DUEL 2 NEWSLETTER

Date   : 10/24/2009    Duedate: 11/06/2009

NOBLISH ISLAND ARENA

DM-93    TURN-286

This Weeks Top Honors

THE DUELMASTER IS

NIGHT STALKER
FORT REAPER (1547)
(93-9000) [5-2-1,55]

Chartered Recognition Leader   Unchartered Recognition Leader

NIGHT STALKER                  SAL TOPPO
FORT REAPER (1547)             MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
(93-9000) [5-2-1,55]           (93-9007) [6-1-0,32]

Popularity Leader              This Weeks Favorite

KARA LEK                       OSGAR POOLE
MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)           MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
(93-9003) [5-2-0,19]           (93-9005) [4-3-0,27]

THE CURRENT TOP TEAM

MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)

          TEAMS ON THE MOVE            TOP CAREER HONORS
Team Name                  Point Gain  Chartered Team
1. MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)        25
2. FORT REAPER (1547)          11      FORT REAPER (1547)
                                       Unchartered Team

                                       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)

The Top Teams

Career Win-Loss Record           W   L  K    %  Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns    W  L K
 1/ 1*MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)      23  11  0 67.6   1/ 1*MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)      9  5 0
 2/ 3 FORT REAPER (1547)        17  27  2 38.6   2/ 2 FORT REAPER (1547)        5  8 0

    '*'   Unchartered team                       '-'  Team did not fight this turn
   (###)  Avoid teams by their Team Id          ##/## This turn's/Last turn's rank

                                    TEAM SPOTLIGHT

              + ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ The Lighthouse ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ +

