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91
Fantasy Craft / Re: Master of Magic
« Last post by SilvercatMoonpaw on February 14, 2017, 04:35:12 AM »
There's probably some old adage about no idea being truly original.

I'd bet money someone came up with the idea before the Crafty Designers.  If WotC needs to be called, so would they.
92
Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Gatac on February 13, 2017, 11:45:25 PM »
Gonna get to the replies in detail after this, but just so it isn't lost in the mass, how about this, pretty much made up as I went along:

Give each weapon a 1-100 rating of Controllability; higher is better.

When burst-firing, the first shot is rolled as normal. For the second shot, take the result of the first roll and multiply by (10000 / Soldier's Strength * Weapon's Controllability) and compare it to the difficulty of the shot; if it's still lower or the same, the second round hits, too. And then you keep going like that for subsequent bullets in the burst.

Quick example: Let's say you have a weapon with a Controllability of 80 that you're firing in 3-round burst mode. Joe Average has a Strength of 50, Jack Brawny has a Strength of 90. Both have rolled a 20 on their attack roll versus a target of 50, so the first shot hits either way.

Joe Average isn't that strong, so the weapon jumps a bit in his hands. Second round has an effective result of 20 * (10000 / 50 * 80) = 50. That's still a hit, but it has no margin of success. (Remember also that margin of success translates to more damage, so burst-fire shots pretty much always fall off in terms of additional damage.) His third round is at 50 * (1000/50 * 80) = 125. Solid miss.

Jack Brawny is very beefy, so much so that holding the weapon steady isn't that much of a problem; it's more the weapon's inherent limits of mechanical accuracy that throw his subsequent shots off. His second round has an effective result of 20 * (10000/ 90 * 80) = 28. Hit! Third round is 28 * (10000/90 * 80) = 39. Still a hit!  Jack sinks all three shots into the target, who will probably be having a bad day.

Also note that, the better your initial hit, the less your result rises over multiple rounds. Obviously, if Joe Average rolls a 1 on his attack, then he's pretty much home free. If Jack Brawny only hit with a 45, his second round would go to 62 and miss. So this kinda math is liable to swing pretty wildly at either extreme (barely-there successes and very low rolls), but I'm not sure if it's a problem to just have "critical bursts" or whatever; enjoy your moment of glory, Joe Average!

For a less wildy variable result, you could just add (10000 - Soldier's Strength * Weapon's Controllability) / 100 for every subsequent round. The problem then becomes that Joe Average packs 60 onto every result, i.e. he's very unlikely to ever get even a second round on target. You could further scale this, of course.

And just to make sure Controllability is not ignored for weapons that don't go braaaap: At the start of a turn, roll against (Soldier's Strength * Weapon's Controllability) / 100. With success, you get a Shift. The game needs some sort of reliable "Shift generator" anyway; this runs on the premise that if you need to spend less time worrying about where your weapon wants to jump, you have more time for other things. Blatantly game-y, but hey.

---

Yeah, I get the intention. I think it's a good idea, it's like applying Call of Cthulu insanity rules to combat and I think that should be a real thing.

My contention is that, in all my not real at all video gaming combat experience that does track at least some attested to combat experiences, beyond first encounters you don't get the shakes from preparing a shot. That does happen, but it goes away.

First you hesitate, then you calculate, then you hate your enemies for trying to harm you, and then you stop caring pretty much altogether and regard setbacks as a kind of personal insult ("how DARE YOU try to out-snipe me!") and at the far end of that track is just being numb where victory is just a precursor to the next battle and only nearly dying makes you feel anything at all.*

Recoil is just a factor you compensate for. Only fire your MMG from a braced position. Only fire your AM rifle from the prone with the bipod. Pick your shots with your temperamental marksman's gun. You want to run and gun? Bring an SMG and a selection of grenades.

*upon reflection THIS means something. I think if you really want to get into battle stresses you need to consider stages of the progression of being jaded.

