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  • Firearm Strength Requirements

    Is it just me or do the strength requirements for firearms in CofD seem a bit high? I consider myself to be of fairly average strength but I can shoot what the game classifies as a Heavy Pistol with little difficulty, and a Light Pistol is barely noticeable to me at all. 3 Strength to shoot a .45 seems a bit much, I could understand for a .44 Magnum revolver but a .45 doesn't have as much kick and the frames are usually heavier which reduces the force of the recoil (actually a .40 is a little harder to shoot than a .45 because often when they make them they just expand a 9mm frame which makes the gun lighter). Now my sister I would say has an equivalent to 1 Strength and she's not too great with .45's but she can handle a 9mm well enough. Am I just underestimating my own strength here or what?

  • #2
    I think it is for when you are using it for actual combat. You are firing the gun in quick successions within 3 seconds and are suppose to hit.. If it was just shooting a single shot in a competition or similar, I don't think the penalty should apply.

    But generally, they do seem high..

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    • #3
      RPGs are notorious for their inaccurate depiction of weaponry. Hurt Locker says it well, though:
      We feature rules and examples in here that aren’t meant to model real-world firearms usage. So, you may
      look at these rules and know that the real weapons don’t necessarily work that way. This is intentional. We’re
      modeling horror stories here, and guns rarely serve an identical function in horror stories to their real-world
      counterparts.
      The current focus on horror means that two major things need to happen.
      • The weapons need to carry physical and spiritual weight
      • The weapons need to be at least a bit inconvenient
      Limited ammo and heavier guns make combat more potentially thrilling than just popping off a silver bullet into every shifter you see, even if it's not entirely accurate.

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      • #4
        i'm talking blue book though, not hurt locker. If I was shooting the pistol one handed then I could see the strength requirement, I can train a .45 on a target with one hand but my accuracy in markedly inferior. I guess I kind of just assumed they meant holding the gun with both hands as opposed to being able to comfortably shoot it in one.

        Unrelated question, would a .45-70 govt count as a big game rifle?

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        • #5
          Keep in mind, the penalty for being under the Strength requirement is only -1. Not really a huge deal. And the quoted section of Hurt Locker is still true of the core book, and of melee weapons as well as firearms; Chronicles of Darkness does not aim to accurately simulate real-life weaponry, but rather to emulate weapons' narrative function in a horror story. Whether a particular gun is a light or heavy pistol isn't really something the system is concerned with. It's concerned with Jill Valentine's handgun as compared to Barry Burton's magnum.

          Under this lense, the standard self-defense sidearm requires someone of about average Strength to use to its fullest, whereas a less-than-average Strength person can still use it, just maybe not quite as well. The hand cannon that packs a hell of a punch and kicks back almost as hard needs someone with higher than average upper body strength to handle, but in a pinch an average or below average person can use it, if not as well as the Big Guy (tm).


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          • #6
            No, I get y'all. I guess my questioning is really more on what "average" strength is than the firearms themselves.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Lord Jub-Jub View Post
              No, I get y'all. I guess my questioning is really more on what "average" strength is than the firearms themselves.
              Ah. I'd say 2 Strength, or "average" is the strength of your regular Joe. Maybe he has a gym membership but he doesn't go as often as he means to, and when he does he's more focused on keeping up his cardio and trying to lose that Holiday weight than in building up his beach body. Maybe she takes a Yoga class to keep in shape, but she's not as trim as she'd like to be and she won't be winning many arm wrestling contests. Maybe they like to run in the mornings before work instead of relying on caffeine to wake them up, but they don't sign up for any 4ks because they're afraid to embarrass themselves next to the people who actually train for that kind of thing.

              EDIT: Notably, CofD (and RPGs in general) kind of isolates different aspects of physical fitness to a degree that can be a little inconsistent with reality. All of the above examples would probably also have Athletics 1, and the yoga woman in particular would probably not have Dexterity less than 2. But it is hypothetically possible to have characters with 0 Athletics with Strength up to 5. Those are your naturally gifted folks who don't practice their talents. That One Guy who never exersizes but is still built like a linebacker (though he may even have Strength 3)
              Last edited by Charlaquin; 03-16-2017, 02:23 PM.


