HTML conversion by Michael P. Owen, March 2000
Last issue (4/2), Bill Jeg brought up an interesting point of ethics, and I'd like to answer it.
Yes, there can be good practical reasons for even a biker gang to spare people when they can.
First, if you're road-raiding, you're doing it in the back
country, far from towns. This means (assuming that if you strip
the vehicle of everything
you want, it's in no condition to go anywhere) that the driver is left on foot, with nothing but the clothes on his back, a good long ways from
anywhere. Believe me, he's now in no position to do you any harm, and he has other things to worry about -- like making it to the next town on
foot. A several-mile hike in tough country is enough to take the starch out of anybody, and after a couple of miles he'll have other things to
worry about besides you. If you've been kind enough to leave him a full canteen, sidearm, and map with the water holes marked, he might even
feel comparatively grateful.
Second, I assume you only pick on vehicles you expect that you
can handle. This means your average working stiff on down to
unemployed -- not people in the professional duelling class. This translates to people with not much in the way of resources -- in money,
political clout, or duellist connections. About all he can do against you, once he finally makes it to the nearest population center, is notify the
cops. Now, how many reported crimes ever get solved, even in the cities, let alone on the road? The most you can expect is that the local law
will make a few passes through the area to see if they can spot anything. Your normal road-watch precautions should take care of that.
Third, gangs who just strip vehicles and leave their victims
alive and pretty much unharmed rate a much lower priority with
either the law or
duellists than gangs who make a regular practice of killing people. If you kill a lot of people, sooner or later it will be worth somebody's time and
expense to mount a big campaign and come clean you out. But if you're only stealing goodies, you're not worth as much effort. This may rankle
your pride, but it increases your chances of survival.
So go ahead and spare the drivers; you'll live longer.
El Cerrito, CA
When are you guys going to make a supplement for the Car
Wars character? Let's face it, Car Wars is a boardgame,
not really a role-playing
game. I, for one, would want to see a roleplaying supplement for CW to come out. It already has an interesting setting. All you need is some
rules for ability scores like strength, intelligence, and so on. Then you would need more skills and more equipment for the character.
Well, besides that, the game is great, especially Dueltrack! I just got it, and I think it's great!
Lake Elsinore, CA
Roleplaying? You mean, like with differences between characters, and hundreds of skills, but set in the Car Wars universe? What a good idea . . .
Scott D. Haring
In the past several issues of ADQ it has become
glaringly obvious that the AADA disapproves of the Big League
organization. Perhaps you do not understand; the membership of BLUD is dedicated to having a whole lot of fun, without the restrictions
imposed by the AADA. BLUD matches are down n' dirty, no holds barred events. BLUD members are not looking for prestige or wealth; all we
want to do is have fun. We do not invite hordes of spectators to watch our fights, because we know they might get hurt.
We do not hand out mints of money to the first person to ace a
tire. We do challenge each other to find out who among us is the
(and, of course, to inflict some mindless mayhem on heavily-armed automobiles). We are not the barbarians you paint us to be, although BLUD
does contain a higher level of psychopathic imbeciles that I would prefer. BLUD is no longer attracting the upper crust of combat-minded
autoduellists, but who would you expect to join a group of "bloody barbarians" who squabble over "cheap trophies and bragging rights."
Now, you, the AADA, seem to think BLUD poses some kind of threat to your members. Ever stop to consider the brute size of the AADA in
2036? Nowadays you could take out the Brotherhood!
In any case, a bunch of boys just trying to have some fun are
now in this up to our collective necks. And as Mr. Haring said,
it's sure to get
worse before it gets better. I would like to ask all of you to stop all this nonsense so we can get back to where we belong -- autoduelling.
I am writing you to inform you of some of the problems with
the corrections of the CA rules (ADQ 4/1, p .10). I agree
the with the 10-point
limit, but the "one weapon per side" rule hurts honest designers who use linked weapons (like me).
These limits are no longer any help. Using Dueltrack
and metal armor, 10 points of non-ablative metal armor weighs
only 50 lbs. per space.
Designing killer vans suddenly became a lot easier (I enclose my own design to illustrate). (Editor's note: The design featured an RL front and 3 MMLs to the other sides, all protected by 10 points metal component armor.)
So, how can we fix it? Simple. Whenever a shot hits an
unarmored side, roll 1d6. If the number rolled is 3 or over the
number of spaces the
weapon on that side (without the extra armor), damage passes that weapon and continues to the next opponent. This way, people in vehicles
using the loophole will not live long! You may also wish to disallow metal component armor. Hope this helps!
Sauk City, WI
If I had known the trouble this simple gadget would cause,
I never would have printed it. You make some good suggestions,
Ron. First, the
"one weapon per side" rule can be modfied so that one 10-point piece of CA can protect a single weapon or group of legitimately linked
weapons (like 2 MGs or 3 HRs, not two different weapons . . .). Base the cost and weight of the CA on the total spaces of the linked
package. For now, this is just a suggestion, not an "official" rules change -- feedback is encouraged.
As for metal component armor, I never considered the possibility when I printed the item -- I was thinking strictly in terms of ablative plastic. Of course, I didn't specifically say that component armor could not be metal, so lots of people gave it a try. Your reaction is typical, Ron -- just about everybody agrees it's a bad idea, game-balance-wise. So here's a new rule (or a clarification of an old one): Component armor cannot be made of metal. This is official.
Scott D. Haring
The following are observations and creative suggestions that require no reply --
1) Hire David Ladyman to be the AADA letter-answerer so the editors have a chance to edit.
2) Convince John Nowak to write a novel in the spirit of yet-another-gaming-company's Dragonlance series.
3) Gather together a bunch of short stories, think of a
creative name (like, Tale-pipes, for instance), and publish a
yearly fiction anthology in the
same way you do Uncle Albert's.
4) Send letter bombs to rules lawyers.
Thanks, Cordwainer. My thoughts: 1) I like David too much
to ever give him that particular job; 2) I guess that's up to
John, but I wouldn't
mind; 3) Interesting idea -- anyone else agree?; 4) No comment.
Scott D. Haring