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Deadman

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Sure... I get this. Have done my share of demolition as well. I was just assuming there was some distance between the barrier and the impacting hand attack. Unlike most horror movies, I don't run into a room, slam the door behind me, the press my back up against it to catch my breath. I was just confused by your scenario is all.

 

 

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16 hours ago, Surrealone said:

Bad idea for a recoil-operated semi-automatic firearm.  Why? Because pushing, say, a Glock against a hard surface can (depending on the surface -- say, an uneven one, for example) cause the slide to be pushed back far enough to force the pistol out of battery … resulting in an action that is no longer locked closed and ready to fire.

 

Now If it were a revolver that isn't prone to such a problem -- well, I'm just as curious on the subject as you are!

 

Ever since probably  The Professional... with Jean Reno... we have scenes in  movies where a character is lining up a shot through a door/wall, but not standing back to fire. Instead they are putting the muzzle of the gun on or very close to the wall, while adjusting for where they think the target is. They aren't necessarily "jamming" the gun hard against it, but placing it close to it, possibly flush.


I know at one point, the M1911A1 had a safety feature on it that wouldn't allow it to fire if the muzzle was pressed up against it, but I don't know of other automatics with that feature, but yeah, anything pushing the slide back could result in an inability to fire.   "out of battery?"  I've never heard that term. Interesting.

 

 

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1 hour ago, RDU Neil said:

 

Ever since probably  The Professional... with Jean Reno... we have scenes in  movies where a character is lining up a shot through a door/wall, but not standing back to fire. Instead they are putting the muzzle of the gun on or very close to the wall, while adjusting for where they think the target is. They aren't necessarily "jamming" the gun hard against it, but placing it close to it, possibly flush.


I know at one point, the M1911A1 had a safety feature on it that wouldn't allow it to fire if the muzzle was pressed up against it, but I don't know of other automatics with that feature, but yeah, anything pushing the slide back could result in an inability to fire.   "out of battery?"  I've never heard that term. Interesting.

The distance from the wall thing is likely just a cinematic Hollywoodism.  I say this because while it's true the bullet will have more velocity closer to the muzzle … the extra fractions of a foot per second would have little (if any) impact on how well the bullet travels through material or whether or not the impact with material causes the bullet to deform and/or tumble.

 

Semi-automatics return to battery as part of their recoil-based operation. An out of battery condition exists when they fail to do so. If I recall correctly the phrase has its origin in the artillery world … specifically pertaining to a piece of artillery that is fired before being pulled back into position.  Think back to wheeled, towable cannon that would move (even when chocked) and you'll have the right mental image for the origin of the term, as each such artillery piece had to be repositioned after every shot.  So why is a wheeled gun that fires from the wrong physical position out of battery?  Because it's not firing with the rest of the artillery pieces that comprise the artillery battery; it is, instead, slightly off-target compared to the rest of the battery.

 

In more modern recoil-operated artillery pieces, the same term came to be used to describe a state where the moving parts of the gun were in the wrong position (since the gun, itself, no longer changed physical position when fired from land).  This was actually appropriate since such a state usually resulted in the inability to fire with the rest of the battery.  The term also made its way to semi-automatic small arms for hopefully obvious reasons, despite the fact that one isn't usually firing such weapons as part of a battery.

 

The origin of the term 'battery' as applied to artillery units is also somewhat fascinating (to firearm nerds like me, anyway) … and also goes back to cannon use.  And cannons have been around since, what, the 12th or 13th century?  Heh.

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Alright on to the next topic Recoil...

 

This should be relatively short since I think that the STR Minimum combined with the modifiers for certain maneuvers accounts for recoil enough to be at least passably realistic.

 

Recoil

 

 Recoil represents the tendency for a weapon's muzzle to rise when shot.  Here is the description directly from 5e Dark Champions...

 

"Thanks to the physical law of action and reaction, guns, particularly ones fired on full automatic, have a tendency to recoil violently and to “ride up” — i.e., jerk upward when fired, thus throwing off the shooter’s aim for shots aft er the first. The HERO System rules don’t specifically account for recoil when guns are fired. In “realistic” Dark Champions games, the GM may want to do so by adopting the following rules:"

 

One of the rules given attaches a pretty severe OCV penalty when Autofiring, something that I don't think is really necessary.  In fact we have made it easier to hit with Autofire in previous posts.  My personal take is that the STR Minimum is what primarily defines the recoil.  If a character doesn't meet the STR Minimum for the weapon he begins to accrue OCV penalties (per the RAW).  This, in my estimation, along with the penalties for Multi-Attacking serve to represent recoil well enough.

 

Recoil compensators would actually be a function of bringing down the STR Minimum.  They would be bought as STR with Focus, Only To Meet STR Minimum (-1 at least) and other limitations.

 

Just to refresh everyone the RAW say that for each 5 points (or fraction thereof) a person is short of the STR Minimum he suffers -1 OCV and -1 Damage Class on the attack.  One caveat that I think I would impose with Firearms is to remove the Damage Class penalty and make the OCV penalty -1 OCV per 3 points the Character's STR is short of the STR Minimum.  This means if Helen (STR: 5) picks up a .44 Magnum Colt Anaconda she would be 6 points under the STR Minimum of 11 and be at -2 OCV to use it.  Of course she can use two hands and lower the STR Minimum of the Weapon by 3 and Brace to lower it by another 5 then she would be able to fire it without penalty.

