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> Newbie with armor question, what stacks vs what doesn't
Dances with Trol...
post Feb 11 2010, 03:55 AM
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Hello. I am a veteran shadowrunner, but new to 4th edition, and I am hoping to get a few things confirmed about the first character I constructed, and what dice he is going to roll when he gets shot.

Question 1: My character is a troll. He gets 1 die of natural armor. I can't find the page that details whether that is ballistic, impact, or both.

Question 2: Armor and Encumbrance. A character's armor is compared to Bodyx2 to determine whether he takes agility/reaction penalties. Is the +1 die of natural armor included in this calculation, or is it left out since it is 'part of the troll'? What about the armor bonus for cyberware like aluminum bone lacing?

Question 3: Form Fitting Body Armor, from Arsenal, pg 48 seems too good to be true. Stackable armor, plus half the encumbrance seems excessive. Am I reading my rules right? My troll has a body of 9, an armor jacket (8/6) aluminum bone lacing (0/1, and +2 body dice to resist damage), a full suit of form-fitting-body-armor (6/2) and a helmet (1/2) This gives him a grand total of 11 + 15/11, not counting the natural armor (pending an answer to question 1). Is that really 26 dice to resist a bullet wound, or am I messing up somewhere? Are there elements of this equation that are not compatible with each other?

Thank you for your assistance. Drinks on me if we meet in the sprawl.
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MikeKozar
post Feb 11 2010, 04:55 AM
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QUOTE (Dances with Trolls @ Feb 10 2010, 07:55 PM) *
Hello. I am a veteran shadowrunner, but new to 4th edition, and I am hoping to get a few things confirmed about the first character I constructed, and what dice he is going to roll when he gets shot.

Question 1: My character is a troll. He gets 1 die of natural armor. I can't find the page that details whether that is ballistic, impact, or both.

Question 2: Armor and Encumbrance. A character's armor is compared to Bodyx2 to determine whether he takes agility/reaction penalties. Is the +1 die of natural armor included in this calculation, or is it left out since it is 'part of the troll'? What about the armor bonus for cyberware like aluminum bone lacing?

Question 3: Form Fitting Body Armor, from Arsenal, pg 48 seems too good to be true. Stackable armor, plus half the encumbrance seems excessive. Am I reading my rules right? My troll has a body of 9, an armor jacket (8/6) aluminum bone lacing (0/1, and +2 body dice to resist damage), a full suit of form-fitting-body-armor (6/2) and a helmet (1/2) This gives him a grand total of 11 + 15/11, not counting the natural armor (pending an answer to question 1). Is that really 26 dice to resist a bullet wound, or am I messing up somewhere? Are there elements of this equation that are not compatible with each other?

Thank you for your assistance. Drinks on me if we meet in the sprawl.


Question 1: Both.

Question 2: The natural armor shouldn't count towards encumbrance; I wouldn't count bone lacing either, but I don't know if there is an official rule you can point to about it.

Question 3: Omae, you just figured out why people roll Trolls. Yes, your math looks good to me, and I have seen similar builds on other Trolls. Even more interesting is if you consider cashing in that dice pool for automatic successes on soak rolls at 4 per success...you can basically ignore weapons that hit for 6DV. Melee against your guy? Futile. Critters? Laughable. 9mm? Not gonna cut it. Ruger Super Warhawk with DV6 and AP -2? Maybe if you get some net hits, dude. You are a Troll. You are Mighty!
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wind_in_the_ston...
post Feb 11 2010, 05:00 AM
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2. Natural and 'ware armor does not cause stacking penalties because it's part of the body.

3. Form Fitting armor seems unbalanced to me, but it doesn't seem like it's wrong. It's not the only item that almost everybody buys because it's so awesome.
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Godwyn
post Feb 11 2010, 05:18 AM
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Missing the custom fit armor and custom fit FFBA so that they go against Body X 3 instead. Then include the Securetech stuff for another 2/6 stackable armor. Now -that- is broken. Though with a body of 9 you don't really need it.

But you seem to be doing it right.
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Neraph
post Feb 11 2010, 05:39 AM
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We don't do custom armor at my table and still I had an elf throwing 30+ dice for Damage Resistance Tests. It's all about stacking.

For a troll, you should also look into doing Chainmail, Form Fitting, and a Ballistic Shield. For very little effort you can get a really high AC.