     "Tinkering strategies?"  Jorja glanced around the common room of the Lighthouse
quickly.  None of her gladiators were near by, but she leaned forward and lowered her
voice anyway.  "The team here doesn't believe I ever do that, and I don't want them
to hear me saying differently, Diaretic.  They'd get expectations, and I don't have
any plan to make life that easy for 'em.  But here's the way I go at it when I'm
feeling generous with my warriors.  Mind you, this is just the way *I* do it, and
there are plenty of other approaches.
     "Say I've got a warrior who's a pure offensive style, which means a basher, a
lunger, or a slasher.  I don't count strikers, as they're versatile and sometimes
unpredictable.  Say I've started him out fast, maybe 8-6-x.  Unless he's fighting
another pure offensive, he should be first off the mark.  So I look for the problem.
If it's a problem with his numbers and style and he should have been some other kind
of fighter, well, too bad, we're both stuck with it.  I can boost his offensive
effort to ten--sometimes it already IS ten, of course, but if it isn't, then that
goes up to the top.  I can drop his activity level, say to four.  I know some people
start their offensive warriors going 10-10-x, but to my mind, this is just asking for
early burnout in a fight.  I've seen that kind of thing--a warrior comes out of the
starting gate like his socks are on fire, and by the MIDDLE, not the end, of the
first minute, he's panting and staggering, and losing.  Sure, some warriors can take
that kind of energy burn, but most can't.
     "So I tinker with his numbers, and it doesn't help, he still gets jumped when he
shouldn't.  The next thing to try is dropping the weight he's carrying.  Maybe I've
got him in some kind of mail, okay, I drop that to leather.  This reduces his
protection against blows from his opponent, of course, but everything's a trade-off.
If he gets out there first and deals a shrewd blow or two, it won't matter; he'll win
before he gets hurt.  If he's already in leather, or if I want to lighten him up
further, I'll drop his backup weapon and give him a lighter one.  Say he's got a
scimitar with a backup same, maybe I'll drop the backup to a shortsword or even a
dagger.  I'll always leave him SOME backup weapon--"
     "He'd have his fists, if you didn't give him a backup weapon, wouldn't he?"
Diaretic asked.
     Jorja shrugged.  "Well... yes, but none of the pure offensives do well with
their fists.  Strikers, maybe, but not bashers, lungers, or slashers.  They can and
will use 'em if they have nothing else, but they won't do well.  And frankly, I
wouldn't even send out an aimed blow, the CLASSIC unarmed style, with nothing but his
fists for backups.  I've seen too many of them 'struck in the arm with the parry'.
It's too risky for a warrior who's already got problems.  Unless, of course..." she
looked suddenly thoughtful, "I'm hoping he'll get killed...."
     Diaretic raised his eyebrows.  "Do you do that much?"
     "Send them out hoping they'll die?"  Jorja shrugged.  "Well, yes and no.  I run
everything, maybe send one warrior in a hundred to the Dark Arena--after he's fought
for a year or two.  There are often warriors that I would LIKE to see die, even
though I hate the hassle of recruiting new ones.  But I've never sent a warrior out
unarmed, unarmored, and with the basic 1-1-1 default strategy.  At least, not
deliberately.  There's a team I have in Murska that was running on maintenance once.
I wasn't paying attention, and no less than THREE new warriors started up there
without strategies--and survived!  They had horrible records by the time one of the
other managers managed to get my attention, 0-19 I think it was, but they survived.
Tough men, and they eventually made it to graduation, once I gave them 'sharp pointy
things' to use on their opponents.  But I don't do that deliberately."  She paused
and signaled for one of the waiters to bring Diaretic a fresh drink.
     "Where was I?  Warriors getting jumped when they shouldn't be, right.  As a last
resort, because I don't really care for tactics, I might give such a warrior
decisiveness in the first minute, also.
     "But if none of this works, if he still gets jumped regularly, then I have to
think about taking a different approach.  Maybe he'd be better off running slowly,
despite his style.  So I put more armor on him, some kind of mail, usually, and I
slow down his first minute, maybe invert it: 4-6-x or 4-8-x or something.  And then
in the second minute pop him up to eight or ten offensive effort, on the idea that
he'll catch the faster offensives when they're tired.  Sometimes it works.
Especially with beginning warriors, winning can often be a game of endurance.  He who
is still standing, wins."
     Diaretic nodded and sipped his drink.  Half-formed ideas of how he might use
these ideas on his own warriors revolved in his mind.  "What about the opposite case,
a defensive warrior who can't last long enough to win as he should?"
     "The total parry who collapses from exhaustion in the second minute?"  Jorja
laughed.  "I've had a few of those over the years.  I call 'em 'the warriors of
exasperation'.  It isn't easy running everything, you know--I end up with some
warriors that not even a mother could love, and with them, I tend to do really dumb
things, just for the heck of it.  The aimed blow with a deftness of three or four,
for instance, or the total parry with no con.
     "But for the, hmm, 'legitimate' cases of warriors running too fast, well, there
are signs as obvious as an offensive getting jumped.  'Fighting to conserve energy',
'straining to hold his weary arms at guard', stuff like that in the fight report is a
sure sign.  You can take two approaches to that, lower the weight they're carrying so
as not to burn their energy that way--lighter armor, lighter weapons.  Or slow 'em
down.  Say I've got a ripper going 6-8-x and stumbling with exhaustion in the second
minute.  I might slow this warrior down to 4-6 and see if that helps.  Heck, I've
even done that with offensives.  Back when I started slashers out going 10-10-x, I'd
get them stumbling with exhaustion and losing because of it in the second or even the
FIRST minute, and I'd slow 'em down.  Activity level comes down first for an
offensive warrior--I think of that as the 'dodging and parrying' number.  Offensive
effort comes down first for the defensives."
     "Hmm."  The younger manager frowned, making a series of linked rings on the
table top with the wet bottom of his glass.  "What about warriors who flail wildly?"
     "I've been told that this is due to lack of attack skills, and unless you're
going to train stats and burn those skills, nothing but time will cure it.  But I've
found that sometimes--not always--lowering kill desire helps.  Drop it to five, say,
if it's higher.  Dropping the offensive effort a notch might help, too.  I think of
'flailing wildly' as 'trying too hard'.  You can never be sure, of course, because
managing gladiators is an art, not a science."  She paused and half stood, looking
toward a center of commotion.  "Do you want Wednesday to get falling down drunk on
the night before the fights?"

           +<]H[>+-----+<]H[+ Question of the Week #8 +]H[>+-----+<]H[>+

Question, turn 417:

All -- Here's last cycle's question that didn't make it in (along with page two of my
personals).  What are the top five weapons to be successful in Advanced? -- Hanibal
Q.O.W.

Answers, turn 418:

Q.O.W. Response -- The top weapons in AD, or even basic DM, are generally agreed upon
to be the SC, LO, BS, and BA.  The scimitar is an all round great weapon.  Seems
easier to crit with, and even against heavy armor, still dishes out a lot of damage.
Because it's a slashing weapon, it seems to pull a lot of critical damage on normal
hits.  The longsword is the second best, though that could be contended, for its one
great ability, the knockdown!  The broadsword is heavy, but it dishes out heavy
abuse, it doesn't break often, and it is pretty good at smashing through parries.
The battle axe is just plain cool, and it is very painful!  After those four, it's
difficult to say which weapon is better.  I like daggers, though shortswords are
strong, and the halberd is really fun if your warrior can throw crits with it. --
Adie

