Let's Read TSR's Conan Role-Playing Game © 1985

Dumarest

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The thread about the newfangled Conan RPG brought up the old TSR game, which inspired me to take it off the shelf in my den and snap a handful of photographs to answer some basic questions about it. It's probably been 30 years since I've actually read or played it, and honestly we probably drew more from the Arnold Schwarzenegger movies than the Robert E. Howard stories at the time. So, had you bought this game when it was in print, here's what you would've received for your money (two 10-sided dice not pictured):
20190706_195605.jpg
There's a 32-page rulebook which includes a very brief adventure based on "The Tower of the Elephant," a 48-page guide to Hyboria presented as the notes of Professor Ervin H. Roberts, a 16-page booklet detailing the talents and weaknesses referred to in the rules but separated out and including handy tables for ease of reference while playing, a big map of Hyboria (really not very useful for gaming but suitable for framing, I suppose), plus some "character folios" that I recommend you photocopy as they're too nice to ruin by writing on them.

The rulebook features a cover by Jeff Butler, I believe hot off his Marvel Super Heroes gig for TSR, and depicts Conan roaring defiantly before some shattered columns and worn stairs while flanked by two beasts, one resembling an ape and the other resembling a large lizard or small dragon. It's the same art as appears on the front of the box.
20190706_201757.jpg
It's not bad but if we could transport Mark Schultz back in time, I think he'd have come up with something better.
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The first page of the rulebook is a nice, clear table of contents that shows exactly where to look to find what you seek:
20190706_202342.jpg
That might not seem noteworthy, but I've read plenty of RPGs where god help me if I can figure out which chapter covers "falling" and where to look for "getting hurt." (I think that phrasing is such because it's meant to be friendly to those who have not played an RPG before. Really, if you think about it, who says "I've been damaged!"? More likely "I've been hurt!" or "I've been injured!", yet games call it damage by rote.)

Of course we start with a few obligatory paragraphs of What is Role Playing? with the apparently mandatory likening of an RPG to your childhood games of cops and robbers, but with rules to eliminate the problem of "I shot you!"/"You missed!" In this instance, they refer to John Dillinger and J. Edgar Hoover in their cops and robbers example, which I assume is a nod to the era in which Robert E. Howard was writing his Conan tales. So that's kinda clever and cool.

Next they explain how to use the 10-sided dice: you'll either add together the results of each die or you'll generate a %. Sometimes you'll be told to add a number like +5 to the sum. Then on to explaining what a player character is ("an imaginary person whose actions you control") and how the referee controls everyone who is not a PC (i.e., NPCs). All fairly standard and fortunately brief: we're still on the first page after the TOC.

The next paragraph explains Talents, which determine the feats of which your PC is capable as well as her chances of success. Some talents are innate and others are learned; as you play Conan your PC can improve existing talents and learn new talents. Talents are ranked with numbers; higher numbers indicate superior skill at a talent. There are six Talent Pools, which are largely self-explanatory areas of ability: Prowess, Fighting, Endurance, Knowledge, Perception, and Insight, nicely divided into three physical pools and three mental pools. Every talent falls under one of the six pools. You'll spend 35 (or 40 if you agree to select a Weakness) points on talents of your choice, but worry not, for you can still attempt to use a talent you didn't spend points on. The rules will explain how to use talents in a bit, so we'll come back to that later.

