Questions about vehicles

mystic101
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Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:13 am

Questions about vehicles

Postby mystic101 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:40 am

I had a few vehicle/riding-related questions, and wondered if anyone knew the answers.

1. I can't find the stats for horses anywhere, or how much they cost. Is that listed anyplace?

2. Drivers/pilots can use their vehicle skill as an interaction, by doing "stunts". Does that count as an approved action on the drama card, if the driver is describing it in a way that fits that particular interaction? Say, for Approved: Trick, "I cut left, to make them think I'm going left, then immediately cut right instead". Or Approved: Maneuver, "I veer into their lane to try to run them into the ditch". I can see it going either way. Technically they're not using the right skill total for it, so maybe it shouldn't count, but then again it's in the right spirit of things. If not, then it kind of penalizes whoever's doing the driving, and I wouldn't want to discourage someone who'd put points into their "non-combat" skills.

3. Is a driver limited only to their vehicle skills and stunt interactions when driving, or can they also try to do the vanilla kind, as well? For example, I'm thinking of a driver who Taunts a pursuer by sticking their arm out the window and flipping them off. It seems like something the driver could reasonably do, but something that should qualify as a vanilla Taunt, since it isn't really related to their driving ability.

4. Can someone use their skills or perks to modify their vehicle or mounts? Doing things like using Science, or Mind + Vehicle skill, to soup up a vehicle's engine, or DIY weld armor to the vehicle's body. Or someone with pulp powers taking Flight, but with a limitation that it only works when they're using their vehicle, rather than for them personally. Say, an engine component that turns their car into a flying car, or a bit & bridle that turns their horse into a flying horse, things like that.

5. This last question sounds a little weird, but it's because the line between equipment and vehicles can get blurry, and the rules treat the two things differently. Can someone say their character's "flying battle suit" is a vehicle, rather than just gear? Like how movie Iron Man's armor was described as a "personal, wearable jet", rather than simply armor. At first I was thinking, naahh . . . but then I reconsidered. IM's armor doesn't seem like a vehicle because it's so compact, but what if it was a little bigger, along the lines of the forklift-mech thing that Ripley used in the Aliens movie? That clearly seems like a vehicle to me. You get in, it's got controls like a forklift, it's directly analogous to one. And what if the mech was a built to fly instead of lift things? Still seems like a vehicle. At that point, it's a matter of scale rather than function. But then, how far down do you have to miniaturize it, until it stops being a vehicle and starts being gear? Pan Pacifica has an Oda Grasshopper Personal Mobility Device, that's just a rocket backpack like they used in that old James Bond movie. If a Nile gadget hero wanted their similarly-sized flying backpack to be a vehicle instead of personal gear, could they? Sure, they'd have to obey the vehicle rules instead of the personal equipment rules when using it (crash mishaps on every roll of 1, damage to the gear gets transferred to the passenger, etc), but is it possible, at all?

. . . Am I overthinking all this? :)

Staffan
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby Staffan » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:55 pm

I think if you're going to have a flying battlesuit, that's cool enough to qualify as a Perk (or perk chain) rather than gear. Sort of like Dragon Armor or Ion Gosuko. Without a perk, I wouldn't let a PC have one on a persistent basis. Since you brought up Aliens, the exoskeleton forklift is a good example: the PC gets to use it for a particular dramatic scene, but it's not like Ripley spends the whole movie wearing it.

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Etan Krel
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby Etan Krel » Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:37 pm

Staffan wrote:I think if you're going to have a flying battlesuit, that's cool enough to qualify as a Perk (or perk chain) rather than gear. Sort of like Dragon Armor or Ion Gosuko. Without a perk, I wouldn't let a PC have one on a persistent basis.

Rocket Rangers !!

I would say :
1. I don't remember seeing them.

2. It all sounds fair to me.

3. I would allow this.

4. I think it could be done. I won't be able to put rules on it.

5. Overthinking ;)

Blightcrawler
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby Blightcrawler » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:13 pm

mystic101 wrote:I had a few vehicle/riding-related questions, and wondered if anyone knew the answers.

