Rail cannon (with adamantine rounds) vs cover


Rules Questions

351 to 369 of 369 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:

That the line weapon stops when it hits cover or a creature it can't damage from hardness does not mean that that's the only way it stops.

True. It also stops at the end of its range.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:
But they're situational. What other ability is nearly as powerful as ignore cover, ignore concealment, shoot at someone through a 30 foot wall and hit multiple targets all at once? What people are reading as the rules makes line way out of line for other abilities paizo has put on the guns.

I don't actually believe line weapons get to ignore total concealment to be honest (you at least have to pick the right square in a line), but to do a straight up comparison, explode weapons can potentially do all that.

1) Explode weapons ignore cover between the attacker and the target if
A) The target intersection doesn't have cover to the target
and
B) There is no total cover to that particular intersection chosen.

Throwing a grenade or a shock caster projectile through a door or window into a room is a classic opening action to hit enemies you don't have line of effect to from outside the room.

It also far more likely to hit multiple targets than picking a single line through the room. (20' burst hits like 44 squares, where as a 80 foot line hits at most 16, less if the room isn't 16 squares wide).

2) Explode weapons ignore concealment

3) Explode weapons hit multiple targets

4) They can't go directly through 30 feet of cover, but they potentially can go around something like 400 feet (Shock Caster) to 1000 feet (Plasma Cannon) of cover, if there's a corridor or open space adjacent to the wall or mountain. Throw the grenade or projectile down the corridor and hit targets 5 to 20 feet to the side. They'll be making the save almost automatically (ranged penalties apply to saving throw DC) but as long as they don't have evasion, it'll be doing more than most other weapons.

Lets compare against Blast while we're at it:

1) Blast explicitly ignores concealment.
2) Blast hits multiple targets
3) Blast does not ignore cover, nor does it go around cover.

On the other hand, blast weapons at higher levels hit many more squares. A 60 foot blast weapon hits a 60 foot cone, which is 96 squares. There's a level 5 Divergent laser heavy weapon that can do that (1d8+specialization damage).

Compare that to the 8 squares of the level 7 Burner Salamander class heavy weapon (2d10+specialization damage).

To be honest, the line weapon kinda needs something like going through cover to be competitive compared to the other AoE weapons. You'll be hitting multiple targets with the other AoE weapons much more often than a line weapon will.


Hiruma Kai wrote:
, explode weapons can potentially do all that.

You are REALLY. really reaching with these.

You can take a level 1 pistol walk around the corner and shoot. Thats an argument for ANY weapon ignoring cover.

If someone is around a corner you somehow have to have an idea they're standing there (and not next to any valuable loot)

Explode weapons allow a saving throw for half (or no) damage against their effects.

Blast hits everything in a cone, which is harder to aim.

A line weapon being slightly worse than blast isn't that far out of line: something is going to be the worst line weapon.

But ignore cover? Thats a very frequent +4 to hit.
You can also shoot at people through walls and they can't shoot back at you: you're not usually doing enough damage to make a hole, especially on the thick walls. As people are reading it a line weapon deals 11 points of damage zips through 30 feet of stone and takes off 1 of its 270ish hit points every 10 feet. Turn any wall into an unbeatable gunport.

Quote:
(you at least have to pick the right square in a line)

Nope. You make an attack against everyone in the line. Doesn't matter if you see them.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Hiruma Kai wrote:
, explode weapons can potentially do all that.

You are REALLY. really reaching with these.

You can take a level 1 pistol walk around the corner and shoot. Thats an argument for ANY weapon ignoring cover.

Except I don't have to actually move to go around their cover with an explosive weapon. Which is basically the same as a line weapon.

Take a hallway between two rooms. Or a tunnel between caverns.
Apologies for the terrible map:

Quote:

1_2_3_X__4_5_6

WWW____WWW
WWW____W
WWW____W
WWW____W
WWW____WWW
____C

If character C drops a 20 foot radius explosion at X, it can hit enemies at positions 1,2,3,4,5,6 no problem. There's no line of effect to 1,2,3,5,6. 4 Benefits from cover, except in this case, the explosion goes around it and doesn't provide the +2 to reflex saves. A line weapon can in principle hit 1 target (maybe 2 depending on how the line is drawn).

Isn't this what we're talking about? You know someone is over there, but don't have line of effect, and also don't want to move to where you have line of effect, because you don't want to get shot by 6 enemies without cover?

BigNorseWolf wrote:
If someone is around a corner you somehow have to have an idea they're standing there (and not next to any valuable loot)

How does that not also apply to firing line weapons blindly? If you have no idea they're standing there, why are you firing your line weapon? A line weapon isn't guaranteed to avoid hitting valuable loot either when fired blind.

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Explode weapons allow a saving throw for half (or no) damage against their effects.

