On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

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Renowolff
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On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:46 pm

Hi all!

1)I was wondering if creatures in your games are allowed to make a fighting withdrawal or retreats to attack another creature behind them?

2)How about making a fighting withdrawal and then a ranged missile attack/cast a spell against the creature they were just previously engaged with, or even other creatures in range? Something akin to the idea of a ranged combatant backing up and letting loose an arrow.

3)After making a fighting withdrawal/retreat, are they allowed to cast spells, look for an item in their pack, light a torch or perform any other sort of action?

I've gone and read around in the forums but unless I've missed it, I haven't seen an answer regarding the ability to do actions after making such defensive movements. Will you not be able to do any other actions after making a fighting withdrawal and retreat?
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Solomoriah
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Tue Jun 15, 2021 11:01 pm

Renowolff wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:46 pm Hi all!

1)I was wondering if creatures in your games are allowed to make a fighting withdrawal or retreats to attack another creature behind them?
Sure. This is allowed; as long as the moving character or creature goes no more than 1/2 of a normal move, no parting shot is called for.
Renowolff wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:46 pm 2)How about making a fighting withdrawal and then a ranged missile attack/cast a spell against the creature they were just previously engaged with, or even other creatures in range? Something akin to the idea of a ranged combatant backing up and letting loose an arrow.
Sure, why not?
Renowolff wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:46 pm 3)After making a fighting withdrawal/retreat, are they allowed to cast spells, look for an item in their pack, light a torch or perform any other sort of action?
Generally yes. Some of those actions would take more than a round.
Renowolff wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:46 pm I've gone and read around in the forums but unless I've missed it, I haven't seen an answer regarding the ability to do actions after making such defensive movements. Will you not be able to do any other actions after making a fighting withdrawal and retreat?
Why do you keep adding "and retreat?" What does that mean to you? "Fighting withdrawal" is a thing by itself.
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Renowolff
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Wed Jun 16, 2021 6:37 am

Oh I was under the impression that after making a fighting withdrawal, you could only attack when a creature pursues you into your threatening range and only then. I did some reading around the forums and some even word it as "When making a fighting withdrawal you may not attack (unless an enemy enters your range)" or something along those lines.

Hence I wasn't sure if a character could use fighting withdrawal to fall back and attack another creature that was behind them, or after a fighting withdrawal make a ranged attack at their opponent on that same turn. So a character making a fighting withdrawal or a normal move can still take actions like attacking and the like?

Does that mean that ranged combatants could always just fighting withdrawal step back out of the opponents reach and launch their arrows without the -5 penalty? Of course provided that there is still room behind them to step back.

Now, of course DMs could rule whatever they wanted to at their table, but I was just curious to see what other people thought of these situations and how they'd handle it.
Solomoriah wrote: Tue Jun 15, 2021 11:01 pm Why do you keep adding "and retreat?" What does that mean to you? "Fighting withdrawal" is a thing by itself.
Ah, I apologize, I meant retreats as in movements that would provoke parting shots/free attacks. In some other games the other sort of defensive movement would be called a full retreat, which is essentially a movement backward at their full movement rate that grants the attacker a free swing and/or -2 to AC for the rest of the round. But I understand that it isn't termed that way in BFRPG's Core Rules. Sorry for the confusion!
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Dimirag
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Wed Jun 16, 2021 2:23 pm

There is no "threatening range" AFAIK

Characters could attack if they have a weapon that allows them after their make their movement, not at the same time, with the corresponding distance penalties.
Sorry for any misspelling or writing error, I am not a native English speaker
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Solomoriah
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:49 am

The comment regarding attacking is meant to indicate that you can't attack before making a fighting withdrawal (in the same round) as you're obviously not in melee range anymore.

Though this isn't necessarily true if you have a long weapon... you could do a short withdrawal, just enough to put yourself out of the other opponent's reach, and still attack with a polearm or spear, for example. As long as you're still close enough for the weapon to reach.

A lot of newer players have a hard time understanding that the rules are really just guidelines for the GM; his or her interpretation, with any additions or amendments, is what matters.
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Renowolff
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Fri Jun 18, 2021 10:18 am

Dimirag wrote: Wed Jun 16, 2021 2:23 pm There is no "threatening range" AFAIK

Characters could attack if they have a weapon that allows them after their make their movement, not at the same time, with the corresponding distance penalties.
I suppose the term isnt threatening range, sorry, but the book does state that opponents that are within 5ft of each other are "engaged" and they must abide by the rules of Defensive movement. That was what I was referring to. I wasn't sure if they were not allowed to have attacks during fighting withdrawals perhaps due to balance reasons. I see that I was worrying too much! Cheers :)
Renowolff
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Fri Jun 18, 2021 10:27 am

Solomoriah wrote: Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:49 am The comment regarding attacking is meant to indicate that you can't attack before making a fighting withdrawal (in the same round) as you're obviously not in melee range anymore.
Ah I had assumed that was the case since movement has to come before attack anyway, so I wasn't sure if the comment was specifying something different. Thank you for clearing that up!
Solomoriah wrote: Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:49 am Though this isn't necessarily true if you have a long weapon... you could do a short withdrawal, just enough to put yourself out of the other opponent's reach, and still attack with a polearm or spear, for example. As long as you're still close enough for the weapon to reach.
I suppose I had my concerns that attacks would be prohibited for balance reasons, to make ranged weapons something you had to put away during a melee engagement and draw a dagger, rather than having the option to continue fighting with it and essentially backstepping and firing to negate the proximity penalties, going toe to toe with a melee combatant with a ranged weapon.

As a side note, are there actually reach rules for Basic Fantasy's Core Rules? I know this falls under "You're the GM, you decide." But I was wondering if it exists by the book.
Solomoriah wrote: Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:49 am A lot of newer players have a hard time understanding that the rules are really just guidelines for the GM; his or her interpretation, with any additions or amendments, is what matters.
You're right on that and I am new to both TTRPGs and the OSR as well. I understand the "Rulings not Rules" mindset but I was worried about the negative mechanical implications that may interfere with the game. I do want to promote decisive moves from the players, which to me includes clear consistent rulings on combat, how it relates to the fiction/real world, their capabilities while engaging with different weapons and the actions they can take.
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Dimirag
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Re: On Fighting Withdrawals, Retreats and Actions

Post Fri Jun 18, 2021 2:53 pm

I suppose I had my concerns that attacks would be prohibited for balance reasons, to make ranged weapons something you had to put away during a melee engagement and draw a dagger, rather than having the option to continue fighting with it and essentially backstepping and firing to negate the proximity penalties, going toe to toe with a melee combatant with a ranged weapon.
A character that does a withdrawal movement moves at half speed while the one moving forward will move its full movement, so its no better or worse than using a melee weapon. Ranged weapons are limited by ammo, melee weapons aren't.
As a side note, are there actually reach rules for Basic Fantasy's Core Rules? I know this falls under "You're the GM, you decide." But I was wondering if it exists by the book.
Only rule I remember is characters with the longer weapon getting the first strike regardless initiative when getting close.
I do want to promote decisive moves from the players, which to me includes clear consistent rulings on combat, how it relates to the fiction/real world, their capabilities while engaging with different weapons and the actions they can take.
There are lots of rules you can import from other systems to mold combat into your liking.
Sorry for any misspelling or writing error, I am not a native English speaker
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