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#1 Graver

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 07:53 AM

One of my players and I were recently talking Dark Heresy and her frustration with the way weapon talents are handled came up. The issues she raised were:

  1. Since weapons are governed by talents and not skills, the only way to get more proficient with a weapon is to raise your base characteristic but with most anything else, the character can get better at it by simply purchasing the +10 or +20 version of the skill without needing to be all around better with a smaller characteristic raise.
  2. This also means that a character who has been toting around his Las Gun and using ever since rank one would be just as good with a bolt gun when he buys that talent at rank 6 even though he's has a lot more experience firing the las gun.
  3. This tends to lead to a Level Up and Get Better Toys mentality as opposed to characters sticking to what they're comfortable with or the development of signature weapons.

So, for her I've been thinking about changing Weapon Training from a talent to a basic skill (no big change to the system there). For the +10 and +20 versions of the new weapon training skills, I was thinking of taking the simple way out and stating that which ever rank the Weapon Training was available for purchase on, advancements to that skill will also be available up to +20 for the same cost as the Weapon Training Skill. Of course, in order to get the 20, the player will have to purchase the +10 and the Skill it's self.

Can anyone see a problem with this change? I'm a bit more reluctant to introduce this change to the rules as it will alter the way PC's spend their XP and, if I were to decide it wasn't working out the way we had thought it would, it would be a bit messier to remove (because of the spent XP, etc).

 

 



#2 Cifer

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 08:45 AM

Well, the combat system is built around the assumption of a certain range of WS and BS and may or may not behave strangely when you get outside those. FA would get stronger (two bullets stronger, to be precise), dodge would get weaker because more attacks per turn will hit.



#3 Graspar

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 09:58 AM

How about simply allowing characters to buy Talented (weapon category) as an elite advance when they have gotten a good amount of practice with the weapon? It would favour specialisation while only being half as unbalancing.



#4 karn987

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 12:18 PM

I like the idea of having a talent for Weapon Focus or Weapon Familiarity to give you another +10 to hit with a specific type of weapon (Ex: SP Pistols).

But the other point about it unbalancing other parts of the game, such as dodge is also very valid. It's hard enough to dodge the killer shots as it is so it has to be limited. I think +20 is way to much, but +10 may not be so bad.



#5 Graspar

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 12:27 PM

Perhaps one can have the different Talented (weapon category) be mutually exclusive? This would force players to choose a specialisation rather than just using it to become combat gods.



#6 karn987

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 12:40 PM

What exactly do you mean Grasper? Not following you heh ><



#7 Bilateralrope

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 12:49 PM

karn987 said:

What exactly do you mean Grasper? Not following you heh ><

Once a player picks on weapon specialisation, they are unable to take any others. I'd suggest going further and have the specialisation impose a penalty to other weapons, with the penalty increasing the more different the weapon is from their speciality.



#8 Graspar

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 01:12 PM

karn987 said:

What exactly do you mean Grasper? Not following you heh ><

''

 

My suggestion is to allow characters to pick one weapon skill to improve above normal with a +10 bonus.

For example, a metallican gunslinger who is skilled at using most kinds of pistols (has many Pistol training talents) but excels at SP weapons (talented SP, +10 to hit) because he favours his hecuters.



#9 karn987

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 01:24 PM

Oh ok, so basically what I said >.>

Im not sure about imposing a penalty to using other weapon types though... its supposed to be your getting really good with this weapon, not forsaking your ability with other weapons to get amazing with this one.

 



#10 the liegekiller

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 03:40 PM

i had the same outlook as your player. in fact, there are a quite a few things i really didn';t care for with the DH ruleset. i'm not as enthusiastic as many ppl on this forum.  as a result, i completely gutted the system.

weapon training falls under skills and not talents. with +5 increments similar to Characteristic Advances with XP costs parallel to the base WS or BS of the career, depending on the weapon category. with each +10 increment granting an extra +1 damage demonstrating skilfull lethality.

i took it upon myself to smooth all the bonuses for skills. from the standard +10/+20 to +5 increments. i just thought those bonuses were too large. characters though can use a basic skill at no penalty. it is after all a basic skill where no advance learning is required.  and any basic skill can be taken at ANY time as well as their +5 increases. so for example Awareness can be taken at rnk 1 to rnk 4 to acquire the full +20 bonus if so desired. basic skills ar also at a cheaper cost 50XPs.

