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2H-Weapons weak?
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SeeleyOne
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 08, 2012 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, good info. I was just wondering aloud, not really trying to poke holes. Given more data makes a difference. Smile I recall having read somewhere that the blade really wasn't as sharp as we like to think, that the weilder can hold onto the side of the blade and not cut their hand up. Of course gauntlets or armored gloves might help as well.
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Zadmar
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Planecreek wrote:
I'd be interested to see what situations people think 2 handed as currently written are better? None of the Std10 characters in our game ever take it (its always d8 weapon and large shield)

My thoughts:
If you have St d10 or more and one or more of the following
- attacking something with very high toughness (maybe in the high teens to the 20s)

Note that replacing your longsword with a greatsword increases your average damage by +0.97, so it's not exactly a huge leap in performance. Of course every little helps, but it's small change compared to Wild Attack (+2 damage, and +2 to attack - increasing the chances of a raise, which gives a further +4.2 damage on average). And yes you can do both, but then your parry is going to be in the gutter.

Planecreek wrote:
- not the target of attacks or you are very tough vs your opponents so don't care (so the parry loss doesn't matter)

Agreed, I think that's the main one. If you're incorporeal or have Heavy Armor, for example, or are attacking an inanimate object, then you don't really care about being hit. Likewise, if you've got Fighting d4-2, have just gone Berserk, and are surrounded by 5 skilled Extras using Wild Attack, their +6 bonus against your Parry of 0 means they'll always get a raise - regardless of whether you're using a greatsword or a heavy shield. So you might as well use the greatsword for the extra damage. Then there are the math quirks, such as having a Parry of 7 against an Extra with Fighting d6; they cannot actually achieve a 6 (due to acing), only a 5 or 7, so -1 Parry isn't such a big deal (it's just a slightly higher chance of them getting a raise) - on the other hand, if your Parry was 6 previously, then a -1 penalty is going to double their chances of hitting you.

Of course if you've taken Berserk, you may actually want to get hit so that you can activate the bonuses.

If you've got Oversized Weapon Master (from 50 Fathoms), then a Maul or Great Axe would be pretty decent against an armoured opponent. You could still use a large shield in the other hand.

And of course there's also the possibility that no other weapons are available. If your longsword has broken, and there's a greatsword lying on the floor, it's usually going to be better than fighting unarmed or with an improvised weapon. Conversely, if you allow katanas then those will beat everything in the medieval category (they have the best average damage combined with 2 AP).
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Lord Lance
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clint wrote:
Personally, I have yet to see an actual "proof" that the greatsword is worse than the longsword (or any other weapon) for the system as a whole.
...
A true system-wide proof would require not testing those characters against each other but against every other potential foe or foes they could face.
...
To be clear, I'm not saying the hypothesis is inaccurate, just that an extremely restricted sampling results in an equally restricted result, not a universal one as seems to be implied.

I think this thread pops up regularly ... Very Happy

However, with all my great esteem for you and with my somewhat limited grasp of the english language (so I hope my words don't appear rudes), I still feel your (official) point of view about this topic somewhat weak.

Even without taking in account the Zadmar math (that I admire, however) or his "warrrior vs. warrior simulator" (that however is not dissimilar from “warrior vs. monster” - we just could ask for 3 or 4 "simulations" vs a skillful weak bastard, or 3 puny goblins, or an orc, or an ogre, or a dragon), even without looking for advancements or specific edges, we are talking about:
  • a character with a standard d8 damage Sword, that invested just d8 in his strength (so probably he has other (agility?) characteristics higher), that does average 9 Damage, that has 6 Parry, and has a free hand to use for doing a whole world of useful things.
  • a character with a standard d10 damage, -1 parry, Great sword, that invested d10 in his strength (so less points for other characteristics), that does average 11 Damage, that has 5 Parry, and has no free hands remaining *

Is that +2 damage worth 1 characteristic point, -1 Parry and no free hands? (I know, Strength is useful for other things too)

So, the “standard sword guy” could have d10 Strength too; the question can be semplified to:
Is that +1 damage worth -1 Parry and no free hands?

