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My final word on missiles

From: Mikko Kurki-Suonio <maxxon@s...>
Date: Thu, 11 May 2000 11:05:19 +0300 (EEST)
Subject: My final word on missiles

Whew, what a can of worms.

I want to stress this one point: The most FT games I played were under
old FT/MT rules. I never claimed I've tested this under the new rules,
in fact, that there is anything wrong with the *current* rules. I merely
outlined the game-breaking scenario that used to be. If someone is
absolutely convinced that his new missile rules cannot be used in such a
fashion, hey GOOD, that's just what I was aiming for.

I moved house about the time FB1 came out and after a few abortive
attempts to fit FT on an 80cm dining table gave up. (Now I've moved
and have a game room with a ping-pong table as playing surface) - ha!
Some bennies for the education.

The game has improved *a lot* since. I heartily applaud the movement to
actually balance the game instead of hand-waving and "make a scenario".
With my limited free time, I do not want to playtest a scenario until
balanced (and everyone is soooo fed up with it). I need a game that
well "off the shelf". FT is there, pretty much. DS is close, but SG is
nowhere near it. Which about sums up the ratio how much I play these
games. It's kinda like the difference between buying a ready application
and buying an "application development platform".

I just wanted to express my feeling that I *DO* *NOT* want to go back to
what was.

 - beam battery costs were fixed. GOOD
 - rerolls strengthen beams. GOOD
 - PT costs were fixed. GOOD
 - screen-3 was banned. GOOD
 - capital ships can have something besides MD2 without paying through
   nose. GOOD
 - The missile problem was largely fixed by the change in PDS/ADFC
   rules. GOOD
   This perhaps makes the old MTM underpowered/limited in scope, but
   frankly I do not miss them.

And actually, Örjan, I never play a space game with hard edges. I find
concept patently absurd, and because I cannot reasonably justify it, I
can't enforce it on the players. IMHO, hard edges in a space game is
a lame cover-up for not figuring it all out.

What I do not like, though, is a game that actively rewards tactics that
cause hassle. And floating the table is a hassle. Moving your figures
literally out the window to loop for another high-speed pass is a
Hit&run is a hassle, generally.

You would also notice that entry parameters make quite a lot of
when you try to do a hit&run. There were (still are?) no hard rules
for this. I used to use initial speed max 10+thrust, facing in general
direction of the enemy. Allowing free facing and/or free initial speed
changes things, naturally (and brings other problems).

Interestingly enough, most of these games were in a campaign. The funny
thing about campaign games is that typically one side wants to run away
immediately, and nobody wants to take any losses. That's what gave birth
to the missile swarms. And then everyone started stocking up on
interceptors, since that was the only thing with any chance of
cost-effectively shooting down the missiles (house rule gave fighters
better chances to better fit the game background, under vanilla I think
they'd have sucked just as bad as PDS). In the end, the fleets were
1/3 missile boats (a maxed out DDG was popular), 1/3
and 1/3 actually able to slug it out. 

And btw: There are no hard rules for ammo resupply costs either. (The
problem with those is that they often make all ammo-using weapons too
expensive to use in a campaign environment -- which, frankly, is pretty
realistic if boring)

-- (Mikko Kurki-Suonio) 	  | A pig who doesn't
GSM +358 50 5596411 Tel +358 9 8092681		  | is just an ordinary
Länsimetsä 3B1 02300 ESPOO FINLAND   Hate me? Try |	      - Porco
Rosso      hateme.html  |

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