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Ranged Combat and Projectile/Rocket Weapons Questions

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Major Doom

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« on: <09-20-10/1114:27> »
First question is concerning Ranged Combat.  I read the Combat chapter over, unless I missed it, there doesn't seem to be any penalty listed if a character is firing into melee combat, where a friendly and an non-friendly are duke it out.  Is this true or did I miss something?

Second question is concerning Projectile Weapons.  Does Step 3. Make Opposed Test for avoiding an attack (SR4 20th Anniversary, page 149), apply to Projectile Weapons, such as grenades and arrows, in addition rockets too?  I would think not since grenades and rockets/missiles have blast effects, but arrows?

Thanks in advance for any clarifications.
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Usda Beph

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« Reply #1 on: <09-20-10/1147:53> »
+1 per friend in the Melee. If I remember the Mod from the cheat sheet right.
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FastJack

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« Reply #2 on: <09-20-10/1219:52> »
Hmm... I'm looking through SR4a and Major Doom's correct. There doesn't appear to be a modifier for the Attacker when shooting into Melee combat. In fact, the only modifier I could find (p. 160) was that the Defender, when in melee combat, receives a -3 dice modifier against ranged attacks.

The +1 per friend in Melee is when you have help in a melee fight: you & three friends gang up on someone, you'll get a +3 dice modifier on your attack rolls.

Regarding the Grenades/Rockets, since they are area-effect attacks then the persons within the area of effect do not get an opposed test to determine if they hit. Instead, since the attacks aren't as accurate as a gun, they scatter and may miss the target completely.

The_Gun_Nut

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« Reply #3 on: <09-20-10/1230:25> »
That's if you are in the melee fighting the guy.  I think he wants to know about possible penalties if someone was a distance away and firing a ranged weapon into a melee.

The defender gets a penalty due to being distracted by melee combat (-3).  However, one could count the melee combat as partial cover, thus granting the defender +2 to defend against the ranged attack (you could say its good cover, +4, if a human sized target is fighting a troll).

Given the speed of combat turns, positioning is more important than simply swinging your fist at someone, as it takes longer to move one's body than to twitch a finger.  It takes even less time if the firer is using a smartlink and has removed the physical trigger.  I'd consider some additional ranged penalties if firing from further than close range (rule of thumb is a -2 to the attack roll).  I think that a canny melee fighter aware of the ranged attacker will do his best to keep the other guy in between himself and the shooter, thus granting more cover.

As it is, no, there is no strict penalty for firing into a melee.  Just some possible cover modifiers.
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anotherJack

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« Reply #4 on: <09-20-10/1301:02> »
Doesn't seem very realistic, but maybe made for game balance, in order to allow melee characters to rush without taking the risk of being shot by their allies.
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The_Gun_Nut

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« Reply #5 on: <09-20-10/1306:45> »
I think it is also partly due to the time constraints of the combat system.  Three seconds is not a lot of time to move around in, which is one of the old arguments against firing into a melee, people moving around each other making it more difficult to hit/more likely to hurt a buddy.  Especially considering the rather impressive speed that sammies or adepts can get (4 initiative passes), the fractions of a second they need to aim mean that a melee combatant is still executing an attack by the time a ranged attacker has finished theirs (from trigger pull to bullet striking the target).

Keep in mind that glitches can still produce unpleasant results (hitting a buddy) and that they are more likely to occur than in previous editions.
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Major Doom

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« Reply #6 on: <09-20-10/1319:25> »
That's if you are in the melee fighting the guy.  I think he wants to know about possible penalties if someone was a distance away and firing a ranged weapon into a melee.

Yes I meant to say that a character is outside of melee combat range, and is shooting at a non-friendly whom is engaged in melee with a friendly.


Hmm... I'm looking through SR4a and Major Doom's correct. There doesn't appear to be a modifier for the Attacker when shooting into Melee combat. In fact, the only modifier I could find (p. 160) was that the Defender, when in melee combat, receives a -3 dice modifier against ranged attacks.