Before you select talents (or a weakness ), you develop a background for your PC: "This includes information about his parents, his homeland, and what he did as a youth." It's a good way to get the PCs grounded in the setting as well. First you'll choose your PC's sex and give him or her a name, then you'll decide where your PC was born. This second item affects your PC's appearance as well as any special knowledge she may have. For instance, Conan is from Cimmeria so he's tall, dark-haired, brown-skinned, and grey-eyed, and "Cimmerians are renowned as fighters." There's an alphabetical lost of possible homelands from Aquilonia to Zingara, which are the options for PCs; not every land of Hyboria is included as only NPCs can come from those not listed. For anyone curious about your options, here you go:
20190706_205143.jpg
Once you choose a homeland, you check your Racial Description in the Campaign Book, which is the new name they're using for what they previously referred to as a "notebook of information" just one page ago. Note that you can select parents from different homelands, in which case you should read about both, but your father's homeland is the one that is considered yours. It should also be noted that the racial descriptions are meant as a general guideline, so your PC doesn't have to look like the average Shemite if you decide otherwise. Your PC automatically speaks the language of her homeland. Make sure you name your parents and give them occupations as well, the better to flesh them out and give you more feeling for your PC's origins. Then, when it's time to select your talents, keep in mind your character's background: although there are no restrictions on what you choose for non-magical talents, some talents would be less likely than others depending on your background. For example: Cimmeria is landlocked, thus a Cimmerian would not be likely to have the sailing talent.

They provide an example of a character created following the steps so far: "Khestas, of Stygia, the son of Khest the Boatman and the slave Myrlias of Brythunia. Khestas grew tall, lean, and blonde-haired."

Next: Choosing Talents
 
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Chris Brady

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Can you do something along the lines of the Savage Sword of Conan comics of yesteryear?
 

Bunch

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I have the set too.
 

Dumarest

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The next step of character creation is Choosing Talents which will represent your PC's "pre-adventuring experiences and studies." Every character starts with 35 points to spend as you see fit, within three restrictions:
  1. You cannot start the game with more than 5 points in one talent.
  2. You must have at least one talent from each talent pool.
  3. You must spend at least one point on your father's talent.
As I mentioned in the first post, you can start with 40 points to spend instead of 35 if you agree to take a weakness--and if you're anything like most gamers I know, it's almost certain you'll do so. A weakness is "a flaw in your character's personality or physical abilities" that prevents her from performing certain actions or may force her into actions not in her best interests. Choosing a weakness means you're agreeing to play your character accordingly and "be prepared to face the consequences!"

If you're going to take a weakness, I recommend choosing it before selecting talents, as some weaknesses preclude some talents. For instance: "fear of animals" means you cannot select the Animal Handling talent. Here are the lists of weaknesses and talents:
20190706_214047.jpg
If you want a talent that is not listed, you're free to seek permission from your referee and he's welcome to decide which talent pool it belongs to and to add it to the game. But really, most anything you need for adventuring in the Conan milieu is already listed. The talents are broadly defined and the combination of talent pools and talents reminds me very much of West End Games' Star Wars, or the other way , I suppose, since this predates Star Wars by a couple of years. But I digress.

It's not explicitly stated where it should be, but you spend from 1 to 5 points to rate each talent you select on a one-for-one basis. (It's instead spelled out in the section on making up new talents, which someone might easily skip or gloss over.)

After you've spent all your points on talents, you need to determine your General Score for each talent pool. This is basically your default ability in a given area, which you will use if you didn't take a specific talent but want to attempt to use it anyway. To derive your general score, you add all the ratings you bought in a talent pool, divide by 10, and drop fractions. What's cool about this is that it means a PC who, for instance, spent a lot of points in Prowess talents will naturally be better at related tasks even if he didn't spend any points on them. Note that general scores can be increased during play, so don't worry if they're low or spread yourself too thin by trying to spend a little bit everywhere. It's also recomended that you note in your character folio where and how your PC picked up any unusual talents.

Now it's time to equip your PC. There's no rolling for gold pieces and no getting screwed because you rolled poorly and can't even afford the basic tools of your character's trade. In Conan, you simply select one item each from three columns:
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This is slick because everyone starts out equal but there are enough choices to make your PC distinct from the others. Don't be put off by "any weapon," as there is a list in the separate 16-page booklet, which you can browse and compare/contrast your options. The various weapons have different advantages and disadvantages, as do the types of armor on the list, but more on that later.

