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Abstracted ammunition/hordes?


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#1 bluntpencil2001

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 04:09 PM

 Is it just me, or can a single 'shot' from a bolter kill multiple members of a horde? Or, does this represent the horde dispersing? Or both?

I figure that ammunition conservation might become an important aspect of play, since Kill Teams may often operate behind enemy lines, so abstract ammunition may not be great.

When killing Genestealers and Orks, for instance, you may need to terminate every single one with extreme prejudice, too, so dispersal may not be an option for a Kill Team, lest one get away and allow its taint to spread.

This might be awkward, I think.



#2 dvang

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 04:35 PM

Well, Orks and Genestealers should really never be done as Hordes, since they are powerful enough to be on par with a SM.

As for your other point, yes, I assume it represents a loss of effectiveness and morale as well as casualties.  Although, it wouldn't be hard to explain single bolter rounds going through multiple people... more likely a combination of casualties and motivation/effectiveness reduction.



#3 Bilateralrope

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 04:41 PM

Lets think about what abstractions there are:

 

 -  1 point of magnitude doesn't represent 1 enemy. For some hordes your looking at 1 enemy to several points of magnitude, for others its several enemies to each point of magnitude.

 - Reducing magnitude only means that there horde is less able to fight. While incapacitation through direct injury is probably what you are thinking of, there are other things like someone taking a nasty hit from shrapnel, the guy who froze up because several of his buddies died around him, the uninjured guy trapped under a pile of corpse, the guy who ran away, etc.

 - A round takes about 5 seconds*, no weapon fires more than 10 shots a round. So either there are no weapons with a rate of fire about 120 rounds a minute, or ammo use is another abstraction.

 

When killing Genestealers and Orks, for instance, you may need to terminate every single one with extreme prejudice, too, so dispersal may not be an option for a Kill Team, lest one get away and allow its taint to spread.

I don't see how the kill team has a choice when the enemy decides to run.

 

*Rogue Trader, page 234



#4 MILLANDSON

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 04:41 PM

dvang said:

more likely a combination of casualties and motivation/effectiveness reduction.

Pretty much that, or that's how I ran it when I playtested it.


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#5 Lord Richter Castus

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 06:43 AM

I like to believe that since a bolt round explodes, it can take out more than one weaker(rebel/serf)enemy in a close formation ravening horde.



#6 KjetilKverndokken

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 06:47 AM

Lord Richter Castus said:

I like to believe that since a bolt round explodes, it can take out more than one weaker(rebel/serf)enemy in a close formation ravening horde.

If one look at it like that its more going thorugh more targets, as the bolter rounds explosives is a small explosion to create massive internal damage, its not lie a frag grenade, not even on a small scale.

But with the speed and size of a bolter round is easy to imagine that it shreds through targets that are lightly armored before it detonates inside the last unlucky bastard.



#7 RenoDM

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 03:03 AM

If you wanted/needed something a little more in keeping with the feel of spending lots of ammo to fight a horde you could try assigning some "ammo to attack" ratios:

  • Single shot at a horde = 10% of a clip [10 attacks per clip]
  • Semi-Auto Burst = 25% of clip [4 attacks per clip]
  • Full Auto Burst = 50% of clip [2 attacks per clip]

That might give you the ammo expenditure you're looking for.  Although if you make that change you may want to modifiy reload times, sense the PC's will be reloading more frequently.

 



#8 Brother Praetus

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 10:20 AM

RenoDM said:

If you wanted/needed something a little more in keeping with the feel of spending lots of ammo to fight a horde you could try assigning some "ammo to attack" ratios:

  • Single shot at a horde = 10% of a clip [10 attacks per clip]
  • Semi-Auto Burst = 25% of clip [4 attacks per clip]
  • Full Auto Burst = 50% of clip [2 attacks per clip]

That might give you the ammo expenditure you're looking for.  Although if you make that change you may want to modifiy reload times, sense the PC's will be reloading more frequently.

