Ultimately, every character’s goal in combat is to prevent opponents from hurting him. This typically involves putting them out of commission before they return the favor.
An opponent is considered to be within a character’s line of sight if he is within the character’s visual range and no obstacles completely obscure him from the character’s view. This diagram also illustrates the effects of cover, which are explained in detail on page 345.
In Spycraft 2.0, each opponent is located at one of three ranges.
Melee Range (Reach): A character’s Reach is based on his Size (see page 347). For most (Medium) characters, this is 1 square. At any time, each opponent within a character’s Reach — for a Medium character, in an adjacent square — is within the character’s Melee Range. Further, when 1 or more opponents are located within a character’s Reach, the character is “engaged in melee combat,” even if he isn’t directly fighting with nearby opponents.
Close Quarters Battle (CQB) Range (Beyond Reach, up to 30 ft.): “Close quarters battle range,” or “CQB Range,” is a flat 30 ft. out from the character in all directions. At any time, each opponent beyond a character’s Reach yet still within 30 ft. is within the character’s CQB Range.
Long Range (More Than 30 ft.): At any time, each opponent beyond 30 ft. away from a character is within the character’s Long Range. See the diagram below for an illustration of these ranges in action.
|Combat modifier types|
Modifiers can apply to nearly any statistic during combat, from an attack check to Defense to damage. For your convenience, here’s a complete list of Spycraft 2.0 combat modifier types, their ranges, and when they come into play.
Discretionary: The GC applies these modifiers to reflect miscellaneous circumstances in the situation and environment. Discretionary modifiers range from –4 to +4.
Dodge: Feats and actions offer these bonuses, which represent the ability to stay out of the path of an attack. Unlike all other named bonuses, dodge bonuses do stack. When a character is vulnerable, he also loses all dodge bonuses. Dodge bonuses range from +1 to +6.
Insight: Origins, class abilities, and feats offer these bonuses, which represent keen understanding. Insight bonuses range from +1 to +6.
Gear: Gear and gadgets offer or trigger these modifiers, which range from –4 to +4.
Morale: Class abilities and other effects that affect confidence apply these modifiers, which range from –4 to +4. Size: The size of a character or object affects his or its Defense and attack checks (with modifiers ranging from –16 to +16), as well as Blend/Stealth and Sneak/Hide checks (with modifiers ranging from –20 to +20).
When a character makes a ranged attack against an opponent who is engaged in melee combat, he suffers a –4 penalty and his error range increases by 2.
Also, when a character makes a ranged attack while he is engaged in melee combat, he suffers a –4 penalty and his error range increases by 2.
A character who makes a ranged attack against a character with whom he is engaged in melee suffers all of these penalties (i.e. he suffers a –8 penalty and his error range increases by 4).
When a character attempts to hit an opponent, he makes a “Standard Attack check.” Each attack check may represent one attack or multiple attacks made during the same amount of time (e.g. it may represent a single punch, or a flurry of blows granted by a feat ability).
The player rolls 1d20 and adds his appropriate attack bonus to obtain an attack check result (see page 59 for details about a character’s attack bonuses). If the result equals or exceeds the target’s Defense, the character hits and inflicts damage; otherwise e, he misses.
When a character makes an attack for which he doesn’t possess the appropriate proficiency, he is considered “untrained.” Any character may make an untrained attack check, but his error range increases by 2 and his Initiative Count drops by 4 (see page 324).
Feats and other character options may grant 1 or more “final attacks” in special situations. By and large, the relevant character option describes what a character must do to gain the final attack(s) and what restrictions are applied.
Each final attack is a free-action Standard Attack. The character may apply tricks to this attack, but may not adjust the attack nor combine it with other actions in any way.
A final attack may never grant more than 1 attack, even when a character option permits multiple attacks as a result of 1 half action.
A character’s Defense is equal to 10 + the sum of the Defense bonuses he gains from each class level + his Dexterity modifier.
An item’s Defense is equal to 5 + its Size modifier (if stationary) , 10 + its Size modifier (if moving), or its holder’s Total Defense bonus + its Size modifier (if carried).
A square’s Defense is 15, whether it’s occupied or not (and even if a character is adjacent to it).
When an attack hits, the weapon used determines the damage inflicted.
No Weapon (Unarmed Attack): If the attacking character possesses the Unarmed proficiency, he inflicts a base 1d6 lethal damage; otherwise, he inflicts a base 1d3 subdual damage. In both cases, he applies his Strength modifier.
Weapon: The character inflicts the weapon’s base damage (see page 224). With a melee attack or a non-explosive hurled attack, he applies his Strength modifier. Unless otherwise specified, a weapon inflicts lethal damage. In all cases, character options, combat actions, and other effects may modify the base damage, though aside from damage reduction (see page 332), no penalty or combination of penalties may reduce the damage from any attack below 1.
Occasionally, bonuses or multipliers may apply to a character’s damage. When 1 or more bonuses and multipliers apply to the same damage total, flat bonuses are applied before multipliers while variable bonuses — i.e. all rolled bonuses — are applied after.
Example: Kevin’s base damage is 1d6 and he benefits from a +2 bonus to damage, 1 die of Sneak attack damage, and a ×2 multiplier r. He rolls a 4 with his base damage die and a 2 with his Sneak attack damage die, so his total damage is 14: ((4 + 2) ×2) + 2.
For the effects of damage, see Injury and Death, page 331.
Unless otherwise stated, three special results are possible with every attack check, as follows.
