Alternate AC against Special Maneuvers

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Beragon
Sinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2012-02-26 22:57
Alternate AC against Special Maneuvers

Reading an old thread discussing why armor is factored into AC against special maneuvers such as: disarm, wrestling, and knock down, I thought about an alternative and came up with the following idea.

Essentially, instead of AC vs. such maneuvers being armor + Dex mod, it would be a number derived from the combatant's Attack Throw Value + Dex mod. To not get it confused with AC, I'll term it, for lack of a better term, MC (maneuver class).

For monsters, it breaks down as follows:

HD = MC
1 or less = 1
1+ to 2 = 2
2+ to 3 = 3
3+ to 4 = 4
4+ to 5 = 5
5+ to 6 = 6
6+ to 7 = 7
7+ to 9 = 8
9+ to 11 = 9
11+ to 13 = 10
13+ to 15 = 11
15+ to 17 = 12
17+ to 19 = 13
19+ to 21 = 14
21+ or more = 15

For Fighters:
Level = MC
1 = 1
2-3 = 2
4 = 3
5-6 = 4
7 = 5
8-9 = 6
10 = 7
11-12 = 8
13 = 9
14 = 10

For Clerics/Thieves:
Level = MC
1-2 = 1
3-4 = 2
5-6 = 3
7-8 = 4
9-10 = 5
11-12 = 6
13-14 = 7

For Mages:
Level = MC
1-3 = 1
4-6 = 2
7-9 = 3
10-12 = 4
13-14 = 5

I haven't actually implemented this in my own games, but I might try it someday (I'd rather keep playing by-the-book until I become very comfortable with the system). I'm just throwing it out there as an idea for those who feel there is a disconnect to adding in armor as a factor against such maneuvers. In essence, MC would be a numerical representation of a combatant's experience/skill in defending against such attacks.

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

It's a good idea. Here's what pops out at me:
1. It would mean that against heavily armored low-level combatants, you'd be better off attempting special maneuvers than conventional attacks. I don't know if that's a bug or feature.
2. This is the first step towards creating an "armor reduces damage" variant of ACKS, with the values listed above replacing AC for most purposes.

koewn
koewn's picture
Patreon SupporterDomains At War BackerSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters BackerBarbarian Conquerors of Kanahu BackerACKS Heroic Fantasy Handbook Backer
Joined: 2012-07-17 20:11

Trailblazer (and Pathfinder, I don't know which one was first) utilizes the same thing; Combat Maneuver Defense.

Trailblazer is essentially identical - Touch AC (usually just DEX Mod) + BAB, with a bonus or penalty for size. Pathfinder adds the STR mod as well.

I know if I'm a goblin and there's a human in plate, I'm going to want to knock him down and stab him through the helmet-holes.

Wrestling would get allies a +4 to attack, attacking a prone opponent is at a +2; whether or not you'd give a full +6 to a third goblin attacking a target two other goblins had knocked down and wrestled, I don't know.

That +6 does essentially negate plate armor, however.

Beragon
Sinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2012-02-26 22:57

In this case, I'm not sure I'd stack the prone bonus and the bonus to hit on a combatant held with wrestling. I'd rule that the wrestling bonus subsumes the hit bonus granted on a prone opponent.

If pressed, I'd cite as precedent, previous commentary that the +2 bonus from attacking from behind and the +4 bonus from backstab don't stack (Acrobatics Proficiency on p.57-58 eludes to this as well).