Parry-Parrying is the primary defensive action for many melee combatants. A parry is made using a weapon against attacks, barehanded parries must be treated as disarm attempts which carries a severe penalty. When a player decides to parry, the action is carried out regardless of whether the parried attack is successful. A parry is treated exactly as an attack, having a To-Hit value exactly like attacks do. For a parry to be successful, it must beat the To-Hit roll of the opposed attack. Even when a parry is successful, it does not necessarily stop all damage. The percent damage reduction is given by the equation
where SR is the ratio of the defender’s strength to the attackers strength, ToHitDifference is the difference in To-Hit scores, and weaponDifference is the difference in weapon weight classes. This score can be over 100%, whatever percentage over 100% is the chance of off balancing the enemy. This score can also be below 0%, meaning the parrying character takes more damage than if they hadn’t parried at all, presumably because she parried a large weapon with a small one against a stronger foe, taking damage from strain on the parrying arm. Because of this, combatants with small weapons are often better off trying to disarm rather than parry.
Each subsequent parry with the same weapon experiences a cumulative -5/weaponSpeed To-Hit penalty that is reset to 0 on the combatant’s next turn.
Without Parry Mastery, parry can only be used against melee attacks.
Block-Blocking behaves similarly to parrying, but with a shield. Unlike parrying, a shield never experiences damage on a successful block and do not get penalties on subsequent blocks. Shields have a limited number of blocks based on their size ranging from 1-5 blocks per round. Shields also benefit from a different multiplier than the To-Hit multiplier for attacks and parries: (Strength/10+Dexterity/10). The shield also does not experience the off-hand penalty of attacks and parries. This mean any fighter with 10 or more Strength and without second hand will have a much more effective defense with a shield than with a second weapon.
Shields also provide cover based on their size. Tiny shields provide 13% cover, small shields 20%, kite shields 30%, large shields 45%, and tower shields 67%. This cover reduces the chance of ranged weapons hitting successfully. Shields can also block ranged attacks that pass the cover, but at a penalty.
Dodge-Dodging is the most powerful defensive action a combatant can take. Dodging uses a dodge roll of 3d6 with multiplier Speed/10. This dodge roll opposes a constant based on the kind of attack: 15 for melee attacks, 20 for throwing attacks and spells, and 25 for ranged attacks and spells using ‘jai.’ Dodging has a cumulative -5 penalty per dodge between turns.
A single dodge moves 2 feet in a given direction, weapons or spells that effect a larger area than this may require subsequent dodges to escape. Dodging repeatedly can effectively reduce damage from area effect spells in addition to escaping weapons with longer reach like two-handed swords.
Fumbled dodges (under 10) lead first to being off-balance and then to falling if a second fumble is made while off-balance.