Gunslinger want to fight underwater


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


Hi, i'm currently playing a lvl 11 gunslinger and i'm looking forward to shoot underwater.

There is customizations upgrades that allow the weapon to shoot underwater for exemple :https://2e.aonprd.com/Equipment.aspx?ID=1224

And some others to preserve ammunitions from water such as : https://2e.aonprd.com/Equipment.aspx?ID=1208

However, from what I can read, this doesn't allow you to reload underwater. For exemple with an arquebus, if I shoot then reload, the ammunition comes from a dry storage, goes underwater and then is loaded into the gun.

I hoped it could simply worked with an air bubble, but the air bubble only surround your head, not your whole body.

I am right? Do you know solution that could allow me to fight underwater?

Thank you in advance.


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Erli wrote:
Do you know solution that could allow me to fight underwater?

I hadn't really thought about it previously. But the equipment links that you provided indicate that the option should be available.

If for some reason, there isn't any way to get reload working by RAW, then as a GM, I would just handwave it away. If the player buys the equipment needed to carry their ammunition and fire their weapon while underwater, then reload should also work. Either by another piece of custom equipment or by including that as part of the existing equipment (Probably the waterproof carrying case).


My Gamemasters arguing because there is no reload indication, meaning by raw that is unavailable for them.

I'm just trying to find another way to be able to reload in wet condition and i can't find anything...

Anyway thank you for your reply.


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Air Repeaters should be able to work underwater, but being simple weapons their damage is a lot lower.


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Erli wrote:
My Gamemasters arguing because there is no reload indication, meaning by raw that is unavailable for them.

Ah, yes. The ol' "deliberate trap option" argument. The Underwater Firing Mechanism exists, but is intended to not actually let you use a firearm underwater.

Hard to argue against because it is technically RAW. Just reference the Ambiguous Rules clause - which is also RAW.


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breithauptclan wrote:
Erli wrote:
My Gamemasters arguing because there is no reload indication, meaning by raw that is unavailable for them.

Ah, yes. The ol' "deliberate trap option" argument. The Underwater Firing Mechanism exists, but is intended to not actually let you use a firearm underwater.

Hard to argue against because it is technically RAW. Just reference the Ambiguous Rules clause - which is also RAW.

Or does the GM want to the PC to sit this one out?

I initially wrote that as snarky, yet maybe the encounter's weighted for the party not having full resources, much like a bathhouse, formal gala, or jail scene.
And there is some merit to guarding the rear, I suppose, what with all your friends in such a vulnerable position and your PC not able to aid them on that side of things.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

so uh, is there anything that actually prevents you from reloading underwater normally?

I can't even find anything that says you can't use Blackpowder underwater, although you can obviously inference it from the presence of that item linked up thread.

The Exchange

The-Magic-Sword wrote:

so uh, is there anything that actually prevents you from reloading underwater normally?

I can't even find anything that says you can't use Blackpowder underwater, although you can obviously inference it from the presence of that item linked up thread.

RAW gunpowder works underwater and in airless environments. Those special feats are just useless flavour feats :) (And don't tell me to use common physics sense since that doesn't apply to other cases)


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RAW black powder is "inert and useless" wet, so I'm pretty sure it cannot be used for its intended purpose when wet.


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Paradozen wrote:
RAW black powder is "inert and useless" wet, so I'm pretty sure it cannot be used for its intended purpose when wet.

This I think is not actually an issue.

An underwater firing mechanism allows the attached firearm to be fired underwater or in other conditions that would normally prevent the ignition of black powder. Attaching an underwater firing mechanism to a firearm takes 1 hour, though this time can overlap with the standard time required to maintain and clean your firearm to prevent misfires.

So the specific rule appears to be this mechanism lets you fire even wet/inert black powder underwater.

