Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Reference is 6E2, 201-2


Combatants with weapons of differing length can inflict minor OCV penalties on one another depending on the reach of the weapon and who has the advantage at the time. The rule is that the shorter weapon is at -1 or -2 OCV (depending on the length differential) until he can take the advantage:


A weapon length OCV penalty only lasts as

long as it takes the character with the shorter

weapon to hit the target with the longer weapon.

Hitting the target means he’s gotten “inside” the

target’s reach — and the situation reverses.


Once this has happened, the longer-reach weapon wielder has two alternatives. He can also attempt to hit his opponent, sucking up the OCV penalty, or he can move:


The wielder of the longer weapon now suffers an OCV

penalty identical to the penalty the character

previously had. (For this reason, wielders of long

weapons often have a Short or Medium weapon as

well.) To get rid of the penalty, he has to back up

a length equal to his weapon’s Reach bonus (this

constitutes a Half Move, of course), or has to hit

his foe in spite of the OCV penalty (this means

he’s thrown his foe back to his preferred fighting range).


All well and good, but it does raise some questions for me as to how to handle this when you're making use of maps and minis.



  1. When the wielder of the shorter weapon succeeds with his attack, and gets inside the longer weapon, does he move closer to his opponent as part of the maneuver (e.g. Where once there was a meter of open space between us, now there is no open space)?
  2. Should there be an option for the wielder of the shorter weapon to close the distance with a half-move prior to attacking, or is the assumption that the longer weapon keeps him at bay? And if that is the case, is there an argument allowing the distance to be closed anyway, and giving the longer weapon wielder a free attack?
  3. If the longer weapon wielder does refuse to budge, makes his attack with the penalty, and hits, does this move his opponent back one or more meters, effectively against his will? And if so, does either combatant get a say in where the shorter weapon wielder ends up - must it be straight back, can it be back and sidestepping to one side or another so long as the correct range is restored? What if there's an obstruction or bad footing where he would need to go?


And a bonus question - for those of you who do still crack out the maps and minis, do you still stick with 2 meter hexes, like 5E? Have you moved on to more GURPSian 1 meter hexes? Do you go with squares (sacrilege!) or free form it and just measure distances?

Link to post
Share on other sites

And a bonus question - for those of you who do still crack out the maps and minis, do you still stick with 2 meter hexes, like 5E? Have you moved on to more GURPSian 1 meter hexes? Do you go with squares (sacrilege!) or free form it and just measure distances?


I have a hex/square map that we can draw on with markers.  I have also purchased a large number of pre made maps and all of those are squares.  And yes we use minis.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Combat is not a static mater. Even if you use a Map to define clear positions people do not stand on the same 2m real space all the time. Also keep in mind that characters have even unarmed a "Reach" of 1m that adds to whatever reach the weapon grants.

If two characters that stand "hex to hex" with one another, there is still 4 meters of maneuvering room for those two during a melee.

You need a total of 5m Reach (1 normal, +4 from Weapon) before you can even attack targets farther then adjacent Hexes.

So the movement for this optional rule will never even enter the realm of "Mapped Movement". For the map they are still standign "Hex to Hex", no mater wich side has the bonus or penalty right now.

Link to post
Share on other sites

What of this rule, also from 6E2, 202:




An attacker with a Long or Extra Long weapon

can attack “over” a friendly character, at an opponent

on the other side, at a -2 OCV penalty. This

makes massed ranks of spearmen particularly

effective in battle.





A +2m reach weapon is sufficient to attack someone on the other side of someone else - so either they're assuming you've abandoned hexes entirely in favor of free-form measurement of distance, or a guy with a Very Long weapon can attack you with a 2m hex of empty space between.


I get that it's supposed to be an abstract depiction of what happens over time, but the rules should be consistent for both short-weapon and long-weapon attacker, and how they impact position on the tabletop. Or abandon any pretense of supporting something that could be considered tactical minis in play.

Link to post
Share on other sites

That doesn't change the rule at all. Whether at 3 meters (1 meter zone you always have +2m from the weapon) or toe to toe, the long weapon can keep the shorter one at bay (at an OCV penalty). If the character with the shorter weapon successfully attacks the one with the longer weapon now has the penalty. If the character with the longer weapon successfully attacks it doesn't push the other the full length of his weapon (causing actual movement on the map), he just gets the other character out from "inside his reach".

Link to post
Share on other sites

Right, +2m (for a total of 3m) sounds like the better measurement.


I guess I just want it to, to help inspire a more dynamic battlefield.

This rule is not about moving anywhere on the map. What happens there happens entirely while the two are normally able to hit one another.


The rule about OCV penalty for shorter reach and OCV penalty in tight spaces is there to give a bit more "sense" to some weapon choices. Without those you would always use your Barabarian Battle Ax. With those two in the field a weaker, shorter weapon has it's place. Add in factors like "weapons permits" and "armament limitations"* and you can get pretty realsitic.

Mostly the OCV penalty for Reach will only come up when storming a castle/building (with tight corridors**) and when fighting against closed formations.


*In many areas there were rules about who could own a bladed weapon and how long it could be. In some regions the Short Sword, Dagger and other small weapons were developed explicitly to circumvent those laws.


**In a tight corridor a spear or helbard would not be really hindered by space (despite it's size) - until the enemy get's past it. In turn the attacker would only be able to use shorter weapons giving the defender a distinct advangate. Add in stuff like held actions and those "two mooks with spears" could be a very dangerous obstacle when palce in a 2-4m wide corridor.

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.

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.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...