Further Actions


Close to 
Striking Range
Strike Blows
"To Hit" Bonuses

Close To Striking Range:
This merely indicates that the party concerned is moving at base SPEED to engage the opponent.
The base SPEED is inches, indicating tens of feet in the dungeon or similar setting indoors,
tens of yards outdoors.
All normal activity and bonuses are permitted when so doing.
This action is typically taken when the opponent is over 1" distant but not a long distance away.
Play goes to the next round after this, as melée is not possible, although other activity can, of course,
take place such as that detailed above.


Movement Rate Outdoors
Movement Rate Indoors
Armor Class of Charging Creatures
Melee At End of Charge
Set Weapons 
Against Possible Opponent Charge
^ Further Actions ^

This action brings the charging party into combat on the charge round,
but there are a # of considerations when it is taken.

ChargeMovement Rate Outdoors: Movement bonus for charging in normal outdoor settings is 33% of base SPEED for bipedal creatures, 50% for quadrupeds.

ChargeMovement Rate Indoors: The indoor/dungeon rate is greatly reduced due to the conditions.
Therefore, all movement of the charge is double base SPEED,
remembering that encumbered creatures are not allowed the charge.
Note: The opponent must be within 10' distance at the termination of the charge in order for any blows to be struck during that round.

ChargeAC of Charging Creatures: There is no DEX bonus allowed for charging creatures.
Creatures with no DEX bonus become 1 AC lower, i.e. easier to hit.
Thus on AC 3 creature becomes AC 4.
There is no penalty to AC 10 creatures for charging, however.

ChargeMêlée At End of Charge: Initiative is NOT checked at the end of charge movement.
The opponent with the longer weapon/reach attacks first.
Charging creatures gain +2 on their "to hit" dice if they survive any noncharging or charging opponent attacks which occur first.
Weapon length and first strike are detailed under Strike Blows.

Only one charge move can be made each TURN;
thus an interval of 9 rounds must take place before a second charge movement can be made.

Q: When do charging characters attack?
What are the effects of a charge?

A: Charging monsters or characters may
attack normally at the end of their charge;
exactly when depends on the reach of the
weapons being used (longer weapons attack
first). The charge movement, initiative, and
affects chance to hit. See the DMG, page 66,
for more details on charging.

Originally Posted by Gray Mouser
Gary, I have a question for you regarding combat, specifically the charge. IMO, it owuld seem that the only people being able to attack/get attacked at the end of a charge would be the first rank. However, I suppose it would be possible for the first rank to continue their advance (supposing they survived, that is) and the second and following ranks could attack as well. The DMG doesn't specify regarding this, saying simply that:

The following note on Melee at the End of Charge doesn't specify either. I was hoping you could give a young, non-war gamer a hand 

Gray Mouser

Most RPGs are not meant to be cmbat suimulations, and that is true of AD&D.

A pike charge (advance at full formed movement rate) will have four ranks attacking the front rank of the defender.
They will have four ranks countering if the defenders are likewise pikemen.
Otherwise, the front rank attacks the front rank, with the charging attackers moving into space left by wounded/killed drfenders, and second rank attackers moving up as well to attack still standing defenders.

The rest really depends on the rules being used, return attacks and morale checjs.


ChargeSet Weapons Against Psb. Opponent Charge:

Setting weapons is simply a matter of bracing such piercing weapons as spears, spiked pole arms, forks, glaives, etc. so as to have the butt of the
shaft braced against an unyielding surface. The effect of such a weapon
upon a charging (or leoping, pouncing, falling, or otherwise onrushing)
opponent is to cause such opponent to impale itself and take double
normal damage if a hit is so scored.

Example: Character A sets her spear
with its butt firmly braced upon the floor just as a giant toad hops at her
(attocking); if the spear impales the creature, it will score double indicated
damage (d8 X 2). Note that in this case initiative is automatically given to
the set spear as it will obviously take effect prior to any attack routine of
the toad, and that two dice are not rolled, but the result of the d8 roll is
multiplied by 2.


garhkal wrote:
Not sure if this got asked before (and have little time to go through the entirity of this and the other threads)..

Would a person get more than one attack when charging??
EG fulsia the elvin warrior has specialized in the spear.
He now has (due to hitting 8th level) 2 attacks a round. If he charges, would he get to make both attacks???

