Mechanics of adding fusions to ammunition


Rules Questions


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So the book says you can add fusions to ammunition, however there's a lot left up to the reader to decide about how this functions, that or I missed something. I'd like to discuss the mechanic's involved in doing this. Here's a few starter questions.

If my ammo has a damage modifying fusion can on turn it on and off with a swift action as I can with a weapon? I've, actually I do want to hurt you with these merciful rounds, I'm gonna deactivate that fusion.

Do you add fusions by individual pieces (the book mentions pieces) or by lot?

Most of the ammos for basic weapons have an item level of 1. Does that mean I can't make holy fusions darts/shells/rounds?

Can any of the "once per day" fusions be placed on ammunition? If so, how does that interact with multiple lots having the same fusion. Or I have 50 darts with entangling, can I use 1 dart from each lot once per day so in total so I get 2 uses per day until I've used them all up?

Personally I like the idea that you can make special ammunition with fusions, but I feel like ammunition and other consumables should have had their own set of fusion separate from weapon fusions if only for clarity's sake.


Does nobody know the answers to these questions, or am I just missing it somewhere?


Nobody knows. The rules as written are odd.


I'm bumping this because this is important and really needs an FAQ.


You and I both. There are at least 2 FAQs re: ammunition fusions by lot or by individual piece of ammo. I can see where per-shot works for grenades and missiles ... per bullet, not so much. Part of the problem with per-shot fusion costs is that it is a radical departure from PF/3e on enchanted ammo. It is still more expensive as IIRC ammunition's largest lot is 30 rounds, while the smaller lots go to, what, 10 or 15?

It also does not help that you have to buy fusions as fusion seals for almost all of the ammunition in-game except higher IL grenades and missiles. fusions only work for its specific item level. fusion seals work for specified item level or lower, with the implication being that fusion sealed ammunition is burned up instead of being transferable. The 10% surcharge is a convenience fee at lower levels. At higher levels it gets very expensive.


That is an excellent point about fusion seals and would be really helpful to note for those guys who are trying to get the merciful fusion onto needler weapons.


Actually I checked and the fusion seal trick does not work :(

"A fusion seal can’t be added to a weapon if doing so would cause the weapon’s total level of fusions (including the level of the fusion seal) to exceed its item level or if the weapon is not a legitimate choice for the fusion within the fusion seal."


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.
baggageboy wrote:

Actually I checked and the fusion seal trick does not work :(

"A fusion seal can’t be added to a weapon if doing so would cause the weapon’s total level of fusions (including the level of the fusion seal) to exceed its item level or if the weapon is not a legitimate choice for the fusion within the fusion seal."

Sure it does.

Fusion Seals wrote:


A fusion seal affects only weapons of a given level or less, as noted in parentheses after the name of the fusion seal.

So buying holy fusion sealed small arm rounds (2nd) works as both a 2nd level fusion seal and on the IL 1st small arms rounds. A holy fusion sealed high-capacity battery (4th) should work in any energy weapon that takes a high-capacity battery (capacity 40 or greater).

The questions are (a) how do fusions and fusion seals actually work on ammunition given the generally very low item level of ammunition as compared to the weaponry that fires them; and (b) is the design intent to charge per-round/per-battery-charge whereas the preceding game mechanics established ammunition costs as per-lot?


But then is says you can't put it on a weapon you couldn't put the fusion on. I think it means the fusion seal level sets a max level weapon it can go on, and the fusion level itself sets a minimum weapon/item level it can go on. It's kinda stupid though because it would mean that the only consumables that could have more than a level 1 fusion (seal or not) would be grenades, heavy weapon rounds and missiles :(

Also I don't think you can put a fusion on a battery as it is not really ammunition...


Batteries are on the ammunition table, but it would be very unbalancing if you could place a fusion on a battery. You could create a holy battery for dirt cheap and then use it for your career in better and better weapons because you can put a smaller battery in a gun, just not a bigger one. Where as the consumables (which the text seems to imply all of the ammunition with fusions are) are gone once you use them. Also since they have negligible bulk you could easily acquire a whole assortment of special batteries and just load up whichever is applicable at the time. It would make energy weapons WAY WAY better than kinetic weapons which they arguably already are.


