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Old 04-02-2024, 07:09 PM   #1
pzmcgwire
 
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Default Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

The original Ogre was written at a time before vertical launch systems (VLS) for missiles.

The chief benefits of a VLS are protection for the missiles under armor and the ability to launch many missiles at once.

If we designed a VLS missile system that was balanced for Ogre, how would they work?

In a Sea Ogre variant, a vertical launch system was modeled as a single D4 unit (same defense as a missile rack) that could launch all its internal missiles at once. I think that's a bit too vulnerable as a single D4 target and maybe a bit too powerful to be able to launch all its missiles at once, but that's what VLS's can do. Any less and you might as well treat it as multiple missile racks.

Ogre MK III and MK V external missiles already can all be fired at once but don't have the protection of armor.

Vertical Launch System
Vertical Launch System (VLS) allow all internal missiles to be fired at once.

A VLS can be targeted separately by individual units as if they were firing at treads (i.e. no combined attacks against the VLS, all attacks are individually at 1-1). On an X or XX result, a number of internal missiles are destroyed equal to half the attack factor of the attacking unit (rounded down).


Optional: if that doesn't make the VLS vulnerable enough.


For each attack on an Ogre weapon system (Not attacks against treads), each attacking unit individually rolls a 1-2 attack against the VLS and an X result destroys a number of internal missiles equal to half the attack factor of the attacking unit (rounded down).

Ogres would either have missile racks or VLS systems. Maybe a further balancing would be to reduce the number of internal missiles when a VLS is installed.

Thoughts? Too powerful, too vulnerable?

Last edited by pzmcgwire; 04-03-2024 at 10:08 AM.
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Old 04-03-2024, 10:21 AM   #2
selenite
 
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Thinking on what I've seen of VLS cells . . .

A VLS seems more like an external missile. Possibly worse. You have an array of cells, each with a lightly armored door. Penetrating the door destroys the missile. Damaging the door to where it can't open wide enough to let the missile out is a mission kill. That feels like D3, maybe D2.

A strong enough attack on a VLS array should take out multiple missiles.

Back to the game world, the balance impact could be severe. A Mk IV with a VLS in place of its racks could fire up to 20 missiles at once. With the mobility and range advantages, that lets it wipe out any force until the VLS is empty. At which point it would run away.
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Old 04-03-2024, 10:24 AM   #3
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Quote:
Originally Posted by pzmcgwire View Post
Thoughts? Too powerful, too vulnerable?
Maybe just too fiddly? At least for me.
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Old 04-04-2024, 06:52 PM   #4
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Thanks for the responses. On further thought, the external missiles are basically VLS launchers.

Previously I had done a search for VLS, but three letter words apparently are not searchable. :) So I didn't think there was any discussion about this aside from a mention in Sea Ogre

I did a revised search and found quite a bit of material on alternate Ogres and specifically missile cells, missiles and launchers from FJCestero back more than a decade ago. https://forums.sjgames.com/showpost....39&postcount=6

There are rules for armored missile cells and an alternate missile rack technology, the Hongjian (HJ) launcher, that protects the launchers but not the missiles.

Good to see there has been thinking about this!
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Old 04-04-2024, 10:27 PM   #5
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

If you don't mind me weighing in...

I think the missile systems of the MSL tank pretty much cover this. A MSL launches a barrage of missiles. 3 in the case of the Paneuropean MSL and 8 (it would appear from the miniature) for the Combine MSL tank.

Now, could you put MSL weapon systems on an Ogre? I would think that if either the Combine or Paneurope thought it was possible (and cost-effective) they would have done so. As of this time, their is no indication of any "official" variants with such. However, Henry Cobb's excellent Ogre Design Javascript Calculator allows you to try your hand at it by putting them under "Special Weapons" with the appropriate stats.

Pairing such MSL systems with a fast Ogre (move of 4 hexes) feels like it might have balancing issues.
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Old 04-05-2024, 11:56 AM   #6
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Appreciate the comments. Yes some of these may unbalance things. What's happened to all of the Assault Pack content from the Kickstarter and what's happening with the Nightfall scenarios?

The Assault Pack had Rocket Batteries (3/4) armament on Ogres, but those were M3.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects.../posts/1285812

There were rules for emplacements and emplaced Ogre weapons.

Was any of this ever made official?

Last edited by pzmcgwire; 04-05-2024 at 01:58 PM.
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Old 04-05-2024, 02:37 PM   #7
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

None of the Assault Pack material was ever made official. It all remains unofficial, unreleased, and unlikely-to-ever-be-released backer-exclusive material in the ODE KS Updates.

I collected the links to them, but they remain inaccessible unless you were a KS backer.

Quote:
Just an FYI for any ODE backers: the never-released backer-exclusive assault packs can be found in backer-only ODE updates here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects.../posts/1257231, here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects.../posts/1264544, here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects.../posts/1271895, and here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects.../posts/1285812.
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Old 04-05-2024, 02:51 PM   #8
HeatDeath
 
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Point of realism about modern VLSs - they aren't Battletech LRMs, they can't actually launch all their missiles at once. The VLS mk 57 can ready something like 2 missiles per group of 8 simultaneously.

Total rate of fire ends up being something like 1 missile per second. Which, granted, is basically simultaneous in Ogre terms, but it makes a big difference in Navy terms since one of the major applications of these things is launching anti-missile missiles. Finding actual stats on the rate of fire is tricky - it's probably classified, since it's the key piece of info you need to know to calculate how many missiles you need to fire at the ship to saturate it's defenses and land a hit. [Generally speaking, single missile hits are basically crippling mission-kills on modern ships. Even if you have to launch 15+ to saturate the point defenses, only one of them has to get through, and it's still worth it.]

If you want to add VLS systems to Ogres, maybe instead of making them missile racks that trade vulnerability for volume of fire but basically duplicate current weapon systems, maybe treat them as a bank of single-use point defense buffs against missile tanks and missiles from other Ogres?

EDIT: in RL naval engagements, the limiting factor apparently is not the rate of fire of the VLS, it's teh sensor range of the VLS platform: the distance at which it can detect incoming missiles is a big limiting factor on whether and how much time it has to launch interceptors from the VLS.

Last edited by HeatDeath; 04-05-2024 at 02:55 PM.
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Old 04-07-2024, 09:15 AM   #9
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

Good point about defensive use of VLS. In the standard Ogre scenario with the CP as a target, balance can be thrown off with hit avoidance tech for the Ogre like point defense.

Would an Ogre trade an Ogre missile for a point defense system that has a chance of negating missile tank or howitzer hits?

More interesting would be PD tech as an option in Ogre to Ogre duels where Ogres could have customized load outs of point defense and/or offensive missiles/systems that are selected secretly.

What's lacking in Ogre is a canon Ogre customization process and more varied armaments and defensive options.
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Old 04-08-2024, 10:26 AM   #10
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Default Re: Ogre Vertical Launch Systems

There's a selection of cool optional loadouts for Ogre missiles in the Barbarians at the Gate supplement. I don't recall if there's a anti-missile missile option in there, but it would be a excellent option, partciularly on a MkV, MkVI, Fencer, or Dopp: replace one or more of your missiles with PD missiles that have a chance to intercept howitzer, missile tank, and Ogre missile attacks.

EDIT: Nope, I was misremembering that. The Barbarians at the Gates missile variants are Cruise Missile variants.

Last edited by HeatDeath; 04-08-2024 at 01:07 PM.
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