This is a work in progress so bear with me, any new rules I come up with will be
added here or to their corresponding rules page.  If you have any suggestions
please bring them to my attention.


1. General Combat
    Multiple Actions
    Auto Fire
    Wounds and Damage
        Natural Healing
2. Martial Arts and Melee
    Hand to Hand Dueling
    Bludgeon Damage
    Friendly Fighting
    Death and Maiming
    Incapacitation and Nerve Clusters
    Surprise Attacks
    Anything can be a Weapon
    Melee, What Does It Cover
3. Miscellaneous Combat Rules
    Called Shots
    Saving Throws
    Chink In The Armor
    Shooting Into A Crowd
    Reloads Carried
    SP and its Relation to SDP
    Fast Draw
    Taking It Like A Man
    Armor and Layering


According to the Cyberpunk 2020 main rulebook, you can only fire your weapons ROF once per round without penalty.  This is fine for weapons being fired on full auto, but if you have a handgun with a rate of fire of 1 for every consecutive pull of the trigger, you're just gathering penalties at a cumulative -3 per shot and wasting ammo.  A round in Cyberpunk 2020 rules is 3.3 seconds, right?  Well, I know for a fact that I can personally pump 4 rounds from a .45ACP 1911  into a 5" by 5" paper target at 15 yards away in under three seconds.  I am certainly no solo, hell I have never even had professional training.  I am not suggesting that everyone can do this, but if some schmuck like me can do this in real life, why can't my battle hardened professional hitman do it in the game?  Ever seen one of John Woo's Hong Kong flicks?  Chow Yun Fat and Leslie Cheung unload clips so fast you can't count the number of times they fired.  Granted its just a movie, but this is just a game.  The same can apply to martial arts, Jackie Chan and Jet Li hit people ten times before you can blink.  The same applies to melee.  In most street fights, the fight is generally over before the other guy knows he is in a fight.  Professional fights (like boxing matches) don't generally apply, because in that situation the show is more important and the fight is not generally to the death, so there is less at stake.  Street fights are much different as anyone who has ever been in one will attest to.  So here is my attempt to make the rules for action in a round a little more realistic and personalized for your character.
A) Divide your combat skill in HALF and round DOWN- (Handgun, Submachine gun, Rifle, Heavy Weapons, Martial Arts, Melee, Fencing, and Brawl).  The number you come up with the number of actions you can make in one round with that skill. This rule does not apply to full auto or three round bursts. After your character has fired the maximum amount of times with that skill the normal penalties apply.  (So if your character has a handgun skill of 6 he can fire his weapon 3 times in a round without penalty.)

B) The player must specify the number of shots to be fired before the first dice (after initiative) is rolled.

C) If attacking at over half your rate of fire, you cannot make a called shot, EXCEPT FOR THE FIRST ATTACK.

D) If attacking more than one target with the same weapon, there is a -3 penalty.  This is cumulative if the character decides to attack more than one extra person.

E) After you have attacked at your maximum ROF all normal penalties apply.  (Consult the rules in Friday Night Firefight)

F) If the weapons BOD minimum is higher than the characters BODY, normal penalties and rules apply.

G) For the purposes of this rule, all semi-auto handguns will have their base ROF reduced to one.  For character's with a skill below 4, 3-round burst, bolt action,  or pump action weapons may only be fired once, and if the skill is higher than 4 the weapon may be fired twice. (The archery and heavy weapons skills do not normally apply as they are usually either single shot or fully automatic weapons.)  

H) If the character has the martial art Gun-fu then the rules for the martial art are applied after the maximum amount of actions w/o penalty are made and then the normal rules follow after that.  (For more about the rules associated with Gun-fu consult the book Listen Up You Primitive Screwheads or check out my addendum to my MARTIAL ARTS MASTER LIST.)

I) This rule also applies to martial arts and melee attacks but only within normal striking range.

(GM'S when applying this rule be sure to exercise discretion, common sense will tell you if what a character is attempting is feasible.)

