Saturday, February 7, 2009

Graviton Gun

For those of you old enough to recall Rogue Trader days, you might be familiar with the old graviton gun. Wielded by Xenos (orks!) and select imperial agents, the graviton gun caused much mayhem to both infantry (reduced movement), tanks and skimmers (crash!).

I recently got thinking: what would the graviton gun look like in 5th edition? How can it be updated from Rogue Trader? Here's my attempt and interpretation about it.

Through a subtle manipulation of the Higgs field, the graviton gun temporarily adds excessive mass to the target that is sufficient to hold even the most dexterous troops and cripple the fastest of vehicles.

Range: up to 12''.
Type: Assault 1.
Strength and AP: Special.

Special Rules.
Roll to hit as normal. The effects of a successful hit depend on the nature of the target.

Non-vehicle, non-flying:
If the target is infantry (or mounted on a bike or steed, etc.) and doesn't fly, then they may not move in their following movement phase, nor run in the shooting phase. In assault, they attack at initiative 1 and are reduced to 1 attack as they desperately try to lift their heavy arms to parry and deliver blows. The target may attempt to avoid these effects by rolling under their initiative on 2d6 - this represents them launching themselves out of the way of the graviton gun's crosshairs as they hear it charging.

Flying, but non-vehicle:
For jump infantry and other flesh and blood creatures that can fly (with wings, jump packs, jet-bikes or otherwise), the graviton gun can be more deadly. When hit, they immediately fall to the earth and must make an armour saving throw or suffer one wound. In addition, they suffer the same effects as infantry do. As above, the target may take a 2d6 save against their initiative to avoid all of these effects.

Against tanks, the graviton gun causes a localized increase in mass along the armour plating, tracks, or other critical point such as the ammo storage area. The tank suffers an automatic glancing hit.

Against skimmers and other flying vehicles, the graviton gun can be deadly. They immediately tumble to the ground out of control and take an automatic penetrating hit.

Suggested role in games:
The graviton gun should probably not be making regular appearances in games. Rather, it can see use as (a) a strategic asset in an Apocalypse game, in much the same way that a vortex grenade is; (b) a strategic objective that can be captured and utilized.

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