Really Big Meson Guns

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Solomani666
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Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Solomani666 » Fri May 15, 2015 4:27 am

Does anyone have rules for the huge spinal meson guns that the Darrians use?

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Condottiere
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Condottiere » Fri May 15, 2015 9:42 am

When did the Darrians start using them?
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Solomani666 » Fri May 15, 2015 11:21 am

Condottiere wrote:When did the Darrians start using them?
Always have.
Part of their doctrine.

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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Fri May 15, 2015 7:35 pm

The Darrian sourcebook only says "Unlike the capital ships of the Imperium and Zhodani Consulate, the Darrians scale their spinal weapons to fit the size of the warship, using design philosophies
conceived before the Maghiz. This makes their primary armament very frightening on their larger ships."

So this doesn't really tell you anything other than that cruisers would get cruiser-sized spinal mounts and battleships would get battleship sized ones. Without any examples the explanation is relatively meaningless.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Fri May 15, 2015 11:09 pm

Solomani666 wrote:Does anyone have rules for the huge spinal meson guns that the Darrians use?

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I've just assumed the rules from High Guard page 66.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Solomani666 » Fri May 15, 2015 11:15 pm

phavoc wrote: So this doesn't really tell you anything other than that cruisers would get cruiser-sized spinal mounts and battleships would get battleship sized ones. Without any examples the explanation is relatively meaningless.
Except that on larger ships, they will be much bigger than the ones listed in High Guard.
Hence my original question.

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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Condottiere » Sat May 16, 2015 12:14 am

If they have a stock of extra large meson guns, any reference to them seems to be shrouded in mystery.

That's not to say they couldn't have been constructed, if Fire Fusion and Steel ever gets updated, but I got the impression that the Darrians prefer smaller, more mobile units, though that may just have been a doctrine they adopted since the bovine byproduct intercepted the ventilator.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Solomani666 » Sat May 16, 2015 12:49 am

Condottiere wrote:If they have a stock of extra large meson guns, any reference to them seems to be shrouded in mystery.

That's not to say they couldn't have been constructed, if Fire Fusion and Steel ever gets updated, but I got the impression that the Darrians prefer smaller, more mobile units, though that may just have been a doctrine they adopted since the bovine byproduct intercepted the ventilator.
Smaller ships but bigger spinal mounts according to the source book.

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ShawnDriscoll
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Sat May 16, 2015 12:56 am

The Darrian book is plagued with the most vague/ambiguous text on just about every topic. Someone other than Nash should have written it. It's the one Alien book I don't recommend to people.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Sat May 16, 2015 2:53 am

Larger spinal mounts don't exist, or at least as far as we know because they have never been listed in any version of Traveller.

For the sake of argument lets take the largest Meson mount there is, a Type D. It's a minimum TL weapon of 13. Assuming the TL of the Darrian 80,000 ton cruiser listed in the Darrians source book is TL-16, there is a 3 TL bonus applied to tonnage, cost and damage.

Base stats - 14,000 tons, 14,000 MCr and 450 damage.
TL stat bonuses - 60% reduction in size, 60% reduction in cost, 30% increase in damage.
New stats - 5,600 tons, 5,600 Mcr and 585 damage.

Darrian TL-16 cruisers are J-6, M-6. Not discounting anything else, the ship requires a MINIMUM fuel tankage of 48,000 tons for J-6 operations. Now, add back in 2,600 Dtons for M-6, 5,600 Dtons for Jump-6 drive, and 3,000 tons for the PP, you've consumed another 11,200 Dtons. So your 80k ton cruiser has a wee bit less than 21,000 tons to cram EVERYTHING else in there. So that TL-16 Type D Meson mount at 5,600 tons just consumed 25% of your available tonnage.

I applied the efficiencies listed in the book, and Darrian ships get a 50% bonus efficiency on M-drive and PP-fuel usage.

So one might argue that the D class Meson mount IS an outsized weapon for a 80k jump capable warship. As it is I'm not sure (without building it out) even get the D shoe-horned into a 80k ton hull. Just a quick comparison to the TL-15 75k Imperial cruiser listed in High Guard says that it can't be done - not without dropping a whole lot of stuff.

This is also where jump riders eat jump-capable ships' lunch because they have so much more space to dedicate to armor and weaponry when freed up from the jump fuel requirements.

Now, if the Darrians also had E or even F class meson mounts in their battleship classes, then the original statement would be more accurate.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Jeraa » Sat May 16, 2015 3:10 am

The type D meson gun does 450 damage. Meson weapons ignore armor, and their damage goes straight to Structure points (High Guard pg 78). Capital ships are considered crippled or destroyed if 1section is reduced to 0 Structure. So unless I am missing something (or don't understand the rules, which is very possible), that would mean that if the type D hits and penetrates, it can 1 shot 90,000 ton ships.

