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Combat/Firing question

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Joined: 12/31/1969


Was wondering if you all could critique on this combat system I have devised. I am new to these forums, already posted two times (great place here.. I have found a cozy home!) and would like to know your opinions.

It is a modern military/tactical game in which the scale is 1 peice=1 soldier.

1. Select target and the location of shot(s). Options are head, torso, l/r arm, l/r leg. Obviously head has less hitpoints, torso in the with average, legs/arm with more.

2. Select fire mode of weapon. I have devised various charts of different firearms, with attempt to keep to realism (as much as I know, never fired a real one but BF2 and DoD could count...?) from research on the web. Each weapon has different characteristics and firepower; a chart which has range increments on one side and die roll on the other, with a cross-index system which shows how much damage is placed onto target location. Each weapon chart also has multiple shot types, depending on firemodes. Base firemodes are an aimed shot, giving a positive DR mod, normal, and quick, giving negative DR mod. With each shot type is a 'fire point' value. When you fire you have 4 fire points to expend, thus bigger, slower firing weapons have greater fire points, reducing the number of shots you may take.

3. Add modifiers. Say, for instance the unit was sprinting outside a house and you are firing through an open doorway at him; a steep DR mod would be added to make the shot a difficult. Other mods, like the state of the firer (is he walking, jogging, wounded, aiming, receiving fire from enemies, supported, etc.) add or subtract to the DR.

4. Now you actually fire. Rolling two dice for each round fired, you cross-index the roll with the range of the attack on the weapon's chart and find how much damage is placed on the target area. Depending on different circumstances, the state of the victim, and armor (which I have yet to devise), the unit becomes hit and placed in one of many wounded categories (stunned, light wound, heavy wound, dead, etc...), depending on the severity of the attack. These states affect how the unit may move, fire, etc.

Now, I have playtested this system a couple of times, and it worked okay. In some cases though, when the firer would set the gun to rock and roll and fire 10 rounds at a target, 10 individual die rolls with different mods each time from recoil got slow.

Does it seem to complicated? Does it seem the long process would take away from the game, which is set at a quickened pace? Tell me your thoughts.

Thanks, Brett

Joined: 01/21/2009
Combat/Firing question

I'm new to BGDF, too. I've been lurking around for awhile, but have only recently posted anything...okay, with that out of the way:

I like some aspects of your system; however, if you are looking for a quick paced game, it may be (ahem) overkill. You need to have a certain level of abstraction. In a way, you have to decide: am I going to make an "action movie" type of combat game or a "realistic" combat game.

"Action Movie" games are those that last, like the movies, in a suspended sort of reality: rolling firefights, going on for 10 minutes in a movie through office buildings and streets. But, the realistic type are the firefights that last minutes (there are some exceptions: Mogadishu).

I've never been in real combat: bullets, the threat of death, etc. I can tell you that I have participated in some very realistic paintball and airsoft combat simulations. You crawl around for 20 minutes and then the firefight starts and it's all over in about 2 mintues.

So, ask yourself which type of game do you want to make? If you decide to move more toward action, consider something like:

1. creating some dice for the various fire modes. Automatic fire, for instance could have more hits, less accurate (I've never liked the idea of a gun jamming - but it happens). Semi-automatic could have differing dice, for instance.

2. instead of charts, make "body dice" - you could roll the gun dice and the body dice to see what was hit: one roll, no charts to cross-reference. For that matter, make the injury on a set of dice, too...Sure, that's a bucket of dice - but, it's elegent. One roll - hits, location and damage: all visable on the playing surface.

If keeping with your original idea, I would offer to not calculate each shot - but use something like a "burst". (Autoburst = so many shots, Semi-auto so many shots, etc.) Each weapon could have a burst rating that would increase the number of hits or damage. That way, you could make a single roll (in your aforementioned system) to determine if the shot hit.

Just my 2 1/2 cents.

Good luck!

Joined: 12/31/1969
Combat/Firing question

I played a lot of Phoenix Command when I was younger. It's a hyper detailed combat system which works similar to what you are proposing. The downside is that it is in no ways a quick paced game.

I think that if you want a quick game you'll have to abstract it quite a bit more. HawaiiIrish's suggestion with the dice is pretty good - quick yet somewhat realistic.

If you want to go with a ultra detailed system then I think that:
1. Aiming is usually done for the center of mass - most combatants don't even see the body parts, due to limited line of sight or limited time in which to aim, and simply fire in the general direction of the enemy.

2. Selecting a mode of fire should be done beforehand. In a combat situation you don't waste time checking how many rounds you'll fire every time you shoot - you push the trigger and whatever your gun's set to will happen. This is also why many armies choose assault rifles without an automatic fire mode - it wastes ammo and gives little or nothing in return because the troops don't aim - they point the gun and press the trigger and after the first round or two they're shooting next to randomly due to weapon's climb/recoil.

3. Good idea.

4. Rolling for each round fired isn't very realistic. It would yield you more random results - unless you devise charts for each type of firing mode and bracing mode. In reality, firing on automatic, your hits would describe a line going upwards. If you're trained and properly braced (no bi-/tripod) you'd get you'd get a line of hits going up and down (which sometimes may seem random afterwards - or if you're spraing an area a line which goes up and to the side.
Thus it might be better to roll once for the type of attack and modify the amount of hits by the amount of rounds fired - more rounds fire, a lesser percentage hits but may actually cause a higher number of bullets to hit due to the increased amount of fired rounds.
Also, if firing in burst or auto mode the shots should be grouped in some way, at least for the first few rounds.

As for your final question - yes, it does sound complicated but if that's the kind of game you want to design and play then go for it!

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