A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Thursday Game Report

As Pico due to work has left our Tuesday group, a new, sadly more casual group has opened up on Thursdays. Currently it is he, 9IN, and myself. This first week was more or less a warmup game to see if we can do this schedule up before even trying anything serious or in depth.

Pico really wants some sort of campaign game. 3 people is about 2 people too short for any sort of campaign game.
But that's a topic for another time. That and the ideas in my head for a casual ground and space based campaign game.

This week was some Federation Commander. One 300 point Federation Starbase versus me in a Gorn Heavy Battlecruiser, Pico fielding a Federation Police Cutter and New Light Cruiser, and 9IN in a Klingon D7 Heavy Battlecruiser. Its been a while since Pico and I have played, and even longer since 9IN had played Starfleet Battles the longer, more complex, and far inferior parent game.

We picked things up pretty quickly, and used some simple logic for the enemy starbase. We guessed it was Andromedan controlled or something. All of our ships survived, and the Starbase was crippled in 3 turns. Our ships had light to severe damage, but overall we rocked the thing, and learned a few rules we never used before or forgot about. (Like Phasers being able to fire as the smaller Phaser types, and partially loaded Plasma Torpedoes.)

A good game overall. This week is either more Federation Commander, or Silent Death.

D&D 4th Edition and the NEW VERSION stupidity.

My views on the new 4th edition of D&D?

So totally uninterested. I really dislike 3.0, and 3.x's too soon introduction pretty much tore what little interest I had in modern D&D right out the window. 4th's apparent MINIATURES WHERE ROLEPLAYING (maybe) sessions break out isn't to my taste and I like "Braunstein" styled games WAAAY more than that deep immersion RP Indies Forge kind of thing. Heck, I think I quit running a nWoD game because it was too heavy into RP. But 4th is taking it way too far.

From everyone I have talked to in the real world, its overwhelmingly ANTI 4th edition. One gamestore that did very well with 3rd has currently a whopping TWO preorders for fourth. Gamegroups that were D&D are trying out things like Gamma World fer crying out loud!

I'm personally looking into DC Heroes or D6 for my next game till I am ready for the crunch and gloom of Warhammer or Dark Heresy. Even the biggest D&D D20 fanboy I know is against the game.

The whole "now you can rebuy stuff that was already working out fine for you loser" thing isn't helping either. Now all my stuff is mostly useless. Again.

Instead of being able to buy cool new supplements I have to rebuy the core books AND then hope every book I liked would get redone. This is one thing that is probably doing more damage to gaming than people realize. Every new edition fragments the playerbase of a hobby that NEEDS people into smaller and smaller groups, many of whom eventually just leave entirely.

New editions are short term profits that lead to long term losses. And I am really getting sick of it. Warhammer 40K did up 4th edition in Spring 05. Hi grognards.txt.  I love you.   3 years later and its time to buy another damned 50 dollar rulesbook, or a 50-60 dollar starter set? Were people that pissed with the old rules so they needed to tweak it, AGAIN? I still haven't bought the newest version of Paranoia or Runequest since I am perfectly happy with my mid-late 80s rulesbooks for games I want to play but can't really get people for anyhow. So why buy it again?

I am not alone. Money is tight, and if you like or love what is currently there, why in hell would you release a somewhat to completely incompatible edition of a hobby game which is sure to fragment the playerbase and cause hurt feelings for anyone who isn't a consumer whore?

Oh right. There are enough of them out there to make those short term profits I mentioned. Which makes the beancounters happy until profits dry up even faster than they did before.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wednesday Game Report

This week was 2 games of 40K and some Magic as a pickup afterwards down at Sarge's.

First game was 1000 points Chaos (me) vs Orks. It was a rather brutal battle, with it turning into Ordnance Wars as every unit capable of moving was either killed or immobilized. Strangely, Gretchin Lobba Gunnerz had better morale than my Chaos Marines, who all eventually ran off board due to on their own checks. If only my light Havoc Squad had killed more Grots, only they fell to a Shokk Attack Gun which rolled boxcars, sucking them into the warp. The Ork force lost two squads of bikers Wazdakka joined and fell back with, only for him to run around and hide behind a tree till he could pop out and immobilize my Vindicator. An Iron Warriors Krak Missile trooper managed to finish off what his fellows failed to do, only to fail the aforementioned on his own check the next time he had an opportunity to do anything.

A good close game overall.

