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Nuclear bomb

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  • Nuclear bomb

    Are there any rules for a nuclear bomb in the rules?
    My players are about to find one ...

  • #2
    Nukes are plot devices - they come in many varieties, sizes, and power levels. But all of them are "obliterate everything within 500 yards" powerful, which is beyond the damage rules.

    How to handle that plot device is largely a setting conceit. A post-apocalyptic Earth is going to interact differently with nuclear weapons than a post-scarcity society stretched across an entire galactic arm.
    But the general guideline is, "the place the nuke was detonated is no longer a place; it is a crater."
    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.


    • #3
      Nothing really new to add except to say that portable nukes (like Fallout's fatman) would probably mirror high-level ordinance, like missiles, but also force a Vigor roll to avoid Radiation Hazard. They may also contaminate an area for a set amount of time.


      • #4
        What's the tech level of the setting and what power level are the PCs at? I can see how you might need rules for a nuke if the group is, like, commanding capital ships or something in a sci-fi game, but on a tactical battlemap level the rules for a nuke going off should be "pick up all the miniatures and the game table, soak it in gasoline, and set it on fire".

        The most powerful bombs and missiles in the Sci-Fi Companion are on the level of 10d10 to 10d12 damage; the City Buster bomb is listed as 10d10 damage, AP 40, HW, 50" radius on the battlemat for a 4-8 KT bomb. For comparison, Little Boy and Fat Man were 15 KT and 21 KT respectively, so we're talking several times that size, and those are quite small nuclear warheads now. The biggest ships listed in the Sci-Fi Companion top out at Toughness 80 (25) so one hit from those high-end bombs and missiles are likely to paste them. There literally isn't anything in the game that's designed to make use of a nuke meaningful other than "everything just dies immediately".

        So that would be my rule. If the nuke goes off, everybody dies. I ended a Deadlands campaign that way once; they did a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid ending to prevent the use of a ghost rock bomb by Hellstromme's forces after they broke into the lab it was made in and killed the scientist who designed it. I didn't roll damage or anything; when the magic nuke went off they all died and I narrated a hellish mushroom cloud going off in the mountains around the City of Gloom.

        When I ran a Fallout game I had the mini-nukes from that game at I think 4d12 damage along with everybody near by taking a massive dose of radiation.


        • #5
          Originally posted by ValhallaGH View Post
          Nukes are plot devices
          I agree with this. Just treat it as a MacGuffin that just annihilates everything near it with no save. Basically treat it like a Sphere of Annihilation.


          • #6
            It is not possible to roll a high enough Soak roll to survive.

            On the other hand, maybe you can spend a benny to find a convenient refrigerator to hide in.


            • Deskepticon
              Deskepticon commented
              Editing a comment
              Needs to be one of those old lead-lined fridges as newer ones won't help to shield the wave of beta and gamma particles. Also, lead has a relatively low melting point, so anywhere within the heat-flash of the blast does the character no good. Additionally, the concussion wave can kill just through blunt-force trauma.

              Honestly, unless the fridge is a couple miles out from ground zero, a nuclear explosion is just an Everyone Dies (TM) scenario.

          • #7
            On the other hand, maybe you can spend a benny to find a convenient refrigerator to hide in.
            I mean, once you've resisted the power of Kali-Ma, experienced the fury of the Ark of the Covenant, and drunk from the Holy Grail, you're already a freakin' superhero. I'll give that one a pass.


            • #8
              Thanks! I'll treat the nuke as a plot device!


              • #9
                Originally posted by Grave Knight View Post
                Basically treat it like a nuclear bomb.
                Fixed that for you

                Like what you have read in someone's post? Hit that like button and let everyone know.

                I run Deadlands Reloaded. One of my players writes an incharacter blog here -->


                • #10
                  The only possible survivors I can imagine would be the toughest lv5 supers. With maxed out resistance power, Toughness, armor, and absorption. Anything less and your just dead. Those however might survive to the point of making the death rolls and card draw. Not counting near lightspeed movement characters because they evade as opposed to endure. Action card metagaming is possible, but same as speedsters. It's avoiding the damage. Actually, spc3 resistance maxed might be enough, as it only breaks down in extreme conditions after time, but the kinetic force might be enough knock you back before the 'breakdown' occurs.


                  • ValhallaGH
                    ValhallaGH commented
                    Editing a comment
                    There are no rules to support this claim. You are speculating based upon arbitrary thresholds you might use to rule that a character survived a nuclear detonation.
                    That's an important piece of information that you should be including in a post like this.

                • #11
                  RESISTANCE (1)
                  „ TRAPPINGS: Energy or matter controllers,
                  altered forms, alien physique.
                  Your hero is resistant to a particular Power
                  Type. She reduces damage from attacks based
                  on the Power Type by 4, and adds +4 to rolls
                  made to resist any effects derived from that
                  She is also immune to most background
                  effects of the Power Type, including extreme
                  conditions for three rounds or so (GM's call).
                  A hero who resists Fire, for example, ignores
                  Fatigue tests when crossing a scorching desert
                  and can even stand in lava for a few rounds.
                  „ ADDITIONAL POWER TYPE (+1): The hero's
                  environmental resistance applies to an
                  additional Power Type. This may be taken
                  more than once, choosing a new Power
                  Type each time.
                  „ AREA EFFECT (+2/+4): For 2 points,
                  environmental resistance may apply to
                  everyone in a Medium Blast Template
                  centered on the super. For 4 points, the
                  character can expand her protection to a
                  Large Blast Template.
                  „ IMMUNITY (+2): The hero is completely
                  immune to her resisted Power Types and
                  any damage or effects Linked to them.
                  At the GM's discretion, even Immunity
                  might break down after a while or in
                  the most extreme circumstances, such as
                  standing in a nuclear reactor for radiation
                  resistance or the surface of the sun for fire-
                  resistant heroes.
                  „ REQUIRES ACTIVATION (–1): The hero must
                  make a Focus roll as an action to activate
                  this ability. If he loses concentration, it
                  Powers Down and must be reactivated

                  Forgot the name change. Environmental Resistance. With all types and immunity modifier. This can allow survival of a nuke. And even with the part about gm discretion, breakdown is stated as after a while. It is not impossible for someone to survive in certain situations. Just unlikely. Hence my stating lv5 supers. Cosmic level entities.


                  • ValhallaGH
                    ValhallaGH commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Maybe, maybe not. After all, "even Immunity might break down ... in the most extreme circumstances." Being inside a nuclear detonation is an extreme circumstance, even by super hero standards.

                    There's nothing wrong with making "might survive nukes" an unlisted benefit of being Power Level V. But it sure is not a listed benefit.