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Old 10-15-2017, 12:10 PM   #1
Rigil_Kent
 
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Default GURPS: Spaceships Questions

So. I've been reading through the Spaceships book specifically for the space combat and I have a couple questions that I haven't quite been able to resolve from my reading. The answers might be there and I've just overlooked them, but ... you know how it is.

1. Are all events in a round simultaneous or do they happen in the order established? For example, say you have PC Ship and Bad Guy Ship engaged in a voidfight. PC Ship goes first 'cause their pilot is better or the captain won the opposed Tactics check or whatever. In the Gunnery part of the round, the PC on the weapons kicked butt and straight up critted the bad guy and then the Bad Guy Ship totally failed to dodge all of the other shots, so he takes like 10 laser shots to the hull. In the course of the damage dealt, the Bad Guy Ship goes to -1xHP and fails the required HT check which, by the rules, means it is destroyed. Does this mean the space combat is over right then or does the Bad Guy ship still get to make this rounds actions and then goes boom? I'm just not clear on that part. The space combat rules in Traveller: Interstellar Wars implies (or at least I infer) that everything happens simultaneously so ships could blow themselves up in the same round.

2. The whole Delta-V/"mps" stuff. Is this even applicable to Traveller or Star Wars kinds of ships that have /c in their Move? The ships I've really looked at will generally have something like 1G/c or 4G/c in Move, not something with MPS, yet there are constant references throughout to MPS (e.g., "Disable Fuel Tank" on p62.)

3. Related to that, if a Traveller or SW ship that doesn't have MPS in the Move (e.g., 2G/c) ends up with a disabled or destroyed fuel tank, does that actually apply to the combat? The way I've been reading Traveller stuff, for example, it shouldn't since those fuel tanks appear to principally be for the Jump drive. Right now, it seems like the only thing that would actually slow such a vessel down is if a weapons shot struck the maneuver drive although, interestingly enough, there isn't a specific reference to Disabled drives in the damage section.

Thanks in advance...
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Old 10-15-2017, 12:22 PM   #2
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Default Re: GURPS: Spaceships Questions

Traveller uses reactionless thrusters, so no fuel for maneuver drives, AFAIK. But they do have fuel for the jump drives.
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Old 10-15-2017, 12:40 PM   #3
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Default Re: GURPS: Spaceships Questions

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Originally Posted by Rigil_Kent View Post
1. Are all events in a round simultaneous or do they happen in the order established? For example, say you have PC Ship and Bad Guy Ship engaged in a voidfight. PC Ship goes first 'cause their pilot is better or the captain won the opposed Tactics check or whatever. In the Gunnery part of the round, the PC on the weapons kicked butt and straight up critted the bad guy and then the Bad Guy Ship totally failed to dodge all of the other shots, so he takes like 10 laser shots to the hull. In the course of the damage dealt, the Bad Guy Ship goes to -1xHP and fails the required HT check which, by the rules, means it is destroyed. Does this mean the space combat is over right then or does the Bad Guy ship still get to make this rounds actions and then goes boom? I'm just not clear on that part. The space combat rules in Traveller: Interstellar Wars implies (or at least I infer) that everything happens simultaneously so ships could blow themselves up in the same round.
The verbiage on page 49 is perfectly clear on defining a sequence for actions.

GURPS Traveller: Interstellar Wars doesn't use GURPS Spaceships, it has its own system. I can think of no reason to expect rules from the former to have bearing on the latter. I don't know right off whether it has simultaneous turns, but GURPS Spaceships certainly does not.
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Originally Posted by Rigil_Kent View Post
2. The whole Delta-V/"mps" stuff. Is this even applicable to Traveller or Star Wars kinds of ships that have /c in their Move? The ships I've really looked at will generally have something like 1G/c or 4G/c in Move, not something with MPS, yet there are constant references throughout to MPS (e.g., "Disable Fuel Tank" on p62.)
Mostly, no - if you have unlimited delta-V there's no reason to track spending it. And obviously you cannot lose a fraction of your infinite delta-V as a result of losing a fuel tank that isn't even involved in feeding the thruster.

Stuff about spending delta-V does tell you a bit about how much you're using your thrusters, if you're interested in that.
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Originally Posted by Rigil_Kent View Post
3. Related to that, if a Traveller or SW ship that doesn't have MPS in the Move (e.g., 2G/c) ends up with a disabled or destroyed fuel tank, does that actually apply to the combat? The way I've been reading Traveller stuff, for example, it shouldn't since those fuel tanks appear to principally be for the Jump drive. Right now, it seems like the only thing that would actually slow such a vessel down is if a weapons shot struck the maneuver drive although, interestingly enough, there isn't a specific reference to Disabled drives in the damage section.