Next: Combat

Can you do something along the lines of the Savage Sword of Conan comics of yesteryear?
I don't see why not. When I last played this, the Marvel magazine and the Schwarzenegger movies were more familiar to me than the Howard stories.
I own this box set yet have never done more than give it a skim. Please continue @Dumarest
Will do!
 

Dumarest

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"It is a time for steel and heroic deeds. For your character to survive in the world of Hyboria, he must know how to fight and fight well. His survival in these cruel and mysterious lands depends on it. Who knows when an assassin might strike from the night, bandits spring from trees, or an evil wizard test your character's steel!"

There are 2 types of NPCs you may fight in Conan: Enemies and Foes. What's the difference, you ask? Well, Enemies are soldiers, hired assassins, guardsmen, sailors, and other men who may be fighters but do not live by the sword as your character does. Your character is superior to an Enemy and will have certain advantages over Enemies in combat. (Yep, those "mook rules" everybody thinks are a new idea have been around since at least the early 1980s.) Foes, on the other hand, are your peers: NPCs as powerful and daring as your PC, over whom you have no special advantages. To be as clear as possible, if you're watching Conan the Destroyer, for instance, those guys on horseback are Enemies:
conan-le-destructeur-84-05-g.jpeg
and this guy is a Foe:
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There are three types of combat: melee, missile, and magic. Magic is explained later in the chapter on magic about 11 pages from now. Melee is defined as fighting with your "bare hands or a non-projectile weapon." Missile combat occurs whenever a character uses "a weapon that leaves his hands." Seems pretty clear to me. Note that you can't use a missile weapon if an enemy is attacking you via melee.

When you want to strike someone, you'll use either your Fighting talent rating for your weapon or else your General Fighting score. For example: if your PC has a Dirk Fighting rating of 7, no Wrestling talent, and a General Fighting rating of 2, you'll use 7 when attacking with your dirk, but if you try to wrestle your opponent to the ground you'll use the 2.

How do I know if I hit someone? Glad you asked. You'll use the Resolution Table seen here:
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Find your character's talent rating for whatever weapon you're using, or use your General Fighting rating if you don't have the appropriate talent. The referee will provide the Movement or General Prowess Talent rating of your opponent, which represents his ability to avoid your blow. You subtract that number from your own rating to get the Combat Differential, which determines which column you're rolling on. It's not explained well in the rules but it's actually very simple. At the bottom of the Resolution Table is a series of numbers from -30 to 30. That's the Combat Differential. So if I have a Spear Fighting rating of 5 and I'm trying to hit a guy with a Movement talent rating of 2, 5 - 2 = 3, I'm rolling on the "3" column. I chuck % to see how well I do: high is bad and low is good. A white result means I missed or failed at what I attempted; green, yellow, orange, and red are increasing degrees of success.

Next: The Combat Turn (surprise, initiative, etc.)
 
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Dumarest

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How does it do 'solo' or small (3 or less) games?
You'll need at least 2 people (a referee and a player) as there is no support I know of for solo play. A single PC or a small group should not be a problem; the sample adventure is written for one player running Conan and creating scenarios for one or a few characters is a piece of cake.

And now, on to the Combat Turn. Fights are broken down into 5-second turns. A character requires 1 combat turn to accomplish 1 action and ready herself for the next. For instance: you want to (1) tip over the tavern table, (2) grab up your sword, (3) smash a lamp, and (4) strike at your enemy in the darkness. That'll be 4 combat turns for a total of 20 seconds. It may not be entirely realistic but it keeps things moving along so I'll take it: if a player declared those intentions for his PC, I'd verify he understands that's 4 separate actions over the course of 4 combat turns; if he understands and still wants to do it, I'll figure out what any opponents are doing for each of those combat turns.

