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Guns are capable of different modes that dictate rate of fire and region of effect. A weapon can have one or more of four possible gun modes, which are described below. In addition to gun modes, weapons that produce a spray or that fire shot usually utilize a choke, which modifies the angle of spread when fired.
Weapons Without Modes
A ranged weapon that has no gun modes must be reloaded, replaced, or retrieved before an attack with that weapon can be used again. This does not mean a weapon without modes can’t fire more than one projectile in a single action—only that its rate of fire is dictated by how fast you can reload the weapon.
Gun Modes: Single Shot (SS) and Semi-Auto (SA)
More common to pistols, Single Shot (SS) and Semi-Auto (SA) both limit your rate of fire to one projectile per attack action. The only difference between these two modes is that a weapon in SS mode cannot be fired more than once per initiative pass; thus, once you fire a SS weapon, you cannot fire it again until the start of your next turn.
Weapons in SA mode can only fire once per attack action, but you can fire the weapon each time you have an available action to do so. Essentially, the weapon can fire rounds as fast as you can pull the trigger.
Unless your weapon has a choke setting that dictates otherwise, SS and SA gun modes are targeted types of attack; they target a single subject, not an area of effect.
Gun Modes: Burst Fire (BF) and Full-Auto (FA)
Burst Fire (BF) and Full-Auto (FA) gun modes turn your weapon attack into an area effect, firing multiple rounds per attack action. When you fire in either mode, you choose which burst to fire and the burst’s spread.
There are three types of bursts based on the number of rounds each burst fires. A short burst fires 3 rounds of ammo, a long burst fires 6 rounds, and a full burst fires 10 rounds of ammo. The following table shows which modes can fire which burst types and what action is needed to fire them. Note that recoil is cumulative for every round of ammunition you shoot, making it impossible to maintain accuracy with continuous automatic fire.
FA Split Bursts: When firing with a weapon in FA mode, you may use a Complex action to fire 3 short bursts instead of a single full burst.
|Burst Type||Rounds Fired||BF Mode||*FA(Full-Auto) Mode|
Before rolling your weapon test, you must decide on your attack’s spread when using BF or FA mode. Bursts are inherently area effects and target all subjects according to the type of area effect: line or cone.
Because you are firing multiple rounds, it is possible to hit the same target multiple times or hit multiple targets. However, the number of struck targets per burst attack is limited by the number of rounds you fire (unless a hit penetrates its target). Each time a non-penetrating hit occurs, you reduce the number of remaining possible hits by 1. Your attack action is considered resolved when all rounds fired in the burst are stopped.
Narrow Burst: This spread option creates a line area effect.
Wide Burst: This spread option creates a cone area effect. Because rounds are dispersed over a wide angle, each range increment increases the threshold for your attack by 1 in addition to your weapon’s normal range penalties. (Note: If your weapon has a choke setting, ignore this additional range increment penalty.)
Hitting with a Burst Attack
When you hit a target with your burst attack, there is a possibility the target is hit by more than one round of ammo. Divide your weapon test‘s net hits by the sum of your weapon’s recoil rate plus your current range increment penalty (round down). Note: Do not divide by your total recoil penalty, divide by the weapon’s recoil rate. Ignore recoil compensation for this calculation. The result is the number of extra rounds that can strike the target in addition to the first round. You may choose how many extra hits the target takes (up to this maximum), but you cannot choose to have the attack miss completely; the initial round still hits.
To calculate damage, add your (undivided) net hits to your base DV as normal. Each extra hit deals additional damage equal to your weapon’s base DV. The target applies their AV, after modifying it from AP, to each hit separately. Then combine the damage left over from each hit. The target is allowed only one damage resistance test against this remainder.
Remember that a target cannot be struck by more rounds than are left flying. Any previous non-penetrating hits are subtracted from the number of rounds you fired, reducing the possible number of times a target can be hit.
Wide Spread Attacks: When attacking with a wide spread, treat your weapon’s recoil rate as 1 point higher when determining if extra rounds of ammo hit.
Burst Attacks without Recoil
While these weapons don’t suffer accuracy loss from recoil, there is still deviation from the target due to air pressure or the subtle movements of your hands. When determining how many extra rounds hit a target with a burst attack using a 0 recoil rate weapon, treat the recoil rate as 1/2 instead. For wide spread attacks, this still increases by 1 point to an effective rate of 1.5.
A ranged weapon’s choke manipulates the spread of its projected ammo. Typically, only chemical weapons and shotguns are equipped with a choke setting; standard firearms and energy weapons don’t fire ammunition that sprays. Thus, these rules only apply to weapons that explicitly state they have a choke setting in their individual descriptions.
The choke setting of a weapon determines the area it effects and can augment the weapon’s range increment. There are three choke settings.
- Narrow Choke: The weapon targets a line area effect. The weapon gains -1 AP and +1 to its range increment, but the weapon’s recoil rate increases by 1.
- Medium Choke: This is the default setting for choke-based weapons. Your weapon targets a line area effect, but otherwise has no statistical change.
- Wide Choke: The weapon targets a cone area effect. You gain +1 dice to weapon tests using the weapon and +1 recoil compensation, but your weapon suffers -1 base DV and +1 AP.
Choke and Burst Attacks
When making a burst attack with a choke weapon, if either option—the burst spread or the choke setting—would target a cone area, then the attack is a cone area effect. Both settings must be a line attack to be treated as one.
Wide Burst, Wide Choke: If you fire both a wide burst while using a wide choke, you may target a larger cone area. You can target spaces within a 90° area of effect (or 2 adjacent cone area effects with no untargeted spaces between them).
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