Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Discuss the Traveller RPG and its many settings
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:05 pm

Since I introduced Monopoly into this discussion (regrettably), I only used it as an example of game that is not "badly broken" by the lack of specific definition of dice and how to roll them. Not as an example of a brilliant game.

Moppy wrote: It's irrelevant, because I will always hit, because Mongoose neglected to specifiy the procedure for rolling the dice (can I place them and them roll them manually to side I need?) nor do they even specify how the dice must be constructed or numbered. I believe the only requirement is that they have six sides.
AnotherDilbert wrote: You jest, ...
Moppy wrote: I'm not actually. Rulebook is badly broken.
AnotherDilbert wrote: No role playing or board game I have seen have ever tried to exactly define what a die or a die roll is. Nor have they tried to define the exact meaning of the word 'is'.

If you consider that badly broken, I'm afraid most games are badly broken, including Monopoly. That doesn't stop people from playing them.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Moppy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:16 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:05 pm
Since I introduced Monopoly into this discussion (regrettably), I only used it as an example of game that is not "badly broken" by the lack of specific definition of dice and how to roll them. Not as an example of a brilliant game.
I am sure there would be less traumatised children if that game was different. :-)
AnotherDilbert
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:25 pm

Moppy wrote: I am sure there would be less traumatised children if that game was different. :-)
Would the game be any better if the die and how to roll it was specified in detail?
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Moppy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:30 pm

Old School wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:43 pm
If you’re so unhappy with the game, the rulebook, and the fact that Matt has a few rules on behavior in his own space, perhaps you might be happier limiting your participation even more. Or perhaps make a positive contribution by telling us how you adjudicate various ambiguities in the rulebook, and why your way works for you.
You already know what I'm going to say already and you didn't like it the first time, but I think you thought I was joking?

"All the tech is fine because traveller is sci-fantasy". Remember when I said the JTAS monster that towed starships was 100% OK?

"Particle beams are fine RAW or firer immune. I don't care how you use it because the universe is already nuts, because every type-S is both a fusion bomb and an armageddon asteroid, yet the Imperium still exists."

The one new thing I'll add is that my policy on dice sliding is 'tit for tat'. If someone starts it, I'll follow, and I've actually practised it. Unless we're playing for money, in which case I'll start off with that if the rules don't disallow it.
Moppy
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Moppy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:47 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:25 pm
Moppy wrote: I am sure there would be less traumatised children if that game was different. :-)
Would the game be any better if the die and how to roll it was specified in detail?
Monopoly sets come with dice, so we can take that as a dice specification. You could play monopoly with a backgammon dice if you wanted to, but you'd quickly get annoyed at resolving moves of 60+. Also, how many times do you pass Go?
Garran
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Garran » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:22 pm

Moppy wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 4:55 pm
I hear this "only governments can censor" a lot in the west, and not much in the east. I don't understand where it comes from. When I learned English, the dictionary certainly didn't define censorship as requiring a government. And anyway, the moderators of a community effectively are their community's government.
Formally, it refers to the use of state power to restrict speech/expression/content. Informally, it will often be used to refer to any perceived restriction. People like to play word games about this (often including erroneous throwaway references to various national constitutional documents), as with many other cases where the formal/informal use is different.

Just wait until you end up having to deal daily with someone who insists on doing this with any question that begins with, "Can I..."
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Moppy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:53 pm

Garran wrote:
Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:22 pm
Formally, it refers to the use of state power to restrict speech/expression/content. Informally, it will often be used to refer to any perceived restriction.

Just wait until you end up having to deal daily with someone who insists on doing this with any question that begins with, "Can I..."
Other way around, surely? Given that I just checked webster, oxford and macmillian. None require a government, and Webster calls an example of tech companies deleting social media posts as "private sector censorship"

Tech gets a lot of "can I ask a question?" questions from individuals that lack social confidence. The usual response is "don't ask to ask; just ask". When it comes to implementing ideas, "easier to ask for forgiveness than permission" is the norm. If you ask if you can reconfigure the X, the manager will obviously say no, as it's their job if it goes wrong. So just do it, and apologise if it fails; if it works, people will like it. Mind you, this advice is from orgs with mottos like "move fast and break stuff".
Melbourne Accords
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Melbourne Accords » Fri Sep 20, 2019 12:10 am

Re. particle accelerators, can anyone offer a good in-universe rationale for why they are not used for point defence? I have no objection to the approach in the current excellent rules, but I’d like to offer a rationale to players in our next season of Traveller. Might Rate of Fire be a factor, for example? I’d appreciate any suggestions.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:04 am

Melbourne Accords wrote: Re. particle accelerators, can anyone offer a good in-universe rationale for why they are not used for point defence?
I don't think there is a good reason. In CT High Guard'79 any laser, energy weapon, or particle accelerator could point defence. In HG'80 and MT only lasers and energy weapons could point defence. MgT reduced that to only lasers.

There has never been any explanation why some weapons can or can't point defence.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Moppy » Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:26 am

Melbourne Accords wrote:
Fri Sep 20, 2019 12:10 am
Re. particle accelerators, can anyone offer a good in-universe rationale for why they are not used for point defence? I have no objection to the approach in the current excellent rules, but I’d like to offer a rationale to players in our next season of Traveller. Might Rate of Fire be a factor, for example? I’d appreciate any suggestions.
Maybe the majority of PA damage is radiation, and this doens't actually kill a missile, but a starship wiith more complicated systems can be affected? This may also explain why you can't just nuke (literally, with a nuke) a missile salvo with a single counter-missile. They have to cluster up at some point if they want to hit you all at once.

