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How would/do you fix Phase World spacecraft combat
It's good as is and doesn't need significant changes 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Increase weapons ranges 9%  9%  [ 8 ]
Increase spacecraft speed 6%  6%  [ 6 ]
Define acceleration/deceleration values 10%  10%  [ 9 ]
Define maneuvering values 9%  9%  [ 8 ]
More complicated energy system with ability to move power between shields - engines - weapons - other features 3%  3%  [ 3 ]
Clearly define the effects of contra-gravity technology 6%  6%  [ 6 ]
Clearly define sensors / stealth systems 7%  7%  [ 7 ]
Define ships tactical purpose within a fleet / formation 4%  4%  [ 4 ]
Create uniform weapons types with specific tactical/strategic uses 6%  6%  [ 6 ]
Specialized weapons (shield disruptors and the like) 7%  7%  [ 7 ]
Use of unmanned drones (defense, attack, sensor, etc.) 7%  7%  [ 7 ]
Add in specialized defensive systems (jammers, decoys, counter-missiles, etc.) 10%  10%  [ 9 ]
Use of Electronic Warfare 10%  10%  [ 9 ]
Other - please explain 5%  5%  [ 5 ]
Total votes : 94
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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 4:31 am
  

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So I have been reading several of the recent forum post on cruise missiles and it got me thinking about some problems I have always had with Phase World. Now first, Rifts in and of itself has a lot of combat problems with weapons like rail guns, p-beams and missiles but I want to focus on Phase World as I feel it's spacecraft combat is more broken than most.

Second, I know several people have created starship creation rules for PW, I have copies of many of these. What I am thinking about here is how much you change and why you change it and maybe what were some of your influences.

When I started playing Phase World with only the first two books all I did originally was add ships and create a few house rules for sensors (largely based on the old West End Star Wars games), ECM, version of chaff and flares, and stealth. I also adjusted stats on ships (the size of the Hunter destroyer or the crew of the Berserker). The new books have made this even more difficult with the usual power creep and ships that have to be cooler and tougher than anything that came before.

Over time though I have made more and more changes to the point that each one needed an additional 2 or 3 pages in addition to what's in the book. I was hesitant to make wholesale changes (for instance I never changed ship speeds or made serious changes to weapons ranges except missiles) as I didn't want to make the books too useless or confuse my players with their own books.

I was also unsure of how complicated I wanted to make this for a pen and paper game.
- -
Influences: As already mentioned the old West End Star Wars was a big one but just for sensors, later the Honor Harrington books got me thinking about proper fleet construction and tactical vs. strategic ship uses. Recently the Expanse and they YouTube channel Spacedock have given me a lot of ideas for new ships and systems.

Big changes:
Sensors, as mentioned.
Defined CG - acceleration/deceleration, effects on sensors/stealth, and the strategic impact of planets gravity well restricting FTL.
Increase Missile Speeds. If fighters can move at Mach 16 to 24 then missiles needed to move faster.

I also made big changes to missiles and gave some tactical notes:
- Mini Missiles - Totally useless in space. I removed them from most ships and replaced them with a slightly smaller number of SRM. Given speeds of missiles and fighters a mini-missile simply couldn't hit anything within their pathetic 2 mile range.
- SRM - On fighters these were anti-fighter or power armor missiles. On capital ships they were dedicated anti-missile systems and I created dedicated "interceptor" missile with greater speed, greater blast radius, but reduced damage.
- etc. etc.

I wanted to do some sort of energy transfer rules, sort of inspired by the old X-Wing video game but it just felt too complicated.

Just a few thoughts and wanted to see if anyone else wanted to chime in.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 6:07 am
  

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Palladin

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Comment: Palladium Books Canon is set solely by Kevin Siembieda, either in person, or by his approval of published material.
I will go into full details later.
But right now as written the ships are basically 18th century galleons run by 17th century admirals who have never heard of the word 'tactics'
Strategy? What's that?
They put better point defense on their tanks then their space ships for example, and only put the neat tech on their power armor. :?

Just for starters you should be putting stealth on your cruise missiles. Which for hecks sake should have MORE range than a LRM not LESS :badbad:

And why do the orbitals have better counter missile tech? :?
An no one is using stealth systems, like at all?
Or using any of the dozen or so other drive options for the amazing options they add?
And why is no one using disruptors or Pin point defense shields
The list of idiot balls is so long that I suspect that is what they make the hulls out of :lol:

Add in how absurdly powerful space magic is, and how absurdly short range things are (even for Palladium)… I mean seriously, has no one heard of 'glide bombs'?


