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Firearms Rework: Aurora Edition

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This is a planned, comprehensive rework of weapons for Aurora. I'm posting this now to get feedback on this, as it is a massive change that will touch every aspect of weapons on the server. A few feelers have been implemented already, as the new Xanan weapons already use the new planned calibers. This is the rest of them:

Gun Expansion: Aurora Edition


  • Make weapons fun to use, play with, and play against
  • Provide a consistent framework for balancing weapons across the game
  • Excise science modular weapons, in favor of a modular attachments system.

TGMC, Baystation 12, CM-13
Suggested Inspiration: CEV Eris? (Do more research)


Weapon Types:


  • Generally balanced around a power/weight ratio.
  • Weapon modes provide flexibility in damage. High-power modes generally have higher alpha damage but lower DpS and worse staying power (uses more energy for each damage point)
  • Swappable cells. May require a tool. Cells can be upgraded.
  • Heavy weapons require energy backpack (laser cannon, laser Gatling)
  • Key Types:
    • Laser:
      • Hitscan
      • Ubiquitous
      • Generally low damage compared to alternatives
    • Disruptor
      • Projectile
      • Stun rounds have excessive energy consumption (maintain security balance)
      • Generally favorable power/weight ratios
      • Other types: Lances? Sonics? Tesla Beams?
    • Projectile
      • Flexible damage types (ammo can provide blunt, burn, and even energy damage types)
      • Not hitscan
      • Ammo types are generally consistent across projectile weapons
      • Simple reload
    • Hybrid
      • Requires both ammo and energy
      • Not hitscan
      • Generally more powerful than projectile equivalents, but more complex to handle
      • Gauss Gun, Railgun converted to this type
    • Chemical
      • Relies on a chemical to deal damage
      • Requires either a gas or liquid
      • Types:
        • Conventional
          • Flamethrower
            • Only requires chemical
            • Bulky but simple and destructive
        • Hybrid
          • Requires chemical and energy 
          • Plasma
            • Requires Hydrogen Gas
            • High energy requirement
            • Decent power/weight ratio
          • Phoron
            • Requires Phoron Gas (rare, expensive, obvious if gone)
            • Medium energy requirement
            • Excellent power/weight ratio



Weapon damage model

  • Maintain existing damage model for now
  • Add damage falloff? 
  • Accuracy is determined by a few factors
    • Each bullet fired increases spread by an X amount
    • Each weapon has a decay factor, that will decrease spread by X amount every second
    • Moving while firing massively increases the spread increase (multiplier)
    • Wielding a weapon decreases base spread and increases decay rate generally, but will also add slowdown
  • Damage, accuracy, movement spread multiplier, ammo speed, and spread decay each have a seperate multiplier for supporting weapon mods
  • Projectiles may also apply mods for these (high velocity bullets)
  • Recoil is simulated. This is mostly cosmetic but high-recoil weapons require a decent strength mod (high strength species, rig, or mech) or they will knock you down. 

Weapon Mods

  • Each weapon mod occupies a slot on a weapon
  • Weapon attachments will increase weight, but can modify several factors on the weapon
  • Current planned slots:
    • Muzzle
    • Rail
    • Stock
    • Underbarrel 
    • Holodisplay
    • Internal
  • Most weapon mods will increase wielding delay and decrease base accuracy. Overloading your weapon will make it very hard to line your shots
  • Weapon Mod Examples:
    • Suppressor (P, H)
      • Prevents sound from traveling through walls
      • Makes the weapon more accurate at the cost of damage
    • Holodisplay (All)
      • Provides readout on HUD of ammo count, ammo type and weapon mode
      • No longer uses map text 
      • Default on security and crew weapons
    • Extended barrel (P, H)
      • Increases accuracy, damage, and projectile speed
      • Massively increases weight
    • Compensator (P, H)
      • Reduces scatter
    • Recharger (H, E)
      • Recharges the weapon over time
      • Will change the ammo overlay colors
    • Grenade Launcher
      • Can be used to launch grenade rounds 
      • Alternate ammo allows for emergency shotgun
      • Very heavy 
    • Stock (all)
      • Increases accuracy and moving accuracy
      • Is heavy
      • Can be used as an improvised club
    • Bayonet (all)
      • Allows you to stab someone
      • Laser sight (all)
      • Increases accuracy especially when unwielded
    • Shoulder Mount (all)
      • Replaces and deprecates special RIG mods
      • Allows the weapon to be mounted on a RIG directly
      • If an energy or hybrid weapon, will leech off the RIG's cell
      • Maximum of two weapons (two shoulders)
      • Supports projectile and hybrid weapons, along with energy weapons
    • Pack plug (E, H)
      • Will allow the weapon to plug into an energy pack
      • Mutually exclusive with a cell (cell will detach if this is added)
      • Innate to heavy weapons and cannot be removed

