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View Full Version : [d20 Future] Starship Combat that doesn't make me cry myself to sleep.



Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 01:14 AM
http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k185/kuma_klaw/dnd/wraithattack.png

My initial review of d20 Future was a mixed bag. Some of the rules and equipment were genuinely cool, but others seemed simply to be a way to add in magic-like effects, like neutralizing poison and diseases, without a magic feel. Others were weird (some cybernetics) or just poorly balanced (subcutaneous body armor).

Until I reached the chapter on Starship combat. Two dimensional grids? Omnidirectional facing? Ships that cannot move and fire at the same time?

A part of me died that day.

I've used it, I worked around it, and I find that no matter what I do, it all boils down to "I fire" and "I don't have any starship feats so I stand there and watch." There were many tactical options but no real reason to use them; why waste an action figuring out what armor the enemy has when you're better off firing your hardest-hitting cannon anyway? Tactics reduced down to movement, but with no reasonable cover or facing, the only real valuable positional information is "how far away from me are they?"

So I've decided to write a new starship combat system. Note that this is in no way intended to be "rules light," as oversimplification is the reason I feel I need to do this in the first place. So, here we go.

Objects in Space

Starship combat takes place on a three-dimensional hex grid, with each hex being 250 feet in diameter. Though the technicality might be disputed in some circles, the universe is sufficiently vast that allowing these dimensions to expand infinitely is a good approximation for such (relatively) small scales.

The third dimension, depth, can be modeled with a number next to the ship's token indicating how far above or below the reference plane it is.

The location of the three planes that make up three-dimensional space and where they intersect, as well as their orientation or rotation, is completely arbitrary. Unlike with most character-scale battles, there is no up, down, left or right, nor is there a floor or ceiling; position and rotation are relative. When no other obvious reference point exists, the players' ship is a good origin. Forward and backward are determined by whatever direction the ship was facing when the battle began. Left and right are to the ship's left and right, and up and down are the ship's up and down. Ground level becomes the middle of the ship.

Enemy ships are rotated and placed relative to the players' ship. If the player's ship changes rotation or position, it is easier to simply change the ship itself rather than move the reference plane with it, which would require a reposition and rotation of everything else. The players' ship is good for setting the initial calibration of the battle map, but the grid need not continue to move relative to the ship.

Unlike character-scale combat, where people can twist to face or attack in any direction at the drop of a hat, the facing of a ship is important. Most ships have a rather poor turn radius, so moving to shoot an enemy who slipped behind you to shoot your engines is a trick of maneuverability.

Ships have three different kinds of faces: a front, a back, and numerous flanks.


http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k185/kuma_klaw/dnd/facingdiagram.png

Front: The front of the ship is the direction it is facing. An attacker attacking the front of a ship gains no special bonuses or penalties. Most ship weapons are designed to be able to fire, if not exclusively pointed, forward.

The front face is green in the diagram.

Flank: A ship's side is called the flank. Attackers gain a +2 bonus on their attack rolls to hit a ship's flank. The ship has a flank above it, below it, and to its left and its right. Many weapons can fire into one or more flanks.

Ships are not usually designed to fly sideways; if the ship is capable, it costs 2 hexes of movement to move into a flank hex.

The flank face is yellow in the diagram.

Back: The ship's back is usually its most vulnerable part, since this is where the engines and mechanical systems are located. Attackers who strike the back of a ship gain a +2 bonus to their attack roll, as well as deal 25% more damage. This increase is factored in before armor. Few weapons are designed to fire backwards.

Like with most vehicles, backwards movement is not a design priority for starships. Most ships are capable of flying backwards, but doing so costs 2 hexes of movement per hex.

The back is red in the diagram.

An Object in Motion....
There is no appreciable friction in the void of space, and objects in motion will continue to move unless prevented from doing so by virtue of inertia. A ship that moved in a previous round does not stop if its pilot gets up and walks away; it continues to move in the same direction and speed until stopped.

Once the pilot establishes a speed and direction, he need only spend fuel and actions to change the ship's velocity. This is why a two month interplanetary trip and a one-minute space battle consume the same amount of fuel; the journey is usually established at the beginning with a single, big boost in speed. The ship simply coasts the rest of the way, while a ship in battle is constantly burning fuel to change direction and speed.

Unless otherwise prevented, a ship will attempt to move in the same direction, at the same speed, and at the same angle or speed of rotation as it did in the last round. Like a player, the ship has two move actions available to it, or it can take a run action as a full-round action. The pilot need only tell the ship what to do. In fact, piloting only requires an actual action on the pilot's part if the maneuver requires more than one move action. Turning the ship within its normal turn radius as part of its move, for instance, does not consume the pilot's action.

Maneuverability
Ships vary in their ability to move about in space, as is determined by their maneuverability. The maneuverability of a ship is in turn set by the size of the ship and the power and capabilities of its engines.

{table=head]|Perfect|Good|Average|Poor|Clumsy
Minimum forward speed|None|None|Half|Half|Half
Hover|Yes|Yes|No|No|No
Move backward|Yes|Yes|Yes|Yes|No
Reverse|Free|-250 ft.|-500 ft.|-500 ft.|No
Turn|Any|90°/250 ft.|45°/250 ft.|45°/500 ft.|45°/1,000 ft.
Turn in place|Any|+90°/-250 ft.|+45°/-500 ft.|No|No
Maximum turn|Any|Any|90°|45°|45°
Up angle|Any|Any|60°|45°|45°
Up speed|Full|Half|Half|Half|Half
Down angle|Any|Any|Any|45°|45°
Down speed|Double|Double|Double|Double|Double
Between down and up|0|0|500 ft.|1,000 ft.|2,500 ft.
Max Dex|+8|+6|+4|+2|+0
Class Mod.|x1|×3/4|×1/2|×1/4|×0
[/table]

Minimum Forward Speed: If a ship fails to maintain its minimum forward speed while in a planet's atmosphere, it must land at the end of its movement. If it is too high above the ground to land, it falls straight down, descending 250 feet in the first round of falling. If this distance brings it to the ground, it is destroyed as if in a collision with the planet. If the fall doesn’t bring the ship to the ground, it must spend its next turn recovering from the stall. The helmsman must succeed on a DC 20 Pilot check to recover. Otherwise it falls another 250 feet. If it hits the ground, it is destroyed. Otherwise, it has another chance to recover on its next turn.

