Jonbertsch
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Tue 10 Dec 2019, 18:07

Sounds like we could use an official answer as to whether or not a facehugger can perform a true to the rules grapple. Xenos cannot make regular attacks, only signature attacks and I'm pretty sure GRAPPLE is a regular attack, furthermore while some of the facehuggers signature attacks have the work grapple in the titles, none of them specifically mention anyone being grappled . Some of the signature attacks sure do sound like a pc is being grappled, but are they technically being grappled? 
 
Riggswolfe
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Tue 10 Dec 2019, 20:46

Looking at the facehugger entry:

Signature Attack 4, the tail grapple is exactly what Ripley suffered right before the marines came in and saved her.  This attack is called a grapple but doesn't have any rules about resisting it so it clearly not a grapple rules-wise.

Signature Attack 5, the face grapple, reads very much like a grapple with the opposed roles. The option for when the PC wins is pretty much exactly what happens the first time Ripley is attacked when she throws it away. If the Facehugger wins then on its next initiative the PC suffers the final embrace. However, I think if the PC has an action before then it's reasonable to let them have a chance to grapple and throw it away. I'd simply run it as a repeat of Signature attack 5, with the same dice and the same possible outcomes except it doesn't count as an action for the Facehugger (much like resisting the attack the first time didn't count as an action for the PC)
 
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aramis
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Tue 10 Dec 2019, 22:49

No, mechanically, Ripley doesn't "grapple" it - mechanically she wins the opposed from the grapple attempt, probably with an extra success (to buy a bonus die on , then does a "shove" on her turn. That's the part you are not grasping. She cannot "grapple" it. At no point is she actually able to prevent it from doing whatever it's going to do next... but she can, mechanically, resist its grapple, then do a shove.

You're too tightly linking the mechanic name to the narrative. The names of the actions and conditions are not always the match to the terms used in describing the action. This isn't unique to this game, either. It's fairly common.
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Vang
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Wed 11 Dec 2019, 01:21

To be fair, the one who actually grapples the facehugger is Hicks with Gorman assisting (Vasquez also assists with unwinding the tail from Ripley's neck) until they can pry the facehugger off and throw it to the ground where Vasquez shoots it.  Ripley was indeed no longer grappling with the facehugger and was doing all she could to resist it before the Marines arrived.

The scene kind of reminds me of videos of people rescuing animals and people from boa constrictors or pythons.  It takes several people to actually pull it off (literally) and save the victim who is virtually helpless at this point.

On a side note, regarding Newt: she benefited from Plot Armor in that scene.   8-)
 
Riggswolfe
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Wed 11 Dec 2019, 19:31

No, mechanically, Ripley doesn't "grapple" it - mechanically she wins the opposed from the grapple attempt, probably with an extra success (to buy a bonus die on , then does a "shove" on her turn. That's the part you are not grasping. She cannot "grapple" it. At no point is she actually able to prevent it from doing whatever it's going to do next... but she can, mechanically, resist its grapple, then do a shove.
Except she clearly DOES. The Facehugger is unable to give her the final embrace. She is holding it back despite it choking her. Mechanically I suppose we could say it hit her with signature attack 4. But she is clearly keeping it from going any further. I think in-game it's reasonable to assume she won an opposed grapple check to keep it from subjecting her to a final embrace. Technically, it could've been that it rolled signature 5 and she won but the GM ruled that since it still had its tail around her neck she couldn't throw it down.
On a side note, regarding Newt: she benefited from Plot Armor in that scene.   8-)
I wonder how we'd treat Newt's scene mechanically. She's holding it back by pinning it with the table. Would that be considered a grapple? (That little girl must have had a ton of stress dice to win that roll!) Because the only skill I can think of that makes sense is close combat though it could have simply been opposed strength checks or something.
 
Vang
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Thu 12 Dec 2019, 00:48

I wonder how we'd treat Newt's scene mechanically. She's holding it back by pinning it with the table. Would that be considered a grapple? (That little girl must have had a ton of stress dice to win that roll!) Because the only skill I can think of that makes sense is close combat though it could have simply been opposed strength checks or something.
Opposed Strength Checks w/ a bonus for leverage on Newt's part.  It's the only way she had an honest chance in that situation.  The facehugger's tail was pinned and it couldn't get any purchase on the smooth, wet surface of the cart or table she pushed against the wall.

