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Old June 4th, 2019, 09:26 PM
jlcapps jlcapps is offline
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Default Range bands and square grid activity

I'm new to Traveller and am having some trouble reconciling a couple of seemingly contradictory passages in The Traveller Book.

In the Personal Combat chapter, beneath the MOVEMENT heading, we get the explanation of ranges bands, "each representing approximately 25 meters." Three paragraphs later: "Characters may move one band per combat round if walking or two if running; animals may move faster, as covered in the chapter on animal encounters."

The range bands chart and the notes that accompany it on page 47 repeat this information and elaborate: "On square girds, one square should generally equal 1.5 meters. Other proportional values are also possible.

"One range band is approximately 17 squares (at 1.5 meters per square)."

That all adds up and makes sense to me.

However, in the Personal Combat chapter, beneath the WEAPONS USAGE heading (p.38) we are told:

Square Grid Activity: Many deck plans, floor plans, or other maps for Traveller are drawn with a square grid, usually representing squares of 1.5 meters each. If grids of this or similar scales are used, then changes should be made to the range band system. Walking speed is 8 squares per combat round. Running is 16 squares per combat round. Greater speeds are in multiples of 8 squares per combat round. Specific activities such as opening doors or hatches each take one combat round, during which time the individual should be treated as evading.
This effectively halves the movement speed in combat from the other two references. Is there something I'm missing that makes these sections agree? The "square grid activity" section is clear that it changes the usual range band system, but it isn't (to me) clear why the change is necessary, nor is it actually clear how it changes it. I.e., is this a change to the scale, making the squares now effectively 3 meters? Or is it a change to the speed of the characters in combat, down to 12 meters from 25? Does it affect only movement, or does it also affect determination of the range of weapons?

I'm interested, because I like to (optionally) be able to move the action to a battlemat when the combat is "tactically interesting" (i.e., too hard to describe effectively). I like to be able to go back and forth between a grid and theater of the mind style. The usual range band rules are really great for the latter, but 17 squares/round is a lot of squares to move if you're using the grid. I'd like to keep them all on the table! So the change to 8 squares is pretty appealing for this reason.

I've run three sessions so far, ruling that we use the 8 square movement rate (same scale, 1.5 meters/square) when in a confined setting -- a building, a ship, etc. I leave the range of weapons unchanged. This has worked fine so far. But it's making me a little bonkers that I don't know what the "correct" way is to do this.

Thanks for any assistance!
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