Solutions to Whiffing

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Rat Catcher
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Joined: Fri May 03, 2019 1:11 am

Does anyone have a good house rule for alleviate the combat whiff factor?

I was thinking of something like "if both combatants have WS less than 55%, double both ratings".

WS 29 v WS 37 becomes WS 58 v WS 74.
WS 29 v WS 55 stays 'as is'.
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Rat Catcher wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 12:36 pm
"if both combatants have WS less than 55%, double both ratings".
Three doubts.

1) Your rule can be interpreted in two ways: either WS of each combatant must be less than 55% or the sum of WS of both combatants must be less than 55%. The example makes it clear, though.

2) If you double WS 54%, it is 108%.

3) The WS rating represents the probability a character hits his or her opponent. So, a character with WS 29% has the probability of 29% (better: 0.29) to hit. The probability of making two hits in a row is calculated by multiplying the WS rating by the WS rating:

0.29*0.29=0.0841 (8.41%)
0.37*0.37=0.1369 (13.69%)

If you double WS ratings, the character with higher WS gets a huge advantage:

0.58*0.58=0.3364 (33.64%)
0.74*0.74=0.5476 (54.76%)

Meddling with the WFRP1 combat system always causes undesirable side effects.
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Orin J.
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if everyone's a whifflord, i'd usually just stick on a +30% "hurry up guys" bonus for most fights, where there's not really meaningful plot stakes.
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Could you use the fourth edition opposed combat rules? The consensus seems to be that that gets rid of whiffing, or that it reduces it considerably.
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Rat Catcher
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^ That's probably the best way to go about it. I'll check it out.

Thanks all.
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I'm looking at trying the Brigandine mentioned in another thread that seems like it will take care of much of that.
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So just a modest observation from my own game:

- An average combatant in 1st ed has around 30-40 WS
- Charging or winning gives you a +10

If you factor in winning or charging then by definition one side should hit around half of the time. So with two combatants you should expect one of them to land a hit every round.

Now obviously that will vary but compared to 2nd ed those are much better odds (since almost everyone will parry).

Another side of whiffing is hitting and not doing damage - I totally agree that is a problem in 1st ed. But this is easily solved by giving all succesfull hits at least 1 W damage regardless of armor or T bonus.
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I think your first task is to define what constitutes an acceptable chance of missing, and what constitutes "whiffing". Changing the mechanics to always hit (or nearly always hit) is equally boring to always missing (equally boring, but more is accomplished). Once you've done that, you have to trust the numbers and not let lucky or unlucky streaks change your mind.

If you go with 4e's opposed roll mechanic where both combatants roll and whomever rolls the most DOS or fewest DOF wins the roll, you need to plan out for what happens when the defender wins. Do they do damage? Do they change the "Winning and Gaining" arrow? Or is it just a failed attack?
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