i also took into account that basic skills CAN be trained. those that have received training for a basic skill rely on both natural acumen but also structured learning. for example, Search...while anyone can do it. the Inquisition, His God Emperors Secret Service, the local Thieves Guild, etc. will instruct on deeper techniques and methodolgies giving a better grasp. I chose to handle this by alloting and extra 50XPs (total 100XPs) and gave a 1 TIME +10 bonus to reflect that kind of specialized training.

 the weapon skills gives all manner of options and reflects 'real' development and ability. for those who are using a weapon that is of the same type... they will not suffer a non proficiency penalty. say Corazon has skill in plasma basic weapons an energy weapon, any energy type weapon he chooses to use he defaults to his BS base. barring a flamer. not so however if he wants to use an SP type weapon, here he will take the profiency penalty. as he has no skill in using this manner of weapon.

exotic weapons are another exception. as they are exotic they each must be specialized individually.

this has all worked out exceeding well.

 



#11 Friend of the Dork

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 08:32 PM

I kinda like the system because it doesen't differentiate markmanship between ranged weapons. There just isn't that much of a difference between a rifle and an autogun and a boltgun. As long as you know how to operate it, aiming is pretty much the same so i see litle difference.

There may be some difference between longarm weapons and pistol-size weapons, but not enough to warrant a whole skill IMO - a talent giving 5% bonus to either kind wouldn't be a bad idea though.

That weapons like bow and slings use the same characteristic is a bit silly though, although simple. Not to mention grenades and throwing weapons.

 



#12 karn987

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Posted 15 July 2009 - 12:17 AM

the liegekiller said:

i had the same outlook as your player. in fact, there are a quite a few things i really didn';t care for with the DH ruleset. i'm not as enthusiastic as many ppl on this forum.  as a result, i completely gutted the system.

weapon training falls under skills and not talents. with +5 increments similar to Characteristic Advances with XP costs parallel to the base WS or BS of the career, depending on the weapon category. with each +10 increment granting an extra +1 damage demonstrating skilfull lethality.

i took it upon myself to smooth all the bonuses for skills. from the standard +10/+20 to +5 increments. i just thought those bonuses were too large. characters though can use a basic skill at no penalty. it is after all a basic skill where no advance learning is required.  and any basic skill can be taken at ANY time as well as their +5 increases. so for example Awareness can be taken at rnk 1 to rnk 4 to acquire the full +20 bonus if so desired. basic skills ar also at a cheaper cost 50XPs.

i also took into account that basic skills CAN be trained. those that have received training for a basic skill rely on both natural acumen but also structured learning. for example, Search...while anyone can do it. the Inquisition, His God Emperors Secret Service, the local Thieves Guild, etc. will instruct on deeper techniques and methodolgies giving a better grasp. I chose to handle this by alloting and extra 50XPs (total 100XPs) and gave a 1 TIME +10 bonus to reflect that kind of specialized training.

 the weapon skills gives all manner of options and reflects 'real' development and ability. for those who are using a weapon that is of the same type... they will not suffer a non proficiency penalty. say Corazon has skill in plasma basic weapons an energy weapon, any energy type weapon he chooses to use he defaults to his BS base. barring a flamer. not so however if he wants to use an SP type weapon, here he will take the profiency penalty. as he has no skill in using this manner of weapon.

exotic weapons are another exception. as they are exotic they each must be specialized individually.

this has all worked out exceeding well.

 

 

Eh it sounds interesting but it also sounds like you just broke DH inhalf and your no longer really playing the system >.>, no offense but I don't think you realize what handing out even more bonuses to hit will do.

Dork is correct in that their isnt going to be enough of a difference to really warrent the creation of different "skills" for using different weapons because the Imperium trys to make their stuff EASY to use so any guardsman can just pick it up and be almost as familiar with it as his las gun. Besides, weapon proficiencies already represent trained skill in using these types of weapons, one that stand out from that category often have special rules built into them to show this or are exotic weapons.

