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6/08/2014 3:42 pm  #1


Heroic Fighting is totally badass

I always considerd this ability irrelevant in AD&D and other retroclones. But now with my third game of AS&SH I realize it's extremely powerful when combined with weapon specialization.
My group has five characters and one of them is a 1st level fighter who uses a bastardsword in both hands with weapon specialization. Against most enemies, he gets three attacks with +3 to Hit and dealing 2d6+3 damage. That's 5-15 damage against enemies with 1-8 hit points or less. That's basically instant kill every time. Up to three times per round. I think that character killed twice as many enemies as the other four combined.

In D&D 3rd Ed. you usually don't fight against a lot of enemies as you get basically invulnerable against their attacks pretty soon and it's way too much work to bother with irrelevant enemies. But playing more old school now, it's actually feasable to have characters of any level encounter regular orcs or bandits in large numbers. It's easy, but not redundant, and not much work to do. So when I first saw fighters getting one attack per level per round against enemies of less than 1HD, I dismissed it as irrelevant and something to just be ignored. Even bosting it from creatures with 1d4 or 1d6 hp to those with 1d8 hp in AS&SH didn't seem to make a difference to me. But there are very few enemies of 2HD or more in my game, which makes the fighter simply a behemoth of slaughter. And by extending it to 2 HD enemies at 7th level, I don't think it will ever get to be redundant

Last edited by Yora (6/08/2014 3:43 pm)


"Steel isn't strong, boy. Flesh is stronger. What is steel compared to the hand that wields it?"

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6/10/2014 9:27 am  #2


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

I'll just add a singular thought. Any side with numbers would probably try to surround a combatant and overbear or grapple somebody ... just thought I'd throw that out there, in case you ever want to remind the players that they aren't gods of slaughter.

 

6/10/2014 10:44 am  #3


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

I've already thinking about that as well. When we wrap up tonight they should get to 2nd level. I'll be dialing up the threat for the next game quite significantly.


"Steel isn't strong, boy. Flesh is stronger. What is steel compared to the hand that wields it?"

Spriggan's Den
     Thread Starter
 

6/25/2014 6:46 pm  #4


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

I didn't notice that difference vs AD&D. Good thing none of my players are fighters.

 

6/26/2014 8:19 am  #5


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

NAJones wrote:

I'll just add a singular thought. Any side with numbers would probably try to surround a combatant and overbear or grapple somebody ... just thought I'd throw that out there, in case you ever want to remind the players that they aren't gods of slaughter.

It's certainly a possibility to consider, but sometimes I think it's okay to allow the player characters to pull off something, well, heroic! As much as I love Smith, Lovecraft, Vance, and so many other great writers, I always think about Howard first. In this instance, consider The Phoenix on the Sword:

+ + + + +
Conan put his back against the wall and lifted his ax. He stood like an image of the unconquerable primordial—legs braced far apart, head thrust forward, one hand clutching the wall for support, the other gripping the ax on high, with the great corded muscles standing out in iron ridges, and his features frozen in a death snarl of fury—his eyes blazing terribly through the mist of blood which veiled them. The men faltered—wild, criminal and dissolute though they were, yet they came of a breed men called civilized, with a civilized background; here was the barbarian—the natural killer. They shrank back—the dying tiger could still deal death.


Conan sensed their uncertainty and grinned mirthlessly and ferociously. "Who dies first?" he mumbled through smashed and bloody lips.
+ + + + +


So, in the context of an AS&SH game -- say you have a fighter of Conan's capacity surrounded by a dozen 1st level men. Which one has the guts to jump him first? ;)
 

Last edited by Ghul (6/26/2014 8:19 am)


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

6/26/2014 10:35 am  #6


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

It's not just being able to cut through a mob of bandits (although that's certainly cool).  There are some really dangerous monsters with only one or two hit dice: most normal-sized snakes, giant centipedes, stirges, and ghouls to name a few.  When you fall in the viper pit, heroic fighting can be a matter of life or death. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/lol.png


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

6/26/2014 1:45 pm  #7


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Blackadder23 wrote:

It's not just being able to cut through a mob of bandits (although that's certainly cool).  There are some really dangerous monsters with only one or two hit dice: most normal-sized snakes, giant centipedes, stirges, and ghouls to name a few.  When you fall in the viper pit, heroic fighting can be a matter of life or death. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/lol.png

Indeed, who in their right mind would want to fall in a pit with 23 black adders?
 


