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Re: "Custom" fleets

From: stiltman@t...
Date: Fri, 9 Jun 2000 09:44:59 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: "Custom" fleets

> > Noam:
> > I'd written out a nice elaborate argument explaining why, on the
> fixed-edge
> > table that the Full Thrust rules so obviously assume as the norm,
> > keepaway beam-6 BC's wouldn't be as broadly sound as the
> before
> > a pretty stupid and simple mod occurred to me:  Reflex field.
> Too easy. I wouldn't fire at you with the field on, and wouldn't let
> fire at me with my distance. If the field turns off for any reason, I
> it.

One problem:  you don't get to know whether the fields are up until
already fired at them.	That's specifically stated as a rule for them in
original entry for them in MT.

> > Your ships can take about half as much damage getting reflected back
> mine
> > can of what gets through.  If you're a starfaring power relying on
> your
> > enslavement by the Hierarchy would take about as long as a refit,
> regardless
> > of whether we were playing on a fixed or floating edged table.
> Rock, paper, scissors. You think I'd throw the same fleet at a reflex

Major assumption problem here:	you don't know if I'm going to fly
with a reflex field or not.  I might have a dreadplanet (with or without
Class 4 beams modded onto them :), I might have battleships.  You don't
That's why I was telling you that most times, that fleet would get
in our games:  you don't have the luxury of knowing what I'm going to
only a warning of a mass if I fly a supership.	If you see a really
mass, that _might_ be the version I showed you earlier... or it might be
horribly beweaponed monster with class-5 or class-6 beams just to tick
off.  :)

> (BTW, I have yet to see the reflex field, and cloak, for that matter
> convincingly balanced for FT2.5).

They're actually not that bad.	Taking a cloaking device is essentially
up about 15-25% of your total firepower in exchange for being able to
when and if the battle is joined.  And a reflex field only works against
anyway and costs twice as much as a screen.

> Laserlight :
> >> That's a genre weapon, not a standard one.  If you take that,
> >> then Noam'll take a Wave Gun or Nova Cannon and kill your
> >> fighters with it.
> Stilt:
> > Pretty difficult to do this, really... with the extra fighter moves
> not
> > too hard to stay out of a supergun's reach.
> Forget that. Keep all the PDS, replace One or two of the Beam-6's with
> Novas. Nova until the Reflex Field thresholds away, then Nova+Beam
until the
> planet falls. Wonderful, Laserlight.

This is cinematic movement, remember.  You're not going to fire the nova
at me at the same time as you're keeping away from me.	You _have_ to be
facing me or flying towards me to use it.  And against something that
you're not going to do damage anywhere near fast enough to make it worth

> > Incidentally, we play cinematic on a fixed edge... which makes this
> > pretty unsound right there.  I honestly don't understand why anyone
> > _want_ to play on a floating-edge table... it's basically _asking_
> people
> > to bore you to death with keepaway.
> Aside from a fixed edge being an entirely artificial limitation in a
> game, here's four reasons not to play fixed (take a 100x100 field as
> example): 1) Edge crawlers, 2) Corner squatters,

These two things simply don't happen with us.  We typically play on a
room floor, and although we do have a fixed playing space the edges are
real specifically defined; we just agree that if you're too far off to
side of the room you're going to get your ship kicked off the board.  No
attempts to _deliberately_ hug the walls because they know that they'll
probably get their ships removed for doing so.	YMMV, but if you've got
people who are willing to abuse the details of the rules this badly I'd
suggest recruiting new opposition...

>3) Behemoths/fleets with
> kill zones that fill 10-20% of the entire playing field, 4) Snipers
that can
> cover 80% of the playing field at all times.

We don't have much trouble with either of these because closing on them
punishing them up close isn't typically that hard.

> > Floating edges disturb that intent, to no real game-related end
(IMHO) but
> to
> > allow someone to get a fast ship with a class 86 beam so that he can
> out
> > of your reach and sling insults at you from the next galaxy. 
> If you want any kind of campaign continuity, that single class 86 beam
> 3.9x10^25 mass and 1.2x10^26 points in cost. THat's about 10^5 times
> mass than planet earth (assuming 1 mass= 1000kg).  I was going to say
> you could simply avoid the starsystem it was stationed in (It can't
> since FTL would cost a minimum of 3.9x10^24 mass (~660 Earths)/
> points, and thrust 1 would cost ~2x10^24 mass (~330 Earths) /4x10^24
> Assuming you've used all the mass in your solar system for the weapon
> itself, it's got one arc and no spinning capability. So I waltz up the
> side with a Needle corvette and cripple it within a couple turns.
Sorry. I
> couldn't help but get carried away on that, but it does nicely
> (in the extreme) the cost effectiveness of large weapons.

