War Machine, revised: Mass Combat for 4e part 2

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6 Responses

  1. Rook says:

    Very nice. While many readers will never use this system, from those of us that will, I thank you for posting it. Well done!
    (the gears in my head are turning already)
    .-= Rook´s last blog ..And me without a Girdle of Masculinity/Femininity: A tale of a modest mini. =-.

  2. Enchelion says:

    I’m so thrilled to read this. I’m already drafting up some ideas for my players to take part in battle, and have the chance to direct the attack themselves.

  3. greywulf says:

    @Rook I agree it’s unlikely to get much use at the table, but if it gets those cogs turning about how you could run a mass battle in 4e then my work is done :D

    @Enchelion That’s great! I’d love to read a write-up of the battle if you manage to make it happen.

  4. AlioTheFool says:

    Wow, I missed you posting this part greywulf. Good thing @newbiedm brought it up on Twitter today and @deadorcs mentioned this post!

    This is a nice addition. I’m still trying to think of a way PC powers can be worked into the format though. Adding in Skill Challenges is good, but there has to be a way for powers to get in there, I know it!

    I just don’t want to overshadow/bore any of the players with simple dice rolls, but having a mass battle mechanic beyond the 4e idea of “just make it a skill challenge” is a godsend.

    Perhaps their powers/spells can target an average AC/NAD of the opposing force, and if it hits provides a significant bonus to the Battle Rating (maybe total damage gets added to BR?) Or maybe a PC leads a unit of forces with the same abilities and that unit can attack with the same power in unison to whittle opposing numbers?

    Sorry, just brainstorming, but does anyone have any ideas in that vein?

  5. greywulf says:

    @AlioTheFool Thanks for the kind words! When it comes to using Powers in Mass Combat, I’d much rather zoom in, and let the PCs play through a pivotal encounter in the midst of the battle. If they win, that grants a bonus to the Battle Roll as they help turn the tide in their favour. That keeps things personal, but still makes the players feel like they’re playing a direct part in the action.

    Hope that helps!

  6. AlioTheFool says:

    That makes a lot sense actually. That would serve to make up that gap I see between running a full-scale army vs. army and allowing the PCs to be the heroes and relevant to the outcome.

    Perhaps the PCs could choose to attack a unit of minions, or a unit of brutes, or sneak around the back and target the general, or spot the opposition’s dragon in the back and go after that game-changing solo. All of these could have vastly different effects on the outcome of the battle (reflected in different effects on BR.)

    How would you approach which player makes the roll for the “good guys?” I’m thinking maybe each player can roll for a unit and I’d just make multiple rolls, or maybe all the players roll a d20 and add their score together and I could roll once. I just don’t ever want someone to feel like they were left out of the action.

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