Post Thu Jul 31, 2014 5:52 am

Combat & Magic

Here be a summary of "game play" rulings and/or clarifications and/or house rules on top of the Delving Deeper rules (themselves a free emulation of the Original 1974 Dungeons & Dragons rules) as per the online hypertext revision.

Note especially that the distinction between normal and heroic characters and normal and heroic combat is observed!

I subscribe to Redbaron's excellent post on armour here.

Leather armour includes any gambeson or arming jack with our without hardened leather carapace,
Mail includes any coat of mail (worn over jacks) of varied length, layering, and weave.
Plate armour includes any suit of plates, or plates over mail, or plates between layers of mail.

Leather, mail, and plate armours are AC 7, 6 and 5, respectively.

Helmets are not included with any suit of armour but can be purchased separately.
Wearing a helmet improves AC by 1, but will double the odds of being surprised.
It takes one turn to put on or take off a helm.

A helmet will be dashed off if any physical blow results in a damage die of 6. Damage suffered from that one die will be rerolled and the helmet must make a saving throw or be ruined.

Shields will improve AC by 2 while not attacked from behind.

It takes one turn to equip a shield properly, but it can be flung aside very quickly.

A shield will be splintered in the event that a frontal physical blow would otherwise be fatal. Damage suffered from that blow is reduced by up to 6 points. The shield is ruined in either case.

A shield may (at the player's option) be sacrificed to blunt a non-fatal blow.

Weight of Armor
Armor is excessively heavy by the book.
Plate shall be 40 lb, mail 30 lb, leather 20 lb, shield 10 lb, helmet 5 lb.
Halfling-sized plate shall be 30 lb, mail 23 lb, leather 15 lb.

Combat is Abstract

A combat turn is one minute long; it potentially subsumes multiple rounds of combat. A lot of fightin' can happen in one minute!

Attack Matrix
We are using the coarse-grained advancements on the Attack Matrices.

Allocating Attacks
Attacks dealt by and to normal-types will generally be randomised each turn.
Attacks dealt by and against heroic-types will generally be targetted specifically.

Weapon Selection
Players of any class can generally make use of any weapon but will always attack as a 1 HD monster with any non-class weapon.

Cleave Thru Mooks
In combat versus normal-types damage always carries over from one slain individual to the next.
Thus it is possible to hit (or even slay) multiple normals with a single attack roll.

Additionally, special functions of magical weapons will not serve players of the wrong class.

Using Two Weapons
Employing two weapons is advantageous for a number of reasons including:
* More weapon-size based initiative options,
* More weapon parrying/counter strike options,
* Can't be completely disarmed by one strike,
* Can possibly deal more damage in a single turn.

In terms of combat resolution an even numbered attack roll implies the primary weapon. An odd numbered attack roll implies the secondary weapon. A natural 20 implies both weapons come into effect (and hence--if a hit is indicated--two lots of damage will be rolled).

Employing a main gauche will also add 1 pip to frontal AC versus melee attacks (but not versus missiles).

Using a suitable two-handed weapon (poleax, two-handed sword, or war-hammer) means a PC is less likely to drop his weapon if struck by surprise (he would have to fail two rolls instead of one), and allows him to throw one additional damage die versus large opponents (in heroic combat only) with the higher die applying.

Clerical-types cannot use slings but they can throw hammers (see Hammer (thrown) on table 1.18).

A shooter can loose either a volley of shots or a single shot during a (one minute) combat turn.

A single shot conserves ammunition. However, frugal shooting (including any single hurled or loosed missile) is less likely to cause harm and is adjusted by -2 on the attack roll.

Otherwise, a volley is assumed to comprise 2-7 arrows or 2-5 bolts or sling stones.

A volley need only include a single silver or magical missile to enjoy its benefit.

Burning Oil
Can be thrown as any other single shot missile.
On a hit the target will be subject to 1-6 points of fire damage in this turn, and in the next turn (unless the flames are doused or smothered).
Multiple burning oil attacks will not stack, but the highest damage result will apply.

