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Old January 19th, 2011, 07:47 PM
BurnyFlame BurnyFlame is offline
 
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Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Apparently, I don't get it.

I don't get what it means to roll zero dice.

So I have created this thread to be enlightened, and for others to as well.

------------------------------------

I think the idea of “zero” in HeroScape is intriguing and deserves its own place for discussion. I want to bring to light certain distinctions which may not be obvious to all players, and to clarify rules for even more advanced players. My statements with supporting justification are just to start the discussion, and may not be the "official” interpretation, but that is what I want to find out. If any example turns out to be over-ruled, I can correct this first post to reflect that.

------------Moving Zero------------

Figures can move zero. Figures can also “not” move zero, that is, elect not to move at all. The rulebook says that moving is optional, but that if the figure moves, it may move zero. So there actually is a distinction, and a choice. This is important for certain powers to activate, or not activate.

Example: Wait then Fire
For this power to grant the extra attack die, you must have “none of the [figures] move this turn.” Thus, you need to elect to forego movement entirely. It does not need to be a formal declaration, but if you actually declare “I am moving them zero spaces,” then you would not get the extra attack dice, because you have elected to use movement, albeit movement of zero. Practically, this would only be useful in super-rare occasions (shooting your own Krug, perhaps), but it is an option available to the player.

Example: Cyberclaw
The question as to the effect of Cyberclaw on an opponent’s movement seems obvious – that figure can not move or be moved. Essentially that forces the opponent’s figure to “choose” the option of not moving. This means they can not even move “zero.” Usually, this has no effect, unless the opponent’s figure has a power which requires movement to work. This is not to be confused with powers which simply occur “after” moving, because those powers are written as such to dictate when they happen, not if.

Example: Marro Hive
The Marro Hive is famous for not being able to move, at all. So the question arises, does it even have a movement step/phase? That is to say, is it allowed to move zero, or is it not even allowed that? I think that it is still allowed its movement phase, but the special rules contend that it can ever move at most zero. This does not seem too useful now, but there is always the potential for future figures powers to activate only upon nearby figures “moving,” and the moving zero would fulfill that condition.

Summary: Moving zero is moving, and is different than not moving.

------------Attacking with Zero------------

No figure to date has an attack of zero. Nor does any figure reduce attack dice of other figures. So at the moment, there is no precedent and little concept of “rolling zero attack dice.” Similar to moving, many powers simply say “after attacking” to indicate a timing of the power, not a condition for it to happen. Furthermore, the rules state that figures must roll all of their attack dice (or none if they elect not to attack), so this is a binary choice, unlike movement which requires the initial choice of moving, and then how far to move.

Example: Toxic Skin
Even if Kee-Mo-Shi does not attack, she still has to roll for Toxic Skin. So the power is independent of attacking, and even if a special power reduced her attack to zero, it seems this power would still activate.

Hypothetical Example: Shocking Grasp
Sharwin Wildborn may add one automatic skull to whatever is rolled when rolling for a normal attack. The question is if some power reduces her attack number to zero, would she still get the automatic skull? That is, is the automatic skull (1) a condition of rolling, or (2) a condition of attacking normally? Although hypothetical, I think that they are both conditions, and if a future power could reduce attack dice to zero, then Shocking Grasp would not activate.

------------Defending with Zero------------

Perhaps the most interesting and controversial aspect of “zero” in action is with defense dice. There are many powers in the game which affect the amount of defense rolled, either positively or negatively. The fewest defense dice which can be rolled is always zero, but in which cases can a figure not even roll “zero” defense dice?

Example: Venoc Vipers
They have zero as their defense number. Does this mean they never roll defense? No, they can if they have height advantage or some other defensive modifier. But can they without that; in other words, can they roll zero in the “positive” sense, or do they not even get that? This would only be a useful distinction in cases where an attacking power requires the defending Viper to “roll defense successfully,” akin to the wording on Shurrak's Knockback 14 special power.

