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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Combat Skill Levels can done any one of the following per phase:

 

Add OCV

Add DCV

Add Damage.

 

The type of CSL you have purchased, at what level and to what you've stated it applies to determines which of the three can be used when.

 

For Example:

3pts +1 Combat Skill Level with Karate

 

As long as I am using a Martial Manuveur that is part of my Karate Martial Art I can add +1 OCV, or +1 DCV or 1 Damage Class. This start when I allocate it during my Phase, and it stays allocated until my next Phase occurs.

 

Is there a specific point in the book we can help clarify?

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

That's a fairly broad question. Basically during each of a characters' phases they can opt to apply their combat skill levels to their DCV, OCV for an attack or some combination of the two so long as the total bonus applied does not exceed the total number of levels possessed and that the levels are only applied as appropriate (HtH levels for HtH attacks, DCV levels to DCV, Levels with Pistols to ... and so on). If you have or can make multiple attacks in a single phase, I believe you must choose which attacks your OCV bonuses will apply to but that you can opt to divide your bonus between attacks.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Can anyone explain to me how combat skill levels work when applied in combat in a game. Thanks. I'm really confused on it.

 

Depends on how they're applied. As ghost-angel says you have a few options (although it takes 2 CSLs to add a damage class, not one).

 

Basically, assuming you have 2 All Combat Levels, you have the following options during any given Phase:

 

1. Put both levels into OCV, improving your chance of hitting your target.

2. Put both levels into DCV, decreasing the change of anyone hitting you.

3. Put one level in OCV and one in DCV, improving your accuracy a little and decreasing your chance of getting hit a little.

4. Put both levels into damage, increasing the damage you do. Exactly how this works depends on the campaign you are in. In heroic games it just adds an extra DC to the attack. In superheroic games it adds 3 STUN to the damage on normal attacks or 1 BODY for killing attacks, but damage can't exceed the max damage for the attack.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

quick question on that: some PC's in my campaign have taken 6 CSL's with a given weapon, and are basically claiming +6 OCV with that weapon. Is this a legal use of Combat Skill Levels?

 

It is becoming difficult to field any enemies against them that they can't hit almost every time without fail.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

quick question on that: some PC's in my campaign have taken 6 CSL's with a given weapon, and are basically claiming +6 OCV with that weapon. Is this a legal use of Combat Skill Levels?

 

It is becoming difficult to field any enemies against them that they can't hit almost every time without fail.

 

Your problem is because...

HERO uses a point based as opposed to a level based advancement system. As a result, you can end up with over-streamlined builds if some type of campaign guidlines aren't enforced (maximum/range of CV, DC, Def, etc...).

 

A more immediate solution might be...

Depending on the type of game (heroic or superheroic) making that particular weapon unavailable or ineffective. (If the character has 6 2pt levels with swords just have his sword get broken/stolen and say the next town doesn't have a swordsmith. they only have axes and spears.)

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Your problem is because...

HERO uses a point based as opposed to a level based advancement system. As a result, you can end up with over-streamlined builds if some type of campaign guidlines aren't enforced (maximum/range of CV, DC, Def, etc...).

 

A more immediate solution might be...

Depending on the type of game (heroic or superheroic) making that particular weapon unavailable or ineffective. (If the character has 6 2pt levels with swords just have his sword get broken/stolen and say the next town doesn't have a swordsmith. they only have axes and spears.)

 

Or give the enemy +15 resistant PD, only against swords. Yes, you will always hit...

 

A Swordbreaker spell, perhaps?

 

There's also nothing wrong with using the same tactic against them. If the opponent also has 6 levels with his weapon, he'll always hit. Maybe he doesn't need 6 levels to hit, so he can use them for something else.

 

Perhaps the enemy refuses to close in - they'll just fire arrows from a distance. Good luck hitting with your sword from 30 meters away - 6 levels or not!

 

The bottom line is that there are lots of ways to make "always hit" far less than "always win".

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

but before doing all that, you might wanna talk to them about it first, saying something along the lines that you didn't really realize that +6 OCV would be so unbalancing and maybe some points could be refunded and spent elsewhere.

