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Old 08-13-2013, 03:19 PM   #31
Fred Brackin
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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Originally Posted by JP42 View Post
as well as AI targeting systems and making it official to include wee little 100KJ lasers on enormous ships for dedicated PD.
AI targeting is already assumed for any weapon bot manned directly by PC.

You already have stats for 3KJ lasers that do 1D-4 dDamage. You don't want to go smaller than that.

It's already legal to put sub-SM systems in place (though I can't find the cute right now). You simply get 3x as many for -1SM. You'd get x10 for -2SM x30 for -3 SM and so on. Much of the same effect can be achieved through the rapid fire and VRF options anyway.

Missiles are also not very relevant in engagements between ships with long range weapons. It's easily possible to kill a ship long before any missiles it launched can get to you. It's really only during fast passes and attacks on sitting ducks like Battlestations that the sort of ultra-speed attacks where one missile equals one kill show up.

Your time would be much better spent customizing your FTL and real space propulsion to ensure that engagements take place at the ranges and with the weapons you want.

It's really only with specific types of FTL (like being able to drop out of hyperspace at a few hundred miles range) or with some very carefully chosen warp and/or reactionless drives that maneuver combat with diverse weapon mixes ever happens. If you have FLOSSGROuPONE heading towards GLUEHOMEFLEET from Mars in open space at constant acceleration you can forget it.
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Old 08-13-2013, 04:22 PM   #32
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
AI targeting is already assumed for any weapon bot manned directly by PC.
I...don't know what you're saying here, but it's definitely not the case that AI targeting is assumed.
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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
You already have stats for 3KJ lasers that do 1D-4 dDamage. You don't want to go smaller than that.
The smallest guns that appear to actually be possible to mount under the rules are 30 kJ VRF, though. And they only mass 1000 lb for a turret. A houseruled 100 lb turret with a VRF 3 kJ gun clearly would have some problems fitting in a control station...
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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
It's already legal to put sub-SM systems in place (though I can't find the cute right now). You simply get 3x as many for -1SM. You'd get x10 for -2SM x30 for -3 SM and so on. Much of the same effect can be achieved through the rapid fire and VRF options anyway.
Spaceships 7. Only allows going down one SM. Arbitrarily many SM down is fairly logical as a houserule, but has rather dramatic effects on ship design.
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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
Missiles are also not very relevant in engagements between ships with long range weapons. It's easily possible to kill a ship long before any missiles it launched can get to you. It's really only during fast passes and attacks on sitting ducks like Battlestations that the sort of ultra-speed attacks where one missile equals one kill show up.
Er, there's no ruleset for Spaceships where that's true. In the basic rules, missiles hit immediately after firing like any other weapons. In the SS3 tactical rules, you can fire missiles from arbitrarily far away, while non-missile weapons have finite ranges.

Missiles do sufficient damage that even at the 1 mps floor from spaceships p59 (which they can easily attain in tactical combat), one missile is horribly destructive.

Also, if you don't use fairly exotic drives, most ships are sitting ducks, in the sense of not having any meaningful ability to maneuver compared to missiles and, in the basic system, being subject to attack with small missiles at X range (p68). Of course, you address this:
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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
Your time would be much better spent customizing your FTL and real space propulsion to ensure that engagements take place at the ranges and with the weapons you want.

It's really only with specific types of FTL (like being able to drop out of hyperspace at a few hundred miles range) or with some very carefully chosen warp and/or reactionless drives that maneuver combat with diverse weapon mixes ever happens. If you have FLOSSGROuPONE heading towards GLUEHOMEFLEET from Mars in open space at constant acceleration you can forget it.
This, yeah, have to agree that drives dictate a lot.
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Old 08-13-2013, 06:03 PM   #33
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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I...don't know what you're saying here, but it's definitely not the case that AI targeting is assumed.
.
That "bot" was supposed to be a "not". Computer programs are allowed as Gunners under Gunnery tasks in Book 1.

There are stats for 3KJ weapons on the big table. Remember you can downsize output power by going VRF as well as using sub-SM systems or even doing both at the same time. I think you could hit 3KJ by an extreme combination of these rules and the ones for SM+4 Fighters.

