"Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

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baithammer
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby baithammer » Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:57 pm

Another factor is thrust isn't strictly a rearward vector, there are other thrust points on the hull to facilitate lateral movement and rotations. ( So you don't need to flip the ship around like a monolithic rocket.)
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Sigtrygg » Thu Mar 21, 2019 11:32 pm

In every version of Traveller to use the main drive thrust you have to turn the ship to point its arse. You do actually have to flip your ship around like a monolithic rocket. Attitude thrusters do not produce 2g continual acceleration.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby phavoc » Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:48 am

baithammer wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:57 pm
Another factor is thrust isn't strictly a rearward vector, there are other thrust points on the hull to facilitate lateral movement and rotations. ( So you don't need to flip the ship around like a monolithic rocket.)
For maneuvering I would agree. But main drives all have to point in one direction to get the full capabilities. You could, in theory, have a 4-g ship with drives pointed every 90 degrees (though like Spock says, this indicates a 2D thinking when space is 3D).

If all your engines were mounted on gimbals you'd have more options. But as Traveller ships are designed it's all aft to push the ship at it's full m-drive potential.

In this case Traveller has always been rather lite on what 1-G really means. For an RPG game lite makes sense. We on the boards tend to ask lots of the harder questions that rarely get addressed in the rules. So we are left to house rule or find a different system we like and adopt that one.

I really liked the combat options from Renegade Legion. Tracking your armor and having weapons that either peeled you like a layer or punched holes was a neat idea. Star Fleet Battles had a relatively basic combat style (got much more complicated when you added books 2 and 3 for additional rules). Weber's early work in Starfire was neat too. How you laid out your ships to take into account the various types of weapons made it kind of interesting. Plus there was the supply aspect since Starfire could be played at the Empire level, and deploying fleets through warp points meant you could really screw yourself over if you outran your supply lines.

Since Traveller has been an RPG first and foremost we shouldn't expect too much from the official RPG rules. At times the logical gaps are big enough to send a supertanker through, but that's been the case since the original LBB! As has the debate. :P
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby paltrysum » Fri Mar 22, 2019 2:12 am

Sigtrygg wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:34 pm
Watch the Expanse, and even that takes liberties with Newtonian mechanics.
Maybe, but for entertainment purposes, that’s how I like to picture it.
"Spacers lead a sedentary life. They live at home, and their home is always with them—their starship, and so is their country—the depths of space."
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Moppy » Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:57 pm

A Traveller space combat turn is several minutes? (It was 20 in classic High Guard. I don't know how long it is in Mongoose but it allows time for repair rolls if I remember correctly).

If you can spin around in a few seconds out of 20 minutes to fire the spinal while still drifting away, you won't lose that much acceleration.

Gaining and losing range on that is the sort of thing that pilot skill rolls can account for.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Sigtrygg » Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:10 am

If you are not accelerating your future position is known, you are vulnerable and should not get any agility DM. Unless the Traveller magic maneuver drive also cancels inertial mass - we know it affects gravitic mass - the turning forces on a ship spinning on its axes to bring a spinal to bear will likely structurally damage the ship.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:36 am

Shouldn't be an issue for turrets, bays and guided missiles.

And you can always tack.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:44 am

Moppy wrote: A Traveller space combat turn is several minutes?
Yes, 6 minutes in MgT2.

Moppy wrote: If you can spin around in a few seconds out of 20 minutes to fire the spinal while still drifting away, you won't lose that much acceleration.
You don't shoot once per round, but all the shots are abstracted into a single attack roll, just like DnD.

Per TNE space combat weapons shoot at least ten times per round.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:55 am

Sigtrygg wrote: If you are not accelerating your future position is known, you are vulnerable and should not get any agility DM.
Agreed.

Sigtrygg wrote: Unless the Traveller magic maneuver drive also cancels inertial mass - we know it affects gravitic mass - ...
I would disagree about affecting "gravitic mass". As far as I know it does not affect mass, just imparts thrust. It does most certainly not cancel inertia.

