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EMPs in Interface Zero

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  • EMPs in Interface Zero

    Hey! So, I have been culling around, trying to find any rulings on EMP weaponry and tech. I can find mentions, here and there, in the IZ3.0 material (the new Mal-Mart Catalog even mentions EMP shielding devices...), but I find absolutely nothing on how these weapons would work, or be build, stats-wise.

    I even went back and bought the older 2.0 rulebook, trying to find something there, and still not much.

    I did find a few conversations where gunmetaldave has mentioned EMPs as being extremely problematic and game-breaking, and implies that because of this EMP rules simply won't/can't exist in official IZ3.0 material.

    So, on the one hand I completely understand this. On the other, however....... I currently am running a game, and my group of players are the kind that will certainly catch me out if I describe something factually inaccurately, or somehow overstep the bounds of reasonable sci-fi physics... (One of my last posts was bout the Hand of God Armaments MAW rifle... That all got started by my players suddenly presenting me with numbers and physics and asking "but how?"... lol) I can almost guarantee that at some point, somebody's going to ask me if they can get, or be protected from, an EMP device... And then the next question would be "why aren't they in IZ3.0?"

    I can get behind EMPs not being in IZ3.0, from a game-mechanic perspective. However, if I'm going to all but totally remove that element from the IZ3.0 world, I feel like there needs to be an explanation or a reasoning for why they aren't there. Are they largely banned, worldwide? (Which would leave room for occasional surprise EMP moments or elements in GM-created stories...) Is there some reason they are difficult to produce? Is there some sort of magic-science reason they wouldn't work on cyborgs or TAPs?

    From what I know of EMPs, they tend to be pretty illegal to build, own, and use... Like, super illegal, at least here in the US. So, I'm leaning towards some sort of super-contraband status, maybe... As far as production goes, similar to how it's mentioned in the IZ material that Faraday cages are relatively easy to build, EMPs seem to be pretty simple to build as well... So I'm not thinking that making producing them difficult would be... well... difficult to justify.

    What is the official thought on all this?

    Just to be clear, I'm not asking for EMPs to be made official in IZ3.0. I understand the game-restrictions... I'm just asking for some sort of clarification, fluff-wise, on why they aren't prevalent in such a futuristic, high-tech world.


  • #2
    Hiya. We're revisiting EMP's and should have some playtest rules for you to look at soon.

    For a reason as to why they might be banned... Well a device like that (if weaponized) could wreak havoc in the real world. Now fast forward to a society where people have cybernetic implants, and air travel is much more congested than today. You have drones flying everywhere, commercial VTOL transportation, etc.; all in and around major sprawls. And that's just air traffic. Realistically, a weaponized EMP could do some catastrophic damage. Banning their use is just common sense (in my opinion).

    in game play, characters who play android, cyborgs, and to a lesser extent, bioroids are at a disadvantage, because all of that tech can theoretically get shut down as fast as flipping off a switch. Sorry if that isn't much help to you.


    • #3
      Hey! Thanks for getting back to me... Any official EMP rules would definitely be appreciated, by myself at least!

      Your reasoning behind strict EMP bans and regulations make a lot of sense. I'll incorporate those concepts when the issue inevitably arises.

      Like I said, I totally understand the gameplay complications EMPs introduce... Thanks for your clarifications.


      • #4
        Originally posted by CowboyTintin View Post
        Any official EMP rules would definitely be appreciated, by myself at least!
        Then you are in luck!
        Just cleared for play testing:

        EMP Weapons
        ElectroMagnetic Pulse weapons do virtually all their damage by generating a pulse of energy that interferes with circuitry. Most of these pulses are less than a dozen centimeters in diameter (ranging from the size of a baseball to a FIFA football), effectively only hitting the target, but missed shots can cause collateral damage.
        These weapons are Heavy Weapons that deal nonlethal damage to all androids, bioroids, cyborgs, TAP users, cybertech and nanotech users, drones, Golemmechs, power armor, and vehicles.

        EMP grenades (Range 5/10/20, Damage 3d6, Min Str d4, Conceal +1, LBT, nonlethal, cost 300)
        EMP bullets (as normal bullets, cost x5)

        Feedback is welcome and encouraged.


        • #5
          Thanks! These look reasonable enough... I'll keep them in mind while I'm running my games, and pull them out if it becomes necessary.


          • #6
            Originally posted by ValhallaGH View Post
            EMP bullets (as normal bullets, cost x5)
            How long would you think the EMP effect would last in a combat situation? Offhand, I'd think maybe two combat rounds? Or, would you make this last more permanently, until the affected character/NPC could get to a jumpstart power source, or reboot, or something?


            • #7
              It's nonlethal damage.
              That means it causes Wounds, which have to be healed. The only difference is that Incapacitated targets will survive, being unconscious for 1d6 hours.