1. I can't find the stats for horses anywhere, or how much they cost. Is that listed anyplace?


I don't think so. The passenger carriage might be the closest, but at $800, I don't think that includes any horses. I would say for most of the modern-ish cosms, go with the going USD benchmark of $2,500. For Aylse and Orrorsh, $1000 or even less (basing this on the price for a horse in India). For a (recently) wild horse in Living Lands $500 or less of value for a starting character - which might also be reasonable as a starting character price generally.

2. Drivers/pilots can use their vehicle skill as an interaction, by doing "stunts". Does that count as an approved action on the drama card, if the driver is describing it in a way that fits that particular interaction? Say, for Approved: Trick, "I cut left, to make them think I'm going left, then immediately cut right instead".


No specified, so probably GM's call. Personally, I'd let it count for maneuvers, since that's exactly what it is, but not any other interaction attacks. Your example Trick quoted above: actually a maneuver. A proper trick is a distraction, some kind of mind game or misdirect, not something you can typically do with a vehicle. Maneuvers include feints.

Sure, you don't want to limit the driver too much, but you also don't want them to overshadow others who are more focused in Mind, Spirit, or Charisma interactions. If there's vehicles involved, their driving skills are already being put to good use. Wasting skill points would be to have a driver focused character, and spend all adventure time indoors and/or on foot.

3. Is a driver limited only to their vehicle skills and stunt interactions when driving, or can they also try to do the vanilla kind, as well? For example, I'm thinking of a driver who Taunts a pursuer by sticking their arm out the window and flipping them off. It seems like something the driver could reasonably do, but something that should qualify as a vanilla Taunt, since it isn't really related to their driving ability.


Totally. It might give them a -2 if the driving requires a heavy level of concentration that aren't quite stunt levels (such as driving fast through medium freeway traffic), but generally this should be doable.

4. Can someone use their skills or perks to modify their vehicle or mounts? Doing things like using Science, or Mind + Vehicle skill, to soup up a vehicle's engine, or DIY weld armor to the vehicle's body. Or someone with pulp powers taking Flight, but with a limitation that it only works when they're using their vehicle, rather than for them personally. Say, an engine component that turns their car into a flying car, or a bit & bridle that turns their horse into a flying horse, things like that.


I'm sure Nile Empire will expand on gadgetry, but absolutely! Work the system.

5. This last question sounds a little weird, but it's because the line between equipment and vehicles can get blurry, and the rules treat the two things differently. Can someone say their character's "flying battle suit" is a vehicle, rather than just gear? Like how movie Iron Man's armor was described as a "personal, wearable jet", rather than simply armor. At first I was thinking, naahh . . . but then I reconsidered. IM's armor doesn't seem like a vehicle because it's so compact, but what if it was a little bigger, along the lines of the forklift-mech thing that Ripley used in the Aliens movie? That clearly seems like a vehicle to me.


In a strict sense, vehicles ARE gear! There's no real difference, except that vehicles move and therefore can get into combat and chases and such.

Go with "Naahh." The forklift mech doesn't really designed to travel, it's a giant tool for lifting. And just because Tony Stark claims it's a jet, doesn't make it a vehicle. It's still only power armor with jet features. In both cases, I don't see crashing as a risk. Even Iron Man, who does crash, quickly learns how to use his suit like it's his own body. This generally should be true for Pulp heroes and other special devices that don't take passengers.

On the other-hand, normal wheeled forklifts? Totally a vehicle. When one shows up in a movie, it pretty much guarantees a crash.

That said, if a character is capable of going fast enough to hold up in a vehicle chase or combat, they certainly can act like a vehicle (even with crashes being a risk). Play it by ear. Iron Man fighting a jet is like a vehicle. Iron Man fighting War Machine is not. Superman fighting a jet is also a vehicle, in my book! Hawkeye fighting a jet is just a dude with a bow, however.

