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#1 Robomummy

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 02:05 PM

So I finally got a group together to play the book campaign Final Testimate. Is it just me or does combat against Severan Dominate troops either too fast or too slow? when you take away the damage from armor and toughness none of the weapons appear to do much damage to either the npc or players. the players end up wasting their grenades just to do a decent amount of damage to the npcs.

 

THe lineup for the group is this:

 

Stormtrooper with a hotshot lasguns

Weapon specialist with a sniper rifle

sergeant who prefers to use his chainsword over everything

psyker who has smite and prescience

 

In addition to this the amount of damage that the NPCs do rarely ever end up hurting the PCs. I know this can easily be solved by giving them some heavy weapons but I don't want the PCs to die too quickly (considering nobody wanted to play a medic). 


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#2 LuciusT

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 02:42 PM

You're remembering to apply the weapons armor penetration, right? The hotshot lasgun should effectively ignore any armor the Dominate troops have, unless they somehow have power armor and even then... 

 

As for the Dominate troop wounding them, remember they have variable setting lasguns too. The overload setting should not be ignored.



#3 Robomummy

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 07:00 PM

yeah, I realized I forgot the variable settings, it helps a little but I still have the same problem. Also the hotshot lasguns has good penetration but the rest doesn't and it means the hotshot is the only one really killing anything.

 

It also means the enemy NPCs don't really do enough damage to be considered a threat. I ran the GM kit campaign to get everyone familiar with the mechanics before we began the book campaign and both the enemy "bosses" were barely a threat. I ended up having to do a high speed chase along the cliff in order to make the ending less disappointing and anti-climactic.


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#4 venkelos

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:16 AM

I'm sure I am, to some extent wrong, but that could be the issue just with fighting SD. Humans are often not impressive, and their guns are often on the lower end (lasguns). I would expect that assaulting a Dominate fort, with some bolt pistol or plasma pistol-toting officers, and a few heavy-luggers (even autocannons or heavy bolters), they might have some worries, but your average grunt troops, carrying their regular lasguns? Probably not too tough.

 

Once they get to Orks and Dark Eldar, I think they might have more fun and challenge. They often seem easier to want to fight, and between melee punishing skill and durability, or difficult to hit and with advanced weapons, they might have to actually try. Guardsmen, on the other hand, usually win by numbers and attrition, which can be very time-consuming. My opinion, anyway.



#5 Robomummy

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 08:19 AM

the 2nd boss that they had to face was a DE archon with a poisoned weapon and a splinter pistol. It still didn't do much except for drag out the campaign. Overall I think I managed to stop people from getting bored with it but I would like to make it so It doesn't happen very often.


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#6 LuciusT

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 09:55 AM

I'm curious what you are looking for in terms of combat because my experience with combat in Only War, while limited to only a few encounters, has been that it is dynamic, tactically interesting and rather well paced. I'm curious about the differences in our experiences.

 

One of our more interesting combats involved 3 guardsmen with comrades vs a like number of insurrectionists in a scriptorium (basically, a long narrow office with a lot of desks). The battle involved a lot of ducking between desks, a few grenades rolled down the ailse by both sides, lots of burst fire and ultimately a bunch of dead insurrectionists and one badly wounded operator.



#7 Myrion

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 10:06 AM

I'm with LuciusT here, what do you want from the game and what are you and your players actually doing?

Also, for completeness' sake: Did you think of the "righteous fury = instakill on mooks" rule?



#8 Robomummy

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 01:32 PM

what I want form combat is for the players to do less standing and shooting at a target and more dynamic. So far the enemies that they have encountered have been ineffective to the point where the players have no need to take cover or even move. their armor and toughness absorbs all the damage and bolter rounds normally just bounce off them. I could introduce more heavy weapons but it is my experience that if I send too much stuff with a high armor penetration at them they can't take a hit and may easily die.  

 

What I would like is to give the players a need to be ducking in and around obstacles and getting to a better firing spot or piece of cover because so far it seems completely unnecessary.


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#9 Spinner

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:06 PM

what I want form combat is for the players to do less standing and shooting at a target and more dynamic. So far the enemies that they have encountered have been ineffective to the point where the players have no need to take cover or even move. their armor and toughness absorbs all the damage and bolter rounds normally just bounce off them.

 

Wait, what? Are they all wearing carapace or something? I've had players scattering for cover in the face of shoota boyz, don't even want to think what bolters would do to the poor frakkers.

Try having them go up against dug-in enemy positions. Snipers, heavy weapons emplacements, maybe a burned-out building full of rebels. They're not going to look for cover if everything you throw at them is bouncing off their armor. I know you don't want to use heavy weapons against them, but the threat of an autocannon to the face ought to keep their heads down. Just make sure to give them plenty of wrecked vehicles and rubble to dart behind!



#10 LuciusT

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 02:07 PM

Bolter rounds bounce off them? That doesn't sound right. 

 

A bolter does 1d10+5 damage with a Pen 4. An average guardsman has a Toughness bonus of 3, with flak armor (armor 4) and let's say 11 wounds. Leaving Tearing out of it for a moment, an average bolter shot will do 11 damage. Pen 4 means the shot ignores the guardsman's armor, Toughness reduces the damage by 3, so the shot does 8 damage, leaving the guardman with 3 wounds remaining. A second shot dealing the same damage would put the guardsman at 5 critical wounds (knocked prone, 1d5 fatigue and a T(+0) test or suffer Blood Loss). 

