Firearms

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David
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Re: Firearms

Postby David » Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:52 am

I think the best thing a pony could do is invest heavily in alchemical cartridges. Those wouldn't be so hard to jam down into a musket. If you were feeling generous and wanted to let ponies reload despite lack of two hands, I'd increase the reload time by one step(full rounds->2 rounds, standard->full round, move>standard, free>move). This would be a house rule of course. Rapid reload would push it one step in the other direction. So a pony with rapid reload would load as quickly as a human without rapid reload.

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Intendant S
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Re: Firearms

Postby Intendant S » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:30 am

Yeah, I like that idea. I might house-rule that if I ever run a Ponyfinder game. And I forgot about alchemical charges. :blush:
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Re: Firearms

Postby TheStratovarian » Sat Aug 31, 2013 4:32 pm

I couldn't see a pistol being used clearly on a non-unicorn/gryphon, but I could see earth ponies and pegasi especially being able to use a rifle with a cartridge based one.

Think of the stock and gun itself like a lance, held and braced against the body of a pony by a harness. The cartridge is near the head, so that the pony can reach to their other side on a new cartridge, but has a sliding chamber it drops the bullet into and seals back up to vent the bullet properly, and is fired by a facial control a light pull in some direction that would fit from a bit trigger?

I sorta see it like the m1 garand rifle, just reversed in part, the chamber for the magazine up top, dropping a bullet into the chamber, instead of drawing it, and ejecting the casing on the lower right side for a right side setup, or the lower left on a left side setup. I wish I could draw it, but thats how I see it.

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Re: Firearms

Postby Platinius » Sun Sep 01, 2013 6:10 am

A musket would be very difficult for ponies, other than unicorns, however a magazine or band fed gun should not be difficult to build.
As a veteran I can assure you can reload magazine fed rifles with one hand, or in the ponies case, mouth. The magazine would go in sideways for easier insertion. The stock could be attached to a harness which also has fresh magazines for a quick reload. The handle for loading the firing-chamber (and similar parts) only need to be a little bit longer/larger so that it can be drawn and pushed with a leg rather than fingers. If you think this sounds rather uncomfortable I assure you holding a rifle in a shooting position is not very comfortable either (unless you are lying on the ground, in which case the uncomfortable part is a non-issue for the pony too). A pony rifle wouldn't have to be permanently fixed to the harness, it just needs a space where the weight of the gun can push into while the pony holds it with its mouth and fires it with its tongue (the grip and trigger would also be sideways). Ponies have much more neck muscles than humans so carrying a rifle in the mouth isn't as difficult as you would imagine. For more comfortable carry (before being put into a shooting position) the rifle could simple be worn on a gun-belt around the neck. I also like to point out that our ponies are relatively dextrous with their hooves, so simply pushing the barrel forward with one hoof while grabbing the grip with the mouth shouldn't be an issue for a pony with basic proficiency in firearms.
A band-fed machine-rifle (like the belgian FN MAG on which I was trained) would be worn on either side of the pony at the shoulder (so that it can be reached with the mouth and the hoof of the shoulder on which the gun is carried) with a fitting adapter (with mouth-grip and trigger) if the gun isn't made for ponies (like the aforementioned FN MAG) the ammunition would be worn in extra-large boxes on the the other shoulder for comfortable carry as counterbalance during long marches.



:O That was longer than I initially assumed, I got even more ideas while I wrote this post, but I will leave it at this for now, I hope I haven't shocked people here :blush:, more at another time.
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Re: Firearms

Postby TheStratovarian » Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:00 am

Haha! These are the valid insights that really make for a proper reply. And I hope something mechanically can be worked out in this regard. Gunslinger and Inquisitor respectively are favorite classes of mine, and both really do benefit with firearms as an option for them. I really hope you can help figure more of this out for everyone Platinius.

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Re: Firearms

Postby Platinius » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:12 pm

:blush: well thank you

Before I go deeper into the subject, I must say a few words about economy. Modern firearms are post industrial revolution weapons, not because they can't be made by craftsmen (you would be seriously surprised what complicated machines and precise devices they can create with the simplest of tools, but that's what makes them masters of their trade), but because the munitions production needs massif amounts iron, lead, copper, brass, coke and varies chemicals, which in turn need lots of workers to be collect in mines and transformed in the factories. These many workers in turn need food and drink which in turn can only be produced by a very optimized agriculture that produces a great excess of food per farmer (that means the farmer has to be able to produce much more food than he consumes). It's not that guns cannot be build at an earlier economic stage in a society, but they would be FAR to expensive. (but don't get me started on DnD economics, that is a massif can of worms that should be discussed in another thread altogether >_< )


