TFT House Rules: Combat

Charge Attack

A charge attack is defined as a movement of 3 or more hexes in a relatively straight line ending with a foe in a front hex. On a hex grid, it is sometimes difficult to move exactly straight, so sideslipping is allowed.

If a person moved at least half their MA on the previous turn, they may continue that movement another 1 or 2 hexes and perform a charge attack, if the last 3 hexes moved were in a line. Real movement is continuous and doesn't stop for the end of the turn.

Pole Weapons

When used in a charge attack or to receive a charge attack, a pole weapon does an extra 1d+1 damage, not double damage as in the original rules. Thus a halberd does 3d+1 in a charge.

When a foe moves into the front hex of a pole weapon user who has not moved or turned, the user will attack at +2 DX, if attacking that foe. This is known as setting a pole weapon against an attacker. If a foe shifted into a front hex from a side hex, no bonus is gained.

The extra damage done by a fine pole weapon is not added to the damage done when charge attacking.

Double or Triple Damage

Doubling and tripling damage of weapons when a 3 or 4 or a Fencing hit is rolled makes them far too deadly. Instead of actually doubling damage, ignore armor and shields the foe has. Treat triple damage the same way, but also add an extra 1d of damage. The Warrior and Veteran talents have their normal full effect. Creatures with natural armor or people using the Stone or Iron Flesh spells stop half as much (rounded down). When striking a foe with no armor or shield (or just Warrior or Veteran) for double or triple damage, reroll all 1s rolled for damage. Whenever double or triple damage is mentioned, treat it in this fashion, unless otherwise noted.

Weapon Master Skills

There are now skills equivalent to the Fencing skill for axe/maces and pole weapons. Collectively, people with any of these skills will be called fencers or weapon masters.


Good Bow Shots

Highly skilled archers may take good bow shots that are treated just like fencing hits for the purposes of damage. If a 3 or 4 is rolled, triple damage is done. If a 5, 6 or 7 is rolled, double damage is done. The range of the target must be 23 hexes or less, and the archer's adjDX to hit the target must be at least 10. The archer must state that a good shot is being taken before any rolls are made.

Archers who can shoot twice per turn and have the Missile Weapons talent may give up their second shot and take a good shot instead. The attack takes place at the normal time for their first shot.

Archers using the sling may take good shots by waiting 1 turn and taking no other action. They must state that they are waiting to take a good shot when their attack would normally happen on the first turn. The good shot occurs at their normal time on the second turn. This is not considered to be waiting for an opening, and none of that options bonuses apply.

Archers not meeting either of the above restrictions and all crossbow users may not take good shots.

Long Range Shots

A person with Missile Weapons talent firing a missile weapon or using a missile spell suffers the following DX penalties at long range.

Out to 30 hexes, normal DX penalty (-1 DX/6 hexes).
31-42 hexes, -6 DX
43-54 hexes, -7 DX
55-66 hexes, -8 DX
67-90 hexes, -9 DX
91-114 hexes, -10 DX

Each additional 24 hexes is another -1 DX. See page 25 in Advanced Melee for additional rules on long range shots. At more than 30 hexes, if an archer who can shoot twice a turn does so, the normal DX penalty is used, rather than the above chart.

Opportunity Fire

An archer may aim at an area where no foes presently are visible. If the archer has been waiting at least one full turn and a target presents itself in the area aimed at, a shot may be fired immediately, during movement. All DX bonuses for waiting apply, but no good shot may be taken. This is the classic situation of waiting for foes to peek around the corner or run across an open doorway.

Waiting For An Opening

A person may opt to not attack for one or more turns and gain a bonus when finally attacking. This is known as waiting for an opening. Archers may not move while waiting for an opening, and people who are engaged may only shift one hex and/or Defend or do nothing.

For each turn that the person waits, a +1 DX is earned. However, no more than +2 DX may be gained no matter how many turns are waited.

A person may choose to increase the chances of rolling double or triple damage instead of gaining a DX bonus. For each +1 DX that would have been earned, a person may instead choose to take a -1 DX penalty and raise the rolls needed for double or triple damage by 1. Thus someone striking a normal blow who waits for 2 turns would have a -2 DX penalty and strike for triple damage on a 3, 4 or 5 and double damage on a roll of 6. A weapon master or someone taking a good bow shot who waits 1 turn would do triple damage on rolls of 3, 4 or 5 and double damage on rolls of 6, 7 or 8.

Dagger Marksmanship

Actually double the damage done if a successful hit is scored (this is an exception to the Double and Triple Damage rules above).

The extra point of damage done by halflings is added after doubling the roll.

Rolling to Miss and Multiple Rolls to Hit

Each figure that an archer, thrower or spell caster rolls to either hit or miss reduces the adjDX of any further rolls by 1. So, if you roll to miss a friend, roll to hit a fow (and miss) and then roll to hit a second foe, your adjDX will be reduced by 2 on the third roll in addition to other adjustments.

Advanced Shield Rules

Shield Bash

A person using a shield may attempt to hit a foe with it and either knock the foe down or reduce the foe's DX for the foe's next combat action.

If a successful roll to hit is made, the foe must make a DX roll to remain standing. The roll is:

2d/adjDX, if the foe is stronger,
3d/adjDX, if the foe has the same ST or up to 4 lower,
4d/adjDX, if the foe's ST is 5 or more lower, and
5d/adjDX, if the foe's ST is half the attackers ST or less.

If the roll is failed, the foe is knocked to the ground. If the roll is exactly the attacker's adjDX, the foe will be at -2 DX for the next turn.

