Attacks of Opportunity in "modern system"



Since I now have C&S, I have noticed the lack of attacks of opportunity in various of the new systems (EZD6, ICRPG, Shadowdark and now C&S).

On my table the fact that you rather should take a careful step back to avoid being swiped at then just run is completely accepted. My people are wondering why I would even consider of getting rid of this seemingly common sense ruling. C&S has the potential to avoid a free attack by an bystander written in the rules “a short step to the side is always a free move” or something like this wording…

What are your thoughts and experiences regarding this topic? How is play without/with variing?

Cheers, and may your dice roll low!


In my opinion, It’s another unnecessary burden that would plague the player’s choice and it’s better for them to just move and do their thing! This works both ways with Monsters, as they can move away too. If doing a “small movement” or 5ft step like in 3.x D&D, then what’s the point?

In Crown And Skull, you can move or you can take an action. If you HURRY, then you are putting yourself in danger by giving the enemy a +5 to their ATK. I think this perfectly handles the situation as is. For Monsters/Enemies, they can also only do one tactic once per round, and that usually is only a 1 in 6 chance of actually getting to move away or to another opponent. I think it works fine and speeds things up.

Try playing without it and making diverse and interesting terrain and see how your players start to skirmish a lot more. It’s fun!


I have a huge beef with attacks of opportunity: is the worst rule ever made for any system by far.

It makes the players stay in place exchanging blows with the enemies until the other bloke falls by excessive bleeding and terminal stupidity. :slight_smile:

Any action that is not “Do Damage” is viewed as a waste, especially when you only have one or two actions. Only after the chars reach a certain level of expertise, is when the players can move around the scenario without “wasting” their precious actions by disengaging or something like that. By then is too late they were trained to behave like newbie players on a videogame: I’ll spam my attack button near this monster even if he is hitting me in the hopes that my attacks will deplete him of HP before he kills me

Without AoO everything changes. Players and DMs start to use more of the scenario in combat, people zip around all over the place, having a big number in movement matters a lot more, and more tactics emerge during play just by not using AoO rules.


The best way to implement it is as a special feature for a monster or a single PC. Give a monster with long reach the ability to make one free attack when a PC moves away. A martial PC could have it as a milestone ability or tied to loot. Giving it to everyone all the time is bad for tactics. I’m saying this as an ICRPG player, I haven’t cared to look too deeply into my copy of C&S.