With the addition of this post, I want to explain that I am phasing out 'subdual' attack ... I've never particularly liked it as a combat solution. Basically, since reducing an enemy's hit points has never meant actually causing physical 'harm' to an opponent, it has always bugged me that "using the flat of the sword" was the avoidance of causing real harm when normal attacking didn't cause real harm.
It seemed equally dumb that subdual damage was 1/10th of normal, but was still treated as full damage in terms of the actual combat ... the Gygaxian solution to not having to kill your opponent, while using the same, unchanged system.
Never worked for me.
So from now on, there's no such thing as 'subdual damage.'
The system will be this: if you don't want to cause a lot of damage, don't use your weapon, use your fist. If you want to pull down your opponent without killing him, grapple him. If you don't want to use your fist and you don't want to grapple, but you insist on using your weapon, well - I can't help you. Either use a smaller weapon or stop using it altogether.
For any leveled person, you can pretty much count on dropping that person into the negatives with your weapon and then easily grappling and or punching him unconscious. For any other creature, I am instituting a policy that they will still live, but can take no action whatsoever, if reduced to -4 to 0 hit points.