Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Savioronedge
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Savioronedge » Mon Sep 02, 2019 8:59 pm

Everything above ↑ plus:
utsukushi wrote:...I don't know about Mishaps. Instinctively I just always see a 1 and think, "Whoops! Mishap!" And that includes on an Active Defense, but reading the two sections I think the rules support your suggestion that it's impossible to Mishap AD. I'm not sure there, but I lean towards Mishap still applying. Disconnection, though - if your defense involves a contradiction, I totally think you can still Disconnect. ...


This is one of the ways a Static Contradiction can come into play...this and Surge. With AD, the Contradiction has to be part of a defense to matter, and you would lose the benefits of the Contradictory item, but would still get a +1 from the die.

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Atama
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Atama » Tue Sep 03, 2019 1:16 pm

utsukushi wrote:Disconnection, though - if your defense involves a contradiction, I totally think you can still Disconnect.

Which defense though? Remember, you’re not rolling for a defense. You’re rolling a bonus for all defenses. Dodge, melee weapons, unarmed, interaction attacks, even willpower. Anyone who attacks you until the end of the round when you make an Active Defense has to contend with whatever bonus you rolled. (That’s in the official errata.)

And that just underscores the fact that you’re not making a skill roll when you Actively Defend, and disconnects are the result of skill rolls and Surges.

Let’s give a hypothetical. Someone tries to Taunt you. You choose to respond with an Active Defense. You’re an Aysle native in Orrorsh carrying a Diffrax shield (which is a 4-case contradiction). You roll a 3. In your opinion, should they disconnect? The shield isn’t even in play right now, so far the only defense involved is against being Taunted.

But if they don’t disconnect, and then a henchman tries to swing a sword at them, hey now they have a +1 to melee defense from their Active Defense, and they can also include that shield which would have been a contradiction on a 3. So do they instantly disconnect?

RAW, per the rules you can’t mishap or disconnect using an Active Defense. As it should be, that should be a no-risk maneuver because you’re sacrificing all actions (except simple actions) for a defense bonus that more than half the time is only going to be +1. (That and you also add a shield defense bonus to Toughness if you’re hit.) You’re giving up the chance to act this turn, so you don’t suffer the potential consequences of rolling poorly if you did take an action.
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby utsukushi » Tue Sep 03, 2019 2:48 pm

That's a really solid case and I'm certainly not saying you're wrong, but as a GM, yes, I would say they Disconnect the first time. The shield *is* in play because their Active Defense is, exactly as you say, modifying All The Defenses, including their Dodge and Melee, which means they are using their Shield. They chose to carry a four case and they're choosing to use it, well, actively. They should not be surprised when this causes trouble.

And for my counter-scenario, I'm going to bring up Deflect again. Suppose you've got a Pulp Hero with a Dex 12, Dodge 3, and the Deflect Power. And they've picked up a Plexiflex Shield, because if Active Defense has no repercussions, why not? They can roll their 4-Case Contradiction Active Defense every round always and the very worst that will ever happen, even when they roll a 1, is they have a defense of 19 - *and* still get to, in effect, shoot back? I don't buy it and I really don't like it. (And for the record, I have a character I'm totally planning to give Deflect to. Being ruled wrong on this would be so in my favor, but might just ruin the power for me. I'm not sure I could take it if it works like that.)

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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Atama » Tue Sep 03, 2019 3:26 pm

I don’t own the Nile Empire book so I can’t comment on the Deflect power. I wouldn’t change one of the core rules because you’re concerned about a Perk being abused, it sounds like you should fix the Perk.
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Savioronedge » Tue Sep 03, 2019 3:39 pm

What utsukushi ↑ said;
And, I would point out the first complaint was against a knight from Aysle in Aysle with a Magic shield having a 45% chance of throwing away his action and making it easier to hit him while now we are debating if the Aylish Knight in Pan Pacifica should have a 5% chance of being easier to hit because of his Contradictory shield, or if he goes down and the Gotak picks up the shield she should have a 20% chance because of the choice to use Contradictory equipment.

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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby mica » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:26 am

Deflect
 Prereq: Dexterity 8+.
This power intercepts thrown objects, arrows, or
bullets. While making an Active Defense, the hero
gets a +2 bonus to dodge against any ranged attacks
involving projectiles. The trappings of this power
could be a strong wind, bulletproof shielding, or
even just luck.
When a deflecting hero takes an Active Defense,
if a ranged attack with a base damage of 14 or less
misses, that attack is reflected back at the attacker
using his action total, with a bonus to the total
equal to the Active Defense bonus. Destiny cards
may modify this total as normal, but additional
Possibilities cannot be spent to improve the result.

