|Main Page → Game mechanics → Combat mode
Combat mode is the mode of play in which the game enters a strict turn-based mode, in order to resolve a violent conflict between opposed parties. When in Combat mode, every turn and every action performed during each turn must be accounted for.
Combat and fighting are an essential element of playing MazeWorld. After all, what good are all those weapons if you can't use them? Learning all of the aspects of combat is important for your survival.
- 1 Turn order
- 2 Declaring actions
- 3 Battlespace
As stated in the opening paragraph, every turn must be accounted for in Combat mode, meaning that overall, the pace may be slower than in Normal mode, but comparatively more intense. A turn in Combat mode is referred to as a combat turn. Every turn is roughly five seconds. Normally, most fights are resolved in a few turns, suggesting that, much like in real life, single rounds of combat tends to be resolved in a matter of seconds. In turn, it is relatively rare for a given fight to last longer than 10 turns.
At the start of every new turn in Combat mode, all creatures in the room (even if there are creatures who are reluctant to fight) must decide what type of action to perform. As explained in Basic mechanics, every action falls in one of three categories: Combat actions, Non-combat actions, and Free actions. When in Combat mode, knowing the type of action you wish to perform is very important, as it determines where you will be on the turn order.
Turn order is a term which refers to the order in which every creature in the room will perform their actions. Certain actions are faster than others and will therefore be attempted first. Generally speaking, free actions take a backseat; very few free actions are allowed while in Combat mode, and although talking is considered to be a free action, it should be kept to a minimum; a sentence or two at most. Most of the time, you will be performing Combat actions and Non-combat actions.
"Initiative Speed" and "IS" redirect here.
In order to accurately determine the turn order of any combat turn, the Initiative Speed or IS of every action must be checked. This value is what determines the turn order. The lower the Initiative Speed value, the faster the corresponding action. You can think of it as a ticket number; the lowest numbers go first.
The Initiative Speed of combat actions is either assigned to a technique or a natural attack, or tied to the corresponding weapon's Weight. Although there are certain ways to modify a weapon's Weight directly (usually through the use of a folding stock), the more common way of improving Initiative Speed is to use IS tier modifiers.
Initiative Speed has both a minimum cap (0) and a maximum cap (C); IS can never go lower than 0 or higher than C. See below for the table of IS speeds and tiers.
Certain effects may cause the Initiative Speed of your combat actions to be modified. Instead of being modified by a flat amount, it is usually referred to as "(increased or decreased) by one tier".
- Example: Kaz is equipped with an MP5A3, which is a weapon with a Weight of 9. If he wants to use it in combat, he will normally have an Initiative Speed of 9. However, if he benefits from an effect which decreases his IS by one tier, every action he performs during combat will be one tier faster than normal. Since the tier under 9 is 5, if Kaz still wants to use his MP5, then he will have an Initiative Speed of 5, making him faster than normal.
If two or more creatures have the same Initiative Speed before resolving a combat turn, this is called a speed conflict (or IS conflict), which must be resolved in order to determine the turn order. There cannot be any creatures that act at the same time. To resolve a speed conflict, the GM may choose to roll to randomly determine who goes first, or simply designate an order without rolling for it. If there is a speed conflict between two player characters and they aren't on opposed sides, it is customary to ask both players if they have a preference on who should act first.
Table of Weight and IS values
Weight and Weight tier also redirect here.
|Weight / Initiative Speed value
|IS tier level
The two highest IS levels, U and C, use letters rather than numbers before they correspond to a name rather than a Weight value.
- U corresponds to Unsparable Weight, and is the IS of weapons of that Weight.
- C corresponds to Concentrating speed; see Concentrating for more details.
The Weight of any given weapon is between 1 and Unsparable. There are only a few exceptions to this rule; three flamethrowers (the No.2, the M2-2 and the XL18 have a listed weight of 40, but a separate listed Initiative Speed (IS 22 for the No.2 and M2-2, IS 18 for the XL18).
This table can also be used to determine what weight tiers are. The Weight of certain items may be directly modified by certain effects, but rather than change the Weight by a fixed numeric value, the concept of weight tiers is used. A Weight 5 item that has had its weight tier increased by 1 becomes a Weight 9 item.
- Example: The Makarov PM is a pistol with a Weight of 2, but if a 80-round drum is inserted into it, the pistol's weight tier increases by one: it becomes a Weight 3 item.
