Gun Template

( ⇪ Technology )

Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power (even if localized) corrupts absolutely. Unskilled undisciplined power over life and death, via gun, corrupts. Guns in this setting are not technically as lethal as real guns, but a coup de grace is a coup de grace, and a double-tap is a double-tap. There will be no mechanism below which corrupts you for using a gun, but it will corrupt all the same.

A “gun” is a template that can be applied on any wand (a “wand gun”) or dorje (a “dorje gun”) that meets certain prerequisites and takes on certain restrictions.

Activation and Charges: Guns are considered use-activated ranged simple projectile weapons in most cases such as for the purposes of proficiencies and iteratives (video example). A gun can have “stable” charges and/or “temporary” charges, and if it has both then when fired you choose which kind is expended. It can be “recharged” by spending gp/valuables, XP, or SP/PP, see the “Recharging a Gun” section below.

Targeting: A gun’s range increment is 10 ft plus a fifth of the normal range of the spell/power (no rounding is necessary). Targets outside of the normal range of the gun’s spell/power cannot be targeted by the gun. All guns which require an attack roll to reach a specific target (not a square) have a critical threat of Type-13/x2 (like that of a spell). If the contained effect is a grenade-like effect that does not normally require a ranged touch attack to reach a destination square or intersection (such as most grenade-like spells with a simple range), when the gun is “fired” you must pick a specific square within range and line of effect and succeed on a ranged touch attack (AC 5) to get the shot to that square (and then if-relevant hit your target in that square). Treat a miss as if you were missing with a splash weapon. Like a crossbow, a gun can also be used while prone.

Attack Penalties: Normally, operating a gun requires two hands. However, you can shoot a gun with spell/power level 6th or lower with one hand at a -1 penalty on attack rolls per spell/power level. You can shoot a gun with each hand, but you take a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with multiple weapons. For this purpose and for the purposes of sleight of hand checks, pistols (guns with spell/power levels 0th~3rd) count as light weapons, and rifles (spell/power levels 4th~6th) count as one-handed weapons. This penalty is cumulative with the penalty for one-handed firing.

Weight and Appearance: A gun weighs 2 pounds per spell/power level (a 0-level wand gun weighs 1 pound) and can have a holster or harness. Wand guns tend to look steampunk-themed, while dorje guns tend to have a crystalline “raygun gothic” aesthetic.

Special Uses: A gun is still treated as a wand or a dorje for the purposes of effects which affect a wand or a dorje except for effects that depend on the wand or dorje’s shape (such as a wand bracer or wand sheath) as a gun is not shaped like a wand or dorje (although something you affix to a wand such as a spell-lens still works, connected to the gun’s barrel). Unlike most ranged weapons and unlike most spells/powers, you can make a coup de grace with a gun which makes an attack roll to reach a specific target and deals lethal damage, if you’re within 5 feet of the target and the attack meets the other criteria for a coup de grace (such as the target being helpless). You use the critical hit damage dealt by the gun for determining the saving throw DC. You can use the Iaijutsu Focus skill with a pistol (spell/power levels 0th~3rd) which contains a single-target spell or power, including for formal Iaijutsu duels where both you and your opponent are using that kind of gun. However, you cannot use the “striking an inanimate object” feature of this skill with guns.

Crafting and Enchantment: A dorje gun’s effect can be augmented by increasing its manifester level during crafting. If a wand gun’s spell would be reduced to its minimum dice and you want it to have a higher dice-based effect, crafting must follow these rules for crafting a wand gun with higher CL. A gun can be enchanted as if it were a bow or crossbow, and an enchantment that would bestow an effect on ammunition bestows that effect on the gun’s shots, but only once per target per shot.

Effect Requirements: A gun can only contain a spell or power that normally takes a standard action to cast/manifest and utilizes a “grenade-like”, “bullet-like”, “ray-like”, “spray-like”, “jet-like”, or “bomb-like” effect (see “ Line of Effect vs Line of Sight”). When fired, the effect seems to originate from the gun’s barrel, and thus (excluding bomb-like effects) only effects that describe how the object gets from the origin to the destination can be made into guns (a grenade does not have this restriction). A wand gun can only contain up through a 4th-level spell, but a dorje gun can contain up through a 9th-level power.

