Melee Weapon Enhancement

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UnitOmega UnitOmega's picture
Melee Weapon Enhancement

So, couple of big weapon-y type homebrew type things floating around lately. Got me thinking about some ideas. From a story perspective, I like Melee weapons. While I would never want to necessarily put using melee above shooting people with bullets (I mean, every modern soldier carries a saber around still, right?) I do think there are some interesting things you could do with melee weapons in EP, so I put a couple of these ideas together. Plus, its no fun if Guns get all the tech porn fiddly-bits attachments. So here are a few of my spit-balled ideas for Melee Weapon Enhancements/Accessories.

Melee Weapon Enhancement

Balanced Hilt
A common attachment for any melee specialist. It features an ergonomic grip of memory materials, and a reworked core which often incorporates density-shifting smart materials to keep the weapon perfectly balanced in the users hand. It grants the wielder of this weapon a +10 to Fray to defend against Melee Weapons, and grants a +10 to attack rolls with the weapon. [Moderate]

Masterwork Blade
Most bladed weapons are mass produced and machine-tooled in fabricators, but there are some groups (Hobbyists, certain Scum or Brinker clades, Ultimates) who practice the art of producing high-quality blades using stronger than normal alloys and composites. Individual smiths often protect the secrets of their particular mix of forging. A Masterwork Blade adds 1 DV and 1 AP. [Low]

Shock Capacitor
This modification enhances a small battery and capacitor to a conductive element built into the weapon. This allows the weapon to deliver an electrical shock when it makes contact with an enemy. It adds the Shock effect to any weapon that doesn't already have it. Due to limitations as an add-on (rather than being built into the weapon), the Shock Capacitor can only deliver the shock effect once per Action Turn. [Low]

Thermic Weapon
This is a complete rebuild of the weapon to include a nuclear battery and a heating element in the contact surface of the weapon. When the heating element is activated, the weapon's surface gets extremely hot, and may even glow in the visible spectrum. Wielders of a Thermic weapon need to take great care not to come in contact with their own weapon's business end while it's active or cooling, lets they harm themselves. Adds 2 DV and AP, and an excellent success with the weapon sets the enemy on fire [Moderate]

Toxin Alloy
A tactic used by assassins, crime rings and a few nasty Scum or Anarchist weapon-engineers, this builds a blade of a weapon out of toxic materials, such as heavy metals, which are designed to flake off and get inside the blood stream of the target. Some lunatics even use radioactive isotopes. If a Biomorph or Pod takes damage from a Toxin Alloy weapon, they must make a DUR test (Medichines makes this DURx2) or begin feeling the effects of the poison, taking 10 damage per Action turn for each full 10 MoF on the test (minimum 1), which ignores armor. Even if they pass the test, they take a -10 penalty to all actions in the next Turn as their body metabolizes the toxin. However, use of this coating or composites degrades the quality of the weapon for it's normal use, reducing AP and DV by 1 each. [Moderate]

Collapsible Weapon
Using the latest smart material components and manufacturing techniques, this allows a melee weapon to fold up or collapse into a much smaller and more compact size and shape. While compressed, the weapon is much easier to handle, carry or conceal. It takes a Quick Action to unfold the weapon back to its normal size. When in it's collapsed state, it's a -20 penalty to detect the concealed weapon or its nature. [One Cost Category Higher]

Oversize Weapon
For Large Sized morphs, using a normal sized weapon is sometimes not enough. In that case, they can choose to enlarge the weapon to a size more befitting their size and build of morph. An Oversize weapon doubles your Damage Bonus to melee damage with the weapon. Small size morphs cannot wield an Oversize Weapon. A Medium Sized morph can wield an Oversize weapon, but they take a -20 penalty to do so unless they have a SOM of 20 or higher. While doing so, the Medium-sized user also gains Reach relative to other Medium Sized morphs, but must use it in two hands, if it is not already a two handed weapon. [One Cost Category Higher]

