SITREP MJD

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
M J Dougherty
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby M J Dougherty » Wed Jul 04, 2018 11:13 pm

There's probably some of my stuff not on there, but I can't think of anything offhand.
steve98052
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby steve98052 » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:09 pm

steve98052 wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:21 pm
. . .
It also might be nice to have the In Design templates saved in Scribus format too; hobbyist writers don't usually want to spend $20 per month for desktop publishing software they rarely use. But if templates don't readily save-as, I suppose we can just look at published Mongoose books and follow their style, or use their own style.
MonkeyX wrote:
Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:53 pm
I second a Scribus template. I use it for all my layout work and if it were available a few Traveller may actually be on the horizon.
OK, I'm downloading a seven-day trial version of In Design. My oh my, it's a slow download. And if I ever need to open another In Design document beyond the seven days, I'll have to pay up. But at least I'll have that TAS template in Scribus format, assuming I can figure out enough about In Design to export the template elements, and create a Scribus template from them. Maybe I'll also do a Word template, in case Scribus feels like overkill.

Of course, I probably can't share the Scribus or Word templates without permission from Mongoose, even if I manage to get them to work. Anyway, time to wait 42 to 44 minutes for the rest of the download, then who knows how long to figure out how to use the darn thing.
steve98052
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby steve98052 » Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:50 am

Update:
  • I've managed to install my seven-day trial of In Design.
  • It didn't work at first because I forgot to install the four fonts listed on the design template page (Walkway, League Gothic, Code Bold, Alegre Sans.) I installed them.
  • It still didn't work, because I failed to install some fonts not listed on the design template page, including some that were supposed to have been covered with the links on the page. I searched, and installed them. They're all at least legal for personal use, but I'm not sure they're all free for commercial use though, so they may not be permissible in a paid-for document. I couldn't find an exact match for one of the fonts (something "No. 18"), and had to do a manual substitution.
  • I exported as EPS, as described in a procedure for converting things to Scribus, and I got some error messages, most relating to absent images. I searched for the absent images, and they were nowhere to be found.
  • I imported with Scribus. Each attempted import took quite a bit of time, even though I have a halfway respectable machine with 16 GB of memory and an SSD. I got lots and lots of errors:
    • traveller template_1.eps : Converting of 4 images failed!
    • traveller template_2.eps : Converting of 145 images failed!
    • traveller template_3.eps : Converting of 137 images failed!
    • traveller template_4.eps : Converting of 146 images failed!
    • traveller template_5.eps : Converting of 152 images failed!
    • traveller template_6.eps : Converting of 1 images failed! [sic: It didn't change the dialog box to "image".]
    • traveller template_7.eps : Converting of 1 images failed! [sic]
    • traveller template_8.eps : Converting of 43 images failed!
    • traveller template_9.eps : Converting of 41 images failed!
    • traveller template_10.eps : Converting of 224 images failed!
    • traveller template_11.eps : Converting of 1212 images failed!
    • traveller template_12.eps : Converting of 229 images failed!
    • traveller template_13.eps : Converting of 1172 images failed!
It's probably obvious that I'm a bit frustrated by this process. I have to run errands. When I get back, I think I'll ask my wife if I can use her PDF editing software, and try to replicate it in Word. Maybe I'll do Scribus later.

So far, my experience with In Design is pretty similar to everything else by Adobe (except Premiere, in spite of its quirks): I find it aggravating.
HalC
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:42 am

Since this hasn't been updated in a bit...

The stale musty odor of the cubical laughingly called an office, housed one junior officer working long hours at the Office of Naval Intelligence. Most of the time, the data analysis from multiple starports would be collated, gone though, prioritized and segmented as only computers could do. But, thanks to some regulation written centuries ago, the ONI was required to have hands on sophant evaluation of data in case the computers failed to prioritize things properly. Even these days in an era of political correctness, which waxed and waned over the centuries like any other fad, sophant was really politically correct speech for Human, as ONI rarely had non-human members in positions of authority. But this...

"Proposal on how to wage low grade warfare without it appearing to be warfare".