Minimum Forward Speed has no effect in space.

Hover: The ability to stay in one place while in atmosphere. All ships can hover in space.

Move Backward: The ability to move backward without turning around.

Reverse: A ship must spend some of its movement to begin flying backwards. This only applies when the ship first begins moving backwards; subsequent rounds of backwards movement do not carry this cost.

Turn: How much the ship can turn after covering the stated distance.

Turn in Place: Many ships can spend some of their movement to turn in place without actually moving.

Maximum Turn: How much the ship can turn in any one hex.

Up Angle: The angle at which the ship can climb. This applies only in atmosphere. Treat up and down movement in space just like turning.

Up Speed: How fast the ship can climb. This applies only in atmosphere. Treat up and down movement in space just like turning.

Down Angle: The angle at which the ship can descend. This applies only in atmosphere. Treat up and down movement in space just like turning.

Down Speed: A ship can fly down at twice its normal flying speed. This applies only in atmosphere. Treat up and down movement in space just like turning.

Between Down and Up: An average, poor, or clumsy ship must fly level for a minimum distance after descending and before climbing. Any ship can begin descending after a climb without an intervening distance of level flight. This applies only in atmosphere. Treat up and down movement in space just like turning.

Max Dex: The clumsier a ship is, the harder it will be to make it dodge. This number is the maximum amount of Dexterity bonus that the pilot can apply to the ship's Defense. If the Pilot's Dexterity score is higher than this, it drops to this value for purposes of the ship's Defense.

Class Mod: The pilot's Class bonus to Defense is multiplied by this number before being applied to the ship's Defense. Round down.

Objects in Time

Starship combat is composed of rounds, each merely 6 seconds in length, just like character-scale combat. Similarly, starship battles are composed of turns, each one happening near-simultaneously but slightly staggered. Unlike with character-scale combat, these turns are fluidly arranged, and every ship acts in them.

Ships are largely incapable of taking actions themselves. Each action in a space battle is taken by the characters that crew the vessel. This does not mean that combat is made up of hundreds of turns, one for each crewmember; only the heads of various stations, such as engineering or piloting, actually take actions. The rest of the crew is there to make sure the ship is in running order and possibly aid the heads in tricky maneuvers. Ship combat usually has 6 to 8 turns, depending on how many stations are crewed. In small ships with single-digit crews, this number is likely the number of PCs on the ship.

To begin a space battle, one must first determine awareness, like with any battle in d20 Future. This will usually be Computer Use checks to operate the sensors (if they are attended); Spot checks out the window will be a last resort. If one or more ships are aware of the others but some are not, a surprise round occurs.

As one might expect, a surprise round is much like a normal round. Those who are aware act, those who are not aware, do not.

At the beginning of the first round in which a ship can act, whether that be the surprise round or the first normal round, or perhaps even later, that ship rolls initiative, using the Captain's Initiative bonus but substituting his or her Wisdom for their Dexterity. Initiative determines the order in which the ships act in a turn, with higher results acting earlier.

Additionally, an opposed Knowledge (Tactics) check made by the captains of the ship determine in what order the ship crews must select their actions for a round. Lower results indicate the ship must choose earlier, and later captains in the round are aware of the general tactical relation of the ship.

For instance, if the enemy loses the Knowledge (Tactics) check, the players are aware of the tactical climate of each turn, knowing what turns the enemy will be offensive and which turns the enemy will be vulnerable, though the exact nature of the actions remains concealed. This allows more tactically-minded captains to exploit their enemy's plans but can also introduce tactical conundrums, such as if the enemy is going to be vulnerable but extremely aggressive on the same turn.

Once the checks are rolled and awareness is established, the players and enemies may begin choosing actions. Initiative applies only to the ship itself, the players may act on different turns in different rounds, as their tactics dictate. They cannot, however, ready actions or act simultaneously unless an action specifically states that it extends into other turns.

When everyone has chosen their action and the round on which they will perform it, the actions are played out. For each turn, each ship takes its assigned action for that turn in Initiative order, playing through each turn until the round is complete, at which point another round begins and the cycle continues until combat is complete.

Extended Example
On a salvage mission for a mysterious patron, the Shenandoah's proximity sensors note a pirate ship. The pirates hail the Shenandoah, demanding they surrender the loot, but the crew of the Shenandoah refuses. Because both sides are aware of each other, no surprise round or awareness rolls are necessary.

When battle begins, the pirate captain and the hero's captain roll Initiative, using their Wisdom instead of their Dexterity. Because neither one has Improved Initiative, this is simply a Wisdom check. An opposed Knowledge (Tactics) check is also rolled, and the hero's captain wins both.

Because the hero won the Knowledge (Tactics) check, the pirate crew must choose their first round of actions before the heroes do. The heroes learn that the pirates will attack on turn 4, 5, and 6, but will be vulnerable on turn 3 as they move into position.

Knowing this, the gunner decides to fire the neutron cannons on turn 3 to take advantage of the vulnerability. The pilot declares he'll jink on round 5 to lessen the damage the Shenandoah will take. The engineer says she'll reroute power from the KE missiles, which the crew is not intending to use, to power up the neutron cannons on turn 1. With turn 2, 4, and 6 remaining, the sensor operator decides to use the sensors to increase the ship's defense on turn 4, and the co-captain decides to use his Charismatic Hero talent to Inspire his allies on turn 6, knowing the bonus will continue for several rounds afterward. With only turn 2 remaining, the captain decides to jump on the rail guns at that time and begin firing, extending her action into turn 3.

Once the entire round is mapped out, the turns play out in sequence.

On turn 1, the hero engineer reroutes the power, increasing the damage the neutron cannon will deal. The pirate ship does nothing visible, but the heroes guess they did something similar.

On turn 2, the hero captain fires her rail gun, but misses. The pirate ship kicks into overdrive as their pilot spends his action to push the ship into an advantageous position.

On turn 3, the hero gunner fires his cannons as the rear of the pirate ship comes into view. Because her action extends into this turn, the hero captain also fires her rail gun, and both score a solid hit, earning them both 25% more damage and an extra point of damage per die (see Focused Fire, below). The enemy pilot jinks, but he is, of course, too late; his bonus to defense lasts from the pilot's action to the next action the pirates take. It would help next turn, if the heroes had any plans of attacking on that turn.

