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D&D 3E
Tomorrow for my game I want to run a chase scene. The characters are… 
15th-Dec-2006 09:30 pm
chocobo
Tomorrow for my game I want to run a chase scene. The characters are heading across the desert on Sand Skiffs (from Sandstorm), and I want to do an encounter where they find themselves being pursued and attacked by guys riding Ashworms. Kind of like the guys from the next car on the freeway trying to kill you.

Anyone have any suggestions on how to run this kind of encounter? Variables to use, checks to make, mechanics for various actions?
Comments 
16th-Dec-2006 03:39 pm (UTC)
The 2nd Ed. AD&D DM's Design Kit b Aaron Allston had some nice guidelines for chases.

I was going to make some suggestions for the current rules, but it struck me that I don't understand one of the basic rules of mounted combat:

If a rider's mount is moving at a full-out run, under what circumstances can the rider take a full-round action?
16th-Dec-2006 04:42 pm (UTC)
A rider can make a ranged full-attack action, just with a -8 to hit (or -4 with Mounted Archery). You can only make a melee attack at a full-out run if it's part of a charge (which isn't quite a full out run). I reference you to the Rules of the Game articles on Wizard's Website (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/rg/20050125a has the one about full-round actions).

So basically the attackers would be riding at full speed and using ranged attacked (probably badly, with the -4 to attack). Then they might get close and try and leap from the mounts onto the skiff, closing to melee. The PCs would mostly be riding as passengers so could take full round actions, except for one who would have to be driving as a standard action each round (though I would like to some ideas for allowing the driver to pull interesting manuevers).

Sound interesting?
16th-Dec-2006 05:23 pm (UTC) - Here's a thought...
You can use the character's (and enemies') Ride skill to help manage the distance between the two groups. It would be an opposed check, with the winner pulling ahead/catching up a number of feet/squares equal to the difference between the rolls. And in this case, I'd say the Ride check would get a synergy bonus for Animal Handling if the ranks are there.
17th-Dec-2006 05:50 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure how fast Sands Skiffs go, or even exactly how they work, as I've never even glimpsed Sandstorm (and so too for Ashworms, even if they're not from the same book...are they?) but if they have similar speeds, then (obviously) this would be possible.

Logically speaking you can't have a chase scene where one group runs at, say, 60 mph and the other is running at 40. The 40 mph group is gonna get left in the dust. Quite logically.

That being said, even creatures with identical speeds technically can't "catch up" to one another if they are running, based on the mechanics in the PHB & DMG. Whenever I have a chase with things with identical speeds, I'll use a round by round initiative. Sure, they may be running at the same speed, but it sort of evens things out a little bit. You might pull ahead in one round, only to be caught the round afterwards.

I especially like that, because it factors in the dexterity of the creature to the run speed. Or you can make a specialized Initiative check, based on the movement mode- Str for a Dig speed, for example.

I'm assuming that the Sand Skiff is a mechanical object rather than a creature, and I'm not sure how it operates. But, if it's anything like using a Ride skill, or Drive from d20 Modern, you should work out a system where making a skill check every round gives a bonus to your Initiative modifier.

Just my two cents. :]
17th-Dec-2006 06:51 pm (UTC)
They are both from Sandstorm, and they do both move at the same speed (which will be 120' per round). The idea isn't for the PCs to outrun their attackers, but to engage their attackers while moving at high speeds.

I like that I can have the driver make a check to pull ahead though. I'll definately use that.

(We didn't get to this encounter last night, so we'll do it next week).
17th-Dec-2006 08:04 pm (UTC)
Glad I could help. :]
27th-Dec-2006 08:34 pm (UTC)
The "Dungeoncraft" column in this month's DUNGEON magazine is all about chases.
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