Question about weapon quality "Volley"

Hi everyone,

I am a new gamemaster to the 2D20 Conan system. We had the books for a while already and now decided to start playing in the hyborian age.
As announced above I have a question about how the weapon quality volley is working (description page 154 of the conan core rulebook).

Just for your understanding I explain how I understood the rules for weapon qualities and how they work in general:
After you made an attack and scored a hit and rolled the CD for damage and rolled one or more phoenix symbols with them, you have the weapon qualities working.

In the description of the volley quality it says among other that you get a bonus D20 for making the attack test and adding a bonus CD to the damage when hitting.

But do you have to make a normal attack first, score a hit and roll an effect to be able to announce you did shoot a volley and can then now roll a bonus D20 to get more momentum and the extra CD for damage?

Or do you say before the attack is made, that you are shooting a volley and can so always then use the bonus d20 for the attack test and the extra CD for the damage when hitting?

So this quality is one of those that are not tied to effects to work? As said on the core rulebook page 151?

We are a new group and our native is not english so we are sometimes insecure when reading and interpreting rules text.

Thanks in advance for any help here! :grinning:

Effects trigger on the CD, Qualities are different and affect things differently.

Volley does two primary things.

  1. It is assumed that you have enough ammunition to use the weapon, barring complications, without tracking how many arrows (or stones or whatever) you have.
  2. It lets you expend a Resource called Load to roll an extra d20 and do extra damage. With rare exceptions, buying extra 2d0s is done before the roll. Loads may be recovered at the end of the fight depending on dice rolls.

So in practice, the character can fire their bow (or sling or whatever) all day long without tracking individual arrows. When they need to they can expend a Load to get the bonus dice, but that is limited by how many of that resource they have.


It took me a while to get to grips with ranged weapons.

Simply put, there are two ways of counting the ammo used by ranged weapons - Shots and Loads.


Applies to most thrown weapons and to arbalest bolts.

You buy a number of Shots (for example, you buy four throwing axes). Each time you attack, you use up one Shot. When you have used them all, you cannot attack with that weapon any more.

At the end of a scene, you roll one Phoenix Die for each Shot used. On an Effect, that Shot is lost or broken and you permanently lose it, otherwise you recover the shot.


Applies to any weapon with the Volley quality. For example, bows, crossbows, throwing daggers.

You buy a number of Loads (for example you buy two quivers of arrows). As long as you have at least one Load you can continue to fire the weapon without needing to track ammo. If you have no Loads then you cannot attack with that weapon.

You can spend one Load to perform a Volley (ch 6, p154). This adds one bonus d20 to the Ranged Weapons test and one Phoenix Die to the damage, if it hits.

At the end of a scene, you roll one Phoenix Die for each Load used. On an Effect, that Load is lost or broken and you permanently lose it, otherwise you recover the shot.


One possible result of a Complication is that you might permanently lose a Shot or Load.