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Traveller starship combat


Riastarthae
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Just getting ready to run a Traveller game and was running through scenarios in my head.

 

It occurs to me that its almost impossible to miss most starships.

 

For example a standard scout class ship has a base dcv of -5. Most weapons are built with a variable advantage that allows +1.5 worth of megascale/increased range/no range mod. A common agility package will give +1 to +6 DCV based on the maneuver drive and even if I use the standard velocity bonuses to dcv (i assume these add to base dcv rather than replace them). In the case of the scout with an agility 2 package that would make base dcv -3 or 6 in best case vector/full speed.

 

Am i getting very confused or missing something here?

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

Hmm thinking about this more I see that Maneuver drives also give SPD

 

Which means that Maneuver 1-4 gives +3 to +9 DCV (increasing by 2's) due to velocity where it caps out at +9.

 

So a standard scout would have a dcv of 0 when moving. assuming an average gunner OCV of 5 (Most ships have at least a fire control system that gives +2) the 16- to hit. Considering that the mentioned advantages make range up to 300000k irrelevant then its real easy to hit.

 

I guess one question I have is can base DCV actually be less then 0? The 5ed vehicle rules state that DCV be less than 0 but all the traveller ships have minus DCV. Should I ignore this and make them effectively 0? This would mean the scout at speed would have a DCV of 5, an average 11- to hit. however that would mean even huge dreadnoughts would at worst have a DCV at speed of 3, the same as a 200 ton free trader.

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

We're still working out the quirks of space combat in general and traveller combat specifically; but one thing I can tell you is that the DCV mod for size generally applies to vehicle vs vehicle only. (Okay, that did not make much sense...) Basically, get the DCV mod for each space ship, and compare the attacker to defender and apply only the difference to the attacker (but only if its a negative).

 

I do agree with you though about the megascale vs increased range mods. On one very small level I understand why they have the option in there, but it would have just been easier to have only one choice :)

 

Aroooo

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

I would think you would apply it either way. Smaller ship shooting at larger should have an easier time hitting. Larger ship shooting at smaller will have a harder time hitting.

 

Also, weapons use the ships OCV unless they have the advantage that they use the persons. This is because a person doesn't physically manipulate the weapon directly. Instead they make adjustments to controls (e.g. wheels and levers on battleships, computer joysticks and keypad entry for more modern systems, etc...). So, you are limited to the response time of the ships systems to your commands.

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

I'm not sure what you mean. Could you post an example?

 

Lets use two vehicles listed in the Size chart (Fred 5e pg 463), an attack helicopter and a tank. The tank has a DCV mod of -4 based on its size. The helo a DCV mod of -5. (I don't particularly agree with those numbers, but lets just work with what we have).

 

Now, if a person shoots at the tank, the tank's DCV gets modified by the Size mod of -4, down to a max of 0 DCV (remember, DCV can not go below 0). If the helo shoots at the tank, the tank should not have any DCV mod vs. the helo since the helo is bigger than the tank. If the tank were to shoot at the helo, the helo would be at only -1 DCV, not the base -5. There are no OCV benefits for a smaller object shooting at a bigger object.

 

Aroooo

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

If you want to make Vehicle Combat less predictable (that is, if you don't want to have both ships hit all the time) remove the Size Modifier from DCV. Now, this does mean that any given weapon will miss a two-kilometer long Star Galleon at close range, which might hurt your suspension of disbelief. Some GM handwaving might be in order (that is, assume the gunner on the Millenium Tercel hits the Star Galleon on anything less than an 18 regardless of OCV/DCV).

 

This does, in my opinion make dogfighting a little more exciting.

 

Note that this option will extend combat.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Re: Traveller starship combat

 

Truly I think one of the problems is that hero does not really give any thought to relative speeds and distance most people forget that a1G maneuver drive in traveller translate in to a acc. of 1g per/timeunit this means that most ships combat is both at extreme differences in vol. and range. Ship a is moving 100000km/s in direction a and ship b is moving 24000km/s in direction b you just can not directly compare the two plus at most system speeds their are delays caused by distance ie light has to tarvele to. Do I have an answer no I just kind of wing it for the most part space ship combat never been a major part of my game.

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Re: Traveller starship combat

 

Size shouldn't even matter in a megascaled environment. The influence of size doesn't make sense. Really, what is the difference between a 10m long ship and a 1000m long ship when they are 100,000m apart? 1 point of DCV difference on the "to hit" curve of 3D6 in thousands of times greater than the influence of size at that kind of range.

 

So my advice is to just not have a DCV modifier for size. I wonder if that is a setting in Hero Designer? Just looked and it is not. Still - it is quite a valid approach I think.

 

--Pete

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