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The move from longbows to rifles has more aspects than mere military effectiveness, though I'm not sure how much the matters mattered.

Well known and as already mentioned, using longbow well required lots of training, while crossbow and rifle did not.

 

That means a bow is a long investment from the common people, who'd also purchase & maintain their own bows. So it's inexpensive for the kings and lords.

Muskets and arquebuses... I think at least the latter would be provided, unless mercenaries were used.

 

But... having common people armed and trained, also means common people are very dangerous and harder to boss around.

Peasant revolts become that much scarier. Bunch of angry peasants with pitchforks is one thing, a bunch of trained angry longbowmen is quite another.

 

And then theres the military effectiveness.

 

So you got a bunch of trained longbowmen with their 100lb pull bows. Then you go on a campaign and they all are malnourished, get fever and dysentry.

After a couple of months, there's 1/3 of them actually capable of using their 100lb bows, while the arquebusers do fine as long as they can stand.

Crossbows work fine also, but arquebus has lighter ammo, easier to transport in large quantities.

Edited by Jarmo

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Maybe the gun usage mechanism would be treated somewhat like magic. You pre-load it (potentially with customized munition?), use it once during battle and then it's done until you have certain amount of time-out period. Either way I'm pretty excited about aspect of seeing guns along with all the swords and magic, and I'm pretty sure the devs are having fun figuring out how to implement it as well.

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Maybe the gun usage mechanism would be treated somewhat like magic. You pre-load it (potentially with customized munition?), use it once during battle and then it's done until you have certain amount of time-out period. Either way I'm pretty excited about aspect of seeing guns along with all the swords and magic, and I'm pretty sure the devs are having fun figuring out how to implement it as well.

 

Reloading a muzzleloader of whatever ignition system takes a while and I can't imagine doing it while someone is trying to take my head off with an axe or a sabre. Veteran shooters can load, prime, and fire a muzzleloader twice per minute, good ones thrice, and highly skilled and practiced ones can squeeze four shots into one minute...barely.

 

As such, I think you're probably right that selecting the proper time to employ firearms will be crucial to our success in combat.


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Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt and for the forests and fields in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoors experience. It will cleanse your soul and make you a better person.----Fred Bear

 

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I'll be curious to see whether or not the wheel locks cease working under wet conditions and whether or not the metallurgy of the era is good enough to prevent the firearms from blowing up once in a while. Both would tend to put a damper on the aspiring fusiliers around here.

...and bowstrings.


"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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Eh I disgree with the "they'll reload crowd". It's a critical miss. A critical miss should affect the player like it did in some older games. In fallout, you'd drop your weapon or get crippled, etc , if i'm not mistaken.

Edited by Hormalakh

My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

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Don't forget to give Gustavus Adolphus his due. Without his inventing the salvo, in which large groups of roving musketmen would all fire at once at a single target, firearms would have taken much longer to break through,

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Don't forget to give Gustavus Adolphus his due. Without his inventing the salvo, in which large groups of roving musketmen would all fire at once at a single target, firearms would have taken much longer to break through,

 

Umm pike-and-shot regimens were pretty much common place by then. Are you sure G.A discovered the salvo?


My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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I find it a bit peculiar that firearms exist in a setting where the printing press does not.

 

I think that it would be very telling for a variety or even a single culture to have all of the knowledge required to build a firearm (metallurgy, chemistry, physics, geology, etc.), yet not have thought of a printing press to record or convey this knowledge ever occur to them.

 

This speaks very ill for the people and theif state of lives within P:E.

 

This is why I think it would be fun to have a really nefarious secret society of scribes -- sort of like a mix between the free masons and Cosa Nostra -- a group that has methodically and ruthlessly eradicated any person who might even be close to stumbling onto the invention of a press.

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Umm pike-and-shot regimens were pretty much common place by then. Are you sure G.A discovered the salvo?

 

Unless my history text last year was wrong...

 

Maybe he only popularized it, but the Swedish Invasion during the Thirty Years War brought its first widespread use.