Rolling zero vs. not rolling is an abstract difference. Unlike moving, rolling defense is not a choice; you must roll if you can. The cases where you cannot are dictated by two things: special powers and the defender's stats. Should the defender have no defense dice, unmanipulated, why should it be any different than if they have no defense dice after a special power activates? For that matter, how can such a power activate if the effect is null? By Occam's razor, the best interpretation is the simplest: you either have the defense dice and roll or you don’t. And yet, there is more to it:

Examples: Stings, Whips, Mauls, Rifles and Stares
First, there are at least six units which state “the defending figure cannot roll any defense dice.” They are:
Deadeye Dan
Deathstalkers
James Murphy
Me-Burq-Sa
Rechets of Bogdan*
Wyvern

It seems that whenever these figures fulfill their powers’ conditions, the defending figure is doomed to receive one or more wounds. The only counter to them is the Vanish, Spidey-Sense, and Disappearing Ninja (normal attacks only) powers (*but even these don’t work against Lethal Sting). Vanish 9 mentions nothing about defense dice, so this defensive power is independent of actually rolling defense dice. Indeed, if a power needs rolling to occur, it would state it, otherwise it could say “when at least one skull is rolled.”

Example: Warforged Resolve
Similar to Tough, but working on Special Attacks, Warforged Resolve starts "when rolling defense dice,” seeming to indicate that this works only during the time when defense dice are rolled. So if you don’t roll defense, you don’t get the power. Besides the six units listed earlier, which would prohibit rolling defense, there are at least two units (Zelrig, Red Wyvern) which, with their Special Attack, can reduce the amount of defense rolled by common figures. The Death Knights of Valkrill can also do this to all figures using Soul Weapons. For Zelrig, Majestic Fires would make a Warforged Soldier’s defense zero.

So what happens if a Warforged Soldier is attacked by this Special Attack (on level ground with no other defense enhancement) and their defense is reduced to zero, does Warforged Resolve activate? Since this is not a power that activates simply “when at least one skull is rolled,” I see the required condition as being “when rolling defense,” which does not happen in this case. The defender does not have the option to roll zero like they have the option to move zero. To roll, you need defense dice. And yes, if they had height advantage, they would get Warforged Resolve.

In real life, you can not tell the difference between someone rolling zero and not rolling, unless perhaps he was making rolling actions with his arm and just had no dice in his hand. Kind of like Charades. Anyway I would like to see it.

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Old January 19th, 2011, 07:56 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

You would still take the step to roll the dice, regardless of the amount of dice actually rolled, including zero. This applies for any power in the official Heroscape game.



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Old January 19th, 2011, 08:30 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

This was the best nothing I have ever done.

My map thread.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 08:33 PM
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Exclamation Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by BurnyFlame View Post
So what happens if a Warforged Soldier is attacked by this Special Attack (on level ground with no other defense enhancement) and their defense is reduced to zero, does Warforged Resolve activate? Since this is not a power that activates simply “when at least one skull is rolled,” I see the required condition as being “when rolling defense,” which does not happen in this case. The defender does not have the option to roll zero like they have the option to move zero. To roll, you need defense dice. And yes, if they had height advantage, they would get Warforged Resolve.

In real life, you can not tell the difference between someone rolling zero and not rolling, unless perhaps he was making rolling actions with his arm and just had no dice in his hand. Kind of like Charades. Anyway I would like to see it.
I think that the difference is the potential to roll dice-if, as you said, they had height, or Raelin, they would have dice available to physically roll, whereas against units like MBS they may not roll any dice, regardless of modifiers.

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Old January 19th, 2011, 09:24 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

I have nothing to say about this.

It's quite well-thought out, but for the part about moving zero spaces, why not just move forward/backward one space and then moving back to the same space again?

Or, if you want a benefit such as Wait then Fire, why just not move at all?

