Combat refers to the systems used in roleplaying games to resolve conflict through violent means, often to the death of one or more characters. Combat often involves several subsystems that determine whether harm is inflicted (to-hit) and the extent of that harm (damage).

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What type of action is sheathing a weapon and equipping another?

I have seen both the "What action type is switching two items between hands" question and the Master at arms feat referenced within. My question is: Suppose I have an elven cleric with both a mace ...
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How do you plan Savage Worlds combats based on PC ability?

Last night I ran my first Savage Worlds combat, to try to get a feel for the system. The combatants were two sword-wielding fighting men against three orcs (extras) and their chieftain (a wild card). ...
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1answer
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How does Stealth work with Sneak Attack?

So, in Pathfinder, it seems that being able to use stealth in order to gain sneak attacks only works in the surprise round, with the rules as written. So, imagine a scenario where we have a sniper ...
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1answer
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How many rays can a beholder use in one full-attack action?

What it says on the tin. Beholders and beholder kin are given a number of rays that they can use. The entry for the Beholder-kin: Watcher notes that each eye can use one of its powers every round, ...
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12answers
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How do I make a gunslinger with a decent damage progression?

I am considering playing a Gunslinger when next we play Pathfinder (I am currently GMing a game, and we'll be switching off afterwards), and thumbing through the Ultimate Combat Playtest v. 2, and I'm ...
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1answer
636 views

Is throwing other PC's possible? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do you rule halfling tossing as a combat action? Hello, one of my fellow players brought upon a good question to me; is possible to throw another PC almost like a ...
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What counts as a critical on defense?

In GURPS Campaigns p381, it states that a critical success on defense causes the attacker to suffer a "critical miss." Does a critical hit on defense count as a roll of 3 or 4? If my parry is 15, ...
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1answer
202 views

Does the Critical Hit threshold keep rising as skill goes up?

In GURPS Campaigns (p381) it states that a skill of 15+ means that a roll of 5 counts as a critical, and 16+ means that a 6 counts as a critical. Does this threshold continue to rise? Ex: Does ...
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Does a creature lose invisibility after being hit?

Duergar Scouts can turn invisible as a standard action until the end of their next turn or until they hit or miss with an attack. One of the PCs guessed where the monster might be and attacked the ...
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Alternatives to inapplicable critical-hit table results?

In a recent session of ours, one of the players scored a critical hit on a very scary wolf. The random critical-hit bonus rolled was "disarm opponent." Our GM was kind and clever enough to announce ...
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How long does “Joker” initiative in Savage Worlds apply?

I'm trying to learn enough Savage Worlds to start running a little experimental game. I keep feeling like the rules are explained poorly, but it may just be that my brain is not ready to learn. The ...
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5answers
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What is, or should be, the average time length of combat in each tier in real time?

As per title, what is or should be the average time length in real time of one combat encounter in each tier of a DnD 4E game? I've noticed between heroic and paragon tier combat length starts to ...
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How does disarming a monster affect its statistics?

The disarm maneuver has almost totally disappeared from D&D 4th edition. However, at least one Fighter power - Exorcism of Steel - allows it. Exorcism of Steel - Fighter Attack 17 You make a ...
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4answers
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How to reduce Whiff & Ping

In Savage World there is a problem of Whiff (I miss) and Ping (I hit but bounce off the armour). We have had several long combat encounters where the PC and NPC have basically done almost nothing for ...
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7answers
786 views

How do I make and use tactically interesting terrain?

I'm running 4e but I think this applies everywhere. I want to use terrain more often in my fights. My best fights are the ones that revolve around interesting terrain. The problem is that I don't ...
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957 views

How does d20 Modern handle having someone at gunpoint?

How does d20 Modern handle the common situation of having someone at gunpoint, or entering a room with your firearm in hand, cocked and ready to fire? I'm asking because I notice that to draw a ...
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Can you ready a charge?

In 3rd edition, you could ready a partial charge. From the PHB, p134: Only partial actions can be readied. To do so, specify the partial action you will take and the conditions under which you ...
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1answer
628 views

Do underwater opponents have cover from someone in the water?

Someone under the water has total cover from someone on the land. If you are in the water but not under it you have partial cover from a land based opponent. What I'd like to know is if you are in ...
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2answers
288 views

Does going prone stack with having cover?

Suppose I'm playing a ranged character. I am standing with an ally between me and my enemies, which grants "+2 defenses" for cover. I decide to further go prone. Do I now have a "+4 defenses", 2 ...
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3answers
427 views

What are some “ideal” marching formations?

It often happens that your party is approaching an area in which you just know combat will soon ensue. Or, when a combat encounter presents itself, you may be given an opportunity to arbitrarily ...
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6answers
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In D&D 4th Edition, how numerically close should party member levels be? What happens if they aren't?

I've read a lot here (and in the official books) about balanced parties in Dungeons and Dragon's 4th edition. Parties should contain at least one each of four specific roles, a distribution of skills ...
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5answers
436 views

How can I improve damage for a 2e rogue? (Particularly a Kender handler)

I'm roleplaying a 2nd Ed. Dragonlance Kender Handler. I had no experience in roleplaying, and kender sounded like a great opportunity to do fun stuff. In particular, my hiding / sneaking stats are ...
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752 views

How do you know if two monsters can move at the same time in DnD4e?

Can monsters in Dungeons and Dragons 4.0 share turns? In the first encounter of the Dungeons and Dragons 4e Redbox it states that you should make one initiative roll for the two goblins and one for ...
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Backstabbing multiple times on the same opponent?

