Continuing where we left off last week, we’re turning to firearms and explosives this time around. These weapons add new rules options to Domino Writing-style USR combat.
Ammunition: USR, in any form, is much too unbelievably simple to worry about ammunition. It’s assumed a character has enough ammunition (arrows, bullets, explosive charges) to never run out. But to add a little more challenge to a combat encounter, consider the following option: on an attack roll where the die result is a 1, the weapon has enough ammunition for just a single attack before it will be completely useless (or it jams). The hero won’t have time to refill ammo until it makes sense to do so in the story.
+1 (Light) weapons: Dueling pistol (1600s to 1800s), needler
+2 (Medium) weapons: Regular pistol (assault pistol or revolver: .357, .38, .44, .45, 9 mm, Wild West “six-shooter,” WWII Mauser), laser pistol
+1 (Light) weapons: Matchlock rifle (arquebus), flintlock (musket, blunderbuss)
+2 (Medium) weapons: Carbine (Wild West “buffalo rifle”), WWII infantry rifle
+3 (Heavy) weapons: Hunting/sniper rifle, laser rifle
+1 (Light) weapons: Blow gun, bola, boomerang, sling, whip
Area of Effect weapons: When making an attack, the player names an enemy target, as usual. The attack is made with a +2 bonus to Action rolls. But an attack with one of these weapons also affects every other character (enemy and ally) within 5 feet/1 space of the target at a +1 to Action rolls. All of these attacks count as the same action for the attacking character.
The assault rifle, sub-machine gun, shotgun, “Tommy gun,” grenade, and the chain gun/mini-gun (which has a +3/+2 bonus) are all Area of Effect weapons.
Flamethrower: This is an Area of Effect weapon, which it continues to burn anything it hits, possibly causing more damage on the next turn.
Bombs and dynamite are Area of Effect weapons, but they’re also explosives. A weapon that is on a timer doesn’t rely on a hero’s skill to make an attack. Instead, treat a bomb like it has an Action stat of d10, “attacking” whenever it’s set to detonate. To disarm a bomb, a hero has to make a non-opposed Wits roll against a target number of 7 or more — and make sure the disarm attempt is appropriately tense!
Stun gun, taser: This is a special weapon that has a +1 bonus to attack, and if it hits, the opponent loses d3 turns in combat instead of taking damage. These rules can also be used for entangling weapons like nets, webs, and even whips and vines.
Tranquilizer gun: A larger version of a stun gun, with darts that attack with a +1 bonus. If the target is hit, the opponent loses d6 turns in combat instead of taking damage.
Chemicals: A chemical, whether coating a sword blade or fired from a grenade launcher, has an effect above and beyond the damage the weapon does to its target, if any.
- Acid: d6 points of damage.
- Nerve gas or tear gas: the opponent has -4 to his or her next die roll.
- Poison: 1 point of damage per turn until the target is healed.
- Sleep drug: the opponent loses d3 turns in combat.
- Smoke gas: the opponent is unable to see on his or her next turn.
Even bigger guns, like a rocket launcher, bazooka, pulse rifle, and rail gun, may not be available to heroes to buy with Combat Gear points. If they are, the weapons probably provide a bonus of +4 or even +5.