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Arrakiz

Second Edition Beta- playing a sniper STILL not possible.

96 posts in this topic

In the real world, there is no such thing as a near-guarantee of death. Not from a sniper, anyway.

 

The immersion in question is in a fantasy, not in reality.

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http://usmilitary.about.com/od/armytrng/a/sniperschool.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Marine_Corps_Scout_Sniper

 

 

 

According to figures released by the Department of Defense, the average number of rounds expended in Vietnam to kill one enemy solder with the M-16 was 50,000. The average number of rounds expended by U.S. military snipers to kill one enemy soldier was 1.3 rounds. That's a cost-difference of $23,000 per kill for the average soldier, vs. $0.17 per kill for the military sniper.

 

The exact point of a trained sniper is to be a force multiplier, able to execute a near-gaurantee of death (which in this instance would equate to kill one enemy solider with an average of 1.3 rounds).

 

The dark heresy 1st edition rules supports the concept of a scout sniper, whose primary role is a bit different. A scout sniper is used to support combat operations by delivering precise long-range fire on selected targets. 

 

There is quite a bit of articles on the subject, and much more available if you have access to any sort of military training documents. The key point I want to make in this post is to contridict your (in my opinion) baseless assertion that a parellel can't be drawn in real life Bogi, since, in fact, that statement is the exact criterion in which certain sniper schools require. 

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I'm honesty still not getting what's being driven at here.  If you have the skills, have the talents, have the gear AND have the operational know-how with the training to execute it properly...you've got everything you're looking for.  It's half the player's job, the talents/skills and equipment are all there.

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Alrik,

 

If we are to use real-world analogues* as a basis of comparison, the Long Las falls short of optimal performence and would suffer a -30 BS penalty for firing into it's Extreme Range, nullifying the benefits of the weapons Acurate Trait.

 

The current ruleset (2.0) is a great basis for the archtypical scout sniper, whose mobile nature is more intuitive towards a mid-range force multiplier. I'm trying to conjur ways to capture the feel of a long-range Sniper, which is currently unattainable due to the Range rules (but admittidly, the audience for such a sniper in an Investigaiton game is rather minor).

 

 

 

*Army sniper school are expected to achieve 90 percent first-round hits at 600 meters. 

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Well, i'd say the major issue is the game-rules regarding ranges, specifically the ranges of weapons.  However, the Marksman talent (as of Only War) flat out negates your penalties for Long and Extreme Range.  There are also talents to reduce your called shot penalties.  These things work together.

 

If you're worried about downing people who have high critical wounds, you can also take Crack Shot.

 

With a BS of 60 (which is what you should have as a Sharpshooter, let alone a Sniper) you could take the hat off a chump from several hundred meters away with little to no difficulty.

 

Remember also, a sniper is shooting an unaware target, that's +30, aiming is +20 with an accurate weapon.  If you have the talents to reduce penalties, since you are firing a single shot, you get another +10 (as of Only War), this is capping bonuses at +60, at maximum range.

 

I'd say even with the penalties, an experienced sniper is going to be rolling vs a 90% BS (Base 60, +60 in bonuses, -30 for extreme range).  And I think snipers are incredibly useful in Dark Heresy games, personally.  After the investigation, someone's gotta take out the bad guy, best to do it where his Ruinous Powers can't reach you.  Honestly, you'll have bigger problems if the threat has a refractor field, rather than missing being a problem.

Edited by Alrik Vas
doomande likes this

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Fair enough on the Marksman talent. I haven't encountered that talent with enough frequency to recall it easily, but yes, it does negate the penalties for long range. 

 

Crackshot though isn't in my copy of DH 2.0 or in the update I can see (if you see it, please let me know where it is). I do get the giest of it from the earlier lines. I'm wondering if this was an oversight and we'll see it in the finalized version or intentionally left out.

 

The target being unaware is completely situational though, so i'd rather not take that into account. Yes, it's true in many cases but not all. 

