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This is sort of both a SR and a non-SR question, but still.

Like most gamer-type people, I started writing a roleplaying game some years back. Looking over it, I still like the background, but I really wasn't doing so well with the game system. So I decided to look for an alternative.

Because some of the themes have areas of commonality with the cyberpunk genre, and because of the existence of psychics, SR was one that immediately sprang to mind. The thing I was looking at now is this: I wanted to fiddle with the damage codes of firearms though, since they're a bit off at the moment imho (and that of others, this I know).

So at the moment, my revised codes look like this:

Holdout Pistols: 5L
Light/Machine Pistols: 5M
Heavy Pistols/SMGs: 8M
Assault calibre rifles (eg 5.56): 10M
Shotguns: 9S
Heavy calibre rifles/MGs (eg 7.62): 12S
Anti Materiel calibre rifles/MGs (eg .50BMG): 14D

On the other hand, I make no claims to any knowledge of firearms, and I'm well aware we have some experts around here.

I don't object to the average lethality of a gunfight going up; this is a vicious setting with a totalitarian governing body, and the appearance of enemy troops with smg's should make characters seek cover at the first opportunity. On the other hand, the setting is also intended to reflect heroic fiction, so I don't want "bang you're dead" either.

(On an unrelated note, if anyone has any ideas on interplanetary travel times - assuming the existence of cold fusion - I'd appreciate a PM)
Austere Emancipator
Errm, if you've got all sorts of weird tech available that's far beyond what you've got in Shadowrun, then it might not be a good idea to use the same calibers as exist IRL (and potentially in SR).

That said, there are dozens of threads around where the damage codes of SR weapons have been discussed, like this, or this, or anything else you'll find by Searching for "damage code" (or "caliber" or other words related to this) by author Raygun, Arethusa, Austere Emancipator, Crusher Bob and others. And, of course, there's Shadowrun and Firearms. These should get you started.

That said, if you wish for any kind of realism, or logic, in your Damage Codes, you'll want some separate system for determining penetration in addition to Power and Damage Level. With the numbers you have above, for example, it is more difficult for an unarmored person to resist the damage from a 7.62 (I assume this is 7.62x51mm NATO/.308 Winchester, which is in fact hardly "heavy caliber") than from a shotgun slug, and that just doesn't make sense -- compare the wound cavity caused by a 12G slug to the wound cavity caused by 7.62x51mm FMJ, and then to the wound cavity caused by 7.62x51mm JHP.

There should be a huge leap from the 7.62x51mm and similar calibers to the truly heavy such as the .50 BMG -- we're talking about a bullet 3, 4 or even 5 times as heavy and 1-2/3x the diameter being fired at higher velocities.
Thanks for the links - I'm on dialup, so searching the boards is a bit of a headache to put it mildly.

As I said, I know bugger all about guns, and I was indeed looking for some kind of logic and realism in the codes, which is why I acknowledged my ignorance and asked for help smile.gif
One thing you should be cognizant of is that when you factor in burst fire or god forbid full auto that weapons like making the 7.62 assault rifle a 12S damage code become monstrosities like 15D which means that even with security armor that people are going to die alot. Granted the game should be lethal but factor in overdamage and things might be a bit more lethal that you are expecting.

Granted 7.62 is a great round and realistically there should be some similarities between machine guns that use 7.62 and the assault rifle damage but having that much of a increase in power over the 12 gauge slug seems a bit of a stretch.

Perhaps rather than simply increasing the base power to indicate the armor piercing capabilities you can reduce the ballistic qualities of regular armors by 2-3 and keep the damage code at 9S.

Other than that I'd be tempted to suggest that submachineguns stay pretty close to the damage code of light pistols for your system as they commonly use the same ammo (9mm assumption for both) while there are increases to power from having a longer barrel etc I'm tempted to say 3 power is a bit much to believe. Now if you are making the assumption that 9mm is heavy pistol then I'd say your codes are decent but if you make the assumption that 9mm is light (like most people here seem to) then i'd say adjustments might be required.
Austere Emancipator
Damn. Just noticed I begun two consequent paragraphs with "that said". Maybe I should try sleeping every once in a while. Coherence level is sinking rapidly.

I know I can be a bit, err, blunt? or maybe a bit of a prick about these things, so don't take it too hard if I say something about your suggested rules doesn't make sense. There are many things about my own rules which don't exactly make sense. In an abstract and (hopefully) very much simplified system, that's bound to happen.

All you can do is make it somewhat reasonable. Towards that end, two other potentially helpful threads.
That's cool smile.gif

And I know it makes the big guns even scarier, but actually, I don't mind that for the setting.

Okay, maybe I should explain the setting just a little, give you some idea of where I'm coming from. It's set about 250 years into our future; the basic principle is that the Solar System is governed by a single megalithic corporation, called EarthCorp, which runs things with an iron hand. This has led to a proliferation of revolutionary movements, a small number of which have banded together in common cause. Each group, of course, has its own goals in addition to the fall of EarthCorp, so internal politics often influences decisions and events.

Technologically, whilst some things have advanced a lot (basic computers and pdas, etc, now use a holographic touch screen for most functions - an idea I got from the Light Organ - allowing the base units to be far smaller, so the standard phone/PDA is now about the size of a large diver's wristwatch) others have approached the shallow part of the curve. Firearms is one of those areas (early iterations of the game did have EC troops armed with man-portable laser weaponry using single-use capacitor charges in magazines to power them. These "cap guns" basically got one laser pulse per capacitor, with between 6 and 10 charges per "magazine" depending on the size of the weapon. At the moment I'm seriously looking at dropping them as not really fitting in). Cold fusion is a reality, although so far microfusion is not; so only installations or largish vehicles can use it. This has, however, opened up the Solar System; the Moon and Mars have been steadily colonised over the last century to relieve growing population pressures, Venus is undergoing long-term terraforming, and many resources are now mined in the Asteroid belt or in Saturn's rings. Again, early versions of the game had solar collectors on Mercury beaming power across the System, but I'm thinking of dropping that as well.

I've set myself a bit of a challenge, really, since I'm trying to balance the grit of a revolution against an utterly despotic, monolithic enemy by a rebel movement with often inconsistent or incompatible goals, versus a kind of heroic fiction feel.

Uh... okay, long and probably uninteresting ramble mode off.
Austere Emancipator
Sometimes even 5L is too high a Damage Code.
QUOTE (Austere Emancipator)
Sometimes even 5L is too high a Damage Code.

she musta been a troll and just staged the damage down...
sounds like a cool sounding setting. I actually ran one quite simmilar to that using D20 Modern (watches nervously as knives come out) and had a blast with it. Came to a rather abrupt end though when the players tried to break into a high security military complex to spring a friend of theirs. I was expecting them to wait untill he was being transported and ambush the convoy. At any rate they ended up on the reciving end of a platoon of Sol marines (think powered armour and miniatureized gattling guns) which put an end to their carriers pertty quick.
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