Where is Kasatha's heavy weaponry?


General Discussion


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This is really a question. Look at all the pictures of Kasathas, they are always using light weapons, when they are not using hyper light weapons. Take Jadnura, the guy's supposed to be some kind of heavy fighter... He is equiped with a light machine gun and a knife. Where is Kasatha's heavy weaponry?
Kasathas don't have 2 pair of arms, they have 4 arms. A longarm is an Operative weapon for them. They should have 4-armed weaponry as there basic equipment as much as all our war equipment is 2-armed equipment.

Currently, I haven't seen a single Kasatha PC while playing SFS. They clearly lack charisma. Give them a real heavy weapon, and I'm pretty sure it'll change a lot. I'm not asking for anything hyper strong, but just something logical. One line of Heavy 4-armed Weapons and one line of Advanced 4-armed Weapons.
Kasathas need more love <3


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If thats your idea of a light machine gun I want to join your gym.


Flame Spinner has the weapon property "free hand (2)". So if you use 3 hands you overcome the unwieldy property.


BigNorseWolf wrote:
If thats your idea of a light machine gun I want to join your gym.

It uses half of his hands, so it's a Uzi for him. He should be able to trick attack with it.

A heavy machinegun should be twice that big. Kasathas have a bonus to strength to make up for that :)

I know it's hard to design 4-armed weaponry because we're not used to it. But I clearly don't see a 4-armed race using so small weaponry.


SuperBidi wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
If thats your idea of a light machine gun I want to join your gym.
It uses half of his hands, so it's a Uzi for him. He should be able to trick attack with it.

Erm, no? Having more arms doesn't change the body mechanics of what you do with those arms.


A four armed weapon would be some sort of mechanical nightmare thingamabob.

Some sort of blast weapon held to the chest designed to be wielded by four arms sounds plausible.

It doesn't sound any more effective than one wielded by two arms with the same humanoid body supporting each version.

Now, regarding Urogs, contemplatives, those sorts of aliens that don't have a humanoid body structure. They are far more likely to have uniquely wielded weaponry available to them.


Nerdy Canuck wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
If thats your idea of a light machine gun I want to join your gym.
It uses half of his hands, so it's a Uzi for him. He should be able to trick attack with it.
Erm, no? Having more arms doesn't change the body mechanics of what you do with those arms.

Its not 1/2 your hands that defines what is an operative weapon or not.


Garretmander wrote:
A four armed weapon would be some sort of mechanical nightmare thingamabob.

That's it. But not necessarily.

For example, if Jadnura had a properly sized heavy machinegun, he would hold it in between his 2 right arms, his arms circling it (ala Space Harrier). With his upper left arm aiming and his lower left arm holding a line of ammunition, for example. The weapon would be far more impressive than his current light machine gun.
And it could have funny Kasatha name, like heavy peacebringer, graviton photonizer, solar judgment or whatever.

Neuromancer wrote:
Its not 1/2 your hands that defines what is an operative weapon or not.

I'm not speaking rule wise. I'm speaking lore wise. For a Kasatha, a Longarm is as light as a pistol for a human. Kasathas can dual wield greatswords.

In my opinion, there's a lack of imagination when it comes to 4-armed or 6-armed weapons. There should be proper weapon lines to use them.
In terms of rules, I don't know how the designers could include them without making them too sexy, but as Kasathas are currently amongst the less sexy races of the game, I don't think it would unbalance the whole game. So, something like special weapons considered heavy weapons by Kasathas and asking for 14-16 Strength to be properly used.


SuperBidi wrote:
I'm not speaking rule wise. I'm speaking lore wise. For a Kasatha, a Longarm is as light as a pistol for a human. Kasathas can dual wield greatswords.

Again, no - they have a higher minimum Strength, but the same maximum Strength as humans.


SuperBidi wrote:


And it could have funny Kasatha name, like heavy peacebringer, graviton photonizer, solar judgment or whatever.

