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Thoughts on Weapon Rate

so I was thinking(it seems that when I do that I break things in my mind...oh well!), and I think weapon rate is a crock. I even hold it is a crock in non-powercombat. my thought is thus, rate, even if it is a viable statistic, is improperly used. rate was origionally for ranged weapons, and it was a major hindrance. the only way past it was charms. then in power combat they added rate to all weapons. now it has made being a mortal weapon master a real chore. my problem is this, if you restrict the number of noncharm attacks per round, you are basically implying that no heroic mortal will ever even compete with a low powered exalt or godblood. I see the heros of exalted, mortal or exalted, to be above and beyond your normal thug. and the multi-action penalties support this. you should be able to make as many attacks or defences as you want up to your dice penalty limit. it is all based on atributes and abilities. so, any physical actions should be not be limited by a weapon. I hold this with bows and cross bows as well. the reason is that when you have a PC with a strength and athletics of five each, what is holding you back from drawing more rapidly and surely than twice a round? the only thing I agree should have a rate are firewands and such like, as they are not based on physical prowess. I could be wrong, or I could be just explaining it poorly, let me know if I am either. I will endevor to explain, should questions or comments range beyond what I have thought of.
-- Gtroc

What's holding you back is the fact that an inferior bow would break if used like that. Better bows (should) have better rates. This is supported somewhat by the fact that powerful, customized, idealized magical weapons tend to have really high rates - the Glorious Solar Saber has an infinate rate, you CAN swing it as fast as your skill allows, because it's that perfectly balanced/etc for you. A mortal blademaster is going to be limited if he only owns a normal sword... I'd strongly suggest picking up a heavily masterwork weapon with at least one point on rate. 2, if you're that sort of swordmaster. Then you can lobby your GM for a Merit which lets you enhance the rate of a weapon you have a speciality in by 1, or somesuch. And if you -still- have trouble, you're just going to have to get a mortal-artifact blade.
-- Darloth

Strength wouldn't help the rate you can fire a bow at all for a start.. it would be dexterity more than anything, nocking an arrow and firing it real quick would need a lot of manual dexterity. And that said, a turn is meant to be around.. 3-5 seconds or so? I'd say the already existing rate 3 on some of the bows is more than generous.. that's probably about the most you could manage in 5 seconds.. and I wouldn't be expecting much accuracy from it ^^ To an extent though, I'd agree.. it's possibly a little strange that an exalt blademaster picking up a mortal sword can't perform more attacks than a mortal without charms. You could always just houserule that rate doesn't apply, cause as you said.. the rate at which pools drop tends to support it anyway. FluffySquirrel

If you want a softer cap, somewhere between the two solutions, state that every attack past rate incurs an extra cumulative -1 to pools or something. So you might go -6,-7,-8,-10,-12,-14, if you wanted to make 6 attacks with a rate 3 sword.
-- Darloth

That's not too bad an idea :) FluffySquirrel

I have a bit of a problem with your thought on weapon quality. what you are essentially saying is that a crappy weapon is harder to use than a good one, which I do not disagree with. but if crappy equipment, hindered usage, shouldn't a bad pair of boots then hinder how much you can run, or how many times you can jump?my point is, and I can see how I was not so clear, if you are going to use rate, do not base it on the weapon. I was thinking of using a derived statistic based off of dexterity and wits. I do not use rate, as I think it is silly for someone who can go toe to toe with death itself to have a limit on actions per round. if I were going to use a weapon rate system, I would probably use something like, the weapons rate is added to the dificulty for every action past the first. for exapmle Death dancer, a solar melee specialist, is attacking three times this round, her sword is wicked fast, with a rate of 1, so every action made has an additional -1 to the dificulty. that's how I would do it, but that is one hell of a leap from where it is at. I just hate rate, what if I want to fire three arrows at once? not drawing three times, or something. cool stunt, and if you have a good ST he will let it slide, but acording to canon, a rate two bow would not allow that. just my thoughts, again I could be wrong, though I tend not to think so.
-- Gtroc

Not a bad point - however, stunts are explicitly allowed to break rules with ST permission. If you can stunt the three-arrow thing well, it happens. - FrivYeti
That is my point though, stunts only work with ST permission. if you have a rules lawer ST, or even a Normal ST on a bad day, you stand a good chance of being denied. I wish all STs were great and wonderful, but we know that to be untrue. some are rough, some railroad, and some have a hard time with grasping the Game aspect of a role playing game.
-- Gtroc
Sounds like your problem rests more with a cock ST than a real mechanical issue. I don't mind rate so much, because I like the idea of things like air resistance and inertia preventing a greatsword from moving too quickly without AMAZING POWERS OF HEAVEN. But then again, I tend to side with printed material until someone points out that something is honestly broken.--UncleChu
I do not think it is broken, mearly unecessary. I liked the way it was, rate was not a needed addition. I like simple combat systems, and rate adds another level of complexity. therefore it is unecessary.--Gtroc

Rate existed in original combat for ranged weapons for one simple reason - it takes a bit of time to draw an arrow, nock it, and draw your bow (or to draw your arm back to hurl a hatchet). However, it takes a bit of time to put any weapon into a position to attack - it takes a moment to bring a heavy greatsword back for a cut, or to line up a rapier for a thrust. Stunts, obviously, allow you to circumvent Rate. Look at it like this: the base rules in Exalted represent "the real world", in some nebulous and perhaps inaccurate way, but Exalted is a movie. Rather than writing a cinematic set of core rules, the rules are gritty but have a provision through which heroic characters can bend reality to do cool, cinematic things. You see the heroes of Exalted (including Heroic Mortals) as being above and beyond what normal people can do. I agree with you. This is represented mechanically by giving these "heroic" characters a power that nobody else in the game has - stunting. Rate does not limit these people when they're doing something cool, but it does limit them when they are not doing something cool. People capable of going toe-to-toe with death itself don't have a limit on how many actions they can take in a turn, because they have the power of stunting (and, frequently, Charms). It seems like you're divorcing stunts and Charms from the core ruleset, and when you do that, of course the game doesn't seem to work right. Now, I'm not entirely happy with the implementation of Rate. I would prefer it to exist, but be a little bit more flexible, perhaps modified to a degree by Attributes, Abilities, or Specialties. I think the new edition, with its tick-based combat system, could resolve this handily, depending on implementation. I would prefer to see Rate as a trait that represents how many "ticks" it takes to perform an action with a given weapon. - David.

Well, how they handled it is mostly okay, and I like the way the new Flurry system works, but Jade becomes way, way too powerful. Speed is much more important than Rate, when really they should be roughly the same thing, with some slight differences in instant speed vs. tactical speed. I'm whipping up a house rule in Ialdabaoth/CombatSystem to address this, called 'Jabs' (basically, executing a Flurry to decrease the Speed of an attack instead of to increase the number of attacks).