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Revised Missiles (long) was Re: [GZG] Heavy missile questions.

From: J L Hilal <jlhilal@y...>
Date: Thu, 8 Jun 2006 19:16:32 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Revised Missiles (long) was Re: [GZG] Heavy missile questions.

--- Robert N Bryett <> wrote:

> One of my nephews/admirals ... and developed a commendable ambition to
> launch salvos of heavy missiles at the OPFOR. ... and I have a few

I have been working with the group I game with to come up with a version
salvo missiles that probably covers what you are looking for.  Take a
look and
see what you think:

The goals of this rule proposal is to address the problems of the
existing Full
Thrust rules for salvo missiles while remaining within the parameters
through discussion on the GZG mail list.  The parameters set by the
are that a missile system is not to have a movement or V dependant on
the V of
the launching ship.

The problems with the existing rules to be solved are:
   1) The "place missile marker, then it looks for targets" game
mechanic is
really the biggest problem.  The game effect of the placed marker system
missiles are used as an area denial weapon like artillery is used in
combat is the biggest source of “suspension of disbelief” in the game.
fact that the missiles are not targeted at a specific ship or squadron
contributes to #3 below.

  2) The close second is the inherently inaccurate missiles of the
"1d6 missiles lock-on" game mechanic.  SF/Sci-fi missiles are usually
as much smarter than this.  The vast majority of misses should come from
defensive fire or evasive/deceptive defenses such as Stealth Hull or

  3) The inherent stupidity of the missile seeker systems which blithely
the nearest target, rather than seeking a specific target.

  4) The "1d6 lock" mechanic limits the launchers to salvos in multiples
of 6. 
A "roll to-hit per missile" mechanic would allow for future development
of a
range of SML/R’s with varying numbers of missiles.

  5) There is a sharp break between the existing SM rules and the
Missile rules.	A smooth spectrum of missiles is more desireable.  The
beta-test AM-Missile could also be integrated as a variant warhead type.

While reading through these rules, keep in mind that the change to a
to-hit per missile" game mechanic will allow the FB1 standard 3 MASS,
to be balanced in the game by adjusting the number of missiles in the
salvo to
find the balance point if so needed.  I.e. if these rules are acceptable
they make SMs more powerful than their FB1 MASS/PV, the size of the
salvo can
be adjusted to 5, 4, or 3 missiles per salvo to bring them into line
with their
MASS/PV.  The reverse also obviously works if these rules are found to
make SMs
less powerful.

A “Salvo” is all of the missiles from a single launcher.
A “Volley” is all of the salvos of a single type from a single ship
directed at
a single target.

We represent a Volley with a SM marker with the number of missiles on
marker represents the number of SALVOES in the Volley, and the die
the number of missiles in the last Salvo.  

Using Salvo Missiles
Standard salvo missiles have a 24MU Range.  This represents their
attack envelope.  They also have a terminal attack range of decreasing
effectiveness. They are targeted against a specific target
ship/station/facility/installation, not an area of space.  

1)  When writing ship orders, note whether the ship is tracking targets

2)  After orders are written, but before ships move, announce which
ships are
tracking targets for SMs, and which targets each ship is tracking.  Each
may track a number of targets up to the total number of FCS that the
ship has. 
A FCS used to track a particular target for SMs are dedicated to that
for the rest of the game turn.	They MAY NOT be switched to a different
during the Fire phase, but they MAY be used to direct other kinds of
fire, such
as beams, p-torps, or k-guns, at the SAME target as they were tracking
for SMs.
 Any FCS not declared as tracking targets for SMs is free to direct any
EXCEPT SMs at any target during the Fire phase as normal.

3)  After ships have moved, any ship that has been tracking SM targets
launch SMs at them.  There is no requirement that a ship must launch at
target that it is tracking.  It may track several targets and choose to
at none, one, some, or all of the targets that it is tracking.	A ship
may not
launch against a target that it did not declare as being tracked in #2,
To avoid gamesmanship, all players write down their launches and reveal
them at
the same time.

4)  Place volley markers for launch.  Each launch platform places one
marker for each target representing all of the salvoes fired at that
target by
that launch platform.  E.g. Ship A fires 3 salvoes at Target B and 1
salvo at
Target C.  Place a single 3-salvo Volley counter against Target B and a
1-salvo Volley against Target C.
  If the Target is farther away than the SMs Range, place the Volley
counter at
the end of its Range along a straight line from the launch platform to
Target.  If the Target is less than the missiles Range away, the place
Volley counter directly against the target along a straight line from
launch platform to the Target.	For each full 6 MU less than the SMs
range the missiles traveled, they may either (launching player's choice)
the direction from which the missiles attack by up to 30 degrees OR
receive 1
"terminal attack point" for evasive maneuvers against PD fire.	E.g. if
range to the target was 12MU less than maximum range, then the Volley
a) adjust the direction of the attack by 60 degrees
b) receive 2 Terminal Attck Points
c) adjust the direction of attack by 30 degrees and receive 1 Terminal

5)  Perform anti-missile and point defense fire as normal.  Note that in
cases the direction of the attack will affect which PD or other weapon
can bear on a particular Volley.  All PD and anti missile fire is
against Volleys, not individual salvoes, so the amount of overkill may
reduced compared to FB1 rules.
  For each "Terminal Attack Point" that the Volley has, the
effectiveness of PD
and ant-missile fire is reduced.  For weapons that score their PD/AM
rolls as
beam dice, treat the number of TA Points as the level of screens that
Volley has.  For weapons that score their PD/AM rolls as straight die
reduce the score by a number of points equal to the number of TA Points
the Volley has.