As far as I can see you could reload but normally the round would be rendered inert due to being soaked but the underwater firing mechanism overrides that condition. Given the price of the underwater firing mechanism that is not a trivial attachment and actually uses magic to fire the bullet.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
kaid wrote:
Paradozen wrote:
RAW black powder is "inert and useless" wet, so I'm pretty sure it cannot be used for its intended purpose when wet.

This I think is not actually an issue.

An underwater firing mechanism allows the attached firearm to be fired underwater or in other conditions that would normally prevent the ignition of black powder. Attaching an underwater firing mechanism to a firearm takes 1 hour, though this time can overlap with the standard time required to maintain and clean your firearm to prevent misfires.

So the specific rule appears to be this mechanism lets you fire even wet/inert black powder underwater.

As far as I can see you could reload but normally the round would be rendered inert due to being soaked but the underwater firing mechanism overrides that condition. Given the price of the underwater firing mechanism that is not a trivial attachment and actually uses magic to fire the bullet.

Now that you mention it, I think you're right the flavor of the underwater firing mechanism is that it actually replaces the gun's usual mechanism, the rune it describes does not mention black powder being involved at all.


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If magic is involved, that makes sense. I could probably get Prestidigitation to dry something out in a reasonably short amount of time. And that is just a cantrip. There is no way it is powerful enough to do it underwater though.

A dedicated rune should be able to dry out the powder quickly enough and for a long enough time to fire the weapon. Maybe some short duration version of Air Bubble along with a water control spell and a flame spell.


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Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.

Scarab Sages

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Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.

Good old lard shot. Lard is a wonderous thing when your GM bites, probably why it's one of the 4 basic food groups.


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Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.

Well, there are rules for Misfires. Just not very historically accurate ones.


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Yeah, when you look at the problem that underwater firing mechanisms actually solves, it makes sense - the underwater firing mechanism enables a weapon to fire despite the powder inside it being exposed to water - when in the process the powder gets wet (either in the gun or when reloading) doesn't really matter.

The carrying case won't work though, it is more along the lines of soldiers putting their gun in a plastic bag to keep them dry while making amphibious landings - it is for transportation through water, so that you can still use the gun after leaving the water, not for actually using the gun while underwater.


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breithauptclan wrote:
Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.
Well, there are rules for Misfires. Just not very historically accurate ones.

Generally players don't really want (they might think they do, but they actually don't) historically accurate firearms, especially flintlock era ones where it literally takes an entire minute to reload and are so inaccurate that you need people to line up and fire in volleys to be effective.


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And for those who do want that, we have the Backpack Ballista and Backpack Catapult for all your weapon-that-takes-a-minute-to-reload needs. I'd love to see a group of PCs or even a group of bad guys go to town with a volley of either of these, actually.


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Tender Tendrils wrote:
breithauptclan wrote:
Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.
Well, there are rules for Misfires. Just not very historically accurate ones.
Generally players don't really want (they might think they do, but they actually don't) historically accurate firearms, especially flintlock era ones where it literally takes an entire minute to reload and are so inaccurate that you need people to line up and fire in volleys to be effective.

In a world where magic weapons exist the really basic type of firearms would never be used. They simply wouldn't do something you couldn't do better with the "technology" available. So going the route they went makes sense something that is at least viable to use compared to what else is available.


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kaid wrote:
Tender Tendrils wrote:
breithauptclan wrote:
Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.
Well, there are rules for Misfires. Just not very historically accurate ones.
Generally players don't really want (they might think they do, but they actually don't) historically accurate firearms, especially flintlock era ones where it literally takes an entire minute to reload and are so inaccurate that you need people to line up and fire in volleys to be effective.
In a world where magic weapons exist the really basic type of firearms would never be used. They simply wouldn't do something you couldn't do better with the "technology" available. So going the route they went makes sense something that is at least viable to use compared to what else is available.