I must have missed the question this is answering, or it was part of an ongoing and
sometimes heated discussion on winning and killing  and aiming locations in Aruak
City.
     Q.O.W. Response -- Other than the obvious ability of aiming at the
chest/abdomen/head to gain death intent statement, I think that it's more difficult
to win when aiming at the body because there are more hit-points there.  This is
especially the case against tough, armored warriors.  Attacking the body with lunging
weapons can get knockdowns, but I think that it's even easier if you aim at the legs.
If you consider protect locations though, maybe the body is better to aim at because
maybe fewer people protect it.
     The limbs, and head especially, have less hit points, so if struck, such a
warrior usually gives up sooner.  Aiming at the head can get quick victories and
death intent statements, but results in more deaths, obviously.  But I think a lot of
people routinely protect the head.  Aiming at the arms allows the defeat of a warrior
when they lose their weapon, or use of their arm, and can't draw a back up. -- Adie
P.S.  I only advocate aiming at the arms and legs in Aruak City.  Elsewhere is a
different story.

Question for turn 418, to be answered next turn:
     New Q.O.W. -- What have people seen in regards to arms that hang useless?  Can
warriors regain the use of them eventually if the fight goes on?  Can they punch or
parry with it, even though they can't draw a back-up? -- Adie

Adie's QoW -- Striking arms can cause an opponent to drop their weapon and
(temporarily) lose the use of the limb.  Striking the legs can increase the chance of
a knockdown.  Striking at head, chest, or abdomen can allow for a kill on the sands.
Chest and abdomen seem to be the locations best protected by armor.  Head can have a
different level of armor protection than the rest of the warrior's body, which can
make things tactically interesting.  From what I've seen, managers usually have their
warriors protect their vital hit locations by default, so to me it makes more sense
to aim at non-vitals. -- Generalissimo Puerco
     Is Generalissimo Puerco psychic?  Tune in next turn and find out!

Hanibal's QoW -- All of the one-handed swords make up the top tier of weapons, with
the axes and spears on the second tier (consider halberd in this group), and all the
bludgeoning weapons (and the greatsword) at the bottom.  Quarterstaves, war hammers,
and mauls are liked by some, and as far as I'm concerned, they can have them.
Unfortunately the quarterstaff recently became tied (with longsword) among my LPs for
most popular favorite weapon.  Also, interestingly, I only have one LP that favors
the scimitar, and it's a total parry! -- Generalissimo Puerco

Hanibal -- Top five weapons?  Hm, scimitar, scimitar, scimitar....  Oh, you mean
DIFFERENT weapons?  A lot depends on the style of the warrior in question and his or
her favorite.  But scimitar is up there near the top of the list for many styles. --
Leeta

The question from turn 418:
     New Q.O.W. -- What have people seen in regards to arms that hang useless?  Can
warriors regain the use of them eventually if the fight goes on?  Can they punch or
parry with it, even though they can't draw a back-up? -- Adie

Answers from turn 419 and 420:

Q.O.W. Answer:  I have had all sorts of s#&amp;t (not sure what word this was
supposed to be) happen regarding arms falling uselessly at their side: some warriors
give up, some continue on, I've even had a warrior lose his use of an arm twice in
one fight (and he still won!!!).  One thing is certain...the weapon in the useless
hand always drops in the sand. -- Dr. Strange

     Refers to last turn's question--
QOW -- Weapons?  We agree that SC seems tops with LO and BS highly desirable.  The
Consortium clan has a great affinity for these also:  BA, DA, QS, SH, WH and GA.  Not
the normal "feelings," but... -- Kennelworth

QOW --  A useless arm is a statement and since it normally comes at the end, it
"seems" to mean something, but it is similar to a dropped weapon. -- Kennelworth

Answer Q.O.W. (arms) -- When arms are struck in combat, I too have seen a variety of
things occur.  I've seen them get hit, forcing a weapon to be dropped, but then a
back up pulled immediately.  I've seen them get hit, drop a weapon, and be too hotly
engaged to pull a new one.  Also, they can hang useless after being struck.  The
weirdest thing I've ever seen is a warrior lose the use of their arm, drop their
weapon, strike with their fists, and then have one of those fists get parried, AND IT
WOULD BE THE ONE THAT WAS USELESS THAT WAS INJURED BY THE PARRY!  Strange eh?  So if
both arms went useless, you could still fight with fists?  Hmm... -- Adie

New question, turn 419:

All -- I recently tried an experiment where I gave a warrior a Primary weapon
(Broadsword) and the same off-hand back-up.  She pulled the back-up when things
slowed down in min. 2.   Does this mean she prefers two weapons or do they always do
that?  If you give a warrior two back-ups will they pull the one they prefer or
whatever you list first? -- Hanibal -- Q.O.W.