6)  When it comes time for the Volley to attack their target, roll one
die for
each missile remaining in the Volley.  This roll represets a combination
of the
missile's guidance quality and all of the non-PD/AM tricks that the
target does
to try and spoof, decoy, distract, or mislead the missile into
generating a
miss.  For Volleys attacking within their Range, each missile
attacks the target on a score of 2+.  For Volleys attacking outside
Range, add +1 to the To-Hit number for each full MU between the target
and the
Volley.  E.g. missiles in a volley placed at the limit of its Range
0.5MU to its target will have to roll a 2+ To-Hit, while one measuring
2.5MU to
the target will need to roll a 4+ to successfully attack the target.

7) For each missile that hits, roll and apply damage as per FB1.

So far, the description has assumed that the target and missiles all
Standard ECM, Stealth, and FCS (missile guidance) as described in my
post of:
However, this SM proposal is perfectly capable of being used with
levels of Stealth, ECM, and Guidance as follows:
* For each level of Stealth Hull and/or ECM the target has above
(Level 3), increase the missile's to-hit target number by 1 (more
difficult to
* For each level of Stealth Hull and/or ECM the target has below
(Level 3), decrease the missile's to-hit target number by 1 (easier to
* For each level of Guidance the SMs have above Standard (Level 3),
the missile's to-hit target number by 1 (easier to hit).
* For each level of Guidance the SMs have below Standard (Level 3),
the missile's to-hit target number by 1 (more difficult to hit).
* For each enemy ship within 1MU of the target and/or 1MU of the
flight path with an active ECM system equal to or greater in Quality to
missile's Guidance, increase the To-Hit target number by 1 (more
difficult to

The missiles so far described are the same as the ones from FB1; 24mu
range and
a 1d6 warhead.	This is a Size Class 1 missile.  Other sizes of missiles
warheads are available.

Warheads are rated by the number of dice of damage that they do.  e.g. a
2 warhead does 2d6, a class 4 warhead does 4d6, etc.  Warheads larger
class 1 are available in integer sizes (2, 3, 4, etc.).  Warheads
smaller than
class 1 are available in Light (1/2d6, or 1d3) and Mini (1d1, i.e. 1

Missiles are available in the same sizes as Warheads.

A Standard Missile carries a Warhead equal to the missile's size with a
of 24MU.  E.g. a Standard SM1 does 1d6 with a range of 24MU, a Standard
does 3d6 with a range of 24MU, etc.

A missile of a given size class can carry a smaller warhead in exchange
extended range, at a rate of +12MU range for each size class reduction
warhead.  Below Size 1 is Light, then Mini.  E.g. an Extended Range SM1
1d3 (Light Warhead) with a range of 36MU, and a Long Range SM1 does 1
(Mini Warhead) with a range of 48MU; an ER-SM2 does 1d6 (class 1
warhead) with
a range of 36MU, a LR-SM2 does 1d3 (Light Warhead) with a range of 48MU,
and an
ELR-SM2 does 1 point (Mini Warhead) with a range of 60MU, etc.

A missile of a given size class can carry a larger warhead in exchange
for a
reduced range: +1 warhead size for a -33% range (16MU) or +2 warhead
sizes for
-50% range (12MU).

These various warhead/range combinations are interchangeable within a
given SM
size class, however they are not changeable during the game.  I.e. you
before the game how many of your salvoes are SM1, ER-SM1, SM1+, etc.,
but you
may not change them during the game.

SM launchers are described  by the class and number of missiles that
launch.  A launcher can only launch a single size missile.  E.g. a SM1
cannot launch size 2 missiles nor can it launch Light missiles.

The 3 MASS launcher from FB1 launches (subject to adjustment by the
list) 6
class-1 missiles each time it fires.  This is described as a SM1L6 or

There is available a range of launchers all having the same MASS and
cost as
this FB1 standard launcher.  I am not sure how they balance, but the
missiles should probably have more total dice per salvo to compensate
loosing several dice damage for each PD/AM hit, e.g. SML2x4, SML3x3,
SML5x2, or
SML2x5, SML3x4, SML5x3, SML9x2, etc. (I realy am not sure how the
ratio should balance); while the smaller ones should probably be around
or x10 and SML-Mx12 or x15, this could all change if it is determined
that the
SM1 launcher should fire salvoes of fewer or more missiles to balance
the new
game mechanics.  At the extreme end of this range will be a launcher
firing a
single very big SM, maybe SML-12x1.  It is a true capital ship killer,
but each
takes only 1 PD/AM hit to swat down.
Additionally, there can be larger and smaller launchers, e.g. a 2 MASS
and a 4 MASS SML2x6, SML3x5, etc. 

So far, we have only addressed normal type warheads, like those in FB1. 
the number/size of missiles per salvo is balance, we can address a range
warhead types as follows:
* Standard Warhead - damage as per FB
* Beam Warhead - stand-off weapon that fires Beam Dice at target ship,
affected by screens, but lesser chance to shoot with PD/AD/AS
* Nova Warhead - Big Boom area affect weapons, lesser chance to shoot
with PD/AD/AS, replaces beta-test AM-Missile
* Hyperspace Warhead - no boom, warhead/missile transists/jumps to
FTL/hyperspace instead of detonating, damaging nearby ship(s)
* Interceptor Missiles - Mini warheads (and appropriate range)
specialized to
attack fighters and missiles.

Would any of these ideas help with your nephew?

Any thoughts, comments, discussion from the List?


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