Using phavocs stats above (585 damage at TL16), it can 1 shot 146,000 ton ships. Make it Rapid Fire (2 attacks in 1 round) and it can almost take out a 300,000 ton ship in 1 round. Not bad for a roughly 6000 ton weapon.

You don't need bigger meson weapons. They work fine as is.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Sat May 16, 2015 3:30 am

Yeah, meson guns are ship-killers. That's why capital ships need to devote the space to heavy armor and heavy shields. And it's why you see the battle riders always armed with spinal mounts.

Usually he (or she, or it) that brings the most spinal weapons to the party leaves as the victor.

An interesting aside here is just how big are the planet-sized ones? You are more or less freed from Dton restrictions. So as long as you have power (and anonymity) your deep-site gun can play whack-a-mole with an orbiting fleet. I would assume since you can have meson shield sleds you can have a meson screen on a deep-site gun.

Planetary invasions and hardware would be an interesting source book to read....
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Nathan Brazil » Sat May 16, 2015 5:13 pm

In other versions of Traveller (Megatraveller and TNE), planet based sites use anonymity as defense. Generators are build miles and miles away from the meson gun. So the idea was you have to take out all of the remote fusion plants, because generally you could not find the gun...
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phavoc
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Sat May 16, 2015 6:55 pm

Nathan Brazil wrote:In other versions of Traveller (Megatraveller and TNE), planet based sites use anonymity as defense. Generators are build miles and miles away from the meson gun. So the idea was you have to take out all of the remote fusion plants, because generally you could not find the gun...
Yes. You still need power, and fusion generators give off telltale tachyons. I think it may have been COACC that discussed one deep-site meson gun that was powered from a nearby hydroelectric plant, so it gave off very minimal electronic tell-tales. You can't hide dams, but if they were smart and used things like underwater current generators, or even offshore tidal generators they would be damn hard to find.

I don't recall where it was mentioned, but somewhere there was a bit that talked about intelligence by an invading force was necessary to find places like SDB bases and deep-site weapons prior to an invasion if you didn't want to have your fleet smashed by the defenses.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby F33D » Sat May 16, 2015 7:26 pm

Nathan Brazil wrote:In other versions of Traveller (Megatraveller and TNE), planet based sites use anonymity as defense. Generators are build miles and miles away from the meson gun. So the idea was you have to take out all of the remote fusion plants, because generally you could not find the gun...
Per MT rules that couldn't work. Densitometers...
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Sat May 16, 2015 7:56 pm

F33D wrote:Per MT rules that couldn't work. Densitometers...
Per the MT rules, a TL-15 densitometer only penetrates 1km. Pg69 of the MT Referee's guide. And with higher tech gear it would be very easy to dig down 1km or further.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby F33D » Sat May 16, 2015 8:00 pm

phavoc wrote:
F33D wrote:Per MT rules that couldn't work. Densitometers...
Per the MT rules, a TL-15 densitometer only penetrates 1km. Pg69 of the MT Referee's guide. And with higher tech gear it would be very easy to dig down 1km or further.
I didn't know you could bury them so far. Ships should put meson weapons at the center buried under all their armor so they can't take hits in combat!
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Condottiere » Sat May 16, 2015 8:31 pm

You also have to clear a cavity and set up mountings so that the weapon system can be turned in any direction.

Since it's implied that the weapon system is very linear, that's a lot of space, and direction is normally handled by pointing the entire weapons platform (ie ship) in the desired direction.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby phavoc » Sat May 16, 2015 9:28 pm

F33D wrote:I didn't know you could bury them so far. Ships should put meson weapons at the center buried under all their armor so they can't take hits in combat!
There's no limitation on where you bury them. From COACC it states that deep-site meson guns are omnidirectional. As far as I know, a meson gun still have a directional emitter of sorts. So if you are digging yourself a hole I suppose you could simply put it in the center and have it rotate 360 degrees to bring the emitter to bear on whatever target you are selecting.
Condottiere wrote:You also have to clear a cavity and set up mountings so that the weapon system can be turned in any direction.

Since it's implied that the weapon system is very linear, that's a lot of space, and direction is normally handled by pointing the entire weapons platform (ie ship) in the desired direction.
Yeah, the question is just how the emitter portion works. In theory I suppose you could have a single 'gun' in the middle, with emitters on the outside that have a specific firing arc, and then you select the most appropriate emitter to send the pulse out. Sort of like how the phasers on the the ST:TNG enterprise worked - taking on targets anywhere along their beam track.
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Re: Really Big Meson Guns

Postby Condottiere » Sat May 16, 2015 10:27 pm

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