I'm writing a Rifts campaign, a portion of which revolves around the assassination of Lord Splyncryth. Yes, I know that sort of breaks the campaign world, but I'm winding up a decade long game and breaking the world is sort of the point.

As a Splugorth, he has approximately 60,000MD, and massive regenerative abilities, so the only practical way of killing him would seem to be a massive nuclear bomb able to deal that much damage in one go; but such damage wouldn't be easily contained.

How much collateral damage do you reckon would be caused to Atlantis by a bomb of this magnitude?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Not really familiar with the system. But I can do some math if you tell me what a few example natural creatures are like. Cats, dogs, people, bears. So I can check for curves and extrapolate. \$\endgroup\$ – DampeS8N Jan 16 '14 at 20:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ Rifts uses two damage systems, SDC (structural damage capacity) and MDC (mega-damage capacity). The former is used for your cats, dogs etc, the latter used for supernatural creatures, giant robots and so on. The basic rule is that 100 SDC points equals 1 MD, except that SDC (usually) doesn't have any effect on MDC, whereas when a megadamage weapon will destory any unarmoured SDC creature on hitting it. \$\endgroup\$ – synesthesia Jan 16 '14 at 20:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, posted that comment too early. To give a more useful answer to @DampeS8N's question, a modern tank has approximately 80 MDC. \$\endgroup\$ – synesthesia Jan 16 '14 at 20:44

Given that a modern Tank has 80 MDC this means that Splyncryth is roughly 1000 times stronger. A Tomahawk is listed at 3d4x100 damage. (I assume this is the non-nuke type) That's 300-1200 damage. The smallest nuke ever created was Davy Crockett at 0.01 KT of TNT which is roughly the same as that Tomahawk.

I'm afraid this works out such that even the Hiroshima bomb could kill 10 Lord Splyncryths.

Now. There do appear to be Nuke rules for Rift. I can't speak to them as I can't find them. Someone with the related rules might be able to provide a better answer.

The damage to the surrounding area, therefore could be reduced if a lower yield bomb were used. If Little Boy destroyed 16 square miles, you should be able to reduce that to around a square mile.

Additionally, the small size of this bomb would mean there would be very little fallout. The area would be habitable again pretty quickly - less than a week of lethal radioactivity, even if the bomb is improvised.

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    \$\begingroup\$ @synesthesia You should not mark this as correct. Give others who may know the source material better a chance to give a better answer. \$\endgroup\$ – DampeS8N Jan 16 '14 at 21:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ If someone gives a better answer, I can always change it later, but that's perfectly good for my purposes. \$\endgroup\$ – synesthesia Jan 16 '14 at 21:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do we know if the Tomahawk's damage is SDC or MDC? Because I recall in Rifts, nearly all 20th century weapons are SDC, so it'd be only 3D4 MDC. Not even enough to get through standard issue MDC armor in RIFTs. \$\endgroup\$ – user9935 Jan 16 '14 at 22:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ An answer of "I know nothing about the system but will guess anyway" is low quality, as the comment discussion is unveiling. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Jan 17 '14 at 12:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @mxyzplk - I don't agree; DampeS8N seems to know a thing or too about nuclear bombs, which while it might be worrying for the NSA, is handier for my purposes than someone with an encyclopaedic knowledge of Rifts. \$\endgroup\$ – synesthesia Jan 22 '14 at 22:23

Nuclear weapons are dealt with in Rifts Sourcebook 4: Coalition Navy. There are bits about common ultra-low yield weapons players could get their hands on and stats for how to deal with all the various effects of a nuclear explosion, including the heat blast, ultrafast winds, initial radiation, and the EMP blast. The bit you'd be interested in would be the "city-busters" the CS reverse-engineered from surviving equivalents to the Tomahawk cruise missile. Their 200kt warheads are capable of dropping 300-1200 md each at ground zero up to a distance of 1000 mi. You'd need about 200 hitting Splyn at the same time if you rolled all 1s. Climatic effects would be well below that of Krakatoa, although you'd have Chernobyl style wastelands in parts of Atlantis. The CS is said to have about 700 such weapons and the ability to bring another 250 online each year, but it's not realistic to imagine they'd all detonate undetected and near enough to one another not to permit Splyn the ability to skip dimensions.

No one on Earth has an ICBM capable of delivering a heavier warhead accurately but you could presumably teleport an enormous warhead in along the leylines Splyn has to sit on. Even if it did work and the GM didn't let him escape or survive within creatures possessed by one of his fractured essences, the players would've been facing 1–6 Splug guests, the Aztec goddess Chiuacoatl (who has a crush on Splyn), and at least one of the 3 planets already dominated by the guy, not to mention the survivors on Atlantis. They'd also paint a target on their own back for annihilation by the CS, who themselves would only use their nukes defensively.

The actual in-universe answer to this question is the SDF-3's railgun,¹ whose damage is all the damage to anything within a mile or so of its exact target. It fires from outer space and no one has any idea what just happened or who was responsible.

¹ Full stats including floorplans in Robotech II: The Sentinels, pp. 150–9. Apparently Archive.org's copies of the old Antikevs site also have stats for the SDF‑1 and SDF‑4 online, with a similar ultimate death reflex cannons. The Antikevs adjust the stats for assaults on planetary objects, limiting its ability to just punch a hole straight through the Earth: 4d6×1,000,000 MD, with a radioactive crater 3d6×10 mi. long and 4d6×100 feet deep, with a shockwave wrecking the terrain for a further 1d6x10 mi.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the interest. Give us a way to equivalently set off text and we can get right on top of adhering to semantic markup. Neither bolding, italics, nor blockquoting is appropriate here. \$\endgroup\$ – lly Jul 21 '18 at 13:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Otherwise, it's more helpful to go around (e.g.) correcting x to ×, -- to —, and " to curly quotes than to imagine that using code causes any problems for the minuscule (nonexistent?) number of visually-impaired people reading through these forum posts with a machine reader. If anything, spelling out the word has the appropriate aural emphasis. \$\endgroup\$ – lly Jul 21 '18 at 13:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan And in that case thanks! although this probably all belongs in a chat log rather than as comments to this answer... \$\endgroup\$ – lly Jul 21 '18 at 14:08

Actually, assuming that Splyncryth is supernatural, using a nuclear bomb would invoke the Radiation rules, meaning that Splyncryth would not be able to regenerate until the radiation levels subsided (even if he did survive).

60,000 is a lot of MD. Considering that 1 MD is equal to 100 SDC (which is what allows buildings and Juicers to survive that Wilks Laser Pistol), that's 6,000,000 SD. I would say that that would level quite a bit of Atlantis, and put a massive crater where Splyncryth once stood. In fact, that could possibly punch a hole in the continent or in the tectonic plate itself (I don't know.)

The best place for this answer, however, is the Rifts community on the Palladium forum.

Hey, you could have a swarm of Mages casting Annihilate upon him, and get a similar effect confined in a 100ft radius.


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