Firearm ranges in RPGs.
Now, generally speaking, it seems to me that listing squares or even meters for firearm ranges in an RPG is kind of a useless exercise.
In reality pistols and shotguns generally have the same effective range (roughly 30 meters, depending on what you're firing), non-precision rifles (assault rifles, battle rifles, etc) have generally the same range, again (300-600 meters), and so on and so forth. On to the RPG part.
If you're in firefight in a room, everything is in range, generally, and if you're in a firefight outside, I've personally never played on a battlemat large enough to properly encompass ranges beyond around 50 to 100 meters or squares. Generally, listing an actual numerical value for range seems pretty useless.
So, here's my question: Is there a solution to this? Should you just have range categories similar to what Shadowrun does? Obviously there would be situations in which you could easily abstract a long range firefight or a player firing support with a sniper rifle or machinegun, but generally it seems like a total non-point.
>generally it seems like a total non-point.
I agree, but many players like useless calculations like that as it gives them a feeling of verisimilitude, even if it is false precision.
What, you've never said "Ok, each square is twenty meters"?
I've been in lots of tabletop fights where it mattered that the sniper rifle had a better range than the assault rifle. Dark Heresy, Deadlands, lots of outside fights that start at long range. It's an interesting and common tactical scenario.
Does this really never happen to you guys? Why not? If you have a rifle, why aren't you opening up from long range?
Not sure how Shadowrun does it, but EotE does things in range bands, so pistols are most effective at short range( about the range of an apartment) before they start to lose accuracy, carbines and nicer pistols reach out to medium range(somewhere out to around 100 yards, give or take), rifles fire out to long range(it takes 2 turns of sprinting to get from short to long range), and extreme is anything beyond that, usually reserved for sniper rifles. There's also engaged range, which is "I'm hitting shit in the face with a hammer" range, but you usually aren't shooting at those ranges.
I visit from /k/ and this hurts me.
and by that you mean "a noob can hit a man sized target after about an hour of instruction & training", yes?
rifled slugs are accurate easily out to 100+m. buckshot not so much but will still do damage to the general area (that being said pistol rounds can still be deadly to around 1km, you just cant hit shit on purpose at that distance)
>more than 300m
not with 5.56/.223 probably not.
>same as ar
lolno thats the point of the battle rifle. you got the 300-600 right for the br though.
if you're in a smallish room, everything is in range allright, but the guy with the looong and heavy battle rifle is going to be at a disadvantage compared to, say, a guy with a pistol-calibre smg.
no idea how to model that in an rpg though, I dont play tg games, I come here for story threads
You are right OP. This is why my ranges are short medium long and very long
However you might like the way GURPS does it. Range actually,matters in that system because it is a gradient of penalties.
>not with 5.56/.223 probably not.
You can reliably go to 500m with full sized M16s. Short barrelled rifles like the M4, not so much.
>rifles fire out to long range(it takes 2 turns of sprinting to get from short to long rang
This is kind of what I think OP is talking about, that's still a ridiculously short range for a rifle.
I'm only a mehish marksman. I can hit 10/10 times an e-type silhouette at 600m with my .30-06 using just iron sites. When I put 8x optics on, I can add another 200m to that without missing. Another 200m drops my accuracy to around 50%...so we're at a kilometer where I can still hit a slightly smaller than man-sized target fairly reliably.
And again, I'm not that terribly good. I just spent four years in the military and now hunt/target shoot around once a month.
>And again, I'm not that terribly good. I just spent four years in the military and now hunt/target shoot around once a month.
That still probably puts you at the 99th percentile compared to the general population.
In a combat situation, how's your aim? Effective range being about that distance still? When you're lying down nicely and breathing calmly and got all the time in the world to line up your shots?
This, but note that GURPS has an abstract range option which works quite well.
Also from GURPS is the idea that most target shooting has significant bonuses for being out of combat. So as in real life, your accuracy goes way down in a combat situation.