Answers, turn 420:

Answer Q.O.W. (backups) -- When things slow down in a fight and neither warrior is
eager to hold the initiative, they will usually pull any off-hand or back up weapon
they have, whether they need it or not.  It has no relation to whether that warrior
prefers to fight with two weapons or not.
     Drawing back-ups also can occur when the fight is intense.  If your weapon
breaks while on the offense, often such a warrior will draw their back up and attempt
a riposte to hold the init.  Also, if you're on the defensive and you attempt to
riposte, but you have a back-up weapon or off-hand weapon to draw, your warrior may
try to pull it. Success is not always guaranteed in either case though since your
warrior may be 'to hotly engaged'.  Even if a defending warrior succeeds, drawing a
weapon after a riposte forces that warrior to give up the init they could have taken.
But if they pull a back-up and THEN riposte, then can take the init.
     If you give a warrior two back-ups, they pull the one listed first, and if it
breaks or is dropped, they'll pull the second.  It is not random. -- Adie

QoW -- If the warrior has a free off-hand, and a backup off-hand weapon, it usually
isn't long before they decide to make use of it.  I'm guessing that OE and
coordination (anonymous source) are factors that affect the likelihood of drawing a
backup in the off-hand.  Wanna Be, manager of A Savage Few here in Aruak, once hosted
a fast draw contest where contestants had to start the fight unarmed but could have
backup weapons.  The all-out offensives would sometimes spend a full minute or more
with their fists before deciding to draw steel.  The defensives would usually draw
something the first chance their opponent would give them. -- Generalissimo Puerco

New question, turn 420:

All -- I was noticing the skill modifiers for low to high size; do these negatives
keep a warrior from being successful at the high end of the game? -- Hanibal --
Q.O.W.

We're now caught up with Aruak City (dm 11) on the Questions of the Week; they are
about to run turn 421 as I write this.  So if Hanibal misses a turn in asking, or the
managers there miss a turn in answering, we'll have to miss a turn in looking over
their shoulders.  Amazing how things follow one another like dominoes falling, isn't
it?  There is NO REASON AT ALL why you here can't pose Questions of the Week of your
own.  Send them as a personal to DM 11, identify yourself as a new manager seeking
enlightenment, and you should get a helpful response. -- Jorja

Note that Hannibal's Questions of the Week stopped some time ago and Aruak City is
now in the vicinity of turn 549.

                                      SPY REPORT

     Well, what are you looking at, NOBLISH ISLAND?  Ain't you never seen Snide 
Clemens before?  Ah, shaddup and listen to my news.  Of course, we're all terribly 
impressed to see NOLLY ORMIN win a fight and gain 18 points, terribly.  Tsk, tsk, 
NIGHT STALKER beat SAL TOPPO and SAL TOPPO lost 9 points.  You're breakin' my heart.  
Our last turn's Duelmaster has lost, folks, lost to KUNG-FU MASTER, and CAPT. JACK 
has made the way for a new Duelmaster!  With CAPT. JACK clearing the throne, FORT 
REAPER of NIGHT STALKER takes a proud seat as NOBLISH ISLAND's new Duelmaster, by 
virtue of recognition points.  Kickbacks and bribes, kickbacks and bribes, how else 
do you think some of these guys win their fights?  Skill?  Ha!   
     He who fights and runs away will live to fight another day, the coward.   
     Ah, now we come to my favorite part, where we see all the guys who are dead and 
gone, and get to see if their team cared.  And one more turn will show if MIDDLE WAY 
22 can successfully bloodfeud that elusive NIGHT STALKER over MAXIE NEBB.  Titanium 
shields and bamboo daggers, guess what brave team is developing these kinds of 
weapons?   
     There's got to be a better place in NOBLISH ISLAND to get a drink than The 
Welcome Wench!  Any suggestions?  Just wait 'till next time I show up here, I won't 
be so nice!  So nyaaah!  Paste this one in your scrapbooks, you'll need the kindling 
come this winter-- Snide Clemens  

DUELMASTER                     W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 NIGHT STALKER 9000            5   2  1    55       FORT REAPER (1547)

ADEPTS                         W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 CAPT. JACK 8999               5   2  1    45       FORT REAPER (1547)

CHALLENGER INITIATES           W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 SAL TOPPO 9007                6   1  0    32       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
-CHEESY RIPPER 9001            3   3  0    31       FORT REAPER (1547)
 OSGAR POOLE 9005              4   3  0    27       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
 QUIN ROSSAL 9006              3   4  0    25       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 NOLLY ORMIN 9024              2   0  0    23       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
 KARA LEK 9003                 5   2  0    19       MIDDLE WAY 22 (1550)
 DIVING REAPER 9017            1   3  0    15       FORT REAPER (1547)
-RENDERING REAPER 9023         0   1  0     1       FORT REAPER (1547)

'-' denotes a warrior who did not fight this turn.