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Eh, again, reading what's been said on the subject by the developers so far, it looks like guns are really just a limited-usage tool for busting up wizard shields.

 

Wheellock arms are going to take forever to reload. Because we're talking 15th century tech, I think we can generally assume that they aren't using any form of cartridge ammo or load pouch. So you're talking about, between shots, pouring powder into the muzzle and the pan, loading a ball, ramming it in place, winding the spring in the wheellock, arming the hammer, aiming, and firing.

 

So really, fighting in any sort of close-quarters melee, which will probably be 100% of the engagements in an isometric RPG, you're only real option for consistantly using a firearm throughout the fight would be to keep a number of primed guns on your character and shoot each one only once, then fall back on whatever melee weapons or secondaries you happen to be packing... like a pirate.

 

Or to only use guns in a limited fashion, i.e. to finish off enemies or take enemies down a peg right in the beginning of a fight (Maybe a gun-shot would reduce an enemies armor or something for the rest of the fight), or to, as they specifically pointed out in the Kickstarter Update, bust up wizard shields.

 

I don't think we'll see gun using characters so much as we will see characters who use guns to solve specific problems.

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Although, the proper kind of heavy crossbow you'd pull using a feet or crank, would be able to fire at about the same speed as a musket,

maybe 3 or so shots per minute, yet it's bee generally accepted to be a once per round weapon. Now once per combat for those as well?

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Not really sure why an arquebus should have such a terribly long reload time

Remember, the arquebus replaced the crossbow as the ranged weapon of choice for the european armies of the 16th century

Most importantly, it's probably a matter of game balancing. I prefer guns to be balanced rather than game breaking.

 

Then our real world is one thing, the engineers in PE might not have developed their guns as well as we have.

 

From a game perspectives it would be more about overlapping weapon. Penetration against heavy armour (plate) is about equal, reload speed is about equal. Damage against unarmored targets probably favors the arguebus (bullets tear the target while the bolt cuts through it). User-friendliness (ease of aiming etc.) should also favor the arquebus from what I have read.

 

Ultimately the potentially unbalancing weapon would be the longbow. Given that the training factor (by far the main disadvantage of the longbow) is not really relevant (we can assume the pc knows how to use the weapon effectively) it would by far win over the other weapons. I once found an article that stated that the longbowmen Henry V had at Agincourt more than matched the muskets used by the russian soldiers during the crimean war in rate of fire, penetration power and range.

 

There is a long-standing argument amongst historians about how effective the longbow actually was against plate armor. A big part of this debate is that we don't really know how powerful the things were. A particular point to keep in mind is that an arrow loses a large amount of its velocity over range, while a musket ball doesn't lose as much (the arrow has more drag due to its surface area). I did some quick research into weights and velocities of muskets vs an English Longbow. It seems like a 75 pound draw longbow could shoot an arrow weighing one ounce at around 185 fps. This gives us an initial energy of 45 joules. A more powerful bow (100 pounds) is estimated to shoot a 1.5 ounce arrow at the same velocity, for an initial energy of 68 joules. If we totally abandon the evidence, and increase the longbow's numbers to some of the most ridiculous claims (2.5 ounce arrow at 250 fps), we still only get 206 joules. An arquebus ball of .80 caliber weighed about 1.77 ounces and traveled between 650 and 750 fps. That's an initial energy of between 987 and 1315 joules. (calculator used: http://billstclair.com/energy.html) As you can see, there's just no comparison in the punch of the longbow and the arquebus. Even if you ramp up the English longbow's numbers to the level of the most absurd claims, there's still no competition.

 

Now let's look at crossbows. An important thing to remember about the crossbow is that while many of them had impressive draw weights of 1000 pounds or so, the distance across which they applied that force to the bolt was much shorter than a bow, so the transfer of energy wasn't nearly as efficient. They applied greater acceleration, but over less distance (and therefore time). I found one test of a powerful crossbow that provided both bolt mass and fps. It was a 780 pound draw arbalest, firing a 4.5 ounce bolt at 159fps. this comes out to an initial energy of 150 joules. Again, this is far weaker than the arquebus. Even if we give a more powerful crossbow very generous numbers (I chose a 6 ounce bolt at 200 fps), we still only get 317 joules, which is less than a third of the lower estimate for the arquebus.

