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-   -   AHL vs. Snapshot (http://www.travellerrpg.com/CotI/Discuss/showthread.php?t=12170)

DonM March 12th, 2007 05:15 PM

Ok, I've been comparing AHL to Snapshot, and while AHL is the better for combat, the AP system in Snapshot seems to be more complete -- Animals, for example, are at least considered, compared to blobs (although giving all animals 15 AP seems odd).

Then there are those actions which are defined in Snapshot but not mentioned at all in AHL: drawing and holstering weapons, picking up items, reloading and using bows/crossbows, and carrying heavy things.

Has anyone "filled in the gaps" in AHL? Other than looking at MT, of course.

SgtHulka March 12th, 2007 08:16 PM

When I get a chance to grab my games reprint and look at the systems side by side I'll try and help.

Off the top of my head, Striker includes penetration factors for melee weapons, so I'd think you could just use those for animals, bayonets, etc. Using snapshot as a basis, they should cost the same action points as semi-automatic weapons. I'm not sure if they should be allowed to be "fired" during the covering fire phase, however. The action points of animals shouldn't be a problem, because all characters in AHL get 6 AP's per phase.

Reloading isn't included in AHL? Are you sure? I could have sworn it took an entire turn to reload, during which you were considered evading.

Drawing a weapon would probably be a Move command and a certain number of action points spent during the movement phase. Same for holstering.

Carrying heavy things is, in fact, covered in AHL, by the phrase "as in traveller". Which is exactly the same rule as in Snapshot. You can carry 1 kg per strength, and if you go over that you receive a -1 to str, dex, and endurance. Double strength takes you to one level, triple strength another, etc. The problem is, you have no way of knowing the strength characteristic of the counters unless you backwards-engineer the melee values.

AHL is even more of a boardgame than Snapshot is. It's intended for use with the specific counters and specific scenarios included with the game. They don't bother spelling out rules like encumberence because they've already been factored in to the counters' statistics.

DonM March 13th, 2007 03:21 AM

Here's the problem with AHL being more of a boardgame -- it's harder to use with Traveller right out of the box.

But, I have found that AHL combat resolution with the TTB range band encounter setup goes VERY fast.

Of course, that's called MegaTraveller, but still...

It's interesting now that I've found what the "Traveller Advanced Combat System" was intended to be before they decided to just wrap it into MT.

SgtHulka March 13th, 2007 10:42 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by DonM:
Ok, I've been comparing AHL to Snapshot, and while AHL is the better for combat, the AP system in Snapshot seems to be more complete -- Animals, for example, are at least considered, compared to blobs (although giving all animals 15 AP seems odd).
Here are the penetration factors of animal melee weapons, taken from Striker:

</font><blockquote>code:</font><hr /><pre style="font-size:x-small; font-family: monospace;">Claws -1 Dfnse 3 Pen Range 1
Teeth 0 Defnse 4 Pen Range 1
Horns -1 Dfense 5 Pen Range 2
Hooves 0 Dfense 4 Pen Range 2
Stinger 0 Dfense 5 Pen Range 1
Thrasher -1 Dfense 8 Pen Range 3</pre>[/QUOTE]In Striker the basic throw to hit in melee is 7+, with the Defense factor causing a negative to the throw. To make it consistent with the 8+ throw for AHL, you probably want to change the -0 Dfense DM's to +1 Attack DM's (making it a de-facto 7+) and make the -1 Defense DM's 0 Attack DM's (making it a de-facto 8+).

Range is totally different in Striker than Book 1. It's less actual range and more melee factor as per AHL rule 17A. In Striker, you add the weapon's range to the figure's melee factor to determine the order of attacks. Here's how I'd suggest treating it:

Use rule 17. Melee. to determine when and how to resolve the animal attacks. Use rule 17A. Order of Attacks to resolve who attacks first. Give the animal a melee value of 4 plus the range of their weapon (so an animal with a thrasher would have a melee value of 7). Don't use Rule 17B. for resolution of attacks. Instead use rule 11C. to determine hits, treating the attack as effective range and aimed fire, and then use rule 12 to determine wounds.

Quote:

Originally posted by DonM:
Then there are those actions which are defined in Snapshot but not mentioned at all in AHL: drawing and holstering weapons, picking up items, reloading and using bows/crossbows, and carrying heavy things.
Drawing and Holstering Weapons: I'd only allow this for counters with the Move order, during the Move phase. Drawing a gun or blade for 1 AP, reholstering for 2 AP, sheathing a blade for 6 AP, dropping a weapon for free. In other words, same as snapshot.

Picking up items: I'd only allow this for counters with the Move order, during the Move phase. Otherwise exactly like snapshot -- 1d6 is the number of AP's required.

