View Full Version : Shadowrun: heavy weapons

2009-06-11, 10:56 AM
Are there any rules for what weapons can and can't be carried?
One of my players, playing a human, want's to carry around and use handheld the Panther XXL autocannon that fires smal tank ammunition

2009-06-11, 11:13 AM
The Panther (at least in 2 and 3 e Shadowrun) is a man-portable weapon. It doesn't fire tank ammo, as far as I know, but something more akin to 20mm ammo. Still quite large, but within the realm of reasonable.

As a GM, I would recomend that if you are concerned about the palyer carrying it, you 1)require them to have a gyro-harness to allow them to support the weight 2)you make sure that the size of the weapon is taken into consideration when dealing with terrain like narrow hallways, doorways, windows, etc. It is a really long gun, and should be awkward to use in enclosed spaces 3)make sure to take the weight of ammo into account and limit the players acsess to it. 4)make the guy with the huge freakin' assualt cannon a primary target of the badguys. Afterall, there ain't much walking that can easily shrug off a hit from that thing, so carrying one should upgrade your player to a high value target just below a mage in the kill order.

A Panther can be a bit of an issue at times, allowing your players to do some pretty nasty things, but it is not at it's strongest as a close combat weapon.

Just be glad that your player did not decide to use it as a long range sniper weapon. The Panther truly excels at that role, above virtually every other gun in the game.

2009-06-11, 11:21 AM
1. As long as it's reasonable you don't need to keep track of it.
2. Without a roll a character can lift Strenght*15 kilogram to torso-height, strength*5 kilogram can be lifted above your own head and Str*10 kilogram can be picked up and carried around.
3. If a character wants to carry more, he has to roll for Str+Con. Every success gives you another 15/5/10 kilogram to lift/carry, but suffers a -1 modificator on physical rolls for every 5 kilogram more than he could normally carry.
4. You can never carry more than your Str*20 kilogram

All rules from 4th edition basic manual page 300 and 130 (at least in the german version).

2009-06-11, 11:27 AM
Funnily enough, the Panther is single-shot so the doubled recoil doesn't even apply - you never fire more than once in a Phase! And yes, it's a man-portable weapon - basically a scopeless Barrett M82 with an even bigger caliber.

Requiring a character to be strong, or to have a gyro harness, or suffer penalties to using a Panther seems reasonable enough, but generally, the only limits on PC equipment should be:
1. What they can find (Panthers are damned difficult to find; using those acquisition rules is critically important in a game like this, and they also happen to prevent starting out with one)
2. What they can afford to buy
3. What they can afford to hump
4. What they can afford to be seen with
5. What they can afford to leave behind

Using an assault cannon on two gigs in the same geographic region will draw a pretty clear parallel between the incidents, and it's going to get the local enforcers all up on your bidness. Carrying an assault cannon around is not only physically difficult, but socially difficult - how are you going to hide it? How many people are actually going to be fooled by a guitar case or other long case or bag? Nobody who you want to fool, that's for sure. And if you get pulled over for speeding and the cops find that thing in your trunk, you're dead meat - killing cops is never a realistic option (if the world is run properly, anyhow).

2009-06-11, 11:53 AM
All setting specific stuff won't help, as we're playing in a post-apocalypse setting, where he actually have a legal permit to carry that thing unconcealed around. (then again, the police harvest organs from beggars on the street)

2009-06-11, 11:56 AM
All setting specific stuff won't help, as we're playing in a post-apocalypse setting, where he actually have a legal permit to carry that thing unconcealed around. (then again, the police harvest organs from beggars on the street)

The rules still work. Availability 18 (or whatever) is way above what's allowed at chargen (12, I think?), and if you use the availability and contact rules (and you should; it's even harder and more important to find stuff in a setting like that), it'll be very difficult and expensive to get hands on an assault cannon.

2009-06-11, 01:23 PM
A quick review of the thread makes it seem to me that the advice being offered is either rules related or non-setting specific, so it should apply even in a home brew world.

If you have discarded the availibilty rules and the licensing rules, be advised that you may have opened the door on situations similar to this where your players are able to acsess gear at character generation that they are not supposed to have acsess too. I would strongly recomend against removing the availibility rules, because by doing so you will make it rather easy for your players to get gear that may unbalance your game.

I strongly disagree with allowing a player character to have legal, unlimited acsess to a Panther cannon, at least from the perspective of balancing your campaign.

Another suggestion for controling the use of the weapon would be to create a house-ruled version that was not man-portable. This might be problematic as well, since your player will, perhaps rightfully, feel that you are explicitly preventing him from doing what he wants to do.

I recomend discussing it with the player and making a ruling that will ensure that your game doesn't get off on the wrong foot.

Addendum: If there are police in your world, I strongly doubt that they would allow any private citizen to have acsess to a military grade weapon with a 1.5 mile effective range, capable of taking out lightly armored vehicles and heavily armored troops. In a post-apocolyptic setting, such a valuable peice of gear would be in the hands of those with the power, and they sure wouldn't let you just carry one around, because it puts you in a position where you are potentially more powerful then the law. I encourage you to rethink allowing legal acsess to such a weapon in your game world.

2009-06-11, 02:26 PM
I don't think there's any sort of balance issue. If the PCs can have assault cannons, so can the enemies. The enemies tend to outnumber the PCs. Oops.

Cristo Meyers
2009-06-11, 02:47 PM
I don't think there's any sort of balance issue. If the PCs can have assault cannons, so can the enemies. The enemies tend to outnumber the PCs. Oops.

And they also tend to use snipers to take out high-threat targets (like, say, guys with assault cannons) before the main firefight can even begin.

2009-06-11, 06:25 PM
Ahh...Shadowrun...good times...

I had a troll heavily cyber'd up who would sport one of those, and the minigun too...most of the time he'd just have a hvy pistol or other weapons that were no big deal, but for intense missions, he'd crack open the Van O' goodies and bring along Big Poppa and the Boom Tube. Sometimes you just need the heavy artillary. While there is nothing intrinsically wrong with having such weapons, a DM must take care to ensure that the environment responds to such weapons appropriately.

For example...for example...a member of a street gang even nowadays carry handguns as do regular citizens where conceal/carry permits are available. Seeing one may make someone slightly alarmed if they notice and suspect a person may be up to no good but all in all a handgun won't cause too much panic (at least in the US where guns are legal...ish). However, a shotgun or rifle, unless obviously being transported for hunting emans someone if expecting trouble and has pulled out a weapon for a reason. People see a shotgun being toted around and know that the carrier intends to use it. They tend to respond accordingly by leaving...quickly...same goes for a rifle.

Now...given the above...what would people think if they see someone with a HUGE gun that is mainly for killing hardened targets. Especially if he has a bunch of reloads for it. You pack that sort of gear cause you plan for war...and unless the people know you are with them, then you may very easily be against them, and they know what you are packin'...there is no real way to hide a weapon of that size. People call police, or other authorities...and if the cops see ya...you better believe they will do something about it...

Now, in a post apocalypse style world...who knows...but people will react in some way. You can't roll into town with a bazooka in hand an not expect a reaction of some kind.