DW isn’t about mechanic exploiting.

DW isn’t about mechanic exploiting.

DW isn’t about mechanic exploiting. But what is stopping me from having 5 Warrior Hirelings with 5 levels each? (Thus adding 25 damage on each coordinated hit; granted it would be hard, but even if you can pull off a 3v1 situation it’s still 10 extra damage.)

16 thoughts on “DW isn’t about mechanic exploiting.”

  1. If you pay and wrangle 5 5th level hirelings and then gang up on one creature, it makes sense they’d go down fast, no? Arranging that situation, however, might be pretty challenging

  2. I can imagine a “Reveal an unwelcome truth” GM move in the middle of a combat where it turns out those hirelings are members of a thieves guild and have lured the player into a trap.

    Maybe that’s against the DW ethos, but so is power gaming to some extent. With the right group, it could be an interesting plot twist.

  3. All mechanical exploitation leads to escalation, almost regardless of system. If you power-game D&D the GM will throw “unfair” monsters at you. If you power-game DW, the GM will make GM moves if necessary to waste your resources or whatever and bring the game back into balance. The only differences I see are that 1) you waste less time going through this escalation cycle in DW because it doesn’t involve as much number-crunching and game-book-searching. And 2) DW is more implicitly a game of free-form fiction, it’s less legalistic than D&D, and so it seems somehow less contentious to try some crazy ass ideas out and then laugh when the obvious shortcomings of them hit you in the face. As a DW GM I would welcome this development (your halfling hit squad). I think it would make for really interesting fiction. 

    Also, BTW, “ganging up” is less powerful in DW than in D&D, I think. In D&D the monster only gets one attack against 5 combatants, aside from attacks of opportunity and other fiddly bits. In DW, the monster can attack and do damage to anyone who fails or rolls a 7-9. Theoretically, it could damage all 5 opponents in a single “round.”

    Another way for the GM to handle it would be to use the same rule suggested for multiple monsters, which is to have the gang do +1 damage for each extra body that could reasonably be in on the attack (and probably only make one hack and slash roll — yours).

  4. Their cost. And as observed above, that tactic would strongly invite the GM to wail on the hirelings on your 9- H&S results, which puts you out all that coin with little to show for it. Would probably be a good tactic if you knew there was one Big Bad you needed to take down quickly. 

  5. It seems downright sensible for an adventurer to get hirelings. But how often can you get new ones to replace the fallen? And will they stick around forever anyway, maybe they’ve got partners and kids?

  6. Okay, but you have to remember their names. Oh, and if Billy dies, Tommy’s gonna quit. And Gunther over there really isn’t that into fighting, per se. He joined for the benefits.

    Also, they’re not coordinating at all! It’s like herding a mob of sword wielding cats.

  7. I’m totally in for that. The GM will intervene only if something violates the rule or principles. Letting the Power Rangers do all the action IS NOT being fan of the PCs.

    Creating a dozen super enemies and throwing them to a party, with a compelling story, in fact it is.

  8. Plus, since “everyone has a name” in DW, at some point those hirelings you keep giving all the work to may realize that, if they’re doing all the heavy lifting, maybe they should just be their OWN party.

    And maybe they realize it just as you’re making your final approach into the “Cavern of the Many-Faced Death”

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