What if they are wielding 2 weapons? Does that change anything??

Assuming the system is OAD&D:

If charge movement were short, I would give the character two attacks, but in the case of something like half charging distance was used, I'd limit it to a single attack on that round.

Whether one or two weapons were being employed is not {material} IMO, as the question pertains to effective strikes.


Spears, sabers, or any other sort of weapon can be used in a mounted charge.
The lance just allows for attack contact sooner than do such other weapons.

Most charge attacks were done at a trot or a canter, not a gallop, except perhaps two mouned units having at each other.

A quarter of a move should suffice for the charging unit to pass through and turn the mount. for example, a charge of 24", with impact after 12" distance has been covered, would ene 8" beyond the point of impace, with the figure wheeling to the left or right if so desired. Otherwise, the move would end 12" beyond the point of impact.

That isn't perfect, but at best such things are loose simulations of actual combat.


Strike Blows:

Simultaneous Initiative
Weapon Speed Factor
Other Weapon Factor Determinants
Striking to Subdue
Grapple and Hold
^ Further Actions ^

As previously stated, initiative is the key factor as to which side strikes blows first each melee round.
This is modified by creatures with multiple attack routines, whether by natural or magical ability (such as haste).
It is also modified by weapon length when one opponent is charging (or otherwise closing precipitously) into melee contact.

Parrying: A character who parries cannot attack, but may
subtract his or her "to hit" bonus from his or her opponent's
attack roll. Parrying may be used in combination with a fighting
retreat. Parrying only has value to a character with a STR
or specialization-related bonus "to hit". - OSRIC, page 122

Strike BlowsSimultaneous Initiative: When opponents in melee have tied for initiative,
blows (attack routines included) occur simultaneously, except when both opponents are using weapons.
Each weapon has a speed factor, and in the case of otherwise simultaneous blows,
the opponent with the weapon which has the lower SPEED factor will strike first.
Thus, a blow from a fist occurs before a blow with a dagger (1 to 2 ),
a dagger before a short sword ( 2 to 3), a short sword prior to a hammer (3 to 4), and so on.

Strike BlowsWeapon SPEED Factor: This number is indicative of the wieldiness of any particular weapon,
how long it takes to READY the weapon against an opponent,
or how long it takes to recover and move it in its attack mode.
A pike, for example, is a 13, as it must be lowered, grasped, and then held/thrust firmly.
Such a weapon is not usable in dungeon settings, or anywhere else without masses of other pikes to support it.
In the latter case,
an opponent surviving the first attack from the bearer of the pike will likely be able to strike several times before recovery of the pike for a second thrust.
This is further detailed below.
A two-handed sword, with a 10 SF,
likewise requires a lengthy readying time and recovery period after its attack due to its size and weight.

When weapon speed factor is the determinant of which opponent strikes
first in a melee round, there is a chance that one opponent will be entitled
to multiple attacks. Compare the score of the lower-factored weapon with
that of the higher. If the difference is at least twice the factor of the lower,
or 5 or more factors in any case, the opponent with the lower factored
weapon is entitled to 2 attacks before the opponent with the higher
weapon factor is entitled to any attack whatsoever.
(Awl) Pikes only: If the difference is 10 or greater, the opponent with the lower-factored weapon is entitled to 2 <check OA weapons>
        attacks before the opponent is allowed to attack, and 1 further attack at the
        same time the opponent with the higher-speed-factored weapon finally is
        allowed to attack. <added italicization & indentation>
Note that such speed factor considerations are not applicable
when either closing or charging to melee, but after on initial round of combat,
or in cases where closing/charging was not necessary,
the speed factor considerations are applicable.

Strike BlowsOther Weapon Factor Determinants:
[aka 'Attacks of Opportunity / Melee Weapon vs. Spell Caster / Option 2: Complex Version'] [also see Option 1: Simple Version]

The SPEED factor of a weapon also determines when the weapon strikes during the course of the round with respect to opponents who are engaged in activity other than striking blows.
Thus, suppose side A, which has achieved initiative (action) for the round, has a magic-user engaged in casting a spell.
Compare the speed factor of the weapon with the number of segments which the spell will require to cast to determine if the spell or the weapon will be cast/strike first, subtracting the losing die roll on the initiative die roll from the
weapon factor and treating negative results as positive.
Note that even though a spell takes but 1 segment to complete, this is 6 seconds,
and during that period a reacting attacker might be able to attack the magic-user or other spell caster prior to actual completion of the spell!
If combat is simultaneous, there is no modification of the weapon speed factor.

