Martial Combat

PERSONAL COMBAT AND WORLD BATTLE SYSTEM

MARTIAL COMBAT

 

A significant aspect of this genre often involves martial combat, whether your character is launching a full-scale seize or defending their lands from foreign forces. First off, the war-side of this system focuses solely upon the Martial and Presence stats. Martial referring to one's military prowess and ability to command armies/navies. Presence is in regards to the character's ability to instill their men with inspiration and lead them into war.

Before any movement of troops can be made, one's character must undergo an important procedure of summoning their troops and preparing for wartime. Each region has it's own group of ready fighting men. These men are career fighters, inclusive of sworn knights as well. These men can be summoned at a notice of merely a few hours, though their movements and positioning, follow the usual rules of battle. The houses are expected to possess the necessary resources to feed and outfit them for their one real purpose, which is fighting.

Here, The Westerlands and The Reach are expected to have 40% of their forces to be career fighters. The Stormlands, The Vale, The Riverlands, The North, The Crownlands (excluding Goldcloaks), and Dorne are expected to be able to gather 35% of their troops on short notice. For the remaining of the regions able men to be called to fight, it would require the means to outfit them ready for war.

In these cases, when a lord wants more than his fighting men to rally for him, A call to arms is not a quick process, due to commoners being preoccupied with their own duties, like agriculture and commerce, rather than sitting about waiting for war. Any region entering into war will need to prepare, which includes the gathering of troops and collecting the appropriate amount of resources required for this endeavor. This preparation will take four (4) real-life days to complete. With each day, 25% of the player’s commoner forces will be rallied-- on the fourth and final day, the army will be completely mobilized. The player will be asked to roll for Presence during this process if the call to arms is not in direct defense of the region or to war with an egregious party. Despite vassals being loyal, they must be convinced to join the call to arms by their Lord.

Once the troops have successfully been called, the character can move their men/ships freely. Presence and Martial stats (and modifiers) will not come into effect until confrontation. Once forces are engaged in battle, Martial will be the prime stat used-- serving as the army's offense and mitigation. Presence will not factor into the equation until an army endures substantial casualties; such as losing half of your soldiers will call for Presence to be rolled for, which will determine whether they flee or continue to fight. A player must roll below their Presence, in order to keep their men in combat; rolling above the set stat will result in a retreat.

Roleplay will be a key component in the background of a battle and as such, it will be taken into account when modifiers for each battle are determined.

PERSONAL COMBAT AND WORLD BATTLE SYSTEM

LOYALTY

It should be assumed that vassals are automatically loyal to their liege, but that’s not to say loyalty can’t falter because of potential In-Character actions that can occur, such as…

 

  • Treason

  • Kinslaying

  • Oath-breaking

  • Severing Guest Rites

… The list goes on, with countless reasons as to why a vassal may re-evaluate their relationship with the current liege and his household. These items against a liege lord can also sway fellow vassals to stand behind their lord. Depending on who commits the crime, any one of these reasons could easily alter a banner’s decision-- whether they provide assistance in their liege's endeavors, maintain a neutral stance, or even rebel.

 

With that said, sworn and loyal banners of a region will continue in their duties of providing support and producing profit, even if they don’t rally to a Lord’s cause. Banners are still considered loyal, regardless if they choose to ignore the call to bare arms; it’s very rare for vassals to enter into conflict, if the reason doesn’t directly involve/benefit them. One can expect bannermen to fight if their liege’s household is in danger or their own well-being is at risk by invading troops, but they would likely refuse to involve themselves in petty squabbles. One of two scenarios are possible when conflict erupts in a region-- it either results from a legitimate or trivial reason.

Scenario 1 - Legitimate Reason:

Conflict that arises in a region due to grave and tremendous slights/crimes against a great house, and the threat of war upon a region’s soil will demand for this type of scenario. Vassals will rise to their lord’s aid without hesitation and instantly offer their support through resources and troops. Normally, the amount of support bannermen provide would rely upon rolls, but in this case, up to 75% of their numbers are guaranteed. The remaining 25% of troops will stay stationed at the banner’s seat to fortify their defenses.

