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Modiphius > Robert E. Howards CONAN roleplaying game
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Ranged Weapons, Loads, Reloads, Volleys and Ohmygod make it stop

posted Jun 26, 2018 01:04:45 by harty001
First off, I'm a fairly smart guy. I say that because I'm about to appear not so.

I just can't get the ranged weapons attacks. Well, the actual attack I get. But what are Loads? There are hints that a Load is a group of ammo (a quiver or bag of stones). However, Volley allows you to shoot another load (and expend it). So does a regular attack loosen one arrow and a Volley loose 20 more? That seems unlikely. But is it one additional shot? Because two arrows flying doesn't sound like a Volley of arrows to me. And Quick Release allows you to spend two Loads. Is that now three arrows? Or 41 arrows (1 + 20 (Load) + 20 (Load)? It's obviously not 41 arrows, but is it only three? And when you recover Loads after a scene, is at an all or nothing endeavor? "I can't find a single arrow I shot," or "Luckily I found all 20!" (I'm using 20 as a base because my gut tells me you can fit about 20 arrows in a quiver).

So, some of you really smart people please explain it to me like I am five. Please?

Thanks.
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17 replies
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TracyGeorge said Jun 26, 2018 05:34:49
Range weapon's ammo is kind of abstract. You never have to track arrows as they are shot. Basically the archer has unlimited shots. However, if the archer wants to do a volley they must expend one of their Loads. These Loads the archer must keep track of. At the end of the scene the player rolls a combat die from each load shot. On a 5 or 6 the Load is lost otherwise it is recovered. Some ranged weapons you do keep track of individual ammo/shots such as the arbalest.
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Shran said Jun 26, 2018 06:55:53
I'm not sure about this either. I get Loads. They are basically a bunch of arrows and you only have a limited supply. But I'm not sure of you have an unlimited supply of normal shots. On p. 123 it says "At the end of the scene, the character rolls 1 [CD] for each shot used. On an Effect, the shot is damaged or broken and cannot be used again." If you had an infinite amount of Shots, rolling and tracking each shot would not make sense.

In addition to that, there is also such a thing as "Reload" which adds a d20 to the skill test and +1 CD damage. But I don't know what a Reload is and where to get it.

I always assume ranged weapons have an unlimited supply of shots (because tracking each shot and potentially recovering it at the end of combat is boring und burdensome). They do have a limited supply of Loads though. But a definite answer would be great.
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harty001 said Jun 26, 2018 13:07:35
Hopefully a *really*smart person will come in here and set us straight. :D
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Shran said Jun 26, 2018 13:38:53
We have cookies...
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SteveHanson said Jun 26, 2018 14:38:44
Reloads are abstracted variable measurements of ammunition. They're not a stable number because a turn isn't a stable measurement of time. Its not whether the character finds an arrow. Its whether they can retrieve them. People have a bad habit of landing on arrows after all and not every arrow retrieved is one the archer necessarily shot.
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With one of his foeman's friends.
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SteveHanson said Jun 26, 2018 14:39:21
So in short a reload is between 1 and 20 arrows depending on the scene.
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To his friend a man
a friend shall prove,
To him and the friend of his friend;
But never a man
shall friendship make
With one of his foeman's friends.
--Havamal
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Shran said Jun 26, 2018 20:00:50
Thanks for your response, but for me this somehow raised more questions than it answered. According to the rulebook, a Reload is a Resource that adds a d20 to the skill test and +1 CD. But from your response, it seems that a Reload actually represents your normal ammunition.

The basic question is: What is a Shot? Does a ranged attacker have to count the ammo for each attack and do they loose them, or do they basically have infinite ammunition? In any case, what does it mean to retrieve Shots after the battle?

It is pretty clear what a Load is. But what exactly is a Reload and what is an archer actually doing when they spend a Reload? It seems a Reload is the same thing as a Load/Volley.
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Shran said Jun 27, 2018 06:07:33
Just opened my eyes and actually looked in the unofficial FAQ which is a sticky post in this forum. I found this answer:

How do Loads/Shots/Reloads work for Ranged Weapons?
(Answered by Nathan Dowdell in the G+ Community)
You only care about individual shots when making a ranged attack with a weapon that doesn't have the Volley quality - that thrown knife or javelin is one of a limited supply, and each ranged attack uses one. At the end of the scene, roll 1[CD] per shot used, on an Effect that shot is lost, on anything else you retrieve it and can use it again later.

Volley weapons use Loads instead, and can fire freely, without a requirement to pay for every shot, using the Volley rule (Core p.154) to spend the Loads for a bonus. When you're out of Loads for that weapon you may still attack (you've got a couple of arrows left, but less than a full Load), the GM may use a complication to rule that you're "completely out of ammo", preventing further ranged attacks until you find more ammunition. At the end of the scene, roll 1[CD] for every Load spent or lost: on an Effect, that Load is lost for good and must be replaced, on any other result, you retrieve enough intact arrows/etc to replenish a spent Load.
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harty001 said Jun 27, 2018 08:50:44
We should make a system where you don't have to keep track of arrows. That really bogs down the game.

That's a good idea.

Instead, you keep track of Loads.

Brilliant!
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Shran said Jun 27, 2018 11:37:45
That is basically the Conan system. You don't keep track of individual arrows, just Loads. People with bows basically have infinite ammunition for normal attacks. Only non-volley weapons (such as javelins) have individual shots.
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rrcautela007 said Jun 27, 2018 13:19:21
Great - very in the spirit of REH.
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ChrisCarlson said Jul 12, 2018 21:08:24
So even though you have a throwing knife, which has the Volley property, you still only have one? What gives there?
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rrcautela007 said Jul 13, 2018 03:47:54
My understanding is that if a throwing knife has the volley quality, its more than 1.


[Last edited Jul 13, 2018 03:48:24]
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SteveHanson said Jul 13, 2018 14:29:41
The intension was that you have a Belt of throwing Knives. If you want to throw a dagger you certainly can but throwing knives are intended to be used en mass.
"throwing knife" = lots of small ones. A single throwing knife is just a dagger/knife/dirk/stiletto.
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To his friend a man
a friend shall prove,
To him and the friend of his friend;
But never a man
shall friendship make
With one of his foeman's friends.
--Havamal
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ChrisCarlson said Jul 26, 2018 17:54:25
So since the bow you start with comes with a free Load of arrows, because it says so under the equipment table for ranged weapons, the throwing knives are assumed to be the same? They are a built in Load of knives? I guess it would have just been nice if the entry for them was "Throwing Knives", rather than the singular.
[Last edited Jul 26, 2018 18:02:01]
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