Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
TheWorldSmith

Defensive, Balanced, and Parrying.

Recommended Posts

Scenario:

You have a sword and shield. You're being attacked - and you get to make a Parry test.

While parrying with your Shield, you gain the bonus from both the sword and the shield (the Balanced and Defensive qualities), but if you were to parry with your sword you'd only get the bonus from Balanced.

 

True or false?

 

If False:

Why?

Please cite sources. ^^

 

A post on Reddit prompted my thinking, and I can't find anything to the contrary; that the Balanced Quality helps you parry with other weapons, and that the Defensive quality only helps it's own weapon.

Edited by TheWorldSmith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I say True for the second part (parry with sword only) and I want to say False for the first part (stacking Balanced and Defensive) however I can't seem to find a specific reference that says that those two qualities don't stack. It is my understanding that you need to select a weapon with which you will attempt a parry but I can't find a single section that stipulates that you can select only one.

 

Balanced:

Carefully weighted, the weapon moves naturally with the user, making his parries more successful. Balanced weapons grant a +10 bonus to Weapon Skill tests made to Parry. Even if the wielder is using multiple Balanced weapons, he only gains the bonus once.

 

Defensive:

A Defensive weapon, such as a shield, is intended to be used to block attacks and is awkward when used to attack. A weapon with this quality grants a +15 bonus to tests made when used to Parry, but imposes a –10 penalty on tests to make attacks with it.

 

Balanced specifically says that it doesn't stack with two different Balanced weapons but it doesn't mention anything about the Defensive quality. As you mention, Defensive only helps when the shield is used to parry which implies that you need to select a weapon to do so. A parry that doesn't use the shield does not gain the benefits of the Defensive quality. However, the parry skill also states that "Parry is the ability to block attacks in close combat, deflecting them using one’s hands or weapons" (emphasis mine). This wording seems to indicate that you can use multiple weapons to parry which in most cases would not grant you any significant bonus. The only weapon qualities that improve parry is Balanced and Defensive and they've already emphasised that Balanced does not stack with itself. The absence of a similar rule to prevent stacking of Defensive and Balanced seems to be an oversight.

 

In summary, I would say that by RAW you could use both Defensive and Balanced qualities from two different weapons in a parry however I think RAI might swing in the negative. It seems odd that the bonuses from a dual-wield sword parry is not allowed but a sword and shield combo is not only possible but also superior.

 

An interesting point to note is that you can attempt a parry attempt against any attacks made against you in melee. I'll quote the relevant section from the errata below but any attack made against you in melee, regardless of whether it is a melee attack (sword) or a ranged attack (pistol), can be parried. So your shield and sword combo by RAW can be used to parry a pistol shot to great effect if both of you are in melee.

 

 

Question: If a pistol weapon is used in melee combat, can the defender make an Evasion reaction using Parry (page 220)?
Answer: Yes, a pistol can be Parried in melee combat. It’s not the defender deflecting the shot so much as he is knocking the weapon away so the shot misses him, though. As an additional note concerning Parrying attacks, any melee weapon can be used with the Parry skill, not just swords. As a weapon with the Balanced quality, swords gain a bonus to making a Parry skill test, but you could try to Parry with an axe, a staff, or even the butt of an autogun for example.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All I can do is disagree with your reasoning, as reasonable as it might be. (And I thank you for having it well-explained and thought out!)

 

Needing to select which weapon is parrying does not mean that another bonus from a different source cannot be applied, as I think you said? Which further leads me to find the result of your reasoning as... Flawed? As RAW I would deduct that they are stackable with each other, although not themselves, and that that is RAI as well.

 

It's odd that two Balanced weapons couldn't help you, but a combination of Balanced and Defensive could, but that's easily reasoned as an incentive to go with a more defensive loadout that the offensive loadout that having two Balanced weapons would imply - as a notion of balancing and an effort to make all options viable in different avenues and angles.

 

If we're to talk about wording, the fact that Defensive is written specifically in reference to it's own weapon (and that Balanced is not) seems to be crucial, and a very-much intentional wording - if not well explained. That being said, writers of these RPGs seem to have a lot of trouble explaining things openly, but I imagine every individual has a problem with that given they know what they mean and intend and that it isn't necessarily obvious.

Edited by TheWorldSmith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the trick with how Defensive and Balanced interact is dependent on how many weapons an individual could feasibly use in a parry. The parry skill certainly indicates that you can use multiple weapons or limbs to parry a strike and Balanced negates the specific double-up from two Balanced weapons. I assumed that the restriction for gaining the bonuses of two Balanced weapons was intended to apply to other instances of stacking parry bonuses but I have nothing to back up that assertion.

 

By RAW you could technically dual wield shields and stack the Defensive qualities for a tasty +30 to parry simply because Defensive doesn't say anything about cancelling a second instance of itself. Sure you'd be effectively useless in close combat but you could be a very effective tank because I think the extra DR from shields also stacks. Be a feral worlder and get a shoulder-mounted weapon MIU or ballistic mechadendrite and you could have a fairly good character for fighting melee enemies. I vaguely recall that another mechadendrite also had the Balanced quality when used to parry if you wanted some extra cheese.

