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cpteveros

Ditching Dodge

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No, I will not be advocating for the end to everyone's favorite broken skill (it is, indeed, broken). Instead, I propose a change to how it works.

 

When somebody attempts to attack your character, and before they roll to hit, you declare that you will spend your Reaction to Dodge. You roll under your Dodge skill (Agility + whatever level Dodge you have), and tally up your Degrees of Success. For every DoS you made on your Dodge test, you impose a -5 penalty to their roll to hit. 

 

What this does:

1.) Nerfs the overpowered Dodge skill

2.) Correctly represents a character being harder to hit, rather than doing the Matrix to dodge bullets. 

 

Because it struck me as odd that somebody who is an incredible shot, aiming, and firing an accurate weapon (so, a +60) can roll an astounding success - and then have that snatched out of their hands by a Dodge roll after the fact. 

 

So what do you guys think?

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Well, that 'incredible shot' should probably have Inescapable Attack.  

 

On top of that, those degrees of success aren't going to get that high that often.  Assuming Agility 40, Dodge +10, that's a 50/50 chance of getting any degrees of success in the first place.  If your problem is players dodging constantly, use Inescapable Attack to throw a penalty on them.  

 

I totally disagree that Dodge is broken, though the only change I would make is have players declare dodges ahead of time instead of after they know if the enemy hit them or not.  

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Well, that 'incredible shot' should probably have Inescapable Attack.  

 

On top of that, those degrees of success aren't going to get that high that often.  Assuming Agility 40, Dodge +10, that's a 50/50 chance of getting any degrees of success in the first place.  If your problem is players dodging constantly, use Inescapable Attack to throw a penalty on them.  

 

I totally disagree that Dodge is broken, though the only change I would make is have players declare dodges ahead of time instead of after they know if the enemy hit them or not.  

 

Not many NPCs are built the way a player might build their character, and I tend to run them the way they are presented in the book - less arguments that way. It just doesn't make sense how someone who totally nails a shot should be entirely negated, simply because a human being somehow hopped out of the way of the (successful) bullet/laser/explosive shell.

 

The reason I find it broken stems from my OW campaign that ended recently, when half the party was Dodging under a 60-80 with Step Aside. Once you get up to a couple thousand XP, It really isn't a difficult level to reach if you have Agility, Finesse, and Defence (which any combat character would logically take). Thus making Warhammer 40k look like the Matrix on steroids. 

 

The point I'm making is that there ought to be an alternative way to use Dodge that doesn't mean penalizing players. Giving enemies extra Talents to negate your party's abilities defeats the purpose of taking those abilities, which makes the game less fun for everyone. 

Edited by cpteveros

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

 

This is actually how it did work at one point during the beta, but they ended up going back to the binary dodge.  

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

 

Uh, wouldn't that leave the attacker with 3 DoS?

 

Regardless, it seems like a contested roll with DoS vs DoS is a good way to go. You'd need to work out if dodge would get some penalties though, for compact areas and such.

Edited by Flail-Bot

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No, I will not be advocating for the end to everyone's favorite broken skill (it is, indeed, broken).

 

Well. it seems we don't play the same game.

 

Dodge was never OP and never saved people from death, unless they acted intelligently. Having a chance to dodge one attack from the many coming your way is not what I call broken.

 

I tried the "opposed" test as is suggested by bilateraltrope. The other end happen: no one ends up dodging and this become a waste of a skill.

 

 

At that point, I prefer your -5 by degrees of success, but even then...would be better to make dodge a talent that add a static maluse to all ennemies firing on you and be done with it.

 

 

There was a topic in hose rule, here, that had a lot of thinking/arguing in it (me in the first place haha), but maybe those thoughts can help you: https://community.fantasyflightgames.com/topic/191828-dodging-bullets/?hl=dodge

Edited by InquisitorAlexel

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Could Dodge (and Parry as well) be used better as passive skills than active skills? So rather than declaring your dodge against a certain attack, you could impose a passive penalty against anyone trying to target you equal to your Dodge rank ie. +20 Dodge turns into -20 for anyone trying to hit you. It would allow those super awesome hits to still go through provided they can wear the penalty.

 

I have no idea how well that would work with Temple Assassin though. Maybe allow the assassins the normal use of the Dodge skill, perhaps?

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

 

This is actually how it did work at one point during the beta, but they ended up going back to the binary dodge.  