Turn 4 rolls around, and the pirates are ready to unleash Hell on the heroes, but the heroes have prepared. The hero sensor operator uses the ship's sensors to help the pilot evade, increasing the ship's Defense. The pirate ship releases a missile, programmed to strike at a different turn.

On turn 5, the hero's pilot jinks, allowing him to easily dodge the pirate's rail guns. Unfortunately, he realizes, the proper turn would have been the next.

Finally, turn 6 is up, and the hero co-captain uses his Inspiration to enhance the captain and the gunner in their offensive abilities. The pirates fire their neutron cannons, and a second volley of rail gun pellets. To make matters worse, the missile returns, making its attack. Both the neutron cannon and the missile hit, but the rail gun misses. Still, the pirates are pleased with their increased damage from focused fire, and the Shenandoah has taken a bad hit.

As they choose their actions for next round, the party vows not to underestimate the pirates again.

Battlestations

Ships have lots of jobs that need to be done, but only a few matter during the heat of battle. Below, the different stations a player can fill are listed, as well as any special actions that station can take.

Captain
The captain is the leader and coordinator, who directs the ship's crew and coordinates their efforts. The captain is also responsible for determining the ship's Initiative and sensing the enemy's tactics.

Re-Focus: A captain caught in the confusion of battle can take a moment to simply observe. When a captain uses the re-focus action, an opposed Knowledge (Tactics) check is forced, and the order in which the combatants must choose their actions changes. The captain can do nothing else, and the effect occurs as the beginning of the next turn.

Tactical Orders: A Knowledge (Tactics) check against a DC 15 allows the captain to coordinate the efforts of the gunners and pilots. This ability grants the ship a +1 morale bonus to Defense or attacks, captain's choice. This lasts until the captain acts again (even if that act is nothing).

Pilot
The pilot or helmsman is the individual responsible for actually moving the ship in space. The pilot determines how hard the ship is to hit.

Jink (4 PC): The pilot can move the ship erratically, making it more difficult to hit. To do so, he must make a Pilot check (DC 10). The size of the ship imposes a penalty on the pilot check (Ultralight -0, Light -2, Mediumweight -4, Heavy -8, Superheavy -16). The ship gains a +2 dodge bonus to Defense if the pilot succeeds, with an additional +1 for every 5 points by which the pilot beat the DC. The bonus is doubled and applied as a penalty to any attack rolls that may overlap with the jinking, with the exception of missiles. Jinking applies only to the turn on which the pilot uses this ability.

Sideswipe (6 PC): A sideswipe is a maneuver in which a pilot attacks with the ship directly, causing an indirect collision. The pilot must move the ship into the enemy's space and make an opposed Pilot check. If the attacker wins, both ships take damage as in a collision, with a multiplier of 1/4. The defender may make a Reflex Save (DC 15) to cut the damage both ships take in half.

Ram (8 PC): Like sideswipe, a ram is an intentional collision. Unlike a sideswipe, it is a direct strike. Without the proper equipment a ram is suicidal, as both ships will take massive damage. To ram, the pilot must move the ship into the enemy's space and make an opposed Pilot check. If the attacker succeeds, the ram is head-on, and the collision multiplier is 1. If the defender succeeds, the ram instead degrades into a sideswipe. In either case, the defender may make a Reflex Save (DC 15) to reduce the damage both ships take by half.

Crazy Ivan (16 PC): A difficult and dangerous maneuver, it is effective for shaking off close pursuit. By making a DC 20 Pilot check, along with the engineer's DC 20 Repair check, the pilot spins the ship 180 degrees, passes the ship directly under the pursuing ship, and immediately initiates a full-burn of the engine, causing a concussive force. The enemy ship must make a Reflex Save (DC 15) or be stunned for 1 round.

This maneuver can only be performed if the enemy is behind the pilot's ship and within one move action.

A failure on the Pilot check causes a sideswipe to occur during the pass, and prevents the concussion blast. If the engineer fails the Repair check, the ship spins around but the engine chokes, stalling the ship in place. If both checks fail, the ship is stunned, negating all ship-related actions until the pilot and engineer act to set things straight.

Engineer
A ship's medic keeps the crew alive and in working order. An engineer is essentially the medic for the ship itself, keeping it in good condition and fixing it when it isn't. Some of an engineer's capabilities are not available if the ship lacks a shield defense system.

Reroute Power: An iconic ability of the engineer, rerouting power increases the effectiveness of one of the ship's systems while hampering or disabling another system. First, the engineer must select a system to deplete...

Defense System: The engineer must completely disable a Defense System. Gain all of its PC to reroute.

Engine: Decrease the ship's tactical speed by 500 feet (2 hexes) and its maneuverability by one step. Gain 1/2 of its PC to reroute.

Minor Systems: Disable the ship's life support and artificial gravity. Gain 4 PC to reroute.

Sensors: Disable a sensor system or the ship's targeting computer. Gain all of its PC for reroute.

Shields: Reduces the shield's strength by half. Gain 1/4 its PC to reroute.

Weapons: Disable one of the ship's weapon systems (weapon batteries count as one weapon, while fire-linked do not.) Gain its base PC to reroute.

Once power has been drained from one system, it can be rerouted to where it needs to go.

Engines: Increase the ship's tactical speed by 500 feet (2 hexes). Requires half of the engine's PC in rerouted PC.

Shields: Increase the shield's power by one-half its remaining power. Requires half of the shield system's PC in rerouted PC.

Weapons: Increase the damage of a weapon system by one-half its base. (weapon batteries count as one weapon, but fire-linked do not. Weapons cannot be used in a fire-linked formation if one is enhanced in this way but the other is not. They must either be used separately or all must be enhanced with subsequent uses of rerouted power.)

Requires half the PC of firing the weapon in rerouted PC.

Reverting a reroute is itself an action.

Angle Shields (2 PC): An engineer can tweak the power distribution in the ship's shields, causing one side to become stronger while another side weakens. By making a DC 15 Computer Use check, the engineer can select one side to reinforce (front, back, left, right, top, or bottom), while simultaneously draining the other side. This lasts until the engineer takes steps to reverse it.

The reinforced side takes half damage when struck, but the drained side does not benefit from shields at all.

Restoring the shields to normal is itself an action.

Sensors Operator
A sensors operator, as the title may suggest, operates the ship's computerized sensors. A sensor operator is the eyes and ears of the ship, and is responsible for keeping the captain and crew informed as to the latest developments in the battle.

