Covenant Game Design: Size

Covenant Game Design - Game Mechanics - Size

(Don’t forget to tune in to the latest episode of the Radio Free Covenant podcast!)

Covenant is filled with sapient species of wildly different sizes, from tiny acoes to hulking valka Matriarchs. We handle that by assigning everything – people, creatures, even gear and vehicles – a numerical size based on their longest dimension. See the following table (one of the few tables you’ll see in Covenant’s rules, I’m proud to say):


Size

Longest Dimension

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

And so on

0.125 m (~5 in.)

0.25 m (~10 in.)

0.5 m (~1.6 ft.)

1 m (~3.3 ft)

2 m (~6.6 ft)

4 m (~13.1 ft)

8 m (~26.2 ft.)

16 m (~52.5 ft.)

32 m (~105 ft.)

64 m (~210 ft.)

And so on


These sizes can be adjusted, by the way. Something thin like a snake might have its size reduced by 1, while something massive like an elephant might have its size increased by one.

This system allows both players and the FM to compare relative sizes during opposed bids, especially attack and stealth bids.

  • For every 1 size the attacker is smaller than the defender:
    • Add 1 advantage to attack and stealth bids
    • Subtract 5 from weapon damage
  • For every 1 size the attacker is larger than the defender:
    • Add 1 disadvantage to attack and stealth bids
    • Add 5 to weapon damage

Let’s look at some examples:

  • A human (size 5) is fighting a valka male (size 4). The human:
    • Adds 1 disadvantage to attack and stealth bids
    • Add 5 from weapon damage
  • A human (size 5) is fighting an aco (size 3). The human:
    • Adds 2 disadvantage to attack and stealth bids
    • Adds 10 from weapon damage
  • A human (size 5) is fighting a valka Matriarch (size 6). The human:
    • Adds 1 advantage to attack and stealth bids
    • Subtracts 5 from weapon damage

Sizes can also be adjusted by the target’s cover and stance. Both effectively reduce the target’s size. For cover (which also includes shields), it depends on how much of the target is covered:


Percent of Target Covered

50%

75%

More than 75%

Size Adjustment

-1 size

-2 size

-3 size


For stance, it depends on how upright the target is:

  • Standing Stance:
    • Add 0 advantages to ranged attack bids
    • Add 0 advantages to defense bids vs. ranged attacks
    • Add 0 disadvantages to defense bids vs. close quarter attacks
  • Kneeling Stance:
    • Add 1 advantage to ranged attack bids
    • Add 1 advantage to defense bids vs. ranged attacks
    • Add 1 disadvantage to defense bids vs. close quarter attacks
  • Prone Stance:
    • Add 2 advantages to ranged attack bids
    • Add 2 advantages to defense bids vs. ranged attacks
    • Add 2 disadvantages to defense bids vs. close quarter attacks

Characters can also make called shots against parts of a target’s body. Called shots adjust attack bids based on which part of the target’s body is being attacked:


Body Part

Limb

Head

Hand or Foot

Eyes

Size Adjustment

-1 size

-2 size

-3 size

-4 size


Well, that’s a long post, and it’s late. Tune in next time for when we talk about how Covenant handles tactical movement during scenes.

Published by radiofreecovenant

A podcast about the science-fiction roleplaying game "Covenant" and the urban fantasy novel "Crossing the Line", soon to be published by Black Opal Books.

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