[A = initiative (modified) of weapon wielder in melee]
[B = casting time] <et al.?>
[WS = weapon speed]
[LI = losing initiative roll]
[WS - LI = A]
[if A is negative, then A = positive]
[if A is less than B, then A strikes first]

Example: A sword with a factor of 5 (broad or long) is being used by an opponent of
a magic-user attempting to cast a fireball spell (3 segment casting time).
If the sword-wielding attacker was represented by a losing initiative die roll of 1,
    the spell will be cast prior to the sword's blow.
A 2 will indicate that the spell and the blow are completed simultaneously.
A 3-5 will indicate that the blow has a chance of striking (if a successful "to hit" roll is made) before the spell is cast,
arriving either as the spell is begun or during the first segment of its casting.
[Example 2]: Suppose instead that a dagger were being employed.
It has a speed factor of only 2,
so it will strike prior to spell completion if the initiative roll which lost was 1-4
(the adjusted segment indicator being 1, 0, 1, 2 respectively)
and simultaneously if the die score was a 5.
[Example 3]: If the weapon being employed was a two-handed sword
(or any other weapon with a speed factor of 10, or 9 for thut matter)
there would be no chance far the reacting side to strike the spell caster prior to completion of the fireball.

ScottyG wrote:
Hey Gary, this is probably one of the most debated facets of the AD&D combat mechanics. I know the AD&D questions can be quite tiresome, but I've never seen this one asked, and it really would settle many, many debates, so here goes. The DMG lists 2 methods for determining when in a round an attack against a spell caster will occur. The first is simple enough, the relevant initiative result is compared to the casting time of the spell, whichever is lower occurs first. In this instance, regardless of who wins initiative, there is a good chance that a spell with a short casting time will occur first.
The second involves using a weapon's speed factor. The example in the book has an attacker that lost initiative subtracting his initiative from the speed factor of his weapon, and yadda dadda da, to determine if the attack can still occur first. In the second method, is it always assumed that if the attacker wins initiative the blow will come first, or does the caster still have a chance to get the spell off.


Gary wrote:

Forget weapons speed factors. I must have been under the effect of a hex when I included them in the bloody rules :?

The first system for determing what happens is the best one, the only one I ever used.
If the weapin-wielder has the initiative and strikes the spell caster, the spell is blown.
If he mosses, or the spell caster wins, the casting time allows, then the spell is activated and takes effect.



ScottyG wrote:
I dropped speed factor long ago, and the first method is the method I use. I just see the discussion come up so often that I wanted to have an 'official' take on the rule to point out to those interested.


Gary wrote:

Scott, a true master GM


Strike BlowsStriking To Subdue: This is effective against some monsters
(and other creatures of humanoid size and type) as indicated in the MONSTER MANUAL (under DRAGONS) or herein.
Such attacks use the flat, butt, haft, pommel,
or otherwise non-lethal parts of the weapons concerned but are
otherwise the same as other attacks.
Note that unless expressly stated otherwise, all subduing damage is 75% temporary, but 25% of such damage is actually damaging to the creature being subdued. This means
that if 40 HP of subduing damage has been inflicted upon an
opponent, the creature has actually suffered 10 hit points of real damage.
The above, of course, does not apply to player characters.


opponent, the creature has actually suffered 10 hit points of real damage.
The above, of course, does not apply to player characters.

Special "To Hit" Bonuses:
The following general rules will be of assistance when you must adjudicate melee combat or missile fire:
Opponent encumbered, held by one leg, off balance, etc. +2
Opponent stunned, held by both legs, slowed, partially bound, etc. +4
Opponent magically asleep, held, paralyzed, or totally immobile Automatic

(Cf. MELEE, Magically Sleeping or Held Opponents.)

Apply bonuses to the chance of the opponent being struck.
The opponent will gain no dexterity bonus, of course.
In totally immobilized and powerless situations, the opponent can be fully trussed, slain,
or whatever in 1 round, so no bonus need be given.

See also MELEE, Flank And Rear Attacks.