An attacker with Advanced Shield talent is given a +3 ST bonus when comparing ST.

Shield Rush

This is an attack similar to a shield bash, but is done at the end of a charge attack. Treat the attack as a shield bash with the attacker's ST effectively raised by 3, or 5 if the attacker has the Advanced Shield talent. This is not like a pole weapon charge and occurs during the normal attack sequence.

Shield Wall

A group of soldiers with the Military Discipline talent may form a shield wall. The shields of people who form a shield wall effectively stop 1 extra hit for each person adjacent to them also forming the shield wall. Thus those on the ends stop 1 extra hit and all those in the middle stop 2 extra hits.

Parrying and Defending

In order to remove all confusion about the terms parry and defend, the following rules now supercede all previous rules and definitions. A person must state if they are parrying or defending.


Parrying is the act of using ones weapons or shield to partially turn a blow while still retaining the ability to attack. Generally, either a shield or a second weapon is used to parry while attacking with the primary weapon.

Parrying with a main gauche is as per the rules in Advanced Melee on page 13.

Parrying with a second weapon while attacking with the first results in a -4 DX penalty on the attack. 2 hits are stopped in addition to any other armor the person may have. Those with the Two Weapons talent suffer no DX penalty while parrying in this fashion.

Parrying with a shield while attacking with a weapon results in a -3 DX penalty on the attack if a small shield is used and a -4 DX penalty if a large shield is used. Tower shields may be used to parry blows, but no attack may then be made. The shield stops 2 additional points of damage. Those with the Advanced Shield talent have a 1 point lower penalty while parrying in this fashion.

Parrying with either two weapons or a weapon and a shield is allowed. Four additional points of damage are stopped, but no attack may be made.


Defending is the act of using ones weapons or shield to prevent an attacker from landing a blow. While defending, all attackers (from the front) must roll an additional die to strike the defending person. This usually means that 4d/adjDX must be rolled to hit the defending person.

While defending with either a weapon or shield, no attack may be made with a second weapon, except as described below. If a second weapon is in use, it may be used to parry. A person may change weapons in the free hand while defending.

Those with the Two Weapons talent may defend with a weapon and still attack with a weapon in the other hand. The attack is at -2 DX.

Those with the Advanced Shield skill may both defend with the shield and attack with a weapon in their other hand. The attack is at -2 DX if a small shield is used and -3 DX if a large shield is used. A tower shield may be used to defend, but no attack may then be made.

Reaction to Injuries

The charts in the In The Labyrinth book and on the Fantasy Master's Screen are superceded by the following chart:

ST Range Hits Taken For -2 DX Hits Taken To Knockdown
1-19 5 8
20-29 7 12
30-39 10 16
40-49 12 20
50-59 15 24
60-69 17 28
70-79 20 32
80-89 22 36
90-99 25 40
100-109 27 44
... ... ...


When a creature takes 8 or more cumulative points of damage from any source during one combat round, that creature is knocked off its feet. For creatures without feet, play as is appropriate to the situation. For creatures with 20 or more ST, see Reaction to Injuries above.

When a blow from an extremely strong foe hits a creature, there is a chance that the creature is knocked down even if less than 8 points of damage is done after counting for armor. If a creature is struck by an attacker with a ST of 30 or greater, no matter how much damage is done, that creature must make a 3d/ST roll to avoid being knocked down. If the attacker's ST is 50 or greater, the roll is 4d/ST. ST 80 or more is a 5d/ST roll.

When a very powerful blow lands on a creature, there is a chance of the creature being knocked down no matter how much damage is done, even after counting for armor. If a blow not covered under Reaction to Injuries above lands on a creature and does more damage before armor than the creature's ST, a 3d/ST roll is required to avoid being knocked down. This roll is 4d/ST if more than 14 points of damage is done, 5d/ST if more than 18 points was done, etc.

Someone with the Acrobatics talent may choose to make the above two rolls against their adjDX instead of their ST if they so choose.

Hand-to-Hand Combat

An attempt may be made to enter HTH combat at two times: either during movement or as a combat option. If done as a combat option, it is considered to be a normal attack as far as ordering of actions goes, and the person attempting HTH must have moved 1/2 MA or less.

Roll 2d and compare it to the following chart to determine the result of the attempt to enter HTH combat:

Roll Result
2 or less Attacker knocked back and down to the ground.
3-5 Attacker knocked back.
6-8 HTH is initiated, defender has time to ready a dagger.
9-11 HTH is initiated, defender doesn't ready a dagger.
12 or more HTH is initiated, defender stunned  and at -2 DX next turn.

Modifiers to the above roll:

-2 Attempted from crawling position.
-2 Attempted during movement.
-1 Defender has higher MA.
-1 Defender has higher UC skills.
+1 Attacker has higher UC skills.
+1 Attacker leaping on defender from above.
+1 Attacker moving from defender's side.
+1 Defender is backed against a wall.
+2 Attacker moving from defender's rear.

After initiating HTH, the attacker may strike the defender on the same turn only if HTH was initiated during movement and the attacker moved 1/2 MA or less. The defender may attack if no other combat action has been taken this turn.

Leaving HTH may be attempted on a 4d/adjDX roll. The +4 DX bonus does not apply. If the roll is successful, the person ends up in any adjacent hex in a crawling position. If the other person has not yet taken a combat option, they may choose to again initiate HTH or to also rise to a crawling position.


A person who is engaged may choose to flee during movement. This allows all foes adjacent to the person one free atack at +4 DX in addition to whatever other combat options they may take.