You should be seeing stuff like a "Escort cruiser" which is a CLE with nothing but point defense that exists solely to shoot down incoming missiles and fighters that threaten a fleet.
Enough ranting right now, I'll write up and post some stuff.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 7:05 pm
  

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I agree with everything you say here. To be fair to PB and Carella this is a common problem in sci-fi. I mean Star Trek, what on EARTH is a Galaxy class ship doing flying around without escort. Also Star Wars and BSG what's with space fighters, they make no sense. In more grounded hard sci-fi like the Expanse or Honor Harrington attrition units are basically gunboats or destroyers. LACs, the smallest combat units of the Honorverse, are in the 20,000 ton range.

The problem is this is a game, you want something for the players to use so you have to give them something. Ultimately something KS said to people about putting support equipment for the CS in the books he said something like "if a player isn't going to use it then you need a really good reason to put it in the book". I created a large number of escort and support vessels but the only purpose they served was to blow them up, the players will never actually use one.

eliakon wrote:
I will go into full details later.
But right now as written the ships are basically 18th century galleons run by 17th century admirals who have never heard of the word 'tactics'
Strategy? What's that?
They put better point defense on their tanks then their space ships for example, and only put the neat tech on their power armor. :?

This is a point. The power armors and thanks in Phase World are way cooler. After the Silver Hawk, which is a completely ridiculous PA even by Carella's standards, the most beloved vehicle by all of my players is the Maniple IFV. That vehicle is just a beast.

The shield disruptors are a game breaking, neigh that is not strong enough, game obliterating technology. My players actually helped me come up with reason why that tech could not be used by large fighters or cruise missiles just to not break the game too badly.

I would argue though that active defenses are missing from most Rifts vehicles. Chaff launchers and missile jamming tech are rare, the best example being the sidewinder SAMAS. I don't know if this is done to keep it simple or what but it is real omission. But it was also missing from popular sci-fi in the '80's and '90's. Star Wars, Star Trek, original BSG all you see for defenses in energy shields and armor. The Klingons fire a proton torpedo at you and all you can do is dodge or tank the damage. We have lightspeed weapons and computers that can calculate FTL travel but you can't shoot one down? They even say in the canon that the reason fighters aren't really a thing is that with advanced computer targeting fighters are just individual coffins but you can't shoot down torpedoes. No decoys either?

eliakon wrote:
Just for starters you should be putting stealth on your cruise missiles. Which for hecks sake should have MORE range than a LRM not LESS :badbad:

See here is an aspect of not explaining the technology. Maybe anything that puts out that much heat can not be stealthed at close range. This is the case in both Mass Effect and Honor Harington.

When we started playing PW it listed the Runner ship and I think the Black Eagle as having stealth but it was never really explained. We ended up taking dual approach passive stealth (absorbing materials and angled hulls things like that) and active (jammers, etc.). Until Mass Effect came out none of us even thought about thermal emissions and internal heatsinks.

eliakon wrote:
And why do the orbitals have better counter missile tech? :?
An no one is using stealth systems, like at all?
Or using any of the dozen or so other drive options for the amazing options they add?
And why is no one using disruptors or Pin point defense shields
The list of idiot balls is so long that I suspect that is what they make the hulls out of :lol:

Again this is where it comes down to I don't know the reason. Rifts in general doesn't have differing effects by weapons types. I mean if you think about it if you are in body armor and someone hits with a Plasma ejector you should be baking like a potato but no it's the same effects as a laser. It would be interesting to have like ion weapons do more damage to shields and electronic systems while plasma does less to shields but more to the hull. But, does this make it too complicated?

As for the engines, we just don't have enough detail on CG works and how ships are built.

eliakon wrote:
Add in how absurdly powerful space magic is, and how absurdly short range things are (even for Palladium)… I mean seriously, has no one heard of 'glide bombs'?

See for Rifts Earth and other settings I understand why ranges are kept shorter. It's the same reason in comics why people with power armors and high tech weapons end up in hand to hand combat. It's more visceral and more fun to play. But in a space game the ranges have to be more. But, this comes down to why I made this post. Do we really want a game system like Honor Harrington or the Expanse where most battles take place at the 10,000 km to Astronomical Units range. I'm not sure how fun that would be especially if you wanted to pilot a fighter or power armor.

Speed too. A maximum speed in space combat makes no sense. Rate of acceleration or deceleration should really be all we look at but who wants to sit there and do the math during a game.

eliakon wrote:
You should be seeing stuff like a "Escort cruiser" which is a CLE with nothing but point defense that exists solely to shoot down incoming missiles and fighters that threaten a fleet.
Enough ranting right now, I'll write up and post some stuff.

