Starship combat range

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings

Starship Combat turn length/scale

6 min
5
56%
1000 sec
4
44%
20 min
0
No votes
30 min
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 9
Infojunky
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Starship combat range

Postby Infojunky » Sun May 25, 2008 6:46 pm

What scale do y'all favor for starship combat?

MGT has a 6 min turn, which is 625 km interval.

CT has a 1000 second turn, which is an 10,000 km interval.

High Guard has a 20 min turn, with no stated interval, but one can assume 10,00 km also.

Mayday has a 1000 min turn, which is an 1 light second interval.

TNE/Brilliant Lances has a 30 min turn with 1/10 light second/30,000 km interval.

Or another way to ask the question is in terms of the Earth/Moon system, how close together on the play map should they be?

Every edition of traveller has had differing scales, Heck that is one of the reason some many of our starship combat/detection discussion become pointless as they have no common frame. I have a pet project of RP scale vector based combat using the hex mechanic as presented in Mayday just trying to figure out what the common scale should be.
Evyn
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Postby Infojunky » Sun May 25, 2008 11:30 pm

Ok maybe the first question is too much.

how about this, should a planets 10 diameter and 100 diameter limits be on the board?

Considering the board is a 6mm hex sheet 150 hexes by 100 hexes (24 by 36 inches)
Evyn
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Postby -Daniel- » Mon May 26, 2008 4:21 am

I think you hit them on the weekend when the math side of the brain is sleeping. :lol:

I know this will get me burned at the stake, but I am unsure I care as long as the rules are adjusted to match the scale they elect to use. Where I see issues is when they start to compare rules from various scales. Then this causes issues as things do not fit etc. I mean the space combat is so abstract for me anyway.

Daniel
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Postby zozotroll » Mon May 26, 2008 4:48 am

I prefer a system you can play with little toy starships, sometimes called miniatures. I dont care about time/hex scales so much as long as it makes sense, and there is more to combat than just pounding each other.

Generaly, however, I like smaller time/hex scales, so long as there is noticeable movement. And I am not so cool with universal bearing turrets. But that may bring in more detail than most Traveller players are willing to put up with. So I live with abstract systems
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Postby Infojunky » Mon May 26, 2008 5:31 am

dafrca wrote:I think you hit them on the weekend when the math side of the brain is sleeping. :lol:
It is a Holiday weekend, Con Weekend etc.... Kinda wishing I had something more to do other than.... well this.
dafrca wrote:I know this will get me burned at the stake, but I am unsure I care as long as the rules are adjusted to match the scale they elect to use. Where I see issues is when they start to compare rules from various scales. Then this causes issues as things do not fit etc. I mean the space combat is so abstract for me anyway.
Yep nailed on the head, but i want a little more feel for the game I am running.

I am just feeling out the general populace to see if any body had any good ideas to share.

Ya' know good stuff to be sucked into the Black hole of quality.
Evyn
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Postby Infojunky » Mon May 26, 2008 5:40 am

zozotroll wrote:I prefer a system you can play with little toy starships, sometimes called miniatures. I dont care about time/hex scales so much as long as it makes sense, and there is more to combat than just pounding each other.

Generaly, however, I like smaller time/hex scales, so long as there is noticeable movement. And I am not so cool with universal bearing turrets. But that may bring in more detail than most Traveller players are willing to put up with. So I live with abstract systems
Yah, that is what I was talking about and opinion. Thanks.

If y'all have figured out I dig miniatures, and my 1st thought was to adapt Full Thrust to PC scale Traveller and use the cinematic system presented in FTs base rules. Then I read MGT's Big Black Book, and I dug out all my CT stuff and looked at Mayday again, and well we ended up here.

Well with the moon and 10d limit on the board then I can have things like La-grange stations and missile bases on the moon involved in combat.

With the smaller scale I get the smaller orbital stuff and the bulk of the planet as terrain.