After you get your armor to a comfortable level, get a car, armor it, and put in a rigger's coccoon. That's another up to 40/40 armor. It's actually fairly easy to get over 100/100 armor, although you're in a vehicle to do so (and vehicles are not neccessarily "evening wear").
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Godwyn
post Feb 11 2010, 05:41 AM
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The downside being vehicle wrecks are oh so nasty.
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Neraph
post Feb 11 2010, 06:02 AM
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20 vehicle armor with a 10 body is not that easy to wreck. And don't turn this into another e-peen contest. It's possible, it's legal (that is, RAW), and it's easy for the GM to avoid ("You guys need to go through the sewers. No, you can't take your car through the sewers."). It can be blown up with effort, but the chances of corpsec pulling it off are slim to none.
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Surukai
post Feb 11 2010, 08:02 AM
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Most stacking armor pieces (Like PPP or a Helmet) add 1-2 armour while the Form-fit is in a special magical category where it stacks for massive +6 ballistic AND causes less encumbrance where no other armour stacks. I am not too fond of that since it makes _everyone_ able to wear 12+ ballistic armour, rendering all small arms nearly useless. In the long run, this means that the fulcrum shifts completely over to Direct combat spells and dartguns (that ignore armor with 2 net hits, dealing 10S per shot if you use Narcojet).

Form-fit is also dirt cheap and "invisible" making it a must have for _everyone_. Since my players require RAW I simply added Formfit stats to every npc, but my suggestion was to simply set it as "not stacking" and put it in line with other armours. Highest of ballistic and impact counts, total for encumbrance. You may add PPP, helmet or shield if you like but Form-fit is more than good enough as "invisible armour you can always wear", it doesn't need the godlike status it has now.

The security companies in my game have made dartguns their new main weapon since Form-fit made their regular pistols useless.
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Medicineman
post Feb 11 2010, 08:13 AM
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Formfitting Armor is a little bit like Smartlink
where Smartlink gives a plain +2 Bonus to everybody FF Armor give +2/+4/+6 Dice to Ballistic Armor or 0/+1/+2 to Impact
Sorry but I don't understand why You're so Upset with the Armor when Smartlink does virtually the same (Raising the Pool)

@Dances with Trolls
My troll has a body of 9, an armor jacket (8/6) aluminum bone lacing (0/1, and +2 body dice to resist damage), a full suit of form-fitting-body-armor (6/2) and a helmet (1/2) This gives him a grand total of 11 + 15/11, not counting the natural armor (pending an answer to question 1)
Thats Right (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
+1/+1 for his skin is a total of +16/+12
(and would be no Hindrance for someone with KON of 6)

he who also dances with Trolls
Medicineman
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Glyph
post Feb 11 2010, 08:18 AM
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Full form-fitting body armor, which includes gloves and a hood, is not exactly invisible. Most of my characters wear the half-suit, instead.

Note that automatic successes are NOT supposed to be used for things like combat, or any other situation where there is a chance of failure. Although with a high dice pool, you will generally get more hits by rolling, any ways.

High armor doesn't really make small arms fire useless, though. Bursts can really do some damage (and even if you convert it to stun, that isn't always a good thing - most combat builds will have a physical damage track that is bigger than their stun physical damage track).
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Stingray
post Feb 11 2010, 09:18 AM
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QUOTE (Glyph @ Feb 11 2010, 10:18 AM) *
Full form-fitting body armor, which includes gloves and a hood, is not exactly invisible. Most of my characters wear the half-suit, instead.

Note that automatic successes are NOT supposed to be used for things like combat, or any other situation where there is a chance of failure. Although with a high dice pool, you will generally get more hits by rolling, any ways.

High armor doesn't really make small arms fire useless, though. Bursts can really do some damage (and even if you convert it to stun, that isn't always a good thing - most combat builds will have a physical damage track that is bigger than their stun physical damage track).

gloves and hood are not needed to get full 6/2 armor from FFBA (full-body version).. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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Surukai
post Feb 11 2010, 09:34 AM
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Stun is generally more versatile. It does not only allow for a non-lethal outcome with all benefits thereof (less murder cases, criminals are less likely to chase you for knocking one of their men down than they are if you had killed them, you can interrogate/torture or steal more from stunned targets and you can always execute them before running away if you really wanted them dead) including the fact that it very hard to get more stun boxes than physical ones.

