Nevets
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My house rules and humble suggestions

Mon 21 Dec 2020, 18:36

I'm a long time time fan of Twilight 2000 and started playing 2nd edition back in the early 90's. I was very excited to see that Free League was resurrecting. I was nervous about how they would change it but I've been very happy to see what they've done. The alpha rules are solid and I hope they don't change them too much. A couple of tweaks here and there and we've got the perfect T2K game in my opinion.

That said I have been using some house rules in my games. These are rules that I feel would improve the game and I hope the people of Free League give them a look.
Maybe some of these rules have already been changed or maybe I have misread them. Let me know if I make any errors.

1) Rate of Fire
I love the ROF rules for the most part. The realistic consumption of ammo in a fire fight with the unpredictability of when your weapon runs dry are excellent for firefights. What I don't like is that auto fire does not actually improve your chances of hitting a target. This bothered me and all my players. 1 well aimed shot vs 1 well aimed shot with 9 extra bullets behind it shouldn't have the exact same chance of scoring a hit. Solution: If the shooter misses on their primary dice but roll at least 2 success on their ammo dice a hit has been scored. Extra 6's on ammo dice work as normal.
Now there is more reward for being less efficient with your ammunition.


2) Explosives and supression
The rules state that you roll CUF after being hit with an explosive weapon. In my game you roll CUF if you were in the blast radius of an explosive weapon. This just makes grenades and such more useful. It also makes more sense to me. If a 120mm motor round exploded 10 meters away from me in real life and I somehow was uninjured, you'd better believe I'm still going to poop my pants!


3) Hunting and Ammo Use

I've never known a deer hunter in my life who took down a deer by rapidly firing 6 rounds at it. I get that this could happen in the desperate survival situation that is Twilight 2000 but its still a bit much. In my game, if you take a sniper shot with a hunting rifle (or sniper rife) you can choose to fire just 1 round of ammunition.

4) Why do carbines and smgs exist?
In the game a carbine or smg is just as heavy and bulky as a full size rifle. I know in real life why they exist but not in the game. I don't really have a good answer to this issue but I feel like there should be one. Maybe a reduced quick shot penalty in confined environments? I don't know, but I need some reason why an M4 would ever be manufactured vs the M16 which is superior in every way as far as the game stats go.


Anyways. That's how me and my players are doing it. Just wanted to see what the T2K community thought about it.
 
paladin2019
Posts: 161
Joined: Mon 07 Dec 2020, 09:16

Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Mon 21 Dec 2020, 19:58

RE: M4 vs. M16, the former's stats are wrong. If the M16 (max. effective range* 460m) is range 5 and the M16A2 (max. effective range 550 m) is range 6. Thus, the M4 and M4A1 (max effective range 500m) have to be range...4?

But there is a system problem going on. Each of these items have 1 "encumbrance point". Without making that stat more granular, which probably isn't helpful to the system, weight can't change.

I guess the benefit is the M4 is cheaper than the M16, probably based on the erroneous range stat.

*Defined as the maximum range the bullet will penetrate a Soviet steel helmet.
 
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omnipus
Posts: 398
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Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Mon 21 Dec 2020, 22:50

Yeah, I think you're right about all of this issues. I'm fairly sure you're playing #2 as it was intended, but it's not fully clear in the rules.

But yeah #4 is a puzzler. One of my players had an SMG and stitched someone up with multiple hits on multiple attacks, and still did very little to him. There was never a point, at any range, where he had an advantage of any kind in any way versus a rifle. Of course I knew this was the case, but he was sad about it.

In Coriolis you can get an initiative bonus by using some "fast" weapons like knives and pistols, as long as you actually attack with them on your turn. I don't think that's exactly an elegant solution, lots of problems with it as well, but it is something. All games sort of have this problem. Computer games too. Here's a few ideas:

  • reduce the unaimed fire penalty for pistols and SMGs to -1 rather than -2.
  • give a -1 or even -2 penalty for firing full-size weapons in cramped spaces (small hallways, rooms, vehicles) -- the problem is this issue should really go away with aimed fire, and if you make it cumulative with unaimed fire suddenly you have at least a -3 to hit at close range. The ammo hit tweaks might offset that.
  • make firing them a fast action (probably has lots of unintended consequences -- including you could fire them twice in a turn)
  • make their ammo much lighter and/or cheaper. But this starts to complicate what is otherwise a very clean abstraction everywhere else in the system.