The problem with that, of course is, that you're gonna be in situations where you can't go by the book. Are you gonna tell the player "Your character will not fire from this position because it is tactically stupid", or are you gonna let them do it and slap them with penalties?

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Thinking about it I think part of my negative reaction to your stress model was using John Done. That this character especially picks up 25 points of stress from a single exchange is really wretched. This dude is The Ultimate's Rambo. He's hard as submarine hull. Maybe some example of the stress reducing itself or being negated would help.

I really should just not have brought the crew into this at all; that set mental images right off the bat that are actively dissonant with the grade of simplification I was going for. Insofar as John Done was just "imagine a dude with pretty good marksmanship and that one special ability", it was still stupid to use that name.

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Mortality relates to your 3 gauges example. A player who is stressed out/lost their cool, readily located by the enemy, and in a crappy position should get real interested in a round or two of defensive play. I was thinking of that with my Mobile Warfare chain and the idea that when the enemy is most poorly prepared to react is when it's most tactically viable to burst out and try to run them over. Bayonet charges are really not a thing of course, so maybe the answer is basically never but eh we'll see.

No disagreements here. Bayonet charges may be obsolete in the sense that nowadays you can rarely secure the circumstances where they would be useful (i.e. enemy almost completely unable to fire at the charge), but I reckon they'd still be useful if only as a psychological thing. Heck, the Brits in the 'stan fixed bayonets and did a horse cavalry charge at least once. Use what you got. "Pointy end goes into the other guy" still works insofar as you can get close enough to make it work. Plus it's just plain fun gameplay, as XCOM 2 shows.

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And I think we're just at a deadlock about weapon controlability and it's consequences. I get what you're saying about AR and BR selection, but I just don't agree that it should translate into shooting stress. Yes, players always gravitate towards larger kill dice just like they always gravitate towards larger magazines and tacticool accessories. The way to discourage that is with the practical issues of supply and reliability.

Let me give you a SC2.0 example. My agent Leopard carried a S&W 500. I got a measure of crap for that (some from agents on these forums who're all dead now ha ha) and it was for reasons that your argument encapsulates. The 500 has a recoil of 25, IIRC. Leo hard a 14 strength. Holy cow muzzle flip, yes.

But emphasizing that disparity misses the point.

Leopard nearly died in The Beast of Dunveegan with The Beast gnawing one leg and a frogman stabbing at the other while she grappled the defector who had (of all the goddamn things) a Beretta Leopard hold out pistol shoved into her ribs.

Leopard's take away was that a) holy shit always wear an armored vest and b) "I need a harder hitting weapon and fuck anyone's opinion about how silly it looks. I won't bet my life on the reliability of burst mechanisms and I also need as much range as I can get because my weapon has to be versatile as 90% of the time I won't have selection of terms of engagement."

Boom, no pun etc, Hunting Revolver.

Our GC made sure her .500 suffered catastrophic breakages every time a 1 came up on the d20 and it ran out of ammo at least a few times and I learned to invest in Clockwork Action and extra loads of magnum rounds. I only carried that gun because no matter what else I had to find a way to max out my firepower while it remained nominally low profile.

(And I got to dance on a few graves, ho ho. That gun carried me through Nest and Lockdown and every other brutal bullet ballet LSpy could serve up.)

Also not disagreeing with this. The answer to "gimmick weapons" like that shouldn't be "THAT IS SILLY YOU DO NOT PLAY WITH THAT AT MY TABLE", but "Uh, sure, but you ought to be aware that when you take all the traits into account, it's probably not all that great a choice" - assuming of course that the system models enough of the quirks of each guns that there is a drawback to just taking the biggest baddest revolver you can get your mitts on. And if you're going for damage, well, you're going for damage, not for mag size or accessories or...

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A weapon's concealment factor is not a problem one of our considered soldiers is likely to have, but the malfunctions and the ammo shortages? Yeah, that'll be a thing. So will smaller magazines as most of the 7.62 guns are 20 not 30. Smaller mags means more conservative shooting and hence more action conservation.

