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Darth Smeg

Called Shots STILL not making much sense

91 posts in this topic

So I've raised this issue before, and again during the Only War Beta, but perhaps the FFG Overlords will listen to me this time?

 

The 2nd edition beta changes Called Shot from a simple -20 modifier to an Attack Action, to it's own Attack Action.

 

The problems are as follows:

  • You do not get the +10 bonus from single shots to mitigate the penalty
  • You can not combine a Called Shot with an Aim Action on the same turn

Shooting someone in a specific location then, such as the Body, is now a full action BS-20 test.

 

Shooting a Body-sized target (ie a Gretchin) with a single shot, using Aim is now a full action BS+10 test.

 

Shooting a Head-sized target (ie a Servo skull) with a single shot, using Aim is now a full action BS+0 test. And mind you, a servo skull flies around more erratically than a man might move his head.

 

The difference is quite big (+30 or +20) and the reasoning is.... wonky.

Edited by Darth Smeg
Eisenhorn_Puritus likes this

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While I agree with you regading this being a problem, I'm afraid my best answer is: Play GURPS.

They have to-hit modifiers based on the size of the target, which a reasonably compatible with the to hit modifiers for called shots. But the system does suffer a bit from occasional clunky-ness. ;)

 

 

On the other hand, you forgot a few examples above, taken from Only War (where I have seen them come up in actual play).

 

Shooting a specific individual in a formation is a called shot. Thus there is no difference between targetting the ork Nob and targetting the Nob's head.

 

Shooting a specific target in an open-topped vehicle is a called shot in itself, so there's no difference (as far as I can tell) between shooting a grot in the right arm, or shooting the Warboss standing behind him, yelling at the driver to go "Fasta!".

 - and with the right talents, appearantly either is just as easy as hitting the trukk itself...

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Yes, or just revert to DH v1s way of handling it: a -20 modifier to the attack action used. 

 

No reason why you couldn't aim for the head with a semi auto burst, for instance.

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It's arguable you even need a called shot action or modifier. Using the size table you can just say that any location on a normal sized person counts as Puny (2) and therefore has a -20 to be hit (possibly making the torso Weedy (3) for a -10 if you wanted to be more detailed). That way it just slots into the existing way the game works without anything else special required.

 

After all, why do we need a special action to attack a persons arm but can do it normally to the servo skull hovering next to them.

 

That said, if they went this route, having this spelled out in a side box to make it clear this is a valid way to resolve specific attacks is always helpful to avoid confusion.

 

Or as Darth Smeg says, just bring back the flat -20.

Edited by Naviward
Elior and Soloman like this

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Called shots have been a terrible option since Rogue Trader (which is where they introduced this rule, I think). Going from modifier to an full action was clearly because FFG thought they were too easy, essentially become no brainer choices with the later talents. However, I don't think this was a design flaw, but simply design intent (higher level gunslingers shooting guys between the eyes with little apparent effort fitting the source material perfectly).

 

I can understand not wanting called shots to be an option for full and semi auto bursts (though I don't think there is anything wrong with it myself, as long as it only applied to the first hit), but then I would have just said "can only be done with single shot" rather than turn it into a full round action (especially as the post BC modifiers made it even worse). It certainly wouldn't be an all brainer choice all the time then, as the extra damage from more hits more than outweighs the choice of location in most cases (most of the adversaries FFG produce seem to come with armour being the same across most locations, so it often only matters for crit effects).

 

So my personal choice: Make it a modifier, but only an option with single shot rate of fire.

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Give it a half action only and -10 instead of -20 and it could be fine.

 

It could also be thought of making this a way to improve a weapons Vengeful trait by one step - or grant it Vengeful (9) if it does not yet have it.

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Called shot was fine as an option on the standard attack with its inherent penalties and penalty negation from talents.

 

Why they felt the need to make it a specific action is hard to comprehend, aiming and shooting, or aiming and trying to hit a specific target area, is surely an extension of the aim and shoot action, no?

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I'm fine with it being its own action, but as it is it's effectively a -30 penalty, which seems harsh. Having it be its own action makes it so you can only single shot attack with it, which is good because of the way the multiple hit table goes (first 2 are head shots).

