Was going to mention tags as well, and I can’t remember any specific examples but aren’t there some abilities that bump up a weapon’s damage die?
As always, context is key. Try to swing a Warhammer in confined roomed. Ever tried to swing a fire hook or wood axe in your living room? Then you will instantly know why a spear and a shield or a short sword and a shield are better in that scenario.
I think it is lazy for a GM to offload contextual decisions onto rules of a game system. That is just poor form. No offence, just something that gets overlooked too often. Me included.
Combat in an RPG consists not of rolling dice; it is a back and forth of GM and players describing how they handle the situation of life and death. It is the GM’s responsibility to reward good descriptions with bonuses (e.g. additional damage, making rolls Easy, giving the players other situational advantages, stepping up damage dice, etc).
This will make combat exciting; not a bland modifier of a weapon that simply changes how a rule is applied.
Context. Context is key. As always.
That isn’t the only example of thing A being strictly better and making thing B redundant - there are many. But ICRPG isn’t a tactical wargame simulation. It explicitly discourages min-maxing.
To me, the intention behind the game is that players grab what seems fun or fits their character concept, then leap into the adventure. I had big doubts when I first read the book, but at the table it works. At least with my group. It flows, it’s fast, you only open the damn book to roll for loot. And most importantly for me, players are finding intelligent, novel ways to deal with situations, rather than just scanning their character sheet for the answer.
One of the best comments I have read anywhere. Glad you are enjoying the game @Whurbin_Holderhek
Sorry for the late answer, I’ll divide my answer into 2 section:
as I read it- a “regular” sword is the only weapon which can be repaired by the PC in the field (w/ the included sharpening kit).
What it means and how relevant it is heavily depends on you and your style.
For me, it’s quite prevalent: Rolled a nat 1 on an attack, corrosive/ destructive qualities to a monster/ trap, long periods of use without maintenance- all mean damage to the weapon.
I use 3 “ticks” for this:
1st time- penalty to effort.
2nd time: attacks w/ weapon are HARD (stacks with other HARD checks).
3rd time- unusable until repaired.
Not many opportunities to find a blacksmith on the road or in the wild.
So you’ll just carry other weapons, right? Well, then you don’t benefit from the bonuses and you still occupy several slots. Maybe this is due to my OSRish sensibilities, but this means way less slots for SUPPLY and other useful items, which could really hurt.
Fighting in tight spaces? In close quarters? attacks hare HARD.
Need to try and conceal weapons or go undercover? Not possible with huge weapons.
People might change their attitude towards people wielding “uncivilized” weapons, attempts to parlay could be harder with menacing weapons, and so on.
Many great responses to this, but I can totally see where @TopMaster is coming from.
One of the main draws for me to ICRPG 2E was the fact all weapons were mechanically the same as I feel this actually promotes players to pick weapons based on how they want to roleplay their character. I know all the super creative people of this community don’t like to hear about Min Maxxers, but in my experience I’ve met more players who wish to make “optimal choices” than not, especially new players to TTRPGs. But again this is just from my limited personal experience. So our table still makes all weapons mechanically the same effort wise and we been having fun with ICRPG for geeze 5ish years now?
I was sad to see Master Edition step away from this ideal and especially the inclusion of GUN effort. But like others have stated ICRPG is a DIY system, hack it up to meet you and your table’s needs.
But sounds like your DM style is similar to my own, and to that I suggest looking at ICRPG Second Edition’s vanilla system as it seems to check the boxes you’re looking for.
Welcome to ICRPG! buckle up, its a hell of a ride!
I totally agree about the weapons in ICRPG 2e! It took awhile for me to accept that a dagger and a battle axe and a spear use the same die type, but dang, once I accepted that I fell in love.
I think allowing weapons to use different dice and having cool unique features is great, but I’ve seen so many players look at the ME list as a “menu” when it works so much better as a list of “recipes.” Look at how they work, then design your own.
Now that I think on this, I do miss the way the weapons were setup in 2E. I really liked the tags and that no weapon had any specific mechanics or abilities attached to them. I think that made selecting them feel more narrative and less concerned with mechanics. This will be something I look at in future games that I run.