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Plausible Deniability Questions

 Post subject: Plausible Deniability Questions
PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 2:31 am 
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Those came about from reading RobbieBuckshotLaFunk's Plausible Deniability RPG 40K Mod (which can be found in the Sci-Fi forum Plasma Pistol thread). He said to go ahead and ask for clarifications, so I will.

What die, and in what way, is used for task resolution? The sample profiles given seem to suggest a D12, in a "roll equal to or lover than the tested stat" scheme. This could work well for a wargame, but if PD is supposed to be an RPG then it seems to me to be a little too limited a scale, especially as the system seem not to include any skills as separate numbers from stats (CC and RC are stats, not skills – looks like WFRP).

Actions – what is the mechanic for them? I've seen Full and Additional One-Handed Actions mentioned.

Spread, Rapid Fire, Low Velocity, Stopping Power – what do they mean, rules-wise?

Increasing the rate of fire – mentioned with some weapons that may not do it. How does it work?

Moving Modifier – how does it work? When reading the pistol section I thought it was simple – a negative To Hit modifier for firing on the move – but that went to Hel once it turned out that most Basic/Special and Heavy weapons have a positive one.

Re-load XxY – I understand the Y is the number of Actions it takes to reload. But how does the first number work? On some weapons X is equal to the ammo count in a single magazine (clip, whatever), on others it isn't (something to do with Spread / Rapid Fire?). Explanations given with some weapons state that X is the number of Shooting Actions after which the weapon has to be reloaded. But the individual ammo count of many of them produces numbers with decimals when divided through X. Some weapons, like Flamers or Plasmas, have no individual ammo count given at all.

Concealability – mentioned in some descriptions, but no mechanic for it. Is it supposed to be handled with common sense (which, as we all know, is very often actually not common but different for everybody)? Why not offer at least a rough mechanic guideline, like in "Cyberpunk 2020" (weapons and other items have 4 Concealability Categories: P – in pocket, J – under jacket, L – under long coat, N – impossible to conceal; belonging to a certain category does not necessarily mean the item is completely undetectable by sight when so hidden – it still might be given away to a sharp observer by bulges in the clothing).

Firing Las weapons High and Low power – seems very unbalanced. High power uses up twice the ammo for a measly +2 to damage, and Low power uses up half the ammo for only a –4 damage. Is the damage mechanic so finely tuned that these are actually worthwhile? Otherwise I see absolutely no reason why anybody would ever fire at anything other than Low power, doubling the ammo carried at the cost of an insignificant damage reduction. Related to that:

Damage – how does it work, how is it resolved? From what I see, I suspect a simple WFRP-like system of Damage - (Toughness + Armor) = Wound Points lost, but I may be wrong. Are there any stat penalties for being wounded? And how is damage resolved against vehicles?

Difference 14 / 20 mm Bolters – if they're supposed to be the same thing, only with different calibers, then why the 14mm versions does not seem to feature the explosive charge? The description does mention "blowing a human in half". Speaking of which:

Explosive X/Y – how does that work, and what do the numbers mean?

SFSH X – from the Energy Fields sections, I know it means Sound Flash Smoke Heat, and X is a bonus to detect the user because of same. I figure it works the same for weapons. But many weapons have no SFSH attribute, and some of those, like Bolters, gain it when silenced. So does that mean that that the user of a weapon without SFSH is automatically detected when he fires?

ExR X – because of some notes in weapon profiles I figured out it has something to do with Extending Range. How does that work?

Mirror Field – costs 20 points more than Cameleoline, but it has a higher Encumbrance and a 3x shorter battery life and is otherwise identical. So why is it more expensive?

Grav-Chute – seems to be better than a Flip Belt in some areas. Why the Move increase? And the better jump? Isn't it supposed to be just a parachute?

Jump-Pack – more Move bonus but no actual jump increase over the Grav-Chute?

I can't make heads or tails of falling and reductions of damage from same by the above items.

Digi-Lasers, etc. – a single one does 2+2D6 damage, but combining several only grants a +3 bonus for each above the first. WTF? I understand all are than resolved as a single hit, taking Armor, Toughness, etc. into account only once, but still it seems a little low (it's not even half of nominal damage). It gets even worse for Knuckles and Gauntlets. Why not resolve each one separately? A purely game balance thing?

Pacificus Axis – the other human power in the galaxy beside the Imperium you always complained of 40K not having? So who are they exactly – any fluff on them yet? Or do we have to wait some more?

That's all I can think of for now. When you gave permission to ask questions, you probably didn't expect having to explain most, if not all, of the ruleset, Robbie. :D Sorry about that. I'm just a naturally inquisitive type.

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 Post subject: Re: Plausible Deniability Questions
PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2007 7:34 am 
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Thankyou for your interest. :D

Kathara Khan wrote:
What die, and in what way, is used for task resolution? The sample profiles given seem to suggest a D12, in a "roll equal to or lover than the tested stat" scheme. This could work well for a wargame, but if PD is supposed to be an RPG then it seems to me to be a little too limited a scale, especially as the system seem not to include any skills as separate numbers from stats (CC and RC are stats, not skills – looks like WFRP).

You assume correctly. Pretty much all statistic based rolls use a D12, where you modify the statistic by all the contributing modifiers, then try to roll equal to or under the modified statistic on a D12. The margin of success on the roll, and sometimes the margin of failure, are important, as they are used for things like determining how far you miss by, or for the game's equivalent of 'critical hits', where the margin of success is added as damage. The game uses only D12 and D6s [and D3s].
If you mean you don't think a D12 has the necessary range of results for a role-playing game, it's not something that's ever occurred to me, it's never caused any problems for me in writing the rules and the underlying mechanics.
I have always disliked D20s, and in D100 games, I always find the level of detail in variation pretty pointless as modifiers always seem to come in units of 5, 10, 20, etc.
I've found that a D12 provides a perfectly serviceable amount of variation, and it ties in with the rest of the system's mechanics.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Actions – what is the mechanic for them? I've seen Full and Additional One-Handed Actions mentioned.

Basically, in a character's turn, he can take a Moving action and an Additional action, or a Full action. Moving actions often modify your required roll if you're performing an Additional action at the same time, and many Additional actions only require - or at least can be attempted with - only one hand. For example, you can move and fire at the same time, but the further you move (as a percentage of your Movement statistic) the greater the negative modifier on your Ranged Combat. And you can theoretically use pretty much any weapon one-handed, to use two weapons at once, but the modifiers for doing so usually make it not worthwhile unless they're pistols fired at close range, or the user is just extremely strong.
If you perform a Full action, you can't do anything else, except appropriate 'free' actions, like talk.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Spread, Rapid Fire, Low Velocity, Stopping Power – what do they mean, rules-wise?

