Hard

Default: Karate-4.

Prerequisites: Jumping and Karate; cannot exceed Karate skill.

This technique is a variation on Jump Kick (p. 75) that uses a pole - typically a quarterstaff but sometimes a sword stuck in the ground or even a convenient banister - to vault into a kick. It involves a short pole-vault forward or sideways that ends in a sharp kick. It's a special option for All-Out Attack. Use the following rules instead of the normal ones for that maneuver.

To attempt a Pole-Vault Kick, you must have two hands on a pole, sword, or similar vertical lever. You must take at least two steps toward the foe; this effectively gives you an extra yard of reach. Roll against Pole-Vault Kick to hit. Your target parries at -2.

If you hit, you do thrust+3 crushing damage - or thrust+1 at +1 per die, if better - plus your Karate bonus. If you miss, or if your target successfully defends, you fall down unless you can make a DX-4 or Acrobatics-2 roll. Hit or miss, you have no defense at all until your next turn!

As strange as it may seem, some real-world martial artists do practice this kick, although its effectiveness is doubtful. At the GM's option, realistic warriors who practice especially flashy styles can buy a Style Perk that lets them improve this technique.

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