 

Regarding accuracy: It is difficult to find reliable accuracy data for medieval bows and crossbows. However, there are a few points of info that will help us get a crude idea. According to a couple of bowhunting sites I looked at, hitting a deer at 100 yards with a modern crossbow (far superior in terms of accuracy) is considered a shot only for very talented crossbow hunters. This is not actually that bad when compared with an arquebus, and when firing at a mass of men the point becomes moot. An important fact to consider is that the slower your projectile is traveling, the higher angle it has to be fired at in order to prevent it from hitting the ground. Projectiles fall towards the ground at the same rate no matter how fast they're traveling horizontally. If you fired the crossbow I mentioned above, from eye level (~5'6" for a 5'11" person) at an enemy's head 100 yards away, but you didn't elevate it at all, the bolt would strike the ground less than halfway to the target. (This is disregarding air resistance, which would make it fall even faster, but is hard to calculate) The longbow fired in the same situation would go slightly farther, but still fall pathetically short. The lower range arquebus shot fired in the same circumstances would still be about three feet from the ground, and impact the poor sod in his dangly bits if it flew true. Also, increased velocity makes it easier to hit a moving target, since the target won't have as much time to get out of the way. (Projectile drop calculations from http://hyperphysics....e/grav.html#bul) Let's look at the specific angles you would need to shoot to hit a person's head with these three weapons. To make that shot with the crossbow, you must elevate to 11.2 degrees. With the longbow, it's 8.2 degree. With the low end arquebus, it's only .65 degrees. (calculations from the section titled "angle of launch" at http://hyperphysics....traj.html#tra16) Greater projectile velocity = a much flatter trajectory = a much easier shot. Also, a steeper angle of shot means the projectile will spend much more of its flight above the height of your enemy, giving you less wiggle room in estimating the range. Basically, the steeper the angle, the less you can afford to be wrong by. Also, when the angle gets really steep, people become smaller targets. A projectile traveling fairly flat has a much larger target to hit than a projectile plunging downwards, because people are much taller than they are wide.

 

Alright, I think that's about enough of this. It's 5:25, and I've had my fill of math for the week. Later.

 

Not going to argue about longbows penetrating a well made suit of plate armour, there is no point. It has limited success against those.

I know that and I agree it will not work well against those.

However remember the armies that the longbowmen went up against, by far the majority of soldiers did not wear a nice well-crafted suit of steel plate armour. Basically the medieval army consisted of the core elite (knights etc.) with some support from men-at-arms and maybe mercenaries, however the majority of the army was made up of levied peasant troops.

 

Yes the longbow will have a limited success against the plated knight on a horse, but maybe 90% of the army, the peasants, will be eaten alive by the arrows. Even the men at arms, which most likely wear mail etc. will have much fun out of the arrows as they can penetrate mail at a decent range. Here rate of fire is what matters as a hit is likely to take the combatant out of the fight or at least slow him down and that is very much in the longbows favor.

 

As for the knights in plate they can then continue the charge after the peasants have broken ranks and half the men-at-arms have fallen down bleeding. At that point the battle is pretty much over.

 

Only the guy in full plate will have a good chance of being fairly immune, but then again he is also going to have a decent chance against a crossbow or arquebus except maybe at point blank range.

However both weapons will have a problem with their reload times and definitely do not get more than one chance at point blank range against a knight on a horse if they even get that.

 

Considering that the majority of the enemies the PC will face in PE is very unlikely to wear a suit of gothic plate armour (after all if the brigands could afford that they could also afford a life in comfort) I will still say that the rate of fire would make the longbow far more deadly than a crossbow or arquebus against light to medium armoured opponents, which should be the majority.

