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azraeluk
Hi all.

A question being asked by the gaming group I am in, is how to handle 'ranged' combat at melee range.

i.e. Shooting a gun at someone punching you in the face.

I can see the rule that states the attacker loses 3 dice with a ranged weapon if the defender is in melee distance. However which 'dodge' pool does the defender use? reaction or reaction+skill (assuming defender is not going full defensive).
Lord Ben
You have that backwards. If the defender is in melee and gets shot at he loses 3 dice from his defense roll.
Lord Ben
Or if the attacker is being attacked in melee he loses 3 dice on ranged. But it doesn't matter if the defender is in melee distance, only that the attacker is in melee with some other 3rd party.

Since it's still ranged combat (though at very close ranges), I'd say you get your reaction or reaction+dodge if on full defense.
calypso
QUOTE (Lord Ben)
You have that backwards. If the defender is in melee and gets shot at he loses 3 dice from his defense roll.

No, he was right. The attacker takes a -3 penalty.

Calypso
Nikoli
I could see that with a longarm, but not an SMG with no sock or a pistol/sawed-off shotgun.
Lord Ben
QUOTE (calypso @ Oct 5 2005, 09:18 AM)
QUOTE (Lord Ben @ Oct 5 2005, 07:18 AM)
You have that backwards. If the defender is in melee and gets shot at he loses 3 dice from his defense roll.

No, he was right. The attacker takes a -3 penalty.

Calypso

Only if the attacker is in melee. If the attacker is not in melee but the defender is then the attacker has no penalty and the defender gets -3.
Lord Ben
Sorry, I didn't understand the original question. I thought he was asking about penalties for firing at someone who was in melee with someone else, IE a penalty to not hit your buddy while trying to shoot the hell hound off of him. Not about trying to shoot the hell hound while it was in your own face.
Raij
Good question. I think as a house rule I will go with reaction+dodge to defend against a melee-distanced ranged attack with a pistol. Obviously it's easier to "react" to a bullet if are in range to "dodge" the hand that is holding the pistol which fires the bullet.

The attacker will receive the standard -3 penalty for firing while an enemy is in melee range, and the melee ranged enemy will have reaction+dodge to defend. Thus it will be hard to hit effectively with pistols in melee range, as it should be.

Block and Parry could sometimes be options, if say for instance the defender tries to knock aside the guys arm as he pulls the gun (blocking a gun-melee attack) and then counterattack with a punch to the face.. or bat aside the pistol as he tries to fire with his katana.. I will have to think more about how to handle those circumstances
calypso
QUOTE (Lord Ben)
Only if the attacker is in melee. If the attacker is not in melee but the defender is then the attacker has no penalty and the defender gets -3.

Sure, but that wasn't the proposed situation.

But yes, you're right. If you're firing at someone that is in melee, and you're not, they take -3 on their dodge.

Calypso
azraeluk
So can I confirm that the following are accurate as per straight SR4 rules (no personal house rules):

1)
A and B are in melee range to each other.
A shoots at B.
A loses 3 dice. B dodges with Reaction (or +dodge for full defence).

(or does B have to actually be in melee /combat/ with A - not just melee range?)

2)
B and C are in melee combat.
A shoots B.
B dodges with Reaction (or +dodge for full defence) AND B loses 3 dice.
Lord Ben
In 1 A and B both lose 3 dice.
milspec
I would argue otherwise, Lord Ben. Since A does not "provoke" B (to use a d20 term) in melee combat, then B should not be penalized for being in melee combat. A has a pistol out. B is using a knife. B does not have to spend any time positioning himself safely, like he would against an enemy who also had a knife out. So B does not lose dice to his defense.

Azr, you only have to be in melee range (2m) IIRC.

Both of your examples look correct.

milspec

Rotbart van Dainig
QUOTE (Lord Ben)
In 1 A and B both lose 3 dice.

