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Askil

Weapon degradation

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Me and my fellow writer/GM are concocting some rules for the effects of wear and tear on weapons in long term deployments to represent the need for proper observation of maintainence rituals.

 

in order to do this we are changing the rules for poor quality weapons and adding two new quality levels for weapons, Bad and Broken. Ths makes the quality scale work as so.

 

Best>Good>Common>Poor>Bad>Broken

 

Poor: -5 to hit, jams on 85-100

 

Bad: -10 to hit jams on a roll of 75-100

 

Broken: Unusable. 

 

Weapons automatically degrade a single quality level on a roll of 95-100 reliable weapons get to re-roll their jam and can only degrade down to poor quality due to their solid and foolproof construction.

 

We will be addng a maintainence skill too but what stat to base it on is a sticking point at the moment as Int would favor medics over weapon specialists but the relevant skill BS or WS doesn`t really ring true either after all you can be a brilliant shot but still have no idea how to clear a jammed round.

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Actually Tech Use would be an appropriate thing for it, or trade armourer, though I kind of question the practicality of this rule. It does make things a little grittier maybe but it also is more likely to just make things annoying because most likely it will mostly just affect players and not enemy armies, and if it does then the Severan Dominate and Orks should be way easier to fight.

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Tech Use? really? not likely.

 

While systemically it fits it doesn`t tally with the idea that just about any trained guardsman (that isn`t an Ogryn) can perform simple maintainence procedures (like the ones shown in the uplifting primer) on their issued weaponry.

 

I`m not talking about characters building weapons from scattered broken parts. More about changing a modular component like a screw-in barrel without stripping the thread or using a clean cloth when cleaning a focussing lens.

 

The concept we are running with is the gradual decay of weapons used by an ill-favored penal unit that has minimal munitorum support due to a mix of command-level snobbery and their habit of using stolen equipment they don`t have the correct training to properly maintain. After all you can`t really turn it over to the quartermaster back at HQ to fix if you nicked it from him in the first place.

Edited by Askil

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I'd utilize the maintenance function as  a subset of three different skills

 

Special Uses for Tech Use, Common Lore (War), Trade (Technomat): Field Maintenance

 

Guardsmen are expected to perform the correct litanies and prayers of maintenance, ensuring the battle-readiness of their equipment, and in particular, their primary firearm.

     On a successful roll, the weapon is restored to a single higher category than it currently is (a weapon reduced to Poor quality would be restored to Common).  For each additional degree of success, the weapon is restored an additional category higher. Weapons cannot be restored to a higher quality than the weapon originally began. 

 

Example Modifiers

 

+30 Restoring a Good Quality weapon back to Best Quality
+20 Restoring a Common Quality weapon back to Best Quality
+10 Restoring a Poor Quality Weapon back to Common Quality
–10 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Bad Quality
–20 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Poor Quality
–30 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Common Quality. 

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While Ilike that someone else have thought about this I still think you`ve missed the point I make ealier.

 

 Basic maintainence is something every guardsman is taught in fundamental and preparatory training, the rites are in the primer they carry at all times. Everyone but an ogryn (due both to a combination of lack of dexterity, intellect and their guns being specifically tamper-proof) should be able to do standard maintinence without additional training.

 

That means it can`t require a tech use or trade skill unless you want to give that to all guardsmen for free at creation. While specific training in tech use and such would be useful for maintaining gear in a broader sense (say repairing an unfamiliar weapon) Iwas thinkig making maintainence a secondary function of weapon training talents using Int. 

 

mantainance modifiers

 

+20 for best quality

+15 for las

+10 for regimental favoured weapon

+10 good quality 

+5 for common

+5 for reliable (if a las weapon)

0

+5 for unreliable or unstable

-5 for 2 or more days since last maintainence

-5 for poor quality

-10 for exotic

-15 for bad quality

-30 for broken

 

On a spectacular sucess (three or more degrees) a weapon may be temporarily be improved to one quality grade above it`s base quality for a period of two days. This effect is instantly ended the next time the weapon rolls a jam returning the weapon to it`s original grade.

