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Question About Wound Levels and Opinion on Alternate Mechanic

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I have a question mainly about Wound Levels, and am working on my own OpenD6 project.


I don't quite grasp the typical current D6 Wound Levels, no matter how many times I look at them (I only played the original SW game maybe twice when i was young). I have run Savage Worlds and *think* I can maybe see similarity in the way some things are done with the damage and the soak, but so much just seems worded strangely, like some of the "if damage >soak but less than soak x2" and such.


Here is my take on how I'd like my game to use Wound Levels, and I'd appreciate anyone telling me how far off my idea deviates from the standard rules, and if they do, how much problem anyone foresees or might feel would present a problem or cause issues.




Damage is rolled, and for every Result Point, divided by... 3 is it? You get +1 to damage I think? I'm changing mine up to be more linear, basically just being "for every 4 points of success above your TN, add +1 Boost to whatever you're doing", whether it's damage in combat or a quality bonus for baking a cake. This will allow a good and somewhat varying potential of perhaps minor but possibly telling damage, at the right time, most of the time.


In the case of MY game, I plan to probably go with static Soak and Parry, being essentially Brawn and Agility x3 for the TN (so 3D in these would be TN 9), similar to MiniSix.



From what I can tell, the Stunned result seems to work vaguely like the Savage Worlds "Shaken" dynamic, to some extent, where if you're hit for damage meeting or exceeding your Toughness, but not 4 over, you're not significantly injured, but are Shaken/Stunned, which is a temporary condition. Since Savage Worlds is what I'm familiar with, I need to frame this question within that system to help me understand D6.


If a Stunned character is hit with another Stunned result, what happens? I've seen some games that seem to indicate that's simply an additional "level of Stun", which I'm not sure what is the effect of. Others seem to indicate, like Savage Worlds, that Stun is treated as a gradation of Wounds, and like Wounded/Severely Wounded, if you are hit with damage to inflict the same result of Wounds you are already at, the damage vaults upward to the next, more severe level of Wound. Which is correct?


The Wounded/Severely Wounded rule confuses me. It specifically states the process I just mentioned above, where if you're Wounded and hit with another Wounded result, you become Severely Wounded instead. Okay fine, but since the basic Wounding rules also say that's how the whole thing works anyway, why is this specified out as two different Wound levels? Because you can't GET "Severely Wounded" if you haven't been Wounded yet, so there's no point in having Severely Wounded listed as its own level, like it is a linear step-up and viable Wound possibility for unwounded characters, right? Or is it possible to do enough damage to make them Severely Wounded, bypassing the initial Wounded level?


My intent is to just simplify all this because it seems unnecessarily confusing:




If damage <= your Soak but less than Soak+4, you're Stunned, which may have various effects, but isn't a true "Wound" level, as it can be removed or recovered from during combat.


if damage => your Soak+4 but less than +8, you gain 1 Wound. And you're also Stunned (?).


And I'd guess I might have similar rules echoing the D6 mechanics for the severe wound levels, where the character may be bleeding out, or may go unconscious and make Brawn checks every round, etc.



I welcome any thoughts from anyone on if my ideas on the D6 rules themselves are wrong or badly in need of proper understanding, and also if my mechanics I presented here seem workable as replacements.



Also something someone mentioned to me, when I was explaining that in Savage Worlds, and at least in some D6 rules, where each Wound you have gives you a general -1 or -1D or some penalty to all rolls; he said, referring to HERO (Champions) Games: "HERO doesn't have any rule like that, maybe because most characters are supposed to be superheroes, so don't tend to have penalties even if wounded".


That made me think, as I'm not generally a fan of HERO due to my own preference for liter systems, that I was surprised that HERO, with all its potentially complicated formulas and in-game calculations, forgoes the inclusion of any sort of punitive measure against Wounded characters, which actually provides one LESS thing to worry about (for players and GMs), rather than implementing it to emulate "realistic effects" as I would have expected HERO to do.


I'm not interested in any sort of system vs. system debate or war, since I just enjoy game design and mechanics, but I'm curious as to if there would be any major problems in not having Wound penalties, for my D6 system; would such a penalty really only be for more gritty, less than action hero characters?