THE DEAD                W  L K TEAM NAME            SLAIN BY              TURN Revenge?
MAXIE NEBB 9004         3  1 0 MIDDLE WAY 22 1550   NIGHT STALKER 9000    283   
KITSUNE 8968            1  2 0 TYRENT'S FURIES 1545 CAPT. JACK 8999       282  NOT REVENGED

                                     PERSONAL ADS

Capt. Jack -- How annoying that you should be doing things correctly and winning!
Good fight. -- Quin Rossal

Cheesy Ripper -- Considering the weapon, where your first blow landed, and the effect
it didn't have, I think you may have a problem.  Which I'm glad of, because I really
didn't want to be, ah, maimed in that way at this point, you know?  Noting that you
didn't manage a second blow, I wonder whether you might not do better with a weapon
that is lighter and smaller, thus easier to move quickly.  Worth a try, kiddo. -- Sal
Toppo

Stupid standby. -- Osgar Poole

Diving Reaper -- Drat.  I could *say* that you needed the win more than I did, but
that kind of reasoning would not move me to throw a fight.  You beat me fair and
square and it annoys the heck out of me.  Obviously, I should have dropped my fight
numbers in the second minute in order to recover from the first minute. -- Kara Lek

Rendering Reaper -- Hmm.  I do believe I won because of what I'm told is called a
"knockdown."  I got you off your feet, and you were immediately handicapped in both
attack and defense unless and until you could get back up.  With luck, a blow to a
leg will do that. -- Nolly Ormin

                                  LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS

CAPT. JACK was bested by KUNG-FU MASTER in a 1 minute fight.
SAL TOPPO was devastated by NIGHT STALKER in a 1 minute one-sided Title duel.
QUIN ROSSAL handily defeated CONVICTED THIEF in a 1 minute one-sided match.
OSGAR POOLE won victory over DIVING REAPER in a crowd pleasing 1 minute gory brawl.
KARA LEK defeated OSKSI NOBLE in a 1 minute match.
NOLLY ORMIN devastated EMBEZZLING SCRIBE in a 1 minute uneven brawl.

                                    BATTLE REPORT

             MOST POPULAR                        RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS     
|FIGHTING STYLE               FIGHTS        FIGHTING STYLE     W -   L -  K   PERCENT|
|SLASHING ATTACK                  3         PARRY-LUNGE        3 -   0 -  1     100  |
|LUNGING ATTACK                   2         WALL OF STEEL      2 -   0 -  2     100  |
|STRIKING ATTACK                  2         BASHING ATTACK     9 -   4 -  1      69  |
|AIMED BLOW                       1         SLASHING ATTACK   13 -   8 -  1      62  |
|PARRY-LUNGE                      0         AIMED BLOW         7 -   6 -  0      54  |
|PARRY-STRIKE                     0         STRIKING ATTACK   25 -  22 -  1      53  |
|PARRY-RIPOSTE                    0         LUNGING ATTACK     9 -   8 -  0      53  |
|BASHING ATTACK                   0         TOTAL PARRY        2 -   4 -  0      33  |
|TOTAL PARRY                      0         PARRY-STRIKE       2 -  10 -  0      17  |
|WALL OF STEEL                    0         PARRY-RIPOSTE      0 -   3 -  0       0  |

Turn 286 was great if you     Not so great if you used      The fighting styles of the
used the fighting styles:     the fighting styles:          top eleven warriors are:

LUNGING ATTACK     2 -  0     SLASHING ATTACK    1 -  2         4  STRIKING ATTACK
STRIKING ATTACK    2 -  0     AIMED BLOW         0 -  1         3  SLASHING ATTACK
                              PARRY-LUNGE        0 -  0         2  LUNGING ATTACK 
                              PARRY-STRIKE       0 -  0         1  AIMED BLOW     
                              PARRY-RIPOSTE      0 -  0     
                              BASHING ATTACK     0 -  0     
                              TOTAL PARRY        0 -  0     
                              WALL OF STEEL      0 -  0     

                               TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
STRIKING ATTACK  NIGHT STALKER 9000          5   2  1   55 FORT REAPER (1547)
SLASHING ATTACK  CAPT. JACK 8999             5   2  1   45 FORT REAPER (1547)
Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above.

