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Might Houserule Debate (LoTR)

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Might Houserule Debate (LoTR)

Postby LordMalekTheRedKnight » Wed Dec 03, 2008 11:27 pm

Hey guys :)

i dont really play LoTR, but one of the guys from club uses LoTR rules to play games of Ancients (Egyptians etc), and a few of us have been joining in.

something came up tonight that another player wasnt happy about, and we are trying to come up with a houserule to mitigate the problem.

here's the situation:

each side has a number of "Captains" (low level heroes, i guess), who each have the same Fight stat and 2 points of Might.
during the game, there is a Captain vs Captain combat. one side scores a 6, the other scores a 5.
the Captain that scores a 5 decides to expend a point of Might to make their scores tied at 6.
the other Captain cannot use his Might, as his score is capped at 6 on a D6 (no 7's allowed, apparantly).
with the scores and the Fight values tied, we rolled off to determine the winner - the Captain that originally rolled the 6 lost and was subsequently killed.

the player controlling this Captain felt that the artificial limit on the dice score was unfair - he wanted to be able to use his Might to win the combat, rather than be forced into a draw.

as a houserule for future games, he suggested that Might shouldnt be used in "Captain vs Captain" combats - i.e. characters with Might should only get to use it on non characters.

as a compromise, i suggested the idea of Might cancelling out. for example, if i say im going to use a point of Might to improve my score, if your score is already capped at 6 you can say that you are expending a point of might to cancel mine out (so no-one's scores get improved). this way, characters that are more mighty than others (have more Might points) can have an advantage, and characters that have worn themselves out already (used up their Might) are at a disadvantage. but otherwise, with the same number of Might points, Might cant be used to create Draws or break them (if the players are prepared to burn Might points this way).

what do you think? and can you come up with any other suggestions? :?:

many thanks in advance :)

~ Tim
p.s. does anyone have any designers notes etc that might shed some light onto why this cap exists in the rules in the first place? if it is intentional, and for a good reason, then that might mean we can leave it as it is...
Last edited by LordMalekTheRedKnight on Thu Dec 04, 2008 12:52 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby jlong05 » Thu Dec 04, 2008 5:16 am

Well, I do play LotR but have never had this circumstance arise. I will have to pose this to a few of my local gaming people, including the game designer for Legends of the High Seas. I know his game is based loosely on the same rules as LotR and WAB so he may have some additional insight from that stand point.

Additionally, you may try posting your question on The Last Alliance website. That is probably the largest group of LotR players around.

I will let you know what I find out though.
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Postby jlong05 » Thu Dec 04, 2008 3:44 pm

OK, Here are responses from 3 of our most active players.

Repost from AdeptusArizona.com wrote:
DrunkenSamurai wrote:
First of all WAB has nothing to do with the question. WAB is basically WHFB 5th edition without magic and a few additional rules. It is nothing like LOTR.

As for the might issue the limit is to allow any given model a chance to win a fight against any other model. Even a mighty hero such as Aragorn will loose a fight if his best roll is a 1. Later in the battle it might be even worse because as he reduces his might pool he will get to a point that he starts to loose fights with 4.

My suggestion is that they play the rules and DON'T mess with the heroic system. They need to learn how to deal with heroes in the context of the rules. The example that you gave I have had and it is the way it goes sometimes. Next time bring more troops with you.


Dean wrote:
Its happens to me plenty of times.... and we just dice off then... 123 evil wins 456 good wins....

That just happens to be the way the rules are written for LotR.
Me personally, I try and stay away from house rules. You never know when you might get them confused in a tourney...

Dean


jlong05 wrote:
OK. I didn't know if WAB used those same rules as it sounded like that was what the were playing. I also see both of your points in that houserules can get confusing, and I agree that might is there to allow the 'underdog' to beat the mightiest hero. However in this circumstance both figures were the same with no loss of might. I guess (not knowing the full circumstances) the player who had a 6 already could have used his might to help boost a fate roll, assuming they had those.


TJSKI wrote:
Hmm here is my insight, keep it as it is.

This was one case were there was two captains with the same fight value were fighting each other, and one person used Might to Tie up the fight and win by rolling a dice – 1, 2, 3 the side that has initiative wins; 4, 5, 6 the side that doesn’t have initiative wins. It happens and it sounds like the player that lost wants to change how it works.

Now if he wants to try something different, I have heard of people that play LotOW & LotHS were they add their Fight score to the dice roll to see who wins fights as well as adding Might to the score to adjust. Although this could lead to the same problem with having a tied score and uses up Might quicker. Some people swear by this but in your example it would lead to the same thing.