 

i just feel that is on the way to a more permanent solution and could be a lot less frustrating for everyone around.

 

i mean, it's cool to temporarily screw a PC by taking away his sword, but to do so everytime you want to challenge that PC would get old and frustating, and the PC might just start trying to get +6 with every weapon..

 

"NOW i have +6 ocv with swords, spears, and axes!"

"too bad that last night those theiving pixies stole all your spears, swords, and axes, just before the gaint owl attack!"

 

"wow, that was a hard fight without my weapons, now to head into town and get a new one."

"too bad that the town doesn't make swords, spears, or axes! only sling shots!"

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

quick question on that: some PC's in my campaign have taken 6 CSL's with a given weapon, and are basically claiming +6 OCV with that weapon. Is this a legal use of Combat Skill Levels?

 

It is becoming difficult to field any enemies against them that they can't hit almost every time without fail.

 

Yes, that's legal so long as they've spent the right points. A +6 with swords will cost more than a +6 with broadswords for example. What might not be "legal" is they're buying that many Levels. Does your campaign use any character building or experience spending guidelines that restrict the max OCV a character may have?

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

For what it's worth, +6 combat levels isn't necessarily unbalancing (low DEX characters might need that many just to have a decent chance of hitting), but if they've got decent base OCV/DCV (from a good DEX) and they're piling on 6 CSLs on top of that, then it can become problematic. Essentially the players have defined "competent in combat" as somewhere around 4-8 combat skill levels, so that's what all the villains should have (and those that are good at combat have even more).

 

I concur with the other posters that you should have a talk to your players first, but if they are insistent by all means go and give the villains the same. They defined the reality, after all. ;)

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

When I've run games I've usually been able to prevent things from getting unfairly weighted toward the players. The way I see it, when you see the players winning without feeling as if they've earned it, you have a few basic options.

 

1. Admit you were wrong to permit a power and nerf it (I shy from this one, since studies have shown that except under laboratory conditions I'm never wrong)

2. Create a symetrical balancing factor to bring events back under control (I.E. more DCV to keep villans from getting hit so much, more defenses to make it matter less how often they get hit, etc.)

3. Create an asymmetrical balancing factor to bring events back under control (I.E. put the party in a place where having a sword with you is cause for harrassment by the authorities, increase the incidence of ranged attacks used by opponents, villans use noncombat influence rather than brute force to exert their will on the party, etc.)

4. Take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

as I mentioned in other posts, this is my first time GM'ing. So thanks for the suggestions. Also, this is a setting with guns, to be clear.

 

Idea #1 : Resulted in general dismay "You'tre trying to nerf my character, all he has is high accuracy!" (+11 OCV+CSLs?!?)

 

#2 : Villans with absurdly high DCV, thugs and normal humans and other less competant enemies are no longer a factor in combat.

 

#3 : Worked, but similar reslult as #1 (can I have my gun back now, can I have my gun back now pleasepleaseplease?)

 

#4 : I think I've tried that.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Well, if the character is THAT good he probably has gotten the attention of some powerful people and/or organizations who's plans he and the party have foiled. They might consider hiring outside help (hired guns) of equal or supierior ability to this character. See most of Clint Eastwood's early westerns for examples of what I mean.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Well, if they manage to upset, say a powerful crime boss who doesn’t care about losing mooks just send in enough so they are outnumbered four or five to one. Then put them in hand to hand range. Even if your player drops the first one they are still outnumbered, facing multiple attackers (don’t forget that multiple attacker bonus) and the first thing they should do is grapple the player’s character. A successful grapple and the character can’t use the gun.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

as I mentioned in other posts, this is my first time GM'ing. So thanks for the suggestions. Also, this is a setting with guns, to be clear.

 

Idea #1 : Resulted in general dismay "You'tre trying to nerf my character, all he has is high accuracy!" (+11 OCV+CSLs?!?)

 

#2 : Villans with absurdly high DCV, thugs and normal humans and other less competant enemies are no longer a factor in combat.

 

#3 : Worked, but similar reslult as #1 (can I have my gun back now, can I have my gun back now pleasepleaseplease?)