Alert (2 PC): A sensors operator may choose to focus on monitoring the enemy, analyzing heat signatures and subtle changes in the ship's energy to help discern what they are planning to do next. Alert grants the user's ship a +1 bonus to Defense if he or she succeeds on a DC 15 Computer Use check. This lasts until the sensor operator acts again.

Assist (2 PC per Gunner): The ships sensors can be synced with the gunner's targeting computer, allowing the two to share data and greatly increasing the targeting computer's effectiveness. An assisting sensor operator grants all gunners a +1 bonus on their attack rolls until he or she acts again.

Jam Transmissions (5 PC): Using the communications system, a sensor operator may send out meaningless data that nevertheless is picked up and processed by a ship's communications array, clogging it and preventing it from sending or receiving data. A Computer Use check (DC 15) is required to jam the signal at all, and the result of a successful check becomes the DC that the enemy ship must beat to overcome the jamming. This lasts for one round.

Overcoming the jamming is itself an action.

Jam Sensors (5 PC): You can create an array of strange energy emissions that enemy sensors can detect, with a Computer Use check (DC 15). These false readings are difficult to sort through, and cause the enemy ship to lose the bonus granted by its targeting computer, as well as any assist bonus from its own sensor operator. This lasts for one round.

To overcome the jamming, the enemy sensor operator must succeed at a Computer Use check, with a DC of the original check to jam. This requires an action.

Gunner
The gunner controls one of the weapon systems. Most ships have more than one gunner, one or two for each weapon.

Cover Fire: Instead of acting to damage the enemy, a gunner can instead scare an enemy away with strategic patterns of fire. The ship gains a +2 bonus to Defense against attacks from any direction in which the weapon can fire on the turn or turns on which it fires.

Cover fire can only be performed with cannons or guns and consumes as much power as firing the weapon in a normal attack.

Self Defense in the Black

A starship weapon is not simply a point-and-shoot weapon. Like personal weapons, they come in different sizes, powers, and flexibilities, allowing characters to adapt to a wide range of tactics. There are three common types of weapon, with two uncommon types.

Cannons: Cannons are powerful, single-shot weapons that deal massive damage in one strike. Cannons can only fire in one direction.

Guns: Guns are weaker than cannons, but rely on a constant spray of damage rather than a single shot. Guns can fire for multiple turns before needing to cool, allowing several attacks. Guns can typically swivel, allowing them to fire into three different adjacent directions (such as forward, down, and to the right.)

Missiles: Missiles are like cannons in that they are single-shot and deal their total capacity for damage in one strike. Unlike cannons, they suffer no range penalty and can be fired in any direction. More interestingly, they can be programmed to strike on someone else's turn. In fact, they must be; they cannot strike on the same turn they are fired. A missile hits whatever side is facing the attacker on the turn it hits.

You use your Wisdom modifier instead of your Dexterity on attack rolls with missiles.

Psi-Cannon: A psi-cannon is a strange device designed to project psychic talents, amplifying a psionic ability with the ships power and firing it as if it were a projectile. The effects of various abilities when fired from a psi-cannon will be explained later.

To target your own ship with beneficial psychic talents, you need an electroanimus, also called a "ghost in the machine."

Nova Cannon: Restricted to only the most powerful ships, a nova cannon is a terrifying weapon. Nova cannons, like normal cannons, deal all of their damage in one blast. Unlike normal cannons, novas create an area effect shaped like a line 500 ft. wide and infinite in length. They deal massive damage capable of destroying some ships in a single strike, but they come at a price; activating a nova cannon reroutes all of a ship's energy to the weapon, rendering it completely defenseless as well as unable to adjust its aim. Because of this limitation, nova cannons require particularly serendipitous circumstances and cannot be used with any efficiency in normal combat.

Focused Fire
Hammering a target with a lot of firepower at once is more effective than dealing the same damage over a period of time. If multiple weapons strike a target simultaneously, each of them deal an additional point of damage per die for each weapon beyond the first.

For example, the Shenandoah has a gun set to fire for 3 rounds, each time striking for 6d12 damage. On the last round, the neutron cannons also fire, dealing 15d8 damage. Because there is an extra weapon hitting on this round, both weapons deal an additional 1 point of damage per die; the gun deals 6d12+6, and the cannon deals 15d8+15.

If a missile was also programmed to hit at that time, all three would instead deal an additional 2 points of damage per die, resulting in a gun that deals 6d12+12, a cannon that deals 15d8+30, and a missile that deals 6d12+12. This extra damage is calculated before the 25% increase for striking the rear of a ship.

Skilled Attackers
Having a high base attack bonus does not grant additional attacks with starship weapons. Instead, every five points of base attack a character has increases the shipboard weapon's damage by one-half its base. A rail gun that deals 6d12 damage, in the hands of a character with a +7 base attack bonus, deals 9d12 damage. In three levels of Strong, he'll deal 12d12 damage.

This only applies to a character with the Starship Gunnery feat.

I'm Givin' 'er All Aye've Got, Cap'n!

Nearly everything on a ship consumes power in some form or another, whether firing missiles, scanning far into space, or simply sitting on standby. A power core can provide weeks or even years of faithful service, but it can only produce a certain amount of energy at any given time. A ship overloaded with activity on all fronts will quickly find itself out of free power, and out of further option.

A power core has a Power Rating (PR), indicating the maximum amount of energy it can produce per round. In casual circumstances, a power core will run at a lower speed, and produce only the power necessary to run the systems, no extra. Like living creatures, the heart of a ship beats faster in life-and-death situations, to ensure that all systems have enough power to do what they need to do to protect the crew. A power core produces its maximum amount of energy per round, and any energy left over after all the systems have been fed is placed in a buffer to fuel special actions. A power core's Maximum Capacity (MC) determines how much energy can be buffered at any one time; extra energy is lost.

All systems have a PC, a Power Cost. This number represents the energy a system consumes while running in a low-power mode, such as on standby or while performing routine tasks. Attacking with shipboard weapons or performing special actions with other systems have an additional cost.

Ships may have as many systems of any kind installed as they please; the power core's PR is the only limiting factor. Much like shipboard weapons, power cores can be linked in sequence to provide additional power, with only the size of the ship providing a limit to the number of power cores and ultimately all other systems. Linked cores must be identical, and each doubling adds one-half the base PR to the total generated power. Two linked fission reactors, for instance, generate 60 PC per round. Four would generate 80 PC, eight would generate 100 PC, and sixteen would generate 120 PC.

