Armor Issues & House-Rules

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings

What do you want be done about the MGT armor rules?

They're fine as presented in the book - leave them as they are
26
40%
Armor ratings have to be increased
15
23%
Armor should absorb damage dice (as in T4)
7
11%
Armor should provide a DM to hit (as in CT)
1
2%
We should use an armor/penetration system (as in Striker/MT)
16
25%
 
Total votes: 65
d(sqrt(-1))
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Postby d(sqrt(-1)) » Thu May 22, 2008 4:43 pm

Golan2072 wrote:Protection is mostly against micrometeorites, suit puncture by sharp surfaces and, more importantly, the suit has to be strong enough to contain the pressure differences between its inside and the vacuum of space.
Well, none of those things are the same as bullet damage. If you are hit by a micrometerorite it probably doesn't matter much what you are wearing. Ripstop and pressure differences yes, but I still don't see that as the same thing as stopping bullets/lasers/shrapnel at all.

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Postby Flynn » Thu May 22, 2008 5:22 pm

Alternately, armor could work like it does in T20: you subtract the lowest die for each point of armor, until you are at the last die of damage (the highest that you rolled in your damage), and the remainder of the armor is subtracted from the remaining die on a point-by-point basis. If there's not more damage left afterwards, then the armor absorbed it all.

It works well in T20, and may be able to use the existing MGT values directly.

Another Random Thought,
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Postby Golan2072 » Thu May 22, 2008 5:33 pm

d(sqrt(-1)) wrote:Well, none of those things are the same as bullet damage. If you are hit by a micrometerorite it probably doesn't matter much what you are wearing. Ripstop and pressure differences yes, but I still don't see that as the same thing as stopping bullets/lasers/shrapnel at all.
Micrometeorites move much faster than bullets, but are much, much lighter, and thus IIRC could be stopped by a vacc suit; they work similarly to bullets in being fast-moving kinetic "projectiles".

Against anything bigger at these speeds, though (such as space-debris and larger meteorites) I agree with you - too much kinetic energy to be stopped by anything man-wearable. But the majority of impacts are with very fast moving yet ultralight objects, being micrometeorites.

Look here for further information on RL (TL7) space-suit construction (you might need to scroll down a little).
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Postby Infojunky » Thu May 22, 2008 6:26 pm

SableWyvern wrote:
Golan2072 wrote:
d(sqrt(-1)) wrote:Dunno, it just seems that protection vs flying lead/needles/plasma etc wouldn't be the main consideration.
Protection is mostly against micrometeorites, suit puncture by sharp surfaces and, more importantly, the suit has to be strong enough to contain the pressure differences between its inside and the vacuum of space.
Besides, at high TLs, why not just wear your Vacc Suit all the time?
Why not, if you're on a combat or exploration spacecraft which might have to depressurize at short notice due to combat preparation? You'll wear the suit all the time (at the very least when you're on shift) sans the gloves and the helmets. The gloves would be tucked in your belt, the helmet would be placed near your station. When you have to be vacuum-ready, just wear and seal the gloves and screw on the helmet. On high TLs, the light and comfortable vacc suit becomes your duty uniform.
Exactly. Why not wear a comfortable, protective vac suit as armour? I dare say many do, because it makes sense.

As to armouring, I know that -- assuming the technology is available -- I'd prefer a vac suit highly resistant to micro-meteorites, shrapnel from the cooling system explosion, the super-sharp edge I just dragged my arm along, the white-hot beam I've just cut and the plasma lance I was cutting it with.
In a couple of my games that was the standard for most of the PCs when in normal space and or planets that didn't have a breathable atmosphere. Soft suits mine you, I have had players who would live their entire lives in a Hard suit/Battledress if you let them, including to the governors ball...

Then there our latter day games where the "Hawaiian" Shirt and shorts (cut-off fatigue pants also) became the de-facto uniform of the Scout service. Flip-flops where a sign of being on detached duty.

Anyways, I know I discarded penetration as system for armor.... Then I went back and reread AHL's rules, well that could be a workable system in that the pen. vs Damage ratio becomes a modifier on the amount of damage chart. This adds a step, but makes the entire concept work better in my minds eye. Gonna have to playtest....
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Postby SSWarlock » Thu May 22, 2008 10:13 pm

SableWyvern wrote:Exactly. Why not wear a comfortable, protective vac suit as armour? I dare say many do, because it makes sense.
Because of the one thing to is glossed over in practically every Traveller campaign..sanitation hookups. They tend to chafe after an hour. :shock:
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Postby SableWyvern » Fri May 23, 2008 1:34 am