Recoil Express


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

While I'm sure its just an aesthetic choice, if not a complete coincidence, why not imagine it as a meaningful setting element? Not many pictures of Kasatha with heavy weapons exist, because Kasatha military tradition deemphasizes heavy weapons. After all, the Kasatha of the Pact Worlds spent a century in a generation ship where man portable heavy weapons would be basically useless; and before that, they lived in a society that grew out of the equivalent of a horse nomad culture. Both of those would logically influence Kasatha military thinking.

Given this prompting, I imagine the Kasatha favor lighter ( relatively ) weapons, with an emphasis on mobility and precision. A Kasatha carrying some kind of four-handed machine gun is a Kasatha who is easily flanked and picked off. If you need heavy firepower? Better to mount it on a light vehicle, or some kind of supportive drone.


Kasatha will be plenty sexy once shields come out in the COM and they can fire heavy weapons through a portable plexiglass barrier.

Sovereign Court

I would like to see weaponry designed specifically with members of the four-armed conspiracy in mind.


Nerdy Canuck wrote:
Again, no - they have a higher minimum Strength, but the same maximum Strength as humans.

Vesks and Gnomes have the same maximum strength, so all Vesks should use tooth picks as weapons of choice?

Metaphysician wrote:
Not many pictures of Kasatha with heavy weapons exist, because Kasatha military tradition deemphasizes heavy weapons.

I'm ok with that. But Kasatha military tradition should emphasize something. And if this something is using only a portion of their arms, then this something straight loses against a military tradition which uses all of them.

Right now, if you look at all Kasatha images on the net, you'll find just a bunch of them using all 4 arms for weaponry. I've found only one which is looking like a perfectly viable weapon setup.

I think it's time to give Kasathas their proper place!

It's true that shields make things better. At least, they'll use 1 extra arm.


SuperBidi wrote:
Nerdy Canuck wrote:
Again, no - they have a higher minimum Strength, but the same maximum Strength as humans.
Vesks and Gnomes have the same maximum strength, so all Vesks should use tooth picks as weapons of choice?

A Vesk and a Gnome with the same Strength score don't find the same object to have any difference of weight.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber

As long as those 4-6 arm requiring weapons get balanced properly, I don't see much of an issue.
A bulk score of 10+ should do the trick. Yes you get your fancy big weapon, but you'll also be encumbered.


Damanta wrote:

As long as those 4-6 arm requiring weapons get balanced properly, I don't see much of an issue.

A bulk score of 10+ should do the trick. Yes you get your fancy big weapon, but you'll also be encumbered.

There's enough cheap ways to add to your carrying capacity that thats no problem at all, load lifter armor upgrades, might of the ecendroth, starfinder backpack...


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So what if you have four arms? You still only have one brain and one set of eyes and one fixed lifting capacity. An empty hand is only a loss if the presumption is that the empty hand would be filled with something useful, which quite a lot of the time is not going to be the case. If a heavy weapon is too heavy to be properly used by someone with two hands, its going to still be too heavy to be used by someone with the same strength who has four hands.


Metaphysician wrote:
If a heavy weapon is too heavy to be properly used by someone with two hands, its going to still be too heavy to be used by someone with the same strength who has four hands.

So, if a weapon is too heavy to be properly used by someone with one hand, it's going to be too heavy to be used by someone with the same strength who has 2 hands?

And why do we get 1.5 times strength to damage when using a longsword with 2 hands in Pathfinder?

4 arms = twice the strength of 2 arms. You can hold far bigger weapons. That's basic anatomy.

PS: I don't mean anything rules related. I would understand Kasathas not to have "better" weapons than everyone else. I'm just speaking about lore, adding some very heavy weapons based on 4 arms, whatever their stats. Damantha example is the type of thing I would add, some nasty weapon but with some drawbacks due to its extreme size.


Weapons need to be able to be used by all PCs with the standard 2 hands.

It's okay to give them the Free Hands (2) quality, however, to make Kasatha a little better at using them.


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SuperBidi wrote:


PS: I don't mean anything rules related. I would understand Kasathas not to have "better" weapons than everyone else. I'm just speaking about lore, adding some very heavy weapons based on 4 arms, whatever their stats. Damantha example is the type of thing I would add, some nasty weapon but with some drawbacks due to its extreme size.