In all honesty... the flintlock firing squad doesn't really seem like it has any advantage over crossbows at all considering the inaccuracy, etc. Similar reload times and such. Bullets getting through armor better was a benefit... up until everyone abandoned heavy armor for obvious reasons. I think that it would have been strictly optimal to go back to crossbows at that point, except of course this is still the era of everything being run by the wealthy and connected, the eternal issue of generals fighting the last war, etc. Guns were what everyone did, therefore more guns (I'll grant that they have much more convenient profiles for transportation, but powder weapons add logistical issues that crossbows don't have due to it being volatile, useless if wet, etc. that counterbalance the advantages of lead shot being more portable, easier to make, etc)

But back to Golarion, yeah... guns are mainly used by the place that has really good guns, and everyone else is using crossbows (or, for the well trained, normal bows). Or they're a evocation mage and getting very well paid by some kingdom to be a living cannon (I love how Secrets of Magic goes into how the different schools fit into the world, and how casters make a living with them).

This, however, is limited to firearms used by individuals. When you're looking at cannons the equation changes completely and even early ones are vastly superior to other options at breaching fortifications or sinking ships.


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flintlocks had the advantage of shock. Large exploding flamy things is a lot more terrifying than crossbows. This is one reason they got pretty popular is because used enmasse forces not used to facing them would break once the shooting started because it was terrifying. That they also had advantage vs armor really tipped the scales for them even when they were very marginal improvements otherwise.


Air Cartridge Firing System, I know it's been a freaking while but for those who came here searching for an answer this is it

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Dubious Scholar wrote:
kaid wrote:
Tender Tendrils wrote:
breithauptclan wrote:
Norade wrote:
Just slather your cartridges in lard or any other sealant and go to town. The game doesn't have rules for fouling or misfires so by RAW you get to keep the water out and have an underwater rifle.
Well, there are rules for Misfires. Just not very historically accurate ones.
Generally players don't really want (they might think they do, but they actually don't) historically accurate firearms, especially flintlock era ones where it literally takes an entire minute to reload and are so inaccurate that you need people to line up and fire in volleys to be effective.
In a world where magic weapons exist the really basic type of firearms would never be used. They simply wouldn't do something you couldn't do better with the "technology" available. So going the route they went makes sense something that is at least viable to use compared to what else is available.

In all honesty... the flintlock firing squad doesn't really seem like it has any advantage over crossbows at all considering the inaccuracy, etc. Similar reload times and such. Bullets getting through armor better was a benefit... up until everyone abandoned heavy armor for obvious reasons. I think that it would have been strictly optimal to go back to crossbows at that point, except of course this is still the era of everything being run by the wealthy and connected, the eternal issue of generals fighting the last war, etc. Guns were what everyone did, therefore more guns (I'll grant that they have much more convenient profiles for transportation, but powder weapons add logistical issues that crossbows don't have due to it being volatile, useless if wet, etc. that counterbalance the advantages of lead shot being more portable, easier to make, etc)

But back to Golarion, yeah... guns are mainly used by the place that has really good guns, and everyone else is using crossbows...

By the 15th century, the arquebus had essentially replicated all of the crossbow's strengths without any of its weaknesses, rendering it obsolete. Armies were carrying black powder anyway in order to supply artillerists and sappers, so riflemen were a plus-one on a supply they already had to carry.

The unrealistic thing is having crossbows as a main weapon of war in a setting where firearms already exist in a somewhat mature form (flintlocks, which are in the setting explicitly, are more advanced than the matchlock arquebus that replaced crossbows).

Radiant Oath

I'm no historian, but I was told that a gun wasn't as tiring as a crossbow. A crossbow requires a minute of heavy rotation to wind back the firing mechanism. A gun takes a minute of light activity. The muscle required for the comparative crossbow was a significant cost in both training and calories. A unit of musketeers could practice once every few months, while a unit of crossbowmen would require weekly strength training.


Kittyburger wrote:

By the 15th century, the arquebus had essentially replicated all of the crossbow's strengths without any of its weaknesses, rendering it obsolete. Armies were carrying black powder anyway in order to supply artillerists and sappers, so riflemen were a plus-one on a supply they already had to carry.

