Combat is essentially the act of fighting. While exploring your world you will undoubtedly be faced with having to fight to survive, as well as fight for any other reason. It is through combat that your character is likely to either grow in power or meet an untimely death. Therefore it is very important to understand combat, the many reasons for combat, and the many forms of combat. The better you understand combat and how it works, the better your chances are at survival.
Reasons for Combat
There are many reasons for combat. Here are the most likely reasons you will find for combat.
- Survival: You have to fight to survive. This could be because someone is attempting to kill you or because you have unwittingly become the prey of some hungry wild beast. This is the most common reason for combat.
- To Meet an Objective/A Hired Kill: You maybe asked to do something or hired to do something within the course of your adventure that leads you into a combat. You could be having to take someone down or having to retrieve some special item that is guarded by someone or something.
- Wrong Place at the Wrong Time: This is likely due to some story line event that the GM has developed. You could be exploring a new town when it all the sudden gets attacked by an enemy group, dragon, or barbaric horde for example. This often also ties into the survival reason, which draws you into combat.
- Anger/Revenge: Some other character does something that really ticks you off. This could be an NPC ran by the GM, or another player character. Out of anger you enter combat with this person.
There may be other reasons for you to be involved in combat, but those are the most common. The so-called random combat usually falls under the survival reason.
Different Forms of Combat
Just like there are different reasons for you to have to fight, there are different ways in which you will be able to fight. Not all combat is the same, and with each different type of combat there are different strategies and rules that you will need to adapt to.
- Full Fledged Battle: This is the most common form of combat you are likely to ever encounter. It is a large-scale, tactical form of combat where you will battle on a grid battle mat against usually two or more enemy targets. All of your skills can come in play here since it takes place on a battle map, and not only would you be engaged in attacking and defending but also moving about the map. This form of combat is typically the most time-consuming and also the most rewarding. If you are careful and use good tactics, it is possible to overcome greater odds and make better use of your skills and abilities here than with the other two forms of combat. The most likely reason you will ever come into this form of combat is for survival.
- Duel: This is a form of combat that takes place with only two participants; typically you and another target. The largest reason for this form of combat is anger or revenge, when you are trying to win back your honor or prove yourself. This form of combat can be fast and deadly and is turn based. This form of combat can take place on a grid battle mat, which is the preferred method, or be a more scripted form of combat.
- Indirect: This is where you target an enemy target from a distance and attempt to kill or harm this target without being noticed. This could be because you are hunting some wild game for food, or because you are trying to take down a select target, usually for the ‘To Meet an Objective/A Hired Kill’ reason. This kind of combat can be tricky because if you mess up you can wind up being pulled into either a one on one duel or a full-fledged battle. You should also beware, sentient foes may use this form of combat against you!