*Spread means the weapon's standard shooting action represents multiple bullets being fired, which are abstracted and resolved as a single attack (usually). It means that since multiple bullets are being fired, you can spread the damage of the attack amongst multiple targets, in close proximity. You could use this to intentionally attack multiple targets, or you could use it to try and apply excess damage on a secondary target, if your attack kills the initial target and you have damage left over. Spread* means that the weapon is automatic, but only fires one shot per shooting action, so you can apply excess damage to a secondary target, but you expend another round of ammunition in doing so.
*Rapid Fire means that the weapon is automatic, and either especially powerful, or has an especially fast rate of fire, so a standard attack with it is resolved as multiple attacks. It's the equivalent of sustained fire.
*Low Velocity means that the projectiles are fired at sub-sonic velocity, which is generally bad for piercing armour (+50% armour bonus), but it also means the weapon is very quiet when fitted with a suppresser.
*Stopping Power means the projectiles deform of fragment on impact, more efficiently inflicting additional damage on soft tissue. Against unarmoured targets, if a weapon with Low Velocity manages to inflict any damage, the target takes an additional D6 damage. This is partially a balance for Low Velocity weapon's poor performance against armour; Low Velocity weapons usually also have Stopping Power.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Increasing the rate of fire – mentioned with some weapons that may not do it. How does it work?

Well, it's a little tricky to explain.
Basically, a standard shooting action represents a fairly prudent expenditure of ammunition, striking a balance between precision and weight of fire. But if you want, you have the option of effectively emptying your magazine a your target, which can be advantageous, and somewhat wasteful.
Weapons that can't increase rate of fire would usually have a recharge time, or something like that, usually in place as an artificial balance.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Moving Modifier – how does it work? When reading the pistol section I thought it was simple – a negative To Hit modifier for firing on the move – but that went to Hel once it turned out that most Basic/Special and Heavy weapons have a positive one.

Heheheh, yeah. Negative Moving Modifier good, positive Moving Modifier bad. I wanted to have it the other way around, since that sort of makes more sense, but in the end, I found the rules much easier to explain as is.
There are already default modifiers for moving and shooting at the same time in place; the Moving Modifier of individual weapons alters this. So weapons like pistols and sub machineguns are not as inaccurate on the move, while heavy rifles and machineguns are very inaccurate if fired while moving.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Re-load XxY – I understand the Y is the number of Actions it takes to reload. But how does the first number work? On some weapons X is equal to the ammo count in a single magazine (clip, whatever), on others it isn't (something to do with Spread / Rapid Fire?). Explanations given with some weapons state that X is the number of Shooting Actions after which the weapon has to be reloaded. But the individual ammo count of many of them produces numbers with decimals when divided through X. Some weapons, like Flamers or Plasmas, have no individual ammo count given at all.

X is the number of standard shooting actions a weapon can make from its normal magazine. Most automatic weapons have the multiple shots they fire abstracted into a single attack. The average 30 round assault rifle gets 4 regular shooting actions before it is empty, averaging 7.5 shots each action.
That may or may not seem like a weird/retarded concept. :P
I can elaborate on it if you like, but basically, it's part of the game's fundamental calibration and dynamics, and it is intended as a contrast to combat rules in pretty much every other role-playing game I have ever read, which typically suffer from the following:
*Not nearly enough rounds are fired.
*Firearms are not nearly deadly enough even relative to the insufficient number of rounds that are fired.
*It is too hard to hit your target in the first place.
*Rolling to see what piece of anatomy each bullet hits and what it does to it is time consuming and somewhat pointless, since most people that get hit with multiple bullets are dead or otherwise incapacitated (or at least they bloody well should be) and not really worth spending that much time repeatedly rolling dice for and consulting injury charts, etc.
My system avoids that by abstracting it and focussing on the important bit, which is the end results.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Concealability – mentioned in some descriptions, but no mechanic for it. Is it supposed to be handled with common sense (which, as we all know, is very often actually not common but different for everybody)? Why not offer at least a rough mechanic guideline, like in "Cyberpunk 2020" (weapons and other items have 4 Concealability Categories: P – in pocket, J – under jacket, L – under long coat, N – impossible to conceal; belonging to a certain category does not necessarily mean the item is completely undetectable by sight when so hidden – it still might be given away to a sharp observer by bulges in the clothing).

It is primarily down to "common sense"...
If I do write a guide to concealability, it will be based around weapon Encumberment.
I have always hated hard and fast concealability rules and categories, since ultimately, concealability is very subjective to the situation and occasion you are in and who you are concealing things from. I think it should come down to a relative statistic which is modified by the relevant circumstancial factors.
But on the other hand, I think that is all pretty irrelevant compared to determining the general level of 'shiftyness' of an individual. Sure your trench coat may conceal your Kalashnikov, but your long coat, dark glasses and anxious behaviour make you look pretty damn suspicious regardless...

Kathara Khan wrote:
Firing Las weapons High and Low power – seems very unbalanced. High power uses up twice the ammo for a measly +2 to damage, and Low power uses up half the ammo for only a –4 damage. Is the damage mechanic so finely tuned that these are actually worthwhile? Otherwise I see absolutely no reason why anybody would ever fire at anything other than Low power, doubling the ammo carried at the cost of an insignificant damage reduction.

Since the damage rules work by trying to beat the level of the target's defences and applying the excess, I can only imagine the low power/high power rules being used in a small number of situations, which is what I wanted. You'd use high power in situations where ammunition expenditure is the last of your worries, such as when you're going to be dead if you don't zap your adversary dead first. I don't mind making low power a relatively attractive option, but I still don't think it would be used that often. In most circumstances, you will be trying to incapacitate your adversaries as quickly as possible so that they do not get the chance to attack back, and those four points of damage can very easily make all the difference.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Related to that:

Damage – how does it work, how is it resolved? From what I see, I suspect a simple WFRP-like system of Damage - (Toughness + Armor) = Wound Points lost, but I may be wrong. Are there any stat penalties for being wounded? And how is damage resolved against vehicles?

You've got it right. A target adds its Toughness and Armour together, and deducts it from an attack's damage roll, any excess being deducted from the target's Wound Points.
I think I wrote up a simple set of stat. modifiers relative to percentage of remaining Wound Points somewhere, but it's not something I use in the default game, it's an optional rule. It is, however, possible to 'stun' a target by inflicting enough damage on them in a single attack, and simmilarly possible to render them unconscious or otherwise incapacitated without having to remove all of their Wound Points.
Vehicles, robots, and cyborgs that are primarily mechanical, just have an Armour statistic instead of a Toughness statistic. They're damaged in the normal manner. I haven't written extensive vehicle rules yet, but with the few vehicles I have made rules for, their entries are almost self-explanatory. For the purposes of damage, they have a number of individually targetable locations. If you want more detail on that, just ask.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Difference 14 / 20 mm Bolters – if they're supposed to be the same thing, only with different calibers, then why the 14mm versions does not seem to feature the explosive charge? The description does mention "blowing a human in half".

