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Parrying is the means of defence by which an the defender deflects an incoming physical attack with their weapon.


Parrying can only be used to deflect physical attacks, thus it is useless against magic.

Parrying can be used to deflect either a melee attack or a ranged attack; if successfully executed then the defender takes no damage.

In order to parry, one must be holding a weapon with tactics-response set to either 'neutral' or 'parry', or unarmed with the 'unarmed parry' tactics response option set. The tactics-parry setting must either be set to 'both', or to a hand the player is holding a weapon in.

Note that parrying is not performed using a shield - see block for deflecting attacks with a shield.


There are two factors associated with parrying:

  • How likely is an incoming attack to be parried?
  • How many action points does parrying an attack cost?

These are addressed below:

Chance of parrying

A character's basic chance of parrying an incoming attack is determined by a skillcheck of their fighting.defence.parrying skill against the relevant weapon skill of the attacker (eg. fighting.melee.sword or fighting.range.thrown).

This chance is then modified by the following factors specific to the defender's parrying[1]:

  • The weapon's weight vs. the wielder's strength. Essentially, an easily-carried weapon provides a bonus to parrying, while a weapon carried with difficulty incurs a penalty. Note that this check can be made more easy by holding the parrying weapon in both hands.
  • The weight of the parrying weapon vs. the weight of the attacking weapon. If your weapon is heavier than your opponent's, then you gain a (limited) bonus to parrying. If on the other hand your weapon is lighter than your opponent's, then you incur an unlimited penalty to parrying as conservation of momentum pushes your weapon away faster.
  • Certain weapons have inherent bonuses to parrying, such as the custom fencing blade from the Genuan Musketeers' Guild.research
  • Axes have an inherent penalty to parry chance. There may also be penalties for other weapon typesresearch.
  • There is a penalty to parrying in direct proportion to the degree of burden of the defender. It's hard to get your weapon in place in time when you're lugging a lot of equipment about.
  • There is a dexterity dependent penalty for parrying with a weapon in the 'off-hand'[2]

Action point cost

The action point cost of parrying starts at a constant base level based on your parrying weapon, and is then modified as follows:

  • The cost is reduced with higher skills in fighting.special.tactics and by winning the check of your fighting.defence.parrying against the attacker's weapon skill by larger margins.
  • There is a small bonus for parrying with both hands (because you only need to move whichever happens to be closest to the attack; this will be less far on average than with one weapon). It is almost always better to parry with both hands than just one.
  • There is an action point penalty for parrying with an axe. There may also be penalties for other weapon types research.
  • There is a diminishing-returns penalty based on the weight of the parrying weapon (the heavier it is, the more momentum you need to overcome after parrying). As with the chance to parry, this is reduced by holding the parrying weapon in both hands.


Parry can be used (along with block, but not dodge) to defend another player. By this means, a player can attempt to parry blows aimed at another player, without exposing themself to risk in the same way that protect does. Note however that:

  • A failed parry results in the defended target getting hit.
  • Defending another player incurs a very high action point cost on the defender, which may well prevent them from defending attacks aimed at themself. Thus, defend is not entirely risk-free.


If a player is using parry as their defensive skill, then they can attempt to riposte an incoming attack - this causes them to attempt a special counter-attack following the next successful parry. The weapon must have a spike or point, as the riposte attack is pierce based.

See also


  1. Note: Other bonuses and penalties also apply; this article only discusses ones directly related to parrying.
  2. Which hand is your off-hand? Find out by unholding your weapons, and then holding a single-handed weapon. Your off-hand is the one you don't hold the weapon in. Note that most players are, unusually, left-handed on the disc.