From Ascension Sojourns


Some of the information below applies to races that are currently closed. These are included to help run Prps and TPs. Staff is aware. These races may show up in combat scene, thus this information is included.

Combat Chart

Other Reference Pages
Gear Weapons Charts
Combat Systems Chart Dramatic Feats Charts Feats of Strength Chart Xp Chart

For specific wizard duel systems, see the General Mage Help under Duels and Challenges section.

Order of Battle
• Initiative: Initiative Rating (Dexterity + Wits) + one die.

• Attack: See whether or not attacks hit their targets.

• Defense: See whether or not a defender has avoided an attack.

• Damage: Determine how badly the combatants get hurt.

• Projectile Guns: Dexterity + Firearms.

• Hypertech Force Guns: Dexterity + Energy Weapons.

• Thrown Weapons: Dexterity + Athletics.

• Hand-Held Weapons: Dexterity + Melee.

• Bare-Hand Attacks: Dexterity + Brawl, Martial Arts, Athletics, or Do.

• Magickal Attacks: Arete. If attack involves a strike or weapon, roll appropriate Trait as above.

• Dodge: Dexterity + Athletics, difficulty 6. Each success removes one attacker success.

• Block: Dexterity + Brawl or Martial Arts, difficulty variable.

• Parry: exterity + Melee or Martial Arts, difficulty variable.

• Desperate Defense: Dexterity + Athletics, -1 die per attacker after first.

• Countermagick: Arete, difficulty 8, as a dodge

• Damage: As attack type, difficulty 6; dice pool is
attacker’s damage roll + numbers of successes after the first.

• Soaking: Stamina roll, difficulty 6; each success removes one damage success.

• Bashing: All characters can soak.

• Lethal: Humans cannot soak without armor, except under Cinematic Damage option.

• Aggravated: No soak without special protection.

Magick and Violence
• Violence as Focus: One action, two rolls: Arete/Enlightenment,
to see if magick succeeds; and attack roll (as above) to see if
attack succeeds. If violence is focus and character cannot
perform one without the other, then player does not need to
divide dice pool as if performing multiple actions.

• Violence Enhances Magick: Two actions, two rolls: roll attack
normally; each success lowers difficulty for subsequent Arete
roll by -1 (maximum modifier -3).

• Magick Enhances Violence: Two actions, two rolls: Arete roll
to cast Effect; each success reduces difficulty of subsequent
attack by -1 for each success (maximum modifier of -3).

• Fast-Casting:Improvised magickal attack; +1 difficulty on Arete roll.

Spirit Combat
• Initiative: Spirits roll Willpower for initiative.

• Attack: Spirits roll Willpower, difficulty 6, unless using a Charm.

• Defense: Spirits roll Willpower, difficulty 6, to dodge; or else
split Willpower dice pool between attack and dodge.

• Damage: Spirits roll Rage, difficulty 6; each success inflicts
one health level of damage. Said damage may be lethal or aggravated,
depending upon Charm. Mages with Spirit/ Dimensional Science Sphere
can soak spirit damage, difficulty 6; mages without
Spirit can soak with Arete, difficulty 8.

• Soak Damage: Spirits soak damage with their Willpower Trait.
Materialized spirits attack and defend as physical characters. Most physical attacks and weapons cannot harm un-Materialized spirits,
nor can Spheres other than Prime and Spirit/ Dimensional Science.

Action Summaries

Action Description Examples
Reflexive No roll Spending Willpower, soaking damage, saying something brief.
Simple One roll, one success needed Throwing a punch, looking up to spot someone, making a clever remark designed to impress someone.
Multiple Divide lowest dice pool between actions Pulling out a wrench and hitting someone with it, running to a door and then yanking it shut.
Extended Several rolls, with an assigned number of successes Fixing a computer, conducting a ritual.
Resisted Opposing players roll against each other Grabbing an angry cat, impressing a potential client.
Extended and Resisted Several rolls against each other Bathing angry cat, arguing online to impress an audience.

Declaring actions

Players will be guided to take their actions from highest initiative roll to lowest.
Staff can not find any evidence in M20 for "reverse declaration of actions" before
actions take place. The average character would not necessarily know what anyone else
in the scene is planning to do. (This is not saying you can't read an opponent to
know if they might thrust or parry).