If you put out a weapon that is better but has drawbacks someone will find a way around the drawbacks.

Sovereign Court

Dracomicron wrote:

Weapons need to be able to be used by all PCs with the standard 2 hands.

Why?


Ascalaphus wrote:
Dracomicron wrote:

Weapons need to be able to be used by all PCs with the standard 2 hands.

Why?

Starfinder design philosophy is that all items be usable by all characters, baseline. Armory made this explicit.

Sovereign Court

Dracomicron wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
Dracomicron wrote:

Weapons need to be able to be used by all PCs with the standard 2 hands.

Why?
Starfinder design philosophy is that all items be usable by all characters, baseline. Armory made this explicit.

Baseline doesn't mean you can't ever deviate from it. It's more like "we're not accidentally race-locking things". But this would be a display-case of "here's a weapon that was clearly designed by people who thought having four arms was normal".

And it'll be perfectly usable for kasatha, witchwyrds, shobhads, skittermanders, and maybe even quorlu.


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Because you don't want to have clearly the best weapon be the reason to pick a race, or everyone will pick that race.


SuperBidi wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:
If a heavy weapon is too heavy to be properly used by someone with two hands, its going to still be too heavy to be used by someone with the same strength who has four hands.

So, if a weapon is too heavy to be properly used by someone with one hand, it's going to be too heavy to be used by someone with the same strength who has 2 hands?

And why do we get 1.5 times strength to damage when using a longsword with 2 hands in Pathfinder?

4 arms = twice the strength of 2 arms. You can hold far bigger weapons. That's basic anatomy.

That's not remotely how anatomy works. "Strength" is about all of your musculature, not how many arms you have.

In any case, this isn't Pathfinder, and characters with more arms have the same Strength range - including the same carrying capacity and the same required Strength score for certain weapons.


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Any weapon could be a 4 armed weapon, imo, just say that the brand of that weapon always makes them for kasatha. It would provide 0 benefits, but it's the same as when races without standard arms like bantrids might have modified weapons so they can use them at the same price.

Sovereign Court

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Because you don't want to have clearly the best weapon be the reason to pick a race, or everyone will pick that race.

Why should it have to be clearly the best weapon?


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Ascalaphus wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Because you don't want to have clearly the best weapon be the reason to pick a race, or everyone will pick that race.

Why should it have to be clearly the best weapon?

A weapon with high requirements for use needs to be commensurately more powerful or useful to make those requirements worthwhile. For example, an Unwieldy weapon has some serious drawbacks, but it generally does more damage or hits more targets.

A weapon that can ONLY be used by someone with four arms or expensive high level augmentations should simply be better than other weapons, or nobody would bother.

This is all game logic stuff. There's no reason to make a weapon that nobody would use, and the Starfinder philosophy is generally against creating weapons that only a few characters CAN use.


Dracomicron wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Because you don't want to have clearly the best weapon be the reason to pick a race, or everyone will pick that race.

Why should it have to be clearly the best weapon?

A weapon with high requirements for use needs to be commensurately more powerful or useful to make those requirements worthwhile. For example, an Unwieldy weapon has some serious drawbacks, but it generally does more damage or hits more targets.

A weapon that can ONLY be used by someone with four arms or expensive high level augmentations should simply be better than other weapons, or nobody would bother.

This is all game logic stuff. There's no reason to make a weapon that nobody would use, and the Starfinder philosophy is generally against creating weapons that only a few characters CAN use.

Another way to understand this is that in terms of balancing things, everything should fit into a sort of power budget (or at least, that is one way of approaching balance under the hood). Things like damage or hitting multiple targets - that is, anything that makes the weapon better - would spend from that power budget. Some things, like the Unwieldy feature or a requirement of 4 arms to use something, effectively refund some of that power budget.

Assuming that the power spend/refund of everything is correctly understood, having unspent power budget would mean that an item is underpowered, while going past power budget would mean that it is overpowered. In either case, that item is effectively not a real choice, which is something you pretty much always want to avoid design wise.

Sovereign Court

I keep asking "why" because I think you're a bit locked in a standard train of thought.

