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Old 09-12-2017, 09:24 PM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2004
Default [AtE] Unnatural Laser

TL;DR: A plan for a viable starter beam weapon, plus an upgrade path to an "ALL THE LASERS" laser. Summary here:

Mode               Dam        Acc   Range     ROF  Shots   Bulk  RCL
HEL              2d(2) burn   3     100/300   10   220(3)   -2   1
  Blind mode     HT-10 aff    3     100/300   10   10 per 
EL               1d-3 burn    2     10/20     1     1 per
                 HT-2(2) aff
  Kill Mode                                         2 per 
Torch            2d(2) burn         C, 1            4 per sec
Dazzle          HT-5 aff(1yd) 6     330/1000  1     82 per
Flashlight     negate darkness      50/3750   -     32.7min per
Baton            sw cr/thr cr       C,1
Shots "per" is per shot of HEL. 4 per sec means 4 shots of HEL per second of torch.

Cost: $15,440, Weight: 3.775

I have my eye on a Quick Gadgeteer (Armaments) guy for AtE, to explore a concept that has gotten stuck in my head ever since AtE came out: Lasers make great post-apoc weapons. But how to get one (they are expensive!)

Obviously, Quick Gadgeteer helps with that, since it basically lets you acquire something for 10% down and 90% sweat equity... if you can make some potentially difficult skill rolls in play. Gadgeteering is fine for this as well, it just takes longer and your sweat is worth less.

So, the only laser you could reasonably start with is a TL 9 Laser Flashlight. I love these things. They can be tuned between infrared, UV, and visible light, and out of the box are a useful weapon (they are a Dazzle laser). At $640 for a pristine Heavy Flashlight, they are a great target for a few points in cash and then getting tagged with sig gear.

As a dazzler, the target need only be looking at the laser and in the cone to be blinded. So, you have Acc 6 to lay a 1 yard cone on someone. That's pretty sweet as a starter gun. Once they are blinded, use the flashlight as a baton to beat them to death if that is your impulse. The power cell in AtE is a C cell, so need to upgrade those 2 B cells to that, and that increases shots to 18,000, weight to 1.4lbs, and flashlight run time to 120 hours.

But hitting people over the head with a very expensive club is gauche. Lets get something weapony: a Laser Torch! The normal (not heavy) laser torch uses a C cell and is 3 lbs, right in the range of what we want. And only $3,200! ($100x32). This is a combo gadget, where we can only use one function (flashlight, dazzle flashlight, or laser torch) at a time, so we save 50% of the cost of the cheaper item (here, $10 x32 for the $20x32 flashlight) and 50% of the weight of the lighter item (.45lbs for the flashlight). Need to dig up $2,880 x .1 = $28.8 in junk (easy, could START with that, and probably should), and upgrade roll will be at +0 (+3 for cost, -3 for TL 9). Take a day if you have it, get a nice skill bonus and really smash any bugs.

Now, instead of beating them to death with the club, you can carve chunks off of em at 2d(2) burn at C, 1, and both use Beam weapons (Projector) to hit! Granted, you are probably defaulting off of Beam Weapon (Rifle) at -4 for that, but still. Each second of torching someone costs 480 minutes of flashlight time, or 1,200 dazzle shots. New weight is 3.45lbs. New value is $3,520.

Now, what to add. The next upgrade is probably an Electrolaser. Also TL 9, a holdout EL is in fairly easy reach at ($250 x 32) = ($8,000 - ($3,520 * .5)) x .1 = $624 in parts. A day spent scrounging a city site should get that. . Shots is 220 with the C cell, weight is 3.6lbs, an EL "kill" shot uses 2 shots, the flashlight is 32.7 min/shot and 82 dazzle shots per shot, the torch is 4 shots per second. New value is $9,760.

Final "still looks like a flashlight" addition is a full up high-energy laser. It's only a little more expensive than the holdout EL, at $300x64 (TL10!) (+10% to upgrade the blinding mode substantially!), so you need ($19,200 - ($9,760*.5)) x .1 = $1624 in junk. A -1 roll. Now your 2d(2) burn damage extends to 100/300, as does your blinding mode, which is now HT-10, though if you miss your old cone based and more accurate flashlight blinder, you can switch to it still! The HEL and EL each use same power, 220 shots, and the rest of the modes are as for EL above. New weight is 3.775, new value is $15,440.

After a few days of work, you can straightforwardly have:

HEL for 2d(2) burn out to 100/300
EL for 1d-3 and HT-2(2) aff out to 10/20
Torch for 2d(2) burn at C,1 as a Jet
HEL Blinding for HT-10 aff out to 100/300
Flashlight Dazzle for HT-5 aff (1 yd) out to 330/1000
Flashlight to 50 yards, signaling to 3,750 yards, swing as a baton (sw cr or thr cr)

Buy in is $640 + sig gear + $2276.8 worth of junk...
or better, a pair of broken flashlights (broken is .25% cost, $160, but provides $1,280 in value!)

So, shill out 2 xp to get +$1000 in gear, spend $640 on a working flashlight, $320 on two broken flashlights, and $300 on a internal Power Pack (a C cell), and have $240 left for other goodies and a pretty sweet starter beam weapon after a few days work (to get the best time use bonus and reduce number of bugs). The truly bold will start with 3 broken flashlights, first repairing one, and then upgrading using the parts value of the other two... The two broken flashlights are worth $2,560 as laser parts, and the upgrades need $2,276.8, leaving a buffer of 283.2 for repairs of the first flashlight... which on a bad roll might need as much as $384 in parts to repair (basically, on the 1d6*10% roll, a 5 or 6 means you are going to need a bit of junk to finish the whole project.).

After the starter laser, a longer term goal of upgrading the HEL to a survival laser, and the EL to a carbine will improve range, Acc (to 12! very valuable), and damage, while requiring a second power cell (or cobbling together a D cell and wearing it on your belt!)

And to make it truly unnatural, plan to add a Laser Microphone ($200x32x.5), a Laser Comm +(50% * $2000 x32 for TL9), Laser-Retinal Imaging +(.5*$1000*32 for TL 9), Tactical LADAR mode +(50% * $10,000 x32 for TL9), and Laser Chemscanner mode (+2000 x 32 for TL 9).

Any other laser things I missed?
My GURPS stuff
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