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The Fleet Ship designs, strategies, and tactics.

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Old January 14th, 2020, 11:18 PM
kilemall kilemall is offline
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Default A Couple Missile Opinions

As part of my CT/HG hybrid I've been looking hard at the missiles and think I've got a working system, including bay missile buys and TL effects and the like.

But it involves altering a long-standing bit about missiles, at least since the Missile Supplement.

I'm allowing for faster missiles then the ships can go. This achieves two things, I can factor in kinetic impact effects that can go up for the faster missiles, and the missiles 'clear the board' faster since I'm actually having them move just like the ships.


However, it DOES affect the interaction of missiles and ships.

With a 6G limit on the missiles, the slower ships can be run down even if they have some delta vee away from the shooting ship, but a faster 5-6G ship will likely escape impact entirely and even a 4G ship at some distance may be out of a reasonable engagement envelope.

But if you have 10G, 12G or higher missiles pretty much nothing escapes at anything medium or shorter (500000 km or less).

IYO how important is it to have that 'fast as ship' missile speed?






Second opinion, lately I've been visualizing missile warheads as delivering an optimized to-hit pattern of solid AP penetrators accelerated the last few 1000km with an explosive charge.

However, it occurred to me that like PA fire or plasma/fusion guns, missiles could fire off several HEAT bolts that do not dissipate quickly in space due to no atmosphere or charged particles. Is that reasonable?
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Old January 15th, 2020, 06:37 AM
AnotherDilbert AnotherDilbert is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kilemall View Post
But it involves altering a long-standing bit about missiles, at least since the Missile Supplement.
....
With a 6G limit on the missiles, ...
I see no such limitation in the missile supplement? Or the LBBs?


Obviously a missile must be more manoeuvrable than the target ship to have a reasonable chance of interception. The standard 5G missile might be enough against slow civilian ships, it will not cut it against fast military ships.
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Old January 15th, 2020, 10:49 AM
whartung whartung is offline
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In TNE, of course, your missile can be as fast as you want. Then again, so can the ships. (Mind I do not know what, if any, limits their are on gravitic compensation for ships -- people don't do well at high Gs for sustained periods.)

In CT we simply didn't have (or were not allowed) to have a faster than 6G drive.

Being able to outrun missiles is an important aspect as it basically empower maneuverability to affect outcomes and be used as a tactic.

If the missile are too fast, then I won't bother "dodging" them, or trying to out run them, I'll simply armor up and build more point defense to counter them directly.

In SFB (I know, I know, I keep coming back to it, but it's really good at this kind of stuff) it's not uncommon to see ships fleeing seeking weapons. This gives the weapons power not so much in their ability do actual damage (though, of course, that is there), but it their ability to control space an territory.

You'll see ships closing, then someone lobs out a cloud of drones or plasma torpedoes, and watch the attackers fire (at a longer range than they'd have liked), turn tail, and run. You'll see folks fire them not so much to damage the attackers, but to make them turn away. Keep them out of overload range, give you some space. Heavy drone users are skilled at using them to control the board. Nothing like letting a lingering scatter pack (a space shuttle filled with 6 drones...or is it?) as a deterrent to keep folks away.

If that can't work, if you can't out avoid these seeking weapons, then...you won't. You'll just armor up, bite down hard, and try to shoot them out of the sky, and eat what's left over but never losing your focus on closing with your real target. It's not that they're not a deterrent, but the opponent can't do much about them. That makes the ship carrying them a deterrent (since they may let fly at any time), but not the missiles themselves. They're just an artifact of damage coming your way just like a meson beam.

This is a key, to me, issue with the game play in general, about "space combat". It's just a slugfest in open space. Who can do the most damage to who, faster. Just two armored boxes running in close to each other, firing as often as they can hoping they open up the other guy first. Pedal to the metal, *WHAM**WHAM**WHAM**WHAM**WHAM**WHAM**WHAM* until somebody breaks.

There's no dance.

In Ouray, a town in Colorado. On the 4th of July (I should say, on the the 4th of July I happened to be there, but it felt like an annual event), they would cordon off one of the down town intersections. It would be surrounded by spectators. Then they would hook up firehoses to the juxtaposed hydrants kitty corner from each other.

Two teams of 3 (maybe for) folks in padded rain suits, safety goggle, and plastic face masks would then pick up their respective firehouse, turn them on full blast, and proceed to pound the other team with it. Each team would then close on each other, occasionally rotating the person in front to the back, until they're on top of each other. Hoses pummeling them until, eventually, one of the teams succumbs.

The one I saw, it seemed that one of the teams lead guy managed to take the stream of water under the chin. His mask went flying one way, he went flying the other, the hose got loose and the water scythed in to the crowd like a bunch of suicidal groupies before they managed to get it under control.

Space combat, I think, is something like that.
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Old January 15th, 2020, 10:55 AM
Condottiere Condottiere is offline
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With missiles, if you can't outrun them, you have to be agile enough to dodge them; they could, of course, reacquire the target.
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Old January 15th, 2020, 11:25 AM
AnotherDilbert AnotherDilbert is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whartung View Post
In CT we simply didn't have (or were not allowed) to have a faster than 6G drive.
The limits to M-drives are only on inertial compensators, that hardly applies to missiles.
Quote:
Originally Posted by CT HG´80, p17
Tech level requirements for maneuver drives are imposed to cover the grav plates integral to most ship decks, and which allow high-G maneuvers while interior G-fields remain normal.
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Old January 15th, 2020, 07:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Condottiere View Post
With missiles, if you can't outrun them, you have to be agile enough to dodge them; they could, of course, reacquire the target.
If we're talking LBB2/Mayday, the missiles will have a significant closing vector so if they miss, they'll have to kill that vector before being able to re-target what they were aimed at. Probably won't have to worry about look-angle (target acquisition field of view) issues though.
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Old January 16th, 2020, 02:10 AM
kilemall kilemall is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
I see no such limitation in the missile supplement? Or the LBBs?