It was an officer candidate's term paper for a wargame assignment some professor had assigned to the Lunion Imperial Academy, or as others in the Spinward Marches would dub it - The LIMP Academy. The problem with attaining a reputation as a substandard training facility throughout the Spinward Marches, the LIMP Academy was both a common nick name and a mask that caused many to forget that brilliance can appear at any place, at any time, and by any individual. Whomever Cadet MJD might have been when this paper had been written, the tactics written within seemed to be spot on if you will. Almost a how to manual for piratical tactics - right down to how to avoid those tactics been seen by the ONI. The low grade officer checked the date the paper was written, and found that it had been written long before today's time - but the suppositions contained within were just as valid today as it would have been when it had been written. Sublieutenant Caarvetii made a mental note to look up cadet MJD's records and see what ever became of him.

Phase I - in establishing a training facility within the Naval organization, a unit had to be trained in unorthodox tactical behaviors. Said unit would be required to work off the grid, with no connection with normal chain of command. All assets gained for use simulating piracy would require that the assets be strictly civilian in nature, with perhaps some above average capabilities - but none that would focus attention upon the assets in any major fashion.

Phase II - determine how traffic patterns work for the civilian logistical systems throughout the subsectors and even sectors. All major bases having to be defined where possible, as well as centers of governmental functions and resources. This is required in an effort to analyze informational highways and determine bottleneck locations for information flow. Where possible, determine what the likely delays are between information arriving, and decisions being made relative to the information, and returning back to where the decision is relevant. Taking advantage of an enemy's weakness with respect to information processing is crucial.

Phase III - determine the criminal elements within the structure so as to connect with them and dispose of goods garnered through piratical activity. Determine which members of the governments and/or naval institutions are open to manipulation that secures their willingness to compromise their heads of state. Infiltrate these organizations and secure help with the piratical illusion by any means necessary - monetary incitements at best, blackmail at worst.

Phases I - III are essentially what pirates need to accomplish in order to survive in a hostile high technological environment. By using the same tactics as pirates engage in to ply their trade, an enemy state can give the appearance of working strictly as a non-allied enemy unit without incurring political fall out. By using those same techniques, a covert enemy team could in fact, give the appearance of highly successful pirates and still inflict massive damage against a target entity. Results would be a built up of anti-piracy assets at the expense of building battle worthy warships. It would also damage their commercial infrastructure in a manner that would otherwise have been detected as enemy action but for the appearance that it is actually a directed military campaign designed to weaken a target entity prior to a war. What had caught sublieutenant's attention was the fact that everything he found in the paper written a long time ago, were seemingly being correlated by his cross-checking of information that the ONI computers had disregarded. The problem here however, was this. If it looks like a pirate, acts like a pirate, and profits like a pirate, conclusion is - it must be piracy. Well, either way, sublieutenant Caarvetii rationalized that pursuing this further would be worth the effort either way. Portraying the piratical activity as a low grade proxy war might just get him his next promotion. Failing that, discerning the current activity as it has been ongoing these past few years, might still get him his promotion. Now, all he had to do, was use MJD's guidelines from his prior work, and see what came of it.

Note:
We've seen SECTOR FLEET material, and we have all sorts of other documents out there on how to run campaigns etc. But, short of having a full fledged battle campaign with the material in SECTOR FLEET - why not build a companion volume that is a how to for Pirates. Those subsector naval units need a mission. They need a purpose. They need - well, pirates. They need skulkers who jump into deep space of a star system, skulk about for a time, record information while skulking, and maybe head off somewhere with that information. If the Imperium records flight paths and transponder codes and everything else - how does a pirate maintain a cover for a ship that is being used to engage in piracy? Answer: Get two maybe three ships of the same class - all with the same transponder code, but only ONE ever appearing in any given port at any given time. Officially, that one transponder code only shows up where it is supposed to - but the other piratical version is out there doing things that the Imperial Authorities would love to find out about. How does one engage in transport of illegal cargoes without a supporting fright manifest to permit legal sale elsewhere? How do pirates find out what is in the shipping manifests of various other ships outbound or inbound? How long does it take to match courses and vectors with a prey ship? If a pirate ship orders you to dump the cargo and it can go its merry way - with the warning "We know your transponder code, mess with us and we'll take our revenge on you elsewhere - might pressure the civilian captains to do just that. If pirates don't kill their prey, don't shoot up their prey, and above all, get what they want - all without having a shot fired - then, that's one happy pirate!

