When can I use Break Guard?

It says in the core rule book, the “Break Guard” Momentum spend can only be used on attacks or Defend Reactions.

So what exactly is meant by “attack”? Is it specifically melee, ranged attacks or threaten attacks or does any offensive action against the target count? I’m asking because in the old forum I remember a post where a character uses Acrobatics as part of an Exploit action to basically Ninja jump behind the target. In that post it was said that Momentum from this Exploit action could be used to Break Guard. Is that correct?

I plan to play it as any action that would let you get closer (inside of the defender’s weapon’s range) to the opponent. Definitely all melee attacks, the acrobatics trick you mention would make sense, and other actions similar to that. A ranged attack would not make much sense, but extreme cases of threaten…maybe. If you threaten an opponent enough he might drop his guard as he hesitates.

Ranged attacks don’t really work, as a character who loses Guard at range can regain it as a free action, but it might be useful if you do it just before an ally charges.

As a rule of thumb, the Momentum spends listed in the rules are examples and common options, but you’re free to allow other options (or unusual uses of existing options) that make sense in your own games. Acrobatics to outmanoeuvre the target, or a feint with the Parry skill, or Persuade to bluff, trick, or threaten a foe, are all reasonable options.

It’s also a useful consequence that might come from a complication - if you attack, but suffer a complication in the process, you might lose your own Guard as you leave yourself exposed.


So basically whatever makes sense narratively (as determined by the GM). That’s cool. Thanks.

Reviving an older thread around this topic in order to confirm something with the community.

Let’s say I have a bunch of DOOM in my pool and my Toughened or Nemesis baddy wants to break the guard of one of my PCs.

Does my Toughened or Nemesis character need to first generate enough DOOM during his own attack in order to BREAK GUARD (at a cost of 2 generated DOOM)?


Can my Toughened or Nemesis character spend 2 DOOM from the pool on his turn to BREAK GUARD and immediately use his STANDARD ACTION to ATTACK, at which point his target is unable to PARRY?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

No. This Momentum Spend has a restriction of:

May only be used on an attack or a Defend Reaction.

So you must roll for an attack or defense skill test before you may spend the 2 Momentum.
You cannot first spend the Momentum and then make the attack (or defense) test.

You can make an attack, spend 2 Momentum to break guard, then make another Swift Attack for further 2 Momentum and profit from the broken guard of your opponent.

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Many thanks, Frank. I suspected the same as the latter would be very OP. Thank you for confirming.