Couple Comments on Combat

This is just a food for thought question about AC. The system of 0-7 is okay, but, If you look at the traditional AC 9 = unarmored human, it allows the possibility that, there could be an AC 10 = blob of jelly or something even easier to hit and penetrate than a bony human. But since ACKS starts at 0, the only way something can be “softer” is to go negative.
If, on the other hand, you bumped up the range by 1, you would gain the following advantages.

  1. There would be room to leave an AC 0 for softer targets
  2. You would have instant easy conversion from traditional AC – just subtract from 10
  3. You would be directly compatible with two other old school products (and could bill that compatibility on support products ) Spellcraft and Swordplay and Dragons at Dawn.
  4. You would be using the exact original system Dave Arneson used as evidenced in the FFC (Gygax said, for whatever reason, that he was responsible for the 2-9 range)
    On the other hand, starting at 0 (I think) makes converting from 3e+ easy because – if I understand it correctly – you just drop the 1 in front. I’m not sure if that is really much of an advantage given other compatibility issues with later versions of D&D, but maybe it is. Something to think about anyway.
    Conceptually, I’m not sure I understand this rule. On Horseback, there is a difference between a charge and a trot, but on foot, all attacks are charges. Its not like you just walk up to melee the enemy. So I would think the charging bonus, if you’re going to have it, would be an automatic bonus to whoever wins initiative in the first round of combat, unless there is some very unusual circumstance to prevent it. But even then it seems to assume that the defender is static, when in reality, charges are often mutual. So in a typical case where both sides are charging at each other is the bonus applied to both or neither?

The major difference between a charge and non-charge is that a charge let’s you move at running speed. If you need to attack someone more than 2O to 4O feet away it will be a charge.
The bonus to hit is equal to the penalty to AC and it is just supposed to represent the initial slam to contact being a bit more dangerous for both sides.
There is no way for both sides to charge since initiative is step by step. bBut its as if they did… Think of it this way–if either side charges, both get +2 to hit.

Got it. That makes a lot of sense, to close to an enemy more than 40’ (20’ encumbered)away one must be charging and the +2/-2 modifier applies. (Clever that the modifiers work out as the same bonus for both sides, I didn’t see that before) The discription in the book might be better if that was pointed out as the major function of the rule. As written charge just seems like an additional combat maneuver. Might also make sense to push the minimum charge distance to 20’ matching the encumbered distance. Might be a little less confusing and 20’ is still a pretty short distance.