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The Fleet Ship designs, strategies, and tactics.

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  #1  
Old March 30th, 2003, 12:06 PM
Borodin Borodin is offline
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I figured other people out there may well be looking to run a merc campaign, and the Mercenary Cruiser is an excellent ship for the job, especially for a medium-size (~ 1 company) merc outfit. And since that's the sort of game I'm getting ready for, I figured a nice update to the (somewhat) erroneous MC in the THB would be useful. So I grabbed Falkayn's T20 ship design spreadsheet (available from the downloads section at http://www.falkayn.com/traveller/), my THB, and the deckplans from http://www.sff.net/people/kitsune/traveller/ (sorry, I don't remember whose site that is), and went to town. After about 30 minutes, here are the fruits of my labor. Comments, questions, suggestions are of course welcome. Also please note, I really can claim no credit for any of this. [img]tongue.gif[/img] Oh, and if anyone has a nice pic of the 'Happy Death Ball' anywhere, lemme know. There is one in the art gallery on travellerrpg.com, but while it does look really nice, it is most certainly NOT spherical (actually, what shape hull is it?)

[img]graemlins/alpha.gif[/img]
Mercenary Cruiser - Starship
Type: Longsword subclass of the Broadsword Class Mercenary Cruiser
Designation: Civilian
Designed by: Borodin (well, not really)

Statistics:

800-ton Hull (Sphere) - Streamlined
AC: 10 (6 vs. Meson Guns) AR: 0 SI: 205 Initiative: 0
Starship Size: Medium
Cost: 361.778 MCr (452.223 MCr without discount)
Model/5 Computer
Avionics: Less than 4,000-ton
Sensors: Very Long Range
Communications: Very Long Range
Cargo: 141.8-tons
Annual Maintenance = 36.178 KCr (18.089 KCr if routinely maintained)
Routine Maintenance = 9.044 KCr/Month (90.445 KCr per year)

Performance:

Jump-3 (270 tons of fuel, enough for 1x Jump-3)
Acceleration: 3-G Agility: 0
Power Plant: TL-13 Fusion (44 EP output, enough fuel for 4 weeks)
Fuel Scoops, Fuel Purification Plant (TL-13, 7hrs per 200 tons of fuel)
Atmospheric Speeds: NOE = 1,175kph Cruising = 3,525kph Maximum = 4,700kph

Weapons:

Hardpoints: 8
2x Triple Missile Rack Turret TL-13 (6 missile magazines)
Missile +4 To Hit, 4d6 (18/x1), Range: 90,000km, Ammo: 240 missiles
2x Triple Pulse Laser Turret TL-13, +4 To Hit, 4d10 (19/x2), Range: 45,000km
2x Double Fusion Gun Turret TL-13, +4 To Hit, 4d20 (16/x5), Range: 4,500km
2x Triple Sandcaster Turret TL-13, +5 AC, Ammo: 60 sand canisters

Ship's Vehicles:

2x 8-ton vehicle hangar
2x 50-ton small craft (External Dock - Streamlined)
Launch facilities for 1 Craft per turn

Accomodations & Fittings:

6x Single Occupancy Stateroom (6 People)
24x Double Occupancy Small Cabin (48 People)
12x Standalone Fresher
1x Sickbay (2 Patients)
2x Airlocks

Crew Details:

1x Pilot
1x Astrogator
5x Engineer
1x Medic

Description:

This is a TL13 version of the Mercenary Cruiser, designed to match up with the deckplans for the Longsword subclass of the Broadsword class Mercenary Cruiser. Changes from the standard MC include updating all equipment to TL13, removing 19 of the staterooms and replacing them with 24 small cabins and 12 stand-alone freshers, adding a sickbay, adding weapons and appropriate munitions, including an extra personnel airlock, including two vehicle bays large enough for a GCarrier or similarly sized vehicle which double as cargo locks, redesignating the 2 Modular Cutter ship's boats as being externally mounted (streamlined mounts), increasing the capacity of both the Jump drives and maneuver drives to provide sufficient power for the externally mounted ship's boats, increasing the power output of the power plant to sufficiently power the weapons and increased drives, and recomputing all sizes and prices for components.

Prices for the Modular Cutters are not included in the ship's cost, and will need to be added. The Cutters will usually mount an ATV module to aid in troop transport. Also, while gunners are not specified in the crew roster, it is assumed the troops on board will fill this role. The ship has 141 tons of space on the cargo deck, and .8 tons elsewhere.

Assuming required command crew and officers (owner aboard, captain, pilot, astrogator, chief engineer, medic, troop commander, and troop sergeant) are all singly bunked, 22 small cabins remain for troop and subordinate crew accomodations (2 cabins for the remaining engineering crew and 20 cabins for troops, all double occupancy) leaving available space for 40 troops, approximately 1 platoon (using the Imperial Marines infantry model) in total. However, one of the staterooms will often be reserved for a representative of the employer, reducing maximum troop capacity to 38 enlisted personnel.