The rules as they stand are a bit confusing for fully automatic fire.  Let me make things just a bit simpler.  GM's should love this rule, while I expect players might not be as fond of it.
A) When firing full auto at a single target, roll to hit as normal.  If you succeed, then subtract the number needed to hit from from the number you rolled.  This number is the amount of shots that hit.  (If a character needed a 10 to hit, and he rolled a 15, 5 shots hit the target.)

B) When firing at multiple targets, or laying down suppressive fire.  Use the rule above, and divide the shots among the targets.  To figure out which of the targets were hit, simply count the targets, and find a die that is equal to the number of targets.

Getting damaged and wounded works just like it always did with just one difference:
The way you record wounds. Each wound you get on a particular area you write down the number of points of damage you took in that that area in the space provided. Then for each point of damage you take you also cross of a box on the wound track and apply saves and effects as before.

For Example: Ripperjack is hit by three 9mm rounds in the torso. The first one gets 3 points of damage through his 'vest'. The second does 1 and the third 6.
This means that in the section under TORSO he must now write:
and cross off 10 boxes on the wound track, (taking him to Critical where he makes stun saves etc. as normal).

This means that the player now has a record of each individual wound suffered and this has a few effects
that need attention.

One point of damage is removed from each individual wound per day. Thus Ripperjack from above would recover 3 points in the first day and go to:
Which brings him down to a serious wound by knocking out 3 boxes on the wound track. So on the second day he would get back 2 points and go to:
Still a serious wound.

The upshot of this is that characters with many small wounds get better faster that those with less large wounds. The other thing to note is that drugs or Nanoids which accelerate natural healing will speed up this
process proportionately. i.e. speed heal will raise it to two points per day off each wound.

Certain medical or first aid treatments will remove a portion of wounds but usually only one wound can be treated at a time. These will be detailed below....

These still occur. Any character amassing 12 points in one area will have it rendered useless.  12 points in the head or torso means the character goes into a coma for 1D10 days and must pass a mortal 1 death save every day.

12 points in an arm or leg means it cannot be used until medical attention is sought.  Single wounds causing 10 or 11 points of damage to one area cause critical effects as follows below......

12 points in the head requires an instant Mortal 4 save and in any case renders the victim into a coma lasting 2D10 days. A mortal 3 death save must be passed every day for the first half of this time. There is a 50% chance of brain damage. This is permanent and reduces INT by D4.
12 points in the torso, (note: for decentralized heart this goes up to 14), requires a single mortal 1 save, (death and stun) and needs a save each minute after the wound at one mortal level greater, (i.e. 2 then 3 then 4 then 5 etc...). This continues till the patient is stabilized, healed or dies....
12 points of bludgeon damage to any arm or leg will break it, this immobilizes it so it cannot be used until it has been re-set and healed, (this means it cannot be used for 1D10 weeks from when it is set (speed heal and other options can speed this up as the y do normal healing).

Single wounds causing 12 or more points of damage will cause a mortal effect as described below...

12 points to the head, (after doubling), will kill the character outright. They automatically drop to death state 10 as their head is literally blown off!!!!
12 points to the torso, (14 for decentralized heart), will automatically put the victim at death state 1 regardless of wounds, this increases as per normal. This represents major internal organ damage.
12 points to any arm or leg will either mangle it or sever it completely. This means the victim must make a mortal 0 stun and death save, with another save one level more each turn, (i.e. mortal 1, then 2 then 3 etc...).  The limb must also be replaced by meat or cybernetics.
Since I originally posted my martial arts table, I have received a few e-mails asking me certain questions, and making certain suggestions.  It has become a fairly popular article, and since I have been promising to do so, I have decided to update it, and flesh out some of the rules regarding martial arts a little better.
For the MASTER MARTIAL ARTS LIST itself, go here:
it has been updated.
Here is an interesting suggestion for those situations where a character is having a one on one duel.  Have the characters roll initiative as normal, but make each combatant write down their exact action on a scrap piece of paper.  Then take the papers, and according to initiative and the information on the papers, you can decide the outcome of the situation.
For example - after winning initiative, Bob marks down on a scrap piece of paper the his character is going to drop to his opponents left side, and sweep his legs out from under him.  Since Dan lost the initiative he is expecting to get attacked, so he writes down that his character is going to guard against incoming blows to the chest and face, attempting to grab the fist or leg if he can.

