Author Topic: Shapeshifter Armor??  (Read 4876 times)

Mirikon

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #30 on: (01:46:00/07-24-16) »
Again, up to the GM, but you're sprouting Wings, a Tail, Armored Scales, and putting on some undefined amount of mass.  If these changes can be accommodated I'm not sure why Man to Wolf or Troll to Bear would be so incredibly different.  YMMV though.
All right, I'll lay it out with a simple example. Take urban explorer gear, which is basically an armored jumpsuit. You really just need some expansion zones to cover the increased mass (including scales) and holes in the back that the wings and tail poke through when you grow them. The arrangement of the head, arms, legs, and so on are the same, you're just making it so that things poke through and expand. But that isn't what's happening when you go from Human to Wolf, for instance. The tail isn't a problem, and changing size to go smaller is only a moderate problem (it is easier to have flaps that expand than to automatically 'take in' flaps to go smaller). The problem is the arrangement of limbs. The positioning of the head and legs is very different on a a wolf than it is on a human.

The same is true for, say, the Lined Coat. Converting this for a Drake is even easier than the Urban Explorer gear. Just have to make sure it  is either big enough to fit the new form, or can expand, and have the holes in the back for the wings. A split back, like you often see on trench coats and dusters to allow ease of movement will allow the tail through just fine. Done and done. But when you try and do that for a quadruped, the coat is going to be dragging the ground in all kinds of places, and you STILL haven't solved the issues caused by the different arrangement of limbs.

And then you have the issues of getting the protection in the right place, as I mentioned before. A human and a Western Drake both walk upright, have two arms, and two legs. The majority of their vitals are in their torso, and that is why most armor concentrates on the front and back of the torso. On a quadruped, the front and back of the torso are largely concealed, unless you're attacking from above or below, and the sides are more exposed. This means most armor for, say, concentrates on the sides of the body, rather than the chest and back. You can't just take a bulletproof vest designed for a human, and cut it down to dog size. Everything is different.

The only way you could solve all these problems is with high tech nano-materials, like with the Smart Blades. But absolutely no one is doing stuff like that right now thanks to the nanopocalypse.

So your best bet would be something like a helmet or ballistic mask that has straps which will allow it to stay on when you change, and then having your team help you into your wolf armor. Or use magic armor, either through spells or being an adept, since those would carry over in your other form.
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Medicineman

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #31 on: (02:30:17/07-24-16) »
or by getting an Armored Poncho (and giving it the same stats as Armored Coat).....
or getting an Armored Vest that only covers the Torso


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Blue Rose

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #32 on: (12:23:10/07-24-16) »
Howling Shadows seems to have settled this pretty definitively with barding.

Animal armor is custom made for an animal of that size, and can't exceed the animal's body rating without imposing penalties.

That seems pretty reasonable to me.  Turning around and making puppy armored jackets at armor 12 when the barding would only be 4 seems to throw away the basic ideas of that animal armor.

As hilarious as it would be to cyber up a behemoth or a juggernaut and put it in heavy milspec battle armor.

Mirikon

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #33 on: (12:32:11/07-24-16) »
Medicineman, with the poncho you'd still run into the same problems due to the fact that any poncho long enough to protect a shifter's vitals while they are in metahuman form would be constantly underfoot when they are in animal form. Especially with armor plates weighing the thing down. And any poncho designed for the animal form wouldn't protect for shit in their human form.

And armor vests cover the front and back of the torso, with little to nothing on the sides, since they use armor plates to help block bullets. Put a vest designed fro a human on a dog, and not only would it fit horribly due to the placement and alignment of limbs/head, but the plates would be protecting their belly and back, not the sides, which are most vulnerable for a dog.

As I said, there are some pretty clear physical challenges involved, which just can't be overcome without nanomaterials or some similar uber-tech.
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Medicineman

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #34 on: (12:44:42/07-24-16) »
Medicineman, with the poncho you'd still run into the same problems due to the fact that any poncho long enough to protect a shifter's vitals while they are in metahuman form would be constantly underfoot when they are in animal form. Especially with armor plates weighing the thing down. And any poncho designed for the animal form wouldn't protect for shit in their human form.

And armor vests cover the front and back of the torso, with little to nothing on the sides, since they use armor plates to help block bullets. Put a vest designed fro a human on a dog, and not only would it fit horribly due to the placement and alignment of limbs/head, but the plates would be protecting their belly and back, not the sides, which are most vulnerable for a dog.

....