Thanks for the help.
Evyn
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Postby -Daniel- » Mon May 26, 2008 6:55 am

zozotroll wrote: But that may bring in more detail than most Traveller players are willing to put up with. So I live with abstract systems
Detail is great when the detail is on the focus of the game. So the real question needs to also ask if you play spaceship combat as a part of the RPG or as it's own game.

If you play the starship combat for it's sake then I think the abstract rules can take away from the fun. But if the space based combat is only to play out how my PC's ship gets past the raiders, well then I error on the side of speed and simplicity over detailed and more in depth rules.

So to answer the original question, I want the scale that allows me to have some space based combat once in a while with the PC's little Scout or Far Trader but is not so “grand” that I end up spending the whole three hour session playing out that one combat.

Daniel
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Postby AKAramis » Mon May 26, 2008 3:01 pm

I use 1min, 18km hexes with MegaTraveller.

I also use a 3-marker movement system, derived from mayday, but just a touch more realistic

Prior position Pp
Current position Cp
Future Position Fp

start of turn:
  1. pick up Pp, put it under Cp.
  2. Pick up Cp, put it under Fp
  3. pick up Fp, and put it equal and opposite Cp from Pp
  4. Apply maneuver: each G is one hex on Cp, and three on FP in the identical direction. (So, if I go direction A for 1g, cp changes 1 hex in direction a, and Fp is moved 3 in direction a).
  5. Fire Phase (Using the MegaTraveller Players Manual page 80 stats, and 10 shots per battery per turn; batteries are simply totalled damage as if conglomerate units; see MT Ref's Companion).
    Fire is done from you Cp to Their Cp.
  6. Accounting phase
Note that this produces 36km/turn accumulated vector change per G, as it should, since ∆V=AT^2, while distance covered is change of distance is ∆D=0.5AT^2....
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Postby SableWyvern » Mon May 26, 2008 4:17 pm

AKAramis wrote:Fp is moved 3 in direction a .. Note that this produces 36km/turn accumulated vector change per G, as it should, since ∆V=AT^2, while distance covered is change of distance is ∆D=0.5AT^2....
I was going to query this, since the speed in hexes per turn gained for a given amount of (constant or average) thrust should be double the hexes moved in that turn due to thrust ... but, of course, Fp needs to be moved to account both for the velocity gained and for the distance already moved. Which I mention just in case anybody else jumps to the same incorrect conclusion I did.
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Postby Infojunky » Mon May 26, 2008 7:54 pm

Thanks guys! I was going from acceleration alone, instead of DeltaV....

Need to simplify to result of Acceleration not expressly it. ergo what GDW did in the first place... Argh.. I hate when I bone head the basics.....

MGT hex size should be generally 1200 km....
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Postby AKAramis » Tue May 27, 2008 4:57 am

Yes, the need to account for both twice as much vector change as movement, plus including the movement already done, is why it's 3x.

Also note: My three marker system IS different from Mayday's, and is open content... just credit me if you include it, please.

I've used it with MegaTraveller for very good effect. (18km hexes are a bit small, really, for the weapon ranges, but I will also note that it's not easy to hit with fire control at ranges of VDistant or longer. (Best is Difficult, rapidly climbs to Improbable. under MT, at least.)
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Postby Infojunky » Tue May 27, 2008 6:03 am

AKAramis wrote:Also note: My three marker system IS different from Mayday's, and is open content... just credit me if you include it, please.
I am putting into possibilities in my notes, but goal is maneuvering will be no more complex than Mayday or book two.... But, if things go well I will up the complexity, and then it may come in handy.

On a side note, I know I am losing it, I was pondering miniatures to fit on to 6 mm bases (rare earth magnets, but the over all size will be small). Though it will be a plotted game instead of a miniature or marker game.
Evyn
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Postby BITS Dom » Tue May 27, 2008 8:01 pm

Power Projection uses a 3 counter system in a similar way to your description, and yes, it's an evolution of Mayday.