To know the actions of your "team" before they perform, will require a Time or Entropy
rote to be in place somehow prior to the scene.
If you find evidence that reverse declaration is a 'thing' in M20, please submit +request and we will correct this.

Performing actions

Characters act in order of initiative, high to low

  • A character can delay their action and take it at any point later in the turn
  • If two characters have the same initiative (or delay until the same moment), then the one with the higher initiative rating acts first.
If Initiate roll is tied: character with highest Wits goes first,
If Wits are tied: character with highest Dexterity goes first.

"In story terms, both characters act simultaneously, and the effects of their actions hit home at the same time." M20 Anniversary pg 400

Timing of multiple actions

See 'Multiple Actions' belwo or else the use of a Time 3 Effect that lets you move faster than usual. All multi-actions are understood to be simultaneous. Though players must declare which order they are doing their actions.

Attack Modifiers

Close combat


  • If you don't have Brawl, roll Dexterity at normal difficulty
  • If you don't have Melee, roll Dexterity at +1 difficulty
  • +(variable) difficulty for wearing armor / shield
  • +1 difficulty for melee with a weapon designed for throwing

Ranged combat

  • With a thrown weapon:
    • Maximum range = (5 * Strength) yards
    • This is for objects up to 3 pounds
    • If you can't lift it, you can't throw it
  • Archery
    • On a botch, the bowstring snaps. Repair requires a spare bowstring and an action (Wits + Archery, or Wits + Crafts at +1 difficulty)


  • If you don't have the appropriate skill, roll Dexterity at +1 difficulty
  • +(variable) difficulty for wearing armor / shield
  • +1 difficulty for throwing a weapon designed for melee



Attacker rolls damage

  • A botch just counts as a failure
  • If you got multiple successes on the attack roll, add 1 damage die for each one beyond the first


Target rolls soak

  • Reflex
  • A botch just counts as a failure
  • Unsoaked damage decreases target's health (Corpus for Wraiths/Risen)
  • If an attack is described as "unsoakable" or "cannot be soaked":
    • If it's affecting your enemy due to a successful action, then ignore it; the enemy may be able to soak it depending on damage type
    • If it's affecting you or your ally due to a failed or mixed-blessing action, then it applies as written: it cannot be soaked at all, even if the victim can normally soak that type of damage
    • Exception: If someone is explicitly able to soak any type of damage (not just "can soak agg"), then that takes precedence
Race Bashing Lethal Aggravated
Vampire Stamina + Fortitude Stamina + Fortitude Fortitude
Ghoul Stamina + Fortitude Stamina + Fortitude Fortitude
Werewolf and other shifters Stamina Stamina (see below) Stamina (see below)
Demon Stamina Stamina (apocalyptic form only) none
Other Stamina none none


  • Generally adds to soak, regardless of severity (bashing / lethal / aggravated)
  • May not apply, depending on damage type (kinetic, fire, electricity, mental, etc.)
  • Doesn't apply if an unarmored body part is successfully targeted
  • If damage (before soak) is at least twice the armor rating, then the armor is damaged until the wearer has time to repair or replace it
    • Only if the armor applied to that attack

Wound penalties and healing

  • Wounds may subtract dice from your action dice pools.
    • Not reflex dice pools
    • Not damage dice pools
    • Not Arete rolls unless mage is incapacitated (MtA 130)
    • Risen wraiths only subtract dice for aggravated damage (The Risen 50)
  • Wounds may also limit your movement.
  • Spend a Willpower to ignore all wound penalties for one turn, unless you're incapacitated or worse (VtM 137, MtA 126, DtF 163)
Damage Description Penalty Time to heal 1 bashing Time to heal 1 lethal/agg
1 Bruised none 1 hour 1 day
2 Hurt -1 1 hour 3 days
3 Injured -1, half speed 1 hour 1 week2
4 Wounded -2, walk 1 hour 1 month2
5 Mauled -2, hobble (3 yards/turn) 3 hours1 2 months2
6 Crippled -5, crawl (1 yard/turn) 6 hours1 3 months3
7 Incapacitated cannot act or move 12 hours1 5 months3

1 Requires medical care to avoid further effects (e.g. extreme pain, broken bones, concussion, impaired senses)
2 Requires medical care to avoid worsening (1 level per day), then healing continues on its own
3 Requires continuous medical care to heal at all

Supernatural healing


  • A mage healing another person directly requires Life 3 (Mage 20 Anniversary p 516).
  • Mages healing aggravated damage is vulgar and costs 1 Quint per level of agg healed (Mage 20th Anniversary pg 409)


  • Requires a full turn of concentration per Faith spent, and only heals one type at a time, not both.
  • If further damaged during the turn, healing fails but Faith is not spent.

