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Katars in the RAW?
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Error
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 1:40 pm    Post subject: Katars in the RAW? Reply with quote



Is there a weaponry write up for the katar somewhere that I do not know about?

The weapon can be used to thrust or slash or parry and is typically either dual-wielded or wielded on a user's "off hand" to supplement another one-handed weapon (much like a jitte or a shoto). What would the damage of such a weapon be? STR + 1D+2 (max 6D+1) seems reasonable.

I wish to come up with an assassin whose main weaponry would be vibro-katars. So the damage on one of those would be like STR + 3D (max 6D+2) if they were to follow the same pattern as the rest of the regular-weapon-to-vibro-weapon conversions.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I remember this weapon correctly, it was mainly used for punching attacks, slashing and could, but rarely used, blocking. As it often caused the weapon to be dropped or a broken forearm.

In game terms I would consider this akin to a short sword. Not sure I would give it a bonus to attack, damage or blocking, but I would give it its own damage rating and a special move.

Katar
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar
Cost: 200
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Easy
Damage: STR+1D slicing (max 4D)
Game Notes: The welder may make a single katar punching attack. Focusing on the tip of the weapon bypasses armor (-2D armor piercing). Performing this action is a Moderate skill roll, doing STR+2D (max 4D).

There are vibro versions of this weapon available.

Vibro-Katar
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: vibro-katar
Cost: 350
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Moderate
Damage: STR+2D to STR+3D (max 6D)
Game Notes: The welder may make a single katar punching attack. Focusing on the tip of the weapon bypasses armor (-2D armor piercing). Performing this action is a Moderate skill roll, doing STR+2D to STR+3D (max 6D).
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What are the sources of those stats? They look fine to me and pretty close to what I had in mind when it comes to damage rating. The special attack is cool too.

I would do this:

Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar*
Cost: 350
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Moderate
Damage: STR+3D (max 6D+1)**
Game Notes: The wielder may make a single katar punching Melee combat: attack. Focusing on the tip of the weapon bypasses armor (-2D armor piercing). Performing this action is a Moderate skill roll, doing STR+3D (max 6D+1).

* Would one really need to specialize in the vibro- form of any weapon? Is there precedence for that? If there is in the RAW I defer to it of course, it just seems illogical to me.

** I say max is 6D+1 because a vibro-knife is max 6D and this is a larger weapon.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 4:32 pm    Post subject: Re: Katars in the RAW? Reply with quote

Error wrote:

I wish to come up with an assassin whose main weaponry would be vibro-katars. So the damage on one of those would be like STR + 3D (max 6D+2) if they were to follow the same pattern as the rest of the regular-weapon-to-vibro-weapon conversions.


Where you gettig that vibro weapons shift up 2d of damage from their non-vibro versions..?

Knife - Str+1d, Combat knives Str+1d+1.
Vibro knives Str+1d+2 or +2d...

Axe (aar'garok, gamorean axe) Str+2d+1
Vibro axe Str+3d+1

Swords, Str+2d
Vibro-swords (Called vibro-blades) Str+3d

Seems to be based on these, that going 'vibro' just adds 1d above the weapons base dam level...
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Error wrote:
What are the sources of those stats?


The standard katar is based on a sword, which is STR+2D (Max: 4D).

The vibro-katar is based on the vibro-blade, which as garhkal pointed out are really vibro-swords. Which come in two varieties STR+2D and STR+3D, both accounted for under the weapon damage for the vibro-katar.

Quote:
Would one really need to specialize in the vibro- form of any weapon? Is there precedence for that? If there is in the RAW I defer to it of course, it just seems illogical to me.


Yes there is precedence for it, but that was not what I was implying by putting that there. For clarity it can be changed to melee combat.[/quote]

Quote:
I say max is 6D+1 because a vibro-knife is max 6D and this is a larger weapon.


I chose the Max: 6D because the weapon is punching weapon mainly , a slicing weapon secondly and a piss poor blocking weapon. I think you are thinking this weapon in the length of a standard western sword when it fact it is closer to a short sword or punching dagger in length. Also something I took into account when figuring its base damage, special damage, maximum damage and if it would have a bonus to parry.

