Actions During Combat
Most players start off with 4 primary actions during combat: the movement action, the attacking action, the surprise action and the free actions. A combat post here is approximately 8 seconds and these actions break down what your character could realistically do within that time frame. The norm unless otherwise suggested is 4 actions per post. Your character's speed does play a role in the amount of actions taken but remember this is not Naruto or some anime and most characters are bound by human limitations, so do not expect a dramatic increase but a slight advantage. Now we will go on to break down the various actions so that they can be better processed. At norm, a character can make 4 actions in total of whatever they please (not counting surprise or free actions).
Movement actions: Movement action is when a character has to move from one location to another. Any movement done while remaining stationary does not count as a movement action in combat with the exception of drawing a weapon. Drawing a weapon counts as a movement action unless otherwise suggested. A character may come into a topic with his weapon already drawn if there is a viable reason to do so but the movement action is considered subtracted from the 4 standard actions. If a player has to move from a stationary location to dodge a blow then a movement action is needed. If this situation occurs and the character is struck with no movement action then the player dealing the damage can either declare it a critical blow or an automatic knock down (catching their opponent off flat footed). Drawing dual weapons counts as two movement actions unless certain skills are purchased.
Attacking Action: Any action where one character tries to strike or grapple another is known as the attacking action. Actions made to set up an attack or feints are not considered attack actions and may be done freely. There are certain skills and items that allow you to perform more attack actions per post. Such things as momentum manipulation or using your opponents footing or positioning in order to get them off balance or compromise their positioning is not considered an attack action.
Surprise Action: A special type of free action that is not considered one the 4 actions a player can take in a post. This action is completely free and can only be made when the opposing player has no clue it is going on or completely taken by surprise. This is also called a stealth action where an opponent either does not know it is happening to them or CLEARLY does not know it is happening until it is too late. If caught by a surprise action on their next post they cannot take a movement action.
Free Action: Any actions done that do not take up one of the 4 per post is considered a free action. Some gear, skills, etc allow for a certain number of standard actions to be done as free actions.
Health Points and Weapons/Armor
Every human character starts off with 10 hit points and a natural armor of 1(stacks with armor). So if a character were wearing no armor and was hit by a standard bastard sword that dealt 6 damage. You would subtract the natural armor bonus of 1 and deal the remained against the hit points. This gives a total of 5 damage against the character. Now lets say that same character wore light Armor giving them an additional +2 to their armor bonus. Their natural armor plus their light armor would give them a total bonus of 3. That means the player would only recieve 3 damage leaving them with 10 hit points. Depleion of all 10 hit points means your character goes unconscious. At -3 hitpoints your character is dead. If above -3 hp and below 1 hp your character will regain 1 hp per 2 posts until he/she is at 1 hp bringing them back into consciousness. However, the 10 hp does not simply gauge the players life but also there threshold. If a character is struck for half of their hp in any area it is considered a serious wound and can impede the player in combat. If the character strikes a player for their total hit points in a single strike it is considered a severing blow which can remove limbs or even decapitate a player depending on where struck. Weapons and Shields also have a threshold. A weapons threshold is based on it's quality. Normal weapons usually have a threshold of double its damage output. Meaning if it does 6 damage that it's threshold is 12 (If it takes 12 points of damage at one time it will break. Cumulative damage does not apply). A shield normally works in the same manner except it is 3 times its defensive value. Therefore a shield that provides a +2 defense can be destroyed by receiving 6 damage en masse.
In the best interest of reality based combat compounded by in game qualities, we have what is called critical striking. Here, a critical strike can be done when hitting an area that is considered vital to the human anatomy or would otherwise kill a human being in one blow. Critical strikes do double the damage that the weapon would do unless otherwise noted. Most armor negates a certain number of criticals before giving way.
This allows an extra attack action with the off-hand weapon but the off-hand weapon does -50% damage rounded down. However, there are skills that can be used to lessen the damage penalty if purchased. Dual Wielding must be purchased in order to use this feature.