Traveller Store CotI Features New Posts Mark Forums Read Register


Go Back TravellerRPG.com > Citizens of the Imperium > Traveller 5 > Traveller 5 > Pre-Release Discussion

Pre-Release Discussion Archive of the pre-release T5 Public

 
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old December 20th, 2006, 01:26 PM
Scott Martin's Avatar
Scott Martin Scott Martin is offline
Citizen: SOC-13
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 753
Gallery : 0
Scott Martin Citizen
Post

Trying to wrap my head around the varioous roles of military starships, and how the weapons mix inter-relates with that.

In T5, I think that fighters should have a different *role* than they did in HG. This is why I am currently advocating to have Plasma weapons returned to the space arena.

Battleships rule deep space
Fighters rule the "interface" between the surface of a planet and high orbit, probably about 100,000 km
Escorts swat fighters (and other escorts if no fighters are available)

Battleships have big, slow-firing energy intensive long range weapons and rapid fire "short-range" point defence weapons
Smaller starships will be like scaled-down battleships
Fighters would have one of three basic configurations:
Lots of small fast firing weapons (superiority or anti-missile role)
a very small number of big (ship killer) short ranged energy weapons
A mix of the above for "general purpose" duties

SDB's could be "fighter" armed or "battleship" armed, depending on dployment: an SDB stationed inside a gas giant or ocean is more likely to have massively nasty short ranged weapons. This will tend to encourage fuel tenders for capital ships, since losing a tender to an SDB is a much better alternative than losing a battleship to an SDB.

Fighters survive by avoiding engagement. In a "deep space" role they would die by the scores attempting to close to "ship killer" range, but would probably be ignored if they stayed out of "point defence" range of the fleet and concentrated on anti-missile duties. In "interface" range (opposing a planetary assault) they would use "ground clutter" to hide until a tempting target came within "sprint" range, at which point they would use high thrust to attempt to close with the target before they could be destroyed.

Planetary assaults with this model would probably park the battleships and other heavy combatants out at about a light second out, with escorts at about 1/2 LS, and fighter support running "sweep and escort" missions before the main planetary landings. If fighters are not carried by the attacking fleet then small escorts or assault landers get this duty, and get to play "chicken" with the planetary defences: Too far away from the planetary surface and they won't provoke a response, too close and they get killed without doing a lot of damage to the defenders. I'd see this turning into attritional warfare, and the worst nightmare for a battleship captain (especially the most junior one!) would be to lose his escort screen and be forced into the role of "bait" for still viable fighter defences.

The "Imperial Rules of War" should prevent capital ships from just glassing a world in frustration, but this may not be a constraint for other polities (or, say, Lucan) so these polities would tend to build less escorts and fighters.

This may not be "Canon Traveller" but it preserves all of the ship *classes* and I think that it is internally consistent.

Comments?

Scott Martin
  #2  
Old December 20th, 2006, 01:36 PM
atpollard's Avatar
atpollard atpollard is offline
Citizen: SOC-14
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Port Richey
Posts: 9,325
Gallery : 43
Visit atpollard's Blog
atpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesome
Post

It has been suggested (by Bill C) that an Imperium based on Nobles owing ships to their superiors is interesting, but will not work if confronted by an enemy with a “national army” type of fleet. While I agree, a hybrid system could exist where only the Emperor has ships with Spinal Mounts (or as an alternative, greater than 100,000 dTons) and the nobles build and control the smaller ships. Think about the advantages.
  #3  
Old December 20th, 2006, 01:42 PM
atpollard's Avatar
atpollard atpollard is offline
Citizen: SOC-14
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Port Richey
Posts: 9,325
Gallery : 43
Visit atpollard's Blog
atpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesome
Post

An old rule of thumb for balancing offense and defense was a ship should be designed for an attack by its own weapons. Pre HMS Dreadnaught, a good ship had an even mix of large, medium and small guns. Post HMS Dreadnaught, ships relied primarily on all large guns (and the bigger, the better). In the modern era, missiles count, big ships are only there to deliver the missiles to the battle (but Traveller lacks the modern “one hit kill” weapon that modern ships confront.)
  #4  
Old December 20th, 2006, 02:09 PM
sgbrown's Avatar
sgbrown sgbrown is offline
Citizen: SOC-12
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 481
Gallery : 0
sgbrown Citizen
Post

If you have efficient ECM measures and scrap the notion that huge computers always mean better firing solutions, then lots of fighters with "ship buster" missles or close range fusion guns woul give the game a WWII Naval battle "feel". The fighters would be a lot more like PT boats than airplanes, but other than that....
__________________
When you stop learning, you stop living!
  #5  
Old December 20th, 2006, 02:10 PM
mike wightman's Avatar
mike wightman mike wightman is offline
Noble
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle
Posts: 16,162
Gallery : 0
mike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizenmike wightman Respected Citizen
Post

What about the spinal meson gun?

In High Guard one hit could mission kill a ship.

Perhaps what fighter/bombers need is a one shot meson gun.
__________________
The beauty of CT LBB1-3 is that the ref is free to make such decisions for themselves.
  #6  
Old December 20th, 2006, 03:43 PM
atpollard's Avatar
atpollard atpollard is offline
Citizen: SOC-14
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Port Richey
Posts: 9,325
Gallery : 43
Visit atpollard's Blog
atpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesomeatpollard Awesome
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by SGB - Steve B:
If you have efficient ECM measures and scrap the notion that huge computers always mean better firing solutions, then lots of fighters with "ship buster" missiles or close range fusion guns would give the game a WWII Naval battle "feel". The fighters would be a lot more like PT boats than airplanes, but other than that....
WW2 combat "feels" the way it does because there are no missiles. Why not fire the "ship buster" missiles from the "carrier" and create a modern Cruiser?