Heavy Weapons

  • Heavy Weapons require a pack on you to supply their energy and/or ammo
  • Most require wielding. No unwelded minigun
  • Miniguns simply require an energy cell to run their motor, but also require a large amount of ammo in the pack. Let's say the pack can store several hundred though
  • Energy heavy weapons (laser cannon, laser Gatling) require a new type of cell: the energy pack. This can be added to an energy backpack to provide energy for it. These are also now the standard energy cells for mechs. 
  • Possible weapon mod to allow standard energy weapons to take this?
  • Look into solution for RIG users (special RIG mod? Allow combat RIGs to innately use energy packs?)



Ammo Types

  • Science can use exotic techs and exotic materials to print all sorts of new ammo types. Including experimental types.
  • General Types:
    • Standard (roundspawn)
      • FMJ
        • Baseline
        • Requires copper and lead
      • Polymer
        • Deals less damage
        • Slightly better penetration
        • Requires plastic and steel
      • Jacketed Hollow Point (JHP)
        • Deals more damage
        • Less penetration
        • Standard for security pistols
        • Requires copper and lead (less copper)
      • Rubber
        • Deals agony/stun damage
        • Minor real damage
        • Requires plastic
    • Exotic (requires science)
      • Armor Piercing (AP)
        • Superior penetration
        • High overpen chance
        • Requires copper and steel
      • Haywire
        • Deals EMP damage
        • Requires Copper, EMP chems
      • Incendiary 
        • Deals burn damage in addition to standard
        • Can set targets on fire
        • Requires copper, steel, and fuel chemical
      • Explosive
        • Explodes on the target
      • Smart
        • Homes in on the target
        • Expensive, requires high tech level
  • Shotgun types:
    • Standard (roundspawn)
      • Buckshot
        • Standard
      • Birdshot
        • More pellets
        • Deals less damage
        • Less penetration 
        • Cheaper and quicker to produce
      • Flechette
        • More AP
        • Secondary pellets deal less damage
        • Takes time to produce 
      • Slug
        • Single bullet
        • High-damage and penetration
      • Beanbag
        • Equivalent to rubber
    • Exotic (requires science)
      • Plasma
        • Makes the shotgun into an effective plasma weapon
        • Requires metallic hydrogen
      • Tracking
        • Launches a tracker
        • Can be used to track people
        • Can home in
      • Stun
        • Effectively a flash round
      • Dragon's Breath
        • Will ignite targets




