Nuclear Beasts Blog
Sunday, August 31, 2003
So two roughly equivalent weapons might do damage d10,d8 and 3d8. Since you only take the highest number rolled, the first would have a higher maximum damage, and the second would be a little more reliable (less likely to hit with really low damage). Both have around the same average. Since most weapons include your Muscles die in their damage pool, it's rare to find anything that does less than 2 dice of damage in total. This is kind of important, because almost every foe will have a couple of points of armor rating, even if they aren't actually wearing any real armor. I want it to be possible for a solid hit to rebound harmlessly off of the target's armor, I just don't want it to be common.
In general, stuff like spears will consist of a single damage die, plus the user's Muscles rating, for a total of two dice. Swords will do Muscles plus two dice (usually with one larger than the other). Axes will also inflict two dice, but they'll generally be the same size. Blunt weapons will contribute three dice, for a total of four. So the basic damage for blunt weapons will be very reliable (roll 4 dice, take the highest), whereas piercing weapons will generally get larger dice but will be much less reliable.
On a critical hit, you actually add the top two dice together, instead of just taking the highest. On an extraordinary hit, you add the top three dice together. If you don't have that many dice, you add a d4, instead. I'm actually leaning towards changing that to adding a d12 instead, so that weapons that have fewer damage dice will see a greater benefit from really skilled hits. It'll only really apply to piercing weapons, which should be really devestating if precisely aimed, anyway.
There could, of course, also be special-case weapons like "this weapon ignores 1/2 of the opponent's armor rating" or "this weapon is +2 to damage and -2 to hit" or such. I'm going to try and stay away from special cases except where they're really justified, though. The damage system, while really important, isn't where I want the players to be focusing their attention. Nor do I want fights to be slowed down while the GM leafs through the rules, trying to find the special rules for using spears against chainmail.
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