Bob elects to Counterattack Adam, and rolls a hit...
Can Adam Dodge the Counterattack?
(It seems to me that if Adam can't Dodge a Counterattack, a strong incentive is created for higher-DX figures to avoid attacking foes who can react, because it means they might get hurt without being able to try to Dodge, whereas if they wait to be attacked, they can Dodge.)
Post by mister frau blucher on May 22, 2020 6:34:55 GMT -5
Thanks for stopping back by, haven't seen you in a while!
The answer is no; Adam cannot Dodge. The reason is you can only take one action in your turn, and Bob is the Attacker and has already attacked. His turn is up. Any Reaction (Couterattack, Dodge) is only allowed by the Defender, at the cost of his upcoming turn.
Sounds like you might not agree with the situation, given the premise of your example, but keep in mind three things with regards to this. One, we don't want a Mobius Loop of Reactions, because Two, while abstracted, there is still only a finite amount of time in a turn. This is why one figure is Considered the Attacker, and one the Defender, with rules applying to each; then the turn is over.
The third thing, and the most important thing with regards to oyur example, is this - higher DX doesn't matter in this instance. This is a critical difference from Melee. In LAW, one side has Initiative in a combat, and they act first. It might be lower DX dude. Initiative never changes (just like higher DX never changes), except in a situation such as a successful tactics contest.
I do think I understand the parts about how Initiative works. I am just thinking that I liked how I thought it would work, and am struggling to like the situation and implied tactics if the attacker can't dodge a counterattack.
To make sure I understand the turn sequence, perhaps I can ask you one more detail: If the same events happen: (Adam attacks Bob. Bob survives.) But then Bob does _not_ choose to Counterattack, and Adam's team's figures are all finished, and Bob has not taken a defensive action, and so if Bob _then_ chooses to attack Adam, in that case Adam could dodge, no?
If so, then I don't really see how that's any less action per turn than if Adam could Dodge the Counterattack.
But the main issue I see, again, is that I feel like a figure with a good Dodge score will tend to have a strong incentive to avoid attacking anyone who might counterattack. Particularly since there also seems to be no TFT-like effects of injury in Legends, it seems like attacking someone who still could counterattack can be much more dangerous than waiting for them to attack you, especially in a duel or other situation where time isn't critical. It also seems like, when there are multiple players on a team, they have to agree who acts in what order, but there's a strong incentive sometimes to want your friends to attack first so they risk being counterattacked rather than you.
Post by mister frau blucher on May 24, 2020 6:58:52 GMT -5
One thing to keep in mind about LAW's more simplified play that is different from TFT - A "turn" is not shared among the sides. Each side has their own turn.
Adam and his side take their turn, moving and/or attacking. Now their turn is over.
Now it is Bob's teams turn. If Bob Reacted (Counterattack/Dodge) he cannot act, but if he didn't he can now attack. He is the Attacker in his turn; Adam would be considered the Defender. So at this point, Adam could React - at the cost of his upcoming turn.The fact that he acted in his previous turn is irrelevant; that turn is over.
Things are very simply I Go - You Go. Not like Melee where the turn is combined for both sides, acting in a certain order. The opposing sides act in their own, separate turns.
Thanks for the explanation. I get what you are saying.
I was using the wrong definition for what the term "turn" was (I meant a complete pair of player turns so everyone gets their move/action once), thinking it must be meant to abstractly represent that there is some simultaneous action going on that would cross/overlap player turns in terms of game time.
So I should have written, "any less action per pair of turns".
I quite like the way that a figure's _next_ turn's action can be used as a Dodge, because it seems to represent well a situation where one fighter is put on a defensive footing for a while (i.e. until the attacker misses, so there's no need to Dodge).
I just think it would work even more to my taste if the Attacker could also Dodge a Counterattack using his next action in the same way, just as they can if the Defender doesn't Counterattack or Dodge but then used a normal attack.
In situations where an attacker really doesn't want to get hurt, and especially when they have adjDX over 10 and/or higher than the attacker's attacking skill, it seems vastly better if the foe attacks you so you can Dodge if they hit or attack them if they don't (even an undodgeable counterattack), because the odds of avoiding getting hit are so much better. Unfortunately, that seems to me to lead to some situations where no one wants to attack first.
