Battle Grounds

We created battle grounds to help you and your group get a real feel of immersion. Battle Grounds are simple enough, just pick anywhere you can imagine and that is where the battle takes place. Now you’ll pick, or randomly decide, from the weather effects and terrain features below. You can pre-build a Battle Ground or do it on the fly.

The Grid. You can play DBU with or without a grid. Without a grid, we use meters to describe distance. With a grid, you use squares. One square is equal to two meters. (Introduction) DBU was designed to work using a grid or not using a grid. It was intended for the dealer’s choice; we wanted you to have the freedom in your play style.

Battle Backgrounds

Battle Terrain

You can choose from the list or simply roll a single d10 for a random result. You can even mix and match or use all five. The bracketed numbers are the dice score for the terrain feature if you randomize them with a d10.

  • (1-2) Water Feature – Hardness Level 0. A large or small water type feature, either a lake, steam, or swamp.
  • (3-4) Rocky Features – Hardness Level 2. Tall rock formations. For each result of this terrain, add 3 rocky features to the battle area.
  • (5-6) Forest Features – Hardness Level 1. Trees or thick forestry. For each result of this terrain, add 3 to 5 forest features to the battle area.
  • (7-8) City Features – Hardness Level 2. Buildings, houses, or other city-type features. For each result of this terrain, add 2 to 5 city features to the battle area.
  • (9-10) Coarse Feature – Hardness Level 1. Any type of coarse features such as gravel, sand or even grass. This pick will cover the entire battle area. Like we said, this is a simple and non-inclusive list, but enough to get the battle ground filled up with some playful terrain features to throw bad guys into. We encourage you to use these features or come up with your own to help make a battle more dynamic.

Hardness. Above each battle terrain feature is listed with a hardness value. Hardness represents the amount of damage the feature causes when you are forcibly knocked into it or struck with it. This is known as Environmental Damage. All Environmental Damage counts as Lethal Damage, and regardless of how you are knocked into the terrain, or why your Architect tells you to take Environmental Damage, you are subject to the full value. You cannot reduce, block or otherwise alter this damage. 

Hardness Level 0 inflicts 1(T) Lethal Damage and for each level of Hardness, increase the damage dealt by +2(T). While the examples above are a good indicator of Hardness Values found on Earth, other planets may have greater or lesser density and as such the Hardness Values may vary. ARCs should consider this when deciding the location of battles. However, no Hardness Value should exceed Level 4.

Terrain size. While using a grid and adding terrain is great and really brings a new dynamic to your typical blast and smash, sometimes there just isn’t enough room on the table. We didn’t want to tie terrain to a standard size. We thought we would leave it up to you, the Architect and players.

Battle Environment

The environment characters battle in can completely change the tide of battle. Battle Environments refer to the actual state of the battlefield, or a particular area within the battlefield that characters can enter such as through flying into the atmosphere and going underwater. The various environments are:

  • Standard. Your standard environment. Air to breathe, land to stand on.
  • Underwater. Races that need to breathe must make a Corporeal Saving Throw when going underwater. For each Difficulty Category your roll exceeds, you can remain underwater without taking damage for +1 Combat Round. If you are underwater past this point, take 1d10(T) Lethal Damage at the end of each of their turns. If you leave the water and re-enter, you must make the Corporeal Saving Throw again. Reduce all character’s Standard and Boosted Speed while Underwater by -1 and -2 Squares respectively.
  • Upper Atmosphere. Races that need to breathe have all of their Ki Point Costs increased by +1(T). Increase the cost of each Square when using Boosted Speed by +1. 
  • Space. Races that need to breathe cannot survive in space for longer than a number of Combat Rounds equal to 1/4 of their base Tenacity Modifier (rounded up). If they reach past this number of Combat Rounds, their Life Points are reduced by -1/2 of their Maximum Life Points at the start of each Combat Round. Movement with your Boosted Speed does not cost Ki Points. Additionally, every attack has the Knockback Advantage, even if they are not a Signature Technique.
  • Poisonous Bog. A mire of poison. Select a severity between 1 to 4, pay x(bT) Ki points to place yd10(bT) Poison Squares on the Battle Map – they must be within x Squares of you. X is equal to the Severity chosen, while Y is equal to 2x the Severity chosen. If this is a naturally occurring Bog, you may place any number of Squares on the Battle Map.