Before you put in a CLE or destroyers or corvettes you have to really define the weapons and what they can do. Why on earth does a Hunter Destroyer have a single shot cruise missile launcher? Why does the Packmaster carrier have CMs at all?

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Unread postPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:50 pm
  

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Comment: You probably think this comment is about you, don't you?
I'm voting other for now because IMO you'd have to overhaul Palladium's combat system in general to get it to work better with modern combat, and then you'd likely have to overhaul the different weapons to reflect better what their purposes were.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 12:18 am
  

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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 4:59 pm
  

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The Beast wrote:
I'm voting other for now because IMO you'd have to overhaul Palladium's combat system in general to get it to work better with modern combat, and then you'd likely have to overhaul the different weapons to reflect better what their purposes were.

I understand this but for me the best parts of PB system is combat and skill systems. Admittedly I do make a very small alteration to it but it has always worked for me.

I have always just tried to make the fewest changes I can so that I can add the features I like without breaking the system. The problem is each new book breaks the system just a little bit more than it was before.

glitterboy2098 wrote:

Yeah I saw this, even ran it through a few quick tries a while ago to see how it works but this system really reduces the strategic importance of gravity wells in TGs (the time from the FTL limit to the planet surface is drastically reduced) as well as magic and power armors / robot vehicles.

It also still has a lot of things to work out. Like how much you can accelerate while still dodging or can you dodge at 0.6c. Now I do like some of the basics of the movement but the weapon stuff just didn't do what I wanted.

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Unread postPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 12:02 am
  

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Warshield73 wrote:
glitterboy2098 wrote:

Yeah I saw this, even ran it through a few quick tries a while ago to see how it works but this system really reduces the strategic importance of gravity wells in TGs (the time from the FTL limit to the planet surface is drastically reduced) as well as magic and power armors / robot vehicles.

It also still has a lot of things to work out. Like how much you can accelerate while still dodging or can you dodge at 0.6c. Now I do like some of the basics of the movement but the weapon stuff just didn't do what I wanted.

i don't have to address that because relative speeds being what it is, if you are going the same speed as your opponent, it doesn't matter if you are going orbital speed of .6c. the same rules for dodging would apply (pg 106 of DB3 phase world sourcebook. sort version, big ships can't dodge, just roll with impact ['maneuver for a glancing blow'] to reduce the damage)

if the ships involved are not going pretty close to the same velocity, you don't spend enough time within range (even with the range boosts i added) to react, either for launching an attack or to dodge. i should not need to spell this out because it should be immediately obvious to anyone.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2019 7:03 pm
  

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glitterboy2098 wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
glitterboy2098 wrote:

Yeah I saw this, even ran it through a few quick tries a while ago to see how it works but this system really reduces the strategic importance of gravity wells in TGs (the time from the FTL limit to the planet surface is drastically reduced) as well as magic and power armors / robot vehicles.

It also still has a lot of things to work out. Like how much you can accelerate while still dodging or can you dodge at 0.6c. Now I do like some of the basics of the movement but the weapon stuff just didn't do what I wanted.

i don't have to address that because relative speeds being what it is, if you are going the same speed as your opponent, it doesn't matter if you are going orbital speed of .6c. the same rules for dodging would apply (pg 106 of DB3 phase world sourcebook. sort version, big ships can't dodge, just roll with impact ['maneuver for a glancing blow'] to reduce the damage)

if the ships involved are not going pretty close to the same velocity, you don't spend enough time within range (even with the range boosts i added) to react, either for launching an attack or to dodge. i should not need to spell this out because it should be immediately obvious to anyone.


I would think so too but I guess it isn't. If you are buzzing an orbital platform at 0.6c why couldn't you deploy weapons, especially speed of light weapons like lasers, but even missiles to hit that target. Likewise if I am the defender and I have lasers why can't I take a shot at you as you pass. Granted no human being could do it but then no human being could fly a ship through space at those speeds either, computers would have to do both. This is done all the time in hard sci-fi settings so why is it so obvious that you can't here?

Additionally, how much time would say a cruiser need to change course if it detected something in it's way like a mine or missile barrage? Tiny changes in course would make for big changes in range but the thrust needed to make those changes goes up substantially. Also, if your in a ship doing 0.6c relative to the object you impact wouldn't the damage from just the impact exceed that of the actual explosive in most missiles? If you don't have the computer power to target a ship while moving at these speeds it does seem unlikely that you could navigate at those speeds.

Another question that occurred to me, and I apologize if I missed it on the page, just out of curiosity in your set up do ships have to do a flip and burn to reduce speed or do you assume some sort of retrorockets or allow the CG field to do it?

