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Lloyd Dupont

GMing and modern weapon question

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1 hour ago, Old Man Henerson said:

I have a question. What would the result be if you rolled a malfunction with a rail gun? In the game I am working on the PCs will likely be armed with light automatic magnetic rifles, so I was wondering what would happen if it malfunctions. Would it explode?

The more complex, the more modes for the thing to break.

How do they generate the mag fields for the railgun?  Batteries & capacitors?  Batteries can overheat & catch fire.  Capacitors can pop.

Timing can fail... Each loop needs to kick the projectile forward HARD, so mis-timed mag pulses can render a dud, that only flies a few meters.  A sabotaged gun could even push the ammo to the tip, then "shoot" it in reverse!

Physical damage to the railgun, or to the ammo, might result in the shot contacting the gun, presumably destroying it's use (manufacturer repair, not field repair).  I suppose damage in the midst of battle might be severe enough for it's own shot to actually "hit" the gun -- foe hits the gun a split second before the gun shoots, so its own shot hits the misaligned rail, or a loop, etc.  Unlikely, but possible.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Old Man Henerson said:

I have a question. What would the result be if you rolled a malfunction with a rail gun? In the game I am working on the PCs will likely be armed with light automatic magnetic rifles, so I was wondering what would happen if it malfunctions. Would it explode?

Assuming that handheld magnetic rail guns sport

  • some kind of high density energy cell (with enough juice for, say, 20-50 shots),  depending on tech level
  • some sort of projectile magazine with a feeding system, either separate from, or integrated with the energy source, depending whether small caliber flechettes (perhaps 40-80/mag) or more massive projectiles (ibidem 20-50) are used 
  • high temperature super conductors (HTSC)

possible malfunctions could include:

  • failure to accelerate and/or eject projectile (“jam”): HTSC and/or controlling electronics are busted, resulting in no magnetic fields at all, or projectile gets stopped in the barrel
  • as a worst case scenario (.0001% perhaps), this could result in a spectacular barrel burst with high velocity shrapnel
  • failure to feed firing channel (“dud round”): magazine/feeder busted
  • energy cell failure: depending on reliability, cell overheats, ruptures, or even explodes 
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1 hour ago, g33k said:

The more complex, the more modes for the thing to break.

How do they generate the mag fields for the railgun?  Batteries & capacitors?  Batteries can overheat & catch fire.  Capacitors can pop.

1 hour ago, foolcat said:

Assuming that handheld magnetic rail guns sport

  • some kind of high density energy cell (with enough juice for, say, 20-50 shots),  depending on tech level
  • some sort of projectile magazine with a feeding system, either separate from, or integrated with the energy source, depending whether small caliber flechettes (perhaps 40-80/mag) or more massive projectiles (ibidem 20-50) are used 
  • high temperature super conductors (HTSC)

I am not sure if they use batteries or capacitors, they are built by Martian colonists who are trying to conserve resources by just using magnets instead of gunpowder and shells, so they would probably use what ever was easiest to make.

1 hour ago, foolcat said:

possible malfunctions could include:

  • failure to accelerate and/or eject projectile (“jam”): HTSC and/or controlling electronics are busted, resulting in no magnetic fields at all, or projectile gets stopped in the barrel
  • as a worst case scenario (.0001% perhaps), this could result in a spectacular barrel burst with high velocity shrapnel
  • failure to feed firing channel (“dud round”): magazine/feeder busted
  • energy cell failure: depending on reliability, cell overheats, ruptures, or even explodes 
1 hour ago, g33k said:

Timing can fail... Each loop needs to kick the projectile forward HARD, so mis-timed mag pulses can render a dud, that only flies a few meters.  A sabotaged gun could even push the ammo to the tip, then "shoot" it in reverse!

Physical damage to the railgun, or to the ammo, might result in the shot contacting the gun, presumably destroying it's use (manufacturer repair, not field repair).  I suppose damage in the midst of battle might be severe enough for it's own shot to actually "hit" the gun -- foe hits the gun a split second before the gun shoots, so its own shot hits the misaligned rail, or a loop, etc.  Unlikely, but possible.

Thanks for the suggestions. These will really help me out in the near future.