So, I didn't really mean it made small arms useless. It made burst fire even more important, if not using shotguns (that go impact and form-fit only adds +2 impact armour). I just dislike it's magical must-have status. At least smart link is hackable/jam-able/detectable. Maybe I've scared my players with technomancers instahacking but they are reluctant to using anything wireless when on critical missions because they can't protect their stuff and rather loose the +2 bonus than loosing the ability to use the gun at all (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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Stingray
post Feb 11 2010, 09:36 AM
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QUOTE (Medicineman @ Feb 11 2010, 10:13 AM) *
Formfitting Armor is a little bit like Smartlink
where Smartlink gives a plain +2 Bonus to everybody FF Armor give +2/+4/+6 Dice to Ballistic Armor or 0/+1/+2 to Impact
Sorry but I don't understand why You're so Upset with the Armor when Smartlink does virtually the same (Raising the Pool)

@Dances with Trolls
My troll has a body of 9, an armor jacket (8/6) aluminum bone lacing (0/1, and +2 body dice to resist damage), a full suit of form-fitting-body-armor (6/2) and a helmet (1/2) This gives him a grand total of 11 + 15/11, not counting the natural armor (pending an answer to question 1)
Thats Right (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
+1/+1 for his skin is a total of +16/+12
(and would be no Hindrance for someone with KON of 6)

he who also dances with Trolls
Medicineman

why stop there..for body 9..
Armor Jacket (8/6)
FFBA (full-body) (6/2) (counted as 3/1 when counting penalties)
Vitals Protection (PPP system) 1/1 (discreet version)
Leg and Arms Casing (PPP system) 1/1 (discreet version)
Shin Guards (PPP system) 0/1 (discreet version)
Forearm Guards (PPP system) 0/1 (discreet version)
Helmet 1/2
Adding Troll's natural 1/1
(if making troll Changeling and taking Dermal Deposit-metagenetic quality previous numbers would be 2/2)
adding couple cyberlims w/armor 3..
All nice RAW legal (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)
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Medicineman
post Feb 11 2010, 10:20 AM
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All nice RAW legal (IMG:style_emoticons/default/grinbig.gif)
Yes but now you're on the dark Road to Powergaming. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif) (You can ask Stahlseele: he's got some experience playing TankTrolls)
Because If you play this Troll the GM is likely to come up with exeedingly tough Enemies that might Kill your Teammates
for Collateral Damage (I hope I'm using the right Words ?)

Hokahey
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Stingray
post Feb 11 2010, 10:34 AM
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QUOTE (Medicineman @ Feb 11 2010, 12:20 PM) *
All nice RAW legal (IMG:style_emoticons/default/grinbig.gif)
Yes but now you're on the dark Road to Powergaming. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif) (You can ask Stahlseele: he's got some experience playing TankTrolls)
Because If you play this Troll the GM is likely to come up with exeedingly tough Enemies that might Kill your Teammates
for Collateral Damage (I hope I'm using the right Words ?)

Hokahey
Medicineman

i know that.. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)
i was just trying to point out how easily trolls get HUGE armor numbers.. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif)
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Surukai
post Feb 11 2010, 11:05 AM
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3 shots of Narcojet (10S each) is enough to take care of those trolls, dartguns do ignore armor after all. F12 overcasted stunbolts is another classic. That is what mages use anyway since it is guaranteed one-shot (unless you have 9+ willpower or extra stunboxes through teh adept power)
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Stingray
post Feb 11 2010, 11:10 AM
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QUOTE (Surukai @ Feb 11 2010, 01:05 PM) *
3 shots of Narcojet (10S each) is enough to take care of those trolls, dartguns do ignore armor after all. F12 overcasted stunbolts is another classic. That is what mages use anyway since it is guaranteed one-shot (unless you have 9+ willpower or extra stunboxes through teh adept power)

Narcojet is countered with Chemical protection, so no go..
usually trolls have weak willpower, so mages rule there..
what is why 1st rule of SR fight is: Geek The Mage First!!
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Professor Evil O...
post Feb 11 2010, 11:15 AM
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Of course, most of that armor won't help against a well placed called shot, which is exactly what the called shot rules are for. Even with the penalty, you're statistically better off to call the shot than to just blast through the armor. Of course, this is when being a troll really helps! Called shots have become pretty common at my table.
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Smokeskin
post Feb 11 2010, 11:37 AM
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QUOTE (Professor Evil Overlord @ Feb 11 2010, 12:15 PM) *
Of course, most of that armor won't help against a well placed called shot, which is exactly what the called shot rules are for. Even with the penalty, you're statistically better off to call the shot than to just blast through the armor. Of course, this is when being a troll really helps! Called shots have become pretty common at my table.