Which is totally irrelevant because SR has no Hit Location Per Se (apart from aimed Shots in Run & Gun which is a separate Issue)
So it doesn't matter at all if a Vest protects the side or not ....Not by RAW

If you want to restrict the Armor unneccessarily better not use any at all
better make the Shifter an Adept/mystical Adept with Combat sense and heightened REA and INT so he doesn't get hit at all.
If his Dodgepool ist 30+ it doesn't matter if he wears armor or not

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Blue Rose

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #35 on: (13:53:18/07-24-16) »
Which is totally irrelevant because SR has no Hit Location Per Se (apart from aimed Shots in Run & Gun which is a separate Issue)
So it doesn't matter at all if a Vest protects the side or not ....Not by RAW
It's not relevant to the mechanics, but it is relevant to the world and affects whether the object makes sense as a thing that physically makes sense in the world.

Hobbes

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #36 on: (22:11:25/07-26-16) »
Again, up to the GM, but you're sprouting Wings, a Tail, Armored Scales, and putting on some undefined amount of mass.  If these changes can be accommodated I'm not sure why Man to Wolf or Troll to Bear would be so incredibly different.  YMMV though.
All right, I'll lay it out with a simple example. Take urban explorer gear, which is basically an armored jumpsuit. You really just need some expansion zones to cover the increased mass (including scales) and holes in the back that the wings and tail poke through when you grow them. The arrangement of the head, arms, legs, and so on are the same, you're just making it so that things poke through and expand. But that isn't what's happening when you go from Human to Wolf, for instance. The tail isn't a problem, and changing size to go smaller is only a moderate problem (it is easier to have flaps that expand than to automatically 'take in' flaps to go smaller). The problem is the arrangement of limbs. The positioning of the head and legs is very different on a a wolf than it is on a human.

The same is true for, say, the Lined Coat. Converting this for a Drake is even easier than the Urban Explorer gear. Just have to make sure it  is either big enough to fit the new form, or can expand, and have the holes in the back for the wings. A split back, like you often see on trench coats and dusters to allow ease of movement will allow the tail through just fine. Done and done. But when you try and do that for a quadruped, the coat is going to be dragging the ground in all kinds of places, and you STILL haven't solved the issues caused by the different arrangement of limbs.

And then you have the issues of getting the protection in the right place, as I mentioned before. A human and a Western Drake both walk upright, have two arms, and two legs. The majority of their vitals are in their torso, and that is why most armor concentrates on the front and back of the torso. On a quadruped, the front and back of the torso are largely concealed, unless you're attacking from above or below, and the sides are more exposed. This means most armor for, say, concentrates on the sides of the body, rather than the chest and back. You can't just take a bulletproof vest designed for a human, and cut it down to dog size. Everything is different.

The only way you could solve all these problems is with high tech nano-materials, like with the Smart Blades. But absolutely no one is doing stuff like that right now thanks to the nanopocalypse.

So your best bet would be something like a helmet or ballistic mask that has straps which will allow it to stay on when you change, and then having your team help you into your wolf armor. Or use magic armor, either through spells or being an adept, since those would carry over in your other form.

I've put toddler clothes on my cat no problem.  Large jacket on a wolf, Poncho on a bear, Trenchcoat on a Tiger...  or go at it from the other way Barding to Biped armor.  If you can build armor that can stretch to accommodate a plus sized Winged Lizardman and a "normal" person I really don't know why you can't come up with a Poncho or Jacket that fits People and Wolfs.  Pretty sure I own a Jacket or three that would fit me and a large range of canines. 

Adamo1618

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #37 on: (11:49:19/07-27-16) »
Different limb placement can be achieved by expanding and contracting the right areas. If armor can adjust to Dracoform, it can adjust to being a quadruped.
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Mirikon

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #38 on: (00:18:57/07-30-16) »
Different limb placement can be achieved by expanding and contracting the right areas. If armor can adjust to Dracoform, it can adjust to being a quadruped.
As a theater brat and son of a costumer, I can tell you that expanding is easy. A few snaps, or velcro, or similar fastener, and an extra piece of fabric will allow the garment to expand without much issue. Contracting isn't so easy. What I described would be basically a manual reset kind of thing once you returned to your metahuman form. It would expand automatically with your shift, but then you'd have to spend a couple rounds fastening velcro back in places once you shifted back.

Automatic contraction with fabrics is going to be very problematic. Honestly, it would be easier to build that kind of function into something like milspec armor, which is already almost like an exoskeleton, and has a lot of moving parts. For fabric, unless you're talking about nanomaterials, some kind of rare magic garment that shifts with you, or something like that, then you're not going to be able to auto-contract. You COULD have it so someone could snap/velcro up the slots for you once you changed, and then it would shift back to normal when you turned human, but it would be problematic in combat, to say the least.
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Hobbes

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #39 on: (13:42:51/07-30-16) »
If Expansion is easy and contraction is hard, start with Armor for the smaller form and modify to fit the larger form. 