...well, to be fair, the "bulk" factor I briefly alluded to previously is included with an eye toward the future, so that a hypothetical "Black Ops" expansion of the rules can key off it for concealability. And it's one way to keep the lid on people who say "well then I use a bigger mag! They make those, you know!". This is one of the pains of gamifying this stuff: getting the most out of unified mechanics rather than having a special rule for everything.

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This is also where using Encumbrance as a balancing factor comes in. Strength is recoil and endurance and part of how much of your loadout is ammo? Better ask Valentina to hump some .50, because Mr. Not Real Buff the Sniper already has his limit filled by that monster 25 kilo sniper rifle (this also happened in LSpy, hi shadow! ;D).

That's why there's an ability to give supply to a buddy. :)

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And let's not lose sight of that the world's most common, sought after, and manufactured weapon is the AKM. The 30rnd mag 7.62 rifle. With the shorter accurate range. And the greater recoil. NATO countries can get as righteous as they want about how important it is for a weapon to be controllable and light and all the rest, but the rest of the world wants a gun that carries lots of bullets, kills what it hits, and always works.

See also the SAW variants with those silly looking gigantic banana magazines that are none the less more reliable and easier to operate than the superior NATO choices.

Eh, I think that's a bit oversimplified. Let us also not forget that a lot of AKM-and-copies-thereof popularity is from the fact that it was available. Supply chain conquers (almost) all - on this I think we agree. And AKs are not quite as indestructible as often claimed - but they're also not as aggressively inaccurate as many people scorn them for. Really, in a lot of ways Soviet weapons just aggressively went for "middle of the road, good enough" and then spread as far as possible through exports and copies. And plenty of really good weapons, like the Valmet or the Galil, basically started as someone going "But what if we put more effort into an AK?".

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I get what you're saying about arbitrariness of gamification, but that's always going to be a thing. There will be a point where 1 point of stress will be the difference between a hit and a miss. You know this. This is a consequence of their being rules. I say "pick your battles."

I'd say it's still a difference between that 1% being on a roll or being a lockout. You can blame the die for the roll that just barely didn't succeed, after all, while the lockout is explicitly your GM going "You must be this cool to ride, no exceptions". But I take your meaning. In the end it's all arbitrary.

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Anyway, I appreciate that you're putting a lot of thought and time into this. I am interested and I have probably contributed more in this thread than I have in the last fews months if the topic is anything except politics. So I'm invested as well. Faster, sleeker, XCommier (I am an XCommunist!?) combat sounds like all the fun for having all the mechanics and 0% of Central constantly butting in to remind me to tie my fucking boots! >:(

Ahem. Party on. I'll be here.

And I thought up a Cool-based feat chain for keeping action options while out of control at various degrees of penalties. I'm just kinda worn out on this post. Gotta take a break for a while.

The worst thing you can do to something is to not care about it. I'm definitely getting loud and clear that you care about this being right. Believe me, no begrudging that from my side. :)

Perhaps recoil stress is a temporary thing? In other words, it's cumulative for the round in which you use it then it goes away after your shooting is done?

That is in fact pretty much what Stress regeneration would effectively do, but see above for an idea that does not rely on Stress.

EDIT: Fixed the Controllability math, had a formula where it actually made more sense for weaker soldiers to be packing less controllable weapons.
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Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Equinox on February 13, 2017, 07:02:57 PM »
Perhaps recoil stress is a temporary thing? In other words, it's cumulative for the round in which you use it then it goes away after your shooting is done?
94
Off-Topic / Re: Cool Non-Video Links (Quizzes, Tests, Illusions, Etc..)
« Last post by Mister Andersen on February 13, 2017, 05:46:37 PM »
Silkpunk is now a glorious looking thing
95
Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Valentina on February 13, 2017, 04:50:27 PM »
Hm. Well, I'm down with rewarding success, but should it punish failure further?

