Saturday, 17 February 2018

Simple jousting rules for 5e

   Attacks. Each jouster wields a shield (+2 AC if proficient) and a lance (1d12, use Strength for attack and damage rolls). On each pass, each jouster rolls an attack with their lance.
   Hits. If a jouster is hit, they must make a brace check (see below) with a DC equal to the damage taken. On a failed check, they are unhorsed and lose the joust.
   Brace check. A brace check is a Strength (Animal Handling) check.
   Initiative. Attacks happen simultaneously, and it is possible for two jousters to unhorse each other.
   Rules of the match. A jousting lance is destroyed when it hits. New lances are handed out and passes are repeated until one or both participants are unhorsed. Additionally, a limit may be set for lances broken; for example, the first jouster to break three lances (score three hits) wins if neither has been unhorsed.
   Passes. On each pass, a jouster may attack normally, or choose one of the following maneuvers:
  • Aggressive: +5 to attack, -5 to AC. 
  • Defensive: -5 to attack, +5 to AC.
  • Braced: -5 to attack, +5 to Animal Handling.
  • High in Saddle: +5 to attack, -5 to Animal Handling.
  • Eyes Fixed: +5 to attack. If you are hit, roll a d20. On a 1, you lose your left eye if you have it, and on a 2, you lose your right eye if you have it. On a 3-4, you gain a Horrible Scar, and on a 5-10 you gain a Minor Scar. (See the DMG p. 272 for the effects of these injuries.)

The same information in table format:
Maneuver Attack AC Animal Handling Special
Aggressive +5 -5 - -
Defensive -5 +5 - -
Braced -5 - +5 -
High in Saddle +5 - -5 -
Eyes Fixed +5 - - See above

King Henri II of France was mortally wounded by a splintered lance in the eye from the hand of Gabriel Montgomery, the captain of his own guard, in a jousting match in 1559.

Optional rules

Reading opponents. When a PC is jousting against an NPC opponent, if you wish, you may allow the PC to attempt to make a read. First decide the NPC's maneuver for the pass, and then allow the player to make a Wisdom (Insight) check contested by the opponent's Wisdom (Animal Handling) check. If the player wins the contest, they learn which maneuver the opponent has chosen, and can then choose their own maneuver based on this information.


Pepor said...

Thank you very much. I was looking for something pretty simple as your method.

Unknown said...

We used your setup in our last game, and I won the tournament! :)
Purely by chance, I'm sure.

It's an excellent method, thank you so much.

Iceni said...

Great simple set of rules, thanks! As attacks are simultaneous not by initiative, you could use playing cards face down, and turn them over at the same time. Choose a suit for fun (OK, I know everyone wants to be spades!) and I tried to pick values that are easy to remember.

Manoeuvre / Playing Card
Normal attack / Jack
Aggressive / Ace
Defensive / Ten
Braced / Four
High in Saddle / King
Eyes Fixed / Two


Luther said...

I am running a jousting in fort Beluarian (Chult) next game. this is perfect. and I REALLY like the playing cards method!

Unknown said...

Hey just wanted to say that I used your mechanics the other night for my session and it was so perfect, especially the eyes fixed mechanic. The whole scar situation ended up being super thematic as my npc rolled a nat 1 on his brace. I had initially said that he got a chunk tore out of his cheek but then rolled the nat 1 on his brace so I had my pc end up accidentally killing the guy instead. It was perfect. So thank you for making this it is wonderful.