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Meatbag
Arsenal does a good job for gun-fetishist weapon modding, but doesn't really offer many options for melee weapons. I think we should fix that!

How would you eyeball:

Placing a poison reservoir into the grip of a knife?

Making a weapon collapsible, as in telescoping batons and switchblades?*

Putting an auto-adjusting weight on a club, so as to add damage without sacrificing balance?

There are just off the top of my head, feel free to think up other melee mods and post them here.

*Before someone suggests it, no, Easy Breakdown doesn't work here; it doesn't take 2-3 Complex Actions to snap out a baton.
Larme
QUOTE (Meatbag @ Jun 20 2009, 09:22 AM) *
Placing a poison reservoir into the grip of a knife?


Just use the cyberware version, but obviously it takes slots instead of capacity or essence. Maybe it takes slots equal to Capacity? Or if it lacks Capacity, it can take a number of slots equal to Essence cost rounded up to the nearest whole number (i.e. 0.1 takes 1 slot, 1.01 takes 2 slots).

QUOTE
Making a weapon collapsible, as in telescoping batons and switchblades?*


You could still use the cost and slots for Easy Breakdown, just rule that because it's a melee weapon it snaps out with a free or simple action. Though you don't really need to spend extra for a switchblade, that's functionally the same as a plain old knife, it's just how you describe it that's different.

QUOTE
Putting an auto-adjusting weight on a club, so as to add damage without sacrificing balance?


Dunno why you'd want this mod. SR4 doesn't have rules for weapon balance, this would provide you no bonus...

Many of the mods already work fine for melee weapons, such as custom look, underbarrel weapon (gun swords!), ceramic components, chameleon coating, gecko grip, metahuman customization, personalized grip (added +1 die to use the weapon under SR3), reduced weight, propulsion system...
Kingboy
Easy Breakdown would actually work for doing something like the Kurgan sword. Which wolud be about as impractical in Shadowrun as it was in the movie. Doesn't stop one from trying though.

As far as "collapsible", why does that need to be a mod? What is the in game effect you are trying to achieve with it? Some sort of quick draw effect, or more concealable, or something else? More importantly, what sort of weapon would benefit from such a mod that isn't available already? Is a switchblade mono-chainsaw really useful?

I guess my thing with "collapsible" is the fact that in RAW we already have the collapsible baton, collapsible staff, monowhip and the Victorinox Memory Blade, which pretty much covers both armed melee skills in the game plus one exotic one. It's unlikely a melee specialist would choose a collapsible weapon as their primary instrument (well, monowhip perhaps), rather using them as stealthy backups.

If you really wanted something like a collapsible stun baton (about the only useful purpose for such a mod I can think of), just use the rules for the existing collapsible weapons (it's like -2 to concealability?), work out a cost for slots (1-2 probably), threshhold and nuyen.gif with your GM, and go to it.
Meatbag
Good calls all around. On auto-adjusting weights, I'm thinking that strapping one to a melee weapon would grant extra DV (due to the extra weight at the moment of impact) without the dice pool penalties that should logically result from strapping a large weight to an otherwise well-balanced weapon. That one's a reach.

Not that melee needs more damage, mind you - and there are always martial arts.

Say, speaking of which, how would you rate a +1 reach. -1 concealability mod? I'm thinking "as Barrel Extension, applied to a sword."
crash2029
My friend made an adept staff specialist for a game a while back. I whipped up stats for a telescoping shockstaff for him. As for a telescoping sword, how about the one Sulu had in the recent Star Trek flick?

Would you count a crowbar as a club? Stat-wise I mean.

How would y'all stat the Dragon's Tooth from Deus Ex? It is a sword that has a blade that is dynamically reforged and sharpened by nanites while activated. The resulting blade is extremely hard and has an almost microscopic cutting edge.
Larme
QUOTE (Meatbag @ Jun 20 2009, 12:28 PM) *
Good calls all around. On auto-adjusting weights, I'm thinking that strapping one to a melee weapon would grant extra DV (due to the extra weight at the moment of impact) without the dice pool penalties that should logically result from strapping a large weight to an otherwise well-balanced weapon. That one's a reach.

Not that melee needs more damage, mind you - and there are always martial arts.


No, adding more weight to a club doesn't get you a more powerful club, not to the point of adding +1 DV, not unless you add enough weight that it's no longer useful. The difference between light pistols and assault rifles is only DV2 after all, though people will tell you that these days, an AR punches right through a kevlar vest and a light pistol never will. +1 DV isn't just a little bonus, it's coming close to changing the class of weapon. Adding DV to melee weapons is the mistake that SR3 made with dikote. The question to ask was not, "Hey, should I dikote my *insert any melee weapon*?" The question was "Duh, me dikote, or iz me stupid?" Mods shouldn't add more damage, that makes them no-brainers, and no-brainers are bad.

