The Combat Round
The Combat Round
At the beginning of the combat, every combatant must roll for initiative. this represents what order each combatant will take their action. Note that even though there is a set turn rotation, it is played out and assumed that every action in a round is happening almost simultaneously within the span of six seconds.
Each combatant has a set number of actions they can take on their turn. These actions represent what they can accomplish in six seconds.
- Standard action
- Move action
- Free action
- Full-Round action
Standard actions are where characters act out the main action of the turn. This is usually an attack, but can be used for other actions, such as aiming, trying to negotiate (a charisma roll), and even an extra move action.
Move actions are used to reposition yourself around the battlefield. It is up to the GM how far one can feasibly move in under six seconds (usually around 30 feet, depending on how heavy the character and their gear is). This action can be replace by a standard action (but not an attack).
Free actions represent small actions that take an insignificant amount of time. A character can take as many free actions as the GM allows (around 2-5 depending on the situation). Free actions are used for things like talking, drawing or sheathing a weapon, signaling an ally, and anything else that wouldn’t take much time.
A full-round action is reserved for things that take longer than most actions and barely fit into a span of six seconds. While taking a full round action, a character can do nothing else for that round. Full-round actions are typically reloading firearms and cannons, setting and priming an explosive device, and other long, complicated processes
Attacking and Defending
The combat rules in the improv system have been simplified into two steps; attacking and defending.
To attack, you must declare who you are attacking, and with what weapon. Next, roll your attack (often called a “to hit” roll) and compare it to the defender’s defence roll. The formula to calculate an attack is simple:
1d20 + attack stat + any weapon bonus +/- misc. modifiers
To defend, you must be the target of an attack or within an area of effect. The formula to calculate defense is simple:
1d20 + defense stat + any armor bonus +/- misc. modifiers
(Optional) Certain types of attacks can ignore armor, such as firearms and some spells.
Did I Hit?
To confirm that an attack landed and did damage, the attacker’s roll must be higher than the defender’s. If the defender’s is higher, the attack misses and nothing happens.
If an attack is successful, the attacker gets to roll for how much damage is dealt (assuming the attack does damage). Use the weapon damage dice from Pathfinder to determine the damage of a weapon. Simply roll the given damage dice and deduct the total from the defender’s HP.