Fumble Table

Discover the Legend RPG, Mongoose's fantasy game.

Are Fumbles integral to RuneQuest?

Hell yes! Bring on pages and pages of funny results.
4
11%
Not really.
2
6%
No, keep them in the old editions where they belong.
4
11%
Yes but keep them simple.
15
43%
Yes but keep them interesting
10
29%
What's a fumble?
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 35
Darran
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Fumble Table

Postby Darran » Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:36 pm

Okay when I played RuneQuest my characters usually died on a regular basis while everyone else kept there starting characters all the way through the campaigns. [I got very good at writting up RQ characters - a full character in less than twenty minutes :shock: ].

Anyway most of the time I died due to the fumble table. Once having rolled "00" three times in a row.

So my question is 'How long and interesting will be the results of rolling a fumble?' :?:

Can we see the fumble chart in the next preview?

Any other interesting ideas on the fumble?
Cheers,
Darran
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Saturday May the 4th 'be with you' 2013.
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Wulf Corbett
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Re: Fumble Table

Postby Wulf Corbett » Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:47 pm

Darran wrote:Can we see the fumble chart in the next preview?

Any other interesting ideas on the fumble?
As a playtester (although of little actual play) I'll keep my opinions general, but I have to admit I wouldn't like too much detail in a fumble table. I prefer to create my own fumbles more closely tied in to the actual scene and action than "Hit nearest friend"*.

Wulf

* at which point the entire party yells "He's not my friend!"
andakitty
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Postby andakitty » Wed Jun 14, 2006 6:55 pm

Yes, but keep it simple. Mind you, this attitude comes more from playing Stormbringer 1e, not RQ. But it has come to apply to any game that I run. Although a detailed fumble chart can add flavor, it slows me down and frequently the results just don't make sense so I have to ignore the result or re-roll. It doesn't seem worth the potential trouble.
SteveMND
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Postby SteveMND » Wed Jun 14, 2006 7:07 pm

Sometimes fumbles and other such things can be worked into a campaign with wonderful results. I remember the very first session of a brand new campaign. The gang was accosted by a bunch of ne'er do wells in Pavis (or something like that, I forget which).

Our heroic Lunar soldier, fresh from military academy, stepped up to the challenge, drew his sword and attacked. Mind you, this was the first roll for the character, literally the first roll of the campaign. Ended up fumbling and doing enough damage to a random location (abdomen, it turned out) to incapacitate him right then and there.

Given the situation, we decided that in his haste to take care of the ruffians, he managed to draw his sword from his scabbard backwards and slit his own gut open by accident. :)

While an unceremonius start to the character's career, the NPC Chalana Arroy priestess that was nearby and healed him developed into a fairly prominent support character as a result of that simple die roll, and two years later, the two were married. :D
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Postby Lord Twig » Wed Jun 14, 2006 7:58 pm

I like the idea that worse can happen than just an automatic miss. You already missed! Now let's see how bad it can really get!

That said I think the old fumble table was a little too deadly and sometimes just did not make sense. I would like something that has a concrete result that would be fairly simple to integrate into the action. And I don't want to have to come up with something on my own. That is an invitation to favoritism or the accusation of it.
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Postby SteveMND » Wed Jun 14, 2006 8:07 pm

Anyway most of the time I died due to the fumble table. Once having rolled "00" three times in a row
Heh, well, with a one-in-a-million chance like rolling three 00s, it had BEST be noteworthy -- good or bad! :-)
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Postby Gaheir » Wed Jun 14, 2006 11:07 pm

A fumble chart is certainly worth adding to the game. The original would be a good starting point. Rather than being too deadly (most results were nuisance factor) it had a good balance. Losing X actions is something that most GM's should have no trouble justifying (sloppy conditions, sweat or blood in the eyes) and most harmful mishaps weren't deadly. With the lessened effects of special and critical hits, they would be even less so, now. The chart would allay suspicions of favoritism, and be quicker than creating a fumble on the fly. The inclusion of some lighter effects would make it more interesting, to me. Perhaps fumbles that could include those you're in combat with, as both (all) parties tumble to the floor, falling in a pool of mud, etc.
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homerjsinnott
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Postby homerjsinnott » Thu Jun 15, 2006 12:02 am

The RQ fumbles were elegant and simple. And if I remember rightly, taken from "real life" experiences in the society for Creative Anachronism (or anarchism as my friend misread for years :D )

Now Rolemaster, that had Fumble Tables. :shock: :D
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Cobra
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Postby Cobra » Thu Jun 15, 2006 4:08 am

homerjsinnott wrote:The RQ fumbles were elegant and simple. And if I remember rightly, taken from "real life" experiences in the society for Creative Anachronism (or anarchism as my friend misread for years :D )
I share those feeings about RQ fumbles - I love them. I think they really add to the narrative of a combat. Critcals give the combat it's heroic nature, while fumbles give it variety - no two combats end up being the same. What's more, the threat of fumble or death by critical keeps people on the edges of their seats - like watching your favourite team in sudden death overtime during the playoffs.

