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Author Topic: Maul and war hammer do subdual damage?  (Read 9074 times)
Albertorius
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« Reply #120 on: January 15, 2012, 05:19:46 AM »

Again, we view unborn and undead and such as immune to subdual because they don't ever sleep and can't fall unconscious. It sounds like your issues are with the weapons in question being used primarily to knock folks out rather than kill them, which is fine. All that's required is to switch those damage types to lethal.
It's not that. It's the mental image of a 'forged being hit by a big, nasty warhammer (or by dozens of them) while he is leisurely sit, sipping tea while reading the Korranberg Chronicle's morning edition  Grin.
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« Reply #121 on: January 15, 2012, 05:42:45 AM »

Again, we view unborn and undead and such as immune to subdual because they don't ever sleep and can't fall unconscious. It sounds like your issues are with the weapons in question being used primarily to knock folks out rather than kill them, which is fine. All that's required is to switch those damage types to lethal.
It's not that. It's the mental image of a 'forged being hit by a big, nasty warhammer (or by dozens of them) while he is leisurely sit, sipping tea while reading the Korranberg Chronicle's morning edition  Grin.

Same difference, honestly.
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Patrick Kapera
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« Reply #122 on: January 15, 2012, 06:52:49 AM »

Y'know, it might be a good idea to take everything you've written in this thread, condense it down and add it to the guidance bit of the errata. Having it written down that 'immunity to subudal damage' in many cases means 'immunity to being knocked unconscious' rather than 'immunity to being hit over the head with a large blunt object' and telling GMs outright that it's okay to treat subdual like lethal when it would make sense (f.ex. swinging a war hammer against a thin wooden door doesn't result in the war hammer bouncing off it) would do wonders to stave off the sort of confusion that prompted this thread.
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« Reply #123 on: January 15, 2012, 01:11:50 PM »

Again, we view unborn and undead and such as immune to subdual because they don't ever sleep and can't fall unconscious. It sounds like your issues are with the weapons in question being used primarily to knock folks out rather than kill them, which is fine. All that's required is to switch those damage types to lethal.
It's not that. It's the mental image of a 'forged being hit by a big, nasty warhammer (or by dozens of them) while he is leisurely sit, sipping tea while reading the Korranberg Chronicle's morning edition  Grin.
Well if he is sitting their sipping tea then the -4  when coveting to lethal damage won't matter much =)
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Albertorius
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« Reply #124 on: January 15, 2012, 02:17:54 PM »

It's not that. It's the mental image of a 'forged being hit by a big, nasty warhammer (or by dozens of them) while he is leisurely sit, sipping tea while reading the Korranberg Chronicle's morning edition  Grin.
Well if he is sitting their sipping tea then the -4  when coveting to lethal damage won't matter much =)
But the "half damage" part of that equation will, what with him having DR8 and all ^_^.
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« Reply #125 on: January 15, 2012, 03:46:46 PM »

Y'know, it might be a good idea to take everything you've written in this thread, condense it down and add it to the guidance bit of the errata. Having it written down that 'immunity to subudal damage' in many cases means 'immunity to being knocked unconscious' rather than 'immunity to being hit over the head with a large blunt object' and telling GMs outright that it's okay to treat subdual like lethal when it would make sense (f.ex. swinging a war hammer against a thin wooden door doesn't result in the war hammer bouncing off it) would do wonders to stave off the sort of confusion that prompted this thread.

We frequently make notes here about things to make sure we explain more clearly in future books. This is one such item.

I'll flag it as something to put into the next errata update as well. It's not truly a "change," per se, but some clarifications in there are helpful as well, so long as it doesn't get too cumbersome.
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Patrick Kapera
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« Reply #126 on: January 15, 2012, 09:01:32 PM »

While I like the idea of skeletons and such not ever becoming unconcious, maybe the simplest solution is to have the rules say what we want to happen - that is make the skeletons immune to becoming unconcious, not to subdual damage. Then beating the hell out of them with a maul would severly impair them as per several grades of fatigued (logically desirable result) without ever knocking them out (also thematically desirable result).

the only fine tuning required would be for fatigued to indicate any further damage is lethal - wether or not the character is unconcious. THen you could use a maul to litterally pound a skeleton into bone meal Grin.
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« Reply #127 on: January 16, 2012, 12:01:37 AM »

@ Morgenstern

I like that.  A very reasonable compromise between RAW, logic, thematic considerations and Rule 0.

