Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
ChromeNewt

Abolishing TB from wound rolls, and upping Armour by 2 points

Recommended Posts

Varnias Tybalt said:

 

I don't find it particularly strange that other melee weapons have a hard time competing with that. Power weapons are to the 40K setting as what "magic swords" are for most fantasy settings.

 

 

To all intents and purposes power weapons are magic weapons in this setting as well, or at least holy items. But still, in the right circumstances (against low armour foes) the amount of damage a chain weapon can do is equal or more and that I fine with me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I totally understand that, but it would make the power weapons oh so much more powered, putting them WELL into the Overpowered area. Removing the TB from wound rolls would make an exciting, fatal, and probably very, very, VERY short campaign.

 

Besides the fact that with out this, the only thing Toughness would be used for is booze/drug use, and at that point you might as well just put that under something else and just get rid of the Toughness stat all together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kylen said:

Well, I totally understand that, but it would make the power weapons oh so much more powered, putting them WELL into the Overpowered area. Removing the TB from wound rolls would make an exciting, fatal, and probably very, very, VERY short campaign.

To be completely honest, I don't really take much issue with the game being more lethal. After all, in the real world, pretty much all combat training are intended to teach people not to get hit by conventional weapons in the first place. If you do get hit you are pretty much instantly considered a casualty, and if you manage to survive you're just lucky.

The thing is that Toughness Bonus is so integrated with the current rules that changing it will cause a lot of unexpected headaches for me. Im perfectly fine with firearms and melee weapons being potential "one-shot-one-kill" affairs against normal, human targets. But when it comes to certain cyborgs (yes techpriests, im looking at you!), mutants, fleshenhanced humans, abominations, monsters, robots, supernaturally enhanced creatures, warp spawns etc. etc. A superhuman Toughness that can actually shrug off bullets and power blades is needed without having to be backed up by armour.

Which mostly explains why I've sort of given up on trying to tamper with how TB works in the game. Too much work to make it really good, so for now I'll settle with how things are. But that doesn't mean im opposed to power weapons being "overpowered" in comparison with more mundane melee weapons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Removing the TB entirely is going a bit too far. You've only got your armor covering for damage, and for higher level campaigns(assuming you scale) where just about every mook has some kind of AP weapon/ability, your Acolytes are going to be dead or horribly maimed at best a few encounters in. Where I'm concerned, the fun stops when people start dying. Odd way to view 40k, yes, but the whole point of a tabletop RPG is to have fun and if players are being taken out of the game an hour or two into a four+ hour session, fun is not being had and the game is failing in its purpose.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with there. The TB is an important balancing factor. Taking it out suddenly toughness a pretty dire stat (even for resist tests which are few and far between and the resist talants would be better than buying toughness). Which would be pretty painful for the only classes that have it as a cheap stat as they have expensive agility. In addition toughness doesn't actually have any offensive or utility effect. With agility there are a plethora of skills that are based on it and even strength has some (as well as the obvious damage increase).

And an important distinction between armour and TB is primitive damage. Often overlooked because armour is so prevalent but in the previous example the Ork has 8 damage reduction against primitive damage while the guy in PA has 19. This might seem silly seeing as no one uses primitive damage but there are still dangerous creatures and of course instead of firing armour peircing ammo (like bolts, the clues in the name) at the ork use dum dums or similar. Ok so Orks don't fight naked but you are more likely to com across a high TB no armour creature anyway.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Artemesia said:

Removing the TB entirely is going a bit too far. You've only got your armor covering for damage, and for higher level campaigns(assuming you scale) where just about every mook has some kind of AP weapon/ability, your Acolytes are going to be dead or horribly maimed at best a few encounters in. Where I'm concerned, the fun stops when people start dying. Odd way to view 40k, yes, but the whole point of a tabletop RPG is to have fun and if players are being taken out of the game an hour or two into a four+ hour session, fun is not being had and the game is failing in its purpose.

The thing is, I think Fate Points are supposed to be used during such situations where acolytes should have gotten "killed" or horribly maimed. In my opinion, the "fun" parts about combat comes from the fact that combat is lethal business not a "game" to be "won". Combat sort of loses it's excitement if it's too easy and when acolytes who are supposed to be relatively normal humans and not a bunch of cheesy space marines are able to slaughter mooks (who are also supposed to be "normal" humans, albeit a little under-equipped) in their hundreds and just lose a few wounds in the process.

