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Difference between close combat and melee

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  • Difference between close combat and melee

    Say, a fight bursts out: Andy and Bob are clashing. Andy has a handgun while Bob has a rifle. Andy acts first, runs into close combat (adjacent hex/inch/whatever you use) and shoots his handgun at Bob (with Bob's Parry as a TN, yes). On his turn Bob wants to shoot back. My questions is as follows: can Bob shoot in this situation? The reason I'm asking is that SWDE, p. 75 strictly forbids using long arms in melee, but not in close combat. On one hand, word melee is usually used to refer to Fighting rolls. On the other hand, Andy's attack is very similar to a melee attack, since he needs to beat Bob's Parry.

    What's your opinion on that matter?


  • #2
    Melee and close combat are pretty much synonyms. Bob cannot attack Andy with his rifle if they are in melee range (adjacent to one another).

    Comment


    • #3
      Any weapon can be used in melee, but it may not always be usable the way you'd prefer. Andy can shoot his handgun no problem against Bob's Parry. In fact, Bob's Parry is reduced by 1 because he's not fighting with a proper melee weapon (the rifle counts as an improvised weapon). Bob can still attack with his rifle, but only as an improvised melee weapon. But this incurs a -1 penalty to Bob's attack roll. On the upside, however, the rifle likely counts as a large improvised weapon. This means the potential damage is Str+d8. And even though Bob's Fighting roll suffers a penalty, Andy doesn't have a proper melee weapon either so the conflicting penalties are essentially a wash.

      Comment


      • DoctorBoson
        DoctorBoson commented
        Editing a comment
        I’d argue that just about any normal rifle isn’t anywhere near big enough to count as a large Improvised Weapon—Medium (Str+d6) at best. Large might be hitting someone with a wooden chair or, in terms of firearms, a heavy machine gun or minigun. Otherwise, spot on.

      • Jounichi
        Jounichi commented
        Editing a comment
        I'd say it depends on weapon weight. Setting aside the Barret .50, the average weight of modern rifles (non AR) in the core book is 9.6 pounds. That's right on the line between the heaviest Str+d6 weapons and the lightest Str+d8. I don't really have a problem letting *heavier* weapons deal more damage. And with the way most modern firearms are statted, it's unlikely they have the strength to capitalize on the higher die type.

      • Freemage
        Freemage commented
        Editing a comment
        This is pretty much spot-on. As noted, there is some wiggle-room in terms of the size class of the rifle as an ImpWeap, but otherwise, everything is straightforward. You cannot shoot the rifle at an opponent immediately adjacent to you. Closing with rifle-wielders is thus an optimal tactic. Folks with a preference for longarms should probably invest in Improvisational Fighter, or at least Unarmed Combat.

    • #4
      Definitely GM ruling here, but if one character shot from adjacent rather than/in addition to making a melee attack, I'd rule that the pistolero isn't pressing the rifleman so much that he can't shoot back. Lots of caveats and conditions here, however; I'd be much more likely to rule this way if Bob had an Uzi or M4 vs a Kar98, and I'd probably assess Bob at least a -2 penalty (based on an Unstable Platform because he's probably not going to get good form to shoot). However, I'm also not sure I'd automatically consider a long gun an improvised weapon. The aforementioned Kar98 is properly built for bayonet drill, and by itself is probably equal to a staff (Str+d4, +1 Parry, Reach 1, 2 hands).
      Last edited by paladin2019; 12-06-2018, 08:08 PM.

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      • #5
        CQC (Close Quarters Combat) is firearm use at ranges generally 30 feet or less. It is, in the end, still gun users still shooting at other gun users. The big distinction is that, on average, the weapons being used are designed to be used in close combat. In the example given it really would depend on what type of rifle Bob is using. A hunting rifle? Sorry, you better use it as a club. A P-90? Sure, blaze away.

        At least, that is how I would do it.
        I have way too much time but do not always edit myself properly. Please do not take offense.

        Comment


        • #6
          Might be worth noting that Bob also gets a free Fighting roll against Andy as he closes in (at -1 for being improvised).

          Comment


          • ValhallaGH
            ValhallaGH commented
            Editing a comment
            Only if Bob has First Strike.

          • Deskepticon
            Deskepticon commented
            Editing a comment
            ValhallaGH Ah, you're right! Confused myself again. Too many rules-systems rolling around in my swiss cheese brain.
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