Sigtrygg wrote: ... the turning forces on a ship spinning on its axes to bring a spinal to bear will likely structurally damage the ship.
Unless the ship is built for that... Accelerating, spinning about, and then decelerating is a standard manoeuvre, but perhaps not on a sub-round frequency.

I don't see how ships could get "agility" in combat without spinning about wildly to shift the direction of thrust.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:01 am

Sigtrygg wrote: In every version of Traveller to use the main drive thrust you have to turn the ship to point its arse. You do actually have to flip your ship around like a monolithic rocket. Attitude thrusters do not produce 2g continual acceleration.
Per MT SSOM (and GT, T5) M-drive thrust is vectored, so you get some, but probably not full, thrust in other directions. To get full thrust you still point the ship like a rocket.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:08 am

Hakkonen wrote: The M-drive is gravitic and reactionless, right? So what are those rocket-nozzle-looking things at the rear of the Element-class cruisers? Am I just overlooking the bit where they're specified to use reaction drives?
Original Traveller in 1977 used some sort of reaction drive (rocket), so the original art showed glowing rocket nozzles.

The reaction drives were skipped in 1980, but the art standard was already set.


MT SSOM made an attempt to explain it: Thruster plates (M-drives) generates light as a normal part of their function. They can be placed anywhere, but are conventionally placed aft.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Moppy » Sat Mar 23, 2019 12:57 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:44 am
Moppy wrote: A Traveller space combat turn is several minutes?
Yes, 6 minutes in MgT2.
Moppy wrote: If you can spin around in a few seconds out of 20 minutes to fire the spinal while still drifting away, you won't lose that much acceleration.
You don't shoot once per round, but all the shots are abstracted into a single attack roll, just like DnD.

Per TNE space combat weapons shoot at least ten times per round.
That's inconsistent with how Mongoose defines ammo.

It'a also inconsistent with how D&D defines ammo. In D&D one hit roll = use up one arrow (unless you specifically take a multi-shot magic power).

edit: Also charges and procs on melee weapons. It's once per swing/attack roll.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:01 pm

Moppy wrote: That's inconsistent with how Mongoose defines ammo.
That is certainly true for missiles, but not really for e.g. railguns, note that railgun ammunition is specified in "attacks", not shots.

Energy weapons have always, from CT forwards, attacked once per round regardless of the length of the round, and by the dogfight rule that is still true in MgT2. Why would a laser be able to fire every 6 s in a dogfight, but only every 6 minutes at slightly longer range?

Moppy wrote: It'a also inconsistent with how D&D defines ammo. In D&D one hit roll = use up one arrow (unless you specifically take a multi-shot magic power).

edit: Also charges and procs on melee weapons. It's once per swing/attack roll.
I'm not all that familiar with modern versions of DnD, but the first versions were clear on that a regular melee attack was a full rounds worth of swings and parries. If I recall correctly that was the clearest description of that in any RPG i have read.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Moppy » Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:50 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:01 pm
Moppy wrote: That's inconsistent with how Mongoose defines ammo.
That is certainly true for missiles, but not really for e.g. railguns, note that railgun ammunition is specified in "attacks", not shots.

Energy weapons have always, from CT forwards, attacked once per round regardless of the length of the round, and by the dogfight rule that is still true in MgT2. Why would a laser be able to fire every 6 s in a dogfight, but only every 6 minutes at slightly longer range?
I'm looking in high guard now for spinal mounts, and under railgun spinals it specifies ammo is in rounds - not bursts. So "per attack" must be a single shot per attack. Unless bays and spinals have a different rate-of-fire.

To be fair, the whole rulebook is a mess and makes no sense, so I think you're OK to interpret it how you wish, within the given parameters.

As you say, switching from dogfight to regular time scale increases the rate of fire of your weapons by a factor of 60, what is even happening? Why isn't regular damage multipled by 60? Literally nothing makes any sense.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Condottiere » Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:29 pm

Rates of fire would vary across different weapon systems, and those extra dogfight turns would be required to acquire and predict a target's position, unless you want to snapshot it.

