Monday, April 15, 2013

Movement & Action


    A character’s standard movement speed is one-third the sum of his dexterity and constitution score which is then modified by Armor Penalty or AP.

Many activities or tasks, such as traveling, running, parleying, using skills and casting certain spells take longer than one round to complete; therefore, they might be suspended if attacked or distracted.  An encumbered or heavily encumbered character is allowed one action per round, while Unencumbered characters are allowed one action plus a partial action each round.   Activities ideally suited for simulation within a round are:



            Attack with weapon or fists, light a torch, cast a spell, drink a potion, read a scroll, retrieve item from backpack, turn undead, or load a musket or revolver.

A sprinting bipedal creature moves d6” for each point of standard movement speed.


3 PARTIAL ACTION   =  1 Full Action

Draw weapon, standard move, dodge, ride, lower spell resistance, use supernatural or innate magic, open or close a door, retrieve item from belt or cloak, answer a question, drop prone,  insert magazine in weapon, mount a familiar steed or parry with a melee weapon.


NO ACTION  REQUIRED  (but must be conscious)

Activate a magic item, use a shield, make a saving throw, drop an item in hand, or a simple telepathic command to a friend or mount.


            This not only describes weight, but also measures portability or bulk.  One unit of mass is roughly equivalent to one pound.  In addition to clothing, footwear & jewelry; a character can carry armor, weapons and other items up to half his weight allowance (WA) and be unencumbered. 

            If carrying more than half Weight Allowance, the character is encumbered.

Heavily encumbered characters are carrying/ holding items whose total mass exceeds the character’s weight allowance, but a character cannot carry more than twice his weight allowance.  Armor penalty for a heavily encumbered is increased three (i.e., 0 à -3,   -1 à -4,   -2 à -5, and so on).


Weight allowance is determining by averaging the character’s strength and size score truncating fractions, and squaring the result.
i.e., (Strength 12 + Size 5)/2 = 8.5 
       8 squared = 64; therefore , weight allowance is 64#

Example;  Vala Tan is a red Martian female criminal of 4th level who is twenty six decades old; her background is abbreviated RFC426.  She has a strength score of eight and a size score of three, since the average of eight and three is five; referencing Table 4.3,  Vala Tan’s weight allowance is 25#.

If Vala Tan is wearing furs (5#), and carrying a short-sword (2#), a dagger (1#), a radium pistol (3#), a magnifying glass (½ #)  and a lock pick kit (½#), she is unencumbered as 5+ 2+ 1+ 3+ ½ + ½ = 12, which is less than 12.5#or half her weight allowance. 

If she were to pick up a sack of 300 silver coins (3#), total mass carried would be 12+ 3 = 15 > 12.5; therefore, she would be encumbered.  Recall, that Vala Tan could carry no more equipment or items than twice her weight allowance  (50#  =  2 x 25#).

Art work is by Frank Cho


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