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GroggyGolem

Ship to ground combat is deadlier than shown in the Canon

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A discussion spawned on the swrpg reddit about using Reflect against ship lasers.

In the Star Wars Rebels series, Force Sensitive characters reflect shots from ships with their lightsabers.

One would have to have incredibly high Reflect in the FFG RPGs to even potentially Reflect enough damage to not get KO'd immediately. Yet, mildly trained Force Sensitives (not Jedi) in Canon manage to Reflect shots without taking severe damage/passing out.

Still, the mechanics of the game means one would likely get shot down unless they had high ranks in Reflect.

This is a curious thing, considering the normal workings of Reflect. So Force Sensitives in Canon are able to Reflect fairly easily but seem to get overwhelmed/lose focus/become exhausted from the constant firing and can eventually take a hit. When they are hit once, they are down. I have to imagine the reason they fall down is a combination of the extreme mental exhaustion of Reflection and the pain from their wound. Converting the damage from Reflect into strain will still make the PC pass out just as fast.

After looking over the F&D Talents, The best talent trees to combine for Reflect look to be in the Consular, Guardian and Sentinel careers, so getting each Spec would be expensive and time-consuming.

If one does grab all 3 Specs, the most damage that could be Reflected would be 11, just barely above a single damage that a ship could cause with a successful hit, because of the planetary rules on damage. It really feels like one should completely avoid the coolness of Reflecting shots from ships and avoid all ground to ship combat.

Edited by GroggyGolem

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This is a curious thing, considering the normal workings of Reflect. So Force Sensitives in Canon are able to Reflect fairly easily but seem to get overwhelmed/lose focus/become exhausted from the constant firing and can eventually take a hit. When they are hit once, they are down. I have to imagine the reason they fall down is a combination of the extreme mental exhaustion of Reflection and the pain from their wound. Converting the damage from Reflect into strain will still make the PC pass out just as fast.

 

Only if you 1) have only one rank in Reflect, 2) have the same strain threshold as wound threshold, 3) take on no wounds, and/or 4) choose to heal no strain with your Advantages generated by skill checks. 

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I'm actually using a houserules that "solves" that problem, but remember that a "deflect" from the TV show maybe is only a cinematic way to say "the TIE failed the attack roll".

 

By the way my houserule is: Reflect, instead remove damage, it adds Failure to the roll. It works almost perfectly, at least for our games :)

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This patch makes force users and Jedi powerful against blaster fire (not invincible), we tried to emulate movies/series. Non so many Jedi were hit on movies or even TV shoes by non-area (like geonosian sonic weapons) and common blaster fire. The rule is just use the same value that you would use with common Reflect rules so:

 

Ex; Reflect 2: Adds 2+2 Failures to ranged attacks. Just change instead reduce damage to add Failures. The rest still the same. In our games this changes we made emulate movies/series a lot :)

 

"Area/Blast" weapons or melee combat (just for brave ones) is needed to defeat a Jedi (or pseudo). The counterpart is, if you get hit, you will receive full damage instead the mitigated one thanks to Reflect common rules. At maximum "common level" (5 Ranks, not the true limit but the most used) a really defensive Jedi/FU can add 7 Failures to an attack roll. With this, now you can Reflect (and return at GM's permission) fire from vehicle/starship scale.

 

Personally, I love it :D

Edited by Josep Maria

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This patch makes force users and Jedi powerful against blaster fire (not invincible), we tried to emulate movies/series. Non so many Jedi were hit on movies or even TV shoes by non-area (like geonosian sonic weapons) and common blaster fire. The rule is just use the same value that you would use with common Reflect rules so:

 

Ex; Reflect 2: Adds 2+2 Failures to ranged attacks. Just change instead reduce damage to add Failures. The rest still the same. In our games this changes we made emulate movies/series a lot :)

 

"Area/Blast" weapons or melee combat (just for brave ones) is needed to defeat a Jedi (or pseudo). The counterpart is, if you get hit, you will receive full damage instead the mitigated one thanks to Reflect common rules. At maximum "common level" (5 Ranks, not the true limit but the most used) a really defensive Jedi/FU can add 7 Failures to an attack roll. With this, now you can Reflect (and return at GM's permission) fire from vehicle/starship scale.

