Shadowrun Play > Rules and such

Companion Rule: Armor Lessens Physical Damage


Played with this rule for the first time yesterday, and everyone in the group enjoyed it.  It was good to see armor doing something tangible, without it taking over the whole dynamic of combat.  It affected things more than I expected due to the amount of times that players took damage.  We had two combats yesterday.  One was fairly long, because the combat specialist spent it Dazed, and not gaining and spending Edge is HUGE in combat.  Players took 1-5 damage after soak, so reduction in physical damage was anywhere from 20% to 100%, with the median probably being 2 damage (50% reduction).  Everyone had DR between 8 and 16; everyone was reducing by 1, no one by 2.

Time will tell if even this is too much effect, but so far so good.  Wanted to discuss the rule a bit though.

Caveats were included for AV weapons when the More Lethal AV rule is in effect, but not when the Improved APDS rule is used - at least it wasn't explicitly stated like the AV rule was.  Assuming, the intention was for armor to be half as effective (rounded down) when both of these are used?

NPCs generally have one CM, so technically this rule does nothing for them.  I plan on applying it as a flat reduction for NPCs, unless other ideas from the community come up.  My players enjoy a bit tougher combat.  This will make the Blast damage reduction extremely effective though, so if that becomes a problem I'll probably change Blast to 1 per 8 for NPCs.

The rule says to convert the physical damage to stun after the soak roll.  Why was it important to do this after the soak instead of before?

Even though the rule is called "Armor Lessens Physical Damage", we are treating it as "DR lessens physical damage".. in other words, Cover, SUT moves, etc all contribute to improving this effect.

One more thing - when the CRB first came out, I noticed that there were a few ways to get crazy high DR.  It didn't matter much then because the most it could do is give Edge as long as it was +4 over the AR.  Now that DR has a larger effect, it's worth revisiting those. One is the adept power Mystic Armor.  I'm not aware of any limitation on  how high Adept powers can go in SR6 (I think previous editions stated the max level you could get on anything was equal to your Magic attribute), as long as it doesn't run afoul of the +4 augmented limit.  Armor isn't one of the things subject to that rule.  For 1 PP, you can add +4 to your DR.  If we take that to the extreme, a character could start with +24 DR at which point their skin is so tough, you have to wonder if they can even get surgery! :)  With regular gear, they'll be converting 4 points of physical damage to stun.  Almost impossible to one-shot kill a character like that.  Even in a gun-to-head situation I'd be second guessing it.
Characters with extensive cyber replacements can get similar extremely high totals when kitted out with armor enhancements.  I'm not going to do the math right now, but I'm sure the possibilities are even more extreme.  These are worth noting when considering the rule.

Ok one more thing - Vehicles.  Obviously vehicles are intended to benefit from this rule since the AV weapon exception is included, but what are you supposed to do with the converted stun damage on a vehicle?  Didn't we establish already that vehicles are not immune to stun damage, like when angry husbands take a baseball bat to smash the car of the guy cheating with his wife?  This must have been solved in 5e already since they had a similar rule, so what is the solution?  Negate the stun?

Stainless Steel Devil Rat:
yeah, the effect of shifting physical damage to stun is in effect pointless on entities that have a single, combined condition monitor.  However it's certainly a big deal to PCs, and "named" NPCs that use separate CMs.

When it comes to vehicles, don't forget they ignore stun damage that is equal to or lower than their body (and is not electrical elemental damage).  When only 1 or 2 boxes is being transmogrified into stun damage, that stun damage will in most cases be ignored.


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