I'm setting up an online campaign using the Star Trek RPG by Last Unicorn Games. While going over the rules, I came across the following "Phaser Damage" table, and several things immediately stood out.
- The damage doesn't progress very well, especially in comparison to the energy expenditure. The difference between power levels 4 and 5 is only 2 points of damage, but it costs 3 extra energy. The same goes for levels 7-8 (+5 power for only +2 damage).
- There's a glaring error in the dice expressions. Power level 13 uses 18d6, but everything else from 11 up only uses 12d6. I'm 90% certain that's just a typo. (A typo that made it across two different rulebooks and a GM screen, but still a typo.)
- The "Notes" section doesn't quite pan out. By the rules, a level 1 Stun shot will stun an average Human for 10 minutes. A level 3 Stun will knock out a Human for 30 minutes.
- The difference between "Kill a humanoid" and "Vaporize a humanoid" is only 2 points of damage. (Incidentally, the level 7 setting will only wound a Klingon, and the level 8 setting will just incapacitate one. An average Klingon, never mind a tough one.)
Here's the chart, so you can see it for yourself. I already have some changes in mind, but I'd like to hear some suggestions first.
The question is, what changes would you suggest?
Setting Damage Chg Notes 1 Light Stun (2+2d6) 1 Stun a Human for 5 minutes 2 Medium Stun (4+2d6) 2 Stun a Human for 15 minutes, or a Klingon for 5 3 Heavy Stun (6+4d6) 3 Stun a Human for 1 hour, or a Klingon for 15 minutes 4 Light Thermal 8+2d6 5 Cut a 1m hole in 10cm of wood in 3 minutes 5 Heavy Thermal 10+2d6 8 Cut a 1m hole in 10cm of steel in 3 minutes 6 Light Disrupt A 12+3d6 12 Cut a 1m hole in 10cm of steel or rock in 30 seconds 7 Light Disrupt B 14+4d6 15 Kill a humanoid; cut a 1m hole in a duranium bulkead in 10 minutes 8 Light Disrupt C 16+4d6 20 Vaporize a humanoid 9 Light Disrupt D 24+5d6 30 Vaporize resilient alloys (beam ricochets possible) 10 Heavy Disrupt A 30+9d6 40 Vaporize any substance (beam ricochets likely) 11 Heavy Disrupt B 40+12d6 50 Explode 10 cubic meters of rock into rubble 12 Heavy Disrupt C 60+12d6 60 Explode 50 cubic meters of rock into rubble 13 Heavy Disrupt D 80+18d6 70 Explode 100 cubic meters of rock into rubble 14 Heavy Disrupt E 100+12d6 80 Explode 160 cubic meters of rock into rubble 15 Heavy Disrupt F 120+12d6 90 Explode 400 cubic meters of rock into rubble 16 Heavy Disrupt G 160+12d6 100 Explode 600 cubic meters of rock into rubble
To put the numbers above in perspective:
- An average Human has 2 points of Resistance (which reduces all damage taken), and seven "Wound Levels" of 2 points each. An average Klingon has 5 Resistance, and nine Wound Levels of 5 points each. Thus, a Human has a total of 14 points of damage they can take before dying; Klingons can take 45.
- The first three settings only do Stun damage. If someone takes enough Stun damage to 'fill' their first Wound Level, they are knocked out for 5 minutes, with an additional 5 minutes for each Wound Level filled. (Therefore, it takes a minimum of 4 points of damage to stun a Human, and 10 to stun a Klingon.)