And that said, if the "recoil stress" thing is really so far off-track, I am gestating alternative ideas to handle burst inaccuracies.

Yeah, I get the intention. I think it's a good idea, it's like applying Call of Cthulu insanity rules to combat and I think that should be a real thing.

My contention is that, in all my not real at all video gaming combat experience that does track at least some attested to combat experiences, beyond first encounters you don't get the shakes from preparing a shot. That does happen, but it goes away.

First you hesitate, then you calculate, then you hate your enemies for trying to harm you, and then you stop caring pretty much altogether and regard setbacks as a kind of personal insult ("how DARE YOU try to out-snipe me!") and at the far end of that track is just being numb where victory is just a precursor to the next battle and only nearly dying makes you feel anything at all.*

Recoil is just a factor you compensate for. Only fire your MMG from a braced position. Only fire your AM rifle from the prone with the bipod. Pick your shots with your temperamental marksman's gun. You want to run and gun? Bring an SMG and a selection of grenades.

*upon reflection THIS means something. I think if you really want to get into battle stresses you need to consider stages of the progression of being jaded.

Thinking about it I think part of my negative reaction to your stress model was using John Done. That this character especially picks up 25 points of stress from a single exchange is really wretched. This dude is The Ultimate's Rambo. He's hard as submarine hull. Maybe some example of the stress reducing itself or being negated would help.

Mortality relates to your 3 gauges example. A player who is stressed out/lost their cool, readily located by the enemy, and in a crappy position should get real interested in a round or two of defensive play. I was thinking of that with my Mobile Warfare chain and the idea that when the enemy is most poorly prepared to react is when it's most tactically viable to burst out and try to run them over. Bayonet charges are really not a thing of course, so maybe the answer is basically never but eh we'll see.

And I think we're just at a deadlock about weapon controlability and it's consequences. I get what you're saying about AR and BR selection, but I just don't agree that it should translate into shooting stress. Yes, players always gravitate towards larger kill dice just like they always gravitate towards larger magazines and tacticool accessories. The way to discourage that is with the practical issues of supply and reliability.

Let me give you a SC2.0 example. My agent Leopard carried a S&W 500. I got a measure of crap for that (some from agents on these forums who're all dead now ha ha) and it was for reasons that your argument encapsulates. The 500 has a recoil of 25, IIRC. Leo hard a 14 strength. Holy cow muzzle flip, yes.

But emphasizing that disparity misses the point.

Leopard nearly died in The Beast of Dunveegan with The Beast gnawing one leg and a frogman stabbing at the other while she grappled the defector who had (of all the goddamn things) a Beretta Leopard hold out pistol shoved into her ribs.

Leopard's take away was that a) holy shit always wear an armored vest and b) "I need a harder hitting weapon and fuck anyone's opinion about how silly it looks. I won't bet my life on the reliability of burst mechanisms and I also need as much range as I can get because my weapon has to be versatile as 90% of the time I won't have selection of terms of engagement."

Boom, no pun etc, Hunting Revolver.

Our GC made sure her .500 suffered catastrophic breakages every time a 1 came up on the d20 and it ran out of ammo at least a few times and I learned to invest in Clockwork Action and extra loads of magnum rounds. I only carried that gun because no matter what else I had to find a way to max out my firepower while it remained nominally low profile.

(And I got to dance on a few graves, ho ho. That gun carried me through Nest and Lockdown and every other brutal bullet ballet LSpy could serve up.)

A weapon's concealment factor is not a problem one of our considered soldiers is likely to have, but the malfunctions and the ammo shortages? Yeah, that'll be a thing. So will smaller magazines as most of the 7.62 guns are 20 not 30. Smaller mags means more conservative shooting and hence more action conservation.

This is also where using Encumbrance as a balancing factor comes in. Strength is recoil and endurance and part of how much of your loadout is ammo? Better ask Valentina to hump some .50, because Mr. Not Real Buff the Sniper already has his limit filled by that monster 25 kilo sniper rifle (this also happened in LSpy, hi shadow! ;D).

