Shooting into melee

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kipling
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Shooting into melee

Postby kipling » Mon May 12, 2008 10:44 am

Okay, I asked this over in the other rules section and answers are all over the board, so now I turn to you.

The shooter in question does not have the Precise Shot feat, so that's not a concern. There are three different situations here (it seems to me), and three different die rolling possibilities.

(a) The shooter is firing into a melee consisting of good guy Alpha and bad guy Omega. Sure, it's -4 for firing into melee, but is there a way to determine if the shot hits Alpha instead of Omega?

(b) The shooter is firing into a melee that consists of bad guys Omega and Omicron, who are in turn fighting Alpha and Beta (it's a very crowded square). Assuming the shooter is trying to hit Omega, but misses, how to determine what he hits?

(c) The shooter is firing into a melee which consists of bad guy Omega, holding hostage (essentially grappling) good bystander Charlie.

The cases here are (i) the shooter would have hit the other person except for that -4, (ii) the shooter would get the other person anyway, and (iii) there's no way that shot would have hit the other person, -4 or not.

So what happens? Does the shot miss everybody (except hostage, who is being used as a shield, so you use the cover rules)? Is there a way by the rules to determine where or who the shot hits?]

(Hope this is clear.)
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Postby Steve Kenson » Wed Jul 30, 2008 12:48 pm

I generally assume shots fired into melee that miss simply do that, miss.

If you want to get into the potential issue of hitting other characters in the melee, as a quick guideline, I'd suggest that if a shot misses the primary target, but equals or exceeds the Defense of one or more of the other characters in the melee, it hits one of them, either chosen at random, or the one with the lowest applicable Defense.

"Human shields" are basically cover (M&M, page 161), so a shot that misses due to the cover modifier hits the hostage instead.
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