RMU Combat and My House Rules

So this time I am really wide open to suggestions!

What I have done in the past and certainly want to keep is the 2 second combat round. I use this in RMC and it works perfectly.

I have eliminated all notion of flurry of blows. Every attack is discrete. Short combat rounds have a few knock on effects.

Movement

Obviously in 2 seconds you can move 20% of what you could move in a 10 second round or now 40% of what you would move in an RMU round. I have never like the notion of the detailed 1AP count down in RMU but I think this is because my 2 second rounds provide almost exactly the same granularity but with out flurry of blows you don’t have to start an attack 5 seconds before you even see your target.

Shorter rounds make things naturally more tactical as it is entirely possible to get peppered by bullets/arrows/spears if you try and cross an open space without covering fire.

Spell Casting

RMC doesn’t have the fast and penalty free casting of RMU but 2 second rounds comes close to emulating that. If your mage is being charged down then because movement is 20% as fast they have more time to prep and cast. So I kept the requirement for 2 rnds prep, cast on the 3rd round despite the rounds being shorter, so 3 x 2 second rounds not 30 seconds.

This has produced some fun situations where one member of a charging party chose to accelerate faster to get to a spell caster that was prepping a spell hoping to get there before the spell was cast. The fact that the players’ plan was kind of dependent on the entire party arriving simultaneously went completely out the window. 

Spell Effects

I do not adjust the spell effects to take into account the shorter round. This does change things. Spells that last hours, minutes or seconds are potentially more powerful especially ones that have a combat usefulness.

Spells that last for rounds/level or rounds/ 5 or 10 RR failure are possibly weaker. If you wanted to blind an opposing magician while you all charge then the charge will take more rounds making Sudden Light less useful in that situation.

On the other hand shorter rounds make ranged spells more powerful as it is harder to get out of range or you need to spend more rounds in range if you are trying to close distance.

I have been playing these rules under RM2/RMC for something like 7 years and this has never been a problem, but it does have an impact of spell selection sometimes.

The impact under RMU should be half that as it was under RM2/RMC as the spells are all set up for 5 second round and not 10 seconds. I don’t think this is going to be an issue.

Bleeding

I do have a house rule that bleeding 1 hit per round will stop on its own after 50 rounds of inactivity. the reason I have this is because I spent a few years when I only had one player and multiple times they were knocked unconscious and bleeding 1hit/round. There was no chance of me being able to justify bringing in an unexpected NPC so they should have bled out. This happened just too often for my liking so once the character is unconscious, and therefore not moving, if there is no one around to save you or finish you off that 1 hit of bleeding will stop.

I mention all of that as bleeding is more dangerous with shorter rounds. I don’t want to halve the bleeding in all the criticals but there is another solution.

The first is the natural clotting I mentioned above and the second is staunching the flow.

Staunching the flow takes 1 hand to do and basically means the character is applying pressure to stem the flow of blood. No First Aid or medical skill roll is required. The character can choose on a round by round basis if they want to apply the pressure. The down side is that you cannot use that hand for anything else while staunching the flow of blood. So no shield or just shield by no attacks.

The effect of staunching the flow is to half the blood loss for that round. I tend to round down so staunching 5hits/round will result in bleeding 2/rnd.

This gives characters a way of mitigating the more dangerous effects bleeding in the 2 second rounds without having to make changes to every critical table. It also makes another tactical choice available for characters.

Action Points

I have never used an Action Point system. I am a big fan of the RMC percentage action system. I have just viewed AP as blocks of 25% activity.

If you eliminate the AP by AP tactical round then lots of the problems with the Action Point system disappear.

I know Hurin has suggested in the past adopting a D&D 5e approach to what can be done in a round but I don’t know much about what that entails now. The last time I played D&D it was in about 1993 and it was 2nd Ed. I think.

So what is the best solution to stay as compatible as possible to RMU but using a 2 second round?

36 Replies to “RMU Combat and My House Rules”

  1. If you are not so big on the whole action point idea, then I think you really can just see each action point as 25% activity, as you say; that is kind of intended, and allows people to play the game more or less how they like (as a point system or as a percentage system). So I think you will find that in practice, you can run the action point system in a way that is not that much different from the old activity % system.

    Similarly, my ‘DnD-style’ version of the RMU ‘Simple Round’ is really just the RMU beta ‘Simple Round’ without declarations, and with a more robust system of zones of control and opportunity actions. The main differences then are just that you no longer need declarations (you just take the actions when it is your turn and you have the action points/% activity to do them), and that characters now have the ability to make DnD style ‘opportunity attacks’ to punish creatures that move carelessly through their zones of control.