 

Thoughts?  Input?

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I think you're spot-on in all respects when it comes to the STR Minimum being used to address recoil. I also fully agree with a steeper OCV penalty and a removal of the DC penalty to accompany the steeper OCV penalty … and -1 OCV per 3 point STR deficit feels about right.

 

The DC penalty never made much sense to me, as recoil doesn't magically change the effect that a bullet has on impact. Instead, it simply alters the probability of an impact.  I get that Mr. Long might have been gunning for (see what I did there?) the concept that recoil will affect damage due to an altered point of impact.  However, a hit is a hit when not using Placed Shots, using disabling/wounding rules, and/or the like -- so an OCV adjustment should more than suffice.  Likewise, Placed Shots, disabling/wounding rules, etc. are heavily OCV-dependent so, again, an OCV adjustment should more than suffice … while letting the rest of the RAW around such things work as designed.

 

As for the Autofire OCV penalty, when it comes to realism the STR Minimum never properly represented what happens with an automatic weapon.  i.e. It doesn't actually require more strength to properly control an automatic weapon; it's all about skill/technique, as each round is NOT generating more force than the last.  Thus, I also agree with you that the Autofire penalty should be ignored … but for a different reason than that which you put forth: the rule is wrong/dumb to begin with.

 

Realistically, I feel; an appropriate Autofire skill should be in place for Autofiring … and without it, ugly OCV penalties should be suffered in progressive fashion for every shot after the first.  This, of course, assumes you want realism.  If the goal (per Neil's goals) is more Hollywoodisms in the form of lots of lead in the air due to increased Autofire use, then even the skill/technique aspect I feel should be in place … should be ignored.

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1 hour ago, Surrealone said:

Realistically, I feel; an appropriate Autofire skill should be in place for Autofiring … and without it, ugly OCV penalties should be suffered in progressive fashion for every shot after the first.  This, of course, assumes you want realism.  If the goal (per Neil's goals) is more Hollywoodisms in the form of lots of lead in the air due to increased Autofire use, then even the skill/technique aspect I feel should be in place … should be ignored.

 

Oooo...I like that.  Perhaps implementing the -1 OCV per shot after the first might not be a bad idea.  Though I would adjudicate that it only impacts how many times they can hit the target.  This means that if an untrained person were to fire a three round burst the first round isn't impacted but they only hit once additional for every three points they hit by.  That is unless the character has the proper Weapon Familiarity (this also works for things like Thrown Blades, etc.).  I think that a WF: Assault Rifles, Submachine Guns or the like would work to negate the penalty (as would WF: Small Arms since it includes the former).  This means that no characters would really be impacted and it could be thrown in immediately.

 

This really does give more of a Hollywood feel.  Think about a person unfamiliar with a submachine gun picking it up for the first time.  I can just see the shots going everywhere.

 

Nice suggestion Surrealone.

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For 1-2 CP, a WF already keeps you from suffering penalties due to lack of familiarity.  I was thinking more like a new 5pt skill (called 'Steady Fire', perhaps?) that becomes part of the Autofire Skills set.  But otherwise … yes.

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So... would this ruling make the use of autofire more or less likely? Is autofire better for an untrained person or not?

 

e.g. I'm an untrained person with one chance to fire a weapon at an enemy before I get shot at... which would be better? I can point and pull the trigger and a single round fires... or point and pull the trigger and multiple rounds fire? (Assuming the weapon is loaded, primed and the safety is off). I think what you are saying is that autofire is still better, as the first shot is not negatively affected... just that second and further rounds are much less likely to hit for the untrained person than the trained. I personally think WF covers that... as the -3 penalty goes make the second shot only hits on a -5, third shot -7... which is pretty much "never" for a 2 or 3 OCV, untrained type. I don't think further minuses are really necessary?

 

So... at this point, I use the following in my games

 

Autofire attack...

  • for all shots, range penalties are doubled (so you have to be 3 meters or less away to have -0 for just the first shot... practically point blank).
  • Braced/set... using bipod/tripod, removes doubling of range penalties.
  • further shots hit based on single attack roll for every 2 less than the minimum required (stand AF rules)
  • AF may be used to increase the chance to hit by +1 for every 3 rounds fired, but with a max of only one shot hitting. (Perhaps this is allowed only for those who have appropriate WF?)
  • Any positive OCV modifier to the weapon only applies if brace/set

Multiple Attack...

  • range penalties are doubled (so you have to be 3 meters or less away to have -0 for just the first shot... practically point blank).
  • each shot suffers a -1 OCV for each extra attack (instead of RAW -2)
  • but number of shots allowed is dependent upon the weapon (semi-automatic handgun (5) vs. revolver (3) vs. flintlock (0), or size of round/kick recoil, etc.)
  • braced/set removes MA penalties from the first shot
  • Any positive OCV modifier to the weapon only applies if brace/set, or if not braced, will apply against MA penalties

With range penalties getting very high, very quickly, do we really need to add further penalties?