When it comes to homebrew its like a salad bar, take the advice you like, leave the rest for someone else =)
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 1:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Katar based on a Sword?? You kidding? Its about the size of a combat knife. So at most should be equated to vibro-daggers...
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The hand and katar picture from my original post has the scale pretty much down. The blade is about 10-12 inches long in my mind, though the Wikipedia entry says they are generally 12-35 inches long. A katar of any length is actually fine for the kind of blocking that is essentially striking at an opponent's weapon when it is coming in, not blocking like you would a sword, because the other weapon would just slide right off it. So blocking with a katar would probably take a specialization. However, I do not consider that a "piss-poor" blocking weapon; the first katar is intended to strike away the incoming weapon with force, and the second is to gut the guy swinging it. Not to mention advanced users catching the incoming weapon between two katars and throwing it upward as they kicked the attacker in the chest.

Garhkal, I don't know where you're getting your stats, particularly for the vibro-knife. Even the basic vibro-knife (smaller than the smallest Katar by 4-6 inches) gets STR + 3D max 6D (rulebook p. 228), as do the Vibrorapier (Gundark’s Fantastic Technology p. 14), the Double Vibroblade (which is essentially two vibro-short-swords on the ends of a staff, i.e. katars on a stick) also gets STR + 3D despite the fact that you can only hit someone with one side of it at a time, Vibroaxe (STR + 3D+1, rulebook p. 228). Also, the Power Sword from Dark Empire Sourcebook (p. 42) is not technically a vibro-weapon, but it is also STR + 3D, which is for all intents and purposes the result when weapons get powered.

shootingwaprats, I have to respectfully disagree that this weapon is only good as a punching weapon. The short ones (10-18") undoubtedly do the most damage using that motion, in fact some katars have thickened points just for this. However, there are multiple forms of the katar. "Form" in this case meaning both of the katar itself, and the combat forms of it (see also: Jedi lightsaber forms). This is the case for most every weapon from Asia, it seems. Sharpened katars of 24 inches or more are, like folks have said, basically short swords, and swords are not "punching" weapons. IMO, the smaller katars are best at armor piercing strikes, while the longer ones (18"+) are capable of both that, slashing, and standard parries. Plus, there is literally nothing between a character an putting crossguards on katars at the bases of their blades. This would only require finding the SWU equivalent of a blacksmith. However, I feel that if these weapons were that bad at parrying, this innovation would have already been implemented on Earth.

I also have to disagree that the weapon blocking would "often" cause a user to drop the weapon or break a bone in his/her forearm. Most katars are tightly bound with tape or fabric from the user's wrist on down to the bottom of the katar, just to prevent such things from happening. They aren't just "held", they are basically glued onto you. So you would actually be dropping a katar a lot less than a vibro-knife or even a lightsaber. If you need proof of the efficacy of this weapon consider this:

"Upper-class Indians of certain groups would even hunt tigers with a pair of katar. For a hunter to kill a tiger with such a short-range weapon was considered the surest sign of bravery and martial skill."
- Dr Tobias Capwell (2009) "The World Encyclopedia Of Knives, Daggers And Bayonets"

This is basic rules question, but I'm too lazy to look it up. If I have a character who uses swords and specializes in them (Melee attack: sword), and that character finds a vibrosword lying around somewhere, does that character now need to re-specialize in Melee attack: vibrosword or does he get to use his Melee attack: sword DC? My gut tells me the original DC is what he would use, because the motions are nearly the same, but I wouldn't be surprised if the RAW says otherwise.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The sword version of a katar is likely the pata, which is essentially a sword where the entirety of the hilt is also a gauntlet, i.e. an extreme basket handle. Anything I've seen on a katar and its use points towards it being less than ideal for blocking - the ones where the handle is more like a H has swordcatcher tines, but it's not a weapon that is particularly good as a defensive weapon. That is not the same as decrying its defensive capability as 'useless' - but it isn't the equivalent of a swordcatcher dagger or a main gauche, which most definitely are weapons with good defensive capabilities.

The damages for vibroweapons seem somewhat inconsistent - where the lowly knife is STR +1D (6D max) and the combat knife is STR +1D+1 (6D max), the Talon Vibrodagger is STR + 2D (6D max) - but the vibrobayonet is STR + 1D+2 (no max specified; 6D seems fair). The vibroblade, again, is STR + 3D (6D max), while the vibroshiv is STR + 1D. The molecular stiletto, with a blade up to 30 cm (12") is STR + 2D.