Recharging a Gun

Each gun has its own limited capacity each day to absorb materials and energy to recharge it. You can give a gun charges by using gp or XP (“stable charges”), or SP/PP (“temporary charges”). When a gun is held, its wielder becomes telepathically aware of what the gun is, what it fires, how much charge capacity it has of each kind, and how many of each type of charge are currently in the gun. The base cost for the gp and XP options, as well as the number of times you can do each option per day, are indicated on Table: Gun Recharging. Extra costs and requirements are given below. You cannot recharge a gun beyond it’s crafted “maximum” charge limit, although when you add a stable charge you overwrite a temporary charge if there’s not enough room for both charges. Be aware that the caster level that was set when crafting a wand gun may be higher than expected.

Table: Gun Recharging
Max Charges gp Base Cost XP Base Cost gp Uses/Day XP Uses/Day SP/PP Uses/Day
1~10 30 gp 150 XP 5/day 2/day 3/day
11~20 45 gp 225 XP 10/day 4/day 6/day
21~30 60 gp 300 XP 15/day 6/day 9/day
31~40 75 gp 375 XP 20/day 8/day 12/day
41~50 90 gp 450 XP 25/day 10/day 15/day

As a full-round action that provokes an attack of opportunity, you can retrieve cash and/or various non-magical non-psionic valuables and touch them to a special absorbing plate on the gun’s body. They must be worth at least the base cost × the spell/power level (0-level spells are treated as 1/2 for this purpose) × the caster/manifester level that was set when crafting the gun. Any excess valuables are degraded to the new worth.

As a mental swift action that does not provoke an attack of opportunity, you can touch the gun and spend XP equal to the base cost × spell/power level × the caster/manifester level that was set when crafting the gun. This does not count as an additional “XP cost” on the spell/power.

As a mental move action that does not provoke an attack of opportunity, you can touch the gun and expend Spell/Power Points equal to the caster/manifester level that was set when crafting the gun. This “temporary” charge dissipates 24 hours after it was added. When a gun has both temporary and stable charges in it, you choose which kind you expend when you fire it.

Crafting a Gun

You must have 5 ranks in Knowledge (Hypertechnology) and the Jack of All Trades feat (CAd p110) to craft a gun (in addition to all other prerequisites for the original wand or dorje). You cannot create an “eternal” gun like that of an eternal wand (MIC p159).

You must craft a gun to be capable of holding a set maximum number of charges. However, you can also craft a gun to have lower than its maximum number of “stable charges” (that is, charges which are not temporary charges from Spell/Power Points). The prices in Table: Example Guns below reflect that the cost per stable charge is double that of the market price per charge of the original wand or dorje, but only for 1~10-max-charge guns. For 11~20-max-charge guns it’s triple, for 21~30-max-charge guns it’s quadruple, etc. (to a maximum of 50 charges).

A gun has a “base price per maximum” of one-tenth its “cost per stable charge”. The cost per stable charge for 1~10-max-charge guns is 30 gp times the spell/power level (0-level spells are treated as 1/2 for this purpose) times the caster/manifester level that was set when crafting the gun.

To find the market price of a gun with less than its maximum number of stable charges:

  1. Multiply the base price per maximum by the maximum number of charges you want it to be able to hold.
  2. Multiply the cost per stable charge by the number of stable charges you want it to have.
  3. Add those two products together to get the market price.

To calculate a gp value for when the maximum number of charges is 11 or higher, half the listed gp value and then triple, quadruple, or otherwise multiply it as appropriate.