After reviewing the information, the GM decides Dan was completely unprepared for the leg sweep, and Bob drops him.

We have used this a few times, and it has been great fun, though I wouldn't recommend its use in all occasions.  It is best used when sparring however.
Bludgeon damage is a tricky thing, because their are so many kinds.  Whether using your hands, feet, and elbows, or that lead pipe you are generally thought to be doing bludgeon damage.  Which is usually thought of as simply whacking someone with a large heavy object.  But less physically damaging effects are also covered under bludgeon like stings and pinches.

It is important to remember that when dealing with this sort of thing, that any amount of pain, whether it be physically debilitating or not will effect your decision making and reaction.  Sure there is no way getting pinched will kill you, but it hurts like hell.  Getting whacked with a wire hanger generally won't cause you to fall unconscious, but it stings like mad.  Too many GM's and players overlook the effects of pain, thinking that if it doesn't kill the character then it is not worth noticing.  Ask anyone who ever attended catholic school how incapacitating having a nun pinch your earlobe was? When someone does this to you, you generally do what they want.

For game terms make your players roll a resist torture drugs test, difficulty varying on the amount of pain.  If they fail they lose their attack for the round and/or are under the attackers influence.  (If the character has already attacked this round, he loses initiative on the next.)

Also remember that it is difficult to die from bludgeon damage, and that it will generally heal much faster than a penetrating wound.  For game pruposes any bludgeon wound that does not break a bone, or cause internal bleeding (ie does more than 12 points of damage with a single attack), will heal at one point a minute, although there might be bruising, soreness, or a headache, or something of that nature (GM's discretion).

When in a fist fight, often the the goal is to incapacitate rather then too kill.  Bar room brawls in some seedy dive can considered a normal night for your solo or nomad.  But how do you keep your character from inadvertently killing some poor schmuck just because he spilled beer on your shoes?  And what do you do when you just want to knock someone out so you can extract them, or when your teammate has been shot full of drugs and is now on a rampage?  If all your character has is brawl, this generally isn't a problem, as he isn't trained to do enough damage to kill someone.  For a martial artist it can be a very real problem.  To counter this, the character must state one of two intentions before they role the dice:

DRUNKEN GOOD FUN - (or Friendly fight) The character divides all his damage by two, this allows for those drunken brawls and fights between characters over who gets to escort that sexy young corporate to her dinner party, and who gets to act as support on the cold rooftop.  This option does not eliminate the possibility of killing your opponent, but it does make the chances drastically less significant.  This also works well for quick showing off during an audition.   This works in both hand to hand and melee situations.

KNOCKOUT - This attack requires concentration by the character, as he attempts put purposely knock his opponent unconscious with one blow.  And works either empty handed or with a melee weapon.  The character must first forfeit initiative (unless he is performing a surprise attack), and will spend the first part of the round concentrating,  If he is struck during this round he loses his attack.  If he hasn't been hit then he will strike at a -3 to his opponent.  If the strike is successful he has willed himself to do just enough damage to knock his opponent out.  No damage is rolled, and no damage is taken, the opponent is simply knocked unconscious for 1D10 x2 minutes.   The opponent does get a chance to avoid being knocked out by rolling under his save at -5

In most fights your character will get into as a professional, things won't be as friendly.  That's when your goals become a bit more sinister.  In some cases you will simply want to take the bastard out, in other cases you are going to want to make him regret he pissed you off for the rest of his life.
To perform the following attacks, the character must first roll above his EMP with the following calculations:
If the character's general feelings towards people is that of a very negative nature, (IE- hates everybody, wipe em out and leave the place for the roaches, etc...) then the character get a -2 to his EMP.

If the opponent is a mortal enemy, has committed or plans to commit a heinous act, (IE- the opponent is going to blow up a school bus full of children, or has released a bio-toxin into the cities drinking water, or just murdered the characters lover) then the character gets a -2 to his EMP.  (GM's this can be cumulative, depending on what he has done already, use extreme discretion though.)