The overall popularity leader is KARA LEK 9003.  The most popular warrior this turn 
was OSGAR POOLE 9005.  The ten other most popular fighters were KARA LEK 9003, NIGHT 
STALKER 9000, QUIN ROSSAL 9006, NOLLY ORMIN 9024, DIVING REAPER 9017, CAPT. JACK 
8999, SAL TOPPO 9007,  0,  0, and  0.

The least popular fighter this week was SAL TOPPO 9007.  The other ten least popular 
fighters were CAPT. JACK 8999, DIVING REAPER 9017, NOLLY ORMIN 9024, QUIN ROSSAL 
9006, NIGHT STALKER 9000, KARA LEK 9003, OSGAR POOLE 9005,  0,  0, and  0.

                             A SACRED LORD'S SLASHER

     Well, this article/spotlight is for Seal at 7th Order, so here goes.

ST:  If he's huge (15+), 3 is okay, and use HA.  I prefer 7 for epee.  9 gets scimitar 
and 11 gets broadsword.  Anything above 11 is a WASTE!!!
CN:  Whatever they send you.
SZ:  Any.
WT:  15, 17, or 21.  13 is workable, but I hate slow learners!   21 will probably take 
a lot from other areas, so 17 is best.
WL:  17, 17, 17!!!!  You need endurance, lots of endurance.  Some of my friends use 
15, but I prefer not to.
SP:  9+  They use SP as well as most, but don't add here until after WT/WL/DF.
DF:  15+, 15+, 15+.  Once again, I have high standards.  The reason?  Have you ever 
had a slasher come out w/ "relying on his speed to stay out of trouble"?  That's 
'cause his parry is in the negative.  With a 15 DF your slasher will have a much 
better parry and will probably be about 1-3 trains from a Master parry in advanced.  
Later on, you'll see!

Now, how to run them:

     10        9         7 ------------------------->  10
     10        4         2 ------------------------->  10
      7        9         7 ------------------------->   1
     CH/HE -------------------------------------------- >
     HE ----------------------------------------------- >
Off:  D at first, open later, min 2 +, open
Def:                                                  D/S (preferably Dodge)

     Min two+ is in case of a TP or WoS coming after you.  This setup works, so good 
luck!

Mike Bookout
Bookie, Sacred Lord of the Black Regime
Memphis Mafia (36,100)

P.S.  Anybody want to join the Regime?

                      The Dark Arena:  A Fighter's Perspective

(sung to the hymn:  Battle Hymn of the Republic)

Mine eyes have seen the glory
Of the coming of the dawn
I am walking down the tunnel
After everyone is gone
I step into the torchlight
And I see the blade he's drawn
My mind, it sings this song:

CHORUS
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
My mind continues on

The crowd is chanting praises
But all I hear are growls
Mine enemy's upon me
So I strike him and he howls
Parry, parry, slash, and parry
I smell his breath so foul
And death, he sings this song:

(CHORUS)

Now we both are tired
And my strength is fading fast
Oh, let me give that fatal blow
Oh, let me be the last
I swing my sword with all my might
The crowd it stands, aghast
As he dies, I sing my song:

(CHORUS x2)

Scotlan (28, 31, 39, 50, ?)

                               Kill Desire: "Patience."

     Many times I have lost warriors, and the manager claimed the KD was only five.  
As if KD had anything to do with the death of my fighter.  It was really the battle 
axe to the head that killed him.
     I was quite disturbed at the widespread belief that kill desire has something to 
do with killing an opponent.  But they have good reason to believe this: the 
Duelmasters Handbook definition of kill desire has a tendency to cast a "confusion 
spell" on the reader to make them think that way.  The wording is very misleading.  
The name "kill desire" is also misleading.  A more correct word would be "patience."
     Yes, kill desire is actually how much patience your fighter had before taking a 
shot.  KD doesn't add damage or tell your fighter where to aim at.
     Damage is calculated by weapon and strength.  (Of course, favorite weapon also 
affects damage.)
     You let your warrior know where you want him to aim at by filling out the attack 
location boxes on the fight sheets.
     Hit location and damage are the main two things that will kill warriors.  Hit 
locations to vital areas such as head, chest, and the abdomen repeated times increases 
your chance to kill.  The amount of damage inflicted to these vital areas also 
increases your chance to kill an opponent.
     As you see, none of this has anything to do with kill desire.
     Now, I will tell you what kill desire, or patience, as I call it, actually is.
     If you run your warrior with an 8-10 KD, you're telling him to swing like a 
drunken wildman.  You'll see statements in his fights that say "swings wildly" or 
other things to that effect.  He is not waiting for a good opening.  He is swinging at 
everything!  This is bad for several reasons.
     With his KD that high, he is very easily dodged and parried.  Also, he can be 
feinted into bad dueling decisions as well.
     I think that KD between 5-7 for offensive styles and 3-6 for defensive styles is 
perfect.
     You get a lot more hits with a 5-7 KD, and feint a lot less.  But you also get 
more kills in this range.  Reason being, you're waiting for a good shot that is hard 
to dodge or parry.  The example I used earlier about the manager with the 5 KD and 
battleaxe is the point I am trying to make.  If his warrior's KD was 10, my warrior 
could have dodged or parried the attack and still be alive today.  But since it was a 
5 KD, he waited for a good shot that my warrior had trouble defending against, and 
cleaved his head off!  (Well, not literally.)
     Defensive styles run about 3-6 KD.  Defensive styles swing wildly a lot in the 
beginning, but that is natural.  They will get better.  3-4 KD, they still have a 
tendency to let attacks go by.  Of course, if you're scumming, go with a 1 KD. 
     In short, having an 8-10 KD means your warrior is doing all that swinging and 
hitting less.  Not to mention all the endurance he is burning up to no avail.
     Any comments, you can diplo me.