An ultralight ship may have 1 power core. A light ship may have 2 power cores, while a mediumweight ship may have 4 power cores and a heavy may have 8 power cores. A superheavy ship may have 16 power cores, but particularly large ships of this size could have more, as the GM determines.

Shut Down: Anyone can perform this action on their turn. An unused system can be turned off, reducing its PC to 0. The points it would have consumed are instead placed in the buffer. Turning a system on again is a full-round action for the character. The system is not functional until the same turn it was activated on the next round. A cannon re-activated on turn 5 cannot be used until turn 5 of the next round.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 01:15 AM
Power Cores

A power core is the heart of the ship, and provides the energy required to keep the various systems and mechanics running. Cores come in all shapes, sizes, and efficiencies, and the choice as to which to carry depends on the ship's tasks.

Core: The name of the core.

PR: Power Rating. The amount of power generated per round of combat.

MC: Maximum Capacity. The amount of energy that can be stored in the buffer. Any energy generated beyond this is lost.

Progress Level: The technological level required to possess a core like this.

Fuel Purchase DC: The wealth check DC to purchase one unit of the power core's fuel. Some cores do not require purchased fuel.

Core Purchase DC: The wealth check DC to purchase this power core. Cores are usually not bought separately, but as part of the ship. The number is parentheses is the modifier to the starship's total purchase modifier, indicating the changes that must be made to the ship's systems to accommodate the power core. If the ship is already bought and the core is being upgraded, an extra purchase of DC equal to 1/4 the ship's total purchase DC is required to upgrade the ship's components to handle the new core.

Restriction: Some cores are experimental or unnecessarily powerful for most applications. They may only be purchased by those who have the appropriate licenses.


{table=width=95%;head]
Core|
Power Rating|
Maximum Capacity|
Progress
Level|
Fuel
DC|
Purchase
DC|
Restriction

Power Cell|
10|
100|
5|
-|
40 (+0)|
-

Solar Cell|
30|
300|
6|
-|
39 (+0)|
-

Fission Generator|
40|
400|
6|
31|
42 (+0)|
Lic (+1)

Fusion Generator|
45|
450|
6|
24|
44 (+4)|
Lic (+1)

Antimatter Reactor|
80|
800|
7|
31|
42 (+0)|
Lic (+1)

Naraka Core|
90|
800|
7|
-|
53 (+12)|
Mil (+3)

Rupaloka Core|
80|
1000|
7|
-|
53 (+12)|
Mil (+3)

Zero-Point Core|
150|
1500|
8|
-|
48 (+8)|
Res (+2)
[/TABLE]

Power Cell: A power cell is essentially an elaborate battery. Power cells are weak but often carried as backup. Power cells last for 2d4 weeks before needing to be replaced; they cannot be refueled.

Solar Cell: Similar to its precursor, the power cell, the solar cell is little more than an elaborate battery. Unlike its predecessor, the solar cell is completely rechargeable with a bit of sunlight. For every hour of sunlight within 1 AU of a G-class star, the cell gains one day of operation. Smaller stars or greater distances increase the time required to charge, and larger stars or smaller distances decreases the charging time. It can last for 2 weeks before needing to be recharged again.

Fission Generator: Building upon PL 5 nuclear generators, a ship's fission core is essentially an efficient and safe nuclear reactor. It utilizes magnetic fields to redirect its radiation out of the ship as exhaust.

A fission generator's fuel lasts for 1d4 years before it must be replaced.

Fusion Generator: Fusion is cleaner than fission and has a better mass to energy ratio, but is significantly harder to perform. The generator is protected by extremely heavy elements and magnetic fields, which keep the process under control.

A fusion generator's fuel lasts for 1d4 years before it must be replaced.

Antimatter Reactor: Built with powerful magnetic shielding and even incorporating gravitic technology, the antimatter reactor is capable of creating massive amounts of energy in a very small space. The reactor requires huge canisters of antimatter, but these last for 3d4 years before becoming empty.

Naraka Core: A Naraka core extracts ambient energy from a mysterious alternate dimension called Space-0. It is self-sustaining and requires no fuel, but it carries with it many rumors and superstitions. Space-0 is not well-understood, and some believe that it is, in fact, Hell. The naraka core's radio emissions, which sound like unearthly screams when received by a sensitive radio device, do not help its image in the eyes of a crew. Others believe the screams are simply a manifestation of auditory pareidolia and are no cause for concern.

The random encounter rate is doubled for ships running on a Naraka core.

Rupaloka Core: A Rupaloka core extracts ambient energy from a mysterious alternate dimension called Space-2. It is self-sustaining and requires no fuel, but, like its sister the Naraka core, it carries with it many rumors and superstitions. Space-2 is believed by some to be a kind of Heaven, or dimension of enlightenment. Consuming Heaven for power is questionable, and the Rupaloka core often brings its owners under assault from religious fanatics.

The random encounter rate is halved for ships running on a Rupaloka core.

Zero-Point Core: A zero-point core creates a quantum fluctuation much like that of the Big Bang, resulting in a tiny universe contained within a single point. This "universe-in-a-bottle" is then drained of its vacuum energy, providing near-limitless power with no harmful byproduct.

A zero-point core is practically limitless and requires no fuel. It could theoretically be drained of power if taxed to its limit for hundreds or thousands of years on end.

Weapons

Weapons come in all different shapes and sizes. Below is a table of the most commonly used weapons aboard starships of varying technology levels.

Weapon: The name of the weapon.

Type: The category of the weapon, which is either cannon, missile, gun, psi-cannon, or nova cannon. This determines how the weapon behaves.

Damage: The base damage of the weapon. This is used to calculate the weapon's total damage after being fire-linked, empowered, or fired by a skilled character.

Critical: The natural number(s) on which the weapon threatens a critical hit. Unlike with personal weapons, the multiplier of a starship's weapon is variable.

Damage Type: The type of damage the weapon deals, which determines how certain technology interacts with it.

Power Cost: The cost the weapon carries for the power core. This is represented by two numbers in the format x (y). X is the cost per round of having the weapon on and functioning, usually to keep it warm, prepped, and possibly even manufacturing its own ammunition. Y is the cost to actually fire the weapon, paid every time an attack roll is made with it.