Thank you all in advance for your time in reading this, and any feedback anyone would care to give.

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You've got a couple things, and I'm a bit short of time, so I'll attempt to make this quick and to the point.


Wounds and Wounded Twice:

These were to give a person two stages of being wounded before being possibly knocked unconscious. Wounded inflicts -1D to die rolls. Wounded Twice inflicts -2D (total) to dice rolls. Both occur before Incapacitated, which adds the additional chance of being knocked unconscious.


Damage rolls and static soak/parry:

Just be aware if you do this, you're going to have a VERY deadly game. Especially if you take out one level of wounds. You're going to have both NPCs AND Player Characters being killed very quickly.

My suggestion, keep the soak and parry rolls. If you go static, do static damage and offer bonus to that static damage based on the quality of the hit (higher skill vs. resistance roll = more damage)


Added wounds:

Usually you can take any number of Stunned results, they just compound. If you want to have them add up to more wounds, feel free to do so!

Typically any wound equal or lower than that already suffering from increases the wound level to the next highest. If the wound level is HIGHER than that already suffering from, add the higher to the lower and that gives you the total wound level. So you're Wounded. Then you suffer Mortally Wounded injuries. Mortally Wounded + Wounded = Dead. Or, you're Wounded. You suffer Incapacitated. Incapacitated + Wounded = Mortally Wounded.


Hope this all makes sense and helps.

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That all helped quite a bit, thank you for your prompt reply.


If you go static, do static damage and offer bonus to that static damage based on the quality of the hit (higher skill vs. resistance roll = more damage)

This was what I had initially been planning but am still unsure how well it will go over. Personally, I prefer a single roll, and it being based on accuracy to guide damage intensity, rather than a seemingly arbitrary damage roll.



I still am unclear on the reason for having an elementary example of "if you hit the same level of lower, increase the Wound severity" rule directly legislated into the Wound levels, if that is already how the system works - wouldn't players know to do this, since it is specified in the rules? Are you saying these are two full and different Wound levels just like any of the others, simply function well to be able to demonstrate the Wound bumping rule?


I am thick on some things, my mind just doesn't understand why all the other Wound Levels are visually and sequentially differentiated from one another in linear hierarchical format, from Stunned to Dead, but for some reason, Wounded and Severely Wounded seem to share the same "spot" in the Wound ladder?


Thank you again for your replies, it has helped me a lot. I don't know why I can't quite open my brain up far enough to get this in one go. =/

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Think of it this way:


Stunned = Stun

Wounded = Wounded

Wounded Twice = Badly Wounded

Incapacitated = Incapacitated

Mortally Wounded = Mortally Wounded


So a character gets injured to the point of Wounded.

Then, a little later, that same character is injured to Wounded again. This moves the injury to "Wounded Twice" (could be read as Badly Wounded if that helps).


Hopefully that makes it little more easy to understand?


As for the damage and static values, I was suggesting just having a set value for the damage, and then providing a bonus based on the quality of the hit. So you would have only 1 roll for the attack. Let me provide an example:

Grok has a sword that inflicts 12 damage. Grok has 6D in fighting. Grok attacks an enemy soldier. Grok rolls an impressive 33. The enemy soldier rolls only 12. That is a hit, but since Grok's attack was so much better than the enemy's parry, it's a really good hit.


Depending on the divisor you decide upon (I use 3 for my games), it will provide a bonus to the damage of 12 that the sword does when it hits. The difference between Grok's roll and the enemy is 21. 21 divided by 3 is 7. So the final damage of the sword hit is 19. The enemy rolls to resist the damage. The enemy has 3D to resist. The enemy rolls 9. So 10 hits are inflicted on the enemy.


By keeping the RESIST roll, it gives the players a chance to potentially save their character with their own die rolls. The attack and damage is all figured into one die roll (the roll to hit), but the resist is left as a roll.

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By keeping the RESIST roll, it gives the players a chance to potentially save their character with their own die rolls. The attack and damage is all figured into one die roll (the roll to hit), but the resist is left as a roll.


