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I have been thinking about the current way 40k deals with ranged combat.
It doesnt appear to be able to represent the effects of fire, as somone might expect from the narative.
I have no firm ideas,but I thought about looking at the the way dammage is handeled from a different perspective.
If you follow the restrictive process of only using a direct fire mechanic.One shooter ,a set number of shots at one defined target.
It realy limits what can be done in the game.
I realise that the weaponry used in 40k is 'futuristic' and the exact way weapons work is open to debate.
But having individual stats for each alien weapon ,because it looks different is a bit of an over complication, perhaps?
So how about defining weapons by thier effects.And basing this set of effects on real world weaponry.This way if we think somthing feels like it should have the same effect as a heavy machine gun,(Heavy bolter),we actualy get the effects of a heavy machine gun in the game....
So ,what I was hoping to do was have 2 types of effect.
1,direct fire,one high powered shot ,(the weapon takes a long time to reload,recharge.)
This would be handeled similar to as we do now.
So missile launchers ,melts guns, lascannon,battle cannon etc, the effects this high powered shot has, is potentialy devestating and worth looking at on an individual basis.
2,direct area fire.Any weapon that fires bursts of projectiles ,assault rifles ,sub machine guns ,heavy machine guns,AA cannon etc.
These sorts of weapons spray an area with projectiles ,mainly to dammage smaller or faster ,more agile targets.
SO if we catagorise all weapons ,from all races ,into 'understandable' weapon types,so the effects are the same ,nomatter what design or origin.
Short effective range.Automaticaly reloads/recharges each time the trigger is pulled.ROF 1 to 2 shots per second,accurate due to short effective range and limited recoil.
SLR.(Self loading Rifle.)
Basicaly a larger, longer ranged version of the pistol.Same rate of fire 1 to 2 shots per second,longer barrel and shoulder stock gives the best 'small arms' accuracy at range.
(Lee Enfield rifle.Mauser,Garrand,)
Designed to engage targets at shorter range than the SLR. the higer rate of fire at closer ranges is more lethal.Can be fired at longer ranges in a similar fashoin to the SLR but effective range/accuracy is reduced,as weapon is primarily designed for higher ROF .
Sub machine gun.
Highest rate of fire of all small arms.Most effective at short ranges, accuracy and effectiveness reduces dramaticaly as range increases.(large amount of recoil means aiming, as such, is impossible.)
Heavy Machine gun.
Ill not bother explaining you know how these work!(ROF as sub machine gun but longer range.)
All the above could be indirect fire .
Anti vehicle, weapons use direct fire.One powerful shot at a slower larger less agile target.
Weapons that fire Blast or chemical type attacks could be incorperated into the area fire system.
Ill get back in a bit.
Do the descriptions of weapons cover all the basic generic types?
If we can establish this list of effects, then we can look at some alternatives..
I do think it's an interesting approach.
But given your idea of smaller bursts, I guess you'd have to define what faster or smaller targets should be. And perhaps even give them a new set of rules. With that, the single shot weapons (as used now) will be quite unbalanced.
Changing a rulings on gunfire and adding gunfire modes brings along a new set of problems like those mentioned earlier. But your idea is interesting nevertheless.
Thinking about it, Tzeentch Inferno Bolts have a similar effect. So I guess those wouldn't even be needed anymore.
Well, I have played other games where small arms and heavy machine gun type weapons have an area of effect.Similar to Artilery but not as large an area or as devastating,obviously!
Anti infantry fire is usualy has an area effect.A spray of projectiles,chemicals or a blast from an explosion.
So what I was thinking of was all small arms fire and machingun type weapons use the small blast template.(3'' diameter.)Only used vs infantry not vehicles .
Eg for every 1 to 5 models firing ,place a blast template over the enemy
For each actual weapon used ,add a fire number,representative of the dammaging effect.
Eg 7 space marines firing bolt guns at a mob of orks.
1 blast template with 5 bolt guns firng (5x 3) gives a fire number of 15.
Plus one blast template with 2 bolt guns firing (2x3) gives a fire number of 6.
So then the SM player compares these two sets of numbers to the defence value of the Orks.If the defence value of the Orks is 4 for example,the blast template with the fire number of 15 could cause 3 ork casulaties, and the BT with the FN of 6 would cause 1 casualty.(Also it could be possible to give moral effects similar to vehicles.For example if the combined FN placed on a unit exeeds the 'moral limits' ,it causes the target unit to become shaken.EG Orks could have moral limit of 20,for shaken and 30 for stunned,and 40 for fall back.)
So rather than lots of different stats and special rules for weapons,they are defined as a 'familiar' patrticular type.
So a nid organic weapon,psychic attack, laser powered,or conventionoal projectile type weapon.Could all be decribed the same if the effect of the weapons was the same.
EG it gives the effect of an assault rifle/sub machine gun/heavy machine gun,etc.
It is just a basic idea at the moment ,this type of system works well in other games,and I just wondered if it had any thing to offer an alternate game of 40k?