The explosive power of a 14mm round isn't considered great enough to warrant an actual blast. The blast effect of the 20mm bolt round is pretty much the smallest and least powerful blast of any fragmenting warhead in the game. :P I've also heard stories of [entirely inert] 12.7mm rounds blowing people in half, but the 14mm round's explosion is confined to causing excessive damage, without posing a significant risk of collateral damage through blast or fragments. I was going to add a note about how only heavily armoured troops and especially fearless/reckless individuals use 14mm bolt guns, because of the risk of shrapnel injuries when firing at close range, despite the lack of significant blast, but realistically, the same could be said of ricochets from any given projectile weapon when fired at close range at hard targets.
One last thing; my amateur calculation estimate that even with only 6mm difference, the volume of a 20mm projectile would be very close to twice that of a 14mm one of the same length. The 20mm bolt would be longer, so it's safe to assume twice the explosive power.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Speaking of which:

Explosive X/Y – how does that work, and what do the numbers mean?

These weapons have each round fired resolved separately, which makes them very powerful. Y is the total number of shots the weapon is capable of firing in a turn, which represents 2-3 seconds, and X is the number of rounds that may be fired before an additional Ranged Combat modifier is incurred. So you can blast off 30 rounds from a 20mm bolt gun in a turn, but each group of 5 rounds after the first will be increasingly inaccurate.

Kathara Khan wrote:
SFSH X – from the Energy Fields sections, I know it means Sound Flash Smoke Heat, and X is a bonus to detect the user because of same. I figure it works the same for weapons. But many weapons have no SFSH attribute, and some of those, like Bolters, gain it when silenced. So does that mean that that the user of a weapon without SFSH is automatically detected when he fires?

When I wrote the core rules, weapons were divided into categories, so when I did section on detecting attackers, there was a list of modifiers applied to groups of weapons. So weapons that fit into categories like 'assault rifles', 'sub machineguns', etc. didn't need an SFSH statistic; you can just refer back to that central list of modifiers for that particular class of weapon. When I wrote expanded rules for wacky Science-Fiction weapons that didn't clearly fit into one of the established categories, I added the SFSH statistic, so that the relevant information is listed in the weapon's profile.
It is something that needs to be cleaned up though, I'll probably add SFSH statistics to all weapons in the 40K mod. file for sake of convenience and to avoid any confusion.

Kathara Khan wrote:
ExR X – because of some notes in weapon profiles I figured out it has something to do with Extending Range. How does that work?

As above, most ‘conventional’ weapons have their Extended Ranges listed in the core rules by category of weapon.
The given ranges in weapon profiles are meant to represent effective engagement ranges against dynamic targets that are actively trying to avoid being shot. If you have time to take careful aim at a stationary target, the effective ranges of the weapons are substantially longer, several times longer in fact.
So for example, if you have the time to take careful aim with a las-cannon, you can multiply its range of 198” 8 times, to 1584”, which roughly translates to 3168 metres.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Mirror Field – costs 20 points more than Cameleoline, but it has a higher Encumbrance and a 3x shorter battery life and is otherwise identical. So why is it more expensive?

Good question. Part of the reason wound be convenience, since you can simply pick it up off a dead guy (if you can find his body), clip it to your belt, turn it on, and become more or less invisible. A Cameleoline wouldn’t be quite as easy to adopt for your own use – realistically for full effect you’d need numerous custom made items of clothing. I think I may make separate entries for ‘Full Cameleoline’ and ‘Cameleoline Cloak’, the latter being not quite as effective but a lot simpler to use.
However, I think you may have spotted a genuine mistake. I probably meant to make the Mirror Field grant a slightly higher level of concealment, but pasted the Cameleoline’s rules, got distracted, and forgot about it. :P

Kathara Khan wrote:
Grav-Chute – seems to be better than a Flip Belt in some areas. Why the Move increase? And the better jump? Isn't it supposed to be just a parachute?

My interpretation of Grav Chutes is that they look like what the Elysian Drop Troop models have, and are used like small Jump Packs for increased mobility on the ground, not just as parachutes. I don’t have a direct equivalent of the purely parachute Grav Chute.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Jump-Pack – more Move bonus but no actual jump increase over the Grav-Chute?

The increased Movement bonus indirectly translates into an increased jump, since the size of the jump is calculated from the available Movement. I’ve interpreted Jump Packs as allowing the user to make powered leaps, as opposed to allowing the user to more or less fly, as they are sometimes depicted.

Kathara Khan wrote:
I can't make heads or tails of falling and reductions of damage from same by the above items.

Heh, effectively it all translates to ‘don’t worry about falling, you won’t take any damage’. :P
Falling damage is normally calculated as a number of D3s depending on how far an individual falls before they hit the ground. The items in this section aren’t finished yet, so I may adjust them once the capabilities of all equipment in this category is laid out.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Digi-Lasers, etc. – a single one does 2+2D6 damage, but combining several only grants a +3 bonus for each above the first. WTF? I understand all are than resolved as a single hit, taking Armor, Toughness, etc. into account only once, but still it seems a little low (it's not even half of nominal damage). It gets even worse for Knuckles and Gauntlets. Why not resolve each one separately? A purely game balance thing?

It’s sort of a balance issue, but it’s also sort of a usefulness issue. Usually, only automatic weapons that are extremely powerful or have an extremely fast rate of fire qualify for an ability to make multiple attacks in the one action. And again, because you are trying to beat the target’s combined Toughness and Armour, even a small increase in damage will be far more useful than a second weak attack.
Consider attacking a Guardsman in Flak Armour, whose combined Toughness/Armour is 9. An average damage roll from the Digi-Laser is 9 – you’d be depending margin of success and a lucky damage roll to inflict any damage at all. And a Guardsman is not an especially resilient individual. If you make 3 separate 2+2D6 attacks and roll average, you’ll have 3 attacks that are lucky to inflict any damage. If you make 1 attack with +6 damage from 2 additional shots, you are more likely to overcome the Guardsman’s Toughness/Armour resistance by a wider margin and inflict more damage.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Pacificus Axis – the other human power in the galaxy beside the Imperium you always complained of 40K not having? So who are they exactly – any fluff on them yet? Or do we have to wait some more?