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The maintenance function should be a subset of a major skill. However, here is a way to achieve that using the game mechanics in an intuitive manner. The Ogryn-specific rule I omitted, but that's going to be an obvious exception.
 
Just to clarify a bit on a narrative aspect: Unless each guardsmen has a natural knack for it, maintenance of weapons by line troopers is usually nominal at best. My experience comes from years in the U.S. Army in infantry and MP units. While everyone was familiar with how to maintain their primary weapon, not every was good at maintaining their weapons. The fact that many units, even non combat ones, still have an Armourer to make up for this deficiency should speak volumes on that.
 
Considering the Penal Nature of this unit your designing with your GM, I'd also highly recommend not trying to get a perk in there with x amount of degrees equals a higher quality. Even as a temporary boon, it seems ill fitting. Maintenance doesn't change the inherent qualities of the weapon, and it certainly won't 'ease' design faults.
 
As an alternative bonus, I'd suggest instead that for each degree of success in addition to the base degree should allow 1 Jam to be ignored. It does show the character has done an excellent job at keeping his weapon cleaned, the machine-spirit appeased, and the proper observances met without breaking immmersion too much.  
 
Trade: Technomat: Used to maintain and repair technological devices, but through rote memorization rather than true understanding.
 
Special Use for Trade: Technomat: 

Guardsmen are expected to perform the correct litanies and prayers of maintenance, ensuring the battle-readiness of their equipment, and in particular, their primary firearm.

     On a successful roll, the weapon is restored to a single higher category than it currently is (a weapon reduced to Poor quality would be restored to Common).  For each additional degree of success, the weapon is restored an additional category higher. Weapons cannot be restored to a higher quality than the weapon originally began. 

 

Example Modifiers

 

+30 Restoring a Good Quality weapon back to Best Quality
+20 Restoring a Common Quality weapon back to Best Quality
+10 Restoring a Poor Quality Weapon back to Common Quality
–10 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Bad Quality
–20 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Poor Quality
–30 Restoring a Broken Quality weapon back to Common Quality. 
 
 
WEAPON TRAINING
Tier: 1
Prerequisite: None
Specialisations: Bolt, Chain, Flame, Heavy, Las, Launcher, Melta, Plasma, Power, Low-Tech, Shock, and Solid Projectile
Aptitudes: General, Finesse
     The character can use all weapons with Class: Pistol, Basic, Melee, Throwing, and Vehicle within the group he has selected with this Talent. When a character attempts to use a weapon he does not have the correct Weapon Training Talent for, he suffers a –20 penalty to any relevant Weapon Skill or Ballistic Skill Test. The character can only use weapons with Class: Heavy without suffering the –20 penalty if he has both Weapon Training in the appropriate group and Weapon Training (Heavy).
     This Talent may be taken more than once, each time with a different specialisation. Each specialisation also allows the character to use the Trade (Technomat) skill with the chosen Class of weapon as a Basic Skill. 
    

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Um. Just make it run off of Tech Use, if you don't have Tech Use you take a -20 penalty then you can get a Weapon Maintence Kit (see page 183 of the Inquisitor's Handbook, in the section for Warzones).

 

"Most commonly designed around the ubiquitous lasgun, each kit includes items such as blessed oils and lubricants, swabbing cloths, cleaning gels, weapon-specific tools and spare parts such as a spare stock and barrel. As standard, these kits are calibrated to Calixis-patterns..." Not going to tryp out the whole thing. Essentially have it work like a Medi-kit or what have you in that it gives you a +20 bonus to maintain your weapons or negates the penalty from trying to maintain your weapon without being trained in Tech-Use. Problem solved.

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Without reading too deep herein - what I do... (I use Upkeep either vs PF or Requisition depending on the Game)

 

Though I really like you're way and will add that to my campaign mechanics...

- Weapons automatically degrade a single quality level on a roll of 95-100 reliable weapons get to re-roll their jam and can only degrade down to poor quality due to their solid and foolproof construction.