Yeah, this comes up in the consequence of Mutants and Masterminds and True20, too; one of the consequences of having damage resistance rolls is that Hero Points (and in D6, Fate and Character Points) can be used to help hold off bad luck with damage. If you eliminate the die roll, that option goes away.

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Thanks for the replies and thoughts =)


I guess my problem with the Wounded and second Wounded on the same damage level, again, was that I didn't understand why it was singled out - why is Severely Wounded and Mortally Wounded not both listed for the next damage range, etc. But if that's my only problem, I feel like I'm doing well. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something.



For my game, I plan on having the option to make a Soak roll, much like an Active Parry/Dodge, where the player can use his static number most of the time but on occasion he feels it necessary (ie just took massive damage), may roll to try to shrug it off beyond his standard static value. I suppose I'll leave it as an always available option that has no explicit cost, such as attack or action penalty or anything, rather than requiring the spend of a CP?

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Why not simply use static values for both soak and damage, but then use CPs and Fate Points* as they are? That way, you eliminate the chaos factor while still leaving some of the control in the hands of the players.


* Instead of a Fate Point doubling your soak dice pool, it would let you make a Strength (or Physique, as might be the case) roll and subtract the result from the damage suffered, just like in D6 Space.

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If you do decide to go with static values for resistance, then it is probably best to use static values for damage and DO NOT give added bonuses to damage for higher skilled attacks.


It wouldn't be fair to the players to have NPCs be able to kick up the damage simply by rolling well on the attack while there is nothing they could do to increase their resistance the same way. Even having the option to use CPs or FPs to allow a roll, it is a hindrance to the players because they must spend something to have a chance of increasing their resistance, whereas there is no added cost for simply rolling well on the attack and getting bonus damage.


It's one thing to come up with rules that "seem like" a good idea. It's another thing when it can result in the quick death of a PC that many players spend a decent amount of time and effort into making into something they enjoy and are attached to. So consider all of the options and potentials on both sides of the GM screen before deciding on rule changes.

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Not much new to say here, but I will just add that I think my players enjoy making the soak roll. It's pretty tense when there's a big damage number floating around, and adds some drama to combat IMO. I used the Mini Six all-static combat system for a while but went back to soak rolls to keep players involved in the fight (other than math-wise) and as I said to add to tension in combat scenes.


Just an aspect of gameplay I've discovered... may or may not affect how you think of handling it.

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In the game I am working on we use a static soak and my players love it because it really speeds up play. My players get tense anytime they enter combat because the most effective way to avoid getting hurt is to not put yourself in a position to be in the first place. The second most effective way is to not get hit, the third and lest effective way is to hope your armor is strong enough to bear the brunt of the attack assuming the other guy is not so much better than you that he is hitting you regularly where your armor is not. I think it all comes down to the style of play your players are looking for.

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Thanks again for the thoughts. I think for my initial test, I will probably go with the all-out option, going with static parry and soak both, with the player having the option to roll instead, for no particular cost, so it will simply be a matter of expediency if they need to roll against damage that exceeds their default static soak.


I can see the intent of not having result point bonuses to damage for better rolls against static, though there is also the option to go completely static on damage, adding only the result points, so someone with Strength of 3D and a sword might add Str + Weapon Damage + Result Points, such as 3 + 6 + 2 = 11, the damage only varying with the attack's accuracy. I've played some other games that do this and were surprisingly fun and it helped keep them moving quickly.

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I've played some other games that do this and were surprisingly fun and it helped keep them moving quickly.


I agree. I would only suggest not using the whole difference, though; that would swing things too much. I'd suggest using result/2 (or maybe result/3), rounding up.


It wouldn't be fair to the players to have NPCs be able to kick up the damage simply by rolling well on the attack while there is nothing they could do to increase their resistance the same way.


That works both ways, though. And there is something they can do to increase their resistance, besides spending CPs: buy up their Dodge.

Actually, in order to better balance spending CPs to soak damage with spending CPs to increase defense, I'd suggest taking a page from D6 Legend and say that the minimum result possible per die rolled to soak damage is 3.

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