If the character's general feelings are of a very positive nature, (IE- loves everybody, the world is full of shiny happy people, etc...) the character gets a
+2 to his EMP.

If the opponent is known to be innocent, or is helpless (IE- unarmed and surrendering) then the character gets a +2 to his EMP.

(Author's note:  this won't work in all situation's, but it will provide a means to keep your players from abusing this rule.  Extreme GM discretion is advised.)

If the character makes his roll successfully, he may then attempt to maim or kill his opponent with one blow.  To do this he must first:
A) Declare his intention, whether he is planning to maim or kill the opponent, before rolling the dice.

B) Must declare exactly what area of the body of his opponent he is trying to attack.  (It must be feasible, if the character is face to face with the opponent he can't very well target the spine can he!!!)

C) The character must then make a called shot, with an additional -2 to the regular penalties.

D) If the character succeeds in making the called shot, his damage is doubled.  (Damage to the head is doubled again.)

We are all aware that there are certain places you can hit a person that can kill or maim them very easily, such as an open palm to the nose, sending the opponents cartilage into their brain, or a punch to the throat, collapsing their windpipe.  To make the most of this I have come up with the following chart on the weak spots of the human body and the amount of damage it takes to kill an opponent utilizing this area.

The following are for unarmed or blunt weapon combat only. These blows are all at -10 to hit.

It takes 4 points of damage before doubling to send the cartilage of the nose into the brain.  (In real life it only takes something like ten pounds of pressure.)

A blow to the throat that inflicts over 6 points of damage before doubling will collapse the windpipe.  An attack inflicting 4 points of damage has a 50% chance of destroying the voice box.

Any attack inflicting over  10 points directly to the spine will cause it to break, there is a 50/50 chance that this will either kill, or paralyze the opponent.

If the opponent takes enough damage to successfully break the leg, and a called shot has been made to the kneecap.  The opponents knee has been broken, and even after medical attention he will be handicapped for the rest of his life, suffering a permanent -2 to his MA.  (Cybernetic replacement will overcome this.)

To instantly kill with a bladed weapon is far easier:  These blows are all at -8 to hit.
This one is self explanatory.

If the jugular is cut, (called shot inflicting more than 5 points of damage) then the character will bleed to death in 1D6 minutes.

Any stabbing attack that does more than 5 points of damage directly to an eye, will pass though the eye into the brain.  If under five points the character is blind in the attacked eye.
(Cyberoptics act as SP:10 and have an SDP of 15.)

See above

Wrist's, inner thigh's, the insides of the upper arm, and on men the penis, all contain major arteries.  If these arteries are cut (same rules as that of the throat), the character will bleed to death in 1D6x3 minutes.

If the heart is pierced (called stabbing shot inflicting more than 12 points of damage) then the character will die within 1D10 rounds.  (If the weapon remains imbedded in the victim, there is a chance he will survive long enough to receive medical attention.)  If the lungs are pierced, the character will die in 1D10x2 minutes.

Same as above

If the achilles tendon is severed (called shot inflicting 5 points of damage), then the character will suffer a permanent -2 to MA and must either wear a brace, or walk with a cane for the rest of his life.  (Cybernetic replacement will overcome this.)

And of course you can always sever a limb.

Anyone with a brother or sister knows how Nerve clusters can be.  Whether you were on the giving or receiving end, you are aware of the pain caused by a the nerves of the neck being pinched.  There are a lot more of these cluster scattered all over the body, and if the attacker is knows them, he can cause either great pain, or even render the area useless for a period of time.  (IE- a knife fist to the deltoid nerve cluster of the inner arm might render it useless for hours.)  Master of this attack can effect entire body functions, and even your state of consciousness.  Knowledge of these areas can be beneficial as well.  Masseurs and masseuses, as well as acupuncturists are adept at manipulating the nerve clusters, some can even heal with their knowledge.  The following illustrations highlight the pressure points of the human body.

