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  1. - Top - End - #1
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    Default Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    This is an attempt at giving the swarm of bees anti-siege weapon stats. I don't know if this has been done before, so I tried. I'm unsure if this is good mechanically, so any criticisms are welcome. Also, keep in mind that these are best for large-scale battles and are meant to be as unpredictable as possible. Should this be an exotic weapon instead of a siege weapon?



    Swarm of Bees: A swarm of bees is an anti-personnel weapon found in kingdoms that have learned to use gunpowder. The weapon itself is made from a single box, a fuse, and thirty-two arrows. The arrows are loaded into the bow and attached to the fuse (which takes a full round action followed by a move action). The weapon is notoriously inaccurate, but most agree that the pure firepower makes up for it. As a standard action, the fuse may be lit, which sets the gunpowder attached to each arrow alight, propelling them all forward in a chaotic pattern. After setting it alight, the arrows rapidly fire from the weapon. All creatures within a 30 ft. cone must succeed on a DC 8 reflex save, or take 1d8 damage. Creatures that take up more than one square must make a number of reflex saves equal to the number of squares they take up (a large creature, for example, would have to make four reflex saves, taking 1d8 damage each time it fails).

    A wielder may decide to increase the range to a 60 ft. cone by positioning the swarm of bees in a more upwards positions, but this incurs a penalty to the relfex save DC (5 instead of 8). If more than thirty two creatures in the 60 ft. cone, only the closest thirty-two spaces worth of creatures have to make the reflex save.

    It is extremely hard to use this weapon in anything besides calm weather. In winds greater than calm, the fuse has a 50% chance of not lighting properly and it is impossible to light in hurricanes or greater winds. In rain and sleet the fuse has a 75% chance of failure.

    A swarm of bees costs 50 gp, not including the arrows. Two hands are required to use this weapon.

    Swarm of Bees Proficiency [Weapon Proficiency, Fighter]
    You are proficient with the swarm of bees, and may use this dangerous anti-siege weapon with extra accuracy.
    Benefits: You attack with swarms of bees normally.
    Normal: You make attacks with a -4 penalty.
    Special: Fighters can select this feat as a bonus feat.
    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-05-15 at 07:09 PM.
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  2. - Top - End - #2
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Sounds kinda like a miniature version of the Hwacha.

    Also, if you pay for the arrows seperate, could you load it with enchanted arrows? Or, better yet, enchant the swarm of bees to enchant your arrows? What would happen if you used, say, splitting arrows?
    Last edited by Admiral Squish; 2011-04-30 at 06:06 PM.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    As a stickler for accuracy I might not say 32 creatures, but 32 squares worth of creatures. Then again, maybe the way you have it is better, since you almost certainly aren't going to get 32 hits in any case. Are there even 32 squares in a 60 foot cone? I can't be bothered to do the geometry.

    A link to some good rules for unreliable (especially in moist conditions) firearms might be nice for someone (not necessarily the original poster) to provide.

    Never heard of this weapon before.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Pretty much, except it dates back to the Ming dynasty of China instead of originating in Korea.

    I'm not exactly familiar with splitting arrows (they're in Champions of Ruin, right?), but I think it wouldn't be broken if all the arrows gained the magical enhancements of the swarm of bees. I hadn't really thought of the fact that arrows of different material could be used. I'm sure I can think of a mechanic that selects what type of arrow is hitting the target if more than one type is used.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    I could write a mechanic for bad weather, but it'd be kinda complicated. In fact, I already did write one for the astonishing lack of firearm accuracy in DnD's stats... and it's COMPLICATED.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Quote Originally Posted by SamBurke View Post
    I could write a mechanic for bad weather, but it'd be kinda complicated. In fact, I already did write one for the astonishing lack of firearm accuracy in DnD's stats... and it's COMPLICATED.
    Yikes, I hadn't even thought of that. This would be a nightmare to use in bad weather.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Why not keep it simple: In winds greater than Calm, the fuse has a 50% chance of failure and is impossible in Hurricane or greater winds. In rain and sleet the fuse has a 75% chance of failure.

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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    That sounds good to me. Its probably not best to over think it. Perhaps I should make the DC to dodge the arrows lower or increase the general AC in order to make it even less accurate, as well.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    What happens if you miss the AC?

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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    All arrows miss, no save required.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Its in the first paragraph. Loading the thirty two arrows is a full round action, while setting up the fuse is a move action, so you can fire thirty two arrows every two rounds.

    Perhaps I should rearrange the paragraphs so it is more obvious?
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Given that the case looks like light wood at best, and gunpowder is involved, wouldn't this be a one-shot weapon? I can't imagine that casing surviving any explosion powerful enough to launch all those arrows.

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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Oddly enought, it is a reusable weapon. After witnessing the weapon actually go off, the casing still seemed to be in pretty good condition. Perhaps there is an interior lining on the inside that helps absorb damage?
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Wait, when you shoot this thing, you need to make an attack roll against the general area? And the arrows are pretty much blanketing it if you hit? What happens to the arrows if you miss the attack roll?

    It makes sense not to calculate that for normal ranged weapons, since they are so precise its not too likely a missed shot will do much unless theres someone right behind the target. But for this? With about as much precision as a grenade the size of your head? No way can those arrows be ignored. Maybe change the angle of the cone by a certain amount based on how badly you missed, but those arrows are going somewhere.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    So all creatures should automatically have to make the save?

    Alright, I'll change it, but keep in mind that with its real life equivalent, it only hit targets about a sixth of the time.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    So all creatures should automatically have to make the save?

    Alright, I'll change it, but keep in mind that with its real life equivalent, it only hit targets about a sixth of the time.
    So make the save easier to pass.

    If you really want an attack roll, make it so that failing the roll means you shoot a bit off-target from recoil.

    EDIT: Also, it should be a Weapon Proficiency feat, not a general feat.
    Last edited by Qwertystop; 2011-05-01 at 05:39 PM.
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    Default Re: Swarm of Bees (Weapon, PEACH)

    Alright, I modified the save to a DC 8. The average warrior will usually dodge it, but the chances of being hit are not so low as to be negligible (at least,not until higher level creatures are involves).

    I also changed the feat from General to Weapon Proficiency. Thanks for the critique.
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