Range Increment: The weapon's effective distance. For every full range increment your target is away from you, you suffer a -2 range penalty to your attack rolls on that target. Unlike personal weapons, a starship has no maximum distance. It can fire an infinite distance, but whether or not it is even possible for such an attack to be effective is up to the GM.

Turns: The number of extra turns the weapon has available to it. This only applies to missiles and guns, but means something slightly different depending on the weapon type.

For guns, this number is the number of extra turns the weapon can fire after it is initially manned. A rail gun, for instance, has Turns 2. It can fire for 3 consecutive turns: the turn on which someone begins to fire it, and the next two extra turns.

For a missile, this is the number of turns it can wait after it is fired before striking the enemy. A missile must strike on its last turn, such that a missile with Turn 3 fired on Turn 1 must strike, at the latest, on turn 4.

Minimum Ship Size: The ship must be at least this size category to be equipped with the weapon in question. Larger weapons simply take up either too much room, too much energy, or have other qualities that require their attachment to large ships.

Progress Level: The level of technological progress at which this weapon appears. It may be available to earlier progress levels, at the GM's discretion, or it may not be available at all.

Purchase DC: The wealth check DC to purchase the item. Starship equipment is notoriously expensive.

Restriction: The level of restriction on the item. Some items are available to anyone with a license to arm their ships, others are available only to law enforcement and certain other companies who have a need for more powerful weapons than standard civilians. Still others are restricted only to the military itself, and others are illegal for everyone, possibly because they violate the Geneva Convention or other restrictions on humane warfare.


{table=width=95%;head]
Weapon|
Type|
Damage|
Critical|
Damage
Type|
Power
Cost|
Range
Increment|
Turns|
Minimum
Ship Size|
Progress
Level|
Purchase
DC|
Restriction

Rail Gun|
Gun|
6d8 (27)|
20|
Ballistic|
2 (2)|
3,000 ft.|
2|
Gargantuan|
6|
30|
Lic (+1)

Tesla Gun|
Gun|
8d8 (36)|
20|
Electricity|
3 (2)|
4,000 ft.|
1|
Gargantuan|
6|
32|
Res (+2)

Laser Gun|
Gun|
12d8 (54)|
20|
Fire|
4 (4)|
3,000 ft.|
3|
Gargantuan|
7|
34|
Lic (+1)

Mass Gun|
Gun|
10d12 (65)|
20|
Ballistic|
5 (5)|
4,000 ft.|
2|
Gargantuan|
7|
35|
Lic (+1)

Plasma Pulse Gun|
Gun|
20d8 (90)|
19-20|
Fire|
5 (6)|
4,000 ft.|
3|
Gargantuan|
8|
34|
Lic (+1)

Mass Flechette Gun|
Gun|
16d12 (104)|
19-20|
Ballistic|
4 (4)|
4,000 ft.|
5|
Gargantuan|
8|
34|
Lic (+1)

Spartan|
Cannon|
10d12 (65)|
20|
Ballistic|
3 (6)|
6,000 ft.|
-|
Colossal|
6|
35|
Res (+2)

Stomper|
Cannon|
10d8 (45)|
20|
Ballistic|
2 (4)|
5,000 ft.|
-|
Colossal|
6|
32|
Lic (+1)

Cheshire Beam|
Cannon|
12d8 (54)|
20|
Quantum|
4 (4)|
6,000 ft.|
-|
Colossal|
6|
33|
Res (+2)

Mass Cannon|
Cannon|
16d12 (104)|
20|
Ballistic|
6 (8)|
5,000 ft.|
-|
Gargantuan|
7|
39|
Lic (+1)

Plasma Cannon|
Cannon|
20d8 (90)|
19-20|
Fire|
6 (6)|
6,000 ft.|
-|
Gargantuan|
7|
38|
Res (+2)

Photon Cannon|
Cannon|
30d8 (135)|
20|
Fire|
10 (12)|
6,000 ft.|
-|
Colossal|
8|
40|
Res (+2)

Neutronium Cannon|
Cannon|
26d12 (169)|
20|
Ballistic|
8 (16)|
5,000 ft.|
-|
Colossal|
8|
42|
Res (+2)

Harrier|
Missile|
6d12 (39)|
19-20|
Ballistic|
2 (6)|
-|
3|
Gargantuan|
6|
33|
Lic (+1)

Lammergeier|
Missile|
8d12 (52)|
19-20|
Ballistic|
3 (8)|
-|
2|
Gargantuan|
6|
36|
Res (+2)

Zephyr|
Missile|
8d12 (52)|
19-20|
Ballistic|
5 (6)|
-|
5|
Gargantuan|
7|
36|
Lic (+1)

Eurus|
Missile|
10d12 (65)|
19-20|
Ballistic|
6 (8)|
-|
3|
Gargantuan|
7|
35|
Lic (+1)

Boreas|
Missile|
10d8 (45)|
19-20|
Cold|
3 (3)|
-|
4|
Gargantuan|
7|
35|
Lic (+1)

Starfall|
Missile|
24d8 (108)|
19-20|
Fire|
6 (2)|
-|
6|
Gargantuan|
8|
36|
Lic (+1)

Leviathan|
Missile|
20d12 (130)|
19-20|
Fire|
4 (8)|
-|
4|
Gargantuan|
8|
40|
Mil (+3)

Red Queen|
Nova|
5d100 (252)|
-|
Quantum|
0 (200)|
-|
-|
Colossal|
6|
42|
Mil (+3)

Heaven's Sorrow|
Nova|
10d100 (505)|
-|
Quantum|
0 (800)|
-|
-|
Colossal|
7|
45|
Mil (+3)

Samvarta|
Nova|
15d100 (758)|
-|
Quantum|
0 (1,600)|
-|
-|
Colossal|
8|
48|
Mil (+3)

[/table]

Rail Gun: A human invention, the rail gun accelerates a conductive slug to extremely high velocities using magnetic fields. It is capable of firing many rounds, and is one of the most common weapons in Terran space.

Tesla Gun: Named for the near-mythical scientist known for his mastery of the electric force, the Tesla gun disassociates electrons and protons, then fires the resulting charged plasma at the enemy. It can manage multiple bolts before needing to rest to disassociate more matter.