(For more information on pressure points, nerve clusters, and Acupuncture, please se the following links:QI JOURNAL, Martial Arts Resources)

For this I tend to use the rules presented in the CP supplement "Listen Up You Primitive Screwheads".  That is, any melee or hand to hand attack which comes as a complete surprise automatically does maximum damage.

As practitioners of the martial art Moo Gi Gong well know, virtually anything can be used as weapon.  The best example I can give for this type of offense is virtually any Jackie Chan movie.  Some of the odder weapons that have shown up in his movies have included:  chopsticks, a towel, a bench, a table, playing cards, pinball machines, wooden shoes, and the list goes on and on.

Too many times characters are oblivious to their surroundings, and neglect to look around fro a weapon, preferring to resort to fighting with their fist when the bullets have run out.  Unfortunately in many cases this is as much the GM's fault as it is the players.  But I bet if you look around your room as you read this you can find at least ten items which can immediately be used as a melee weapon.  When a character picks up any item to use as a melee weapon that was not deigned to be a weapon, his melee drops to half.  (For characters with the Moo Gi Gong Martial art, this does not apply.)

Some sample items might include:
Soda or beer cans:  1D6/2 (can be effectively thrown)
Rolled up towel- dry 1D6/3, wet 1D6/3+2
Pencil or pen - 1D6/3 (can be effectively thrown)
Chopsticks - same as a pencil, but can also be used as a grappling weapon (to lock wrists, etc...)
Pool cue- to hit someone 1D6, stabbing 1D6+2 (can be effectively thrown like a spear)
Billiard ball- 1D6 (can be effectively thrown)
Telephone- home phone blunt 1D6/2, (can also be used to entangle) Pay phone can be used the same way, but generally only the receiver can be utilized, limiting range extremely due to the fact that its rather difficult to rip out a pay phone)
Bottle- unbroken blunt 1D6/2 (has a 60% chance of breaking, broken bottle slashing 1D6 +2
Stepladder- bludgeon 1D6+3
Chair- bludgeon 2D6
Wire Hanger- bludgeon 1D6/3, can also be used to entangle
Clothing or drapery- can be used to entangle

I could go on forever, but I think you get the point.

Melee is generally the same as brawl, but with weapons.  Some martial arts provide weapons training, and for these purposes use of that weapon falls under the martial arts ability under strike cast.  A martial artist who picks up a weapon he hasn't trained with will use his melee skill.  (Practitioners of Moo Gi Gong ignore this effect.)

The following are some of my thoughts and suggested rules for Combat in CP2020.  They don't really fall into any category, or they make up their own in some cases.
Called shots have always tended to stir controversy in CP 2020, some think they are too easy, some think they are too hard.  Personally in general combat I think that the head should have the same modifier that the limbs do.  After all the head is generally about half the size of an average man's torso, and doesn't move around quite as much as the limbs do.

In hand to hand and melee, called shots are necessary, especially if you are a martial artists.  If you don't make a called shot then what you are essentially doing is flailing your arms wildly just hoping to hit something.  Now the question remains, how do I assign difficulty modifiers for called shots in hand to hand and melee combat?  The answer is you don't.  That is unless the attacker is trying for an extremely specific target (IE- he wants to grab a character by the nostrils), or unless he is throwing his weapon.

The rules for saving throws are generally fine, simply roll under your save and you are peachy keen.  But what about those characters with a BOD of 10 and above? Well I have 2 different ways of dealing with this:

A) If the character has a BOD of ten or above make him roll his save as normal using two ten sided dice, or a twenty sided if you have one.

B) Or you can simply state that the maximum save you can have is ten, regardless of how high your BOD is.  Then change the rule slightly, stating a tie roll is a failure.  (I generally prefer this, as I don't believe that having muscle bone lace, or grafted muscle will alter the size of your body.)

Everything has a weakspot, the trick is determining it.  When trying to determine an opponents weak spot in combat, (IE- trying to figure out the best place to hit that borg that's coming at you, or trying to determine the location of the gas tank on that truck that just ran over your homie) You must roll a very difficult Awareness Notice (28).  Searching for the opponents weak spot requires you to spend 3 rounds observing it, during which no actions can be taken.  If the character has some knowledge of the offending party, he can apply half his skill to this roll.  (For example:  if the character is being attacked by an ACPA, and has ACPAtech, or ACPApilot as a skill, he can add half of that skill to his awareness notice roll.)