A combat turn has 6 steps to it, which sounds like a lot but isn't really:
  1. Is anyone caught off guard?
  2. What are you going to do?
  3. Who goes first?
  4. Action!
  5. Repeat Step 4 until all characters have acted.
  6. Repeat Steps 2 through 5, as necessary.
Let's take the steps one at a time.

(1) Is Anyone Caught Off Guard? At the beginning of a fight, to determine if anyone was caught off guard or taken by surprise, in small fights only everyone will roll on the Resolution Table under the column for his Animal Reflexes talent rating or General Prowess rating. A color result will mean a degree of advantage (from 1 to 4) for your PC. Meanwhile the referee will do the same for any NPCs. Then you compare the numbers and subtract the smaller from the larger, and the result is how many free combat turns that side gets before the other side can react. If there are a large number of characters on one or both sides of a fight, though, you're not going to roll for every single participant. Instead, you just roll for the best Animal Reflexes or General Prowess rating on each side and apply the results to the entire side.

The only time you might roll for this more than once in a combat would be if a new combatant enters the scene from a new direction, and then you would only check for the reaction time of whoever is being attacked by the new combatant.

(2) What Are You Going to Do? The players and referee state their characters' actions for the turn. Most actions fall into one of five categories: Fight, Defend, Move, Cast a Spell, or Wait. Here are the guidelines necessary for declaring each type of action:
  • Fight: state whom you are attacking and what part of the body you are aiming for.
  • Defend: you can only defend against 1 attack per turn and must state how (i.e., parry with sword, roll out of way, block a punch, etc.).
  • Move: state where you are moving to and how (i.e., run, crawl, swim, etc.).
  • Cast a Spell: state what spell and who is the target.
  • Wait: explain what you are waiting for to trigger a delayed action (i.e., "I'll wait to see if the stranger draws his sword; if he does, I'll try to strike first.").
Next: Who Goes First?
 

Voros

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Is this the Conan game designed by Zeb Cook? The resolution chart looks a lot like the one in Faserip, did this come out before or after Marvel Super Heroes?

I really like that interior illustration by Easley.
 

Mankcam

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Back in the '80s I always assumed that TSR had only done the AD&D CONAN modules, I never realised that this line used a completely different system from TSR AD&D.

Looking at this, it's dawning on me that this could be the ZeFRS system that I stumbled across on the internet a few years ago, but never took a really good look at. It actually captures the pulpy CONAN flavour quite well, and still looks pretty good by today's standards

I'm intrigued, please keep posting! :thumbsup:
 
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AsenRG

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Back in the '80s I always assumed that TSR had only done the AD&D CONAN modules, I never realised that this line used a completely different system from TSR AD&D.

Looking at this, it's dawning on me that this could be the Zefers system that I stumbled across on the internet a few years ago, but never took a really good look at. It actually captures the pulpy CONAN flavour quite well, and still looks pretty good by today's standards

I'm intrigued, please keep posting! :thumbsup:
That is ZeFRS! Or rather, ZeFRS is based on this game:smile:.
 

TristramEvans

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Is this the Conan game designed by Zeb Cook? The resolution chart looks a lot like the one in Faserip, did this come out before or after Marvel Super Heroes?

It is. TSR did three games utilizing the "colour chart resolution" of which FASERIP is the best known (besides Conan there was also an edition of Gamma World - I want to say 3rd, but maybe 2nd).
 

Toadmaster

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Another of those games I had always assumed was awful, and then a couple years ago found out it actually had fans and there was even a serial numbers filed off clone version (the above mentioned ZeFRS).

Will be following this as I've been curious about it ever since discovering somebody actually played it more than once.
 

Bunch

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It is. TSR did three games utilizing the "colour chart resolution" of which FASERIP is the best known (besides Conan there was also an edition of Gamma World - I want to say 3rd, but maybe 2nd).
3rd edition gamma world. 1&2 are D&D 1st edition. 4th is ad&D 2nd edition.
 