 

If you went into combat with it - it requires an Upkeep Test afterwards - fail that test - drop the Gear's condition by one stage...

 

Best > Good > Common > Poor > Broken

 

Dark Heresy CORE BOOK PAGE 142

Damaged Items
Even the most finely wrought item is not immune to impairment,
and it can become damaged. This might come from serious
mistreatment, ongoing neglect, or specific effects from other items
or even psychic powers. Continual use of a sniper rifle as a melee
weapon, for example, could lead the GM to declare it is damaged.
A damaged item cannot be used, and must be repaired (or
replaced); if traded in, its damaged status imposes a –20 penalty
on the subsequent Requisition test. Note that damage differs from
actual weapon destruction, such as the result of a weapon’s Power
Field quality destroying another weapon. Destroyed items cannot
be repaired.

 

Acquiring Items

When a character wants to acquire an item or resource, he makes a
Requisition test. This test represents the character using the various
resources
he has at his disposal, including local currencies or his
fearsome reputation, to attempt to purchase, trade, or extort what
he wants from his current location. It also takes into account the
item’s or resource’s overall availability and quality.

 

This is not like spending Gold Coins in D&D!

 

Rogue Trader PAGE 275

Upkeep Tests - ROGUE TRADER (Concept)
Even after the Explorers have acquired an item, it may still be a
drain on the resources of the dynasty—requiring fuel to run, dues
to be paid, or careful maintenance and repair. At certain times (see
below), the GM may require the Explorers to make an Upkeep
Test to see if they lose their acquisition or it is diminished or
degraded in some way.

 

An Upkeep Test functions in the same way
as an Acquisition Test, using all the same modifiers and factors
involved in acquiring the original item—in effect, the Explorers
are acquiring the item or resource again. If they pass the Test, then
their acquisition is unaffected, otherwise they have encountered
a shortfall in funds or a waning of favour or influence and must
choose one of the following options:

 

• Discard the item or resource: The Explorers cannot use
the acquisition until it is repaired, reloaded, or purchased
anew. An acquisition lost in this way cannot be reacquired
until the Explorers’ Profit Factor increases.

 

• Downgrade the item or resource: The acquisition’s
Craftsmanship is reduced by one level (i.e., Best to Good,
Good to Common, etc.). If the acquisition is already of Poor
Craftsmanship, then this option may not be selected.

 

• Downsize the item or resource: The acquisition’s Scale
is reduced by one level (i.e., Major to Standard, Minor to
Trivial, etc.). If the acquisition is already of Negligible Scale,
then this option may not be selected.

 

• Overstretch Profit Factor: The Explorers incur a –5
penalty to all Acquisition Tests until either the Explorers’
Profit Factor increases or they choose to discard, downgrade,
or downsize the acquisition.
 

Example
Lady Fane has run into some financial difficulties concerning her mansion
in the Grace system. The GM requires Lady Fane’s player to make an
Upkeep Test to maintain the property, which given its high expense she
fails. The player now has a choice of whether to discard the property,
downgrade—allowing it to fall into disrepair, downsize—selling off
some of the land, or overstretching her Profit Factor.

Edited by MorbidDon

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To be honest I feel like this rule is kind of pointless, except in the most extreme of circumstances. Any decently trained soldier will keep his weapon in working condition as a matter of habit, and unless the weapon is severely damaged in some way (i.e. dropped ~50 feet or run over by a tank) it should work the same as always. If this sort of thing ever comes up in my games it's only because the weapons or players have been dunked in mud or something similar, which is an automatic no test action to clear, it just takes time. The only way a weapon's condition or physical state would affect the ability of the weapon to fire would be if the gun was literally rusted out or had the receiver gummed up with tens of thousands of rounds fired and no cleaning. I understand that the idea is to make the game more challenging, but at some point it just becomes way too cumbersome.

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The other problem is that very low chance of success of fixing your weapon and the very high chance of it breaking.

