Official Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Picking calibers to include? (Deus Ex/Bloodline style shooter hybrid, but applicable to other RPGs)

Discussion in 'Codex Workshop' started by deuxhero, Jan 19, 2017.

  1. deuxhero Arcane

    deuxhero
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,826
    Location:
    Flowery Land
    What should a developer consider when picking what and how many calibers of ammo to include in a game? Assuming there is no retarded loot treadmill where everyone at the start has 22s and everyone at the end uses 5.7 while newer guns do more damage purely because they look cooler.

    I think it's reasonable to expect each caliber should have a distinct gameplay reason to exist (leave uncovered warehouses full of 4.73×33mm for modders to add).


    Other thing I can think would be important of is how common a given type would be in the setting. In a sci-fi or non-Earth setting you would be able to invent whatever you want in this regard so it's not applicable. Even in such a setting, unless you are going pure energy weapons, I doubt most RPG makers have enough knowledge of bullets to make their own calibers without it going full retard.

    Building an actual list to start (open)

    Combining a few Google results the most common calibers in America are (in no order)
    9mm
    223/5.56
    45ACP
    40 S&W (This one is likely dated info. The FBI and lots of other agencies ditched 40S&W in large numbers in 2016, having determining it wasn't notably better than 9mm, after all lists I could find were published)
    22LR
    12 gauge
    7.62 NATO/.308
    38 Special/357 Magnum
    7.62x39

    Dropping 40 S&W, that leaves us with 8 calibers. The differences here seem largely obvious to assign general gameplay stats to (not purely simulationst, but vaguely resembling reality).

    22LR: Decent accuracy, low power and range. However it is super cheap/common (it's generally sold in packs of 500 and non "gun people" often have some). Head shots do extra damage (22 has a nasty tendency to penetrate the skull once, after that it bounces around in there). 22 also has a variety of easily concealed guns.
    9mm: Standard pistol ammo. Relatively low power, but good quality ammo works plenty good.
    45 ACP: Compared to 9mm it does more damage and has a higher flinch (just how much so this matters in the real world is debated, but for gameplay purposes...) at the cost of higher recoil and lower capacity. It's also better with a suppressor.
    5.56: All around cartridge. Has higher high range and accuracy than you'd expect from the "middle"
    7.62x39: Higher damage compared to 5.56, but less accuracy and especially range. 357 can also be used in a derringer.
    .308: High range, damage, recoil.
    357 magnum: High damage (for a handgun), low capacity.
    12 Gauge: It's a shotgun!

    This gives 2 or 3 options for most types of gun (Marksman rifle, pistol, assault rifle ect., though shotgun is currently only 1) with a variety of firearm types supported.

    Any suggestions to add to this?
    Show Spoiler
     
    ^ Top  
  2. Hoplopfheil Literate

    Hoplopfheil
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2017
    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Deimos
    If you're making a sci-fi game, you can make interesting new calibers by extrapolating from existing cartridges, and history.

    For example, .45 ACP is an ancient, low-pressure cartridge. It's not very size efficient. A modern alternative is .45 Super, which is a higher pressure variant that uses thicker case walls, but is dimensionally the same. That gives it more potency (higher velocity with the same weight of bullet means more muzzle energy, flatter trajectory).

    So you could take a modern cartridge, and invent a futuristic variant of it. If you're doing speculative sci-fi, perhaps metallurgy improves in the future to the point where a higher pressure variant of .40 S&W can be used. Call it .40 Magnum Super. Starting life as standard .40 S&W, then lengthened slightly to form .40 Magnum (an intermediate between .40 and 10mm), then years later beefed up to higher pressures with a "Super" variant. Voila, .40 Magnum Super. All you have to do to justify its commonality is to say that a major police agency or military adopted it, thus increasing production and therefore availability.

    In terms of realism, there's not a macro-scale practical difference between most pistol calibers. The three most common handgun calibers, 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP are so close in muzzle energy (compared to any long gun), you would be hard pressed to justify giving one or another greater damage potential. They're only very slightly different (9mm is light and fast, .40 is medium and medium, .45 is slow and heavy).
     