QUOTE
Say, speaking of which, how would you rate a +1 reach. -1 concealability mod? I'm thinking "as Barrel Extension, applied to a sword."


The thing is, +1 Reach is actually +1 meter in length. If you want a +1 reach katana, you get a nodachi, if you want a +1 reach sword you get a claymore, if you want a +1 reach club you get a staff. Doubling the length of the weapon makes it into a really bad weapon, it needs to be constructed to bear the added weight and be balanced while being longer. You can't just add blade and say "when" when you feel like it's long enough... And having a claymore, nodachi, or staff that's 3 meters long? Nuh-uh, not happening.

And barrel reduction is much the same. If it's a claymore with -1 reach, it's a crappy broken claymore. Better to get a sword. If it's a sword with a -1 reach, it's a broken sword, better to get a knife. And if it's a knife with -1 reach, then it's just a tiny sliver of steel that can't hurt anyone...
BullZeye
Making a melee weapon more effective without changing the principle of how a weapon works has only limited options. I would guess one can modify any bladed weapon to monofilament blade, giving a -1AP to it. Vibro blades already exist and I think they are quite the peak of blade tech without having some kind of force field around the blade. Other than that, there's not really any other way to "improve" a blade without changing it's size. For a blunt weapon, one can add some spikes, possibly giving the same -1AP but adding only weight does make both bladed and blunt weapons much more unwieldy. One could add to a hammer some kind of explosive to propel a spike or such on impact. There are dozens of options like that, but they all change how the weapon actually works and game mechanic-wise, I would ask for a exotic weapon skill for such fancy items. And using such a device is really distinct style...

The idea of the auto adjusting weight does sound bit odd to me. If your weapon all of the sudden changes it's balance so radically that it will deal more damage, would it not then rip off from your hand?

Maelstrome
as far as the adjusting weight for me damage. there is a weapon in fantasy called the mercurial sword. a sword thats semi hollow and has mercury in the handle. when you swing the sword the mercury travels to the end of the sword increasing its momentum. in dnd its an exotic weapon doing slightly more damage than a sword of the same class. if you are looking for something realistic you might not find it but this comes close.
Dumori
That mercurial sword idea isn't completely fictitious IIRC there are a few combat blades that use this idea not that it dose much.
Larme
The problem is that +1 DV isn't just a bonus, it's a whole different class of weapon. You just can't represent minor bonuses like being heavier with an entire +1DV. They would make the weapon a little better in real life, but not better enough to merit a whole +1DV in Shadowrun. And again, no-brainers are bad. A mod that simply adds +1DV to anything you want is just silly. Why wouldn't every single weapon have it? SR4 has done a good job with weapon mods by making few if any that are true no-brainers, it would be going backwards to start adding them via house rule.
Maelstrome
exotic weapon

mercurial sword
reach 1
damage (str/2)+4
cost 1000

exotic weapon

mercurial great sword
reach 2
damage(str/2)+5p
ap-1
cost 1800

have fun crazy swordsmen. lulz for all.
Regiment
Heh, dunno if this qualifies to what the OP was asking for...

But I got a little worried on the 1835742(F) uber-illegal rating of a mono-whip so came up with a thought for it. Customize it to ceramic/plasic and hide it inside the butt-end of a extendable baton.

Not sure how much this would cost, and I'm sure others have thought of it... but there it is, anyway.
Socinus
NO melee weapon should be used without the Personalized Grip mod. Its cheap and gives you +1 dice pool modifier on melee combat rolls to use it. There is simply no reason not to use it.
Mx
QUOTE (Larme @ Jun 21 2009, 12:17 AM) *
The thing is, +1 Reach is actually +1 meter in length.

Where do you get this...
Dumori
QUOTE (Socinus @ Jun 21 2009, 05:10 PM) *
NO melee weapon should be used without the Personalized Grip mod. Its cheap and gives you +1 dice pool modifier on melee combat rolls to use it. There is simply no reason not to use it.


Negative IIRC it gives plus 1DV smile.gif
Larme
QUOTE (Dumori @ Jun 21 2009, 11:53 AM) *
Negative IIRC it gives plus 1DV smile.gif


You don't RC. "...+1 dice pool modifier on melee combat rolls in the case of a melee weapon." Arsenal p.152

QUOTE (Mx @ Jun 21 2009, 11:19 AM) *
Where do you get this...