 

Personally, I love it :D

That's amazing and I think I want to use it.

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My original thought was that Reflet and Parry should have been skills, used mostly to oppose combat checks, replacing the standard difficulty. But this failure system is quite elegant. Either way it makes Force Users much more powerful in combat, so a campaign needs to be prepared with that in mind

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I think reflect works just fine (in personal scale), as a GM you just have to frame the check narratively, instead of getting a blaster bolt to the chest from a successfuly hit, they reflect a few bolts and then take a light graze. And I know you'll all point out "Well Leia got "grazed" in the movies." My friends, that was not a graze. She takes a direct hit to the arm.

 

EDIT: I just remembered this topic was about vehicle weapons being reflected, in which case, the canceling successes makes sense.

Edited by BigSpoon

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I'm not familiar with Reflect, but is this another place where changing the scale from x10 damage to x5 damage would help?

Not really. Even when talking Damage 3 autoblasters, that's 4 minimum damage, at x5 that's still 20 points, say -6 or 7 from reflect/soak and you're still looking at 13-14 damage... so you can survive (maybe) 2 hits instead of 1. So anything heavier is still gonna vape ya.

 

This is one of those things I like and hate. I like that if a vehicle showed up with a 20mm canon it's pretty much duh that you don't want that to hit you. I hate that there's so few vehicles that mount personal scale weapons to actually allow a vehicle to show up and engage the players...

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My original thought was that Reflet and Parry should have been skills, used mostly to oppose combat checks, replacing the standard difficulty. But this failure system is quite elegant. Either way it makes Force Users much more powerful in combat, so a campaign needs to be prepared with that in mind

It's a real challenge in regards to design.  

 

When I did the F&D playtest I had my doubts about how well received the mechanic would be as I wasn't sure players would feel they are directly engaged enough in the whole concept of Parrying and Reflecting by passively adding Soak essentially. The Strain cost was a good call but it's a tough thing to capture.

 

You don't want more dice rolled in a kind of 'saving throw' mechanic using opposed checks, as that doesn't create a fast moving cinematic feel, it actually does the opposite and bogs combat down with more dice pools and rolls.

 

Simply adding Difficulty upgrades is hard to do and balance between being not terribly reliable or completely OP.

 

I do think Josep's  idea dispenses with the personal/vehicle scale damage issue nicely though.

Edited by 2P51

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This is one of those things I like and hate. I like that if a vehicle showed up with a 20mm canon it's pretty much duh that you don't want that to hit you. I hate that there's so few vehicles that mount personal scale weapons to actually allow a vehicle to show up and engage the players...

I’m coming around to the view that most vehicle weapons simply can’t be used against personal scale targets in most cases.

If you were to fire those weapons while inside a hangar bay or on a landing platform, there would be too much risk of a stray shot punching a hole in the walls that aren’t that well armored, and then there’s all that fuel that could potentially be ignited.

Personal scale targets also don’t move anything like vehicle scale targets, either. You can’t take the main gun on an M1-A1 Abrams tank and expect to be able to use it with any efficiency against a single individual who is running in a field. But put that person in a building and use the cannon to attack the building, and you’ve got a potential winner on your hands.

If you want to attack personal scale targets, you need to use weapons designed to do that. If you’re in a vehicle and you want to attack the people on the ground, you want to make sure that your vehicle has some personal scale weapons on it as well as the vehicle scale weapons.

Otherwise, you’re trying to do the equivalent of taking a nuclear-tipped Minuteman Missile to go after the houseflies that are annoying you by buzzing around your head, and the result of that is not likely to be anything that you would want.

For vehicles that are designed to be used against personal scale targets as well as vehicle scale targets, they would mount a variety of weapons, and some of them might be grenade launchers or mini missile tubes or e-web blasters, all of which could be very effective against personnel on the ground. And if they’re hiding in or behind vehicles or buildings, then you could bring the vehicle scale weapons to bear on whatever it is that is providing cover.