If combat is more deadly and it really shows because PC's frequently have to burn fate points just to survive when they've made stupid tactical decisions (like running headlong into the firing range of a hidden sniper, or charging towards an entrenched machine gunner etc.), GM's can also be a little bit more generous when they hand out Fate Points. Because as it is now with both TB and the FP mechanics in effect, there's a serious risk of Fate Point abuse if you hand out too many.

The way I see it, Fate Points are supposed to be the rectifying factor when it comes to premature deaths of player characters. Granted I agree that removing TB damage soak entirely is a bit too harsh as well and that it would complicate matters to a headache inducing degree, I think that TB damage soak should be "nerfed" in some way. Yes it should be a helping factor when it comes to surviving injuries for human beings, and it should show that tougher and more resilient characters are able to pull even while injured than weaker and less resilient characters. But I don't like the current method where TB basically acts as a form of impenetrable armour that is immune to Penetration.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know what you mean. This game feels a little safe during combat compared to how you imagine a gun fight going but this is part and parcel of any system with a generic damage (read all systems).

There is obviously an amount of abstraction. If it's less damage than thoughness then it's not a deep cut, the bullet just grazes or the armour reduces it to a bruise.

But it is a balancing factor and you can tell from the armour values vs damage that they have calculated it to work out and as already been said some targets are balanced by high toughness than others who are balanced with armour so unless you have a more complicated system it's going to mess something up somewhere.

As I said previously, if you want to make it more deadly without adjusting the balance give things less wounds. Takeing a normal human (or starting character) from 10 to 6 (or less) is going to make combat a lot more deadly already.

But I can't really say it's not deadly enough currently. It's a little bit heroic but my players have taken a hell of pasting over their careers and if they are going to stand against anything even remotely well known in the 40 universe, which is the main reason for playing it, other than gangs of humans it really needs to be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One idea I've suggested a few times for heightening the lethality of the game without removing TB altogether (not an idea I'll ever use; the game is as lethal as I want it to be), is changing what TB does in regards to a damage roll.

Essentially, TB becomes an allowance, a limit to the number of Wounds a character can lose to a given hit, with any damage left over causing a critical hit.

For example: an average human guardsman (TB 3, 4 AP, 10 wounds) is hit in the chest by a lasgun blast, for a total of 9 damage. The Guardsman's armour absorbs 4 of that, leaving 5 damage to get through. With a Toughness Bonus of 3, he uses 3 of his 10 wounds to reduce the hit further. Having done so, he takes 2 Critical Damage to the body, and suffers the corresponding Critical Hit, causing him a level of Fatigue.

In the following round, he is struck in the arm by a bullet from a Heavy Stubber, dealing 10 damage. His armour can only protect against 1 point of this damage, as the Heavy Stubber is Pen 3, so he takes 9 damage. Three further damage is absorbed by the character's Wounds, leaving 6 damage to be accounted for. The Guardsman's Critical Damage increases to 8, and he suffers the corresponding Critical Hit, tearing his arm off and leaving him bleeding to death.

In the third round, a pair of bolter shells penetrate his skull and finish off the crippled Guardsman; the first deals 13 damage, ignoring his armour and reduced to 10 by 3 of his 4 remaining wounds. The resultant critical hit reduces him to a lump of bloody meat, which the second bolt sailing past the ragged remnants of the corpse's head.

For human beings and similar, it makes for lethal fights where minor criticals happen early and prolonged combat becomes extremely deadly. For tougher adversaries, similar happens, but their ability to endure for longer increases - a Space Marine has at least twice the armour, toughness bonus and wounds of a normal human guardsman, and can last a lot longer, particularly when you consider the True Grit talent as well.

Using the same two attacks as the example above: a Tactical Marine (TB 6, 8 AP, 22 Wounds) is struck in the chest by a lasgun blast, for a total of 9 damage. The Marine's armour takes most of the hit, leaving a little residual heat and impact which the Marine happily absorbs with 1 of his wounds (he can absorb up to 6 points of damage per hit in this way, so long as he has wounds remaining).

The round after, a Heavy Stubber round strikes his arm, dealing 10 damage. The armour absorbs 5 of this (8 AP, the Heavy Stubber is Pen 3), leaving a further 5 to be absorbed by wounds, bringing the Marine to 16 wounds in total, but with no Critical Damage as yet.