They’re an Axis (alliance) of multiple human-populated planets in the Segmentum Pacificus. They are generally non-aggressive and non-expansionist, and have a tenuous non-aggression treaty with the Imperium.
I suspect the treaty would have been reached after several engagements during attempts at forced-assimilation, in which the Imperium got horribly pwned by a numerically inferior adversary with a beyond-visual-range military capability they couldn’t comprehend.
I wrote a partial Pacificus Axis army list. It predominantly features power armoured human infantry supported by Starship Troopers-[the book]-esque heavy power armoured jump infantry, which I suppose would make the army almost Tau-like.
I have also written an approximately 25,000-word story featuring a Pacificus Axis faction as the antagonists. It is currently waiting for me to arrange the ending in a suitably elaborate and tactically accountable manner…

Kathara Khan wrote:
That's all I can think of for now. When you gave permission to ask questions, you probably didn't expect having to explain most, if not all, of the ruleset, Robbie. :D Sorry about that. I'm just a naturally inquisitive type.

You’re welcome. If you, or anyone else, have any more questions, post away.

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PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2007 1:49 am 
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Thanks for the explanations. It's all much clearer now. Some comments:

The die thing - I'd have to try a D12 sometime. It's just that this particular scheme of task resolution strikes me as very wargame-y instead of RPG-like. And I could somehow never look very favorably on RPGs that did not use a proper Stat and Skill system, instead making WS etc. a stat and having skills as basically checkboxes ("I can / I can't", with no experience variation), like WFRP. I dislike D20's in RPGs too, although it has nothing to do with the die itself, rather with the one particular system that has become the paragon of its use. Material for a different rant. My favorite is the D10, used in a "Stat + Skill + Modifiers vs. Target Number" scheme. It just somehow feels most natural to me.

Actions - check.

Spread, Rapid Fire, Low Velocity, Stopping Power - check.

Increasing the rate of fire - check.

Moving Modifier - again a matter of personal taste, but I always disliked systems that made negative modifiers good and positive ones bad - for me it's just completely counterintuitive and out of whack. Of course, you can say that, like here, the modifier adds to the Difficulty instead of the character Stat, but if you have it one way for one rule, then if only possible you should keep to it for every rule instead of having it one way and then another for different situations, or so I believe. I think the human instinctive reaction is more=better. Of course it's not always true in real life, but for simplicity's sake I like to keep it that way in wargames and RPG. This applies to dice rolling as well. Yes, the "roll equal to or lover than the tested stat" scheme is simpler and works well, but again goes counter to instinct by saying "the less you roll the better". That's why I prefer to have "Die Roll + Stat + Modifiers vs. Target Number". It increases the maths required a little, but not that much I think, and avoids the "less is more" silliness.

Re-load - I guess I know where you're coming from. It was somewhat of a problem for me in CP2020, where armor outstripped firearms in their eternal race, and even without armor a strongly built person could shrug off a .22 bullet to the head. It all depends on which elements you want to be realistic and to what extent. You want realistic firearms lethality, without necessarily realistic hit locations. If nothing else, it lets you avoid the conundrum of "to what location should we apply damage from an explosion?". But what happens when, for example, the target has a cybernetic limb? If the limb was hit, the owner would not actually suffer any damage, instead his prostetic could be destroyed. For me that would be an important distinction, and one that requires hit locations. And I always disliked games (coughd&dcough) that let you take tons of damage without an effect on your performance, until suddenly you hit 0 HP and drop dead on the spot. Wound penalties are important - even if the system is less than lethal, including them will make the players less inclined to risk their health.

Concealability – well, I'm not talking hard categories, rather guidelines. And even if you look unsuspicious and you're the coolest cat around, that does not mean that those guards won't notice that bulge in your jacket...

Firing Las weapons High and Low power – check. But I'd still make High power +4 - come on, it doubles the ammo expenditure.

Damage - check.

Bolters - check.

Explosive X/Y - ah, so the two are separate stats? Check.

SFSH - check.

ExR - check.

Cameleoline and Mirror Field - The rules did not make that sufficiently clear (at least for a dummy like me :P ), but I understand now that Cam is like a coating for clothing, whereas the MF is an actual personal field. Check.

Grav-Chute - check.

Jump-Pack - ah, that's what I've been missing, that the jump increase is calculated from the Move with the bonus. Could have figured it out, but it somehow slipped past me. Check.

Falling - check.

Digi-Lasers, etc. – check, although I still feel the bonus is a little low. They are not a single automatic weapon, they're several weapons firing simultaneously, and they are not one weapon firing at higher power, so I don't really see an excuse from that end. Game balance, like you say. But I'll probably make the bonus a +1D6 or so. It's just very counterintuitive, that, firing on an unarmored target, you are better off firing at him twice, in consecutive rounds or with separate hands, than hitting him at once with what realistically is the same amount of weapons fire.

Pacificus Axis – check. I'll be interested to read it once you're finished.

And that's a wrap for now. Thank you for your time.

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PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 7:10 am 
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Kathara Khan wrote:
The die thing - I'd have to try a D12 sometime. It's just that this particular scheme of task resolution strikes me as very wargame-y instead of RPG-like.

Actually, the basic mechanics of the rules were originally intended for wargaming, since I wanted a much more detailed system for skirmish games. But in practice, the system has worked perfectly well for role-playing. I think everyone who has used it has found it to be relatively simple, straightforward and logical. People with any familiarity with role-playing or wargaming have been able to get a good grasp of the system in next to no time and even start independently writing additional rules. Out of everyone that has ever used or read the system, I've never had anyone come back and say they didn't think it worked well as a role-playing game, or that they thought it would be better suited to wargaming.

Kathara Khan wrote:
And I could somehow never look very favorably on RPGs that did not use a proper Stat and Skill system, instead making WS etc. a stat and having skills as basically checkboxes ("I can / I can't", with no experience variation), like WFRP. I dislike D20's in RPGs too, although it has nothing to do with the die itself, rather with the one particular system that has become the paragon of its use. Material for a different rant. My favorite is the D10, used in a "Stat + Skill + Modifiers vs. Target Number" scheme. It just somehow feels most natural to me.

I'm not sure of what real advantages there would be to using the particular system you suggest, or of any others.
My system uses mechanics I'm familiar with and is calibrated within the desired parameters using those mechanics. Basically, it all works in the way intended, and to do it differently, it would be more work to come to the same end result.

I absolutely cannot stand systems where you get 'skill points' or equivalent to spread amongst a wide range of skills, where your character is inevitably a complete gimp at some basic task because you haven't allotted any skill points to it. If that's appropriate to the setting or the campaign, fair enough. But in a game where the default scenario revolves around trained professional soldiers/fighters, usually *highly* trained, it seems very silly to me to waste time and convolute things with a skill system, when it should be very safe to assume a reasonable level of competence in pretty much all relevant areas.
The classis example to illustrate this is:
'My 1337 Sp3cial Forc3s Solj3r drops a grenade into the room through the window.'
'Roll and add your grenade bonus.'
'But I'm just *dropping* it through the window?'
'You have to use the appropriate skill.'
'Hmm. I didn't spend any points on my grenade-use-applicable skill. I spent them on more useful things. Damn, I rolled really low.'
'You missed.'
'I missed dropping the grenade through the open window?'
'Yes. The grenade lands at your feet and explodes. You are dead.'
Etc.