To be honest as much as I love Honor Harrington and the Expanse a in my opinion a Star Wars Sci-fantasy setting fits the feel of PW better than those settings do.

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Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 12:54 pm
  

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eliakon wrote:
An no one is using stealth systems, like at all?

Stealth exists in the setting, even in DB2.

The thing is with things like gravitational wave sensors, your ability to "hide" is much harder than from other sensors (IR/heat sensors might also be difficult to "stealth"). So it might be prohibitively expensive.

eliakon wrote:
Or using any of the dozen or so other drive options for the amazing options they add

MiO's other drives do get a mention in DB2, they make up 20% of the other drives.

eliakon wrote:
And why is no one using disruptors or Pin point defense shields

Disrupters are in Fot3G, which are a type of laser IIRC. If you are referring to something else specifically (like RT's shield disrupters licensing might be a factor)...

Point defense shields could be achieved with variable force fields directing all their shield power to one side. Various powers just may not see the utility, or force fields can't be layered.

One other thing to remember is that some technology might be out of reach for the 3G, we see this with the Intruders (DB3) and their "space fold" system (and solid energy technology).

Warhsield73 wrote:
I mean Star Trek, what on EARTH is a Galaxy class ship doing flying around without escort. Also Star Wars and BSG what's with space fighters, they make no sense.

In Star Trek's defense, most ships go around solo in peace time. We do see it operating with escort when engaging in military operations (DS9's wars IIRC), so it might be a situational thing.

Re: Fighters.
It depends on how they came about originally (in their respective settings) and what factors might have influenced their evolution over the years to the state we see. While a case(s) exists that makes them impractical, given the right circumstances they might still be a "practical" necessity.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:04 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
eliakon wrote:
An no one is using stealth systems, like at all?

Stealth exists in the setting, even in DB2.

The thing is with things like gravitational wave sensors, your ability to "hide" is much harder than from other sensors (IR/heat sensors might also be difficult to "stealth"). So it might be prohibitively expensive.

I think the point is that we don't have very good rules for stealth and only a few, largely non-military, ships that are equipped with it. There are no stealthed corvettes or cruisers to fill the role of recon or special warfare.

ShadowLogan wrote:
eliakon wrote:
Or using any of the dozen or so other drive options for the amazing options they add

MiO's other drives do get a mention in DB2, they make up 20% of the other drives.

It is mentioned but again no examples of them or even any specifics of where they are used and by whom. We also don't have a lot of information on how they compare to ships with CG drives.

ShadowLogan wrote:
eliakon wrote:
And why is no one using disruptors or Pin point defense shields

Disrupters are in Fot3G, which are a type of laser IIRC. If you are referring to something else specifically (like RT's shield disrupters licensing might be a factor)...

Point defense shields could be achieved with variable force fields directing all their shield power to one side. Various powers just may not see the utility, or force fields can't be layered.

One other thing to remember is that some technology might be out of reach for the 3G, we see this with the Intruders (DB3) and their "space fold" system (and solid energy technology).

I covered this in another post but the way point defense is listed in the books are completely ineffective largely due to ranges. Anything with a range of just 2 miles is pointless, pardon the pun, as it has no time to react. Now you can make short rang PDCs, The Expanse for instance has PDCs with a range of about 5 km but they put out an incredible field of fire to increase the chance of hitting something. We see weapons that can do this in PW, the P-beam cannons on the CAF troop shuttle, but for some reason they are not used in point defense. There are also no dedicated anti-missiles which you think you would see in a missile heavy threat environment like this.

Also, pure defenses like decoys and jammers are just largely absent as are specialized weapons. There are examples in Rifts of weapons like this. The lightning guns in the NGR or the Arkohns tribeam weapons but very little in Phase World.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warhsield73 wrote:
I mean Star Trek, what on EARTH is a Galaxy class ship doing flying around without escort. Also Star Wars and BSG what's with space fighters, they make no sense.

In Star Trek's defense, most ships go around solo in peace time. We do see it operating with escort when engaging in military operations (DS9's wars IIRC), so it might be a situational thing.

Re: Fighters.
It depends on how they came about originally (in their respective settings) and what factors might have influenced their evolution over the years to the state we see. While a case(s) exists that makes them impractical, given the right circumstances they might still be a "practical" necessity.

