Monday, June 20, 2011

Alternate Rules: Defense

Armor is highly impractical in my world of Hekinoe. I had to actually scale the environmental danger rules down a step, or my players would have died by now from heat, most days in The Know World end up getting to be at least ninety out. It is too hot for heavy armor, and Pathfinder resolves close range firearm attacks as a touch attack, which I like, but with guns being so commonplace, armor is basically useless, beyond a few special types I've come up with.

My thought is that it would be prudent to add a Monk AC style feat series to the game. I would model it after d20 Modern or 3.5 Unearthed Arcana's class defense bonus. I figure that people with the reflexes and instincts for it would have developed a style of fighting that involved not being where a bullet was aimed or a blade fell. Something beyond just having good reflexes that was discovered when men realized that a close range bullet can punch through plate mail as easily as leather armor. 

It would apply to touch attacks, and wearing armor would negate it or halve it, as would being immobilized or restrained, but I'm not sure if I want to treat it like a Dexterity bonus to AC and have it be negated by using Bluff in combat or when flat-footed, though that would seem appropriate.

The requirements would be something like Improved Initiative or Evasive Reflexes and above average (thirteen or higher) Wisdom or Dexterity to kind of indicate quick reflexes to dodge with or a strong gut instinct/intuition telling you where not to stand. Perhaps a base attack bonus of a certain level would be an appropriate prerequisite as well to indicate experience. I don't want to make it too all difficult to obtain, but it is a pretty useful feat series, so I have to make the requirements reflect that.

I'm not sure how I want to stagger the bonus though. The class defense bonuses start at +2 and some go as high as +10 by twentieth level. It totally overpowers a Monk's class AC ability, which starts at zero and caps at +5. But, a Monk would have a high Wisdom to go along with that, so maybe the progressions I've been looking at aren't that overpowered in comparison.

I think I have a good starting point to work with, we'll see what comes up. On a side note, considering the whole nature of my post about Coddling, perhaps it is time to teach the guys about heat exhaustion and dehydration...

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