'Barbarism is the natural state of mankind,' the borderer said, still staring somberly at the Cimmerian. 'Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph.'

-Robert E. Howard
Beyond The Black River

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Conan 2d20 RPG Overview: Protection.

In our last installment we talked about damage, today I want to talk briefly about protection from damage. In other systems, like D&D, characters, NPCs & monsters all have a designated armor class we roll against to determine if the hit is successful and damage is applied. This AC is generally derived from armor, shields, dexterity and skills.

As we saw in Conan 2d20, hitting an opponent is either a skill test or a struggle, armor is not part of that equation. In Conan 2d20 we have several types of protection, but all work more or less in the same way. As you may have guessed we broadly have two forms of protection; physical and mental. Each type of protection consists of two basic types, fixed and variable. Whether these are fixed or variable, mental or physical they are all collectively known as "Soak".

ArmorStatic value. Reduces physical stress damage by it's value.
CoverVariable value. Reduces physical stress damage by a value rolled on combat dice.
CourageStatic value. Reduces mental stress damage by it's value.
MoraleVariable value. Reduces mental stress damage by a value rolled on combat dice.

The amount of damage armor protects against can be reduced by various things, such as momentum spends and piercing effects, or if the protection is variable, it is possible to roll no protection. Lets take a quick look at a spear vs chain armor & a shield.

For example,
SPEAR 4cd, Piercing 1 vs. Heavy Armor soak 3 & Shield shield2.
We are assuming the spearman has successfully hit the armored combatant and we are now rolling damage.
The spearmen rolls his 4 combat dice and scores: 3 damage and scores a total effect of 2 piercing.
The target has a shield with a rating of 2 and so gets to roll 2 dice and add them to his total soak, this brings his total soak to 4.
The soak of 4 is reduced to 2, due to the spears piercing effects meaning the spear scores 1 point of damage (3 damage - 2 soak = 1 damage)

If you are interested in checking out the Conan system why not head over to DriveThruRPG and pick up a copy of either the Conan 2d20 core book or the Conan 2d20 quickstart pdf?

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