 

 

And the reason was that the math doesn't work out well at all. It sounds good on paper but doesn't work in practice. Really wish I had saved that post...

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And the reason was that the math doesn't work out well at all. It sounds good on paper but doesn't work in practice. Really wish I had saved that post...

 

Me too.  I had previously been a proponent of contested dodging until I read that analysis.  I no longer remember anything about the argument, but I remember clearly that it completely changed my mind on the issue. 

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

 

I currently run 2 Dark Heresy games, 1 Rogue Trader and 1 Only War game that all use this approach.

 

In addition to this, we made a few additional adjustments:-

* As it made dodging slightly too hard, we brought in a talent called Evasive (might have been from the old beta) that gave you another DoS on a successful dodge.

* Walking fire had to allocate DoS from their attack pool onto each opponent, making hitting multiple opponents easier for them to dodge rather than overwhelming one with fire.

* Blast weapons allocated their DoS to each person hit, giving them an advantage for hitting tightly packed groups over full auto weapons (blast weapons were under used before this)

* Flame weapons rolled to hit then worked like blast weapons rather than using agility to dodge (this was probably the most debatable change)

 

This seems to make it all balanced out well, making the combats fun without high level fights turning into a dodgefest.

 

cps, I'd be interested to hear what it was about the maths that didn't work for you.

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Like Vorzakk I was totally on board with opposed dodge until I read the analysis, and I also don't remember any of the specifics. Short version someone better at statistics than most people (including the beta's authors) ran the numbers and showed very convincingly that opposed dodge is a bad idea for reasons that are non-obvious.

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Like Vorzakk I was totally on board with opposed dodge until I read the analysis, and I also don't remember any of the specifics. Short version someone better at statistics than most people (including the beta's authors) ran the numbers and showed very convincingly that opposed dodge is a bad idea for reasons that are non-obvious.

 

Fair enough, I vaguely remember those posts too. I'm guessing that the beta forums are long dead though. It'd be interesting if anyone did fancy running the numbers again though, as I'm fully prepared to be proved wrong on this.

 

As a little aside, if anyone does go down the DoS vs DoS route, make sure to apply the dodge bonuses for cover from the skills section of the book, as you want to make sure that dodgers can get situational bonus much the same as attacks can.

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Could Dodge (and Parry as well) be used better as passive skills than active skills? So rather than declaring your dodge against a certain attack, you could impose a passive penalty against anyone trying to target you equal to your Dodge rank ie. +20 Dodge turns into -20 for anyone trying to hit you. It would allow those super awesome hits to still go through provided they can wear the penalty.

 

It would be a way to see it. We should run the maths, because normally, dodge apply for one attack a turn, not all.

 

 

 

 

 
As a little aside, if anyone does go down the DoS vs DoS route, make sure to apply the dodge bonuses for cover from the skills section of the book, as you want to make sure that dodgers can get situational bonus much the same as attacks can.

 

That was the main problem: you could get +30 for point blank, +10 to aim half aim, +10 to single shot, and you add a 30bs mook having 70% hit vs 35% dodge and the guy couldn't hope to dodge unless very lucky.

 

In my games, players never dodge, even those maxed up with agility and dodge skill, because it was too harsh that way.

 

Honestly, the limited number of dodges in a game make for the strenght of the skill taken separetely, make your adversaries combine on an ennemy to drop his dodges for the coup de grâce to touch the character, it will be more strategic and let the player uses his skill.

Edited by InquisitorAlexel

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Whenever someone tells me; Skill X is broken because all of my players max it out and it's too powerful I usually end up at the same answer: Why are ALL of your players spending that many points on the same skill? Are you not challenging their other abilities enough? Do you understand the limitations of said skill?

Dodge is an important COMBAT skill but is not unbeatable in any way! Consider the following:

1.) Dodge IS an opposed DOS when dealing with hits from semi and automatic weapons.

2.) Evasions (Dodge/Parry) are NOT ALLOWED if target of attack is surprised.

3.) Dodge is NOT ALLOWED when dealing with weapons with blast radii unless the character's normal movement can move them o/s the blast radius. (Small rooms and frag grenades are a problematic mixture!)

4.) Dodge is NOT ALLOWED when attacked from overwatch.

None of these conditions require any special skill or talent to take advantage of! All deprive the dodge monkey of his favorite skill!

What's the problem?