Next was 1500 Chaos with Orks (they made up after the brutal violence of the last game I guess) against 3000 Slaaneshi Chaos that used Apocalypse rules but was called due to the other Chaos player's ride leaving. We were winning, but having a handmade Ork Fighta Bomba on the field and our insanely high rolls for everything was doing sick damage anyhow. Sure, he had tons of Demons due to come in on later turns, but the Orks took Flank March meaning they were coming in from who knows where. In 2 turns of shooting and fighting I had taken out a Dreadnought, Rhino, Defiler, a Bike Squad, and still had some more to kill. Daemonettes had gotten summoned by the one remaining biker my Berserkers assaulted on turn 1 (he thought Turbo Boosting worked in Close Combat too. It does not. No invulnerable saves against angry Khorne commanders!) alongside some Raptors, yet my second Berserker squad was on their way in. And the Orks had sent a planeful of bombs on top of two Rhinos rushing in to support their fellow S&M freaks. A word of advice: Apocalypse templates are SCARY. The Fighta Bomba used a template that was effectively 4 Large Blast Templates with a 1" template in the center connecting them.

Yeah. I'm glad the Orks were on my side.

I also brought my AT-43 books which got quite a bit of interest from folks. If you bring it to the right place with the right people, different games might actually have a chance!

My Car Wars car. Let me show you it.

And following it up with what I own for the game!

My car for a Division 15 campaign is this:
See if you can guess why it has the name it does!

Arilou Special
Cost: 9430
Handling Class 5
2642 Weight
Acceleration 10
Top Speed 132.5
Subcompact
Xtra Heavy Chassis
Heavy Suspension
Medium Engine, Superconductor (Front Mounted) (1540 power)
Tires: Heavy Duty Radial
Single Weapon Computer (Light Laser)
Forward Mount Light Laser with Pulse.
80 Points of Armor: (20 F/B 14 L/R 6 T/U)

Personal Gear: (3601 cost.)
Body Armor
Armored Battle Vest carrying Minimechanic, Limpet Mine, Bowie Knife, Machine Pistol, and 2 Clips.
Fireproof Suit
Laser VLAW with Laser Scope.

My car is cool. It just rammed too many bikes and trikes this week. We got ambushed by 2 bikers and 2 trikers with 10-15K costs.

My collection of stuff:
Miniboxes: Car Wars, Truck Stop, Sunday Drivers
Ziplocs 1,3, and 4. (I have ALL of Midville. FOUR TOTAL MAPS.)
AADA Duel Circuit: L'outrance
The AADA Vehicle Guide
Deluxe Car Wars
Deluxe Car Wars Compendium 2nd Revised.
Car Wars Tanks (Came with above.)
Arena Book
Mean Streets
ADQ 10-2, 9-3, 7-2,3,4, 8-1 through 8-4, 5-3, 1-1 through 3-4
Gurps Autoduel 2nd edition.
Mini Car Wars.
AADA Atlases 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7
AADA Game Master Shield
Car Wars 5th: ALL OF IT.
Convoy
Turbofire (3rd party CW compatible module/setting.)

(Updated July 10 with a few new bits I have.)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Tuesday Game Reports

This week Car Wars started up in earnest. Our three cars were cruising down a town road when 2 bikers and 2 trikers ambushed us, intent on taking us out with their fancy expensive vehicles. Magicdrew was taken out with repeated shots to the rear, eventually taking him out of action, but the car was still moving. My character engaged in multiple ramming attacks out of sheer angry fury, which took out his car's front end. (He took a Trike with him.) He later hopped into Magicdrew's car, put his character's knocked out and injured self safely on some grass and proceeded to not do much outside of mess with the remaining triker's plans as our earlier attacks had sent the 2 bikes packing. Magicdrew's spike dropper in a critical place helped this along quite a bit too. 9IN was the star of the day, trading shots with almost every enemy gang member, and causing the last triker to spin out and crash through a chain link fence and into a wall.

The reward was substantial, but the amount of damage my car took put me in debt, which 9IN is covering till I can pay him back. Now Rufus wants revenge on these biker scum for trying to wreck the Arilou special (subcompact with a 5 Handling Class and a single Light Pulse Laser) and keeping him from his eventual semi truck.

Rufus hates people who wreck his plans.