Also, the streamlining of the ship was upgraded to allow it better maneuverability when landing on a potentially hostile planet and to allow gas giant fuel skimming. Fuel scoops were added on the dorsal and ventral surfaces outside the crew deck, which vent the gasses down to the cargo deck, where part of the cargo space was filled with a fuel purification plant.

A sickbay with beds for two patients and all necessary medical equipment (TL13) was added on the mess deck. Unfortunately, the primary access to Turret 8 leads straight through the sickbay area. For this reason, Turret 8 is usually equipped with pulse lasers and does not require a gunner or reloading crew.

[img]graemlins/omega.gif[/img]
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  #2  
Old April 1st, 2003, 08:19 PM
far-trader far-trader is offline
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Hi Borodin,

I should be doing a few other things but I got distracted by this shiny new cruiser [img]smile.gif[/img]

I did a quick run of the displacement and it didn't add up. Putting in everything the way you listed it (including 130.0dT for the two cutters and external docks, 190.2dT for the cargo hold, and 16.0dT for the two vehicle holds) I came up 74.0dT over. Not sure where the problem lies, my error or yours/the programs. I think my work is correct, but my interpretation of your design may be off.

Also you need to upgrade the avionics one step to handle the upgraded streamlining or suffer an agility penalty of -1 when operating in an atmosphere. That may be your intention, but you missed the notation then.

Other than that (and other stuff I might have missed cause I didn't check it out) it looks to do a nice job of modelling the deckplans, kudos.

Oh, as for the T20 art for the Merc Cruiser I'd say its a Close Structure, which matches the partial streamlining noted for the T20 design.
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Old April 1st, 2003, 09:01 PM
Falkayn Falkayn is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by far-trader:
I did a quick run of the displacement and it didn't add up. Putting in everything the way you listed it (including 130.0dT for the two cutters and external docks, 190.2dT for the cargo hold, and 16.0dT for the two vehicle holds) I came up 74.0dT over. Not sure where the problem lies, my error or yours/the programs. I think my work is correct, but my interpretation of your design may be off.

Also you need to upgrade the avionics one step to handle the upgraded streamlining or suffer an agility penalty of -1 when operating in an atmosphere. That may be your intention, but you missed the notation then.
Ugh ... software's fault I'm afraid. The next version has the avionics bug fixed - but the problem with external docks is that they don't count and yet they do ... they do for Jump volume and they don't for space inside the ship (and therefore maneuver drive?).

[EDIT: So for all my own designs I use internal docks.]
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  #4  
Old April 2nd, 2003, 12:06 AM
far-trader far-trader is offline
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Sorry to clutter your design thread Borodin but since it came up here I hope you'll forgive a little related feedback on Falkyn's work.
Quote:
Originally posted by Falkayn:
Ugh ... software's fault I'm afraid. The next version has the avionics bug fixed - but the problem with external docks is that they don't count and yet they do ... they do for Jump volume and they don't for space inside the ship (and therefore maneuver drive?).

[EDIT: So for all my own designs I use internal docks.]
Hey don't beat yourself up over it [img]smile.gif[/img]

Could you make the avionics thing a choice, like you pick the minimum or better to offset any streamline upgrade choices? I like making some designs deliberately awkward for atmospheric ops, besides its cheaper too [img]smile.gif[/img]

I can see how external docking mounts would be tricksy. I'd never thought of it in quite the way your programming choice made me think about it though. It makes some sense, as I think I see you doing it. For manuver drive calculations the dock hardware is counted but not the actual carried craft, right? For my second run through of Borodin's design with that assumption it does save some tonnage for the manuver and consequently some power plant and fuel too since the manuver uses less. In fact with the reduced manuver drive the agility power works out to a nice 14EP for +2, the same 14EP that is used for the weapons. At least that's the way I prefer to rule emergency agility, you only have whatever power you can redirect from other systems.

Anyway for my rework now I just changed the cargo capacity (which includes the spare module holds) to 130.2dT along with the above manuver and power change and I'm happy. Thanks Borodin.

EDITED - Sorry, my comments above I was thinking of AMV's program for some reason, so they may not make much sense, I need some sleep
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Old April 2nd, 2003, 01:01 AM
TKalbfus TKalbfus is offline
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It seems the T20 version of the Mercenary Cruiser can land. The original Merc Cruiser couldn't although it looks like it could. I once designed a similar starship for the Alternity Game, it was 10 stories tall! I also had special internal elevators called Gravlifts, it could whip anyone to any deck of the ship in less than a second. The doors just snapped shut and immediately opened again and you were there. The elevators had separate grave plates that automatically compensated for the acceleration so that the occupants didn't feel it. The effect is almost as if the ship had an internal teleporter.
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Old April 2nd, 2003, 08:54 AM
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Jame Jame is offline
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This is a nice looking ship, Borodin. If you'd post a revised version using the fixed software, I'd like a copy!
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Old April 17th, 2003, 07:30 AM
Tanuki Tanuki is offline
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Hey, thanks, Borodin! Nice set of stats there.