Basically all these ideas of turning the weapon prof's into skills and allowing them to give hit and damage bonuses are going to break the system. Dodges and Parry no longer really matter any more because it just became even easier to stack up to the +60 to hit and easy need to roll under 101+. Psychic powers aren't as good any more because they can't get these bonuses and your underpowering what is supposed to be the most dangerous thing in the imperium. You also just made full auto obscenely powerfull if you have the full +20 you discribe because your doing an additional +2dm per hit and your easily going to be able to get the +60 bonus now. It's a cool idea but it doesnt fit into the system.

I also want to know why the bonus to damage? That doesn't even make sense since # of successes is already tied to damage in the weapons where it really matters and # of successes is tied to your BS or WS and what bonuses you can stack on it. All of these represent what your broken system already does, but apparently not to the degree that makes you happy.

I'm sorry, this is just a terrible idea IMO. I think you nicely broke the system and ruined the delicate balance of the RPG.



#13 the liegekiller

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Posted 15 July 2009 - 02:03 AM

@Karn987

as stated i've gutted the system and changed a number of things right across the board to reflect a number of the items u have already noted. i just didn't think there was any need to fully flesh them out as this wasn't the thread for such a thing.

instead of players getting a boost across the board in BS or WS (which they still have the option of upgrading) they can now focus on individual classification of weapons, which limits how many XPs they have to spend in their pool. for a trade off in specialization and that expense, its an offering of more lethality.

anyone that has used firearms extensively knows..they may all have the same basic function ..they don't all shoot the same...a pistol has unique qualities as  opposed to a shotgun, a shotgun from an assault rifle..the tactics and methodologies of their use varies. currently we all use SP type weapons...within the 40K environ the range is much wider. the care, the maintenance, the tactics and methodologies will be just as varied.

the psykers have all manners of new powers, skills and talents accessible to them and the Acolytes opponents are a lil tougher and or have more wounds where i thought necessary. more armour or more skill.

for a broken system its been running along pretty damn well and i can tell u, the players do not find it easy by any measure. i am by no means a soft touch GM.



#14 Graver

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Posted 15 July 2009 - 06:54 AM

Thanks all for your extra eyes and brains on this point! I was concerned there'd be some kind real wonky thing waiting down the line if this were implemented. The possibility of having to dodge more would be the only point of contention for players so I'll make sure that's stressed a bit and while it dose change the dynamics a bit, it doesn't seem to break anything or put all kinds of emphasis on one way of fighting excluding all others (my main concern).

Simply including the Talented might be a good mid-ground and I'll bring that one up too. It would be perfect except that it doesn't do as much to solve the Level Up and Get New Toys syndrome quite like simply purchasing a +10 or a +20 in a weapon skill or two would... at least it doesn't seem like it would, but who knows. Still, definitly something to consider and it's a nice minor change which is usually the best option.

Either way, I'll bring all of this up with my players at our next get-together. Thanks everyone for your input and extra eyes and minds on this issue!

 



#15 Khorne-ucopia

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Posted 15 July 2009 - 07:42 AM

Just my two cents, but doesn't the Guardsman type character from the Rogue Trader adventure have some talent that gives bonuses to hit, damage, and initiative for a certain weapon group.  If you break it into three talents(one for each bonus) players might want to stick with the weapons they have been using since they are investing exp into three different talents and getting better in that one weapon group.



#16 Solomon Kane

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 01:48 AM

Our GM posed this idea to us a few weeks ago, just as we had finished House of Dust and Ash (which he considerably up-statted and we ended up renaming it "the house of screaming and bleeding"). our 5 person group is now 6th level and to be honest some of us havent changed our ballistic weapon types since we started. My guardsman has a Hellgun, the Scum his his Armageddon, the assassin has a Nomad, Its only the Sister with her boltgun and the Techpriest with her meltagun that have really upgraded thier weapons.

Our main expenditure has been on improving our armour and melee weapons. We have gone from mono-swords to powerswords, powerfists and breachers. And from Flak/Mesh to Carapace and Powered armour.

All in all i think the idea of Talented (weapon group) works nicely, as the "level up-get better kit" isnt so focussed on ranged weapons.

Anyone have any differing expeiences?

S.K.