Which seems counter-intuitive. Batteries are consumed by energy weapons in the same way that everything else consumes ammunition. Higher-end energy weapons eat up the ultra-capacity batteries at a similar rate to automatic weapons and far faster than comparable projectile weaponry.

Batteries with fusions/fusion seals are wasted when used outside of weapons. Given the cosmetic changes on such batteries it is incredibly unlikely someone will mistakenly slot them into their jetpack or otherwise use them to power non-weapon devices.

Without a specific statement otherwise, one can reasonably assume that a depleted fusion-enhanced or fusion-sealed battery bought at the half-price mark loses its benefit once depleted. When recharged the magic doesn't return. If full price was paid then I would absolutely expect the magic to be permanent regardless of the battery's remaining charges, whether depleted, partially charged or fully charged.


Well batteries themselves are not consumed only the charges they are holding. and I can recharge my batteries for free at my ship, it isn't like I have to do a swap out like you do with a propane tank IRL.

BTW thanks for discussing this with me. I hope we can get some clarification on all these rules.


Until you get back to your ship with the depleted batteries. ;)

Glad to discuss this as the implications are considerable. It would be nice to have this resolved during these early days of game publication so everyone's on the same page going forward.


Yeah, I'm not exactly sure how weapon seals and ammunition interact either, considering how many different kinds of ammunition there are and how some can be replenished and some can't.

For the time being, I'd say that it's probably safer to place Fusion Seals on guns rather than bullets.


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.

So what I've pulled from the Equipment chapter is:
1) Special material is priced per bullet, and seems resonably so.

2) A holy seal (10th), the example given, should cost 3,938 cr, and can go on any weapon between 2nd and 10th level.

3) It really seems like ammo is per bullet when adding fusions, and there are almost none that work as written.

We really need a dev to drop by, this is about as bad as the batteries.

Even making enough anchoring needles to fill a magazine would cost 380 credits, and you'd only get 6 of them.

Though reading the section on fusions, it sounds like the restriction on exceeding item level only applies to weapons. Right after that it mentions putting them on ammo, etc.

If it is per box, and ammo is exempt from item level restrictions, then those needles cost 80 credits, and you get 25 of them.

So my big questions are,
1) does ammo count as a weapon for fusion seals, specifically the rule against exceeding the item level.

2) Per piece or per box?

3) Holy batteries? How would that work?

The Exchange

Seriously we do. And not all ammo is created equal. Without even touching batteries heavy weapon rounds are a level 2 item. There are a lot of good level 2 fusions, like holy and Blast. Personally I feel like we shouldn't be able to attach limited per day abilities to ammo. Because why buy a scattergun or something with the automatic quality when you can just slide a clip of blast ammo into your reaction cannon. At 180 a shot that's actually even cheaper than spending a clip off the bigger guns to use automatic, and you get better range and damage than the built in blast weapons.


Also, if level of ammunition doesn't matter for a fusion, can you put multiple fusions on a single piece of ammo? Or holy and shocking


My theory: ammunition fusions are only meant to be used for grenades.


It would work that way, but it specifically called out ammunition as well as grenades.


Maybe that's just future proofing. Also, the painfully high cost doesn't matter as much for GM plot devices or for loot.


... Future proofing is leaving open reference to content that does not yet exist. Referencing ammunition when we have tables of ammunition is not future proofing...

If it was a GM plot device, it should go in the GM section with artifacts and MacGuffins, IMO. Chapter 7 is for PCs.


River of Sticks wrote:

... Future proofing is leaving open reference to content that does not yet exist. Referencing ammunition when we have tables of ammunition is not future proofing...

If it was a GM plot device, it should go in the GM section with artifacts and MacGuffins, IMO. Chapter 7 is for PCs.

By future-proofing, I just meant that in the future there might be more ammunition worth putting fusions on.

The NPCs often don't need to be cost-effective like PCs should, so an option can be effectively GM-only, even if it's not in the GM section.


Regardless, the rules are very unclear Please FAQ so we can get some Dev input on this. Thanks


Bump.


At this point I dont expect any FAQ/ eratta until October, just before the Alien Archive release.


