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Old September 3rd, 2018, 10:24 AM
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Default MgT1E adaptation of the ISW: the naval design factor

When I began studying MgT1e (mostly HG) I realized it implied several paradigm changes. One of the main ones, IMHO, was that it shifted the main ship killer in large ship combat from the missiles, queens of the battle in CT and MT (the previous versions I’ve played) to the beam bays and turrets, be them PB at lower TLs or Fusion/MG at higher ones.

I also find the Spinals (mostly the PA ones) to be too easily stopped by armor, making them also quite inefficient weapons (see this post for my assertions about effects on missiles and PA spinals).

This lead me to reconsider the history of Interstellar Wars as it has been told to now, as I keep believing (and have stated already many times, something I know some of you don’t agree) that the history narrative should be understandable from the rules POV in a setting that is derived from a game (and so, its rules). I tried to keep the main historical lines but not so sure about GT:IW (as I don’t own it) and surely not too compatible with Imperium game.

Background:

When the Terrans contacted the Vilani Empire it has reigned for several millennia and has not faced a serious space thread for most of them. This has lead its fleet to become mostly a planet threat tool, concentrating most its offensive power on missiles as they were the main ortillery weapons, and to a dismiss of the beam ones (lasers excluded, as they can be used as PD), that were relegated to TL 10, mostly as spinals, as they could not be exchanged by missiles and where quite scaring and impressive (though they being TL 11, their ships were limited to 50 kdton, and only the largest ones carried them).

OTOH, the Terrans, having no space combat experience, assumed the Vilani had more of it and so their designs would be better and copied this trend on their military ships, making them quite missile heavy in their offensive powers. Even the spinals where ignored, as their ships were smaller (due to their lower TL).

The first Clashes:

When the first Interstellar War began, both sides confronted their heavily armored and missile armed sips, leading to many inconclusive duels. Even the large Vilani PA spinals where largely ineffective against the heavy armored ships, while the missiles, though some devastating salvoes could destroy or heavily damage an enemy ship, where mostly stopped by the PDs or negated by armor, while they were consumed at unexpected high rate.

The Terrans also faced the problem of having a poor supply train, as most of their shipbuilding capacity was dedicated to military ships, so the dwindling missiles supply quickly degraded the offensive capacity of any fleet as they went farther from Earth.

This, of course, gave some advantage to the Vilani, whose supply ships and missile production capacity were plentiful and had larger ships, as they still held a small TL advantage…

The neglected nations:

Earth, so was in serious trouble. To the factors told we must add Earth was not yet united, being a Balkanized world, and the standardization, both in material, languages, training and other factors (not to forget national agendas, despite all problems they shared) was far from total.

Then one unexpected factor entered in the equation.

Due to Earth history and internal politics among their nations, some of its shipbuilding nations had no nuclear weapons capacity (most important of them being Germany and Japan, but also Australia, Canada, Nigeria, Scandinavic countries and some Latin American nations among others), and they have dedicated their shipbuilding capacity to beam armed ships, leading to the development of the PB, both as turrets and bays.

Those ships, being considered not usable in set battles due to their lack of the main ship killing weapon (the nuclear missile), have been relegated to secondary roles, such as planetary defenses or freight escort until Terran losses and lack of supplies forced them to confront the Vilani in set battle, to an amazing effect.

The tide turns:

The Terrans soon realized their unexpected usefulness in battle, and the owning nations made sure their contribution and beams development were widely known among the Terran Naval high brass, beginning what was a true design policy change among the Terran shipbuilding, eased by the fact Terran fleet was small and easily refitted, while their shipbuilding facilities were not yet fully set up, making retooling them easy too.

The Vilani also saw it, but they were reluctant to accept what had worked for centuries (if not millennia) would not work anymore, and they were still more reluctant to a full change on their design policies (that should have to be approved by Vland Council, unaware of those facts, in any case) that would have forced them to retool all their shipbuilding industry, with the problems this would have meant for the maintenance of their already large fleet.