    Poison Squares inflict the Poison Combat Condition on any character that starts or ends their Turn on them. Races that need to breathe have their Combat Rolls reduced by -1(bT). This reduction becomes -2(bT) if you are below the Injured Health Threshold.

The effects of these environments can be reduced by wearing appropriate apparel.

Battle Weather

Now that we have created your battlefield, let’s consider the weather. Is it sunny or is it pouring down destruction and kittens? Battle Weather effects can be combined in any fashion; you could have it raining while a thick fog rolls in. Battles in the Dragon Universe are cataclysmic and cause breakouts of magma even in the frozen landscape of the poles. Feel free to add flare to your encounters by adding Battle Weather during Combat Encounters, perhaps even changing it during the battle to represent the world-shaking effects of a particular attack!

Battle Weather entries are listed with bracketed numbers. If you are randomizing Battle Weather, the number relates to a dice score.

  • Sunny Day. A warm and comfortable day, unafflicted by Battle Weather. When you’re using the Combat Recovery Maneuver, increase its effects by +1d4(T). (Actions & Combat)
  • Fog (1-2). Imagine a battle in thick fog where all you can see are the flashing of color and explosions of ki. There are two types of fog: light and thick. Both affect your ability to use energy attacks and see. Once per Combat Round, you may roll a Clairvoyance Skill Check as an Instant Action, TN Medium. If you pass, you may ignore the effects of this Battle Weather until the start of your next turn. If you fail, continue as normal.
    • Light Fog. When you shoot into combat, when you make a manipulation check roll 2d10 selecting the lowest natural result and discarding the higher. Botch and critical rolls still count as solid dice.
    • Thick Fog. When you make a manipulation check reduce your dice score by -2(T). Increase the Clairvoyance Skill Check to ignore this effect to TN Hard.
  • Winds (3-4). Typically, there is always wind, but we are covering the more aggressive winds such as those from storms or hurricanes. Once per Combat Round, you may roll an Athletics Skill Check as an Instant Action, TN Medium. If you pass, you may ignore the effects of this Battle Weather until the start of your next turn. If you fail, continue as normal.
    • Forceful Gale. Strong winds which reduce your Defense Value by -1(T). Reduce your Boosted Speed by -1.
    • Hurricane Winds. Powerful and rapidly shifting winds capable of warping the environment which reduce your Defense Value by -2(T). Reduce your Boosted Speed by -3. Increase the Athletics Skill Check to ignore this effect to TN Hard.
  • Rain (5-6). There are two types of rain: downpour and storm. Once per Combat Round, you may roll a Perception Skill Check as an Instant Action, TN Medium. If you pass, you may ignore the effects of this Battle Weather until the start of your next turn. If you fail, continue as normal.
    • Downpour. Heavy rain that affects battle and movement. Reduce your Strike rolls by -1(T).
    • Storm: Thunder and lightning with heavy rain. Reduce your Strike rolls by -2(T). Increase the Perception Skill Check to ignore this effect to TN Hard. Also, at the end of every round of combat, the ARC will roll a d10; if the Natural Result is a 1 or 2, strike a random combatant with lightning. They receive 2d10 Lethal Damage. The combatant can roll an Impulsive Save, TN Hard. If they succeed, they take no damage from lightning. This effect cannot be ignored through the Perception Skill Check.
  • Cold (7-8). Cold weather can come in various forms, which can be gained simultaneously. You might have flash-freezing temperatures, snow, maybe even ice. Sometimes all three! Once per Combat Round, you may roll a Survival Skill Check as an Instant Action, TN Medium. If you pass, you may ignore the effects of this Battle Weather until the start of your next turn. If you fail, continue as normal.
    • Freezing Temperatures. Rolls to regain Life Points such as through a Healing Surge or Combat Recovery are reduced by -3(T). Your Corporeal and Impulsive Saving Throws are reduced by -1(T).
    • Snow Fall. Blizzard-like conditions. Reduce your Normal and Boosted Speed by -2. Additionally, reduce your Strike and Dodge rolls by -1(T). Increase the Survival Skill Check to ignore this effect to TN Hard.
    • Ice. Ground covered in ice, making it difficult to stand. After you move using your Normal Speed, move +1 square in any direction but immediately make an Acrobatics Skill Check, TN Medium. If you pass, nothing happens. If you fail, you are knocked Prone and take Environmental Damage from the ice.
  • Hot (9-10). Hot weather can come in various forms. Volcanic weather is usually applied in addition to High Temperatures. Once per Combat Round, you may roll a Survival Skill Check as an Instant Action, TN Medium. If you pass, you may ignore the effects of this Battle Weather until the start of your next turn. If you fail, continue as normal.
    • High Temperatures. When you make a Steadfast Check roll 2d10, select the lowest natural result and discard the higher.
    • Volcanic. When you make a Steadfast Check reduce your dice score by -2. Additionally, select 2d10 squares on the battlefield. They become filled with magma. Squares filled with magma deal 2d10(T) Lethal Damage to any character who is on those square(s) at the start of each Combat Round. Increase the Survival Skill Check to ignore this effect to TN Hard.

