Barbette Ion Weapons - intended effectiveness?

Feagal

Mongoose
Mostly thinking out loud here, but barbette Ion weapons seem too effective at disabling traveller-type ships in a single hit, and this creates scenarios I'm not a fan of.

Without taking extra "damage" from Effect into account:

2d6x10 for an ion barbette = avg 7x10 = 70
This will cause huge problems for a smaller ship (which travellers tend to use)

With the new High Guard currently saying to x3 for a barbette this means average of 210 power gone in a single hit.

I don't like the scenario that one ship can disable a similar sized ship in a single hit, even if it is just for a single turn.

For this reason I am personally going to use just 2d for a barbette, with the x3 barbette multiplier.
This will give, on average 21 power drain, with a range of 6 to 36 (more when taking into account Effect)
Not enough to cripple a ship unless it has a damaged power core, but it will cause problems for them - or stop a passenger shuttle or express boat pretty well.

This means that to be effective, barbette-sized ion weapons will have to be used by gangs (of pirates probably)
or a ship will have to fit multiple barbette-sized ion weapons
or the ion-firing ship will need to be attacking a smaller ship.

I realise this shifts the balance away from ion weapons but in the right circumstances they absolutely will still be effective

Any thoughts anyone? Or am I just chatting spaceballs (probably)
 

Reisender

Banded Mongoose
I see Barbettes as something that belongs on military vessels of considerable size. Should your average Traveller ship stand a chance against a military craft, which is probably bigger in size as well?
 

Feagal

Mongoose
I see Barbettes as something that belongs on military vessels of considerable size. Should your average Traveller ship stand a chance against a military craft, which is probably bigger in size as well?
That's a very good point - and a good question.
I'll have to play it out in my head for a bit.

My initial gut feeling is that, yes, they should stand a chance against an ion barbette fitted military ship, even one larger than them, as long as they are running away.

If the military ship is purpose built to stop another ship getting away, having multiple ion barbettes instead of other weapons, then no, I reckon that's fair game.
Run very quickly If you see that ship.

If they decide to fight against a bigger military ship they are doomed anyway, ion weapon or no ion weapon.

I guess I need to find out if ion barbettes are actually illegal to have fitted if you're not military. I know you normally need to find them on the black market but once you've got them are the navy going to confiscate them if they see them?
 

Reisender

Banded Mongoose
It depends on the universe of your Traveller campaign or adventure. The construction rules in Highguard allow you to stick barbettes on anything as long as enough tonnage, energy, crew and credit is provided.
Neither the 400t System Defence Boat nor the 400t Patrol Corvette, which air on the smaller side concerning military ships IMHO, do feature a Barbette in their standard configuration. But I think you could stick one on it as a main armament if you should desire. But maybe these are even more dangerous with their multiple triple turrets.
The first class of ships to have Barbettes are the 1000t Destroyer Escorts, at least in the old Highguard.
 
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Feagal

Mongoose
In my version of the Traveller universe I do want to limit their effect

There are two ways to do it as I see it:
Make ion barbettes themselves less effective
Make ion barbettes illegal in most places

For freedom's sake, I think I prefer the first option

1) Pirates won't suddenly be capable of stopping significant ships if they get hold of just one ion barbette
2) Same goes for PC travellers
3) Military can still easily do the above with dedicated vessels
4) It means a non-hardened ship still stands a chance against a ship fielding ion weapons, unless that ship has gone all in on them (which probably means it's a purpose built military interdictor). Now hardening is very nice to have, but not having it doesn't mean you're in such a bad place as soon as a single ion weapon comes over the horizon.

These are just my current thoughts, I've probably missed some obvious things, and I am sure I can quite easily be persuaded that ion should be one-shot-pause for smaller ships.
 

