Hello my fine players. Just wanted to start a little discussion on a rules module that is in Deadlands Savage Worlds. The word on the discussion boards is that this rule will become "official" in future printings of SW, as the "+1d6 for a raise" rule did. They are already using it in all future settings they are working on. Hopefully you all didn't groan inside too much from that news. So here is the lowdown:
To start, forget what you know about melee damage. Instead of using Strength plus a number, we pre-calculate the damage of melee weapons as die types.
Weapon Damage Die
Short Sword d6
Long Sword d8
Great Sword d10
A weapon at Str+5 becomes d12. Str+6 becomes D12+1 and so on. When you strike a foe in melee, you roll your strength die and your weapons die and add them together. (much like ranged weapons, except the dice might not match) Both dice can Ace, just like ranged weapons. You can't spend bennies to reroll, because it's not longer a trait roll.
Example: Two feathers has a strength of D10 and wields a war club (+d6.) He lands a blow on a walking dead and rolls a d10 and a d6. He rerolls any aces as usual and adds the dice together to get a damage total.
Bonus damage is not affected. If you hit with a raise, you still add a d6 to your total damage.
There are some restrictions on strength and weapons. Your weapon die cannot be higher than your damage die. So if your strength is d4, you would roll 2d4, not d4+d10. Also, if you are too weak to use a weapon you lose any special benefits the weapon might have (armor piercing, parry bonus.) The old rules for minimum strength are no longer used.
Unarmed fighters just roll their strength die. There's a new "full defense" maneuver that you can use to roll your fighting and replace your parry with the total.
Ok so why change to this? Several reasons. First of all, it makes the damage rules more uniform. I also believe that extras are really lame with hand to hand damage. An extra with a gun might do 2d6 damage, where armed with a sword rolls a a single d6 and adds 2. This way they will also roll 2d6, which at least makes them viable. Now you may be thinking "it's great for use that extras suck at hand to hand Tim, because we fight a lot of them." True, but I have to make the battles interesting. Right now I can only do that two ways. Use a lot of guns, which works sometimes, or add in a lot more enemies. Adding in more enemies just makes the battle take longer, I'd rather just have the extras have a chance to hurt you some. You guys fought hoards of probably some of the nastiest extras in the game and they could hardly touch most of you. (I know Delphino got hurt, but he's not supposed to be in melee too much.) Also don't forget, your allies will get a little cooler too. I'll still use the damage cap in 50 fathoms to minimize the chance of Joe Schmoe Pirate taking your head off with one shot.
Ok let me hear you guys. Questions? Praise? Complaints? Speculation?