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Old 05-30-2016, 01:08 PM   #1
infoweasel
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Default Firing from Stealth?

So our GM is going to be running GURPS 4e Basic Set TL3 in a Conan / Hyborian Age settings. Good times.

I've got my Ranger-y guy built with 150 points, but one of the reasons I groaned when he said we'd be running GURPS (again) is because the rules set is so damned dense and complicated as to make even simple questions enough to send me to a forum and ask rather than trying to do the research myself (already tried and failed to find anything).

To whit:

What's the deal with firing from stealth with a bow? Do I get penalties for trying to remain concealed? Do they just get a roll (Observation, I think?) to try and see me? Do I need to make a 'pop-up' attack (B.S. 390) even though that specifically says it's about firing from cover, not concealment?

Any other advice for playing a ranger-y stealth-y archer type is also welcome since I don't know GURPS half as well as most other systems.
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Old 05-30-2016, 01:16 PM   #2
roguebfl
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

First Camouflage is the more appropriate skill to remain out of sight.

Stealth is the skill not to draw attention to yourself not to hide persay.

Cover helps, range helps. but it ans an opposed roll (Per or Observation)
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Old 05-30-2016, 01:26 PM   #3
infoweasel
 
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

Makes sense. I've got Camo as well.

So re-dress the question with Camo. If I'm all camo'd up, and they fail their Observation or Vision roll, can I just sit there and plink at them all day until they see me?
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Old 05-30-2016, 01:40 PM   #4
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

It's a contest of skill. Their Observation (or Per) -range modifiers vs your Camouflage. The GM may give a slight penalty to your camo for attacking (I'd give a -2). They need to beat your margin to spot you.
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Old 05-30-2016, 01:47 PM   #5
roguebfl
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by infoweasel View Post
Makes sense. I've got Camo as well.

So re-dress the question with Camo. If I'm all camo'd up, and they fail their Observation or Vision roll, can I just sit there and plink at them all day until they see me?
Yes until they spot you though your cameo the best the can get is "attack you're aware is coming but can not see" (dodge -4)
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Old 05-30-2016, 02:11 PM   #6
johndallman
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinman View Post
It's a contest of skill. Their Observation (or Per) -range modifiers vs your Camouflage. The GM may give a slight penalty to your camo for attacking (I'd give a -2). They need to beat your margin to spot you.
I think I'd give a bigger penalty than that, somewhat dependent on what you're attacking with. A bow is a bit more obvious than a crossbow, for example. Discussion on Camouflage, with links to relevant FAQ entries, here.
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Old 05-30-2016, 02:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

After the End 2: The New World offers some rules for firing from stealth: your first victim gets no defense, and after that you roll a quick contest of Stealth (I'd allow substituting Camouflage for a prepared sniping position) against the opponents' best Perception (I'd allow Observation, if better). The Perception roll takes range penalties, but gets +9 (beams, silenced guns) or +13 (unsilenced gun). For a bow I'd reduce this bonus further - +6 or even +4.
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Old 05-31-2016, 02:14 AM   #8
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harald387 View Post
After the End 2: The New World offers some rules for firing from stealth: your first victim gets no defense, and after that you roll a quick contest of Stealth (I'd allow substituting Camouflage for a prepared sniping position) against the opponents' best Perception (I'd allow Observation, if better). The Perception roll takes range penalties, but gets +9 (beams, silenced guns) or +13 (unsilenced gun). For a bow I'd reduce this bonus further - +6 or even +4.
This would be how I do it (that book is quite handy for a lot of reasons).
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Old 05-31-2016, 08:13 AM   #9
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

The thing to keep in mind regarding the naked eye is that we evolved to spot motion. Standing up and loosening a shot requires motion and does produce sound.

When ever there are questions regarding rules when I game master for my group, I try to imagine being there for real and asking myself "what is really going on here?" That mindset helped me in the days before GURPS HIGH TECH first edition came out where I told players who could see the table before them that just because THEY could see the table doesn't mean that their characters could. The needed time to assess what was in their field of view (IQ saving roll with vision penalties), time to aim at New target before they could take the shot. Sniper scopes made the job HARDER, not easier. Later on, one of the players would go on to run a range as range officer in the army and say "what you had us do in the aftermath campaign was right on the money for qualification shooting where you had to shoot at pop up targets at varying ranges - 40 shots within a given span of time.

Unless your character is firing from a tree line with a fair amount of concealing vegetation to hide within, your character is likely going to give his position away. Drawing and nocking and arrow may well cause the vegetation to shake, etc....

Sticking a few arrows in the ground ahead of time might help. Taking a shot while in the semi-open area after using stealth to get into position, and using stealth to get further back into the tree line might work. If firing from waist high grasses while initially hunched over for concealment would count as a pop up attack unless you take time to aim (time your enemies can attempt to spot you).

One trick I use in moderns games or sci-fi games is the rule of random aim time by npcs... roll 2d6 of different colors. The first die is how long before the shooter spots the player character and how long before he shoots. If he takes longer to spot the player than he takes to shoot, the the box shooter is either shooting at some place else (and automatically misses the player character) or if the time taken to loose a shot is longer than it takes to spot the character, any time spent beyond spotting is aiming. If the player goes to ground or finds cover before the shot is fired, then the character is doing what it takes to be a difficult target, otherwise the character runs the risk of being hit. Keeps them guessing! Remember, going prone results in having to kneel, stand, and then start running, giving the enemy more time to hit.
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Old 05-31-2016, 10:57 AM   #10
Varyon
 
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Default Re: Firing from Stealth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harald387 View Post
After the End 2: The New World offers some rules for firing from stealth: your first victim gets no defense, and after that you roll a quick contest of Stealth (I'd allow substituting Camouflage for a prepared sniping position) against the opponents' best Perception (I'd allow Observation, if better). The Perception roll takes range penalties, but gets +9 (beams, silenced guns) or +13 (unsilenced gun). For a bow I'd reduce this bonus further - +6 or even +4.
Depending on the weapon and the quality of the silencer, a gun can be not much louder than a bow, and an arrow is much easier to see in flight (and thus figure out where it came from). All that in mind, I'd probably have bows get the same modifier as beams and silenced guns.
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