Thursday, February 16, 2017

Mechanics I Want to Use - Boomerage Stealing Attack

The second use for the boomerang in the Legend of Zelda games (besides stunning / paralyzing your enemies, as in my earlier post) is picking up objects and carrying them back to you. Other games have similar "fetching" weapons, like the grappler in Super Metroid. What's even cooler than simply picking up objects off the ground? Plucking them out of your enemies hands, and depositing them directly into yours, obviously.

But I also wanted this deed to capture the feel of something else - the moment when you kill an enemy and they leave behind arrows, or missiles, or a special weapon recharge, or money, or a bomb, or a grenade, or (most often) a little refill of health. The Mega Man games employ this same mechanic.

So, what we have is a deed for rangers that lets them either disarm their opponent and steal their weapon, or steal a little power-up / prize. As a mechanic, it absolutely is a bit video-gamey, since you get the prize based on your Deed Die roll, regardless of whether or not that item was on the judge's list of treasures to be found on that particular opponent. (Although the judge could insist that this only works on humanoids who are carrying some kind of equipment, or that you have to accept a lower result if it doesn't make sense for them to be carrying the item in question.

Weapon Specific Deed - Stealing Attack (boomerang)

The ranger throws her boomerang to knock away a piece of her opponent's equipment and return it to herself. If possible, the boomerang knocks away her opponent's weapon and return's it directly into the ranger's hand to wield next round. Otherwise, it returns adventuring equipment as listed below.

The judge is encouraged to tailor these results slightly to fit the nature of the opponent and the setting (for example, by choosing the denomination of the coinage, the type of ammunition, or the specific grenade-like weapon.)

3     The ranger steals a weapon up to the size of a dagger, or 1d12 coins.
4     The ranger steals a weapon up to the size of a short sword, or 1d6 rations, 1d6 torches, or other basic equipment.
5     The ranger steals a weapon up to the size of a longsword, or 1d6 arrows, 1d6 sling stones, or other ammunition.
6     The ranger steals a weapon up to the size of a two-handed sword, or 1 vial of holy water, 1 flask of oil, or other grenade.
7+     The ranger steals a weapon up to the size of a lance, or: 1 mushroom elixir (imbiber heals 1d4 hit points of damage immediately) or other medicine.

After getting some feedback, I also want to revisit my advise for when a boomerang returns to its owner.

Weapon Boomerang, Damage 1d4, Range 10/20/30**, Cost in gp 25

Although it is a thrown weapon, the boomerang follows a curved flight-path that allows it to sometimes brings it back to its owner's hand. If the ranger misses her attack, the boomerang will return to her at the end of the combat round. If she makes a regular attack or regular deed, the weapon hits her opponent and falls to the ground nearby. If she makes a critical hit or a weapon-specific deed, the boomerang hits her opponent but continues on its flight, returning at the end of the round. If the ranger fumbles, the boomerang returns, but she is hit by it instead of catching it; depending on the fumble result, this may be deadly, painful, or simply embarrassing.

Both Stun and Steal could probably be used as weaponless deeds by very roguish warriors who were trained to sap or mug their enemies. The stunning attack and stealing attack could also both probably be used as weapon-specific deeds for the whip, in any kind of Western setting.

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