I’ve made a living pushing people around – no, I’m not a bully, but I used to be a bouncer. Nowadays I use my powers for (mostly) good, but once upon a time I could grab a grown man off his feet and hurl him backwards and onto his backside. I’m not much of a rules-hacker, not because I lack the ability to vary the rules, but because I pretty much like them as they are. This means I probably have few house rules than most GMs. GURPS strikes a damn good balance between the gameable and what is realistic. One thing that has always bugged me is how Judo Throw works. For a game rule it’s fine, but if you’re trying to emulate how it works in real life…not so much. I’ve come up with what I think is a workable solution. Inspired by a couple of conversations I’ve had privately on the subject and this thread, I present a variant method for Judo Throw.
Slam-Based Judo Throw
Use the normal rules for Judo Throw (requires a Judo Parry, then a Attack roll, etc.). A thrown target falls wherever you like up to one hex away (typically his starting hex, yours, or any hex adjacent to one of those). Additionally, unless your target makes a Acrobatics-6 roll to kip-up he’s automatically prone – if he succeeds he may have started prone, but ends up on his feet, in a crouch, and so on. Roll 1d to determine how he lands if the judoka didn’t specify: 1-2, he landed on his back; 3-4, he landed on his side; 5-6, he landed on his stomach.
When determining damage you inflict a number of dice of crushing damage equal to (their HP x Velocity)/100. Velocity is the number of yards your target moved on the turn that you used your Judo Parry (minimum of 1). Additionally, add +1 to Velocity if you know Judo at DX+1 or +2 at DX+2. If damage is less than 1d, treat fractions up to 0.25 as 1d-3, fractions up to 0.5 as 1d-2, and any larger fraction as 1d-1. Otherwise, round fractions of 0.5 or more up to a full die. You can use All-Out Attack (Strong) to increase your damage! This doesn’t cause actual damage, but is instead used to determine if your target is stunned or not. Should you want to cause damage you may make a skill roll at -1 plus the hit location penalty you are targeting (if any). The victim may attempt a Breakfall or Roll with Blow to reduce this normally. Add a bonus to the final damage roll when attempting to throw your target against a hard surface. This is typically +1 for most surfaces, but can add up to +2 for hard surfaces with angled corners or for objects with small areas of impact. If a weapon is braced or its killing edge can otherwise be used, use the damage bonus for it’s best thrusting attack as well as its damage type!
If you inflict any on damage your target he must make a HT roll or be stunned. Add a -1 penalty to this roll for every 4 points of damage you inflict. (e.g., 8 points of damage results in a HT-2 roll). If you throw your target into someone else they must roll vs. the higher of ST+3 or DX+3 to avoid being knocked down.
Example: Hordric the Brave has a Judo of 14 and a DX of 12. He just parried a attack by Mansor the Merciless last turn, this turn he decides to Judo Throw Mansor. Since Mansor performed a All-Out Attack (Strong) last turn to perform a Flying Tackle, but failed. Hordric decides to throw Mansor on one of his arms. Rolling a 4 he critically succeeds and he throws Mansor in the hex behind him. Since Mansor has 15 HP and moved 3 yards last round his base Velocity is 3 – but Hordric knows Judo at DX+2 so he adds another 2 yards to the Velocity before damage is calculated resulting in 1d of crushing damage, which he rolls and gets a 5! Rolling his critical hit he gets triple damage on the chart, resulting in 15 points of crushing damage to Mansor’s arm, crippling it! Since the damage exceeded his ST-4, he also has to make a HT roll or be stunned. Mansor is having a very bad day.
Picking Over the Bones
You might get wonky results with really large creatures, but since you can’t throw someone more than twice your ST anyway, it ought to land in a nice sweet spot. Another option might be to treat Judo Throw as written, but you inflict thrust-4 crushing damage or thrust-2 at -1 per die, whichever is worse (just like Aggressive Parry). When you get down to it, your ST isn’t what’s causing the damage when you chuck someone like a pinata – it’s how they land and what they land on. Something this variant rule seeks to emulate.
Edit: I made a few changes as pointed out by Peter from the original post.