Laser Gun: A single, high-intensity beam of coherent light is focused on the enemy, and can burn a hole through the ship's hull in a matter of moments.

Mass Gun: The mass gun is a smaller version of the mass cannon.

Plasma Pulse Gun: A refinement of the earlier Plasma Cannon, the plasma pulse gun is smaller and more efficient but just as powerful as its larger predecessor.

Mass Flechette Gun: Using the same ideas as the mass cannon, the mass flechette gun fires superheavy elemental darts at high velocities and speeds, similar to a very large shotgun.

Spartan: A powerful cannon named for an equally feared military society, the Spartan is the most damaging common weapon of its time. It uses charge pistol technology, but at a much larger scale, and propels a massive slug 4 feet in diameter. Smaller ships shake and shudder when the Spartan is fired.

The Spartan is more effective than the Cheshire beam on low-armored targets.

Stomper: A smaller cousin to the Spartan, the Stomper is nevertheless a powerful deterrent for pirates. It is designed for merchant and personal ships with a keen eye for defense.

Cheshire Beam: This weapon fires what are known as cheshire particles; particles of matter that have a magnitude of charge but no persistently identifiable polarity. It is named after the Cheshire Cat, who would fade in and out, with his only persistent trait being his smile.

The Cheshire beam ignores half of an enemy's armor, and is therefore more powerful than the Spartan against enemies with heavy armor.

Mass Cannon: Like its earlier cousin, the rail gun, a mass cannon uses magnets to accelerate the projectile, but the mass cannon uses superheavy, unstable elemental matter which undergoes rapid decay when it strikes the target, increasing the carnage beyond that caused just by the impact.

Plasma Cannon: A rather simple design, the plasma cannon is the larger, more powerful version of a Tesla gun. The cannon manufactures masses of highly charged plasma, then flings them at the opponent with magnetic fields.

Photon Cannon: A photon cannon, as its name suggests, fires a single burst of highly energetic photons at the target. It does not rely on sustained contact; the photons carry enough energy to demolecularize matter near-instantly.

Neutronium Cannon: This cannon fires a pellet of unimaginable mass, essentially a single atomic nucleus the size of a marble covered in an iron shell. The force of the impact is enough to decimate most small ship.

Harrier: Named after the bird of prey, the harrier is a simple, high-explosive guided rocket. It is often used in astromining as a cheap way of splitting asteroids and derelicts into smaller pieces.

Lammergeier: This missile is a much larger version of the harrier, named after a similarly large bird. It is designed more for combat applications, but some aggressive mining corporations have acquired licenses for it.

Zephyr: An advancement on the previous progress level's Harrier, the Zephyr is a missile designed for speed and flexibility. It carries a better on-board rocket and a tighter, more powerful payload.

Eurus: The big brother of the Zephyr, the Eurus is the advancement of the Lammergeier. The Eurus abandons its former explosives and instead carries a nuclear payload.

Boreas: This missile is filled with two chemicals separated from one another by a thin shell. When the Boreas strikes an enemy vessel, the two chemicals spill out and undergo an extremely endothermic reaction, capable of warping and damaging metals. Because the missile does not need to be primed and is significantly lighter than even the Zephyr, it consumes less energy to fire and maintain.

Starfall: Starfall is the first truly energy-based missile, and the only one of its kind. Composed of an exotic plasma condensate, the missile's own naturally generated electromagnetic field holds the missile together, which contains a massive amount of energy.

The missile is then magnetically nudged on its way. Upon contact with the enemy target, the missile destabilizes and the raw energy of a tiny star is unleashed.

Leviathan: The leviathan is a multi-stage rocket, a return to the simpler designs of Progress Level 6. It carries radioactive elements not known at that earlier time, however.

When fire, the leviathan sets out towards its target. Moments before impact, the rocket splits, releasing twelve different mini-missiles each carrying a nuclear payload. When the rockets impact, they initiate a fusion reaction, disintegrating a wide swath of armor.

Red Queen: Named for the red guiding beam on which its payload travels, the Red Queen is the most destructive device ever created by human hands at this progress level. The Red Queen is actually a particle accelerator integrated into the ship. When activated, it reroutes the power from the entire ship, even to the point of disabling lighting, to create antimatter which it propels along the red beam.

A few kilograms of antimatter can be created in seconds, after which the Red Queen deactivates and sets about cooling itself.

One kilogram of antimatter reacts with an equal amount of matter, releasing roughly 45 kilotons of energy; the Red Queen turns the enemy's ship itself into a nuclear bomb.

Heaven's Sorrow: Wielding the technology that will one day become the Zero-Point Core, Heaven's Sorrow initiates a quantum fluctuation similar to that of the Big Bang. The blast of energy and its antithesis is directed haphazardly forward, and sears the target with the fragments of an aborted universe.

Samvarta: The most powerful weapon in the known universe, Samvarta is pure entropy. Everything in the weapon's line of fire is reduced to its vacuum state, even causing particles such as protons to decay into quarks. Essentially, Samvarta brings about the ultimate fate of the universe, but at a local scale.

Samvarta ignores armor.

Armor

Armor is a protective, physical shell that protects the ship from harm. Because of the large size of a ship, armor is designed to be absorbant rather than deflective; they focus on reducing the damage the ship takes instead of making the ship harder to hit.

Heavier armor reduces a ship's speed and maneuverability by drastically increasing the mass. It is up to the ship's designer to decide if maneuverability or armor is more important.

Because of the harsh environment of space, even non-combat vessel carry hefty amounts of armor.

Alloy Plating (PL 5): Alloy plating is made of advanced metal alloys engineered for high resistance to attacks at relatively low weights.
Hardness: 20.
Tactical Speed Penalty: –500 feet (–2 hexes).
Maneuverability Penalty: None.
Weight: One-eighth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: None.