If you read the post I was just pointing out that in a real world setting this makes no sense. The very idea of space fighters is laughable and really have to work hard to make them work in a setting. Also even in peace time a ship the size and importance of a Galaxy class would never be on its own. But even is DS9, which is my favorite Trek by far, we still only see the most elementary of fleet structures.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:37 am
  

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Warshield73 wrote:
I think the point is that we don't have very good rules for stealth and only a few, largely non-military, ships that are equipped with it. There are no stealthed corvettes or cruisers to fill the role of recon or special warfare.

I agree the rules for Stealth (and ECM and alot of other things) aren't necessarily very good, though stealth itself is a broad term.

As far as Stealth Ships, checkout Fleets of the 3 Galaxies (Etherium GMD pg82, Raider Shuttle pg71, both Naruni ships). Oni have a Stealth Shuttle (pg138 DB6).

Warshield73 wrote:
It is mentioned but again no examples of them or even any specifics of where they are used and by whom. We also don't have a lot of information on how they compare to ships with CG drives.

True, though given PB's C&P use I don't think stat wise much will change between MiO and PW users of those systems. Who uses said hardware, well that's on the writers.

Warshield73 wrote:
Also, pure defenses like decoys and jammers are just largely absent as are specialized weapons. There are examples in Rifts of weapons like this. The lightning guns in the NGR or the Arkohns tribeam weapons but very little in Phase World.

I agree there are examples megaversally, and they aren't used as much as one would think they should be used. Every combat flying vehicle should have some type of decoy system to ward off missiles (but that is a very short list, and with a tiny payload). Jammers, PB makes it available via rules to repurpose existing hardware (though I agree dedicated systems should be more prevelant).

Warshield73 wrote:
I covered this in another post but the way point defense is listed in the books are completely ineffective largely due to ranges.(...)

Point Defense Guns/Missiles might have given way to force fields (which are plentiful).

Missiles might actually be a "dumb" weapon to use if you think about it. If you shoot down a missile, the debris from the missile can still hit you (albiet for less damage) when you fly through the debris (in atmosphere it "sinks", in space it will just "float" there).

Warshield73 wrote:
If you read the post I was just pointing out that in a real world setting this makes no sense. The very idea of space fighters is laughable and really have to work hard to make them work in a setting. Also even in peace time a ship the size and importance of a Galaxy class would never be on its own. But even is DS9, which is my favorite Trek by far, we still only see the most elementary of fleet structures.


Space "Fighters" can make sense in the real world, but it is going to be a matter of what drives their evolution in how they are used/designed.

You might have "fighters" that are basically anti-capital ship in mission (think WWII torpedo bomber), one might not be a danger but a number of them will be. For the cost of 1 Bindas-Class Cruiser (Fot3G pg56) you could purchase 130 Scorpion Fighters of the B model (PW pg157-8), which IINM could kill a Bindas with a missile barrage (on minimum damage and with the weaker cruise missile) or given enough time chew it up with cannon fire (130 fighters vs 11 guns, only 4 of which are anti-fighter that they can stay out of range of). Naruni Corporate Fire-eater fighter (Fot3G costs less than a Scorpion and carries far more missiles). So if your enemy is deploying small attack vehicles (ie fighters) that carry weapons that can kill your big capital ship (albeit in numbers) you either need to deploy smaller vehicles of your own or missiles (which those small craft could shoot down or otherwise defend themselves against).

Re: Star Trek
I think with Star Trek we have to remember that Star Fleet is not strictly a military organization, which could influence deployments and structures. The Defiant-class is one of the few "warship" first designs Star Fleet uses, even if it uses "warship" classifications.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:11 am
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
I think the point is that we don't have very good rules for stealth and only a few, largely non-military, ships that are equipped with it. There are no stealthed corvettes or cruisers to fill the role of recon or special warfare.

I agree the rules for Stealth (and ECM and alot of other things) aren't necessarily very good, though stealth itself is a broad term.

As far as Stealth Ships, checkout Fleets of the 3 Galaxies (Etherium GMD pg82, Raider Shuttle pg71, both Naruni ships). Oni have a Stealth Shuttle (pg138 DB6).

Yes stealth itself can be very broad, just like ECM, so I have taken a page from Honor Harrington and really broken it down into active measures, like jammers, and passive, like energy absorbing hull materials and design. Not the most complete system but simple enough to run.

I have read all the ships you mention and the problem is that the way stealth is described is inconsistent and incomplete. Without having good info on sensors how stealth works is incomplete. Actually the Etherium has the best description of how its stealth works but without a firm breakdown of sensors its still just house rules.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
It is mentioned but again no examples of them or even any specifics of where they are used and by whom. We also don't have a lot of information on how they compare to ships with CG drives.

True, though given PB's C&P use I don't think stat wise much will change between MiO and PW users of those systems. Who uses said hardware, well that's on the writers.