Yeah, this means that you’d have to hand-wave the installation of appropriate personal scale weapons to handle that function on a variety of vehicles. But when it comes to the thing that does the least amount of damage to my “willing suspension of disbelief”, I think hand-waving the personal scale weapon installation makes more sense than anything else I’ve seen or heard so far.

Auto-blasters might be the only thing I can think of that would be the equivalent of a minigun firing 7.62N rounds at 6000 rounds-per-minute or maybe a 20mm gatling-style cannon, and therefore could potentially be used in both scenarios.

On reflection, personal scale weapons using the Gunnery skill simply can’t be used at Engaged range at all. Whereas Ranged (Heavy) weapons simply suffer more setback dice to being used at Engaged. So, maybe vehicle-scale weapons would have similar limitations in use in personal scale combat? And their hits are all area-of-effect when it comes to personal scale combat?

I dunno. I’m just “thinking out loud” here, and I’d love to hear what other people think on this subject.

The one thing I’m sure about is that the more I think about it, the more I think that you really just can’t mix personal scale and vehicle scale weapons. There’s virtually no overlap there.

That’s not to say that people can’t be injured by attacks that come from vehicle scale weapons, just that you just can’t effectively use vehicle scale weapons against individual people. They’re designed to be used against vehicles and large structures, and almost all damage that occurs to the people in or near those vehicles/structures is only indirectly caused by the weapon being fired at them.

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I'm actually using a houserules that "solves" that problem, but remember that a "deflect" from the TV show maybe is only a cinematic way to say "the TIE failed the attack roll".

 

By the way my houserule is: Reflect, instead remove damage, it adds Failure to the roll. It works almost perfectly, at least for our games :)

Do you apply this mod to Parry too? Or just Reflect?

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For the moment, just for Reflect. We wanted to emulate movies as mush as we can. There are some scenes at CW where Jedi where hit and disarmed (even "easily" in some cases) on melee combat but never USES to be a "insta-kill", so, "damage mitigation" seems enough in that cases. :)

 

Any suggestions about that Jegergryte?

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Yes, Planetary to Personal scale combat should usually be avoided at all costs, cause it tends to leave smoking boots behind instead of bodies.

 

.. and that is essentailly what my players have done on two occasions just to make a point... The 'baddies' took the hint after the second smoking crater and backed off for a bit... of course as GM I just wove in other complications when I rolled for Obligation :D

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Auto-blasters might be the only thing I can think of that would be the equivalent of a minigun firing 7.62N rounds at 6000 rounds-per-minute or maybe a 20mm gatling-style cannon, and therefore could potentially be used in both scenarios.

On reflection, personal scale weapons using the Gunnery skill simply can’t be used at Engaged range at all. Whereas Ranged (Heavy) weapons simply suffer more setback dice to being used at Engaged. So, maybe vehicle-scale weapons would have similar limitations in use in personal scale combat? And their hits are all area-of-effect when it comes to personal scale combat?

I dunno. I’m just “thinking out loud” here, and I’d love to hear what other people think on this subject.

The one thing I’m sure about is that the more I think about it, the more I think that you really just can’t mix personal scale and vehicle scale weapons. There’s virtually no overlap there.

That’s not to say that people can’t be injured by attacks that come from vehicle scale weapons, just that you just can’t effectively use vehicle scale weapons against individual people. They’re designed to be used against vehicles and large structures, and almost all damage that occurs to the people in or near those vehicles/structures is only indirectly caused by the weapon being fired at them.

 

To me it seems WEG had a good idea in this realm by having a set of baseline weapons, but not locking down any weapon stats to a specific name. The Probe droid carried a "blaster cannon" that was essentially a slightly beefed up blaster pistol when you actually looked at the stats.

 

 I think that's part of what's getting FFG in trouble, they locked down all these vehicle scale weapons with certain weapons names, and now feel they can't back out.

 

Say they want to make a... S-1 Firehawke Repulsortank. Looking on wookieepedia it's listed as having a Heavy laser cannon and medium blaster cannon. Flipping to the vehicle weapons chart in the core, you'll probably just translate that as direct as possible. Heavy Laser cannon and Light or heavy blaster cannon. Against personnel that's horrendous...