 

It depends on which part of the Middle Ages you're talking about. You're probably thinking of the time of the Hundred Years War. By the time firearms first came around armies had mostly shrunk down to a corps of professional soldiers, most of whom were well supplied with armor. Look at the War of the Roses for a good example. By that point peasant levees had no place in battle anymore.

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The move from longbows to rifles has more aspects than mere military effectiveness, though I'm not sure how much the matters mattered.

Well known and as already mentioned, using longbow well required lots of training, while crossbow and rifle did not.

 

That means a bow is a long investment from the common people, who'd also purchase & maintain their own bows. So it's inexpensive for the kings and lords.

Muskets and arquebuses... I think at least the latter would be provided, unless mercenaries were used.

 

But... having common people armed and trained, also means common people are very dangerous and harder to boss around.

Peasant revolts become that much scarier. Bunch of angry peasants with pitchforks is one thing, a bunch of trained angry longbowmen is quite another.

 

And then theres the military effectiveness.

 

So you got a bunch of trained longbowmen with their 100lb pull bows. Then you go on a campaign and they all are malnourished, get fever and dysentry.

After a couple of months, there's 1/3 of them actually capable of using their 100lb bows, while the arquebusers do fine as long as they can stand.

Crossbows work fine also, but arquebus has lighter ammo, easier to transport in large quantities.

 

Not to mention the fact that making a bolt or arrow is a craft which requires skill, while anyone with a mold and a fire can produce many musket balls, and anyone can be taught to mix black powder.

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Umm pike-and-shot regimens were pretty much common place by then. Are you sure G.A discovered the salvo?

 

Unless my history text last year was wrong...

 

Maybe he only popularized it, but the Swedish Invasion during the Thirty Years War brought its first widespread use.

The idea of firing missile weapons in a volley existed long before firearms. Gustavus Adolphus' contributions to military history mainly had to do with using more maneuverable formations and more mobile artillery, and training and treating his men well. If you're interested, look here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustavus_Adolphus_of_Sweden#Legacy_as_a_general

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Possibly we could actually have firearms technology improve during the game - maybe have the main antagonists army have it's edge by using rifled weapons, or the PC could employ some inventor a la Kang the Mad or Dworkin the... also Mad, come to think of it. It seems in gaming technological invention must come at the price of sanity.

 

Also whatever primitive firearms we start with should be modelled on the guns from Princess Mononoke. And therefore receive massive bonuses when fighting samurai. Or uppity gods.

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Don't forget to give Gustavus Adolphus his due. Without his inventing the salvo, in which large groups of roving musketmen would all fire at once at a single target, firearms would have taken much longer to break through,

 

If you want to give credit to anyone for inventing the lines of archers alternating between firing and reloading it should probably go to the chinese, they used fairly similar tactics to those of the pike and shoot infantry formation well before the european middle ages

 

It depends on which part of the Middle Ages you're talking about. You're probably thinking of the time of the Hundred Years War. By the time firearms first came around armies had mostly shrunk down to a corps of professional soldiers, most of whom were well supplied with armor. Look at the War of the Roses for a good example. By that point peasant levees had no place in battle anymore.

 

Okay removed a few old quotes to keep it from turning into a wall of text.

The problem though is that mail or similar types of armor is only resistant to arrows fired by a longbow, you really need steel plate to get close to immunity. The peasants are the most vulnerable to arrows yes, but in no way are men at arms safe.

 

During the later parts of the middle ages the overall armour of the armies did improve quite a bit yes, but not really enough to make the average infantry immune to arrows. The standard around the time of the english civil war was something like brigandine, which while leagues ahead of what levies wore, is still vulnerable, especially at shorter ranges.

 

That is not to say you are not safer in brigandine or mail than wearing nothing but cloth or furs, but it would not guarantee you anything in terms of safety unlike the plate which is almost guaranteed to protect you.

 

I think the consensus we can reach is longbows are deadly vs lightly armoured targets with reduced effect as the armour gets heavier and becoming nearly useless against full plate.