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It's arguable you even need a called shot action or modifier. Using the size table you can just say that any location on a normal sized person counts as Puny (2) and therefore has a -20 to be hit (possibly making the torso Weedy (3) for a -10 if you wanted to be more detailed). That way it just slots into the existing way the game works without anything else special required.

I've always had this stance. Why is shooting at a head a special action, but shooting at the head sized servo skull next to it just a modifier?

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It's arguable you even need a called shot action or modifier. Using the size table you can just say that any location on a normal sized person counts as Puny (2) and therefore has a -20 to be hit (possibly making the torso Weedy (3) for a -10 if you wanted to be more detailed). That way it just slots into the existing way the game works without anything else special required.

I've always had this stance. Why is shooting at a head a special action, but shooting at the head sized servo skull next to it just a modifier?

 

So, we're back to playing GURPS again? :)

Not that I disagree actually

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I'd like to see called shots remain as a subset action of attack action, and the two talents that cumulatively reduce the penalty to -10/+0 add a benefit to targeting anything size scrawny or smaller, so first talent +10 to hit size scrawny or smaller, 2nd talent +20 to hit size scrawny or smaller.

 

And a called shot should be an opposed dodge test, this would allow mid to end game snipers to maintain some sort or parity with melee specialists and gun slinger types who use 2 weapons with multi hit capability.

 

Currently snipers get one attack, melee upto 4 and gunslingers 2-6 dependent on guns, and this is a huge issue because while the melee/GS have no opposed tests they each get enough combat actions per round to deal with a character or enemy with high dodge scores and 2 dodges or 2 parrys, the sniper does not, in fact as I am typing this out here, it would be even better if a called shot gave a flat dodge reduction based on DOS by the shooter, every 2 dos -10 for example. 

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I, personally, think Called Shot should just be rolled into the Aim action. What are you aiming AT exactly? An aim action with several sub-options would be nice.

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That's a nice idea, but it prevents hip-shots / snap-shots at specific locations.

 

Which is strange, as you could snap-shoot a servo skull, but not the head of the guy next to him.

 

I still think just a size modifier will do fine. No need to limit it to special actions or attack modes. Because you CAN shoot full auto bursts at a servo skull. 3 hits will result in 3 bullets in the skull. If you are able to pull of that kind of precision shooting when shooting at a skull, why can you no longer do so once that skull is attached to a body?

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A size modifier seems reasonable to me.

 

Restricting called shot to single shot and burst fire could also be considered fair. It is not really in the spirit of full auto to do precision aiming.

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Restricting called shot to single shot and burst fire could also be considered fair. It is not really in the spirit of full auto to do precision aiming.

 

Remember that for semi auto, if the first shot hits the head the second shot also hits the head.

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Why can I fire full auto at a servo skull and not a person's head, though? If bursts are being restricted, they should be restricted for ALL smaller targets, I'd say.

Darth Smeg likes this

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That's exactly my point, Mr. Cruise.

 

I could understand that full auto vs a head might not work well, but then it should work equally badly against servo skulls or rats.

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That's exactly my point, Mr. Cruise.

 

I could understand that full auto vs a head might not work well, but then it should work equally badly against servo skulls or rats.

Realism vs playability.

cps likes this

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I, personally, think Called Shot should just be rolled into the Aim action. What are you aiming AT exactly? An aim action with several sub-options would be nice.

 

That's how things worked way back when in Inquisitor - if your roll 'to hit' was low enough relative to what you needed (in FFG terms, you got enough degrees of success), then you got more control over what part of the body your shot/blow hit.

 

If you want a simple rule, you may add (or subtract) your degrees of success from your target location roll. Called-shot type talents give you bonus degrees of success for the purposes of this.

 

I agree with the statements above:

 

1)  If a servoskull is floating next to a man-sized target, it should not be easier to hit the skull than shoot the man in the head.

 

2) If I am taking careful aim, it is odd to suggest that I should find it harder to hit the target at all. I understand the argument "but you're not aiming for centre of mass", but is it really harder to land a shot on an extremity than to hit with a snapshot when I'm not aiming at all?

 

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