Vehicle Size Thoughts

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
heron61
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Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby heron61 » Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:02 pm

Thinking about vehicles has again brought me to the problem of vehicle size. In the corebook, we have a 4-seat groundcar listed as 3 dtons, where each dton is (depending on how you measure them) 13.5 or 14 cubic meters. Sure, that's shipping size, which means (at least to me) how much space it would take up packed in a shipping container. However, that's still 3dtons. If you look at an average minivan or a large SUV, in volume they are approximately 1.2-1.5 dtons, and if you make take the dimensions of a rectangular container that can hold the vehicle with room to spare, you get at most 2 dtons. And yet we have 3 dton groundcars that hold 4 people and 4dton air rafts that hold 6. Does anyone have any thoughts on how to get this to make sense.
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:20 pm

It gets worse if you compare the sizes of real tanks and a 200 Space tank.
-Daniel-
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby -Daniel- » Sun Feb 26, 2017 11:51 pm

I gave up trying to make the system make logical sense. :|
Loconius
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby Loconius » Sun Feb 26, 2017 11:54 pm

Could the measurements include much larger packaging, including things like a shock absorbing frame around the vehicle and cargo handling infrastructure built into the cargo handling requirements?

The tanks volume could be the result of thatcannon, which isn't large in volume but requires a massive box to hold it and the tank?
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Infojunky
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby Infojunky » Mon Feb 27, 2017 12:02 am

The future is BIGGER.... :D

The real answer is that certain people around here have no concept of volume. They truly think in 2d deck squares.

But, a quick trick is to draw out the vehicles footprint on a deck. Said ground car takes a rectangle of 2 squares by 3 squares, ergo 6 spaces.

I tend to think Garage Space when Mongoose says Shipping space.

When designing vehicles one trick is to use the the various trade offs that give extra space for a reduction in performance, then boost them back up using the mods that don't alter space counts.

And finally remember the second line when looking at the number of spaces allocated to weaponry.
Evyn
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby dmccoy1693 » Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:42 am

-Daniel- wrote:
Sun Feb 26, 2017 11:51 pm
I gave up trying to make the system make logical sense. :|
This.
Annatar Giftbringer
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Mon Feb 27, 2017 9:52 am

Vehicle Handbook, p.3 wrote:Shipping Large Vehicles
It is more efficient to ship a single large vehicle than several smaller ones. Vehicles over 30 Shipping Tons can halve this value, to a minimum of 30 tons.
Based on this, I'd say shipping size definitely isn't the same as actual vehicle size.

More like the amount of space needed to park, gain comfortable access to, and perform some service on a vehicle. Skillful stacking should be able to shrink the space needed for any vehicle, at the cost of slow on/offloading and limited or no access to the vehicle in question during transit.
FallingPhoenix
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby FallingPhoenix » Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:03 pm

Also:
Vehicle Handbook, p. 6 wrote:"We have intentionally put a lot of 'fuzziness' into the design system...

If you want...simply tweak the Shipping Size of your final design...

It is perfectly acceptable to adjust any characteristic of a vehicle."
So the stats are really more guidelines then actual rules...
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msprange
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby msprange » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:05 am

FallingPhoenix wrote:
Tue Feb 28, 2017 9:03 pm

So the stats are really more guidelines then actual rules...
Yes, this, absolutely.

When working on vehicles, we started hitting exception after exception after exception. We could have had a crack at including them all, but we knew one of you would simply come up with a concept for a vehicle that we had not thought of :)

So, if we were to have a vehicle creation system that was a) easy and b) could handle just about anything anyone could think of, from rickshaws to floating super heavy battle tanks with installed vodka bars, we needed to insert leeway into these mechanics. If you start to reverse engineer some of the vehicles in the VHB, you will see we have done exactly this (if you have 'missing' Spaces in larger vehicles, for example, some have gone into walkways and communal areas for crew and passengers). You will also see some intentional flaws in some vehicles, but I digress...

The issue, really, is getting the same system to work with Bicycles as with Passenger Jets. And Trawlers. And Submarines. And the Optimus Prime that someone will want to put together.

Fortunately, there is a really easy solution - add the leeway/fuzziness, and allow the referee to exercise his judgement. The only real danger here is with players getting hold of the book and seriously taking the mick with it but, again, this is what the referee is for.

We felt this approach was the best way to keep everything simple while allowing the greatest variation among the final vehicles. As I have said elsewhere, we did at one point consider using a very similar system for spacecraft, but we felt we would get lynched if we touched that sacred cow (and, to be fair, spacecraft are a lot more focussed - even with differences between a Ship's Launch and a Tigress - than between different vehicle types).

Putting it another way, we have reduced the precision on vehicles, but you should find the results a lot easier to work with in what is, at the end of the day, a game designed to be played.
Matthew Sprange

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Annatar Giftbringer
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Re: Vehicle Size Thoughts

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:20 am

And I'm thankful for it, the quick and fuzzy system is easy and fun to work with :)

(Some minor issues in weapon spaces keep popping up though, if you'd like to clarify them please?)

Optimus prime should be fairly easy, a heavy walker with the most advanced droid brain available, the largest and most advanced arms, plus some creative use of the "ground drive" option :)

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