Sandcasters and fleet combat

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arcador
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Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby arcador » Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:03 am

While browsing the ready ships from HG, I noticed a lot of them mount tents of sandcaster turrets.

Yet I failed to see a sandcaster accounted in the fleet combat rules.

I propose a simple (house) rule - each used sandcaster eliminates 1 damage from turret weapons (before any attacks/dmg resolutions).

Example: Enemy has a total of 200 turret damage. The target ship uses 60 sandcasters (and 60 sand); the turret damage is 140 for this round's attack.


-- Edit --

Maybe we can house rule that extra chaff use can provide even further bonus vs missiles, but I doubt it will be better than a triple laser turret against missiles.
Anyway, if 1 chaff stops 1 missile but requires no rolls, it might be a "safe" alternative to PD. So a triple sandcaster will be able to stop 3 missiles.
Annatar Giftbringer
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:08 am

I’ve been having very similar thoughts, and have been meaning to post them but never gotten around to do it.

I too was surprised to see that sandcasters seem to do nothing in fleet combat, and have also wondered if chaff is supposed to give -1 per cloud or per canister. Having it Per canister lets sandcasters be effective against missiles, and means that a ship like the Atlantic heavy cruiser gets decent missiles defense.

I am a bit worried that it might upset the delicate missile balance - too much defence and they’re useless, too little and they quickly end up way too powerful.

On the other hand, a triple sandcasters turret with chaff would give -3 to hit to an incoming missile salvo, less effective than a skilled point defense gunner with a triple laser turret, and lasers can deal damage in return. Of course, sandcasters with pebble ammo deals 1DD personal scale damage, equivalent to that of beam lasers when scaled for space combat, so sandcasters can deal damage too, though presumably short-ranged.



I like the idea of using sandcasters to defend against missiles with chaff canisters (in practice they’d work the same as frag missiles, trade on a one-to-one basis).
Condottiere
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:21 pm

Ablative shield in a magnetic field?

It's also supposed to blur the sensors.
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:40 pm

I do not see any particular problem with allowing sandcasters to defend against missile salvoes. As long as they are worse than lasers, but still use as many hardpoints, they will not break the system.

In fleet combat they should not reduce the attack roll but work like salvo defence: a pool of damage reduction. That is probably one pool too many.
arcador
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby arcador » Sat Mar 10, 2018 4:29 pm

It can count in the same Salvo defence pool. Simply a bullet point:
  • for each sandcaster add +1 salvo defence. (no bonus for skill level, and still requiring a gunner)
(we can assume fleets have sand for at least 12 rounds, i.e. avoiding this calculation)

edit: yeah, you are right. If they can also stop lasers, they need to be a pool, since - either a laser or a missile
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby steve98052 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:41 pm

Sandcasters are purely defensive, except in the rare case of using them as giant shotguns against individuals. They're also limited by magazine capacity. As such, they should be very effective -- at least as good as lasers against missiles, and the only effective defense against lasers. One sand canister can take out one missile with a decent roll, and more than one missile from the same flight of missiles (same origin ship, launched on the same round) on a good roll.
Condottiere
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Re: Sandcasters and fleet combat

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:01 pm

It really depends on the payload, which could have more variants specialized against specific threats.

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