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« Reply #128 on: January 16, 2012, 01:27:59 AM »

If subdual doesn't mean "knock unconscious," I don't see the point of the damage type.
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Patrick Kapera
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« Reply #129 on: January 16, 2012, 02:44:37 AM »

If subdual doesn't mean "knock unconscious," I don't see the point of the damage type.

Subdual still means 'knock unconscious', it's just that hitting a skeleton or an unborn over the head with a friggin' war hammer should do more than bounce off them, as they do currently. (See subdual damage affecting objects, and how you had to errata that one.) As it stands I think many groups rule zero certain subdual weapons to affect skeletons\unborn\others. As it stands I'd either let them convert the damage type without the attack penalty, or just outright treat the weapon as doing lethal damage against them.


While I like the idea of skeletons and such not ever becoming unconcious, maybe the simplest solution is to have the rules say what we want to happen - that is make the skeletons immune to becoming unconcious, not to subdual damage. Then beating the hell out of them with a maul would severly impair them as per several grades of fatigued (logically desirable result) without ever knocking them out (also thematically desirable result).

the only fine tuning required would be for fatigued to indicate any further damage is lethal - wether or not the character is unconcious. THen you could use a maul to litterally pound a skeleton into bone meal Grin.

Now, I'm not much for designing mechanics, but couldn't you do this by moving the 'subdual damage can eventually kill' bit from the damage type description to the fatigued condition description? After 'If a character with fatigued IV is fatigued again, he instead falls unconscious.' you add 'additionally, any further subdual damage becomes lethal damage instead.'

Still, I find the solution somewhat lacking, as you'd have to do enough subdual damage to cause the skeleton to fail 5 fortitude saves, and then deal enough damage to chew through vitality/wounds or cause a failed damage save. While the skeleton is fairly non-threatening by the time you begin chipping away at its vitality/causing damage saves (-8 STR and DEX and likely unable to move), it's still taking the subdual guy many times longer to down a skeleton than someone who uses a lethal-dealing weapon to begin with.
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« Reply #130 on: January 16, 2012, 03:12:08 AM »

I may be wrong, but everytime the problem has been raised, it was related to weapons, not the damage type itself. Maybe a different way to look at the thing would be to re-write how non-lethal weapons work. Or maybe just add a paragraph somewhere that says: "When a weapon's damage type is subdual, the wielder can always convert it to lethal without any damage penalty." (so they still suffer the attack penalty for not using the weapon to its best efficiency but not so much as when using a sword to deal nonlethal blows for instance) ... or something else that would "solve" or shed some light on the issue. I have no problem with the current rules (particularly since I use the "Set to Lethal" trick), but that's just some thoughts.
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Crafty_Pat
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« Reply #131 on: January 16, 2012, 06:14:09 AM »

Or, you know, leave everything as is and simply convert those damages to lethal if you like.

Sometimes simpler actually is better.
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Patrick Kapera
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« Reply #132 on: January 16, 2012, 01:28:42 PM »

Or add the spiked quality. Instant transfer to lethal within the rules. Ta da.
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« Reply #133 on: January 16, 2012, 10:22:37 PM »

You're my hero of the day, Coyote.
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« Reply #134 on: January 16, 2012, 10:37:06 PM »

Or add the spiked quality. Instant transfer to lethal within the rules. Ta da.

That does not solve the issue with the damage type and weapons themselves however. People will find ways to house rule it but there seems to be a disconnect between what the damage type is meant to do, weapon types and creatures themselves.Something being immune to being knocked out is not the same as something that is immune to subdual, if subdual can damage objects and brake bones.
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