 

Realistically, in order to be a sniper in DH 2.0 you'll need to invest in quiet a few talents and characteristic bumps to be adequate to great. Definitely not a concept that can be run from creation. 

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I find that players typically don't realize that any home-brew or super-sniper combo they come up with can validly be turned back on them.

 

I think the players should have a mechanic in place to eliminate mooks and minions with a singular sniper shot from time to time. 

 

As has been said, they do. I'm playing in a game with a sniper-assassin. No fancy alt-ranks, no fancy gear beyond his long las + red-dot sight. He drops mooks frequently in 1 hits. Hardier enemies in 2. He doesn't even use hotshot.

 

 

If he's using a red-dot sight, he's giving his position away prior to firing,

 

Nothing in the rules suggests this. He may actually not even use a red-dot, tbh.

 

Target is rarely unaware (or we forget to use the rule) but half-Aim + Accurate bonuses + range + Marksman (head shots called) are usually good enough.

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Yes, in regards to the red dot sight - when I made that previous post for some reason I had the imagery of a red dot laser in my head. I realized I erred on that account, forgetting about the optical red dot sights existence (irl). 

 

XD

 

either way, fundamentally, we don't agree on 'usually good enough'. It falls short of my expectations on a dedicated, professional sniper while fullfilling the archetypical 'scout sniper'. 

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To be fair the actual scenario of the professional military sniper (long solo prep time in an isolated, hidden hidey-hole) does not mesh well with the nature of this game, or many RPGs (same issue playing in Shadowrun - the build is generally viable, but most combat occurs within about 20 meters, so it's a lot more effective to throw a lot of lead downrange, especially since you will be under ideal sniper conditions maybe 1 mission out of 50).

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Fair enough on the Marksman talent. I haven't encountered that talent with enough frequency to recall it easily, but yes, it does negate the penalties for long range. 

 

Crackshot though isn't in my copy of DH 2.0 or in the update I can see (if you see it, please let me know where it is). I do get the giest of it from the earlier lines. I'm wondering if this was an oversight and we'll see it in the finalized version or intentionally left out.

 

The target being unaware is completely situational though, so i'd rather not take that into account. Yes, it's true in many cases but not all. 

 

Realistically, in order to be a sniper in DH 2.0 you'll need to invest in quiet a few talents and characteristic bumps to be adequate to great. Definitely not a concept that can be run from creation. 

I agree that you can't do it out the gate.  Yet in real life you don't either.  It takes a lot of training and experience to do what those guys do.  You'd be a sharpshooter/scout for a while.  It's an RPG, there's always going to be room to grow.  I think your expectation might be unrealistic.

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Don't forget a sniper would be using a telescopic scope (negate some range penalties with full aim action), full aim for the scope and accurate...

+30 right there, +40 with BC onward for single shot.

 

Assume a BS of 40 (30 normal human, 35 a good shot, 40 for the cream of the crop) for the would be marksman and we are getting around 70/80% of ***** "hitting" in a combat environment. Seems close enough to IRL standards,

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The more I see people ***** about the strength of the sniper rifle, the more I question how powerful the **** thing will need to be before any of you are satisfied. I've seen sniper rifles level creatures designed to be used against space marines in DW. Seriously, if you need more power invest in 'Weapon training: Heavy' and get a man portable lascannon.

The vincare uses a special type of rifle called an Exitus Rifle. Its far, far more powerful than the regular sniper rifle.

 

If the Exitus Rifle uses a turbo penetrator round, Its at 4D10+2 Pen 14. Thats before including mighty shot and the one that lets you add damage on criticals, or any bonus damage from accurate. How is this underpowered?

It's undeprowered when you realize 4d10+2 can result in anything between 6 and 42. If you can show me a Xeno overlord who can die from 6 points of damage, then sure, it's really powerful...

 

4d10+2 sounds really scary, but in reality, it's terribly uncertain. It would have been much more reasonable if it was 3d10+7. But in reality, it should be something like 1d10+17. Because yeah, 19 damage is something that I can get behind as a reasonable minimum. And 22 is definitely a reasonable medium target number.