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On 11/30/2019 at 6:20 PM, Old Man Henerson said:

I am not sure if they use batteries or capacitors, they are built by Martian colonists who are trying to conserve resources by just using magnets instead of gunpowder and shells, so they would probably use what ever was easiest to make...

Ordinary magnets won't power a railgun.  You need mag-fields you can turn on and off very quickly, e.g. electromagnets; electromagnets need portable power, e.g. batteries, and the speed of discharge to fire a railgun says capacitors (all this is with our current state of the art tech & science, of course).  That can be resource-conservative, none of this gets used up.

Or build it with "Ancient Martian" Clarketech, or other Handwavium.

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3 hours ago, g33k said:

Ordinary magnets won't power a railgun.  You need mag-fields you can turn on and off very quickly, e.g. electromagnets; electromagnets need portable power, e.g. batteries, and the speed of discharge to fire a railgun says capacitors (all this is with our current state of the art tech & science, of course).  That can be resource-conservative, none of this gets used up.

Or build it with "Ancient Martian" Clarketech, or other Handwavium.

I can just say that batteries and capacitors have advanced over the 300 years that the Martian colonists have lived on Mars out of need to squeeze every last drop of power they can from wind turbines and solar panels. As they say, "Necessity is the mother of invention."

Of course, the backstory involves Elon Musk helping to save humanity with his secret fleet of spaceships and going on to help build the first generation of mecha suits the PCs will use to fight eldritch horrors, so some Elon Musk brand Cyber-Hadwaveium TM would not be too unreasonable either.😉

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2 hours ago, Old Man Henerson said:

Of course, the backstory involves Elon Musk [...snip...] going on to help build the first generation of mecha suits the PCs will use to fight eldritch horrors, so some Elon Musk brand Cyber-Hadwaveium TM would not be too unreasonable either.

A-hem.

Eldritch horrors + Elon Musk + Neon Genesis: Evangelion = shoggoth-powered mecha.

I'm just saying.

!I!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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10 hours ago, Lloyd Dupont said:

I wouldn't worry about that level of details.. because, obviously, going that way we wouldn't even be in space yet! :P 

Yeah, details are such a bother. ;) we have much more important things to focus on...

10 hours ago, Ian Absentia said:

A-hem.

Eldritch horrors + Elon Musk + Neon Genesis: Evangelion = shoggoth-powered mecha.

I'm just saying.

!I!

Like how teens with attitude are going to bring down Cthulhu with their Elon Musk mecha. XD

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2 hours ago, Old Man Henerson said:

Like how teens with attitude are going to bring down Cthulhu with their Elon Musk mecha. XD

Let's be honest with ourselves - the fight against Cthulhu is a staying action at best. Stuffing a shoggoth into a steel robot shell and stuffing a pouty, psychically-linked teenager into that is almost a no-brainer, for entertainment if nothing else. Slap one of your railguns into it's hands and it's a non-stop spiral into madness and mayhem.

!i!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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Pouty, self-obsessed teens ARE a madness-inducing horror.

 

 

Shoggoth's are an afterthought.

 

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55 minutes ago, g33k said:

Pouty, self-obsessed teens ARE a madness-inducing horror.

In all fairness, we've all been there, on one or both sides of the equation.  A moment of appreciation for our parents and our former teenage selves.

Now, back to them railguns and such.  I'm totally into statting out the shoggoth-suit again, but that's more appropriate to a separate thread in the CoC forum.

!i!

Edited by Ian Absentia
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A different approach could be the use of combat remotes that can take that amount of heavy fire. Treat these friendly combat bots like allied spirits or elementals in RQ. It doesn't have to go all the way to Ice Pirates, though.

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On 1/5/2020 at 10:47 AM, Ian Absentia said:

In all fairness, we've all been there, on one or both sides of the equation.  A moment of appreciation for our parents and our former teenage selves.

Now, back to them railguns and such.  I'm totally into statting out the shoggoth-suit again, but that's more appropriate to a separate thread in the CoC forum.

!i!

I had a similar idea to that earlier, only I was using a shogoth type monster as an enemy for the PC's mechs only they would be a kind of symbiote for the "mech pilot." I talked about it with some others on this thread over here if you are interested.

 

Edited by Old Man Henerson

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