Regarding Ripley, I would say she was at the point of Final Embrace; she was being strangled by the facehugger's tail and barely holding it at bay.  It was only a matter of time before it succeeded.  It's in that time that the Marines were able to intervene and is very much based on the situation.  I would say that Kane from ALIEN actually had LESS time for his Final Embrace because once it melted through his helmet integrity, he would have been subjected to the effects of the atmosphere and temperature of LV-426, which was a lot less hospitable in ALIEN.  He would immediately started gasping for air, and weakening.  In fact, if memory serves, that's pretty much how Alan Dean Foster described it in the ALIEN novelization.
 
Riggswolfe
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Thu 12 Dec 2019, 05:32

I wonder how we'd treat Newt's scene mechanically. She's holding it back by pinning it with the table. Would that be considered a grapple? (That little girl must have had a ton of stress dice to win that roll!) Because the only skill I can think of that makes sense is close combat though it could have simply been opposed strength checks or something.
Opposed Strength Checks w/ a bonus for leverage on Newt's part.  It's the only way she had an honest chance in that situation.  The facehugger's tail was pinned and it couldn't get any purchase on the smooth, wet surface of the cart or table she pushed against the wall.

Regarding Ripley, I would say she was at the point of Final Embrace; she was being strangled by the facehugger's tail and barely holding it at bay.  It was only a matter of time before it succeeded.  It's in that time that the Marines were able to intervene and is very much based on the situation.  I would say that Kane from ALIEN actually had LESS time for his Final Embrace because once it melted through his helmet integrity, he would have been subjected to the effects of the atmosphere and temperature of LV-426, which was a lot less hospitable in ALIEN.  He would immediately started gasping for air, and weakening.  In fact, if memory serves, that's pretty much how Alan Dean Foster described it in the ALIEN novelization.
Kane was hit by signature attack 6. It explicitly says it makes short work of anything covering your head and immediately gives you the final embrace. 
 
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Sulaco
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Thu 12 Dec 2019, 17:39

I'll take a stab at it.  This is how I see it.  but I have only read through the book once or twice, so please let me know if I missed something. 
I am more of a boardgamer then an RPG'er, so reading it like it was a board game this is how I would rule it. 

Forget the movies...

A facehugger is a Xenomorph, since it is under the Xenomorph heading. 
You cannot grapple a facehugger. 

Since there is a xenomorph heading under grappling, that means that Face Grapple is a grapple.  And since you are grappled and the facehugger is a Xeno you cannot shove it away.  You cannot even break free because that is a grapple. 

If you are by yourself...you're screwed. 
If you have  shovel or some other tool, you could have blocked it.

You are actually also prone, and drop any weapons you were holding. 

Your only hope will be if you have buddies.  I would allow them to shoot it at close range but the victim would take acid splash to the face. 
You could also use some kind of pulse weapon or tool?  maybe a cutting torch to burn it off.  but then again the victim may take damage.  Maybe a stun baton?  might be immune.  I have not done the math on the weapons but you could flame thrower it off as well, hoping the victim survives..(or not depending on your agenda)  :twisted: 

On a facehugger special 5 or 6 you are not getting out of this unscathed. 

But being the GM one could always rule anything and allow buddies to grapple and pull it off.  Especially if they come up with some brilliant way to do it.   But the way the rules read, it cannot be done.  
 
 
Jonbertsch
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Thu 12 Dec 2019, 20:55

The only way anyone can initiate a grapple is by using a stunt from rolling multiple 6s on a close combat action. Since xenomorphs can only use their signature attacks and therefore do not have access to stunts then technically they cannot grapple. That's my ruling anyway. I posed the question on this form about xenos and what happens with multiple 6s rolled and people were split pretty even, YES xenos can use stunts with their additional 6s and NO only additional damage can be applied with the extra 6s and I don't think there has been an official answer that I have seen.
 
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Fenhorn
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Re: Facehugger combat questoin

Thu 12 Dec 2019, 21:22

Aliens can only do signature attacks. Some of the signature attacks are a special kind of grapple. An alien grapple follow special rules as listed in the specific signature attack, but unless specified otherwise, it is still a grapple. The "special" with an alien grapple is the effect of the grapple, not that it is a grapple.


Also. I moved this thread to the GM section since it is a discussion that can contain spoilers for some.
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