Of Mythras, Runequest, Glorantha, Edition wars, and where to start???

Raleel

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  • I use the “Shift One Location” like Raleel, but it’s available through Combat Styles, not open to everyone.
nod, i did that with cyberpunk and ranged weapons. a little less of a change i think, but it helps things stay interesting. choose location (head) is very tempting because the best condition is dead :smile:

oh, and prepare counter is a nice little add. it is extremely strong.
 

CRKrueger

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Like Loz said, for Mythras definately put an emphasis on Passions and make them central to the game. RQG now does this to good effect with Runes & Passions, but in Mythras they can possibly be read as an afterthought, if you let them - putting them up front and centre is the key.
Only if you like Personality Mechanics. It’s Tenbones we’re talking about, remember.

Also a good thing to do with any BRP game is to show the characters the damage dice on the weapons list - it is more or less in scale with D&D. Then explain to them that there is no ever- increasing Hit Points like in D&D, and also show them the natural healing rate for HP recovery.
Let them take all that in... :grin:
Yeah, that’s the real hard thing for people to get their head around. This isn’t D&D, or even Savage Worlds. It’s CP2020 without guns. Fantasy=Modern D&D, ie. “we can turn our brain off, charge, and still win“, for so many people, that faced with Mythras, Harnmaster, Rolemaster, or other fantasy games, it’s a real shock to the system.
 

CRKrueger

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nod, i did that with cyberpunk and ranged weapons. a little less of a change i think, but it helps things stay interesting. choose location (head) is very tempting because the best condition is dead :smile:

oh, and prepare counter is a nice little add. it is extremely strong.
Yeah, I added Special in there just for that reason, to make sure Choose Location wasn’t a standard option, and people had to pick from all the other options. Combat is so dynamic and intricate with people trying different tactics depending on what’s happening. Mythras really put a kibosh on trying other systems, they don’t want anything else.
 

Mankcam

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So looking at the setting through Mythras glasses: Gloranthan heroes fight without tiring, go for the pure and simple damage, quite often inflict tremendously powerful blows (extra success level permits three special effects) and shattering weapons. So more like Heracles than the Achilles of Mythras.
No, I think they are about the same, local hero levels, although you can certainly move up to Achillies level and rub shoulders with Heracles level if you survive that long.

There are encumberance rules in RQG, which is an expansion of the Encumberance rules from RQ2.
You have an ENC threshold maximum, and for 'deftly agile' actions (ie: acrobatics, dodge skill, stuff like that) you take a modifier to your rolls for things like this, depending on how much ENC you have accumulated. Once you get beyond your ENC threshold, the modifier becomes much more impairing, and it widens it's scope out to pertain to all physical actions.

RQG heroes are impaired by their encumberance in regards to what they are carrying (including weapons & armour), and I think it also affects how quick they are in the combat order (I need to check the last bit).
So it's very 'old-school crunch' in this regard, wherein stuff like this gets measured and has a meaniful effect, there's no handwaving it. Heavily armed combatants tend to run the risk of having their rolls partly-impaired, whilst lightly encumbered opponents often get to have more actions within the same combat round.
It all ends up feeling very tactile, and it can also drive the kind of character that you play ( warrior-tanks vs rogues, or something in between)

So I guess very powerful characters are more like the greek heroes, but average characters will feel fatigued/impaired in combat if they are overloaded beyond their capacity.
 
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Mankcam

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Two reasons.

Firstly the design brief undertaken by RuneQuest: Glorantha was to retain the mechanics of RQ2 as much as was possible. Sure, the Sorcery system was changed and the Rune-based personality factors added, but the designers would argue that these ideas were always under development. And even though some other changes were made here and there, the intent was that the game was meant to feel like the RQ of old.

Secondly, the rules mechanic used in CoC7E isn’t really all that elegant. It requires that half and fifth % scores be calculated and recorded on the character sheet. This increases the maths of the game and, if you’ve seen the RQ:G character sheet you can see it’s already heavy with stats already. Essentially tripling the number of stats on the sheet would make some gamer's eyes glaze over, no matter how much you might argue for its logic.