By the time the Vilani began to accept the unavoidable conclusion, after having lost several important battles to the PB armed Terran ships, and began the transition this needed, the Terrans have already won important territory (and industrial base), and their PB developing was leading to the first MG spinals (and soon after bays).

The rest is history…

(now ducking my head against the canonsits shooting )
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Last edited by McPerth; January 9th, 2019 at 06:30 PM.. Reason: typos
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 01:09 PM
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well, since you linked back to the discussion that spawned it, I am sure you remember my own take on the same events and history.

I might have to re0build that ship in 2e and see if I can make it a bit better, and tidy up that backstory a bit.
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxeskingofking View Post
well, since you linked back to the discussion that spawned it, I am sure you remember my own take on the same events and history.
I'm sure I skiped it, as otherways I would have answered to it...

Great background history, though I keep believeing the Vilani were mainly missile armed, and so any such Vilani design would have initially been so, as my history tells...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxeskingofking View Post
I might have to re0build that ship in 2e and see if I can make it a bit better, and tidy up that backstory a bit.
Your history is quite good too. I don't own MgT2e, so I cannot help you there, nor know if the missiles there have more punch...
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Last edited by McPerth; January 9th, 2019 at 06:38 PM.. Reason: typos
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 01:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
I'm sure I skiped it, as otherways I would have answered to it...

Great background history, though I keep believeing the VIlani were mainly missile armed, and so any such Vilani design would have initially been so, as my history tells...
well, the vlani designs I talked about were explicitly missle boats, as I wanted to keep that style as the "traditional" way of war that had worked for them since before the Consolidation Wars (which took longer than the time it took rome to be founded, grow, expand, found the Roman empire and the western empire to fall, and those two events happened at in the same time frame, incidentally).

I never got round to statting them out, but I rough sketch was a 10kdt j2 design with armour 8, missile bays as main armament and a large number of shuttles and marines, the logic being it was optimised for imperial policing rather than pure naval combat.


Quote:
Your history is quite good too. I don't own MgT2e, so I cannot help you there, nor know if the missiles there have more punch...
they do. standard and nukes are now 4d/6d respectively, so missiles are much better at ship killing (espically at adventure scale)

also Particle weapons are now TL11 and PA's smaller than 5 ton barbettes are de-canonised (ie, they have rules, but they don't exist in the OTU), along with non spinal meson weapons.
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Last edited by Xerxeskingofking; September 3rd, 2018 at 01:54 PM.. Reason: corrected weapons values
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 02:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxeskingofking View Post
well, the vlani designs I talked about were explicitly missle boats, as I wanted to keep that style as the "traditional" way of war that had worked for them since before the Consolidation Wars (which took longer than the time it took rome to be founded, grow, expand, found the Roman empire and the western empire to fall, and those two events happened at in the same time frame, incidentally).

I never got round to statting them out, but I rough sketch was a 10kdt j2 design with armour 8, missile bays as main armament and a large number of shuttles and marines, the logic being it was optimised for imperial policing rather than pure naval combat.
That's my take on Vilani fleet too, as I explained: they had become more a pólice force than a true Space Combat one. After all, they have been many centuries without a credible space threat...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxeskingofking View Post
they do. standard and nukes are now 4d/6d respectively, so missiles are much better at ship killing (espically at adventure scale)
See that in the OTU 3I the ACS are unlikely to be using nukes...

And I've read it has eliminated barrage combat, so IDK what effect this has to Warships.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxeskingofking View Post
also Particle weapons are now TL11 and PA's smaller than 5 ton barbettes are de-canonised (ie, they have rules, but they don't exist in the OTU), along with non spinal meson weapons.
This is quite a retcon for the OTU, as PA turrets (even the old Gazelle used them) and Meson Bays were quite there...
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
That's my take on Vilani fleet too, as I explained: they had become more a pólice force than a true Space Combat one. After all, they have been many centuries without a credible space threat...
I thought the Missile Boat was a Terran invention and advantage?


Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
And I've read it has eliminated barrage combat, so IDK what effect this has to Warships.
There is a similar system but the table goes from 0 - 100%. The rolls are much closer to the basic system, so less inconsistencies.


Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
This is quite a retcon for the OTU, as PA turrets (even the old Gazelle used them) and Meson Bays were quite there...
PA barbettes are still available, which is what the original Gazelle used.

But Meson bays are perhaps gone, except that several Imperial Navy ships in MgT2 HG use them...

As far as I know these retcons come from T5.
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
I thought the Missile Boat was a Terran invention and advantage?
Right, according Imperium game at least... As a copy of the Vilani strategy to base their forcé in missiles.

I already said this was not compatible with it, as it was thought with a paradigm where missiles reigned in space battles, something taht does not happen in MgT1e

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
PA barbettes are still available, which is what the original Gazelle used.

But Meson bays are perhaps gone, except that several Imperial Navy ships in MgT2 HG use them...

As far as I know these retcons come from T5.
The Gazelle used a 2 dton turret that is specified some people calls barbettes. Acording CT:HG or MT at TL 15 it would have been only 1 dton.
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
I thought the Missile Boat was a Terran invention and advantage?
Right, according Imperium game at least... As a copy of the Vilani strategy to base their force in missiles.

I already said this was not compatible with it, as it was thought with a paradigm where missiles reigned in space battles, something taht does not happen in MgT1e

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
PA barbettes are still available, which is what the original Gazelle used.

But Meson bays are perhaps gone, except that several Imperial Navy ships in MgT2 HG use them...

As far as I know these retcons come from T5.
The Gazelle used a 2 dton turret that is specified some people calls barbettes. Acording CT:HG or MT at TL 15 it would have been only 1 dton, and has little to do with the 5 dton barbettes represented in MgT (at least in 1e).
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Old September 3rd, 2018, 06:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
RIght, according Imperium game at least... As a copy of the Vilani strategy to base their forcé in missiles.
According to the Imperium counters the Vilani used balanced ships with fairly equal beam and missile armaments, whereas the Terrans used more extreme designs with mostly either beam or missile armaments.


Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
The Gazelle used a 2 dton turret that is specified some people calls barbettes. Acording CT:HG or MT at TL 15 it would have been only 1 dton.
The 5 Dt PA barbette is straight out of HG'80, see p25. (There is also a higher TL 3 Dt PA turret).

Quote:
Originally Posted by JTAS#4, Gazelle, p19
The barbettes, and their particle accelerator weapons are not specifically covered in Traveller Book 2. They are a variant drawn from the material in High Guard, and grafted onto Book 2. Specifically, the barbettes are 5 tons each.
MT did not use the name barbette, but a TL-14 PA turret was 67.5 m³ = 5 Dt:
Quote:
Originally Posted by MT RM, p73
Particle accelerator volume depends on Tech Level at TL 14, volume is 67.5 [=5 Dt], at TL 15, volume is 40.5 [=3 Dt]; ...
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Old September 4th, 2018, 06:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
According to the Imperium counters the Vilani used balanced ships with fairly equal beam and missile armaments, whereas the Terrans used more extreme designs with mostly either beam or missile armaments.
I guess the beam factor in Imperiu represents more the Spinals than the bays/turrets, and so the Vilani also use to have them.

In any case, I guess I was quite clear in my OP:
Quote:
Originally Posted by McPerth View Post
...and surely not too compatible with Imperium game.
Imperium game used a diferent paradigm, I guess more close to CT:HG, where missiles and spinals were the Queens of the space battle, while, as I already explained, MgT1e fully changes that, making them both nearly useless.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherDilbert View Post
The 5 Dt PA barbette is straight out of HG'80, see p25. (There is also a higher TL 3 Dt PA turret).

MT did not use the name barbette, but a TL-14 PA turret was 67.5 m³ = 5 Dt:
You're right here. My fault.

But even so, the TL 15, 3 dton particle turret would disapear in this case...
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