General maneuvers

Aborting actions / Changing actions

  • Requires succeeding at a Willpower roll or spending a Willpower, unless your declared action is now pointless (e.g. attacking a target that was already killed)
    • Reflex
    • Spending a Willpower this way need not be declared ahead of time
  • New action is +1 difficulty unless it's defensive


  • Can't target someone already in combat
  • Resisted roll, attacker's Dexterity + Stealth versus target's Perception + Alertness
    • Attacker wins: one free attack, each additional success adds 1 die to attack roll
    • Tie: attacker acts first but target can perform a defensive action
    • Target wins: determine initiative normally

Flank attacks / Rear attacks

  • Attack from target's side: +1 die
  • Attack from target's rear: +2 dice


  • A character moves by walking, jogging or running. Per turn movement is:
    • Walk 7 yards
    • Jog 12 + Dexterity yards
    • Run 20 + (3 x Dexterity) yards
      • Crinos Form: Move an additional 2 yards per turn by dropping to all fours.
      • Hispo Form: Move at one and one-half times human speed.
      • Wolf Form: Move at twice human speed.
    • Swim: 8 + Dexterity (unskilled)/ 12 + Dexterity (skilled) yards
    • Fly 10 to 20 yards
    • Climb 10 feet (3.3 yards) per success normally; 15-20 feet under ideal conditions; 5 feet per success under poor conditions

Multiple actions

  • Determine which pools your actions would require, use the lowest pool available

If you want to use do three actions and the dice pool for each action is 6,4,5 then you use the 4 dice pool and divide those 4 dice across each action. You may alott 2 dice to action 1, 1 die to action 2, and 1 die to action 3.

  • Or else the use of a Time 3 Effect that lets you move faster than usual


  • May bypass armor or cover
  • Medium (arm, leg, briefcase): +1 difficulty, normal damage
  • Small (hand, head, laptop): +2 difficulty, +1 damage
  • Precise (eye, heart, lock): +3 difficulty, +2 damage
    • Stake through heart: target vampire's heart and do 3+ damage (after soak); vampire is conscious and can use Auspex, but can't move or spend blood

Defensive maneuvers

  • Each of the target's successes cancels one of the attacker's successes on the attack roll.
  • Even if you have lower initiative, you can declare a defense against an anticipated attack that hasn't been declared yet. If the attack does occur, then your defense resolves at the same time (though it may turn out to be ineffective, e.g. trying to block a gunshot).
  • To abort to a defense, see "Aborting actions / Changing actions".


  • Dexterity + Brawl
  • Close combat only
  • Can't block lethal or aggravated unless you can soak it


  • Dexterity + Dodge
  • Versus Melee or Brawl: requires enough room to bob and weave
  • Versus Firearms: requires moving at least one yard and ending up behind cover, or dropping to the ground
  • Difficulty may vary based on how much cover is available (see Cover) and how far away it is (see Movement)
  • Does not require declaring which attack you're trying to dodge
  • Kitsune can't botch Dodge rolls (counts as simple failure)


  • Dexterity + Melee
  • Close combat only
  • Requires weapon or shield
  • If you parry an unarmed attack with a lethal or aggravated weapon and get more successes, you damage the attacker, adding 1 damage die for each extra success

Desperate defense

  • Declare that you'll spend the entire turn performing defensive actions
  • Instead of the usual penalties for multiple actions, just subtract 1 die from the second action, 2 from the third, etc.