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5 hours ago, RDU Neil said:

Autofire attack...

  • for all shots, range penalties are doubled (so you have to be 3 meters or less away to have -0 for just the first shot... practically point blank).
  • Braced/set... using bipod/tripod, removes doubling of range penalties.
  • further shots hit based on single attack roll for every 2 less than the minimum required (stand AF rules)
  • AF may be used to increase the chance to hit by +1 for every 3 rounds fired, but with a max of only one shot hitting. (Perhaps this is allowed only for those who have appropriate WF?)
  • Any positive OCV modifier to the weapon only applies if brace/set

Multiple Attack...

  • range penalties are doubled (so you have to be 3 meters or less away to have -0 for just the first shot... practically point blank).
  • each shot suffers a -1 OCV for each extra attack (instead of RAW -2)
  • but number of shots allowed is dependent upon the weapon (semi-automatic handgun (5) vs. revolver (3) vs. flintlock (0), or size of round/kick recoil, etc.)
  • braced/set removes MA penalties from the first shot
  • Any positive OCV modifier to the weapon only applies if brace/set, or if not braced, will apply against MA penalties

With range penalties getting very high, very quickly, do we really need to add further penalties?

Here is what I am suggesting...but, as always, do what fits your game.

 

Autofire Attack

  • Range Penalties are Doubled unless the weapon is mounted or Braced.  In my game I use the Optional Range Modifiers so the doubling doesn't begin until 9m.  Normal penalties are (0-8m:0, 9-12m: -1, 13-16m: -2, 17-24m:-3, 25-32m:-4, 33-48m:-5, 49-64m:-6, etc.).  This is what is doubled.
  • Further shots hit based on single attack roll for every 1 less than required (adjusted from the +1 hit/2 in the RAW).
  • If shooter is untrained (no Weapon Familiarity) the first shot takes no penalty (other than the untrained modifier of -2 OCV) but the further shots only hit at a rate of 1 per (# of Total shots fired).

Multiple Attack

  • Range Penalties are Doubled as autofire above.
  • All shots suffer a -1 OCV for each extra shot fired (adjusted from the -2/additional shot in the RAW).
  • Number of Multiple attacks is limited by Weapon Type (Semi-Auto: 4, Double Action Revolver: 2, Knife or Barehanded: 4, Shortsword: 3, Longsword: 2 ).  This may be further adjusted if character is close to STR Minimum of the gun/weapon.

Additionally most scopes and such are created with the Limitation (Must Set or Brace to use: -1/2) or (Must Set and Brace to use: -1). 

 

I do not apply any other modifiers but may add some maneuvers like the Quick Fire maneuver I previously posted.

 

T

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I realize I mistyped... my range mods were off... I use the old DI range mods... so 3 game inches... six meters... that is where the first -1 kicks in.

 

You actually have AF hitting for every -1? wow... that seems really, really good. 

 

I know if you are playing much more realistic scales... where a five OCV is crazy good... that might make sense. But at cinematic levels, where PCs start at 6 OCV (comparable to 18 DEX or so) and have levels, that would get nuts good. Trained agents have a five or six total... standard cops and crimals, 4-5 OCVs... but only the non-combatants are at 2s and 3s. I think scale of the game really matters.

 

I can't remember if I posted this... but here are guidelines for "character levels" in game terms and game world terms.

 

Character Combat Skill Classes

“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.”

 -- Twelfth Night, Act 2, Scene 5

 

Secret Worlds characters, particularly Specials, are most often both superior in natural ability and highly trained. This combination makes them very dangerous combatants. Below are lists of mechanics along with a "descriptor" that gives a sense of how the character would be perceived by others.

 

Stat Level: OCV and DCV (Reflecting natural ability and combat experience)

·       Normal = 3

·       Athletic = 4

·       Talented = 5

·       Natural = 6 (A person twice as good as normal without any particular training)

·       Prodigy = 7

·       Phenom = 8

·       Peerless = 9 (A person three times better than normal without any particular training) 

OCV and DCV should be considered separately. A character could be a Prodigy in avoiding attacks (7 DCV) but only slightly better than normal in attacking (Athletic 4 OCV), if that matches the character concept. PCs are limited to Prodigy levels or below w/o GM permission.

 

Skill Levels: (Reflecting Training with a weapon/attack maneuver/group of maneuvers.)

·       Untrained: No Weapon Fam, -3 OCV w/weapon, base OCV for basic HtH maneuvers

·       Trained: Weapon Fam, minimum martial maneuvers, but no levels.

·       Skilled: Trained, +1-2 with a single maneuver

·       Advanced: Trained, +1-2 CSLs with a small group of attacks

·       Expert: Trained, +1-2 with a small group of attacks AND +1-2 PSLs with a group of attacks or other combination

·       Veteran: Trained, +3 levels with a group of attacks AND +2-3 PSLs, or other combination

·       Master: Trained, +4 CSL with group of attacks AND +3-4 PSLs, or other combination (but no more than 5 CSL with any one attack)

·       Legendary: Trained, 5 or more CSLs AND 5 or more PSLs with a group of attacks, and no limits to how they are combined on any one attack

Skill Levels and Stat Levels should be thought of combined to establish the character concept. e.g. A Skilled Normal, or a Trained Prodigy, etc.