3rik

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It sounds pretty good. It would be fun if there was optional random char gen.

Subjectively, how much does it actually "feel" like a Conan game in play?
 

Gabriel

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The Conan AD&D1e modules were omnipresent back then. They were standard fixtures on the module racks of Waldenbooks and game stores. I never knew there was a boxed set Conan RPG. The box images don't look familiar, so I doubt I ever saw it on the shelf and passed it over.

Despite liking Conan the Destroyer, and watching it over and over on VHS back when this game would have been new, I doubt I would have been interested in the Conan RPG back then. However, now it seems really interesting. I immediately sought out ZeFRS after reading this thread.
 

AsenRG

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It sounds pretty good. It would be fun if there was optional random char gen.
Take a hint from the best and improvise a randomised lifepath chargen yourself:smile:?

Subjectively, how much does it actually "feel" like a Conan game in play?
From all the reports I've read, it does. My try to run ZeFRS was less stellar, but I admit I was feeling uninspired at the time, so I might be the outlier:wink:.
 

Dumarest

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It sounds pretty good. It would be fun if there was optional random char gen.

Subjectively, how much does it actually "feel" like a Conan game in play?
There are so many opinions on what Conan "should" be like in games that the question is objectively unanswerable, but subjectively I don't recall ever having any problems evoking Savage Sword of Conan magazine stories. I'd actually like to try it again knowing what I know now, but I wouldn't want to play with Hyboria pedants and Howard fanboys as I'm sure they'd find some way to suck the fun out a game because "Khitai doesn't export silk to Zingara" or "Shemites don't eat pork" or something.

Moving right along to:

(3) Who Goes First?: after you've all stated your actions for the upcoming combat turn, you need to figure out the sequence in which those actions occur. If you chose to Defend or Wait or otherwise act nonaggressively as your action, you don't need to roll a die. Otherwise, roll 1d10 and add your character's Animal Reflexes, Movement, or General Prowess rating, whichever is highest. Then add the Initiative Bonus for your weapon--note that this could actually be a malus. Highest total result acts first.

This individual determination only applies for small fights, just like Is Anyone Caught Off Guard? did. For large groups, you roll 1d10 and use the best Animal Reflexes, Movement, or General Prowess rating on that side for the modifier. You do not add/subtract the weapon Initiative Bonus unless everyone on that side is using the same weapon. Here's the chart showing initiative bonuses ("Int Bonus") as well as damage bonuses ("Wpn Bonus"):
20190707_123715.jpg

The reason you don't need to roll if you chose to Defend is that nothing will happen until someone attacks you. For instance: there is a skirmish raging but Thongor is more interested in protecting the damsel he rescued from the snake-men than joining the fight. He chooses to Defend, so unless a snake-man tries to attack him, he's just observing.

Similarly, if you chose to Wait for a particular trigger, you won't do anything until the condition is met, then you'll roll your Animal Reflexes or General Prowess on the Resolution Table: anything better than a white result means you get to act first. Let's say Thongor was not attacked last combat turn so he tries to slip around a corner to get the damsel to safety. However, he notices a snake-man break away from the fight to follow. Thongor states that he will Wait in the shadow around the corner and try to kill the snake-man before the snake-man can act. When the snake-man rounds the corner, Thongor rolls his Animal Reflexes and gets an orange result, so his attack comes first: if he's lucky he may kill or otherwise silence this snake-man before the others can be alerted.
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Conan and his ally choose to Wait

Sometimes you'll want to try Multiple Actions in a combat turn. If so, you'll tell the referee what you want to do and in what order. Your first action is resolved normally, but to attempt your second action you need to roll your Animal Reflexes or General Prowess on the Resolution Table and achieve a red result: any other color means you cannot take a second action. Additionally, failure means you get a -3 penalty to all Resolution Table checks for the rest of this combat turn as well as the next combat turn. Is the risk worth the reward? This really should have been inclided earlier under (2) What Are You Going to Do? Also, there is no mention of third or fourth actions: I would resolve them the same way but maybe apply a cumulative penalty for each Animal Reflexes/General Prowess check after the second action. Note that Enemies cannot attempt multiple actions in a combat round, but Foes can.