 

but 6 as a minimum? Not even close.

 

But again, killing anything with one shot should never be possible, without extraordinary luck. No, scratch that, killing anything more substentional then normal unarmoured human with a single shot shouldn't ever be possible at all, luck or not.

 

But I wish the game was honest about it, that's all.

 

Well when you quote the min/max of dice rolls yes it's going to look obscene, BUT if you take an average case (1d10 rolled infinitum gives 5.5) You're looking at 24 damage - which is good!

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Fair enough on the Marksman talent. I haven't encountered that talent with enough frequency to recall it easily, but yes, it does negate the penalties for long range. 

 

Crackshot though isn't in my copy of DH 2.0 or in the update I can see (if you see it, please let me know where it is). I do get the giest of it from the earlier lines. I'm wondering if this was an oversight and we'll see it in the finalized version or intentionally left out.

 

The target being unaware is completely situational though, so i'd rather not take that into account. Yes, it's true in many cases but not all. 

 

Realistically, in order to be a sniper in DH 2.0 you'll need to invest in quiet a few talents and characteristic bumps to be adequate to great. Definitely not a concept that can be run from creation. 

I agree that you can't do it out the gate.  Yet in real life you don't either.  It takes a lot of training and experience to do what those guys do.  You'd be a sharpshooter/scout for a while.  It's an RPG, there's always going to be room to grow.  I think your expectation might be unrealistic.

 

It's not unrealistic. One of the big issues that plagued the DH 2.0 Beta process was half of the community wanted to play competent, high end Inquisition and the other half wanted to build up from a relatively inexperienced, low end inquisition. It's a matter of taste, not realism, as to what the starting point should be. 

 

Argueably, the characters in this game already represent the training we associate with professionals. The sniper schools in real life are measured in months, and the characters we create in the game are seasoned by years. It's one of those things that just doesn't translate well. 

 

On a side note: Please don't use the 'It's an RPG' as a valid arguement. Our discussions here are more along matters of subjective taste, and that sort of declaration carries a certain level of objective truth, which neither one of us possess. Thanks. =D

 

To be fair the actual scenario of the professional military sniper (long solo prep time in an isolated, hidden hidey-hole) does not mesh well with the nature of this game, or many RPGs (same issue playing in Shadowrun - the build is generally viable, but most combat occurs within about 20 meters, so it's a lot more effective to throw a lot of lead downrange, especially since you will be under ideal sniper conditions maybe 1 mission out of 50).

 

This is more or less the point I was trying to make earlier. The game (DH 2.0) currently supports a scout-recon sniper who operates within a combat fire fight, rather than the long-range sniper who sits in raven nests waiting for their target.  

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Sniper schoool is measured in months, so is basic training, so is advanced infantry, survival school is measured in weeks, qualifications for various weapons can be done over days.

 

However, training isn't "you've done it, now you're done", it's an on-going process.  Experience is what makes them what they are.  You're right, RPG's don't do this very well when the fluff claims you're the "best there is to offer organization X" when you start off with, at best circumstances, an 80% success rate on a shot (meaning you're around a 40-50% under "normal" environs of combat).  Absolutely, that doesn't sound like a professional, it sounds like someone who understands what they're supposed to do, but hasn't done it enough.

 

So, in real militaries, they have operators train constantly while they aren't on deployment.  Doing this doesn't just keep them sharp, it often makes them better for the next time they're deployed.  There's no equation for this in an RPG, so they go with experience points instead.

 

Yet I actually think this gets away from the point of the discussion.  The post title reads that a sniper isn't possible in DH2.0 Beta, when just as in Only War, it absolutely is.  If the post was about, "RPG's aren't true to life, so let's not talk about mechanics", then i'd be more inclined to follow your argument.