 

--

 

We had one character at Prodigy, with Master skill levels, and he was hell-on-wheels master sword fighter, and just gross compared to nearly everyone else. He retired and the other two top notch gusy are more the Veteran Natural levels, and still really good, but not quite as over-powering. 

 

When you get characters like this, they are so much better than most Trained Normals or even Advanced Atheletes, that Auto-fire at -1 only would be so, SO good for them.

 

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15 hours ago, RDU Neil said:

I realize I mistyped... my range mods were off... I use the old DI range mods... so 3 game inches... six meters... that is where the first -1 kicks in.

 

You actually have AF hitting for every -1? wow... that seems really, really good. 

 

I know if you are playing much more realistic scales... where a five OCV is crazy good... that might make sense. But at cinematic levels, where PCs start at 6 OCV (comparable to 18 DEX or so) and have levels, that would get nuts good. Trained agents have a five or six total... standard cops and crimals, 4-5 OCVs... but only the non-combatants are at 2s and 3s. I think scale of the game really matters.

 

I can't remember if I posted this... but here are guidelines for "character levels" in game terms and game world terms.

 

Character Combat Skill Classes

 

“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them.”

 

 -- Twelfth Night, Act 2, Scene 5

 

 

 

Secret Worlds characters, particularly Specials, are most often both superior in natural ability and highly trained. This combination makes them very dangerous combatants. Below are lists of mechanics along with a "descriptor" that gives a sense of how the character would be perceived by others.

 

 

 

Stat Level: OCV and DCV (Reflecting natural ability and combat experience)

 

·       Normal = 3

 

·       Athletic = 4

 

·       Talented = 5

 

·       Natural = 6 (A person twice as good as normal without any particular training)

 

·       Prodigy = 7

 

·       Phenom = 8

 

·       Peerless = 9 (A person three times better than normal without any particular training) 

 

OCV and DCV should be considered separately. A character could be a Prodigy in avoiding attacks (7 DCV) but only slightly better than normal in attacking (Athletic 4 OCV), if that matches the character concept. PCs are limited to Prodigy levels or below w/o GM permission.

 

 

 

Skill Levels: (Reflecting Training with a weapon/attack maneuver/group of maneuvers.)

 

·       Untrained: No Weapon Fam, -3 OCV w/weapon, base OCV for basic HtH maneuvers

 

·       Trained: Weapon Fam, minimum martial maneuvers, but no levels.

 

·       Skilled: Trained, +1-2 with a single maneuver

 

·       Advanced: Trained, +1-2 CSLs with a small group of attacks

 

·       Expert: Trained, +1-2 with a small group of attacks AND +1-2 PSLs with a group of attacks or other combination

 

·       Veteran: Trained, +3 levels with a group of attacks AND +2-3 PSLs, or other combination

 

·       Master: Trained, +4 CSL with group of attacks AND +3-4 PSLs, or other combination (but no more than 5 CSL with any one attack)

 

·       Legendary: Trained, 5 or more CSLs AND 5 or more PSLs with a group of attacks, and no limits to how they are combined on any one attack

 

Skill Levels and Stat Levels should be thought of combined to establish the character concept. e.g. A Skilled Normal, or a Trained Prodigy, etc.

 

--

 

We had one character at Prodigy, with Master skill levels, and he was hell-on-wheels master sword fighter, and just gross compared to nearly everyone else. He retired and the other two top notch gusy are more the Veteran Natural levels, and still really good, but not quite as over-powering. 

 

When you get characters like this, they are so much better than most Trained Normals or even Advanced Atheletes, that Auto-fire at -1 only would be so, SO good for them.

 

This is an absolutely awesome breakdown.  I may stea...er...borrow this for my games.  Just to clarify I don't do an extremely low powered game.  If and when I start my DC game back up it will be at the Powerful Heroic level (225 starting points).  I consider it a very "cinematic" game.  What this means is that the PCs should have little problem dispatching little gangsters or cannon fodder types.  Though they still need to be wary of guns in general and understand that one lucky shot from one of those mooks could end it all.  This generally means that they have to be smart about it.  Now when they are going up against a higher powered villain, like Lieutenant level they really need to watch it because they will have the same capabilities that the PCs possess.  Here is a typical character from my game.  Her name is Hair Trigger and she is at starting level.  By your breakdown she would be a Natural/Veteran.

 

Hair Trigger

 

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3 hours ago, Deadman said:

This is an absolutely awesome breakdown.  I may stea...er...borrow this for my games.  Just to clarify I don't do an extremely low powered game.  If and when I start my DC game back up it will be at the Powerful Heroic level (225 starting points).  I consider it a very "cinematic" game.  What this means is that the PCs should have little problem dispatching little gangsters or cannon fodder types.  Though they still need to be wary of guns in general and understand that one lucky shot from one of those mooks could end it all.  This generally means that they have to be smart about it.  Now when they are going up against a higher powered villain, like Lieutenant level they really need to watch it because they will have the same capabilities that the PCs possess.  Here is a typical character from my game.  Her name is Hair Trigger and she is at starting level.  By your breakdown she would be a Natural/Veteran.