The scale (as presented in the new rules) is slightly broken (the thrust points to change range are slightly out) but they're near enough for roleplaying ;-)
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Postby SableWyvern » Wed May 28, 2008 1:46 am

BITS Dom wrote:The scale (as presented in the new rules) is slightly broken (the thrust points to change range are slightly out) but they're near enough for roleplaying ;-)
If you wish to apply any degree of real world physics, the system in the main rulebook is utterly broken, as it fails to conserve any momentum from turn to turn.
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Postby Infojunky » Wed May 28, 2008 1:59 am

SableWyvern wrote:
BITS Dom wrote:The scale (as presented in the new rules) is slightly broken (the thrust points to change range are slightly out) but they're near enough for roleplaying ;-)
If you wish to apply any degree of real world physics, the system in the main rulebook is utterly broken, as it fails to conserve any momentum from turn to turn.
The real question i does it work in game.
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Postby SableWyvern » Wed May 28, 2008 5:28 am

Infojunky wrote:
SableWyvern wrote:
BITS Dom wrote:The scale (as presented in the new rules) is slightly broken (the thrust points to change range are slightly out) but they're near enough for roleplaying ;-)
If you wish to apply any degree of real world physics, the system in the main rulebook is utterly broken, as it fails to conserve any momentum from turn to turn.
The real question i does it work in game.
If you don't mind the lack of physics, then yes, it works just fine -- it's much simpler than dealing with vectors, and it's internally consitent if not realisitic.

OTOH, if your suspension of belief is destroyed by the idea that a ship stops dead relative to the enemy as soon as you stop applying thrust, then, no, it doesn't work at all.

I wasn't suggesting that the rules must be changed, merely pointing out that it's not remotely realistic (and, IMO, if you're fine with that, there's no point even mentioning that the thrust-to-range measurements are imperfect).
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Postby Infojunky » Wed May 28, 2008 5:44 am

SableWyvern wrote:
Infojunky wrote:The real question i does it work in game.
If you don't mind the lack of physics, then yes, it works just fine -- it's much simpler than dealing with vectors, and it's internally consitent if not realisitic.

OTOH, if your suspension of belief is destroyed by the idea that a ship stops dead relative to the enemy as soon as you stop applying thrust, then, no, it doesn't work at all.

I wasn't suggesting that the rules must be changed, merely pointing out that it's not remotely realistic (and, IMO, if you're fine with that, there's no point even mentioning that the thrust-to-range measurements are imperfect).
If i where fine with it I wouldn't have hauled out my CT rule books and started figuring out an alternate solution that would work within the rules framework laid out by Mongoose. Thus my public pondering of what would be an appropriate scale to play out ship to ship combat.
Evyn
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Postby SableWyvern » Wed May 28, 2008 5:55 am

Well, I'm not sure I follow your question then ("Does it work in game?").

I took it as a semi-rhetorical "Does realistic conservation of momentum really matter?", which given your response to my answer, doesn't seem to have been your intent.
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Postby Infojunky » Wed May 28, 2008 6:24 am

SableWyvern wrote:Well, I'm not sure I follow your question then ("Does it work in game?").

I took it as a semi-rhetorical "Does realistic conservation of momentum really matter?", which given your response to my answer, doesn't seem to have been your intent.
It come from the honest attempt on my part not to bitch about the parts of what is a better than average games flaws.

So the base mechanic works, yes. Does it work in a way that feels like the game I have loved for the last 30 years, no not really. But in contrasting to a couple of threads here argue about a topic that what flogged to death on the TML 18 years ago, this search for a differing solution has been civil.

I am sorry for the inconsistent answer, some times I just answer a quest without regard to the topic of the thread, and it bite both me and the person I am replying to it the butt.

As such I beg your forbearance to my sometime inconsistent mood/replies.
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Postby SableWyvern » Wed May 28, 2008 7:12 am

Ok, I'm with you now. 8)

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