View Full Version : Simplifying Rules for Homebrew Ruleset/Gameworld Setting

2012-07-10, 01:02 PM
I keep getting distracted, but I've been slowly narrowing down on what my core concept is for the Drift setting I've been piecing together for a while now.
Much of it is still up in the air, but I wouldn't mind getting a little feedback on the idea of the mechanics and ways they might be streamlined.

I'd like to keep everything very simple and focus many of the rules and stats on the concept that everything is Light, Medium, or Heavy. All armors, weapons, vehicles, etc. will have one of the three as a rating and will determine how it interacts with the others.

Armors will have a size/mass rating that specify much of the statistics and what "equipment slots" are available, to which the classes will add some specialization.

Weapon Slots:

Sidearm: May only hold a sidearm or a combat knife.

Light: This slot may hold an SMG, low-profile shotgun, any weapon with the [Light] property, or function as a sidearm slot.

Medium: This slot may hold a rifle, shotgun, LMG, any weapon with the [Medium] property, or function as two separate light slots.

Heavy: May be used to carry a rocket/missile launcher, machine gun, Heavy Rifle, other large man-portable weapon, or any weapon with the [Heavy] property. This includes room for a weapon tripod if relevant. If none of these are taken then the heavy slot may function as separate medium and light slots.

Shield: This slot may only hold a combat shield, or piece of equipment with the [Shield] property.

Melee: This slot may only be used to hold a combat knife, combat sword, or any weapon with the [Melee] property.

Rifle/Shotgun/Other [Named Weapon]: A slot with a named weapon may only hold a weapon of the type described. For example, a class that is designed for precision fire at long ranges may add a [Sniper] slot to the base armor.

Utility Slots:

Ammo: Ammunition is counted as a single slot and will contain the relevant amount

Grenade: This slot may hold up to 3 separate pieces of thrown weapons/equipment such as grenades, flares, throwing knives, or anything with the [Grenade] property.

Equipment:Equipment Slots come in the forms [Light], [Medium], [Heavy] (similar to weapons).

Light: This equipment slot may hold one piece of equipment that has the [Light] property.

Medium: This equipment slot may hold one piece of equipment that has the [Medium] property, or function as two separate light equipment slots.

Heavy: This equipment slot may hold one piece of equipment that has the [Heavy] property, or function as separate medium and light slots.

I am trying to avoid feats and have most modifiers to direct combat provided by armor, weapon, and equipment customization and advancement (players earn "Requisition" that determines how much value they can assign to equipment when they leave for a mission, much in the vein of modern fps games where players are not pigeonholed by equipment for more than a battle or two). Where being Light, Medium, or Heavy dictates much of how the equipment works, and what some of it's assumed bonuses are. Players receive a certain amount of requisition when they achieve a new rank, representing both entitlements of their rank and various favors they might have gained with those of a higher political standing. This requisition is added to a pool that squad members can "spend" to choose their arms/armor/equipment loadout for any given mission, and represents the value of equipment they are trusted to be responsible for in the field at any given time. Requisition can be traded in permanently (e.g. a squad member will always have less available resources to equip themselves than squadmates who keep all their requisition) for favors or advanced training, such as becoming licensed to use heavier armor than a class allows or being trusted to "field test" the technocracy's experimental weapons and technology before official acceptance to the quartermaster's inventory. The level of available requisition never drops on its own unless the soldier gets in the habit of losing equipment or returning it in an irreparable state, and returns to the full amount (minus any spent on training/favors/etc.) upon debriefing and de-arming after a mission. There are no capital gains, and very little in the way of personally owned equipment.
Requisition may come in different types, such as Officer Requisition which can only be used on advanced training or outfitting with rank appropriate equipment like a Lieutenant's Sidearm.


To keep it simple, vehicles will have hitpoints (from HD) and attributes as well (although it may be more interesting for a vehicle to have different HD for various components). One important issue is what happens when a vehicle impacts a foot soldier in power armor or another object. My initial attempt to deal with this is by providing all armor, vehicles, etc. with a Hardness rating.

+1: Unarmored Soft Target
+2: Light Power Armor / Equipment Load (e.g. carrying a sizeable ammo crate) / Shield (Shields stack with armor for hardness rating) / Unarmored Vehicle
+3: Light Exoskeleton / Light Vehicle Carapace
+4: Medium Power Armor
+5: Medium Exoskeleton / Medium Vehicle Carapace
+6: Heavy Power Armor / Light Mech Armor
+7: Heavy Exoskeleton / Medium Mech Armor
+8: Tank Armor / Heavy Mech Armor
+9: Durable Armored Building or Bunker
+10: Immobile Hard Object (e.g. solid rock face)

A vehicle takes no damage if it doubles the hardness of the object it strikes (A tank will roll through a lightly armored dune buggy or a soldier in medium armor with little trouble, but may suffer some damage to its treads or repulsor lifts from a vehicle with medium armor). The amount of damage done to a vehicle when it runs into an object is equal to the hit die of the vehicle (usually d20) times the relative hardness of the object (the hardness of the object minus half of the vehicle's hardness rounded down). A lightly armored vehicle with hardness 3 would suffer no damage from striking a soft target, but would suffer 1d20 damage from striking a soldier in light power armor or an unarmored vehicle as half of its hardness rounded down is +1, and 2 hardness minus 1 hardness creates an effective hardness of 1.

The damage a vehicle does to an object is equal to the difference in hardness times the objects HD. A tank strikes hits a soldier in medium power armor and does 4(the difference between their hardness)d12(the soldier's hit die) damage to the soldier.

For all intents and purposes, consider the object with higher hardness to be the striker, and the object with lower hardness to be the target.

Higher speeds increase the damage to all involved.
Slow Speed is considered anything less than 30 movement and has a damage factor of x1.
Medium Speed is anything between 30 and 60 movement and imparts a damage factor of x2.
Fast Speed is anything between 60 and 200 movement and boosts the damage factor to x3.
Anything over 200 is considered Very Fast, and is limited to Flyers and heavily customized hover vehicles, but applies a damage factor of x4 to the collision.
A boosted hovertank moving at ~120 would suffer 3d20 from running over a vehicle with medium carapace armor instead of the 1d20 it originally would have sustained.
High speed collisions are often lethal for all involved. Very Fast Durable Buildings are not something that should be entrusted to unruly players.

Reinforced Armor / Ramming Equipment increase the hardness rating of the vehicle by +1. This is often favored by raiders who want to strike brutally while using lighter vehicles that allow for faster hit and run tactics.

I'm basically developing it around the d20 genre as it's what I'm most familiar with, but after getting everything together I may go with something more like d10 to give equipment choices a bit more of a starring role. I may just go with d12 to be kooky and always be able to make a fraction of 3 ;)

edit: Apparently accidentally hitting enter while editing the title posts the whole thing. I was planning on adding a bit more to this before submitting it.