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Vehicle and support weapon squad level integration

Golan2072

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I'm currently revamping my version of the Solar Triumvirate's Marine Corps (IMTU, TL12; all gravtech moved up one TL, so no gravbelts yet but plenty o' G-Carriers). My question is: Should a Marine squad in such TL have an organic G-Carrier at all (I have no vehicle combat/design rules yet so no Grav-APC yet), and if so, how is it integrated in the squad level? Do troopers from the squad's fireteams drive the G-Carrier/man it's turret, or does it have it's own dedicated driver and gunner (maybe the driver is the Squad Leader)?

The issue is that not all Marine missions are planetside (in fact, many aren't) or in large enough space stations (i.e. hollowed-out astroids and Island-class stations) for the G-carrier to operate in, so the driver/gunner will have to have other squad jobs; also, the dropship will have to be able to carry the troops both within and without of their G-Carriers.

Another question: How do you integrate infantry support weapons (mostly PGMP-12's in this TL, right?) to the squad level? One per fireteam?
 
One per fireteam?! :eek: You are really looking at gunning up your Marines! (Or, are your fireteams larger than I am thinking - ~3 people?)

How big are your squads and your platoons? This would be the largest factor in your G-carrier question. I probably would raise it to the level of a platoon, then design it large enough for one. (I assume you are not talking about anything but a method of delivery to the front lines?)
 
Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
Should a Marine squad in such TL have an organic G-Carrier at all ... and if so, how is it integrated in the squad level?
If you choose to not have the vehicle integrated into the squad, it's probably best to have a separate crew for it. You might even consider transporting your G-Carriers as a "wing", grouped together on a ship and sent to support marine operations where needed.
If you do decide to integrate them at squad level it's probably better to add them as a third (or fourth) fireteam if you're using them as transports rather than fighting vehicles.

Another question: How do you integrate infantry support weapons (mostly PGMP-12's in this TL, right?) to the squad level? One per fireteam?
You can go either way. With current support weapons, machineguns are typically one per squad while grenade launchers are one per team.
 
IMTU I use the model of the Napoleonic era for shipboard Marines, as light infantry for boarding actions and raiding ashore. In that role they don't need vehicles; their ship (and its small craft) take them where they need to go. Of course, for Imperial Marines I'm used to thinking of TL15 and battledress with integral gravbelts.

In the real world, the US Marines do not assign vehicles to squads; the vehicles are in separate units and are assigned to support/carry infantry units as needed.

That said, the classic Type T patrol cruiser had a G-carrier for its squad of troops, so it might well be that in TRAVELLER the infantry have vehicles, at least in wealthy governments.

As for the PGMP-12, Book 4 Mercenary says that the PGMP-12 was often replacing the grenade launcher as a squad-level support weapon, implying that there would be as many PGMP-12s as there had been grenade launchers, and there usually is one grenade launcher per fireteam. Again, this is if the government can afford to provide such a level of support.
 
Originally posted by Fritz88:
One per fireteam?! :eek: You are really looking at gunning up your Marines! (Or, are your fireteams larger than I am thinking - ~3 people?)

How big are your squads and your platoons? This would be the largest factor in your G-carrier question. I probably would raise it to the level of a platoon, then design it large enough for one. (I assume you are not talking about anything but a method of delivery to the front lines?)
A fireteam is 4 people; a Squad is currently 2 fireteams and a squad leader (9 men), though I might add a two-person Plasma Team (if the PGMP-12 won't be assigned to each squad), resulting in 11 men per squad. If the APC will be assigned to the squad as a fireteam-equivalent it'll probably add 2 more people (driver and gunner).

And the G-Carrier/Grav-APC isn't only a battlefield transport; it also provides heavy (VRF-Gauss) fire support.

However, according to the advice given to me in this thread, I'll probably have Marine squads of 11 men (2 Gauss Rifleman fireteams of 4 men each, a two-men Plasma Team and a Squad Leader); vehicles will be integrated in the Platoon level. Since my Marines don't use Sections, a Platoon is 3 Squads (33 men) plus a Command Post (4 men: CO, XO, Medic, Intel/commo specialist) and a G-Carrier/Grav-APC "squad" of 4 vehicles (one per infantry squad and one for the Command Post), including 9 men (4 G-Carrier Pilots, 4 G-Carrier Gunners and one Vehicle Squad Leader). So total 46 men, not including ship/dropship crews (will they be Navy or Marines?), per Platoon.
 