Blades

Viper Sword
The big brother of the Wasp Knife, the Viper Sword doesn't cause as much harm as a Vibroblade or Monofilament Sword, but has one advantage in the form of an internal arterial structure. When combined with a triple-cartridge system in the base of the weapon, this allows the Viper Sword to be almost instantaneously coated in any Toxin, Chemical or Nanotoxin from storage. It can also be used to cause damage in pressure differential situations like a Wasp Knife, though this requires a stabbing motion rather than a slash to apply. The Viper Sword has a series of three canisters which hold three separate doses of a drug or chemical substance. [Moderate]
AP -1 2d10+2+DB DV

Unarmed

Power Fist
A high-power unarmed weapon which uses the same technology as a Synthmorph's Pneumatic Limbs. It's favored by a few martial artists and sportsmen, or some particularly aggressive or vindictive security forces. It takes the form of a massive gauntlet with a strike-plate hooked to some high-pressure pneumatic cylinders. When an impact is made with the gauntlet, the cylinders release concentrating a lot of force into a small space. The gauntlets are so hefty that most users only wear one at a time, and their bulk grants a -10 penalty to all tests using the gloved hand, but offer an additional 1/3 AV to that arm. Scoring an excellent success with the Power Fist also forces the target to make a SOM x3 test or be knocked down, as if they had taken a wound. [Moderate]
AP -4 2d10+DB DV

Vibroknuckle
A nasty little high-tech version of a knuckleduster used by some street gangs and pugilists. Instead of using hard rings or spikes, the Vibroknuckle has oscillating blades which vibrate at high frequencies when activated. Under normal circumstances, these don't do much besides add a little bit extra penetration when punching (and inflicting more painful injuries), but when used to make prolonged contact, they add an additional -3 AP and +1d10 DV. [Low]
AP -2 1d10+2+DB

EDIT: So added rules for the Toxin Alloy. Damage is high because toxicity damage in EP is high. You could also use the Toxin rules for a kinetic ammo type, probably, if you really felt like being a bastard.

Also added a couple of Unarmed weapon ideas for you punching aficionados out there.

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thebluespectre thebluespectre's picture
Suggestions?

The Viper Sword seems like it would be better off as a flat 2d10 AP+-0 and Low cost. It doesn't have any parts reliant on nano-scale engineering; you could probably have one made today, though the number of non-superspy reasons to poison three people in a row during a knife fight are limited. And if we are talking about poisoned weapons, why not have a mod to make the blade out of poisonous metal, like the Kris dagger (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kris) was rumored to use? The chances arsenic has against Medichine implants are limited, but you KNOW some Scum smith was looking for a way to get rid of their stinky toxic metal.

Also

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=pile+bunker

Dayita-scale Unarmed weapon

You know you want one

"Still and transfixed, the el/
ectric sheep are dreaming of your face..." -Talk Shows on Mute

UnitOmega UnitOmega's picture
The Viper Sword is based of

The Viper Sword is based of the Wasp Knife, and since it takes the idea of the knife (which is Low) and then adds a die of damage and two additional doses of whatever you want, it gets a cost hike. I'd also imagine that the "internal artery" system is pretty complex and would require some smart material engineering to have the weapon maintain structure while you're stabbing things.

I'll have to have a think on some stats for an "Toxin Alloy" mod. Poisons are sadly under-played by EP, but I have some notes from a mostly complete Fallout hack I can use.

As for a Pile Bunker, I'm not sure if that's more an unarmed weapon, or an exotic melee weapon you could mount on a large robot. DB probably wouldn't come into it at all, for instance. Not that the Daitya needs any help, it already deals 3d10 with AP -5 DV as is. Could always try and minaturize the Pneumatic Limbs technology (for biomorphs) and make a Power Fist, though. Or a vibroblade knuckle-duster.