If you really want fighters, then they need to be faster than dreadnaughts and they need to be able to hurt warships. I don't think this can be done without at least "bruising" some of the traditional rules.

Increase fighter agility to 2 times G rating (or some other multiple) to make the things hard to hit.

If you really want a WW2 "gun" fighter, try this bend: allow a fighter to mount up to 5 x 1 dTon particle accelerators in a fixed barbette (perhaps on a 50 dTon fighter – 1 dTon of weapons per 10 dTons of fighter). Allow the Fighter to spend multiple turns recharging the weapons to reduce the PP size.
  #7  
Old December 20th, 2006, 03:48 PM
robject's Avatar
robject robject is offline
Marquis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 13,861
Gallery : 9
Visit robject's Blog
robject has disabled reputation
Post

So "Age of Sail" may apply to travel in Traveller, but doesn't apply at all to combat.

Age of Sail sort of breaks down when torpedoes come into the mix, eh?

Age of Sail also doesn't do much for "fighters". What's an Age of Sail fighter? A rowboat? Eeek.
__________________
Imperiallines magazine
My Helpful Stuff for Traveller5
IMTU tc+ t5++ 3i(+) au ls+ / OTU 44% an+ dt+ ge- j- jf+ n- pi+ pp+ tr+ tv- uwp+ xb+
Tools Link
  #8  
Old December 20th, 2006, 03:50 PM
robject's Avatar
robject robject is offline
Marquis
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 13,861
Gallery : 9
Visit robject's Blog
robject has disabled reputation
Post

Back to Scott's thoughts.

Keeping plasma weapons in the space combat arena allows fighters to have a close-combat role -- plasma and fusion guns become the "knife fighting"-range weapons, very short range but also quite effective.
__________________
Imperiallines magazine
My Helpful Stuff for Traveller5
IMTU tc+ t5++ 3i(+) au ls+ / OTU 44% an+ dt+ ge- j- jf+ n- pi+ pp+ tr+ tv- uwp+ xb+
Tools Link
  #9  
Old December 20th, 2006, 05:05 PM
sgbrown's Avatar
sgbrown sgbrown is offline
Citizen: SOC-12
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 481
Gallery : 0
sgbrown Citizen
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by atpollard:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by SGB - Steve B:
If you have efficient ECM measures and scrap the notion that huge computers always mean better firing solutions, then lots of fighters with "ship buster" missiles or close range fusion guns would give the game a WWII Naval battle "feel". The fighters would be a lot more like PT boats than airplanes, but other than that....
WW2 combat "feels" the way it does because there are no missiles. Why not fire the "ship buster" missiles from the "carrier" and create a modern Cruiser?

-clip-
</font>[/QUOTE]But for WWII there are torpedos - essentially water missles. The TU "fighters" I was referring to would be comparable to PT boats not dive bombers.

I concur that if you want the TU fighters to match the impact of airplanes (WWII to modern day)you have to tweak the base rules to make them more agile and significantly faster than the large ships. The problem is for space and the assumed traveller tech, I simply can't imagine a legitimate scientific reason for that to occur. Maybe I'm just too limited in imagination?
__________________
When you stop learning, you stop living!
  #10  
Old December 20th, 2006, 05:36 PM
Whipsnade's Avatar
Whipsnade Whipsnade is offline
Citizen: SOC-14
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Dover, New Hampshire, USA
Posts: 5,916
Gallery : 5
Visit Whipsnade's Blog
Whipsnade Citizen+Whipsnade Citizen+Whipsnade Citizen+
Post

Quote:
Originally posted by SGB - Steve B:
I concur that if you want the TU fighters to match the impact of airplanes (WWII to modern day)you have to tweak the base rules to make them more agile and significantly faster than the large ships.
Steve,

Sorry, but no.

Letting fighters become more agile and faster only improves their survivability against large ships. That's defense.

The offensive handicap fighters face is two fold: relative computer size and weapon battery size. It's a matter of hitting/penetrating; computers, and causing damage; weapons.

After a certain TL; around 13 or so, fighters fall behind in the computer race. You can build a fighter that carries a size 9 computer, you sacrifice other things though and you fighter balloons past the 50dTon size up to 99 dTon. Computers allow you to hit the other fellow. Once he has a positive differential of three or so, you're pretty much screwed especially if you're using small battery sizes.

Fighter battery size is the other part of the equation. When you're limited to one turret or barbette, you battery factors stay small. Maximum factors are:

Missile - 3
Beam Laser - 4
Pulse Laser - 3
Plasma Gun - 3
Fusion Gun - 5
PA turret - 2
PA barbette - 1

It's hard to hit and penetrate with those battery sizes already. If you're facing a negative DRM due to a small computer it gets worse.

Damage from those batteries, with the exception of nuc missiles, recieves an automatic +6 DRM on the tables too. Not only is hit hard to hit and then penetrate, the damage gets diluted too.

It's tough enough being a fighter. However once large ships get faster and more agile, once they carry larger computers and more armor, the fighter's job in the frontlines is finished.


Have fun,
Bill
 

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

This website and its contents are copyright ©2010- Far Future Enterprises. All rights reserved. Traveller is a registered trademark of Far Future Enterprises .
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright (c) 2010-2013, Far Future Enterprises. All Rights Reserved.