SSWarlock wrote:
SableWyvern wrote:Exactly. Why not wear a comfortable, protective vac suit as armour? I dare say many do, because it makes sense.
Because of the one thing to is glossed over in practically every Traveller campaign..sanitation hookups. They tend to chafe after an hour. :shock:
A fair point ... but, the same should probbaly apply to battle dress and combat armour, and certainly to combat environment suits. One can only hope that technological advances in the field of comfort are across the board...
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Postby Golan2072 » Thu May 29, 2008 1:24 pm

A random thought - if we change the personal armor ratings, shouldn't we also do the same to to animal and vehicle armor ratings to keep everything on the same scale?
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Postby Golan2072 » Thu May 29, 2008 2:23 pm

Animal Armor
Animal armor as given on p.71 should be increased accordingly to the personal armor changes in order to keep everything on the same scale. Armor Rating 1 for animals is the equivalent of Jack and thus should now be 3; Armor 2 is the equivalent of Mesh and should now be 6; Armor 3 is the equivalent of Cloth (but should be the equivalent of a Flack Jacket) and should now be 8; Armor 4 is the equivalent of Flack Jacket (but should be the equivalent of Cloth) and should now be 10; and Armor 5 is the equivalent of high-TL Flack Jacket or Cloth and should now be rated at 12.
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Postby Golan2072 » Thu May 29, 2008 2:51 pm

Regarding vehicle armor, I think that it should be upgraded too. Take the ground car for example; it has Armor 6 and Hull 3. An average pistol shot with Effect 0 (8 damage) would cause it two points of damage, enough for a single damage roll - and a shot causing maximum damage with Effect 0 (15 damage) would cause 9 damage points, enough for double damage to a single hit location. Now, even a few average pistol shots would be able to disable a car or expose it to internal damage (remember that it has no weapons or sensors so they too are replaced by Hull hits). Should cars be that vulnerable to pistol fire?

A single rifle bullet with average damage and Effect 0 (10 damage) would cause 4 damage, that is 2 separate hits; a burst or one round of autofire is likely to wreck a car! Is that realistic?
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Postby Infojunky » Thu May 29, 2008 4:22 pm

Infojunky wrote:Maybe yet another entirely different damage/defense mechanism is needed. Now mentioned is going back to the marginal system that was in MT which might work for some, not me, but some. Or the variations of either Snapshot (which is basically CT combat with bells and whistles) or AHL which is kinda a fusion of Striker and Snapshot, and finally Striker. All work in their way, some are clunkier than others. CT probably is the smoothest but you need the correct table to look up die effects. The other tended to bring play to a grinding halt, MT to three tries to get out right in a sensible format, and with that it was too in-love with it's own task system that it forgot to explain what was going on in a smoothly flowing chart. TNE worked similarly to MT in a lot of ways but it to was over complicated.

What I am trying to say is if a new mechanic is needed make sure it adds to play by working well (i.e. fast and not arbitrary) while covering what needs to be covered.
Ok I said that, then I went and looked at AHL and Striker again, well I was wrong I think there is a system in there. But until I have finished with my Mayday 2 rules, I ain't changing anything else.
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Postby FallingPhoenix » Fri May 30, 2008 6:26 am

Golan2072 wrote:Regarding vehicle armor, I think that it should be upgraded too. Take the ground car for example; it has Armor 6 and Hull 3. An average pistol shot with Effect 0 (8 damage) would cause it two points of damage, enough for a single damage roll - and a shot causing maximum damage with Effect 0 (15 damage) would cause 9 damage points, enough for double damage to a single hit location. Now, even a few average pistol shots would be able to disable a car or expose it to internal damage (remember that it has no weapons or sensors so they too are replaced by Hull hits). Should cars be that vulnerable to pistol fire?

A single rifle bullet with average damage and Effect 0 (10 damage) would cause 4 damage, that is 2 separate hits; a burst or one round of autofire is likely to wreck a car! Is that realistic?
Yes and no. While I find it unlikely that a pistol round would hole the engine block (for example), all you'd need to do is shoot out some tires or the radiator to severely hamper the car. Not to mention any electrical damage done by a round going through the dash. Although maybe a pistol round wouldn't go through a dash... hmmmm.

FP, who doesn't have much experience with pistols and cars. Anyone shoot them up for entertainment? :)
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Postby -Daniel- » Fri May 30, 2008 6:51 am

Well, I have played out 20 combat set ups with various armor and weapons, each of the 20 with the armor out of the book and using Golan’s numbers found on page three of this thread. With that as a basis, I have elected to make the players chose. They can go with the book and combat is deadly (and slightly faster) or use Golan’s numbers and combat is slightly more survivable but slightly slower.

I am doing this because it was true Golan’s numbers seemed to offer a slightly more realistic feel (in some cases), but I found myself not bothered with the outcome of the fights when using the numbers from the book either.

