TAoM combat involves a fight between player controlled mages in which the goal of combat is to reduce the opponent's ward to 0% by the means of casting spells. The players control their mages by utilizing action slots with various commands available. Neither player knows how the other will act, as all posts are sent to a neutral third party called the arbitrator, who is responsible for updating the IC with information about the battle. This section will cover the core rules which apply to every TAoM match, and walk through the process of combat.
In order for a character to fight, it must have a combat sheet. The combat sheet functions like a stat sheet which gets updated as the fight progresses. It contains only information which is critical to combat.Name
Ward % remaining: X/25 (health)
Mana % remaining: X/100 (magic available for use)
Available Keywords: X (explanation of added effects the character uses)
Special: X (unique factors that can affect the fight, commonly added by rule extensions)
Some rule extensions are used to define how to play the game, or function as a critical balancing mechanism. The Core Extensions apply in every TAoM fight unless stated otherwise.
You are allowed to cast one spell per turn. When you cast a spell you must declare the amount of mana(whole numbers only) you placed into its power and effects in parentheses if applicable. (% power, keyword). At this point the spell is now casting. Spells resolve damage to the target equal to the current % power of the spell in terms of the opponent. This is called resolving. Under normal circumstances, the action will take a full round and a half to resolve after it was cast. Damage is only applied during coping, but having the spell apply its effects sooner can sometimes work toward your advantage. On a final note, in the case the order of resolution matters for spells that would otherwise resolve at the same time, use a random determinant to decide which resolves first.
1st React 1st Respond 1st Intermediate 2nd React 2nd Respond 2nd Intermediate 3rd React Casting Active Opponent Reacts Active Opponent Copes Resolving Casting Active Active Opponent Reacts Active Resolving AND Opponent Copes
Keywords define specific effects that can be added onto spells to extend/overwrite rules about how they function. Players may place X unique keywords in their combat sheet where X is decided by the GM(a buffed version of a keyword is not unique). If no number is specified, X=4.
Canceling is the act of treating an action as though it never happened, or had no effect. Many things cause canceling, and the way it is handled is variant on the situation so it is explained by the event which causes it. If you are ever confused about canceling, it is covered in detail in the potentially confusing concepts.
At the end of each round, all the actions that were cast subtract their % from the % mana remaining field, inform the opponent of negative effects they will be taking next round, and edit in the previous round's anticipation. Also, if a character coped, ward % remaining is updated.
Using magic presents a toll on a mage's body. Because of this:
While the mana % remaining is 60% or lower, players have their physical attributes nerfed.
At 40% or lower, the character has their physical abilities nerfed again, and cannot use actions which require aim or balance.
At 30% or lower, your character becomes dizzy, requiring close range to hit the target.
At 25% or lower, your character will faint if they are not the target of an active spell cast by the opponent.
If two spells are active at the same time, they subtract their % power from each other. If a spell would reach 0% power this way, cancel it. A spell cast for 0% always loses clashes.
Knockback is a keyword common among most spells and available to everyone(to save time, a spell has knockback 1 unless stated otherwise). If this spell resolves damage, the opponent gains the status knockback 1 in the step the spell resolved. A player with this status is moved by the impact of the spell and any spells in the process of casting are canceled[they still pay the cost]. The larger the number, the greated the impact(this is only relevant in extensions with distance).
Once combat sheets are up, the fight can begin. The fight is carried out using action slots. These slots represent the actions available to your character. They also serve to organize the casting and revolving of spells. While these don't refer to a specific period in time, they do state the order in which actions occurred. Because anticipating doesn't happen in a constant order with the other slots, the time slot organized by the anticipate slot is referred to as the intermediate step to avoid confusion. I highly recommend using these charts as a reference during TAoM battles.
Each round you receive 3 action slots, each containing a unique list of actions: react, respond, and anticipate. These actions must be included in each post.
The react is a primarily defensive slot which focuses on taking action against the opponent's last turn or taking advantage of the situation. You are permitted to do one of the following:
Option Explanation Evade/Cast Defense Use a technique designed to quickly suppress incoming magic for (0-8% clashing, defense) or evade physical objects. Due to its keywords, a defensive spell never resolves. It does not count towards your one cast limit. Counter If you chose to Prepare To Counter last turn, cast an offensive spell for 0-8%. Dispel AND Take Another Option Pay 1.5 times the mana cost of the spell your opponent casts during this react step to make it cancel instantly(if they do not cast anything, pay 0%), then, if applicable, take another anticipated option. You will not be able to dispel again for X rounds where X is a predetermined number unique to the character/thread. If there is no specified cooldown, X = 3 rounds. Wait/Prepare Take no action against your opponent's last response. You may also add an extra keyword to your response. Cancel this action if you are hit by a spell before your response resolves. Spite/Brace If you chose to Prepare For Trouble last round, buff yourself in a way described during the last round before taking an anticipated hit. If you chose to Brace, take another reaction. Abandon Anticipation Cancel your last anticipation.