The cutter bays were a particular problem -- the old CT deckplans are -- interesting -- the module stowage areas are not big enough to hold the modules for instance, and they don't have enough displacement. What I finally ended up with is cutter bays/docks/cradles that are partially internal and partially external. They do take volume out of the spherical hull, but there was no way to fit two cutters and their modules completely inside the sphere.

Somewhere I've got the rough stats I used to put it together, but I like your stats and writeup a lot. With your permission, once you're satisfied with whatever tinkering remains, I'd like to put your stats on site with the deckplans.

Thanks again -- Brook (aka Tanuki)
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Old April 18th, 2003, 10:34 AM
Borodin Borodin is offline
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Jame, I know diddly about the computer design sequence and how it ties into ship design (having only the examples in the book to go off of, well, you know about those!) and they don't explain all of that too clearly. I would think it would try to get as many of the necessary programs in as possible: the vessel operations, offensive, and defensive programs. Feel free to contribute some input there.


Hmm, I hadn't really looked at some of the calculations too closely. I see the thing about the external docks. Basically what we end up with is an 800dton hull that is moving around 900dton worth of ship.

So if I'm reading this correctly, the MC will need 18 J drive units (to cover the 800 dton main hull [16 drive units] and the 100 dton worth of modular cutters [another 2 units]) which is two more units than the original calculations. So the J drive gets bumped up 4 more tons, requires 30 tons more fuel, and draws 3 more EP, plus raises ship cost 18MCr.

The comments look like you're saying manuever drive can stay as is, with just 16 drive units. I guess the assumption is the cutters kick in some extra thrust of their own? That seems a bit strange, personally, as it would require the navigation systems being tied into the main ship's system and would produce a lot of extra stress on the docking clamps. My inclination right now is to say that won't work, and we need drives for 900dtons here as well, with the bonus that once the cutters disengage from the ship, the extra drive power can be rerouted to provide some agility perhaps (if you also shut down some of the weapons, that is ). So I'm gonna say, increase manuever drive requirements to 18 units as well, taking up 8 more tons space, costing another 4 MCr, and requiring another 3 EP.

Also, the avionics do need to be upgraded to M/3, requiring .4 dtons more space and raising the cost by 4.5 MCr. Power requirements remain the same.

These changes mean the power plant needs to be upgraded as well, bumping it up to 44 EP output. That will take 3 more dtons (and 3 more dtons for fuel) and raise the ship cost by another 9 MCr.

Also, I didn't take the spare modular cutter modules into consideration. Hmm, might need to drop another 60 tons of cargo space to accomodate those an extra module for each cutter. Some of that can be recouped by saying they're cargo modules, which have, what, 20 dtons cargo space in them? Hmm, what do you all think about those?

Total effective change to the ship design:
Increase power plant output to 44 EP, increase jump fuel tank by 30 dtons, increase power plant fuel tank by 3 dtons, increase avionics to M/3, decrease cargo space by 48.4 dtons (not including the cutter modules), increase price of ship by 26.5 MCr. Ouch! I'll make those changes now.
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Old April 18th, 2003, 10:35 AM
Borodin Borodin is offline
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Oh, and Brook, sure, feel free.
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Old April 19th, 2003, 09:58 AM
Tanuki Tanuki is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Borodin:
Hmm, I hadn't really looked at some of the calculations too closely. I see the thing about the external docks. Basically what we end up with is an 800dton hull that is moving around 900dton worth of ship.
Whoa! Hang on a minute -- I took the semi-external docks into account when I designed the ship. The total displacement of 800 dtons includes the docked cutters. The actual sphere is a tad under 750 dtons. I don't remember the exact figure but I worked out the geometry of the thing re: how much of the cutter hulls are actually within the sphere and how much hang out top and bottom. So the whole thing behaves like an 800 dton ship.

Which means that if the cutters are not docked (empty space in the docking wells) the ship is only 700 dtons -- and if it's not carrying spare modules either (the module wells then opening directly into space as well) it's 640 dtons of ship with drives designed for 800 dtons. That should make a difference in performance!

I suppose that if you slaved the cutter drives to precisely offset the cutter displacement/mass the ship would behave like a 700 dton ship w/800 dton drives but I think that's starting to complicate things unnecessarily.

Though if it was good enough for the Annic Nova... [img]graemlins/file_23.gif[/img]

Wonder how much accelleration the cutters could provide all by themselves in an emergency? "Cap'n, the maneuver drives are hard down for the at least three hours." "Well, Scotty, you'd better figure out how to turn our upcoming hot entry into an orbit or we're dead."
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