Dunno, just some ideas. Like you said, these weapons need a reason to exist. Currently, the only reason you'd choose one is if you had a specialty in them. Even then its a dubious choice.
 
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The JollyGM
Posts: 52
Joined: Sat 25 May 2019, 15:02

Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Mon 21 Dec 2020, 23:35

I like your idea of unaimed shots from a smg or pistol getting a reduced snap fire penalty. Or maybe give them a bonus to hit if with in short range.

I totally agree with why WOULD anyone use an SMG, there is no advantage or benefit for using them outside of "role playing" it. So, yeah.. i support any change to an SMG or Pistol.

Yeah, I think you're right about all of this issues. I'm fairly sure you're playing #2 as it was intended, but it's not fully clear in the rules.

But yeah #4 is a puzzler. One of my players had an SMG and stitched someone up with multiple hits on multiple attacks, and still did very little to him. There was never a point, at any range, where he had an advantage of any kind in any way versus a rifle. Of course I knew this was the case, but he was sad about it.

In Coriolis you can get an initiative bonus by using some "fast" weapons like knives and pistols, as long as you actually attack with them on your turn. I don't think that's exactly an elegant solution, lots of problems with it as well, but it is something. All games sort of have this problem. Computer games too. Here's a few ideas:

  • reduce the unaimed fire penalty for pistols and SMGs to -1 rather than -2.
  • give a -1 or even -2 penalty for firing full-size weapons in cramped spaces (small hallways, rooms, vehicles) -- the problem is this issue should really go away with aimed fire, and if you make it cumulative with unaimed fire suddenly you have at least a -3 to hit at close range. The ammo hit tweaks might offset that.
  • make firing them a fast action (probably has lots of unintended consequences -- including you could fire them twice in a turn)
  • make their ammo much lighter and/or cheaper. But this starts to complicate what is otherwise a very clean abstraction everywhere else in the system.

Dunno, just some ideas. Like you said, these weapons need a reason to exist. Currently, the only reason you'd choose one is if you had a specialty in them. Even then its a dubious choice.
 
paladin2019
Posts: 161
Joined: Mon 07 Dec 2020, 09:16

Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 00:55

Regarding SMGs ("ultra-modern" definition) vs carbines, here is no advantage. Anything an MP5 can do, an M4A1 or Mk18 can probably do better. In the period we're talking about, that lesson wasn't as widespread, so you'll see a lot of paramilitary/police tactical units and some SOF running them, but they are not equal. The problem comes more when comparing an M4 to an M16.
 
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omnipus
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Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 03:55

Eh, don't really agree with that.

Having carried both an M4 and M16, the difference is marginal. It's slightly more pleasant and comfortable to carry the M4, but they are essentially the same tool for the same job (at least until you start accessorizing them and suppressing them, mostly stuff outside of the scope of the time period).

Of course, at typical battlefield ranges anywhere but an urban environment, rifles and carbines are the obviously better choice.

But SMGs are much more easily stashed/transported (making them far more viable for vehicles, aircaft, etc), are much more convenient to carry, especially in tight quarters and vehicles, much more discreet, usable even as sidearm/backup weapons, cheaper to operate, less susceptible to over-penetration, and in most cases much more controllable at high rates of fire (but correspondingly shorter ranges). With the proliferation of body armor they face new challenges which make them less popular with many professionals, but that is arguably not a factor of huge concern in the world of T2K. Generally speaking the 10.5" carbine that's most popular today with hard chargers doesn't even exist in the year 2000. The one that does (the AK74SU) is wildly unpopular for being over-gassed and overpowered, among other reasons.

