Combat Overview

Some encounters can only end in combat, when the adventuring party must match both wit and strength against those who would seek to defeat them. The rules presented within this page cover the basics regarding combat, greatly simplified as compared to a typical "pencil-and-paper" role-playing game.

Once combat begins, all conscious combatants receive a "turn" in which they're allowed to perform a single major action (such as swinging a sword, actively defending themselves, drinking a potion, etc.). After these combatants have had their chance to act (or have otherwise been defeated and can no longer act), the combat "round" ends and a new round begins. Combat rounds continue until one side or the other has been vanquished.

Roll for Initiative!

Each round, all combatants roll a 1d10 for initiative, adding their dexterity bonus if they possess one. Those with the highest scores act first, descending in order until all combatants have had a chance to act. Once a new round begins, new initiative scores are rolled (so a hero acting first in one round may be the last to act in the next round). In instances when a hero and his enemy have rolled the same initiative, the hero receives priority and is allowed to act first.

Combatants who are unconscious, paralyzed or otherwise incapacitated do not receive initiative scores and can no longer participate in combat.

When combat begins, the adventuring party is often considered to be some distance away from its enemies and those with missile weapons (bows, crossbows, slings, etc.) can immediately seek an opponent and attack. Some hero classes (such as thieves and magic-users) will want to stay at a distance, while other classes (such as fighters and clerics) will want to engage the enemy and attack them in hand-to-hand combat. Likewise, the party will encounter some enemies that will evade their attempts to attack at close range, while others will quickly move forward to engage in hand-to-hand combat.

Consequences of Hand-to-Hand Combat

Once a combatant engages in close combat with its enemy, it cannot retreat to utilize a missile weapon again. Further, once a combatant has engaged in hand-to-hand combat, it is allowed to strike any other enemy that is also no longer at a distance (as long as it is not already being attacked). Hence, committing to close melee range can expose such combatants to other nearby enemies as well.

Primary and Secondary Ranks

Fighters and clerics will always form a "primary rank" and face in the direction of oncoming enemies, doing their best to protect any thieves or magic-users that stay behind to form a "secondary rank." Each fighter and cleric within the party can "absorb" three enemy combatants; once the limit is reached, additional combatants will flood the party and begin to attack any thieves and magic-users as well.

Each round, combatants can choose to attack a single enemy (depending on its distance) or actively defend itself from all enemies (increasing its armor class by one for the duration of the round).


Heroes always attack using the melee or missile weapon chosen for them by the player (via the MANAGE ITEMS button). Heroes can attack ANY close combatant with its melee weapon or any nearby combatant with its missile weapon PROVIDED the hero isn't already engaged in hand-to-hand combat with another combatant. Once an enemy attacks a particular hero, that hero must defeat that enemy before he or she can target other combatants within the encounter area.

When attacking, a combatant rolls a 1d20 and adds appropriate strength (close combat) or dexterity (ranged combat) bonuses along with any magical bonuses that may exist. The combatant's goal is to roll a score equal to or higher than its opponent's armor class; if the roll is successful, then the enemy is struck and damage is calculated (per the weapon type, strength/dexterity bonuses and other associated bonuses and circumstances). Note that a roll of a 1 is always considered a miss regardless of all associated bonuses, just as a roll of a 20 will always hit a target regardless of armor class.


Combatants naturally protect themselves as much as possible. This is primary done through the use of armor, shields, magical rings and other forms of magic. Again, all things being equal, an enemy must roll the value of a defending hero's armor class or higher on a 1d20 in order to successfully strike the hero and cause bodily damage.

However, heroes can also choose to actively defend themselves even more during combat. When the associated command is selected, the hero spends the entire round doing everything in his power to evade attacks. This results in an additional bonus to the hero's armor class and makes him slightly more difficult to hit (but it also prohibits the hero from doing anything else during the round).

Hiding in Shadows

Thieves and magic-user/thieves within the player's party can try to HIDE IN SHADOWS during their turn, attempting to blend into any natural shadows within the encounter area and basically become invisible to attacking combatants. To hide in the shadows, a thief must roll her HIDE thieving ability or lower on percentile dice. For example, a 5th level thief has a 30% chance to hide in shadows per attempt. Note that a thieving hero already engaged in hand-to-hand combat cannot try to hide in shadows--the thief must be free of all attacking combatants first.

When successful, the thief essentially becomes invisible to all combatants and will not be targeted by any of them for as long as the thief remains in the shadows. Further, the thief can then attempt to attack any combatant (with either her melee or missile weapon) and do so with a +4 bonus to hit, and if a hit is scored, the thief automatically does TRIPLE DAMAGE to the opponent. Once an attack is made, however, the thief is no longer hiding in the shadows and can become a target of combatants once again.

If a combatant is struck during combat, appropriate damage is done to that combatant and hit points are (temporarily) lost. Damage is based on the weapon (or, for an attacking monster, the type of attack involved such as a claw, sting, bite, etc.). Attackers striking at close range add any strength bonuses they may possess while attackers at a distance add any dexterity bonuses they may have. Magical weapons, spells and other types of magic may increase the amount of damage inflicted as well.


As combatants are injured they lose hit points and once those hit points reach zero the combatant is rendered unconscious and is defeated (and no longer able to participate in combat unless at least one hit point above zero is restored). Such combatants are NOT killed but they are incapacitated and no longer receive a turn during a combat round.


Party heroes can lose hit points that go beyond zero; once a hero is at -1, he is dying and must be stabilized at once (dying heroes continue to lose one hit point per round until they are stabilized back to zero). Allies of the fallen hero can elect to spend a turn stabilizing their comrade if desired.

Combatant Morale

Not all combatants facing an adventuring party will fight until rendered unconscious. When at least half of all combatant hit points have been lost in battle, each combatant must then do a morale check to determine whether they will continue to fight or turn and flee the encounter. All enemy characters and monsters possess a morale value from 2-12; when a check is made, two six-sided virtual dice are rolled, and if the result is greater than the combatant's morale value, the character or monster immediately turns and flees (at which point the combatant is automatically considered defeated and no longer participates in combat).

Total Party Defeat

Should the entire adventuring party be rendered unconscious, the party is defeated and the battle is lost. At that point, the online Game Master will then "reset" the encounter and allow the player to try again, returning all hero hit points and spells in the process. Note that defeated parties do lose one point of reputation, but otherwise the player can try the encounter again.