Scenario 2 - Trivial Reason:

In the event the ambitious Lord Tully decides he wants Lord Waxley of the Vale’s lands, the banners of the Riverlands would be extremely apprehensive and ponder this endeavor with much thought. Unlike the immediate assistance by banners in the first scenario, this one will require dice rolls to determine whether aid is provided and how much of it is offered. Should the Lord make a call to bare arms, three steps are required for this procedure of Scenario 2:

 

  1. The Lord must choose which banners he wishes to provide him support.

  2. Once the banners are picked, the player will have to roll for each banner individually to determine which ones will accept this call to arms. Whether or not they accept will depend upon the player’s Presence stat, with the addition of class and talent modifiers. In-character roleplay will account for +/-1 modifiers too, such as having a parent from said banner household, marriage alliances, past history/feuds, etc. The player must achieve a roll below their modified Presence stat in order to receive support-- the successful banners will proceed to the next step.

  3. Lastly, the player will roll for each individual banner’s amount of support-- how many troops the banner lord decides to offer their liege. Once again, the amount of troops will be capped at 75%, as it would be realistic and logical for the banner lord to keep some soldiers positioned in their lands.

 

Percentage of Troops Provided

d20

25% of Troops

1-7

50% of Troops

8-14

75% of Troops

15-20

 

 

Additional Notes:

 

 

  • The rolls for loyalty and banner involvement during conflicts ONLY applies to NPC banners; PC bannermen are completely free to make their own decisions in regards to the above information.

  • In the event a great house lord has committed an unfavorable action and a rebellion among his banners is a possibility, then the result should be executed through roleplay of PC banners and collaboration with the story team.

 

 

 

PERSONAL COMBAT AND WORLD BATTLE SYSTEM

ARMY MOVEMENT

 

The movement of troops from one location to another is an important component of war. Because of this, Lords who wish to move an army from point A to point B must undergo checks for movement of their army. A small based unit will be much easier to conceal and move quicker, though at a severe disadvantage if found by the enemy. A larger sized unit will be harder to conceal, move slower yet pack a punch when encountering an enemy.

To keep the feel of ‘war’ intertwined into the story on the sim, those who have failed to roll successful movement checks will have reports arrive to King’s Landing of armies in movement, the direction and a general phrasing as to how many soldiers are move.

Example:

 

Lord Lightfoot is moving an army of 6000 swords from the shores of Dorne and

moving north toward the castle Vaith. Because of the size of the army, he is unable to hide his movement. Word reaches King’s Landing that Lord Lightfoot was last spotted leading a sizeable army north towards Vaith.

 

 

Size of Army

d20

0-250

15

250-500

14

500-1000

12

1000-1500

6

1500-3000

4

3000-4000

2

4000-5000

1

5000+

0

 

MECHANICS OF LARGE SCALE BATTLE 

Army Composition
Armies are now divided into three types of troops: (Preferably this is to be given in at the time of WBS submission within the form itself)

Infantry: Bog standard men-at-arms, no special rules apply to them. Usually outfitted with spears or pikes, but all manner of melee troops are under this banner.

Archers: Men with bows, crossbows, or even javelins. They have two special rules.

Range: Archers can attack at long distances, and so don't need to be standing next to troops to fire on them. Their specific range is up to admins in the moment.
Backup Weaponry: If archers are engaged in melee combat, they switch to their backup weapons. These are normally large dirks and the like. As a result, archers in melee suffer a -4 penalty to their ATK.
These two rules combine to make Archers a formidable offensive tool, as you can shoot wherever you need. The trade off is their extreme vulnerability if they're engaged. Protecting your archers is important!


Cavalry: Men mounted on horses. This can be anything from Dornish light cavalry to heavy Vale Knights. If it's riding a horse, it's cavalry. Cavalry have one special rule.

Charge: On the first combat round after moving, Cavalry receive a +4 bonus to their ATK. The unit they are charging receive a -4 penalty to their DEF against the charging unit. If Cavalry charge into Infantry that are both facing them and not currently fighting anyone, the Charge bonus and penalty do not apply. Instead, the charging Cavalry receive a -4 penalty to their DEF, and the Infantry receive a +4 bonus to their ATK.
This is meant to model the extreme power of Cavalry crashing into a unit by giving them a far greater chance to successfully cause casualties. However the bonuses are flipped to the defending side if Cavalry charge a waiting and ready infantry, to represent them setting spears into the charge. This should keep Cavalry power in check by giving them a firm tactical counter.