Of these, the vibrobayonet is perhaps the most inconsistent one - and I'd say that the Talon seems more right with its damage than the vibroblade. Even the vibroaxe's damage seems to be about +1D as compared to Mythosaur axes - which is consistent with vibroweapons in general doing one die more than the nonpowered weapon, unless the nonpowered weapon is exceptional (such as the molecular stiletto).
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Error this sounds more and more like a fighting style that includes the use of the katar. I am not versed in any of that. Sorry I was unable to help =)
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is fairly typical of the uses I've seen with katar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dryvI9ERK80

This is fairly typical of the uses I've seen with pata: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9QHTBq2DzSM

This is ... not traditional, but fun nevertheless: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFnuBu9sOSU
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Error wrote:

Garhkal, I don't know where you're getting your stats, particularly for the vibro-knife. Even the basic vibro-knife (smaller than the smallest Katar by 4-6 inches) gets STR + 3D max 6D (rulebook p. 228), as do the Vibrorapier (Gundark’s Fantastic Technology p. 14), the Double Vibroblade (which is essentially two vibro-short-swords on the ends of a staff, i.e. katars on a stick) also gets STR + 3D despite the fact that you can only hit someone with one side of it at a time, Vibroaxe (STR + 3D+1, rulebook p. 228).


I always read that as a vibro-sword, not a vibro-knife, partially because it's almost as damaging as a vibro-ax. The Talon vibro-dagger, for example, is +2D, max 6D. The Vibro-bayonet is +1D+2. Nagai Tehk'la blade, a vibrodagger? +1D+2.

It just makes sense that a Vibro-knife isn't going to be near as deadly as a vibro-ax. Their use of a vibroknife in the example adds to the confusion, but there we have it.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

shootingwomprats wrote:
Error this sounds more and more like a fighting style that includes the use of the katar. I am not versed in any of that. Sorry I was unable to help =)

Nooo, you have been great help, particularly for posting the stats, and I am basically using that design modified a little. I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear or sounded argumentative.

I'm not going to make it complicated, just let's say individuals who specialize in katars would get to Melee attack: katar and could also specialize in Melee parry: katar as normal, though the latter comes at the normal cost in CP, not half. Just like everything else, people can get good at blocking with a katar too.

After reading through Zarn's and MrNexx's posts, the damage (for a vibro-katar) I think is good at like STR + 2D (max 6D). The regular ones would be STR + 1D+1 (max 5D+1). Then it would have a special punching melee attack which if successful is armor piercing -2D. The katar will stay a katar (blades between 8 and 16 inches) in my game, at least. Mine would look like the ones in the first and third videos Zarn posted above.

If anyone has any convincing thoughts on why one or more of these numbers are off, I'm still all ears. However I must admit, I am leaning toward most of them for specific reasons. Reasons of scale and other things. The vibro-knife being statted in the RAW at STR + 3D seems like an aberration rather than a standard to me, for example. Most other vibro-versions are in the range of +1D+1 to +3D and almost all are max 6D unless they are big weapons.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Error wrote:

After reading through Zarn's and MrNexx's posts, the damage (for a vibro-katar) I think is good at like STR + 2D (max 6D). The regular ones would be STR + 1D+1 (max 5D+1). Then it would have a special punching melee attack which if successful is armor piercing -2D. The katar will stay a katar (blades between 8 and 16 inches) in my game, at least. Mine would look like the ones in the first and third videos Zarn posted above.

If anyone has any convincing thoughts on why one or more of these numbers are off, I'm still all ears. However I must admit, I am leaning toward most of them for specific reasons. Reasons of scale and other things. The vibro-knife being statted in the RAW at STR + 3D seems like an aberration rather than a standard to me, for example. Most other vibro-versions are in the range of +1D+1 to +3D and almost all are max 6D unless they are big weapons.


I would likely cut the armor piercing aspect of the punching attack, and possibly give it a different difficulty... -2D is a significant amount of armor penetration.

Here's what I might do

Katar
Model: Punch Dagger
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar
Cost: 50
Availability: 1, F
Difficulty: Easy
Damage: STR+1D+1 (maximum: 6D)
Special: A katar can be used to make an armor-piercing punching attack. Such an attack requires a Moderate Melee Combat check, and will ignore 1D of armor protection.