The mechanical innovation that was introduced, as far as I am aware, in King Arthur Pendragon and then adopted by other systems like Mythras, is to have opposed rolls determined by the 'highest successful roll wins”. That is, so long as your dice roll below the skill score target, then the dice are read and compared to the opponents roll. Whoever is highest, so long as they pass, wins. If somebody fails then obviously they are bust. To me, this is much more elegant, because it requires no calculations or table referencing and is entirely intuitive.
I never really liked the 'roll under under your target number'. It sure is a simple mechanic at the table, and it does work really well.
However it just feels counter-intuitive for me in regards to percentile rolls. Mythras does this, so I have used it on several occasions
But I'm glad RQG didn't go wiith it.

Also the recording of three values for each skill on a character sheet is ridiculous, I totally agree with that, and never do it with CoC 7E (although the autocalc sheets are fine). But penciling them in on the sheet is a nightmare, and absolutely not necessary.

In RQ there is already a Special Success - that's usually not recorded on the character sheets, you either work it out at the time, or check the table if you think you rolled in the vicinity of it, so nothing changes there.
(But Special Success has always been a bit tedious, it should be 10% of the skill, just like the Crit chance in Mythras, as it's an easy calculation at the table)

However for RQG I don't see having an extra success level as being cumbersome, in fact it frees things up a bit.

Hard Success (half skill%) really isn't a big mental calculation. I dislike maths, but most of us can halve a number pretty quickly in our heads, so that's not a big issue. The result is that the old combat stalemates get resolved quicker once Hard Success come into play, and it's less clunky than combat rounds going on for too long.

But yeah...I admire the RQG design team to sticking to their vision, but in terms of core mechanics I think that a few things have been done better since then - most of which found it's way into the Mythras rules :grin:
 
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Luca

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One thing which has not been said regarding Glorantha as a setting, and which, I think, is really important if you want to understand what's going on:

when big-ticket heroes enter the Godplane and perform their Heroquests, they have the capability to retroactively rewrite history.

This means that the various differing viewpoints of the cults about historical or mythical events might very well have been all true, albeit during different time periods.
 

Mankcam

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One thing which has not been said regarding Glorantha as a setting, and which, I think, is really important if you want to understand what's going on:

when big-ticket heroes enter the Godplane and perform their Heroquests, they have the capability to retroactively rewrite history.

This means that the various differing viewpoints of the cults about historical or mythical events might very well have been all true, albeit during different time periods.
Yeah it could easily all end up a mess of the magnitude of MARVEL Cinematic Universe Timeline Distortion proprotions :grin:
 

Séadna

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RQG heroes are impaired by their encumberance in regards to what they are carrying (including weapons & armour), and I think it also affects how quick they are in the combat order (I need to check the last bit).
It does. Increases the Strike Rank.

No, I think they are about the same, local hero levels, although you can certainly move up to Achillies level and rub shoulders with Heracles level if you survive that long.
....
So I guess very powerful characters are more like the greek heroes, but average characters will feel fatigued/impaired in combat if they are overloaded beyond their capacity.
You're right. Starting characters are mundane in both systems. I suppose I was thinking about the more "heroic" end of character progression for both systems and that the fatigue of Mythras feels very different to me from the impairment of RQG.

Mainly what I was thinking about was how for "strong" characters in Mythras because of Fatigue and several special effects they slowly tire and bleed out. This reminds me of many Indo-European heroic characters like how Achilles, Hector, Cú Chulainn, Beowulf, a few Norse characters fight. In some cases dramatically dying on their feet from exhaustion and blood loss.
 
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Mankcam

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Even though RQG is exceptional in it's portrayal of Glorantha, in many ways I feel that Mythras probably has the better mechanics.

They are both BRP, but RQG has intentionally been designed for close compatibility with RQ2, whereas Mythras is the end result of writers adjusting and trying new things with the RQ rules.

In some cases Mythras just refines RQ rules.

For example, I'm sitting here looking at the same Basic Magic spells between the two games. RQG calls this magic 'Spirit Magic', whereas Mythras calls it 'Folk Magic', but they represent the same magic. This magic is available to most characters (depending upon setting). In both cases it could easily be retrapped as a system for cinematic Feats, but as presented it is a form of minor magic.

Most spells have the same name, and comparing them, in almost every case I prefer the Mythras versions. Most of the RQG spells remain unchanged since RQ2 and RQ3, and suffer the same issues.