Base Mechanics

The basic rolls are very similar, but how things affect casualties are different. Note: For this section, if it says "Martial" it means "Martial + Martial Modifiers"

Attack Roll is made.
If Dice Roll < Martial: Successful attack is made. Move on to defense rolls.
If Dice Roll > Martial: Unsuccessful attack. Attackers take casualties equal to two times the difference between the Dice Roll and the attacking commander's Martial. ([Dice Roll - Martial]*2) (ex. If side A has 12 Martial and rolls a 16, they would lose 16-12 = 4, 4*2 = 8, so they would lose 8% of their men as casualties) .

Defense Roll is made
If Dice Roll < Martial: Successful defense is made, and the attack is mitigated. Defenders take casualties equal to the difference between the Attack Roll and the attacking commander's Martial. (ex. If side A has 12 Martial and rolled a 5, and side B successfully defended, side B would take 12-5=7% casualties).
If Dice Roll > Martial: Unsuccessful defense is made. Defenders take casualties equal to two times the difference between the Attack Roll and the attacking commander's Martial. (ex. If side A has 12 Martial and rolled a 5, and side B failed to defend, side B would take 12-5=7, 7*2 = 14% casualties).
If Dice Roll < Martial AND Dice Roll < Attack Roll: A successful counter attack was made. Attackers take casualties equal to half the difference between the Defense Roll and the Attack Roll. (ex. If side A rolled a 10 to attack, and side B defended with a 5, side A would take 10-5=5% casualties)

Casualty calculation is now done a little differently! It's based off of dice differences, so a little more math, but it allows for more variety in outcomes, with some attacks being barely successful at all, and some being wildly so. This should make rolling a 20 dreadful, and rolling a 1 amazing, as how much you fail/succeed by now matters far more.

One round of combat has each side attacking and each side defending. These attack and defenses both occur BEFORE casualties for the round are determined, which happens last. As that's the case, the order of who attacks first in a round doesn't really matter, as both will attack before casualties are applied.

Casualties
There are two new things about casualties. The first is that Casualties are now calculated as a percentage of the attackers, rather than of the force losing men. This is bolded because this is a major, major change. To give an example of what that would mean, if side A has 1000 men and side B has 500 men, if side B takes 10% casualties, they will lose 10% of side A's strength in men. In this case, that would be 1000*10% = 100 men. This has two primary purposes. One is to represent a diminished capacity to do harm as a force dwindles, and the other is to have a numbers advantage actually mean something concrete. If you've got twice the men as your enemy has, you're suddenly doing (on average) twice as many casualties to them. That is an incredibly difficult (but not impossible) hurdle to get over, which is a pretty realistic scenario for a force outnumbered 2:1 to be in. Something to consider perhaps is in VERY large disparities (200 men vs 20,000 men), limiting how many people can actually get close enough to attack, and basing casualties off that number rather than the total force number.

The second casualty change is the following: Casualties are no longer just dead people. Casualties can also be people who are injured too much to continue fighting. With that in mind, after a fight each side will roll a single die. They will recover 20% + half the dice roll (rounded up) of their total losses. (ex. if you roll a 17 on the die, your side will recover 17/2 = 8.5, rounded up = 9 + 20 = 29% of your total losses.) The 20% are those with somewhat superfluous injuries, and the dice roll are those with more severe injuries. Admins can decide to deny the roll or the entire recovery action depending on circumstances. (A force that was surrounded and killed to a man doesn't recover any men at all, for example, and a force that has disease rampant in its camps might only recover the 20% as all the severely wounded people would take to infection). This serves two purposes as well. One, it models injuries and puts importance on RP regarding recovery (to get bonuses and the like), and two, it allows us to have higher casualty battles without forever crippling both sides.


All casualty rolls in any circumstance are rounded up to the nearest man. 

Movement

In some scenarios (particularly ones involving archers), movement needs to be modeled. This is going to be a very simple abstraction. A unit can give up its attack to move. Admins will determine how far away things are and how many rounds of movement it might take to reach somewhere. Commanders should have free access to this knowledge before a final decision is made on if they should move or not. Note: Moving is not instant. If you give movement orders to a unit who is currently engaged in melee combat, the enemy forces will still get to attack them that round.

Morale

Morale checks are very simple. It's a simple pass/fail based on if you roll below your Presence stat. The specific consequences/benefits are determined by the circumstances of rolling, but there is one consistent morale check will always be asked for. If at any point in time a unit's total casualties exceed 50% of their original force, a morale check is called for. If they succeed, they continue to fight as normal. If they fail, that unit retreats. This same check can also be called if ever a unit loses more than 25% of their original force in one round.