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              • #8
                Check out the Size column for firearms. All pistols are intended as one-handed weapons according to Size. Since the penalty is slight, you could mitigate the penalty by using two hands if you wanted to create that rule. Average strength is 2. I think I'm of average strength and I would have some trouble using anything these rules would call a heavy pistol with one hand. I would not have any trouble with light pistols. So, I think you have the strength right but neglected Size in your thinking.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Charlaquin View Post
                  EDIT: Notably, CofD (and RPGs in general) kind of isolates different aspects of physical fitness to a degree that can be a little inconsistent with reality. All of the above examples would probably also have Athletics 1, and the yoga woman in particular would probably not have Dexterity less than 2. But it is hypothetically possible to have characters with 0 Athletics with Strength up to 5. Those are your naturally gifted folks who don't practice their talents. That One Guy who never exersizes but is still built like a linebacker (though he may even have Strength 3)
                  Though I agree with you, I should point out that I think Athletics is more about actually using your athleticism instead of just having great body strength/dexterity. Just because somebody can lift 400 pounds does not necessarily mean they're capable of doing extensive rock climbing, or swimming, or etc. They might be able to do it naturally, given that they're really strong and are able to pull their body weight much better, but they don't have the skills involved (when to hold your breath, where to put your hands, various styles, etc.)

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RomulusGloriosus View Post

                    Though I agree with you, I should point out that I think Athletics is more about actually using your athleticism instead of just having great body strength/dexterity. Just because somebody can lift 400 pounds does not necessarily mean they're capable of doing extensive rock climbing, or swimming, or etc. They might be able to do it naturally, given that they're really strong and are able to pull their body weight much better, but they don't have the skills involved (when to hold your breath, where to put your hands, various styles, etc.)
                    Well, yeah, and the example characters I mentioned all use their physical ability in some way. Gym guy does go to the gym, even if not often. Yoga gal takes a yoga class. Running nonbinary person runs. Lazy linebacker, conversely, would not have Athletics despite his strength because he doesn't exercise.


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                    • #11
                      I like to represent things like regular gym workout as a Equipment, instead of "fixed stats". But I enjoy anything that shifts weight from "character construction decisions" to "character playing decisions", as I feel the first one is little overloaded in many RPGs. One of things I like about CofD is how easily I can do that by utilizing Equipment and Condition rules.

                      As for what dots represent...we assume that deficiencies are represented by Conditions, not 1 dots in attributes, so Strength one is usually Average but unreliable and downward tendency, Strength two is reliable Average with good potential for bursts of over average, and three is reliably above average.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Diggs View Post
                        Check out the Size column for firearms. All pistols are intended as one-handed weapons according to Size.
                        They all can be used as one-handed weapons, but I wouldn't go so far as to say they're intended to be used that way. The way I would narrate it at least, if you have two hands available, you'll hold your pistol in both to help steady your aim and manage recoil. If you need to use one hand for something else, you can. It's not ideal, but it's not inconvenient enough to be worth a dice penalty.


                        Onyx Path Forum Moderator

                        My mod voice is red. I use it so you know when I'm speaking in an official capacity, not as an indication of tone.

                        Going by Willow now, or Wil for short. She/Her/Hers.

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                        • #13
                          "Size: 1 = Can be fired one-handed;" -Bottom of the Ranged Weapon Chart

                          All pistols are Size 1, so I don't see how anyone could not think they are intended to be used with one hand. Certainly doesn't stop someone from using two hands, but that would be grounds for a bonus on attack, to counter a low Strength perhaps.

                          The other way to look at it is the Melee chart has all one-handed weapons unless the weapon has the two-handed tag. The two-handed tag means it is intended to be used with two hands, but one hand could be used without penalty by increases the Strength requirement by one. Reversing that means Size 1 Ranged can be used with two hands using a minimum Strength 1 less than listed.

                          I wouldn't suggest an attack bonus just for using two hands on a pistol for all purposes so considering pistols having a one-handed tag is probably the easier route.

                          edit: The rest of the Size description on the chart has 2 as must use two hands and 3 can use two hands so apparently they use "must" and "can" interchangeably on that chart.
                          Last edited by Diggs; 03-16-2017, 03:01 PM.

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                          • #14
                            I know the mechanics list 2 as average strength, the description of the guy hitting the gym or the girl in yoga don't actually mean anything to me because I don't have numbers on what they can and can't do.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Lord Jub-Jub View Post
                              I know the mechanics list 2 as average strength, the description of the guy hitting the gym or the girl in yoga don't actually mean anything to me because I don't have numbers on what they can and can't do.
                              They can perform feats you would assume an average person can. This system doesn't like to assign hard numbers for this type of thing so just use your better judgment.

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