Overall the game was pretty fun, though Magicdrew and I had some poor luck, and Starfury as the GM had some insanely GOOD luck in both to hit and damage rolls. Overall Gurps Lite combined with Car Wars isn't working too shabby, though some kinks need to be worked out. For our introductory mission maybe we shouldn't have been nearly evenly matched with our opponents, but we prevailed, even if it took most of our money to do so. Magicdrew seemed a little frustrated with the game, but he just had a bit of bad luck, and I guess it seemed a little insulting to him that Rufus would hop in his car and try to keep the fight going. It helped us win by causing the final trike rider to be a little too dangerous, so it all turned out for the best.

I was swearing and cursing myself, but was having a good time overall. Its a Rufus thing. Rufus is cranky and gets mad at things that deserve to get their ass kicked. He just didn't have the rolls to make it proper is all!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Wednesday Game Report and AT-43 Armybuilding

Sorry this took a while to post. I've been having disturbing continuous aches and pains which have made worrying about posting stuff a little less important. Its probably nothing given all other evidence, but its enough to give me pause. I'd get these things checked out, but getting things checked out mostly seems to mean "Give us lots of your money after your insurance does and we will tell you everything looks fine. Oh, let's make an appointment for more of your money".

I swear its probably 80% stress and worry, 20% something actually in need of fixing.

But Wednesday was another of the no 40K days because everyone started too fracking early. However, I got in a few games of Magic and played some solidly tough decks to start things off. Ever get hit by 4 Lightning Bolts by turn 4? Yeah. I fought one of those.

It was followed up by me demoing AT-43 for one of the 40K players. One of Sarge's clerks has been talking with me since I have mentioned getting into the game. He isn't gonna order stuff till there is some special orders and whatnot to get the ball rolling. Sensible enough I think. However, he was able to procure a demo copy of the starter set. Thus I got to run a couple scenarios and more than a few people showed some interest in the game. AT-43 has an excellent introductory set, not really requiring a ton of rules reading before getting the demo games up and moving.

I may be getting and fielding a UNA army sooner rather than later. If other people are playing I won't need to have 2 armies built before getting things going. I will just need one. Given UNA's use for other games, I have decided on them, with Therians to be more fully built up later on. My initial plans include getting another starter set cheap, then using Sarge's to preorder everything else I need. I will most likely grab a Defender Snake and 2 Steel Troopers attachment boxes to start with. This should give me 3 Walkers, 2 main infantry squads, and 1 elite squad to get me going. A nice solid starter force.

2 Starters gives me 2 Leaders, 12 soldiers with Laser Rifles, and 4 Missile Launchers. 2 Attachment boxes adds in 2 more Leaders, 2 more Missile Launchers, 2 Machine Guns, 2 Medics, 2 Mechanics.

I'm probably going for M.Ind as my Force Pattern. This means I get up to 3 Walkers, and up to 3 Infantry units.

This means 1 Steel Trooper squad will be 4 soldiers, 1 Master Sergeant, 2 Missile Launchers, Medic, and Mechanic, with Triple Lens Helmets.
(Points Cost: 320 base, +50 for 2 Missile Launchers, +15 for a Master Sergeant. 385 points.)

The Second Steel Trooper squad will be 4 soldiers, 1 Master Sergeant, 2 Machine Guns, Medic, and Mechanic with Triple Lens Helmets and Grenades.
(Points Cost: 365 base, +15 for a Master Sergeant. 380 points.)

This leaves me enough for another squad. RAWK. 4 more soldiers, 1 Master Sergeant, and a Laser Gun.
(Points Cost: 175 base, +15 for a Master Sergeant. 190 points.)

Now in bigger games I can swap out the small squad for a unit of Steel Tacarms with a Sergeant and Laser Targeter for 325 if I want, but the M.Ind army design only allows for 3 infantry units.

For fighting vehicles I can take 2 Fire Toads, 1 as a Sergeant 415 points. (Note to self: Buy another Fire Toad so I can have a full squad.)

And my big dog, the Defender Cobra, Sergeant Upgrade. 365 points of glorious heavy combat strider.

Of course Colonel Stark for another 85 points when needed.

That gives me a maximum army points value of: 1955 if I am doing my math correctly.If I want an even 2000 I just get Sergeant Borz and add another 35 points.

Sounds good!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Tuesday Game Reports

Well, this week was Car Wars, minus Pico whose hours changed, and Missme who has decided to leave our group without bothering to tell most of us, merely telling MagicDrew who she works with that she feels she is keeping us from playing more complicated games.

