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Old 09-11-2010, 02:16 PM   #21
sir_pudding
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

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Originally Posted by mlangsdorf View Post
DF is somewhere between TL3 and TL4 - some TL4 weapons and armor are available.

The problem with a swashbuckler/pirate template is that TL4 guns are underwhelming. The .51 caliber flintlock pistol weighs 3 lbs and does 2d-1 Pi+ damage, compared to a ST13 Pistol Crossbow (ST11 user, Crossbow at DX+2, and Crossbow Finesse does 1d+2 Im damage) which has a better rate of fire at only 4 lbs. The Flintlock musket at 4d Pi++ is better than any reasonable crossbow, but you can carry two crossbows for the weight of 1 musket and fire more versatile ammo. I don't think a flintlock sharpshooter who fires a 4d++ shot at Acc 2 every 10 or 20 seconds is going to be viable against the Scout.

You really need TL5 revolvers to practically match the Scout as a ranged combatant. Using the .36 revolver to spray 6 shots, and then reload for 18 seconds, creates a combatant with a lower overall rate of fire than a Scout, but equivalent or slightly better "burst" capability, especially in ambush situations.
The Unlimited Ammunition Perk would fix all of these.
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Old 09-11-2010, 04:22 PM   #22
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

You mean "Infinite Ammo: Over the Top"? I'd be a bit peeved as the Scout if one other PC got an endless supply of musket shots for a single point and that wasn't an option for me. And if it is an option, than Scouts should start applying that Perk to the crossbows they're all going to be carrying. I mean, 1d+7 damage every round for crossbow user with ST11, Crossbow Finesse, Infinite Ammo and Weapon Mastery (Crossbow) is pretty sweet.
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Old 09-11-2010, 04:33 PM   #23
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

I'd allow it simply because many of my players are coming from a World of Warcraft background and letting "Dwarf Hunters" have their guns makes them happy. That said none have yet to ask.
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Old 09-11-2010, 04:42 PM   #24
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

If one is willing to get a bit weird, it might be interesting to look at how different forms of power might be used to power-up a gunpowerder character class.

Technology and gadgets might be used to produce weapons (and accessories) that can outperform their realistic counterparts, but you have to be a specialist to use such strange devices. This would be a sort of Artificer / Scout with access to special items.

An entire school of magic might be built around exploiting gunpowder and gunpowder weapons. This would be a sort of magical Scout specializing in high damage attacks (and perhaps even explosions).
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Old 09-11-2010, 06:01 PM   #25
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

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Originally Posted by mlangsdorf View Post
You mean "Infinite Ammo: Over the Top"? I'd be a bit peeved as the Scout if one other PC got an endless supply of musket shots for a single point and that wasn't an option for me. And if it is an option, than Scouts should start applying that Perk to the crossbows they're all going to be carrying. I mean, 1d+7 damage every round for crossbow user with ST11, Crossbow Finesse, Infinite Ammo and Weapon Mastery (Crossbow) is pretty sweet.
I'm not sure it's an option for Muscle Powered Ranged Weapons. I see your niche protection issue though. What about just maxing out the quick-loading options from Gun-Fu?
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Old 09-11-2010, 06:11 PM   #26
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

Actually reminds me of a comic strip in some long ago dragon magazine that went something like this:

Panel one:
2 dwarves #1 in funny hat #2 holding an axe

#2: "So son, you want to go loot a dungeon, I am so proud of you I will show you how."
#1: "No need dad, I know what to do"

panel two:
Picture of dwarf 1 pushing a detonator with a big explosion in the background.

panel three:
dwarf #2 holding head like in despair.
a collapsed mountain in bakground
dwarf #1 shouting: "allright everyone, grab your shovels"
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Old 09-11-2010, 09:01 PM   #27
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

DF can be a rather interesting setting to incorporate firearms, although frequently such weapons will be effectively underpowered relative to other weapons (notably in terms of RoF). Here are a few things to consider...

Melee: Bows are almost always useless as melee weapons, and crossbows aren't going to be much better than small clubs (if they can be used at all). A good musket, on the other hand, is a serviceable staff, a decent two-handed club, or even a spear. In a setting like DF, a bayonet might not detract from ranged skill - and may even be an integral part of the weapon. A musketeer could use his weapon primarily in melee, maintaining the ability to instantly deliver a (single) high-damage shot at range should the situation call for it. Keep in mind as well that a carefully-loaded shot (which the first shot should always be, as you can take your time loading at camp) gets a +1 to Acc (HT86).