Additionally, a commander can attempt to stabilize a routed unit with a morale check. This check is made with a -4 penalty to PRE. If the check is successful, the routed unit regroups and is able to be given orders again next round. If the check fails, the routed unit engages in a Disorderly Retreat (See below). Regardless of if the unit regroups or not, it can not be ordered to do anything the round after it is routed, and will abandon its place in the line and move away from the front lines during that round. This is to ensure a failed morale check to hold against massive casualties always hurts, even if you manage to make them regroup. It will at the very least leave some of your men unable to attack for a round and also leave a big hole in your line that could potentially be exploited.

Admins might also decide that a morale check is needed for other reasons (pushing into an intimidating force, going on a suicide mission, anything they feel warrants a check). It's up to them to determine the consequences/benefits on a case by case basis. 

Retreat

At any time a Commander can call for a unit to retreat. Doing so means rolling a morale check. If the morale check is successful, the unit moves and then engages in an Orderly Retreat. If the morale check is unsuccessful, the unit moves and then engages in a Disorderly Retreat.

Orderly Retreat: The unit pulls back as a unit, and leaves the battlefield in good order. After incurring any attacks during its move as normal, the unit is removed from the battlefield safely.
Disorderly Retreat: The unit turns tail and runs off the battlefield. The unit automatically fails any defense rolls it needs to make during its turn, including against any attacks that were given during its move for the turn. If the unit that engages in a Disorderly Retreat is still in melee range of an enemy, that enemy gets an immediate extra attack that does not count as its attack that round. The unit automatically fails its defense roll, should it need one. 

Units and Grouping

While it's often easier to just roll once for everyone and that's that, sometimes you'll need to break down units into sub groups that act independently. This is most common with Archers/Cavalry/Infantry all acting separately, but there are occasions one might wish to split some of those groups up further. This is fully acceptable provided those units have different orders. All troops of the same type in the same area with the same orders should be rolled together to lighten the amount of rolls needed. Units all get one attack per round, as normal, and will deal casualties based on the unit size and not the army size. The new casualty rules means there's no difference between one attack from 1000 men and one attack each from two groups of 500 men. This means splitting up an army into units only gives more control to what troops are doing, and not more power in an absolute sense. This additional control comes at a slight risk, however, as the smaller a unit is the more susceptible to casualty-based morale check it is.

Skirmishes

We're moving onto meta rules governing battles now. There are three types of meta-rules (four if you count sieges), and these are based off what the commanders of each side wish to do. If commanders both want a skirmish, follow the skirmish rules. If they both want a battle, follow the battle rules. If one side wants a skirmish and the other wants a battle, follow the Harrying Action rules. 

Skirmish rules should be rather familiar to anyone who's looked at the Martial page. Three rounds of combat occur, per the basic mechanics. Between the second and third round, a morale check is done by both sides. A successful check returns 10% of casualties to active fighting condition, while a failed check results in 5% of the skirmish force that failed retreating. Note: If the morale check is successful, the amount of troops who returned are later subtracted from the total casualties recovered at the end of the fight. These are wounded men who already returned to service, no double dipping.

After three rounds, whoever has more troops remaining are declared the winner and achieve their objective, should they have one, or simply bask in the glory of a successful skirmish, should they not have had a specific objective. The losing side will do an Orderly Retreat. 

Harrying Actions

If one side wants to skirmish but the other wants to engage in a pitched battle, the skirmish forces will simply be harrying the enemy. There isn't really a "winner" or "loser" declared in these actions, after three rounds the harrying force will do an Orderly Retreat. Harrying Actions otherwise act exactly like Skirmishes, and follow the same three round, one morale check structure. This is basically just a skirmish that one side automatically "loses" because it doesn't want to commit troops. However, Harrying Actions with archers in particular can be an effective way to whittle down an opponent before a fight, with some risk involved. 

Battles

If both sides wish to enter into a pitched battle, then battle is met. Winners aren't determined at the end of rounds, but rather when one side retreats (voluntarily or otherwise) or is killed to a man. The Battle will simply keep going until one of those two conditions is met. This is a pitched battle, and so so long as the commander can keep control of his troops, they have every right to continue pushing and pushing. With that in mind, there's no round limit. It goes until one side gives up, just like a proper battle should.