Transformation. When you use the Transformation Maneuver to enter a transformation, you may ignore the effects of Battle Weather until the end of your next turn. You still take damage from Environmental Damage and any effects of Battle Weather that would inflict damage.

Sight & Illumination

Dark caves, nighttime, smoke and other effects can obscure your vision and give your character a significant hindrance. Some areas might only be limiting, while others might be completely obscured. Your ARC will inform you if you are in an environment where sight is an issue.

  • Limited Sight. Areas with dim light or obscured vision, limiting what you can see. This effect can be replicated through the Illusion Magical Ability. Characters affected by Limited Sight suffer a -1(T) to all Dodge and Strike Rolls. You have Impediment on all Perception Skill Checks.
  • No Sight. Areas without light or when your character’s vision is completely obscured, leaving them blinded. Characters affected by No Sight have the Combat Condition Impediment when making a Dodge or Strike Roll, as well as suffering from the penalties of Limited Sight.

Sensing. If you have any number of ranks in the Clairvoyance Skill, you can attempt to sense your opponents and therefore ignore the penalties from Limited or No Sight. Once per Combat Round, as an Instant Action, you may make a Clairvoyance Skill Check against your opponent(s) Concealment Skill. If you win, you do not suffer any penalties against that opponent. If you lose, you suffer the typical issues against that opponent.

Illuminating Aura. If you use the Power Up Maneuver, you may reduce No Sight to Limited Sight until the end of your turn. Additionally, some transformations cast light that may remove the issues altogether. For example, the Super Saiyan transformation has a brilliant golden aura bright enough to illuminate even the endless darkness of Yakon’s homeworld, as such even the effects of No Sight are removed in the presence of a Super Saiyan. Your ARC will decide if this is relevant and if your transformation can activate this effect.

Area Attacks

Some attack types cover an area, allowing the attack to strike or affect more than one target at time. An attack’s traits, advantages, or other ability will specify its area of effect. There are three different type of area shapes, cone, line, or sphere. All shapes have a point of initiation or the location which the attack or ability originates from. Each shape’s initiation point is detailed below.

Cone. The area shape cone extends in a direction of your choice from its point of initiation. A cone’s width at a given point along its length is equal to that point’s distance from its point of initiation. A cone’s point of initiation is not included in the area which is effects, unless the otherwise stated.

Line. An attack with this area shape extends from its point of initiation in a straight or direct path up to its determined length and covers the squares it passes through. Typically, a line doesn’t include its own point of initiation.

Sphere. This area shape extends outward from its point of initiation in all directions. The sphere’s size is expressed as squares that extends from the initiation point. Sphere’s initiation point is included in the area of effect. Note, that sphere is expressed as a square because distance is measured in gridded squares.

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