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"Looking for fantasy combat rules with a bit more detail." Topic

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825 hits since 18 May 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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mwindsorfw18 May 2018 8:24 p.m. PST

I'm usually willing to put up with a generic/abstract combat systems in games, but sometimes I'm willing to invest the time and effort in more detail. Can anyone recommend a set of fantasy skirmish rules where there's more distinction between weapons and armor, where hits go to particular spots (rather than just mark off 2 of 5 "health points," and maybe tactics matter?

McWong7318 May 2018 8:31 p.m. PST


Personal logo Sgt Slag Supporting Member of TMP18 May 2018 8:45 p.m. PST

D&D 4e ($7.99)? It is more of a skirmish fantasy miniatures game, with a veneer of RPG. It has been compared to World of Warcraft, only as a tabletop RPG, with mini's.

If interested in a hard copy, check Amazon ($13.17, used, delivered), e-Bay, and the other usual suspects. Oftentimes, a used hard copy is only a few dollars more than a PDF. Cheers!

DeHewes18 May 2018 9:14 p.m. PST

Battle Troll by Harold Whitehouse. It has hit locations, armor distinctions and tactics for different weapons. It's very much rpg lite. The game is designed around the Viking sagas, so it's pretty close to fantasy. There are rules for creatures, but no spell system.

saltflats192918 May 2018 9:25 p.m. PST

I'll second Battle Troll where it matters what weapon you're using and where you hit (although thats random), but if ypu want a game where you say "I bash with my shield to destabilize the target and then stab him in the neck" you want the Gurps rpg.

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP19 May 2018 6:10 a.m. PST

Melee and wizard by SJG

Personal logo The Beast Rampant Supporting Member of TMP19 May 2018 7:41 a.m. PST


Mordheim doesn't really fit that bill.

Dynaman878919 May 2018 9:47 a.m. PST

Melee and Wizard, though personal favorites, do not go past hit points. You can swing for the head to get more hit points taken off per hit however.

GURPS may be of interest, it also sticks with hit points but goes into more detail on hitting limbs (and aiming for them as well).

Wasn't there a game back in the eighties that went into great detail on hit location? The primary one was a scifi or modern game but I think there was a Fantasy game as well.

David Johansen19 May 2018 10:40 p.m. PST

There was Phoenix Command, that's probably the one but it's one among many, many, super detailed games.

I love the GURPS tactical combat system but I'm less in love with character creation.

Personal logo Ed the Two Hour Wargames guy Sponsoring Member of TMP20 May 2018 10:32 a.m. PST

Red Sand Black Moon has hit locations, armor types and creatures as well.


Not dungeon crawl, but will work for a combat system with any set. Here's a step by step demo. Just play it outside of an arena setting.

PDF link

altfritz20 May 2018 6:43 p.m. PST


10mm Wargaming Supporting Member of TMP21 May 2018 1:34 a.m. PST

Shadow Storm aka Fantasy Hail Caesar .

As always, comments are appreciated.

Take care


Kealios25 May 2018 3:01 p.m. PST


Hero 6th Ed?

It's super-generic, can build ANYTHING, including using points for equipment (or just designate a dollar amount for the unit and buy from that).

There are expansions GALORE…very detailed martial arts systems, yes to the Hit Locations and Called Shots…and you can literally build just about any super power you want.

It's an RPG, but no reason it couldnt be used on the tabletop. It actually sounds fun, and I might sucker my son to try it with me this weekend!

Chgowiz04 Jun 2018 8:38 a.m. PST

Ral Partha Chaos Wars!


Rules are free. It's based on a classic "troop tray" game, but tons of opportunities for individual characters, creatures, mages, priests, bad guys and artillery.

It has rules for units and for individuals, as well as how to do campaigns and expand to RPG-like settings.

Another wonderful skirmish game that is directly compatible with D&D is "Book of War" by Daniel Collins.


This is a very simple 10:1 scale game, but with a supplement written by yours truly, you can easily move from a tabletop RPG session to a mass-combat/skirmish encounter and back. I do it quite a bit in my games.



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