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Flame Quality and Hordes


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#1 revanant

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 03:44 PM

So, this issue cropped up recently in one of my Black Crusade games.

 

One of the characters was considering taking a noise weapon with the spray quality to counter hordes. However according the Core Rules as Written (pg. 349), spray doesn't have an impact on hordes--the necessary quality is Flame.

 

Now, as written, "A flame weapon used on a Horde hits it a number of times equal to one quarter of the weapon’s range (rounding up), plus 1d5. So a flame weapon with a range of 10 hits a Horde 1d5+3 times."

 

With flamers, this makes perfect sense, as the spray quality gives them an in-built limited range of around 30-40 meters. (damage @ 30 meters= 10+1d5)

 

However, other non-spray weapons can have the Flame quality, too. These create major balance problems, as far as I can tell.

 

Inferno Shells:

 

Inferno Shells (pg. 173 of Core) give a weapon the Flame special quality. They can be used in any SP basic or pistol weapon.

 

If we take the RAW, an auto gun (100 meter range, average availability) with inferno rounds (scarce availability) will be able to do 25+1d5 magnitude damage against a horde. Similarly a stub rifle (120 meters) will do 30+1d5 magnitude, due to the flame quality.

 

For comparison, a Legion Heavy Flamer (very rare) with High Grade Promethium will be doing 13+1d5 damage against a horde (50 meters/4).

 

Hellish Blast:

 

Hellish blast (pg. 221 of Core) is an exalted psychic power that has, among other things, the flame quality,  a blast radius of psy rating, a distance of 30 x psy rating, and a minimum psy rating of 5.

 

If we use the range of the power to calculate magnitude damage, the power will be doing 5 magnitude damage from blast and 38+1d5 magnitude (30x5=150 meters/4=38) damage due to range.

 

Alternatively, if we treat the radius of the blast as the range of the flame, it will be doing a much more reasonable 5 blast damage and 2+1d5 magnitude damage from flame.

 

Flaming Melee (i.e. Flaming Gauntlets)

 

Flaming Gauntlets (pg. 61 of Tome of Fate) give unarmed attacks the Flame quality. How should this be interpreted? Should we go with range=point of origin? In other words, a punch has range of 0, and therefore does an additional 1+1d5 magnitude damage due to flame vs. hordes?

 

Extrapolation:

 

I think there are two issues at play here. In Deathwatch, Flame weapons had the in-built range limitation of the "spray" quality, so basing damage on flame and range didn't run into these problems. For weapons like incendiary missiles, they didn't have the flame quality--they just set things on fire.

 

In Black Crusade, however, Spray and Flame are two different qualities. I see two different scenarios.

 

1)The Spray quality was the intended feature that was supposed to do Range/4+1d5 magnitude damage to hordes. However, despite the introduction of the spray rule for Black Crusade and non-flaming spray weapons such as Doom Siren and Spore Caster, "Flame" was mistakenly carried over as the key anti-horde quality. This would make sense, as spray severely limits weapon range, and counts as auto-hit across its 30 degree arc.

 

Solution: Spray should replace the Flame entry on page 349.

 

2) It was intentional to make Flame the operative characteristic for horde magnitude damage, as the Game Designers didn't want to extend anti-horde qualities to noise and other spray weapons. However, the entry on flame was carried over without considering psychic powers, inferno bullets, and melee weapons.

 

Solution: Flame damage to hordes should factor in the point of origin of the flame. A flamer remains unchanged, as the flame will originate at the full range of the flamer. However, inferno rounds and melee attacks will be treated as having 0 range, and so do 1+1d5 magnitude damage, while blast weapons will do only the radius of the blast/4+1d5.

 

Thought? Input is welcome! :)

 

 



#2 Tenebrae

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Posted 24 November 2013 - 05:46 PM

I think it's a case of author lazyness.

 

Assume that the reference to the 'flame' quality actually refers to the 'spray' quality, and things make sense.



#3 BrotharTearer

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 07:09 AM

You're overthinking it. The horde rules are just incorrect. It's basically an editing error (or someone was stupid), as they've put Flame instead of Spray there because of previous editions where those equalities have been the same thing.

Check under the Storm of Iron talent. It mentions all the different ways to damage a horde, and mentions Spray and not Flame as the method you do damage to hordes with.

Weapons with Flame but lacking Spray does not do the special horde damage, so those Inferno rounds wouldn't be any more effective than other rounds (it's E damage, not X, so doesn't deal +1 hit).

Edited by BrotharTearer, 25 November 2013 - 07:11 AM.

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#4 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 09:51 AM

#hat I want to know about is the Spore Caster, which has Devastating but does no damage...



