View Full Version : Gets hot

17-07-2012, 08:43
So 1/6 plasma shots gets hot and 1/3 of them result in space marine failing its armour save and dying or becoming a casualty. So 18 shots.

Assuming 100 marines in a company and 1000 in a chapter.

1800 shots to destroy a company
18000 shots to kill a whole company!!! (19800 if 1st company are terminators)

What utter rubbish. No commander would allow the weapon to be used!!!

Whats that you are a space matine, one of the chosen, an investment of huge resources and technology, trained for decades to martial perfection. I know lets give you a weapon that on average within 18 shots will kill you.

Utter hoop.....

17-07-2012, 08:56
It's essentially a game mechanic and is extrapolated (somewhat) heavily - it's not a 'real' representation of the use of the weapon. If you have read any of the BL novels or GW fluff featuring plasma weapon overheats, it is usually caused when in a last stand/overwhelmed scenario and the operator is firing far too much/too rapidly to allow the weapon to cool sufficiently between each shot, and eventually it overloads (usually with explosive results). So tends to happen when the weapon is overly abused, opposed to just used.

17-07-2012, 08:56
You do realize that failing your save does not automatically mean the model in question is dead in terms of fluff. That can also just be incapacitated or knocked unconcious.

17-07-2012, 09:02
cause every failed Armour save = a dead soldier
/End sarcasm

Ninja's 2x

17-07-2012, 09:02
Yes... Hence why i said dead or a casualty :-)

17-07-2012, 09:03
1800 shots to destroy a company
18000 shots to kill a whole company!!! (19800 if 1st company are terminators)

Right here

17-07-2012, 09:07
To agree with ctsteel (but not having read the books), I always though of it as more that the firer keeps missing so tries to correct by holding down the trigger longer and bypassing the built-in safeties to try and get that kill, which works some of the time (i.e. when a 1 was not rolled) but does risk the weapon malfuntioning and backfiring/venting containment plasma etc.(hard to see it as the weapon actually exploding when, if your armour save is passed, you can still fire it). Its war after all and theres no point stopping firing at the manufacturers recommended safe temperature if that leaves you opponent alive to shoot you in the face...


17-07-2012, 09:26
Also of importance is rate of fire.

1 shot in game is representative. I don't know how many bullets it represents, but I'd assume 20 or 30 rounds. A minigun, for example, doesn't shoot four bullets...

A plasma gun is getting hot because someone is firing it over and over.

17-07-2012, 09:50
The 1 in 6 failure rate is only during the game. It's probably slightly different in the real world. ;)

17-07-2012, 10:29
yes, for instance, my plasma gun hardly ever overheats 8-)



17-07-2012, 10:39
To be fair - I agree with the op. It is silly, especially for such a valuable resource, even if its only an injury. On the other hand I think it's supposed to represent the weapon being out of action, rather than the marine as such. Unfortunately that would increase record keeping, and end up with a "bullet catcher" marine with only a Bolt Pistol. I'd prefer to play it that way in a small game, but is another unnecessary detail that doesn't really add a lot to the game.

shades of blue and grey
17-07-2012, 12:28
as its a roleplaying boardgame i dont think you can compare dice rolls of 1 to real life it doesnt work. it works in the game because plasma weapons are very powerful and there needs to be some hinderance to using them.

some times looking into the boardgame rules dosent portray the fantasy sci fi story of warhammer 40k as a possible reality

17-07-2012, 13:08
yes, for instance, my plasma gun hardly ever overheats 8-)



I don't know what's wrong with yours Jim, but my plasma gun never overheats... :cool:

Gorbad Ironclaw
17-07-2012, 13:10
Basically its a silly rule that was introduced in 3rd because otherwise the stats given to plasma weapons made them too good. Now there were some variation in plasma weapons in 2nd and traitor marines notably only had normal access to older style plasma weapons that had a higher rate of fire but was less safe than Imperial(and Eldar and Ork) plasma weapons. Basically it used a sustained fire dice rather than the two firering modes and recharge of other weapons so there was something of the idea but its pretty Mich just an abstract rules artifact put into the game to (i suppose) balance plasma weapons. Extrapolation any sort of background impact/reason/justification is futile and only going to lead to madness (much the same applies to virtually any other rule. The link between rules and fluff isn't that tight).

Athlan na Dyr
17-07-2012, 14:01
I must admit that one of my pet peeves is people ranting on and on about plasma weapons and gets hot without understanding what it represents and why it is used.
Whilst my own understaning is far from perfect, a brief rundown of why plasma weaponry is good from a fluff background is as follows:

1. Scaling: As mentioned above (thank you xxRavenxx) one shot rolled for != one shot made in the battle but 20 or 30. 120 or 180 shots before there is a risk of damage to the user is one hell of a lot better than 6.
2. What the dreaded 1 represents: If you care to read some background material, the plasma gun does not spontaneously go boom and are reasonably safe in a normal operating procedure. Its when a religously motivated soldier starts firing the gun faster than he should that it starts overheating and when the demented religous zealot decides its a good idea to keep shooting when the warning signs start flashing bright red it explodes in his/ her face. Ergo, its safe as long as sense is applied.
Personally I think it shows the Imperium's crappy understanding of the weaponry they use and utter disregard for human life compared to dead enemies.
3. Role: The plasma gun, whilst used in the Imperial Guard, is generally found in Space Marine chapters, the exception being the Guard Elite. Unlike the Lasgun, it is not a weapon intended for lines of troopers engaged in a pitched battle, but the common battles of Space Marines and Stormtroopers. That means Boarding Actions. Rapid strikes against dug in enemies. Descending into hell with little hope of coming out. The troopers taking place in these assaults are almost meant to die, with a bare handful having a chance of emerging alive. The point and purpose is to kill and destroy as much as they can as quickly as they can. A plasma gun, whilst dangerous, is effectively a handheld autocannon that laughs in the face of armour. In other words, ****** perfect.
Of course, if you only look at the notable events for Space Marines in which they fight pitched battles, then you would see an environment where the Plasma Gun and its relative danger is ill suited. Their primary role is where it shines, although these sorts of suicide runs rarely show through on the table top or the codex background. I've heard the Imperial Armour books are good with that sort of background, although I must admit that I haven't read them myself.

