Couple of semi-sessions behind, testing a lot of stuff. Some thoughts/questions came and I want to ask/share with you and see what you think:
1. Firearms vs Railguns
At first glance, the Railguns seems to be superior to Firearms. They have more AP and +2 damage, more range, they are silent and generally more "cool".
However, after you dig more into Types of Ammo, Smart Ammo + Accessories, I realized that...actually firearms can be stronger than Railguns and give you MUCH more options.
Lets take Assault Rifle. Firearm vs Railgun: both 2d10, both 30 magazine, SA, BF and FA.
Railgun -9, 2d10 +8. Firearm -6, 2d10 + 6. Obvious. But, lets pimp them:
Railgun can only use regular or AP ammunition (not Reactive one). So we can bump it to -14, 2d10 + 6 (-2 DV from AP ammo). And... that's all. We can't use other types, can't use smart ammo, and smart magazine (best accessory to weapon) is useless for Railgun because we can't use different ammo types.
Now Firearm Assault rifle. We can use everything, so lets pump it to max AP and bonuses. Reactive AP ammo + Accushot = -12, 2d10 + 5 and we ignore all range modifiers so we can snipe all day. Let's trade Accushot for Laser-Guided/Homing and have extra +10 to tests (cumulative with either smartlink or Laser). So we have only 2 AP lower, and 1 damage lower but we have +10 to tests or lack of modifiers on all ranges.
But we can do more. Smart Magazine + Splash + Liquid Thermite + Zap rounds. Firearm.
Or we can do max damage with Homing/Laser Biter ammo and have -6 AP, 3d10 + 6 +10 to Weapon Test weapon. And we can make a full use of Smart Magazine= fight vs soft targets (some scums militia with Bioweave or armor vests)- Biter. Fight vs tought targers - change to Reactive Armor Piercing. Tough biomorph to take alive- change to zap. Tank- splash liquid thermite + zap combo.
Or if we just want an bette railgun assault Rifle we use Reactive Ammo + Accushot/Homig and we have.... TADA! AP -8, 2d10+8 with no modifiers on range or +10 skill. So we only use -1AP vs regular railgun assault rifle and making it sniper king or having wooping +10 to tests. Worth it.
Not to even mention how accushot and Biter/Reactive AP make difference on Sniper Rifle or Heavy Pistol. Also by RAW Railguns can't use Extended Magazine (most people homerule that).
So, yeah, I think with Smart Magazine you can have everything needed in your Firearm Assault Rifle/Pistols and Railguns are not anymore that good. Even their range is not that great if you can have accushot smart ammo.
2. Drugs and "Long Terms Users suffer -X to Y".
So, while reading on combat drugs- Kick and MRDR. Both can lead to addiction obviously BUT both have written "Long-term users suffer –5 COO" (Kick) and "Long-term users suffer –5 SOM" (MRDR).
Ok, so what is "Long Term user"? I mean if we are talking about a PC that has both Toxin-Filters and Medichines- I can't see how any of that effects might occur. Addiction is something totally different and can't be cured by Toxin-Filters or Medichines. But those long term effects are are totally not well-explained. Like what? Year? 10? 20? Drugs can't really make any permanent physical damage to brain (Kick -5 COO) or to your body (MRDR -5 SOM) because medichines, healing vac or toxin filters would patch that. So how does it even work?
It's even stanger with Synths- using nacroalgorythms- all drugs are just software and synth mind is digital. So how can a long-term usage of software cause -5 COO or -5 SOM? Not to even mention anyway with Programming and Infosec could easly patch you up with some simple counter-software to "fix" it. And since Synths narcos are mental only- phychotherapy/psychosurgery would also counter that.
So with that super high nanotechnology medicine/softwares etc. how can that "Long term users" penalties even exist in first place. And again- what is "long"?
Been testing some melee by RAW. Even with Plasma cutter and 3 extra Limbs- you are better with Shredder or more shredders in melee distance. Penalty is meh really if you have already high weapon skill and you still cut enemies Fray by half when you use it so overall I was able to do:
1. More damage with FA on Shredder
2. Hit more targets.
3. Hit more times because skill was high anyway + enemies Fray was only half vs having high melee skill but with full Fray enemies where dodging a lot of attack. Plus by RAW melee is still only one attack, as opposed to how many times you can shot with Shredder. Since shredder is also just a heavier version of shard pistol (so counts as small same as heavy pistol) you can also concealed /mount it in synthmorph arm or hide it in skin pocket and always have it ready when there is CQC fight.
Seems like EP is at least realistic in this term- gun is always superior :)