'Salright... I was exaggerating as an extreme myself. :)

> > Sure, it might
> > be a bit more realistic (as is vector movement) for those of you
that are
> > hardcore B5-niks, but it's still boring as all heck.

> A fixed map is almost a moot point vs. a thrust 1 ship anyway, unless
> starts at the edge (which you do in your standard setup, see below).
> Fighting a spinner seems boring to me. One can only play so many
"attack the
> starbase" games before wanting something else. Different folks,
> tastes. For some, better realism makes better games.

*shrugs*  I fly some games where I spin at thrust 1.  I fly some where I
cloak and stalk.  I fly some where I have some sit back to support
while others maneuver to crack area-defense shells.  I fly some where I
fly up and slug it out.  We don't, by any stretch of the imagination,
"attack the starbase" every time.

> > We simply don't have people deliberately try to abuse the borders.
> Perhaps not, but your starting conditions play right into the hands of
a big
> spinner. You said you start ~70" apart 15-20" from the edges. For a
> with 24" range weapons that _is_ sitting on the edge. Anything between
> spinner and the far edge is a kill zone, effectively cutting off
25-50% of
> possible attack vectors for opposing ships (depending on how wide your
> is).

Yes, but it also leaves them horrifically vulnerable to needle beams if
try that.  Sacrifice a couple of fast needle craft to take out their
then park your ships in their weakest arc(s) and take them apart.

> >  We may
> > enforce an edge, but we do so because we expect people to stay near
> middle
> > and fight.
> Again, that may not be a deliberate abuse, but the very expectation
> maneuver-heavy tactics. The fact your wife took a KV fleet straight
> your throat illustrates that your play group either does not know how,
> chooses not to use maneuver in a fight. I'm not sure why highly
> ships and tactics seem inherently ridiculous to you.

See other post.  I've used Oerjan Velocities in my games before, to
effect.  I'm just not going to use them on _all_ of my ships too often.

> > On the other hand, I've seen both Oerjan and Noam suggest with a
> face
> > that someone make a strategy out of using a long-range beam and
abuse the
> > floating edge to ping away at people.
> Semantics, semantics. I call it taking advantage of the space.
> as pointed out above, spining dreadplanet 20" (even 30") away from one
> is effectively an abuse of the fixed edge.

Doesn't usually happen.  The fighters usually decide the game well
before it
gets to this point, and if they don't, the dreadplanet itself usually
and runs down enemy carriers ship-to-ship if it gets out-fightered.

> As a side note:
> | Laserlight:
> | >> On the other hand, I've seen you suggest with a straight face
> | >>	that "space has an edge".
> |
> | Stilt:
> | > Hey, dude, watch your tone here.	We're all friends here...

> | Me:
> Laser's tone seems pretty identical to that of your barb at Oerjan and
> I took both in the same lighthearted spirit. I hope I did not err.

I wasn't barbing at you, I merely observed that you'd both suggested
forms of keepaway tactics.  He was suggesting that he has a house rule
all his ships get back a full row of hull boxes (in response to our
rules) and distorting my comments to mean that "space has an edge".  I
letting him know I didn't care for either comment.

If either of you took my observation as a barb, I'm sorry.  I didn't
mean it
as such.

> 'Course as Oerjan said, the initial excercise (killing the
> could be accomplished by a single Kormarov and other standard FB1

The Komarov has to point its front end at the dreadplanet to fire Class
beams.	In cinematic movement, that means you _cannot_ both fire that
use your thrust to stay away from me.  You've got all of a 12 MU window,
even assuming I _don't_ tweak the "dreadplanet" to carry Class 4's

That design is still a little experimental, and I'm actually not
happy with the amount that I neutered its beam armament from its
prototype version in order to mount those plasma bolts; I'm considering
various forms of mods to change that before I call it a final version.
One thought I have is to take off the needle beams and a couple of class
3's to put a couple of class 4's and 18 class 1's on it.  That gives it
answer to the Komarov _and_ would much improve its beam firepower at all
distances (2/12/22/50 versus 0/10/20/30); the plasma probably makes the
needles obsolete for the purposes they were originally on there for in
previous version, and the Class 4's could help replace a little of the
extra-long range threat that the nova gave before.  A Komarov would
be able to take the thing one-on-one anyway (it would never survive the
fighter attack) but having taken the nova cannon off of the previous
version it probably would be a good idea to give it back some form of
range threat.
 The Stilt Man
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   < surrender your money.  Antitrust law is irrelevant.	>
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