The unrealistic thing is having crossbows as a main weapon of war in a setting where firearms already exist in a somewhat mature form (flintlocks, which are in the setting explicitly, are more advanced than the matchlock arquebus that replaced crossbows).

I beleive the team tried explaining it by the development only being common in Alkenstar and very, very rare elsewhere. However, in the real world the Portuguese sailed all the way to Japan, introduced guns to them, and the Japanese adored them so much they just started making their own, so the idea that other nations wouldn't get guns from Alkenstar (especially since it's not like they try to keep them a secret) is laughable (double laughable with all the magic shenanigans going on).

It's just a quirk of Golarion, like how basically every nation is it's own self contained thing even though realistically things should be happening (I'm looking at you, Galt).


If you read the description of the underwater shooting customization, it says it shoots the projectile using the spark from the rune.

Furthermore, the reload action in of itself does not have any prohibition on using it underwater.

If your DM is preventing you from reloading in the water while you have the mod; they are being a dingus


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AceofMoxen wrote:
I'm no historian, but I was told that a gun wasn't as tiring as a crossbow. A crossbow requires a minute of heavy rotation to wind back the firing mechanism. A gun takes a minute of light activity. The muscle required for the comparative crossbow was a significant cost in both training and calories. A unit of musketeers could practice once every few months, while a unit of crossbowmen would require weekly strength training.

Not only.

Firearms added lead as ammo in place of old bolts made of wood and iron/steel. Even having a worse hit-rate at long-range when compared to bows/crossbows their lethality over the most common cheaper armors and mounts made them rapidly replace the crossbows as main weapon for most armies. The hit-rate was rapidly compensated by skirmisher lines that compensates the low hit-rate with a salvo of shots and the lack of long-range weapons was compensated by cannons artillery.

Also due the lower training time needed to use firearms many skirmishers was able to get training in sabers and spears (bayonets in fact) to make a more versatile army instead of make months and years training specialized archers and swordsmans.

But fantasy games has a perfect excuse called "magic" that easily replaces cannons with versatile casters, gives magic armors and defensive spells perfectly fine to protect armies at a lower cost and enchant all type of weapons to become more precise and dangerous.

That's why I don't understand the need of designers into make firearms worse than bows for most classes instead of made them competitive with advantage and disadvantages when compared to medieval solutions enchanted by high-fantasy magic.

Liberty's Edge

YuriP wrote:
AceofMoxen wrote:
I'm no historian, but I was told that a gun wasn't as tiring as a crossbow. A crossbow requires a minute of heavy rotation to wind back the firing mechanism. A gun takes a minute of light activity. The muscle required for the comparative crossbow was a significant cost in both training and calories. A unit of musketeers could practice once every few months, while a unit of crossbowmen would require weekly strength training.

Not only.

Firearms added lead as ammo in place of old bolts made of wood and iron/steel. Even having a worse hit-rate at long-range when compared to bows/crossbows their lethality over the most common cheaper armors and mounts made them rapidly replace the crossbows as main weapon for most armies. The hit-rate was rapidly compensated by skirmisher lines that compensates the low hit-rate with a salvo of shots and the lack of long-range weapons was compensated by cannons artillery.

Also due the lower training time needed to use firearms many skirmishers was able to get training in sabers and spears (bayonets in fact) to make a more versatile army instead of make months and years training specialized archers and swordsmans.

But fantasy games has a perfect excuse called "magic" that easily replaces cannons with versatile casters, gives magic armors and defensive spells perfectly fine to protect armies at a lower cost and enchant all type of weapons to become more precise and dangerous.

That's why I don't understand the need of designers into make firearms worse than bows for most classes instead of made them competitive with advantage and disadvantages when compared to medieval solutions enchanted by high-fantasy magic.

So that firearms can be enchanted by high-fantasy magic too.


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I know. I'm just saying that due the presence of magic would be easily to level them with other magic weapons.
But that train has already passed. My hope now in this sense is SF2.

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