Good discussion on the DW subreddit regarding Volley’s rules. Made me wonder if I’ve been doing it all wrong!

Good discussion on the DW subreddit regarding Volley’s rules. Made me wonder if I’ve been doing it all wrong!

Good discussion on the DW subreddit regarding Volley’s rules. Made me wonder if I’ve been doing it all wrong!

I’m curious about the general communities approach to a basic Volley move with multiple attackers involved. Here is the scenario:

GM: Ranger, 3 Goblins are across the room and advancing on you to attack, what do you do?

Ranger: I draw my bow and start popping off as many shots as I can at the three of them!


15 thoughts on “Good discussion on the DW subreddit regarding Volley’s rules. Made me wonder if I’ve been doing it all wrong!”

  1. I choose none of the above. Well Volley really, but…

    “Oh, you’re gonna try to shoot all three? Yeah I think you could, but if you fail to kill them they’ll be on you and you won’t be able to fight back right away. You ok with that?”

    “Uhh, sure I guess. Rolled an 8, I’ll lose one ammo – that makes sense, right? Damage is… 5. Fuck, they’re not dead are they?”

    “Most definitely not. They’re on you like a swarm, ripping and tearing… One of them yanks your bow out of your hand, the other two claw at you. Take d6+2 dmg…”

  2. Mostly the first one, with the caveat that if the monsters are treated like a group (i.e. single health pool and damage die) then a single attack can take out more than one if the damage is high enough.

    The book says that you can damage multiple enemies and divide the damage between them if the fiction makes sense, but dividing damage three ways is a bit on the lackluster side.

  3. Reading the move, Blot out the Sun, it seems pretty clear that the Ranger gets to roll full damage against each target. While the basic Volley, per standard rules would only allow you to roll once anddivide the damage.

  4. I don’t know where y’all are getting “divide damage” from — page 56 says roll once and enemies all take that damage.

    In which case, Blot out the Sun seems to be assuming shooting more than 1 target is pretty unlikely? I dunno.

    EDIT: ugh but now I’m looking at it like “wait, am I meant to interpret ‘roll once and apply to damage to each target’ as roll once and apply to each target, or roll once and divide amongst each target??” What a pain

  5. A goblin can take 4 damage. If she does 8 damage, she kill two Goblins with a regular volley. If she say: i want to harm all of them and hope to drive them away, then i look at the Goblin description to see what they may do. Ohh, the Goblin will totally do this move: Retreat and return with (many) more

    Ps: If she bloat out the sun and lose two ammo she roll 3x d8 damage. But that does not change what i wrote above

  6. Lester Ward “Note that an “attack” is some action that a player undertakes that has a chance of causing physical harm to someone else.” So if the character attacks 1000 goblins I’d they cannot cause physical harm and are more than likely to die.

  7. I love discussing technical thoughts and rules on games, especially DW. However, when ever Torra is ever ask to chime in, the answers always lean towards ‘do what makes sense in the fiction’. Which is how we all tend to play this game anyways, right?

    I divide the damage, it makes sense to me in the fiction.

    Swarm is another discussin

  8. By reading p56, I’ve learned that the text is open to multiple readings.

    “If the action that triggers the move could reasonably hurt multiple targets roll once and apply damage to each target (they each get their armor).”

    What does “roll once and apply damage to each target” mean?

    “Apply” does not specify how to apply the damage. It could mean “each target takes the full damage you rolled” or it could mean “divide the damage of your one roll among your targets.” In both cases, we are “applying” damage to the targets.

    Which interpretation works best for the game? It seems reasonable to take the “divide damage” interpretation for these reasons:

    1) In fiction in general, it’s hard to take out multiple attackers in a short time with a weapon like a bow or a sword. The characters that do this tend to have some exceptional ability — eg the master samurai or longbowman.

    2) it keeps the power of basic Volley (or Hack and Slash) within bounds, allowing tags and advanced moves some room to make a difference.

    3) it gives the move Blot out the Sun a reason for being.

  9. Interrogate the player. Ask questions, use the answers.

    GM: “Is your intent to hold them back or force them into cover? Or are you just trying to murder?”

    Force them into cover: “It sounds more like a defy danger with your Dex. You won’t do damage but you can control the battlefield.”

    I have murder in my heart: ” Well, you could focus fire on one and wait for the perfect shot, and volley as normal.”

    Tell them the consequences and ask.

    “If you want to try and hit them all, I’ll let you spread your Damage among them. It’s gonna take a lot of arrows though, spend one Ammo before you roll.”

  10. My page 56 is Hack and Slash. I wouldn’t assume the rules about multiple opponents for that move apply to Volley, since (a) it only refers to one target, and (b) Blot Out the Sun makes no sense otherwise.

  11. To play devil’s advocate for a moment: even if every target takes full damage from a multi target attack, Blot Out the Sun still makes perfect sense as a move.

    If you don’t have the move, you have to be able to justify shooting multiple targets, and the GM can throw a move at you since you’re looking to them to see what happens. If you do have the move, then you already have permission to shoot multiple targets and the cost to do so is set ahead of time. It’s like a less dumb version of those moves that give you leverage to parley; it’s about shifting costs rather than new options.

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