And let's not lose sight of that the world's most common, sought after, and manufactured weapon is the AKM. The 30rnd mag 7.62 rifle. With the shorter accurate range. And the greater recoil. NATO countries can get as righteous as they want about how important it is for a weapon to be controllable and light and all the rest, but the rest of the world wants a gun that carries lots of bullets, kills what it hits, and always works.

See also the SAW variants with those silly looking gigantic banana magazines that are none the less more reliable and easier to operate than the superior NATO choices.

I get what you're saying about arbitrariness of gamification, but that's always going to be a thing. There will be a point where 1 point of stress will be the difference between a hit and a miss. You know this. This is a consequence of their being rules. I say "pick your battles."

Anyway, I appreciate that you're putting a lot of thought and time into this. I am interested and I have probably contributed more in this thread than I have in the last fews months if the topic is anything except politics. So I'm invested as well. Faster, sleeker, XCommier (I am an XCommunist!?) combat sounds like all the fun for having all the mechanics and 0% of Central constantly butting in to remind me to tie my fucking boots! >:(

Ahem. Party on. I'll be here.

And I thought up a Cool-based feat chain for keeping action options while out of control at various degrees of penalties. I'm just kinda worn out on this post. Gotta take a break for a while.
96
Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Valentina on February 13, 2017, 03:47:39 PM »
  While getting beaten by your gun is a real thing, and gun selection should generally match beast to weilder (kind of the heart of SC recoil mechanic - "use a gun your size, yo?") often the worst beatings come from shooting badly. A.k.a. the poorly seated shotgun to the shoulder.

  It seems like with stress being a fluid thing, making kicking ass being a cause for celebration while a miss could be disheartening OR represent that poorly seated shotgun moment, recoil-based stress damage on a miss might achieve all goals more fluidly. "Yes, my shoulder is sore, but I GOT THE SUNUVABITCH!! Yoo hoo!" vs. "Bang, ow, and shit he's still coming..."

This.

As someone who's put in literally thousands of hours into pvp multiplayers in FPS and MOBAS and every other god damn thing making a critical shot is a real morale boost and morale is how those battles get won. Which sounds like what Gatac's trying to do.

Hence my disagreement that taking a shot is stressful, but missing isn't. The former can be true but the latter is far, far more frequent a reaction to it's triggering event. The bigger the gun, the more critical the hit and the greater the miss stress.

My experience is that people with poor morale they tend to either undercommit or that they spend too much time aiming. A warrior on a kill high will tend to drive forward following the rush and will attack fluidly.
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Fantasy Craft / Master of Magic
« Last post by Kadrok on February 13, 2017, 03:26:59 PM »
So the other game is releasing new options for Warlock and Wizard, and one of the new options for Wizard gives an ability called "Master of Magic" which lets you cast any spell in the game, even if you don't know it... you know, kind of like the level 14 Mage ability in Fantasy Craft that is called "Master of Magic" and does the same thing. I mean, I guess it's a little different because the other game separates spell lists, but still...

...

Should someone call them out on this?

http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/unearthed-arcana/warlock-and-wizard
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Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Gatac on February 13, 2017, 10:44:55 AM »
Hm. Well, I'm down with rewarding success, but should it punish failure further?

And that said, if the "recoil stress" thing is really so far off-track, I am gestating alternative ideas to handle burst inaccuracies.
99
Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Morgenstern on February 13, 2017, 10:33:41 AM »
  While getting beaten by your gun is a real thing, and gun selection should generally match beast to weilder (kind of the heart of SC recoil mechanic - "use a gun your size, yo?") often the worst beatings come from shooting badly. A.k.a. the poorly seated shotgun to the shoulder.

