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Old 09-13-2017, 09:52 AM   #1
Michael Thayne
 
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Join Date: May 2010
Default [Spaceships] Using 20-second tactical combat rounds for all space combat

I've been struggling a bit with figuring out the best way to run space combat, since the canonical rules leave many things up to the GM. Here's an option I'm tempted by: use tactical combat for everything, no matter what, and also use 20-second combat rounds once you're in weapons range. Longer combat rounds can be used for pre-battle maneuvers, but for the sake of avoiding the weirdness of the rapid-fire rules, weapons range means 20-second rounds.

I tried running a sample combat like this using an Archangel and Xingzhai from Spacehips 8 (with AKV payloads), and 1000-mile hexes. It seemed to work pretty well. I decided the Archangel had been ordered to destroy the Chinese vessel at all costs, and therefore came in at a speed of 50 mps. The first 7 rounds are just the Archangel taking pot shots at the Xingzhai's AKVs as they deploy x-ray warheads and then suddenly they get within MAX range of the 300MJ lasers and everything goes very quickly. The fact that neither side is able to maneuver to a significant degree seems to create dramatic tension rather than lowering it: contact is inevitable, all you can do about it is decide what to target first. Only downside: wouldn't be much fun for a pilot PC in an actual game.

If I ever did this in a real game, I'd likely "zoom in" once the fleets get within some small number of hexes of each other (say the SDVs are 5 hexes apart, because that's what my battle mat accommodates).

Has anyone else tried something like this? How did it work?
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Old 09-13-2017, 12:25 PM   #2
Emerald Cat
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Using 20-second tactical combat rounds for all space combat

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Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
Here's an option I'm tempted by: use tactical combat for everything, no matter what, and also use 20-second combat rounds once you're in weapons range.
You could use the tactical combat rules for all space combat. But the tactical space combat rules require the use of vectors. So make sure your players are willing to handle that complexity.
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Old 09-13-2017, 05:03 PM   #3
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Using 20-second tactical combat rounds for all space combat

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Originally Posted by Emerald Cat View Post
You could use the tactical combat rules for all space combat. But the tactical space combat rules require the use of vectors. So make sure your players are willing to handle that complexity.
True. I was sort of taking for granted players would go for this in situations that didn't seem too "weird" (ships can maneuver on scales that don't take up the whole map, not a fast pass). I'm suggesting if you're OK with that, using it for the weird situations is also OK.
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Old 09-14-2017, 09:30 AM   #4
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Using 20-second tactical combat rounds for all space combat

I would certainly say that not using the longer turns makes the Spaceships combat system less broken.
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