Initiative and Surprise
When the miniatures representing characters are with 2” of each other, they may engage in melee. For the player characters and members of their party, individual Initiative Score
(INTV) = Dex score + Wis mod. +
Weapon modifier + Armor Penalty
For adversaries, INTV = d20 + Reflex bonus. The DM will determine the initiative score for the rivals or NPC’s opponents; rarely breaking the opposing party into two groups if necessary for dramatic effect. The first round of melee, only those members of the player’s party whose INTV equals or exceeds that of the opponents party may perform one full round of action, then all the opponents act for this first simulated combat round. Do not roll dice to determine INTV for members of the PC party.
The second round of action or melee, all members of the player’s party act first, preferably in order of initiative score. This is followed by all the members of the opposing party controlled by the GM. For clarity and speed, the DM might assign clockwise seating to the players in descending order of INTV score; i.e. the player with the highest INTV score sits at the GM’s left and lowest INTV score will sit at the GM’s right. Game action proceeds in this manner, PC group followed by opponents each round until there is conquest, withdrawal or surrender.
If the INTV score for the opponents’ exceeds any character’s INTV score by 10 or more, then that member of the PC’s party is surprised the first round, and only the first round of combat. Surprised characters lose their shield and dexterity based bonus to defense, cannot cast spells, cannot use ranged weapons and they cannot engage in complex mental activity or processing; however, saving throws and melee attacks are normal for duration of this round.
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