Holy Water
Holy water functions as does burning oil except that it specifically affects undead (including incorporeal undead) and causes 2-12 damage points of damage in the first turn only.

Rest and Healing
Pausing for a breather and a refreshing draft, or taking time to dress and bind wounds, or just to rub some dirt in it, is all considered to be "healing".

Healing requires a dungeon exploration turn (10 minutes) during which time the PC is assumed to stow arms, remove helmet and shield, sit down and take refreshments.

The chance of being surprised while so resting is doubled. However, a rested PC regains 1-6 lost hit-points (but never more than were lost in the immediately preceding fight).

Consecutive rests are not cumulative; only the highest result counts.


PCs are incapacitated at 0 hit-points. They can crawl, beg, and utter famous last words, but that is all. Any unhindered foe can automatically perform a coup de grace and end it all.

A PC is slain instantly upon reaching -1 or fewer hit points.


Read Magic
Clericial-types do not require Read Magic to comprehend their spells. Instead their spells are written in Lawful. Anti-cleric spells are written in Chaotic.

Lawful clerics can read one another's spell books and scrolls.

Magic-users cannot read one another's spell books or scrolls without use of Read Magic.

Read magic will make a particular instance of a spell comprehensible to the caster. That spell can then be used at any time thereafter.

Read Magic essentially "unlocks" a spell without causing it to be cast.

Once a spell is legible, it can (subject to class and level restrictions) be memorised, cast, or copied.

Copying a spell (either to a spellbook or scroll) takes a day, and costs 50 sp per spell level.

Casting From Spell Books
Both magic-users and clerics can cast spells from spell books (although magic-users must use Read Magic for spell books other than their own). Reading a spell from a book will take an exploration turn, and will erase the spell from the book.

Casting From Memory
Only one instance of any spell can be memorised at a time.

. Copying a spell does not consume the source text.
. Memorising a spell does not consume the source text.
. Casting a spell from a spellbook or scroll consumes the source text.
. Casting a spell from memory wipes it from memory.

Dual classed Magic-Users and Armour
An Elf Fighter/Magic-user cannot cast spells from memory while wearing normal armour, but he can cast spells from memory while wearing magical armour.

A spell that does not require the Fighter/Magic-user's ongoing attention (e.g., Charm Person, the Infinitesimal Summons, etc.) will continue regardless of whether the Fighter/Magic-user subsequently dons armor or undertakes any other activity.

A spell that requires the Fighter/Magic-user's ongoing concentration, or requires him to actively direct or control it (e.g., Phantasm, the Eerie Lambent, etc.), will end if the Fighter/Magic-user subsequently dons armor.

A Fighter/Magic-user can read spells from scrolls even while wearing normal armour as can a thief (i.e., fails on a throw of 1-2 on a six-sided die). A Fighter/Magic-user can read spells from scrolls while wearing magical armour without any chance of failure.

Identifying Enchanted Items
Given a turn of uninterrupted study, any player can identify any enchanted item usable by his class with a throw of 5 or 6 on a six-sided die excepting that; magic-users alone can identify miscellaneous magic items, potions, rings, and intelligent magic swords this way, and; elves of any class can identify boots and cloaks of elvenkind this way.

Magic-users require the use of a Read Magic spell to identify (and unlock) spell scrolls and spellbooks.
Clerics automatically identify (and unlock) clerical scrolls and spellbooks.
Anti-clerics automatically identify (and unlock) anti-clerical scrolls and spellbooks.

Otherwise, a Read Magic spell used in combination with a Detect Magic spell and one turn of uninterrupted study will correctly identify an enchanted object other than those purposefully designed to be deceitful or harmful.

A clerical Detect Evil will portend a malicious enchantment and, if used in combination with a clerical Detect Magic and one turn of uninterrupted study, will identify its genuine nature. A clerical True Seeing will function in the same manner.
[f=32]Golgildir the Elf Medium (MV 12", AC 9, HD 1, hp 1/1, AL N) great cloak, lantern; spells: color spray; scrolls: sleep, sleep, charm person
Hirelings: Georges; torch[/f]