Having a wide choice of lesser fumbles is great. Having armour or shield straps break can force interesting changes tactics of tactics. Players favouring their bladesharped weapons a little too much? There's nothing like launching your great-axe across the room to force one to make use of their dagger or grapple skill a little more.

Perhaps the fumble table could be broken into categories - say 4 categories of severity, then within each category a list of suggested fumbles to suit a wide variety of situations. For instance, a weapon fumble of magnitude 1 might be damage taken to the weapon. Magnitude 2 would be weapon dropped or lodged. Mag 3 would be weapon thrown, and Mag 4 would be weapon shattered.

Opinions on that, anyone?

Cobra
andakitty
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Postby andakitty » Thu Jun 15, 2006 4:40 am

Check out Stormbringer 5 if you have'nt already. It has a very interesting fumble chart that adds flavor, with worse results on higher rolls. All sorts of bad things like all mentioned above and more. One nasty one is 'several fingers severed'. This chart could be used with RQ for the little surprises in a PC's life. And vice versa.
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Postby Lord Twig » Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:12 am

Most of the fumble table was great and we really enjoyed it, but after 15 years you really get tired of "hit nearest friend for maximum rolled damage and ignore any armor; hit self if no friend is near."

It was possible to do more damage on a fumble to yourself or a friend than it was to do to an enemy! There was no critical hit table where you could do maximum damage in addition to ignoring any armor. While things like "Armor strap breaks" made it interesting, the cutting your own head off just became stupid.
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Postby Adept » Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:20 am

Lord Twig wrote:Most of the fumble table was great and we really enjoyed it, but after 15 years you really get tired of "hit nearest friend for maximum rolled damage and ignore any armor; hit self if no friend is near."

It was possible to do more damage on a fumble to yourself or a friend than it was to do to an enemy! There was no critical hit table where you could do maximum damage in addition to ignoring any armor. While things like "Armor strap breaks" made it interesting, the cutting your own head off just became stupid.
Yeah. People do hit themselves with axes and swords, or cut themselves with knives, but not for "maximum rolled damage". It's just not possible unless you actually fall on your sword in a million to one trick suicide. The things should be like "You cut/bruise yourself with your own weapon, 1 point of damage).

Speaking of damage, I wonder if there finally are penalties to combat skills for being wounded. In a modified Warhammer system we have a simple system. -5 for every hitlocation wounded, -10 for every hitlocation severely wounded (like at 0 hp in RQ).

Having people fight with 100% effisciensy until they drop is so D&D.
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Postby JohnLokiBeard » Thu Jun 15, 2006 11:17 am

I've fond memories of my RQ3 character Connor the shepherd fumbling his Sling rolls in identical fashion twice in one session.
First combat encounter: one of his friends, Samuel the soldier, ran forward to hurl a javelin, then Connor promptly accidentally hit him in the back of the head for 1pt more damage than his helmet could stop.
Second encounter: exactly the same thing.
Third encounter, Sam's player's statement of intent was "I run forward, hurl my javelin at the broo and immediately dive to the ground with my shield over my head"!

I think 'Hit Self' results should be restricted to about half normal damage - possibly with an exception for flails, several kids at my school nearly cracked their own skulls trying to be Bruce Lee with nunchaku - but 'Hit Nearest Friend' should include criticals. Especially with missile weapons.
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Ummm...

Postby zomben » Thu Jun 15, 2006 7:18 pm

Lord Twig wrote:There was no critical hit table where you could do maximum damage in addition to ignoring any armor.
Ummm... that's exactly what a 'critical hit' was in RQIII... doing maximum damage, and ignoring armor...
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Re: Ummm...

Postby Adept » Thu Jun 15, 2006 8:59 pm

zomben wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:There was no critical hit table where you could do maximum damage in addition to ignoring any armor.
Ummm... that's exactly what a 'critical hit' was in RQIII... doing maximum damage, and ignoring armor...
I have a real problem with the old RQ criticals. The do maximum (doubled) damage and ignore all armour rule was a nasty game stopper.

