These faqs are the result of discussions I initiated on the now defunct WebRPG web site in July 1999. My thanks to all who contributed with many excellent suggestions. Special thanks to Ax'l Adams for his very pertinent contribution. I hope this will help GMs sort the action out. I tried to include everyone's ideas. Needless to say, a gm should use the rules most pertinent/constant/appropriate to the campaign they are running.
FAQ #1: Initiative Value - who goes first? Non-engaged and Engaged figures and related materiel!
FAQ #2: Damage from spells - clarification of rule 18.4.
FAQ #3: The Colleges of Magic - a summary by John M. Kahane (August 19th, 1999).
FAQ #1: Initiative Value - who goes first? (and what about some other actions)
School of thought #1: Just what the book says, all Engaged figures go before Non-engaged figures.
A figure who is Engaged is defined as one who is adjacent (hex) to a hostile figure on the display. Thus most of the time spell casters and ranged weapon users are considered Non-engaged. Strictly speaking, the pikeman would have Engaged initiative in attacking an opponent who is two hexes away, the opponent would have Non-engaged initiative.
School of thought #2: Simpler initiative, highest IV goes first then you just go down the list.
A figure who is engaged is defined as one who is actively participating in combat. Thus spell casters and ranged weapon users are considered engaged. Initiative is calculated for all Non-engaged and Engaged figures and then actions are resolved in order of highest initiative. This way a Non-engaged figure with a high IV get a chance to help and save the day before the Engaged figures get chopped down.
School of thought #3: Overall IV goes first.
The highest IV character acts first. If he/she/it is Engaged, then that entire engagement is done first. Then the next highest IV goes (if they have not already acted) and so on. This way a Non-engaged character could have a chance to act before an engagement and help out a buddy. Using this scenario, Ranged and Magical attacks would fall under the Engaged category.
#1 What about line of sight... can you shoot an arrow directly between two occupied hexes?
The modifier for making a ranged attack through a sheltered hex is -20%. If one misses a roll bad enough, say 100, then the gm could rule that one of the figures you were trying to shoot in between got shot instead.
#2 When do you roll for stun recovery?
If your character has not already acted during the pulse in which he/she got stunned, he/she is allowed to roll to become unstunned and then can roll at the end of each 5 second pulse until unstunned. Remember that a figure who becomes Stunned may drop anything it is holding as per 17.3.
#3 How are multiple attacks resolved (in what order) due to high agility (see 15.3) or attacking with two weapons (one in each hand)?
It may be a gm call. But for simplicity's sake both attacks are resolved at the same time based on IV. Note that if attacking with a different weapon in each hand, then the second weapon may actually strike after the opponent has acted since the IV for the second weapon may be less than the first one.
#4 Can a character still fire his bow onto another character (not the one attacking him) when engaged in the current pulse?
Yes. However, there should be a negative modifier for getting swatted with a sword or other weapon while trying to fire a bow.
#5 If a figure is Stunned, or has any rear hexes towards his opponent, the opponent automatically receives the Initiative.
FAQ #2: Damage from spells - clarification of rule 18.4.
A) The 4 types of damage incurred as a result of a magical attack are:
Damage as a result of change in the physical environment. Ex: Like "windstorm, falling rocks", etc. It is absorbed by armor. Ex: Windstorm Spell (S-1, Air Magics).
Damage as a result of pure magical energy. It is not absorbed by armor (unless the armor has extra magical protection). Ex: Bolt of Energy (S-2, Ensorc. & Enchant.), Spell of Molecular Disruption (S-4, Sorceries of the Mind), etc.
Damage as a result of physical matter or entity shaped or created out of mana. It is absorbed by armor. Ex: Spell of Ice Projectiles, Earth Hammer Spell, Spell of Diamond Javelins, Meteor Spell, Phantasm Spell, etc.
Damage as a result of a breath weapon. Ex: Breath weapon of a dragon, Spell of Dragon Flames (S-10, Fire Magics, at the discretion of the gm):
School of thought #1:
By the book. The DQ rule book mentions in 2 places that that kind of weapon damage is never absorbed by armor. The first time is in rule 18.4. The second time is in section 75.DRAGONS in paragraph 21 of DQ 2nd Ed. If the armor is magical then the gm could rule that its magical boon absorbs breath weapon damage, gm's discretion.