I can't find it in SR4, but that's what they said in SR3, and it makes sense. Knives are less than a meter long and have 0 reach. Swords are about 1 meter, certainly less than 2 meters, and they have 1 reach. Greatswords are about 2 meters, and definitely less than 3 meters long, and they have 2 reach. You'll notice that there is not one single Reach 3 weapon in any of the books. Why? Because a reach 3 weapon would be so unwieldy as to be a joke in combat. You could get, like, a pike that was long enough, but it would need special rules in combat, because there's just no way you can fight with a 9 foot long weapon in a confined space, and it's useless if the enemy gets inside your range.
Dumori
Humm IDK where that idea came from obscure house rule I guess.
Mx
QUOTE (Larme @ Jun 21 2009, 07:57 PM) *
I can't find it in SR4, but that's what they said in SR3, and it makes sense. Knives are less than a meter long and have 0 reach. Swords are about 1 meter, certainly less than 2 meters, and they have 1 reach. Greatswords are about 2 meters, and definitely less than 3 meters long, and they have 2 reach. You'll notice that there is not one single Reach 3 weapon in any of the books. Why? Because a reach 3 weapon would be so unwieldy as to be a joke in combat. You could get, like, a pike that was long enough, but it would need special rules in combat, because there's just no way you can fight with a 9 foot long weapon in a confined space, and it's useless if the enemy gets inside your range.

But a claymore is 1,5 meters long and it has reach 2.
BullZeye
QUOTE (Mäx @ Jun 21 2009, 09:57 PM) *
But a claymore is 1,5 meters long and it has reach 2.

I think it's more like arms+weapon = reach... 1m = 1 reach. Yes, swords are longer than that, but their effective use range is about 1m while a great sword has closer to 2m.
Dumori
however it dose brake and you can get a +5 reach modifier if you twink enough.
Byron
1. Look into having a compressed air resorvoir, http://www.waspknife.com/ , always really nasty.
2. Generally, I agree, if ou want to use something that isn't a bullet and doesn't explode, go with poison.
3. Or, when all else fails, put a laser sight on it, laser sights make every attack better, see! http://www.ctrlaltdel-online.com/comic.php?d=20090309
KarmaInferno
QUOTE (Dumori @ Jun 20 2009, 11:27 PM) *
That mercurial sword idea isn't completely fictitious IIRC there are a few combat blades that use this idea not that it dose much.


Don't you occasionally see folks in baseball cheating with a sliding weight in the bat?

I know I've seen a toy water filled bat. All the water goes to the far end during a swing. Whether this actually lets you hit harder I dunno.



-karma
Falconer
Electrifying a bladed weapon w/ an insulated grip. Quite a jolt for the unsuspecting. (incompatible w/ ceramic construction to defeat MADs)

Really, there's very few mods in arsenal that go on melee (personalized grip, ceramic construction, maybe a few others are all I can think of).

But really, most of them are either A. materials upgrades (unobtanium). Or only turn a weapon into a slightly different related weapon (club vs. tonfa, vs. nunchuk vs. minbari fighting pike.
Wiggles Von Beerchuggin'
QUOTE (KarmaInferno @ Jun 21 2009, 09:26 PM) *
Don't you occasionally see folks in baseball cheating with a sliding weight in the bat?

I know I've seen a toy water filled bat. All the water goes to the far end during a swing. Whether this actually lets you hit harder I dunno.

The traditional way to cheat in professional baseball is to drill out the head of the bat, and replace the wood with cork. The lighter bat can be swung faster, increasing the distance on hits.

The mercurial sword thing is weird; it would require using the sword as a club, with big, looping swings that would crash into the person's body and possibly stick there. From my experience, most sword arts are about quick cuts and stabs, instead of cutting opponents in half. Of course, this is a game where a troll can use a dwarf as a human shield and people can make heads explode with magic.
BullZeye
QUOTE (Wiggles Von Beerchuggin' @ Jun 22 2009, 06:52 AM) *
The traditional way to cheat in professional baseball is to drill out the head of the bat, and replace the wood with cork. The lighter bat can be swung faster, increasing the distance on hits.