    ^ Top  
  3. Nathaniel3W Rockwell Studios Developer

    Nathaniel3W
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    499
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I would start by asking yourself why you would want different kinds of ammo at all. I'm not saying it's a bad idea. I'm saying you need to know why you want it to begin with, and then see how many different types best help you to reach that goal. And consider the tradeoffs between realism and playability. I might suggest that these are some reasons why you might want different calibers included in a game:

    • Realism
    • Variety in the "feel" of weapons
    • You want to add difficulty to a survival game--you have a gun but the wrong kind of ammo--and want to encourage people to scrounge and horde

    You might have other reasons, but those are just some that I thought of just now. And each one would encourage different calibers and number of calibers.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  
  4. crazyirish Scholar

    crazyirish
    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2011
    Messages:
    117
    Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    About the only time .22 behaves the way you describe is in the rare case of an eye shot or a contact shot. Penetrating head wounds from any decent range are going to be very rare.

    Another consideration is the use of Suppressors. Slower projectiles (under 1100 fps at the muzzle) will be much quieter than the faster ones. Of course if noise/stealth isnt a factor in game then it doesn't matter.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  
  5. DrDigej Unwanted

    Unwanted
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2017
    Messages:
    122
    And yet you also go ahead full retard "7.62x39: Higher damage compared to 5.56, but less accuracy and especially range"

    If you dont go for gun porn, then you go for 3 ammo types and thats it. Small, medium, large. If you wanna be extra fancy, you go 5.
    And if you do go for porn, go full throttle.
     
    ^ Top  
  6. Hoplopfheil Literate

    Hoplopfheil
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2017
    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Deimos
    For maximum effect, use nanite based ammo, so all guns feed from the same general pool.

    :smug:
     
    • Funny Funny x 3
    • Rage Rage x 2
    ^ Top  
  7. Mustawd Arcane

    Mustawd
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2015
    Messages:
    12,136
    Wouldn't the weapons dictate the caliber anyway?

    Something like a shotgun, even if it's a made up weapon, is going to have very different ammo than something like a smg.

    Anyhow, unless you're wanting to go into minutiae, worrying about calibers seems unnecessary. Categories like pistol, rifle, shotgun, and assault weapon ammo (for example) is more than enough IMO. Just make the ao fot the particular weapon you include in your game.
     
    ^ Top  
  8. deuxhero Arcane

    deuxhero
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,826
    Location:
    Flowery Land
    Nathaniel3W
    The only alternatives to not having different types of ammo is universal ammo (which is just retarded), unlimited ammo (also retarded), one type of ammo with extremely limited firearm options (only suited for games where guns are rare, at least in terms of the player getting one) and every weapon having its own ammo type (only suited for a small variety of weapons).

    Hoplopfheil
    That all evidence has shown lethality between 9MM, 45 and all new 10mm/40 S&W/357 sig whatever stuff is minimal with modern defensive ammo is definitely true. This is a thread about gameplay mechanics though and the question is "is it worth bothering with adding more than 1 type of pistol ammo in a game?" and not how realistic any appreciable difference on the target is. Ideally these should retain some semblance of reality (a pistol caliber carbine will not be a "long range" weapon compared to anything but a pistol).

    Mustawd
    We're looking at it the same way from opposite ends I think. I'm asking what's the ideal number of types to allow the maximum variety of weapons.

    crazyirish
    Any citations on that? I really doubt .22 just stops at the skull past execution ranges.

    Suppressor compatibility was one thing I was considering (One of the reasons to include 45 at all)

    While I'm hardly an expert on the subject of bullet lethality, I've seen 7.62x39 allowed for "humane" hunting of stuff bigger than 5.56 is (legal requirements for hunting could just be retarded).
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2017
    ^ Top  
  9. Hoplopfheil Literate

    Hoplopfheil
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2017
    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Deimos
    That is definitely true, you can make a very clear (and satisfying) distinction between say, a GLOCK 19 (fast firing, low damage, high capacity) and a 1911 (slower, punchier, limited capacity). The more common way to differentiate between handguns is with, say, a lower power pistol with an automatic cartridge, and a higher power revolver with a magnum cartridge. I.e. Half-Life's Beretta/GLOCK pistol, and Magnum Revolver.

    If you're talking about .22, it's really a story of two different barrel lengths. .22 Long Rifle is a cartridge that is enormously dependent on barrel length. From a rifle length barrel, it really isn't all that bad. .22 rifles are also so stable and easy to shoot, that in game it could be a total headshot machine. From a pistol length barrel, it's pathetic. There are famously repeated stories of people surviving multiple point blank shots to the head from a .22 pistol.

    Where .22 gets interesting is if you factor in ammo weight. I wish more games other than Fallout New Vegas made ammo weight a real thing. A quick Google search found a chart that compares ammo weight.
    With .22 LR you can carry 133 rounds per pound.
    With 9mm you can only carry 38.