Obviously a missile must be more manoeuvrable than the target ship to have a reasonable chance of interception. The standard 5G missile might be enough against slow civilian ships, it will not cut it against fast military ships.

Missile supplement has no dodge factor for regular intercept, you get within X distance and the missile automatically hits. Dodging is only an issue if you are going for the direct contact kinetic bonus.


The 6G limit is built into the table for buying your propulsion system, on the revised version that is Page 15.


Of course I have no problem ruinating this standard and indeed want to, but I'm asking the question if I am missing some content thing people treasure.


The other question also stems from the Missile supplement, in that the warheads all seem to be near detonation effects with only the hard contact/kinetic try involving impact by the missile itself. I've been trying to visualize this so it works within the HG tables logically, along with a simplified build/buy option for missiles, including bay missiles that aren't really covered anywhere as discrete designs. Just the Striker ortillery impact/bay count definition.
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Old January 16th, 2020, 02:12 AM
kilemall kilemall is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grav_Moped View Post
If we're talking LBB2/Mayday, the missiles will have a significant closing vector so if they miss, they'll have to kill that vector before being able to re-target what they were aimed at. Probably won't have to worry about look-angle (target acquisition field of view) issues though.

For the purposes of any posting where I reference my CT/HG hybrid, the goal is to have CT LBB2 maneuver paired with LBB5 HG ship designs, and preserve the relative cost/system values within a different battle context then the classic HG line em up battle.
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Old January 16th, 2020, 02:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whartung View Post
In Ouray, a town in Colorado. On the 4th of July (I should say, on the the 4th of July I happened to be there, but it felt like an annual event), they would cordon off one of the down town intersections. It would be surrounded by spectators. Then they would hook up firehoses to the juxtaposed hydrants kitty corner from each other.

Two teams of 3 (maybe for) folks in padded rain suits, safety goggle, and plastic face masks would then pick up their respective firehouse, turn them on full blast, and proceed to pound the other team with it. Each team would then close on each other, occasionally rotating the person in front to the back, until they're on top of each other. Hoses pummeling them until, eventually, one of the teams succumbs.

The one I saw, it seemed that one of the teams lead guy managed to take the stream of water under the chin. His mask went flying one way, he went flying the other, the hose got loose and the water scythed in to the crowd like a bunch of suicidal groupies before they managed to get it under control.

Space combat, I think, is something like that.

I'm hoping what I have come up with does induce maneuver, a juxtaposition of beams doing less damage and less likely to hit further away and closing creates more damage/likely to hit, but at a price of possibly closing with a gaggle of missiles which the combined closing speed allows them to do more damage. Closing TOO close, less then 100,000 km and an order of magnitude more at less then 10,000 km means terrifying mutual beam destruction.



The key is to make armor more a full penetration damage/no damage effect thing, simplify the rolls to less then a few per firing ship, and missiles be VERY kinetic such that you get less damage even if they do hit with drawing away, and conversely in some situations a heavily armored ship will close before the missile can get up to penetrating speed.
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Old January 16th, 2020, 01:29 PM
whartung whartung is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kilemall View Post
Missile supplement has no dodge factor for regular intercept, you get within X distance and the missile automatically hits. Dodging is only an issue if you are going for the direct contact kinetic bonus.
Mechanically from a rules standpoint with Mayday, if you get within the Missile maneuver envelope, they hit. Just how they work.

In that sense, with that rule base, missile act like moving mines. Anything within their zone of control (i.e. their maneuver envelope) is going to get smacked, so it behooves the target to stay out of that envelope.

This is also a reason traveller missiles historically don't have much maneuver (notably fuel for maneuver). A lot of missiles are 6G missiles with 12Gs of fuel.

They adopt the vector of the attacking ship.

So, in a simple example, you can see a ship moving with a vector of magnitude 10 (i.e. speed 10, 10 hexes). The ship launches the missile, which immediately adopts the same vector.

It can use it's 6G drive and 12Gs of fuel to make a 6 hex correction on its vector to get it in place. But after that, it just coasts. It's now a 6 hex radius bubble waiting to pop. If the target ships vector crosses that bubble, the missile burns the rest of its fuel (up to 6Gs) to "correct" it vector and smack the ship.

A missile floating around is a force to be reckoned with, it's "controlling" quite a bit of space (almost 100 hexes).

For example, if the launching ship has a vector of magnitude less than 6, then the missile can use its initial maneuver to "stop". Leaving a "mine" with a 6 hex radius zone.

In game terms, there's really no maneuver here. It's not a Sidewinder jinking and turning. Missiles just maneuver like ships, they just have the ability to maneuver last. Actually, I think they get to maneuver "whenever". The get the benefit of the doubt. If you have a ship with a high vector, it's easy to see a turn where they start outside of the maneuver envelope of the missile, "pass through it" and end up, again, still outside of the envelope. i.e. image a ship going "16", starting head on to the missile 8 hexes out. It tried to maneuver "through" the missile, and at the end of the turn, it's now, still, 8 hexes out, but behind the missile. But the missile still gets its shot in simply because the ship crossed the envelope. Just makes the game play easier, they get an exception to the normal rules.
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