                                        ta-ta,
                                                  Sir Jessie Jest

                                                  DM 11: Lords of the Abyss
                                                  DM 61: Pit Fiends
                                                  DM 67: Storm Wizards
                                                  DM 5:  Bad Girls

                               SOME INFO ON THE RIPPER

     Being that the parry-riposte is my favorite style, I thought I'd share a few 
things I've learned.
     General design:

     ST: 7-11  Strength isn't all important to the P.R.  An 11 will gives you all well 
               suited weapons.  I'll even go as high as 17, but with no dramatic 
               effect.

     CN: Any   A higher con will give a better endurance and make survival easier.

     SZ: Any   Although a smaller size gives you a defensive bonus.

     WT: 15-21 As with all other styles the higher the better.  15 will give the epee.  
               A P.R. needs to learn skills to survive.
     
     WL: 13-21 Will is as important as wit.  It helps endurance and life expectancy.  
               A higher will allows you to pick apart most scum.

     SP: 5-13  13 is a major breakpoint but it's not necessary to go that high.  A 
               combo of 15 wit, 15 deftness and 11 speed will give you an expert in 
               riposte with any luck.

     DF: 13-21 The higher the coordination the easier it is to hit your attack 
               location.  A 15 will give you the epee.

     The perfect P.R. would look something like this: 9-4-5-17-21-11-17 with starting 
skill bases like:
     Ini: 60%
     Rip: 90%
     Att: 75%
     Par: 70%
     Def: 75%
     Dec: 40%
     One of my first PRs looked like this: 15-10-9-15-15-6-14, Thror the Dark.  He was 
extremely unlucky as far as starting skills.  He now looks a little different: 17-11-
9-17-16-7-15 with 90% Init, 145% Rip, 130% Att, 130% Par, 115% Def and 80% Dec.  I 
destroyed him with early stat raises.
     I had a similar design that was luckier, at least until he got X-ed by a slasher 
in a tourney.  He died with a 12-3-1 record.  But enough of that.  You're probably 
wanting to get on with the strategies.
     So getting on with it, I've tried both offensive and defensive strategies.  
Generally defensive has worked better for me.  Something like: 3-6-6 going offensive 
in minute 3 or 4 with a 10-8-6 or a 9-7-6 and then backing off to a 6-4-6 or a 4-5-6.
     As far as tactics go I don't use 'em very often.  If you use any offensive tactic 
use the lunge or nothing.  Defensively use dodge and parry sparingly, if at all, and 
don't use the riposte tactic after you've achieved a master.
     Okay, now on to weapons and armor.  A parry-riposte is somewhat limited when it 
comes to weapons.  The longsword is their best choice against heavier armors.  I once 
tried the halberd (I'll wait until you finish laughing.)  Anyway, Thror the Dark 
savagely slew Spymaster with it.  I only give the PR an off hand weapon with epee, 
shortsword or the longsword.
     I've done varying things with armor, but I've found that lighter armor works 
better, personal favorites being APL, ARM, and ASM.  I read an article about the 
parry-riposte of coom that made me laugh.  It said something about wearing more armor 
than expected of a PR, listing nothing higher than ACM+F.  Imagine what he would have 
thought fighting Thror the Dark in APA+F.
     This is just an opinion brought to you by Necrom, manager of Knightmares (33), 
Pentad Paladins (55), Northlanders (70) and a couple of others.