    I don't know about you, but I could accomplish a hell of a lot more with 133 rounds than I could with 38.
     
    ^ Top  
  10. Fowyr Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Fowyr
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    6,285
    First you should ask yourself: where your game is happening, what time is it and do you want include civilian or old as hell rounds just for the gun porn.

    Most used military cartridges for USA (NATO) and WD

    Pistol and SMG cartridges:
    .45ACP (USA only)
    9x19
    Rifle cartridge:
    30-06 (USA only)
    7.62x51
    Intermediate cartridge:
    5.56x45
    HMG:
    .50 BMG ( :M)

    WD:
    Pistol and SMG:
    7.62x25
    9x18
    RIfle:
    7.62x54
    Intermediate:
    7.62x39
    5.45x39
    HMG:
    12.7x108 ( :M)
    14.5x114 ( :M)

    There is no use to include modern and rare shit like 9x39.

    Old but very common rifle cartridges.
    .303 British (UK and its colonies, some other countries)
    6.5x50SR - Eastern Asia
    7.92x57 - All central and East Europe.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    ^ Top  
  11. deuxhero Arcane

    deuxhero
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,826
    Location:
    Flowery Land
    Fowyr
    Hence
    And why I gave a list of the common calibers in America.

    In .303 British really still in use elsewhere? I remember The Canadian rangers ditched their Lee-Enfelds (for a pretty standard .308 bolt action Colt Canada got to charge up the ass for because they're the only Canadian arms company left) recently in large part because nobody makes ammo for it anymore (and the surplus ammo used some weird unstable powder).


    Hoplopfheil
    The stock triggers of those two are also entirely different ends of quality, though figuring out how to simulate that in a video game is its own section of a design document (best I can come up with is how long you have to hold the mouse or a delay on firing and a limit on how soon you can fire again for high reset).

    Ammo weight is a good point. Was taking for granted the few games (mostly tactics games) actually do keep track of that. 7.62 Hard Life actually makes ammo weight pretty important (especially with high capacity or taped mags) because it also effects how heavy your gun is (stamina cost for keeping it ready, time to get it ready, changed balance) and that stuff could easily be copied.

    Good to know that about 22. My understanding of the lethality was from reading doctors who hate treating it, but I guess doctors wouldn't really note the ones that didn't even penetrate. Perhaps some tweaking
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2017
    ^ Top  
  12. Fowyr Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Fowyr
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    6,285
    There are shitton of WD weapons in the USA. Definitely add 7.62x54R. Probably 9x18 for all these cheap Maks as well.
    Also Deus Ex changed locales a lot, that's why I remembered Arisaka's ammo.

    Nope, but I remember that some European manufacturers still make it. For example S&B and LVE from Novosibirsk.
    http://www.sellier-bellot.cz/en/product/rifle-ammunition/rifle-ammunition/products/detail/496/
     
    ^ Top  
  13. Nathaniel3W Rockwell Studios Developer

    Nathaniel3W
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    499
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    deuxhero
    If you're targeting any kind of controller with motion sensors, you have a whole lot of other options. I for one would like to see something done with the new controllers meant for VR headsets. Imagine flicking open a revolver's cylinder to drop the spent brass out. Or imagine having to touch your chest in a "reach into the ammo pouch" motion to reload your rifle. Cycle a pump-action shotgun, pull the slide on a semi-auto pistol, or any number of other actions.
     
    ^ Top  
  14. crazyirish Scholar

    crazyirish
    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2011
    Messages:
    117
    Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Doctors are probably unlikely to give an unbiased opinion on the terminal ballistics of any caliber. But yes, as stated, people have been shot in the head at point blank with a .22 and survived. On the other end of the spectrum, there has been a single confirmed polar bear kill with a .22. Very lucky shot...
     
    ^ Top  
  15. laclongquan Arcane

    laclongquan
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    Messages:
    1,868,191
    Location:
    Searching for my kidnapped sister
    Do you want the headache of quality control, and game balance between various type of gun and ammo? It's a big headache that can generate game breaking features.
     
    ^ Top  
  16. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2005
    Messages:
    9,206
    .22 tends to lack the penetrating power to punch through a skull, particularly that of an adult male or larger animal. It is very unlikely that you will be able to penetrate thickened forehead plates even on a direct strike, and a strike at an angle basically has no chance. The sides of the temples are much weaker and a direct strike may penetrate there. As the .22 does not carry a great deal of energy, hits that fail to penetrate will inflict only superficial (and often quite bloody) surface wounds and unlikely to cause any kind of concussion.