This slot is primarily offensive, containing actions which present threats to the opponent or overpower lingering active spells. If an option doesn't meet its casting conditions, it is canceled. Aside from only being able to 'cast' once, you are permitted to do all of the following:
Option Explanation Cast Defense If you chose to Fortify last turn, use an anticipated technique designed to quickly suppress incoming magic for (0-8% clashing, defense). Due to its keywords, a defensive spell never resolves. It does not count towards your one cast limit. Null Cast You may cast a spell for 0%. It loses all clashes, and only causes knockback. Cast Weak Spell You may cast a spell for less than 5%. It can inflict damage alongside causing knockback. In addition, it may have one positive added effect in exchange for a negative added effect. Cast Strong Spell You may cast a spell for 5-8%. It can inflict damage alongside causing knockback. It may have one positive added effect. Move Change position, but it is too late to dodge. If you were already in motion, move faster or change direction. Flee Attempt to leave combat through various means. Talk You can talk whenever you want, but it is always treated as a response.
This slot allows your character to gain an offensive or defensive advantage. These advantages vary from gaining special options to getting buffs. All anticipate actions are considered to happen in the intermediate step. You may choose one of the following:
Offensive abilities affect the respond step.Defensive Abilities
Option Explanation Fortify Commit to a specific defensive action. Follow Up Commit to taking a specific offensive action. If your last response hit the opponent, this spell gains auto-hit. Dominate Ignore all stat nerfs during the next response. This doesn't include status conditions. You may also Overpower. Penetrate Your spell only clashes with spells with clashing and other spells with penetrate. Breakthrough Predict the need to dispel the opponent's response and take offensive action. If the opponent does not use % to respond, dispel for 0%(it still cools down). Overpower Win all clashing ties. The result of a tie is a 0% spell which only causes knockback. If you also chose to Dominate, the spell(s) cast during the respond is(are) canceled if it doesn't clash.
Defensive abilities affect the react step.
Option Explanation Counter Commit to taking an offensive action. Trust Instinct Commit to taking defensive action. It ignores auto-hit status. Recover Quickly Predict the need to overcome status afflictions before your response. Status conditions (except knockback) are nerfed next turn. If you also chose to Prepare For Trouble, cancel anticipation if you do not cope next turn. React Quickly Predict the need for your next reaction to gain a speed advantage. Your spells gain a response priority in the next react. Guard Against Multiple Spells Predict the need to dispel and take further defensive action. You may also Prepare For Trouble AND Make It Double. Prepare For Trouble Commit to Bracing(nerfs knockback) OR commit to Spiting with a specific buff. You may also Prepare To Recover Quickly. Make It Double Shameless Pokemon reference.
General abilities are able to be used without using up your anticipation.
Option Explanation Special Preparations State exactly the way an opponent will react, respond, and/or anticipate(this may target the events occurring next round or the current round). You must state which option is picked, the % cost, added effects, and who is targeted. If all statements are correct, cancel that/those action(s). If all statements about any action are wrong, you must cancel anticipation. Otherwise nothing happens. You may take another anticipate. Adapt Instantly cancel an active defense that resolved in a previous round. You may take another anticipate. Cope Deal with the negative effects of a spell that made contact. You must cope if you are hit, but you may Dispel instead of coping(it is treated as having happened when the spell resolved). Coping cannot be canceled. If a spell resolves damage after coping, even if ward % remaining falls to 0, fatality does not occur until the spell resolves. Dispel You may only use this on spells cast the previous turn, or a spell you would have coped. Pay 1.5 times the mana cost of an active spell to make it cancel instantly. You will not be able to dispel again for X rounds where X is a predetermined number unique to the character/thread. If there is no specified cooldown, X = 3 rounds. Think You may think any number of times at any time, however it is always treated as anticipation.
You now know everything you need to know to play a TAoM fight. If you want to create your own rules, please read the hider below.
The function of the Core Rules is to create a base on which to build. Unlike any other combat system, it actually encourages you to create and modify rules to better fit it to your roleplay(the game is really boring with just Rules). However, it is the responsibility of the creator, of a rule, to know how it applies in any circumstance.
If there are any questions about why and how the system works, read the Live Battle and System Notes.