Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
baithammer
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby baithammer » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:10 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Tue Feb 19, 2019 2:24 pm
baithammer wrote: This means its cheaper and less dt to go with TL12 Advanced Materials than bog standard TL15 material, this isn't such a good result.
Old School wrote: The powerplant example is one of the many issues where the construction rules don’t quite flow.
I really don't see a major problem here. Refined low tech is cheaper than newly introduced high tech, until it also gets refined. Isn't that rather normal?
Because it's not newly introduced technology, as those would be the prototype versions and as such is standard technology of that period. ( In this particular case, military technology primarily.)
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:50 pm

Sigtrygg wrote: I doubt very much if the game designer considered all of this - running these numbers for every system takes time, the fact that stuff like this is just being discovered leads me to agree with phavoc - unintended consequence.
We did go through this in detail during beta, didn't we?
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:54 pm

Libris wrote: Not when the “new” high tech is demonstrably worse across all metrics.
baithammer wrote: Because it's not newly introduced technology, as those would be the prototype versions and as such is standard technology of that period. ( In this particular case, military technology primarily.)
OK, this seems to a big deal to you. I guess I have to agree with Old School:
Old School wrote: Your game, your rules.
Shrug.
phavoc
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby phavoc » Wed Feb 20, 2019 4:03 am

Has anyone re-built some of the core ships in min/max configurations to compare to the standard ones?
Linwood
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Linwood » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:47 am

I second that request. The min one might be the export version to frontier regions.
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Wed Feb 20, 2019 11:12 am

phavoc wrote: Has anyone re-built some of the core ships in min/max configurations to compare to the standard ones?
I haven't seen the need for "exactly the same, but slightly better".

Taking full advantage of the system, we can make e.g. this:
Image

Designed for the cheapest available jump drive it is a 100 Dt J-2/M-2 light utility ship for the reasonable price of MCr 24.

With high automation (Virtual Crew + Expert + Repair Drones) it can be flown by a single pilot.

It is built around a modular 70 dT bay (10.5 m × 31.5m × 3m [7 × 21 squares]), with drives to the sides and a tiny bridge/crew compartment in front. The bay is accessed by a cargo hatch in the aft and the crew compartment has an air-lock to the side. Normally 20 Dt jump fuel is carried in the modular bay, leaving 50 Dt free for staterooms, barracks, cargo, or whatever. Standard modules are 10 [7 × 3 sq.] or 20 Dt [7 × 6 sq.] and include 10 Dt fuel, 10 Dt (2 state) habitat, 20 Dt (4 state) habitat, 10 Dt VIP habitat (lux. suite), and 20 Dt barracks.

The small 1 Dt modules with external access (dorsal/ventral) can carry e.g. an escape capsule, autodoc, docking clamp, sensors, drones, or even a turret.

It can also carry payload externally turning it into an unstreamlined up to 200 Dt ship with J-1/M-1 performance. It can carry up to 50 Dt drop tanks, up to two 30 Dt small craft, and/or up to 100 Dt external cargo for a total of max 100 Dt external payload.


It is cheap, flexible, and useless in combat. As a utility ship it beats both the Scout and the Free Trader, and perhaps the Yacht. Note that the basic airframe is half the cost of a Free Trader. As shown it is just about profitable as a bare 50 Dt freighter.


A streamlined 200 Dt J-1/M-1 version with the same drives and a longer 170 Dt modular bay using the same modules is available for MCr 34.
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Thu Feb 21, 2019 2:11 am

An budget Free Trader might look something like this:

200 Dt, J-1, M-1, 10 staterooms, 20 low berths, 92 Dt cargo, MCr 35. Quite profitable.
Image


The standard Free Trader costs MCr 47 in quantity and is not quite profitable:
Image
phavoc
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby phavoc » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:01 am

Well, with those numbers it's pretty clear there's a disconnect between book designs and optimized ones.

Thanks for sharing those.
Old School
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Old School » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:19 am

The book designs aren”t even accurate, much less optimized. I understand that the ships wrre designed to be consistent with prior versions rather than optimized for current rules. I don’t understand why Mongoose has decided not to correct the large number of errors in the designs.
AndrewW
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AndrewW » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:49 am

Old School wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:19 am
The book designs aren”t even accurate, much less optimized. I understand that the ships wrre designed to be consistent with prior versions rather than optimized for current rules. I don’t understand why Mongoose has decided not to correct the large number of errors in the designs.
They have been corrected, just the books haven't been updated.
Old School
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Old School » Thu Feb 21, 2019 4:24 am

AndrewW wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:49 am
Old School wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:19 am
The book designs aren”t even accurate, much less optimized. I understand that the ships wrre designed to be consistent with prior versions rather than optimized for current rules. I don’t understand why Mongoose has decided not to correct the large number of errors in the designs.
They have been corrected, just the books haven't been updated.
That’s the only part that matters, Andrew. If I go to DriveThruRPG right now and buy a copy of High Guard, which was published 2 1/2 yesrs ago, will I get the corrected versions, or no?
Linwood
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Linwood » Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:46 am

Nice work, AnotherDilbert!!

I think I’m going to start working these into my campaign. Maybe in the background - the “other ships” the players see at busier starports.
Libris
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Libris » Thu Feb 21, 2019 11:56 am

Linwood wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 10:46 am
Nice work, AnotherDilbert!!