These days I'd go with what we have in our Warhammer rules (based on Hârnmaster and RQ). A special success gives +1 damage, and a critical success also ignores armour.

In RQ a fight between two well armoured and skilled opponent's was basically an excercise to see which one criticalled first. Alternatively everybody used a weapon with huge damage value (greatsword, pole-axe, troll-maul) and did damage on the high rolls (mostly to the opponent's weapon/shield).
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homerjsinnott
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Re: Ummm...

Postby homerjsinnott » Thu Jun 15, 2006 9:45 pm

Adept wrote:
zomben wrote:
Lord Twig wrote:There was no critical hit table where you could do maximum damage in addition to ignoring any armor.
Ummm... that's exactly what a 'critical hit' was in RQIII... doing maximum damage, and ignoring armor...
I have a real problem with the old RQ criticals. The do maximum (doubled) damage and ignore all armour rule was a nasty game stopper.

These days I'd go with what we have in our Warhammer rules (based on Hârnmaster and RQ). A special success gives +1 damage, and a critical success also ignores armour.

In RQ a fight between two well armoured and skilled opponent's was basically an excercise to see which one criticalled first. Alternatively everybody used a weapon with huge damage value (greatsword, pole-axe, troll-maul) and did damage on the high rolls (mostly to the opponent's weapon/shield).

I don't know anybody who used max damage for a crit, we used impaling crits sure but normal damage rolls.
We also ruled that you needed a large amount of room for long 2H swing weapons. So you couldn't use them indoors and teachers were hard to find
Etc. Very, very few people in any of our games use them and they were always way behind in skill (also cause you started at basic).
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Postby andakitty » Thu Jun 15, 2006 10:02 pm

Maybe Adept is thinking of Stormbringer? Double rolled damage, ignore armor roll? Need a critical parry to keep from getting diced? THAT was a nasty critical rule.
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Postby Adept » Thu Jun 15, 2006 10:48 pm

andakitty wrote:Maybe Adept is thinking of Stormbringer? Double rolled damage, ignore armor roll? Need a critical parry to keep from getting diced? THAT was a nasty critical rule.
The RQ-3 deluxe was worse than that. A critical meant that weapon damage was maxed (damage bonus still rolled) and armour did not protect. If the weapon in question was capable of impaling (and used so) then it was a critical impale. Maximum damage*2 + damage modifier, armour again doesn't help.

Those are lethal. Funnily enough a parry was always a parry. A sword blocked 10 points (this from memory), and a spear thrust did 1d8+1 damage. So a critical spear thrust from an average male human would do 18+1d4 points of damage. A succesful parry would reduce this by 10 points and armour would not help. 8+1d4 points of damage to a location mess up any character.

The parrying weapon would also take damage (I'm not sure with the spear thrust) and later parry only nine points. Now that was a strange rule. We quickly decided that the weapon still protected for the full 10 points, it was just closer to being snapped in two.
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RMS
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Re: Ummm...

Postby RMS » Thu Jun 15, 2006 11:34 pm

homerjsinnott wrote:I don't know anybody who used max damage for a crit, we used impaling crits sure but normal damage rolls.
We also ruled that you needed a large amount of room for long 2H swing weapons. So you couldn't use them indoors and teachers were hard to find
Etc. Very, very few people in any of our games use them and they were always way behind in skill (also cause you started at basic).
We did. Isn't that the official rules: max damage, ignoring all armor (even spells if I recall correctly). That's not exactly how I handled it in play, but it worked out that way.

I ruled that slashing weapons did max damage on a special, impaling weapons did double damage on a special, and crushing weapons did max damage bonus on a special. Any critical received the special result and ignored armor. Battle/spirit magic protection spells reinforced armor so were also ignored if armor was ignored. Rune/divine magic always gave full protection, since it was from the gods. That made Shield an extremely useful spell.

Of course, a successful parry still stopped a fair amount of damage, and I houseruled that each level of success for a dodge reduced the level of attack success by one, so a successful dodge turns a crit into a special, etc.
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Postby Adept » Fri Jun 16, 2006 12:10 am

Not a bad take RMS. Better than my original struggles to go literally by the rules in the first years. That "cutting weapons did max damage on a special" bit is a bit stern though.

Meh... things ended up doing too much damage in RQ-3 anyway, is what I remember. High level characters ended up with iron chainmail before long, and even that didn't help against the criticals.
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