Sunday, August 18, 2013

Firing Missile Weapons into Melee Combat

For situations in which a monster is engaged in melee with Party Member(s)/Friendly Force(s), and an attempt is made to fire a missile weapon at the Foe, roll a d6, and if the number rolled is = or < than the number of friendly combatants, then the attack is rolled against the friend, not the Foe.

For example, if one fighter is engaged with a monster, there is a 1 in 6 chance that the chaos of combat has caused the fighter to be in the path of the missile.  If there are two party members attacking a monster, there is a 1/3 (2 in 6) chance of someone friendly being accidentally targeted. 

Assumes a max. of four PCs per roughly man-sized opponent (completely surrounded).  For larger monsters, assign a greater value to the creature; an Ogre might be worth two man-sized slots, a Giant could possibly be 3, 4, or 5 times the size of a man.  If the total # of effective combatants exceeds 6, use a d8, if 8 or more are involved, use a d10, etc. 

Further example: Four PCs surround and attack a Giant which is roughly 4x the size of a man.  Total effective combatants equals 8 (4+4).  Roll d10, results of 1-4 means a PC is accidentally targeted, while results of 5-10 allows the attack to be made on the intended target.

For exceptionally large creatures, I usually allow missile fire into melee w/o penalty.  If the fighters have opted for (or better, been maneuvered into!) a questionable full-frontal assault on a T-Rex, I assume the archer hanging back shifts fire about 20' or so, and tries to plug the beast in its massive arse.  (If I thought of it, I'd ask, "Where, exactly are you shooting it?" and if the Player said, "Ass end," I might decide that a dino might be spooked by the surprise butt-slap -Morale/Reaction Check- and instead of attacking normally, he might stampede off, forcing a Save or Initiative Check to avoid a trampling!)