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That is quite dressing as there are many topics, including this one, that really need some clarification.


Has anyone had any new insights on this? I know Mad Comrade in particular was planning on creating a lot of specialized ammo for use in a scattergun, which is an idea I like a lot if it's legal/financially viable.


4 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

So, I'm going to do some unrepentant necromancy here, in the hopes that more people will click the FAQ button, because there has never been an answer, as far as I can tell, and the rules regarding ammunition fusions are still completely unclear.

An official answer would be very helpful regarding:

1) Whether the fusion price is "per shot" or "per lot"

2) Whether enchanted batteries retain their magic when recharged

3) Whether once per day fusions are once per day per shot, once per day per weapon, or some other variation

4) Whether it is possible to derive benefit from a fusioned battery in powered armor


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I am bumping this thread one more time, to ask people to please help with the FAQ request, since nothing published since these questions first came up has offered any clarification. We have a system here that could add a lot if interesting customization to projectile weapons (maybe other weapons, based on whether batteries take fusions and how that works?), if we knew how to uset aNY ofurther it.


I was perusing through the fusions section earlier today, and I found some segments that may help answer some lingering questions. My thoughts on these matters can all be wrong though, as I am not a designer for the game.

baggageboy wrote:
If my ammo has a damage modifying fusion can on turn it on and off with a swift action as I can with a weapon? I've, actually I do want to hurt you with these merciful rounds, I'm gonna deactivate that fusion.
CRB p.191 wrote:
Any decisions that must be made when a fusion is added to a weapon are made when a fusion seal is created, and they can’t be changed.

I read this as, "If you added the fusion to a piece of ammo via fusion seal, the fusion's effect will always be considered active when you fire that ammo." Because the effect being active or not is a decision that can only be made when the fusion is on a weapon. Unless your GM is messing with you, nobody is going to craft a fusion seal that is permanently deactivated. However, if the fusion was applied directly to the ammo, you could turn it off. I don't see why you would want to do that though, as you'd effectively be throwing credits into the void, but you could.

baggageboy wrote:
Do you add fusions by individual pieces (the book mentions pieces) or by lot?
CRB p.192 wrote:
You can install a fusion into a grenade, a piece of ammunition, or another consumable item; such a fusion costs half the normal price of a weapon fusion for a weapon of the same level.

Given the section I bolded, I believe a fusion (and by extension fusion seal) can only be added to a single piece of ammo at a time, and not to the full box you would buy from your local arms dealer. While this is annoying, there is the caveat that it costs 50% less to install it.

baggageboy wrote:
Most of the ammos for basic weapons have an item level of 1. Does that mean I can't make holy fusions darts/shells/rounds?

I can't find a segment to clarify this, but I'd say this entirely depends on whether ammo is treated as "a weapon" for the purposes of all the other rules in the section.

baggageboy wrote:
Can any of the "once per day" fusions be placed on ammunition? If so, how does that interact with multiple lots having the same fusion. Or I have 50 darts with entangling, can I use 1 dart from each lot once per day so in total so I get 2 uses per day until I've used them all up?

Assuming I am correct about the segment I quoted earlier pertaining to 1 fusion (or seal) per piece of ammo, I would say that "once per day" fusions should be treated as "once per day per gun they're used in." This would then require you to either carry several guns, or simply hold off on firing all the pieces of ammo in one combat encounter.

I hope we can all derive some use out of what I found, but we still really need Mr. Pasini or somebody on the dev team to clarify all of this.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

The "decisions made" issue is for fusion seals, not fusions. Also, the merciful switch isn't one that you make when a fusion is applied; it's an ongoing feature.

Regarding pricing, we really do need some clarification on this. It has a similar issue to special materials, though at least they specify that they go on individual rounds. For both of them, you run into an issue where there isn't a rule to support buying an individual bullet (for most regular ammo types).

For special materials, at least they're priced way below what you'd pay to put the same on a reusable (in that case melee) weapon. The fusions being 50% off is more in line with them being "by the box" in that they're cheaper with less utility. Making it by the round would make the costs scale much worst. A box of holy heavy rounds would be 3,690, as opposed to 360 for a 2nd level weapon.

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