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  • Falling Damage and Armour

    Hi folks, just a question for my fellow GMs....

    Do you allow armour and toughness protection provided by armor or power armor to protect a character from a fall?

    Maelgwyn

  • #2
    I do not.
    Armor is mass, and the more massive something is the more falling hurts. This is why a cat can fall out a fifty foot tree and walk away but a horse will break its legs from a three foot drop.
    I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

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    • #3
      Well nothing official I consider the guidelines in the Collision rules. Basically your own armor works his armor-piercing versus the Earth while the Earth's works is armor piercing. That is my justification for saying armor does not count. Imagine it like dropping a tank from the back of it airplane that dank may be heavily armored but it ain't going to run well

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      • #4
        Lol, we all might do this differently. I let the Toughness of the armor protect them, but not the armor value itself.

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        • #5
          I'm with jrpaikuli, here--Armor does not apply (I agree with Ndreare on that one), but Toughness does, simply because that's what the difference between Toughness and Armor values on Body Armor is supposed to represent.

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          • #6
            OK the toughness approach was kind of what I was leaning towards myself, I'm glad to see I wasn't alone.

            I didn't like the idea that Armor was protection against falls because unless you fall on some sharp object the injury is mostly internal from the sudden stop. I do like that the the toughness applies though as it seems to be described as shock absorption and structural reinforcement against impact. So apart from stopping your brain rattling around and getting a concussion it is exactly the kind of impact protection I would want.

            A follow up then, and maybe I have missed it somewhere in the books, but even assuming there is no bodily injury from the fall, would you still just declare someone shaken in order to simulate minor concussion or winding? Or would you let the amount of damage take care of that one? Or am I just trying to over think this in the name of realism, which I will admit I am guilty of.

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            • SteelDraco
              SteelDraco commented
              Editing a comment
              You could apply the Bumps and Bruises condition, which is represented by one level of Fatigue. That's used for "You're banged up, but not really wounded" in lots of places in the system.

          • #7
            I let the damage roll decide the result.
            Like any impact, there is a chaotic element to falling that causes a wide variation in how severe the damage actually is. Random dice do a nice job of simulating that - especially when you're rolling enough dice that it's nearly impossible for a character to not be at least lightly injured.

            The reason I don't allow Toughness from armor to apply is Baby Dragons. They can fly but if a FWDH did fall one hundred feet, it should splash. With Toughness 34 (16) at minimum, dragons are tough enough (Toughness 18) that they would survive better than a human - but if you ignore Size and armor toughness then they're Toughness 6 and hurt just as bad as most humans.
            I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

            Comment


            • #8
              I'm for toughness applying to falling damage, but worn armor not.
              When it comes to power armor and spells however, it seems like it should protect. Just because in the genre, people in power armor shrug off impacts that should splatter the pilot. So I'd lean towards anything that gave MDC protecting against falls/impacts.

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              • #9
                It depends heavily on what the actual "armor" is. Something that lessens kinetic impact like a force field would still work (the earth is still a projectile coming on your direction), but traditionnal armor would not. I would also allow any magical or TW bonus to apply.

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                • #10
                  Originally posted by ValhallaGH View Post
                  I do not.
                  Armor is mass, and the more massive something is the more falling hurts.
                  So why do parachutists wear helmets? Or motor cyclists for that matter? Cyclists also wear other armor (leathers and padded or braced gear).

                  And as a motorcyclists, it,s not just for the sliding along the gravel (I am a cyclist).

                  Its for protection from the impact as much as anything.

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                  • #11
                    Originally posted by Malifice View Post
                    So why do parachutists wear helmets? Or motor cyclists for that matter? Cyclists also wear other armor (leathers and padded or braced gear).
                    Shock absorption, because organs are squishy and even "minor" bumps to the noggin (such as a six foot drop, like slipping and landing on the head) can cause fatal levels of brain trauma.
                    For parachutists, the helmets prevent them from being knocked out while exiting the craft or deploying the chute. It's really difficult to activate the chute, avoid hazards such as trees or lines, or land correctly when concussed.

                    Riding leathers are for abrasion resistance - road rash will rip off flesh in huge batches and faster than can be believed without relevant experience. Leather does better against road rash than any other flexible material tested, without the risks of deformation injuries seen with metal plating.
                    "Armored" leathers have a bunch of shock absorbing padding under hard plastic to reduce collision damage to vital or delicate areas - dropping compound fractures to just breaks, breaks to cracks, cracks to bruising, and minimizing displaced joints or organ impact damage.

                    But those are not going to help in combat - at best, you're looking at +3 armor to the head and +1 body armor from the armored leathers, and modern firearms are all AP 1 or better.
                    Last edited by ValhallaGH; 07-09-2018, 06:11 PM.
                    I hope you find the above post useful. And not insulting, because I was trying to be helpful, not insulting; being a pedantic jerk, that isn't always clear.

                    Comment


                    • #12
                      Thanks ValhallaGH, I was going to say very similar, only adding that the helmets for a paratrooper I can't imagine are there so that it could take the blunt trauma of a fall or crash. Otherwise, they'd put similar on their feet to absorb it. Regardless of how hard the helmet or boots (if such a vision could be conjured), the body inside would still be mush. As for bike riders, you would use the vehicle crash rules anyway and not deal with falling damage (unless you fell off a cliff or similar?).

                      The standard rules indicate that ALL armor applies to falls, so you can certainly go with that. Rifts introduces +Toughness to armor, so I thought that made more sense to apply to falls, as that type of padding and shock absorption would show there.

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                      • #13
                        ValhallaGH: Honestly, I'm not sure I agree with the notion that a falling dragon should splat, but if you want to go there, there's a better way than culling out the Toughness bonus from worn armor (which requires double-checking to see what that bonus specifically is, instead of just dropping the Armor rating from the convenient spot on the character sheet). Instead, just create a bonus to damage for falling equal to the faller's Size rating. This makes massive creatures (and vehicles) hit the ground harder, and negates the toughness boost they get from Size, but allows for other Toughness enhancements to remain in place.

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                        • ValhallaGH
                          ValhallaGH commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Yeah, I've considered it. I've even tried it, and it mostly works, but SR broke it by commonly having "tough hide" Toughness bonuses.
                          Nearly unbreakable skin doesn't protect against the organ destroying forces of terminal velocity impacts - just because your skin is intact doesn't mean your brain isn't a useless puddle of jelly inside your skull.

                          I'm not criticizing other people's ways of doing things, just explaining and defending my own way.

                        • Freemage
                          Freemage commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Fair enough. I tend to interpret 'tough hide' as 'resilient flesh' if it gives a Toughness bonus--and so it's muscle and bone and internal organs all being hardier than a creature without that bonus, as well.. A carapace or other thick hide that only goes skin deep is just an Armor Bonus (which I agree with you, should not affect falling damage).
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