Every non-combat action has an IS of 0. This is fixed and unchanging, even with effects that modify one's Initiative Speed tier, as such effects only affect combat actions. Although it is possible, with enough IS tier modifiers, for a combat action to be so fast, it is as fast as a non-combat action, it is impossible for a non-combat action to be slower than IS 0.
When in Combat mode, you may perform a number of non-combat actions, such as:
- Cover taking: See Cover for more details
- Doing nothing: Choosing to do nothing as a non-combat action always succeeds, since you, well, do nothing.
- Escaping: Reaching one of the doors in the room in order to try and leave the area
- Manipulating a weapon: Loading, unloading, reloading, using accessories - anything not related to actually attacking; see Weapons for more details
- Non-combat movement: Moving to another Side of the Battlespace
- Using an item in the inventory: Depends on the item you wish to use; search for the relevant pages and information on the wiki for your particular item for more details.
In order to escape the current room while in Combat mode, a creature must roll an escape check: 2d6 plus their current Agility.
- If the result is 6 or more, the escape check is successful; that creature successfully escapes through one of the available doors in the room to escape through. They leave immediately, and any attacks targeting this creature during the rest of the turn are canceled.
- If this happens to a player character, the UA trip length is automatically increased by 1, as if they took a Detour. This effect stacks with any Shortcuts or Detours that apply.
- If the result is 5 or less, the escape check is failed; that creature is treated as having done nothing for the turn, and does not move.
Multiple creatures choosing to try and escape at the same time can make an escape check as a group. Each creature in the group must roll 2d6+Agility; every result is then averaged. A success results in all creatures of the group escaping the current room at the same time. It is not necessary for them to escape through the same door, though.
Non-combat movement is a term which refers to movement from one Side to another Side while in Combat mode, and not as part of another action (such as moving into a target's Side as part of a melee attack, for example).
Performing a non-combat movement allows for no other actions to be performed in the same turn. This action has no other specific requirements, and always succeeds.
Turn order resolution
Once the turn order has been determined for the turn, each creature will act in accordance to their chosen action, in the order that was set by their Initiative Speed and any resolved IS conflicts.
The steps of a typical combat turn are as follows:
- 1) Game Master (GM) declares that a new combat turn is about to begin. ("Turn X, what are your next moves?")
- 2) GM requests the players to describe their next action, while secretly preparing the next actions of every NPC.
- If, for one reason or another, player characters are on opposed sides of a fight and must not reveal their plans to one another, players may instead provide their next actions to the GM secretly.
- 3) GM resolves any outstanding IS conflicts.
- 4) Once the turn order is determined, GM announces the turn is beginning.
- 5) Every creature resolves their actions in the determined order.
- Any combat actions must go through accuracy resolution, then damage resolution, if any hits were scored.
- 6) Once every action is resolved, GM announces the turn is ending. This is the point where counters, effects or anything relying on turn counting can be ticked up or down, and the point where the GM must check whether or not Combat mode may continue or end.
- If at least two opposed creatures are still standing and willing to fight, then combat goes on to the next turn - Return to the top of this list, rinse and repeat the above steps as many turns as needed.
- Otherwise, combat ends and the game returns to Normal mode.
Keep in mind that combat can end in more ways than simply killing or incapacitating all of the opponents. Fleeing, surrendering, asking for a truce, or any other reason to end a fight and cause opposing creatures to stop fighting one another, are all equally valid reasons to end Combat mode.
Certain circumstances may lead to one side being completely at the mercy of another. Maybe you've incapacitated a dangerous creature, maybe the raiders you were fighting all passed out from Pain; but the downed party is not quite dead yet, they're simply helpless. In situations like these, Combat mode is over, but the winning side still has the opportunity to put the downed side out of their misery. These situations are informally referred to as executions; they refer to the use of attacks or weapons to kill (or in this case, finish off) opponents even as Combat mode has already ended.
However, always remember that YOU too, can be downed and rendered helpless, and at the mercy of another creature; and they may not all be inclined to let you live!
At the start of a turn, you will be prompted by the Game Master to declare your next action for the upcoming turn. You need to describe as much as is necessary for the GM to properly understand what your character is about to do, by leaving as little to assumption as possible. This is so GMs do not have to keep asking the same questions every turn.
For combat actions and particularly when using weapons, you need to specify at least:
- Which weapon do you wish to use
- How many shots do you want to fire / how many swings, thrusts or attacks you wish to attempt
- Which weapon mode do you wish to use
- If you're unsure of what your weapon is capable of, refer to this wiki's individual weapon pages, or to your inventory sheet; your weapon's description should have condensed information on all of its important details. More information on using weapons and weapon modes can be found here.