 

Hair Trigger

 

 

Hair Trigger is a character who is a solid action hero (heroine), but not over the top. Some of my PCs would have more body and stun, and every PC in my campaign has 1 level of Combat Luck but I limit it to 1 level only. PDs tend to be 6-9, but I have my Luck Chit system which often allows PCs to swing "lucky shots by the badguys" into misses and such as well. Makes PCs much more survivable without them having to stack Combat Luck or always be wearing Level 4, cutting edge combat armor everywhere they go.

 

I don't build out equipment they way you do... just grab stuff off the lists in books, since Active Points and such don't matter in my DC games (no drains vs. Kevlar... heh.) All that aside, Hair Trigger would pretty much fit right in.

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18 hours ago, RDU Neil said:

 

Hair Trigger is a character who is a solid action hero (heroine), but not over the top. Some of my PCs would have more body and stun, and every PC in my campaign has 1 level of Combat Luck but I limit it to 1 level only. PDs tend to be 6-9, but I have my Luck Chit system which often allows PCs to swing "lucky shots by the badguys" into misses and such as well. Makes PCs much more survivable without them having to stack Combat Luck or always be wearing Level 4, cutting edge combat armor everywhere they go.

 

I don't build out equipment they way you do... just grab stuff off the lists in books, since Active Points and such don't matter in my DC games (no drains vs. Kevlar... heh.) All that aside, Hair Trigger would pretty much fit right in.

Sadly, in my experience Deadman doesn't use HAP natively.  I wish he did, as it's effectively a RAW 'Luck Chit' system that makes a lot of sense when it comes to keeping dramatically inappropriate things from happening just due to 'the luck of the dice'.  I do like the breakdown you use, Neil … but I also like Deadman's balance point system.  Looking at them, I find them to be somewhat duplicative when applied.

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Heroic Action Points (HAP)

Okay I give.  Both Neil and Surrealone mentioned using Heroic Action Points and I have to say that I can't think of anything much more cinematic than that.  It will allow for major characters to somewhat change an otherwise catastrophic event and survive it.  On the other hand I do like a somewhat gritty feel to an adventure and allowing too many modifications could remove that. 

 

For that reason I would do several things: 

  1. I would lower the roll from the 2d6 suggested in 6Ev2 pg. 287 to only 1d6.  
  2. I would say that the GM may add HAP during the course of the game for Heroic, Creative, and/or Dramatic acts on the part of the player. 
  3. I would say that the HAPs a character has are unknown to the Player.  They are rolled once per adventure by the GM.  
  4. I would say that HAPs can affect almost ANY dice roll even those performed by others but this does depend on what die roll is being altered.
    1. Skill, Characteristic, Perception, To-Hit and Hit Location rolls are 1 for 1.
    2. Normal Damage attacks are 1 HAP per STUN (adding 3 STUN will automatically add 1 BODY) or 2 HAP per BODY (no STUN adjustment).
    3. Killing Attacks are 3 HAP per BODY or 3 HAP to raise the Stun Multiplier by +1.
    4. Other Attack modifications will based on a 1 HAP per 5 AP of the attack.
  5. If a character spends HAP on something but doesn't have enough for the desired effect the points are still used.  They just don't adjust the roll enough to have the effect the Player wished.
  6. Players may spend HAP to achieve Lucky Breaks (described in Luck below).  The cost is left for the GM to decide.
  7. In an attack situation the defender gets the last say on HAP expenditures.  Just in case a bidding war starts.

HAP Example:  Hair Trigger is facing off against El Azteca's Lieutenant, El Escorpion and a couple of his cartel soldiers.  She is pinned down behind a short wall taking automatic fire.  Suddenly the shots stop and El Escorpion leaps the wall looking to surprise our Heroine.  The GM gives her a perception roll to hear him coming (he misses his Stealth roll of 12- by 1 but uses a HAP point to make it).  Her hearing Perception roll is 12- and she rolls a 13 (1 short of hearing the stealthy El Escorpion).  Her Player decides to use a HAP point to improve her Perception roll by one to make the roll.  She is not surprised when El Escorpion leaps over and they have to roll to see who can get the first shot off.  They each make a DEX roll which El Escorpion wins (neither spends any HAP points to increase it).  El Escorpion fires two shots at Hair Trigger using Multiple Attack (he has Rapid Attack) and is aiming for a Head Shot (this is a -4 OCV but nullified by his PSLs).  His total OCV for the attack is 8 (10-2 for Multiple Attack) and he rolls to hit.  He gets an 11 on the first attack and a 14 on the second.  Hair Trigger (DCV 6) is hit by the first (by 2) and is just missed by the second.  El Escorpion decides to use a HAP to lower his second roll to 13 to hit Hair Trigger (the nerve!!!).  Hair Trigger's player says that he will also spend a HAP to keep it a miss (El Escorpion can't spend more to raise it again as Hair Trigger is the defender).  The Hit location roll for a Head Shot is 1d6+2 and El Escorpion rolls a 5...(uh oh...our Heroine just got hit in the Head!).  Hair Trigger's player figures that she might be running out but tries to spend a HAP point to change the Hit Location roll to a 6 hitting her in the hand instead.  She has enough and El Escorpion rolls damage getting 4 BODY and 8 STUN in the Left Hand (hitting the hand is 1/2 BODY and the -x1 STUN Multiplier is offset by the Hollow Point bullet's +x1).  After her Combat Luck she takes 1 BODY, 0 STUN unfortunately she misses her DEX roll and drops the pistol that was in that hand.