Calling shots to bypass armor? Why is that statistically better, except for ensuring you do Physical damage?

The +4DV for -4 dice to hit, that's a good tradeoff, but I don't see the bypassing armor being good for much? Is there some binominial spreads at work here, because the expected results seem to be the same for a hit, but with less chance of hitting.
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Surukai
post Feb 11 2010, 11:46 AM
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The called shot to ignore armour rule seems heavily broken to me. The reasoning behind it is somewhat sound but statistically it only means you miss. The only reason to use it is on surprise attacks where the troll don't roll any defence and even then, -15 or worse on your roll means non-min-maxed characters won't have a chance to hit even in ambush.
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Professor Evil O...
post Feb 11 2010, 12:23 PM
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The +DV is usually the best if in combat, but ignoring armor can be effective in certain situations. Surprise is one (aiming can partly offset the penalty) and especially when using flechettes and the like which normally would give a bonus to armor - not every corp sec guard has APDS. At my table, both players and the opposition make extensive use of stealth, so surprise is actually pretty common.

It's not RAW, but I've also house ruled that you only take the called shot penalty for the heaviest armor worn when staking armor, baring helmets and the like, and that natural armor/implants can't be bypassed and don't apply penalties to the shot. It realistically shouldn't be any harder to hit an exposed area regardless of what the character is wearing underneath the armor. So form fit plus armor jacket would be -8 rather than -14.

Edit:
Edge is also relevant here. Less dice total means less dice you can re-roll to bump up your total soak hits and fewer chances for 6s.
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Summerstorm
post Feb 11 2010, 12:34 PM
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You are not thinking BIG enough. You want smartskin, trauma-dampener, suprathyroid-gland and platelet factory... even IF they do damage, they don't do very much.

Also change Troll to Fomori (for protection against magic and +1 body *g*) And fit in some Nanosymbionts, bio-symbionts and that wriggling symbiont for + dice on healing.

That is what i have build... in combat (with a PPP-System, armor, smartskin active) i throw 30 dice against balistic and 34 against impact (17/21 armor) and if i get damage i get one box converted to stun and that ignored.

And that character isn't even optimized for armor... he is optimized for recovery... he can pretty much just eat a pig and a sack of sugar (Suprathyroid gland and symbiontes) sleep 8 hours and be good as new tomorrow after having shot into oblivion (25 dice-modifier+medicine dice for healing)

WAIT... no... not back into the powergame-punishment cellar.. NOOOOOO............
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Tycho
post Feb 11 2010, 12:49 PM
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You are all noobs... (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)

to maximize armor you should take a suitable number of FFFBs. For example, if you have Body 3 you take 2 FFFBs, with Body 6 you take 4 FFFBs and so on. Nowhere is said, that you can only wear one of them at the same time.. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)

but serious in my opinion the form-fitting armor is too good, too. My favorite house rule is, that you only get half the armor if you combine the form-fitting armor with an other pierce of armor. Then it is well balanced with all the other addon stuff like ppp, gel packs and so on.

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Smokeskin
post Feb 11 2010, 01:05 PM
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QUOTE (Tycho @ Feb 11 2010, 01:49 PM) *
You are all noobs... (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)

to maximize armor you should take a suitable number of FFFBs. For example, if you have Body 3 you take 2 FFFBs, with Body 6 you take 4 FFFBs and so on. Nowhere is said, that you can only wear one of them at the same time.. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)


Rofl!

I houseruled the FFB special rules out of existence. No stacking.
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Surukai
post Feb 11 2010, 01:38 PM
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QUOTE (Smokeskin @ Feb 11 2010, 02:05 PM) *
Rofl!

I houseruled the FFB special rules out of existence. No stacking.


That is what I will do too. The FFBA is still a good piece of armour and it is cheap and easy to conceal and is a perfect option for the poor sods that have less than 3 body so removing the stacking special rule for that armour (no other armour have that stacking bonus NOR the half encumbrance feature) and it is not even restricted to wear it!
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