- Which creature do you wish to target
- Which body part of the targeted creature you want to hit
- If you do not know what body parts you can target, you can refer to the wiki's individual creature page about it, or ask the Game Master to let you know what you can aim at.
Although it seems like a lot of information, you can condense all of the necessary information in a single, easily readable sentence.
- Example: Kaz and Joss are about to fight an enemy creature, a baby dragon. Neither player want to leave anything to chance - baby dragons shouldn't be underestimated. Kaz has an H&K MP5A3, a submachine gun with multiple fire modes (Semi-auto and Full-auto), while Joss has a Beretta Cx4 Storm, a conventional rifle with only one fire mode (Semi-auto).
- Kaz describes his intent to attack the beast as such: "I'm going to shoot the baby dragon in the chest with my MP5. Full-auto, long burst."
- Joss describes her intent as such: "I'll try to smack the baby dragon in the head with my Cx4. 8 shots."
When resolving a combat action, you must make attack rolls, one for each shot fired or attacks attempted. An attack roll is a 2d6. Your accuracy (what transforms each dice score into misses or hits) is determined by your Accuracy statistics: Failure Threshold (FT) and Inaccuracy Range (IR). Any modifiers to these stats must be taken in account; your skill level, your weapon accessories, any active effects, and if applicable, the effects of Recoil.
|Attack roll result
| Critical hit
|Treated as a hit. Roll &crithit to determine additional effects.
|> (FT + IR)
|Attack hits the target as intended.
|> FT, but < (FT + IR)
|Attack hits the target, but at reduced effectiveness. 0.7x Pain and Limb Damage.
|Attack misses entirely, dealing no damage to the target
|Treated as a miss. Roll &critfail to determine additional effects.
Without any modifiers, the default Failure Threshold is 6, and the default Inaccuracy Range is 2. At these default levels, rolling 9, 10 or 11 will result in a hit; rolling 7 or 8 will result in an inaccurate hit, and rolling 3, 4, 5 or 6 will result in a miss.
Once the amount of hits and inaccurate hits has been determined, the Game Master may determine the amount of damage dealt to the target, using this checking order:
- 1) Determine the amount of Pain dealt.
- 2) Determine the amount of Limb damage dealt.
- 3) Determine the amount and type of any Injuries inflicted.
- 4) Resolve any special effects, if applicable.
The checking order as it is provided exists to encourage prompt resolution of combat. Don't do the full order if you can already tell the creature is dead before the checking order is finished. For instance, if you can tell that the creature is dead just from Pain, there is no need for the GM to check for limb damage or injuries, and so on.
Of course, if you would find it more enjoyable to crunch the full numbers for every fight and every creature, feel free to do so, just make sure to check with your players if they don't mind.
Combat normally ends when all opponents have either died, fled, or when a truce has been established and accepted by all surviving sides.
When combat ends, all survivors gain Combat Stress, depending on the number of opponents faced. A creature is considered an opponent if they were hostile to you during the fight.
"Battlespace" redirects here.
The battlespace is the term given to the global area covering the current room, and is meant to determine the location of each creature, object, and piece of furniture (including pieces of Cover) when in Combat mode. It is of little importance when in Normal mode, though the location of everything in the room may still be requested to the GM,
The battlespace is divided into four quadrants called Sides, as shown in the picture to the right. They can be named after their numbers (Side 1 through Side 4) when in the Uncivilized Area, or after cardinal directions (South Side, North Side, East Side, West Side) when in a Civilized Area.
In the Uncivilized Area, player characters are assumed to enter every new room from Side 1, regardless of the actual direction they're going relative to the world.
When Combat mode begins, the Game Master must announce the location of every player character, every other creature, every object, and every piece of furniture in the room. The presence and location of Cover must be requested before it can be used - see the relevant page for details on how Cover and stealth works.
Battlespace location is also used to determine weapon range. All attacks may either be Ranged or Melee. Ranged attacks may be used against creatures in any Side of the battlespace, with the caveat that cover can be used to guard against ranged attacks.
Melee attacks render Cover useless, but requires the attacker and the target to be on the same Side. If an attacker intending to use a Melee attack isn't starting the turn on the same Side as their target, they will move into their target's Side as part of their action.
Planted explosives (all of which are Class 4 weapons) are a special case; they cannot be used directly to perform attacks normally like with other weapons, instead requiring to be placed in the Battlespace and meet certain conditions in order to detonate. For further details on how they function, see Explosives, or the relevant individual weapon pages.