 

 

Last sentence of the first column on Page 17 of Final Sanction:

  • Ammo Expenditure and Jamming are never applied to Hordes - they always have enough bullets to keep firing.

Remember also that the description of the battle at the Chapel is described as 600 PDF v. "Rebels in the thousands."

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#9 jareddm

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 01:55 PM

Brother Praetus said:

RenoDM said:

 

If you wanted/needed something a little more in keeping with the feel of spending lots of ammo to fight a horde you could try assigning some "ammo to attack" ratios:

  • Single shot at a horde = 10% of a clip [10 attacks per clip]
  • Semi-Auto Burst = 25% of clip [4 attacks per clip]
  • Full Auto Burst = 50% of clip [2 attacks per clip]

That might give you the ammo expenditure you're looking for.  Although if you make that change you may want to modifiy reload times, sense the PC's will be reloading more frequently.

 

 

Last sentence of the first column on Page 17 of Final Sanction:

  • Ammo Expenditure and Jamming are never applied to Hordes - they always have enough bullets to keep firing.

I'm pretty sure he's referring to the player's ammo, not the horde's ammo.



#10 Stinger

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 06:24 PM

Counting shots fired sucks and enforcing it in the middle of a fight is bothersome, people never properly keep track or forget to do it at all, IME.

What I'm going to do is, during any individual engagement, I won't worry about ammunition expenditure for the Marines, assuming reloads just happen. But if someone rolls a jam, then I'll give the player the option of actually having a jam that needs to be cleared or running out of ammo and needing to reload (they'll just get the reload as a free action - that's the tradeoff for the reload using up ammo).

Then, when the fight is over, each character rolls BS (representing their fire discipline) and if they fail, their ammunition level is reduced a step - Full > Depleted > Low > Out. If they rolled a jam in the fight and chose the reload instead of the jam, the ammo level automatically depletes without a roll.

Or something like that.



#11 RenoDM

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 07:11 PM

Sorry if I wasn't clear, but yes I was refering to the marines and not the hordes. 



#12 Xenoviel

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 07:27 PM

Stinger said:

Then, when the fight is over, each character rolls BS (representing their fire discipline) and if they fail, their ammunition level is reduced a step - Full > Depleted > Low > Out. If they rolled a jam in the fight and chose the reload instead of the jam, the ammo level automatically depletes without a roll.

Or something like that.

This is a rather nice abstraction, and reduces innumerable records-keeping steps to just a single event at the end of the fight. Perhaps with modifiers for the number of rounds the fight took or number of rounds the character spent firing? A very workable idea!



#13 Hivemind

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 07:35 PM

I hope they come out with a special rule for the Tyranids since they won't break under any circumstances unless you can distrupt synapse. Being Deathwatch our heroes would be well versed in what synapse creatures are and how to kill them to distrupt the Hivemind and break the enemy.



#14 N0-1_H3r3

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Posted 27 June 2010 - 08:20 PM

Stinger said:

Counting shots fired sucks and enforcing it in the middle of a fight is bothersome, people never properly keep track or forget to do it at all, IME.

For the sake of comparison, the group I ran Final Sanction for tracked their ammo expenditure without prompting - particularly in the case of the Ultramarines Tactical Marine, ammunition usage was monitored and considered carefully (shots missed are shots wasted), reverting to single shots and semi-auto when full-auto would be a wasteful and unnecessary extravagance, and in one case, reloading in the middle of the fight to save the remaining Kraken shells (I only gave them 1 magazine of Krakens per tactical marine - the rest were standard shells), and the Devastator was careful not to burn through his limited supply too quickly.

It depends on the group, really.


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#15 RenoDM

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Posted 28 June 2010 - 05:12 AM

When it comes to tracking ammo something I've had players do in other games is use piles of those little glass "stones".  The small ones are perfect and their easy to keep in a little plastic container.  We put as many stones in the container as one clips worth of ammo and remove the stones as shots are used up.  When the clip is changed simply pick up all the stones and put them back in the cup (or the other way around).

