A 'prep' is a turn in which the character prepares to launch their attack. Some special abilities require a certain amount of prep's before an attack can be successfully launched. As a player, it is your responsibility to be aware of which abilities require preps and then to adhere to these rules. Missing a single required prep will probably result in Eden's combat judges voiding the applicable tier of the fight.
A prepping move should state clearly what ability is being prepared for use and provide some imaginative description of this process, whether it be an elaborate ritual or a intense concentration etc.
Special abilities that do not require maintained focus/concentration can be combined with another turn. For instance, whilst a mage is launching a non-magical attack with his sword, he might be muttering an incantation in preparation for using a special ability later. Specifics must still be provided.
If the character receives damage between the preparation and the attack, the most recent prep will be cancelled.
An attacking move should be a detailed account of everything vital to the attack: the stance of the attacker, the momentum or direction of the attack, the method of the attack, and it should hint at the desired outcome.
An attacking move must be comprised of one main action, or series of synchronized actions [within the realms of logic please].
Elario_Chinglove braces his right foot against the ground in front of him, screeching like a particularly irritated banshee as he sends his staff sailing down vertically for Crispian_Nohamar's cranium, relying on the weight of the sturdy oaken staff in addition to his own strength for the momentum needed to crack Crispian_Nohamar's skull.
The above move, although containing information about smaller movements of the attacker’s body is centered on one central movement, that of the downward swing of his staff.
Like an attack, a defensive move must allow for the defender’s stance, method, and desired outcome. It’s no good simply stating that the character miraculously dodges the attack – it must be a detailed account of how this daring escape is achieved.
The defender must be consistent with the position they were in before the attack took place. For instance, if our defender [Crispian_Nohamar] was standing directly in front of Elario_Chinglove with his hands behind his back and his eyes on the ground when Elario swung his staff, that is the stance he must attempt to defend from. However, before he defends he must be seen to somehow acknowledge the attack. After all, he wouldn’t know to defend if he didn’t know of the threat to begin with.
Crispian_Nohamar instantly distracted from his train of thought by Elario_Chinglove's strangely effeminate screeching, he catches a glimpse of the attacker just in time to save his own bacon. His head and upper body reflexively tilt to the left, causing what may have been a fatal blow to the head to land painfully but not mortally upon his leather-armor clad shoulder.
In the above example, Crispian’s player acknowledges that his character was not in the best defensive stance to begin with, and as such appreciates that his character cannot completely evade the attack. Considering Crispian wasn't expecting the attack, it would be unrealistic of him to come out of it without taking a blow of some sort.
If Crispian had managed to completely evade the attack, the player of Elario would not be allowed to perform a connecting move and would instead have to RP the resultant events.
Elario_Chinglove bends his knees in a last ditch attempt at keeping his balance as his staff strikes air and continues towards the ground under its own powerful momentum, the fine polished oak smacking impotently against the flagstones.
However, as Crispian did not completely evade the attack, Elario's player gets to perform a connecting move:
A connecting move is a move that confirms the attacker’s success. If the defender was unable to completely evade the attack, the attacker is expected to spend a turn describing the results of their attack.
A connection must describe the initial results of the connection and nothing more about it's effects upon the defending character. For example, Elario’s player could not state that the staff whacked Crispian’s shoulder and then bounced up into the side of his head, as that would be two separate attacks [albeit maybe not both intentional].
It is very important not to ‘auto’ in a connection. Although you can state where the blow landed based on the information offered in the preceding attack and defense moves, you cannot state the exact amount of damage dealt upon another character. Such details are reliant upon the information in the previous moves. For instance, a powerful downward thrust of Elario’s staff would obviously cause some bruising and internal injuries when it hits Crispian’s shoulder [although if Crispian is wearing armor of some sort the damage may be decreased], whereas a sword would have cut the flesh and caused bleeding. A connection may also contain preparation for the next attack, such as a change in stance. Usual Prep rules apply.
Elario_Chinglove tenses his shoulders to absorb the shock of his staff striking down heavily upon Crispian_Nohamar's right shoulder. He lets the staff glance off the shoulder after hitting and swings it back up over his head in readiness for another attack, a victorious smirk mocking Crispian_Nohamar's misfortune.
In the above post, Elario's attack clearly connects, but it is never stated the exact level of damage that is caused. From this point on Crispian's player is expected to RP the character according to the damage which he believes would have occurred. In this instance Crispian is wearing leather armour which may just save his shoulder from being dislocated, but there would still realistically be heavy bruising. As such, Crispian should have less use of his right arm until the wound his healed.
There is another type of move that is often used in T1, and it is a variation on the Defensive move:
Rather than simply evade an attack, the defendant may block or counter it with one similarly fluent move.
Crispian_Nohamar had been expecting an attack, and had his trusty dagger ready behind his back the entire time. Upon the thrust of Elario's foot, he bends at the knees, his left arm flying up to catch the blow on its bronze bracer whilst his right arm swings round -- dagger in hand -- to swipe horizontally at Elario's stomach.
The above move would require great skill on the part of the defendant, and therefore only a character who has an established history of combat prowess could realistically pull it off. Most counter-attacks require a similar level of combat skill, as the combatant is performing different simultaneous actions. As long as those actions can be realistically performed at the same time [i.e. one arm can't realistically be in two places at the same time], the move is valid.
It is then up to Elario to decide whether he will defend, counter-attack or simply take the hit. Considering his staff was already sailing down towards Crispian with some momentum, it will probably still cause some damage to Crispian's arm, but a move of that ferocity on Elario's part will have left his midriff defenceless [aside from any armor he might be wearing] as his arms are engaged in holding the staff. As such, Crispian's dagger would most likely strike as intended.
It's not uncommon for both parties of a fight to take some damage, and it is often considered the honourable thing to accept at least some of your opponents hits [if they're realistic].
As you can see, a tier does not necessarily only consist of three moves. Tiers may overlap or extend beyond the original three basic moves. A T1 combat session ends when there are no more attacks to be made, either because one or more sides of the fight have died, one or more sides of the fight have escaped, one or more sides of the fight have been incapacitated or both parties have reached a non-violent conclusion.