Bows and Crossbows: 2 AP's to load bows, 6 to load crossbows, and I would allow counters with the "AIM" order to load during the Movement phase. This means that characters armed with bows ould never snapshot more than once (2 action points to load, 3 action points to fire) and characters declaring cover fire could never snapshot (could only use a single cover fire per phase -- 3 points for cover fire and 2 points for loading). Crossbows could never be used with snapshot nor with Covering fire. The difficult part is finding penetration factors of bows and crossbows, since they aren't included in Striker, either.

Reloading: See rule 25B.

Dragging Heavy Ojects: See rule 8C8. Use the traveller encumberance rules to determine weapon modifiers as per Integrating with Traveller rule E.

SgtHulka March 13th, 2007 06:03 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by DonM:
Here's the problem with AHL being more of a boardgame -- it's harder to use with Traveller right out of the box.
I'm not sure how you would integrate it without serious house-ruling (see above). Definitely doesn't integrate out of the box.

As a campaign setting -- i.e. a Battlestar Galactica-style campaign set entirely on an AHL -- it integrates fine out of the box. In that case you aren't using the game, you're just using the game components (deckplans, supplement).

Here's how I'd rate the various games, with "Boardgame" being entirely self-contained and relating little to Traveller, and "Supplement" integrating perfectly with Traveller:

Mayday: More Boardgame than Supplement. Simplifies first edition Book 2 Combat and makes the style of combat actually playable (I contend that wires, strings and planetary templates make first edition Book 2 unplayable). Between First Edition Book 2 and Second Edition Book 2, Mayday might actually have been a good replacement for Traveller Starship combat, though it would have been deadly with Special Rule 7A. However, when High Guard comes out it makes both Book 2 combat irrelevant and Mayday irrelevant. They're both totally pointless from that point forward. Which is especially odd since I think High Guard came out before Mayday. Then Second Edition book 2 comes out which "Mayday-izes" Book 2 combat, but it keeps the planetary templates and the wires and strings so it makes Book 2 still unplayable, anyway. Mayday can only really integrate with Traveller by using the High Guard/Mayday system suggested at the end of Mayday, but even there you have to figure out the houserules, because High Guard and Mayday use totally different turn sequences. None the less, as a boardgame, Mayday rocks.

Snapshot: Rocks as both a boardgame and a supplement. Can be perfectly integrated into Traveller to replace Book 1 combat.

Azhanti High Lightning: More boardgame than supplement. Too many abstractions and not complete enough to substitute it for Book 1 combat. De-emphasizes the character. Doesn't offer any real improvements on speed of play over Snapshot, so doesn't help with the "what if you have a platoon on either side" scenarios. Furthermore, if you play two identical scenarios, one using Book 1 and one using Azhanti High Lightning, the results will be completely different. I'm not sure I'm completely enamored with it as a boardgame, either.

Striker: Both boardgame (well, miniatures game) and supplement. Can be perfectly slotted in to replace Book 4 abstract combat. I'm not so enamored by it, but it does what it purports to do -- it models platoon-sized engagements to about company-sized engagements. Does a fair job of modelling the same results as you'd get from the Book 4 abstract system. It also introduces vehicle combat, which can be used out of the box, in my opinion, with Book 1 combat.

etherflyer March 13th, 2007 09:38 PM

Personally, I'd go with &lt;b&gt;At Cloase Quarters&lt;/b&gt;. The same level of integration as Snapshot, but more realistic -- and simpler than AHL.

SgtHulka March 14th, 2007 06:14 PM

Can you tell me more about At Close Quarters? I've heard good things about it, but I'm unclear on the system. Is it Classic Traveller? T20? Or version independent.

With ACQ and Power Projection we've almost got a replacement for two of the main Traveller games. Now all we need is someone to convert Stargrunt II to replace Striker. ;)

Supplement Four March 15th, 2007 12:03 AM

At Close Quarters is most closely associated with T4, using T4-esque tasks.

The text says it's useable by any version of Traveller.

It's a tactical action-point system. You get "X" amount of points to spend each round, and every action you take has an associated cost. It's similar to Snapshot or Azhanti High Lightning.

-S4

Anthony March 15th, 2007 02:14 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by Supplement Four:
At Close Quarters is most closely associated with T4, using T4-esque tasks.
I assume it uses the BITS task system. Which is readily converted to MT and slightly less so to CT.

DonM March 17th, 2007 04:42 AM

Having considered several combinations, I'm starting to lean towards Snapshot, except replacing the combat engine with that from AHL. I like the Dexterity+Endurance action point combination.

ACQ looks nice, but it feels too T4-ish, and to be honest, T4 sucked hickeys on rocks.

Hmm... might be insulting rocks there.

Anyway, that combination, plus Striker for vehicles, allows me to stay Classic and yet improve massively on the combat feel.

Maybe range band combat for the roleplayers who don't want to game with miniatures, and Snapshot-level action for the close-combat miniatures gamer.


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