 

Hair Trigger returns fire with the pistol in her right hand, shooting El Escorpion twice with her Quick Fire (Autofire 2 shots for pistols).  Her OCV is 10 and she cannot use targeting.  She rolls a 9 and hits El Escorpion (DCV 4 since he use Multiple Attack) both times.  She rolls a 9 and a 13 for Hit Location hitting him in the Shoulder and the Groin.  The Raw Damage is 5 BODY, 15 STUN from the first hit and 6 BODY 24 STUN from the second (Hollow Point bullets +x1 Stun Multiplier).  El Escorpion takes the first shot but worrying about the second elects to use 2 HAP points to change the location to 11 in the Chest where he is protected by his Jacket.  Unfortunately El Escorpion is out of HAPs and takes the shot to the Groin.  This means that the Stun Multiplier is +x1 and he takes 6 BODY, 30 STUN from the attack.  He ends up taking no damage from the first attack (Combat Luck and Armored Jacket) but takes 3 BODY, 19 STUN from the second Stunning him.  Hmmm...what is a good Vigilante to do?

 

Thoughts, Comments?

 

T

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I like it, but I think you make things simpler if you let players know their HAP totals - and I see no reason why you shouldn't since the entire point is to provide players a way to keep things they feel are inappropriate from happening to their characters … or allow them to influence things they feel are really important to their characters. (i.e. Why make players blind when it's all about group storytelling and HAP are a way to give some limited, controlled influence to people other than the GM?)

 

As for how doing so is simpler: it means no worries about over-spending and, thus, no need for rules around that.  That's a complexity reduction...

 

I also fully agree with 1d6 being 'enough'; 2d6 just seems excessive to me, as well.  Last,  I really like the idea of a GM adding HAP for actions s/he deems appropriate, but again, I think players should be 'in the know' on their totals.

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2 hours ago, Surrealone said:

I like it, but I think you make things simpler if you let players know their HAP totals - and I see no reason why you shouldn't since the entire point is to provide players a way to keep things they feel are inappropriate from happening to their characters … or allow them to influence things they feel are really important to their characters. (i.e. Why make players blind when it's all about group storytelling and HAP are a way to give some limited, controlled influence to people other than the GM?)

 

As for how doing so is simpler: it means no worries about over-spending and, thus, no need for rules around that.  That's a complexity reduction...

 

I also fully agree with 1d6 being 'enough'; 2d6 just seems excessive to me, as well.  Last,  I really like the idea of a GM adding HAP for actions s/he deems appropriate, but again, I think players should be 'in the know' on their totals.

 

I don't actually use HAP... and in fact I'm going to go look that up and see what that is. I have a home grown "Chit" system that replaces "Luck" as written. I think it performs the general idea the same. I do agree the point in that the players have control. They can see what HAP or Luck resources they have for that game, and plan accordingly.

 

In gritty games, I like it a lot, because it lets me put the PCs through meat grinders that would inevitably result in TPK if simply left to the dice, but the Luck Chits enable the players to over-write critical moments that would grease them, and push through to more dramatic moments. Mechanically, it adds a very clear sense of drama, as the players use up their chits, they know that they are more and more vulnerable. Making the GM "throw a chit" to save a bad guy (he gets an extra dodge or block or recovery) is a "victory" for the players in that it is an obvious sign of wearing the bad guys down, etc.

 

I really like these types of mechanics for the drama they bring to the table. The tactile sense of picking up the shiny chit and making the "I'm spending this!" and toss it in, gesture, are often great story moments that shift the narrative. While, at the same time, the majority of the task resolution comes down to traditional rolls to hit/succeed, etc.

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1 hour ago, Surrealone said:

I like it, but I think you make things simpler if you let players know their HAP totals - and I see no reason why you shouldn't since the entire point is to provide players a way to keep things they feel are inappropriate from happening to their characters … or allow them to influence things they feel are really important to their characters. (i.e. Why make players blind when it's all about group storytelling and HAP are a way to give some limited, controlled influence to people other than the GM?)

 

As for how doing so is simpler: it means no worries about over-spending and, thus, no need for rules around that.  That's a complexity reduction...

 

I also fully agree with 1d6 being 'enough'; 2d6 just seems excessive to me, as well.  Last,  I really like the idea of a GM adding HAP for actions s/he deems appropriate, but again, I think players should be 'in the know' on their totals.

I don't know, I am kind of on the fence.  I kind of like the idea of PCs not knowing as it would ensure they use them discriminately.  On the other hand if they knew their total it keeps them from whining if they don't have enough to perform a specific act.  I was playing with Luck and set it up very similar to how I have presented HAP.  In the case of Luck I really like the unknown factor.  I have seen what Luck used in this manner can do and how powerful it could potentially be (especially if a character decides to buy like 6d6 of it).  In this gritty, heroic game I would say that it should be treated much like characteristics (meaning the Normal Max would be 3d6 and the cost would be doubled up to the cap of 5d6.  Not sure if even 3d6 is too much.

