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What are Machine Pistols?

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cuidaBeja

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« on: (22:48:29/12-03-19) »
I know a decent amount about guns in the real world, but in the SR6 rules what's the point of the category being separate from SMGs or Light Pistols? The best reason I can think of is concealment ratings, but I can't see where that's specified for MPs.

Michael Chandra

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« Reply #1 on: (03:37:54/12-04-19) »
If we're going to look at previous editions (SR5 specifically), basically a machine pistol is inbetween Pistols and Automatics, and can be fired with Pistols skill in SA mode and Automatics in BF/FA mode. It's also as concealable as a Heavy Pistol, unless you use the folding stock. Range-wise, they had Light Pistol ranges. And unlike an SMG, it can be quick-drawn.

For 6w, it's basically 'BF and higher ammo capacity than most light pistols', and the Concealable holster can only fit pistols/tasers, including machine pistols. Plus the ammo is cheaper than that of SMGs.
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easl

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« Reply #2 on: (09:32:00/12-04-19) »
Seems to be a text hold-over from previous editions with little mechanical effect?

While the Gear section has a different intro for each table, the light, machine, and heavy pistols all have the same "can take X accessories" description. And the specializations under the Firearms skill just says "pistols".

Though since the book also says the specialization list is not exhaustive, the 'machine pistol' descriptor could provide players with a hook if they want to design their own specialization. For example, if a player came to me and said "I want a specialization that covers machine pistols and SMGs," that would sound very reasonable to me.

skalchemist

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« Reply #3 on: (09:51:21/12-04-19) »
Seems to be a text hold-over from previous editions with little mechanical effect?

While the Gear section has a different intro for each table, the light, machine, and heavy pistols all have the same "can take X accessories" description. And the specializations under the Firearms skill just says "pistols".

Though since the book also says the specialization list is not exhaustive, the 'machine pistol' descriptor could provide players with a hook if they want to design their own specialization. For example, if a player came to me and said "I want a specialization that covers machine pistols and SMGs," that would sound very reasonable to me.
As an aside, machine pistols seem to be one of those firearm categories that is a must-have in an action-based RPG, and of very limited utility in the real world.  Like, the main reason you seem them in movies is the cool factor of having a gun in one (or BOTH!) hands that spews out bullets extremely fast, but practically what that means in real life is that you aren't hitting much of anything with any of those bullets.  From Wikipedia...

Quote
Machine pistols are considered a special purpose weapon with limited utility. Due to their small size, machine pistols are difficult for all but the best shooters to control...
...However, he also stated that machine pistols are "...(h)ard to control in full-auto fire", which means that there is nothing that a machine pistol "...can do that other weapons available today can't do more efficiently."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machine_pistol

This is not a complaint, just an (obvious) observation that the reasons for including particular weapons in an RPG may have little to do with game mechanics or realistic simulation, and everything to do with letting players create characters they think look like bad-asses in the theater of the mind.

Noble Drake

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« Reply #4 on: (10:25:40/12-04-19) »
For example, if a player came to me and said "I want a specialization that covers machine pistols and SMGs," that would sound very reasonable to me.
That would be called "automatics" and it also covers assault rifles.

It's not entirely clear from just reading the SR6 book, since the rules text frequently fails to mention details that people would know if they're familiar with SR4 or SR5 - so the text just includes the putting all the firearms skills into one skill, not anything that covers which weapon types each of the listed specializations (named the same things as the SR5 skills) cover.

easl

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« Reply #5 on: (12:49:26/12-04-19) »
This is not a complaint, just an (obvious) observation that the reasons for including particular weapons in an RPG may have little to do with game mechanics or realistic simulation, and everything to do with letting players create characters they think look like bad-asses in the theater of the mind.

I would agree. If RPGs simulate anything, I'd say they lean more towards simulating action movies (or adventure, or fantasy, or sci-fi, etc..) than RL. Art imitating art. :)

Xenon

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« Reply #6 on: (14:54:58/12-04-19) »
I know a decent amount about guns in the real world, but in the SR6 rules what's the point of the category being separate from SMGs or Light Pistols? The best reason I can think of is concealment ratings, but I can't see where that's specified for MPs.
Biggest reason why you use a machine pistol is because of style.


Reasons why you use a light pistol (instead of a machine pistol) is mostly because light pistols (but not machine pistols) fit in a hidden arm slide (drawing a weapon from a hidden arm slide only cost a minor action and if wireless you even get it back - and you also get a free edge when drawing your weapon like this) and light pistols also fit into a smuggling compartment.

Reasons why you use a machine pistol (instead of a light pistol) is because it have access to narrow burst and wide burst (wide burst let you attack two targets and it also let you take the anticipation edge action) and come with much bigger magazines.


Reason why you want to use a SMG instead of a machine pistol is because they are better (they deal more damage, have higher attack ratings and can fit more attachments).

Reasons why you use a machine pistol (instead of a SMG) is because it is more easy to conceal (it fit in a concealable holster which will increase the concealable threshold by 1 or even 2 if wireless while SMGs need to be tucked away which mean they only have a total concealable threshold of 2) and because they are cheap (machine pistols and machine pistol ammo also only cost roughly half as much as SMGs which might matter if you are awakened or emerged are on a strict budget with priority E resources).

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #7 on: (16:36:42/12-04-19) »
Yeah, +1 @ the notion that the primary advantage of a machine pistol vs a SMG is concealability.

Note that in 6we, there is no "palming check". You cannot use a skill to increase the concealability of a weapon, so its concealability threshold is that much more important.  Yeah you can pack a SMG with more power and better game stats, but the 2 hits required for a perception test to notice your suspicious bulge is not just 1 less than 3 for a light/machine pistol, the 6 dice that's probably necessary to get 2 hits is a very plausible dice pool for generic guards/pedestrians to have.  3 threshold should require a perception pool in the neighborhood of 9 dice, which is going to be far less frequently encountered.
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

Xenon

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« Reply #8 on: (17:48:51/12-04-19) »
SMG don't fit in concealable holster so its threshold stays at 2.
Pistol (even machine pistol) fit in concealable holster which give them a total threshold of 5(!)

cuidaBeja

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« Reply #9 on: (18:57:47/12-04-19) »
Really the reason I asked wasn't about critiquing aesthetics or anything, I really just didn't see why there was a category of only three guns that was separate from light pistols when one light pistol already has a lot of the capabilities of the guns in the category.

The only answer I've seen that actually clarifies their separation from the light pistols category is the sliding arm mount. It's a classic case of core rulebooks being allergic to giving information in more than one place in a 400 page book.