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Doctor Acula
2011-01-11, 09:14 AM
I am currently in the process of writing up a new and fully fleshed campaign world, one of the aspects I'm very interested in trying to incorporate in the campaign is having the world itself be a gaseous planet. However I never have had a very effective way of handling aerial combat on giantitp or in a real life game. I am interested in running games for this world in both of these mediums so I'm interested if any of you know of any good ways to handle this both on line and on the board.

Trekkin
2011-01-11, 09:36 AM
I would use altitude bands, ideally scaled slightly smaller than my hexes or squares are wide. if your system uses range modifiers for damage, every band up a ranged attack has to travel increases the range by one, and every band down decreases it by one. Accuracy modifiers might count the absolute value of the difference between bands as a negative modifier in addition to the one for lateral distance.

It's like trigonometry, but without Pythagoras.

Aharon
2011-01-11, 10:06 AM
In actual games at the table, I handwave away maneuverability. Anybody who can fly has perfect maneuverability.

Yora
2011-01-11, 10:10 AM
I handle aerial combat the same way I do ground combat: Without a grid.

This makes speed and maneuverability pointless, but saves a lot of trouble.

Doctor Acula
2011-01-11, 08:45 PM
Thanks, Is there an easy way for me to do 3d combat in a play by post game?

AslanCross
2011-01-11, 09:28 PM
I run it as written in the 3.5 DMG; I mark altitude (relative to the PCs' general elevation) on the grid beside the creature in question. A blue dragon flying above the PCs will have a (+200 ft) beside it.

Ormur
2011-01-12, 07:06 PM
By hoping someone at the table is really quick at solving the Pythagorean equation.

Runeclaw
2011-01-12, 07:12 PM
By hoping someone at the table is really quick at solving the Pythagorean equation.

It's simple enough to make an Excel spreadsheet with the equation programmed in. Then all you have to do is enter the horizontal and vertical distances, and it will spit out the hypotenuse. This is what I've done.

I still wish, though, for a way to hang my minis in the air where they belong. Lacking that, we usually stack them on a D6 or two simply to indicate they are airborne and then just keep track of altitude separately.

ShneekeyTheLost
2011-01-12, 07:17 PM
On a board? What I do is put a d20 under the character in the air. The number facing up is the altitude in 5' squares. So an individual who is 30' up off the ground would have a 6 indicated on the die the character was standing on.

linebackeru
2011-01-12, 07:17 PM
You could use a Star Trek Chess board:

http://www.liquideggproduct.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/star-trek-chess-side.jpg

ericgrau
2011-01-12, 07:29 PM
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/movement.htm#tacticalAerialMovement
You could print the table there if you want. I also have it in my sig in the "DM screen", with all rules within the table rather than surrounding text so you could print that one out instead, cutting out the table and tossing the rest, if you want something smaller and easier to handle.

There's no reason why vertical diagonals should be any different from horizontal diagonals if you're worried about distances. If somebody wants to move diagonally in both dimensions then you count squares as 1-2-2-1-2-2-etc. instead of 1-2-1-2-1-2-etc. Vertically you note a distance or if it's a mixed air/land battle then marking what's flying and what isn't is often enough.

Ignoring maneuverability is a patently Bad Idea if the players use spells or abilities like Overland Flight, as it makes them overpowered. The caster should spend a precious turn on Fly if he wants to fly in combat. If you really want to handwave it I'd treat Good and Perfect like Perfect and Average and below as "not for combat movement". Basically someone with Average and below could keep moving forward, farther and farther away, but getting close to an unwilling foe is nigh-impossible. Casters would be limited to medium and long range spells and martial types would be limited to projectile weapons. And ya at lower maneuverability there's not much point to a grid.

AslanCross
2011-01-12, 07:39 PM
By hoping someone at the table is really quick at solving the Pythagorean equation.

Thankfully my group consists of science high school graduates in engineering courses. I had a relatively easy time thanks to them. The spreadsheet suggestion is a good idea though.

Ormur
2011-01-12, 07:50 PM
It's simple enough to make an Excel spreadsheet with the equation programmed in. Then all you have to do is enter the horizontal and vertical distances, and it will spit out the hypotenuse. This is what I've done.

I still wish, though, for a way to hang my minis in the air where they belong. Lacking that, we usually stack them on a D6 or two simply to indicate they are airborne and then just keep track of altitude separately.

Good idea, I'll have to get one of my players to do that for me. :smallbiggrin:

Callista
2011-01-13, 02:14 AM
Stick the mini on an extra die and keep track of altitude in your head. Works fine.