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Old July 25th, 2012, 07:53 PM
hiro hiro is offline
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hiro Citizen

Most of what I present here was written offline, since when there have been several posts that I am basically repeating and hopefully adding to... I'm also thinking in Mongoose Traveller terms.

I think you'll find that very few current military doctrines teach that your average infantry man should use automatic fire. Automatic fire is as mentioned already for your support weapon (be it squad or platoon level) to be dishing out, in a suppressive and/or targeted manner. Most average joe combat load outs include 7 30 round magazines giving a potential 210 rounds it doesn't last if you shoot full auto and you'll be hitting precious little. Your platoon NCO will be caning your ass. And yes, barrels get real hot, real soon. Weapons designed for sustained automatic fire have quick change barrels.

When shooting semi auto you shoot your target till its no longer a threat, you don't stop at one hit, there's a good chance it will take more than one hit to put a person down. To interpret that in terms of ammo use I think it's best to abstract it, anywhere between one and six rounds (hah! conveniently a 1d6 roll!) is to me reasonable, depending on shooter proficiency and how long your target presented itself. Likewise the damage rules are abstracted, when you do 3d6 damage there's no hit location and it's up to the GM to suggest where the target was hit and how many times.

Not too long ago H&K had an experimental weapon firing caseless ammo (it's called the G11, see here: that had a breech unlike most current. It was said to be able to fire 3 rounds in a burst and the rounds would be so close together as to be considered one. I'm not sure what the reality was but suffice to say, with umpteen centuries to perfect it (the G11 has been dropped as far as I know tho am sure there are people out there trying to work out better ways of killing people) it seems reasonable that a Traveller era weapon could make similar use of automatic fire.

When looked at in a current context maybe full auto fire will have become a useable tool in the distant future for engaging a single target and will effectively add damage to a hit rather than just paint the wall behind your target with holes.

Suppressive fire is essential in a fire fight and I think the MGT auto rules do a fair job of simulating suppressive fire but you'd chew thru the rounds. The burst fire rules attempt to bring in the G11 idea where a burst of X rounds are fired very closely together tho I'd still go with the 1d6 bursts fired in one attack roll to give a number of rounds fired in total. From an ammo consumption/conservation point of view, it's just not what you'd do for each and every engagement.

sticking to whats doable and not experimental might be too close to ignoring that Traveller starts off in the far future - it all depends on how you want to take forward current technology and roll it into your TU
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