I think that was in Mythbusters... busted. It doesn't really help as the cork is too soft so you won't get a good impact to the ball. Even if you can swing something faster but with softer, the impact isn't as strong... or something like that if I remember correctly. smile.gif

For blunt objects to deliver most impact you need: weight and solid/rigid item to hit with. Hence a feather is probably the crappiest club while a solid steel baton would be much better ;)
DuctShuiTengu
QUOTE (BullZeye @ Jun 22 2009, 01:27 PM) *
I think that was in Mythbusters... busted. It doesn't really help as the cork is too soft so you won't get a good impact to the ball. Even if you can swing something faster but with softer, the impact isn't as strong... or something like that if I remember correctly. smile.gif

For blunt objects to deliver most impact you need: weight and solid/rigid item to hit with. Hence a feather is probably the crappiest club while a solid steel baton would be much better wink.gif


You're right about the reduced weight lessening the impact (relative to the speed, it's not a significant net loss compared to the force being put into swinging it). However, the improved speed allows batters a little more time to get a good look at the pitch coming at them, and thus judge where - and whether - to swing. With relatively little difference in the amount of force behind the bat (less mass, but higher velocity), the improvement in accuracy allows for a net gain in performance.
BullZeye
QUOTE (DuctShuiTengu @ Jun 22 2009, 03:36 PM) *
You're right about the reduced weight lessening the impact (relative to the speed, it's not a significant net loss compared to the force being put into swinging it). However, the improved speed allows batters a little more time to get a good look at the pitch coming at them, and thus judge where - and whether - to swing. With relatively little difference in the amount of force behind the bat (less mass, but higher velocity), the improvement in accuracy allows for a net gain in performance.

True true smile.gif that's a perk for hitting a ball with a bat and the myth was only about the force if I remember correctly.

Ought one take this thing in account also on melee weapons? Hitting someone with a rattan stick vs. with a sledge. With a stick it's probably lot more easy to hit but the damage is a lot different compared to a sledge...
hyzmarca
QUOTE (Kingboy @ Jun 20 2009, 11:25 AM) *
Easy Breakdown would actually work for doing something like the Kurgan sword. Which wolud be about as impractical in Shadowrun as it was in the movie. Doesn't stop one from trying though.


The Kurgan Sword doesn't work in real life. The problem is that so much stress would be put on the joints that it would be prone to just breaking and flying apart. They used a solid weapon for the actual fight scenes for this reason.


QUOTE (Maelstrome @ Jun 21 2009, 01:17 AM) *
exotic weapon

mercurial sword
reach 1
damage (str/2)+4
cost 1000

exotic weapon

mercurial great sword
reach 2
damage(str/2)+5p
ap-1
cost 1800

have fun crazy swordsmen. lulz for all.


You can't fit enough mercury into a sword to make a difference without severely compromising it's structural integrity. A better solution, and one actually used in some cases, is to forge a blade that is heavier at the tip than at the base, either due to being thicker, wider, or both. The wider tip also has the advantage of impacting earlier in the swing, thus giving more space for follow through, a similar advantage can be obtained by curving the blade toward the edge as in the kukri and the falcata.

Kingboy
Kinda outright skipped the part where I stated it was "impractical" did ya there hyz? *gets out reflex hammer* Yup, good knee jerk there though...

Speaking of impractical, mercurial swords and other geek inspired dumb-assery are a large part of what I don't miss about working at the sword vending booth at the local Ren Faire. As Alpha Geek on staff, it was my job to try and explain to the bladesmith just what all the idiot cosplayers out there wanted him to make. "Yes he does custom work, no, he won't be doing yours because even if you couldafford it, he won't be trying to make your steel Inuyasha sword replica or whatever other dumbass thing you want..."

My personal favorite was the guy who wanted the sword with two blades (perpendicular to each other of course), where one of the blades could launch itself with some sort of undefined spring mechanism *facepalm*. Yea, I definately don't miss that aspect...
Dumori
See if I got a custom blade it would be a short sword so I could use my skill with epiee with it. Or maybe a cut and trust rapier. Although I would love to make it my self and that is in fact one of my random life goals.
hyzmarca
QUOTE (Kingboy @ Jun 22 2009, 03:47 PM) *
Kinda outright skipped the part where I stated it was "impractical" did ya there hyz? *gets out reflex hammer* Yup, good knee jerk there though...


Well, there is impractical, in the sense that it would take time to put together, time that one doesn't have in a fight, and then there is impractical in the sense that it can't possibly withstand actual use.

QUOTE
My personal favorite was the guy who wanted the sword with two blades (perpendicular to each other of course), where one of the blades could launch itself with some sort of undefined spring mechanism *facepalm*. Yea, I definately don't miss that aspect...


Yeah, that is stupid, and I'm pretty sure illegal.
crash2029
How about the Spetznaz knife? A solid combat knife that can launch the blade accurately over short distances for a surprise attack.

A favorite of mine for silent takedowns is subduing + syringe.
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