Rant about ranting about Gets Hot! over :)

EDIT: i tell a lie, not yet!

What utter rubbish. No commander would allow the weapon to be used!!!

Rubbish? This is the Imperium of Man. If the Emperor farted there would be rejoicing throughout the realm before they were eaten by tyranids/ stomped by orks/ etc. To try and alter the standard operating procedure set down by Guilliman would be seen as outright Heresy and dealt with accordingly. In any other setting I would agree with you, but it shows the callousness of the Imperium, its stagnation and devolution of Technology and the fact that with mounting enemies closing in the risk of another dead trooper means precisely nothing to anyone bar that trooper.

17-07-2012, 17:44
No the imperium chucks lives of billions away but even it thinks twice about marines of which there are not many. Even if the imperium didnt the chspter masters would ;-)

Oh well prefered enemy stops it cutting hot so often!

17-07-2012, 18:02
I prefer to call it "Gets... hahahaha!" My nids love cooked marine. :p

As others have said our little table top battles are meant to represent decisive tipping points in battles. The fate of entire systems hang in the balance so the plasma gun users are pumping out plasma like a run away fire hose and sometimes pay for it.

17-07-2012, 18:22
Well I am going to go with the OP on this. I am also not a fan of "gets hot".

Reduce it's stength, availability, change the rule to it can't fire next turn while it cools or whatever but get rid of "gets hot" in it's current format.

I like the fluff and look of Plasma but I have had a couple of bad experiences & it is now resigned to the armoury dust locker.

It doesn't happen that often but when it does it can be very damaging & frustrating.

Now that the rule also applies to vehicles it's even less appealing.

17-07-2012, 20:50
Failed armour saves may not represent deaths, in fact they rarely do. Many las weapons can cause blindness, and being seperated from your unit or combat counts as a casualty. Some men may run, or be called to another task rather than slain. In the case of plasma, a minour surge of a plasma weapon can destroy the electrical components of power armour and leave soldiers unable to move.

I don't have a source, but I asked something about this on B&C, and someone responded that a marines gun had outright exploded, and while he suffered a significant injury, he was no where near dying. It's all but impossible to kill a marine from their gun overheating by that logic, which makes sense logistically, and from the fluff. Even slain brothers can likely be revived due to future tech and the impossible resilience marines have (they can go into stasis if the receive a mortal wound to prevent themselves from dying).

The 1 in 6 failure rate is only during the game. It's probably slightly different in the real world. ;)

I just lost the game.

18-07-2012, 14:36
Basically its a silly rule that was introduced in 3rd

2nd, actually; Chaos Space Marine plasma guns had this rule to distinguish them from the more modern, improved versions used by Imperial troops. The modern versions had safety cut-outs which meant the gun had to cool down periodically (in game terms, you could only fire it every second turn) - look at how the plasma gun performs in Doom Doom 2 or Halo. 3rd edition got rid of almost all continuous effects, so they went with the Gets Hot! rule instead.

Out of interest,

in 40k the plasma gun overheats 1 out of 6 shots.
In Necromunda, it overheats 1 out of 72 shots (1/6 chance of needing to make an ammo roll, 1/6 chance of rolling a 1 for said ammo roll, 1/2 chance of failing the subsequent check to see if it explodes).
In Inquisitor, the overheat rate is dependent on the firer.
In the Deathwatch RPG, it overheats 1 out of 10 shots.

Obviously in the above examples, "shot" means "a single roll to hit".

I think that makes it obvious that the actual failure rate of a plasma weapon is something that the game rules only try to approximate, or to give a flavour of within the confines of the game.

18-07-2012, 15:58
You'ge got to wonder, if plasma weaponry can overheat and injure the user what about powerfists/lightning claws? As power weapons they are described as coalescing with energy and the users hand is encased in this device. Not only that but you are smashing things with the fist/claw so damage and wear to the weapon itself is inevitable.

18-07-2012, 16:39
In the history of the Imperium, there must be one idiot that forgot he was wearing lighting claws and went to pick his nose. ;)

I guess the strength of the plasma gun and its ability to cut through armour outweighs the danger to the firer. As dangerous as it is to the holder, going by dice rolls alone, it kills a lot more of the enemy than it does users.

18-07-2012, 22:33
All the space marines have preferred enemy in the fluff so they get the reroll ;)

18-07-2012, 22:57
Its worth noting that the gun doesn't necessarily explode either. Otherwise, how would you explain an overheat where the model made his armour save? What I've read is that essentially, an overheat is simply the gun venting excess plasma/heat/whatever. A soldier that's quick enough, or wearing heavy enough armour would be able to avoid the venting, and then pick up the weapon and keep using it.

18-07-2012, 23:12
I have no issue with gets hot, sure it can bite you in the ass some times but its a small trade for the fire power plasma guns offer, weapons malfuncation in the battle field,they jam, overheat, missfire etc so having one weapon in your entire armoury which reflects this isnt an issue.

While an over heating plasma weapon would probably kill a guardsman scalding him to death i doubt it would do half as much damage to an astartes, sure they may get knocked out of action for that battle but they'll be back for round 2.