Ahhh, yes, 2-4601, that sounds much better - at the squad level.

If you make the dropship crews Marines, I would adopt the US concept of "Rifleman first". That is that every Marine is a Combat Rifleman - just some of them get to do other jobs, too. So your dropship crews would cycle through other Marine jobs, as well. (I am assuming by dropship you mean a small vehicle which can also be used for air support.)

The starships should only be crewed by Navy folks.
 
Dropship = a custom small craft; uses the Ship's Boat skill. The skill isn't included much in the LBB4 generation system (only on the "shipboard life" table), though Marine Flight School Graduates (see my house rules for details) would fit in as well. As IMTU is TL12, Battle Dresses are still in R&D, and Marines from a TL12 force (rules say "world" but Solar Triumvirate marines are equipped to TL12, with no exceptions - they are the few and the best) would recieve a Ship's Boat skill instead on the Marine MOS table.

Another issue - how are Marine forces deployed planetside? I was thinking about leaving the mothership in geo-synchronic orbit abouve the LZ to provide the Platoon with C3I and ortillery support; two dropships (one carrying the marines and one the G-Carriers) will go planetside. Another option (which I'll use for the Alliance marines) would be to assign each squad to a light dropship - which will function as their organic transport and fire support - and forgo the G-Carrier.

Drop Capsules are limited IMTU to deployment of the elite Drop Troops, the cream of the cream of the Marines (I know, I've listed them as Army in a different thread, but they fit the Marines better). These soldiers are supreme shock troops, equipped with heavy weaponary and combat armors, and dropped on enemy strong points in surprise assaults from stealthed ships.
 
One PGMP-12 per fireteam sounds about right. Depending on whose model you are using. Since WWII the Squad Automatic Weapon type weapon has been integrated at the Fireteam level. For how, IMTU, Marines are organized, (Yes I came to the same conclusion that Imperial Marines are, in the majority, Light Infantry.) it is in this thread
 
Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
Another issue - how are Marine forces deployed planetside? I was thinking about leaving the mothership in geo-synchronic orbit abouve the LZ to provide the Platoon with C3I and ortillery support; two dropships (one carrying the marines and one the G-Carriers) will go planetside. Another option (which I'll use for the Alliance marines) would be to assign each squad to a light dropship - which will function as their organic transport and fire support - and forgo the G-Carrier.
If you go with the dropship as a shuttle you might want to consider having the marines land with their carriers. If the landing is opposed and the drop ships are "bump and go" the marines will want the VRF Gauss gun umbrella right handy. This assumes your rules allow point defense fire against incoming attacks.
 
Yeah, I picture the marines coming in already in the G-carrier for a high speed low pass and drop by the shuttle. Kinda like in the movies Aliens or a Low Altitude Parachute Extraction like that used by the C-130, only without the parachute.
 
If you are going Mech. The Vehicles should be integrated at the Squad level. It just works better integrated. Your Squad goes from 2 fire teams to 3. The third one being the ICV (Infantry Combat Vehicle) and crew. So for example with the TL12 Grav APC in Supplement 6, it has a crew of 3 and 8 passengers. THe Squad is a Squad of 11. With an 8 person dismount element and a 3 person vehicle crew. In this case probably two 4 person fire teams and the vehicle Team. (With the Squad Leader either commanding one of the teams directly, possibly the Vehicle Team, but more likely the First Fireteam.)
 
Ok, so what you're proposing looks like:
Squad: 3 Fireteams - two infantry ones of four men each (with one PGMP-12 per fireteam as a "grenade launcher" high TL substitute), one Vehicle "fireteam" containing the G-Carrier Pilot, and the G-Carrier Gunner and a Squad leader (total 11 men).

Platoon: Since my Marines don't use Sections, a Platoon is 3 Squads (33 men) plus a Command Post (5 men: CO, XO, Medic, Intel/commo specialist and "Political Advisor" - remember my Solar Triumvirate post about these "PolAs") and a Dropship (crewed by two Marines: a Pilot and a Gunner). Total 40 men.
 
Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
Ok, so what you're proposing looks like:
Squad: 3 Fireteams - two infantry ones of four men each (with one PGMP-12 per fireteam as a "grenade launcher" high TL substitute), one Vehicle "fireteam" containing the G-Carrier Pilot, and the G-Carrier Gunner and a Squad leader (total 11 men).