    I am intrigued by the HARP 2-second round because I can see many advantages to giving up the ‘flurry of blows’ concept. So I for one am on board with this experiment.

    One thing you will have to adjust however is the costs of some actions (i.e. the time it takes to perform them). Their costs currently are set for 5-second rounds. For example, loading a Heavy Crossbow currently takes 20 seconds (16 AP), but if you just go down to a 2-second (and still 4 ap?) round, that will reduce the time to 8 seconds. So you’ll have to go through the list of actions on p. 82 of the beta to make those adjustments.
    I also worry that missile weapons and ranged magical weapons will become too good. I already think some of the ranged tables are a bit too good (the Longbow has been a bit romanticised in the attack charts for example), and going down to a 2-second round will make them considerably better. RMU does make shields better at blocking arrows (you can apply your shield skill against them if you spend the AP to do so), so that is good; but that just means shields become even more indispensable, making two-handed weapons relatively that much worse (and they already need help).

    In regards to bleeding, I too wondered about imposing some sort of clotting rule, especially after a PC died in a Spacemaster campaign from 1 hit/round of bleeding. 1 hit/round doesn’t seem like the sort of bleeding that should be life threatening; don’t most bleeding wounds clot over eventually? Take a result of 6 on the slash chart: the critical reads, ‘Surface wound to the thigh. +7 hits, 1B’. A ‘surface wound’ sure doesn’t sound like it is life threatening to me (infection can be life threatening of course, but that’s not what we’re talking about here).

    So how about this rule: bleeding wounds less than 5 hits/round clot over in a number of rounds equal to hits/round x 10. So a 1 hit/round wound will clot in 10 rounds, a 2 hits/round will clot over in 20, 3 in 30, etc.

    1. I will take a look at the list of actions and their timings. No one uses bows in my games partly because I frequently use urban or indoor settings which takes away their range advantage and the second reason is that puncture criticals lack stopping power.

      The speeds that people shoot bows at in RPGs are incredibly slow. I gave said this before I am not a particularly good mounted archer and I am approaching 2 seconds to go though the entire nock, draw, aim, shoot cycle when shooting from the hand. That becomes 2.5 seconds when using a quiver. Jengada is also a mounted archer, I would be interested in hearing his shooting speeds.

      I think your version of the clotting would work. A bleeding wound at 4 hits per round will still do 160 points of damage so could still prove fatal. 3 hits per round would be 90 hits before it clotted. Both demonstrate that bleeding is dangerous and life threatening without being an automatic death sentence. I am going to include that.

      On the forums I suspect that any suggestion like this would get shot down due to being less realistic.

      1. I’m starting to look at APs, but borrowing an idea from the new Top Secret rules I’m basing them on an average of character stats so each character has a different number of APs. I’m also using the two second round, with one AP equal to about a quarter second of activity.

        My reason? I was never comfortable with all characters having the same number of APs. With RM2 and my modifications I always used Phases, with the character with the highest average QU/AG bonus acting first (or last, depending) in the proper Phase. APs actually give you an opportunity to reflect reaction time, and I don’t see any reason to squander that. Characters with average Ag/Qu in the 90-100 band get 8 APs, and it goes down from there to a low of 3 APs (which is for a character with stat averages below 50, which isn’t possible for rolled characters in my system).

        I still tend to prefer Phases to APs simply because it drives players into “fire and maneuver” without them having to think about it, but if I’m going to have to use APs I want them to reflect character reaction speed.

          1. Yes, I’ve recently been playing a videogame (Divinity: Original Sin I) that does the same thing (i.e. varies the number of APs characters get depending on their stats). Do some of the Fallout games do that too? In any case, it certainly is done in some Action Point systems.

            My main worry with doing that is the potential for imbalance. The sequel to Divinity thus just gives all players the same number of APs. I’m not saying it can’t work, mind you; just that balance can become an issue if the system isn’t calibrated well.

            Can I ask IntothatDarkness: how many APs does a character with high Ag/Qu get? I just wonder because in SM2, Agility already was a kind of god-stat (i.e. extremely useful for pretty much every character), and I worry that tying APs to agility would make it even better.

