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Re: Salvo missile escalation

From: stiltman@t...
Date: Wed, 13 Sep 2000 13:52:27 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: Salvo missile escalation

> Is it just us or is anyone else having the problem of every game of
> fleetbook FT degenerating into a competition to see who can launch the
> salvo-missiles first?

Nope.  I've thought of at least four different countermeasures that can
very drastically reduce the effectiveness of salvo missiles.

1.  Lots of point defense.  I've generally found that if you really take
gloves off, this sort of thing never hurts anyway.

2.  Decoys.  Take good hard look at the salvo missile rules and you'll
notice that they _have_ to target the ship that lands closest to where
they're placed.  There is no statement that says that this ship has to
be of greater than mass 2 or 3.  :)  Yes, it's probably an abuse of the
letter of the rules... but if you'll abuse missiles, I'll abuse their
weaknesses. ;)

3.  Low-power plasma bolts.  If you've ever played Star Control II or
think "Kohr-Ah ring of fire" and you've got the rough idea.  It works
on capital or super ships.  The details involve two (preferably four)
1 plasma bolt launchers, that alternate turns in ones or twos covering
area around the ship in low level plasma in order to incinerate
It doesn't matter whether you've got two salvoes or eighty; none of them
have any defense against the plasma, so if you fire them into that area,
they're toast.	My grapeshot plasma is going to hurt me a lot less than
missiles will, and meanwhile, I'm shooting back with the _real_

4.  Lots and lots of speed.  If you're gunning the throttle at better
20 MU per turn and you can pull 3-point turns or better, your opponent
as well not bother bringing missiles.

And if you don't mind genre tech, I'll add a fifth...

5.  Cloaking devices.  Just about anything with a cloaking device will
slaughter anything with missiles.  All you have to do is keep someone
guessing as to whether your ship will still be visible when the missile
has to target it.  Cloaking takes place in the movement phase of the
while missiles have to target _after_ that.  Thus, a cloak-capable ship
can quite literally decloak, fire away with direct-fire weapons, cloak
again the next turn, and unless your opponent takes a blind shot in the
hopes that you're going to come out of cloak in a given area, the
are useless.  And you don't even want to begin to think about what
_carriers_ are going to do to missile barges.

Full Thrust, if you scratch the surface of the tactics you can use with
is a lot more than just a game of nuclear exchanges.
 The Stilt Man
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