Space Terrain - How do you use yours?

Space Terrain - How do you use yours?

  • Option A - Templates

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Option B - Individual models - Base size blocks LOS

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Option C - Individual models - Centre point of base stem blocks LOS

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Option D - Asteroids (and/or Gas Clouds) DON'T block LOS!

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters


The last couple of tournaments I have been to (Yeovil Games 2006, Into the Fire II) (Yeovil Games 2006, Into the Fire II) have used terrain very differently that I have used in my home it got me thinking, how do you use terrain in your games?

Case in point is how does terrain block line of sight - let me show you this example...


Let us imagine that it the Narn players turn to fire (he is boresighted on the Octurion) now what option do you guys use:

A) The whiteline around the asteroids represents a template (made prior to game starting - say a piece of card) on which the asteroid models or other representations are placed. These do not represent actual objects but signify the entire template is an asteroid field hence any ships moving into the template have to make the standard CQ checks etc to avoid collision.

In this case the G'Quan CANNOT shoot the Octurion as he is on the other side of the asteroid field and LOS is blocked by the template.

B) In this case there is no template (ignore the white line) and LOS is broken ONLY is an asteroid is directly between the ships firing on each the case use the base size of the asteroid model to identify where LOS is broken.

C) Same as case B except that the asteroids (or Gas clouds) only block line of sight if the centre point of the asteroid model stem is directly between the centre point of the two ships...

D) I have misinterpreted the rules and asteroids don't block LOS and simply have movement penalties, in which case please post on how this problem would apply to Gas clouds and movement through asteroids.

E) Something different! Please let me know...

Clearly in my example only Option A will likely block LOS for the Narn player so it can be pretty important in tourneys if different people play this differently!

We have always used option A for home games (for asteroid and gas clouds) - makes for far less arguements about what is and what isn't crossing the field, blocking LOS etc - however, in the last few tourney games I have played, asteroids (and gas clouds) have been represented by models alone without a template which leaves it open to a wide interpretation...

I'll pick option A, obviously I would but hey ho jsut thought Id chip.

It certainly makes it easier to determine where the asteroids are without leading to nitpicking with opposition players and avoids the questions of: "Am I in the asteroid field here do you think?" or "can I see there past that asteroid?"
A- Template.
In fact, I really use a template : fine black paperboard, with individual asteroïd blocks on it.
option A but if no template and just models i tend to say that the outer edge of the models is the edge of the field instead of individual asteroids etc, so basically draw an imaginary line around the otuside of the models.
A combination of a and b. We put `3D` models on teh table but define the base cluster `template` to block LOS, kind of the principle of historical wargaming forests.

That would mean on your picture, the whole white outline around the asteroids would be the `base template` that blocks LoS.
We use actual roid models for template definition.

Using just base size or uhh base stems, wont give you alot of LOS blockage without you putting alot of stuff on the field. Well base stems only would give one in a hundred blockage maybe ^^.

We love terrainheavy maps yes. So always 1 maybe more planets and 3-* asteroid fields.
A mixture of A and B. I build an asteroid field out of lots of little asteroid templates. Each individual template will block lines of sight, but the field as a whole will add the movement penalties.

In your example above, the G'Quan would ba able to fire, but if either ship moved within the white line, they would have entered the field and need to make CQ checks to avoid the asteroid collisions. So a combintation of B and A

If the asteroid field was a dust cloud, it blocks LOS to ships on the other side anyway. So option A would be used. The G'Quan and/or the Octurion would need to be with the dust cloud to be fired upon.
Since you split the board into 12" squares for terrain generation I place markers at the edges of the foot-square area the terrain is in and place a number of asteroids equal to the field's density inside, with the boundary of the field (obviously!) being the markers. Markers and a nebula graphic for dust clouds. Line of sight is blocked through any edge, regardless of how big or how many terrain pieces are within.
Depends on the terrain- in the rule book description, planets don't block LoS, provided one ship or other is actually on the template. Which I find rather odd, and count them as impassable.
Dust clouds block line of sight across, but not into or out of, the cloud.
Asteroid effects on LoS are rather poorly specified in the rules- there have to be threads on this somewhere. I usually say the same- can't shoot into or out of, but can shoot within, the field.
Basically, for a planet, I look for something circular to use as a marker; for an asteroid field or dust cloud, a marker- which might be as simple as a scrap of paper with 'asteroid field' written on it- with a noted radius, usually d6+1".
Effectively, A.
Clarification of my original point, we do, as Reaverman suggests, use both a template and models, however:

1: The template is physical (a piece of coloured card) and as such pretty easy to tell if LOS is broken or not.

2: In the two tourneys I have played there was no physical template but most players seemed to accept the models represented a field, i.e. draw an "invisible" white line around a group of asteroids.

3: The problem, as I see it, is that when there is no physical template and you rely on edges, bases, stems whatever there will be scope for arguement (indeed some posters on the thread have indicated the way they play terrain would allow the G'Quan to shoot).

Now this obviously isn't a problem if you don't use terrain but in one game I played at the tourney there was *a lot* of terrain - in one move I tried to move a ship behind an asteroid field...which led to a slight disagreement about what could and could not see the ship which wouldn't have existed without a template.

In the end we compromised (fair enough - we didn't even need a ref to decide!) and used Option B (which let half of the ships my opponent wanted to shoot and blocked the ones that obviously had a huge lump of rock in the way only ;) )

Still - I did feel a template would have made things easier...
Personally I would feel that an asteriod field blocks LOS, anyone seen Empire Strike Back??? C'mon guys really simple, the big bits are just rperesentations, there would be loads of smaller bits floating around to break up any weapons fire
Cinematically, an asteroid field is a dense collection of floating rocks. It means that the viewer knows what is going on. What the Millenium Falcon flew into was more likely a rubble field from a stellar collision or a planetary ring.

I think Traveller classified an asteroid field as dense if you could see more than 2 asteroids in the same arc of sky.
I use option A, templates. asteroids shouldn't be limited to a "collection of models" it should be an area. It should never! be the stem of an asteroid model. There'd be no point then.

Cap'n Silvereye

Just to detract from the thread and go on to a much loved subject, the Falcon went into an asteriod field, C3P0 called it an asteriod field, the Imperials called it an asteriod field, It looked like an asteriod field, so surely it was an asteriod field? :lol:

Anyway a template makes things easier, Im up for that.
Cap'n Silvereye said:
Cinematically, an asteroid field is a dense collection of floating rocks. It means that the viewer knows what is going on. What the Millenium Falcon flew into was more likely a rubble field from a stellar collision or a planetary ring.
Looked like a duck, waddled like a duck, quacked like a duck...