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Big List of Stuff to Fix—Chapter 2, Part 1 (Page 65–79)

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  • Big List of Stuff to Fix—Chapter 2, Part 1 (Page 65–79)

    Continued from the previous lists of stuff. Chapter 1, Part 1, and Chapter 1, Part 2.

    Bonus Design Note from Chapter 1:
    Mean (Page 25) and Ugly (Page 28): This is touched on a bit more here, but it’s unclear why Ugly (Minor) and Mean only inflict a –1 penalty to Persuasion (and Ugly (Major) only inflicts –2), when the Skill Penalty racial ability notes that a –2 to one Skill is a –1 ability; under this setup, a race that has a –4 to all Fighting rolls would have the same level of detriment as a race with Major Ugly, who only suffers a –2 to Persuasion. To alleviate this, changing Ugly to inflict a –1 to both Performance and Persuasion (or –2 as a Major Hindrance) works wonders and translates as a better analogue to Attractive. Similarly, increasing the penalty for Mean to –2 would solve this as well. One thought that was pointed out is that Mean and Ugly are “always on” Hindrances so the penalty shouldn’t be as steep, but almost all Hindrances are “always on,” so that doesn’t make much sense. One of my first thoughts was that it was because it’s a Core Skill, but Clueless and Clumsy both penalize other Core Skills far more heavily. Another thought I had was that it might be because Persuasion is almost always an opposed roll, but so is Mild Mannered (–2 to Intimidation), so I’m not sure what the reasoning here is. It’s worth noting that these Hindrances are an even better deal than the above math suggests because they also grant a character access to the Menacing Edge.

    In the same vein, Racial Enemy (Page 20) inflicts a highly situational –2 penalty to Persuasion for –1 racial points; it would be worth bumping this highly situational penalty up to –4. As it stands, you effectively have a –1 ability (–2 to a Skill) that is far more limited than simply taking racial penalty to Persuasion.

    Killer Instinct: How does this Edge interact with Charismatic? The latter allows a character to Reroll a failed Persuasion roll (which only occurs after an opponent has opposed the roll with her Spirit); would a character who also has Killer Instinct be allowed to Reroll again if the roll is failed after Charismatic has come into play?