  • According to Matt Atlas, "fundamentally calibers are divided between antag calibers (762, full 556, 9mm) and ship calibers (556 poly, .45)"
  • This is unintuitive to those who work with guns (many of us), boring, and there's clear overlap (5.56)
  • Scrap this, let's go with something more interesting
  • Let's do a little lore:
    • The Sol Alliance's military is primarily evolved from earth's legacy rounds. They are mostly stuck with vintage rounds dating back to this time. Rejected by human lore, give Sol new-ish rounds that are still old by comparison to the Coalition. 
    • The Coalition, wanting to prevent their stuff from being used by their enemies and having the opportunity to do a clean slate, allowed de Namur to make new calibers. 
  • Roughly:
    • Sol Bloc
      • Sol, Dominia (Zavodskoi), Nralakk (historical ties), Izweski (attempted ties in early history)
      • Uses existing ammo calibers (5.56, 7.62) Human lore wants new rounds. Make them sound-alikes that invoke the old rounds, but are newer than the 20th century.
      • Sol surplus from Interstellar War and Hammertail Smiths also often use these rounds. Many criminal and antagonistic groups will use these as a result. 
    • Coalition Bloc
      • Coalition, Elyra (COC ties), Biesel (NT desire to break from Sol), PRA (NT ties)
      • New ammo calibers (20mm, 6.5mm, 4.6mm)
    • Bizarre Bloc
      • Whatever the hell the NKA is doing (ancient calibers developed by ancient tajara are best)
      • Frontier/vintage rounds (.45-70 Govt.)
    • The basis here is that the typical antagonist factions will use Sol weapons while usual allies will use Coalition rounds. A handful of opportunities for mirror matches (such as with Elyra) for the crew.
  • Horizon guns will use Coalition calibers. While Sol calibers are based on real calibers, Coalition calibers are fictional so we're free to do whatever to ensure a clean balance slate here. All rounds are fictional now except in the bizarre bloc. Clean slate across the board. 
  • Code-wise, all weapons will now use defined calibers. Custom calibers will be heavily scrutinized.
  • Caliber classes:
    • Standard Pistol (generally easy to use, low penetration. Used by security)
      • Sol: 9mm Pistol
      • Coalition: 10mm Pistol
    • Service Pistol (armor Piercing, compared to standard pistols)
      • Sol: 5.7mm Pistol
      • Coalition: 4.6mm Caseless Pistol
    • Assault Rifle/LMG (generic rounds)
      • Sol: 5.5mm Rifle
      • Coalition: 6.5mm Caseless Rifle
    • Battle Rifle/MMG (extra damage and penetration, higher recoil)
      • Sol: 7.6mm Rifle
      • Coalition: 10mm Caseless Rifle
    • HMG/AT Rifle (extreme recoil, use two hands or deploy. Meant for anti-mech and defensive turrets)
      • Sol: 12mm Rifle
      • Coalition: 15mm Caseless Rifle
    • Shotgun
      • 18.5mm Shell (security and military)
      • 15.5mm Shell(barkeeper)
    • Gauss/Railgun
      • Add stuff here 
    • Misc
      • Frontier/Antique Rounds
        • .40-75 Govt. (Yeehaw)
        • .30-06 Springfield (for the Springfield)
        • .357 Magnum/.38 Super (old revolver, lever action carbine)
      • Special Rounds
        • 20mm (Coalition Autocannon)
        • Others as needed
      • Adhomai
        • Ball (musket)



Code Details: Sprites

  • We will now support 64x64 sprites
  • Are only to be used for heavy weapons (the minigun looks very cramped at 32x32)
  • Sprite team has stated they will scrutinize this. Do not use these unnecessarily
  • Support for emissives on all layers?
  • Energy Weapons
    • Base sprite
    • Charge sprite
    • Mode-based dynamically updated positioning with mask
    • Dynamic colors?
    • Look into recharger sprites
    • Empty sprite (for extra flashing lights, etc)
  • Projectile weapon
    • Base sprite
    • Ammo sprite (for exposed magazines, ammo indicators, etc)
    • Will change based on magazine inserted
    • Empty indicator (for alarms, etc)
    • Bolt sprite (for applicable weapons)
    • Support for firing animation or cycling animation
    • Seperate firing animation for base sprite? (Minigun?)
  • Hybrid
    • Shares both
Edited by GeneralCamo
  • Like 8
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Despite not being overall essential to the RP or even gameplay for most of the players, i think a project like this would go a long way to making guns in the game being both more inlined with Lore, and way more fun to use and mess with. I would be very happy to see this project getting worked on.

Though, one question.