I like using visual/tactile methods like this because it tends to keep the players at my table more focused on the game then writing and erasing on their character sheet.  It also tends to make sure ammo is kept track of accurately without becoming a management hassle or being distracting.

 



#16 Aajav-Khan

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Posted 28 June 2010 - 09:11 AM

N0-1_H3r3 said:

It depends on the group, really.

     Yes. Having played most "ammo-dependent" RPG`s available trough the years ( Twilight 2000, Cyberpunk, Shadowrun etc etc. ), counting ammo is a learned reflex. It is just something you do. It gives a sense of realism. Abstracting ammo reserves ( for a PC ) just feels...wrong. YMMV.



#17 talsine

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Posted 28 June 2010 - 02:37 PM

RenoDM said:

When it comes to tracking ammo something I've had players do in other games is use piles of those little glass "stones".  The small ones are perfect and their easy to keep in a little plastic container.  We put as many stones in the container as one clips worth of ammo and remove the stones as shots are used up.  When the clip is changed simply pick up all the stones and put them back in the cup (or the other way around).

I like using visual/tactile methods like this because it tends to keep the players at my table more focused on the game then writing and erasing on their character sheet.  It also tends to make sure ammo is kept track of accurately without becoming a management hassle or being distracting.

 

 

I just stole this from you, so much easier than my scatch paper, and gives me something to use my life/honor counters for now that i don't play L5R anymore. I have to track my ammo, its a compulsion, i've played too much Post Apoc stuff not to.



#18 LegendofOld

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 07:38 AM

 I do something similar to the stones, but use poker chips instead. Every time people start shooting they have to hand in poker chips of appropriate value. 



#19 Shamoth

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 01:54 PM

Back in the old Cyberpunk days I've seen sheets of paper with cross- sections of clips. You'd prepare the clips by using pen to fill in the bullets from the bottom up to the correct number in the clip then use pencil to cross of rounds as you fire them. Worked well.

 

BUT! The cool thing I've seen (in these forums?) for Dark Heresy was an awesome circular ammo counter. You pinned it in the middle and turned the top circle window to show the current number of rounds and clips. It's easy and makes counting ammo novel, so encorages the player.

Is the person who made those around still? Any chance of making those for Marine weapons? Unlike Dark Heresy we are now dealing with nice, standardised weapons so it should be easy.



#20 Stinger

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Posted 29 June 2010 - 01:59 PM

Aajav-Khan said:

N0-1_H3r3 said:

 

It depends on the group, really.

 

 

     Yes. Having played most "ammo-dependent" RPG`s available trough the years ( Twilight 2000, Cyberpunk, Shadowrun etc etc. ), counting ammo is a learned reflex. It is just something you do. It gives a sense of realism. Abstracting ammo reserves ( for a PC ) just feels...wrong. YMMV.

Aajav-Khan said:

N0-1_H3r3 said:

 

It depends on the group, really.

 

 

     Yes. Having played most "ammo-dependent" RPG`s available trough the years ( Twilight 2000, Cyberpunk, Shadowrun etc etc. ), counting ammo is a learned reflex. It is just something you do. It gives a sense of realism. Abstracting ammo reserves ( for a PC ) just feels...wrong. YMMV.

 

Indeed it does vary. I can count round-by-round when I'm running a character, but nearly everyone else I've run games for doesn't do it/can't be bothered/forgets/fudges/misses the count.

So I really really hate tracking ammo and look for ways around it - especially for games where there is a cinematic feel to the action (or those where such a feeling is laid on).

For special ammo like Kraken rounds, yes, count it shot-by-shot of course. Or 6-shot revolvers or low-cap shotguns, grenade launchers or one-shot muskets where it's easy to count. But for automatic and semi-automatic weapons, either got ammo or you don't and that's what matters to me anyway.

YMMV indeed. ;-)






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