Or if Expansion and Contraction are simply a matter of how many straps and buttons you need to fiddle with make it automatic for whatever conversion is the "Emergency" mode.  i.e. if you're an Elf / Panthrine and the Panthrine is the combat mode make the armor so that it shifts automatically from Elf to Panthrine for Combat stuff.  Then when you shift back to Elf you've got time (and hands) to fiddle with stuff usually.

And keep in mind spending a tiny bit of time adjusting straps and snaps isn't a big deal.  Shifting isn't typically done "in combat" anyway due to the nature of 5th edition combat.  (Typically over in a single round, takes actions to change forms so you likely only get one action before the fight is over).  Likely a player is in one form or the other depending on what they're doing.  Social stuff and legwork phase, probably in two-leg mode.  Sneaky-fighty time, probably in four-legged mode.  When the rest of the team is pulling out shotguns and putting on Helmets and PPP kits, you're doing your thing too. 

And obviously the "Barding" rules from Howling Shadows gives a Player with time and teamates a viable "battle mode" option as well.


Bull

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #40 on: (20:28:48/07-30-16) »
Here's an answer no ones gonna like :)

I doubt Shapeshifters would want to wear armor in any form.  And especially not in critter form.

Shapers are not humans that can turn into animal form.  They're wild animals that happen to turn into human form.  They operate as much on instinct as they do intellect.  Not to say they're stupid or would act dumb, but they're going to follow their nature.  They don't think like humans do.

It's one of the reasons I don't really like them as PC options and discourage players from using them.  Because for most people, they're just People with a cool extra form.

I mean hell, if it wasn't for the fact that they';re smart enough to know they have to blend in?  Shapeshifters probably wouldn't even wear CLOTHES most of the time.

They will adapt.  But they're not going to like it, and they're going to be fighting their instincts every step of the way.

<shrug>

But, your game, be free.  But yeah.  Read Stryper sometime, if you get the chance.  Not one of the better SR novels, IMO, but a good look at the animalistic and almost alien nature of a shapeshifter compared to normal society.

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #41 on: (23:14:05/07-30-16) »
They're wild animals . . .

They're all wild?

Quote from: Run Faster 103pg.
For example, canine shifters do not have the Uneducated quality because they live among people and learn right alongside them. Buying off this quality would require a similar story, such as a shifter who was a mascot at a college, or a trained ursine, tigrine, or falconine learning while their handlers are not looking.

I've got a shifter in my game, and he does frequently get naked though. I just wanted to discuss the possibility of armor because staying alive is good and stuff.  I figure that would eventually be a question that would pop up. "What's all of that? Why do you wear it? Can I have some?"
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Jack_Spade

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #42 on: (02:13:42/07-31-16) »
@Bull
Shifters used to have Regeneration to compensate for that issue. Without it I'd guess every shifter who has been shot once will very quickly revise their stance, suppress their natural urges and try to get some armor. Learning through pain is very effective.... ::)
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Hobbes

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #43 on: (09:24:20/07-31-16) »
@Bull
Shifters used to have Regeneration to compensate for that issue. Without it I'd guess every shifter who has been shot once will very quickly revise their stance, suppress their natural urges and try to get some armor. Learning through pain is very effective.... ::)

Yeah.  When getting your lungs ripped out was only a minor slow down, Armor didn't matter (okay slight exaggeration...).  5th Edition getting your Lungs ripped out is now really bad, combined with the fact that even regular street clothes have an armor rating. 

People don't like wearing body armor either.  It's heavy, it's hot, it's uncomfortable.  I would imagine Shifters being smart enough to realize that wearing armor when doing something dangerous is a good idea.  Just like wearing clothes to meet the Johnson is also a good idea.

I don't really have a problem with PC shifters in 5th edition because the cost/benefit is so poor it's being done for RP reasons.  I think letting the assorted combat forms have the basic tools to actually live through a firefight is a good idea.  Unless you're saying the Errata team is bringing Regen back for Shifters  8)  ?

Senko

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Re: Shapeshifter Armor??
« Reply #44 on: (09:17:33/08-20-16) »
Yep I agree with that the shifters aren't human sure but they aren't dumb either. Its one thing to get home, dump the clothes, transform into a fox form and stretch out on the couch in comfort snapping up the occasional cockroach that gets too close as you ponder the complexities of the pretty patterns made by the sun on the floor for a few hours. Its something quite different to charge into combat without armour becuase its "human protection rubbish and rubs my fur wrong." For me any shifter who's been in combat (all established runners) is going to be aware that wearing armour no matter how unpleasant is a good survival choice.

As for armour changing forms I'm also inclined to agree that the difference in form and size (for some species) is going to make having armour shift with you is largely non-viable and your better off getting armour made for each form. Amoured clothes, lined coat, etc for human form and proper armour for your animal form. Although I can see some limited adjustment especially if your going smaller to large or have a friend to adjust it for you e.g. pull the clothing round so the plates that were front and back are now on the sides.