Updating close combat weapons too

Melee-WeaponsWell after the grand overhaul of range weapons the last couple of days, I sat down and brought melee weapons in line too. More variety (well, not quite to the medieval list pictured right), better prices, bigger selection, and a few new weapon abilities unique to close combat.

Lance: This weapon can only be used while mounted. Add +1 damage when performing a Charge with this weapon.
Opportunity: Add +2 Attacks when performing a Snap Attack with this weapon.
Poacher: Add +1 Attack against Dinosaurs.
Sap: On a hit of 2+ total damage the attacker heals 1 Hitpoint (cannot exceed their starting Hitpoints).

Also I used some of the new special abilities for range weapons to make new close weapons, like the Energy Sword which uses Power Settings.

Now we’ve come a long way from knife + broken bottle + hatchet (aka the only close combat weapons real wild west cowboys used), but variety is the spice of life, and it’s fun to have some sci-fi stuff going on. Also if you have trouble visualizing a Duster wielding an Energy Sword, just think of some Neotechnoist in his high tech armor riding out through The Wall mounted on a custom breed of dinosaur, with bright banners everywhere and gun bearers scurrying behind. Besides…it’s fun!

As before the prices for equivalent Attack/Damage stats on close combat weapons is cheaper than range weapons. Because you have to get up close to hit someone in the face with them. For example the 3A-7D Long Sword is $130, 4A-4D Axe is $80, 6A-0D Spine Blade is $40, and the 2A-2D Bar Stool is $5. Compared to say a 400kW Six-Shooter at 4A-4D for $110, or 6A-2D Ultra Repeater for $150.

Anyway here is the PDF snippet of the new close combat weapons. These will be in the upcoming v2.5 release of the main rulebook.

I have another Battle to Seattle game tonight, set in Death Valley. Should be a grand old time! I’ll post some pictures asap. Also we are having a “bonus game” this Saturday, which is a pleasant surprise. It will be at the race track in Pahrump (east of Death Valley), which of course will be ruined.

Some weapon ideas

Dual-WalkerSee the end of this post for an update!

For a long time I’ve had this item on my TODO list:

- Calculate weapon stats using math instead of off the cuff

It’s a big one though, just because of the sheer number of existing weapons. However right now a lot of those weapons aren’t really choices since they are junk (Throwing Knife) or way too expensive to ever see actual play (Flamethrower). What I’d like to do, besides making sure each weapon is mathematically balanced, is add a bunch of NEW weapons as well, touch up the old ones, and give players a lot more choice.
I’m going to aim this for a v2.5 release, again a slight version jump because of the significant changes. It’ll also ruin a lot of old Saloon links if I remove weapons, but that’s the cost of progress sometimes. I wouldn’t worry about releasing these changes until after the Battle to Seattle campaign, just to not rock the boat too much with the existing players. So that would mean end of April maybe.
Here’s my brainstorm doc transcribed from a scribbled note sheet I wrote very late last night:

– Flare Gun
— Min range 2
— Halve target Defense until start of attacker’s next Activation
— Apply to whole allied team, so you can “mark” a target
— Need high tech version too (Holotargeting Marker?)

– Sonic Gun or Bronto Gun (like Elephant Gun)
— 4A-0D, force Bravery Test on 2+ total damage

– Variable Pulse Rifle or Flux Rifle
— 5A-1D base, but can change before each attack, as long as total is 6
— For example 4A-2D, 3A-3D, 1A-5D, 6A-0D, etc.

– Lever-Action Rifles
— 3A-4D stays, 3A-5D (or maybe 6D) becomes 2A. Current 3A-7D becomes 1A-7D.
— Remember to adjust Reload as well
— Maybe minimum range to 5 (from 4)

– Shotgun
— Can use Buckshot (“Rippershot”) for 4A-1D (or whatever)
— Or can use Slug at 1A-4D
— Can choose at start of game and on a Reload, or manually spend an action to change types

– Different Six-Shooters, styled after real world
— Volcanic for example is 5A, less damage
— eg 5A-0D entry level is equal to 4A-1D six-shooter
— LeMat revolver (renamed to LeDuc or something)
— Can fire buckshot in the real world, not sure how to account for that
— Walker pistol, high caliber (+Damage)
— Peacemaker pistol, long range

– Need more $10 entry level options as an alternative to 80kW Six-Shooter
– Need to remove junk weapons
– Need more close range shotgun variety, instead of just the three types
— Maybe add wattage ratings to shotguns? Or whatever rating plasma capacitors use
– Maybe need a new way to display similar weapons so the list isn’t just 10 different wattages
– General new rule: Avoid anything that does 10+ damage
— Exception are “Heavy Weapons”
— Such as cannon, flamethrower
— Heavy Weapons maybe have “Ponderous” (or something, maybe just “Heavy”) special rule which is -1 SPD, no Hustle, no Charge
– Need slightly more Medical Devices, specifically a $10 Delayed type

Update with a PDF
Well I actually wrote this post yesterday and scheduled it for this morning, and in the mean time I went through and did a first pass at revising the weapons! I’m really happy with the changes. The various pistols provide different approaches to Attack/Damage, while remaining thematic to their true world counterparts. I also like the shotgun revisions, updates to Twin Rifles, tweaks of Lever-Action Rifles, improvements to Laserbows, Throwing weapons, etc. Plus who doesn’t love the name “Bronto Gun”, which is like an Elephant Gun, but for Brontosauruses. In addition the balance between weapons for their cost and stats is a lot better now.
Anyway you can take a look at the revised weapons and items here: Revised Items PDF. I’ll be tweaking these more as I go forward, so like I said look for a full release after the campaign, so sometime in April. Remember of course you can always see the latest rulebook in the bleeding edge Dropbox which is synced with my computer.

Images of weapons

Thanks again to Felix for some weapon images. A lot of these (especially the six-shooter, lever-action rifle, and hand cannon) are exactly how I visualized them. They’ll eventually make their way into the rulebook under the weapon and equipment section, but for now here’s how they look.