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Old 02-08-2019, 02:45 PM   #11
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
I've got to ask, how many missiles per salvo are you envisioning?

Because as you note, it's salvos, not missiles, that give effect. RoF is voluntary. It's stupid in setting, but I'd seriously consider only firing one missile per gunner per turn regardless of turn length or number of available tubes in order to not waste colossal amounts of very expensive ammo.
Yeah, generally envisioning one missile per salvo.

Quote:
You realize that this problem is entirely an artifact of the tactical system dropping the wait and attack functionality (and the time granularity of course), right? The missiles are going to 'overfly' the screening craft at point-blank range. There's no simulation justification for not being able to shoot at them while they do - it's just the rules decided not to deal with it.
Sort of? You can't use wait and attack against missiles in the basic combat system anyway. More broadly, you can't do anything resembling point defense for another ship unless you're in formation with that ship, which the tactical system interprets as meaning "in the same hex". And yes, the Spaceships combat system has a lot of goofiness, but I'd like to use RAW as much as possible rather than gradually writing my own system.

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That is a plus that I hadn't been thinking about in this go-around, yeah.

I don't see how it doesn't solve the 2% miss chance, though. Defense in depth means that the missiles get attacked (at least) twice - once by the screen and once by final point defense. The latter only needs to engage the 2% that survived the screen.
Hmmm, right. If you assume "declare all point defenders, then fire" defense in depth provides a way around that.

Unrelated: I wonder if those really big beam weapons AlexanderHowl likes could have a niche in providing MAD. Keep one trained on your enemy's spaceport, and even if it's theoretically vulnerable to missiles, you might be able to do a lot of damage to the spaceport in the time period when the missiles are flying. Of course, the other side might angrily demand you move the thing as soon as it enters range. The background treaties or "space law" can affect warfare a lot just by dictating where military space vehicles are when the fighting breaks out.
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Old 02-08-2019, 03:18 PM   #12
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
Sort of? You can't use wait and attack against missiles in the basic combat system anyway. More broadly, you can't do anything resembling point defense for another ship unless you're in formation with that ship, which the tactical system interprets as meaning "in the same hex".
You can assume without loss of generality that I am never ever saying that the basic combat rules are better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
And yes, the Spaceships combat system has a lot of goofiness, but I'd like to use RAW as much as possible rather than gradually writing my own system.
Well, that does make the defense in depth unlikely to work.
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Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
The background treaties or "space law" can affect warfare a lot just by dictating where military space vehicles are when the fighting breaks out.
Unless both sides are based on the same planet or we're talking about interplanetary-range beams, I'd generally expect hostilities to be clearly established before anybody is in beam weapon range of each other.
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Old 02-08-2019, 03:29 PM   #13
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

The largest scale battle(s) I ever ran were during the combined playtest of Spaceships 3 and 4.

I took some of the designs that were to be published and turned them into fleets. If you wonder, David liked that if you're ever in a similar position in the future.

To get the largest number of similar ships i ended up at a hard science TL10. There were Victory-class cruisers, some destroyer 1 SM smaller and Nova-class Assault Carriers.

These all used to be the colonial navy of the Greater League of United Earth but the Free Libertarians of the Outer Solar System captured the half of the ships not based at Earth in a sudden uprising.

So the new FLOSSForce launched an attack on Earth with a TO&E that was a mirror image of GLUEFleet. Except for the SM+14 Gibraltar battlestations in Earth orbit.

The Victory-classes had a pulse drive while the Novas had Fusion rockets so they did not maneuver in concert. The Victory led squadron launched first toward some target in Earth space with the Novas launchign separately and later.

GLUEFleetIntel decided their target was the L4 habitats and the appropriate response was to launch a mirroring detachment to intercept while FlossForce was still out of range of L4.

Before the first battle starts everybody knows something is up because the Novas have passed the turnover point and are still accelerating. The geniuses at GLUEFleetIntel desice the Nobas are going to run an update of the Doolittle Raid and have their fighters shoot up everthing they can in Earthspace for psychological effect and to force GLUE spending on defense and thereby postpone any GlueFleet ops to retake the outer system. It wouldn't have been a horrible plan.

At any rate the GLUE cruider squadrons are committed at this point and an equally matched battle between them and their FLOSS opposite numbers can not be avoided. The GLUE guys can't even divert to attack the Novas instead withoit the FLOSS squadrons attacking them first.

A battle between equal forces could have been predicted to create yhorible csualties but how bad and how quickly that happened was shocking (2 Turns).

Eggshells with hammers indeed. Shoot first and hope your gunners get lucky. The whole "navy ships updated to space" paradigm is probably not valid (at least for fleet v, fleet).

Deciding they might as well trust FleetIntel GLUE has dispersed it's own Novas and fighters widely to be seen as opposing FLOSS at every possible point.