Take in the situation and categorize things as they need to be for the circumstances. Do not categorize things free from context and then enforce that decision for all time. That's good advice for the game and the real world.

utsukushi
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby utsukushi » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:37 pm

Totally overthinking, but you don't have footnotes so Blightcrawler gets to keep the crown. ;)

I'd assume having a horse would generally fall under the, "Home, vehicle, and so on" that characters can just have if it makes sense... but given that Beast Riding comes with a free Perk equivalent, I sure hope we'll be seeing riding beasts detailed better in some of the supplements.

My thought on using Land Vehicles to do a Trick or whatever during a chase scene... it's an interesting idea, and I like your thought of it encouraging people to put points into non-combat skills, but it does open that up to other non-combat skills in other circumstances. Can someone with Science roll that instead of Trick to whip up a smokescreen in a lab? Can you use your Faith to Intimidate a demon? My ruling would be no -- in the sense that you can do those things, but, to take your example, if your end result is to Trick them, then you use your Trick skill and just describe it as dodgy driving. How, exactly, you do your Trick, Maneuver, etc., is always flavor.

Definitely think a driver can do other things (except texting!) Torg is, as we often note, cinematic, and in lots of movies someone drives while popping off a couple shots at their pursuers. But as Blightcrawler noted, circumstances may often impose a penalty - either the equivalent of "running", or multi-action if there's any need to roll Land Vehicles that round too, and possibly both.

And I agree totally with Steffan on the flying battlesuit: that's neither gear nor vehicle, but a Perk or a special adventure-related prop.

But, given that there's a blurry line there, too, I would say it's more gear than vehicle. I mean, is a suit of full plate armor a vehicle? Of course not. What if it includes rollerskates? I still say no. Even if your friend gives you a push. That said, I have no doubt Iron Man's suit uses Air Vehicles to fly. I'm OK with that, but if you really want harder lines, that might mean it counts as a vehicle for you.

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TorgHacker
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby TorgHacker » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:37 pm

mystic101 wrote:I had a few vehicle/riding-related questions, and wondered if anyone knew the answers.

1. I can't find the stats for horses anywhere, or how much they cost. Is that listed anyplace?



Not yet, but they show up soon.


2. Drivers/pilots can use their vehicle skill as an interaction, by doing "stunts". Does that count as an approved action on the drama card, if the driver is describing it in a way that fits that particular interaction? Say, for Approved: Trick, "I cut left, to make them think I'm going left, then immediately cut right instead". Or Approved: Maneuver, "I veer into their lane to try to run them into the ditch". I can see it going either way. Technically they're not using the right skill total for it, so maybe it shouldn't count, but then again it's in the right spirit of things. If not, then it kind of penalizes whoever's doing the driving, and I wouldn't want to discourage someone who'd put points into their "non-combat" skills.



No, have to use the interaction skill if you want to get an Approved action. Stunts are just a way to get some extra use out of your vehicle skill.


3. Is a driver limited only to their vehicle skills and stunt interactions when driving, or can they also try to do the vanilla kind, as well? For example, I'm thinking of a driver who Taunts a pursuer by sticking their arm out the window and flipping them off. It seems like something the driver could reasonably do, but something that should qualify as a vanilla Taunt, since it isn't really related to their driving ability.



No, they're not required to only using vehicles skills.


4. Can someone use their skills or perks to modify their vehicle or mounts? Doing things like using Science, or Mind + Vehicle skill, to soup up a vehicle's engine, or DIY weld armor to the vehicle's body. Or someone with pulp powers taking Flight, but with a limitation that it only works when they're using their vehicle, rather than for them personally. Say, an engine component that turns their car into a flying car, or a bit & bridle that turns their horse into a flying horse, things like that.



Not in the rules. That's something a Perk would be for.