1 hour ago, GeneralCamo said:
  • Assault Rifle/Light Machine Gun (generic rounds)
    • Sol: 5.5mmR
    • Coalition: 6.5mmR
  • Battle Rifle/Medium Machine Gun (extra damage and penetration, higher recoil)
    • Sol: 7.6mmR
    • Coalition: 10mmR
  • Heavy Machine Gun/AT Rifle (extreme recoil, use two hands or deploy. Meant for anti-mech and defensive turrets)
    • Sol: 12mmR
    • Coalition: 15mmR

Is the choice to make every intermediate to big cartridge a rimmed one deliberate?

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8 minutes ago, Farofafeijao said:

Is the choice to make every intermediate to big cartridge a rimmed one deliberate?

This is actually meant to refer to a "Rifle" cartridge, as opposed to a pistol cartridge. I could probably figure out how to make it clearer.

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I don't have too much to say other than that I hope all rounds will be produceable in some form; let there be blueprints for the autolathe if need be that can be acquired via uplink or other sources. It's a major dislike of mine that we're introducing new weapons that may very likely find their way into antagonist hands (faction crates, for example) but may be seen as quite worse because they can't realistically resupply themselves even with preparation, pushing them toward the more mundane weapons using older calibres that have near-identical functionality.

Edited by Carver
removed an extra period that bothered me lmao
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1 hour ago, Carver said:

I hope all rounds will be produceable in some form;

Plan is pretty much all standard rounds will be made in the autolathe. Experimental rounds are exclusive to research and the protolathe, but they exist to give science something and they typically use odd materials that can't be used in an autolathe. 

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26 minutes ago, GeneralCamo said:

Plan is pretty much all standard rounds will be made in the autolathe.

Would this include the Sol calibers and the more esoteric Frontier/NKA/whatever else calibers? My concern is only ship standard rounds being produceable. I understand if weird Elyran cardox versions of coalition calibers or some kind of funky phoron round isn't produceable outside of science, and if more normal yet niche stuff like haywire/incendiary shells remain as uplink and cargo orderables only.

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26 minutes ago, Carver said:

Would this include the Sol calibers and the more esoteric Frontier/NKA/whatever else calibers?

Perhaps with a hacked autolathe since they're non-standard for the Horizon. I don't see any reason to restrict ammo like this, especially if you need to do some unauthorized modifications that could be detected. 

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10 hours ago, GeneralCamo said:

This is actually meant to refer to a "Rifle" cartridge, as opposed to a pistol cartridge. I could probably figure out how to make it clearer.

Sorry for the late response, but just giving you the heads up. Usually, when a round carries an "R" on its name, it means that its a rimmed cartridge. I know that you intended for it to signify a rifle cartridge, but careful cause people might get confused by it.

  • Like 1
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On 19/11/2023 at 01:49, GeneralCamo said:

This is actually meant to refer to a "Rifle" cartridge, as opposed to a pistol cartridge. I could probably figure out how to make it clearer.

I'll have more thoughts later, but on the simplest of levels usually I can tell a cartridge is a rifle cartridge because the number is bigger.

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I have doubts this would improve the science experience. Modular guns foster interest in and of themselves for science players to go off on their own and tinker with them; regardless if security will accept them or not. Modular weapons have their problems firstly out of sheer negligence, long before we consider other factors like their baseline concept. The worst case scenario for these changes, is that security remains accustomed to playing with their own toys, and science loses an activity to do with their endless free time in exchange for a bunch of modules that they have no use for. Security is already terrible at asking for help from Science, and it's more like our players to put their trust in something consistently accessible rather than sporadically available.

Maybe these weapon modules and ammo types could do something positive, but I don't want to see modular weapons get sacrificed concurrently when there's barely any mechanics to supplement interest in science, and no guarantee that the weapon modules can fill that particular void.


Edited by Boggle08
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I have updated the initial post in response to feedback. The "R" designation is gone, and all rounds now use metric. Instead of that, we have a classification of "pistol", "rifle", and "shell" ammo to distinguish them.

In addition, the sprite team has stated their intention to go over many older sprites. A common request was for more "futuristic" caseless ammo and pulse-action rifles to be added. With the older sprites due for a relook, these are now the signature of the Coalition, as well as the Horizon. Sol remains using the older cased ammo, to distinguish them more.

Edited by GeneralCamo
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