            1. The max allowable is 8, which would allow characters to act in every quarter second of the round. No one can ever exceed that, and since it’s based on the average of Qu and Ag you’d need high temps in both stats to hit that mark (90+ in both).

              Fallout does something similar to this in the VATS system. As you improve stats you can get extra VATS points, allowing you to take more actions while using that system. They’ve never changed that mechanic; just shifted some of the stat perks around from version to version.

    2. Here is the Action Point list from RMU Cha&Arms. Action AP
      Drop item 0
      Instantaneous Spell 0
      Use shield in melee 0
      Move 1/4 of movement rate 1
      Shift item to other hand 1
      Draw weapon/ammo/item 1
      Prone < -> Stand 1
      Perception 1 – 2
      Ranged Attack 1 – 3
      Eat or drink (herb/potion) 2
      Cast Spell 2-4
      Melee Attack 2-4
      Get item from ground 3
      Dodge 4
      Mount/dismount 4
      String Bow 6
      Load Light Crossbow 8 (4 seconds)
      Load Heavy Crossbow 16 (8 seconds)
      Pick Lock / Disarm Trap 20 (10 seconds?)

      So I spent some time today watching youtube videos of people loading light crossbows and 4 seconds, two combat rounds is really not unreasonable. This is especially true as the people in the videos were generally talking to camera and not trying to do the action in fastest possible time because their life depended on it.

      The heavy crossbow certainly took more than 8 seconds but in my experience of Rolemaster, in older editions fights tended to last only 4 or 5 rounds anyway so no one would ever consider reloading a crossbow. It was a fire and drop weapon. If you were in a siege or stand off situation then rate of fire is largely irrelevant.

      I personally do not think it is worth changing this table and introducing incompatibilities. The fact that a heavy crossbow fires 5 times slower than a traditional bow is enough I think to discourage heavy crossbows from being overly common in PC parties except in that fire and forget role.

      1AP to draw an arrow followed by 3AP to aim and fire gives a 2 second cycle and that is in line with my own experience or should I say aspiration. Have a look at this clip…
      https://youtu.be/2yorHswhzrU?t=107
      …it is not the most exciting video in the world but what is interesting is that we always imagine PCs drawing a single arrow from their quiver and then shooting it. There is no good reason for doing that. If you know or expect you are going to shoot multiple arrows then shooting from the hand is so much faster. There is a girl in this clip at 3:22 showing how the technique. https://youtu.be/3i58R9rw8q4?t=202 There is even a slow motion sequence with the entire action.

      So the point is I don’t think the AP costs for actions really need to change. The only one I am really not sure about would be the disarm traps but I tend to make that a percentage skill check rather than a pass/fail anyway so chances are it will take multiple rounds depending on the complexity of the trap.

      1. Yes, you’re probably right that most of the times are not that problematic. Can I also say that it makes me very happy to learn that there is such a thing as the international horse-archery association, and that it even has a grand prix?

        As for adjustments that might need to be made:
        –We had some discussion about this on the forums a long time ago, but the cost to fall prone and stand up might need to be adjusted; I think it might need to be adjusted even in a 5-second round. At least, getting up should be harder than falling prone. I for one can hit the dirt faster (albeit more painfully) than I can get to full standing. So maybe 1 ap for falling prone, and 2 for getting up?
        –The movement speeds will need to be adjusted. Or I guess you could just reduce the base movement rate by 60%, and leave the chart as is?

        1. Reducing base move to 40% of the listed value is my preference.

          I cannot say that I recall reading falling damage rules for RMU but we could steal those directly from HARP seeing as we have just had a rather timely explanation.

          I agree that getting up should be slower than hitting the dirt. That is a minor tweak but should be fixed.

            1. Thanks for the information on archery skills. It is probably the biggest argument area for players in my experience. However, I suspect that most arguments flow from the desire to have the speed of an elven archer of fantasy rather than based in reality.

              I’d like to add a rider to your timings though. First, as an amateur and now rusty archer, I can’t fire that fast (skill level what 2-3 ranks?). I don’t have the skill to fire from hand, but I can pick and draw from a stand in front (even if I miss more static targets than I hit).

              Yet, you Pros can fire faster so the speed is a reflection of your skill level rather than an absolute. Also, I note in the videos, the targets tend to be moving in defined arc sequences, although I’m sure you could still hit a randomly moving passive target if slightly less quickly or less accurately.

              So, rather than have a fixed time why not apply the RM1 mechanics that allowed for a quicker draw and fire with an OB penalty. Not that I ever thought that that was a reasonable reflection.

