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Thread: Firearms

  1. #61
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    A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)



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    I'm starting a seafaring game soon (Saltmarsh, etc.) and I want to introduce firearms rules but I am concerned about game balance.

    Firearms in the DMG are 1 damage die higher than crossbows. Light crossbow d8 -> pistol d10, heavy crossbow d10 -> musket d12. This is balanced by:
    1. Lower range increments
    2. They're loud
    3. Cost of ammo
    4. Cost of the weapons themselves

    But for many players the damage die matters more than any of those things. So the only real balancing factor is cost. And, the pistol costs 250 gp and the musket 500 gp -- respectable amounts, analogous to the better armors (splint 200 gp, breastplate 400 gp, half plate 750 gp). So that seems fair to me.

    Except, I don't want players to select those guns during character creation as part of an equipment package. It would be like starting with breastplate; you are supposed to work your way up to that. So now I've got three options:
    1. Forbid starting with firearms. That's lame, though. If I want firearms in the game, I want players to have them.
    2. Reduce the price of firearms. But that would remove price as a balancing factor. (Also, I don't want to change the statistics from the DMG -- it's easier for everyone if they can refer to the DMG or the D&D Beyond for those stats.)
    3. Introduce new, weaker firearms that you CAN select at character creation.

    I picked option 3. While I was at it, I totally stole @Satyrn's idea for shotguns, and used them to create stats for blunderbuss and dragoon gun (historically, it was called a "dragon," but I think that terminology may become confusing). Here's what I wound up with:

    Name:  Firearms.png
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  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beleriphon View Post
    Well drilled infantry could fire four to five times per minute, for the sake of game play once every six seconds isn't crazy.
    IIRC, that rate of fire was for unaimed volley fire, not accurate shooting. But I don't want to get too technical in the game, so for 1E/2E, 'load and fire once a round' is reasonable. In 5E? Not all that familiar with it, but 'spend one full round loading' seems like it would work. I wouldn't want to bog the rules down with too much detail...

  3. #63
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    Myrmidon (Lvl 10)



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    I like the list and the mechanics there a lot. Not overpowered or overcrowded and the comparisons from weapon to weapon seem right. My only caveat is a historical one, and we while know that D&D isn't driven by historical accuracy, so I will mention that your Blunderbuss' long range is probably twice as far as a historical blunderbuss was effective out to. At least as far as my familiarity with early firearms goes anyway. Whatevs maybe, but I'll throw it out there.

  4. #64
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    @77IM Have you considered deafening effects from firing firearms? Either temporary or permanent.
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  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Draegn View Post
    @77IM Have you considered deafening effects from firing firearms? Either temporary or permanent.
    Considering Knock alerts everyone within 300 feet aka American Football field but does not deafen the party, why should firearms do so?
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  6. #66
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    The Great Druid (Lvl 17)



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    Because firearms are loud and can cause hearing problems?

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by tglassy View Post
    Because firearms are loud and can cause hearing problems?
    As someone who's fired a .357 magnum without hearing protection, I can definitely say that it hurt, and my ears rang for about 30 minutes afterward. Unless I need to defend myself without warning, or I choose to commit suicide (which I find myself thinking about more and more, and it does eventually seem inevitable . . . at some point), I'll never fire a gun without hearing protection again.

    That said, the Thunderwave spell creates sound that actually throws people and buffets them with such sound that it deals actual damage, and it doesn't deafen. If Thunderwave doesn't deafen, a gun shouldn't. If a gun does, then maybe Thunderwave should.

    Now, I can see an argument for firing a gun imposing disadvantage on your perception checks related to hearing until you complete a short or long rest. That makes sense. Again, though, it doesn't make sense that that also wouldn't be part of the effects of a Thunderwave.
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  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasper View Post
    Considering Knock alerts everyone within 300 feet aka American Football field but does not deafen the party, why should firearms do so?

    https://www.shootinguk.co.uk/answers...ing-loss-77421

    This was studied on firing outdoors. Firearms discharged indoors are worse due to the sound waves being bounced back by walls and other obstructions.

    I see no reason why there should not be a temporary deafness condition or permanent for long term usage. If 77IM's firearms can be heard 600 feet away, what of the chap who fired a musket held up to his cheek? One could apply the effects of the deafness spell, save of be deaf for one minute.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Draegn View Post
    https://www.shootinguk.co.uk/answers...ing-loss-77421

    This was studied on firing outdoors. Firearms discharged indoors are worse due to the sound waves being bounced back by walls and other obstructions.

    I see no reason why there should not be a temporary deafness condition or permanent for long term usage. If 77IM's firearms can be heard 600 feet away, what of the chap who fired a musket held up to his cheek? One could apply the effects of the deafness spell, save of be deaf for one minute.
    Again Knock and Shockwave don't cause hearing lost. Add hearing lost to all thunder damage and I would get behind you.
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  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by 77IM View Post
    I'm starting a seafaring game soon (Saltmarsh, etc.) and I want to introduce firearms rules but I am concerned about game balance.

    Firearms in the DMG are 1 damage die higher than crossbows. Light crossbow d8 -> pistol d10, heavy crossbow d10 -> musket d12. This is balanced by:
    1. Lower range increments
    2. They're loud
    3. Cost of ammo
    4. Cost of the weapons themselves

    But for many players the damage die matters more than any of those things. So the only real balancing factor is cost. And, the pistol costs 250 gp and the musket 500 gp -- respectable amounts, analogous to the better armors (splint 200 gp, breastplate 400 gp, half plate 750 gp). So that seems fair to me.

    Except, I don't want players to select those guns during character creation as part of an equipment package. It would be like starting with breastplate; you are supposed to work your way up to that. So now I've got three options:
    1. Forbid starting with firearms. That's lame, though. If I want firearms in the game, I want players to have them.
    2. Reduce the price of firearms. But that would remove price as a balancing factor. (Also, I don't want to change the statistics from the DMG -- it's easier for everyone if they can refer to the DMG or the D&D Beyond for those stats.)
    3. Introduce new, weaker firearms that you CAN select at character creation.

    I picked option 3. While I was at it, I totally stole @Satyrn's idea for shotguns, and used them to create stats for blunderbuss and dragoon gun (historically, it was called a "dragon," but I think that terminology may become confusing). Here's what I wound up with:

    Name:  Firearms.png
Views: 1817
Size:  70.3 KB
    Nice.

    By the way, interesting fact I only noticed last night:

    I went with a range of 20/80 for the shotgun, but that's because I never noticed at the time that the DMG made the long range for guns equal to triple the normal range. I based my guns on the PH crossbows, and their long range is quadruple the normal range . . . just like all the other ammo-firing wrapons in the PH (and all the thrown weapons are triple-range).

    If I can manage a phantom-edit of my houserules, I'm might change the shotgun to 30/90.

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