Instead of talking things out with us, and letting everyone else decide if we really mind not playing more hardcore or complex things (the answer is: we can play lighter fare no problem), I get to feel like a douche.

Not cool.

Then the rest of us proceeded onto Car Wars. As my character (using GURPS), and my 12000 dollar ride were built waay back in November sometime, 9IN and MagicDrew built their dudes and machines while I cleaned up from last week's game and reorganized my pile of Car Wars goodies.

15K to build cars and 100-120 point characters. We used my map of East Midville (The one not in most Car Wars Deluxe Boxes!) and since my character and car were already built for a previous attempt at the campaign back in the early winter, I reorganized my stuff. A couple of the plastic miniboxes and ziplocs, Pre Compendium Deluxe, And Black Book Compendium. (The LAST word in classic Car Wars!) Ok, I am leaving out Mini Car Wars, Autoduel 2nd edition, my AADA Atlases, and all of 5th edition, but its a nice pile of stuff.

The GM is borrowing some of my road section ziplocs no less! My character's car has a gunner, so I have decided he is basically the president in Idiocracy. My character's goal is to buy a Semi and kick ass on the roads of America. Which is why he has 3K left while the other players spent almost every dollar. My car has a HC of 3 which makes it much more peppy than the other players. (HC 1? OWWW) I might rebuild it though. See if I can't get an even higher HC, drop my awesome gunner with a turret machine gun, and just use my 2d Recoilless mounted on the hood. Do I really need a top speed of 120 MPH? I say no.

We had a short period to be acquainted with the rules and get used to our rides, with a test fight on one of my old maps, East Midville. Overall it went well, with actual campaign based vehicle destruction starting next week.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tuesday and Wednesday Game Reports

This Tuesday we continued our Lord of the Rings miniatures battle that began last week. While I may do up a comic styled battle report sometime in the future, I will summarize the basics here: Starfury and I met on one flank, he with Faramir and forces from Minas Tirith, me playing Gothmog and Mordor Orcs. MagicDrew had Gimli, Merry, Pippin, and a mixed force of Elves, Dwarves, and Hobbits. Facing him was 9IN with Lurtz and White Hand Uruk Hai. On the other flank was Missme with Boromir and more Minas Tirith troops against Pico with a mixed force of Moria Goblins and Haradrim. Pico pretty much smashed through Missme, Starfury stomped me, and 9IN got into a solid battle in the center, capturing the artifact, but just barely pushing Magicdrew out.

I think 4 of us enjoyed the game, but MagicDrew and Missme seemed less thrilled. Maybe the size of the game (400 points a player) was a bit too big for them. They tend to be strategy game novices as is. MagicDrew seemed to be overthinking most of his moves (something he does a LOT) and Missme just seemed irritated and frustrated with the game as a whole. This is rather disappointing to me given how much I like the game and how much I have spent on it recently, even if it was at 50% off. Their frustration has made me all but stop buying pieces for the game, though I really do want more, even if its just a couple of the "big" pieces.

Next time I try the game with them (provided they let me run it again), I will give them 200 point armies to battle with, and maybe even just make it 400 points per side and have players take certain units as opposed to a whole force.

The game was called for time, though the non frustrated folks had a good hour plus to kill. Since I had my Magic decks floating around and they are relatively balanced to each other (give and take), we played some Magic and had a pretty good time. No power decks, no sub 6 turn win decks, nothing that can go infinite. Since Pico's hours are changing this was his last day in the Tuesday group so it was good for him to leave on an up note with a game everybody playing was having fun.

Wednesday had myself demoing Warhammer 40K for Starfury at Sarge's. 1000 points of Chaos Space Marines per side. I got some mostly painted Iron Warriors for a buck a figure so I had extra troops letting me build some nice simple introductory forces without too much complexity to them. The fight went pretty well overall, with a bit of give and take, though Starfury took me out with 2 units surviving to the end. It would have been 3, but his commander unit, Typhus, managed to roll a 1 for his Daemon Weapon attacks 3 turns in a row, killing him. My Khorne lord was lost to a Demolisher cannon shot, and his Terminators deep striking behind my Havoc squad, wiping them out and making multiple 5+ invulnerable saves. We followed it up with some more Magic, with some of my decks getting some actual compliments from the players at how devious and amusing they are. It is also leading to Starfury getting a decent sized Necron army for a great price.