              Quiver load (standard method) +0
              Staked load (reduce time by what 5-sec potential) -5/-10
              Hand load (gives potential to fire at 2-sec rate) – 15/20

              Fire rate
              10 +0
              8 -5
              6 -10
              4 -20
              2 -25
              Maybe the 2-sec values are a bit harsh – I’ve just put it on a sliding scale so that at 5 ranks you could do it but you wouldn’t be accurate. What do the experts say?

              1. I am no expert. I changed my shooting technique this year from a korean thumb draw to a Mediterranean 3 finger. This changed everything from swapping the arrow from the right to the left side of the bow. You hold the arrows the opposite way up and you nock and draw completely differently. It took just 6hrs to go from not being able to hit a round bale from 8m to speed shooting every 4 seconds on target from 18m.

                The point is that with an hour’s coaching and 5hrs practice is all it takes. That, to me is barely 1 ranks worth of training.

                If you had a tradition style barebow I could probbly get you shooting at similar speeds just be describing the technique.

              2. Regarding the targets. In some of the videos there is a 3 faced target that is elevated, about 2m up. The represents a war elephant’s head. In that discipline you can shoot as many arrows as you like in 20 seconds as long as your horse never drops out of canter.

                In other runs there are regular targets about 30m apart. These represent the officers at the heads of columns of men. You run across the face of the enemy picking off the officers.

                The battle track event you are faced with targets behind cover, both sides of the horse and at distances that very from right next to your stirrup (representing someone trying to drag you off your horse) to up to 85m. There are more targets than you have arrows in your quiver so you need to carry multiple quivers and swap your ammunition around during the run. The track can be up to 1.5km, about a mile in length and covers all sorts of terrain including jumps.

                1. Not many war elephants in my campaigns :). What you are describing is shooting in a massed rank battle. Surely, that differs from the more informal skirmish of most RPG combat?

                  So for firing from hand, we are talking a -5 penalty?

                  1. I think the horse in those videos is a bit of a red herring. The point is that the archer PC can be armed and loaded with half a dozen arrows at the corner of every dungeon corridor without having to learn anything complex or unique.

                    I would probably say that PCs are actually doing it anyway. That what we are seeing as something ‘different’ is actually the norm. Therefore there would be no penalty for shooting from the hand.

                    If anything there would be a slight cost in AP every 5 or 6 arrows when the hand needs to be reloaded. Many competitive archers can hold 20-25 arrows in several layers in one hand but I don’t think PCs would do that as the risk of a single stumble sending all your arrows scattering over the floor would be too great. Holding 5 in the hand and one on the string from a stock of 20 is no big deal though.

                    If you have some archery experience here are a couple of videos you may like.
                    The different techniques:
                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPx2hsUoAW8
                    Loading from the bow hand:
                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2gxvRiP5aI

                    What is interesting is that the loading from the hand techniques grew up independently all over the world, they are each slightly different but all pretty much on a par.

                    The perception that this is something different can probably be blamed on the romanticisation of the English Longbow or hollywood movies or both in the case of Robin Hood.

              1. I would demand a successful riding roll and only then if the riding was successful would I allow the archer to fire.

                HARP has a type of skill roll called a ‘Bonus’ skill roll. Here you roll your riding skill, in this case, and the success or failure of the riding roll would equate to the bonus or penalty to shooting.

                In my experience if the horse is playing silly buggers then the archer doesn’t get many or any arrows away.

          1. I forgot that I needed to reply to this point. My wife and I had our 10th anniversary vow renewal, inviting my horseback archery club, as well as my colleagues from the Seattle Men’s Chorus (predominantly gay). The entire archery club danced all night, while the Chorus community just sat and watched. Mind you, there were members of our club the Chorus was watching, but the point is that the archers danced the night away.

