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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“Epic Level” Shadowrun

Recently I've run into an issue with my Shadowrun campaign for a number of reason, the most key of which is that my players have hit the 180-250 karma level where they've started to ascend to levels ...
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908 views

How to make combat deadlier?

I was thinking of reducing all hit points by 1/2 (pc, npc and monster) to make combat deadlier and less Hp crunching. Is this a good approach or is there a better way to do this or would it be better ...
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Do players get full XP from encounter if enemies break and run?

First, I don't know of any specific morale rules for NPC's/monsters, but I would say based on modern army tactics, a unit has lost its effectiveness at 33% losses, and at 50% its a rout. So if the ...
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Is there a penalty for holding a two handed weapon in offhand while throwing a weapon?

I have a fighter (warforged weaponmaster, level 6). He wields a Mordenkrad (2-handed hammer, brutal 1). He has a "Dwarven Thrower" Throwing Hammer (1-handed throwing weapon) sheathed at his belt. ...
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1answer
264 views

Is it still valid to zig-zag an opponent through a wall for multiple hits?

An old D&D 4e trick is to use forced movement to zig-zag your opponent through a wall effect multiple times for multiple hits. As I understand it, the Wall of Fire power specifically has been ...
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Is there a good way of dealing with both movement and tactical combat in Shadowrun?

Many times, while I know the hard rules of Shadowrun, I fail to put together a good combat that can be clearly described to the players. When initiative is rolled, we calculate our phases and then ...
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Targets and multiple attacks on a full round action

In DnD 3.5, depending on your base attack bonus, you can use a full round action to perform multiple attacks. I have two questions regarding to targeting: Assuming one has two attacks: Can one ...
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Can a Gelatinous Cube be knocked prone?

Actually, this is a more general form of the question. Can something that cannot be tripped still be knocked prone from an effect which causes it? So, in the Gelatinous Cube Stat block, we have: ...
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620 views

What is added on to secondary attacks with implement powers?

Background: The Wild Magic Sorcerer in my group often uses his at-will power Chaos Bolt. On a hit with an even numbered roll, he gets to make a secondary attack against a creature within 5 squares of ...
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2answers
452 views

Difference between a crit and extra attacks

In DnD 3.x and related systems, you threaten a critical hit on a natural 20, but then have to confirm the crit by making another to-hit roll. If your followup roll beats the target's AC (or is another ...
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3answers
446 views

How do you keep players involved between their turns?

I've been running D&D Encounters for the last several seasons. One of the areas I would like to improve is keeping players involved and interacting with the scene when it's not their turn. When ...
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11answers
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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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2answers
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Is that superior or partial cover?

Take the following diagram: . E . X X . X X . X X . X X . . A . Considering the Attacker has line of effect (like an arrow slit) to the Enemy. According to RC pg 219 on determining cover, lines ...
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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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0answers
148 views

Does a forced movement from an OA stop a movement action in progress? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Does movement continue after an Opportunity Attack? I am in the process of creating a Druid, and an interesting opportunity came up. I a creature moves away from me to ...
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2answers
443 views

What's the impact of a monster being immune to Unconscious?

Some monsters have immunity to being Unconscious. Since monsters die when they hit 0 HP (barring a PC deliberately inflicting nonlethal damage), what's the impact of this? Do they fight on when ...
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How to kill yourself in 4e?

Warning: spoiler about P2: King of the Trollhaunt Warrens. The following explains why I want rules on killing yourself, but isn't critical to the question (with the edit), so don't read it if you will ...
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1answer
581 views

How is the Dragon Age RPG combat supposed to be played?

I had the opportunity to briefly see the Dragon Age RPG by Green Ronin in play today at Free RPG Day 2011 but not actually play it. I was able to pick up the FRPG Day mini-adventure and read through ...
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535 views

Non-combat objective: Delay larger enemy force

I'm re-writing the "Battle of Albridge" encounters from The DM-kit's Reavers of Harkenwold. As supplied they are mostly just a rehash of earlier fight-to-the-death skirmishes on re-used maps. Instead ...
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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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375 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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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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197 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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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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668 views

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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What is a 'Death Spiral'?

And what does it mean for combat in a game?
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328 views

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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1answer
549 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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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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2answers
655 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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4answers
840 views

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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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 I make GUMSHOE combats more dynamic?

In GUMSHOE what can be done to make the combats more dynamic, more exciting?
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Rules for delaying action?

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

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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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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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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5answers
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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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393 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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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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8answers
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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.