In my humble opinion, absolutely no, it isn’t. And I don’t feel the need to fight every monster in the bestiary to find that answer.

* Side note: the Great sword guy spent more for the weapon, carry more weight, has problems when he need to ready the weapons etc. However we can ignore those minor details.
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wheatiess
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i to feel they are a little underwhelming in certain battles. but when you are working as a group with the sword and board character taking the charge and acting like an anvil the twohander really starts to shine stepping in and crushing with a wild attack

much the same as the unshakeable question
a one on one swordfight between 2 equals is very different then say a boss with unshakeable fighting a large group of heros that can only just damage it

i do use the effective strenght rule when using 2 hands for any weapon even a chopstick

a 2hander is going to look more like
ag 8 str 8 sp 6 sm 4 vig 6
fighting 8 ........ other skills notice, stealth, flyfishing, acting like conan
great sword, chain mail, (weight 37 out of 40, cost 700 of lets say 1000)
first strike, beserk (or extraction depending on style)

parry 6 - 1 so 5 (6 in my home rules)
tough 5 +2 so 7
doing 2d10 damage(effective str rule..2d8+1 if swaped to barstad sword

sword and board more like this
ag 8 str 6 sp 6 sm 4 vig 8
fighting 8.....other skills , being a turtle, repair as more things to break
short sword,medium sheild, plate chest, helm (weight 45 of 48 cost 725)
brawny, hard to kill.

parry 6 + 2 so 8 (9 in my home rules
tough 7 + 3 so 10
doing 2d6 damage

these are both legal 0xp character(hinderances assumed but not included). while they are not the difinative character for their role this is what i would start out as if i was going to build my character into the role

so....... Zad could you test these for the sake of it (wild attacks, barstard sword/great sword with effective, 2handers parry at 5 and 6
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Zadmar
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 4:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 59927 of them, while Shortsword+Shield won 40073.

Or with Wild Attack:

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 59798 of them, while Shortsword+Shield won 40202.

However there are three points worth mentioning:

1. You're using a house rule that gives the greatsword user the equivalent of a free advance. That's not entirely fair if you're trying to argue that two-handed weapons are already good!

2. You've given the greatsword user Berserk (one of the strongest combat edges) while the other guy gets Hard to Kill (a good survival edge, but gives absolutely no advantage during the fight).

3. The shortsword isn't even a particularly good weapon.

Even if we just drop Berserk and Hard to Kill, look at how much the outcome changes:

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 32908 of them, while Shortsword+Shield won 67092.

And with Wild Attack:

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 40405 of them, while Shortsword+Shield won 59595.

And now if we replace the shortsword with a rapier:

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 26084 of them, while Rapier+Shield won 73916.

And with Wild Attack:

There were 100000 fights. Greatsword won 36565 of them, while Rapier+Shield won 63435.

And that's including your house rule that increases the greatsword guy's Strength from d8 to d10 because he's using his weapon two-handed.
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supercOntra
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe there is a reason almost every culture (possibly excluding the samurai) throughout history and on every continent has used a shield in battle.
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wheatiess
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

my point with those edges is that if you are going for the heavy tank you want to take edges that suit it
if your playing the crazy berserker with the massive cleaver(or the blade dancer) the same applies

as PCs are on the same side can you test these two fighting together vs a horde of mooks to see who gets the most kills and who takes the most wounds fighting side by side ...

not that this works as the shield should try to take the hits in a team and the two hander should take opertune strikes that are almost garented to kill

a heroic sword and board will not have the same edges or stat block as a two hander beserker

sword and board in my thinking would try to get
block, counter attack, harder to kill, nerves of steel and other setting specific edges that make him better at his role

berserker would go
sweep, giant killer, and missing edges...no mercy, lunge?, dont get him riled up, extraction, firststrike maybe even fleet instead of other starting edge so he can get the charge in most of the time

would you start your sword and board character with berserk
would you start your berserker character with berserk

