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Old 12-08-2014, 04:21 PM   #1
Sindri
 
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Default Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

What is the basis behind the damage modifiers of impaling weapons? What makes swords get increased damage with length and thus increased ability to penetrate armour?
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:28 PM   #2
McAllister
 
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

Swing weapon damage reflect weight and length, length adding to damage due to leverage. The damage of a swung weapon the weight of which is balanced evenly along its length (such as a sword) is poor at penetrating armor: this damage only adds to armor penetration because a realistic system would be very difficult to use.

Thrust weapon damage seems to reflect weight. Thrust impaling damage specifically may also reflect the wound channel created by the weapon's head, although a weapon with a larger head also penetrates armor less well, and now we're right back in "how much detail do you want to model" land.

In conclusion, use Super Edge Protection (link below) and, if impaling weapons still aren't getting the penetration you think they deserve, reduce the EP to .5 x DR for fibrous armor and most metal armors, and 1 x DR for plate armor.

http://jetgurps.blogspot.com/2014/04...adding-to.html
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:39 PM   #3
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by McAllister View Post
Swing weapon damage
Is completely irrelevant unless using something like a pick. The thread is about comparing impaling damage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McAllister View Post
Thrust impaling damage specifically may also reflect the wound channel created by the weapon's head, although a weapon with a larger head also penetrates armor less well, and now we're right back in "how much detail do you want to model" land.
I'm wondering about whether there should be less difference in damage modifiers and instead some differentiation in injury multipliers.

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Originally Posted by McAllister View Post
In conclusion, use Super Edge Protection (link below) and, if impaling weapons still aren't getting the penetration you think they deserve, reduce the EP to .5 x DR for fibrous armor and most metal armors, and 1 x DR for plate armor.
While an interesting set of rules, I'm thinking about relative penetration, not whether armour is penetrated well in absolute terms.
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:48 PM   #4
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
Is completely irrelevant unless using something like a pick. The thread is about comparing impaling damage.
It's mostly irrelevant, but asking what justifies the damage mods for impaling damage made me wonder, what justifies the damage mods for any weapon? Note also that swing impaling does exist.

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Originally Posted by Sindri View Post
I'm wondering about whether there should be less difference in damage modifiers and instead some differentiation in injury multipliers.
I support this wholeheartedly. In fact, it might be best to start by giving impaling weapons Armor Divisor 1.5 and injury multiplier 1.5, and then broader weapons like hunting spears can reduce the first one to increase the second, whereas narrow weapons like stilettos can do the reverse. The more I think about it, the better this seems.

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While an interesting set of rules, I'm thinking about relative penetration, not whether armour is penetrated well in absolute terms.
So, impaling penetrating relative to other damage, or the penetration of one particular impaling weapon relative to another? SEP doesn't address the latter, it's true, but I think it's still worth using to model the fact that weapons either penetrate armor and inflict serious harm, or fail to penetrate and their damage is limited to blunt trauma.
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Old 12-08-2014, 05:18 PM   #5
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

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Originally Posted by McAllister View Post
It's mostly irrelevant, but asking what justifies the damage mods for impaling damage made me wonder, what justifies the damage mods for any weapon? Note also that swing impaling does exist.
Well there are other factors in, say, cutting damage that don't exist in impaling damage. Swung impaling exists but it's just a product of putting impaling blades at a different angle.

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So, impaling penetrating relative to other damage, or the penetration of one particular impaling weapon relative to another? SEP doesn't address the latter, it's true, but I think it's still worth using to model the fact that weapons either penetrate armor and inflict serious harm, or fail to penetrate and their damage is limited to blunt trauma.
Relative damage of different impaling weapons. Does the increased weight of longer swords really justify the increased damage bonus or is it exaggerated? How much should the injury multipliers realistically vary among swords?
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Old 12-08-2014, 05:58 PM   #6
Kromm
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

The very idea of armor divisors hadn't been invented when melee-weapon damages were first eyeballed, with the implication that the game's original damage model was relatively insensitive to penetration. It would be kind to say that damage adds approximate both penetration and wounding effects . . . really, they're primarily measures of wounding. Right or wrong, that's the choice SJ went with in GURPS First Edition (in fact, in Man to Man), and we've stuck with it ever since.

As a result of this model, the wider the blade, the bigger the damage add for being impaled by it: a skinny 1-cm-wide fencing blade or an awl-like javelin does thrust+1, a fatter sword blade up to around 2 cm wide is thrust+2, a 4-cm-wide greatsword or a spear gets thrust+3, and the broadest boar spears and the like ("heavy spear") are thrust+4. Realistically, thicker blades would be better handled with fixed damage, progressively worse armor divisors, but correspondingly better wounding modifiers. However, that isn't the current GURPS model for thrust impaling damage.

You could revisit this. If you did, you would have to revisit all melee weapons – thrust and swung, blunt and sharp – and grade armor divisors and wounding more finely. That would be an edition-level change, and one that pulls away from the current industry trend toward simplification, so I wouldn't bet on seeing it happen "officially."
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Old 12-08-2014, 06:36 PM   #7
Sindri
 
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Default Re: Impaling Weapon Damage Modifiers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
The very idea of armor divisors hadn't been invented when melee-weapon damages were first eyeballed, with the implication that the game's original damage model was relatively insensitive to penetration. It would be kind to say that damage adds approximate both penetration and wounding effects . . . really, they're primarily measures of wounding. Right or wrong, that's the choice SJ went with in GURPS First Edition (in fact, in Man to Man), and we've stuck with it ever since.

As a result of this model, the wider the blade, the bigger the damage add for being impaled by it: a skinny 1-cm-wide fencing blade or an awl-like javelin does thrust+1, a fatter sword blade up to around 2 cm wide is thrust+2, a 4-cm-wide greatsword or a spear gets thrust+3, and the broadest boar spears and the like ("heavy spear") are thrust+4. Realistically, thicker blades would be better handled with fixed damage, progressively worse armor divisors, but correspondingly better wounding modifiers. However, that isn't the current GURPS model for thrust impaling damage.

You could revisit this. If you did, you would have to revisit all melee weapons – thrust and swung, blunt and sharp – and grade armor divisors and wounding more finely. That would be an edition-level change, and one that pulls away from the current industry trend toward simplification, so I wouldn't bet on seeing it happen "officially."
Thanks for taking the time to respond. I understand that a revision like this is unlikely to be done officially and indeed the rules work well as they are. I'm just an inveterate rules tinkerer : ).
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