Post by mister frau blucher on May 24, 2020 19:45:09 GMT -5
You may be right. We occasionally change our rules, given sufficient reason. I am a little wary of changing the Attacker's ability in that way, giving him the option of doing a second action in the same turn. It adds a layer of complexity - not necessarily a bad thing, but one of our dictates is Simple - but then it also means your record keeping has to extend for two turns out (your opponent's upcoming turn, then your next one).
That being said, I do see your point. Not sure how often it would come up - would you actually refrain from attacking because you could not Dodge a subsequent Counterattack? To the point of not ever attacking? Maybe - has that situation come up in your games? I am curious. This is not something I have experienced, but if it does come up with regularity among our players, I want to know!
I'm (a very experienced TFT/GURPS player) in my first multi-player game playing Legends now (PBP on the TFT Discord server) and I started considering it in our third fight, when I learned that's how the GM was handling counterattacks. Then in the fourth combat I did spend a turn doing nothing, because we had one guy trapped between two of us, and I didn't want to get hurt. IIRC, next turn I let my comrade's PC attack him and he did get counterattacked, so I then finished the guy off since he'd then used his one reaction.
I think it depends on the situation what I'll choose to do, and since usually it's a group fight, I probably won't usually not attack unless there seems to be time, in which case yes I can see cornering foes and just standing there until either they attack or Ivan throws an axe at them or something. But when our fighters are rushing up to attack and we're supposed to cooperate on who attacks first, it seems like an uncomfortable situation because it's like whoever attacks first might get counterattacked with no defense.
I'm also considering trying to attack the weakest/wounded people first and using skill for damage (and possibly not using my shield, so I can do another point of damage) so I have the best chance of actually killing foes in one blow to avoid counterattack, since there are no effects of injury other than death or possibly them choosing to Dodge.
Allowing people to dodge counterattacks doesn't seem noticeably different or more complicated to me than the ability they already have do dodge attacks during the enemy turn. But then again, I have lots of tolerance for complexity, so I'm probably not the best judge of what other players would find complex or not.
Post by mister frau blucher on May 25, 2020 7:11:46 GMT -5
OK, thanks for the feedback, skarg. I actually don't have a problem with complexity, either - I have been a playtester for Advanced Squad Leader (including Festung Budapest - that was a Master's Class in design) of and on for 20 some years, and it doesn't get any more complex than that. But the LAW rules were originally just a simplified distillation of TFT, and took on a bit of their own life 10 years ago with some changes. We have decided to keep things simple for a variety of reasons, though we encourage groups to do house rules as they see fit for their own particular vision or campaign.
Besides simplicity, you do have to draw a line at a certain number of actions in a turn. Allowing a player who is taking his turn, to go ahead and forfeit his turn coming up later by Dodging the defender who is forfeiting his turn to Counterattack allows a lot of action into a compressed time frame. And, say if Adam Attacks, Bob Counterattacks, what if Adam, instead of Reacting by Dodging, wants to React by Counterattacking (thus attacking again in the same turn?) Would Bob be able to Dodge this - or even Counterattack yet again? You could go on and on.
I can certainly see a realistic rationale for ruling something, but I think want to stay in the parameters of the game; that is one action per turn.
But if you guys house rule it, I would be interested in hearing further thoughts.
(Counterattacking the counterattacker does seem silly to me, but dodging doesn't to me, probably partly because I'm used to GURPS defenses, but mainly because of the dilemmas I mentioned that I think it brings up.)
We struggled with this as well. Our solution was to allow a counterattack to be dodged. I was worried with the complication, but in the end it didn't really matter. 1st. This doesn't happen often. There are some scenarios that warrant an immediate counterattack, but they just don't happen that often. 2nd. We took the simple solution of placing a "Loss of next turn" marker on the player/counter/miniature that reacted. You can't react of course if you don't have a next turn. The marker is removed at the end of the player/foe's next turn. 3rd. We don't allow a counterattack of a counterattack.
In the scenario above, both players would receive a loss of turn marker. We don't allow a counterattack of a counterattack.