The Ascension Project
Cover is assessed in subjective measurements of how much protection it offers. The GM determines the value of cover. There are four degrees of cover a character can benefit from, Soft Cover, Partial Cover, Full Cover, and Total Cover.
Cover, in addition to defense, also provides benefits to attacks. When a character is firing from full cover they are assumed to be using the obstacle to better stabilize their ranged weapon. All characters in cover reduce their total recoil penalty by 1 for attacks made using the cover element to stabilize the attack. The GM may impose other penalties or restrictions on attacks depending on the details of the cover.
The general rule of thumb for cover is, the character nearest to the source of cover gains its effects.
Cover Defense Bonus
Cover gives a Defense bonus, presented in the table below, for different degrees of cover. Add the relevant number to the character’s Defense. This cover bonus stacks with other bonuses to Defense.
Cover Reflex Save Bonus
Cover gives a Reflex save bonus, presented in the table below, for different degrees of cover. Add this bonus to Reflex saves against attacks that affect an area. This bonus only applies to attacks that originate or burst out from a point on the other side of the cover.
|Degree of Cover||Bonus to Defense||Bonus to Reflex saves|
|Soft Cover (the body of a creature)||+1||+1|
|Partial Cover (standing at an open window or behind a 3ft wall)||+2||+2|
|Full Cover (actively using a wall or corner while scanning/firing)||+4||+3|
|Total Cover (Hiding behind a solid wall or barrier)||Negates||Special|
Special: Certain sources of cover may not negate attacks made with explosives and is at the GM’s discretion, however those saves are made with a +8 cover bonus.
Soft Cover: Whether movement, a hostage held, or proximity to allies, puts another creature between a character and the source of a ranged attack, the target of that attack has soft cover. While this can be useful, circumstantially, it is not foolproof. If the creature proving the soft cover is considered unprotected (no shield or plating HP) and the damage dealt by the attack is greater than the soft targets DR, the attack negates the cover bonus provided to the original target.
Partial Cover: When a character is behind a solid barrier that covers at least 50% of their body, but not actively using the barrier as a source of cover, they are considered to have partial cover.
Full Cover: When a character is behind a solid barrier that covers at least 50% of their body, and are actively using the barrier as a source of cover, they are considered to have partial cover. It takes 1 action (either a movement action or an attack action) to enter cover. To exit cover requires a Stand Up action and the type of cover determines whether a character is considered crouched or prone.
Total Cover: When a character is completely concealed by a solid barrier they are considered to have total cover. This means they are unable to be hit by direct ranged attacks and attacks that require a Reflex save (explosions). Total cover can also be entered when a character is using a barrier for full cover, this requires an attack or move action and may not completely negate Reflex saves depending on the source or cover.
Striking the Cover Instead of a Missed Target
If it ever becomes important to know whether the cover was actually struck by an incoming attack that misses the intended target, the GM should determine if the attack roll would have hit the protected target without the cover. If the attack roll falls within a range low enough to miss the target with cover but high enough to strike the target if there had been no cover, the object used for cover was struck. This can be particularly important to know in cases when a character uses another character as cover. In such a case, if the cover is struck and if the attack roll exceeds the Defense of the covering character, the covering character takes the damage intended for the target.