Secrets Revealed

1st May 2023, 12:00 AM in Earth's Greatest Un-Team
Secrets Revealed
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Author Notes:

1st May 2023, 12:00 AM
This is another one of those instances where I get a newfound appreciation for these movies by having to stop and pause for frames. Tony's face in the second panel is magnificent.


1st May 2023, 11:16 AM
Silly Chris... um... the Thor version! XD

Just because you can add an extra weapon to your off hand does not mean it is always worth it. Even if you have the necessary training (however the game system represents it), what if your primary weapon is requires two-hands for certain techniques? ;) Now, this Chris is totally right to be annoyed he wasn't offered a weapon though... always have a back-up. Preferably two or three, if your character can carry them.

For example, one of my old favorite characters to run in GURPS was a man named Lister. I'll try to go light on the GURPS mechanics, but they are relevant to why his usually wields two hatchets. Lister is meant for games that are set in or equivalent to the medieval period of Europe. If he has to, Lister can even resort to using the typical woodcutting hatchet (instead of his normal hatchets, which are meant for combat), albeit at a small Skill penalty. Several weapons use the same Skill as the hatchet. These weapons aren't overly expensive, either. Throwing such weapons requires a separate skill from using them in melee combat but not only is that separate skill the same for all of them, it is also an Easy (less expensive to learn) Skill in GURPS. So Lister has both at decent levels.

Getting to the point, Lister will usually carry at least one spare weapon on his person. If he can afford the Encumbrance, he'll carry more than that; otherwise, he'll leave the rest back at camp (or wherever he and his stuff are staying). He'll usually have

-spare hatchet
-small mace
-"regular" mace
-throwing axe

that he can pick from for a spare weapon. Why so many? As stated before, they use the same Skills. They also don't cost large amounts of in-game currency; the price for the seven weapons Lister usually hauls along with him is about the same as the price of one shortsword! Having a spare is also about having an alternative. Even in a mundane, realistic setting, there are times when you'll want to have access to different kinds of damage. Especially once you add in fantastic elements, there will be creatures you're better of bludgeoning than stabbing, cutting instead of stabbing, etc. The hatchets are also the best option defensively. "Impact" weapons like this normally cannot be used to attack and defend within the same combat turn (remember, combat turns are 1-second long in GURPS). The hatchet is the exception to that rule. Assuming I still had the Character Points left, Lister would also likely have the Brawling and Wrestling Skills in case something went extra wrong... or he's just in a situation where he's gotta go in unarmed.

Getting back to the hatchets and dual-wielding. GURPS has a -4 penalty for using a weapon in your "off" hand. There's also a -4 to hit if you're trying to attack the same target with two weapons (one in each hand) at the exact same time. Again, one-second combat turns. So, if I didn't prepare ahead of time for it, Lister would have one attack at -4 and the other at -8. Ouch! Which is why I had Lister take the Advantage (Feat) "Ambidexterity" and learn Dual-Weapon Attack. If I couldn't take Ambidexterity, then Off-Hand Weapon Training is another option. This makes it possible to reduce or completely eliminate the penalties I just mentioned, though one needs to carefully do the math; it might be more affordable to keep the penalty but raise up the underlying Skill. XP
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