Sub-Combat and Sub-Commanders

Large combats can (and should) be broken up into smaller combats. It should be noted that these smaller combats are an abstraction, though, and so there should be free reign to affect the other sub-battles, should on be succeeding well. This could be as simple as breaking off some men to go join another section of the line, or as strong as routing the enemy before them and turning on the the flank of the line next to them. All sub-combats should be kept to the same round count across the board, to ensure one doesn't rush through ten rounds in the time it takes another to go through five. How many sub-combats is really up to the size of the battle and how many sub-commanders each side can field. Each Sub-Combat is treated as its own combat with all that entails. Details on what happens in a sub-combat should be kept to just the sub-commanders of that battle, as well as the overall battle commanders. Sub-commanders of other parts of the line shouldn't be able to get a good idea of what's happening without the overall commander telling them.

Each sub-combat should have their own sub-commanders on each side. These should (ideally) be player characters. So long as Sub-Commanders are following the orders of their overall battle commander, they can chose to use either their own Martial/Presence stats or their commander's. This is another fancy two-fold reasoning situation. The first is that it lets people without super ideal stats still participate in battles without having to gimp an army's potential, and secondly it rewards sub-commanders who /do/ have good stats by allowing them to take far more initiative and seize opportunities as they see them, because they don't have to worry as much about using their own stats rather than their commander's.

Preparations and Further Bonuses

Lists of preparations should be submitted no later than 12 hours before a scheduled time for a battle. Admins will look over the lists both sides put in (if they put them in), and assign bonuses or penalties depending on their content. This can be as simple as a broad small bonus (Had a giant feast, +1 PRE for morale checks) or a very narrow one (Dug hidden traps along the left flank, armies attacking from that direction will take heavy losses and not be able to travel that way without difficulty), all depending on what preparation you do. Some preparations might need rolls, others might be denied outright due to time or feasibility or any number of other things. Everything should be sorted before the combat, however, and once the combat starts you can't argue for more preparation bonuses. 

In combat you can also earn additional bonuses, either from tactics or good RP or any number of other things. These are up to admins to decide on the spot, by and large. There are two more common bonuses that aren't admin-given, however:
Flanking: If you get a unit up on a unit's side and are attacking it from two directions at once, the unit gets a -2 Penalty on its DEF. Any unit attacking that unit in melee get a +2 Bonus on their ATK. This bonus increases to +3 and the penalty increases to -3 if the flanked unit is flanked from opposite sides (ex. front and back) rather than adjacent sides (ex. front and left side).
Envelopment: In the rare situation that a unit is completely surrounded, it must take a morale check. If it is successful, it continues to fight. If it is unsuccessful, the unit lays down arms and yields. If the enveloped unit continues to fight, it gains a +2 Bonus on their ATK and a -4 penalty on its DEF. Any units attacking it in melee gain a +2 Bonus on their ATK. Men backed into a corner fight harder, hence the bonus to attack. However, it's very difficult to defend in such a circumstance, and so they incur a massive penalty. Attacks gain a large (though not as large as an opposite flank) bonus to attack for that same reason. The bonus isn't as big as an opposite flank due to the successful morale check changing the formation of the enveloped unit so that they're all facing outwards.

This is a purely player proposed system that has held up well in many tests so far. 

 

NPC Stats involved :

 

NPC Lord/Commander Stats :

Offense - 6
Mitigation - 6
Endurance - 5
Martial - 5
Presence - 5

Damage: 3
(No special modifiers)

 

NPC Guard Stats : (For personal combat mostly.)

Offense - 6
Mitigation - 6
Endurance - 8
Martial - 3
Presence - 3

Damage: 2
(No special modifiers)

 


ROLEPLAY is KEY and it can change the tide of battle in any phase. It is the -sole- factor that determines on the spot modifiers that may affect battle like strategic locations and war tactics, time of the day and such. For fairness, the concerned parties will be part of the process in determining these modifiers and a commonly accepted set that will be applied on time of actual confrontation will be arrived at and documented in the most transparent manner possible. 


Personal Combat amid the Commanders is optional but when Roleplayed well, it can be quite the satisfactory experience, provided it stays withing limits of reason. In such cases, points from stats of individuals may be affected by the tide of battle.