Friday, November 19, 2010
Thoughts on non-variable weapon damage.
I'm thinking of using non-variable weapon damage for tonight's foray into the Forsaken Halls. I'm sure by now you've probably read JB's in-depth essay on the subject (and perhaps even Alexis' characteristically irascible response), but I don't really have any deep reasoning behind the decision. I just want the focus off the damage a weapon does, and more on the iconic nature of the weapon itself. I'm hoping to see this help to develop the narrative of combat a little more - every weapon is devastating in its own way. I'm hoping the players will have fun with it, if not, its easy enough to go back to the way we've been doing it all along.
My only point of difficulty is with two-handed weapons. Why sacrifice a shield bonus to AC if you're not going to do more damage? It seems like the whole reason to pick up a two-handed weapon is to be able to bring more of your natural strength to bear on the matter-at-hand. So my idea is that you get double your strength bonus (or penalty!) to damage when wielding a two-handed weapon. So the damage chart with two-handed weapons looks something like this:
Or 3-8 (-2); 9-12 (+0); 13-18 (+2) with Swords & Wizardry.
So, someone with three strength is completely useless with a two-handed weapon (d6-6) and someone with 18 strength is devastating (d6+6).
Or, I could just go with a flat +1 bonus to damage with 2-handed weapons, but that seems a little off, for some reason. Alternately, I could let the player choose between a +1 to AC, or a +2 to damage, which is similar to how I use two-weapon fighting (choose +1 to AC or +1 to damage).