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Ryse1095 Ryse1095's picture
Vibrodrill

Since you're trying to make improved melee weapons I figured I should tell you about something I made once, well two things actually but anyway

The second thing I just thought of was that one character I made was a synth with pneumatic limbs and a battle suit, each of which add 1d10 to unarmed combat strikes. So he was swinging for 3d10 melee damage, which outscales all but the very biggest of guns, and those guns tend to be situational and unusable in close combat so that combination actually is the pinnacle of melee within the vanilla rules without getting too creative...

which leads me to the vibrodrill cyberlimb+ that I invented. Now this weapon is OP as all hell, so if you take the idea, I strongly recommend toning it down, cause just based on the basic rules here that spawned this demonic tool of destruction this is a thing that makes melee superior to tanks, like I'm not even kidding, I ran some combat sims against various tanks... It won.

Basically, it's 3 vibroblades resting in the limb, when activated they come out and move forward, locking together into a drill shape, then spinning. Because vibroblades do extra damage when sawing or in this case drilling, this new drill technically does 12d10 damage with AP15, not accounting for somatics, unarmed strike damage, etc...

Now in the campaign this spawned in I haven't built the thing yet, cause it was part of a battle suit and the character doesn't have the resources to do it right now, but I pre-emptively limited the damage to 7d10 AP10 because of just how OP it was, rationalizing that it was an unorthodox drilling method so efficiency was less than maximum.

So yeah, a neat idea with the potential to make melee combat as viable an option for unleashing tons of pain as the sniper option. Enjoy ^_^

Trappedinwikipedia Trappedinwikipedia's picture
The important keyword for

The important keyword for vibroblades is "carefully" I think, or perhaps "sawing" as neither of those things appear to be happening. :p

I'm not sure what the rules would be, but smart matter blades would be interesting. They'd be easy to disguise, and have some really strange properties (a smart Urumi would be crazy) in a fight. I'm not sure how to give them rules without getting as complicated as flexbots though.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
@ Ryse1095

@ Ryse1095

I'm not sure how you determined the numbers for your drill weapon. Did you some how added up the damage for 3 vibroblade? 3 vibroblades that were working in ideal conditions (where the bonuses for workshop like conditions applied)? Did you plan to add the bonuses from the morph and exosuit to this damage?

Look, at 12d10, this drill weapon is clearly more deadly than plasma gun (3d10 + 20, -8 AP), or even seeker weapons. Standard sized seekers (not mini or micro) deal double damage, so you can get numbers like 6d10 + 20. Is your drill weapon really more deadly than a seeker?

If I were to design a new melee weapon that was a little bit more deadly than a vibroblade, I would have started it at 2d10 and added a few more points of damage. The monofilament sword is like that at 2d10 + 2 damage. If I wanted a new melee weapon to be much more deadly than a vibroblade, I would have started it at 3d10. 12d10 looks very much like something you would expect to be mounted on a tank or a spaceship.

To look at it another way, a character can deal 1d10 damage with an unarmed attack. A 2d10 weapon is a weapon that adds 1d10 to the damage. Even when you add SOM bonuses for melee combat, a 2d10 weapon is still only a 1d10 improvement. A weapon that deals 12d10 or deals 7d10 is a weapon that respectively adds 11d10 or 6d10 additional damage over melee damage. No other weapon gets that sort of improvement over any other option.

Ryse1095 Ryse1095's picture
DivineWrath wrote:@ Ryse1095

DivineWrath wrote:
@ Ryse1095

I'm not sure how you determined the numbers for your drill weapon. Did you some how added up the damage for 3 vibroblade? 3 vibroblades that were working in ideal conditions (where the bonuses for workshop like conditions applied)? Did you plan to add the bonuses from the morph and exosuit to this damage?

Look, at 12d10, this drill weapon is clearly more deadly than plasma gun (3d10 + 20, -8 AP), or even seeker weapons. Standard sized seekers (not mini or micro) deal double damage, so you can get numbers like 6d10 + 20. Is your drill weapon really more deadly than a seeker?