  2. Wow, I love that there’s a whole branch of the conversation about (mounted) archery. I am far less a horseman than an archer, but as Peter R said, I do both. I would second everything he’s said here, from the mounted aspects to the on-foot. I can easily hold 6 in hand and fire them all in about 20 seconds. Doing that, I’ll hit the inner 28 cm of a target at 15 meters about 80% of the time.
    I’ve done some wargames with boffins (padded arrows) where we shoot at each other. It’s FAR harder to hit when someone else may be firing at you, to be sure.
    I grew up doing the Mediterranean draw (3 fingers) on a 50# draw recurve. I switched to a 45# Mongolian horse bow about 5 years ago, with Asian thumb draw. I can shoot about twice as fast with thumb draw.
    In my campaign, I’ve stuck with the 10-second rounds and the theory that there’s one viable shot in that, for typical characters. However, in my archery culture, I have a weapon style that allows them to fire extra viable shots each round. One variant is 2 shots/round but only for 2 rounds, with increased fumble range – then 2 rounds of no shots. The other variant is solely intended to fluster spell casters; four shots per round but only one roll to hit, fumble range increased, and target has to make an Extraordinary Spell Failure or Concentration check using the attacker’s Style bonus as the modifier.
    And for those who use Nomads of the Nine Nations, I can only apologize that the archery in the published version was written before I knew a tenth of what I know today about historic archery 🙂

    1. So your four shot is suppression fire with arrows. With the 2 second combat round most archers do not get an arrow off every round just because the targets themselves tend to move more. If you were a melee based fighter and there was an archer shooting at you you would make the best use of cover. So although these house rules say one could shoot every 2 seconds in practice the reality is that archers do not have a viable target every single round.

      I started with thumb draw and I am now practicing 3 finger mediterranean. I found thumb draw much easier on the hands than I am finding the mediterranean but maybe that is because I am a bit of a wimp and haven’t toughened up yet.

  3. Ok, so, it seems like games like we all agree the early editions of RPGs like DnD and Rolemaster had rounds that were unrealistically long, meaning that characters attacks were much slower than they were in real life. So we need to make things a bit faster.

    Right now, in the RMU 5-second round, an archer can shoot an arrow for minimum 1 AP (about 1.25 seconds), and load for 1 AP in addition. With the quickdraw talent (which I think mimics how Peter and Jengada and others with experience/training at archery will be able to draw and loose faster), the draw is reduced to an instantaneous action (0 ap for the first one each round, 1 ap for each subsequent one). So if you already had an arrow out (in hand) to start the round, you could loose an arrow (-50 attack, cost of 1 ap), draw another (0 ap), loose a second (-50, 1 ap), draw a third (1 ap), and fire a third (-50, 1 more ap). So you fire three arrows in 5 seconds, albeit at a significant minus. If you aimed more carefully (2 ap), you could fire two arrows in 5 seconds at only a -25 penalty to each.

    That seems pretty reasonable to me. However, lowering the round from 5 seconds to 2 would mean you could shoot three arrows in 2 seconds, which seems a bit fast to me… it seems a bit faster than people in this thread are saying they could reasonably aim and loose three arrows.

    Thoughts?

    1. Mu gut instinct says that you are right and 3 arrows in 2 seconds is too fast. I know that people do that but I think they are probably using the real life equivalent of Adrenal Move Speed.

      So we could bring the AP cost of the bow in line with Melee attacks (2-4AP), both are now discrete individual attacks now anyway. That makes the maximum speed starting with one in hand (0AP), loose and arrow (2AP -50), draw another (0AP), loose a second (2AP -50). Without the talent the second arrow is nocked and ready for the second round.

      1. Just one quick correction Peter: in RMU, drawing an arrow takes 1 ap (or 0 for the first each round with Quickdraw), and shooting takes 3. So if you only spend 2 to shoot, the penalty is only -25, not -50. If you spend 1 to shoot, then the penalty is -50. (The rule is -25 for each ap less than the maximum you can spend on the attack).

        So the fastest you could shoot in a round, if you already had an arrow in hand to start, and had the quickdraw talent would be:
        –Shoot arrow for 1 ap (-50 penalty)
        –Draw for 0 ap
        –Shoot second arrow for 1 ap (-50 penalty)
        –Draw for 1 ap
        –Shoot third arrow for 1 ap (-50 penalty)

        Without the Quickdraw talent and without an arrow out to start the round, you are much slower:
        –Draw the arrow for 1 ap
        –Loose first arrow for 1 ap (-50)
        –Draw second arrow for 1 ap
        –Loose second arrow for 1 ap (-50)

        1. I was suggesting that the bowfire was made the same as a melee attack and those require 2-4AP. There is no 1AP attack for melee. It slows bows down a touch losing the third arrow.

          1. Ah, I understand now. Yes, I think if melee has a minimum of 2 ap, then ranged attacks should too. Certainly, no character should be able to make a ranged attack in half the time it takes to make a melee attack! I can stab a spear at least as fast as I can draw and loose a bow!