Kathara Khan wrote:
I think the human instinctive reaction is more=better. Of course it's not always true in real life, but for simplicity's sake I like to keep it that way in wargames and RPG. This applies to dice rolling as well. Yes, the "roll equal to or lover than the tested stat" scheme is simpler and works well, but again goes counter to instinct by saying "the less you roll the better". That's why I prefer to have "Die Roll + Stat + Modifiers vs. Target Number". It increases the maths required a little, but not that much I think, and avoids the "less is more" silliness.

It's not something that has ever been an issue. The only comments on the reversing of desirable rolls is that it is a pleasant change to be happy when you roll a 1. :P
But it all works in favour of simplicity. The idea is to require as few charts and tables as possible. I hate charts and tables. If you took the 40K shooting rules and changed it so that instead of referencing your Ballistic Skill's required to hit roll, you just try to roll equal to or under your Ballistic Skill on D6, it would work out exactly the same and the game would use one less chart. Of course, that isn't really a problem for 40K, since just about everyone has the to hit charts memorised and they're pretty simple anyway.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Re-load - I guess I know where you're coming from. It was somewhat of a problem for me in CP2020, where armor outstripped firearms in their eternal race, and even without armor a strongly built person could shrug off a .22 bullet to the head. It all depends on which elements you want to be realistic and to what extent. You want realistic firearms lethality, without necessarily realistic hit locations. If nothing else, it lets you avoid the conundrum of "to what location should we apply damage from an explosion?".

The thing is, I have never seen a role-playing game with hit location rules that was actually realistic. There's a number of factors at work; the realism of combat as a whole, the realism of injuries and effects, and the actual playability (fun) of the system.
First, I've never seen a system with hit locations where the actual over-all resolution of combat actually played out in a realistic manner, mainly due to the turn sequence and weapon effects. Things that work in the game and work well, simply wouldn't work in real life, or shouldn't work in the contextual reality of the setting. Anyone claiming their game of choice is more realistic because combat/damage is resolved using separate body locations is probably overlooking something more important.
Second, I can't recall a system with hit locations where it went into any more detail than 'left leg, right leg, head, abdomen, right arm, right hand, etc.'
Different levels of damage to a location are one thing, but there's a world of difference between getting shot in the thigh and shot in the knee, or having an anti-material round remove your leg just below the hip, or just above the ankle.
Armour for such systems always seems to protect the whole location with no regard to what is or would be vulnerable from different angles, etc.
So third, if you derive a logical solution to those shortcomings, you have a system that is far too cumbersome to be playable.
What matters are the end results, and I think a system that focuses on implementing those end results, rather than agonising over how you generate them, will ultimately be more playable, and potentially no less realistic.

Kathara Khan wrote:
But what happens when, for example, the target has a cybernetic limb? If the limb was hit, the owner would not actually suffer any damage, instead his prostetic could be destroyed. For me that would be an important distinction, and one that requires hit locations.

That would depend on what sort of 'cybernetics' were in the setting.
Clunky metal limbs that wouldn't actually work and that next to no one would actually want attached to them in real life might react quite differently to real limbs when shot. Real cybernetics would more likely be made primarily from plastic or similar, and would try to replicate the performance of a real limb. You couldn't just attach a 'super strong' limb simply because the rest of the body isn't strong enough to support it. Also, there have already been donor limbs attached to amputees and replacement human organs grown in or on animals. So I think 'cloned' or otherwise grown replacement limbs will be a reality long before cybernetic limbs.
But, I don't see any more need for hit locations with cybernetics than without. The cybernetic limb is hit and destroyed but the owner doesn't take any damage? It doesn't make that much more sense than saying the normal limb is hit and destroyed but the owner doesn't take any damage, depending on the type of cybernetics.

Kathara Khan wrote:
And I always disliked games (coughd&dcough) that let you take tons of damage without an effect on your performance, until suddenly you hit 0 HP and drop dead on the spot. Wound penalties are important - even if the system is less than lethal, including them will make the players less inclined to risk their health.

I agree, mostly.
But, I would say that in a system where you *can't* take loads of damage before expiring, wound penalties aren't as important and may well be inappropriate.
There are a few contributing factors though. I think it would be silly if a game has detailed location damage and wound effects, but the game's 'healing' and/or first aid rules make it easy for characters to be restored to perfect health within a short period of time after an encounter. And in the interests of playability (fun) I really don't like the idea of a system where a character takes a stray bullet to the foot (or worse) in an early encounter and is forced to limp and hobble about for the rest of the session and for days or weeks afterwards, or even not participate at all.
So on the one hand you can say that wound effects are good and realistic and promote sensible gameplay, but on the other, taken to their extreme, realistically implemented, they're going to ruin the day (and days, weeks, months, etc.) of the character/s who do suffer the consequences. And that's usually not what people role-play for.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Concealability – well, I'm not talking hard categories, rather guidelines. And even if you look unsuspicious and you're the coolest cat around, that does not mean that those guards won't notice that bulge in your jacket...

That's basically what Encumberment provides. Anything with a stat of 1 or above isn't going to fit in your jeans pocket. 2-3 will require a coat or a violin case. 4-5 kilograms of rifle is going to require some creativity to conceal. As uncommon as common sense may be, at this stage I am hopeful that people would be able to work out for themselves where you can and cannot fit items of certain sizes.
With spotting/detection I think it really comes down the situation. You could stick a fake pistol through your belt or a replica sub machinegun under your coat, and go pretty much anywhere without anyone being suspicious. Even walk into a police station and talk multiple officers without them asking questions or making observations, simply because a person with a concealed weapon is not something they're looking for in that situation. On the other hand, someone manning a security checkpoint in a government building may well be on the look out for just that sort of thing.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Firing Las weapons High and Low power – check. But I'd still make High power +4 - come on, it doubles the ammo expenditure.