 

In any case, I agree that RAW would allow a sword and board parry combo at +25. I don't know if that was intended by the designers but I can't claim to know what they were thinking at the time. The specific exclusion of the Balanced double-up is what led me to believe that they didn't intend for multiple sources of parry bonuses to stack but that's just conjecture on my part. Dual wielding swords is a fairly common thing in 40K and RPGs in general so it's a shame that they didn't allow for those bonuses to stack.

Edited by Popdart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

By RAW you could technically dual wield shields and stack the Defensive qualities for a tasty +30 to parry simply because Defensive doesn't say anything about cancelling a second instance of itself.

 

The bonus from Defensive only applies when that specific shield is being used to Parry. You can't parry with two weapons at the same time, and have to elect one, meaning only one instance of Defensive can ever apply.

 

As for why Balanced couldn't apply with itself, other than general balancing reasons, I reckon it's because after the first sword the effect of balancing the user is extremely diminished - and certainly means that Defensive+Balanced is much more valuable for parrying and blocking blows, just like in  the real world.

 

Going with two swords could be more defensive than it is, but a different of 5 is inconsequential, and would leave shields in the dust with no need to ever pick them up. I reckon the intent is to allow Balanced weapons to give a bonus to blocking in two-weapon-fighting, but also to give the user more offensive potential, while leaving the Shield+Sword combo to be the more defensive option? (And as it should be & is, me thinks.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can't parry with two weapons at the same time, and have to elect one, meaning only one instance of Defensive can ever apply.

 

I'd like to see your source for that because I could not find a specific rule or description that said you could only use one weapon to parry. I originally assumed that there was a limitation but the description of parry certainly implies that you could use multiple weapons. After all, that's part of the assumption on how Balanced would be able to work with a Defensive shield. If you couldn't use your sword when parrying with your shield, I don't believe that you could benefit from the Balanced quality. It wouldn't make sense to get a passive bonus from an item when you don't even use it for the relevant skill test.

 

The Balanced quality even implies that a character could use multiple Balanced weapons when parrying and it specifically prohibits the multiple bonuses from stacking. Defensive weapons on the otherhand have no restriction and I haven't seen anything that says that you are unable to parry with more than one weapon, hence you could technically double shield parry + medicae mechadendrite with the Balanced bonus on top. If you were limited to only using one weapon, I don't see why they bothered to include the extra restriction on Balanced weapons as it wouldn't have been an issue in the first place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We need to make a clear separation between items that you parry with, and items that give benefits to parry - if that makes sense?

 

With qualities like Defensive and Power Field, you have to be using that specific weapon when parrying to gain their bonuses. Balanced, on the other hand, gives bonuses to parry but makes no issue about it having to be the weapon being used.

 

I also fail to see how Parry, in it's description, encourages the idea that you can use more than one weapon?

 

Do I have two weapons out? Yes. One is Balanced, and one has a Power Field. Which am I using to Parry with? Well, the Power Field of course, because then I can use it's bonus while also getting the Balanced bonus from the other weapon - But wait! Is that shiny loot I spy? Hah! Nevermind - I'll use the other weapon instead of parrying with my Power Field.

 

Make sense? Balanced seems to me as though it helps you to Balance your character, something crucial to blocking, riposting, and parrying - even if the weapon isn't being directly used to Parry, it's still relevant to the Parry test.

 

It's implied that you're picking one weapon to parry with, to gain that weapons effects, while other bonuses that help with Parrying (which don't need to be the parrying weapon) may still apply.

Edited by TheWorldSmith

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I also fail to see how Parry, in it's description, encourages the idea that you can use more than one weapon?

 

I also fail to see how Parry stipulates that you can't use more than one weapon. Heck, you could use anything that resembles a melee weapon, even if it's the butt of a gun, a metal girder, or just your bare hands, during a parry test and I cannot see anything that says that you can't use more than one weapon. Mechanically, using multiple weapons is unlikely to grant you a higher bonus to parry than using just one and the sword and shield scenario is an instance of a higher bonus because the character chose a more more defensive set of equipment .

 

Perhaps their logic was that it's easier to move your balanced weapon out of the way of your parrying weapon...

 

That logic would make sense if Unbalanced weapons also provided a passive penalty to parry tests. As it stands, Unbalanced only applies a penalty when the weapon is used during the parry. I would have thought that if Balanced provided a passive bonus then Unbalanced would apply a passive penalty. The difference in phrasing between the two qualities indicates that either Balanced operates completely differently to any other quality that modifies parry tests (passive vs active) or Balanced is intended to operate on the same basis, ie. Balanced weapons must be used during the parry.

 

I think the sentence "Balanced weapons grant a +10 bonus to Weapon Skill tests made to Parry." should have included "when using this weapon" at the end. It seems very odd that Balanced operates on a different set of rules compared to any other weapon quality that modifies Parry tests and I don't know if that was intended.

 

This distinction is only required if Parry prohibits the use of more than one weapon during the Parry test. I have not seen anything that restricts the use of more than one weapon and I'd like to see a source or a part of the rulebook that says that Parry only allows one weapon to be used.

 

We need to make a clear separation between items that you parry with, and items that give benefits to parry - if that makes sense?

 

I understand the separation but I'm struggling to find another instance outside of cybernetics and consumables where items grant bonuses to skill tests without the item being used. If you're able to locate any such examples, I would appreciate the comparison because otherwise the Balanced quality appears to be an anomaly in how it operates.

Edited by Popdart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...