Point is, there is a role for them that is different from other weapons. As it is, the rules do not allow for this distinction; instead they are simply "worse." Likewise, a handgun has its uses but is mostly a liability in the game.
 
AEB
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Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 04:16

There is a reason why the SAS and other SPEC Ops use SMGs like the MP5 over carbines like the M4 - length matters (.i.e. shorter is better) - when it comes to clearing the interior of structures. The opposite obviously occurs out in the field where range becomes more important.

Same applies to high capacity pistols. The tactic is approach, breech, double-tap any hostile, move on all in a well-practiced dance of death.

As mentioned 9mm has the advantage of avoiding over-penetration.

Also as mentioned the shorter length of SMGs and obviously pistols is of great benefit to vehicle crews or anyone who needs to perform tasks without a carbine or assault rifle getting in the way.

In TW mechanic terms, about the only compensation for a smaller range is a benefit in close quarters - perhaps by removing Close Combat penalty. I would probably do the same for sawn-off shotguns. Trade off range for enhanced close-in effectiveness.
 
paladin2019
Posts: 161
Joined: Mon 07 Dec 2020, 09:16

Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 04:48

There is a reason why the SAS and other SPEC Ops use SMGs like the MP5 over carbines like the M4 - length matters (.i.e. shorter is better) - when it comes to clearing the interior of structures. The opposite obviously occurs out in the field where range becomes more important.
The reason they did is because the M4 and Mk18 weren't available. The 10.5" and 11.5" have been around since Vietnam, but the true experimentation to get from the Colt 607/M177 to the Mk18 wasn't done yet. Regardless, things that we know about like Operation Ivory Coast (Son Tay Raid), where the raiders had options like new grease guns, Swedish Ks, and the S&W M76 not-a-copy still chose M177s. The SAS chose the fancy German wunderwaffen for Operation Nimrod and full-size AR15s two years later for Operation Corporate.

Regarding overpenetration, rifle bullets do so less (breaking up much sooner in construction materials) than much heavier pistol bullets. But that's not really a consideration in T2k <shrug>

And professionals don't double tap (aim once, shoot twice). We execute controlled pairs (aim twice, shoot twice), which keeps us set up for failure drills.
 
AEB
Posts: 138
Joined: Sat 19 Sep 2020, 06:01

Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 05:09

I am referring to operations like the Iran Embassy Siege or Lufthansa Flight 181 - situations where combat was conducted at close ranges with a desire not to harm the people being rescued.

The issue with using M4s in such a circumstance was shown in the Sydney Lindt Cafe Siege where a hostage was killed by fragments of 5.56mm fired from M4A1s used by the police that hit a tiled surface while engaging the terrorist.

But in Twilight if the SMG or Pistol is not going to be inferior to the carbine or assault rifle in all circumstances then they must be given some advantage under the rules. Without adding additional rules the easiest one would be to remove the Firing In Close-Combat -3 modifier - maybe to nil for a pistol and -1 for SMGs.
 
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omnipus
Posts: 398
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Re: My house rules and humble suggestions

Tue 22 Dec 2020, 06:53

Regarding overpenetration, rifle bullets do so less (breaking up much sooner in construction materials) than much heavier pistol bullets. But that's not really a consideration in T2k <shrug>

And professionals don't double tap (aim once, shoot twice). We execute controlled pairs (aim twice, shoot twice), which keeps us set up for failure drills.

Again, respectfully, but... nonsense. If I shoot my 9mm at an intruder, I can be somewhat comfortable in knowing where those bullets are going to end up. If I shoot my AK at an intruder, I have to know it's entirely likely the rounds go through him and probably through the next house or two up the block.

Whether it's a consideration in T2k really depends on the game. There's no rule for it whatsoever... but it would certainly add some drama.

As for "professionals," I dunno -- I've been trained by both active SF A-Team guys and MARSOC guys and they both taught the Mozambique/FSD... probably everyone who shoots has their own opinion on this but the reality is people have different skills. Hardly matters here though.

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