Often the RQG versions are inconsistent in magnitude, and some of them are hardly worth the effort casting them, they aren't that 'magical', whereas the Mythras versions feel worth having.

As an example:

Coordination Spell in RQG:
2 MP cost (not variable) = Grants +3 DEX, reduces 1 SR, and grants +5% for Agility, Manipulation, and Stealth skill categories.

Coordination Spell in Mythras:
1 MP cost = Re-Roll any action where coordination is required (eg: Acrobatics, Lockpicking, etc). Pick the best roll.

Bladesharp Spell in RQG:
1 MP (variable) = grants +5% combat skill, and +1 damage.

Bladesharp Spell in Mythras:
1 MP = Raises the damage dice by one step (eg: a knife doing 1D4 damage does 1D6, a sword doing 1D8 damage now does 1D10, etc)

As you can see, the Mythras spells cost less Magic Points, and usually provide more meaningful benefits (thus actually feeling more magical). The mechanics feel less fiddily and tedious. Occasionally some RQG versions can be boosted to be more powerful at an increased MP cost (called 'variable' costs), but sometimes this is out of the scale for the description of basic magic, which is typically just meant for cantrip to utility level magic.

This is just one example where I can see that Mythras shines in terms of mechanics; it's the result of refining a great core set of mechanics with a fresh set of eyes over this last decade

It is a real shame that a more streamlined Mythras was not married to Glorantha for the new version of RuneQuest.
 
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Atelerix

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For crits, special hits (and the half skill), there's a simple way to calculate them on the fly. Buggers up when your skill is over 100, and assumed you're rounding down, but that's life.

For criticals (1/20 of your skill): any roll that's a multiple of 20 and under your skill is a crit.

Any roll that's a multiple of 20 and over your skill is a fumble.

For Mythras criticals, it's any multiple of 10.

For special hits, it's any multiple of 5.

And for CoC half skills it's even numbers.

Takes a few rolls to get used to, but doesn't slow down play at all once you get it.
 

silva

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One thing which has not been said regarding Glorantha as a setting, and which, I think, is really important if you want to understand what's going on:

when big-ticket heroes enter the Godplane and perform their Heroquests, they have the capability to retroactively rewrite history.

This means that the various differing viewpoints of the cults about historical or mythical events might very well have been all true, albeit during different time periods.
I could be mistaken but I think they can rewrite myth, not history. When they enter godplane they interact with the feats of the gods, but they can't affect the mortal peoples deeds.
I could be mistaken though, it's a long time since I've read or played on Glorantha.
 

CRKrueger

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Rewriting myth though, can have rippling effects in the real world, as things no longer resonate with the myth, or resonate differently.
The God Learners got up to all kinds of shenanigans in the Second Age by rewriting myths.
 

Simlasa

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Improvement is different. BGB is a learn by doing system, where successes are checked, while Mythras awards a certain number of experience rolls that can be distributed however the player likes (or even stashed for use in purchasing more powerful abilities, etc.)
This is probably the only thing I dislike in Mythras. I still prefer the 'do it to learn it' system of BRP. It was one of the early things I loved about RQ when I first discovered it... made so much more sense than 'leveling up'. Plus, you can still go purchase training, if there's a skill you don't have or are rusty at.
 

Toadmaster

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A wonderful thing with all of the RQ / BRP games is their relatively high compatibility with each other. After 40 years of tinkering, 7 editions of RQ, 7 editions of CoC and numerous other incarnations including the products of other game companies the core system is still largely intact.

The game core also scales very well from relatively light games like Open Quest, Call of Cthulhu and Magic World to fairly heavy crunch of MRQ and Mythras with RQ1-3+RQG falling in the middle.

The biggest thing that took me some time to adjust to in Mythras (actually RQ6 in my case) was the special effects. It feels backwards to roll and then declare the effect after seeing what you rolled. Once I got past the feeling that it was in the wrong order I actually like it.

I waffle on which of the games I prefer, sometimes I really like the relative simplicity of CoC or MW, sometimes I really like the detail of Mythras, nice thing is there are so many variations of the game in print, something for everybody.
 