Yes, which is approximately as good as having to roll to hit them. Better for 3/4 BAB classes, worse for a Soldier. The only time explode weapons that deal damage do nothing is when the target has evasion.

A typical 3/4 BAB class at 10th level is going to have +7 to hit, and if maxed for ranged combat, 24 Dex for +7 to hit from Dex. +14 to hit vs 25 KAC with a railgun. 50% miss, 45% hit, 5% crit for double. So on average 55% effective damage.

Now take a 10th level explode weapon, and that 24 Dex to get a DC 22 save against +12 reflex save. 40/60 odds for full damage or half. That is 70% effective damage on average.

Soldiers can in principle hit 85% effective damage with EAC targeting weapons and weapon focus. 75% if they're using a railgun targeting KAC.

So in terms of applying damage, they're pretty close on average. And the worst case is much better in the case of explode weapons (I've literally seen an operative not roll higher than a 3 on their attacks for an entire combat).

BigNorseWolf wrote:

Blast hits everything in a cone, which is harder to aim.

A line weapon being slightly worse than blast isn't that far out of line: something is going to be the worst line weapon.

If I've got 8 enemy mooks, I'd much rather have the blast weapon than the line weapon. I'm much more likely to catch 3 or 4 (or even 8 of them), where as that is highly unlikely with a line weapon.

BigNorseWolf wrote:

But ignore cover? Thats a very frequent +4 to hit.

You can also shoot at people through walls and they can't shoot back at you: you're not usually doing enough damage to make a hole, especially on the thick walls. As people are reading it a line weapon deals 11 points of damage zips through 30 feet of stone and takes off 1 of its 270ish hit points every 10 feet. Turn any wall into an unbeatable gunport.

At the beginning, you pointed out anyone could just walk around the cover and shoot. Why can't your targets do this? Go down the hall to where you are, or simply walk away from the room they are in? Get 110 feet away or something. Are they trapped for some reason in their room?

Quote:
Quote:
(you at least have to pick the right square in a line)
Nope. You make an attack against everyone in the line. Doesn't matter if you see them.

My apologies, I meant to say if someone has total concealment, you have to somehow know where they are to have the line go over their square. Make a perception check or something against a +20 DC since they're unseen and presumably moved. +40 DC if they aren't moving. If they're in a giant cement box 100 feet away through a mountain than I'd argue have 0% chance of success of locating them with a perception check.

Generally when a target has total concealment, you don't automatically know which square they're in. So you say I'm shooting a line between squares A and B. And you have to hope the enemy is somewhere between A and B, and not 10 feet over from the line.

In which case, hitting more squares matters, as you get more chances to get lucky. Which is a point in favor of exploding weapons.

Perhaps it just me, but I tend to see the ideal situation for a line weapon happens much less than the ideal situation for an explode weapon, and they basically roll the same number of damage dice.


Quote:
If character C drops a 20 foot radius explosion at X, it can hit enemies at positions 1,2,3,4,5,6 no problem. There's no line of effect to 1,2,3,5,6.

That's incorrect. Both 3 and 4 have line of effect back at you, albeit with cover if they're shooting. 3 can shoot from his southeast corner and 4 can shoot from his south west corner. (the alternative is that everyone has cover in a 5 foot hallway)

I also don't see explode 20 feet on anything under a level 16 weapon. If shooting through mountains was relegated to high level play you might have a point, but by the global reading of the rule the S Mart brand mini gun can do it in the hands of a third level soldier.

Quote:
How does that not also apply to firing line weapons blindly? If you have no idea they're standing there, why are you firing your line weapon? A line weapon isn't guaranteed to avoid hitting valuable loot either when fired blind.

Using your map C pokes his head around the corner Sees 3 and 4 standing there and a wall behind him, moves 1 space west and fires a line down to hit 3.

Quote:
Now take a 10th level explode weapon

Here's the problem with that.

You don't upgrade your weapon every level. You can't. So while you're ahead when your weapon has a brand spanking new price tag it starts to lag behind a little for a few levels until you get a new one. And if your explode weapon isn't your main one, it gets even worse.

Quote:
If I've got 8 enemy mooks, I'd much rather have the blast weapon than the line weapon. I'm much more likely to catch 3 or 4 (or even 8 of them), where as that is highly unlikely with a line weapon.

8 mooks is a niche market. Cover is ubiquitous.

Quote:
t the beginning, you pointed out anyone could just walk around the cover and shoot. Why can't your targets do this? Go down the hall to where you are, or simply walk away from the room they are in? Get 110 feet away or something. Are they trapped for some reason in their room?

For DM cheese, a camera and a machine gun shooting through the wall. Make it a maze if you really want

As a group of PCs just send the melee vesk down the hall

Quote:
Perhaps it just me, but I tend to see the ideal situation for a line weapon happens much less than the ideal situation for an explode weapon, and they basically roll the same number of damage dice.