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Dodge isn't usable against counter attack either.

 

 

Even maxing out a character, for example a 70 agility (rolled 45 and bought the 5 advance) + dodge +30, giving you a 99% dodge with step aside, you still can only dodge 2 attacks a turn in limited conditions.

I don't see how broken this is. PCs are supposed to be the few against the many, and they should have sometimes more than 2 hits against them, which put them in very big danger.

 

 

And this situation is very costly in XP and won't happen until very very very very late game, and if the character was very very very lucky at character creation.

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Not really necessary Alox. Players who min/max dodge are likely to ignore things like awareness ( an int. Based skill). Being unaware of the heretic thug that takes you down with no dodge is just embarrassing! Consider the following: Thug bs is say 30. + short rng (+10), + target unaware (+30) - 10 (autogun full auto) + aim (+10 half action) equals full auto attack with no dodge from thug with 70 total bs! Bad day for dodge monkey!

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I should have probably written the original post differently, as I see from the reactions in the thread that it confused the point I was trying to make. I don't have a problem with using tactics or other actions besides move/shoot/run (in fact, people should already be doing this). Where I take issue is with Dodge outright negating an otherwise successful attack roll after it is made.

 

I don't mean to "nerf" Dodge to make it easier to hurt PCs or defeat a "dodge monkey," I've got plenty of tricks up my sleeve to do just that. My intention was to brainstorm a different way for Dodge to work for everyone in a way that doesn't take away from a successful hit.

 

It doesn't make sense in my head that you get hit and then somehow hop out of the way of the successful hit after the fact. If I am trying to dodge someone shooting at me, I am going to dodge whether or not I think that person is going to hit - not wait until I know that the next shot would be successful if I don't jump one meter to the side. 

 

Do you see what I mean?

 

Whether or not it is an opposed DoS test or a negative modifier before they make the shot doesn't matter all that much. Dodge just shouldn't take away a successful roll after it is made - regardless of who makes it. 

 

EDIT: wow, synonyms for grab are blurred out. I should've seen that one coming, changed to "take"

Edited by cpteveros

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Do you see what I mean?

 

Yes.

 

 

 

 

 Dodge just shouldn't take away a successful roll after it is made - regardless of who makes it. 

 

Then don't describe/narrate it this way. 

 

Your NPC rolls to hit your player, you tell your player that shots are aimed at him and will clearly hit him, unless he reacts correctly.

 

"I roll dodge and succeed"

 

"At the last moment, ennemy fires ripped through the air you were standing in a microsecond before, missing you close"

 

 

 

"I roll to hit the Great Chaos Sorcerers and have 3 levels of success"

 

*Roll to dodge for chaos sorcerer - success - *

 

"Unfortunately, while your shots where well aimed, the ennemy sensed your manoeuvrer and got out of the way before you finished squeezing the trigger"

 

 

 

 

 

I should have probably written the original post differently, as I see from the reactions in the thread that it confused the point I was trying to make

 

On my side, your intentions were very clear, I was much more discussing the general points brought by other members here! ;)

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Spending your reaction on a dodge only for the incoming attack to jam isn't going to feel good for anyone. How about this alternative:

 - Attacker rolls their attack. Takes not of how many DOS he got.

 - If they hit, defender may choose to spend a reaction to roll dodge.

 - Each DOS on the dodge roll reduces the DOS on the attack roll by 1.

 - Attacker then uses that final DOS to calculate how many hits he gets.

 

For example, if the attacker was using a single shot weapon and rolled 6 DOS while the defender rolled 3 DOS on the dodge, the attacker still had one DOS after the dodge so the hit still happens.

 

This is actually how it did work at one point during the beta, but they ended up going back to the binary dodge.  

 

 

And the reason was that the math doesn't work out well at all. It sounds good on paper but doesn't work in practice. Really wish I had saved that post...

 

 

Pity. Though I realise that no games do it the way I suggested. Generally I see one of three methods:

 - DH method. Attacker rolls, with the targets stats usually not affecting the roll. Then, if hit, defender uses one of their limited defence options.

 - D&D method. The attacker rolls, with the targets stats affecting what they need for the roll. The higher the targets AC, the better the attacker needs to roll in order to hit.

 - Opposed roll method. Every attack is an opposed roll between the attackers attack roll and the targets defence roll. So the target can attempt a dodge against every single attack. In some, the target must make a defence roll.

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