Vibro-Katar
Model: Punch Dagger
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: vibrokatar
Cost: 250
Availability: 2, F
Difficulty: Moderate
Damage: STR+2D (maximum: 6D)
Special: A vibrokatar can be used to make an armor-piercing punching attack. Such an attack requires a Difficult Melee Combat check, and will ignore 1D+2 of armor protection.

This leaves the vibro-weapon as the better, but more difficult, weapon. Really good armor will still protect you from a punching attack, but it's still worth it to try.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2017 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Error wrote:

Garhkal, I don't know where you're getting your stats, particularly for the vibro-knife. Even the basic vibro-knife (smaller than the smallest Katar by 4-6 inches) gets STR + 3D max 6D (rulebook p. 228), as do the Vibrorapier (Gundark’s Fantastic Technology p. 14),.


You do know there is a difference between a vibro KNIFE and a vibro SWORD/BLADE don't you??
Maybe what You are seeing as knives are swords, and what i see as swords You see as knives..
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MrNexx wrote:
Error wrote:

After reading through Zarn's and MrNexx's posts, the damage (for a vibro-katar) I think is good at like STR + 2D (max 6D). The regular ones would be STR + 1D+1 (max 5D+1). Then it would have a special punching melee attack which if successful is armor piercing -2D. The katar will stay a katar (blades between 8 and 16 inches) in my game, at least. Mine would look like the ones in the first and third videos Zarn posted above.

If anyone has any convincing thoughts on why one or more of these numbers are off, I'm still all ears. However I must admit, I am leaning toward most of them for specific reasons. Reasons of scale and other things. The vibro-knife being statted in the RAW at STR + 3D seems like an aberration rather than a standard to me, for example. Most other vibro-versions are in the range of +1D+1 to +3D and almost all are max 6D unless they are big weapons.


I would likely cut the armor piercing aspect of the punching attack, and possibly give it a different difficulty... -2D is a significant amount of armor penetration.

Here's what I might do

Katar
Model: Punch Dagger
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar
Cost: 50
Availability: 1, F
Difficulty: Easy
Damage: STR+1D+1 (maximum: 6D)
Special: A katar can be used to make an armor-piercing punching attack. Such an attack requires a Moderate Melee Combat check, and will ignore 1D of armor protection.

Vibro-Katar
Model: Punch Dagger
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: vibrokatar
Cost: 250
Availability: 2, F
Difficulty: Moderate
Damage: STR+2D (maximum: 6D)
Special: A vibrokatar can be used to make an armor-piercing punching attack. Such an attack requires a Difficult Melee Combat check, and will ignore 1D+2 of armor protection.

This leaves the vibro-weapon as the better, but more difficult, weapon. Really good armor will still protect you from a punching attack, but it's still worth it to try.

Thanks! I really enjoyed reading over this. However, I want to preserve a reason for a PC to actually use katars, so I'm keeping the -1D to -2D armor-piercing strikes. I do like increasing the difficulty between the two weapons, but going from Easy to Difficult is a big leap for what is essentially the same motions.

Here are my versions (slightly modified)

Name: Katar
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar
Cost: 350
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Easy
Damage: STR + 1D (max 6D)
Game Notes:
The katar is an extremely specialized weapon, so wielders must specialize in the katar before they can use it well. Any attempt to attack or parry with one prior to specialization in either incurs a -1D penalty.
///
The wielder may make a single katar "punching" attack each round, which requires a Moderate Melee combat: katar skill check. Such an attack, if successful, is armor-piercing for -1D, since focusing the full force of the blow on the tip of the weapon tends to bypass armor. This also requires that the user have specialized in the katar.

Name: Vibro-katar
Type: Melee weapon
Scale: Character
Skill: Melee combat: katar
Cost: 1000
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Moderate
Damage: STR + 2D (max 6D)
Game Notes:
The katar is an extremely specialized weapon, so wielders must specialize in the katar before they can use it well. Any attempt to attack (but not block) with one prior to specialization incurs a -1D penalty.
///
The wielder may make a single katar "punching" attack each round, which requires a Difficult Melee combat: katar skill check. Such an attack, if successful, is armor-piercing for -2D, since focusing the full force of the blow on the tip of the weapon tends to bypass armor. This also requires that the user have specialized in the katar.
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Last edited by Error on Fri Feb 03, 2017 8:27 pm; edited 3 times in total
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