06 January 2014

MinMax Monday

You so often see a character with a bow in post-apocalypse games.

At first blush it seems like a good alternative to a gun because you can recover the arrows.

In practice, if you miss, that arrow is likely to be gone for good unless you're willing and able to spend significant time to finding it.  Quite often a hit will ruin an arrow as well.

In GURPS 4e terms a ST 10 person will do 1d-1 imp damage with range values of 150/200 and an Acc of 2 for a regular bow.  This weighs 2 lb. and an individual arrow is 0.1 lb.  What that gives is 2-10 points of damage to the torso with an average hit of 4.  You get one aimed shot every 3 turns.

A bolt action .22 LR, such as an ancient Remington 341 does 1d+2 pi- to 80/1,400 with an Acc of 4.  The gun weighs 5.6 lb. loaded and you get 15 shots for 0.1 lb. (included in the weight of the gun); of course it takes 45 seconds to reload fully.  This yields 1-4 points of damage to the torso with an average hit of 2.  But you get an aimed shot every two turns!  Plus, a ST 7 person can manage it without penalty.

The bow seems to be doing better than the gun for damage.

Let's aim for the vitals.  The gun gets a slight edge here because it's got one more Acc.  It can also be fired braced for another +1.

Damage for the bow changes to 3-15, average of 6.  The gun gets 9-24, average of 15.

For the brain (important for zombie hoards) the bow does 0-12, with an average of just 4 zero! (skulls have DR 2 which shifts the curve).  A .22 does 4-24 with an average of 12.

Performance on limbs and other extremities is nearly identical.

The nearly ubiquitous Ruger 10/22 gets 10 shots before reloading and can dump 3 per turn and only takes 3 turns to reload.

2 comments:

  1. The nearly ubiquitous Ruger 10/22 gets 10 shots before reloading and can dump 3 per turn and only takes 3 turns to reload.

    If you really want to min-max the Ruger 10/22 in a modern setting, I have a ProMag Ruger 10/22 32-round magazine right beside me. It has steel feed lips, so it should have decent reliability (take it out for a range day first, so that you can argue with a firearms-savvy GM about reliability). With a fully-loaded ProMag in the magazine well, plus a round in the chamber, you can fire 3 rounds per turn for 11 turns before needing to reload. If that argument doesn't turn out to your advantage (i.e., your GM assumes that the ProMag magazines are too unreliable), the factory-spec BX-25 still gives you 8+ turns of fire before reloading.

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    Replies
    1. I think I'd go for the double stack 30 round magazines. Most of what I've heard of them is that they're nice and reliable if you get the ones with steel feed lips, and at half the length they should have less/no bulk penalty than the single stack high caps. 10 turns of shooting and much less space taken up (even if GURPS doesn't track volume, just weight)

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