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Ryft

Combat Moves

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I guess I'm just using this rules discussion opportunity to clarify a question I had about shields, but also other combat buzzwords from other LARPs that I've heard.

 

I read the shield entry in the online pdf rulebook. You mention that shield size is limited because in real life, maneuvers used to handle a shield are too dangerous to use in the game.

 

There was no mention of proper shield technique, though, as far as what is allowed in combat and what isn't. Specifically what I'm referring to here is what some other LARPs call "turtling", where the shield purposefully covers every legal target available, leaving only the head visible. The rulebook was ambiguous about this issue, despite the reason for limiting shield size being almost identical to the wording used by other LARP games as the reason for disallowing turtling.

 

"Machine gunning" was addressed adequately in the book.

 

I'm guessing from your description of "necessary force only" that I don't have to ask about "baseball batting."

 

Do you guys have any opinions on charging? Obviously hip checking with a shield wouldn't be cool. I'm unsure as to how to describe what Alliance or similar LARPs consider "charging." I'm not entirely for or against it, but I have been on the receiving end of backpedaling into thorn bushes on several occasions, and that certainly isn't fun.

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Charging: if you move towards your opponent in such a way that he has to give ground to avoid a collision, you are cheating.

 

Turtling: currently impossible by design given the size limitations on shields unless you're a very small person. We recently upped the size limit on round shields only to 36" diameter, which might change that. We have a simple mechanism for dealing with turtling: we whack the person repeatedly in the head. This isn't addressed specifically in the rulebook because the current limits have been in place since the beginning of the game, but the Marshals have experienced turtling in all it's glory, and are cognizant of the potential problem.

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Charging: sounds about right. You phrased it far more succinctly than I ever could.

 

Turtling: I am small enough to turtle behind a buckler. Okay, that's a stretch, but in any event when I take a low fighting stance and use a shield, I have to be pretty careful or I find myself doing this unintentionally at times. I still find myself getting whacked in the head at times because I am so short, with or without a shield, but I've discovered my own ways of dealing with opponents that can't take that into account.

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It's been awhile since I fought with a shield, but in my experience, there's a point between "shield too big to move" and "I'm too big to hide behind it". I don't think it's really possible to have a shield so big that it covers from head to toe all the time.

 

We've yet to see anyone make a 36" shield though. I look forward to it.

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I'm working on a 36" round shield. It'll be padded like all get-out because it will be legal for multiple systems, but it will still be a 36" round shield. The old East German riot shields are only 30". I think I'm going to like this. :)

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what about the franks son? he was invisible behind his large round shield. :)

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He's bigger now.

 

I can see writing into the shield rules that if a Weapons Marshal deems you're so small you're effectively turtling, you will be required to reduce the size of your shield.

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He's bigger now.

 

I can see writing into the shield rules that if a Weapons Marshal deems you're so small you're effectively turtling, you will be required to reduce the size of your shield.

 

You're gonna need to, I can guarantee it. As a 5'7" woman, I can, in a slight crouch, hide ALL targetable body parts behind a 36" shield.

 

Y'all were on crack when you changed that rule.

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Yeah, but a slight crouch is almost necessary for proper legwork... being able to spring around when needed. This is especially true for short people with short arms... we don't have reach, so need to rely on speed to make up the distance.

 

If you wanted to standardize what GMs are allowed to call turtling on, maybe pick a standard height, say... 5'10", and declare a set decrease in area or diameter for every inch in height below that. Of course, that's a P.I.T.A.

 

A better solution is to just tell the person that they have to expose something, so that they don't have to stop using a shield altogether. I usually leave my forward leg exposed, and tuck it back if someone swings or stabs at it, or else I leave my sword arm exposed enough that it's a reasonable target. It's not perfect, but it's an attempt at using a shield responsibly.

 

Shields are tons of fun for line battles, but because of the grief I go through for using them I usually pass them over. No one seems to mind when I turtle behind a pair of short swords...

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Everyone should have their knees slightly bent while fighting, sure, but actually crouching is bad on a number of levels from a how-to-physically-fight viewpoint.

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Ok, so we have a semantic misunderstanding. Let me rephrase my initial concern, then.

 

"I am short enough that with my knees bent a little bit I can turtle behind most long shields."

 

I'll probably end up sticking with round shields for this reason.

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Our long shields aren't wide enough for anyone to turtle behind with the current size limitations. This is why we're only concerned with the round shields going up to 36".

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I think I've been getting charged quite a bit by npcs, mostly duel wielders, I'm not much of a fighter though so I naturaly avoid hand to hand confrontation. I'm still unsure as to where to draw the line, clearly people are going to run at you in battle, and if they are using shorties they will need to come close to running me over.

 

It's always safety first, but I just don't want it to get to the point where if I'm back pedaling in a fight I don't take damage. Is there a rule of thumb to follow when being charged

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It's like basketball. If you're moving back, they're not charging. The only way to "get charged" is to have them collide with you.

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