Rules Clarifications

The First Clarification: This page is here for me as much as it is for anyone else. My proficiency with Savage Worlds is still growing, so issues surrounding how the system works are bound to arise. I’m very much a “make a quick ruling at the table and consider the matter later” kind of GM rather than the “stop the game to dig in the book and find the definitive answer right now” sort. A case in point, I winged the gambling with Victor’s character from memory. Looking it up afterwards, I found I’d got it a bit wrong. The idea has been reinforced, so I probably won’t get it wrong in future.

I suspect that the first time many of the game elements arise, the decisions about how to play them at the time will be altered a bit upon consideration. I’ve found Savage Worlds lends itself well to this kind of trial and error, molding itself around the way in which it is used. Please be patient and understanding through any of these sorts of growing pains.

When an issue with a game element arises, and upon reflection I find I think it should be played differently than we played it at the table, I will post my thoughts here. They are open for discussion. I will ask that the majority of the discussion take place on the forum rather than at the table. Let’s leave the table for actual gaming and telling our story.

Duels and Edges: I received clarification that regardless of edges(Two Fisted and so forth), during the “Swappin’ Lead” phaze, only a single shot may be fired. Certain edges may allow two guns to be drawn without penalty to be used if actual combat begins, but only one may be fired, and that one only once, during the actual duel.

Beast Bond/Beast Master/Beast Friend: Issues arose surrounding these during our first session. I muddled through them at the time, and have given them more consideration since. I have a better idea now of how these should work in our campaign. There are a few bits I want to clarify, since I’m certain similar issues will arise again.

It may be important to point out here that these powers specifically work on animals, and, in a metagame sense, there is a distinction between animals and monsters. The difference is muddy on purpose, especially given that to most folks, there are no such things as monsters, and thus, no reason to suspect a difference. What I’ll say to it is that animals have their origin in “nature”. The definition of “nature” I’ll leave to the individual with the stipulations that my definition is the one that counts and I don’t plan to elaborate. The point in mentioning it here is to head off any tantrums that might otherwise arise at the table should a creature that is expected to behave as an animal somehow doesn’t. When the cute little fawn you are petting suddenly opens a great fang-filled maw and eats your head, it may be possible that fawn doesn’t fall under the heading “animal”.

Beast Master: Going forward, subject to alteration, we will define “attack” as an offensive action taken with specific intent. Potentially damaging actions that are in themselves byproducts of some other intent would not be classified as attacks. For example, A horse biting you is an attack. A horse attempting to buck you off its back is not attacking, but simply attempting to get you off its back. A horse can be your friend without wanting you on its back in the same way a man can be your friend without wanting your dick in his butt. Such a man, when presented with the dick in butt scenario, may buck as well. The bucking is not an attack, though an attack may follow. In a similar way to all of this, a cow that is pulling against you when you throw a lariat around its neck is not attacking, neither is the group of running cattle who trample you if you happen to be in their way. There is also the consideration of enragement which applies here. In the case of breaking horses, I would suggest that no matter how calm an unbroken horse is initially, there is a degree of enragement that begins the moment someone gets on its back.

Beast Friend: I found it interesting to use Beast Friend in the attempt to break the horse. I think I allowed a +2 to the riding rolls to break it. Beast Friend, however, is written very like Puppet with its own advantages and limitations. That actually makes more sense to me. Going forward we will consider Beast Friend as simply mind control, taking the animal’s will away from it, for the duration of the spell. Once the spell is over, that will is restored and the animal goes back to being the animal, with the animal’s normal behavior in the given situation. This means that the caster could control an unbroken horse and ride it for the duration of the spell, but once the spell was done, the bucking would commence if there was still someone on its back. By the same token, if Beast Friend is used on a wolverine that is enraged at being caged up, and that wolverine, while under the spell, is then taken from the cage and released away from people and apparent danger, it would most likely simply go on its way, rather than hunt down those who caged it. Should the issue arise, Beast Friend will trump Beast Master, though under certain circumstances, an animal may be allowed an attempt to fight this influence. If, for example, our huckster cast the spell on Scott’s character’s dog, and commanded the dog to attack Scott’s character, it would be allowed a spirit check.

The Order of Damage: I’ve done some more investigation on this issue and found some further info from Clint. This is the order of what happens when damage is done.

  1. The Amount of Damage Is Determined-This can be any number of wounds depending on the damage roll. 6 raises = 6 wounds.
  2. Soaking Is Resolved-If the damaged character has the ability and desire to soak he makes the attempt based on the total number of wounds determined by the damage roll. 6 wounds = 3 necessary to soak to avoid incapacitation.
  3. The Damage Is Applied-This is the total number of wounds minus any wounds soaked with the cap of three wounds and incapacitation. 3 wounds or less means the character is still fighting. More than 3 wounds and the character is incapacitated and must make the immediate vigor roll.
  4. Healing May Be Attempted-If the character is incapacitated, this must be dealt with first. Then wounds may be healed.

Stuff on Horseback: This came last time as well. I found the rule in the book and from the way it reads, I think it is meant to apply to close, physical type skills like fighting or athletics rather than for shooting. Firing a gun from horseback would simply be subject to the unstable platform penalty and still use the shooting skill, but trying to hit someone with a gun butt would use the lower of fighting or riding.

Rules Clarifications

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