We NEED a how to guide - involving sensor rules detecting ships and the like. We need to know how long it takes for a ship in its berth not actively geared for battle stations - perhaps with its crew about under normal conditions, suddenly having to return to ship and attain battle stations in preparation for chasing after a situation. No ship can be at battle alert status 24/7/365 days a year!

What we need, is a MJD special in the same vein as SECTOR FLEET, but with a catchy title. TRAVELLER: A PIRATE'S LIFE FOR ME! or something even snazzier. Cadet MJD - your term paper needs to be finished. *Teasing grin*
Moppy
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Moppy » Fri Dec 28, 2018 3:32 am

HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:42 am
How long does it take to match courses and vectors with a prey ship?

We NEED a how to guide - involving sensor rules detecting ships and the like.

We need to know how long it takes for a ship in its berth not actively geared for battle stations - perhaps with its crew about under normal conditions, suddenly having to return to ship and attain battle stations in preparation for chasing after a situation.
The first 2 are in Mongoose including High Guard.

For the second, you can probably use current time scales. When Pearl Harbor was attacked, the USN was able to get some active battleships underway within 30 minutes.

Navy ships still maintain a watch, even when at civilian ports. They don't want another USS Cole.

If they have to leave in a hurry, the navy will of course send an air/raft round to the local bars to pick up anyone who might be ashore.

It can take up to 2 weeks or more if the ship has been laid up for a while but I don't think this was the question you asked.
M J Dougherty
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby M J Dougherty » Fri Dec 28, 2018 4:46 am

Okay, I'll bite. Because it's 4:44AM.

The pirate guide thingy you speak of.... I'm writing that now.

As to the tactics and whatnot of piraticky-lookin-warfare, well, I have actually published papers on related subjects in the real world. I'm not active in the defence sector at present, but I used to be on the lecture/conference circuit as an assymetric warfare expert. So maybe the tongue-in-cheek fiction piece is closer to reality than it seems.....
HalC
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Fri Dec 28, 2018 2:45 pm

Moppy wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 3:32 am
HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 1:42 am
How long does it take to match courses and vectors with a prey ship?

We NEED a how to guide - involving sensor rules detecting ships and the like.

We need to know how long it takes for a ship in its berth not actively geared for battle stations - perhaps with its crew about under normal conditions, suddenly having to return to ship and attain battle stations in preparation for chasing after a situation.
The first 2 are in Mongoose including High Guard.

For the second, you can probably use current time scales. When Pearl Harbor was attacked, the USN was able to get some active battleships underway within 30 minutes.

Navy ships still maintain a watch, even when at civilian ports. They don't want another USS Cole.

If they have to leave in a hurry, the navy will of course send an air/raft round to the local bars to pick up anyone who might be ashore.

It can take up to 2 weeks or more if the ship has been laid up for a while but I don't think this was the question you asked.
Hi Moppy,
Would have tried to send you a more private comment - but it appears that option is not available SOOOooooo...

Pearl Harbor's battleships that got underway were definitely not fully manned, and those that were underway were largely incapable of engaging against a ship of their own capability (if I'm recalling correctly what I read decades ago). They had the ability to maneuver and man their guns etc - but their complement was lacking.

The questions posed earlier stem from the fact that many who want to set up scenarios will be of a mind to assume "perfect intelligence" in which the authorities know right off the bat that the pirates are up to no good, and respond instantly. In addition, taking Lunion Subsector for example, we might have a total of 25 planets within the subsector, but of them, only 11 of them, per Classic Traveller encounter rules, are free from pirate encounters.

So, what assets are available for any given scenario? What will the pirates have at their disposal? Can for example, a ship put out a distress signal indicating they are under attack - and draw off assets charged with protecting the system? Can a 4g Asset converge upon a 1g target, and cut it off before it can reach the 100 diameter limit, and still have time to engage with its target, unload their cargo bay, load up their own, and then maneuver to the jump point outside 100 diameters and escape? THAT requires having rules for the situation as it develops. How many times will tower control warn off a ship that doesn't have skull and crossbones painted on its side to identify it as a pirate to veer off from its present course and call on the big boys to enforce their mandate? If a starport type E has only those sensors necessary to handle inbound and outbound traffic - what happens if a ship or boat is in orbit on the other side of the world, and starts off in pursuit of its prey from there?