The drives in MiO aren't described in the same way as PW so compatibility is an issue, but for the most part you are correct. Writers could always use these drives for any low tech world.

The biggest problem is we don't know how CG works for the most part so it is hard to compare.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
Also, pure defenses like decoys and jammers are just largely absent as are specialized weapons. There are examples in Rifts of weapons like this. The lightning guns in the NGR or the Arkohns tribeam weapons but very little in Phase World.

I agree there are examples megaversally, and they aren't used as much as one would think they should be used. Every combat flying vehicle should have some type of decoy system to ward off missiles (but that is a very short list, and with a tiny payload). Jammers, PB makes it available via rules to repurpose existing hardware (though I agree dedicated systems should be more prevelant).


Yeah, this was actually the very first thing I added to PW ships. Again some set of specific systems, not all of which would be carried by every ship, that are used for missile defense. In space combat some of these would have to be things that work in forward aspect to protect the ship during attack runs on large ships.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
I covered this in another post but the way point defense is listed in the books are completely ineffective largely due to ranges.(...)

Point Defense Guns/Missiles might have given way to force fields (which are plentiful).

Missiles might actually be a "dumb" weapon to use if you think about it. If you shoot down a missile, the debris from the missile can still hit you (albiet for less damage) when you fly through the debris (in atmosphere it "sinks", in space it will just "float" there).

No, I have to disagree on this. Given the way PB missiles work the best defense against missiles is missiles.

As for the debris, in an MDC setting floating pieces of small missiles won't do much and actually a missile, with its own explosive warhead, is going to eliminate far more of the potential debris than directed energy or rail guns.

As for force fields, they can soak up some damage but AM CMs can tear them up in short order. Active defenses are something that has been overlooked in sci-fi for a long time but we have seen it more even as early as Andromeda and of course Honor Harrington and the Expanse.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
If you read the post I was just pointing out that in a real world setting this makes no sense. The very idea of space fighters is laughable and really have to work hard to make them work in a setting. Also even in peace time a ship the size and importance of a Galaxy class would never be on its own. But even is DS9, which is my favorite Trek by far, we still only see the most elementary of fleet structures.

Space "Fighters" can make sense in the real world, but it is going to be a matter of what drives their evolution in how they are used/designed.

You might have "fighters" that are basically anti-capital ship in mission (think WWII torpedo bomber), one might not be a danger but a number of them will be. For the cost of 1 Bindas-Class Cruiser (Fot3G pg56) you could purchase 130 Scorpion Fighters of the B model (PW pg157-8), which IINM could kill a Bindas with a missile barrage (on minimum damage and with the weaker cruise missile) or given enough time chew it up with cannon fire (130 fighters vs 11 guns, only 4 of which are anti-fighter that they can stay out of range of). Naruni Corporate Fire-eater fighter (Fot3G costs less than a Scorpion and carries far more missiles). So if your enemy is deploying small attack vehicles (ie fighters) that carry weapons that can kill your big capital ship (albeit in numbers) you either need to deploy smaller vehicles of your own or missiles (which those small craft could shoot down or otherwise defend themselves against).

Re: Star Trek
I think with Star Trek we have to remember that Star Fleet is not strictly a military organization, which could influence deployments and structures. The Defiant-class is one of the few "warship" first designs Star Fleet uses, even if it uses "warship" classifications.

Again I agree with all of this but it is something you are not likely to see in a "real" situation. And it's not just the federation, Romulan D'deridex class ships are almost always alone to say nothing of Klingons. The only time we see actual fleets is the Dominion war.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:19 am
  

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Warshield73 wrote:
The biggest problem is we don't know how CG works for the most part so it is hard to compare.

At a certain level this is true, but at the same time I think there is enough information provided to work with. We know CG drives operate at the basic level (manipulate gravitational interaction), essentially they are reaction-less drives. Operationally they are probably closer to the MiO Traction Drive (itself an example of reaction-less drive) than the other MiO Drives.

Its probably also worth considering that a significant portion of the target audience probably doesn't care for this level of technical detail when it comes to various technologies involved in the setting.

Warsheild73 wrote:
No, I have to disagree on this. Given the way PB missiles work the best defense against missiles is missiles.

Depends on what you consider the best defense. If the choice is Missile (70%) vs Gun (40%) counter attack only, then a missile is the better choice...

But other options exist like blocking with a force field (100%), or Dodging (assuming # is less than 4) or Piloting Maneuver: Evasive Action (this one requires porting piloting rules from other lines as Rifts doesn't really do this like HU or 1E RT). Chaff/Flares are also an option (if present, 75% chance), missile jamming is also possible (if present).