 

Lastly, whether a sniper or a sharpshooter is useful in DH2.0 has merit is entirely up to the players and the GM of a game.  If the Arbites find the enemy, the psyker uses his voodoo to scout it out and the scum draw the enemy into position, the assassin can certainly put one between the sorcerer's eyes from 600+ meters away, using the Guardsman as a spotter.  If instead the GM decides to make a large combat inside a building to be the final confrontation, the sniper would be acting as a sharpshooter instead, something they'd also be good at.

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Well

 

1) 1.3 rounds per kill is not a guaranteed kill. It 's more like a 66% kill. Not counting that "kill" here is not actually "killed," but "removed from combat." Which BTW Dark Heresy will give you.

 

2) 50,000 rounds per kill for M16 includes training fire, suppressive fire, firing into the air, very little of it is actually shooting to kill a person.

Edited by bogi_khaosa

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 Also, rolling 4 ones is just as likely as rolling 4 fives, actually. The "avarage roll" is always a simplification, since the only thing you can really be certain of, is that 4d10 will produce something between 4 and 40. That doesn't mean it will produce 20 more often then 10 really.

 

I noticed nobody reacted to this piece of ignorance. 

TRUE: the chance to roll 4 5's are the same as rolling 4 1's 

NOT TRUE: the chance to roll 4 is the same as rolling 20 

 

its simble math, the outcome is evenly distributed for ONE die, but not multiple. 

4 is only possible to achieve with 4 1's. 

20 however can be achieved with (a few examples)

- 5,5,5,5

- 5,4,6,5

- 4,4,6,6,

etc.

The above list actually counts 633 permutations which means that the chances to roll a total result of 20 is 633 !!! times higher than rolling 4. Chance to roll 22 even 670 times higher (which is what has the most chance of rolling). 

Actually the chance that you roll below 17 is only 17% or in other words there is an 83% chance that you roll 17 or higher on the damage roll. 

 

Just thought to point this out. 

 

o and I didn't take righteous fury into account, which makes the *average* damage even higher. 

Edited by wolph42
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Welp, the horse is beyond dead and now a mass of meat. 

 

No one should ever pitch house rules to provide alternatives, since this ruleset is completely tight and coherent. =D

The point of the thread is not that someone can't houserule something to change the game. Go ahead, have fun. However the dsicussion is about whether or not the current ruleset (or the new proposed one) allows effective sniper characters to exist in its current incarnation.

Edited by Cail
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Which it does, as I've explained.  I never offered up any houserules as an explanation of how you could make a sniper in Dark Heresy.

 

Matter of fact, let's go through it point by point.

 

Talents:

SP, Bolt and Las training, Marksman, Dead Eye Shot (and it's upgrade, which i forget the name of), Mighty Shot, Crack Shot, Sprint...and i forget the name of the talent that Ignores Cover, but I know it exists.  These are all available in the current set up.

 

New Talents (OW and newer): Stealth Sniper (makes it bloody impossible to find where you're shooting from), Versitile Shooter

 

Skills: Stealth (or Concealment/Silent Moves for old DH), Survival, Awareness, Operate: Aeronautica (Snipers should be versed in drop ops), Scholastic Lore: Tactica Imperialis, Tech Use (creative use of vox channels is a plus), Security, Athletics skills are a plus as well.  The majority of these skills should be upgraded to at least +10.

 

Characteristics: BS 50+ (60 perferred), AGL 50+, PER 50+

 

What you have is a character who can get into position anywhere they need to and can make the shot from any range or angle they need to.  They can even get accuracy bonuses out of some non-sniping weapons and good luck spotting them before, during or after their shot.  They'll have ample time to get away when their target is down as well, partially due to their talents, partially due to careful planning, which is what a sniper should be all about.

 

Of course this isn't a starting character, but it's easy to play this type even before you've got all the necessary tricks.  You do the job enough, it gets easier as you go.  That's experience.

Kshatriya likes this

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Which it does, as I've explained.  I never offered up any houserules as an explanation of how you could make a sniper in Dark Heresy.

 

I was clearly replying to Cogniczar. I'm in total agreement with you.

Alrik Vas likes this

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