It originally was +4. But I'm pretty much convinced that a +4 bonus would lead to just about everyone using high power all the time. Las-Guns have good ammunition capacity, so even halved; it's not that big a deal.
It would also make the Hell-Gun/Hotshot Las-Gun pretty redundant, and would likely make Auto-Guns less viable.
I considered making a Hell-Gun nothing more than a regular Las-Gun set to high power, but there is definitely background information to support the Hell-Gun as a separate weapon.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Digi-Lasers, etc. – check, although I still feel the bonus is a little low. They are not a single automatic weapon, they're several weapons firing simultaneously, and they are not one weapon firing at higher power, so I don't really see an excuse from that end. Game balance, like you say. But I'll probably make the bonus a +1D6 or so. It's just very counterintuitive, that, firing on an unarmored target, you are better off firing at him twice, in consecutive rounds or with separate hands, than hitting him at once with what realistically is the same amount of weapons fire.

Don't expect too much from a weapon that only costs 2 points. :P
While you would likely inflict more damage on an unarmoured opponent with each digilaser resolved as a separate attack, I envision them being more useful in a wider range of situations with multiple lasers being resolved as a single attack with a damage bonus for each additional laser. You could always stick a couple on each hand if you want to make two separate attacks.
But with pretty much all weapons where an attack is an abstraction of multiple shots, you would of course get better efficiency firing single rounds under ideal conditions. There are options for doing so with rifles, etc. The default rules are just set up to make things easier to resolve and over-all more effective under the adverse conditions normally encountered.

I haven’t been working on anything lately so I don’t have anything new to report at the moment. :P

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Here I go again.

Quote:
I'm not sure of what real advantages there would be to using the particular system you suggest, or of any others.
My system uses mechanics I'm familiar with and is calibrated within the desired parameters using those mechanics. Basically, it all works in the way intended, and to do it differently, it would be more work to come to the same end result.

I absolutely cannot stand systems where you get 'skill points' or equivalent to spread amongst a wide range of skills, where your character is inevitably a complete gimp at some basic task because you haven't allotted any skill points to it.
...(snip)...
Etc.

Ah, you see, here we have a difference in our personal experiences. I understand what you're saying, and I see how that could be a problem. But it never became a problem in any game I ever played with my group. We were sensible enough to instinctively work around it with no hassle. If I ever found myself in a situation like what you're describing with the grenade, I wouldn't be angry at the skill system, but at the GM for being an unreasonable, unflexible prick. On the other hand it always pissed us off when, for example in WFRP, a character went from complately inept at a skill to grand master in a moment, just by checking the box next to the skill name. It wasn't so bad with some skills, as they still relied on your stats to actually work, but with others it was plain ridicilous. So that's why I'm complaining.

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The thing is, I have never seen a role-playing game with hit location rules that was actually realistic. There's a number of factors at work; the realism of combat as a whole, the realism of injuries and effects, and the actual playability (fun) of the system.
...(snip)...
What matters are the end results, and I think a system that focuses on implementing those end results, rather than agonising over how you generate them, will ultimately be more playable, and potentially no less realistic.

So okay, maybe I shouldn't have said "realistic". But some kind of hit locations just have to be there for me, even if I later just fudge everything, as a reference if nothing else. They show that the creators of the system at least gave some thought, however superficial, to possible different effects when hitting different areas of the body. A lack of hit locations creates idiotic situations with armor (look at D&D): what if I'm wearing track pants and an armored west? It all depends on the level of abstraction you want to support. I think it's very abstract to treat a spray of bullets as one attack, like you do in PD. Why then don't you accept the abstract armor and damage to locations?

Quote:
That would depend on what sort of 'cybernetics' were in the setting.
...(snip)...
So I think 'cloned' or otherwise grown replacement limbs will be a reality long before cybernetic limbs.

I am fully aware of the super-strong arm on normal body issue and I do use this limitation in my own work. I am also aware that in real life we'll have cloned, natural replacements long before cybernetics, and that it would be more logical for it to be so in game worlds also. But generally when it comes to cybernetics, I don't care about nor want realism. What I want is "Gunnm". So I will not get into a discussion here, as I sense it's just a row waiting to happen.

Quote:
But, I don't see any more need for hit locations with cybernetics than without. The cybernetic limb is hit and destroyed but the owner doesn't take any damage? It doesn't make that much more sense than saying the normal limb is hit and destroyed but the owner doesn't take any damage, depending on the type of cybernetics.

But I will throw in my 5 cents worth here. Of course it's "realistic" (at the level I want at least, which pretty much is "clunky metal limbs that wouldn't actually work and that next to no one would actually want attached to them in real life") for the character not to take any damage when his cyberarm is hit. It moves like it is, but it really isn't a part of their body. It does not feel pain beyond a certain treshold (I think it would be stupid if it did, especially for a military-issue limb). It will not bleed, so it's impossible to die of blood loss through your cyberlimb. On account of both of the above (as I understand it) "wounds" on cyberlimbs will not result in shock. So getting shot in a cyberlimb will not reduce the characters HP - the shot does not really hit him, it hits a piece of machinery that just happens to be attached to his body and serve as his limb. The limb has its own structural integrity that is reduced through damage, and may not function properly when damaged, just like a natural limb, but having it damaged or even destroyed will not result in any actual harm to the character (then we can have exceptions based on technology used or even the exact place the limb is hit - if it's hit where it actually attaches to the body things will be different).

Quote:
I agree, mostly.
But, I would say that in a system where you *can't* take loads of damage before expiring, wound penalties aren't as important and may well be inappropriate.
...(snip)...
So on the one hand you can say that wound effects are good and realistic and promote sensible gameplay, but on the other, taken to their extreme, realistically implemented, they're going to ruin the day (and days, weeks, months, etc.) of the character/s who do suffer the consequences. And that's usually not what people role-play for.

Yes, but there really are more options than all the way in one direction (total abstraction) and all in the other (hardcore realism). And with the foot issue - you're the GM, deal with it. Either make it so he's not shot, or else, if you want to play strictly by the book (why would you I have no idea), provide some opportunities for him to have fun even with his shot foot. That's the way it always worked in my group, and we never had any trouble.

For the las-weapons - I think High Power is definately too weak at +2, you think it would be too good at +4. Well, let's just go in the middle then, and make High Power +3. :P

The rest is okay.

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Deleted - sorry, a double post.

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Kathara Khan wrote:
Ah, you see, here we have a difference in our personal experiences. I understand what you're saying, and I see how that could be a problem. But it never became a problem in any game I ever played with my group. We were sensible enough to instinctively work around it with no hassle. If I ever found myself in a situation like what you're describing with the grenade, I wouldn't be angry at the skill system, but at the GM for being an unreasonable, unflexible prick. On the other hand it always pissed us off when, for example in WFRP, a character went from complately inept at a skill to grand master in a moment, just by checking the box next to the skill name. It wasn't so bad with some skills, as they still relied on your stats to actually work, but with others it was plain ridicilous. So that's why I'm complaining.

