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Re: [FT] Railguns

From: "John C" <john1x@h...>
Date: Wed, 25 Nov 1998 08:18:04 PST
Subject: Re: [FT] Railguns

So, let's see if this works....

>On Tue, 24 Nov 1998, John Crimmins wrote:
>>	Okay, here's a thought...let's make Railguns completely
>good thinking.

I want something different, not just Beam Batteries with a new paint 

>>	To hit, RGs must roll HIGHER than the distance to the targer (in

>> centimeters, or whatever scale you are using) on 3d6.
>nice one! this really is different, and quite fun.

Thank you!

>>  In other words, in
>> order to hit a ship 12" away, the Kra'vak player must roll 13 or 
higher on
>> 3d6.  A roll of "3" is always a miss, and a roll of "18" is always a 
>problems that i can see are:
>- weapon's effective range is only about 15; beyond this, hit 
>drops too low. this is very, very short compared to beams and missiles

I am not sure that this is a bad thing.  I think that RGs should be 
balanced weapons, not just better ones.  Giving them LOTS of damage, and

a short effective range, leads to very different tactics than one would 
emply with human ships.  Whether or not this is a good things depends on

your point of view, of course.

>- weapon's actual range is unlimited - 18 is a hit at any range

Agreed.  If we do use the rerolled sixes, than we should drop the "18 
always hits" rule.  If not, limit the range to 24", or something.  I do 
like the potentially unlimited range, though.

>- rate at which hitting gets easier falls of at very close range - not
>much difference between 5, 4 and 3 inches, and no difference between 1,

>and 3. not that much fire combat occurs here, of course.

Agreed again, on both counts.  If you have a lot of close-range combat, 
this will be a problem.  If not...then it won't.

>>	Damage is equal to the roll 1d6 per class of the weapon (2d6 for

class 2,
>> 4d6 for class 4, etc.), with no rerolls; half of the damage (rounded 
>> is applied to armor, and the rest to the target's hull.
>i think rerolls should be allowed; they just reflect the chance of a 
>hit, not some special property of beam weapons.

True enough, but I just thought that 3d6 of damage was bad enough as is.

>maybe this would be a reasonable strategy for a fleet with massdrivers:

>your ammo is unlimited (as it might well be if you use small 
>you just keep blasting away. a rule might be introduced to counter 
>how about saying that firing your railgun emits an electromagnetic 
>and gives away your identity, much like using active sensors. this 
>discourage long shots early in the game if you use sensor rules. i 
>think of anything that works mid-game and which is not too severe.

I like the sound of that.  I just don't want to have people slowing the 
game down by firing all of their RGs, every single turn, when they have 
no reasonable chance of hitting anything.  I know how some gmaers 
think...from bitter experience.

>>	Option the Third: If the damage seems to high, allow screens to 
>> one point/level from the damage dice.  I don't see a need for it, but
>> whatever works for you.
>sort of goes against what vanilla ft screens are supposed to be, 
>of course, if you use, say, a star trek background, then your screens 
>against massdrivers anyway.

I see screens as intense magnetic fields anyway, but YMMV.  Like I said,

I don't see a real need for it, but it might balance things a bit 
better.  Of course, why bother with balancing it?  The KV are aliens, 


>overall, this is a nice system. i haven't looked at the statistics in
>detail, but it seems alright. 18 inches as a max range still feels a 
>steep, though. how about making the target number half the range?

If I remember correctly, the average 3d6 roll is nine, meaning that the 
KV would have 50% chance to hit a target 9" away.  Doubling that to 18" 
would give them a 50% chance to do LOTS of damage to a target that would

be unlikely to do much in return with its beam weapons.  At least at 9",

beam weapons are going to be capable of significant return fire.

Unless I'm rolling, in which case the humans are screwed anyway.

John Crimmins

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