..rapier and medium/heavy shield looks odd and in most fantasy settings rapier will cost more than in the book. Not that i wouldnt allow it but would tilt my head and go huh

and
while where doing it
two weapon weilder
ag 8, str 6, spr8, sm 4 , vig 6
fight 8
2 axes, chain mail (weight 29 of 30, cost 700)
ambidex, two weapon

parry 6
tough 5+2
damage 2d6 two attacks with wild die each

or rapier and Mguache
parry 8
2 d6+d4 attacks
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Zadmar
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

wheatiess wrote:
my point with those edges is that if you are going for the heavy tank you want to take edges that suit it if your playing the crazy berserker with the massive cleaver(or the blade dancer) the same applies

The point I was making is that the berserker is strong despite their greatsword, not because of it. If you're comparing two-handed with sword&board, and give one of them an amazingly powerful edge and the other a useless edge, it's going to heavily skew the results.

To show you just how much of an impact Berserk has, here are two characters with d4 Smarts, d8 everything else. Both are armed with a longsword and a medium shield. The first has Berserk, the second has Hard to Kill.

There were 100000 fights. Berserk won 66906 of them, while Hard to Kill won 33094.

Because of that one edge, the berserker wins more than two thirds of the fights.

wheatiess wrote:
as PCs are on the same side can you test these two fighting together vs a horde of mooks to see who gets the most kills and who takes the most wounds fighting side by side ...

Sorry, the combat simulator doesn't support teams unless they're identical. It's just a simple tool for direct comparisons.

wheatiess wrote:
would you start your sword and board character with berserk

I see no reason why berserkers can't "bear bloody shields". It gives them something to bite before the battle!

wheatiess wrote:
..rapier and medium/heavy shield looks odd and in most fantasy settings rapier will cost more than in the book. Not that i wouldnt allow it but would tilt my head and go huh

The example wasn't for flavour, but to demonstrate the effectiveness of certain combinations. Some weapons are generally superior to others, and your character will usually be more successful when using those weapons. I'm talking pure crunch here, not fluff.
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Clint
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lord Lance wrote:
However, with all my great esteem for you and with my somewhat limited grasp of the english language (so I hope my words don't appear rudes), I still feel your (official) point of view about this topic somewhat weak.


My "official" point of view?

I'm thinking there might be a language issue here because I said...

Clint wrote:
To be clear, I'm not saying the hypothesis is inaccurate, just that an extremely restricted sampling results in an equally restricted result, not a universal one as seems to be implied.


I'm just making it clear that those samples are in no way universal proofs as they seem to be portrayed occasionally.

My post did not portray a specific point of view on the balance of the greatsword, just the fallacy in basing that view on incomplete "evidence."

But we could discuss that I suppose...

Lord Lance wrote:
Even without taking in account the Zadmar math (that I admire, however) or his "warrrior vs. warrior simulator" (that however is not dissimilar from “warrior vs. monster” - we just could ask for 3 or 4 "simulations" vs a skillful weak bastard, or 3 puny goblins, or an orc, or an ogre, or a dragon), even without looking for advancements or specific edges, we are talking about:


So we ignore Edges and specific tactics, right? Two of the basic foundations of how the combat system works. Sure, specific Edges might be allowed in the simulations, but there is no way for the simulator to change tactics in the middle of the fight where a key to SW is the player making those kind of decisions.

Okay, then for the time, we ignore those.

Lord Lance wrote:
  • a character with a standard d8 damage Sword, that invested just d8 in his strength (so probably he has other (agility?) characteristics higher), that does average 9 Damage, that has 6 Parry, and has a free hand to use for doing a whole world of useful things.
  • a character with a standard d10 damage, -1 parry, Great sword, that invested d10 in his strength (so less points for other characteristics), that does average 11 Damage, that has 5 Parry, and has no free hands remaining *


The average for acing damage would be a little more than 10 points and 12 points. Doesn't really seem to change things, but we'll get to that later.