Actually come to think of it how would the game represent things like this, if they go with the IE/D&D model it is just about the character having a decent BAB and the armour is useless.

 

Funny how the topic is about firearms and we mainly focus on the longbow ;)

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Or you could move away from muzzle loading to breach loading or auto-loading and cartridge ammunition. But once you have rifled barrels and connical, cartridge ammunition there's no reason to use a bow at all any more.

 

Pretty sure they don't have silencers yet in PE. Now, if they'll put in parts where you can assassinate people with silent bow attacks to avoid detection or not will be seen. But firearms being noisy as hell should definitely be a factor in whether or not you use them for a particular encounter. Edited by HereticSaint

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I think the consensus we can reach is longbows are deadly vs lightly armoured targets with reduced effect as the armour gets heavier and becoming nearly useless against full plate.

Actually come to think of it how would the game represent things like this, if they go with the IE/D&D model it is just about the character having a decent BAB and the armour is useless.

 

That's a conclusion easily agreed with. :)

This also hopes for significantly lesser damage from longer ranges, both for arrows and firearms alike.

 

For armor, I'm hoping for a more Fallout style approach (not exactly the same though, since it didn't work very well),

where you have one stat for your general bullet dodging skill and another from armor providing damage reduction.

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Hehe OK so people have run with the discussion into Earth historicity and application of that to PE.

 

The real idea behind my starting post was to think not so much in terms of historical accuracy, but to imagine what scenarios it would be fun to use firearms for in the game, and what makes them stand out in terms of both the effect on the scenario and how they are experienced/interact with the game world.

 

To break down my short story: it imagines a possible use of firearms in bringing down a large or perhaps well armoured/protected beast. Only one person in the group has a firearm, perhaps indicating that they are expensive, hard to come by, or requiring quite specific training to use. The firearm itself is an object of wonder - giving clear scope for a range of customisations/expression of background stories, and requires quite a lot of support material - at the least a ramrod, shot, wadding and powder, the latter of which carries it's own concerns of environmental protection.

 

In this example, it takes a while to prep the gun, and possibly restricts mobility once prepped, leading to tactical decisions in when to prep, protecting the character, and using a scout to lure the target into an ideal firing solution rather than taking the gun to them.

 

The firing of the gun demonstrates some more point - inaccuracy (also a cause of needing to lure the target in) but also that the gun has useful effects even if it doesn't hit. Also the sheer noise in firing a gun is an event by itself - there's a big environmental reaction so the party have just revealed their position in the forest for anyone interested. Perhaps similar effects could be used tactically to draw or distract foes.

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Or you could move away from muzzle loading to breach loading or auto-loading and cartridge ammunition. But once you have rifled barrels and connical, cartridge ammunition there's no reason to use a bow at all any more.

 

Pretty sure they don't have silencers yet in PE. Now, if they'll put in parts where you can assassinate people with silent bow attacks to avoid detection or not will be seen. But firearms being noisy as hell should definitely be a factor in whether or not you use them for a particular encounter.

Suppressors (nitpicking, sorry) don't actually muffle the sound they redistribute it. Their big advantage is completely eliminating muzzle flash, which was impossible with black powder guns because it needs large amounts to shoot (so if they had to compensate the powder volume for what its loss with a suppressor it could rupture the barrel ) and it had a very heavy smoke that gave away the shooter's position

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I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

village_idiot.gif

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Or you could move away from muzzle loading to breach loading or auto-loading and cartridge ammunition. But once you have rifled barrels and connical, cartridge ammunition there's no reason to use a bow at all any more.

 

Pretty sure they don't have silencers yet in PE. Now, if they'll put in parts where you can assassinate people with silent bow attacks to avoid detection or not will be seen. But firearms being noisy as hell should definitely be a factor in whether or not you use them for a particular encounter.

