Thursday, July 19, 2012

Mythic Greece: Combat Styles

Thinking about RuneQuest 6 combat styles right now. Here are my disorganizedthoughts on which ones should be included in my RQ6 Mythic Greece campaign.

Achaean Combat: This is the cultural style for all Achaean warrior-aristocrats, involving swords, spears, and shields. It emphasizes one-on-one combat, not formation fighting. It emphasizes force over elegance.

Chariot Combat: An obvious one. Chariots were used to carry heroes into combat, who would jump off and join the battle, run up along the chariot-pole and fight from there, fling javelins into battle, or use a two-handed spear or lance to "joust". The two-handed spear, shield, one-handed spear, and javelins are the most typical weapons for this style.

Mounted Combat: For Amazons, Scythians, and other horse-riding barbarians. Horse-bows and lances, plus shields.

Siege Warfare: Many heroes are "sackers of cities", so they would be skilled in this type of combat. However, fer complicated siege engines would be involved here, mostly ladders, rams, etc. Since it's at such an early stage, though, maybe there should be a cap on this skill?

Skirmishing: This seems appropriate, especially for any hero described as "swift-footed" (e.g., Achilles, Atalanta, etc.) The Amazons and Scythians are mounted skirmishers.

Unarmed Prowess: Should probably be divided into "Boxing" and "Wrestling". Boxers could use the cestus, a type of boxing glove consisting of leather straps wrapped around the hands for protection. The spiked version included what is essentially a pair of spiked "brass knuckles".

Other Combat Styles
Achaean Hunting Style
Berserker (Ajax the Greater)
Excellent Footwork (no specific reference, but it seems appropriate)
Intimidating Scream (Diomedes was "Master of the War Cry")
Spear Combat (Diomedes was noted as a "great spearman", Menelaus was "Spear-Famed)
Archery (Odysseus, Paris, Teucer)
Shield Wall a nd Formation Fighting: mostly civilized nations, like the Trojans.

Note that there's no shipboard fighting style. This is because the Achaeans don't seem to fight while at sea; they land there ships, jump out, and fight on land.

I also recall a scene where Achilles uses his shield as a weapon. Not sure if this should be a separate style or not.

Thoughts and comments are welcome, as usual.


1 comment:

Asen R Georgiev said...

First comment, the styles seem awfully specific. Footwork? You can name a single combat skill that doesn't involve manoeuvre?
Boxing, Wrestling, that makes sense if you think any of those guys could be overspecialised. If they would end up with both being equal or nearly so, why bother? Better add some rules for specialisation, if you're into it. Say, up to half the total Unarmed skill.
Odysseus wrestles on games, and later kills a man with his fist strike. Sounds like he was competent enough in both!
Rage is better left to Passions, too. Let a berserker augment damage by one step on a critical Passion: Killing success.
Shield attacks are definitely part of using the shield offensively, as much as using the sword defensively is part of swordsmanship.
Other than that? Good research, but the point of Styles is to represent a package of skills. Again, skill specialisations might be a good idea, as an optional rule.