Table: Example Guns
Spell / Power Level Caster / Manifester Level Base Price per Maximum Cost per Stable Charge Full Market Price per Maximum
Minimum Item Level 1/2 (50 gp max) for 1 stable charge
0th
(DC +0)
1 1 gp 5 sp 15 gp 16 gp 5sp
1st
(DC +1)
1 3 gp 30 gp 33 gp
Minimum Item Level 1 (150 gp max) for 1 stable charge
1st
(DC +1)
2 6 gp 60 gp 66 gp
1st
(DC +1)
2/31 9 gp 90 gp 99 gp
1st
(DC +1)
3 9 gp 90 gp 99 gp
Minimum Item Level 2 (400 gp max) for 1 stable charge
1st
(DC +1)
3/51 15 gp 150 gp 165 gp
2nd
(DC +3)
3 18 gp 180 gp 198 gp
2nd
(DC +3)
4 24 gp 240 gp 264 gp
2nd
(DC +3)
4/51 30 gp 300 gp 330 gp
2nd
(DC +3)
5 30 gp 300 gp 330 gp
Minimum Item Level 3 (800 gp max) for 1 stable charge
2nd
(DC +3)
5/71 42 gp 420 gp 462 gp
3rd
(DC +4)
5 45 gp 450 gp 495 gp
3rd
(DC +4)
6 54 gp 540 gp 594 gp
3rd
(DC +4)
6/71 63 gp 630 gp 693 gp
3rd
(DC +4)
7 63 gp 630 gp 693 gp
Minimum Item Level 4 (1,300 gp max) for 1 stable charge
3rd
(DC +4)
7/91 81 gp 810 gp 891 gp
4th
(DC +6)
7 84 gp 840 gp 924 gp
4th
(DC +6)
8 96 gp 960 gp 1,056 gp
4th
(DC +6)
8/91 108 gp 1,080 gp 1,188 gp
4th
(DC +6)
9 108 gp 1,080 gp 1,188 gp
Minimum Item Level 5 (1,800 gp max) for 1 stable charge
4th
(DC +6)
9/111 132 gp 1,320 gp 1,452 gp

1 A wand gun of that spell level that deals dice of damage higher than its lowest caster level must use this row to get the higher number of damage dice shown on the left of the slash. The number on the right of the slash is the caster level for all other effects for that spell.

Example Guns

This table shows the price breakdown for some guns that have a maximum number of charges of 10 or less. The “full market price per maximum” column means that’s the final market price for a gun that has a maximum of 1 charge and is full of stable charges. If you want the gun to have a maximum of 2 charges, you simply double the full market price per maximum. The table only goes up to 4th-level spells because wands can only have up through 4th-level spells. Dorje powers however can go up to 9th-level.

Some Common Wand Guns

0th: electric jolt (ray-like), ray of frost (ray-like)

1st: burning hands (spray-like), jet of steam (jet-like), lesser orb of acid (ray-like), magic missile (grenade-like)

2nd: blinding color surge (ray-like), force hammer (ray-like), frost breath (spray-like), scorch (jet-like), scorching ray (ray-like),

3rd: chain missile (grenade-like), fireball (grenade-like), lightning bolt (jet-like), rainbow blast (spray-like), shockwave (grenade-like)

4th: blast of flame (spray-like), explosive cascade (grenade-like), force missiles (grenade-like), orb of acid (ray-like)

Some Common Dorje Guns

1st: crystal shard (ray-like), energy ray (ray-like), entangling ectoplasm (ray-like)

2nd: crystalstorm (ray-like), energy push (ray-like), energy stun (grenade-like)

3rd: energy bolt (jet-like), energy burst (bomb-like), psionic blast (spray-like)

Meta Analysis: Guns in this setting are meant to serve as “magic anyone can use”. You are very welcome to also include the renaissance-era gunpowder guns described in Dragon Magazine #321 pp30~38 as a “non-magical option” that can bypass antimagic fields and the like. It would be horribly overpowered if guns/firearms could instantly kill someone (without a coup de grace).

However, guns with AoE effects are extremely effective at softening up a combat with lots of minions .

Gun Template

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