Against combat magic

  • If a magic power/item would do damage to a character, then that character can defend against it (e.g. with Dodge), subject to the same mechanics as defending against a normal attack.
    • Exception: If the power specifically locks onto the target (e.g. mage using Forces + Life and allocating a success to the latter), and the target doesn't specifically have something that negates that (e.g. another Mage with a Life shield already up and running). See also When Are Pattern Spheres Required?
    • Exception: Area-of-effect attacks require escaping the area of effect.

Close combat maneuvers

Attacks that require you to either directly touch the target, or hold a weapon that does so.


  • Vampire in clinch or hold, or a turn after successfully tackling
  • Shifter in appropriate form
  • Dexterity + Brawl + 1
  • Damage = Strength + 1 aggravated
    • Increased to Strength + 2 for Redcaps and shifters in appropriate form
    • Reduced to Strength - 1 for Gila monster Mokole in Suchid
    • Vampire can drain blood instead (up to 3 per turn)


  • Vampire with Feral Claws (Protean 2, aggravated) or bone spurs (Vicissitude 3, lethal)
  • Shifter in appropriate form (aggravated)
  • Dexterity + Brawl
  • Damage = Strength + 1

Clinch / Grapple

  • Strength + Brawl
  • On success, attacker does damage = Strength
  • Either character already in a clinch can use their action to:
    • Do damage = Strength
    • Escape (succeed at resisted Strength + Brawl versus Strength + Brawl)
    • Something else that doesn't require moving limbs


  • Target their weapon with your weapon: Dexterity + Melee, +1 difficulty
    • Target their weapon without a weapon: Dexterity + Brawl - 1, +2 difficulty
  • If damage (before soak) exceeds target's Strength, their weapon is knocked out of their hand
  • Target doesn't take damage
  • Garou can only do this in Homid/Glabro/Crinos


  • Strength + Brawl
  • On success, attacker holds target (no damage)
  • Either character already in a hold can use their action to:
    • Escape (succeed at resisted Strength + Brawl versus Strength + Brawl)
    • Something else that doesn't require moving limbs

Jab pistol

  • Dexterity + Melee with pistol
  • On success, shoot for +2 damage
    • Rubber bullets do normal damage, but lethal instead of bashing
  • Target can try disarm if they act before you


  • Dexterity + Brawl, +1 difficulty, damage = Strength + 1
  • Garou can only do this in Homid/Glabro/Crinos

Multiple opponents

  • Attack and defense are +1 difficulty per each additional attacker, maximum +4


  • Successful parry with weapon, next action is attack with that weapon against that character: +1 die

Strike / punch

  • Normal brawl attack
  • Garou can only do this in Homid/Glabro/Crinos


  • Dexterity + Brawl (leg) or Melee (weapon)
    • Garou in Crinos can sweep smaller target with arm
  • +1 difficulty
  • On success:
    • Damage = Strength (leg) or normal (weapon)
    • Target knocked down unless they succeed at Dexterity + Athletics (+2 difficulty, reflex)

Tackle / Body slam

  • Strength + Brawl
  • +1 difficulty
  • On success:
    • Damage = Strength + 1
    • Attacker knocked down unless they succeed at Dexterity + Athletics (+1 difficulty, reflex)
    • Target knocked down unless they succeed at Dexterity + Athletics (+1 difficulty, reflex)
    • Target is +1 difficulty to all actions next turn
  • On botch, attacker is knocked down or takes damage = target's Stamina

Weapon length / Close distance

  • Target's weapon longer than yours: -1 die

Weapon strike

  • Normal melee attack

Ranged maneuvers


  • Requires Firearms 1+ for a gun or Archery 2+ for a bow
  • Can't be used with shotguns or SMGs
  • Spend one or more turns doing nothing but aiming
  • +1 die per turn (maximum of your Perception)
  • Additional +2 dice (regardless of number of turns) if using a scope or laser sight
  • Target must be moving no faster than walk

Automatic fire

  • Requires SMG or assault rifle with clip at least half full
  • +2 difficulty, +10 dice, empty clip
  • Damage isn't increased, except by extra successes as usual
  • Can't target specific body parts
  • Counts as a single action


  • Light (lying prone, behind telephone pole / streetlight): +1 difficulty to be hit, normal difficulty to hit
  • Good (behind wall): +2 difficulty to be hit, +1 difficulty to hit
  • Superior (only head exposed): +3 difficulty to be hit, +2 difficulty to hit
  • Relic bullets discorporate upon hitting a solid Skinlands object