Endless Flight

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I probably have asked this before, but is there anything in the works for a modern day version of Mythras? I think some of what I’m asking may have been piecemealed already
 

CRKrueger

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A wonderful thing with all of the RQ / BRP games is their relatively high compatibility with each other. After 40 years of tinkering, 7 editions of RQ, 7 editions of CoC and numerous other incarnations including the products of other game companies the core system is still largely intact.

The game core also scales very well from relatively light games like Open Quest, Call of Cthulhu and Magic World to fairly heavy crunch of MRQ and Mythras with RQ1-3+RQG falling in the middle.

The biggest thing that took me some time to adjust to in Mythras (actually RQ6 in my case) was the special effects. It feels backwards to roll and then declare the effect after seeing what you rolled. Once I got past the feeling that it was in the wrong order I actually like it.

I waffle on which of the games I prefer, sometimes I really like the relative simplicity of CoC or MW, sometimes I really like the detail of Mythras, nice thing is there are so many variations of the game in print, something for everybody.
Seemed very odd to me too until I had a WMA friend explain it. He said in real fighting, you usually don’t decide from the beginning that you’re going to close and trip your opponent, what happens is you see an opening that presents itself, and based on the circumstances of that moment, you decide to disarm, trip, go for the head, whatever. You might want to do A, but you’ll only do it if the right opportunity presents, otherwise you’ll do something else.

Once I heard that, and found out Pete was a re-enactor who gets out there with weapons and armor and gets bruised and bloodied, sometimes broken bones, for fun, the details of the combat system really started clicking.
 

Bilharzia

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I probably have asked this before, but is there anything in the works for a modern day version of Mythras? I think some of what I’m asking may have been piecemealed already
After the Vampire Wars & Luther Arkwright are both pretty close to a "modern day" version. but might not be quite what you mean. There is some kind of espionage game being worked on but very little info on that so far - along the lines of a campaign which expands the ideas in the "White Death" scenario. There's also the superhero book in the works.
 

silva

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Rewriting myth though, can have rippling effects in the real world, as things no longer resonate with the myth, or resonate differently.
The God Learners got up to all kinds of shenanigans in the Second Age by rewriting myths.
Yep, the "God switch" experiment was one of those. But my point stands, changing myth in Glotantha is different from changing history (and creating timelines and such) as seen in various media nowadays. Or so I remember.
 

Bilharzia

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As you can see, the Mythras spells cost less Magic Points, and usually provide more meaningful benefits (thus actually feeling more magical). The mechanics feel less fiddily and tedious. Occasionally some RQG versions can be boosted to be more powerful at an increased MP cost (called 'variable' costs), but sometimes this is out of the scale for the description of basic magic, which is typically just meant for cantrip to utility level magic.
It's funny you say this because an enormous amount of angst was expressed by RQ2/3 grogs about the loss of variable battle magic, since it was felt all the power was robbed from the spells. Variable battle magic Healing (Healing 6) was able to re-attach limbs, (still does in RQG, no need for any fancy Rune magic or specialists) Bladesharp could boost weapons to beyond what most Rune Magic was able to do, Protection could give you better armour than any physical armour and could be better than Rune magic shield. Part of the issue was that Rune magic was far, far harder to acquire and use than battle magic, which was ubiquitous. In RQ2/3 you have a magical arms race going on with extremely potent, stacked battle magic and rune magic. Mythras is exceptionally careful to not allow this to happen so it puts a hard clamp this arms race - you can't stack armour, you can't stack spells the usual rule is "highest effect is the cap". RQ2/3/RQG doesn't have this, clearly the RQG fans embrace this magical arms race.


Seemed very odd to me too until I had a WMA friend explain it. He said in real fighting, you usually don’t decide from the beginning that you’re going to close and trip your opponent, what happens is you see an opening that presents itself, and based on the circumstances of that moment, you decide to disarm, trip, go for the head, whatever. You might want to do A, but you’ll only do it if the right opportunity presents, otherwise you’ll do something else.
This marries exactly with what I've read Pete saying about playtesting with martial art practitioners, that they recognised these opening opportunities from their experiences.
 

Toadmaster

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Seemed very odd to me too until I had a WMA friend explain it. He said in real fighting, you usually don’t decide from the beginning that you’re going to close and trip your opponent, what happens is you see an opening that presents itself, and based on the circumstances of that moment, you decide to disarm, trip, go for the head, whatever. You might want to do A, but you’ll only do it if the right opportunity presents, otherwise you’ll do something else.