Next: Melee
 

Dumarest

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Melee and other combat takes up a few pages, so I may have to break this up into multiple posts.

Melee occurs whenever an opponent is within reach of your weapon (excluding projectiles). "Within reach" is defined as "occupying an adjacent space," which is apparently based on the assumption that you're using graph paper. Here is a diagram wherein your character is in space A and B indicates what is adjacent:
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However, if you're playing without maps and counters or miniatures, common sense should be enough to dictate who is within reach.

When you make a melee attack, you need to declare an Aiming Point, i.e., the body part you're trying to hit. There are 7 to choose from: head, right arm, left arm, chest, gut, right leg, and left leg.
conan02-1.jpg
Conan's player declared a gut strike
In normal situations, both fighters are standing and you can hit any part of your opponent's body, but other circumstances may arise and preclude some aiming points. For instance, if you are mounted and your opponent is not, you can only aim for the head, chest, and arms and she can only aim for your legs, gut, arms, and chest. An exception to this rule arises if one or both of you are using a weapon with a positive Initiative Bonus, in which case you can aim anywhere you like. The rules don't spell out why, but it's because those are weapons with greater reach: halberd, lance, and pike. Note that they only get a positive initiative bonus on the first round of combat and then it turns negative; presumably that's because the range has been closed and the advantage of weapon lengthhas become a disadvantage at close quarters.

Sometimes you won't have a melee weapon available and you'll still want to fight. Brawling, Wrestling, Rushing and Bashing, and Weapons of Desperation cover those occasions. There are also several paragraphs devoted to Fighting with Two Weapons and Knock-outs. I'll get to those topics next time, as well as Defending.
 

Brock Savage

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There are so many opinions on what Conan "should" be like in games that the question is objectively unanswerable, but subjectively I don't recall ever having any problems evoking Savage Sword of Conan magazine stories.
As someone who has spent a lot of time discussing Conan and Howard on various message boards I think it's ridiculous that people split hairs over this sort of thing. IMHO, first and foremost a decent Conan RPG needs to deliver two-fisted tales and fast-paced, visceral action. Both the Modiphius and Mongoose versions got caught so caught up in the lore and crunch that their systems don't deliver an exciting pulp/action film/comic book experience.
 

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[/QUOTE]
3rd edition gamma world. 1&2 are D&D 1st edition. 4th is ad&D 2nd edition.
4th is actually more a prototype that fits somewhere farther from 2E, and closer to 3E. Not the same as either having both percentile skills (everyone has these but at different percentages), levels, classes, and then level up skills for the classes specifically.
 

Toadmaster

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I'm impressed with the artwork, if that posted all came from the game. I didn't expect to see that level of quality based on the the cover art which is kind of cheesy.
 

Dumarest

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I bought it when it came out and never ran a game.
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Let's carry on with Brawling, which is using your fists and feet and punching and kicking in a fight. Note that hitting someone in the arms or legs doesn't inflict much damage, so you'll be better off going for your opponent's head, chest, and gut. Brawling does less damage and inflicts different Specific Wounds than does weapon combat. We haven't gotten to the rules on inflicting injuries and what the different wound locations mean, but here's a sneak peak at the Specific Wound Chart to give you an idea of how you can use tactics in combat in Conan and choose to hurt your opponents in different ways depending on your goals:
20190707_213600.jpg
Wrestling requires you to describe what you're attemtping to do and roll your Wrestling (or General Fighting) rating, minus the defender's Movement rating, on the Resolution Table: anyhing but white succeeds, but only red actually inflicts any damage. You may also get a damage bonus from your Strength talent. I'd consider ruling that a player has the option of inflicting no damage even on a red result, but anyone who's wrestled knows sometimes you can hurt your opponent without meaning to.
Rushing and Bashing are actually two separate things that might have been better as separate entries. Rushing is what you do when you want to escape a fight but your way is blocked. You put your head down and run full tilt at the person blocking your exit route. When you choose this action, you need to state where you're going; anyone who gets in the way during the combat turn is automatically attacked no matter if it's friend or foe. You'll roll your Movement (or General Prowess) rating, minus your opponent's Movement (or General Prowess) rating. A white result means you fail and get knocked to the floor; green, yellow, or orange means you succeed and push aside the obstacle and can continue moving forward but your opponent can still take action against you as you pass; and red means you've knocked down the blocker and he cannot take any action.