When engaging an enemy in a crowd, hitting innocent bystanders is almost a sure thing.  For some characters this isn't a problem, but for others (especially cops and corporate forces) this can be a real killer.  When fighting in a crowded situation, and a shot misses, roll under your LUCK and apply the following:

Determine the size of the crowd
1-5 people, -1
6-10 people, -2
10 -15 people, -3
15-25 people, -4
25-50 people, -5
50-100 people, -6
100-200 people - 8
and so on.
And always remember, even when the players are not in a crowd, there is always the chance of a stray shot hitting someone.
This is so overlooked in so many games it makes me want to cry.  Even in games where the players are all excellent, and the honor system is in full effect this can be abused.  To make some progress, I advise the following:
A) Have your character mark on their sheets how many reloads they carry for each weapon.  I suggest making another column on the weapon part of the character sheet at the end.  Simply mark how many full reloads the character has in a little box.  This works perfectly for general situations where the character is simply carrying his average, everyday accouterment.  (I personally also have them make another box at the beginning of the columns stating where the weapon is kept on their body, with abbreviations of course.  No one can write that small.)  For situations where the characters are gearing up for a larger scale conflict than normal and are carrying extra ammo, make sure they write it down on a scrap piece of paper.

B) On a scrap piece of paper, have them keep track of every shot fired.

The Definition of SP and SDP can get a little blurry sometimes.  In most cases it works well, but in some it just needs to be a little more defined.  SP is strictly a measure of how much damage an item can take before the bullet or projectile passes though it.  SDP is strictly a measure of how much damage an item can take before it is considered inoperable.  With me so far?  Ok here is where it gets confusing.  Take a computer, if you hide behind it, you are using it as protection.  Someone shoots it so what do you do?
Technically the computer is not armored, but it still provides an SP value.  So what do you do now, and how do figure out where SDP starts and SP ends....

Here is my system for just that:

If the object is hollow, then it has (such as a pipe, or a box) 2 SP ratings.  And if it is hollow and contains something (like the computer mentioned before, or a box of tools) then it gets a third SP rating.  For a projectile to pass through it must defeat all the SP ratings.  It is not however, always necessary for it to beat the SDP of an object.

If the object is by itself, or contains a mechanical device, or electronics, then the object also gets an SDP rating.

If the device is one solid piece (like a log or a solid steel door) then it only gets one SP rating.  If this device serves a function (like a support beam, or a brace) then it too will have an SDP.

SP is determined by the density and thickness of an object.  A car engine is very dense, and very thick, giving it a high SP.  An aluminum can is not very dense at all, and is extremely thin, there fore it has a very low SP.

SDP is determined by the intricacy and delicacy of the item.  A computer is very fragile, and very intricate.  If you damage even a small piece of it, chances are you are going to destroy it.  While a car engine is much less fragile, and if you shoot it you most likely won't do it much damage.  Even if you do, because it is less intricate, the engine has a good chance of remaining functional.  The SPD of an object will very with intricacy and durability.

In the case of the SDP of a solid object, the object must take 4 times its SP in damage before it becomes inoperable.

I am including this merely to clear something up.  I recently had a discussion with my players about exactly where the initiative bonus for Fast Draw comes in.  The answer is pretty simple, and we both agreed on it, but I can also see where some GM's might be confused.  The bonus comes in only during the first round of combat, and only if the opponent has not drawn their weapon.

Whenever a character is hit, he must roll under his COOL/WILL twice.
The first time is to determine whether the character can continue to fight that round (if he roles over he loses all actions that round, if the character has already taken his action for the round, he loses initiative the next round),  The second roll is determine whether or not the character drops his weapon.

I agree with the rules presented in LUYPS, with the exception of one thing.  Light Skinweave, Subdermal armor, etc.... do NOT count as a layer.

Created and written by Deric "D" Bernier, if you have comments, questions or complaints, feel free to drop me a line at