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11/02/2016 1:13 am  #1


Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

From the rulebook: "With few exceptions, spells cannot be cast if the sorcerer is engaged with an enemy".

I know this comes from Holmes, but since I always allowed casters to cast spells in the midst of melee, I'm confused in how this exactly works. Specially in the "fighter vs. magician" duel type of scenario. 

Being this game an O/AD&D derivative, I assume that action during combat it much more simultaneous than in strictly turn based combat, such as d20 D&D.

Therefor I assume that if a magician backs away from melee once engaged, his enemy will follow him at the same time, even thought it's not strictly his turn act, thus having the spellcaster effectively "locked down" by the melee combatant. 

So how does the magician escape from this lookdown, so as to be able to cast his spells? Simply 1/2 move and cast his spell by phase 2? What outs does he have?

Thanks

 

Last edited by Zulgyan (11/02/2016 1:17 am)

 

11/02/2016 12:23 pm  #2


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

Welcome to the forum, Zulgyan! It's funny you should ask this question. One potential change we're working on for Second Edition is a new attack modifier called hindered. Similar to the flanked, prone, and stunned modifiers, hindered will impose a –2 AC penalty "if combatant is held by one leg or in an otherwise off-balance or awkwardly inconvenient position." This is relevant to your query because we also suggest using this modifier if a sorcerer insists on casting a spell whilst engaged in melee combat. You heard it here first!

 

11/02/2016 12:29 pm  #3


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

DMPrata wrote:

... "if combatant is held by one leg or in an otherwise off-balance or awkwardly inconvenient position."

Is there some Hyperborea slash fic you're writing that we aren't aware of?


What? Me worry?
 

11/02/2016 12:33 pm  #4


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

Thanks for the welcome and congrats on the great game and upcoming edition, which I have gadly supported.

-2 AC is not that big of a penalty, if originally the sorcerer was to be completely impeded from spell casting!

If you can shed me some light into how this rule works right now, I would much appreciate it.

What can the sorcerer do in this cases to be able to cast spells?

Last edited by Zulgyan (11/02/2016 12:43 pm)

     Thread Starter
 

11/15/2016 9:27 am  #5


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

Zulgyan wrote:

Thanks for the welcome and congrats on the great game and upcoming edition, which I have gadly supported.

-2 AC is not that big of a penalty, if originally the sorcerer was to be completely impeded from spell casting!

If you can shed me some light into how this rule works right now, I would much appreciate it.

What can the sorcerer do in this cases to be able to cast spells?

Hello Zulgyan,

Welcome to the forum! The sorcerer can move (backpedal) half his movement rate and then cast, but this puts the spell caster in Phase Two of the combat sequence. Of course, just because the sorcerer backpedals does not mean that the enemy does not pursue. It's certainly a possibility. 

Cheers,
Jeff T.
 


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

11/17/2016 9:29 am  #6


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

I always assumed that both sentences of that paragraph are important:

"With few exceptions, spells cannot be cast if the sorcerer is engaged with an enemy; likewise for combatants discharging magical devices. If a spell caster is struck whilst casting, he loses his spell, unless the optional concentration check is utilized."

That is, I usually assume that you can *try* to cast a spell if someone's trying to hit *you*, but good luck winning initiative or not getting hit. But you definitely can't cast anything when trying to hit someone else--which is what "engaged with an enemy" means, unless I no longer understand prepositions, which, maybe. Always a risk. DMP, Ghul, if the intent here is that a sorcerer can't cast anything when someone is trying to hit him/her with whatever version of a pointy stick seems most meet, then I suggest changing "with" to "by": "spells cannot be cast if the sorcerer is engaged by an enemy."

Are the "few exceptions" the touch spells then?

 

11/17/2016 6:14 pm  #7


Re: Escaping "engaged in melee" as a spellcaster

Handy Haversack wrote:

I always assumed that both sentences of that paragraph are important:

"With few exceptions, spells cannot be cast if the sorcerer is engaged with an enemy; likewise for combatants discharging magical devices. If a spell caster is struck whilst casting, he loses his spell, unless the optional concentration check is utilized."

That is, I usually assume that you can *try* to cast a spell if someone's trying to hit *you*, but good luck winning initiative or not getting hit. But you definitely can't cast anything when trying to hit someone else--which is what "engaged with an enemy" means, unless I no longer understand prepositions, which, maybe. Always a risk. DMP, Ghul, if the intent here is that a sorcerer can't cast anything when someone is trying to hit him/her with whatever version of a pointy stick seems most meet, then I suggest changing "with" to "by": "spells cannot be cast if the sorcerer is engaged by an enemy."

Are the "few exceptions" the touch spells then?

That whole first sentence is coming out, Handy, to be replaced with a reference to the hindered penalty. Basically, as Jeff pointed out, the sorcerer's best recourse likely is to backpedal and cast in phase two. If he insists on casting whilst his opponent pokes at him with a pointy stick, then he suffers a –2 AC penalty and risks spell failure.

 

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