School of thought #2:
Damage from breath weapons is absorbed by armor. Many people use this rule and it makes sense since an almost naked person would suffer more damage than a fully clothed one with leather armor for example. Some GMs have house rules specifying which type of armor protects most or least.
B) The 2 kinds of armor pertinent to damage from spells:
Type #1: Ordinary armor like chainmail of protection=6 and armor of extraordinary quality like the same chainmail but of protection=7. Those do not absorb damage from pure magical energy (Type 2).
Type #2: Armor enhanced by magic like a chainmail +2, the +2 being derived from magic permanently invested in this item. And armor protection magically enhanced with a spell like the Spell of Enchanting Armor (S-9, Ensorcelments and Enchantments). The amount of pure magical energy (Type 2) damage absorbed is only the amount of the magical protection boon, like the chainmail +2 would absorb only 2 points of damage from a pure magical energy (Type 2) attack.
C) Other damage from spells issues:
Take your pick among the following three:
School of though #1:
Damage from a magical attack and breath weapons carry over (or roll-over) into Endurance when Fatigue is depleted.
School of though #2:
Damage from a magical attack and breath weapons are deducted from Endurance only after Fatigue has reached 0 (just like the rules for standard weapons combat).
School of though #3:
Damage from a magical attack are treated as in #2 but have house rules for when a huge amount of damage is caused. Each GM use a different house rule for this one.
FAQ #3: The Colleges of Magic - by John M. Kahane.
Ensorcelments and Enchantments - this College is concerned with general magic, but in particular the charming and enchanting of individuals and objects.
Sorceries of the Mind - this College of magic is modeled on the Deryni books of Katherine Kurtz, and concerns itself the manipulation of the mental abilities of sentients and the power of the mind.
Illusions - this College is concerned with the creation of stimuli designed to fool the senses of an observer so that he will accept the existence of what is not actually there, and vice versa. Illusions are automatically believed in unless the character makes a conscious attempt to disbelieve in an illusion.
Naming Incantations - this College specializes in things having to do with True Names, and is concerned with magic in general (and counterspells in particular). Inspired by the Earthsea books by Ursula K. Le Guin.
Air Magics - this College is concerned with the shaping of the powers of the element of air.
Water Magics - this College is concerned with the shaping of the powers of the element of water.
Fire Magics - this College is concerned with the shaping of the powers of the element of fire. Fire Magics tend to be very...unforgiving. :)
Earth Magics - this College is concerned with the shaping of the powers of the element of earth, and those entities rooted in the earth or in contact with it. Earth Magics takes one of two forms, Pacifistic or Druidic.
Celestial Magics - this College is concerned with magic that has to do with the stars, night, and shadow. There are three forms of this College, Star Mage, Dark Mage, and Shadow Weaver. Some of the spells of the College are limited only to one or two of the types of Celestial Mage.
Necromantic Conjurations - this College is concerned with the processes of life, death, decay, and putrefaction. Necromancers in DQ can be fascinating to play, but the College was really downplayed in the 3rd Edition of the system.
Black Magics - does not exist in 3rd Edition DQ. This College is concerned with the magic and powers derived from making a deal with the Powers of Darkness. (In DQ terms, with the various Demons that are part of the DQ mythology and belief system from the 1st and 2nd Editions of the game). Really nasty College of magic.
Greater Summonings - does not exist in 3rd Edition DQ. This College is concerned with the ability to summon and bind beings from other planes of existence, notably Demonic entities.
Lesser Summonings - this College is only found in Arcane Wisdom, and concerns the summoning and binding of creatures and beings from the same plane of existence. The version of this College that appeared in 3rd Edition DQ is called Summoning, and is very much inferior to that found in AW. Some of the stuff that one could summon in Greater Summonings (such as imps) are included in this version of the College.
Rune Magics - this College is found in both Arcane Wisdom and 3rd Edition DQ (but in the latter is somewhat inferior to the original that appeared in AW). This College is concerned with the use of special symbols (runes) of power to shape mana/magic into desired forms.
Shaping Magics - this College is found in both Arcane Wisdom and 3rd Edition (but see the notes above on this). This College is concerned with the fashioning and animation of non-living matter, and with the construction of enchantments that endure and thus of potent magical items.