Yeah thanks, because I experienced it recently with a group I'm playing with, and we found it odd that there are no penalties levied on the ranged attacker concerning specifically just with shooting into melee (save for miscellaneous penalties such as distance, visibility, etc.).  This however is a major exploit that can be taken advantage of by a smart group.  You can have a teammate (friendly) go into melee with a non-friendly, and you just use ranged attack on the non-friendly, whom will suffer a -3 from ranged attackers due to being in melee (as per Defender In Melee Combat rule, SR4 20th Anniversary, page 160).  Which leads me to surmise...


The defender gets a penalty due to being distracted by melee combat (-3).  However, one could count the melee combat as partial cover, thus granting the defender +2 to defend against the ranged attack (you could say its good cover, +4, if a human sized target is fighting a troll).

Given the speed of combat turns, positioning is more important than simply swinging your fist at someone, as it takes longer to move one's body than to twitch a finger.  It takes even less time if the firer is using a smartlink and has removed the physical trigger.  I'd consider some additional ranged penalties if firing from further than close range (rule of thumb is a -2 to the attack roll).  I think that a canny melee fighter aware of the ranged attacker will do his best to keep the other guy in between himself and the shooter, thus granting more cover.

As it is, no, there is no strict penalty for firing into a melee.  Just some possible cover modifiers.

...It would be feasible to say instead of on Critical Glitch, but on a normal Glitch, you end up hitting the friendly engaged in melee, instead of the intended non-friendly engaged in melee.  Yes, No?
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Medicineman

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« Reply #7 on: <09-20-10/1323:19> »
First question is concerning Ranged Combat.  I read the Combat chapter over, unless I missed it, there doesn't seem to be any penalty listed if a character is firing into melee combat, where a friendly and an non-friendly are duke it out.  Is this true or did I miss something?

 

If you Fire at somebody who's in Melee with your Friend than (I'd say) He's in partial cover (+2 to Dodge) or you should use Aim Fire(simple Action and -4D Modifier) to not accidently  hit your Friend

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« Last Edit: <09-20-10/1325:47> by Medicineman »
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FastJack

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« Reply #8 on: <09-20-10/1328:10> »
I'd leave injuring your friend to Critical Glitches, since normal glitches shouldn't result in any injury (unless what they were attempting was REALLY dangerous/stupid). A normal glitch would probably be a near miss, allowing the defender to notice he's being shot at and possibly a free action to switch places with the friendly...

Major Doom

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« Reply #9 on: <09-20-10/1337:14> »
I'd leave injuring your friend to Critical Glitches, since normal glitches shouldn't result in any injury (unless what they were attempting was REALLY dangerous/stupid).

But shooting into melee where you have a friendly involved is considered stupid.
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FastJack

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« Reply #10 on: <09-20-10/1339:03> »
Well, yeah. But to have the other PC being punished for YOUR bone-headedness isn't very fair, now is it? ;)

Major Doom

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« Reply #11 on: <09-20-10/1341:26> »
No one said running in shadows is going to be safe and easy either  ;)

Shit happens too.  ;D
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The_Gun_Nut

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« Reply #12 on: <09-20-10/1434:44> »
You could say that shooting the right guy in a melee combat requires a called shot to pick a specific target.  That would treat the melee as a large entity, and offset some of the bonuses granted by the target being distracted.

Now that I'm thinking on it, this seems especially relevant for grappling, but I can see it as a nice house rule.  It makes glitches more likely, and keeps things at a nice pace, since you don't have to tack on some half thought out extra rules.
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Major Doom

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« Reply #13 on: <09-20-10/1435:30> »
Actually IMO, it makes better sense to have damage done both to the targeted non-friendly, and the friendly, on a Glitch for firing into melee.  ;D
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The_Gun_Nut

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« Reply #14 on: <09-20-10/1447:36> »
Like a minimum damage hit?  Base damage of the weapon?
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