Once I heard that, and found out Pete was a re-enactor who gets out there with weapons and armor and gets bruised and bloodied, sometimes broken bones, for fun, the details of the combat system really started clicking.
It makes sense from a narrative sense as well avoiding the whole I aim for his his head (rolls poorly), er I trim his finger nails. :sad: Instead just roll the dice (rolls very well) my blade slices through the air and his head leaves his body in a shower of blood! :dice:

My major issue with it was 30 years of "this is how things are done".
 

Simlasa

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The 'roll before effects' thing bugged me too at first... because I was used to called shots in other games and I so liked DCC's 'Mighty Deeds' (which go beyond the effects in Mythras to include all sorts of swashbuckling stunts). But the 'exploit an opening' got me over the hump.
 

Bilharzia

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What do all the RQ heads think of the BRP big gold book how does it compare to Mythras or the new Chaosium RQ? I have the BGB but haven't really delved into it. Do the newer editions add anything that isn't covered by the BRP rules?

For reference I loved RQ2 but only ever had the (UK) boxed set and we were snot-nosed kids so played it more or less like we played T&T, and D&D so my Glorantha is a very different beast than the one most Glorantha fans would recognise.
Your experience is probably more common that you might think. As far as Mythras goes, at this point the BRP BGB itself is covered by the core Mythras rules or the Mythras supplements. When it comes to the BRP supplements, whenever I've converted BRP material to use in Mythras I've ended up just re-flavouring systems already in Mythras, rather than trying to convert the BRP mechanics, which can be a bit different from Mythras. You can quite easily run CoC scenarios using Mythras rules even though Mythras doesn't have a dedicated horror supplement it has its own madness mechanic which works a bit differently from CoC. SF settings are pretty well covered between Luther Arkwright, M-Space, and Worlds United, Superpowers and Superheroes are in development with a taster found in the Agony & Ecstasy adventure.
 

Raleel

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The espionage game might be right up my alley.
That would be Project M, I believe. There is very little information out for it. One could pretty easily run a modern game with just Mythras imperative, if one was accepting of relatively low detail and willing to build most of their adversaries.
 

Loz

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Department M is an espionage supplement for the core rules and Mythras Imperative. It will provide everything needed for espionage scenarios, agents and assets as characters, equipment and gadgets, and the titular agency as a backdrop that can be slotted into whatever kind of setting you prefer: Bond-style theatrics; Flint-style spoofiness; Smylie-style grittiness; Bourne-style noiriness. We'll discuss it more as the manuscript develops. It's had a few ups and downs, but I'm confident that we've now found the right Person for the Job.
 

Simlasa

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Is the Jason Bourne stuff considered noir?
I've only seen the movies but he seemed like a lower-powered superhero to me.

le Carre is definitely my preference for espionage tales... so glad that's on the menu.
 

robertsconley

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Seemed very odd to me too until I had a WMA friend explain it. He said in real fighting, you usually don’t decide from the beginning that you’re going to close and trip your opponent, what happens is you see an opening that presents itself, and based on the circumstances of that moment, you decide to disarm, trip, go for the head, whatever. You might want to do A, but you’ll only do it if the right opportunity presents, otherwise you’ll do something else.

Once I heard that, and found out Pete was a re-enactor who gets out there with weapons and armor and gets bruised and bloodied, sometimes broken bones, for fun, the details of the combat system really started clicking.
My experience from fighting in reenactments that it is a little of both exploiting opportunities and deliberate tactics. Although deliberate tactics are rarely something like I am going to disarm. More like, "This guy has a weak grip on his weapon and I will exploit that." And one of the exploits could be a disarm attempt.

Also it possible as a personal fighting style, a combatant executes a basic but solid defense but has the skill to brutally exploit any vulnerabilities i.e. opportunities their opponent makes.

I favor that GURPS approach over Mythras because it accounts for both deliberate tactics as part of a larger fighting style, and the exploitation of opportunities. However there isn't a huge gulf between the two in terms of realism. Just different approaches.
 

Voros

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My experience from fighting in reenactments that it is a little of both exploiting opportunities and deliberate tactics. Although deliberate tactics are rarely something like I am going to disarm. More like, "This guy has a weak grip on his weapon and I will exploit that." And one of the exploits could be a disarm attempt.

