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Re: [FT] WotW #10 Damage Shields - shall we put it to bed?

From: Charles Taylor <charles.taylor@c...>
Date: Sun, 08 Jul 2001 15:58:05 +0100
Subject: Re: [FT] WotW #10 Damage Shields - shall we put it to bed?

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<> you

> Charles,
> Can you give me a summary of the WOTW #10 conclusions if any?
> I've been too heavy into RL to keep much track. I don't think there
has been
> much substantive commentary, but I may have missed some.
> I'll add Jaime's SV system as WOTW 10.5 after I get the details from
> Take your pick at WOTW 11
> Noam

Ok, Here is a (rather long) summary of the discussion:

I'm re-posting this to the list as well, as I had a few new thoughts,
and to see if I missed anyone.


In general (and I think this was brought up more in the earlier 'Real
Shields' discussion, there is the feeling that 'protect against
anything' and perhaps 'protect against kinetics' defence systems would
weaken the K-Guns - making them overpriced. In the case of a specific
'kinetic' defence system, this could possibly be handled by raising the
cost. But there is no real solution for an equally effective defence
except upping the cost to the point that it is a 'Jack of all trades,
master of none'.

Another thing that should be considered: FT uses a 'model' where ships
are reasonably durable, and screens just provide additional defence. In
some SF, the shields/screens are _all_ the defence, once they are gone,
the ship (however big) has about 1 hull box, other genres are between
these 2 examples.
> [FT] WotW #10 Damage Shields (Was Real Shields) (long)
> In light of David Griffin's search for "Real Shields" and the petering
> of WotW #9, Here's # 10 with Damage shields and their ilk:
> Damage Shield
> Generic damage absorption shield.
> Mass is 2% ship mass per shield point (1 mass per point minimum).
> Cost is 3 points per Mass.
> Each shield point has its own box on the SSD + 1 box for the
> When damage is  taken from any source over one turn, it is applied to
> the damage shield first, until the shield  has absorbed as many points
> as it has boxes. Each box that absorbs damage rolls a threshold at the
> current level, and burns out if it fails (i.e. that box cannot absorb
> damage on  subsequent turns until/unless repaired). If the Shield is
> overwhelmed (damge received is  greater than number of  functioning
> shield boxes), then the generator also takes a threshold  check. When
> normal threshold due to damage is called for, each shield box _and_
> generator take another threshold roll.
Hmm.. thats quite a lot of thresholds if you've got a few shield points.
Perhaps if the ship makes a normal threshold check, roll 1 threshold for
the whole system for speed of play?

(New Suggestion) A possible, faster play, version is to put a limit of 6
boxes per generator. During the damage control phase, roll 1d6 for each
generator, subtracting the number of boxes on that generator that have
absorbed damage, the result is the number of boxes that 'regenerate'.
Generators should be 'stacked' (like Phalon shell), damage is applied in
sequence. If all boxes on a generator are hit, it must make a Threshold
roll. K-guns are treated in the same way as when used against a Phalon

> ----------
> Globular Shield
> Mass: 3 per DP absorption, Cost 4xMass
> Deflects all damage up to its DP each turn.
> Restrictions:
> When active, mounting ship can't use thrust, weapons, FTL, or launch
> fighters. FTL can't be used for 2D6 turns after last use.
> If the shield takes more damage than its DP remaining in one turn, the
> generators overload,	taking a threshold check, but can be repaired
> DC parties. If repaired, the shield is re-activated at half it`s
> original DPs, and can regenerate as normal from there.
> Comments:
> (Oerjan)  Conceptually similar to the Phalon vapour glands, but the
> Shield gets better the more of it you can carry (ie., the bigger your
> own ship is). Still, considering its size and penalties it probably
> isn't too much of a problem - eg., replacing the normal screens on a 
> Komarov-class SDN with Globular Shields gives the Komarov 7 "free" DP
> per turn -  equivalent to the average damage its normal screens save
> from 21 beam dice - but only if the ship doesn't maneuver or fire. All
> in all I'd say this potentially very powerful, but so loaded-down with
> restrictions that it becomes virtually useless.

The time that the FTL system cannot be used after the shield is dropped
is rather long (on an average roll) - I'd remove this limitation, and
just keep the limitation above.