So all in all it ends up being the same in the long run. Perhaps your friend needs to adjust the Fight Values or change the Might allocated for his conversion of Ancients.

Tim K



Now to give backgrounds. DrunkenSamurai(Rob) has been playing LotR, WAB, and LotHS for a while, Dean runs the current local Indy GT for LotR(Along with TJSKI) and that indy GT is now going to be a circuit event so I consider him a pretty good rules judge. TJSKI(Tim) also run the event and also is the Author of LotHS which uses many of the same game mechanics as LotR. Tim gave a good suggestion in adding the Fight values, but given this circumstance I don't think it would have mattered. I also dislike the idea of mixing up stats more unless the 2 units 'should' have been different.

It appears that this is just a spot where a line must be drawn and still give a chance for the underdog.
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Postby jlong05 » Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:05 pm

Here are some additional posts from earlier that I hadn't got a chance to repost here. febber(Frank) is the reigning US Circuit winner last 2 years and BrestS is the guy in 2nd place on the same circuit.

Repost from AdeptusArizona.com wrote:
BrentS wrote:
...Now, back on the original question. I would not advocate changing or creating a house rule for this Hero on Hero combat. Roll-offs are the nature of the game. I can't count the number of tournament games I've won or lost on the outcome of a single tied combat roll-off. As a corrollary to this, there is a reason my All Hero army at the LV Clash of Heroes went almost un-wounded. When you have 4 models that are Fight Value 6,7,7, and 9 with 3 attacks and 3 points of might, its very, very difficult to lose a fight. If you don't want to tie your combats, bring a higher FV model ;)


Febber wrote:
My facetious post was attempting to make this very point. In wargaming, crap happens. So he rolled higher, got tied on might and lost the rolloff and died? This is a game, not a computer algorithm. Stuff like this happens on purpose. If the designers had wanted captains not to be able to use might on other heroes, they would have specified that. Instead, the rules specifically deal with how might is used in a battle between heroes where 1 or both want to use might. There is no need to create a house rule to alter the way the game is fundamentally designed. My suggestion is that the dude should suck it up and pull out the figures for a rematch.

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Postby LordMalekTheRedKnight » Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:15 pm

cheers for all the help, mate. :)

i was kinda hoping that someone would pull out a designer's note quote explaining why its capped at 6...

just to clarify, in a nutshell, the problem (as perceived by the other player, and as far as i can tell) is that both sides can use Might to boost their scores, but not if one player gets a 6. i must admit, it does seem rather arbitrary (unlike in 40K for example, where even though Strength is capped at 10, that is because the wound table doesnt go any higher). if 5+1=6, why cant 6+1=7?

for example, if i roll 5 and you roll a 4, and we each have 1 point of might to spend, then i still win (5+1=6 vs 4+1=5). however, if i do better and roll a 6, and you get a 5, i actually lose out in so far as you get to force a draw (6 vs 5+1=6).

has anyone read anything as to why its capped at 6?

cheers :)

~ Tim
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Postby jlong05 » Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:08 pm

It appears that the cap is simply to allow anyone(lowly non might hero), captain, to a mighty hero to ALL have an equal chance hence the cap. If there was no cap, then a mighty hero would always win as he would always be able to boost to a higher level and 'outbid'.

The best thing to remember is that by the current design, although it is unlikely, a hobbit can still win against the Balrog, and a regular uruk captain can beat even the mighty Aragorn.

Mainly the cap is to institute a level of chance in the game. If there is a tie, its a roll off.

Not knowing the full rules for your game, did the player losing the Captain not have any fate points left? If so he could still have used him might to help boost that roll if needed.
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Postby LordMalekTheRedKnight » Fri Dec 05, 2008 9:54 pm

jlong05 wrote:It appears that the cap is simply to allow anyone(lowly non might hero), captain, to a mighty hero to ALL have an equal chance hence the cap.

i thought that might have been it...

jlong05 wrote:If there was no cap, then a mighty hero would always win as he would always be able to boost to a higher level and 'outbid'.

well, until he runs out of Might points that is (and assuming he rolled high enough in the first place). :P

but yeah, i get your point. :)

jlong05 wrote:Mainly the cap is to institute a level of chance in the game.

understood.

jlong05 wrote:Not knowing the full rules for your game, did the player losing the Captain not have any fate points left? If so he could still have used him might to help boost that roll if needed.

he did have 1 Fate point, and 2 wounds. however, he took 2 wounds from the attackers, and rolled a 1 for his Fate save - even if he spent both Might points at this stage, he would still have died (1+2=3). he was just very very unlucky.

i guess the message i have to pass on then is that "its just a game mechanic".

cheers :)

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