  It seems like with stress being a fluid thing, making kicking ass being a cause for celebration while a miss could be disheartening OR represent that poorly seated shotgun moment, recoil-based stress damage on a miss might achieve all goals more fluidly. "Yes, my shoulder is sore, but I GOT THE SUNUVABITCH!! Yoo hoo!" vs. "Bang, ow, and shit he's still coming..."
100
Off-Topic / Re: [Theorycrafting] Let's talk squad tactics game
« Last post by Gatac on February 13, 2017, 07:29:37 AM »
Hot take: firing causes stress but missing doesn't?

My counter-intuitive is maximum.

Well, let me flip this: why should missing the target cause Stress? I've set chisel to stone but haven't raised the hammer yet; there is yet time to change this.

Remember that "Stress", as I've called it, is stuff that impedes your performance; most directly, it worsens your attack rolls. I think I've explained my rationale for why recoil fouls subsequent shots, but I'm not sure I see the rationale for why simply missing a target ought to make the next shot worse; in fact, I'm pretty sure I've seen games where easier difficulties apply a hidden "better luck next time" bonus that actually increases your chances to hit the more often you miss, so I'm not sure I want to bake the opposite into the system.

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But I kind of get it. I think you want stress to function as an action currency.

I don't think is a bad idea, but you might want a different concept. Maybe Focus or Awareness or the fairly standard Energy. Some reason why kill'em all and move on isn't the constant and default tactic. I mention this because as so far illustrated the idea of stress naturally bleeding off seems unlikely.

Maybe instead go with Cool which you lose as you fight but you can regain by breaks in the action. Have abilities gated by how much Cool you have going. Hard to snipe when you're frenzied/freaked the fuck out, etc.


What's in a name? Maybe "stress" just summons the wrong associations.

What's the conceptual difficulty in seeing "Stress" dissipate over time? Is it the name? Is it that I've so far failed to present a concise formula for it? I can see either being problematic.

I'm not super-into using the Stress gauge to "gate" abilities because as designed, Stress just changes too quickly to be a reliable mechanism, and also hard cutoffs in granular measurements are always gonna look arbitrary as heck. I don't want the player going "I can snipe at 61 Cool but can't at 59? This is bullshit." Stress as designed already provides the gradual penalty that communicates to the player "Maybe this is not the guy who you want to snipe right now".

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I get the firing stress rifle example thinger you've given, but honestly? That's full-throttle grognard. Let it go. If you want gear restrictions make it a supply chain deal -"yes, we only give out controllable 5.56 and 7.62 guns here. Yes, you can install a vertical grip. No, you can't hip-fire the .50." PC's are limited by supply and access to cleaning kits and replacement parts and all the rest (maybe some Geneva Convention details) is why it's not Pro to carry a .50MRIAEDE instead of an M9. The Crafty Lads have a good clean outline with "be X strong or take Y penalty to-hit."

And weapon degradation is a fantastic little corner to share. The more exotic your weapon, the faster it'll get to "dubiously useful" because somebody just had to carry a gun that made the armorer roll her eyes.

Strength affects recoil, too. I see I need to get my shit together and write up how I intend that to work overall as my next topic, because it seems to need urgent clarification. As for supply line issues and exotics, it's on my list, as is weapon degradation - I think I implied that with an ability already.

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IMO also a symptom of going Full Grognard is the implication that characters aren't really prepared for the recoil stress of firing a weapon. That's just....wut. I get that a SCAR has an untamed feel to it, but my brain just doesn't the idea of that being something that a skilled operator doesn't factor in just by being a skilled operator. Like it's an additional layer to the concept of non-proficiency. Which follows with the question of how long a non-familiarity modifier should last.

You need something to keep mortality on the player's mind. Since you're going something like semi-simulationist you need an element that suggests the usual "slay the standing, vault the fallen, trample the dead" approach isn't necessarily wrong, because I kinda think that's a real world impulse too, but that it's not always a good idea.