What assets are likely emplaced at a class D starport or even Class C starport to discourage piracy? Can a shuttle be used to ram a military vessel without warning as happened with the USS COLE? While it is unlikely to happen, at least in theory, what happens when a freighter is potentially on a collision course with a naval asset - one that is incompetently trained or manned? One would NEVER have imagined that the US Navy could have it happen not once, but twice in recent times - but it has happened.

In all - what is missing in all of this are some common sense guidelines. A poor crew will tend to respond more slowly or incorrectly to events, whereas a crack crew will be sharp and on the ball, leaving little margin of error to be exploited by any potential enemies. Something as simple as an Admin roll to insure that when the flag goes up, the crews are on hand and ready to engage the enemy might be worth introducing into the game. Maybe it isn't admin that determines a readiness state - perhaps it is a leadership roll. Who knows?

As for the other stuff - SECTOR FLEET has rules regarding ship readiness states (page 70), But what happens when a ship is not on battle alert? Turning to page 66 of IMPERIAL SQUADRONS from T4, we get some clues, but frankly, I don't want to have to constantly shift between something written in CT, MT, GT, T4, T5, T20, or any other game system. I'd like for everything to be spelled out in one manuscript. GURPS TRAVELLER introduced the concept of being able to perform the yearly maintenance without starship facilities and how long it would take absent those facilities. The prime requisite was that the ship had to carry those maintenance supplies in its own hold or have it available somehow.

In the end? I'd like to see something that is capable of helping a GM set up scenarios that he can adjudicate for his players and still have fun - all without turning it into a four hour game session that simulates only 3 minutes of character life. ;)
Moppy
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Moppy » Fri Dec 28, 2018 3:19 pm

In my experience the only people that really want guidelines for this are the type that will throw them out and make their own because "X wont work, Y won't work, Z is stupid" exactly like the battleships at pearl harbor example - it's a lot of work for no gain.

If you're playing a wargame it's necessary but Traveller isn't really the best wargame framework.

Many of the issues are also political and not military. Can USS Cole happen again? Theoretically no if you let them sink anything they see. Who will let them do this in peacetime?
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby AndrewW » Fri Dec 28, 2018 5:06 pm

HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 2:45 pm
Hi Moppy,
Would have tried to send you a more private comment - but it appears that option is not available SOOOooooo...
You can click on the user name then under Contact you'll see PM: Send private message, just click there.
Moppy
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Moppy » Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:08 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 5:06 pm
HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 2:45 pm
Hi Moppy,
Would have tried to send you a more private comment - but it appears that option is not available SOOOooooo...
You can click on the user name then under Contact you'll see PM: Send private message, just click there.
I have that disabled. I don't know if that works, but I've not yet received a message.
HalC
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:29 pm

Moppy wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:08 pm
AndrewW wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 5:06 pm
HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 2:45 pm
Hi Moppy,
Would have tried to send you a more private comment - but it appears that option is not available SOOOooooo...
You can click on the user name then under Contact you'll see PM: Send private message, just click there.
I have that disabled. I don't know if that works, but I've not yet received a message.
currently, you have it disabled such that you won't be able to receive private messages. Sometimes, rather than put too much into a thread, or derail a thread TOO badly, I feel it is best to go to private messaging rather then open communication. The way to enable your private messaging is to go to the tab above the "search" box and click on the second from the left (or the one adjacent to the ? square. When you click on that button (it will have your name when you mouse over it), you get three options to choose from. You want to go to User Control Panel. From there, go to Board Preferences. It will have a whole slew of options that you can choose to say yes or no to. If you want to have private messages sent to you, then select that option as a yes. Currently, it is set to no based on your inability to recieve messages and my inability to send you one. If you want to receive emails when someone posts to a thread you've subscribed to, etc - well, those options are listed.

In theory, one can be contacted via email, but I'm not seeing it here on this board even though I've enabled the option at my end.

In the end, whether one wants to be contacted via private message or not is up to them, and I can respect a person's wish either way without thinking twice about it. ;)

I tend to use private messages for private stuff or for when I figure what I have to say is boring or what have you. Me? I'm a mongrel through and through in the sense that if something looks good in CT, and something else looks good in T4, and something else looks good in T5 - and I use GURPS TRAVELLER for my basic vehicle, well, I'm definitely NOT using a pure strain of Traveller - that's for sure!
HalC
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Fri Dec 28, 2018 7:07 pm

Moppy wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 3:19 pm
In my experience the only people that really want guidelines for this are the type that will throw them out and make their own because "X wont work, Y won't work, Z is stupid" exactly like the battleships at pearl harbor example - it's a lot of work for no gain.

