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7/09/2018 7:52 am  #1


Cataphract's charge!!

A Cataphract in the party was given the task of leading a group of 6 fellow Cataphracts with the other characters to aid a warlord in the Bandit Kingdoms.

They were engaged in a fight near Nod's Chain with a large group of Ape-Men attacking from and moving in the tree tops as well as a ground force of Vhurmis and Albino apes.  The charge of the Cataphracts was devastating (pretty cool actually) and the chaotic forces were driven back to their frozen holes.

Question: I ruled that on a hit with the full Cataphract charge the lance would be in the creature and fouled, necessitating a change to sword or other weapon.  They could use the lance in combat at regular damage moving back and forth on their steed and striking first with bonuses but not the full charge damage multiplier.

Do others have Cataphract in the campaign and how do you handle the charge?  Could there be an avoidance save to reclaim the weapon after a full charge?  I'm interested in what others would do! 


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
 

7/09/2018 10:01 am  #2


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

I've never seen a cataphract in AS&SH, or a cavalier in AD&D for that matter.

It may be because I tend to focus on dungeon adventuring, and my players just don't see any point because horsemanship is useless in that environment.


"The fear of death, its risk each time, is one of the most stimulating parts of the game. It therefore behooves the referee to include as many mystifying and dangerous areas as is consistent with a reasonable chance for survival." - J. Eric Holmes
 

7/09/2018 10:36 am  #3


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Blackadder23 wrote:

I've never seen a cataphract in AS&SH, or a cavalier in AD&D for that matter.

It may be because I tend to focus on dungeon adventuring, and my players just don't see any point because horsemanship is useless in that environment.

My daughter liked the class feature of being honored / offered hospitality and riding horses....


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
     Thread Starter
 

7/09/2018 11:58 am  #4


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

I give it about a 2-in-6 chance if the target stuck is heavily armoured; otherwise, I let it go. Do what thou wilt! ;)


Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea - A Role-Playing Game of Swords, Sorcery, and Weird Fantasy
 

7/09/2018 6:22 pm  #5


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

You could always make a class 2 or 3 item saving throw for the lance.

 

7/11/2018 6:53 pm  #6


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Even though a megadungeon is central to the campaign I'm running, one of the players has in fact rolled a cataphract. If he lives long enough, maybe I'll let him have a cave lizard or something.

Anyway, as to the question: some quick research shows that medieval lances were designed to be broken off during a charge. But my personal idea of Hyperborea and other sword and sorcery settings is more modelled on the ancient world (bronze-early iron age). So, in my head and at my table, a "lance" is more accurately a kontos (kontoi). Thus, they are unweildly to use on foot, but not totally unusable and probably recoverable after a mounted charge.

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Last edited by Jimm.Iblis (7/11/2018 7:54 pm)


"Role-playing isn't storytelling. If the dungeon master is directing it, it's not a game."  ~ Gary Gygax
 

7/11/2018 9:23 pm  #7


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Blackadder23 wrote:

I've never seen a cataphract in AS&SH, or a cavalier in AD&D for that matter.

I played a cataphract in one of Jeff's playtest at GaryCon/NTX a few years ago (it may have been Return to Dunwich?)---quite the badass! :D

Allan.

 

7/12/2018 8:42 am  #8


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Jimm.Iblis wrote:

Even though a megadungeon is central to the campaign I'm running, one of the players has in fact rolled a cataphract. If he lives long enough, maybe I'll let him have a cave lizard or something.

Anyway, as to the question: some quick research shows that medieval lances were designed to be broken off during a charge. But my personal idea of Hyperborea and other sword and sorcery settings is more modelled on the ancient world (bronze-early iron age). So, in my head and at my table, a "lance" is more accurately a kontos (kontoi). Thus, they are unweildly to use on foot, but not totally unusable and probably recoverable after a mounted charge.

Thanks!  I appreciate the research! For others, my concern was the weapon being caught within the target after such a brutal charge not so much breaking, though I like that idea as well.  I think I will give an avoidance save to recover and reset the lance for a new charge with a (one round delay) and a 2 in 6 chance of the lance breaking.
Thanks for all the suggestions!
 


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
     Thread Starter
 

7/12/2018 8:45 am  #9


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

grodog wrote:

Blackadder23 wrote:

I've never seen a cataphract in AS&SH, or a cavalier in AD&D for that matter.

I played a cataphract in one of Jeff's playtest at GaryCon/NTX a few years ago (it may have been Return to Dunwich?)---quite the badass! :D

Allan.

They do lose their horsemanship abilities quite often but the immunity to fear and prestige make for an interesting character.  
 


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
     Thread Starter
 

7/12/2018 2:10 pm  #10


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Jimm.Iblis wrote:

Anyway, as to the question: some quick research shows that medieval lances were designed to be broken off during a charge. But my personal idea of Hyperborea and other sword and sorcery settings is more modelled on the ancient world (bronze-early iron age). So, in my head and at my table, a "lance" is more accurately a kontos (kontoi).

I'm sure this is meant to be the case in Hyperborea; why else would Jeff have used the ancient term "cataphract"? http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

Jimm.Iblis wrote:

Thus, they are unwieldy to use on foot, but not totally unusable and probably recoverable after a mounted charge.

If a cataphract PC in my game wanted to take a lance into the dungeon (the better to make use of that mandatory weapon mastery) I would require him to "cut it down" for foot use, and to acquire another one (or at least a new shaft) before engaging in mounted combat. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png


"The fear of death, its risk each time, is one of the most stimulating parts of the game. It therefore behooves the referee to include as many mystifying and dangerous areas as is consistent with a reasonable chance for survival." - J. Eric Holmes
 

7/12/2018 2:55 pm  #11


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Blackadder23 wrote:

If a cataphract PC in my game wanted to take a lance into the dungeon (the better to make use of that mandatory weapon mastery) I would require him to "cut it down" for foot use http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png

I wouldn't say he couldn't try. But I would have everyone behind him make an avoidance save or be knocked down every time he turned his body around. Because I still find the Three Stooges funny.
 


"Role-playing isn't storytelling. If the dungeon master is directing it, it's not a game."  ~ Gary Gygax
 

7/12/2018 4:10 pm  #12


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Jimm.Iblis wrote:

Blackadder23 wrote:

If a cataphract PC in my game wanted to take a lance into the dungeon (the better to make use of that mandatory weapon mastery) I would require him to "cut it down" for foot use http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png

I wouldn't say he couldn't try. But I would have everyone behind him make an avoidance save or be knocked down every time he turned his body around. Because I still find the Three Stooges funny.
 

As amusing as the slapstick sounds, I eschew anything that adds a lot of extra die rolls to the game. They just annoy me. It's the main reason I stopped running skill-heavy games like Call of Cthulhu. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/stoned.png


"The fear of death, its risk each time, is one of the most stimulating parts of the game. It therefore behooves the referee to include as many mystifying and dangerous areas as is consistent with a reasonable chance for survival." - J. Eric Holmes
 

7/12/2018 5:16 pm  #13


Re: Cataphract's charge!!

Blackadder23 wrote:

As amusing as the slapstick sounds, I eschew anything that adds a lot of extra die rolls to the game. They just annoy me. It's the main reason I stopped running skill-heavy games like Call of Cthulhu. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/stoned.png

More of a joke that. Kidding aside, I hear you. I'm trying to break away from my Pathfinder instinct of calling for roles everywhere and improve my pacing overall.
 


"Role-playing isn't storytelling. If the dungeon master is directing it, it's not a game."  ~ Gary Gygax
 

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