Those defender penalties apply to attacks coming from distance. wink.gif
calypso
QUOTE (Lord Ben)
In 1 A and B both lose 3 dice.

No, only A loses 3 dice.

"A character dodging and weaving in melee combat with another opponent has a more difficult time dodging attackers coming from a distance. The defender suff ers a 3 dice pool modifier against ranged attacks, regardless of how many characters he is in melee with."

A is not at a distance, so B doesn't lose 3 dice.

Calypso
Thorncrow
An idea that you could try is using the opponent's Unarmed Combat or Melee skills to determine if any blows are struck but use the gun's damage code for actually applying the damage. Watch the final fight scene in Equilibrium to see what I mean.
DrJest
Equilibium sprang to mind here as well; I wonder... a pistol specialisation, not in a weapon type, but in - what to call it? - "close combat shooting".
Ophis
Gun-Fu dagnammit!!!!
TheNarrator
Personally, I think it makes sense for it to be easier to dodge someone trying to shoot at you from up close, just due to the trigonometry of it: if you dodge 3 feet to the side when someone's taking aim at you from 30 feet away, it's not a very big angle they have to change their gun by to re-target you, whereas if you dodge 3 feet at melee range, you've moved way off to the side out of his line of sight. Also, if you're within arm's length, you could try to shove his gun away from you with your hand or weapon.

If I were making the game system, I'd probably let people defend against ranged attacks at melee range the way that they defend against melee attacks (Reaction + Close Combat Skill or Reaction + Dodge) to reflect this. And attackers using longer-barrelled weapons would have bigger penalties than those with shorter-barrelled weapons. Maybe -1 for a pistol-sized weapon, -2 for SMGs, sawed-off shotguns and shorter, carbine-style assault rifles and -3 for full-sized assault rifles, rifles, shotguns and heavy weapons?


The SR4 book doesn't go quite that far, but it does say this:

Attacker in Melee Combat
If the attacker is attempting to conduct a ranged attack
while engaged in melee combat, or if he is aware of another
character trying to block his attack within two meters of him,
the attack suffers a 3 modifier.


So I guess the -3 is for anytime an enemy is close enough that you have to worry about them trying to come at you and knock you shot off, whether it's aimed at them or not. Perhaps rules for "struggling for the gun" type situations will be introduced in Arsenal. In the meantime, I guess you can just apply the -3 from the core book or house-rule as you see fit.
mfb
it doesn't really work that way, TheNarrator. the smaller adjustments you need to make to put your weapon on-target at longer ranges are harder to make correctly than the big changes you make for closer targets. it should be much easier to avoid getting shot at long range than short range. at very short range, of course, you should (realistically) have the option of actually deflecting the attacker's weapon.
Xenith
Just use agility+unarmed as the defense roll. Then on the defenders turn he can opt to disarm and retreive the gun with a similar roll versus the holder of the gun.

That works rather nicely I'd say.
TheNarrator
QUOTE (mfb @ Oct 8 2005, 01:55 PM)
it doesn't really work that way, TheNarrator. the smaller adjustments you need to make to put your weapon on-target at longer ranges are harder to make correctly than the big changes you make for closer targets. it should be much easier to avoid getting shot at long range than short range. at very short range, of course, you should (realistically) have the option of actually deflecting the attacker's weapon.

Err... that was pretty much what I meant. I suppose I didn't phrase it the best way. (The trigonomentry also works against the person dodging, after all: his body takes up a bigger angle up close which would make it a bigger target.) I should probably quit posting while half-asleep.

I meant what I typed to apply strictly at "very close range" (what SR would call "in melee") when you're close enough to actually knock their gun-hand aside, or for a dodge to carry you half-way around the person to get behind them, or to be wrestling for control of the gun. But at a distance of say, 10 feet, you're fragged. (Or at the very least, you're not getting to apply any melee combat skills, SR4-rules-wise. Better have a jacked-up Reaction. cyber.gif )
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