The Novas have continuosly accelerated towards Earth all the way from Mars and have used up half their fuel reaching 70 miles per second. That's when they opened their hangar bays to disgorge not fighters but 100 TL8 ASATS homemade in the outer system.

They aren't targeted at a wide range of Earth targets either. They are concentrated on the Gibraltars with 100 kamikaze ASTA launch 3 submunitions each and at 70 mps only one needs to get through for not jsut akill but over-kill. The Gibraltar has nothing like the required amount of PD and what's left of GLUEFleet is probably very busy protecting the orbital infrastructure from the debris.
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Old 02-08-2019, 03:43 PM   #14
Rupert
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
A battle between equal forces could have been predicted to create yhorible csualties but how bad and how quickly that happened was shocking (2 Turns).

Eggshells with hammers indeed. Shoot first and hope your gunners get lucky. The whole "navy ships updated to space" paradigm is probably not valid (at least for fleet v, fleet).
Which 'navy ships'? Because that's not a terribly unlikely outcome for two reasonably matched modern fleets of missile ships.
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They aren't targeted at a wide range of Earth targets either. They are concentrated on the Gibraltars with 100 kamikaze ASTA launch 3 submunitions each and at 70 mps only one needs to get through for not jsut akill but over-kill. The Gibraltar has nothing like the required amount of PD and what's left of GLUEFleet is probably very busy protecting the orbital infrastructure from the debris.
Which suggests that big ships are a bad idea with that tech - too big a basket.
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Old 02-08-2019, 04:06 PM   #15
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

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Originally Posted by Ulzgoroth View Post
Unless both sides are based on the same planet or we're talking about interplanetary-range beams, I'd generally expect hostilities to be clearly established before anybody is in beam weapon range of each other.
"Both sides are based on the same planet" isn't a super-popular scenario in sci-fi, but if you have one garden world in your system and no FTL, it's the easiest way to justify having sides that are even roughly equally matched. Honestly more settings should be like Transhuman Space in that regard. Though garden world vs. a heavily populated asteroid belt could be interesting.
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Old 02-08-2019, 04:17 PM   #16
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
The largest scale battle(s) I ever ran were during the combined playtest of Spaceships 3 and 4.

I took some of the designs that were to be published and turned them into fleets. If you wonder, David liked that if you're ever in a similar position in the future.

To get the largest number of similar ships i ended up at a hard science TL10. There were Victory-class cruisers, some destroyer 1 SM smaller and Nova-class Assault Carriers.

These all used to be the colonial navy of the Greater League of United Earth but the Free Libertarians of the Outer Solar System captured the half of the ships not based at Earth in a sudden uprising.

So the new FLOSSForce launched an attack on Earth with a TO&E that was a mirror image of GLUEFleet. Except for the SM+14 Gibraltar battlestations in Earth orbit.

The Victory-classes had a pulse drive while the Novas had Fusion rockets so they did not maneuver in concert. The Victory led squadron launched first toward some target in Earth space with the Novas launchign separately and later.

GLUEFleetIntel decided their target was the L4 habitats and the appropriate response was to launch a mirroring detachment to intercept while FlossForce was still out of range of L4.

Before the first battle starts everybody knows something is up because the Novas have passed the turnover point and are still accelerating. The geniuses at GLUEFleetIntel desice the Nobas are going to run an update of the Doolittle Raid and have their fighters shoot up everthing they can in Earthspace for psychological effect and to force GLUE spending on defense and thereby postpone any GlueFleet ops to retake the outer system. It wouldn't have been a horrible plan.

At any rate the GLUE cruider squadrons are committed at this point and an equally matched battle between them and their FLOSS opposite numbers can not be avoided. The GLUE guys can't even divert to attack the Novas instead withoit the FLOSS squadrons attacking them first.

A battle between equal forces could have been predicted to create yhorible csualties but how bad and how quickly that happened was shocking (2 Turns).

Eggshells with hammers indeed. Shoot first and hope your gunners get lucky. The whole "navy ships updated to space" paradigm is probably not valid (at least for fleet v, fleet).

Deciding they might as well trust FleetIntel GLUE has dispersed it's own Novas and fighters widely to be seen as opposing FLOSS at every possible point.

The Novas have continuosly accelerated towards Earth all the way from Mars and have used up half their fuel reaching 70 miles per second. That's when they opened their hangar bays to disgorge not fighters but 100 TL8 ASATS homemade in the outer system.

