Skip to main content

Weight in Combat in the War of Ashes

+Evil Hat Productions' latest hardcover release is War of Ashes: Fate of Agaptus, a Fate Accelerated-powered adaptation of Zombiesmith's "grimsical" miniatures games. I was very pleasantly surprised when I dug into the PDF of this game and saw the various new rules and systems that expand on the solid but slim FAE base.

One of those systems that I'm particularly impressed by and think can find a home in other designs is that of character weight and its impact on combat. Weight is an elegant new way to handle scale. In War of Ashes, each character and monster has a numerical rating of its overall impact on combat primarily based on size. PCs and many monsters on their scale are weight 1, while smaller creatures are weight 0. Large monsters range as high as weight 8 for the massive herbivores called foadstors.

In combat, you total the weights of each side within a zone. If one side outweighs the other by 2:1, you replace one die the larger side rolls with a + after rolling. If the difference is 4:1 or higher, you instead replace two dice with +s. Obviously, this increases the average of the larger side's rolls without boosting the maximum beyond the normal +4.

War of Ashes also lets you use weight in social conflicts. There it represents status, expertise, and influence. Mechanically, it works the same way, reflecting how physical and social conflicts are equal in Fate Accelerated Edition. In social conflicts, a commoner might have weight 1 to petition the government while the king has weight 8.

I love the weight system. It's tiny, adding a single line to any stat block that differs from weight 1. You can feel the impact without it overwhelming the core mechanic. It encourages tactics and positioning. And it applies equally well to both physical and social conflicts. I can see this rule being used in a lot of games.

Popular posts from this blog

Dungeon Crate, May 2016

For my birthday last month, my friends got me a subscription to DungeonCrate.  This service is the RPG-focused entry in the current "crate" craze, where you pay a subscription fee and a box of themed stuff is sent to your home monthly, quarterly, or whatever. Well, my first crate arrived today, and I thought I'd go through it here on the blog.

Discworld RPG Review

The Discworld Roleplaying Game is a standalone fantasy RPG written by Phil Masters with rules based on GURPS Fourth Edition by Steve Jackson Games. It is the second edition of Discworld RPG, following the original GURPS Discworld published in 1998 and reprinted under the Discworld RPG name in 2002.

For those who may not be familiar, Discworld is the setting of an extremely popular series of fantasy novels written by Sir Terry Pratchett. The Disc consists of a flat, circular plane resting on the backs of four elephants who in turn stand on the shell of an enormous turtle which swims through space. It began as a fairly traditional — if satirical — fantasy world, but through over 40 novels, Pratchett advanced the setting into a rich canvas on which to poke fun at the peculiarities of modern life.

The first edition of the Discworld RPG was based on GURPS Third Edition, and it included GURPS Lite, a pared down version of the core system. Still, it relied perhaps too much on knowledge of th…

Voting Is Live For The 2016 Ennie Awards

The 2016 Ennie Awards are now open for voting. Go to to vote for the great gaming products in two dozen categories.

While you’re there, I hope you’ll consider voting for It’s Element-ary! for Best Family Game. I’m up against some very worthy competition, and I’m honored just to be nominated. But who knows what could happen, right?