I'm not sure what the relevance of the Plexiflex Shield is in the use of Deflect. From the above description the shield is simply a trapping, nothing more than say a bin lid, chair, the cybergeek's expensive laptop or even a recently hacked up gospog that just happened to be nearby. It is just flavour. Also not sure how you ended up with 19 defence unless I missed something (Dex 12 + dodge 3 + 2 deflect +1 min bonus = 18).

Edit: Just to clarify if the deflect power actively added the shield bonus to the dodge that would be a different issue, but it doesn't so I do not see it as relevant to contradiction.

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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Atama » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:13 am

Ah... So if someone can sit there sipping a mocha and casually bouncing bullets back at people without being harmed, those people will stop shooting at said person and shoot that person’s friends. I don’t think that’s all that problematic.

I’ll also add, it seems like it might be difficult to hit anyone with Deflect. For it to work, their attack roll has to be less than your Dodge+Active Defense bonus, and also higher than their own Dodge+your Active Defense bonus. Unless they have much worse Dodge than you, that’s probably a pretty narrow window.
mica wrote:Edit: Just to clarify if the deflect power actively added the shield bonus to the dodge that would be a different issue, but it doesn't so I do not see it as relevant to contradiction.

Why wouldn’t it? Shields normally grant a bonus to melee, unarmed, and dodge defenses. Unless the Perk states that it excludes shields then the shield bonus would apply. Assuming of course the attack is coming from the front or the shield side of the character.
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Kuildeous » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:35 am

Atama wrote:I’ll also add, it seems like it might be difficult to hit anyone with Deflect. For it to work, their attack roll has to be less than your Dodge+Active Defense bonus, and also higher than their own Dodge+your Active Defense bonus. Unless they have much worse Dodge than you, that’s probably a pretty narrow window.


I’m hazy on the wording here. When you deflect the projectile back, you use the attacker’s action total (which, as you established, is lower than your defense) against the attacker’s defense. You add your active defense modifier to the attacker’s action total.

So if you roll a +10 on your active defense, then you’re very likely going to send those projectiles back onto the attackers. At least until the LAW rocket comes out.
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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby utsukushi » Wed Sep 04, 2019 1:21 pm

Deflect is weird, but it is also - and I say this as the one who brought it up - a distraction. I do agree with Atama that it wouldn't make sense to change the rules based on one odd Perk. On the other hand, I think it's fair to assume that the Perk was written with the rules-as-intended in mind. I also think it's fair to assume that if we have one Perk that plays with Active Defense, there may be more in the future. I certainly hope so, anyway - I think there's more that can be done there.

And like I said, I'm torn on the question of Mishaps. That's more just an instinctive response that Ones are Bad that has been drilled into me across multiple games for ever so many decades. Er, maybe not that many, but more than one. But I don't think a Pulp Power can be immune to Disconnection, and this one is entirely based on Active Defense. So either it is completely free of Disconnection risk, or Active Defenses involving Contradictions risk Disconnection. The former feels to me like a gross violation of the principals everyone else has to deal with, while the latter seems like business as usual.

Consider an Active Defense as being a kind of Multi-Action. You get to roll Defense on all six possible attack styles at once, but you don't have the penalties for rolling six skills at once because, well, most of them probably won't come up and you are indeed giving a lot up to dig in and defend, basically doing the same thing with all of them. So that's fair. But that is basically what you're doing - you're engaging all six defenses at once. If you rolled, let's say, Melee Weapons, Intimidate, Taunt, and Maneuver all at once in an attack, and the only thing Contradictory in there was.. let's say you have Super Skill: Taunt. And you roll a 1. You will Disconnect. There's no question about, "Well, do you hit them and then scare them and then suddenly Disconnect in the middle of the action?" No, of course not. You Disconnect as soon as you roll a 1 while engaging something Contradictory.

Same thing here.

And note that you always have the option of, if you're only rolling your Active Defense to protect yourself from a Taunt, declaring that you're not using your Diffrax Shield/Deflect Power/Super Skill/whatever. Yes, you then run the risk that your relevant Defense might end up a little bit lower than if you had kept the Contradiction and not rolled, but you also don't risk Disconnecting by choosing to actively use your Contradiction. So again, I feel if the player is choosing to risk a Contradiction, they know the chance they're taking.


(And for the record, also agree with Atama that nothing in Deflect says you can't include a shield, so Mica's right, my math was off - minimum Dodge there is a 20. Which seems plenty high enough to often be missed and still have a good chance of hitting your opponent. And of course they'll stop shooting at her; that's what Bodyguard is for.)

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Re: Active Defense FAQ entry clarification question

Postby Atama » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:13 pm

Kuildeous wrote:So if you roll a +10 on your active defense, then you’re very likely going to send those projectiles back onto the attackers. At least until the LAW rocket comes out.

Getting a +10 requires rolling 31+ on a D20. Even spending a Possibility that’s difficult. Most of the time your Active Defense bonus will be +1.
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