Thanks in advance...
Losing fuel tanks won't slow down a rocket either - just stop it dead if it runs out...

Anyway, no, there is no specific reference to disabled drive because there's no need for one. The section starts with a blanket rule: "If a system is disabled it is normally no longer functional."

The systems that are mentioned are ones that either violate that by retaining partial functionality, have contents whose fate needs to be addressed, or in the case of life support a relatively obscure functionality that might be overlooked.

Rockets and reactionless thrusters alike are not noted (except by way of being volatile systems if applicable) - which means they simply lose their functionality per the general rule.
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Old 10-15-2017, 02:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: GURPS: Spaceships Questions

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The verbiage on page 49 is perfectly clear on defining a sequence for actions.
Actions aboard a specific starship, yes. I was simply unclear whether all actions that transpire between respective ships were simultaneous.

To me, the more time that a "round" takes (e.g., the 10-minute turn), the less sense it makes for actions aboard various hostile vessels to not happen concurrently. For example, if actions are not simultaneous, that means it is entirely possible for a PC vessel in a 3-minute or 10-minute round to get completely wiped in the opening round of a space combat without even having the opportunity to fire back, even if they're completely aware of this. Strikes me (personally) as kind of weird, that's all. If I'm a player in a game with a (FREX) Basic Speed of 7 and I normally go before our Pilot, and because our Pilot is only of average Speed, our ship goes after the bad guy ship & is destroyed in round 1 before any of the players get to act, I think I might complain a little bit. If we're destroyed in that round but manage to return the favor to our enemy (mutual TPK! That's one way to end a campaign, I suppose), I think I'd be less irritated.

Since you're telling me that the each spacecraft's respective turns aren't simultaneous per RAW, though, I may consider house-ruling that ... maybe if initiative is determined by Tactics check instead of Pilot basic speed, then it's sort of like a quasi-ambush? Something to ponder, I suppose.

Quote:
GURPS Traveller: Interstellar Wars doesn't use GURPS Spaceships, it has its own system. I can think of no reason to expect rules from the former to have bearing on the latter. I don't know right off whether it has simultaneous turns, but GURPS Spaceships certainly does not.
I think you misunderstand what I was asking - my fault. I should have been more clear. I was not expecting the rules from GT:IW to "have bearing" on those from Starships; I was merely using that as a comparison or example.

Appreciate the response!
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Last edited by Rigil_Kent; 10-15-2017 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 10-15-2017, 03:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: GURPS: Spaceships Questions

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Originally Posted by Rigil_Kent View Post
Actions aboard a specific starship, yes. I was simply unclear whether all actions that transpire between respective ships were simultaneous.
No, page 50 presents a sequence for actions within a ship's turn. Page 49 talks about the sequence in which ships get their turns. (It doesn't really specify what that should be.)
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Since you're telling me that the each spacecraft's respective turns aren't simultaneous per RAW, though, I may consider house-ruling that ...
Simultaneous resolution isn't a minor houserule. The piloting rules would need a radical rebuild, at least, and there might be further consequences.

Radically reworking Spaceships before using it isn't a bad idea by me, to be sure. But putting that out there...
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maybe if initiative is determined by Tactics check instead of Pilot basic speed, then it's sort of like a quasi-ambush? Something to ponder, I suppose.
You should probably actually look at what's on that page 49 - tactics contest is one of the suggestions.
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Old 10-15-2017, 09:31 PM   #6
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Default Re: GURPS: Spaceships Questions

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Originally Posted by Rigil_Kent View Post
2. The whole Delta-V/"mps" stuff. Is this even applicable to Traveller or Star Wars kinds of ships that have /c in their Move? The ships I've really looked at will generally have something like 1G/c or 4G/c in Move, not something with MPS, yet there are constant references throughout to MPS (e.g., "Disable Fuel Tank" on p62.)
For the most part, a ship with /c speed can just ignore anything that involves spending or losing delta-V. They are limited by how quickly they can accelerate, but not how long. Generally, if they have fuel tanks, it is used for something else (stardrive fuel, for secondary reaction engines used under conditions where the reactionless drive doesn't work or isn't adequate, or because the ship is designed to serve as a tanker or service ships that don't fit reactionless drives).
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