Bif Smith:
Probably to stop people jumping in and out (especially out), instead
to stay and fight.
> ------------------
> Mass/Energy Shield (ME shield)
> Trek type shield. System has emitters and  generators.  Generator
costs 5%
> ship mass/level. 
> Emitters: 360 degree coverage  = 3 mass, 180 = 2 mass,  60 = 1 mass.
> 3/mass
> Absorbs damage. Acts as screen against beam weapons (Screen level =
> shield level/2 round	down). Reduces other damage by shield level for
> each die of damage. Damage reduction is for ship itself. Full damage
> applied to the shield (e.g. a level 2 ME shield prevents a beam roll
> 4 from damaging the ship, but the shield counts as having taken that
> point of damage.  Similarly, a roll of 6 vs. this shield scores 2
> to the hull and 2 vs. the shield total. If a shield facing receives
> damage than its level from a single source (weapon, not ship),  the
> emitter facing that direction makes a threshold check at current
David Griffin:
This one sounds promising. I wonder if Jon is going to include something
like this in the "official" next generation? It seems to me that lots of
genres would have shields of various types, so it's not just Star Trek.

Roger Books:
So how many points of damage does a shield have?

Bif Smith:
How about works like a normal screen against beams, and a damage/kinetic
screen against others (K guns etc).

Using the effect of Screens vs. plasma Bolts as an example, I'd say that
for weapons that do a straight d6 damage, a level 2 or 3 ME shield
should negate rolls of 6, and a level 4+ ME shield should negate rolls
of 5 & 6. Against K-guns, I'd subtract half the ME shield level from the
K-Gun class _only_ for the dice roll to determine if damage doubles.

Considering that (at least in games I've seen) people tend to resolve
the entire attack of a ship by rolling all beam dice at once, the fact
that this shield requires keeping track of the rolls of individual
weapon's dice would slow down play a lot.

> ----------------
> Pinpoint Shield
> Mass: 40, Cost: 120,
> Able to absorb 20 DP
> Shield must "intercept" attacking fire by rolling higher than attack
> roll. First intercept roll is at +2, each subsequent rolls subtract 1.
> (1d6+1, 1d6, 1d6-1...).
> Pinpoint shield automatically absorbs some damage from any "area"
> >From D6 "damage=roll" attacks (Plasma bolts, Nova Cannon) PS absorbs
1 DP
> per die.
> >From "beam" type area attacks  PS absorbs 1 point from all rolls of
> Against missiles, the shields roll a 1D6 after PDS, to see how many of
> remaining missiles they stop (each missile stopped applies its damage
> the Pinpoint Shield. If, for example, 3 missiles are stopped, but the
> missile pushes absorbed damage to or past 20 DP, the third missile
> goes through). Shields can regenerate at the rate of 1D6 + 1 DP per
> (after all attacks completed). With the pinpoint shields in use,
> screens are inoperable. Multiple pinpoint shields can be 
> mounted in a ship, and used together or separately.
> Comments:
> (Noam) Perhaps should be buyable in smaller units, say 10 mass for 5
> absorption.
First thought; _why_ can it block area effects? - I'd remove this
ability. Also - I think its a bit unwieldy and would slow play a lot.
Personally - if I was to use such a system - I'd prefer something
simpler: Say: ship can mount any number of pinpoint screens (MASS
allowing) each can intercept ONE attack per turn (say on a roll of 4+ or
5+) vs. fighters or Salvo missiles intercepts 1 beam dice of attacks.
Down side of this: logically, K-gun shots should be _easier_ to
intercept than beams! Solution: either: It don't work vs. beams! (dunno
if this fits source), or Intercepted K-guns are lessened in effect
(say, 1 dp absorbed), but not stopped.

Bif Smith:
Because it worked like that in macross (put the pinpoint shields between
your ship and the blast wavefront and hide behind it).
> ----------------------
> Void Shield
> Armor variant.  Acts as armor. Mass = 1/point. Cost 4xMass.
> Void Shield boxes can be repaired by damage control as other systems.
> Icon: 
> Comments:
> (Oerjan) Extremely useful for capital ships since they have DCPs to
> far less so for cruisers and smaller.
Could make the MASS a proportion of the total MASS of the ship, say
(just as an example), MASS = 2% of hull MASS per point (must buy at
least 1 MASS worth)? Or leave MASS as given, but COST multiple is a
percentage of hull MASS?
Or: remove the regeneration dependence on damage control (and hence ship
size) - each damaged void shield box is regenerated on a roll of 6 on
1d6 (roll for each damaged box, during damage control phase).
Assuming an average game length - it should be possible to come up with
a reasonably balanced cost.
OTOH, the standard FT screens are only cost effective on ships above a
certain minimum size.

In either case, I'd suggest an enhancement:
Layered Void Shield
Works like Phalon Shell armour, but can be repaired (or regenerates).
MASS is 1 per void shield box, COST is cost of void shield box x layer
number (c.f. shell armour).

If I was doing a Star Trek conversion, I think I'd use this system to
represent deflectors, and use screens to represent the structural
integrity field (but I'm not, ATM).

Well, I hope this helps



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