#17 Kurgan_cz

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 09:24 AM

As a player I think any Skill or Trait granting bonus to hit is going to ruin the game. Just an example with my character...Guardsman with BS 48 and Hecuter with Targeter. That means all my shooting is done with base BS 58. Now single shot with aim is at 68, same for semi-auto, full-auto is at 78. That is at standart shooting range 30-60m. I rarely get to situations beyond this range so I get no penalties for long or extreme range. On the contrary I often get into a close range battles so I get bonus +10, that means my shots are at 78 / 78 / 88. And I only took two BS advances so far, so I can improve this value for another +10 if I want...and I most certainly will at some point.

Now, say I would have a Skill or Talent to get another bonus to my BS...there will be no space for misses...all the rolling would be pointless.

 

IF you want to give something to players to improve their effectivness with some weapons I would advise giving them a Talent with something smaller than a bonus to hit. As a player I would really appreciate something like this

Talented (Las/SP/Plasma pistols/basic/heavy) - grants Reliable quality to the respective type of weapon and category. So for example PC would take SP pistols - when he uses SP pistols they get the Reliable quality. Because of his great knowledge of this kind of weapons he can apply better maintenance or just solve field problems and jams really fast with some nice tricks. If a weapon already has a reliable quality it cannot jam, unreliable quality will be canceled etc.

You can work so many Traits or Talents to make subtle changes like these...for example Las weapons can get +1 penetration because PC can better set the output of the weapon or whatever...

Or you can invent a new combat action that can be made with this kind of weapon - like two single shots from a pistol in one round for a full action...empty a Revolver in one round at close range with some penalty etc.

There are many much cooler ways of how to solve this matter than just +10 to BS...

Think about it



#18 borithan

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 12:51 AM

There are some very good reasons not to upgrade to certain weapons even if you have the talents. Boltgun ammunition costs a ridiculous amount. A Guardsman at rank 3 (for example) can afford exactly 4 rounds of boltgun ammunition a month. Most of the Dark Heresy boltguns also don't some with full-auto (and seeing as a heavy bolter fires 160 thrones worth of stuff every burst it wouldn't exactly be very appealing even if they did). If you don't hand out ammunition or money freely then Bolt weapons are going to be incredibly unpopular, except to those that really just want to have one for the cool/intimidation factor.

Plasma and Melta weapons don't have this issue, but they do tend to have poor firing modes (melta weapons are single shot only, and plasma are largely capped at Semi-auto), tiny ammunition capacities, and large reload times. Due to their underselling by the Dark Heresy stats they are also not that great, unless you really need to toast heavily armed things. Plasma also obviously has the Overload issue, and most have Recharge as well. They just aren't worth the bother unless the target is simply too hard to deal with conventionally.

90% of the time the characters will be not much worse off with las and SP weapons, and SP weapons are the most commonly issued with Full-Auto capability and have alternative ammunition. Las is less appealing (which is a shame) due to full-auto being generally limited to specialist pieces, and the fact you don't have to buy ammo after having a couple of clips (as long as you have the ability to recharge the packs) isn't so overwhelming because SP is so cheap (unless you are really short on money, a Scum say, and burn through ammo quickly).

 

There is more of an "upgrade" issue with melee weapons, as there generally is no reason to keep weaker weapons once you get and can use the better ones. Ok, there may be personal choice, or maybe the campaign/mission style demands a little bit more subtlety than a chain or power weapon can muster, but other than that, Power beats Chain beats Mono beats Primitive. Shock... well, depends on your intentions, but will fall about the same level as Chain.



#19 Kasatka

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Posted 21 February 2012 - 02:33 AM

 I think a lot of the discussion about having skills or Talented[weapon type] ignore that there are already plenty of ways in game to differentiate someone who has never picked up a gun before (the -30 untrained penalty), to someone who has basic competency with a weapon (Weapon Proficiency), to skilled marksmen, snipers and automatic weapon  masters (the Marskman, Ambidextrous, Bulging Biceps, Deadeye Shot, Gunslinger, Hip Shooting, Mighty Shot, Sharpshooter, Quick Draw, Rapid Reload, and Target Selection talents all cover this).

There is plenty already in the system to differentiate between skill levels with weaponry beyond the basic differences in Ws and BS, i just think maybe some players and GMs haven't looked at it this way.


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