 

You've given weapons a 5% chance to degrade every shot, and the 50% chance mark for your weapon to degrade is 13 shots.  So, by your 13th shot, you are at roughly 50% chance for your weapon to have degraded.  That's not even a full magazine.  You chances of being able to fire a full 30 round magazine without your autogun degrading around only around 21%.  And once it degrades the first time, it's all downhill from there.  So most guardsmen will not be able to fire a whole magazine from an autogun without the gun turning into junk.  And after that, when it comes time to fix things, the average guardsman will have roughly a 30% chance to get things put back together again.  So under these rules, the best kind of build is one who is good at fist fighting, because guns just aren't going to work.

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To play devil's advocate; lets say you get hit by a Melta and survive after "soak" (i.e. AR + Toughness), well we ALL know by the fluff no one sticks out their chest and takes it like a champ - rather one would think a character rolls out of the way (no not dodge here just explaining SOAK) or mayhaps a glancing blow.

Glancing Blow; so lets say the explanation was/is a glancing blow by the Melta - fine - after the battle now my armor is scorched and my primary weapon that I had in my hand when they hit me with Melta goodness is also "scorched" - time to do an UPKEEP TEST...

 

Then there's the whole Monty Haul (google the term if you don't know what this means) issue when players gear is "unlimited" aka GAME BALANCE

 

I dont know about you but I like YEARS of play in my PNP RPGs - im highly invested in the stories and overall challenge presented, now I'm not going to get inot the finer points of this RPG issue but know it can kill a game in a few sessions - heck I go thru all sorts of FORUMS and YOUTUBE vids talking about how groups don't last with many of the 40k FFG lines...

 

I've been playing RPGs now since 2nd Edition D&D - Ive seen them come and go - those with lasting power and those without...

 

If balance is of no concern - then that's fine - you should play the way you like and makes the table happiest - but for some of us this THORN in our side won't do, thus the effort herein to address and perhaps fix it - if need be.

 

On that note I feel the Upkeep Rules from RT and or PAGE 142 DH 2nd Edition CORE BOOK are good:

 

Damaged Items

Even the most finely wrought item is not immune to impairment, and it can become damaged. This might come from serious mistreatment, ongoing neglect, or specific effects from other items or even psychic powers. Continual use of a sniper rifle as a melee weapon, for example, could lead the GM to declare it is damaged. A damaged item cannot be used, and must be repaired (or replaced); if traded in, its damaged status imposes a –20 penalty on the subsequent Requisition test. Note that damage differs from actual weapon destruction, such as the result of a weapon’s Power Field quality destroying another weapon. Destroyed items cannot be repaired.

Repairing Items
To repair a damaged item, the character makes a Tech-Use test and applies the repair modifier from Table 5–2: Craftsmanship, Requisition, and Repair on page 141 that corresponds with the craftsmanship level for the item. If the test succeeds, the item is repaired and can be used again as normal. If the test fails with four or more degrees of failure, the item is destroyed and no further repair attempts are possible.

 

CLOSING

I hope player BIAS isn't causing such a divide on this issue - its not the player's responsibility to adjusting rules into then favor them (i.e. Bias) - I've seen this before!

 

Stay GAMING

Morbid

Edited by MorbidDon

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I think that in Only War, if the PCs are trying to stockpile looted/captured equipment, much do a full Monty Haul kind of thing, then it's time for a Unit Inspection.

Also, remember, anything they requisition has to get returned at the end of the mission (or all of the paperwork that they checked it out needs to be made to disappear).

 

I'd say that if the PCs are regularly doing maintenance, and their unit is in contact with the Munitorium/supply, their Issue kit should be golden under most circumstances. Specially requisitioned stuff is a bit more questionable if they're doing the maintenance themselves, but if they're properly turning stuff in to the Unit Armorer for regular maintenance, it should also be okay. It's the fancy stuff that they've captured/looted/stolen that's going to be problematic, not only to maintain and keep supplied with ammo, but also (and perhaps more importantly) to keep anybody from officially noticing/finding out that they have, are keeping, and are using stuff that is not regulation.

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