Combat in Free-Style Play
B. Task Resolution
F. Quick & Dirty
E. Opponents & Combat
The bad-guys as well have wounds, but most simple adversaries do not have Traits and skills. Instead
the referee can more easily generate opponents by simply describing the foes in terms of buzzwords,
features or colorful characteristics. These he can then compare to his own attack tables for delivering
damage on players. Many times an enemy is described as a threat rating which must be reduced to zero.
Yet unlike hit points, the threat rating is assessed on the whole not the numerated sum of the parts.
The players will seldom if ever defeat a mob of monsters by draining each one to zero. They and the
referee will find it more pleasing to reduce the lot in stages. A great army could be Shocked,
Shattered, Scattered, Decimated and the stragglers could be engaged to knock it down piecemeal to
Scared Remnants, Dogged Few or a Single Stoic Standard Bearer. Notice how the climax builds even
in the defeat of the army. A dragon might be fought and dropped from Giant, to Terrible to Horrible
to Nasty to Exhausted, but then Desperate.
The referee’s task is simplified. If players seem experienced at role-play the referee should make them
describe every action -- jump atop a foe, trip someone, tackle the leader , topple a riser -- just
wing-it with you or your players setting the Degree for all rolls, as modified by the character
skills. Else stick to stock examples until the players become more familiar with their options.
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