Next Tuesday is an up in the air game, and Wednesday or Thursday is some gaming with Pico, and possibly 9IN and Starfury depending on times and work availability.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Tuesday and Wednesday Game Reports

This is another of my 2 in 1 reports.
My game reports, being the mostly boring E/N post equivalent are the unimportant part of this blog that from time to time the odd bit of wisdom is imparted from. This will be one of those sorts. Except without pictures.

Tuesday was the start of the big Lord of the Rings game. It is going well overall, even if my force, Orcs lead by Gothmog are mostly getting their asses handed to them by Starfury's army, Faramir and his Gondor fighters. I am taking pictures for when the whole battle is concluded and it will be one big comic styled report. The other 2/3rds of the battlefield are mostly a big giant scrum around the objective as Lurtz tries to swat some pesky Hobbits, and Boromir's troops can't kill anything at all.

Gameplay wise LotR is impressing the hell out of me. Actual tactics is the order of the day, not what kind of badass army list you made and you got to go first this turn type of shenanigans.

I just need Missme! to listen when I explain the rules of the game is all. Actually, that's my bit of wisdom contained in these otherwise mostly pointless reports. IF THE RULES PERSON IS TELLING YOU THE RULES OF THE GAME, PLEASE LISTEN TO HIM OR HER AND ASK YOUR QUESTIONS AT THE END. (Or at least stop talking and wait for a pause before you ask said question!)

I could only imagine what sort of terror would come in trying to explain Federation Commander or Squad Leader...

Wednesday was a surprisingly purchase free day at Sarge's, since I have made other buys elsewhere and my LotR getting mania needs a week or two break. I am the only one really getting this stuff, so its not like I have to hurry. This week's 40K mayhem involved 1500 point forces of Chaos (me!) and the Sisters of Battle up against Orks and Chaos. My side lost, mostly due to some bad deployment and not inconsiderable amounts of horrid rolling. The deployment was the biggest one though. My main assault unit, an 8 strong Berzerker unit with Typhus running alongside was at the far flank. Nothing else was there. The other side is where the BIG fights were, and the Orks and Chaos Marines broke the Sisters entirely too easily. The center was bloody, but our side took it. It just wasn't enough and as mentioned, my main striking force were too far away from everything, though they did get to shoot a couple plasma pistols into a few enemy models. If I was gonna cover a flank, I should have used the smaller Rhino transported Berzerker squad who could have got somewhere fast and not been a big easily slammed target by multiple weapons once my Vindicator was taken out. Typhus and 8 guys could have held off better than 6, and said 6 could have shored things up.

I really need more Rhinos for my foot troops.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

From my Brain to this Blog..

Over at an RPG forum the brand new Robotech Shadow Chronicles RPG is being discussed. The usual Mega Damage (MDC) thing came up.

In short, Mega Damage is super armor/damage that normal people and technology can't really hurt. Your average Player Character would be vaporized by a single MD point, since Structural Damage (SDC) is 1/100th an MD point and your average twinked PC has maybe 40 total SDC points.

This is a strange system, and leads to much abuse and confusion. Why an Armor Penetration/Armor Resistance ruleset wasn't used I don't think we will ever know. (Warhammer 40K's Strength vs Toughness is a massively abstract version of this. A Toughness 3 man is likely to be hurt by a Strength 3 Lasgun. A Toughness 8 Wraithlord mech is all but immune to his fire, and vehicles are an armor value starting at 10 and going up, beaten by rolling a D6 and adding the weapon's Strength. Meaning that Strength 3 Lasgun can't hurt even the lightest of tanks, but a Strength 9 Lascannon will all but vaporize the hapless man and turn light vehicles to scrap without little effort, and can penetrate up to 15 armor, though 14 is the known maximum.)

Well, one fellow was mentioning his more Robotech cartoon like house rules, which were pretty decent. Upping damage, lowering personal armor to fit in closer to the show and common sense, ect. (A guy in a non powered armored suit shouldn't have 1/3rd the MDC of a jet fighter.)

Now these were good ideas, but my idea is something I may use should my gamegroup play Robotech sometime soon: (Note I tweak one of the house rules the fellow used to fit my idea. His idea lead me to my idea!) 10% of the original armor's stats are base, and the rest is the character's SDC converted over to MDC with MD damage also being SD personal damage. (Cyclone armor would be on top of this and would split the damage 50/50.