And you may be right on this. I haven't tried playing with either enough to know. My ranged character is an envoy and her move action is usually spoken for so a line weapon or explode into my own party isn't really an option.

But that a line weapon is useless/so much worse that it ignores cover (which comes up constantly) and shoots through 30 foot thick walls or it's useless....? Yeah. no.


If we're talking balance, I don't see any reason the railgun in question would ignore concealment, so even generously, you can shoot, but you've got 50% miss chance baked in too. No different than firing at an invisible target.


Hiruma Kai wrote:
Except I don't have to actually move to go around their cover with an explosive weapon. Which is basically the same as a line weapon.

Not exactly.

Let's say you have to take over a building. If you manage to hack the cameras, you can shoot everyone inside with your Adamantine Rounds Railguns without any chance of retaliation (you can even jam the entrance door so noone can get out while you kill them).
If you're in a room no more than 100ft long, you can cast Wall of Force: no save, no SR, autowin spell.

So, no, not basically the same :)
Line weapons ignoring cover is just trivializing many indoor fights.
And I hope I'll never play a fight on each side of a wall (or walls). That would be the most pointless fight ever...


SuperBidi wrote:

Not exactly.

Let's say you have to take over a building. If you manage to hack the cameras, you can shoot everyone inside with your Adamantine Rounds Railguns without any chance of retaliation (you can even jam the entrance door so noone can get out while you kill them).
If you're in a room no more than 100ft long, you can cast Wall of Force: no save, no SR, autowin spell.

Unprepared answer anyone can do: I shoot the camera.

If you're relying on cameras, then a simple level 1 signal jammer will buy you 10 rounds guaranteed preventing communication of the camera images to the guy with the rail cannon, and ion tape will permanently defeat a camera you can't destroy for some reason. Alternatively counter hack the cameras.

Edit: I seriously recommend the 100 credit level 1 signal jammer to every adventuring party. The DC doesn't matter as it always takes 1 minute to try to get around the jamming. By which time nearly any fight is going to be finished. Really handy when ambushing enemy patrols.

As for wall of force, it lasts between 13 and 20 rounds depending on caster with hardness of 30. No point in adamantine rounds in that case since they don't ignore it. However, at 13th and above level, many classes have options to get around it. If you're in a large building, simply moving to another floor will work. Or exiting out a window. Or the back door (doesn't the Pactworlds have fire codes?)

If there's a techomancer in the party they can just teleport away.

A ghost operative might just walk through a different wall to outside.

A solarian on turn 3 can just wormhole everyone through.

Thats not even including high level consumables and magic items. Any high level party without a technomancer really should buy a tiara of translocation or two.

Any crazy high level plan you come up with, there's generally a reasonable set of precautions for the other side to take at around that level.

Also, does anyone who is remotely serious about security not air gap their internal security systems from the outside world?

Edit: I just realized something. How much do adamantine bullets cost? Is it 50+4.5 for each individual adamantine heavy round? Thats like 272.5 credits per shot on the level 3 tactical rail cannon. That is not remotely economically reasonable for a primary weapon until like 10th level and above if I'm understanding this right.

Edit 2:

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Quote:
If character C drops a 20 foot radius explosion at X, it can hit enemies at positions 1,2,3,4,5,6 no problem. There's no line of effect to 1,2,3,5,6.
That's incorrect. Both 3 and 4 have line of effect back at you, albeit with cover if they're shooting. 3 can shoot from his southeast corner and 4 can shoot from his south west corner. (the alternative is that everyone has cover in a 5 foot hallway)

Just wanted to say thanks for pointing this out and that I had missed that distinction. You're right, 3 should have cover, not total cover. I now realize that means 5 foot wide pillars can never provide total cover, which is good to know.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Hiruma Kai wrote:

If you're relying on cameras, then a simple level 1 signal jammer will buy you 10 rounds guaranteed preventing communication of the camera images to the guy with the rail cannon, and ion tape will permanently defeat a camera you can't destroy for some reason. Alternatively counter hack the cameras.

Edit: I seriously recommend the 100 credit level 1 signal jammer to every adventuring party. The DC doesn't matter as it always takes 1 minute to try to get around the jamming. By which time nearly any fight is going to be finished. Really handy when ambushing enemy patrols.

The problem with that is the following rule:

Each signal jammer is designed to affect one specific broadcasting medium (such as radio or wireless).

We have no idea what kind of broadcasting mediums there are in this setting. The device only lists two, but this is a campaign we're telepathy-only-enabled devices and other weird broadcasting technologies like that can exist.

It's kind of hard to get a device to block something you can't even understand on a fundamental level. You basically have to have a favorable GM on your side to get it to work at all.

I for one have taken to writing "blocks comm units" on my character sheets. Since I don't know what kind of broadcasting mediums there are, I instead write down what kind of devices I intend for it to block. At least I know what those are.