 

Heh, never said that. The first rifled barrels appeared in the 15th century with the first paper cartidges, the first connical bullets in the 19th century... the First silencers didn't appear until the 20th century. I mean, point taken, and anyway. I totally rescind my original quote with regards to tech level there since, having actually read what the developers have now said about fire arms, I know exactly the level of tech they're talking about: and it don't involve breach loading or connical ammunition. They could conceivably be using paper cartidges, but who knows.

 

Secondary point taken as well. The wheellock guns they're talking about are not stealth implements. I posted a couple of videos of people firing 14th century guns, and not only are they loud and not only is there significant muzzle flash, but they produce huge clouds of smoke. If they don't hear you or see the flash of your gun, then they'd certainly spot the giant smoke cloud hovering over where you just fired them.

 

Suppressors (nitpicking, sorry) don't actually muffle the sound they redistribute it. Their big advantage is completely eliminating muzzle flash, which was impossible with black powder guns because it needs large amounts to shoot (so if they had to compensate the powder volume for what its loss with a suppressor it could rupture the barrel ) and it had a very heavy smoke that gave away the shooter's position

 

So everyone seems to agree: your sneaky characters won't be using guns, most likely.

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Hehe OK so people have run with the discussion into Earth historicity and application of that to PE.

 

The real idea behind my starting post was to think not so much in terms of historical accuracy, but to imagine what scenarios it would be fun to use firearms for in the game, and what makes them stand out in terms of both the effect on the scenario and how they are experienced/interact with the game world.

 

Well, I like thinking about historical accuracy. I guess I was kind of nerd gushing, but I'd like to see a game try to make fighting with early firearms fun.

 

 

To break down my short story: it imagines a possible use of firearms in bringing down a large or perhaps well armoured/protected beast. Only one person in the group has a firearm, perhaps indicating that they are expensive, hard to come by, or requiring quite specific training to use. The firearm itself is an object of wonder - giving clear scope for a range of customisations/expression of background stories, and requires quite a lot of support material - at the least a ramrod, shot, wadding and powder, the latter of which carries it's own concerns of environmental protection.

 

In this example, it takes a while to prep the gun, and possibly restricts mobility once prepped, leading to tactical decisions in when to prep, protecting the character, and using a scout to lure the target into an ideal firing solution rather than taking the gun to them.

 

The firing of the gun demonstrates some more point - inaccuracy (also a cause of needing to lure the target in) but also that the gun has useful effects even if it doesn't hit. Also the sheer noise in firing a gun is an event by itself - there's a big environmental reaction so the party have just revealed their position in the forest for anyone interested. Perhaps similar effects could be used tactically to draw or distract foes.

 

I like a lot of those ideas. I think rather than restricting mobility, priming a fire-arm mid combat should cost significant amounts of time, most likely. The combat in PE is supposed to be real time, so I guess I can't think of it in terms of the number of turns it would take to reload and rewind your wheellock, but the whole point of inventing the wheellock and doing away with the matchlock was so that you could be more mobile.

 

I don't know how much they'd make it into the game. Like loud, smokey fire arms giving away your position in the woods... how would that work? Is there like a static chance that any wilderness encounter could have a percent chance that additional enemies pop of the bushes if you're too noisy?

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I want a Shield Gun/Rifle. Kind of like.... an umbrella with 1 hole (where the gun shoots from). Never seen that before :p

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I want a Shield Gun/Rifle. Kind of like.... an umbrella with 1 hole (where the gun shoots from). Never seen that before :p

 

This one? ;)

527px-English_-_Gun_Shield_-_Walters_511414.jpg

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I like the fact they are adding in firearms because it's the natural progression in a society. I always hated games that have thousands of years of history and they never moved past the bow.

 

Devil's advocate: There's an argument for lack of technological/intellectual advancement when readily available magic accomplishes many of the same goals as tools do for real humans. If you can town portal/teleport your ass anywhere you like there's not much call for planes, trains and automobiles.

 

My own opinion: I want to see magicless, wholly tech-oriented, advanced civilizations/races go to war with magic-reliant, technologically inferior races as a broader theme in a game some day.

Edited by AGX-17

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