Smoke Grenades and Multispectral Visors

Smoke grenades raise the Difficulty of Observation tests or attacks within, into, or
out of the affected zones by +X for the Smoke X quality of the grenade.

Weapons with the Reflektive X quality “are the same as Smoke, except that the affected zones
are impenetrable to modern optics and sensors, including multispectral visors (which are, therefore,
affected by the penalties normally).” (Quoted from the core rulesbook.)

Is a multispectral visor then supposed to make the user able to see through the smoke effect of a smoke grenade?

In the description of the MSV it works like an expert system, giving its rank (1 to 3) as bonus momentum. But that is only applied AFTER a successful test was rolled.

And that would mean for an Observation test, that normally would only be a D1, but due to Smoke 2 effect now is a D3, a character with a MSV 2 would still need to succeed at a D3 test, and then get 2 Bonus Momentum from the MSV 2.

That doesn’t sound like it should work this way.

I would expect the MSV 2 to reduce the Difficulty increase by 2, making the actual Observation test significantly easier.

The way MSVs work as expert systems make them not helpful at all in smoke situations.

So why even mention that a Reflektive X works like Smoke X, but for MSVs, too, when normal Smoke X isn’t reduced in effect at all by the MSV rules as written?

As those MSV questions come up A LOT in my games, I would really appreciate a rules clarification on how MSVs are supposed to work against Smoke X and similar effects.

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I didn’t write the gear chapter for Infinity, so I can’t speak to the specific intent here, but my personal handling of the situation (as a GM) would be thus:

A Multispectral Visor grants X bonus Momentum on Observation tests. This is a persistent function, completely independent of everything else (intended to be most advantageous during face-to-face tests, where total Momentum generated determines success, and to allow more detail to be gleaned from observation).

A weapon with the Smoke X quality makes Observation tests and attacks more difficult by +X, except to those using sensors such as Multispectral Visors: that is, as a specific interaction of MSVs and Smoke X, the penalties imposed by Smoke X do not apply to those using MSVs.

Reflective X is thus a version of Smoke which does apply against MSVs.

An alternative handling might be to change Expert Systems so that each point of value of an Expert system can either: grant +1 bonus Momentum, or reduce the Difficulty of the associated test(s) by 1, to a minimum of 1.


That is very helpful, thanks.