Bashing has two varieties and the first is related to Rushing but different because it means you're wielding your shield to push your opponent down as you rush him. Use the same rules as did for Rushing. The second type of Bashing is swinging your shield to bash an opponent beside you. For this kind of Bashing, you'll roll your General Fighting rating minus your target's Movement or General Prowess: red knocks down your opponent, everything else fails. No damage is done in either case.

Weapons of Desperation covers those times when you're grabbing whatever's handy and using it as a weapon: a mug, a wine bottle, a chair, a candelabra, a skillet, etc. It's the referee's job to decide what weapon your chosen object most closely resembles. For instance, a candelabra might be considered similar to a club and a letter opener would likely be in line with a dirk.

Fighting with Two Weapons applies to characters who have the Zingaran Fighting talent. Only one-handed weapons can be used, which I assume was stated explicitly to discourage those types of players who would try to somehow justify swinging a pair of two-handed swords. Likely combinations would be sword and dirk, sword and cloak, or two one-handed swords. When you fight with two weapons, you'll need to declare your action (attack or defend) for each. If you're making two attacks, the first occurs according to initiative sequence but the second takes place at the end of the round. This is not considered a Multiple Action, but there is a -3 Combat Modifier applied to the second attack. Even so, the Zingaran Fighting talent could be a pain in the ass if you let the wrong player take it, so as a referee I'd be cautious in allowing it to a player I don't know well.

Knock-outs: sometimes you just want to render someone unconscious without killing or wounding him. For instance, a friend has been ensorcelled and is attacking his allies, or maybe you want to slip past the town guards without becoming wanted murderers. (That second example might be ashockingly foreign concept to some D&D players I've known.) To knock out an opponent, you must announce that this is your intention and then roll as you would for a normal attack. A red result means you succeed; any other color means your attack has no effect. If you succeed, the target is kayoed for 1 to 10 minutes (12 to 120 combat turns).
donkey-punch-gif-10.gif

Next: Defending
 

Mankcam

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The success chart bands are remarkably close to Mythras’s standard, hard, formidable, and Herculean, actually. Neat, didn’t realize that.
Yeah in many ways this whole game feels like a more pulpy BRP system, I am quite surprised how much I'm liking it!
 

Mankcam

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Both the Modiphius and Mongoose versions got caught so caught up in the lore and crunch that their systems don't deliver an exciting pulp/action film/comic book experience.
Totally agree with this. Both systems are great regarding setting lore, but they miss the mark in other ways. The mechanics also capture the grittiness rather well, but it is a difficult tightrope for systems to walk, as what they don't evoke is the the pulpy action inherent in the stories or comics.
It's like they forgot the fun factor, which this system seems to be having a good go at.
 

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This is a blast from the past! I bought it when it came out and never ran a game. Please keep posting.


Sorry, Brachko, but having Conan and not running it...the mind, it is boggled:shock:!

Yeah in many ways this whole game feels like a more pulpy BRP system, I am quite surprised how much I'm liking it!
It's BRP with a chart for the special results, IMO.
Also, it's suitably lethal, which I like:thumbsup:.
 

