Positioning and the combat environment

Introduction Forums General Rules Discussion Positioning and the combat environment

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    One of the things I find most frustrating about most any RPG is that the action economy is most efficiently used in a series of attack and defense rolls. Most game systems don’t incentivize any other kind of exchange. Movement especially is given little attention and it’s difficult to force a character to move. When you do force a movement to disadvantageous terrain or gain advantageous terrain yourself, a simple move action by the opponent undoes the work.

    When I think of how important footwork is in both cinematic and actual combat it seems like something very important is being overlooked. I have three scenes in mind:

    – The Princess Bride: Inigo Montoya vs the Dread Pirate Westley. The fight roams up and down the ruins and the two fighters use their attacks to force each other to move and sacrifice position.

    – Batman Begins: Bruce Wayne and Henri Ducard are training on the ice, and Bruce seemingly wins the fight. Ducard then tells him he has sacrificed his footing and knocks the ice out from under him.

    – Star Trek TNG, S3 Ep11 – Worf and Danar trade a few punches and then toss each other into stacked crates and bins. Danar wins the fight by knocking a stack of crates on top of Worf.

    OpenD6 has a built-in “help” mechanic: a successful helping skill adds half of the excess total to the main skill. Some of this probably just requires descriptive license, but it seems like there ought to be a mechanism backing it up in the game. Suggestions?

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