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RE: 25mm Grav Bikes and Rules

From: Thomas Barclay <Thomas.Barclay@s...>
Date: Thu, 19 Nov 1998 00:26:27 -0500
Subject: RE: 25mm Grav Bikes and Rules

Wayne spake thusly upon matters weighty: 

> At 10:04 PM 18/11/98 -0500, Thomas Barclay wrote:
> >Of course, with any sort of an ammo capacity, you'd run out after a 
> >few turns of fire. With basic firecontrol (the best the bike could 
> >mount), you are only somewhat dangerous (per SAW). 
> I would call six bikes shooting six SAW's at my squad more than
> dangerous.  That is like, with basic Firecon and depending how you
> their shooting (individually or as a unit) from one to six D4 and from
> to six extra D8's.  If you use a gattling type SAW that becomes D10's.
> Since I move faster than you I should be able to get to within one or
> range bands which means you would probably be rolling D4's or D6
> dice.  This will mean my bike squad is going to hurt you a lot.

You should (according to conversations with Jon and others) be 
rolling unit quality + fire control for a vehicle mounted weapon. So 
either you'd resolve it as six attacks with basic firecontrol (D6) + 
unit quality (call it D8) or as one attack with 6 SAWs (D6 6 times) + 
(D8 for unit quality). And yes, that would be nasty. However, If I 
let six small dune buggy's zip up to me the same way, that would be 
equally devastating. The problem I guess lies in the fact that in one 
unit activation, you could move all six of these saws into range 
(BTW, while you chopped apart a squad, another would nuke you... 
theose bikes are not bulletproof).  

I like the idea of gun-bikes, but I see the issue. you don't want to 
run them as vehicles or every moves puts the moving vehicle out of 
unit cohesion. You don't want to move them all at once if they carry 
SAWs. Interesting. I'll think about it and see if I can think up a 
good answer. 

> Ammo capacity doesn't come into SG2, except for missiles.

Not maybe in your games (ie - it is something you can track if you 
want, or not... it isn't required but otherwise you really make SAWs 
and other types of weapons capable of infinite fire and this should 
be an advantage of static defenders with extra ammo boxes). The rules 
indicate this is an extra level of bookkeeping - true. But I apply it 
where I think necessary - GMS, SLAMs on vehicles, IAVRs, and in this 
case I'd use it on vehicle SAWs as they don't have big ammo reserves. 

> >And if the bikes 
> >themselves increased weapon damage (to integrate the likelihood of an

> >explosion or being thrown off or any number of things), then they'd 
> >still be pretty balanced. And, like I've always said, I can balance 
> >any situation if I think about it. If I give you a fast bike squad 
> >with 6 SAW weapons, I'd better have a reasonable counter - maybe a 
> >VTOL, some good arty, or chassis mounted quad-APSWs to offer some 
> >examples. 
> All these reasonable counters use vehicles, how about an infantry

Okay. You have 1 squad with bikes (6 guys). I have 3 regular squads. 
You zip in and clobber one of my squads with 6 SAWs. It hurts a lot. 
My other two squads chew you to bits before you can do another fire 

> SG2 is after all an infantry game.

> >If you don't like the idea of armed bikes, I'm fine with 
> >that, but I think it is hard to say it is technologically impossible 
> >to arm such a beast. A saw (even with ammo hoppers) won't weigh more 
> >than 30 pounds - limited ammo. I don't think that is too much to 
> >assume. Maybe the RFAC is too heavy. Maybe these 'gun bikes' have 
> >slower movement rates. Who knows? What makes one comfortable is what 
> >one should always go with. 
> I can see armed bikes existing but that wasn't the point I was trying
> get across.


 It was infact an attempt to write rules that created a mounted
> infantry squad type, that could be used for grav bikes and other types
> bikes (even cavalry if you are insane enough to try), and that
> game balance.

Or one flavour of it anyway. But point taken. 

> As for the US cavalry analogy, it wasn't meant as proof to support my
> reasoning but just as a way of highlighting the context that the rules
> where writen in.(Though after rereading what I wrote I can see how you
> thought it was)

Sorry. I just wanted to point out where such an analogy may not 
> >Unless I realized that the drive across the open would keep me 
> >exposed to the aforesaid threat (like say a SAW or RFAC) for some 
> >period of time. My bike won't move fast enough to outrun its 
> >traverse, it has a high cyclic, and I have no armour to protect me. 
> >I'd consider bailing off and getting prone.	
> Speed makes you harder to hit.

Yep. Except I wonder if this matters against weapons like Vulcans 
(RFACs). I've seen what they can do.... it makes me wonder if speed 
WOULD be adequate defence. I suspect since you can't outrun the 
traverse, and the wall of lead put out is vast (and given future FC), 
you'd probably just die (far more easily than the D8 vs point targets 
in the game causes you to). 

  And rapid acceleration would through off
> the aim of the people shooting at you,

But will it beat the computer? Hmm. If it could, I don't think you'd 
ever get hits in FT. Depends on what is attacking you. But I do take 
your point - against normal infantry with non smart weapons, it 
strikes me that speed is a reasonable defence. Not the only one. I'd 
rather be behind a big rock or even a decent little hump in the 

 at least for a while, so would rapid
> evasion movements.

Thomas Barclay		     
Voice: (613) 831-2018 x 4009
Fax: (613) 831-8255

 "C makes it easy to shoot yourself in the foot.  C++ makes
 it harder, but when you do, it blows away your whole leg."
 -Bjarne Stroustrup

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