Normally, you want a weapon to be accessible to most PC races. Normally, you want a weapon's flaws and powers to be in balance with all the other weapons, so that it's not too strong or too weak. And you can't just keep on adding flaws to compensate for powers, because people will find ways of ameliorating the weaknesses.

However, what's being asked here is not "a super powerful weapon that only works if you have four arms". What is being asked is indeed something that's somewhat exclusive to the four armed crowd. So it's a bit of a niche item. (It's not like Paizo never published a niche item before.) It doesn't need to be more powerful. Making an item with flaws more powerful to compensate is something you'd usually do, but since we're making something here that's not that flawed for the intended audience, it doesn't need to be unusually powerful either.

So yeah, it's a bit of a vanity design: make a weapon that's not that useful for most races because you need a lot of arms to use it. And it's not even that powerful (although it's on par enough that kasatha would feel good about using it).

Given that Starfinder is somewhat post-humanoid, you can even introduce some weapon mods alongside it that make it usable by people with a disappointing number of arms. While it started out as a four-armed weapon, technology has adapted to be more inclusive of two-armed people's handicaps.


The real "why" is that Paizo has a limited amount of design time and page space; making super niche items that only work properly for a tiny fraction of characters is not a good use of those resources.

The Free Hands (X) mechanic is already there to drastically improve some items for folks with extra arms. The better use of time is to use it to make unwieldy items wieldly. You can make a kasathan 4-handed sword... you just have to let people with two hands use it... just not in a full attack or an AoO. That's good as it is.


Twin railguns. Fires in a 180 degree arc, requires 4 hands,burns all the ammo..


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...punches holes in mountains.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The problem with balance-by-requirement is that its not really a form of balance. A weapon that is Better-Than-Standard, but with the downside of Must-Have-Y-To-Use? Has two scenarios:

1. People who don't have Y, who will simply not use the weapon in the first place, and are thus not hindered by it.

2. People who *do* have Y, who will not find the necessity any hindrance at all, and thus just get Better-Than-Standard with no actual drawback.

Its a lot like how the race-based level limits in 2e and prior were not actually balanced at all, because they either applied or they didn't. If you were likely to reach them, they were so crippling that no one would ever use that race/class. . . and if you were *not* likely to reach them, they were meaningless and thus no limit at all. A limit that means some other hypothetical character is inconvenienced means nothing for you.


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Dracomicron wrote:
The real "why" is that Paizo has a limited amount of design time and page space; making super niche items that only work properly for a tiny fraction of characters is not a good use of those resources.

Has anyone ever seen a garrote used? There are tons of niche weapons in the Armory. Even Powered Armor is kind of niche, especially the Huge ones or the ones using one power per minute.

These weapons would be easy to create, just find a type of weapon that doesn't exist. You don't have to make it better than other types of weapons, just unique.
Good examples would be acid heavy weapons. Current acid heavy weapons are either line or exploding ones. A blast or just normal one would be cool.
You can also design weapons with a small advantage over the other line of weapons. For example, these weapons could be automatic. They are technically better but automatic is not the kind of thing that breaks the game. So, it's nice, but noone would scream about it.

I've seen tons of characters using roleplay weapons even if it was not adding anything to their character rulewise.


SuperBidi wrote:
These weapons would be easy to create

No, no they wouldn't.


Nerdy Canuck wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
These weapons would be easy to create
No, no they wouldn't.

Clearly, you have the right to dislike the idea of 4-handed weapons and chances are low anyway for anyone in Paizo to ever read this thread so I don't think it will have any impact.

Still, I really would like to know what you dislike about this idea. To me, you seem to have a bad gut feeling about it.


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SuperBidi wrote:
Nerdy Canuck wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
These weapons would be easy to create
No, no they wouldn't.

Clearly, you have the right to dislike the idea of 4-handed weapons and chances are low anyway for anyone in Paizo to ever read this thread so I don't think it will have any impact.

Still, I really would like to know what you dislike about this idea. To me, you seem to have a bad gut feeling about it.

Either:

(a) These weapons are worthwhile, in which case every extra-arms option has instantly become more powerful from a presently balanced state, or

(b) These weapons are not strong enough to have that impact, in which case they're overall weak enough to be a non-option.