To me, it just seems that that's what that type of system wants though. If you don't check the box or allocate the points, you suck and suffer the consequences, no matter how highly skilled you are at anything else, and no matter how badly such severe shortcomings contradict the character or campaign concept.
I think a better system is using your character's statistics as the basis of everything they do that requires skill, and the skills or tasks themselves have an associated modifier to reflect how far removed from the basic statistic they are. So someone that's good at tennis isn't going to be equally good at squash, but the basic statistics/attributes they use that make them good at one, are for the most part transferable to the other, and they'll have a shorter learning curve than someone whose statistics make them good at neither.

Kathara Khan wrote:
So okay, maybe I shouldn't have said "realistic". But some kind of hit locations just have to be there for me, even if I later just fudge everything, as a reference if nothing else. They show that the creators of the system at least gave some thought, however superficial, to possible different effects when hitting different areas of the body. A lack of hit locations creates idiotic situations with armor (look at D&D): what if I'm wearing track pants and an armored west? It all depends on the level of abstraction you want to support.

Basically I see hit location damage as a gigantic can of venomous worms...
I've never seen a combat system with hit locations that was any more inherently realistic than a combat system without, and to make it realistic, it's more trouble than it's worth.
In a system without hit locations, it's very easy to work with locational damage as necessary, as a role-playing element, rather than a rules element. If a player tells me he's emptying a magazine from his machine pistol at a fleeing enemy's legs, then if his attack hits (with modifiers for not shooting at the centre of mass) and causes any significant damage, we don't need rules to determine that the guy's not walking anywhere in a hurry. Otherwise, in general, we'd have a 'don't ask don't tell' policy in regard to location damage, since it's simply not worth the trouble. I don't know about you, but I don't want to roll to see what happens for every one of the 6-30 individual bullets that half a dozen characters and as many 'bad guys' are firing off every turn. :P
So as far as location damage and wound effects are concerned, I think it's better to do it as necessary, rather than as a matter of course. There's just no point in making half a dozen extra dice rolls to determine that a guy is dead. The fact that he's dead is the important part, and 'dead', 'incapacitated', and 'still going' are the three most common outcomes of being shot.
So I think rules should focus on determining what's immediately tactically important.

Kathara Khan wrote:
I think it's very abstract to treat a spray of bullets as one attack, like you do in PD. Why then don't you accept the abstract armor and damage to locations?

I dislike it because it isn't necessarily realistic (usually quite the opposite), it's time consuming, and rarely contributes to playability or 'fun' in a tactical role-playing game. So for me, the means don't justify the ends. Whereas my experience with abstracting numerous shots into one attack is just the opposite. The ends are exactly what they're calibrated to be, and the method of achieving them is pretty straightforward.

Kathara Khan wrote:
What I want is "Gunnm".

Heh, I read about 12 volumes of Gunnm recently. Good stuff, though a bit 'power rangers' at times. Probably my second favourite manga next to Appleseed.

Kathara Khan wrote:
Of course it's "realistic" (at the level I want at least, which pretty much is "clunky metal limbs that wouldn't actually work and that next to no one would actually want attached to them in real life") for the character not to take any damage when his cyberarm is hit. It moves like it is, but it really isn't a part of their body. It does not feel pain beyond a certain treshold (I think it would be stupid if it did, especially for a military-issue limb). It will not bleed, so it's impossible to die of blood loss through your cyberlimb. On account of both of the above (as I understand it) "wounds" on cyberlimbs will not result in shock. So getting shot in a cyberlimb will not reduce the characters HP - the shot does not really hit him, it hits a piece of machinery that just happens to be attached to his body and serve as his limb. The limb has its own structural integrity that is reduced through damage, and may not function properly when damaged, just like a natural limb, but having it damaged or even destroyed will not result in any actual harm to the character (then we can have exceptions based on technology used or even the exact place the limb is hit - if it's hit where it actually attaches to the body things will be different).

But in the end, the tactically significant outcome is that the person doesn't have use of their arm. Supposing a person doesn't succumb to shock and pain and blood loss (as heroic role-playing characters are notorious for not doing :P), it's pretty much the same thing.
If a person loses hit points when their arm is damaged, would that mean that a person with a cybernetic arm would have fewer hit points to begin with? Or, separate hit points for their cybernetic arm? What about several cybernetic limbs, or a complete cybernetic body?

Kathara Khan wrote:
Yes, but there really are more options than all the way in one direction (total abstraction) and all in the other (hardcore realism). And with the foot issue - you're the GM, deal with it. Either make it so he's not shot, or else, if you want to play strictly by the book (why would you I have no idea), provide some opportunities for him to have fun even with his shot foot. That's the way it always worked in my group, and we never had any trouble.

Well, I think a stray bullet in the foot is one of the least serious injuries you could sustain. If you don't actually want to have to deal with the consequence of being shot in specific locations and having your day/week/month/year/rest of life ruined because of it, I don't think a system that attempts to have realistic hit locations and injuries is the best choice for you. Though that’s good for making combat something you want to avoid, as opposed to something you want to engage in at every opportunity to harvest XP…
But, it all comes down to what the games master and the players want from the game. If someone likes rolling on charts and finding that their character's career has come to a sudden end, so be it.

Kathara Khan wrote:
For the las-weapons - I think High Power is definately too weak at +2, you think it would be too good at +4. Well, let's just go in the middle then, and make High Power +3. :P

Might be a good idea. Needs play testing.
One of these days...

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Quote:
I think a better system is using your character's statistics as the basis of everything they do that requires skill, and the skills or tasks themselves have an associated modifier to reflect how far removed from the basic statistic they are. So someone that's good at tennis isn't going to be equally good at squash, but the basic statistics/attributes they use that make them good at one, are for the most part transferable to the other, and they'll have a shorter learning curve than someone whose statistics make them good at neither.

I think I see how a system like that would work well. Problem is, I never encountered a system like that. Every time it was that some skills used stats to determine the actual result, but others were all-or-nothing, which is retarded. But if the system was consistent... I'll have to try it sometimes.
My favorite to date was, I think, D6 Star Wars. Skills were basically bonuses to stats - most tasks could be attempted unskilled, but the difficulties were calibrated such that without the appropriate skill success was rather doubtful.

On the hit location thing... Maybe I just need to break out of my set thinking patterns. It's just that we always used them and never experienced much trouble because of it. But the approach: "attacks are aimed and hit the center of mass as standard, limbs (and other locations) may be hit on demand by applying to hit modifiers" is, I admit, a tempting one.

Quote:
Heh, I read about 12 volumes of Gunnm recently. Good stuff, though a bit 'power rangers' at times. Probably my second favourite manga next to Appleseed.

