Another week, another blog post. I know I didn't have one last week, with good reason.
I didn't write one.
I'm still trying to squeeze in posts when I can, but I've got a lot to do and I'm running out of time to do it. I've been pouring a lot of my writing energy into the "Edge of the Wasteland" module I'm writing for GamerNation Con. It's almost to the point where I can get a playtest group together and give it a go for 4 hours to see how it shakes out. I figure one more weekend and it'll be ready for testing.
Part of what I'm writing for that module involves rules for one specific character; the Knight from the Brotherhood of Steel. She's tromping around the Wasteland of the central Commonwealth in a well-loved T-45b power armor suit. As I've mentioned before, Power Armor changed dramatically between Fallout 3 and Fallout 4. Fallout 3 it was basically stat boosting armor. Fallout 4 it's practically a vehicle. It boosts stats, sure, but it's also an environmental suit, it runs on a limited-use power cell, it is loaded down with enhancements and customization options.
I want to keep some of that for my module, but I also have to take into consideration the reality that the person playing this character will have about 5 minutes to familiarize themselves with these rules. Simplicity may be the necessity.
I pondered making Power Armor a Silhouette 1 vehicle, but after a lot of consideration about the complexities of vehicle-scale interactions with personal scale combat, I elected to make Power Armor act very similar to normal armor. There are some changes, though, and some complexities.
Player characters can wear anything when they enter Power Armor as long as they are not Encumbered, at the GM's discretion. While wearing Power Armor, the Soak rating of the Power Armor replaces that of the character while is its worn. This is a total replacement; it does not add to it, nor do any of the Character’s Characteristics, Talents, or Abilities add to the Soak rating of the Armor. When the character is struck by an attack, subtract the Soak of the Power Armor from the damage and apply the remaining amount to the character's current damage total. The exception to this is if the attack strikes a location that's "Compromised".
Critical Hits and Compromised Locations
Critical Hits against a character in Power Armor are determined and activated as normal; the attacker must score enough Advantage to activate the Crit Rating of their weapon, or spend a Triumph to generate a Critical Hit.
When a Critical Hits is scored on a character wearing power armor, that hit removes the Power Armor's protection of a limb, head, or torso instead of inflicting a Component Critical. The location struck by the critical hit is now "Compromised". Any attachments or modifications granted by a Compromised location are lost until that location is repaired.
Roll 1d10 to determine location struck:
4 Right Arm
5 Left Arm
6-7 Right Leg
8-9 Left Leg
If the location rolled is already Compromised, the hit scores a Critical Injury against the wearer, and the Critical Injury result is determined as per the normal rules in Edge of the Empire.
Aiming at a Location
A specific Location can be targeted by using the Aiming at a Specific Part rules on page 201 Edge of the Empire. If successful, that targeted location is struck (arm, leg,torso, or head). If the attack generates a Critical Hit, the Critical Hit is applied to that specific location and that location is now Compromised. If the attack hits a location that is already Compromised, the attack is applied to the wearer against the Character’s Soak, not the Power Armor’s soak.
Repairing Power Armor
Repairing a Compromised section of Power Armor requires a Hard Mechanics Check to fix. You also need to have a Power Armor Repair cradle or other heavy lift, a tool kit, and a selection of salvage. The difficulty of the check is upgraded twice if attempted without such a lift, and cannot be attempted at all if missing a tool kit or salvaged metal/replacement parts.
Falling in Power Armor
Power Armor allows the wearer to fall from great heights without much injury, as long as they land right. Characters wearing Power Armor treat all falls as 1 Range band shorter (Long range becomes Medium, Medium becomes Short, and Short falls inflict no damage). Additionally, the character may spend 3 Advantage or a Triumph on their Coordination or Athletics check when reducing falling damage (page 215, EotE) to reduce the fall by an additional range band.
The Fusion Core
In Fallout 4, all Power Armor requires a Fusion Core to operate. The Power Armor draws power from the disposable Fusion Core, and the rate of consumption is determined by the actions the wearer makes. The Core’s fuel charge cannot be replenished; once it’s gone, it's a dead battery. The Power Armor can only be refueled by installing a fresh Fusion core. Spent cores can be recharged from a generator or other power source, regaining a number of points per hour per the generator’s power rating.
All Cores start with 100 points of fuel.
Actions In Power Armor and Fuel Costs:
- 1st Move maneuver on character’s turn - 0 Points
- 2nd Move maneuver on character’s turn - 2 Points
- Move Maneuver during another character’s turn - 2 Points
- Falling - 1 Point (Suit expends energy absorbing the landing)
- Jet Pack (if one is installed) - 1 Point per range band moved.
- Suit-mounted Energy Weapons (if any are installed) - 1 point per use
This is all I have for now. There will likely be other actions that drain the suit, but this is all I have right now.
I'm on the fence about having the Fusion Core be something for the Brotherhood Knight to worry about for my module at GamerNationCon. If I use it, she'll probably start with something like 40 points of Fuel; an amount that will may tempt her to use it during early engagements but may make her rather stingy with her actions towards the end of the module. That or she'll say "to hell with it", run it dry, and either find a way to recharge/replace the Fusion Cell or ditch the suit.
T-45b Power Armor
Soak: 10 Fusion Core: 40/100
Effects while Worn: +1 Brawn, Applies 3 Setback to all Agility Skill Checks (except Ranged Combat Checks)
Helmet COMPROMISED - Spotlight
Torso - None
Right Arm - None
Left Arm - None
Right Leg - None
Left Leg - None
There's a spotlight attached to the helmet, but since the helmet is starting the adventure Compromised it's not working. If the Knight can get the helmet fixed during play, the spotlight will become usable again.
Another Settlement Needs Your Help!
The adventure is coming together pretty well, I'll admit that. I've got the outline, I've got the detailed write-up about half finished, and if I push it should be good to go by Monday. Then I have to figure out maps, create the character sheets, and it's set.
Then I can determine if I have time to write up the sequel to last year's "Guns of Nova Rain". I finally figured out what I want to do for "The Hunt for White Spring", but I have to decide if I have the time to get it finished for March, with a 2 week loss of writing time for when I'm on vacation.
My life is so rough at times.
May the dice be with you.