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Re: (TFT) Death Test 1, take 4: SURVIVED!

Quoting dwtulloh61@cox.net:
I can see how a two-handed hafted weapon (axe, hammer, quarterstaff, pole
arm would be good at parrying a swing from a sword, but what about a thrust?
That would seem to be where it is the weakest at parrying, since it becomes
more of a timing issue than blocking a swing.
Since TFT doesnt differentiate between swings and thrusts, it would make
sense to me that these kinds of weapons have an overall lower rating to

Well, the only place TFT appears to have any sort of parrying is in the 'defend' option. And in reference to an out-of-band conversation, it does make little sense that a halberd does more damage than a spear if a charge attack is a thrust, but it does follow the game mechanic that more ST = more damage. I'll reference a couple of manuals for the medieval opinion on this one. The first is I.33, which is a manual on the sword and buckler from 13-14th century (no definitive date), and of course, Fiore's manual (because I'm most familiar with it). In both (and others), static interposing blocks are not shown (my own opinion is that they were used, but weren't considered optimal, more like something you do when you scerw up). In that sense, then, the parry shown for both cuts and thrusts are based on timing, and closing of lines in preparation for counterattack. So the difference is less than you suggest. Additionally, Fiore specifically says that setting aside the thrust is very easy (the context is about how much force it takes to do so, and he says soemthing like a child could do it). So it's a matter of whether you can get the weapon into the right place to parry, rather than some other factors. Interestingly, there's a guard (or variation of it) in most manuals that's modernly called the tail guard, where the weapon is not held in front of the person wielding it, but low on the right side, pointing backward. And it's used with all weapons. The medievals seem to be of the opinion that it's a good defensive guard for parrying, as long as you can correctly ascertain the line the attack is going to come through. Also, the medievals did not parry just to keep from being hit (at least, in theory). One parries in order to set up one's own attack. This doesn't have any mechanics at all in TFT. If I were to try to introduce something, it might be something like if you take the defend option, your opponent rolls 3 dice to attack. If he misses, he'd have missed anyway. If he would hit, he rolls the 4th die. If he still hits, he hits you. But if that 4th dies causes the miss, then it's your parry that caused the miss, and you get +2DX on your next attack on him if you do it next turn. Or something like that. The I act/you act, nothing happens at the same time thing really isn't realistic at all, but works for the game. The only other mechanic that rivals it for unrealism (besides magic, of course) is that the other guy's DX has no bearing on whether or not you hit him. But again, it's consistent, and it works. And these sorts of mechanics get interesting when you have magic, where some effect may happen if you're touched, or your weapons touch. Then you'd have to keep track of whether your parry actually touches his (if you do what's called a void, then no, otherwise parrying does), whether he hit you and you just didn't take mornal damage (TFT does that with the armour takes the hits mechanic, D&D didn't), etc.
Neil Gilmore
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