 

T

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10 minutes ago, RDU Neil said:

 

I don't actually use HAP... and in fact I'm going to go look that up and see what that is. I have a home grown "Chit" system that replaces "Luck" as written. I think it performs the general idea the same. I do agree the point in that the players have control. They can see what HAP or Luck resources they have for that game, and plan accordingly.

 

In gritty games, I like it a lot, because it lets me put the PCs through meat grinders that would inevitably result in TPK if simply left to the dice, but the Luck Chits enable the players to over-write critical moments that would grease them, and push through to more dramatic moments. Mechanically, it adds a very clear sense of drama, as the players use up their chits, they know that they are more and more vulnerable. Making the GM "throw a chit" to save a bad guy (he gets an extra dodge or block or recovery) is a "victory" for the players in that it is an obvious sign of wearing the bad guys down, etc.

 

I really like these types of mechanics for the drama they bring to the table. The tactile sense of picking up the shiny chit and making the "I'm spending this!" and toss it in, gesture, are often great story moments that shift the narrative. While, at the same time, the majority of the task resolution comes down to traditional rolls to hit/succeed, etc.

So how do your Luck "Chits" work?  You mention an extra Block, Dodge, Recovery.  How many do the PCs get?

 

Sounds interesting,

 

T

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I dug up my old house rules document that was last edited for 5th Ed.  Here is what I wrote on Luck Chits... though I'm editing this for updates I've made since. I think this covers it all. More detail than matters in actual play, for the most part.

 

Luck & Luck Chits 

Luck cost 5 pts per level. (Price doubles for each 3 levels bought (so fourth level of Luck costs 10 points) For each level of Luck purchased, players gain: 

  • 1d6 of Luck to add to a Luck Roll that can only have positive results. 

  • They randomly draw +1 Luck Chit at the beginning of the game from “the bag.” 

------ 

Luck Chit Rules 

Each PC draws one Luck Chit from “the bag” +1 Chit for every level of Luck at the beginning of the game.  “The bag” contains 72 Chits in the following assortment:  30 White Chits, 20 Black Chits, 20 Blue Chits, 1 Red Chit, 1 Gold Chit.  A player may decide to “throw a chit” at any point during play where they think it will benefit them, the group or the story to do so.  The chits provide the following benefits in play. 

  • White Chits:  Lowest rank.  Using a white chit allows ONE of the following by choice of the player: 

  • Re-roll one roll you control 

  • Take an Abort Action at any time without cost of a regular Action. 

  • Take a Recovery at any time without cost of a regular Action or any defensive penalties. 

  • Defensively move a Hit Location result one level up or down on the HL chart. (Only used in Heroic games where Hit Location is used.)

  • Black Chits: Middle rank.  Using a black chit allows ONE of the following by choice of the player: * 

  • Any one of the benefits as listed under White Chits. (see above) 

  • Any one benefit as listed under Blue Chits. (see below)

  •  
  • BUT...Throwing a black chit allows the GM to draw a chit to add to his/her pool of NPC/Villain chits. 

  • Blue Chits: High rank.  Using a blue chit allows ONE of the following by choice of the player. 

  • Any one of the benefits of the White chits as listed above.

  • May remove a single die from a 3d6 roll you control, to maximize chance of success/hit. (Making the roll a "3" or less does not activate a critical hit.) 

  • Power Stunt:  Player may choose to utilize active points of a power of their character for an effect not specifically paid for with points, but within the SFX of the power.  Ex:  A character with an EB defined as “flame blast” wishes to extinguish a fire in a doorway blocking escape for civilians. The character does not have a power that would normally allow him to do this, but by throwing a blue chit, for one action, he can put the active points of the EB into Change Environment: Extinguish/Reduce Normal Fires (or something similar) and the player can then perform the desired action. 

  • Minor Scene Change:  Player may choose to alter or set a small piece of the scene for character or story advantage.  Ex.  “There is a pack of dry matches in the old hunting shack. Just what I need to light my torch to fight the vampire!” or “As I fly in, I see an open skylight allowing me access to the building without breaking in!”   GM and group agreement on what is appropriate necessary. 

  • Make the impossible, possible:  Player may throw a blue chit to turn an action with little or no chance of success, into one with a standard chance of success.  Ex.  Even for a superhero, diving through the window of a moving car, snatching the kidnapped child out of the seat and out the other side window without causing a crash or hurting the child would be nigh impossible. A blue chit makes this a simple matter of Acrobatics and grab roll situation.

  • Insert Minor Dramatic Moment: The player may state a dramatic moment into a scene that can initiate story, resolve story. Similar to Minor Scene Change, Minor Dramatic Moment is less about adding an element to the current scene, as to initiating a scene or resolving one. Example: Vigilante Squad has just finished off Don Montelli's goons in the warehouse, as the sounds of sirens and stamping of SWAT boots approaches. A player pushes forward a blue chit and says, "As the police rush in, the smoke clears to find the bodies of Montelli's men, but no sign of us. The police surround the area and helicopters sweep, but we are gone, vanished in the night. My intent is that we get away and don't have to hassle with the law... at least this time."  This would be appropriate, assuming the table agreed it was within the bounds of the fiction, and didn't make things unfun, etc.

