In Kurphath, we use the Reign RPG system as a framework for our shared fiction. Now, I really like the dice mechanics in Reign, which are built upon the O.R.E. (One Roll Engine) that has also been used in RPGs such as Wild Talents and Nemesis.
However, in play-by-post games, combat can really, really slow a game down. Things can slow to a crawl as dice are crunched, math is performed, the GM waits to collect results from each player, etc.
Now, the good news is that Reign RPG's dice mechanics resolve combat more quickly than most other RPG systems. Because of that, and because I really like those mechanics, we'll probably use those mechanics in solo play, and for major, story-critical, battles involving a multiple-PC party. For lesser battles, especially versus Mooks, we may use the rules for dealing with Unworthy Opponents and/or some other abbeviated mechanic for combat resolution.
Because combat is decidedly deadly, I permit the optional rule for allowing PCs to Burn XP in order to Squeak By, Power Through, and Shake It Off. I want players to understand that their character can die. The danger is real. So you really should keep a few XP in reserve so that you can execute one of the aforementioned meta-maneuvers. If you don't keep an XP in reserve for such an eventuality, then your only hope is resuscitation.
You may also want to consider taking the Thick Headed Advantage at character creation. That extra wound box in the Head location may save your bacon on numerous occasions.
- I really want my character to be able to cut off enemies' arms and legs. It's just stylish. Can my PC do that? Yes. First, the targeted limb must already be full of Killing damage. Then, make a Called Shot at that limb (-1D to your attack). If you hit with a set that has a minimum Width of 3, you sever the limb. If you hit with a Width 2 set, your damage goes on their Torso instead.
Severing a Mook's arm or leg finishes him off. If done to someone who isn't an Unworthy Opponent, they must immediately roll Body + Vigor. Failure to get a set indicates they take two additional Shock to their Torso. If they succeed in the roll, they take 1 instead of 2 Shock.
- How do I Aim/Feint? To Aim, spend one round making no attacks. You may still Parry or Dodge, albeit with a -1D penalty. The following round, if you attack the target you Aimed at, you can add 1 regular die to your pool, or offset a -1D penalty. This benefit increases to 2D if you spend two consecutive rounds aiming. To Feint, make a roll (Body + Fight or Coord + Weapon Skill). If you succeed, then the next Attack you direct against that same target later in the melee, you gain a +1D bonus. Note: you can Feint twice in a round, and if both are successful, then the next Attack gains +2D. You cannot gain more than +2D from Feinting. Remember that attempting two Feints in a round means you're taking a Multiple Action, which incurs a -1D penalty for every action beyond the first.