    However, should it manage to somehow get inside of a skull, it also lacks the power to LEAVE the skull, and will ping around in there making a hash of the place instead of punching out and only leaving your victim a drooling retard.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
    ^ Top  
  17. Hoplopfheil Literate

    Hoplopfheil
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2017
    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Deimos
    The Darkness used analog controls in a novel way. You could see the hammer traveling rearwards as you pulled the trigger button, with a pretty clear 1:1 ratio.

    I don't think it was anything but a cosmetic effect. But it could be expanded into something cool. You would get less accuracy if you yanked the trigger back, and better quality guns would have a much quicker break.

    Of course if they had all semi automatics fire in double action only mode, that would be another problem. I can't remember for sure.
     
    ^ Top  
  18. deuxhero Arcane

    deuxhero
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,826
    Location:
    Flowery Land
    It would be pretty easy with an analog controller, but why would you ever play an FPS, even a hybrid, with a controller?

    I was considering these two, but came to the conclusion nothing eats 7.62x54R except Mosin-Nagant, various WW2 semi-autos, non-man-portable stuff and the SVD (which comes in 7.62 NATO anyways). There isn't any real applicable difference you can give it compared to 7.62 NATO either, even stretching physics for a game. 9x18 is largely in the same boat except there's no real popularity in the US.

    edit: What language gets WD as an abbreviation anyways?
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2017
    ^ Top  
  19. Hoplopfheil Literate

    Hoplopfheil
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2017
    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Deimos
    Perhaps meant WP, as in Warsaw Pact?

    For a non-US setting (say, Ukraine) you have more options for interesting military surplus. A CZ-52 or Tokarev would be a great counterpoint to a Makarov. The CZ-52 and Tokarev shoot a fast, light-armor piercing round with a lot of energy, whereas the Makarov shoots a 9mm round that falls somewhere between real 9mm NATO (9x19mm) and .380 ACP.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    ^ Top  
  20. Fowyr Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Fowyr
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
    Messages:
    6,285
    Sorry, my bad, I slept only three hours yesterday and it shows. "Pact" is "dogovor" in Russian.
     
    • Informative Informative x 3
    ^ Top  
  21. deuxhero Arcane

    deuxhero
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Messages:
    8,826
    Location:
    Flowery Land
    Gameplay design wise, if I was going to include fictional calibers (and not have it far enough in the future all calibers are fictional), I'd likely start with stuff that can't be covered by real calibers in common usage like a rimless shotgun cartridge.
     
    ^ Top  
  22. gaussgunner Arcane

    gaussgunner
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2015
    Messages:
    3,791
    Location:
    Worst Kwa
    I've heard of people getting 22 bullets stuck in their forehead, sternum, etc. Also heard of 22 LR or magnum blowing a deer's head apart. Depends how much powder and what type of bullet.

    These are all common in the USA -

    .22LR rifles & pistols - v.common, cheap plentiful ammo, light weight
    9mm pistol
    12ga shotgun
    .223 rifle
    .30-06 / 7.62 rifle

    7.62 would probably be the mainstay if fighting ever breaks out here. Assuming a good supply of guns & ammo in that caliber, I wouldn't bother with anything else for general combat needs. Maybe a 9mm or 12ga for close quarters combat.

    Assuming everyone has rifles, skill would be the deciding factor. Doesn't matter how awesome your gun is if an enemy can get in range, aim, fire, and take cover before you see him or hear the shot.
     
    ^ Top  
  23. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2005
    Messages:
    9,206
    Because rifles fire supersonic rounds, you will never hear the shot until it's already over. If you get brained with it, you'll never hear the shot.
     
    • Interesting Interesting x 1
    ^ Top  
  24. gaussgunner Arcane

    gaussgunner
    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2015
    Messages:
    3,791
    Location:
    Worst Kwa
    You'll damn well hear it if he misses.

    Headshots are more likely to miss, so he'll shoot you in the chest if possible, anyway. Especially if he's got a high caliber rifle that don't give a shit about your body armor.

    Body armor could make things interesting. Even if it stops the bullet, I hear it hurts like a bitch. Knocks you on your ass and maybe breaks some ribs. 22's and little pistols won't penetrate so you'd probably want to get close and go for the headshot if that's all you've got.
     
    ^ Top  
  25. Norfleet Moderator

    Norfleet
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2005
    Messages:
    9,206
    You'll hear the crack which is actually the sonic boom of the bullet...but by then, the shot is over.
     
    ^ Top  

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.