Systems interact with each other; a change in one place ripples out to impact other areas of the game.

It's less of a "bad gut feeling" and more of a "I see where else in the game this would impact".

Sovereign Court

Yeah I'm with SuperBidi on this. Paizo writes niche and circumstantial stuff all the time, so that's really no excuse why it would be impossible to write four-arm weapons.

If you think it's impossible, try telling me with a straight face that serpent lasers are more than a joke weapon.


Ascalaphus wrote:

Yeah I'm with SuperBidi on this. Paizo writes niche and circumstantial stuff all the time, so that's really no excuse why it would be impossible to write four-arm weapons.

If you think it's impossible, try telling me with a straight face that serpent lasers are more than a joke weapon.

Serpent Lasers are pretty clearly not meant to be a meaningful option for PCs, no.

Making these things similarly not worthwhile, and thus effectively a non-option, would be a way to go - but I've been assuming that the idea was for these to be a meaningful option, making Serpent Lasers an inaccurate comparison.

Having said that, I'm pretty sure Serpent Lasers are there to be an NPC option (and they're a much lower-interaction thing overall, because they're not interacting with existing racial bonuses or anything like that).


Nerdy Canuck wrote:

(a) These weapons are worthwhile, in which case every extra-arms option has instantly become more powerful from a presently balanced state, or

(b) These weapons are not strong enough to have that impact, in which case they're overall weak enough to be a non-option.

I'm pretty sure you can imagine a proper middle ground. Between non option and worthwhile, there's a place called "nice but not incredible" where you can put these weapons.

I really think it's a gut feeling. You don't want anything to screw the balance (neither do I). It's true that it would be hard to properly design such a weapon. But it's far from impossible, in my opinion. And anyway, Paizo will come up with new weapon lines anyway. So, the risk exists. I expect this kind of weapon only from a lore point of view. I like the concept of very heavy weapons using tons of arms.

Sovereign Court

Nerdy Canuck wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:

Yeah I'm with SuperBidi on this. Paizo writes niche and circumstantial stuff all the time, so that's really no excuse why it would be impossible to write four-arm weapons.

If you think it's impossible, try telling me with a straight face that serpent lasers are more than a joke weapon.

Serpent Lasers are pretty clearly not meant to be a meaningful option for PCs, no.

Making these things similarly not worthwhile, and thus effectively a non-option, would be a way to go - but I've been assuming that the idea was for these to be a meaningful option, making Serpent Lasers an inaccurate comparison.

Having said that, I'm pretty sure Serpent Lasers are there to be an NPC option (and they're a much lower-interaction thing overall, because they're not interacting with existing racial bonuses or anything like that).

Paizo was willing to spare art budget and space for description for something as pointless as those.

I think the niche for fourarm weapons would be as SuperBidi says "nice but not amazing". Yes, it would make kasathas a bit better, which is okay since right now they seem to be quite on the low end of the scale. Four arms is pretty much their big racial feature but it does very little. Starfinder's WBL model doesn't encourage having four separate weapons, and the combat rules don't make using four separate weapons at the time very useful.

Shields might help a bit because kasathas don't have to choose between longarms and shields, they can have both. So the balance change is already happening; we're now talking about something that's "not more powerful than a shield and a 2H firearm".

I think interesting things could be: operative (melee) weapons that require 3-4 arms to use, kinda like some of those monk weapons that look like an Ikea catalog gone berserk. Or a big weapon that you can reload while firing if you have extra hands - there are enough high-capacity weapons that this won't let you do anything otherwise impossible, but it's nice. It might even make people use automatic fire.


SuperBidi wrote:
Nerdy Canuck wrote:

(a) These weapons are worthwhile, in which case every extra-arms option has instantly become more powerful from a presently balanced state, or

(b) These weapons are not strong enough to have that impact, in which case they're overall weak enough to be a non-option.

I'm pretty sure you can imagine a proper middle ground.

This is cause and effect. There is not a middle ground. The second these weapons hit "nice", the second they're worth taking over any of the "standard" weapon options, they have made existing options more powerful.

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