Let's get back to the fun stuff, guns for non-unicorns :-D
Pistols for ponies, the grips could be mouth-grips with tongue-triggers like before. It could be carried in sheaths carried on belts around their necks or on the side (classic cowboy-style). Given that the barrel of the gun would be in the middle of the pony's face, the shot would always goes into the direction the head is facing. This fact would make them actually very precise, much like a blowgun. The one difficulty I see is that the exhaust gases have to directed away from the ponies face. (and now we know why shooting glasses are so popular with marksponies) To reload the mouthgun :) the pony simply holds the gun against it's chest with one hoof, pushes the magazine-eject-button while doing that and inserts the fresh magazine. (Remember, a pony mouthguns :laugh: magazines are fed into a magazinewell, they do not have pistolgrips through which the magazine could be put in like a human handgun.) There are many variations of human handguns and proper operating ways, to further go into to detail is an exercise in futility and doesn't really add anymore to the subject particularly since I am neither a gunsmith nor an engineer.

For fluff, I can add however that a pony would need the feat Cunning Linguist to speak intelligibly while holding the gun, that would also mean that spellcasters could cast magic while holding a gun... >_> <_<

Edit: Thanks to their quadrupedal nature ponies can use side mounted machine-rifles (like the FN MAG which weighs 11 kg empty) with relative ease since they don't have to actually lift the heavy piece of steel in an uncomfortable angle with their hooves, also, the adapters for humanoid guns would have an additional aiming device, after all the face of the pony is at least 30 or 40 cm sideways away from the actual aiming devices and would need it unless it would literally only fire from the hip. (a practice that is criminally reckless and dangerous for all involved, not only the enemy). Also, they can easily dual wield those with an fitting adapter.... >_> <_< :-D :-D :-D :P
Last edited by Platinius on Sun Sep 01, 2013 10:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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TheStratovarian
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Re: Firearms

Postby TheStratovarian » Sun Sep 01, 2013 1:58 pm

Given that pegasi, and a few other winged equines exist. I would like to ask you, in your view, if pistols could be molded for the front hooves in a locked gauntlet style approach? A flyer in the air, has two free font hooves that may be usable for this. With it designed to fire with certain muscle movements in the leg in for the revolvers. Could you see that as something viable? A reverse engineering of how a gryphon might hold the gun for this purpose?

I do understand about the economy of it, and it makes sense. Guns take a very established industry to make, produce, and keep to production. As for the d&d economy, yeah... :laugh: The less said the better.

Though with a mouth grip, if the pistol was not a magazine, something that would take time and effort to do, but in the revolver family, how would one go about changing the weapon unless you had it more as you carried many of them, reloading after a fight? It just seems more to incline pistols to a unicorn or gryphon, given that hand use. But the rifles more towards pegasi and earth pony shapes because of recoil, the nature of mage hand, and the kick! Rifles, especially a strong one, really do kick like a mule, no unkindness tended to those dour fellows. :)

I wonder, given the older guns tended to use more a black powder, or was it saltpeter, if a slang for those ponies that used them couldn't be adapted for use?

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Re: Firearms

Postby Platinius » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:44 pm

Sulfur-beath? Hell-breath? maybe

Ponies have a a relatively large space between the front legs, meaning that they can carry firearms easily with a harness, though the belly part has to be very thick, guns that fire lots of rounds in a short time become very hot. (a little anecdote, once during mission training, our sergeant told our gunner team to link all our blanks into one large band, so 400 blanks fired later the barrel was glowing cherry red. This is also the reason why barrels of machine rifles like th BMG .50 that we used in that exercise or the FN MAG, are changed in the field after so many shots to cool off, so that they don't warp and/or explode in your face, this is not exaggerated)
Pegusi fly and at greater heights it's colder and there is a lot of wind which help to cool the guns, however I recommend only short bursts and not to big a gun, the recoil would make their flying difficult to impossible. The other reason I didn't mention this possibility earlier, is that a pony would not and could not lay down with such an apparatus (which may be literally burning hot) between its legs. However Pegasi could use all their legs to help manipulate the weapon during flight. For safety reasons, the gun should be easily detachable.


I think you are thinking far to complicated (though I applaud the effort). The gryphons' claws (if they have the same build as Guilda) are essentially hands (even if they also walk on them), meaning that gryphons use guns like humanoids. On the revolver thing, you do realize that the munitions drum of the revolver is essentially a magazine and could simply be drawn out and replaced with another fresh one just like a regular pony mouthgun?

