The range penalty for a ranged weapon depends on what weapon the character is using and how far away the target is. All ranged weapons and thrown weapons have a range increment (see Table: Ranged Weapons and Table: Melee Weapons). Any attack from a distance of less than one range increment is not penalized for range. All attacks made beyond the first are penalized according to the total distance and the type of weapon. For ballistic long arm weapons, every range increment past the first is the length of the previous increment plus the base increment. In simpler terms, the third increment would be 3 times the base and the 5th increment would be 5 times the base. For hand guns, the multiplier is 1.5 the base for each increment. Thrown weapons, bows and otherwise low velocity weapons maintain their base increment.
There is a new mechanic: the drop effect (or in the case of energy weapons, entropy). When drop takes place, there is an additional -1 to every range increment past the drop increment. Every ballistic gun has drop. Hand guns drop after 3 increments (this is also to account for the short aiming base the user has). Rifles, SMGs, and Assault rifles drop after 4 increments. Sniper rifles tend to go even further. Having feat like far shot and having ammo like high velocity rounds changed the effective increments as well as the drop.
Energy weapons do not experience drop, but do suffer the penalties of entropy (diffusion, energy loss, and cool off). Energy weapons begin to take a percentile damage loss starting at the 5th range increment beginning with 5% and an addition 5% every range increment out until it loses power (at the 24th increment). This is the standard “max range” of the weapon. It can be modified by weapon gadgets.
Finally there is no maximum distance to high velocity ballistic weapons. Thrown weapons, bows, and otherwise low velocity weapons maintain the normal set of rules for ranged penalties and have a max range of 10 increments. The environment may have an effect on weapon projectiles. Heavy rain increases damage drop off of energy weapons and increases drop penalties of ballistic weapons; high winds increase range penalties of ballistics; low gravity reduces drop penalties of ballistic weapons but high gravity increases drop penalties of ballistic weapons; sand storms increase damage reduction of energy weapons.
Important Note: Weapon Gadgets can greatly effect a weapons performance. Please see the revised weapon and ammo gadgets for information.
Special Note: Plasma weapons that shoot a ball in a line use an artificial gravity well that diminishes over time and stops at the first substantial solid object or until the gravity well diminishes and the plasma cools off.