Hiruma Kai wrote:
Also, does anyone who is remotely serious about security not air gap their internal security systems from the outside world?

This does nothing to stop a mechanic or technomancer from using their class abilities to hack the system. Those abilities somehow manage to work even if the device is a closed system that isn't broadcasting any form of wireless signal. At least the technomancer can call it magic, but a mechanic...uses nanites or something similar to physically breach the system...I guess?

The game developers made it clear how they want these rules to work, but you really can't look at it TOO closely or nothing will ever come out making any sense at all. It all comes down to "magic" or "super science" I suppose.


Also not hard to run a camera with a hardline through the wall


Hiruma Kai wrote:
Unprepared answer anyone can do: I shoot the camera.

It doesn't change the issue, the game will be more a question of how to look through walls (Detect Thoughts, Magic, Undead, Arcane Eye, Cameras, Stealth Drones, Tremorsense, Blindsense, whatever) than a game of fighting enemies. As soon as an enemy is detected, he takes one shot per PC per round. Infravision goggles are an autowin for at least 20% of fights.

Hiruma Kai wrote:
Edit: I just realized something. How much do adamantine bullets cost? Is it 50+4.5 for each individual adamantine heavy round? Thats like 272.5 credits per shot on the level 3 tactical rail cannon. That is not remotely economically reasonable for a primary weapon until like 10th level and above if I'm understanding this right.

It cost the same price as what you would use in a combat: you don't shoot randomly, you specifically shoot at a guy.

Also, expect players to build large bulletproof glass shields or anything similar, providing them total cover while they shoot enemies on the other side. Portable invincibility.

Anyway, this rule is clearly the type of rule you can abuse like crazy. Allowing it is opening Pandora box: You will trivialize a lot of combats or create hour long discussions on the possibility to determine someone's location from a camera footage, or the chances for Bob to be in the toilets right now.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I once borrowed the party soldier's machine gun and let loose on a group of enemies that were about to overwhelm us. Rather than thank me, he made me pay him back for all the adamantine bullets I had wasted. Ouch.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:


Anyway, this rule is clearly the type of rule you can abuse like crazy. Allowing it is opening Pandora box: You will trivialize a lot of combats or create hour long discussions on the possibility to determine someone's location from a camera footage, or the chances for Bob to be in the toilets right now.

*weaponizes profession chef and shows up at the facility 1 an hour earlier with a burrito cart*


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Seems like some folks are forgetting that the line weapon doesn't ignore barriers; it damages them and the things behind them.

Carrying around giant glass shields is a good way to waste money and time; not a very effective tactic.

Y'all are describing some pretty outlandish scenarios you think players (or GMs) would pull to get a couple rounds of advantage.

Even if they do: concocting elaborate plans to try to get an advantage on your enemy is a time-honored gaming tradition.


HastyMantis wrote:
Seems like some folks are forgetting that the line weapon doesn't ignore barriers; it damages them and the things behind them.

I haven't understood what you are implying. It damages them, but only destroy them if they deal enough hit points. So, you can find something hard enough and transparent you can use as a moving wall.

HastyMantis wrote:
Even if they do: concocting elaborate plans to try to get an advantage on your enemy is a time-honored gaming tradition.

Elaborate, everything is in that word. I'm speaking of using always the same plan as soon as you are indoor.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
SuperBidi wrote:
HastyMantis wrote:
Seems like some folks are forgetting that the line weapon doesn't ignore barriers; it damages them and the things behind them.
I haven't understood what you are implying. It damages them, but only destroy them if they deal enough hit points. So, you can find something hard enough and transparent you can use as a moving wall.

So, transparent aluminum. Hardness 10, 15 hp per inch of thickness. By the time they can get a null-space chamber big enough to move their 100 bulk, 2 inch thick wall, they're also going to be using weapons that will destroy it in one or two shots. Plus, the enemies also get to act. A moving wall isn't a feasible plan. If it was, people would already be doing that with arrow slits.

SuperBidi wrote:


HastyMantis wrote:
Even if they do: concocting elaborate plans to try to get an advantage on your enemy is a time-honored gaming tradition.
Elaborate, everything is in that word. I'm speaking of using always the same plan as soon as you are indoor.

If a GM doesn't react to what the players do and just lets the same lazy plan work again and again the game won't run long, so don't worry about it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
HastyMantis wrote:
A moving wall isn't a feasible plan. If it was, people would already be doing that with arrow slits.

Except they are. They're called riot shields, and they're on their way to Starfinder. :P


Yeah, Riot Shield are in the playtest.

Although they have drawbacks.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Claxon wrote:

Yeah, Riot Shield are in the playtest.

Although they have drawbacks.

And rules, notably.

351 to 369 of 369 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Starfinder / Rules Questions / Rail cannon (with adamantine rounds) vs cover All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.