Basics of Combat

Los Angeles: A House Divided is not a combat MUSH. LA is not a MUD. However, violence is a legitimate and even integral aspect of a vampire theme. Therefore, we have provided combat rules. Every player is entitled to rely upon these combat rules. Though if all of the players in a combat agree, feel free to ignore these rules as appropriate in favor of roleplay and compromise. The files in this section will guide you through contested combat.

Combat in General

Combat challenges are resolved by contests. In this context, combat is modeled as a series of exchanges, not a blow-by-blow battle. Each challenge represents a number of feints, blocks, parries etc - lasting perhaps five or ten seconds. Thus if you attack someone, you may find it is you that ends up getting injured.

Generally, each combat challenge is resolved as two contests - First to determine which party, if either, hits the other - then a Second to determine how much damage results. Each character has a combat stat sheet (+combat). It can look something like this for someone with access to Wolf Claws:

Brawl 5 6 3 2
Claws 5 8 4A 2A
Grapple 4 5 2 1
Evade 8
Soak Total 7
Fire/Sun Total 3

You don't need to understand how your +combat numbers are generated, merely how to use them. For the curious, the details ar listed below.

  1. On the left hand side you have your combat totals ("CBT") and damage totals ("DMT") for each combat type. Not every combat type has a DMT. E.g. Evade, which never deals damage. But every combat type has has a CBT.
  2. The CBT column is your maximum contest total for that combat type. You don't have to use your full total, but holding back in combat could mean getting hurt. Some Disciplines can affect your CBT. The details are presented in the appropriate power cards.
  3. The DMT column is your damage total for that attack form. This is used to determine whether you do the LOW or HIGH damage rating. Like CBT, certain Disciplines can affect your DMT. The HIGH and LOW columns are the number of damage levels you do with that attack. If the number is followed with an A, the damage is aggravated.
  4. On the right are listed your soak totals. These are used to resist DMT. The 'Soak total' is used as your acting value against any attack except fire or sunlight. The Fire/Sun total is lower, and is used against fire and sunlight damage. If you are immobilized or otherwise cannot avoid the attack, you should subtract your Dodge from these totals.

Resolving Combat

  1. Resolve a contest of opposing CBT values. You may use any combat type available to you that makes sense in the situation. For example, you may use Brawl to punch or kick at your opponent, or you may use Evade to attempt to avoid combat altogether. You may also use claws or a weapon, if you have either. The different combat types are treated with more detail in the ranged combat, brawl and melee, and grapple combat files.
  2. If the CBT contest results in a tie, the combat is inconclusive. No one takes damage. If one party successfully used their Evade, that party has managed to escape combat and should be allowed to escape. If neither of these events occurs, resolve damage as below.
  3. Resolve a contest of the winner's DMT against the loser's applicable soak total. The loser takes the LOW rating damage if they win or tie. The HIGH rating of damage is applied if they fail the contest.

Additional Combat Guidelines

If you want to do something in combat that the combat files don't cover, reach an agreement between everyone involved that seems fair.

Additionally, everyone is strongly encouraged to roleplay combat actions. In fact, if you just want to tell each other your appropriate combat totals and roleplay the whole thing out without contests, then we would be delighted. But certainly roleplay the outcome of every contest. Typically, someone hit in combat will want to move away, cry out in pain, shout for help, etc. As a guide, after each combat action you can have one physical action (staggering backwards, doubling up in pain, whatever) and one verbal action (gasping for help, shouting abuse, etc).

How some of the numbers are worked out

CBT Dex+<Skill>. <Skill> is Dodge (Evade), Brawl, Melee, Firearms or Athletics (Throwing) as appropriate. Grapple CBT is Str+Brawl+Potence.
DMT Str+<Skill>+Potence+<Modifier>. <Skill> is Brawl,Melee,Firearms or Athletics as appropriate. <Modifier> depends upon the attack.
Soak Sta+Fortitude+Dodge. Remember that Dodge must be subtracted if you can't avoid the attack for some reason.
Fire/Sun Fortitude+Dodge. Remember that Dodge must be subtracted if you can't avoid the attack for some reason.

Combat Commands

The +combat command shows your present combat capability. Brawl, Evade, and Soak stats are always shown. If currently wield a weapon, you can see how you perform with it. If you have protean 2 and claws active, that will also show. This is the only way for players to get "numbers" on how a weapon works (for them). Firearms have an added line describing using them as a club in melee.

Command +combat/show [<attack>|evade|wounds|soak|fire] to <player/object>
Usage Allows you to "prove" your skill in combat to another player to resolve potential conflicts. Staff can also intercede in your behalf and see your combat table if need be (and without giving away such information to the other player). This command will show a single row from the list of attacks you have, your evade, soak, or fire/sun soak.


+combat/show Brawl to Tuan

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