Every attack possesses a threat range. The threat range of all attacks begins at 20, though it may increase or decrease due to feats, conditions, and other factors.
When a character hits with an attack and rolls a natural number within his threat range (an actual roll of the number on a d20), he scores a threat — a potential critical hit.
|When two or more multipliers apply to any value, the multipliers do not multiply one another; instead, they are added together, subtracting 1 for each multiplier beyond the first.
Example: Two multipliers apply to a character’s damage roll: ×2 and ×5. The total damage multiplier is ×6, not ×10.
If a threat range is “reduced beyond” 20, the attacker may not score a threat with the attack.
Example 1: A character possesses the Finesse Mastery feat, which increases his threat range by 1 when making melee attacks. His threat range with these attacks is 19–20.
Example 2: A character attacks an opponent who possesses the Tough Luck feat, which reduces his threat range by 1. The acting character has no threat range with this attack check and therefore may not score a threat.
To activate a threat as a critical hit, the character must spend 1 or more Action Dice. A critical hit overrides a threat, negating the threat’s effects and replacing them with the effects of a critical hit. Also, most of the time, a critical hit has the following effects on the damaged character or item (certain actions and situations may prompt alternate critical hit results, as noted in their descriptions). For more information about standard and special characters, see page 441.
- Special Character (1 or more remaining vitality points): The attacking character may spend 1 Action Die to apply the damage directly to the target’s wound points. Instead, if the damage exceeds the target’s Constitution score, the attacking character may spend 2 Action Dice to inflict a critical injury, as shown on Table 5.5: The Table of Ouch (see page 332). The character may not invoke both of these effects.
- Special Character (0 remaining vitality points): In addition to the standard effects of applying the damage (see page 331), the attacking character may spend 1 Action Die to inflict a critical injury, as shown on Table 5.5: The Table of Ouch (see page 332).
- Standard Character/Vehicle /Gear: The attacking character may spend 1 to 4 Action Dice to cause the target to automatically fail the same number of Damage saves (in addition to the standard rolled save prompted by damage inflicted by the attack). In the case of standard characters, animals, and most gear, 1 Action Die is enough to eliminate the target.
If the character chooses to spend no dice, the attack check remains a threat. Many character options and weapons provide additional benefits when a threat is scored.
Unlike in Spycraft 1.0 and most d20 games, a natural 20 is not an automatic hit; a character’s attack result must equal or exceed the target’s Defense in order to hit. The effects of a threat or critical hit, however, override any miss.
Special Note: When a standard NPC scores a threat with an attack check, it may only be activated as a critical hit if the NPC possesses the treacherous quality (see page 451).
Every attack possesses an error range. The error range of all attacks begins at 1, though it may increase or decrease due to feats, conditions, and other factors. An error range may not decrease below 0.
When a character misses with an attack and rolls a natural number within his error range (an actual roll of the number on a d20), he suffers an error — a potential critical miss.
Example 1: A character is targeted with the Black Cat feat, which increases his error range by 2. The character’s error range is 1–3.
Example 2: A Soldier with the no worries ability makes an attack check. The ability decreases his error range by 2. The Soldier’s error range with the check is 0.
To activate an error as a critical miss, the character’s opponent — usually the GC — must spend 1 or more Action Dice. A critical miss overrides an error, negating the error’s effects and replacing them with the effects of a critical miss. It can also have a variety of effects, as shown on Table: Critical Miss Effects. Certain actions and situations may prompt alternate critical miss results, as noted in their descriptions.
If the character’s opponent chooses to spend no dice, the character’s attack check remains a standard failure and an error. Many character options cannot be activated in the event of an error, and some character actions may only target opponents that score an error.
Unlike in Spycraft 1.0 and most d20 games, a natural 1 is not an automatic miss; a character’s attack result must be lower than the target’s Defense in order to miss. The effects of an error or critical miss, however, override any hit.
Special Note: Any negative attack check result operates like an error and may be activated as a critical miss.
When a character scores a total result of 75 or higher with an attack check, he scores a “Triumph.” This is a defining martial accomplishment on the order of an impossible shot, or a totally original combat maneuver that others will strive for decades to repeat. Scoring a Triumph is the highest possible accolade in Spycraft 2.0 and reason for reverent celebration.
No Triumph should go by unnoticed; neither should one fade quickly. Triumphs are the stuff of legend and should find an honorable home in the GC’s setting — perhaps as a recurring NPC-driven story growing more and more outlandish over time, maybe as something upon which high-ranking NPCs commend the team when they meet for the first time. The Game Control should always strive to pay tribute in his own way, using each Triumph as the gateway to greater flavor and roleplaying potential in his game.
But Triumphs are not merely flavor. They also offer the entire team a number of significant benefits, as follows.
- Once per mission only, the character scoring the Triumph and each of his teammates gains an additional +10% XP for the current mission, rounded up (this bonus is applied after the mission’s base XP reward is multiplied by the character’s career level or the team’s Threat Level). This bonus stacks with any Crossroads Title benefits each character may already gain (see page 53).
- Each time a Triumph occurs, the attack result is considered a 1-action die critical hit. The character may spend additional Action Dice to achieve a higher critical result.
- Each time a Triumph occurs, each standard opponent who witnesses the Triumph as it happens suffers 2d10 stress damage.
- Once per session only, each special opponent who witnesses the Triumph as it happens suffers 1d10 stress damage.
- Each time a Triumph occurs, each opponent who witnesses the Triumph as it happens — whether standard or special — must immediately make a Resolve/Morale check.