If you're playing a wargame it's necessary but Traveller isn't really the best wargame framework.

Many of the issues are also political and not military. Can USS Cole happen again? Theoretically no if you let them sink anything they see. Who will let them do this in peacetime?
I know this may seem a bit odd, but I'll address it if you will...

Role playing as a whole is a sort of bastard child. Before role playing came into being, there were war games. If you look at the earlier role playing games out there, you'll note they have a distinct "wargame" approach to them. Now, if someone like MJD were to create a series of guidelines, those who purchase the guidelines are more than welcome to use them or toss them as they see fit. But, for those who don't have a structure to work with, creating the structure whole cloth can be rather daunting. For those whose background is spotty and they'd like to see someone else with a better grasp on things - take a run at it FIRST. This way, they can take the basic framework, accept those things they agree with, and dump those things they do not.

Then there are those whose experiences are such that they don't understand certain ramifications. For instance, you've likely heard of the phrase "ambush" and you understand its basic concept. But have you ever run across the concept of "Ambush in time?" In that instance, you know for example, that you intend to force a battle at a given location, and you don't want the enemy to see your forces available - so you present him with a smaller target group. What the enemy doesn't know however, is that you're maneuvering a larger force to meet up with the smaller force at a later time (hence the "in time" aspect). The concept is older than the Romans who had it applied against them by Persian units and others (I think the Jewish forces may have utilized it as well). Long story short - someone who goes through the effort to categorize things, organize them, and then present them - is going to have a few insights that may have been hard won.

So, to that end - any role playing game that has a combat aspect to it, can be utilized as a war game. Having the players make decisions as if they were ship commanders will have an impact on a skirmish if their ship is at the wrong place at the wrong time, or at the right place at the right time. Given the players a tactical puzzle to work out can sometimes be a rewarding experience as they figure out the correct answer on their own.

Now suppose for a moment, that MJD does the grunt work and sets up some really NIFTY scenarios to play out - whether for use with Mongoose Traveller, or for people such as myself who raid other game system publications for use with their own campaign. I picked up SECTOR FLEET despite owning a copy of GRAND FLEET. I've picked up some of the other work that has Martin's name on it, including a book he published on firearms. I've enjoyed the reading material and I've enjoyed the subtle differences between GRAND FLEET and SECTOR FLEET (largely a difference between the material on subsector navies and the like).

So, if you grew up enjoying games like MAYDAY and SNAPSHOT and perhaps a few other games (including FIFTH FRONTIER WAR and IMPERIUM, which is sorta Traveller, but sorta not) - then you might enjoy crafting your own scenarios.

Picture this if you will, and why I tend to base many of my Traveller Campaigns in the Lunion Subsector - the Fifth Frontier War is about to commence. No where do you see anything involving the FFW as it relates to the Lunion Subsector, despite the fact that the Lunion Subsector is adjacent to the Sword Worlds. I largely suspect that any actions that took place during the Fifth Frontier War in the Lunion Subsector would have largely been commerce raiding and a few odds and ends skirmishing between lesser ships. ALL of which would have been either adventure class ships, or the next level up with Destroyer class ships instead. Think about it - how much fun could a GM have detailing scenarios involving the Lunion Subsector Navy in that time period? What if there were a few sword worlder naval officers trained to live off the land (so to speak) as pirates operating within the Lunion Subsector?

If a given world has three 400 dton Type T patrol cruisers on station, how do you manage a raid from right under their noses? Send a few "pirate" ships to jump in close to a gas giant (for example) act like ordinary merchants attempting to engage in wilderness refueling, and leave a few surprises behind near the gas giant. If possible, maybe engage in raids that destroy infrastructure so as to generate a lot of MAYDAY calls for help. Problem is? Few books even bother to detail the infrastructure that is present within any given system. Even something as simple as absconding with a single shuttle worth a few MCr might be worth the raid. Maybe.

So, in the end - it all depends on what the market out there is like for the writers. And, if their experiment is successful, and people buy their work in sufficient numbers as to make it worth their while, maybe they write another one, and then another one after that, etc.