As to non-instant missiles, check p.36 of Book 3. Missiles are given Thrust ratings and Burn pts there. Missiles are put on the map and maneuver like ships in the Tactical system. Standard missiles don't exceed 6Gs either. There's no way they can always hit in 1 Turn at all ranges.

I may tend to forget the abstract combat system's more aphysical aspects. I'd never use it myself unless I was using inertialess ships from Lensman or something. Only warp missiles compete in both range and speed with UV+ lasers.
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Old 08-13-2013, 07:39 PM   #34
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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That "bot" was supposed to be a "not". Computer programs are allowed as Gunners under Gunnery tasks in Book 1.
Allowed, yes. Assumed, no.
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There are stats for 3KJ weapons on the big table. Remember you can downsize output power by going VRF as well as using sub-SM systems or even doing both at the same time. I think you could hit 3KJ by an extreme combination of these rules and the ones for SM+4 Fighters.
Yes, there are stats for them. No, you can't build what you're saying without making up unofficial systems. The smallest weapons supported by any official system are 3 MJ cannon, even for SM+4 fighters, which can be stepped down to 30 KJ VRF guns. And the rules for sub-SM systems are strictly defined in terms of systems for smaller SM ships. The extrapolation is obvious, but using it is house-rule territory.

There may be a rule somewhere that can get you down that remaining factor of 10, but I don't know what it would be and it isn't what you're looking at.

Also, of course, there's a world of difference between a 30 KJ vrf and a battery of 100 independent 30 KJ guns.
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As to non-instant missiles, check p.36 of Book 3. Missiles are given Thrust ratings and Burn pts there. Missiles are put on the map and maneuver like ships in the Tactical system. Standard missiles don't exceed 6Gs either. There's no way they can always hit in 1 Turn at all ranges.
Right, in the tactical system missiles don't hit instantly at range. But in the tactical system missiles have infinite range, so there's little reason for a beam ship to have any chance to shoot a missile ship that has ammo left.

Unless we have a heavily adjusted drive regime that causes all engagements to occur inside beam ranges of course.
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Old 08-13-2013, 08:15 PM   #35
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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Right, in the tactical system missiles don't hit instantly at range. But in the tactical system missiles have infinite range, so there's little reason for a beam ship to have any chance to shoot a missile ship that has ammo left.

.
Huh? Assume 2 ships detect each other while out of beam range. One with missiles, the other with all beams. The missile ship can launch immediately but if the other ship closes the range the beams will still hit first under many range situations.

As an example, a TL10 SM+9 ship could carry a 1 GJ UV laser as a main battery. That has a range of 3000/10,000 miles.

If the missile boat launches from just outside that range his best possible standard missiles have 20 miles per second of Delta-v. The missiles will take 500 seconds to hit.

That's a lot of 20 second combat Turns.

The laser ship could advance to within his max range and open up with his big laser. The missile boat could easily die within that time frame and the missile boat's side then has no better possible outcome than mutual kill.

The missiles will have to manage their delta-v carefully too and might not be able to spend it all at the beginning of their flight to shorten flight time. 2 Hot Reactionless engines at TL10^ is 4 Gs compared to the missiles 5.

Long range weapons like UV lasers could also have multiple 20 second Turns of defensive fire (at odds reduced for range of course but more PD is better than less).

If both sides have lasers at least could hope that his gunners are better or luckier and posslby come off with a win with low damage. One or bith sides could turn and run before destruction too. The missile boat needs to plan based on the assumption of being dead before his missiles hit.

I don't tend to build missiles intended for ship-to-ship in situations where truly long range beam weapons are available. There were a lot of orphaned missiles waiting for tactical updates and mid-course corrections from dead ships in that GLUE/FLOSS thing.
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Old 08-13-2013, 08:56 PM   #36
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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Originally Posted by Fred Brackin View Post
Huh? Assume 2 ships detect each other while out of beam range. One with missiles, the other with all beams. The missile ship can launch immediately but if the other ship closes the range the beams will still hit first under many range situations.