In the third round, a pair of shells from a Bolter, the first striking his faceplate for 13 damage. This is reduced by his armour to 9 (8 AP, the Bolter is Pen 4), and he spends the maximum 6 wounds to reduce it further down to 3 damage and leaving him with 10 wounds left. This results in 3 Critical Damage, reduced to 2 (half, rounding up) by the Marine's True Grit talent, causing the corresponding Critical Hit, overwhelming senses and autosenses alike for a few seconds, leaving the Marine blind and deaf for 1 round, and with 2 levels of Fatigue (Explosive Head Critical 2). The second shell deals 11 damage, reduced to 7 by armour, and costing a further 6 wounds to reduce it to 1, pushing the Marine's Critical Damage to 3 and causing him another 2 levels of Fatigue as his faceplate cracks further and shrapnel cuts across his face.

It lets big and tough creatures weather otherwise-lethal attacks, for a while, but even they start to take niggling wounds when their endurance starts to fail them...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Artemesia said:

I GMd our last game a week or so ago and made a few changes to see how my group would like it. When it comes to ranged combat, I made my players test toughness to resist the damage and if they failed, they only received half their bonus, ie Bob the Guardsman has 11 wounds and a toughness of 42, gets himself into combat with a Chaos cultist and is nailed in the shoulder with an autogun round for 9 damage. He tests toughness, rolls a 73 and fails, so he only gets a toughness bonus of 2 rather than his full 4.

 

I also used this system for armor. During the summer one of our main GMs commented that "it doesn't make sense that armor would stay intact forever." He wanted to use some kind of durability system that never was put into play for armor to fall apart as it took damage. Instead of using that, I simply made the PCs test armor like they do toughness to represent if the armor holds up. This is a little more complex, as you need to take the quality of the armor and the protection it gives into account. I used the armor's points with a zero on the end, then a -5 with a maximum of 70.  IE Bob the Guardsman is shot and fails his toughness bonus. He is wearing enforcer carapace on his arm/chest, and rolls for his armor. Enforcer Carapace gives 5 armor, so he must make a roll of 45 to see if his armor holds. He rolls and once again fails, meaning his armor will only give him a protection of 2 since I make them round down, as 40k is very grimdark and unfair. Bob takes 5 damage, reducing his wounds to 6.

 

 

Quoting the important bits here because it was an absurdly long post that nobody read. The bolded bit is an addendum.

 

My group has found that this works relatively well. It's a bit random, but it makes combat potentially more lethal without changing the rules too much. The idea behind it was that it represents how well the character can cope with being shot, and if the armor can stand up to the force of a bullet/las shot/grenade/whatever. Failing the armor test means that the bullet went through, shrapnel hit an exposed part of your body, the las shot burns right through, etc, and the TB is how well you cope with being wounded. Failing it just means it hurts. A lot. The only thing I can liken it to is cutting yourself badly while shaving and either hissing in pain and dealing with it or outright yelling "expletive here, OW" and immediately going to find a towel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Artemesia said:

My group has found that this works relatively well. It's a bit random, but it makes combat potentially more lethal without changing the rules too much. The idea behind it was that it represents how well the character can cope with being shot, and if the armor can stand up to the force of a bullet/las shot/grenade/whatever. Failing the armor test means that the bullet went through, shrapnel hit an exposed part of your body, the las shot burns right through, etc, and the TB is how well you cope with being wounded. Failing it just means it hurts. A lot. The only thing I can liken it to is cutting yourself badly while shaving and either hissing in pain and dealing with it or outright yelling "expletive here, OW" and immediately going to find a towel.

I actually pondered a similar system in regards to WFRP2 a while back. Essentially, it dispensed with the d10 roll as part of damage, instead adding the attack's Degrees of Success to the static damage value, and then was resisted by a modified Toughness Test from the target (Toughness + 10x AP on that location). Success, and every subsequent Degree of Success, on the Toughness Test resulted in the final damage being reduced by 1, while every Degree of Failure resulted in the final damage increasing by 1 instead.