Also it possible as a personal fighting style, a combatant executes a basic but solid defense but has the skill to brutally exploit any vulnerabilities i.e. opportunities their opponent makes.

I favor that GURPS approach over Mythras because it accounts for both deliberate tactics as part of a larger fighting style, and the exploitation of opportunities. However there isn't a huge gulf between the two in terms of realism. Just different approaches.
Far from an expert on sword-fighting but I’m pretty confident talking boxing and there it is a combination of instinct, muscle memory via extensive training and intentional strategy based on the strategy or tactics of your opponent.

What distinguishes a great boxer from a merely good boxer is the ability to change your tactics and strategy in a fight in response to what your opponent is doing.

That seems obvious but is a lot harder to implement in a fight than one may think. And unlike in most boxing matches in a sword fight you’d have much less time to analyze your opponent and adapt to their tactics.
 

CRKrueger

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Deliberate tactics play a part in both they’re just realized differently. If someone isn’t wearing a helmet, but has strong armor in other places I’ll obviously want to go for a headshot.

The planned method would be to do something like
”I attack his head.”
”Ok, roll at -30.”
”I missed.”
”Ok, you miss”. Or hit normally, depending on system.

The exploit opening way, would go something like this.
”I attack”.
”His defense is weak, you have an opening, but it is minor.”
”Ok, I’ll hit him and try to disarm”.

They both allow for you to Intend a type of attack, it’s just that one roll determines whether your intent succeeded, and another determines what kind of opening was created. The Intent is the same, but the choice is moved after the die roll, as a different opening type gives you a more informed and fluid choice.
 

Toadmaster

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Far from an expert on sword-fighting but I’m pretty confident talking boxing and there it is a combination of instinct, muscle memory via extensive training and intentional strategy based on the strategy or tactics of your opponent.

What distinguishes a great boxer from a merely good boxer is the ability to change your tactics and strategy in a fight in response to what your opponent is doing.

That seems obvious but is a lot harder to implement in a fight than one may think. And unlike in most boxing matches in a sword fight you’d have much less time to analyze your opponent and adapt to their tactics.

You use different moves when fighting half a dozen people than when you are fighting just one. :grin:

1579384833667.png
 

AsenRG

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Seemed very odd to me too until I had a WMA friend explain it. He said in real fighting, you usually don’t decide from the beginning that you’re going to close and trip your opponent, what happens is you see an opening that presents itself, and based on the circumstances of that moment, you decide to disarm, trip, go for the head, whatever. You might want to do A, but you’ll only do it if the right opportunity presents, otherwise you’ll do something else.

Once I heard that, and found out Pete was a re-enactor who gets out there with weapons and armor and gets bruised and bloodied, sometimes broken bones, for fun, the details of the combat system really started clicking.
Great:smile:! That's exactly my experience with WMA (and EMA/AMA), too, and it helps you to understand not just Myhras, but a few other systems as well (like ORE and Exalted 3, IME:thumbsup:).

What happens is that you "clash", for a lack of better word - this might be manoeuvring on both sides, or one chasing and the other sidestepping, and it's still the same "clash" - and you're looking for advantage. Sometimes it might be as big as the enemy losing his balance, or as minor as moving his hand on the wrong angle, or holding the weapon either too close or too far from his body...though what is an advantage depends on your skills, anyway.
Now apply that to Exalted 3, and you'd know what I see in that system:devil:.

It makes sense from a narrative sense as well avoiding the whole I aim for his his head (rolls poorly), er I trim his finger nails. :sad: Instead just roll the dice (rolls very well) my blade slices through the air and his head leaves his body in a shower of blood! :dice:

My major issue with it was 30 years of "this is how things are done".
#NotJustFromANarrativePOV.
 

Ossian

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I think of it like this: if I want to just play in Glorantha, I’ll use RQG. If I want to just play in Harn, I’ll use Harnmaster, if I want to just play in the Old World, I’ll use WFRP. But if I want to play in all 3, then I’ll just use Mythras for all of them. I think GM system mastery is a great thing. I also think it’s ultimately less work (and less annoying to your players) to convert everything to your system of choice rather than switching systems often.
 
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