Close In Weapons Systems would be fired in bursts, while a spinal mount would build up tension until it releases it's wound up energy.

Image
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby baithammer » Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:34 am

Moppy wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:50 pm
As you say, switching from dogfight to regular time scale increases the rate of fire of your weapons by a factor of 60, what is even happening? Why isn't regular damage multiplied by 60? Literally nothing makes any sense.
The scale is 6 mins per turn at ship scale and 6s for dogfight so not 60 times.

The dogfight rules seem to rely on weapons being fixed mounts rather than turreted,( Even though small craft have the option for single turrets and barbettes.)
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Condottiere » Sun Mar 24, 2019 3:35 am

Originally it was meant to give some form of flavouring for Confederation ship design philosophy, but I can't figure out any tactical advantages for it, unless it's a monocockpit, and you're equipped with guided missiles, because even off bore, you can pop them out, and they can change direction.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Moppy » Sun Mar 24, 2019 4:00 am

baithammer wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:34 am
Moppy wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 6:50 pm
As you say, switching from dogfight to regular time scale increases the rate of fire of your weapons by a factor of 60, what is even happening? Why isn't regular damage multiplied by 60? Literally nothing makes any sense.
The scale is 6 mins per turn at ship scale and 6s for dogfight so not 60 times.

The dogfight rules seem to rely on weapons being fixed mounts rather than turreted,( Even though small craft have the option for single turrets and barbettes.)
There's a 6*60s / 6s -> There is 6 on each side so those cancel out, and you're left with 60.

I should have written "damage" and not "Rate of fire" as it's clear then. My english might imply it the wrong way around but 60 is the correct ratio.
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby Sigtrygg » Sun Mar 24, 2019 8:28 am

baithammer wrote:
Sun Mar 24, 2019 2:34 am
The scale is 6 mins per turn at ship scale and 6s for dogfight so not 60 times.
Lol 6 minutes is 6x60=360 seconds. A 6 minute combat turn is thus sixty time a 6 second dogfighting turn.
The dogfight rules seem to rely on weapons being fixed mounts rather than turreted,( Even though small craft have the option for single turrets and barbettes.)
The dogfighting rules are pure cinematic tosh and have no place in a game with Newtonian movement. But personal prejudice aside, to line up a shot with a fixed mount the fighter has to point that mount at the enemy and stop using its main drive as it take the shot, thus when a fighter shoots it can not gain a maneuvering advantage since it can not accelerate with its main engines. The advantage is with the weapon system in a mount that can move independently of vessel movement, like a turret perhaps?
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Re: "Nozzles" on the Element cruisers

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sun Mar 24, 2019 9:32 am

Moppy wrote: I'm looking in high guard now for spinal mounts, and under railgun spinals it specifies ammo is in rounds - not bursts. So "per attack" must be a single shot per attack. Unless bays and spinals have a different rate-of-fire.
We can, with some difficulty, interpret that as combat rounds, not rounds of ammunition. I believe Mongoose are trying to be deliberately vague in order to avoid these kinds of problems and allow you to interpret things anyway you like.

Moppy wrote: To be fair, the whole rulebook is a mess and makes no sense, so I think you're OK to interpret it how you wish, within the given parameters.

As you say, switching from dogfight to regular time scale increases the rate of fire of your weapons by a factor of 60, what is even happening? Why isn't regular damage multipled by 60? Literally nothing makes any sense.
It does make some kind of sense if you accept that an attack is not a single shot. You attack continuously during the round, miss most shots, and get a single attack roll to represent all the shots fired during a round.

The actual rate of fire is constant, you just miss a lot when you leave visual range and fire at an approximate sensor blob. This is explained in the very detailed TNE FF&S system.

The combat system is very simple, and hopefully fast. A more detailed system would require much more rules and be much slower, and very few would use it... I don't think Mongoose has any intention of competing with FF&S.

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