I like to think however that pegasi and gryphons use the same rounds, barrels and loading mechanisms, even if the magazines go in another way and the trigger/grip is different. A savvy gunproducer would make products that essentially have to different triggers and grips on the same product: to directly sell to both airborn races, also, that way it is easier to send weapons to your allies without actually compromising your own production if the need arises.
Last edited by Platinius on Sun Sep 01, 2013 10:25 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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David
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Re: Firearms

Postby David » Sun Sep 01, 2013 2:51 pm

Griffons have hands. Their talons are agile enough for all purposes, so griffon gunslingers are a go.

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Re: Firearms

Postby Platinius » Mon Sep 02, 2013 12:08 am

An important detail, 7,62 mm NATO and 3006 rounds are the biggest caliber a human or pony could fire in short burst, the .50 BMG round can only be fired in single shots by with a pony held weapon. The BMG .50 needs a tripod that firmly hooks it into the ground and even then it risks flipping over if you haven't properly set up the tripod without weighting the tripod down. During training, we shout the .50 mounted on an armoured Hummer (which weights empty 4,5 tons) the handbrake was drawn firmly and and the wheels had been blocked with large pieces of wood. The Hummer still got pushed up the wooden blocks a few cm during longer burts (I mean bursts of 20 rounds which equal to about 2 seconds of continued fire, remember that a typical box of .50 ammunition is only 100 rounds deep, the BMG .50 fires about 500 rounds/minute = 50 rounds/6 seconds), we also changed the barrel after every box. (we did that because it was an exercise and we would be firing thousands of rounds through each barrel over the course of several hours to equally distribute the wear on all the barrels, my superiours also wrote down which barrel shot how many shots, the barrels need to be check by a gunsmith after a certain amount of use and replaced if necessary)

Also, the largest modern round used primarily against people as in medium sized humanoid (as opposed to material) is the 7,62 mm NATO (I mean in general size and power, there are lots similar rounds from many different producers, countries, etc.) This round was meant to kill people.
Over the course of the years NATO members switched over to 5,56 mm NATO to primarily wound rather than kill. Wounded people are more useful than dead ones, wounded enemies that are recovered by their troops are an additional drain on their resources, if the soldier is dead, he is just dead. Also, wounded soldiers can be taken captive and interrogated (if the wounds permit it), the dead can't talk. Additionally wounded make a for good bargaining chips. There is another practical reason (probably not originally intended, but there it is) 5,56 mm NATO rounds weigh about 11g each, 7,62 mm NATO weigh about 24g, which means that a soldier can carry twice as much ammo for the same weight, meaning you can fight twice as long. You can believe me when I say that 6 magazines with 30 shots each are very quickly used up even in short contacts.
And now, more on the .50, this round is primarily used against material, meaning cars, buildings and aircraft, to use it primarily against people is a total overkill and results in very bloody messes and lots of little pieces. I can't remember the maximum range form the top of my head, but I think it was around 8000m, please don't quote me on that however. Marksmen use it against material and against people at very long distances (as in more than a 1000 m and the like), the original round designed by John Moses Browning (still in use as far as I can tell) was not meant for such action, it is meant to be used against material.


This may seem strange to people who never were soldiers, but I was taught a good deal of this data during training, the rest I looked up by myself, because it was my job at the time and to do a good job you have to be interested in it (which is why you train in your free time and also look things up). All the data and facts that I posted here, I recalled directly from memory, I didn't need to look it up, because I took my job seriously during training.

And finally, you are probably a bit shocked by the amount of data there is on these very destructive tools called guns (btw, I do not consider myself an expert in guns, just a former user who read up on his stuff), the point I am more or less subtly trying to make is that war is a very ugly business and weapons are only a means to an end. By themselves, weapons are inert lifeless matter without any intrinsic value whatsoever, it is the people that do things with them. I don't want to spoil your roleplaying fun, quite the contrary, I want you to use this information and think a little bit about the poor "usually" or "always" evil sods whom you are about to mow down.

Please consider all this tangential information, nice to know but not all that essential, I can try to think up more useful information for ponyfinder, but I have the feeling that it would get rather technical and not that interesting, feel free to ask questions though, I am always very :-D to answer those if I can. Also, I'd like to ask the artists among you to draw pictures of the stuff discussed not only here, but also in the other threads, it greatly helps inspiration and it is very satisfying to see one's ideas realized :starry:

PS: on roleplaying; adventure (to me at least) is more about discovering new lands and meeting interesting people and less about slaying enemies, so take <3 an go on an :adventure:
Life is an adventure, brave it with courage


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