Warhsield73 wrote:
As for the debris, in an MDC setting floating pieces of small missiles won't do much and actually a missile, with its own explosive warhead, is going to eliminate far more of the potential debris than directed energy or rail guns.

While hitting a field of missile debris isn't going to do as much damage as getting hit by the missile's explosive warhead, it can still add-up in the long run (especially if you have 100s of missiles in debris form to contend with).

I don't think I've seen a debris table for Rifts/PW, but I know such a table for space debris can be found in a few places in 1E RT (RDF Accelerated Training Program OR Ghost Ship modules). Damage for missile shrapnel isn't great, but some of that shrapnel from its destruction should impact its original target (if it is intercepted to close, or you don't change course).

Warshield73 wrote:
As for force fields, they can soak up some damage but AM CMs can tear them up in short order. Active defenses are something that has been overlooked in sci-fi for a long time but we have seen it more even as early as Andromeda and of course Honor Harrington and the Expanse.

It would make sense that settings without force fields (like Andromeda) would develop active defense though.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:15 pm
  

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Comment: You probably think this comment is about you, don't you?
I just want to point out that in space debris from a missile won't "float" unless something forces it to slow down and eventually stop. Until then it'll keep expanding outward from its point of origin.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:34 pm
  

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Warshield73 wrote:
snip...
Second, I know several people have created starship creation rules for PW, I have copies of many of these. What I am thinking about here is how much you change and why you change it and maybe what were some of your influences.

When I started playing Phase World with only the first two books all I did originally was add ships and create a few house rules for sensors (largely based on the old West End Star Wars games), ECM, version of chaff and flares, and stealth. I also adjusted stats on ships (the size of the Hunter destroyer or the crew of the Berserker). The new books have made this even more difficult with the usual power creep and ships that have to be cooler and tougher than anything that came before.
....snip


When looking for building a spaceship or starship the last place I would look at are the PW "Guidelines" for ships.
For ship (space- or star-) creation I look to the rules set down in the Aliens Unlimited: Galaxy Guide (AA:GG) from the Heroes Unlimited Setting game-books. Here is the why... the ship construction rules set out how much space the ship has for internal systems and what it costs to build that hull, and the cost of the systems themselves and how much. Thus a more 'real world' considerations about what to include in building a ship.

While there are some rules about combat in the AA:GG, they are also, but in other ways, to be lacking in the combat rules.
The acceleration/deceleration rules are....have a lot of words in them. However, in places they are self contradictory. Like two people were writing two sections of them and nether was coordinated with the other. There are also rules about crash landings within the space-star-ship text concerning movement.

In conclusion there is more text concerning the details about movement in the AA:GG book than in the rifts books.

P.S. I did write up an expation for the AA:GG text. Expanding the number of diiferent systems, weapons and missiles, while also updating some of the system rules for previus systems in the AA:GG book where they were awkward.

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Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2019 1:51 pm
  

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ShadowLogan wrote:
Its probably also worth considering that a significant portion of the target audience probably doesn't care for this level of technical detail when it comes to various technologies involved in the setting.

This is kind of the point of the post and the poll to see what people would like. I ran Phase World for so long with just 2 books and added so much of my own stuff that I sometimes often forget what is canon and what is mine. I just wanted a sense of detail people what some people may want.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
The biggest problem is we don't know how CG works for the most part so it is hard to compare.

At a certain level this is true, but at the same time I think there is enough information provided to work with. We know CG drives operate at the basic level (manipulate gravitational interaction), essentially they are reaction-less drives. Operationally they are probably closer to the MiO Traction Drive (itself an example of reaction-less drive) than the other MiO Drives.

The problem with all of this is that it doesn't fit many of the descriptions or artwork and that the descriptions are inconsistent. Artwork and many describes ships as having actual thrust systems. Fleets of the Three Galaxies describes many of its ships as having capital thrusters or plasma engines. There is a lot of inconsistencies in how CG is described

My biggest problem is how fast can a ship move with just a CG field and for a ship that has thrusters how fast can it move without it. This has real implications when you are shutting down a CG field to avoid detection. Also how long does it take to jump to FTL? This makes a real difference when approaching another ship and is actually one of the very first things I had to house rule in Phase World during my first session.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warsheild73 wrote:
No, I have to disagree on this. Given the way PB missiles work the best defense against missiles is missiles.

Depends on what you consider the best defense. If the choice is Missile (70%) vs Gun (40%) counter attack only, then a missile is the better choice...