It's not about lack of familiarity or preparedness. This is not a system to simulate a "I took my girlfriend to the range for the first time and gave her my .500 S&W revolver for shits and giggles" YouTube video; we are dealing with professionals here. It's simply a fact that a light weapon with a powerful caliber is gonna kick more than a heavier weapon with a less powerful caliber. Awareness of that fact doesn't change it; familiarity may let you better manage it, but there's just not gonna be a point where it disappears. A recoil-agnostic system will overrate big caliber guns, period. The whole reason the real world went 5.56mm NATO and 7.62x39mm after the 50s flirtation with automatic "battle rifles" is that people realized the advantages of light weapons capable of reasonably accurate automatic fire over bigger, heavier rifles with more range and power that are effectively for suppressive fire only outside of semi-auto. It's a tradeoff either way.

And I'm not sure what you're getting at with the "mortality" bit. Can you expand on that?

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With JA2 and XCom hovering nearby quite how combat can end with prisoners could use some illustrations. What little I know about US covert ops in Afghanistan and Pakistan suggests exactly how many POW's are produced can vary wildly based on many surprisingly..."fluid" factors that seem to involve how much patience a given soldier has. So rules for PC psychology require more depth. Does taking prisoners risk/reward with intel, Supply, and somehow keeping a minimal "Humanity" value or should double-tapping them and leaving them for the fauna have a place?

I have a few ideas in mind for this, but my gamist view is this: insofar as securing prisoners is in itself a riskier proposition than just hanging back and shooting everyone, there ought to be a fairly substantial carrot for it, whether it's concrete material gains, intel, better PR or even converts. By which I don't mean to imply we're gonna be doing the Diamond Dogs thing and recruiting our fighting force in the field like Big Boss does, but insofar as you may be fighting a mercenary group, you may then be able to convince some of the captives to earn their pay from you as a stay-behind security force guarding sectors you've cleared, which my twisted ethical subroutine holds as a somewhat more palatable alternative to recruiting plucky local villagers as militia.

I'll grant that "So how do we treat the player if he has alternatives to killing and still kills?" is a thorny question usually neatly avoided by taking away those alternatives to killing. My hot take on it is this: I'm not setting out to build War Crimes Simulator X, but if we're gonna have this kind of choice we need to respect that the player is gonna choose Plan E for execute. The game as a whole shouldn't care; the soldier ordered to do so and some of the NPCs you will be interacting with very well may. There is no "humanity" score, but there is that "Ordered his men to fire on surrendered enemy troops" tag on your dossier that I imagine would make you only marginally more popular than the "Slaver" tattoo in Fallout 2 did. And all that said, insofar as enemies who are Down are very limited in ways to hurt you, and enemies who have surrendered will not harm you at all, I hope that reflects a certain amount of "Why should I bother to shoot them?". Sure, it might be fun to torture pixels for shits and giggles, but don't be surprised if it hurts your progress through the game. It's certainly not the end of all wisdom and may also not be completely fair in some edge cases that I'm sure can be constructed, but I think it fits with the kinda consequentialist ethics the reputation system runs on.

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I get the point about the real world efficiency of aimed single shots, but lotsa Police/SWAT/military guns also come with a 3-shot setting which suggests to me that if you're going to squeeze off 1 careful shot Uncle Sam would like it if you tried to do that with 3 bullets instead of one.

Also because you're less likely to spasm out the entire magazine.

Automatic fire absolutely has its uses for suppression and at short ranges. The chance to put three bullets on target is an immense potential damage boost. This is where the cited burst-fire mode on a SCAR-H CQC is actually useful, the whole FISH and CHIPS parts of operations where you're going room to room, house to house and need to be sure that whoever jumps in front of you gets dead if you pull the trigger. It just doesn't replace machine guns for sustained volume of fire, as once so naively hoped.