 

Even a Storm Trooper with TB 4, Carapace armor (6) and 15 wounds would suffer 5 points of damage after armor and toughness for each hit with a bolter. 

 

???



#11 Robomummy

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 04:40 PM

that would work if my dice weren't cursed. The average amount of damage a bolter does when I roll it is 9-11 and with carapace armor and a TB of 4 that wont even get through their defenses.

 

 

Try having them go up against dug-in enemy positions. Snipers, heavy weapons emplacements, maybe a burned-out building full of rebels. They're not going to look for cover if everything you throw at them is bouncing off their armor. I know you don't want to use heavy weapons against them, but the threat of an autocannon to the face ought to keep their heads down. Just make sure to give them plenty of wrecked vehicles and rubble to dart behind!

 

Its not that I don't send in heavy weapons against them it is just that the ones I do end up doing little to no damage or far too much for them to handle. I don't want to be in the position of sending in too many to end up having the PCs killed but there is no real middle ground with them.


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#12 LuciusT

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 07:10 PM

that would work if my dice weren't cursed. The average amount of damage a bolter does when I roll it is 9-11 and with carapace armor and a TB of 4 that wont even get through their defenses.

 

Well, a) that's not a problem with the game, that's a problem with your dice and b) yes, it will. Against a character with TB 4 plus Carapace armor (6) a damage of 9 with Pen 4 will is still do 3 points of damage. Not a lot, I grant you, but something. You would literally have roll a 1 twice to do no damage at all to such a character when using a bolter. Granted, most foes won't be using bolters but that's the example you gave.

 

If your dice are causing the game to go so badly as to make it unenjoyable, get new dice or, failing that, fudge the rolls.



#13 crusher bob

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 10:19 PM

Bolters are tearing, so average damage from a bolter against a TB4 guardsman in guard flak armor is 8.15 points.  So a second shot by a bolter will have a good chance of putting them in a bad way.

 

In addition, tearing weapons have a much higher chance to cause righteous fury, since they roll two dice.



#14 Spinner

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 11:19 AM

 

that would work if my dice weren't cursed. The average amount of damage a bolter does when I roll it is 9-11 and with carapace armor and a TB of 4 that wont even get through their defenses.

 

Well, a) that's not a problem with the game, that's a problem with your dice and b) yes, it will. Against a character with TB 4 plus Carapace armor (6) a damage of 9 with Pen 4 will is still do 3 points of damage. Not a lot, I grant you, but something. You would literally have roll a 1 twice to do no damage at all to such a character when using a bolter. Granted, most foes won't be using bolters but that's the example you gave.

 

If your dice are causing the game to go so badly as to make it unenjoyable, get new dice or, failing that, fudge the rolls.

 

 

This. As with a fair number of RPGs, if the dice behave really badly, combat's going to be a bit wonky.

 

How have you handled situations where the heavy weapons "do too much for the party to handle"? Does that mean they all took heavy damage, did characters die, was this caused by their aforementioned lack of jumping behind cover, that sort of thing? Also, what were the bad guys using?



#15 Myrion

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 01:54 PM

And a double 1 is almost impossible due to a rule that most people seem to overlook (it's easy enough, certainly!):
You can always choose to replace one die in you damage roll by your DoS!
So as long as you don't make the shot just barely, with only one DoS, you'll have rolled at least a two :)



#16 LuciusT

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 09:29 AM

And a double 1 is almost impossible due to a rule that most people seem to overlook (it's easy enough, certainly!):
You can always choose to replace one die in you damage roll by your DoS!
So as long as you don't make the shot just barely, with only one DoS, you'll have rolled at least a two :)

 

Wow, I had actually completely missed that rule. I'm going to remember that one.



#17 Radwraith

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 02:01 PM

If you want your game to become more lethal; remove the toughness modifier from damage (Reasoning that it already governs the number of wounds the character has). Be cautious though! It will become a LOT more difficult for your players this way!



#18 Robomummy

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 02:11 PM

ok, I figured it out. it turns out that actually doing damage to players who focus on armor and toughness is difficult but since I don't see a way to increase wounds outside of character creation I will be going for a more attritional approach since the group has no medic.


Edited by Robomummy, 10 September 2013 - 02:11 PM.

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#19 Magnus Grendel

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 01:53 AM

Sound Constitution talent is still in there, isn't it? That gives you an extra wound.

 

Also, are you using weapons Pen values? Most things aside from low-power las shots reduce your armour's damage reduction by one or more points.

 

Certainly, the characters shouldn't be having trouble hurting basic dominate troopers:

Hotshot lasguns carve through armour thanks to their pen value

 

Chainswords do tonnes of damage - add the weapons damage, plus the wielder's strength bonus, plus the pen value pretty much junks flak armour, and there's the two-dice-pick-the-best of tearing.



#20 Robomummy

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 11:41 AM

yes I am using weapon pen values, for the most part it doesn't really do anything to slow the players down. I am doing the book campaign and so far they haven't really gone against anything that has done anything enough to threaten the players.


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