#5 BrotharTearer

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 10:32 AM

#hat I want to know about is the Spore Caster, which has Devastating but does no damage...

 

It does its Devastating damage to hordes, but no hits from the Spray because the weapon doesn't actually do wounds damage. You get additional hits from Spray, but those hits still need to do atleast 1 damage to the horde to do magnitude damage.



#6 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 11:28 AM

 

#hat I want to know about is the Spore Caster, which has Devastating but does no damage...

 

It does its Devastating damage to hordes, but no hits from the Spray because the weapon doesn't actually do wounds damage. You get additional hits from Spray, but those hits still need to do atleast 1 damage to the horde to do magnitude damage.

 

 

I can see that; I'd always however read "successful hit" in the Devastating description as meaning "hit that exceeds AP + TB", because otherwise you have frag missile launchers doing Mag damage to things they can't hurt (admittedly, there aren't many such things).

 

BTW those Khorne artillery pieces in ToB can do -- am I reading this right -- hundreds of Mags of damage?



#7 BrotharTearer

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 02:00 PM

Devastating (x) is automatic. You catch the horde with the Spray and their magnitude is automatically reduced by X amount. No damage needed as Devastating doesn't give you additional hits.

Not sure what you're talking about? Artillery pieces in ToB? Name and page number please.

Edit: Doom Blaster and Salvo of Skulls?

Doom Blaster: Blast 10 for 10 hits, X for +1 hit, Devastating (5) for 5 magnitude damage. Potential 16 magnitude damage, minimum 5.

Salvo of Skulls: Blast 25 for 25 hits, X for +1 hit, Devastating (15) for 15 magnitude damage. Potential 41 magnitude damage, minimum 15.

Edited by BrotharTearer, 25 November 2013 - 02:07 PM.


#8 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 25 November 2013 - 02:41 PM

Devastating (x) is automatic. You catch the horde with the Spray and their magnitude is automatically reduced by X amount. No damage needed as Devastating doesn't give you additional hits.

Not sure what you're talking about? Artillery pieces in ToB? Name and page number please.

Edit: Doom Blaster and Salvo of Skulls?

Doom Blaster: Blast 10 for 10 hits, X for +1 hit, Devastating (5) for 5 magnitude damage. Potential 16 magnitude damage, minimum 5.

Salvo of Skulls: Blast 25 for 25 hits, X for +1 hit, Devastating (15) for 15 magnitude damage. Potential 41 magnitude damage, minimum 15.

 

Doom Blaster. Blast 10 for 10 hits. X +1 hit. Devastating (5) for 5 magnitude damage per successful hit.  11 + 55 = 66 magnitude damage.

 

Salvo of skulls: Blast 25 for 25 hits. X + +1 hit. Devastating (15) for 15 magnitude damage per successful hit.  26 + (26x15) = 416 magnitude damage.

 

At least that's how mag damage is computed in Deathwatch, per the many many forum discussions of it.

 

Which is why I'm confused. There were many many FFG rules clarifications regarding just this issue, and now ToB comes around with these weapons that give OMG results if FFG's rules clarifications are actually followed.

 

Well, 415 mag = about 200 Guardsmen probably. A huge explosion but conceivable. Poor frag missile though, it looks so sad in comparison.

 

EDIT:

 

Here it is.

 

"As a weapon with the Blast Quality inflicts a number of hits to a horde equal to its Blast value and a Weapon with the Devastating Quality reduces the Magnitude of a horde on a "per hit" basis, they do stack. Therefore a Blast (5) weapon which also has Devastating (2) would reduce the Magnitude of a horde by 15 points (5 for the Blast rating, and an additional 10 for Devastating)

 

Thank you for your question and happy gaming!
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Edited by bogi_khaosa, 25 November 2013 - 03:00 PM.


#9 revanant

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Posted 27 November 2013 - 12:22 AM

Technically, the fact that "spray" is a quality listed under storm of iron doesn't mean that "spray" is also the quality that should determine magnitude damage based on range.

 

The Devs might have wanted to give all spray weapons--flame or not--the bonus of hurting hordes slightly better, just as they gave it to any semi-automatic weapon. In this scenario, the flamer doesn't lose out, since it's both spray and flame.

 

In other words, it could have been a design choice to boost all spray weapons a little bit, but still make flamers the only spray weapons that deal magnitude damage based on range.



#10 BrotharTearer

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 05:43 PM

So you'd think they'd list every type of attack listed in the horde rules AND spray (which is only in the horde rules under the "Flame Weapons" section), but not flame? Yeah, that makes so much more sense. /sarcasmoff

 

It's obviously an editing error, because nothing makes sense otherwise.



#11 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 11:01 AM

It's an editing error resulting from Spray and Flame being identical qualities in previous games.






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