  • Bypassing a successful Block.  Player may choose to throw a blue chit so that an attack that is successfully Blocked still carries through, effectively negating the block.  Only a blue chit thrown in response can reassert the Block’s success. 

  • Move a result on the Hit Location chart up or down 3 places, either defensively or offensively. (Only used in Heroic games where Hit Location is used.)

  • Gold Chit: There is only one Gold Chit and it has unique abilities.  Using the gold chit allows ONE of the following by choice of the player. 

  • Any one of the benefits of the white, black or blue chits as listed above, without GM drawing a chit. (But this would be a waste.)

  • Primary use of the gold chit is to allow the player to become storyteller/GM in powerful ways.  By spending the gold chit, the player gets to insert a scene, event, plot point, result or other situation that they wish to occur.  This normally focuses on their character and that character’s Story, but it can encompass the group if all player’s agree. GM still has last word, but mostly it is a group decision on “Is that cool and interesting as a story, and does it make sense for what is happening currently?”  Whatever the event/situation/scene, it should have significant effect on current and even future plots, though specific results or repercussions may be unforeseen. Player intent is key. What is the "outcome" the player wishes to

             Red Chit: There is only one Red Chit and it has unique abilities.  Using the red chit allows ONE of the following by choice of the player. 

                        Exactly the same benefits as the Gold Chit, BUT the GM then takes possession of the Red Chit and has it to be activate a very clear obstacle/challenge/things-go-badly scene against the PCs. You spend the Red Chit knowing that karma is a  bitch.

 

GM: Draws after all players.  One chit per PC, plus chits for any NPCs/Villains who may have Luck. 

UnluckUnluck reduces the number of Luck chits drawn for every level.  This primarily effects the GM and the use of Luck chits for certain NPCs, as it is unlikely a PC would take Unluck.  

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That is a pretty cool system Neil.  It must make for some pretty cool storylines.  Do all of the players draw from the bag so that only one can get the Gold/Red Chit or is the bag made whole for each player/NPC?

 

I would consider doing something similar with luck.  I have been toying with the idea of a "Lucky Break".  This would be an expenditure of many luck points depending on what the Player wanted to do.  For example if we use the chart in 6Ev1 pg. 246 each level of Luck would cost 5 luck points so a "miracle" would cost 15 Luck points.

 

The HAP system is outlined in 6eV2 pg. 287.  I find it an interesting idea but as Surrealone mentioned I have never used it.  I will probably give it a shot the next time I run a game.

 

The more I think about it the more I would lean toward making HAP known to the player.  I am also toying with a different roll.  I don't like the characters having the chance of getting only a single HAP.  Perhaps 2d3  or even 3d2 would be better.  This would give them a smaller range (2-6 or 3-6 respectively) but at least the minimum they could get would be higher.  I may handicap the NPCs somewhat by sticking them to a strict 1d6 roll.

 

Okay, I have so many ideas that I have to put a game together, recruit some players and playtest all of this.

 

T

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6 hours ago, Deadman said:

I don't know, I am kind of on the fence.  I kind of like the idea of PCs not knowing as it would ensure they use them discriminately.  On the other hand if they knew their total it keeps them from whining if they don't have enough to perform a specific act.  I was playing with Luck and set it up very similar to how I have presented HAP.  In the case of Luck I really like the unknown factor.  I have seen what Luck used in this manner can do and how powerful it could potentially be (especially if a character decides to buy like 6d6 of it).  In this gritty, heroic game I would say that it should be treated much like characteristics (meaning the Normal Max would be 3d6 and the cost would be doubled up to the cap of 5d6.  Not sure if even 3d6 is too much.

We use 1d6 of HAP/Luck in Khedron's game (which is a 5er game to which HAP was loosely ported) and what I've seen in 3 years of doing so is that when people roll well they tend to use it to help out people who didn't roll so well.  Meanwhile, those who didn't roll so well tend to save what little they have for those critical moments where someone drops the truck (i.e. rolls an 18) or where an attack against them is perfect (i.e. a 3 is rolled).  Overall, most sessions go without all HAP being used unless it's one of those really brutal and gritty scenes where the dice are wrecking havoc on all sides.  

Lieutenants and bosses get 1d6s HAP, too, btw … but mooks don't.

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I think I forgot to mention that the Luck Chits in my game are "use 'em or lose 'em" to encourage the spend of them during a session. They renew each session. Sometimes games go by and none, if any chits are spent based on how the game plays. Sometimes the PCs just own the bad guys because they are never really pressed hard enough, so the chits aren't used up and PCs are able to just be really heroic. Sometimes, all the best chits can't keep a PC for getting greased when the dice just hate him (as happened recently.)

 

I think the only downside I've noticed is that, in general, players can start to get a little cocky, since the chits can bail them out of the typical number of tough situations in a game session, but honestly, I'd rather have PCs who are willing to jump into action, than those too afraid to do anything because "Damn! I might get shot!"   :P Confidence on the part of the PLAYER that their character is competent and can be successful is a good thing for play, IMO.

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