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Daxium

Self-Destructing your own or someone else’s power supply.

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While I know that for the most part a Space Marine would rather not contemplate blowing themselves up to take a target out, but let us for sake of argument, say that the unarmed (no weapons/grenades) Space Marine must take out target A, and it is immune to his punches/teeth/yelling, but he is carting around a fusion generator on his back. How much damage would it do, if he let it go critical and exploding? I would think that it would at least be the equivalent to a 40-50 mega ton nuclear warhead, seeing that it would last for centuries or longer depending on which novel you read. While I profess that I am NOT planning on using this for my character (Nathiel), I might have it come up in an adventure that I am running. So I would like to hear what you guys think that the damage should be and any other effects that you think would be appropriate.

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 50 megatons?! Really?! That's bigger than all but one nuclear weapon ever tested. I'd wager that's more energy than in a lance strike. Look at tactical nuclear weapons for comparison, or the yield of a nuclear plant in meltdown. 50 megatons is insanely too high especially for something built as an energy source, not built as a bomb.

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It's an interesting thought, I think that in the case that a marine is blowing himself up/his armor up/his friend up it would be 'up to the GM.  To me it would depend onthe cinematics of the scene in question.  If it would 'be cool' then just take the enemy (and probably the PC unless it was a trap or placed bomb) out and say it dies.  If it wouldn't be cool, then let them both live, horribly hurt.

If you absolutely must have number, I'd consider either a melta bomb with a bigger blast (if melta weapons get x2 pen at half range, what is half range for the bomb?), or if it must be uber consider doing something like a psy power that does xd10 ignoring armor and toughness- if you're going super brutal do something like 10d10 or so (which wil kill nearly any marine and maim or kill most masters that aren't daemons).

TBH though, as a GM, if the character planned on taking himself out I'd let him take most enemies out via the blast in a sacrifice of some sorts.  If the character planned on leaving a trap and running, it would depend on the story whether or not the plan would work.  I'd not roll dice- I might let a player roll to feel better though depending on the circumstance and player- I'd have a predetermined course.  As for fallout?  I'd make the area radioactive for a time, but that means near nothing for those in full power armor.  If PCs were investigating a scene where it happened though they might detect signatures of some kind that could give the power pack away- not that there is a lot of 'real' science to say that's possible but it fits 40k sci fantasy whole heartedly gran_risa.gif

As an aside, I am fairly certain a 50 megaton detonation was the largest ever done, by the Russians, followed by a US test at somthing like 15 megatons, if you're looking for something to relate to.  That's simply added for refernce if you're looking for a modern equivalent.  The internet is filled with info on old nuclear tests, given the general feeling of 'wow, those are kind of messed up weapons to use' that many people have, so it might be worth doing a general search if you're looking for numbers and stats to back up what you do- even if things don't add up in reality, that type of info can help you pick a number or what not to convey scale and theme to players in your game.

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 As a physicist I believe that the deuterium tritium reaction releases approximately 17.6 MeV of energy per particle, multiply that by a mole of particles and we get roughly 5 Kg of Deut and Trit in the right proportions gives around 2 billion joules. this could power a 100W computer for 5000 hours. Scale up a bit and say the back pack contains 50Kg of fuel, that means powering the suit for 50000 hours. This could be supplemented by adding water into the back pack as a fuel source in principle. And overloading that much fuel at once is 20 billion joules or approximately 5 kilotons in TNT.

according to javascript:void(0);/*1325426401643*/ this is a fireball 117 meters in height with a blast radius of 960 meters.

This is the maximum possible energy that could be released. in truth most power supplies are less than even 10% efficient. I would go with upped melta bomb or det charges

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To my knowledge, the only statting of atomic weapons in FFG'S WH40kRPG setting is in Into the Storm for Rogue Trader. A general description of power is given as "a single atomic has the power to destroy a hive spire between five and 10 kilometres across" and then it stats the damage done to a starship that is hit with a missile or shell mounting an atomic warhead. If an atomic explodes inside a ship or orbital station, it's just flat-out destroyed.

Obviously, these are also stats for atomic devices specifically designed as weapons (as opposed to an energy-producing unit that went into meltdown or exploded), and of a scale to be fired by a starship macrobattery. But it's a good reference point. I'd think an exploding backpack might do a little more damage than a real-world "briefcase" tactical nuke, but nothing on the scale of a weapon attached to a bomb or missile or shell.

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Kshatriya said:

To my knowledge, the only statting of atomic weapons in FFG'S WH40kRPG setting is in Into the Storm for Rogue Trader...

Probably right there, but by no means the only description sub-atomic weapons in 40k though:

http://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Hellhammer_cannon

I imagine it will have a simliar effect but smaller, those shells are massive and the space marines backpack is pretty stable comparitivly. After all a smallish uranium rod would provide power for years but wouldn't explode on it's own (although would irradiate things nastily) and in most cases in the fluff it's plasma reactors that are more unstable and dangerous.

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