Blades in the Dark lets you take a pistol for 1 load, or a pair of pistols for 2.

The Blades-based sci-fi game Scum and Villainy lets you do the same with blasters, or the Scoundrel's fine sidearms.

We understand the basics of how equipment works in the game — creating an opportunity to act where you couldn't otherwise, influencing outcomes due to potency or quality, serving as inspiration for devil's bargain — and how this plays into creative and unexpected uses of gear. When we play, we look to the fiction to guide us, as intended. But most of the gear also has very straightforward applications mapped out in the book, too.

In light of that, what's the "typical"/"bread-and-butter" benefit of checking 2 load boxes to bring two handguns on a job over just bringing a single one?

  • \$\begingroup\$ @enkryptor Ah perhaps, I am not familiar with the systems at all so I wouldn't know. This change was made as more of a test due to this meta question. Feel free to revert if it doesn't make sense \$\endgroup\$ – Sdjz Sep 27 '19 at 10:02

Keep in mind the basics of how load works, from p.57:

For each operation, decide what your character's load will be. During the operation, you may say that your character has an item on hand by checking the box for the item you want to use—up to a number of items equal to your chosen load.

You choose what your load maximum is going to be, which affects how quickly and freely you can move. But you don't actually fill up that load with particular items until you need to use them. It's possible, but unlikely, to start an operation, decide you're heavily loaded, and then never actually bring any items that impact load into play.

So, in addition to the practical impacts of using two pistols or blasters at once:

  • bringing more firepower to a single point at once
  • getting a greater volume of shots off in any given period of time, if, say, you need to avoid the attention of someone who will come running when they hear gunfire
  • threatening a much larger firing arc than you would be able to threaten with one weapon held in one hand

there's the other temptation.

Sure, your single pistol/blaster misfired itself into a piece of scrap, or got knocked out of your hands and down four stories into the drink by some bluecoat/Imperial sharpshooter, or got eaten by an overzealous recycler droid, but that's okay, right? You brought a backup, right? All you need to do is check that little box and pull it out. It's not like you needed that load for anything else, is it?

It's assumed that, being a professional crimesman who is professional at crimes, you can credibly obtain all the stuff on your load list during downtime without even trying. But during an operation, you have what you brought. Did you bring a backup?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Is the term crimesman used by text or is that your coinage? \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Apr 7 '18 at 19:04
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ It's my own idiolect. The in-world equivalent of "PC" or "character" is "scoundrel" in Blades, which I imagine translates just as well to Scum and Villainy. \$\endgroup\$ – Glazius Apr 8 '18 at 4:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ upvote for style (incl. "crimesman") \$\endgroup\$ – walker Jul 6 '20 at 14:14

Blades in the Dark is set in a world that still uses single shot firearms for the most part, as described at the book page 88:

A Pistol: A heavy, single-shot, breechloading firearm.

If you shoot someone, you can't just turn around and shoot someone else without having to reload your pistol unless you're carrying more than one, or using the Hound's fine pair of pistols, which are defined on page 67 as each having two barrels to load.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks. Any comment on S&V? \$\endgroup\$ – Alex P Apr 6 '18 at 12:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm not familiar with S&V, unfortunately. \$\endgroup\$ – Vandalheart Apr 6 '18 at 13:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ S&V might just inherit this option from Blades \$\endgroup\$ – enkryptor Sep 27 '19 at 11:17

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