So a dude who takes a 25 point MDC hit to his armor is losing 25 points to said armor, and is internally taking 25 points of SDC damage as well. If his original Hit Points was 10, and his SDC is 23 and he is wearing armor that originally as written provided 50 MDC, his armor's MDC is 28. 28 points of MDC will destroy the armor, leaving him with 5 Hit Points. You could also take the current Palladium armor rule where even 1 remaining MDC point has to be destroyed before the wearer is gonna take MD and die to its less munchkiny logical course. Sure, that 1 MDC point as written can take UNLIMITED damage and the wearer still lives until next turn as the armor is now NO MORE IT HAS CEASED TO BE, but that SDC damage could still kill him.

An example: Joe Shmuck is the fellow above with 10 HP, 23 SDC, and the 5 points MDC armor with his 23 SDC converted into MDC giving his armor an effective 28 points. He is hit for a whopping 40 MDC in damage. Maybe an Invid was lucky. Now his armor takes 28 points by my house rule, but AS WRITTEN IN CURRENT PALLADIUM RULEBOOKS that extra 12 MDC goes poof and does nothing. If we play it my way, the MDC doesn't blow in as usual. But the hapless wearer is STILL taking the 12 SDC of internal hits from the impact and whatnot. However Joe only has 33 total SDC points he can take meaning he is totally fragged and there probably isn't anything left of him or his armor that is recognizable.

Which makes sense considering 20-60 FOOT TALL ROBOT GUNS firing at a 2 meter tall human should usually leave that human dead regardless of whatever armor he is wearing. Joe's skill at evading hits (remember we aren't considering his SDC to be TRUE LIFE FORCE, more skill at not getting serious injury..) isn't enough to save him from the big nasty cannon designed to blow up BIG ROBOTS. Even in Warhammer 40K a big badass Space Marine can't take a hit from an anti tank weapon and live unless its more dumb luck and the weapon really misses him or just glances.

If it was a Cyclone, 20 points of MDC would go to the Cyclone armor which we shall leave as written, and only 20 would go to his personal armor the Cyclone fits on top of, meaning he would only be taking 20 SDC. He is in trouble and another hit of any sort is gonna turn him into a big smear on the pavement, but his transforming motorcycle and his combat experience merely grazed the bike, but his luck is running out!

Now if Joe had 31 SDC, he would have lived. 36 MDC for the armor and it still would have been shredded. (Again, ITS A BIG GUN DESIGNED TO DESTROY LARGE THINGS THAT WEIGH TONS NOT 200 POUND MAN.) However, with his Hit Points (And if I haven't mentioned, Hit Points are Palladium's actual "Life Force you are taking ACTUAL PAINFUL HURTS" thingie.) and SDC he now has 41 total points, leaving him with 1 total Hit Point left, no armor, and a big scary robot about to turn him into paste should he not run for cover, surrender, play dead, or hope his buddies can pull him out of the fire so he can go to the medics and take a 2 week nap. His skill in combat was as such he saw the BIG SHOT and jumped behind some light cover, ducked, or something that kept him from taking a direct hit which would be fatal to any normal human being. However, even a close miss or a light hit is enough to put him out of any meaningful action for quite some time.

You know, I like this rule. I am excited about it! I now want my copy of Robotech: Shadow Chronicles from Palladium to get here faster so I can run this.

I do like me some Cyclone Mospeada Ride Armor after all:
100_0737
(If we use it in the examples above, the 40 point hit would have taken out one of the shoulderpads. A killing hit would be a dead center hit, which even the heavier bike armor isn't gonna block. A higher SDC pilot is gonna lose an engine or take a serious mechanical hit that ruins the bike and he comes crashing to the ground, no longer jumping about like Rand here is, meaning he is gonna feel that landing, and the Cyclone is effectively totalled.)

Its taking the generic D&D Hit Points as a measure of skill, luck, endurance, glancing hits, and karma as opposed to true damage absorbing life force. Your character's improving SDC for level ups affects the armor you wear. It makes so much sense I kind of wonder why Palladium hasn't used it. Its still the kludgy Palladium MDC shenanigans, but now it actually feels more realistic in the setting and rules provided.

Edit: The rulebook showed up today. A cursory evaluation says Hit Points go up per level. Well NARF. Ok, HP doesn't go up in level in my houserule then, SDC does. CRISIS AVERTED. Also, the actual armor seems to be 120 points for personal REF armor, so dudes would get 12 plus their SDC converted to MDC.

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