Hope no one minds if I post a question of my own.
First of all I admit to being rather ignorant of real world firearms.
My question is, I've seen in multiple systems with guns that weapons that share an ammunition type will have different damage stats and I was wondering is there any real world truth to this?
I would have thought that the 'damage' caused by a gun would be totally dependent on what it's shooting i.e. the ammunition.
The physical damage caused done from a gun is mostly dependent on its ammunition, however different guns may differ slightly in accuracy and the speed it leaves the barrel - guns with shorter barrels may lose some energy compared to those with longer barrels as some of the escaping gases will not be used in propelling the bullet forwards.
It's usually not a major difference, though.
It's usually not enough to merit stat changes. The reason stats vary by weapon is that most game developers want their equipment list to have some variation and reflect the brands' reputations.
So yes it matters, but at the level of resolution of a typical RPG, two guns of similar overall design will perform more or less identically.
If you want further information, here's a scientific test involving someone taking a hacksaw to a mosin nagant and seeing the muzzle velocity with each two inches cut off.
From 29 inches to 17 inches the muzzle velocity decreased from 2800 to 2525 feet per second.
The accuracy bands aren't for aiming, it's for taking a generalized shot with a gun with only iron sights with no penalty. Most people have to aim to hit much beyond 100m effectively without taking time to aim, even with rifles. Optics change things up a bit, but they have their own set of setting-specific modifiers.
>In a combat situation, how's your aim? Effective range being about that distance still?
About the same...I was DM -- not because I was the best shot in my squad, but because I was the best shot under pressure. Honestly, in real combat situations when you're engaging at 500m+ if you're doing it with any kind of rifle, you're going to have pretty much all day to line up your shots just like shooting at the range. There are, of course, exceptions to this, but usually in regular infantry, in those situations, you're calling in an air strike, arty strike, shoot a rocket at them, or something similar and aren't counting on a long range rifle shot to bring a target down...or more likely you're going to close as a unit.
That's a good point. Optics and visibility are often far more important than external ballistics. I wonder if there is some good way to build around that idea for outdoor RPG firefights
A few systems do things differently. 40k RPGs add to the user's ballistic skill based on how good the optics are, FFG SWRPG does things ranging from nullifying some situational disadvantages, like smoke/low light, or adds automatic advantages(which help with critical hits) to your dice roll.
How you do it depends on how in depth you want things to be.
The most determining factor isn't the gun's range, but how you're shooting. If your carefully aiming at a target you can accurately hit long range targets. Hitting a man-sized target at 300m with an assault rifle is pretty easy if you're prone, using a bipod, and take your time to aim. This is more or less the only time when you can expect hitting a target at past weapon's range.
Hitting a target in a room cleaning situation is more difficult as you don't really have time to aim. Forget hitting anything beyond 1/2 weapon range.
Between the two, you have the situation where you're covering an area and will open fire at every target showing up. Maximum range will be the weapon's range
Finally, you have suppressive fire. You're just pumping an area full of lead to force the bad guys to keep the head down. Range can be doubled for that purpose. Skill check is only needed to avoid hitting bystanders or friendlies.
The TN depends on those types of shooting. Range and movement give penalties. Optics give bonuses.
As such range is important, but how important is it during game. Well, it depends on who the PC's are and what they're doing. If they are mercenaries serving in some corporate war in Africa, range will be of importance. If they are hypochondriac history professors and archeologists investigating occult stuff in urban areas, range won't be that important.
I actually like Infinity's answer to this. It's played on a standard 4'x4' table, and most weapons have a max range of 48". The only things that don't are pistols (24"), shotguns (also 24"), and thrown grenades (12"). Some weapons can even go further; sniper rifles have a max range of 104".
To balance this, weapons also have a "curve" of bonuses and penalties to hit depending on range. Most weapons spike at 0" and peter off towards their max range. But some more cumbersome weapons (like grenade launchers, heavy machine guns, and sniper rifles) spike in the middle and drop on both ends.