I think I’m going to start working these into my campaign. Maybe in the background - the “other ships” the players see at busier starports.
These look excellent.

All my gripes came about when designing my own macro driven Excel spreadsheet - VBA macros can be a lot stickier when it comes to logic errors than spreadsheet cells.
Today Is A Good Day For Someone Else To Die!
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Baldo » Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:43 pm

AndrewW wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:49 am
They have been corrected, just the books haven't been updated.
Let me guess: are you planning a new "High Guard" book with revised stats, redrawn deckplans (the micro-thrusters of the Kinunir were hilarious! :lol: -page 160-) and added stuff?
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:57 pm

Note that my budget designs skimp wherever possible and have severe disadvantages.

With a Small Bridge and Basic sensors they have a hardware DM -5 on sensor tasks; they will not see anything but transponders and are completely reliant on ATC.

With Light hull strength and very little space for weapons they are not very combat worthy and will easily lose to a standard Free Trader.

With no armour at all they can easily be destroyed by handgun fire.

They may not be very well-suited to adventuring...
AndrewW
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AndrewW » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:22 pm

Baldo wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:43 pm
Let me guess: are you planning a new "High Guard" book with revised stats, redrawn deckplans (the micro-thrusters of the Kinunir were hilarious! :lol: -page 160-) and added stuff?
Not at this time that I'm aware of.
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby Linwood » Fri Feb 22, 2019 10:49 am

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Thu Feb 21, 2019 1:57 pm
Note that my budget designs skimp wherever possible and have severe disadvantages.

With a Small Bridge and Basic sensors they have a hardware DM -5 on sensor tasks; they will not see anything but transponders and are completely reliant on ATC.

With Light hull strength and very little space for weapons they are not very combat worthy and will easily lose to a standard Free Trader.

With no armour at all they can easily be destroyed by handgun fire.

They may not be very well-suited to adventuring...
That makes them great background vessels. Cheap fragile craft that get in trouble on a regular basis when they venture outside more settled space. Ships for a rival small shipping company that keeps undercutting the players on key contracts. Or break down and ask for rescue, or become targets for pirate attacks. AKA plot generators...
phavoc
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby phavoc » Fri Feb 22, 2019 2:41 pm

It would make sense that you have cheaper, lesser-quality ships out there. If you consider the Free Trader to be the equivalent of the Peterbilt/Freightliner/Mack truck (US) or the Volvo/MAN lorry in the UK, then we should be seeing the same basic 200 ton freighter built to lower standards.
So the min-max design to optimize for nothing but freight is reasonable. I'm not so sure they should be as blind as the book says for basic sensors (after all they are still spacecraft and there is a need for minimal sensors to avoid space-borne debris and such), but yea, it's reasonable to have cramped bridges and (nearly) blind ships that never expect to see a pirate in their normal deliveries. Which makes them far more akin to the trucks that are ubiqituos on highways around the world.
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Feb 23, 2019 12:36 am

OK, we agree that my budget designs are very "civilian".

So how do we build a survivable "frontier" trader? A streamlined hull is not cheap and we need a bit of armour, which is not free either. To get Hull points and hardpoints we need size, so make the hull as cheap as possible, i.e. planetoid.

We get something like this:
Planetoid, 400 Dt, J-1, M-1, a boat in a clamp, MCr 56 (including boat)
Image
A little more expensive than a Free Trader, but more payload, and much more Hull and hardpoints. I've chosen Fixed Mounts since they require fewer gunners, so we can carry more passengers. We have 8 staterooms for paying passengers, 20 Low, and 100 Dt cargo + 20 Dt in the boat, a bit more than a Free Trader.
Somewhat combat-worthy, yet still profitable.


Boat:
Since the ship is unstreamlined we need an interface craft. It has Armour 6, making it immune against more or less everything but hi-tech anti-tank weapons. With a turret-mounted weapon it can defend itself on the ground.
30 Dt, M-3, Armour 6, turret, 20 Dt payload (seats/cargo/fuel), MCr 6.
Image
phavoc
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Re: Primitive and Advanced Spacecraft.

Postby phavoc » Sat Feb 23, 2019 4:24 am

Guess it depends on how "rough" that frontier is. Planetoid hulls pay for their 'free' armor in space. Did you look at building the same hull using a standard configuration and same armor rating? By making the ship able to land you could dispense with the ships boat altogether and add that money back into the cost of the ship.

Fixed mounts don't make a lot of sense for a civilian ship. As a freighter it should be trying to run away from people shooting at it, thus the fixed mounts would not be able to bring to bear the enemy unless they were fixed aft. And that seems rather odd to me. Turrets would be better. While the rules might permit the ship to stop thrust, spin 180 degrees on its axis, aim and fire, then spin again and re-activate drives during its phase, it's neither logical nor realistic. Turrets would also give it the ability to engage ships in all quadrants rather than just one direction - though that would be quite bad luck for such a small ship. They would also allow engagement of fighters or small craft that got close - fixed weapons would (should) have a much harder time.

The high cabins shouldn't be on such a ship, just mid passage cabins. There's no way you could justify high passengers with such a small common area.

Other than that it seems like a cheap transport that you might see flying the spaceways. It's still hard to accept the very low fuel requirements in v2 after seeing the older methods for so long.

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