5. This last question sounds a little weird, but it's because the line between equipment and vehicles can get blurry, and the rules treat the two things differently. Can someone say their character's "flying battle suit" is a vehicle, rather than just gear? Like how movie Iron Man's armor was described as a "personal, wearable jet", rather than simply armor. At first I was thinking, naahh . . . but then I reconsidered. IM's armor doesn't seem like a vehicle because it's so compact, but what if it was a little bigger, along the lines of the forklift-mech thing that Ripley used in the Aliens movie? That clearly seems like a vehicle to me. You get in, it's got controls like a forklift, it's directly analogous to one. And what if the mech was a built to fly instead of lift things? Still seems like a vehicle. At that point, it's a matter of scale rather than function. But then, how far down do you have to miniaturize it, until it stops being a vehicle and starts being gear? Pan Pacifica has an Oda Grasshopper Personal Mobility Device, that's just a rocket backpack like they used in that old James Bond movie. If a Nile gadget hero wanted their similarly-sized flying backpack to be a vehicle instead of personal gear, could they? Sure, they'd have to obey the vehicle rules instead of the personal equipment rules when using it (crash mishaps on every roll of 1, damage to the gear gets transferred to the passenger, etc), but is it possible, at all?

. . . Am I overthinking all this? :)


You're overthinking it. Look to Dragon Warrior and Ion Gosuku for an idea what the Rocket Ranger Battlesuit will be like.
Dean Gilbert
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Dlw32
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Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby Dlw32 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:55 pm

I'll agree with the consensus here... stunts can be approved actions; drivers can do other stuff; Rocket Rangers Go!!!; Rocket Ranger Battlesuit(tm) should probably be a perk set....

So using some guess work on stepping down attributes and borrowing from the old Kanawa Land Vehicles book, here's my take on a TorgE horse...

Standard Horse
Attributes: Charisma 5, Dexterity 9, Mind 4, Spirit 5, Strength 10
Skills: Maneuver 10, Unarmed Combat 10, Willpower 7
Move: 9 (36); Tough: 10; Shock: 7; Wounds: 1
Equipment: —
Perks: Large
Possibilities: —
Special Abilities: —

Savioronedge
Posts: 95
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:55 pm

Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby Savioronedge » Tue Nov 14, 2017 6:32 pm

TorgHacker wrote:...what the Rocket Ranger Battlesuit will be like.


Where is my "jump for joy" emoji?

utsukushi
Posts: 308
Joined: Fri Feb 10, 2017 7:30 pm

Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby utsukushi » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:21 pm

Still strapping on its jetpack. Rocket Rangers jump really high for joy.

mystic101
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:13 am

Re: Questions about vehicles

Postby mystic101 » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:42 am

@Blightcrawler & Dlw32: Thanks for those guestimates about the horses, especially the real-world pricing info for availability. Very useful to go on until we get more official information. Strength 10 sounds a little low to me for a horse. At first I thought, hmm, wouldn't your average horse be stronger than any human? Then I remembered those strong-guy competitions, where someone single-handedly pulls a bus or a plane or something. Maybe an average horse wouldn't be stronger than one of those guys. :) But if they can pull and carry more than most any human, I'd still put them at Strength 12.

@TorgHacker: Rocket Rangers. Good to hear, and looking forward to it. Your comments really clarified the whole gear/vehicle issue for me. It sounds like, shockingly enough, vehicle rules are only for vehicles. :) And pulp powers are only for a character to use innately, or through personal gear that they can carry. The two rules systems can't overlap, at least not without a special perk to bridge the two. Basically, "don't cross the streams."

This clears up my confusion, because while the "skin" of both areas is blurry and has a lot of overlap, the rules "under the hood" remain distinct. For example, take the Oda grasshopper. It's an air vehicle the size of a backpack, and so follows vehicle rules. I think a Nile gizmo hero could grab one, strip the innards from it, and replace it with weird science components to use with a Flight power that has a gear or costume limitation. But if they did, the grasshopper shell would cease to be an air vehicle anymore. As a foci for a pulp power, it would become personal gear instead . . . even though it literally has the same size, shape, and basic function as before. Different rules for different things, no matter what their appearance.


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