Friday, January 15, 2016

Defending Your Territory

One of the chief ways animals communicate with and defend their territory or belongings against other animals is through scent marking. This involves rubbing objects or creatures with scent glands, urination, defecation, and other methods of leaving one’s distinct smell on the target. Every species language includes scent as a component, and no one learning another species’ language can truly understand it without knowing that species’ repertoire of scent messages. 

When an object or area becomes contested between two or more animals, a scent battle can ensue. Scent battles are a sort of non-lethal conflict by proxy, but follow different rules, since the parties are usually not both present at the same time. One party marks a target with her scent, then the other character comes along later and tries to overwhelm the previous scent. This can go on for days, sometimes months, without the two characters ever actually meeting. This does not imply, however, that scent battles are unwinnable, or fought by attrition. Victory can be achieved depending on the difference in Hit Dice/Total Levels between the two animals involved. 

Table 4.4 Scent Battle Resolution Matrix shows one way to resolve the conflict. It is based on the original fantasy game cleric’s ability to “turn the undead.” A player consults the column on the left, “PC Level,” to find her own current Total Levels. She then cross-references it with her opponent’s Hit Dice or Total Levels to the right. The number shown is the modifier to her core dice roll when trying to win a scent battle against that opponent; that is, the number she adds to her roll. A * indicates victory without rolling. The opposing character will simply give up the fight and move on to other prospects. 

NPCs who fail three consecutive Scent Battles will also give up and move on to another area. 

Note that this is the only modifier applied to your core dice roll during a Scent Battle, unless you have the Guardian niche.  Guardians can add their niche die roll result to a Scent Battle check.

                                        Opponent's Hit Dice/Total Levels
              
PC Lvl
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
1
+7
+3
+1
No
No
No
No
No
No
No
2
+9
+5
+2
+0
No
No
No
No
No
No
3
+11
+7
+3
+1
No
No
No
No
No
No
4
+13
+9
+5
+2
+0
No
No
No
No
No
5
+15
+11
+7
+3
+1
No
No
No
No
No
6
+17
+13
+9
+5
+2
+0
No
No
No
No
7
+18
+15
+11
+7
+3
+1
No
No
No
No
8
*
+17
+13
+9
+5
+2
+0
No
No
No
9
*
+18
+15
+11
+7
+3
+1
No
No
No
10
*
*
+17
+13
+9
+5
+2
+0
No
No

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