Prev: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update Next: Re: Re: Fighter Fixes was Re: Re: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update

Re: Fighter Fixes was Re: Re: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update

From: Oerjan Ariander <oerjan.ariander@t...>
Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2006 18:16:25 +0200
Subject: Re: Fighter Fixes was Re: Re: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update

Robert Bryett wrote:

>Yuk! *This* is the future direction of FT? The game that's supposed
>to be quick and fun to play? Really?

<g> You sound *exactly* like I felt before I tried this concept out for
first couple of battles... and there are lots of others who reacted just

like this too, only to change their minds after trying it out in a game.
looks very ugly on paper (particularly if you read the "explain
in triplicate" version you linked to), but it actually plays about as
as standard FT2.5.

>One of the great attractions of FT is that it generally doesn't
>require lots of plusses, minuses and modifiers. This seems to take
>mechanisms that are *mostly* optional rules in FT2.5 and make them
>core in FT3,

The DRMs from the "Advanced and Specialized Fighter Types" section are 
optional in FT2.5, true. CEF aren't though, and although beam rerolls
*nominally* optional the entire Fleet Book ship design system was
around the assumption that beams do reroll '6's... which makes the
rule about as "core" as it could be :-/

>and a *lot* of extra chits, markers etc. are going to be
>needed to keep track of screening, escorting, evading etc.

Screening/escorting status is tracked by moving the fighter groups into 
base-to-base contact with whatever they're protecting, and if you track
expenditure by tick boxes on the fighter group's SSD instead of using 
fiddly little dice on the fighter group's base, you don't need any extra

chits to track evasion either.

So no, you don't need even one single extra chit or marker :-)

>Apart from the complexity, this "fighter fix" also smuggles in some
>pretty major changes to other non-fighter "ordnance"-style systems:

Yep. Which isn't very surprising, considering that those other 
ordnance-style systems have balance problems that are quite similar to 
(though less extreme than) the fighter ones...

>1) Arbitrary bonuses for certain weapons systems: "Salvo Missile,
>Plasma Bolt, and AMT markers AUTOMATICALLY gain a -3 target DRM to
>any non-PD-mode fire against the marker." Why?

Salvo Missiles because their sub-missiles are tiny targets assumed to
by default, Plasma Bolts because they were difficult targets even for
under the old FB2 rules (and also because they're *very* easy to wipe
without the DRM), and AMTs because by the time you get to shoot at them 
they has already deployed a number of warheads MIRV-style throughout the

target area.

>For example, an AMT has the same mass as a Heavy Missile, so why should
>be harder to hit?

See above. The HM is a single fairly large target; by the time you get
shoot at an AMT, it consists of multiple small targets.

>In fact the privileged projectiles that receive this -3 DRM seem
>to be not just harder, but *impossible* to hit with non-PD weapons,

"Impossible"? No. Difficult, yes, that's precisely the point with the -3

DRM; but beams still hit on successful rerolls, and P-torps/K-guns hit
rolls of  5+ at range 0-6 and on rolls of 6 at range 6-12.

>while Heavy Missiles are laughably easy to knock down (see next

Provided that the targets can bring their non-PD weapons to bear against

them (the HMs' secondary move can make that difficult) and have enough
to engage them with (a ship needs to dedicate a separate FCS to each
Missile it wants to engage with non-PD fire).

>2) Evasion and missile range: The "burn an endurance point for
>evasion" rule is very hard on standard Heavy Missiles which have only
>three CEF, greatly reducing their effective range if they evade.

I'm curious here: How often do you fire Heavy Missiles at their
maximum range of 60 mu? (3x18 mu moves + 6 mu target acquisition range =
mu from the launch point.)

>My feeling is that missile ranges are already short compared with
>and this only exacerbates this. On any turn when an HM *doesn't*
>evade, by the way, a B4 anti-ship battery (for example) could knock
>it down with one shot at 48mu as easily as a dedicated PDS would at
>point-blank range! That feels completely artificial and gamey, and
>*certainly* puts my suspension-of-disbelief meter in the red zone.

The Heavy Missile is around TMF 1 in size; the smallest spaceship you
build under the Fleet Book design rules is TMF 2. Why would it be 
impossible/unbelievable for the B4 to hit the TMF ~1 Heavy Missile at
48mu, when it is perfectly capable of hitting the TMF 2 spaceship at

>Finally I was left a bit gob-smacked by this comment: "Similarly the
>fighter morale rules are GONE. They were always dubious from a PSB
>point of view (why would robotic fighters be scared of being
>Since when have FT fighters been robotic?

Since about five minutes after the first munchkin player bought More
back in 1993. Robotic fighters is by far the most common argument used
those players who don't/didn't want to use the (optional) More Thrust 
fighter morale rules to explain why their fighters shouldn't have to
the morale tests...

However, the real reason why the fighter morale rules were removed is
they were counter-productive. Without the morale rules small numbers of 
fighters were pretty ineffective while massed fighter swarms could sweep

all before them... and the effect of the MT fighter morale rules was to 
penalize small numbers of fighters even further while having very little

effect on the massed fighter swarms :-(



"Life is like a sewer.
  What you get out of it, depends on what you put into it."

Gzg-l mailing list

Prev: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update Next: Re: Re: Fighter Fixes was Re: Re: Re: [GZG] Revised Salvo Missiles Update