Can a thief backstab twice if the opponent is otherwise occupied? Scenario: Big Bob the fighter has engaged an Ogre in combat. Sneaky the thief moves silently to get behind the ogre and ...
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How can Rogues maintain combat advantage?

I get that if you are hidden from an opponent, you gain combat advantage against them. I get that if you make a point of it, and you're not getting surprised by the opposition, you should be able to ...
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657 views

How can I make GUMSHOE combats more dynamic?

In GUMSHOE what can be done to make the combats more dynamic, more exciting?
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4answers
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How can I make combat more challenging without making it too frustrating?

My fellow DMs and I have come across a problem. It feels like the party has been doing a good job of dispatching our monsters with relative ease. We are not upset about this part, our party has done ...
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12answers
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What is a good combat tracker for D&D 4th Edition?

As my players go up levels there are more and more variables in combat. I need help. What solutions exist out there and what makes them good?
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2answers
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Can an unconscious character use a healing surge?

Can an unconscious character use an action (like second wind or a healing power) to spend a healing surge? Can an unconscious character spend a healing surge due to some external effect?
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How can acrobatics be used to move through an enemy occupied square?

According to the AcrobaticsDDI skill you can use an Acrobatic Stunt to "somersault over an opponent", amongst other things . It gives a base DC of 15, and "the DM sets the DC based on the complexity ...
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Close burst from a large creature — one square origin or all of them

If a large or larger creature uses a close burst, does the burst have to emanate from a single square of the large creature's space, or does it act as if the creature is the source (all squares)? The ...
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570 views

Combat Skill Challenges

I've seen a combat run as a skill challenge before, and it worked quite well. I'm wondering, though, if anyone has made more formal rules for a combat skill challenge, beyond "pick main skills and set ...
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What to do in Labyrinth Lord when both PCs and Foes are surprised?

In Labyrinth Lord, when there is a possibility of surprise for both PCs and foes, both sides roll 1d6. A 1-2 indicates that side is surprised for the first round. If both sides roll a 1-2, both ...
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How do you alter the difficulty of a challenge/fight in the middle of it?

I've run a bunch of times with players that took very diverse characters. I made them use their own rolls (which often ended up giving them awesome stats for some reason). Eventually I had to ...
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182 views

Rules for delaying action?

Does Advanced Dungeons & Dragons have rules for holding/delaying action in combat?
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3answers
411 views

Reducing Damage as an Interrupt

A friend of mine's assassin just got Sunspray Heritage which includes an encounter power- when hit by a radiant or fire damage, the triggering damage is reduced to 0. When he's in Shade form he's ...
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Is there a way to regain the daily power on a miss?

Missing on a daily power is a big let down and happens, frankly, a lot around our gaming table. Is there a way to introduce a rule that allows regaining the daily on a miss?
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Effective use of many close combat characters?

In systems with a square grid, it seems that melee/close combat characters are limited by their numbers. In one of my games we currently have more than five melee characters, and are now being ...
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13answers
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How to communicate to the players that an encounter can be solved also through diplomacy?

When you play D&D, you are not supposed to chat with the enemy during encounters. The system is made for fighting. However, in some circumstances, it would be nice to make the players conscious ...
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What's the maximum number of minions for an encounter?

What is the maximum number of minions that can be pitted against a party 0f 5 characters of equal level without being overwhelming (as defined by the DMG)? ie: How many Kobold minions can I pit ...
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Beyond hit points: injury in D&D [closed]

I'm interested in adding a touch of realism to combat in D&D 3.5 or Pathfinder. Hit points are a very simple way of measuring injury and stamina, that contributes to the "hit things first, ask ...
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3answers
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What can we do to streamline combat in Deadlands?

I'm a player in a regular Deadlands game. Sessions usually run 4-5 hours, and it seems like at least an hour gets dedicated to a single combat encounter. We have several characters with high dice ...
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5answers
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How do I get players to use their Interrupts?

Is there a good tool to get plays to remember their immediate interrupts? (please remember I play D&D4e with kids, so kid specific answers are always appreciated)
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Downtuning lethality in Savage Worlds

My groups go-to system is Savage Worlds, and it works pretty well for our needs. But the system uses exploding dice, and that means that sometimes a casual encounter that should be a cakewalk for the ...
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Without a map or miniatures, how to best determine line-of-sight, etc?

I think the title says it all. Let's say you're mastering a game without the benefit of miniatures, maps, or any kind of physical representation of the environment. How would you keep track of details ...
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2answers
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Does ranged magic that requires line-of-sight also require line-of-effect?

This came up during a combat last week. The party had barricaded themselves behind double doors and the wizard was peering through the keyholes, dropping Scorching Bursts on anything foolish enough ...
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How do I use the same type of creature as characters level up without using more of them?

Is there a good formula/strategy for making monsters harder as characters level up without just throwing more of them? My kids, for example, love Kobolds but I just don't want combats of 30 of them.
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Encouraging out-of-the-box thinking in combat encounters

I'm a GM currently running D&D 3.5. I try to think of situations that present the players with a number of possible solutions. The players, however, always resort to the same pattern of killing ...
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Clocking the round. Tools?

Chess players use a special clock to keep timings of each move within a reasonable amount, or they lose. During fighting session, I'd like to introduce a similar technique to prevent excessive ...
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3answers
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What is a 'Death Spiral'?

And what does it mean for combat in a game?