Alqualonde

Mongoose
It depends on the universe of your Traveller campaign or adventure. The construction rules in Highguard allow you to stick barbettes on anything as long as enough tonnage, energy, crew and credit is provided.
Neither the 400t System Defence Boat nor the 400t Patrol Corvette, which air on the smaller side concerning military ships IMHO, do not feature a Barbette in their standard configuration. But I think you could stick one on it as a main armament if you should desire. But maybe these are even more dangerous with their multiple triple turrets.
The first class of ships to have Barbettes are the 1000t Destroyer Escorts, at least in the old Highguard.
Just my two Solomani Credits worth...
IIRC the Gazelle Close Escort has 2 PA Barbettes. And it is 400dT (including the Gig & Drop Tanks).
The SDB (if it is the same than in MegaTraveller) & the Patrol corvette are armed with lasers & missiles. There was no Laser or Missile Barbette at that time (CT or MT, rulewise).
So I guess the barbette is possible on a small ship, but it will depend on the intended mission. The Patrol Corvette is not supposed to fight military ships, thus it has light weapons. On the other hand, the Gazelle is supposed to either do convoy escort or escort a fleet where it will need some heavy firepower.
That's the issue with canon ships, they were designed with a different rule set. And for the Gazelle, we are keeping an old mistake as it should only have 3 hardpoints. The old Gazelle from CT Highguard is a 300dT ship with 100dT worth of drop tanks. IN MegaTraveller it was 330dT with 50dT of drop tanks and a 20dT Gig in a external grapple. (I think it was a mistake, I can be wrong...)

In CT (FASA Adventure Class Volume 1), the Valor Missile Corvette is a TL-E 400dT ship with 4 missiles turrets. In Mg Traveller 2, you can use 2 missile barbettes, 1 Type-III Point Defense and either a laser turret or a barbette for self defense (no need to waste missiles on a small fighter). I guess it should be possible to squeeze a small missile bay, but it would require some tradeoff (and make it an unpopular ship for the crew). But it would become a different class.
 

Reisender

Banded Mongoose
IIRC the Gazelle Close Escort has 2 PA Barbettes. And it is 400dT (including the Gig & Drop Tanks).
You are correct, I missed that one. On the other hand this ship class is TL15.
And I did mention that you can put Barbettes on smaller ships, didn't I?
But let's come back Feagals original question: Is the Ion Cannon Barbette balanced?
Since space combat between military carfts is not something I'm pursuing in my Traveller, universe somebody else has to step up to answer that question in that regard.
I still think that going against any military vessel of bigger or even same size with your average Traveller ship (100-200t) is foulish, Barbettes or not.
 
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AndrewW

Cosmic Mongoose
And for the Gazelle, we are keeping an old mistake as it should only have 3 hardpoints. The old Gazelle from CT Highguard is a 300dT ship with 100dT worth of drop tanks. IN MegaTraveller it was 330dT with 50dT of drop tanks and a 20dT Gig in a external grapple. (I think it was a mistake, I can be wrong...)
The Gazelle in the 2nd edition High Guard and the updated one is a 400 ton ship.
 

Arkathan

Cosmic Mongoose
I am betting on the Ion Cannon barbette being exempted to the x3 barbette rule. Quite the nerf of the small bay if you get the same power drain with no negative for shooting at small ships.
As written, only a fool would buy a small ion cannon bay when you could get the equivalent of ten of them in the same space with barbettes - AND no penalty on shooting small freighters.
 

AnotherDilbert

Cosmic Mongoose
If you actually intend to hurt the enemy, your ship will carry barbettes. Turrets are just an afterthought or PD mount.

Ion barbettes were effective enough before (if you carried enough of them), but range is a problem. Nukes or PAs can kill them from afar.
 

Arkathan

Cosmic Mongoose
Quad turrets should be baseline, they are in T5.
This isn't T5. Some consider quads to be military hardware. If you are making military ships, you have High Guard, and therefor you have access to quad stats. If not, the basic rules give you basic ships.
 

Condottiere

Cosmic Mongoose
Optionally, probably slightly more volume required.

As compared to warp and time drives, which fundamentally change the setting.
 

Sigtrygg

Cosmic Mongoose
Once again people are missing the point - if MgT Third Imperium is to be considered canonical then it can not contradict T5, otherwise it is an ATU at best.
 

phavoc

Cosmic Mongoose
Once again people are missing the point - if MgT Third Imperium is to be considered canonical then it can not contradict T5, otherwise it is an ATU at best.
T5 is officially canonical, not MGT in any of its versions.

And conflicting Canon is a hallmark of Traveller. Why would they go and fix that after 40yrs???
 

AnotherDilbert

Cosmic Mongoose
Quad turrets in T5 live in the same twilight zone as in MgT; they are in the rules, but 3I ships don't use them.

It is not explicit whether they are canonical in the OTU or not, but presumably not...
 

Condottiere

Cosmic Mongoose
That's legacy.

You'd have to redesign most of the starwarships, and some of the commercials, in order to reconcile it.
 

Arkathan

Cosmic Mongoose
Everything in T5 is canonical for the OTU.
They are in the book. Use them. Or don't. Why hijack the thread over something that you have the rules for and just don't like the lack of top billing in the book?
Not (m)any classic canon ships that use them, anyway.
 
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