The shortcomings of today's point defense guns against certain missiles are basically engagement range vs missile speed. They can hit, but not far away enough to prevent missile debris hitting the ship. This shouldn't be a problem for particle accelerators.

Rate of fire shouldnt be an issue. You put the laser pointer on the missile, you fire the particle, it goes out at light speed. If you have to track where you are shooting to correct your aim - well you can't do that as the beam is likely invisible in space. Therefore their guns probably shoot exactly where the beam pointer is laid. Other alterantive is that you guess the position relative to the ship but then I don't see how they hit anything. Unless lasers just spray everywhere and only 1% hit. Might that explain the additional rate of fire in dogfight rules?

Missiles should really be targetable at any range, not just point defense. Point defense is the last-ditch system after it breaks through all the other layers, but I notice in gaming that it's common to consider it the only hard kill system that can engage missiles. I'm told there's sone additional rules in Traveller Companion to address this.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Melbourne Accords » Sat Sep 21, 2019 1:53 am

Thanks very much for your thoughts.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Garran » Sat Sep 21, 2019 9:47 pm

My guess would be that it's an artifact of lasers being the only turret-mount energy weapons in the core book. I don't think that High Guard includes any but if you had turret-mounted energy weapons of some other sort (including particle-based ones) then there's no reason you shouldn't be able to use them for point defense.

There's a practical reason to prefer lasers though: they have a built-in bonus to Gunner attacks, which means they'll be more effective at removing missiles from an incoming salvo, since that's based on Effect.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:26 pm

Garran wrote: My guess would be that it's an artifact of lasers being the only turret-mount energy weapons in the core book. I don't think that High Guard includes any but if you had turret-mounted energy weapons of some other sort then there's no reason you shouldn't be able to use them for point defense.
HG has energy weapons, but the PD action specifies turret-mounted lasers, so only turret-mounted lasers can PD, i.e not fixed mounts and not other weapon types.

Garran wrote: There's a practical reason to prefer lasers though: they have a built-in bonus to Gunner attacks, which means they'll be more effective at removing missiles from an incoming salvo, since that's based on Effect.
They have a bonus to Gunnery Attacks (Core, p156), but PD is a Reaction (Core, p160), not an Attack. By RAW the bonus does not apply to PD, as far as I can see.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Garran » Sun Sep 22, 2019 2:25 am

High Guard has other energy weapons but only as barbette/bay/spinal mounts. Of the turrets listed there the only new one is the laser drill, so it's still laser-only any which way.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:17 am

Garran wrote: High Guard has other energy weapons but only as barbette/bay/spinal mounts.
In the presumably optional High Tech chapter there are Plasma, Fusion, and Particle turret weapons (HG, p68).
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Condottiere » Sun Sep 22, 2019 9:59 am

1. DICE FOR THE DICE GOD !!!

2. Monopoly™ is a cautionary tale.

3. Depending on how dangerous chucking spears at each other at hundred kay klicks is supposed to be in Traveller, the response would be a layered defence, especially since there is no sea to skim; basically, everyone should see missiles coming and going.

4. The question is if plasma and/or fusion guns leak radiation; man portable fusion guns are miracles of miniaturization, with possibly a couple of corners getting cut, like shielding.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Annatar Giftbringer » Sun Sep 22, 2019 1:42 pm

AnotherDilbert wrote:They have a bonus to Gunnery Attacks (Core, p156), but PD is a Reaction (Core, p160), not an Attack. By RAW the bonus does not apply to PD, as far as I can see.
I’ve never been 100% sure of this myself, but I’m leaning towards the same reasoning as AnotherDilbert, due to the wording and game balance.

In the same vein, I’ve assumed that fire control/advanced FC will only affect attack rolls and not point defense reactions.

I do wonder though, can fire control software be used to allow the computer to make point defense rolls, or just attacks?
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sun Sep 22, 2019 2:00 pm

Annatar Giftbringer wrote: I do wonder though, can fire control software be used to allow the computer to make point defense rolls, or just attacks?
Interesting question, I haven't considered that.

Fire Control (Core, p151):
Allows the computer to fire a number of turrets per round equal to the listed number. Alternatively, it can give a positive DM to an attack equal to the listed number, or any combination of the two.
As far as I can see FC software can do PD, but cannot add a DM to a PD reaction.


Virtual Gunner (HG, p64):
Virtual Gunner: A Virtual Gunner package allows a ship’s computer to replace living gunnery crew in an efficient manner. The package can replace any number of gunners, ...
Says nothing about attacks, so shouldn't have any problem doing anything a live gunner can do, including PD.
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby AnotherDilbert » Sun Sep 22, 2019 2:26 pm

And the obvious conclusion is that if we allow the laser attack DM on PD, we reasonably also have to allow the FC DM on PD.

Adding up to +4 (laser) and +3 (FC) = +7 to PD is quite a lot, making missiles questionable. When missiles vs. PD was balanced in the beta program that was not included.

See e.g.:
viewtopic.php?f=89&t=118038
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Re: Ship Combat: The Particle Barbette

Postby Garran » Sun Sep 22, 2019 5:07 pm

There'd still be the tradeoff that if you're using your Fire Control for PD, you're not using it to help stop the ship (or whatever) that's actually flinging the missiles your way.

In any case, absent applying the laser DM bonus, I don't see any reason why you wouldn't switch over, nor any particularly good reason why other turret types (if you're high tech enough to have them) wouldn't be viable for it. (Whether you're still dealing with missiles that can be shot down rather than invincibly phasing their way to the target is another matter...)

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