power and therefore do double.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Chee » Tue Oct 16, 2012 12:49 pm

Damn! I just got Scienced!!!

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Peter Levy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:43 am

Ben wrote:2)If you have a shield strapped to your arm then you can only call X damage


This.

I propose limiting the number of grades of srength/dex you may apply. Perhaps to 1 per threshold beyond Standard? Or perhaps to zero? A +1 Water sword still adds its +1 grade from the water magic.


So, our fighty type, let's call him... Tunks Troeheart, is facing a horde of shouty goblins who want their lunch back. He has a very large shield with a wonderful diagonal strap on his left hand. He has a sword in his right hand, and a wooden kite shield strapped to his right elbow. The primary shield (massive and lovely) is fine: it's a shield. The wooden one, as the secondary then limits his damage with that arm.
A)He has four grades of strength and proficiency, but at his threshold can only apply three of them, so he's limited to Quad.
B)He has all the strength and prof in the world, but he's taken the second shield, so is limited to Single.

Another example: A less fighty type, but only because he's 15 skill, let's call him... Peter's Orc Celebrant. He's fighting with a grotesque pole-mace, with a shield lashed to his arm, and held with the pole-mace in his right hand. He has no grades of strength, but one proficiency, therefore he is able to do Double. At 60 skill, he's dedicated himself more to being a healer than a fighter, and so still does Double.


In brief: A strap-on shield should count as a shield, but should restrict you from using strength/dex to do damage.

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Stevie » Thu Apr 11, 2013 1:34 pm

Seems legit.

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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Alexander » Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:01 pm

| Please accept my apology for the poorly informed writing that was once here.
Last edited by Alexander on Thu Mar 24, 2016 4:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Ben » Tue Jul 16, 2013 4:29 pm

To quote Chee

Chee wrote:Damn! I just got Scienced!!!


Basically this discussion came about from whether you could wield 2 shields. For ease, shields are indestructable in the game (by normal weapons) so having two grants your plate to your arms that can't be broken (normal plate would be broken after 6 hits). It can physically be done (wearing a shield on each arm) and fight with a sword in each hand too. The question is: can you do as much damage with a sword in a hand that should have a really heavy shield attached?

As for bows...again, game mechanic to stop bad things happen: I could get within 10' of you, release 3 arrows from the same draw and you take (for example) 12 points of damage instead of the 4 I could do with one arrow.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Will » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:42 pm

I think the important thing to remember is that in order for the game to run smoothly, we have to abandon certain real world considerations.

We also can't shoot lightning bolts from our fingers :-)
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Ben » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:44 pm

I can. I just choose not to.
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Re: Weapons+shields

Postby Luke » Sat Jul 20, 2013 5:20 pm

This may be derpy but I think limiting strength or dexterity would make the most sense. If someone casts might on themselves then they can damn well wield a two handed sword and a buckler. You have to spend skill to use a shield, skill to buy strength and skill to buy proficiencies so actually instead of wielding two swords with two shields which I imagine is much harder IRL than we suggest, especially for the ill-co-ordinated ganglier kind of larper (like myself) might as well save the ambidex skill and buy something else.

I'd limit strength, and have a minimum requirement of 1 strength to wield a buckler with a weapon. I don't see a justification for a high strength character not being able to use one because despite how amazing it sounds, it really isn't that easy to fight with it. The most common example I can think of is Sundairs but that was one small element of a very well designed and very geared-up character. If you removed the buckler I think Sundairs would have been just as tough.

Let's see it on a 20 skill larkant, I can't see it making them much tougher.
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