For example: a SB 3 soldier with a sword strikes an essentially identical Toughness 31 human with armour worth 2 AP (for a +20). The attack passed by 2 degrees, so the attack deals 5 damage.  The defender rolls a 65 on his Toughness Test, which is 1 Degree of Failure, so he loses 6 wounds (5 damage, +1 for the single Degree of Failure). If he had passed on a roll of 16 (3 Degrees of Success), he would only have taken 1 wound (5 damage, -4 for a successful test and for each of the three degrees of success).

Even if Toughness and armour reach particularly high levels (even 100+ totals), the fact that the Toughness Test scales the damage received based on degrees of success and failure means that even a roll that will automatically succeed (Toughness 70, 5AP, for a total of 120), some damage is likely to get through.

For 40kRP, it'd need a lot more work - it can't as easily incorporate Unnatural Toughness (unless you gain the bonus degrees of success for an opposed test, even though it isn't strictly an opposed test), and with many weapons dealing multiple d10s of damage, there's another factor that needs to be incorporated (necessitating a reworking of a large number of weapons and attacks, with some weapons possibly having a multiplier for Degrees of Success so that, for example, a Lascannon deals 10+(5x DoS) damage, meaning a 2 DoS hit actually results in 20 damage to somehow overcome) and with Degrees of Success being repurposed into the damage roll, it also displaces the autofire rules which would need a different mechanic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

N0-1_H3r3 said:

 

One idea I've suggested a few times for heightening the lethality of the game without removing TB altogether (not an idea I'll ever use; the game is as lethal as I want it to be), is changing what TB does in regards to a damage roll.

Essentially, TB becomes an allowance, a limit to the number of Wounds a character can lose to a given hit, with any damage left over causing a critical hit.

 

We use a 'system' quite similiar but a little easier to keep track of (though it still can be a little intricate with keeping track of the criticals of many comabatants). Every (N)PC suffering from a wounding hit, also suffers from half the number as a critical (without stacking). This way the Wounds characteristic (like these darned HP in other games) as some kind of unrealistic soak is not that strong (I always wondered why Joe Average does not even flinch, if hit by  a Plasma Gun hit dealing 12 of his 13 wounds).

E.g.: The Guardsman Joe Average fights against a few cultists and shots his Lasgun on semi-auto at one hitting him twice. He rolls for damage (4 and 7) dealing 7 and 10 damage to the head and arm respectively. The cultist wear Gang Leathers and discounts one damage point each because of the armour value and three more due to his TB of 3. So, he loses 3 and 6 wounds out of his 10. Normally that would be all and the cultist could charge Joe Average with his cleaver in hand next round and try to gut him. In our game though, the cultist suffers a 2 point E critical to the head and a 3 point E critical to the arm also. This leaves the Cultist dazed by the shot to the head and his arm scorched dropping the cleaver in turn. So, the cultist is hardly able to charge Joe Average next round...

This way wounding hits have a more direct impact and influence on the game and the tactics involved in combat. At least it furthered the tactical thinking of my players. And it lessens the mentality of calculating how long one can be hit by Autopistol rounds before it becomes 'dangerous'...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Varnias Tybalt said:

It seems to me that the solution would be, not to grant characters a damage soak equal to their TB, but rather that the damage soak should be based on some sort of calculated table. Sort of like this:

 

TB                    Damage Soak

1                                X

2                                Y

3                                Z

 

...And so on. Where the lower end of Toughness Bonus don't provide any damage soak at all, but the higher ends and where Unnatural Toughness comes into play provide a really meaty damage soak (mostly intended for monstrous creatures and such).

The trick is, how do you calculate and create a fair and reasonable table based on these facts and figures?

You could use something like this:

 

Soak = (TB/2-0.5)-(5-TB)

With minimum value of zero (no negative values)


TB     Damage Soak
1        0
2        0
3        0
4        1
5        2
6        4
7        5
8        7
9        8
10     10
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Polaria said:

Soak = (TB/2-0.5)-(5-TB)

I'm so glad you included a table after that. I have enough trouble with damage calculations as it is.

Not that I'm going to play that way. After taking the arm off one of my players and burning his FP I maintain this system is plenty deadly enough. or at least, when people are dealing with things that are worth dealing with (in this case a Genestealer - War Hound hybrid).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We simply go with a saving throw for armour. Either roll equal or lower than the AV to save, or take full damage. Penetration should be self-evident.

An extra rule to help survivability would be to allow you to add half the AV, rounded up, to your T if you fail the save by up to two.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...