I would say more "Dragon Bal Z" than "Power Rangers", especially in "Last Order". But it's one of my absolute favorites too, just like "Appleseed" (I like GitS, but am of the opinion that Appleseed is vastly better, even graphically - it's more comprehensible, that's for sure).
I must say, I find it rather strange you would like them, with the, forgive me, hang-up on realism you seem to often exhibit.

Quote:
If a person loses hit points when their arm is damaged, would that mean that a person with a cybernetic arm would have fewer hit points to begin with? Or, separate hit points for their cybernetic arm? What about several cybernetic limbs, or a complete cybernetic body?

Ah, here's the really interesting problem, isn't it? I never got around to codifying my approach to it, but I'd basically say yes, a person with cyberlimbs should have fewer Hit Points then one without (for starters, when hit in a location that could actually bleed, they'd bleed out sooner, as they have less blood in their body). Organs like cyber-livers would be different, as they would still have real blood flowing through and be essential in the persons life-support "system". And a full conversion cyborg? A tricky one. On the one hand, they'd be really hard to actually hurt, the attack having to punch through all the machinery in the way. On the other, once the attack reaches them, they'd be dead very fast (barring some auto-medical procedures) - how many Hit Points for just the brain? :D Maybe use some form of the rules you got going for damaging the pilot of battlesuits?

Quote:
But, it all comes down to what the games master and the players want from the game. If someone likes rolling on charts and finding that their character's career has come to a sudden end, so be it.

Yup, that's me - I love charts (to a certain limit, of course). Though I use them mainly as a GM, and take care for the players not to suffer adverse effects of my chart hang-up, like play slowing down to a crawl. But I just feel better knowing that, should I ever need it, the chart is there, even if I end up never needing it. It's a psychological thing. When I'm playing myself I don't much care if the GM uses charts, dice, coffee dregs, or the phases of the moon, as long as they're fair, consistent and everybody is having a god time. Damn, I so miss our last L5R campaign... :sad:

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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2007 12:41 am 
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Kathara Khan wrote:
But it's one of my absolute favorites too, just like "Appleseed" (I like GitS, but am of the opinion that Appleseed is vastly better, even graphically - it's more comprehensible, that's for sure).
I must say, I find it rather strange you would like them, with the, forgive me, hang-up on realism you seem to often exhibit.

I don't really get why Ghost in the Shell has recieved so much more attention than Appleseed. Must be a lot of people that think rambling incoherent philosobabble is clever or cool or something.
But I like them for many reasons. They've got great artwork and mechanical designs, the stories are interesting and overall entertaining, but most of all, they're good depictions of contextual realities. They've gone into a good amount of detail in realising the particulars of realities in which things are possible that aren't possible (either at present or likely ever) in our own reality.

Kathara Khan wrote:
A tricky one. On the one hand, they'd be really hard to actually hurt, the attack having to punch through all the machinery in the way. On the other, once the attack reaches them, they'd be dead very fast (barring some auto-medical procedures) - how many Hit Points for just the brain?

My system simply replaces Toughness with Armour. If you perforate a mechanical body with numerous bullets, damaging internal bits and pieces that move things, power things, regulate things, etc., the cyborg body will potentially be just as injured as a flesh and bone body. It would likely be more 'shock' and pain resistant, but I think there would be just as much 'vital fluid' or pneumatic pressure, or power conduits, etc. to have leak out and rupture or sever. It would all depend on the specifics of the technology.
Cyborgs in my rules aren't necessarily any tougher than regular people, it depends on how much amour they're wearing or have built into their design. But the basic switch of Toughness to Armour makes them more resistant to some things, a little more vulnerable to others. They're not affected by poison or sedatives for example, and low velocity firearms are pretty ineffective even on lightly armoured cyborgs. But weapons that have an armour/cover modifier because of small diametre high velocity projectiles, which don't inflict as much damage on fleshy targets, will get the bonus against mechanical-bodied cyborgs.

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I don't really get why Ghost in the Shell has recieved so much more attention than Appleseed. Must be a lot of people that think rambling incoherent philosobabble is clever or cool or something.

Probably. Or it's the Major's oversexed wardrobe (and extracurricular activities...). Not that I'm complaining all that much. :P But it makes me sad that because of it Appleseed went on a indeterminate (and probably permanent) hold. :sad:

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If you perforate a mechanical body with numerous bullets, damaging internal bits and pieces that move things, power things, regulate things, etc., the cyborg body will potentially be just as injured as a flesh and bone body. It would likely be more 'shock' and pain resistant, but I think there would be just as much 'vital fluid' or pneumatic pressure, or power conduits, etc. to have leak out and rupture or sever. It would all depend on the specifics of the technology.

Specifics of technology, exactly. In my standard take on a Full Conversion Cyborg, I imagine their life support system to be fairly compact, taking less space in the torso than vital organs of a human, and completely separate from the "drive train". So while yes, penetrations to the upper torso, spine and cranium would (after taking armor into account) be pretty much just as lethal as for a normal human (look at when Bri gets shot in Appleseed Book 1), "wounds" sustained to limbs or even the "unimportant" parts of the torso and head would pose no direct danger whatsoever to their health. Sure, they would suffer the same mobility crippling effects as a "meatbag" (and have any additional built-in systems damaged), but would be in no danger of dying. Gally routinely kicks people's asses with two or more limbs, or even torso parts, missing (cut/shot/ripped off, take your pick). :D As long as the living parts and their support systems (including the power supply) aren't breeched, an FCC could just shrug it off (I am of course ignoring, for simplicity's sake, any danger of further and real hurt stemming from the mobility debilitating effects of such "unimportant" damage). A FCC would also be resistant or immune (depending on the bio to cyber ratio of their life support system) to deasese except for things that could effect the brain directly.

The only thing I'm not sure about is the power supply. How are cyborgs and cyber-implants powered in your reckoning? Unless some very compact fission or fusion reactors are in effect, they'd have to either recharge power cells regularly, or draw chemical power from food, just like a normal human body. Appleseed, GitS, Gunnm, Eden, Robocop, Aliens, CP2020, all material with some form of cyberware and cyborgs in it, always, to the best of my knowledge, avoids providing any answers as to how those machines are powered.

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PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2007 5:46 am 
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I think any successful design would incorporate multiple backup power supplies and life support systems, and use a method of recapturing/recycling energy from the cyborg's own movements.
The technology is way too far off to speculate what the primary power source in a humanoid cyborg body would be though. So yeah, probably best left unaddressed. :P

I think a system of digesting regular food to sustain the few remaining biological components of a cyborg is pretty unlikely, and would be very inefficient. It would probably be one of the last developments in cyborg technology, once things were developed to a point where replicating functions of a real body were feasible, either for social reasons or to free cyborgs from dependance on an obscure infrastructure.
Some sort of nutrient fluid would probably be an easier option to keep the brain and spine fed and healthy.

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