 

Numbers rant about shooting a player with a blaster cannon:

Shoot a player with a light blaster cannon and he's at x2WT, and if the GM is feeling nasty, taking a +50 crit. Foom! One shot and you're sitting on what? 39 Wounds and a crit? (Assuming you have a WT of 13 and by "you track to x2 your WT" to mean x2 beyond your WT and not your WTx2 total). If I apply all stimpacks possible and a Medicine check we're still talking what? Something like 19 wounds? You're still out of the game for the rest of the day... not fun. (Note: The wound tracking max is a bit of a question mark for me, as if you drop the max tracked wounds to x2 total, you CAN survive a hit from a heavy weapon and be revived once per day...making me suspect this may be the intent)

 

But now lets get real... A real-world main battle tank traditionally carries a heavy long-range cannon... Ok, Heavy Laser cannon would fit the bill... But they also carry a coaxial machine gun for shooting up infantry, and a 12.7mm/.50 cal on a pintle for everything in between.

 

The firehawke doesn't do the pintle, thing, so that leaves to coax. Easy translation.... the "medium blaster cannon" could be something like a light repeating blaster. A personal scale weapon, with auto-fire, damage in the 11 area, and maybe an extra quality or two. Now the tank comes rolling in. Seeing the opposition is dismounted trooper (players) it ops to open fire with the repeating blaster. If a player gets hit... he'll either survive, or be back up and running with a single stimpack. But now it's not a "blaster cannon" so...

 

 

I dunno... we'll see what happens as more supps come out I suppose...

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Shoot a player with a light blaster cannon and he's at x2WT, and if the GM is feeling nasty, taking a +50 crit. Foom! One shot and you're sitting on what? 39 Wounds and a crit? (Assuming you have a WT of 13 and by "you track to x2 your WT" to mean x2 beyond your WT and not your WTx2 total). If I apply all stimpacks possible and a Medicine check we're still talking what? Something like 19 wounds? You're still out of the game for the rest of the day... not fun. (Note: The wound tracking max is a bit of a question mark for me, as if you drop the max tracked wounds to x2 total, you CAN survive a hit from a heavy weapon and be revived once per day...making me suspect this may be the intent)

 

 

The rules are "to a maximum (wounds suffered) of twice the wound threshold." Not thrice ;)

 

But point taken: all you have to do is play a Wookiee, or any character with a WT of greater than 15, and you can get laid out for an entire day, barring some fantastic medicine checks. I'm playing a PbP right now where that is the case for my character :)

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My Wookiee has been shot by a LRB, which does more damage than an HBR.

Of course, the guy with the LRB was his Klatooinian PC buddy in the game, who managed to roll a Despair while firing into a group where my Wookiee was Engaged with some Minions.

But my Wookiee survived, and continued the fight. He didn’t shoot back at his buddy, but he did scream a fair amount. I kinda wish my Wookiee had the Scathing Tirade talent for cases like that…. ;)

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Shoot a player with a light blaster cannon and he's at x2WT, and if the GM is feeling nasty, taking a +50 crit. Foom! One shot and you're sitting on what? 39 Wounds and a crit? (Assuming you have a WT of 13 and by "you track to x2 your WT" to mean x2 beyond your WT and not your WTx2 total). If I apply all stimpacks possible and a Medicine check we're still talking what? Something like 19 wounds? You're still out of the game for the rest of the day... not fun. (Note: The wound tracking max is a bit of a question mark for me, as if you drop the max tracked wounds to x2 total, you CAN survive a hit from a heavy weapon and be revived once per day...making me suspect this may be the intent)

 

 

The rules are "to a maximum (wounds suffered) of twice the wound threshold." Not thrice ;)

 

But point taken: all you have to do is play a Wookiee, or any character with a WT of greater than 15, and you can get laid out for an entire day, barring some fantastic medicine checks. I'm playing a PbP right now where that is the case for my character :)

 

Thanks, that's... somewhat better, but you're right. You end up with the tank recovery artifact.

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