Best isn't just about percentage chance to destroy an entire volley, which is what you are saying, it is about preventing damage. Active defenses like counter missiles and point defense, as well as electronic warfare, are used to stop the damage. Your hope is to stop missiles from ever hitting your shields so that those shields can be as close to full power as possible for when your enemy gets into energy weapons range as those can not be stopped by active defenses.

ShadowLogan wrote:
But other options exist like blocking with a force field (100%), or Dodging (assuming # is less than 4) or Piloting Maneuver: Evasive Action (this one requires porting piloting rules from other lines as Rifts doesn't really do this like HU or 1E RT). Chaff/Flares are also an option (if present, 75% chance), missile jamming is also possible (if present)

Force fields will always be limited in power and as I've said you want to use active defenses where you can. Now PW SB has rules for ships dodging but that is limited for anything bigger than a destroyer. Not sure where you get the chaff and flare percentage as PW doesn't have those. If you are using a percentage from another Rifts book you have to remember that chaff is far less effective against smart missiles than guided but that is true of all active defenses. In some ways this makes active defenses even more important as it saves shield strength for those weapons that can't be dodged.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warhsield73 wrote:
As for the debris, in an MDC setting floating pieces of small missiles won't do much and actually a missile, with its own explosive warhead, is going to eliminate far more of the potential debris than directed energy or rail guns.

While hitting a field of missile debris isn't going to do as much damage as getting hit by the missile's explosive warhead, it can still add-up in the long run (especially if you have 100s of missiles in debris form to contend with).

I don't think I've seen a debris table for Rifts/PW, but I know such a table for space debris can be found in a few places in 1E RT (RDF Accelerated Training Program OR Ghost Ship modules). Damage for missile shrapnel isn't great, but some of that shrapnel from its destruction should impact its original target (if it is intercepted to close, or you don't change course).

The Beast wrote:
I just want to point out that in space debris from a missile won't "float" unless something forces it to slow down and eventually stop. Until then it'll keep expanding outward from its point of origin.

If combat takes place out in open space, like is described in Fleets then only debris of the largest ships would make any difference as it will be moving out of the engagement zone at its previous speed until it hits something.

Now, my house rule is that most battles actually take place in a gravity well. This is something I've had in place since the first book since in a battle between 2 FTL capable ships out in open space would end as soon as one ship starts to loose. You just jump out. Now in a gravity well debris would be more of an issue with debris but still not even close to enough to make letting a missile hit you worth it. Small debris burning up your shields or scratching up your hull will NEVER be as bad as a single AM cruise missile.

ShadowLogan wrote:
Warshield73 wrote:
As for force fields, they can soak up some damage but AM CMs can tear them up in short order. Active defenses are something that has been overlooked in sci-fi for a long time but we have seen it more even as early as Andromeda and of course Honor Harrington and the Expanse.

It would make sense that settings without force fields (like Andromeda) would develop active defense though.

Again force fields have limited durability. BB vs BB or DD vs DD a single launch of AM missiles can obliterate the shields of the other ship. Even systems with force fields have active defenses. Honor Harrington is a great example of this in that more than half the ship is protected by impenetrable grav wedge and the rest by force walls still has counter missiles, EW and point defense.

Force Fields are defenses of last resort and missiles are day ruining, life ending weapons. You want to do everything you can to stop them before they get to you.

drewkitty ~..~ wrote:
When looking for building a spaceship or starship the last place I would look at are the PW "Guidelines" for ships.
For ship (space- or star-) creation I look to the rules set down in the Aliens Unlimited: Galaxy Guide (AA:GG) from the Heroes Unlimited Setting game-books. Here is the why... the ship construction rules set out how much space the ship has for internal systems and what it costs to build that hull, and the cost of the systems themselves and how much. Thus a more 'real world' considerations about what to include in building a ship.

While there are some rules about combat in the AA:GG, they are also, but in other ways, to be lacking in the combat rules.
The acceleration/deceleration rules are....have a lot of words in them. However, in places they are self contradictory. Like two people were writing two sections of them and nether was coordinated with the other. There are also rules about crash landings within the space-star-ship text concerning movement.

In conclusion there is more text concerning the details about movement in the AA:GG book than in the rifts books.

P.S. I did write up an expation for the AA:GG text. Expanding the number of diiferent systems, weapons and missiles, while also updating some of the system rules for previus systems in the AA:GG book where they were awkward.

I have barrowed from these sources heavily for my own games but AU and AU GG have as many problems and omissions as PW. Some of those problems and omissions are different but it still has them.

Again I plugged most of these holes in my own games but as I look at my house rules they are extensive. I am just trying to get a feel for what people want so I can evaluate those rules.

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