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So I'm definitely interested but I think wanting all these stress modifiers and bent corners and details really muddies up what I think is supposed to be a efficient, streamlined system. The emphasis on suppression is understandable, but I think it misses the point of applying suppression and that's that you either can't hit your target directly or that you can't find the target. I'm sure one of the actual soldiers could clarify this for me but how much actual in-the-shit shooting is just hammering rounds out kinda in the direction of the enemy instead of either keeping your head down or watching for the chance to directly drill someone?

Last I'd heard blindly pointing a weapon over cover and fanning out the magazine was a gigantic no-no.

Maybe suppression shouldn't necessarily be a direct action and should be a side-effect of an actual attack? IE "John Done missed, but he missed by 5 or less so he still get a Suppression effect on his target." Multi-target or area suppression could still be a thing, but be more a tactical choice (I have 3 shooters for 5 enemies, so shooter A is going to suppress tangos 1-2-3 while B looks to kill any heroes while C scampers around the flank) instead of it just being "I'm either shooting to kill or suppressing but not both." The point is that any incoming bullet is a potential threat, right?

I realize the crunch factor on this may be revealing itself to be substantial, but it sounds worse than it is written out rather than behind a glossy interface with a tireless bookkeeper handling all the boring parts. I can't speak to actual combat shooting and the suppressive effects thereof so I'll leave that question to the pros.

The problem with putting your gun around a corner and blind-firing as I see it is more one of safety and avoiding collateral damage: if you're not looking, you don't have a damn clue what you're firing at and what's behind it. It's also obviously less effective than more focused suppressive fire on a specific enemy position. That said, if anyone stepped up to me and told me that it therefore doesn't happen, I would raise a mighty big eyebrow. It may be against doctrine, it might get you in big trouble after the fact and it might not actually even help your tactical situation all that much, but it's still technically an option. But it's not really what I'm talking about.

If you'll return to the example for a moment, you'll see that the missed shots do cause Stress in the target. That is a natural suppression side-effect of an attack and very much intended to work along the lines of what you said. What's missing is how it affects other nearby enemies and the mechanics for dedicated suppressive fire; that's definitely coming, but I'm still working out the precise rules. I suspect once I've worked out dedicated suppressive fire it'll also slot into the side effect of attacks on people near the actual target.

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D20 modern didn't do much right but IIRC how it handled suppression was that movement in the targeted area demanded a reflex save or you caught a round and that might be some kind of a useful model for this project. Spend 5 rounds per target being suppressed and anyone who breaks cover takes an attack at -10% per target (3 targets, -30% frex) to hit or the like.

(WW1 trench assaults also came to mind. Kind of what I was thinking of with Pounce as the modern version is taking a doorway for when you have to rely on shock of assault and just pouring into the area.)

This is one of the aforementioned difficulties in suppressive fire that I'm working on. Part of the intent in limiting Stunned soldiers to Shifts only is precisely so they don't do that "running through suppressive fire" thing to begin with. XCOM handles Suppression by giving you an Overwatch shot on the target if it moves, and I think that's an okay abstraction - will be when I get to working all the kinks out of Overwatch. *sigh* This whole "make a system from scratch" business is no picnic, lemme tell ya.

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I don't know. I think I get what you're aiming at and I kinda like how it could shape up -ie the default PC stance not always seeing any chance to attack as one that should be taken- but I don't think stress is quite the right concept. You want conservation of energy and the importance of tactics and movement, but perhaps the incentive should be expressed as the ebb and flow of a positive value (spend Cool) not a negative one (gain Stress).

Yeah, maybe. My high concept was that the ideal state of a soldier is to have all three gauges empty (no Stress throwing her off, no Visibility to get spotted by, making no Noise to tip anyone off) and have the player instinctively understand that the fuller those gauges got, the more danger the soldier would be in. And I admit there's a certain bloodymindedness about Stress counting up instead of Health counting down. (...he said, having previously bent himself into a pretzel trying to get away from equating the Stress gauge with Health.)

I hold out hope that this will all make sense when it's put together, but if it doesn't, then it's not like the math will get superduper more complicated by counting in a different direction.
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