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Old January 19th, 2011, 09:27 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Deadliest Warrior View Post
It's quite well-thought out, but for the part about moving zero spaces, why not just move forward/backward one space and then moving back to the same space again?
Because that might force you to leave engagement, or you might be on a single-space pillar, or you might be in a crowd of friendly units, et cetera et cetera et cetera.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 09:40 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anitar View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Deadliest Warrior View Post
It's quite well-thought out, but for the part about moving zero spaces, why not just move forward/backward one space and then moving back to the same space again?
Because that might force you to leave engagement, or you might be on a single-space pillar, or you might be in a crowd of friendly units, et cetera et cetera et cetera.
Well, that's plenty of reason for me, I suppose.

Although I wonder, according to the Official Rules, can a figure claim to have moved "zero spaces" and take benefit for movement abilities without actually having gone anywhere? I'd use it a lot but my 'Scapemates would be skeptical...

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Last edited by The Deadliest Warrior; January 19th, 2011 at 09:40 PM. Reason: spell check
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Old January 19th, 2011, 09:52 PM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by BurnyFlame View Post
Sharwin Wildborn may add one automatic skull to whatever is rolled when rolling for a normal attack. The question is if some power reduces her attack number to zero, would she still get the automatic skull? That is, is the automatic skull (1) a condition of rolling, or (2) a condition of attacking normally? Although hypothetical, I think that they are both conditions, and if a future power could reduce attack dice to zero, then Shocking Grasp would not activate.
The rest is good, but this I don't agree with. If you can roll zero defense, then why can't you roll zero attack?

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Old January 20th, 2011, 08:06 AM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Interesting read. I'm not sure what the whole point is, but I'm sure someone will find it usefull.

The Moving section I agree with. Even though I feel it was not needed, but hey, to each their own.

The Attacking section is good. Allthough the Sharwin Wildborn example is moot. As you've said, there are no figures that reduce attack. Now that Heroscape has been discontinued, there won't be. Unless/until the customs community come up with one thats generally accepted by the heroscapers community at large. Then again, we'll cross that proverbial bridge when we come to it.

The Defense section. Here I feel is the meat of your argument. Because one can make many valid arguments for warforged resolve, one way or the other. However, the official position on warforged resolve is already available. Yes, resolve still activates no matter how many defense dice are reduced from a special power. Figures like Me-burg-sa and others that you have pointed out remove the ability to defend all together, so no resolve there. Other figures, like Zelrig, simply reduce the number of dice rolled. In those cases, the precident has already been set, resolve still happens. So yes, you can roll 0 defense. Allthough in most cases, there is simply no reason to do so.

I don't know what it is, but this is the second rules lawyer-ish type of thread I've run into this week. I love a good debate, but this rules lawyer stuff has got to go.

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Old January 20th, 2011, 09:30 AM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

I wonder, according to the Official Rules, can a figure claim to have moved "zero spaces" and take benefit for movement abilities without actually having gone anywhere? I'd use it a lot but my 'Scapemates would be skeptical...

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Old January 20th, 2011, 09:55 AM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Deadliest Warrior View Post
I wonder, according to the Official Rules, can a figure claim to have moved "zero spaces" and take benefit for movement abilities without actually having gone anywhere? I'd use it a lot but my 'Scapemates would be skeptical...
Yes
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Old January 20th, 2011, 10:03 AM
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Re: Much Ado About Nothing - Moving/Rolling Zero

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cavalier View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Deadliest Warrior View Post
I wonder, according to the Official Rules, can a figure claim to have moved "zero spaces" and take benefit for movement abilities without actually having gone anywhere? I'd use it a lot but my 'Scapemates would be skeptical...
Yes
Indeed, only if the card specifies X number of spaces will this be different. Otherwise, it essentially means "after your movement phase" - in which you can move 0, 1, 2, 3, etc.

Or put another way, you never skip the movement of a figure, you simply choose to "move" zero spaces.

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