Saturday, July 2, 2011

Stuff and Guns and Stuff!

         Happy Monday RocketFans!
         Turns out my nausea is caused by a sever sinus/ear infection.  How fun is that?
         This hasn't prevented my from getting some work done on The Black Desert Role-Playing Game core book, fortunately.  What follows are the fluffy bits from some of the entries in Chapter 5: Weapons & Gear:
Bruce Lee meets Arthur C. Clark

Combat Broomstick
        Luna was home to some of the most intense infantry fighting of the Great War. FreeBrawling, the no-holds-barred, low-gravity martial art that evolved from these struggled have forged the warriors of Terra's largest satellite into the most dangerous unarmed and melee combatants in space. No weapon symbolized this unique fighting style better than the Combat Broomstick.
         Like many martial arts weapons, the Broomstick is an adaptation of common tool found in low- and micro-gravity environments. The Combat Broomstick appears to be a simple tube, 150 centimeters long, with a broad pad on one end and a hard knob on the other. In the center of the tube two grips and a series of control buttons. The main body of the Combat Broomstick is made of light-weight, thermal resistant ceramics.
        One button fires an air cannon that propels the knobbed end of the Broomstick two meters outward with enough force to crack the ribs of an adult human (3D damage). There is a spring in the tube that retracts thee knobbed end after it has been fired. A ratcheted locking mechanism arrests the spring, allowing the tube to remained extended.
        The padded end also has a spring within the tube, but its use is more conventional. By pressing the appropriate button, the padded end of the Broomstick extends two meters, propelled by the spring. This spring must be manually retracted to collapse the padded end of the Broomstick. By pushing off of a surface with the spring-loaded pad, a normal-sized human can propel themselves in free fall at a speed equal to their normal move speed and then come to a gentle stop by absorbing the motion with the collapsing spring. Some versions use more powerful springs, enough to propel a human with equal speed while under Lunarian, or even Martian gravity.

 Lunarian Stunner
This cheap weapon is much more dangerous than its innocuous name suggests. By using Pulsed Energy Projectile (PEP) technology to to modify common Utility Lasers, the Lunarian freedom fighters came into possesstion of a truly formidible weapon. The PEPs themselves, which consist of brief, high-energy blasts of laser energy that vaporize material on contact, create a plasma burst strong enough to break bones and warp metal. In addition, electromagnetic pulses generated by the stunner cause incapacitating pain in any victims unfortunate enough to be shot. These EMP pulses are just as debilitating to robots, as their outer shielding is often vaporized initial PEP strike.

Utility Laser
        Just as the Colt .45 and Winchester Repeater defined the American West in the 19th century, the Utility Laser has come to define the Black Desert in the 23rd. Most often used as as a cutting or heating tool in space, the Utility Laser is nevertheless a capable sidearm in anything from full Terran gravity and pressure to vacuum.
        One of the most useful features of the Utility Laser is its SmartScreen. The 5 cm screen, mounted just above the handle, receives data from the laser's reflex aiming sight and can display visible or thermal images. The placement of the screen also protects the users' eyes from laser attacks by forcing them to look down.
         Another useful feature of the Utility Laser is its self-contained cooling system. Mounted just under the SmartScreen, a small cartridge of compressed gas vents after each shot from the Laser, cooling the sensitive electronics. The cooling system can be turned off when not needed.

        The Skinsuit is a tight-fitting coverall that uses mechanical pressure to protect people from the rigors of vacuum. While thin enough and light enough to be worn under loose clothing, the Skinsuit is made up of a complex sandwich of durable dirt-resistant fabrics, nanocarbon filaments, and integrated electronics.
        Skinsuits are fairly easy to put on and wear and are available in many sizes. This ease of use is only possible because of the suit's complex electronics. The nanocarbon filaments built into a Skinsuit are normally relaxed for everyday wear. However, they automatically contract around the wearer when the suit's integrated computer detects a drop in air pressure. Using stored data about the wearer's body topography and ergonomics, the nanocarbon strands can not only exert the correct amount of tension to prevent decompression, they can also adjust to take into account unusual body positions, wounds, and even weight gain.
        Even the most basic Skinsuits have integrated leads that constantly monitor their wearer's heart rate, blood pressure, respiration, and other vital signs. This data, when downloaded by a medical professional, allows any Medicine or Medicine: First Aid Skill Checks to be made one Difficulty Level lower than normal.
         All Skinsuit designs have a rigid collar built into the neck of the garments, which are of the same size and configuration no matter the size of the suit or who the suit's fabricator is. These collars will accept standard vacuum helmets and allow the Skinsuits to be used in airless environments. Gloves are also provided with most Skinsuit designs, but are usually only worn when needed. The suits almost always have integrated footwear, usually in the “tabi socks” style. More rugged footwear can be worn over the suits, protecting the feet in tougher terrain.
        Skinsuits are truly thought of as a “second skin” by their owners, who will often only remove them for hygiene purposes while in space. Because of this, most space suit designs place padding over certain areas for modesty.


  1. Nifty.
    Thought for the close quarters stuff - how come nothing like a shark bang stick? It'd be an ugly thing, but it doesn't depend on the human element to power its way through.

    On the broomstick. Hmm, talk to me about the springs? Conventional steel? Or something more exotic with a higher power density? Also what about advanced materials that are piezo electric, changing shape to spring forward with an electric charge?

    Finally, sticking to your opponent in micro-g environments is going to be important. Anything that could stick to clothes and skin (memory metal barbs anyone?) could help in that regard.

  2. YES! I wanna Bank Stick! That's definitely going into the Core Book.

  3. The padded end needs a no-slip coating, you are almost never going to be approaching perpendicular to the surface you want to transfer momentum to.


Questions, comments, criticisms? All non-Trolls welcome!