Multiple shots

  • Multiple-action penalties apply as normal
  • Can't exceed weapon's rate of fire


  • Within 2 yards (point-blank): -2 difficulty
  • Outside normal range: +2 difficulty
  • Outside maximum range (twice normal range): automatic miss


  • Takes an action
  • While readying another arrow for a bow normally takes an action, if the archer has prepared additional arrows for easy acceess beforehand - such as by stabbing them tip-first into the ground in front of them - they may freely split pools and otherwise take extra shots as normal without having to spend actions on reloading (at least until they run out of prepared arrows).

Strafing / Spraying

  • Requires SMG or assault rifle with clip at least half full
  • +2 difficulty, +10 dice, empty clip
  • All targets must be within 3 yards of each other
  • Successes divided evenly among all targets, attacker chooses how to assign leftovers
    • If only one target, successes are halved
  • Damage isn't increased, except by extra successes as usual
  • Dodging such an attack is +1 difficulty
  • Can't target specific body parts
  • Counts as a single action

Three-round burst

  • Requires rate of fire 3+
  • +1 difficulty, +2 dice
  • Damage isn't increased, except by extra successes as usual
  • Counts as a single action

Two weapons

  • Off hand is +1 difficulty, unless you have the Ambidextrous merit at either 1 or 2 dots
  • Multiple-action penalties apply as normal, unless you have the Ambidextrous merit at 2 dots and take no other actions that turn
    • See '+explain Ambidextrous' for further details
  • Some weapons require both hands, though the +1 difficulty does not apply (all relevant +equip templates include 'Two-Handed: Y')



  • Attacking a blinded target: +2 dice
  • Close combat or other vision-dependent action while blinded: +2 difficulty
  • Ranged combat or other vision-dependent action while blinded: +6 difficulty
  • Partly/fully reduced by:
    • Heightened Senses (Auspex 1, penalty halved)
    • Eyes of the Beast (Protean 1, no penalty)
    • Blind Fighting skill (close combat only, Perception + Blind Fighting without applying blindness penalty, reflex)
      • A success reduces your penalty by 1 or reduces bonus to attack you by 1
      • Each 2 additional successes reduce your penalty by 1 or reduce bonus to attack you by 1
    • Other relevant supernatural effects

Dazed / Stunned

  • Occurs when damage successes (after soak) exceed target's Stamina (mortal or mortal+) / Stamina+2 (supernatural)
  • Target loses all actions next turn
  • Attacking a dazed target: -2 difficulty


  • Attacking a partly immobilized target: +2 dice
  • Attacking a fully immobilized target: minimum 1 success


  • Dexterity + Athletics (reflex)
    • Success: get up immediately, but -2 initiative next turn
    • Failure: getting up requires an action
    • Botch: 1 bashing, unsoakable
  • Until you get up:
    • Close combat attacks by you are -2 dice
    • Attacks against you are +2 dice


  • Attacker moving faster than walk: +1 difficulty
  • Target moving faster than walk: +1 difficulty

Magic during combat

Limits by race

  • Mages can only cast one Arete effect per turn.
    • Triggering an Artifact/Invention uses your Arete (but gives you more oomph per success) and thus counts against your limit. Continuously active items don't need to be triggered. (FbDF 15-16)
    • Triggering a Talisman/Device uses the item's Arete and thus doesn't count against your limit; you and the item can each cast one Arete effect per turn. (FbDF 46)


  • One-turn duration ends at the end of the turn in which the power was used, unless the power specifies otherwise (e.g. Celerity gives extra actions during the turn after you use it).
  • In general, the power's stated effect is part of the same action, unless it explicitly sets up for a future action (e.g. Lore of Winds 3: the evocation's effect is limited to forming the dice pool, then you use it on a later action).

Additional fera stuff

  • Corax in Crinos or Corvid: -1 diff Athletics
  • Gurahl in anything but Homid: -2 diff Perception based on smell, +2 diff Perception based on sight
  • Rokea in Chasmus or Gladius have jagged skin (hit them barehanded -> 2 levels lethal, soakable if you can soak lethal)