Shemek hiTankolel

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Sorry, Brachko, but having Conan and not running it...the mind, it is boggled:shock:!


It's BRP with a chart for the special results, IMO.
Also, it's suitably lethal, which I like:thumbsup:.
What could I do? The guys I gamed with back then only wanted to play AD&D and BTech. The fact that we actually tried CoC and MERP and ran mini campaigns are miracles. The only way that I was able to run a Tekumel game was to port it into AD&D.
 

AsenRG

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What could I do? The guys I gamed with back then only wanted to play AD&D and BTech. The fact that we actually tried CoC and MERP and ran mini campaigns are miracles. The only way that I was able to run a Tekumel game was to port it into AD&D.
I don't know your guys (and that was a joke anyway:smile:).

In my case, I'd run Conan or whatever damn well pleases me, and tell them "that's on offer". If they don't like it, they're free to run something else:wink:.
 

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It's BRP with a chart for the special results, IMO.
Also, it's suitably lethal, which I like:thumbsup:.
Although reading it, you subtract the skills and roll on the chart, so it’s a way of collapsing two rolls into one, essentially giving the chance for success.
 

Bunch

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What could I do? The guys I gamed with back then only wanted to play AD&D and BTech. The fact that we actually tried CoC and MERP and ran mini campaigns are miracles. The only way that I was able to run a Tekumel game was to port it into AD&D.
I've owned it for decades and never ran it either.
 

Shemek hiTankolel

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I don't know your guys (and that was a joke anyway:smile:).

In my case, I'd run Conan or whatever damn well pleases me, and tell them "that's on offer". If they don't like it, they're free to run something else:wink:.
You're right. This was initial response, but this would have resulted in no gaming. Back in the 80's where I lived, there were only a few people that played, and were not complete dicks, or losers. One needed to choose their battles carefully, and dealing in absolutes quickly resulted in no gaming. Besides, I was getting my Tekumel fix, and didn't see the need to rock the boat over a new game system.
 

Shemek hiTankolel

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I've owned it for decades and never ran it either.

That's not the only game that I had and never ran. Recon, Top Secret, Pendragon, and Stormbringer all come to mind. Even Gamma World never got the attention that it deserved. When you have a gaming group that doesn't want to try new things you play with what you've been dealt.
 

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That's not the only game that I had and never ran. Recon, Top Secret, Pendragon, and Stormbringer all come to mind. Even Gamma World never got the attention that it deserved. When you have a gaming group that doesn't want to try new things you play with what you've been dealt.
Story of my life. I had an omnivore group as a kid and then ever since it's been harder to find. I have so many games that never have been played.
 

AsenRG

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That's not the only game that I had and never ran. Recon, Top Secret, Pendragon, and Stormbringer all come to mind. Even Gamma World never got the attention that it deserved. When you have a gaming group that doesn't want to try new things you play with what you've been dealt.
When I have a gaming group that doesn't want to try new things, it's time for the group to learn enjoying new things*, IME...:grin: Conan and Stormbringer would have earned a lot more playtime here.
But then my players have adopted my attitude, because it was me who introduced them to roleplaying:tongue:.

I can only kinda envy your collection, though:thumbsup:!


*Or to learn enjoying new GMs, either way a change would be imminent.
 

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Although reading it, you subtract the skills and roll on the chart, so it’s a way of collapsing two rolls into one, essentially giving the chance for success.
replying to myself - if one were to convert this, doing Conan85 skill times 10, then adding 20 would be very close to a d100 roll and maintain the probabilities.

or you could not be a crazy person and just play the game as is and enjoy the fact that it squeezes so much into so little.
 

Bunch

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replying to myself - if one were to convert this, doing Conan85 skill times 10, then adding 20 would be very close to a d100 roll and maintain the probabilities.

or you could not be a crazy person and just play the game as is and enjoy the fact that it squeezes so much into so little.
What madman would do that?!?
 
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