Bottom line for me now is this “fix” makes sense as a house rule, but it does not change enough to make me want to “change the book” per say. So without there being strong feelings on my part either way, I will leave it to the players.

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Postby Golan2072 » Fri May 30, 2008 7:14 am

dafrca wrote:Well, I have played out 20 combat set ups with various armor and weapons, each of the 20 with the armor out of the book and using Golan’s numbers found on page three of this thread. With that as a basis, I have elected to make the players chose. They can go with the book and combat is deadly (and slightly faster) or use Golan’s numbers and combat is slightly more survivable but slightly slower.
I am glad to see that it didn't slow down combat too much (only slightly). Thanks for the playtest :)
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Postby AKAmra » Fri May 30, 2008 2:15 pm

Golan2072 - I like your armor mods at face value, thanks for the posting. Without any playtesting, I am concerned that MGT's subdermal armor augmentation (another 1 or 3 points) added to increased armor values across the board could really start to slow down combat.

dafrca - Based on all your playtesting with the different armor values, do you think PC's with another 1/3 points of subdermal armor are going to have much effect?
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Postby SSWarlock » Fri May 30, 2008 2:29 pm

AKAmra wrote:Golan2072 - I like your armor mods at face value, thanks for the posting. Without any playtesting, I am concerned that MGT's subdermal armor augmentation (another 1 or 3 points) added to increased armor values across the board could really start to slow down combat.

dafrca - Based on all your playtesting with the different armor values, do you think PC's with another 1/3 points of subdermal armor are going to have much effect?
Ha! Not against laser weaponry, believe me. Been there, done that, got the toe tag.
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Postby -Daniel- » Fri May 30, 2008 2:43 pm

SSWarlock wrote:
AKAmra wrote:Golan2072 - I like your armor mods at face value, thanks for the posting. Without any playtesting, I am concerned that MGT's subdermal armor augmentation (another 1 or 3 points) added to increased armor values across the board could really start to slow down combat.

dafrca - Based on all your playtesting with the different armor values, do you think PC's with another 1/3 points of subdermal armor are going to have much effect?
Ha! Not against laser weaponry, believe me. Been there, done that, got the toe tag.
Without trying it, I think SSWarlock has the right idea. The 1 or 2 extra points would have a larger impact at the lower armor end (as a percent increase) but against some weapons it would not make a big differance.

What I saw was combat only slowed when looking at the higher end of armor vs the lower end of the weapons (And this is realistic given the assumptions of the setting IMO). The combat where they were using Plasma Rifles vs. various armors went quickly either way and I do not think 1 extra point would have had much of an impact in the end.

But it would need to be tested out to know for sure.

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Postby Golan2072 » Fri May 30, 2008 2:55 pm

Hmmm... Forgot about the dermal armor. Do you think that it has to get increase ratings as well if I increase the ordinary armor ratings?
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Postby Golan2072 » Fri May 30, 2008 6:38 pm

Dermal armor is a major issue. Too low, and it'll be insignificant by itself. Too high, and combined with worn armor it'll stop most small-arm fire. However, my current idea is actually to leave it as-is (or maybe increasing all dermal-armor ratings by 1): it has a low rating as there is very little space under the skin to cram armor into without harming flexibility or impeding the sense of touch. And it is best worn when combined with other forms of armor - the worn armor stops the bullet while the dermal armor prevents the bruises or broken ribs caused by kinetic energy not fully stopped by the armor.
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Postby SSWarlock » Sat May 31, 2008 3:56 am

Golan2072 wrote:Dermal armor is a major issue. Too low, and it'll be insignificant by itself. Too high, and combined with worn armor it'll stop most small-arm fire. However, my current idea is actually to leave it as-is (or maybe increasing all dermal-armor ratings by 1): it has a low rating as there is very little space under the skin to cram armor into without harming flexibility or impeding the sense of touch. And it is best worn when combined with other forms of armor - the worn armor stops the bullet while the dermal armor prevents the bruises or broken ribs caused by kinetic energy not fully stopped by the armor.
I see it the same way.
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Postby -Daniel- » Sat May 31, 2008 5:32 am

Golan2072 wrote:Dermal armor is a major issue. Too low, and it'll be insignificant by itself. Too high, and combined with worn armor it'll stop most small-arm fire. However, my current idea is actually to leave it as-is (or maybe increasing all dermal-armor ratings by 1): it has a low rating as there is very little space under the skin to cram armor into without harming flexibility or impeding the sense of touch. And it is best worn when combined with other forms of armor - the worn armor stops the bullet while the dermal armor prevents the bruises or broken ribs caused by kinetic energy not fully stopped by the armor.
After looking at it a little tonight I say leave Dermal as is for now. Just my .02

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