                                   Crimson Strikers

     Greetings, fellow managers, I, Crimson Strategist, shall share my thoughts with 
you on the striking attack style.
     This style developed in cultures where weapon quality surpassed that of the 
armors, this made landing the first blow vital.  This blow is usually delivered in a 
downward fashion quickly, surely, and with power in a minimal of wasted motion.
     Here's how I rate the stats:
     ST 11-15: Never go below 11, strikers are well suited to ALL the weapons in the 
game and 11 allows the use of the majority of them.  They also need to hurt their foe 
when they hit, thus making this an important consideration for damage rating.
     CN 3-9:  This whole style revolves around finishing your foe quickly, if your foe 
has time to develop a complex formal attack on your striker, then you're not fighting 
him properly.  A properly run striker should never be hit more than four or five 
times, any more than this and the whole concept behind this style gets thrown right 
out the window, therefore I rate con as the least important attribute for this style.
     SZ 9-16:  A size of 9 allows use of all the weapons and it is important in 
determining your damage rating, plus, it also adds to your init and this style thrives 
on init.
     WT 13+:  As with any style, the higher the better.  13 is rock bottom, it allows 
the use of all weapons except the epee and you'll still learn at a decent pace.
     WL 7-13: This style conserves endurance which allows this attribute to go 
considerably less than most styles and still fight effectively for a respectable 
length of time.  I've had strikers with a 13 ST, 3 CN, and 5 WL get poor endurance 
ratings and ones with 11 ST, 6 CN, and 9 WL get normal.  However, if you want some 
long term potential, you'd want to be around 13 or so.
     SP 10+: This is very important for decise and init skills which are the heart of 
this style.  Landing the first blow and finishing the fight quickly is hinged on your 
striker's speed.
     DF 15+:  This is crucial attribute for this style, they NEED to be precise with 
their blows, plus, it also adds to their init.  Get to 17 or 21 if possible.
     Now let's take a look at the style itself.  The striking attack is one of the 
easiest styles to run, yet they have adversity that many styles lack.  As I've said 
before, a striker can use ALL the weapons in the game.  They can fight effectively 
wearing plate armor and no armor, they can use EVERY tactic in the game be it 
offensive or defensive, a striker can fight like a lunger or basher, ripper or 
slasher, etc... provided that you match up their strategy with the appropriate tactic 
and weapon.  They can beat ALL the styles in DM and beyond if you choose their 
strategy correctly for that particular style vs. style matchup.
     Here are some examples of style vs. style matchups for strikers and various 
tactic selections vs. the different styles.
     High decise strikers over slashers and lungers, strikers over total parry and 
wall of steel, rippers over strikers, etc...
     Using the decise tactic vs. lungers, slashers, and aimed blows.  Using the lunge 
tactic vs. rippers and aimed blows, using no tactic and having a moderate offensive 
effort and moderate activity level vs. total parries and wall of steel, etc...
     The possible variations for this style are virtually endless.
     Now let's take a brief look at your striker overview and glean some helpful hints 
on how to fight them.  If you see statements like "relying on speed to stay out of 
danger" or "avoiding rather than trading blows," this is telling you that your AL 
should be moderate to high.  If he does great damage, then don't use weapons like the 
epee or shortsword, this would be an underutilization of his strengths.  If he learns 
attack skills easily, then this is telling you that he likes to take his time and pick 
his shots so don't send him out with a 10 OE!  If you see statements like "has learned 
how to be a decisive and quick fighter," then by all means USE the decise tactic with 
a high OE.  Don't send him out with offhand weapons unless he's ambidextrous, if you 
do, it will take away from his attack.  As you can see, the various statements on your 
overview are very helpful in telling you how your striker likes to fight.
     Here's a very general strategy that has worked well for my strikers.

OE             10   8    7    7    7    6    6       Armor: ARM to ACM
AL              4   3    2    1    1    1    8       Weapons: BS,LO,SC,GS,BA
KD              6   6    6    6    6    6    5
ATT LOC        Head, body, arms
PRO LOC        Head or body
OFF TCT        Decise or bash
DEF TCT        Response or dodge

     Before I close there is one last point I wish to emphasize, USE the 
challenge/avoid system, it will help control who you fight and when.  In closing, I 
would like to thank the following managers for their diplos and articles which helped 
me learn the game: Sir Jessie Jest, Talon, Tex, the managers on the roundtable, and 
numerous others who took their time to put quill and ink on parchment and pass their 
knowledge on to others, thanks!
     Many of you know the Crimson Death stables or soon will know them since I plan to 
have quite a few of them up and running, however, some of them will be on and off due 
to monetary fluctuations so if you wish to diplo me with any comments, criticisms, 
whatever, send them to my home arena, which, from here on out, will always be active.

                                             Later, 
                                                  Crimson Strategist
                                                  Crimson Death DM 61