Sunday, August 22, 2010

1, 2, 3 Hit Mooks

A question and a suggestion --

Does everyone keep track of HPs individually for "Orc #1" or do you sometimes use a shorthand system?

For years now I've used a system of "hits".

I define a hit as "5 points of damage".  I track "half hits" which is less than 5 points, but not equal to 1.  

A "one hit mook" then will fall when it takes one hit of 5+ points or when it takes two "half hits".  Usually a "one hit mook" is a 1 HD creature, but not always.  A tough orc leader might require two or even three hits to down.  The HD is just a yardstick that helps me think about how many hits a critter aught to take before being defeated.

I usually use "X's" as the hits and "/" as half hits in my notes.  Sometimes I'll mark monsters like so, using circles to represent the hits.  Then I just mark through them with slashes or X's as the monster takes damage.
Orc 1 O, 2 O, 3 O, 4 O, 5 O, 6 O;  Orc Leader OO 
Does anyone do anything similar to this when running your games?

6 comments:

Jim said...

With a laptop, I find it just as easy to track hits in real HP.

But as far as DnD4e, "Minions" are the 1 hit mooks...and they exist all the way up the levels of monsters almost as high as you want to go. Higher level minions may have a decent set of abilities and powers, but are designed, basically, to be dropped with a single hit of damage more than 1 hp worth.

Trey said...

I've always tracked individual hit points, but the system you suggest seems reasonable.

Alex Schroeder said...

Individual tracking. Recently I've started just-on-time hp: player hits, rolls damage. If I'm in doubt (ie. damage is not over max anyway) I roll monster hp to see whether it died or not. Then just keep track of these survivors.

JDJarvis said...

I track the hp but I don't worry too much if orc #1 or orc #11 has taken a certain blow unless I feel it's important. I usually do it with a long list and of HP and keep track of points underneath doing changes as needed.
The players seem to be able to keep track of which orc out of 30 took 4 points of damage and which took 5 but can't keep track of their own rations.

windmark8040 said...

I usually use individual tracking, but I have always liked the idea of 'mooks'. If it speeds the game along, and makes things go easier for a GM, then I am all for it!

Scott said...

I use a system very similar to the hits system you describe, though I never thought about using half-hits. I'm more handwavy with the hits that don't meet a 5 pt damage threshold. So a good description on a 2 pt hit might inspire me to check off a box. Or if a fight's going slowly I'm more apt to check off a box for less than 5 or something like that.

I've used this system (or some permutation) for a while now and I think it's great.

I hadn't thought of half-hits, though. I think that's a great idea and I may add it on to the way I was using the hit boxes.

Thanks.