They aren't targeted at a wide range of Earth targets either. They are concentrated on the Gibraltars with 100 kamikaze ASTA launch 3 submunitions each and at 70 mps only one needs to get through for not jsut akill but over-kill. The Gibraltar has nothing like the required amount of PD and what's left of GLUEFleet is probably very busy protecting the orbital infrastructure from the debris.
Fun story. I'm curious how developed the setting background was. Did you figure out the purpose of the space navies pre-mutiny? Certainly if they were designed for combatting civilian mutineers, or threats on the scale of Transhuman Space's Martian Triads and Red Duncanites, that would have justified being poorly optimized for "serious" warfare. But it's not a mistake you'd make twice, and it might not be a mistake you make once in a Transhuman Space-like setting where China and America know they might fight each other in space at some point.
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Old 02-08-2019, 04:23 PM   #17
AlexanderHowl
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

I am thinking that a good design for realistic capital ships will have four fuel tanks, three armor (one per section), three hangers for drones, two major batteries for beam weapons, two habitats, one tertiary batteries for missiles, one tactical comm/sensor array, one control room, one fusion reactor, one fusion drive, and one hanger for shuttles. At TL10, that gives a delta-v of 240 mps, which should be sufficient for most capital ships. A SM+12 capital ship will have 900 SM+4 drones, 900 40cm missiles with 10 megaton antimatter warheads, and 30 SM+6 shuttles.

The beam weapons are probably improved 30 GJ lasers with a total RoF of 40 on a 3-minute turn, dealing 6d10 (2) burning d-damage up to a range of 10,000 miles and 6d5 (2) burning d-damage at a range of 30,000 miles, allowing for orbital bombardment from GSO of missiles and lasers. The soft targets get the lasers and hard targets get the antimatter missiles. A pure spaceship of terror will exchange the missiles for 2,700 40cm bombs with 10 megaton antimatter warheads, which ends up not even doubling the payload cost, which it would drop from GSO.
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Old 02-08-2019, 04:56 PM   #18
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

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Originally Posted by AlexanderHowl View Post
I am thinking that a good design for realistic capital ships will have four fuel tanks, three armor (one per section), three hangers for drones, two major batteries for beam weapons, two habitats, one tertiary batteries for missiles, one tactical comm/sensor array, one control room, one fusion reactor, one fusion drive, and one hanger for shuttles. At TL10, that gives a delta-v of 240 mps, which should be sufficient for most capital ships. A SM+12 capital ship will have 900 SM+4 drones, 900 40cm missiles with 10 megaton antimatter warheads, and 30 SM+6 shuttles.

The beam weapons are probably improved 30 GJ lasers with a total RoF of 40 on a 3-minute turn, dealing 6d10 (2) burning d-damage up to a range of 10,000 miles and 6d5 (2) burning d-damage at a range of 30,000 miles, allowing for orbital bombardment from GSO of missiles and lasers. The soft targets get the lasers and hard targets get the antimatter missiles. A pure spaceship of terror will exchange the missiles for 2,700 40cm bombs with 10 megaton antimatter warheads, which ends up not even doubling the payload cost, which it would drop from GSO.
I'm not sure what you mean by "good" or "realistic". If you mean that it would work well in some hypothetical set of rules that make more sense than the Spaceships rules, I mean maybe, I guess. But in RAW missiles larger than 16cm are usually a bad choice, mainly because they cost more but are no harder for point-defense guns to destroy. That rule actually sort-of makes sense: the missiles delta-V stats that can probably only be achieved by making the unarmored, so they're going to be real fragile. But realistically armored missiles should be an option alongside unarmored ones. If armored missiles were an option, larger ones would tend to have more armor, and give them a clear reason for being.

*sigh*. I wish Vehicles 4e were out. Seems unlikely to ever happen, though.
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Old 02-08-2019, 05:19 PM   #19
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

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Originally Posted by Michael Thayne View Post
"Both sides are based on the same planet" isn't a super-popular scenario in sci-fi, but if you have one garden world in your system and no FTL, it's the easiest way to justify having sides that are even roughly equally matched. Honestly more settings should be like Transhuman Space in that regard. Though garden world vs. a heavily populated asteroid belt could be interesting.
That changes the whole picture a lot, though. It's questionable whether you really need any proper interplanetary warships if the space war you're preparing for is a sudden shootout in Earth orbit. You'd perhaps want some interplanetary 'cruisers' cut out to do flag-showing, armed policing, and emergency response outside Earth orbital space, but fighting each other would be a long way down the design priorities for those.
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Old 02-08-2019, 05:20 PM   #20
Michael Thayne
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] How does large-scale space warfare play out (without superscience)?

For what it's worth awhile back I started this thread to try to figure out how the heck having multiple point-defense gunners works (among other things). I did not get an answer. Based on this thread from ten years back, Ulzgoroth, it sounds like you favor "a point defense gunner gets to see if his buddy hit before deciding whether to take a shot", is that correct?

You'd think that even if this question didn't have an official answer for point-defense, it would have an official answer for Sacrificial Parry or especially Shield Wall Training. But AFAICT we don't have anything official.
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