As a general bloke - I've had nothing but good contact with Martin. I'd be happy to buy him a beer or dinner one night if possible. If he were to pass through Buffalo New York, and I had ample time to prepare the guest room with a spare bed etc - I'd likely do for him what I did for John and Alyson (spelling?) who arrived from England on their Honeymoon. I still remember those two with fondness. :)

So - yes, all wars are political. Yes, all rules of engagement tend to follow certain paths despite someone saying years or decades later (or even centuries?) "Why in the nine hells did those morons do what they chose to do!" Most decisions tend to have their own internal consistency or logic that is often not recorded in time. Sometimes historians have to wrestle with the "everyone knows" syndrome where something is left out of the narrative because - well, it goes without saying!

How long did it take before CT finally allowed for the possibility that a fusion power plant could be operated at a power level 1 instead of power level 4 - in order to permit a longer duration for its missions without the need to refuel? In hindsight, it seems like an obvious decision no? Just as it can happen that in one game system, weapon bays are not permitted unless the ship has a displacement of 1,000 dtons. Mongoose Traveller's rules for bays are a wee bit different than CT's - which means that what was not possible in the one system is now possible in another.

Last but not least and I'll bring this post to a close...

MAYDAY rules for ship to ship combat were fun to use and missile combat with its attending "Electronic warfare" and "Sandcasters" had a definite flavor to it. GURPS TRAVELLER was such that laser turrets could largely whittle down missile warfare to where they rendered the missiles less useful. It also required that the missiles (largely fire and forget in CT) had to be guided by the turret operator or missile bay operator, changing the aspect of naval warfare in a big way. Many of the Classic Traveller ship designs made NO sense in the GURPS TRAVELLER universe. Likewise, having fusion power plants that last 200 years at a pop, rendered the whole issue of limited fuel supplies for power generation a moot point. Now, contrast either of those two systems against TRAVELLER: THE NEW ERA design!

It can be VERY difficult to write something that is useful across the board for all versions of Traveller. I think SECTOR FLEET did a rather nice job myself. I have purchased some of the Mongoose material and incorporated it into my GURPS campaign. Want to know the best part? GURPS allows you to build characters, and encourages to some extent, a "min/max" approach (ie, get the most bang for your character point bucks). The end result tends to be a bland rehash of what the player considers to be optimal builds. So - I use the Mongoose Traveller system for generating the character, and then converting it over into GURPS. I've looked at the various supplements and found that they contained the older BITS material - but hey, I liked having them in PDF format instead of the booklet format.

Ah well, this grew a bit long. Time to bring it to an end here. :)
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby steve98052 » Fri Dec 28, 2018 7:54 pm

HalC wrote:
Fri Dec 28, 2018 2:45 pm
. . . A poor crew will tend to respond more slowly or incorrectly to events, whereas a crack crew will be sharp and on the ball, leaving little margin of error to be exploited by any potential enemies. Something as simple as an Admin roll to insure that when the flag goes up, the crews are on hand and ready to engage the enemy might be worth introducing into the game. Maybe it isn't admin that determines a readiness state - perhaps it is a leadership roll. Who knows?
. . .
Interesting question. I would agree that it's an Admin roll to have at least some effective crew at ready on all shifts.

But it's a Leadership roll to do a good job of determining which crew are effective, and a good Leadership skill tends to improve the effectiveness of crew who are are neither chronic slackers nor self-motivated overachievers, in other words, the majority in the middle.

Then it's back to Admin to figure out a way to make best use of those self-motivated overachievers. Some of them want to rise in the ranks towards department commands, or toward their own ships; some want to be crew member of the month; some just want to make themselves, their department, their ship, their task force, etc. the best they can be. If you have someone looking for his or her own ship, the best way to keep him or her happy is to cross train through every department with a lot of time as a command apprentice, maybe even night shift officer. But someone who wants to be promoted to commander of the Sensors and ECM Department is best rotated through that department's jobs. Someone who wants to do a great individual job, or a great job for a team, ship, etc. just needs to be assigned to work that makes that possible.
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:47 pm

If I had to borrow from the concepts presented with MgT, I think the way I'd handle this would be:

Roll vs Admin to get the crew to a given level of competency. From there, once the minimal level is attained, one needs to roll against Leadership to attain a higher category of proficiency. Each step adds or subtracts from the general roll to maintain or get better. Perhaps a failed roll by a given value lowers the level of crew effectiveness. Maybe elite crews are deliberately kept together in recognition of how hard it is to get that kind of crew. On the other hand? Ever hungry for good talent, maybe a reputation for a really GOOD crew makes it harder to maintain as other commands raid you for your key personnel.