Platoon: Since my Marines don't use Sections, a Platoon is 3 Squads (33 men) plus a Command Post (5 men: CO, XO, Medic, Intel/commo specialist and "Political Advisor" - remember my Solar Triumvirate post about these "PolAs") and a Dropship (crewed by two Marines: a Pilot and a Gunner). Total 40 men.
Don't forget your Platoon HQ is going to have to be as mobile as the rest of the Platoon so probably requires a vehicle. Platoon HQ, should require a Platoon Leader, Platoon Sergeant, Medic and possibly a Communications Specialist. Political Officers should be at the Company Level and higher. Platoons generally only have one Officer and have been traditionally too small for the limited numbers of "Politically Reliable" Political Officers available to any Government.


(Soviet Army they were at the Company Level and above. WH40K they are also generally at the Company Level and Higher, though in 1st Ed. occasionally there were so many of them that they found the occasional Commisar at the Squad Level.
)

BTW I tend to think of the PGMP as more of a high tech SAW replacement than a Grenade Launcher Replacement. (Grenade Launchers are in the rules, every rifleman carries one. Similar in concept to the OICW, There are no ACR/Gauss Rifle SAW equivalents.)
 
And, just to give your G-Carrier crew something when you're not deploying in vehicles:
Gauss Light Support Weapon:
Use the range and target modifiers of the Gauss rifle and the firing rate rules for the light machinegun or VRF.
Needles, battery and coolant come in cassetes loaded like the autocannon. Each cassete holds 10 bursts and weighs maybe 3 kilos. A heavy weapon, so maybe the weight of the TL5 early machinegun.
 
Originally posted by Bhoins:
Don't forget your Platoon HQ is going to have to be as mobile as the rest of the Platoon so probably requires a vehicle. Platoon HQ, should require a Platoon Leader, Platoon Sergeant, Medic and possibly a Communications Specialist. Political Officers should be at the Company Level and higher. Platoons generally only have one Officer and have been traditionally too small for the limited numbers of "Politically Reliable" Political Officers available to any Government.
The Platoon-level PolA is a Marine-specific issue; Marines are the only ground force to be independantly deployed through a starship at platoon level, and are deployed onboard a fast-attack corvette to boot; Think of the corvette as a submarine in this respect. And the PolA is not always an officer and usually out of the chain of command; her job is to keep her eyes open for possible sedition or treason, to "wave the flag" (that is, spread pro-Triumvirate propaganda and keep a fighting spirit), to act as a military-corporate liasion and, only in the case of an emergency (such as the CO showing clear signs of sedition), relieve the officer from command (this doesn't happen often, and every such case is reviewed; it is usually better to dishonorably dismiss/arrest unwanted elements when at a port than suring a military mission, and the Triumvirate is not paranoid enough to allow too much of such distruption of its military activity). Think of the PolA has a mix between an MP investigator, a real advisor on political matters and an "educational NCO/officer" (who is responsible for keeping up morale and patriotism). The Triumvirate isn't a full-blown police state (just an overbearing military-corporate impersonal bureaucracy which had a sucessful Insurrection against it 30 vyears ago and doesn't want another Insurrection and another Alliance created). But anyway, the PolA will be assigned to the ship, not to the squad.

And I think that I'll add a G-Carrier (maybe a speeder?) with a Pilot and a Gunner for the Command Post.
 
Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Bhoins:
Don't forget your Platoon HQ is going to have to be as mobile as the rest of the Platoon so probably requires a vehicle. Platoon HQ, should require a Platoon Leader, Platoon Sergeant, Medic and possibly a Communications Specialist.
And I think that I'll add a G-Carrier (maybe a speeder?) with a Pilot and a Gunner for the Command Post. </font>[/QUOTE]G-Carrier. It eases logistics, eliminates the easy recognition of the command vehicle and allows a place for an impromptu emergency medical facility. It would also allow extra ammunition/supplies to be carried for use by the platoon on a long deployment. Or you could add a Platoon Level Heavy Weapons Team. (Team Leader w/Gauss Rifle, 3x Team Members w/PGMP-12.)
 
I'm also toying with the idea of having all Squad Leaders double-function as Forward Observers; I'll give them Laser Rifles for both sniping and designation, if this option will be implemented.

I've also decided to re-insert the Section into the Marine organizational chart in order to split the Platoon into two Dropships (not to put all the eggs in one basket).

So, before this optional modification, so far we have:
Fireteam: 4 men: all with Gauss Rifles; one of them is the Team Leader.