Lord Lance wrote:
Is that +2 damage worth 1 characteristic point, -1 Parry and no free hands? (I know, Strength is useful for other things too)

So, the “standard sword guy” could have d10 Strength too; the question can be semplified to:
Is that +1 damage worth -1 Parry and no free hands?

In my humble opinion, absolutely no, it isn’t. And I don’t feel the need to fight every monster in the bestiary to find that answer.


Yeah, I can see where +2 damage (or +1 damage) wouldn't seem worth it, but that too is "incomplete evidence." It's a +2 or +1 more than the average, but that ignores the overarching curve of damage results.

+2 isn't worth it? Above it was mentioned facing an orc, ogre, or dragon. Let's not look at the bonuses, but the odds 2d10 vs. 2d8 affects.

The orc Extra will be Shaken 79% of the time instead of 67.2%, and he will be taken out in one shot 47% of the time instead of 31.2%. So slightly less than 1 out of two hits will take down an orc vs. slightly less than 1 out of 3.

The ogre with a Toughness 4 points higher than the orc, faces those same exact odds to be Shaken, 47% vs. 31.2% (again half the hits vs. a third of them). He will take a wound 23% of the time vs. 15.2%. 8% difference doesn't sound like much, but it's the same ratio at this level; that "+2 bonus" equates to a 50% greater chance of wounding the ogre.

With a dragon, the percentages get closer, but the odds nearly double for the chance of getting a Shaken, Wound or even more on a dragon. It's not about a +2 bonus to the average; it's about a 1 in 10 chance vs. a 1 in 20 chance. Is that worth a -1 Parry when fighting a foe who suffers a -4 to hit you to begin with?

Maybe it isn't. The effect will vary on the base Parry. I could choose a d10 Fighting and Parry of 7 which would give great results (the orc has the exactly same chance of hitting a 6 as a 7, the ogre has a 37.5% chance vs. a 25% chance, and the dragon has a 17.5% chance vs. a 15% chance), but that just once more gets into one of the many variables that could affect the results.

Again, I'm not saying the hypothesis is incorrect, but the underlying system is more complex than "two guys fight each other with different weapons" or "+2 on average worth -1 Parry and no free hand." Heck, I think the "minor detail" of the d10 Strength having a 25% increase in Load Limit over the d8 is anything but minor, besides the potential exponential effects of character builds and decisions.

If there's any point of view here, it's just that simplicity of play doesn't means simplicity of design as well. And sometimes rather than trying to wade through all the math, statistics, variables, and probabilities, a simpler and faster solution can be found just by going with your gut feelings. Because those often take into account individual play styles that no amount of math can adjust for.

So if a two-handed weapon (or anything for that matter) doesn't feel balanced in play, by all means change something (their stats, Edges, a maneuver, whatever). But "in play" is the key term there, as how something works in game can be far different than how it appears on paper. That's a cornerstone of Savage Worlds as those who have been around for a while well know.
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CitizenKeen
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Am I really the first in the thread to suggest Savage Armoury?

I feel those weapons are a little more balanced.
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Boldfist
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clint wrote:
Heck, I think the "minor detail" of the d10 Strength having a 25% increase in Load Limit over the d8 is anything but minor, besides the potential exponential effects of character builds and decisions.


I've been following this thread and trying to decide how to respond. Of course, my response isn't necessary but this quick quote from Clint kinda sums up how I feel. There are SO many variables in Character design you can't just compare two weapons based solely on what they do. At d10 Strength (and Brawny) the character could (and probably should) carry both a Longsword/shield AND a two-handed sword to fight depending on the situation. I'd also have a spear and two daggers to fight against certain creatures/monsters/hordes!
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ogbendog
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I LARPed once. I used a 2-handed sword; PVC pipe wrapped in padding.

I found it very easy to whip around to block attacks, with both hands on the large handle, I had much more leverage that I had with a short sword.
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SeeleyOne
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I am getting from this thread is that some people will use a house rule to make it so that two-handed weapons are a die higher and that the Great Sword will lose its Parry penalty.

People will either play the rules as written or they will add that house rule (or something similar to it).
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