Elite: can only be attained by a crack crew having undergone major combat or difficult missions and being kept that way by its command cadre. +4 to retain
Crack: Highest level any non-combat tested crew can attain. +2 to retain.
Well Trained: Highest level one can reach on admin alone. +1 to retain.
Average: Nothing especially good nor bad. +0
Green: Usually a crew that is either new, or has some poor leaders as its helm. -1 to your maintain level (sometimes it is hard to get a bad crew up to snuff)
Poor: Usually a crew that has had really BAD leadership or has morale issues inherent with being decimated or what have you. Should be disbanded. -4

Then, allow certain tasks to benefit from crew rating etc. Those numbers aren't intended to be writ in stone, but worked until someone can say "Hey, yeah, it makes sense, and works within the system." Maybe +/- 4 is too much - maybe it should be a 3 or even a 2. Who knows. Ideas are meant to be shared - not because they're good, but because maybe they will inspire the good stuff. ;)

But if this helps with making the crew of a ship come more alive for the players who command a ship, I'm all for it. The ship based adventures look tempting, and the day I have my bills paid up and I have spare change, I'm likely going to take a hard look at them and maybe pick one up. :)
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Rikki Tikki Traveller » Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:45 pm

I suspect that any System Defense Force will have multiple ships in a variety of readiness status.

For Example, the fleet has 4 System Defense Boats:
1 is on Active status - flying around, checking papers etc. within the 100D limit
1 is on Standby status - the ship is in port, docked etc. but could be active and flying within an hour - crews are aboard ship, but the ship is mostly shut down
1 is on Reserve status - the ship would take a day to get underway, up to 2/3 of the crew is not aboard ship
1 is in Maintenance status - it could not get underway for at least a week - major components are off-line, unavailable.

Modern US Air Force has as much as 50% of its fighters unable to be rapidly deployed (respond to an emergency) due to maintenance or crew issues.

Just some thoughts...
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby HalC » Mon Dec 31, 2018 10:42 pm

Rikki Tikki Traveller wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:45 pm
I suspect that any System Defense Force will have multiple ships in a variety of readiness status.

For Example, the fleet has 4 System Defense Boats:
1 is on Active status - flying around, checking papers etc. within the 100D limit
1 is on Standby status - the ship is in port, docked etc. but could be active and flying within an hour - crews are aboard ship, but the ship is mostly shut down
1 is on Reserve status - the ship would take a day to get underway, up to 2/3 of the crew is not aboard ship
1 is in Maintenance status - it could not get underway for at least a week - major components are off-line, unavailable.

Modern US Air Force has as much as 50% of its fighters unable to be rapidly deployed (respond to an emergency) due to maintenance or crew issues.

Just some thoughts...
In Traveller turns of 20 minutes, the Standby status might require 3 turns before it can launch. The "Active Status" ship - would likely tend to be relegated to a "Lifeguard" type position, where they are to remain in place until absolutely needed. Once the ship is underway, it will have to deal with built up velocity and vector issues not present if it is in orbit.

Now, what effect would a Reserve ship have if it is missing half of its crew? Can't use half of its weapons? Is considered under-manned when it comes to its engineering department? Maybe the best top flight "A-team" personnel are not manning duty stations, so the bulk of the skills may suffer penalties?

You know, I rather LIKE that idea. Senior best operators might normally be skill 2 or even 3, and that's how the battle will unfold in general. But when a Reserve ship enters the fray, rolling against ADMIN or LEADERSHIP for each aspect of ship capability might make it worth the while.

Engineering
Command
Sensors
Weapons

Something to think about. Thank you Rikki
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Linwood » Fri Jan 04, 2019 11:28 am

You could simply give the Reserve ship a Bane on certain actions (maybe all) to represent missing crew.

Or - if the ship is running Virtual Crew, the penalties would come in with damage control activities.
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Re: SITREP MJD

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:21 pm

The naval campaign sourcebook (from the Element cruiser box) has tools for handling partially crewed ships.

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