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Diceless Damage System

First post. Have played all forms of Traveller and finally just made the leap to T20.

I've always been a referee put off by rolling large amounts of dice at a time during a gaming session. I noticed the potential for large amounts of damage dice rolling in T20. Imagine a squad of Imperial Marines attacking the party with FGMP-15's rolling 9D20's for EACH attack. :eek: Below is my proposal based on a system I developed for Twilight 2000 with the same problem.


Each weapon has a base damage according to the table below. When a "hit" is scored, compare the adjusted number rolled to the defense of the target. Add the difference in the attack roll and defense to the base damage of the weapon. Criticals are resolved the same as before. Example: Attack bonus +6 shoots at Defense 18 with weapon of base damage 5. Attacker rolls 16 + 6 = 22. Damage is 9 (base 5 plus 4 for 22 - 18).

Armor Reduction (new to me in d20 only played Modern and D&D before)I yet have to work out but could actually be simpler with a diceless system: AR reduces the damage by the AR#. At first glance the AR's listed may need to be increased (doubled?) in order to keep the system on par with the diceless one. I may need help here with what to do since AR is new to me in d20.

1d4 = 1
1d6 = 1
1d8 = 2
1d10 = 2
1d12 = 3
2d6 = 3
1d12+2 = 4
2d8 = 5
3d6 = 6
1d20 = 6
2d10 = 7
2d12 = 9
3d8 = 10
4d6 = 10
3d10 = 12
6d6 = 17
6d12 = 35
7d12 = 40
8d12 = 50
7d20 = 70
9d20 = 90

First the "-'s" of this system:

1. Less min. and less max. damage. Extremes are lost. This is most notable in high damage weapons.
2. A few weapons with very similar damage (1d8 and 1d10) have the same damage in this system.
3. Very low end damage weapons (1d4) do more damage on average then with dice rolling damage.

Now the "+'s":

1. Less rolling. No damage dice to roll. After a hit, you will only have to roll again if you need to check for a critical.
2. How well an attacker "hits" affects damage. No cases of an attacker barely hitting for max. damage or rolling 10 over what is needed but only inflicting min. damage.
3. The attacker's skill with the weapon indirectly affects damage which makes sense. A very skilled attacker shooting at a low defender will do more damage on average with the same weapon then a lowly skilled attacker shooting at a high defender.

Not sure if this is a flaming board, but please don't burn me unless you have more "-'s" to add by giving constructive criticism. A similar system worked well in T-2000 but I haven't tested it with T20 yet which is new to me. The table above only has damage listed for personal weapons and explosives. I can work out the math for starship and vehicle weapons if someone likes this idea. I also have the numbers for d20 Modern weapons of anyone is interested.
rpg's aren't real life, but much of the time they at least try to follow it a bit. combat is irregular and unpredictable, and the damage dice system is intended to model that. the system you propose is very regular and predictable. it's fast, yes, but a bit dry.

personally, I'd think that if a squad of marines opened fire with FGMP-15's there would only be a few combat die rolls, followed by many new character die rolls.
the system you propose is very regular and predictable. [/QB]
The range of results is nearly as randomn as the dice damage systems currently used. For example 2d6 with dice gives a range of 2-12 with 7 being average. 2d6 with this system gives a typical range of 3-10 (can be higher) with 6.5 being average. The range does get reduced with high damage weapons such as the FGMP's but their is still a range of results and the average is about the same.
Originally posted by Kevin Livingston:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Sturn:
Damage is 9 (base 5 plus 4 for 22 - 18).
Question: Where did that " plus 4" come into play? </font>[/QUOTE]22 in the example was a modified die roll against a defense of 18. A character with an attack bonus of +6 was rolling 1d20 with a result of 16 (16+6=22). The target number was the defense of 18. The character rolled 4 over what he needed to hit so he gets a bonus of +4 damage in this system. This is added to the base damage of the weapon as listed above.
So, a nat. 20 (with a +4 to hit) against an AC of 10, with a 1d6 Sword, would do 1+14=15 damage, or 30 damage if it criticals?

A Character with a +27 to hit, rolling a nat.20, and with a +4 DEX bonus, using a 2d6 weapon, would do 2+41 = 43 damage, or potentially (if x3) 129 damage. In a flurry of blows, the 20th level a character may get in 4 attacks, an average of 172 damage, and a maximum of 516 damage. A 20th level character has about 200 Stamina max.

DEX is now a VITAL ability, allowing you to absorb some of the potential damage. STR really isn't of much use any more, except at low levels when brute force serves as a poor replacement for battle instincts. In fact a veteran character can use pretty much any weapon, even a matchstick, and make it lethal - using their BAB. Of course, if Attack Bonus also includes the STR bonus, it is somewhat contradictory to add STR in again once the weapon has hit.
Maxing this idea does show a large flaw in it thanks K.Livingston. I guess this system doesn't move well from T2000 to T20 even tho the names are very familiar

The key idea is to have how well you hit (above what is required) affect how much damage you do in order to get rid of the damage roll and still have randomness. Perhaps someone else has a suggestion? The only other idea I have is to use charts and that defeats the purpose > time saved on rolling dice and adding them up is used looking at a chart instead.
Oh I wasn't critcising at all! Its a system that gives an edge to higher level characters. This system reflects the fact that a trained and exerienced sniper may be able to finish a fight with one shot, given his training. Whereas a "green" soldier may need to fire bursts of shots in order to increase his chances of hitting something.
This is similar to my mass combat house rules for T20. Mostly used in large scale (Fleet level) ship combat.

This is a very lazy man's meathod of getting things done, so the probabilities may not be up to exactly how the core rules are done, but at least I don't have to keep rolling hordes of dice.

Take the average(or middle) number for a given dice, i.e. 3 for 1d6, 5 for 1d10, etc... Damage done by that weapon in that number times the dice multiplyer.

Autopistol would be a 5 (1d10 avg 5 x1)
Gauss Rifle would be a 12 (2d12, avg 6 x2)
FGMP-15 would be a 90 (9d20, avg 10 x9)

Armour reduction would first remove dice as usual, but as soon as there is only 1 dice left the damage becomes maximum and they leftover AR is subtracted from that.

Cloth armour (AR6) as example:
vs. Autopistol = 10(full because only 1 dice remains)-6 or 4LB damage.
vs. Gauss Rifle = 12 (last dice) - 5(1AR removed 1 dice) for total of 7LB
vs. Fusion gun 3(9-6) x 10(average) = 30LB.

In starship combat this works the same way but does SI damage.
Very nice Cmdrx. I tried to use a similar method once in a past game and totally forgot it until you brought it up above. This would make it easy to subtract AR dice - just remove 1 point from the multiplier per AR, min. of x1. This would be slightly different then removing the lowest rolled dice first, but comes close enough I think.

One reason I did not use this in T2000 was that you still had to roll another die and how well you hit had no affect on how much damage you dealt.