 

#4 : I think I've tried that.

 

If all they have is high accuracy they are already nerfed because it would mean they don't do enough damage to their targets when they hit. Otherwise they'd have accuracy and damage potential. Of course, maybe they do have damage potential but they think that doesn't count because they didn't pay points for their guns.

 

You could try creating a group of equally disproportionate villains they could try to fight. One with even more accuracy than they have (with accuracy tricks bought as powers), one with enough armor their guns can't penetrate it, one who turns intangible so it doesn't matter if he gets hit, one who turns invisible, one who specialized in explosives or some other AoE attack, etc. If the heroes are all that accurate as a baseline, turn everything ridiculously anime and have some fun with it.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

as I mentioned in other posts, this is my first time GM'ing. So thanks for the suggestions. Also, this is a setting with guns, to be clear.

 

Idea #1 : Resulted in general dismay "You're trying to nerf my character, all he has is high accuracy!" (+11 OCV+CSLs?!?)

If he's telling the truth there (ie he's not particularly resistant to damage, and his chosen weapon doesn't do that much damage, no particular other abilities of note), then I agree with the sentiment. That's his "schtick". You can ask him to tone it down, perhaps, but not to abandon it. On the other hand if he's not telling the truth, point out the discrepancies and see if you can come to some sort of compromise.

 

The impression I got was that all your players had adopted this strategy. If it's just one, then it's not so bad.

 

#2 : Villans with absurdly high DCV, thugs and normal humans and other less competant enemies are no longer a factor in combat.

By "villain" I meant "any NPC that will be in combat with the PCs", including thugs. Like I say - if all PCs have 6 combat skill levels, then they have (IMHO) defined, for this world, that anyone who is decent (not exceptional) at combat has a similar number of combat skill levels. Otherwise why would all the PCs be built that way?

 

EXCEPTION: If the campaign is based around the idea that the PCs are awesome sharpshooters, then obviously that doesn't apply.

 

But it does seem as if I had misinterpreted your original post, and that it's actually only one of the PCs that has this.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

If you think it's an issue .... introduce them to grenades, rockets, land mines and other Area Of Effect weapons.

 

Even mooks can hit a DCV 3.

 

I like that idea, thanks! ...erm, I mean, I'll take that into consideration...

 

Sorry to steal the topic like this, but this has really answered a lot of questions.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re: Combat skill levels

 

I have to agree with Stewart on this one. Talking with the player is the only solution. If you tell the player he can not do it, he will simply move on to the next rule he can exploit. If you try to creatively screw over the player, he will become paranoid and take precautions against each new tactic. You essentially create a GM vs. Players situation.

 

Talk to him, ask him to tone it down and let his character shine every once in a while.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

Also rememebr this

 

2 point skill levels only add ocv

 

3 point skill levels add to ocv or dcv

 

Martial arts can be fun in the mix

 

If they have useds 2 point skill levels for there sword

 

Introduce a character with a MA based around swords (Fencing or Kenjutsu probably)

 

Who has the same number of skill levels in said martial arts (3 pointers)

 

and a single point of speed higher. Dodge, dodge, strike, dodge,

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

There's no end to solutions. AOE's certainly balance vs. high CV characters.

 

So do Darkness, AOE Flashes, taking cover, disarming, hostages, disguise/surprise and ablative or short-term defenses or defenses tuned to cope just with the hero's attack (if the heroes encounter the same group repeatedly and they have resources and NCI, they have the time to prepare, though in general I dislike this approach).

 

One thing that's been left out is CSL's also allow bouncing attacks.. but that's really not relevant, I guess.

 

Which is why I felt compelled to mention it.

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Re: Combat skill levels

 

One thing that's been left out is CSL's also allow bouncing attacks.. but that's really not relevant, I guess.

 

Which is why I felt compelled to mention it.

 

Actually this brings up a good point - if the only thing they're doing is using the CSLs to add OCV they're grossly underusing them.

 

I'd start having enemies with CSLs fire at them from cover using Bouncing, or hit a bunch of them with some Sweep manuevers. There's all kinds of fun you can having with CSLs besides assuring you always hit one target.

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