            You could also go the other way, and allow 1 ap melee and missile attacks. To keep them in check, you could raise the fumble rate for all attacks made with only 1 ap.

            1. I was seriously considering 1ap attacks but I had 2 concerns. The first was spamming attacks praying for an OE. My players would do that.

              The second is the one that you just pointed out that when talents vome into play things get too fast.

              Resolving 4 attacks per player per round would slow combat to a crawl. I am pretty sure my players inder report fumbles as well. That weakens one of the balancing checks.

  4. Not to belabor the archery element of this thread, but this video just came up in my FB archery community. Lars, the trainer, is a controversial guy in the archery community, but the styles and citations included in the videos are great fodder for fantasy gaming perspective.

  5. I think a lot of fantasy RPG archery concepts come from the English Longbow and I would add Robin Hood. It [the English Longbow] is over romaticised.

    1. True but I think actually it comes from those inaccurate portrayals in films starring Errol Flynn and Alan Ladd, rather than the books or the legendary skill of English (re-read as Welsh) Longbowman.

    2. Also been pondering bleeding with the shorter rounds and the desire not to tinker with the stats. Medic! We all know that the body development system although useful is not a great model for blood loss but is a useful mechanic.
      I know because some of my friends are A&E doctors and because I can trawl the medical journals that generally speaking the average sized person has between 2 and 20 mins to stop blood loss before their heart stops depending upon the severity of the wound and its location. Also, at around 40% of your blood volume lost your heart is unable to compensate so doing stuff becomes harder (-mods). Things you phone up your mates to find out eh?

      Just working up the numbers gives a pretty good correlation for an average Co or 50 and average Hits at each level – even if it does become more skewed as the character increases level (it’s a fantasy game I can live with that or just take away body development skill).

      At a minor 1hpr – minutes until
      chr lvl hits 40% blood loss unconscious Dead
      1 30 2 5 13
      2 50 3 8 17
      3 70 5 12 20
      4 90 6 15 23
      5 110 7 18 27
      It’s a linear progression after all.

      But this does pose a problem with 2sec sliced combat if you keep the hit per round rule you are suggesting. A better workaround is to call the hits per 10sec. True with the increased number of crits (because you are not having 8 sec of seeking an opening) you will bleed even more but that at least is OK because of multiple wounds.

      1. I am going to make a new post just on bleeding as I think we can approach that balance of realism, fun at the table, detail and ease of use.

    3. I seem to recall a story about an ambassador to England from somewhere like the Ottoman Empire complaining, after firing a truly impressive shot with his bow (might have been a composite), that the country’s dampness limited the range by decreasing the bow’s effectiveness. Many of the smaller bows were pretty impressive.

      I also seem to recall watching a programme where they said no-one actually knows how effective a true English longbow was, because no-one alive can actually fire the ones that were used in combat. Or possibly even make them. Especially if some did actually have a draw of over 200 pounds, and not merely the around 185 pounds generally believed.

      1. I have seen someone draw and fire a 240lb longbow but he was a big chap. Mind you he could leg press 350kg as well and my horse only weighs 330kg so this guy could put my horse on his shoulder and walk off with her! How much hyperbole TV attaches to the longbow can vary dramatically from program to program of course.

        The bows recovered from the Mary Rose had a draw weight of 160lb to 180lb. Making a traditional English/Welsh longbow is not a lost art. It was well documented at the time and the traditional methods are still alive. How much market there is for those sorts of draw weights is a different matter. When a bow goes over about 60lbs it stops being fun.

        1. If I remember correctly, this was a documentary on Crecy and Agincourt, and whether the longbow was truly effective as thought. I think the conclusion was yes, you have several thousand people firing longbows at close range and you will really ruin a knight’s day.

          I recall reading that about the Mary Rose bows, but I think the documentary mentioned heavier ones (it was years ago). possibly longbows on the ships weren’t as powerful as ones used in land combat a a couple of hundred years earlier. Given that heavier draw weights are really only useful in combat, not leisure activities, I doubt there would be much market for them! You can’t even use bows for hunting (legally) if I remember.

          1. It is certainly illegal to hunt with a bow in the UK.

            You can get a traditional longbow made to order to any draw weight you specify and it will cost you £800-£1000.

            Massed longbow men were somewhere between the artillery and machine guns of their day. That is sort of the point though, the PCs in fantasy games are not those mass ranks of soldiers they are individual archers picking individual targets.

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