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

6/26/2014 2:14 pm  #8


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Heh heh heh. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/devious.png


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

6/26/2014 5:08 pm  #9


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Ghul wrote:

So, in the context of an AS&SH game -- say you have a fighter of Conan's capacity surrounded by a dozen 1st level men. Which one has the guts to jump him first? ;)
 

The drunkest one.
 


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

8/02/2014 1:43 am  #10


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

I have had quite the opposite problem, as I made my fighter with the idea of taking command of mooks and chopping through hordes of....mooks!  But, either me and the other players are too powerful for that scenario or our gm doesn't want to,  for the most part, let me steal the show. Howevor......  single hit dice enemies have become the exception rather then the rule. And now I realise that even by the time I have the heroic feat apply to creatures of two hit dice, at that party level even they will be the exception.....
        I guess the problem is that as long as I exist, these low hit dice creatures can't make a real threat to me, and extensively, the party,  therefore they are not worth encountering.  I have pointed out that even when I am level nine and gain an army (a goal I am working dilligently towards), that army is comprised of single hit die mooks.  Therefore, how come despite never confronting a boss of such high constitution,  I rarely find enemy minions to be just, minions? 
           Thanks for letting me rant on this obscure frustration, I do understand that especially when I double my attack rate there is almost no point in slowing down the game for the sake of a blood quenching grind that we all know the outcome of (mostly).  thoughts?
 

 

8/02/2014 5:01 pm  #11


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

You should talk to the DM and let him or her know you are frustrated.

 

8/02/2014 10:53 pm  #12


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Yeah, if your Ref. is altering the lay of the land to avoid your character's using an ability ... well, it's odd to me. Also, from a Reffing POV, easier just to disallow the technique. Or triple the mook number. It's hard to go wrong with triple mooks. It is known.

 

8/03/2014 1:40 am  #13


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Yeah,  honestly it's not to say I never get to use the ability, just seems odd I almost have to search for mooks but then agian we are an average party of six level 3-4 and mostly fighter subclasses so I can't expect most fights to be that easy.  I've talked with him and brought up some points, leaving me with a "careful what you wish for" feeling......especially now Im leading our merry band of vikings to take on Gal city

Last edited by RedJowel (8/03/2014 1:40 am)

 

8/03/2014 5:05 am  #14


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Most of the followers you get at higher level are level 0, because it is assumed that they would be fighting against other creatures of comparable strength most of the time. If your castle always gets attacked by giants and wyverns, they can't really do much against them and would die like flies if ordered into battle.
Instead of having the enemies be close to equal in strength to the PCs, there should mostly be just a lot more of them. If you get attacked by 20 bandits who come from all directions, even your three attacks per rounds and good chance for two kills per round won't make the encounter trivial.

This is something that is very different in d20 games, which are so fiddly that no GM really wants to have a lot of creatures involved in any fight. It even outright says that you shouldn't even bother with enemies, if the party can take on more than 10 at the same time. But that makes followers and ordinary mercenaries pretty much irrelevant.


"Steel isn't strong, boy. Flesh is stronger. What is steel compared to the hand that wields it?"

Spriggan's Den
     Thread Starter
 

8/03/2014 12:20 pm  #15


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

The way I run my campaigns, most people in the world have 1 HD or less and most of them do not have a class. So, even a hoard of bandits is mostly composed of these guys, it's the captain and his lieutenants that will have levels and be formidable. I feel like it makes the world more believable... and its probably why my 3E group ten years ago wiped through everything so easily...


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8/03/2014 12:56 pm  #16


Re: Heroic Fighting is totally badass

Interestingly, the 3rd Edition Dungeon Master Guide was still written under that premise. But then it got immediately abandoned in all further publications.


"Steel isn't strong, boy. Flesh is stronger. What is steel compared to the hand that wields it?"

Spriggan's Den
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