As an example, a TL10 SM+9 ship could carry a 1 GJ UV laser as a main battery. That has a range of 3000/10,000 miles.

If the missile boat launches from just outside that range his best possible standard missiles have 20 miles per second of Delta-v. The missiles will take 500 seconds to hit.
But this is where it all goes wrong. There's no reason for the missile boat to launch from just outside that range. The missile boat can launch at 20,000 miles. Or 200,000 miles.
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Old 08-13-2013, 10:21 PM   #37
JP42
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

Great grist for the mill, all. I definitely need to make the time to take a few dozen ships out for a test drive.
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:11 PM   #38
apoc527
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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But this is where it all goes wrong. There's no reason for the missile boat to launch from just outside that range. The missile boat can launch at 20,000 miles. Or 200,000 miles.
Can it, realistically? That's a LOOOOOOONG flight time and you will have a LONG time to shoot those missiles down. Also, do the missiles have the Delta-V to travel such long distances and hit a moving target?

You have to define your missile parameters and your sublight drive parameters. If you use Fred's version, 4G hot reactionless thrusters vs 5 G missiles means that if you launch from too far away, you basically never hit anything before all your missiles get sniped...

I'm inclined to think there's not as big a problem in actual play with an actually defined setting. Which is good, as I want to use Spaceships.
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Old 08-13-2013, 11:23 PM   #39
Ulzgoroth
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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Can it, realistically? That's a LOOOOOOONG flight time and you will have a LONG time to shoot those missiles down. Also, do the missiles have the Delta-V to travel such long distances and hit a moving target?
Trivially, since flying a long way takes no additional delta-V and the missiles are susceptible to PD for exactly the same amount of time as they would be if you decided to suicidally launch at only 10k miles.
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You have to define your missile parameters and your sublight drive parameters. If you use Fred's version, 4G hot reactionless thrusters vs 5 G missiles means that if you launch from too far away, you basically never hit anything before all your missiles get sniped...
It's not getting sniped that's the problem, it's the missiles having to counter unlimited delta-V with limited delta-V. Yeah. Powerful reactionless on ships very much changes the picture for ordinary, non-superscience missiles.

It might be possible to counteract that by firing a spread of missiles so that the target can't actually escape all the intercept baskets, but doing that would weaken your volleys a great deal.
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I'm inclined to think there's not as big a problem in actual play with an actually defined setting. Which is good, as I want to use Spaceships.
You mean for a setting defined in certain particular ways? It's dead easy to define it in ways that do make them a huge, killer problem. It may be possible to define the setting in ways that dodge that problem.
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:31 AM   #40
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: [Spaceships] Combat Examples?

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But this is where it all goes wrong. There's no reason for the missile boat to launch from just outside that range. The missile boat can launch at 20,000 miles. Or 200,000 miles.
Launching just outside beam range was to give you the minimum flight time.

Still if we go and do the math (SM+9 ship w/Fusion reactor) I get a net +1 to detection rolls at 10,000 miles during a 3 minute Turn. That's +43 in applicable bonuses and -42 for range.

Phooey, forgot the telescopic vision bonus. That's another +10. So we actually get automatic detection at 15,000. +53-42 and +10 is auto-detect.

Unless one ship is coasting on aux. power only. That takes away 7 pts of the bonus and takes auto detection down to 1000 miles. Turning off the fusion reactor also makes the benefits of a Stealth Hull available too for another -4. Automatic detection range gets very close indeed and I think we're down to rolling straight-up Skill of the Sensor Operator at 10,000 miles

So, no the missile ship probably can't launch from arbitrarily great distances at other combatant ships. Spacestations and celestial bodies sure but not ships.

When you start using a detailed system like Ve2 you'll find that missiles sensors end up being very limited when attempts are made to use them on a spaceship scale. They will generally be very dependent on getting tactical info from a friendly ship.

This wouldn't have to be active remote control and it wouldn't have to be the launching ship either but missiles relying on their own sensors wouldn't have anything like the detection range of the launching ship.
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Last edited by Fred Brackin; 08-14-2013 at 11:10 AM. Reason: Edited for amth error
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