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Troll-Bred Bashers

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     The Bashing attack is not, as many of you may have noticed, one of the dominant 
styles in Duelmasters.  There are two reasons for this; one of which I will cover 
here, the other I will cover in an accompanying article.  I will preface this article 
on Bashing attack design and strategy by saying that I have been playing Duelmasters 
for two years, and I have spent most of this time experimenting with and perfecting 
the Bashing Attack.  In my opinion, a Basher needs to possess a monumentally high 
attack percentage, with decisiveness and initiative not far behind.  What follows is 
designed to achieve the desired results.
     Let's get right down to business.  First, the stats:

                                           PERFECT
ST:  13-17                                   15
CN:   3-5                                     3
SZ:   6-9                                     6
WT:  17-21                                   21
WL:  17-21                                   21
SP:   5-9                                     5
DF:  11-15                                   13

     Here's why:
     Strength is arguably the most important attribute for a basher.  A basher with a 
high strength can virtually be assured of a reasonably high attack.  however, excess 
strength takes away points from other vital areas and, as you will see, this Basher 
will not want for attack.  A 13 strength gives the Basher most of the good Bashing 
weapons.
     Constitution is absolutely unimportant to any offensive styles warrior.  Bashers, 
and for that matter, offensives in general, should be designed to dish out damage, not 
absorb it.  If you are designing a Basher to absorb damage, then you are designing him 
wrong.
     Size is an attribute that this game system does not handle well.  As we all know, 
too large a size means that you do not have enough points to allocate to the other 
attributes.  You would think logically that a Basher would need a large size.  I am 
not talking about logic.  I am talking about winning within the parameters of this 
game system.  I give a minimum size of 6 since this is the smallest size that can 
achieve "great damage with a blow."
     Wit, in my opinion, is the most important attribute for every style.  This is 
strictly my opinion and you do not have to agree with me.  Where Bashers are concerned 
however, a Basher without very high wit is garbage.  High wit will greatly effect a 
Basher's initial attack, decisiveness, and initiative.  My research has led me to the 
conclusion that a Basher's initiative is primarily a function of wit.  high wit also 
ensures that the Basher will train consistently.  Also, a Basher with a high wit can 
expect an initial initiative rating somewhere in the 50-60% range.  Note that speed is 
also a modifier for initiative.
     Will is another attribute that the Basher cannot do without.  Will affects a 
Basher's attack and decisiveness, and is responsible for, in conjunction with 
strength, giving the Basher normal endurance, despite the pitifully low constitution.
     Speed has almost no affect on a basher.  I have seen many high speed Bashers, and 
I can tell with 100% certainty that Bashers do not derive strong benefit from speed.  
Slasher, strikers, and to a lesser extent, Lungers, all derive noticeable benefit from 
speed.  I am not saying that a 5 speed Basher will be equally as fast (initially) as a 
19 speed Basher, but I am saying that a Basher can derive greater benefit by placing 
points in other areas.  This Basher will drive his decisiveness from the high wit/will 
combinations: 21-21-5; 19-19-7;  17-17-9.  These combinations, or something similar, 
will generate an initial decisiveness rating of about 50%.
     Deftness is very important to a Basher.  The strength/wit/will/deftness 
combination is where this Basher will generate the awesome attack percentage and his 
attacking precision.  A Basher with the aforementioned minimums in 
strength/wit/will/deftness can expect to achieve an initial attack rating between 60-
80%.  A 13 deftness will also allow the use of my favorite weapon, the morning star.  
In the hands of a Basher, this is a devastating weapon.
     Now that you know how to design a Basher, here's how they should be run.
     This strategy should be used vs. offensive styled warriors:

          1    2    3    4    5    6    Desp
          10   10   10   10   10   10   10
          10    3    3    3    3    3   10
           7    7    7    7    7    7    7
          HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE
          HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE
           D    B                        D

     The offensive effort is self-explanatory.  If you are not trying to destroy your 
opponent, then you should not be running a Basher.  The activity level requires some 
explanation.  Bashers, as you might expect, perform better with a low activity level.  
This is because the Bashing attack style is a series of overhand, overpowering blows 
which are designed to deliver maximum hitting power.  Running around like a 
decapitated chicken would appear to be counterproductive.  Here is the key.  The 10 
activity level in minute one is designed to help you get the jump on another offensive 
warrior.  If you do get the jump, you will win.  Even if you are hurting the Basher's 
attack percentage, how many offensive warriors do you know of that will be able to 
parry or dodge this Basher's attack?  NONE.  Therefore, the 10 activity level in 
minute one is justified.  The decisiveness tactic in minute one is also there to help 
you get the first shot off.  Assuming you get the jump in minute one and the fight 
somehow manages to make it into minute two, that's where the bash tactic comes in.  
You enter minute two with the initiative, land a bash modified head shot into the poor 
slob in front of you, and down he goes!!!  Minutes 3-6 are basically superfluous as 
not many fights will go that far.  10-3-7 allows the basher to do what he does best.  
The theory behind the desperation configuration is the same as that for minute one.  
Since the bashing attack is a downward motion, attacking the head is logical to say 
the least.  Modify this to the chest if you suspect that you adversary is protecting 
his head.  Defending your head is simply there to ensure that you hold your hands up 
high.  My reasoning is that I am simply trying not to interfere with the Basher's 
attack, as opposed to seriously trying to defend myself.  Against defensive warriors, 
change minute one to 10-3-7 with no tactics: i.e., let the basher do what he does 
best.  I have only lost one fight to a defensive styled warrior with my best basher, 
and that was MY fault.  Minute two can be left the same, or you can drop the bash 
tactic.  I am tempted to leave the desperation minute the same.  If you are desperate, 
it probably means you were just hit.  This design cannot take getting hit.  You need 
to go berserk in order to regain the initiative.
     A high quality Basher should have no trouble with Parry-XYZ's and TPs.  Against 
scum try 7-1-7 with the bash tactic.  You should have no trouble blasting attacks 
through the feeble parries of a scum warrior, and the relatively slow (for a basher) 
tempo will allow you to keep it up for 3-4 minutes, which WILL be more than enough 
time to demolish even the most stubborn APA, F, ME, ME 1-1-1-P Total Parry.  Let me 
also mention that the bash tactic should never be used against PRs.
     Last, but by no means least, is what to wear.  Armor should be APL, ALE, or none 
at all.  DO NOT strap this basher into a suit of plate armor.  The Bashing Attack, 
despite what some other managers say (even those self-proclaimed "highly experienced" 
manager who relentlessly brag about their 600+ winning percentages who only run 
defensives, SCUM, and lungers) is a quick style.  The armor should be correspondingly 
light to allow the basher to get the jump on his opponent.  The same theory applies to 
weapon selection.  Try using the QS, MS, of the WH.  The GA and MA should only be used 
against slower offensives of defensive styled warriors.  Again, the key here is 
quickness.  THIS basher is designed to win his fights, with his tremendous attack 
percentage, not with his tremendous damage bonus.
     This article has been brought to you by.....

Mark Schwartz
280 Middlesex Road                                   aka  Troll King
Matawan,  NJ   07747                                      mgr. Troll Lords
201-583-5150                                              Arena #36  Jhans
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