Magelock: Rather than using any of the traditional lock mechanisms (matchlock, wheellock, flintlock, etc), this piece lacks any visible firing mechanism at all - it doesn't even have a flash pan. Instead, a magic-wielding user casts a specialized "cantrip" version of Ignite Fire to fire the weapon. For game mechanics, any mage that knows Ignite Fire can learn Fire Musket, which requires no roll and costs no FP and allows using a magelock musket (it's essentially a "can use magelock muskets" Perk). Magelocks work fine in rain and the like (all the powder is snug in the barrel) and firing is instant (if GM normally allows a Sense check to allow you to Dodge a match/wheel/flintlock from a hidden foe - to account for the flash from the flash pan - this doesn't apply to attacks from magelocks). An Acc bonus may be appropriate - the firing occurs exactly when the shooter wants, and there's no annoying flash blinding him just before the shot. Magelocks would reload faster than other muskets, as there's no firing mechanism to mess with (I'll leave it to those with experience to decide what this speed would be). Magelocks would be less expensive than even matchlocks, as they are simply muskets with no locks whatsoever.
Magelocks are comparable in some ways to percussion caps, meaning the possibility of a self-contained cartridge exists (ignited by the mage, of course). This would, naturally, result in very short reload times. If this occurs, expect either for most musketeers to have Magery or for there to be a magic item that attaches to a magelock and lets a more mundane character fire it (by having the item essentially cast Fire Musket each time a button is pressed or whatever).
It may be possible for mages to design a spell (possibly based on explosive fireball) that mimics igniting gunpowder. With practice, this could be detonated within a magelock musket behind a bullet, eliminating the need for powder for such mages.

Essential Gunpowder: As I've stated before, I've never really given the GURPS Magic system an in-depth look. It may be possible to make some sort of Essential Gunpowder, however, perhaps by making the charcoal of Essential Wood and casting Essential Earth on the saltpetre and sulfur. I'd expect Essential Gunpowder to have an REF at least the same as modern smokeless powder (and it may itself be smokeless). Once you've worked out the REF, multiply all damage and range by the square root of the REF ratio between essential and normal black powder (which is probably either Serpentine, REF 0.3, or Corned, REF 0.4)*. This assumes that the damage increase from the explosion is directly correlated to the damage/range increase. Essential Gunpowder may be more resilient to lighting, possibly requiring the Fire Musket spell/Perk (see Magelock, above).
*If you dislike math, just multiply by 1.5, which is close enough to what the multiplier to go from Corned (REF 0.4) to Smokeless (REF 0.8) would be.

Heroic Musketeer: Gunslinger seems to be designed with more modern weapons in mind (namely, repeating pistols). It may be appropriate to modify it for the musket such that it is more comparable to Heroic Archer. Namely, giving full Acc is likely appropriate (normally longarms get half Acc). A very useful aspect of Gunslinger is its ability to half and Fast Draw penalties. If the GM allows it, you could use this to reload in half the normal reloading time by accepting a -10 to your check - which would be halved to -5.

Rifling: In a world with mages and faeries, having the ability to create rifling grooves before technology would otherwise allow it certainly is not impossible. Rifles may be available, giving +1 Acc but costing a great deal more. An accurized rifle would have a very high cost but give Acc 4, on par with an accurized longbow (and with the +1 from careful loading, have Acc 5 for the first shot).

Enchantment: Magic powder, bullets, and muskets could be available. A useful enchantment might be one that changes damage type, helping get rid of one of the flaws muskets have over crossbows (one can have cutting arrows and the like, but no real equivalent exists for muskets).
Imbuements can similarly be useful - an arrow that splits into multiple armor-piercers is useful, while a musket ball that does the same is downright deadly.
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Last edited by SuedodeuS; 09-11-2010 at 09:07 PM.
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Old 09-11-2010, 11:10 PM   #28
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

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Originally Posted by SuedodeuS View Post
Rifling: In a world with mages and faeries, having the ability to create rifling grooves before technology would otherwise allow it certainly is not impossible.
Isn't rifling as much a conceptual advance as a technical one?
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Old 09-11-2010, 11:29 PM   #29
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

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Actually reminds me of a comic strip in some long ago dragon magazine that went something like this:
You mean this?
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Old 09-12-2010, 09:06 AM   #30
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Default Re: [DF] I can haz gunpowderz?

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Isn't rifling as much a conceptual advance as a technical one?
Probably, although the (ever-reliable) Wikipedia entry notes that archers already knew that imparting a spin to the arrow (via some fletching tricks) resulted in better accuracy. Regardless, DF tends to be TL 3 with TL 4 technologies, and most of the sources I've looked at (online, so accuracy is questionable) indicate rifling being invented in the 15th century, which is late TL 3, early TL 4, which seems to fit DF. The way I've understood it, of course, is that after rifling was realized, it took a while before technology could reliably rifle a weapon. DF can avoid this issue and produce decent rifling as soon as the phenomenon is recognized.
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