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Old 07-10-2017, 12:53 PM   #21
Anaraxes
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
I'm not convinced you can dive behind a shield that you are holding or wearing.
Only if you insist on a remarkably literal use of just one of the definitions of the word "dive". (In which extreme case you can't literally "dive" behind lots of kinds of cover. That slit trench example might be one of the few, and only then if it's full of water...) Anything that would make Bert the Turtle happy when you "duck and cover" should do, even if it's not a duck.

A better hole in the whole argument is justifying a shield as "cover" in the first place. The shield section in equipment in Characters doesn't actually say they can be cover.

If we just want to design more rules for the fun of it, then there's no reason shields should have any special rules. See the existing RAW for the random chance of attacks hitting cover instead of target locations, and just use those to implement shields. Why have a special case system for shields at all? They're just a small piece of portable cover.
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Old 07-10-2017, 03:11 PM   #22
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Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
Only if you insist on a remarkably literal use of just one of the definitions of the word "dive". (In which extreme case you can't literally "dive" behind lots of kinds of cover. That slit trench example might be one of the few, and only then if it's full of water...) Anything that would make Bert the Turtle happy when you "duck and cover" should do, even if it's not a duck.
Can you present any definition of the word 'dive' which makes sense here? I can't think of a single one.
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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
A better hole in the whole argument is justifying a shield as "cover" in the first place. The shield section in equipment in Characters doesn't actually say they can be cover.
No, that's an awful argument. Literally any object can be cover (albeit not necessarily sturdy cover or large enough to afford meaningful protection to a human) and that capability is not normally discussed in equipment writeups.

There's no question that a shield can be cover. The question is, how much cover, how can you arrange that cover, how fast can you do it, and what if any rolls are involved.
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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
If we just want to design more rules for the fun of it, then there's no reason shields should have any special rules. See the existing RAW for the random chance of attacks hitting cover instead of target locations, and just use those to implement shields. Why have a special case system for shields at all? They're just a small piece of portable cover.
Are you saying get rid of the shield rules, and pretend that shields are wielded totally passively? (Note - you actually still would actually need new rules to tell you what hit locations the shield covers.)

There have been better developed versions of the idea of replacing the shield rules with something cover-like.
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Old 07-10-2017, 05:39 PM   #23
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Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Can you present any definition of the word 'dive' which makes sense here? I can't think of a single one.
Same as the word "duck". Duck behind your shield, dive behind your shield, cower behind your shield, hide behind your shield, cover yourself with your shield, take cover with your shield, take cover from your shield, shield yourself with your shield -- you have to desperately parse minor shades of meaning to read differences into any of these to come up with dramatically different meaning. In fact, all those phrases mean the same thing. In this case, you'd have to insist that "dive" must always mean "throw yourself headlong from a higher place to a lower altitude", even though the word isn't a requirement, but just the name of the rule.

(Compare the various arguments about "blocks" or "parries" having stop a weapon from moving altogether versus deflecting it from its target, even though those words, too, are just the handles for mechanics.)

There's no reason the "dive for cover" rule means you can't use your shield as the cover for which you're "diving". Even if you insist on ending up prone while the shield-cover means you could wind up kneeling -- or MUST wind up kneeling, if one wanted to be dogmatic about that interpretation of the phrase -- that's a far smaller and less intrusive change than inventing entirely new rules that ultimately have about the same effect.

The OP was complaining that bearers of large shields can't use them to defend against cone attacks and explosions (at least so far as that one player and GM saw it), and wanted some rules to do so. Several posters, including me, have pointed out where RAW does actually provide some defensive benefit for shields in such cases. Sometimes those rules are a little indirect -- as you mention, nowhere do the rules explicitly say that shields can be used as cover, much less against dragon attacks, but start connecting the dots and it's there -- so it's worth pointing out how shields are connected to those other rules.

If the OP doesn't like those rules for some reason, then he'll still need to invent new ones. I don't find them unsatisfactory to the point of wanting to replace them.
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Old 07-10-2017, 07:19 PM   #24
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Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
Same as the word "duck".
There is no such definition of the word "dive".

This is a stupid argument, but if you're going to make a definitional argument...
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:04 PM   #25
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Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

Going for the Rule of Cool and Fun Psudo-Realism here:
You could do a forward dive (more like just fall forward onto your stomach) while bracing the shield over your head. The character would end up with the shield braced into the dirt and angled over the head and shoulders. I'd allow that to count as a 'dodge and drop' and then use the shield as cover DR. Not so great for relatively fragile medieval shields (better than nothing against mild shrapnel though), but pretty viable for a force shield. Given that your whole body would be stretched out behind the shield I'd let it work for even a medium shield, assuming that the direction of the cone attack or shrapnel came from directly forward. For something more enveloping, like fire, maybe only a large shield would be effective since the flames could curl around the edges of the shield so a medium would be too small. For a large shield instead of a dive you could 'drop' to your knees and curl into a ball behind it for similar effect. For any of these I would treat it as an all-out-Defense and require both a dodge roll and a block roll, with both benefiting from the shield's DB. Failing Dodge would mean you didn't get in position fast enough, while failing Block would mean a failure to properly brace or position the shield (although if successful the Dodge would still allow the character to have changed position in time which has implications for shrapnel to-hit rolls).
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Old 07-10-2017, 08:21 PM   #26
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Default Re: Shields, explosions, area effects, cones and large area attacks

This seems straightforward. You need a ready shield, or take a ready maneuver with an unready one. You need a shield large enough to provide cover -- probably a large shield, maybe a medium (depending on your size). Then you change posture, to kneeling. At that point you are behind cover, which works against even a cone attack. The only game mechanic issue is whether the size of the shield will provide you cover. A roman shield is large, and clearly works. A medium shield, well...maybe. Either way, this a Step And sort of thing.

Edit: Also, the Barricade Tactics perk in Tactical Shooting allows one to get one-step additional cover. It might be a good Perk for campaigns where hiding behind shields is common. So then with a perk the medium shield acts as a large shield.
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Last edited by safisher; 07-11-2017 at 07:41 AM.
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