Squad: 11 men: three Fireteams: Two regular Rifle ones, and one G-Carrier one, consisting of a G-Carrier Pilot and G-Carrier Gunner. In addition to the fireteams, the Squad has a Squad Leader.

Section: 23 men: two Squads, plus a Section Leader. Rides a single Modular Dropship (a military version of the Modular Cutter).

Platoon: 56 men: two Sections, plus a Command Post (6 men: Platoon Commander, Platoon Senior NCO, Comm/Intel Specialist, Platoon Medic, Command G-Carrier Pilot and Command G-Carrier Gunner) and a Heavy Weapon Team (4 men: Team Leader with a Laser Rifle and 3 Plasma Gunners with PGMP-12s).

The Heavy Weapon Team would probably ride the Command Posts G-Carrier; that G-Carrier would be carried by one section's Modular Dropship.

The entire Platoon would be carried on a Rapid Assault Corvette (RAC).
 
Have you noticed that, according to LBB1 character generation, Navy and Army personel can have forward observer skill, but Marines can't?

This is corrected in MT basic character generation ;)

Either that, or the marines need to take a naval forward observer along with them.
 
Originally posted by Employee 2-4601:
I'm also toying with the idea of having all Squad Leaders double-function as Forward Observers; I'll give them Laser Rifles for both sniping and designation, if this option will be implemented.

I've also decided to re-insert the Section into the Marine organizational chart in order to split the Platoon into two Dropships (not to put all the eggs in one basket).

So, before this optional modification, so far we have:
Fireteam: 4 men: all with Gauss Rifles; one of them is the Team Leader.

Squad: 11 men: three Fireteams: Two regular Rifle ones, and one G-Carrier one, consisting of a G-Carrier Pilot and G-Carrier Gunner. In addition to the fireteams, the Squad has a Squad Leader.

Section: 23 men: two Squads, plus a Section Leader. Rides a single Modular Dropship (a military version of the Modular Cutter).

Platoon: 56 men: two Sections, plus a Command Post (6 men: Platoon Commander, Platoon Senior NCO, Comm/Intel Specialist, Platoon Medic, Command G-Carrier Pilot and Command G-Carrier Gunner) and a Heavy Weapon Team (4 men: Team Leader with a Laser Rifle and 3 Plasma Gunners with PGMP-12s).

The Heavy Weapon Team would probably ride the Command Posts G-Carrier; that G-Carrier would be carried by one section's Modular Dropship.

The entire Platoon would be carried on a Rapid Assault Corvette (RAC).
Looks workable. Just a couple of things you might want to think about before you finalize it.

Since you have two sections riding separately, I'd add the assistant platoon leader/XO back in. That way you can have an officer on each drop ship and ensure you have an officer on the ground even if you loose one of the ships on the way down.

If you are going to use the PGMP-12 as a support weapon, then I'd give it a two man crew. The PGMP is useless for self defense, so the gunner needs someone to watch his back. Also, the power pack only holds 40 shots, so having a second power pack on hand with each gun would be essential for any protracted operation.

At this point you only have line of sight weapons. I'd add some form of indirect fire organic to the platoon. Adding a couple of tac missile teams to the weapons section or mounting tac missiles on the G-Carriers would take care of that if you allow the tac missiles to be used like the FOG-M.

I wouldn't have the squad leaders being the FO or sniping. Both of those are really full time jobs. I'd have either a full time FO with the section leader or at the platoon level.

Of course all of these ideas just add more bodies into an already large platoon, but if the platoon is intended to operate independently, than I think you can justify the large size.

Just my thoughts...
 
Originally posted by Sigg Oddra:
Have you noticed that, according to LBB1 character generation, Navy and Army personel can have forward observer skill, but Marines can't?

This is corrected in MT basic character generation ;)

Either that, or the marines need to take a naval forward observer along with them.
Yep, at the time we took it to mean the Marines were Space Troops and stayed clear of dirt. When the Navy wanted to introduce a planet to ortillery they sent in the Army or their own FO. Of course now I wonder would you even need FO for ortillery? Consider the excellent sensors and high guard position, where better to see your strike than from the ship doing it? Artillery FO was historically for when you didn't have line of sight to the target. That's not the case for ortillery, except perhaps in very rare cases. Like a meson strike on a target on the other side of a planet. Even then wouldn't a couple of satellite relays be just as good, and needed anyway unless your FO had a portable meson transciever.

So I don't see the MT edition as so much a correction as a change of direction (like many Traveller changes over the years). Not a bad thing, just a different thing
 
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