4thed rules for ship weapons?

A project to create a Spelljammer conversion to 4th edition rules.
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Silverblade-T-E
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4thed rules for ship weapons?

Post by Silverblade-T-E » Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:30 am

read a cool thread on Enworld about ballistae, oen guy's rules for ballsitae are superb, IMHO! :)

http://www.enworld.org/forum/d-d-4th-ed ... ost4468687
Skyscraper wrote:
Balista (standard; recharge 5, 6) * weapon
Ranged 30/60; + X vs. AC; 3d6+5 damage and target is knocked prone. The creature manning the balista must use a move action to roll for a recharge.

The bonus attack should be the basic ranged attack bonus of the person using the balista. I would consider whether this is a superior weapon, i.e. does the person get a proficiency bonus for using it? Something to discuss with the DM. The proficiency bonus should be +2 if you allow one.

The "recharge 5,6" is normally reserved for monster abilities, but why not use it for players in this instance? It represents that it takes a while to recharge the thing. The fact that the creature needs to spend a move action to be able to roll the d6 to see if it recharges means that it must remain there each round, though it still has its standard action so the combat is not lost for this PC.

The damage is probably comparable to many daily spells you have. You can modify the damage ouput if you feel it's inappropriate, and/or you can make it a "recharge 6" if you want it to be available less frequently (in which case it would mostly be an encounter power - who would want to remain in the balista for 5 rounds on average before it recharges?)

Sky
sounds great to me for a light ballista:) ballistae should be Exotic weapon though, for feats/attack bonus.
also suggested, from point of impact, bolt travels a further 2d4 squares, same attack roll on anything it hits...well they do go through things ;)

those rules could be adapted for Heavy ballistae and catapults, IMHO.

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Re: 4thed rules for ship weapons?

Post by Big Mac » Sat Sep 20, 2008 2:14 pm

Silverblade-T-E wrote:ballistae should be Exotic weapon though, for feats/attack bonus.
also suggested, from point of impact, bolt travels a further 2d4 squares, same attack roll on anything it hits...well they do go through things ;)

those rules could be adapted for Heavy ballistae and catapults, IMHO.
I'm not really into 4th edition yet, so can't really comment on the rules, but the exotic weapon thing could apply to 3.X edition.

I would say that their should be a Weaponeer PrC for SJ, where they gain proficiency in all shipboard weapons (as well as some other abilities). They don't have PrCs in 4e, but I'm sure a similar "Paragon Path" (or whatever it is called) could be set up.
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Re: 4thed rules for ship weapons?

Post by eldersphinx » Sat Sep 20, 2008 10:05 pm

I've got two things I'd want to do with 4th edition and ships. First is ship weapons as recharge powers, as this suggests. A light ballista or catapult would recharge on a 3-6 (2E RoF of 2/3), a medium weapon on a 4-6 (RoF of 1/2), a heavy weapon on 5-6 (RoF of 1/3). Great Bombards and similar siege weaponry has a recharge of 6.

Second is a twist on the difference between hit points and Hull Points. Spelljamming ships and other large vehicles suffer less damage from most 'personal-scale' attacks - minimum damage roll on the dice, and 1/10th of any static bonuses. A ticked-off fighter with a bigass axe (1d12+6 damage) who starts beating at the side of a hammership does just 1 damage per hit. If he winds up and hits it with a Brute Strike for 3[W]+Str damage, that's still just 3 damage. If he invokes the magic of his Gauntlets of Ogre Power, he adds +1 to his damage on that hit (since his static modifier is now +11). Ship weapons would do full damage to ships, making them more important in fights and not as likely to be overshadowed by a midlevel wizard blasting at the hull with disintegrate and thunderlance while still having it only do 2d10 or 3d8 damage. Use a ship-scale weapon against a character and it does only normal damage, due to being clumsy and very likely to only score glancing hits.
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Re: 4thed rules for ship weapons?

Post by Silverblade-T-E » Sun Sep 21, 2008 4:13 am

Big Mac,
I gave this character (3.5)
http://www.silverblades-suitcase.com/wi ... rtilus.htm
the "Ballista" proficiency, as, alas, in 3.5 folk don't get neough proficiencies and he'd need 1 in each seige wepaon type: catapult, ballista, greek fire projector. hm.

4th ed has "Superior" weapons, same as "exotic" in 3.5 basically :) so for 4th ed, i think seige wepaons should have such a rule: a proficiency for them.

Eldersphinx,
I think, IMHO, 4th ed should have kept damage reduction/hardness.
Anyway, 4th ed rules *must be simple*, that's vital. They have to be quickly, easily applied, witht he player having to work out any attacks/damage, not the DM.

I'd suggest in 4th ed, ships get a big AC boost, as actually being able to do damage to them, is a hell of a lot harder than merely hitting them, and Reflex Defence is for touch and area attacks and similar. No damage reduction so use AC as means of showing how hard they are to damage, about the same as hitting a decently equipped fighter of same level IMHO.
And also they ignore damage from creaturesof less than Large size..since ship weapons are Large size, this doesn't bother them.
Some spells MAY ignore that, I'd think Area Effect, and Disintegrate?

In a 4th ed combat, a player is just *not* gonna do much damage to a squidship hull, for example! You'd just say that "In 10 rounds you cna do 1 hull point damage with a suitable weapon, or in 5 rounds with a 2 handed weapon" or some such.
you don't have ot be so fiddly precise simulationist in 4th ed, that's not what 4th ed is about ;)

Ok this is my rough idea for 4th ed ship rule:
SQUIDSHIP (Level defined by PC or NPC captain: same with role)
Gargantuan natural construct

Initiative: same as captain, with a penalty if poor manouverability class.

Senses: same as average of the lookouts, or a PC.

HP: double the helmsman's, helmsman takes damage as the ship does (simple rule this links how tough a ship is, to level of encounter!), healing the helmsan does NOT repair the ship though.

AC: this is based off captains level (1/2 level as a bonus), a penalty for poor manouverability, and a bonus for type of material and quality of construction (rules needed! 1' thick timber walls are strong, so say at least equal to plate armour?)

Speed: Ship's tactical Speed should be 1/2 Helmsman's rating + bonus for helm type

Action Points: As per helmsman (helmsman IS the ship, effectively)

(ranged attack) Heavy Catapult (standard: recharge 6) * Siege Weapon
+ (bonus same as weapon master for that weapon) vs AC, 7d6+15,
Secondary attack on impact against those creatures near impact, same attack bonus, burst 2 1d10+4 vs Ref (burst doesn't harm ship)

(ranged attack) two Medium Ballistae (standard: recharge 5-6) * Siege Weapon
+ (bonus same as weapon master for that weapon) vs AC, 5d6+10
Secondary attack on impact against those creatures near impact, same attack bonus, burst 1 2d4+2 vs Ref (burst doesn't harm ship)


(melee attack) Ram (standard recharge 6) * Seige weapon
+ (bonus same as Helmsman for that weapon) vs AC, 2d6 x ship's rating (ramming should be brutal, but you cnano ram anything less than Huge size, except by accident)
Secondary attack, all on enemy ship, Ref or knocked prone.

Alignment: Unaligned Languages: as crew
Skills: as Crew
STR: 30 DEX: varies on manouverability Class (rules needed!) wis: as Helmsman
Con: 30 Int: as helmsman Cha: as helmsan
Equipment: varies
What ye think? :)
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