What is the deal of decoy missiles?

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arcador
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What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby arcador » Fri Apr 20, 2018 12:28 pm

After some pondering, I see some utility of the decoy missile, but most of the utility gets outplaced by any other missile in the same price range.

Do you have any use cases of the decoy missile, which can't be achieved using, standard, advanced or long-range missiles?
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Reynard » Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:07 pm

The benefit is, in a point defense heavy environment, more missiles will get through. This is why having different loadouts on board can make a difference.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby AnotherDilbert » Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:25 pm

Quite, they can defeat PD, but not armour.

Might be good for shooting at a Free Trader with a laser turret or two?
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby paltrysum » Fri Apr 20, 2018 8:36 pm

Depending on the cost, they can be a good defensive mechanism. The more lasers your opponent assigns to point defense, the fewer he is using to perforate your ship.

The next Q is: Why not just use sandcasters to nullify his lasers? A: Yes, that makes sense, but sandcasters only reduce the damage of laser hits. A laser that is never fired at your ship does not damage at all.
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arcador
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby arcador » Fri Apr 20, 2018 9:35 pm

Those are valid points, but standard missiles will also keep the enemy PD's busy, and they are cheaper. Perhaps the Decoy will keep more PDs busy.

Maybe it can be "programmed" to appear as another type of missile, until it's about to hit.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Condottiere » Fri Apr 20, 2018 11:11 pm

In theory, they are supposed to be more attractive to defensive systems; probably something you'd invest more in for torpedoes.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Reynard » Fri Apr 20, 2018 11:13 pm

The decoy not only ties up PD fire but more get through to cause actual damage. 2 4 1 strategy.
arcador
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby arcador » Sat Apr 21, 2018 6:24 am

There is some sort of strategy I see.

Let's say you have 2 bays. You plan to fire 48 missiles towards the enemy. The enemy PD can stop 36 missiles.

If you fire 48 nuclear missiles, the enemy will stop 36, so only 12 will hit.

If you somehow overload his PD, (decoy missiles, multiwarhead or something else with a penalty to PD), he will use his 36 PD to stop only, let's say 24 missiles (the decoy salvo). So the full salvo of Nuclear missiles will be able to get close, optimizing the damage.

Of course, there is the question of how soon the enemy will realize they are firing PDs at decoys.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Apr 21, 2018 11:03 am

Note that the "Decoy Missile" contains decoys and a weaker warhead, it is not a decoy in itself.

If you fire a turret (3 missiles) against a Free Trader with a laser turret, it might kill 2 missiles with PD, 1 missile attacks. If you fired Decoy Missiles instead of regular missiles the DM -2 to PD would save the missiles and 3 missiles would attack.

So, with Decoy Missiles more missiles would hit and if the target has little enough armour, make more damage.

Against heavy armour the decoy missiles are too weak and can't really hurt the target, so it has limited military value, hence will likely not be fired from bays.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Reynard » Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:16 pm

This is why vessels, most especially military ship, would carry a diversity of missile types. Decoys and multi-warhead for enemies with known PD systems while swarms of standard and nuclear go against more armored targets and fragmentation for those days you go up to a carrier. One advantage decoys have over multi-warhead is hitting targets sooner at longer ranges which makes PDs less likely to clean out missile groups.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Condottiere » Sun Apr 22, 2018 10:11 am

On the other side of the coin, decoy drones.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Linwood » Mon Apr 23, 2018 11:41 am

Decoy missiles might be more useful if instead of simply adding a DM-2 each decoy increased the apparent size of the salvo by 2. The PD would then be split between more targets (perhaps targeting decoys first) and thus more of the more powerful missiles would get through.

I would look at tech level difference to determine if PD can sort out the decoys from the real targets.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby phavoc » Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:41 pm

If we would treat decoy missiles the same as we treat decoy MIRV's, a decoy missile would launch decoy targets that caused the enemy to waste defensive fire. The technical problem is that a decoy missile would have to have an engine to match the velocity of the rest of the missiles. Plus it would need ECM and thermal generators to match the sensor profiles of the other missiles.

ECM would make the missile more expensive than a regular missile since electronics would typically cost more than an explosive payload (nukes excluded of course). At least that is how it would be in the real world. So the question becomes are decoy's cost effective if they have to live in a more realistic environment?
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Condottiere » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:30 pm

Nothing except convention prevents increasing the warhead yield, to maybe one megatonne TNT equivalent.
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:01 am

Decoy mini-nuke warhead? Yes please!
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Re: What is the deal of decoy missiles?

Postby steve98052 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 6:17 pm

If a decoy missile has a radar spoofing system that makes it return three pings for each incoming ping, point defense might fire a shot at each of the three pings, amplifying the decoy's ability to draw point defense fire away from the real missiles. Of course if the target ship double checks the radar pings against the optical view, or a pair of allied ships both ping the decoy, they might recognize it as a decoy and aim at the real missiles preferentially.

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