Everyone seems to ignore a big elephant in the room, and that is how to compute hull damage capacity. If following the Megatraveller design evaluation (including the errata to multiply hits with 10 for vehicle combat), the results are pretty strange.

Assume a human sized robot, chassis size 0.1 m^3. This would give hull hits of 0.07 / 0.2, and that is for standard combat, i.e. AFTER multiplying with 10. This must then be rounded in some way, but the effect would be that all robots smaller than 600 liter have hit 1/1 (or 10/10 if rounding before multiplying with 10), and all robots smaller than 2250 liter have hit 1/?. This is clearly not satisfactory - we want robots to differ in how tough they are.

So, how do you guys solve this?

One possibility would be to directly convert the hit values from Book 8. This leads to the formula (Volume in liters)/15. ( /6 for destroyed.) It would give nice results for our 100 liter robot: 7/17. But this would simply not do - it would lead to a large difference between robots and vehicles. A 2 m^3 robot would be 133/333, while a displacement 1 ground car (13.5 m^3) would be 9/23 (10/20 if rounded before conversion), both examples for Vehicular combat.

I have been thinking about it, an my take is that the basic assumption that hits ~ hull volume in Megatraveller is simply false. What is needed is a measure of the 'amount of structure' in the hull. One possibility would be to relate this to the surface area of the hull, which can be approximated to be proportional to Volume ^ (2/3). The formula would be:

- inoperable = (Volume ( in m^3) ) ^ (2/3) ( * 10 for vehicular combat)
- destroyed = inoperable * 2.5

This would give hits 2/5 for our 100 liter robot, and still a sensible 194/484 for a Free Trader in ship combat, compared to 180/450 using the original rule. Small crafts and vehicles would differ more (ground car 57/142 instead of 9/23). Very large ships would also become easier to destroy, and fighters would become tougher.

Another alternative would be to use the (base) COST of the hull as a measure of 'amount of structure'. This sounds weird perhaps, but has some kind of logic to it (economics never lies

), and seems to give nice results. I'd use (Base price of hull (Cr)) / 1500 and (Base price of hull (Cr)) / 600; times 10 for vehicular combat:

- 100 liter robot (vehicular combat): 3/7
- Displacement 1 ground car (vehicular combat): 22/55
- Free trader (ship combat): 177/442

So, these are my ramblings on the topic of hit points for robots. Of these two alternatives I think I prefer the price based one, since it has easier calculations and nicer results. The surface area based alternative is perhaps more logical, though. So, what do you think, and do you have any better ideas?