    With that, we move forth unto Chapter 2
    Page 65: Does Armor stack with natural Armor in the way that, say, a chain hauberk stacks with a steel breastplate (i.e. add half of the lower armor value to the higher value)? In other words, would a saurian (Armor +2) with a chain shirt (+3) have +4 Armor or +5?
    Page 65: In the chain shirt + plate mail example listed, the Minimum Strength requirement should be lifted to d12, not d10.
    Page 66: Minimum Strength notes that Strength lower than d4 exists (presumably referring to d4–1 and d4–2). In that case, would a d6–1 Strength character suffer penalties when attempting to use something like boiled leather armor or a short sword (Min Str d6 for both). How would you calculate the Encumbrance for something with a Strength malus? Would d6–1 count as d4 Strength for Encumbrance? How would d4–1 or d4–2 Strength work?
    Two Hands: This doesn’t have a specific page number, but it’s something that’s been asked about a lot on the forums. It might be worth adding a note somewhere that players should consult the One Arm Hindrance if attempting to use a two handed weapon with one hand.
    Page 68: The Bipod/Tripod entry notes that they negate the Recoil penalty. However, this means that bipods provide no benefit when using large sniper rifles like the Barrett .50 cal. Moreover, on Page 75 it’s noted under machine guns that bipods also eliminates the Strength requirement when deployed. This entry should be changed to reflect that one instead.
    Pepper Spray/Stun Gun Note (Page 68): Stun guns and pepper spray are brutal; even after their initial effect, they take some time to get over. It might be worth changing pepper spray and stun guns to inflict a level of Fatigue if the user doesn’t get a raise on his Vigor roll.
    Page 68: In the Ammo Table, it’s likely worth noting that Medium Bullets covers most rifle rounds, as well as Desert Eagle rounds, especially for folks who are less educated on how gun calibers work.
    Page 69: Under Helmets, the sentence has awkward punctuation. It should read “An attacker may make a Called Shot (page 98) to any exposed area to bypass its protection. For example, an archer shooting at a medieval soldier wearing a pot helm could target his face or neck, ignoring the Armor.”
    Page 69: I know that bronze armor simply wouldn’t be available in most medieval settings, but it’s strange that bronze armor is strictly better than chain, splint, and scale mail. Same Armor/Min Str. but lower weight and cost. Is there something I’m missing here? It seems odd that an army would opt to use chain or scale instead of bronze armor.
    Page 70: Under futuristic armor, “Any armor listed below may be treated with an “energy skin” (or skein” to diffuse energy, reducing damage from lasers by 4.” Probably worth removing “(or skein”.”
    Page 70: It’s a bit odd that the futuristic battle helmet has a significantly higher Armor value than the infantry battle suit. Not an intrinsic problem, but a notably incongruency.
    Modern Shield Note (Page 71): It’s very hard to find a good source of firearms vs ballistic or riot shields. That said, I know that riot shields aren’t good against actual guns, but based on the linked video, ballistic shields should probably have a higher Armor value (maybe +3 or +4, to put it in line with plate armor). The damage reduction against firearms helps a lot there, but I’d imagine the ballistic shield would be better at stopping arrows, axes, and other non-firearm ranged weapons. On the topic of the ballistic shield, according to this source, a version of that shield large enough to count as Medium Cover should be around 14–15 lbs, not 9.
    Page 72: Interestingly, the axe is now heavier than the short sword, though they are identical in all other aspects. Same with the battle axe and long sword.
    Chainsaw Note (Page 72): This seems like a good opportunity to make the chainsaw comparable to “Chain Weapons” in the Science Fiction Companion (add +d6 damage and AP 2). A Strength+2d6, AP 2 weapon with a high weight and critical failure hitting the user keeps the existing chainsaw mechanics while the math is roughly the same (slightly buffed against armor).
    Crossbow/Heavy Crossbow Note (Page 73): I love this addition to the weapon table; now we have a fantasy-esque “light” crossbow and a big, hulking, heavy crossbow with a longer range, reload time, and higher damage. It is curious to me that when considered with its AP and range, it’s actually a better weapon than the brown bess (and only better than the kentucky rifle due to shorter reload time, though the trade-off is the weight). It’s also curious that the “light” crossbow no longer has a listed reload time. I think it’s worth messing with the names here, so you have the Crossbow (15/30/60, 2d8, AP 2, etc), and the Light Crossbow (10/20/40, 2d6, AP 2, etc). I’m not sure how to address the fact that the heavy crossbow is better than the brown bess, but I think it’s worth consideration.
    Page 73: Since the Compound Bow is the only Shooting ranged weapon with a Str+dX damage, it might be worth a short note as to why. Many might not know what a compound bow is or how it works, so a quick note beneath the weapon (similar to the note that the modern crossbow used to have) would go a long way.
    Real World Ranges Note (Page 74): “Real World Ranges” (noting that the weapons’ real world ranges are 2.5× tabletop range) were removed from 2.1 to 3.0. I think that space was better served with that rule than simply showing a Tommy Gun and a M1911; it’s a very helpful addition which allows for utilizing realistic gun ranges in Theater of the Mind play (as noted in [url=]this previous thread[url]).
    Potato Masher Note (Page 78): It’s odd that this has 3d6–2 damage; by my understanding there wasn’t a notable power difference between the german and allied grenades; the german ones simply weighed more because of their handle, which allowed for a greater throwing range. It might be worth bumping the damage up to 3d6.
    Page 79: Under Minefields, it’s listed that navigating them should be a Dramatic Task. With what Skill, though? Athletics? Notice? It’s not stated.
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  • #2
    Folks will have to do a little research on compound bows, differences in German frag grenades vs US grenades, etc., if they're curious.

    Persuasion penalties aren't a direct 1:1 ratio. While we kinda have to do that in the racial abilities table, some of them are just used more often, or are more important than other. Mean is -1, for example, but Outsider is -2, because Mean comes up every time you make a Persuasion roll and that skill is used VERY often now. The penalty applies from Outsider more rarely. That said, I think adding Performance to Mean is good anyway so will do that. Dennis Leary would be an exception to this rule. (Or succeed despite of it!)

    Working on some language to address and clarify that.

    The bronze breastplate covers only the breast. Most of the time that won't matter, but the chain shirt covers the arms and groin too.

    This is the shield I was using:

    Leaveing the chainsaw...the one here is for wood. Those in the SFC are for combat and tipped with something to get through armor better.

    Real World Ranges isn't necessary anymore with the addition of Extreme Range.