If I were to design a new melee weapon that was a little bit more deadly than a vibroblade, I would have started it at 2d10 and added a few more points of damage. The monofilament sword is like that at 2d10 + 2 damage. If I wanted a new melee weapon to be much more deadly than a vibroblade, I would have started it at 3d10. 12d10 looks very much like something you would expect to be mounted on a tank or a spaceship.

To look at it another way, a character can deal 1d10 damage with an unarmed attack. A 2d10 weapon is a weapon that adds 1d10 to the damage. Even when you add SOM bonuses for melee combat, a 2d10 weapon is still only a 1d10 improvement. A weapon that deals 12d10 or deals 7d10 is a weapon that respectively adds 11d10 or 6d10 additional damage over melee damage. No other weapon gets that sort of improvement over any other option.

see that's why I said it was OP, because yeah, the 3 vibroblades got their damage totalled because they are all damaging the target, and each of them when getting the damage boost for the drilling is 3d10... so technically in ideal conditions they'd be 12d10

As I said though, before even considering making it I just automatically toned it down significantly cause 12d10 is ridiculous. And even so if I ever get to actually make the thing I'll likely tone it down even more because even my 7d10 is pretty insane.

As for seeker weapons/plasma cannons, the thing I've found is that melee weapons, when you combine enough mods (I once made a character who punches for 3d10, and I was holding back cause he's an NPC enemy and I was trying to be fair-ish), are pretty easy to make more damaging than most ranged weapons, but melee weapons are just that, melee. A seeker weapon can probably get off 2 or 3 shots before someone is in melee range, and also bear in mind that dodging beam/kinetic/seeker weapons is Fray divided by 2, whereas the a drill or blade or anything else melee is just straight up fray (possibly with a bonus since drilling is a very specific and televised type of attack?), which is a very huge difference, someone with 80 fray has an 80% chance of dodging a drill, but only 40% chance of dodging a missle

So melee weaponry can do a crudload of damage, but they inherently have certain disadvantages which keep ranged weapons superior for the most part. Situationally a melee weapon like this would easily outdo a seeker, like in close quarters where the distance is easily crossed and an attack launched, but by the same token, a sniper half a mile away would easily drop someone even wielding the 12d10 version of the drill.

Trappedinwikipedia Trappedinwikipedia's picture
I mean, the 12D10 isn't

I mean, the 12D10 isn't actually exceptionally ridiculous, a pair of SMGs or shard pistols can pretty much match that (against a poor armored or unarmored target anyway).

I don't really think it makes a ton of sense from an in-universe standpoint, as I imagine drilling with vibroblades would foul them pretty quickly. They're usually pretty thin to transmit the vibrations better from what I've seen. Vibratory drills do exist, but look like they need a solid and long touch to work, not really much of a weapon. If I were to just try to stat something like that up, I'd probably put a weaponized drill (which is probably a forced entry device getting abused anyway) I'd put them somewhere around 3D10+5 with a strong pen, like -8, or some kind of armor damaging special rule. I'd also require the target to be unable to move away from the attack, such as a restrained person, or attacking a vehicle.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Look. I'm going to try to

Look. I'm going to try to keep it short.

I think this problem with your op drill came to be because you designed your drill out of 3 swords, and ruled that the vibro setting works in combat (at least with the drill version). You added all the dice together to determine its damage (which I think was a mistake), which created more problems than just op damage. I don't think that was the best place to start since there are reasons why a sword works well, and why a drill made out of swords won't nearly so well. I'm not in a mood to talk about it right now so maybe later.

The transhuman rulebook has a section for creating morphs. It includes adding natural weapons and what their damages can be. Natural weapons that deal 3d10 damage is restricted to large or bigger morphs and is a rather pricy advantage. I don't think your drill weapon should be significantly better than anything you can find on that chart.

Transhuman, p. 222:

1d10+1, AP -1, 1 cp
2d10+0, AP -3, 5 cp
3d10+0, AP -5, 10 cp (large morphs and very large morphs only)