Have you ever used the -1D6 on a volley move and it result in no damage?

Have you ever used the -1D6 on a volley move and it result in no damage?

Have you ever used the -1D6 on a volley move and it result in no damage? Doesn’t feel much like a success at a cost. Or, do you say something narratively happens, but no damage. Eg. ‘Your arrow clinks off the helmet as a glancing blow. This gives your ally the perfect chance to strike.’

Something like that?

35 thoughts on “Have you ever used the -1D6 on a volley move and it result in no damage?”

  1. Huh. I don’t think I’ve every had a character choose the -d6 damage option. Frankly, that’s a sucky option. For the instant, I would say damage is minimum 1. Second, for future volleys, I would replace that option with something like You have to take what you can get: halve your damage, rounded down.

  2. Ray Otus that’s pretty good. Have you ever had a player say something like. ‘I’m taking a shot, not for damage, I just want to trip him up or distract him for someone else.’

  3. I’ve had them try to call shots – like to knock something out of someone’s hands. I don’t recall them shooting to just to distract. If they were, then halfing damage would still get the job done, right? It’s almost not a downside, which I’m fine with.

  4. I think about what could be a success but with no damage done. Maybe it’s just the fact the monster doesn’t attack them. The arrow glances off their armor and it doesn’t notice them so they have time to fire another shot.

    The arrow didn’t do damage but it distracted someone.

    They grabbed an arrow and the tip fell off so it didn’t do damage but it stunned the monster giving you time to act again.

    The arrow missed but creates an opportunity. Like it hits a barrel of tar which spills on the monster.

    Its rare my players choose this option but I’ve probably use one of those

  5. Our Ranger had to use that option a lot, and it does sometimes result in 0 damage. But no one has ever cried foul—they know it’s a gamble! Sometimes, they would rather gamble than spend ammo or put themselves in a spot, and that’s okay by me.

    By the probability, 1d8-1d6 will result in at least 1 damage 56.25% of the time. That leaves 43.75% of the time they deal 0 damage, but even that is better than the GM making a move. At least when I’m the GM.

    Having that option also makes them value their ammo more.

  6. Ray Otus​, Jason Lutes​. I like the adv/disadv as well. It’s a really good catch-all, much like how Dnd 5e uses it. Much better than +1 forward IMO. If there is a DW 2e, I’d love to see all the great ways to Implement it.

  7. We’ve been using [w]2d for over 30 sessions, works great. Doesn’t mean 0 damage never happens, though. If the target has any armor, there’s a significant chance of 0 damage on even a 10+.

    The thing is, Volley is a way more nuanced move than it seems at first glance. It’s the basic move most likely to result in no real change to the situation. You can get a 10+ (or a 7-9 and decrement ammo/reduce damage) and end up doing no damage. At which point, everyone is looking at the GM and the GM makes a (probably soft) move.

    But the GM’s soft move is still bound by the principles, right? Most notably begin and end with the fiction. You plink an arrow off the (armor 3) giant beetle and it has no effect, but the beetle is still over there engaged with the cleric and you’re still over here with your bow and arrow and it just doesn’t make sense for the GM to be like “the beetle turns and charges you, archer” because the cleric is right there. So you’re safe. Or safe-ish.

    What I’m probably going to do instead is switch focus and give the cleric an opportunity, “the beetle flinches a little when the arrow pings off it, you’ve got a moment to act, what do you do?” Not like a free just-do-your-damage type thing, but basically hand them the initiative. That way I’m both beginning and ending with the fiction and being a fan of the archer character. But, ultimately, that archer’s shot didn’t affect the game much… but they didn’t risk much, either. (Worst case, like a miss, maybe they shoot the cleric.)

    Now, that same sort of situation can come up from a Hack and Slash against an armored foe, but H&S is way less likely to result in a “nothing happens” roll. And even if it does, you’ve got the narrative momentum of the fight to dictate things. Maybe the cleric hits and does no damage and the beetle reels back a little, gives ground, gives the cleric the initiative again. But maybe the cleric and beetle are locked in a grapple, squirming and trying to get a telling blow on the other. Depends on the fiction and their respective rolls.

    It’s late and I’m rambling, but I think my key point is this: Volley is generally a “safe” move. And it should be: you’re plinking away at someone from a distance. But that safety also means it’s a lot more likely to have no real effect, because, again, your attacking from afar and not really getting your hands dirty. And while that sorta goes against the “moves always matter” ethos, I think it’s pretty spot-on. Little ventured, little gained.

  8. I think adv/disadv might be ok for some things but I’m not a fan of it for the basic roll as a replacement for the +/- mod. I’ve stated my views on that elsewhere though.

  9. Jeremy Strandberg I like what you said here. I think you’re right that it’s OK that ranged shots can kind of do ‘nothing’. Hitting on my initial question, I guess I just felt like getting a mid result of 8 and it dealing canceled out damage didn’t pack the ‘partial success’ feel.

  10. Some PbtA games, like Spirit of ’77, use advantage/disadvantage in place of +1 forward to good effect. Ray Otus, if you don’t want to restate your case, maybe link us to it?

  11. Yea. Lots of people want to use the D&D 5e style of _oll two and pick the best/worst instead of +1 in Dungeon Wo_ld. I get the impulse but mathematically that’s a _eally _adical switch. I’ll point to one of my posts whe_e I do the math in a bit, when get to my laptop.

  12. I have heard a similar concern with adv instead of giving +2 for things in DnD. I’m alright with the Stat changes, especially if it means I can easily give bonuses and move forward.

    To that end, I think +1 is underwhelming and everyone seems to forget about to add the bonus most of the time in my games.

  13. Haha, I’m being ironic (as the guy who has a website predicated on science). I think +1 works and makes sense, especially since I forgot that the PCs will also likely already have +1 to +3 from their attributes.


    Counter to your point: Why are you against us rolling more dice? What am I suppose to do with all these D6’s? Wash myself with them? That’s what soap is for, Ray. That’s what soap is for.

  14. I was thinking about this discussion last night. Upon second thought, I stand by my halved damage because the phrase is “you have to take what you can get.” A randomization that allows max results – even if more rarely (such as worst of two dice, but you roll boxcars) – isn’t really “taking what you can get,” it’s more like luckily threading the needle. But hey, this is a nit-picky stuff. I can see how the original isn’t too bad even if it sometimes means you get dick.

  15. Ray Otus I can dig on what your saying. With your way, at least damage is always being dealt. ‘taking what you can get’ kind of implies that the pay off is that the PC chose to stay back and out of the way. Beggars and choosers.

    Though, I also like what Deep Six Delver​ says. Flavor wise, it’s like a passing hail Mary or flinchy pot shot. More gamble; the bell curve stretches out.

    Either way, thanks everyone for the input. This community is jawesome.

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