Polymeric (PL 6): Polymeric armor is made up of advanced polymers, such as carbon fiber and high-grade fiberglass. It is relatively cheap and light, but doesn’t offer tremendous protection.
Hardness: 20.
Tactical Speed Penalty: None.
Maneuverability Penalty: None.
Weight: One-tenth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Vanadium (PL 6): Interlocking plates of light vanadium alloy absorb a respectable amount of damage and are easy to mold to a starship’s hull.
Hardness: 30.
Tactical Speed Penalty: -250 feet (-1 hex)
Maneuverability Penalty: None.
Weight: One-eighth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Cerametal (PL 7): Combining the heat-resistant qualities of tough ceramics with the ductile strength of metal, cerametal armor offers a good compromise between protection and economy.
Hardness: 30.
Tactical Speed Penalty: None.
Maneuverability Penalty: None.
Weight: One-eighth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Deflective (PL 7): Deflective armor is composed of a shiny, light, flexible polymer especially good at neutralizing energy damage but less effective against ballistic attacks.
Hardness: 20 against attacks that deal ballistic damage, 40 against all other attacks.
Tactical Speed Penalty: None.
Maneuverability Penalty: None.
Weight: One-tenth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Neutronite (PL 7): Neutronite is a tough steel alloy into which a “weave” of free neutrons has been pressed. It is extremely resilient but also incredibly massive, weighing about five times more than a similar volume of lead.
Hardness: 40.
Tactical Speed Penalty: –500 feet (–2 hexes).
Maneuverability Penalty: A ship equipped with neutronite has its maneuverability decreased by one step.
Weight: One-quarter the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Ablative (PL 8): This silvery, reflective armor is amazingly thin, yet has tremendous tensile strength and the ability to absorb damage better than most kinds of armor plating.
Hardness: 40.
Tactical Speed Penalty: None.
Weight: One-tenth the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Nanofluidic (PL 8): Consisting of a thick layer of gel-like fluid sandwiched in a neutronite structure, nanofluidic armor is “smart” armor—it concentrates at the point of impact to blunt physical blows and circulates around heat sources to dissipate energy.
Hardness: 50.
Tactical Speed Penalty: –500 feet (–2 hexes).
Maneuverability Penalty: A ship equipped with nanofluidic armor has its maneuverability decreased by one step.
Weight: One-quarter the weight of the starship (rounded down).
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Shields

A shield is a field of energy that deflects or absorbs incoming attacks. They function by dispersing an attack's energy until it is no longer harmful. Like weapons, a shield has two different phases of power drain, a passive and active one. The passive drain is the amount of energy required to create and sustain the field; this requires a remarkably small amount of actual power. When the shield is struck, its power consumption spikes proportionately to the damage dealt; this is its active drain.

If a shield does not have enough power to block an attack, the attack penetrates and deals the remainder of its damage to the ship itself.

Thogcha Shield (PL 6): This shield is the first of its kind, and is often used to protect space stations and orbital bases from harm. Thogcha (literally "sky iron") blocks weapons that deal ballistic damage. Energy weapons ignore the presence of a thogcha shield. Thogcha cannot block Quantum damage.
Passive PC: 6
Active PC: 1 PC per 5 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 50 damage.
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Particle Shield (PL 6): Developed as the counterpart to thogcha, the particle shield blocks weapons that deal any kind of energy damage, except Quantum damage. The particle shield and the thogcha shield cannot be active at the same time.
Passive PC: 4
Active PC: 1 PC per 5 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 50 damage.
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Asura Shield (PL 7): The child of previous technology, the Asura shield is the first true shielding technology, capable of blocking nearly any harmful attack. The asura shield's only weakness is Quantum damage, which it cannot block.
Passive PC: 8
Active PC: 1 PC per 5 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 80 damage.
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Active Shield (PL 7): Instead of protecting the entire ship, an active shield relies on focusing all of its energy in a very small space, much like catching attacks with a baseball glove instead of building a wall. This makes the shielding much more efficient, but it requires an action on the part of the engineer to manipulate the shield.

If an attack hits the ship while the engineer is operating the shield, he or she may make a Defense check (1d20 + Dexterity modifier + Class Defense) as if they were piloting a ship with average maneuverability. If they beat the ship's attack roll, the shield's absorption applies. The active shield cannot block Quantum damage, but can block any kind of energy or ballistic damage.
Passive PC: 2
Active PC: 1 PC per 10 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 150 damage.
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Deva Shield (PL 8): One of the most powerful shield's available, the deva shield is efficient and capable of absorbing massive damage before failing. The Deva shield can block any type of damage including Quantum, but cannot block a nova cannon, even if it could normally block that energy type.
Passive PC: 8
Active PC: 1 PC per 10 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 200 damage.
Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Serenity (PL 9): Aptly named, Serenity is nearly indestructible. Unfortunately, due to its sustained energy requirement, a ship guarded by Serenity can do little else without a significant number of power cores. Unlike all other shields before it, Serenity can block a nova cannon, though such a weapon may still overflow the shield generator and pass through.
Passive PC: 80
Active PC: 1 PC per 10 points of damage.
Maximum Absorption: 1000 damage.
Purchase DC: 20 + one-half the base cost of the starship.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 01:16 AM
Psi-Cannon

Psionic powers of an offensive nature must be projected to the enemy ship by a psi-cannon. The exact effect depends upon the power used. Psi-cannons are composed of a special metal which has some electrons swapped for psions, the particle responsible for consciousness. This allows the object to function as if it had a mind, one that was blank and conducive to thoughts placed within it by a psychic. It then stores and amplifies this energy, to allow its use across vast distances.

Range for all psi-cannon psionics is "6,000 feet/+500 feet per manifester level," with a target of "one ship." Cost and duration remain unchanged unless otherwise noted.

Concussion: You make an attack roll as if firing a shipboard weapon. The bolt deals 10d12 points of concussive damage. It is not considered energy and bypasses both ballistic-only and energy-only shields.
Daze: Select one battlestation. If the captain fails a Will save, that battlestation cannot act for 1 round.
Distract: Enemy gunners suffer -1 circumstance penalty to attack rolls.
Electric Touch: You create a surge of energy in the enemy ship, dealing 6d6 electrical damage. This damage ignores shields and armor.
Far Hand: Play havoc with the ship's internal mechanisms, imparting a -2 penalty to all Repair, Computer Use, and Pilot checks for 1 round per manifester level.
Far Punch: An orb of pure telekinetic energy strikes the enemy ship if you succeed on an attack roll as if firing a shipboard weapon, dealing 1d6 points of concussive damage per manifester level. It is not considered energy and bypasses both ballistic-only and energy-only shields.
Finger of Fire: A bolt of plasma strikes the enemy ship, dealing 1d8 points of fire damage per manifester level.
Fire Bolt: You make an attack roll as if firing a shipboard weapon. The bolt deals 10d10 points of fire damage.
Fire Storm: As Fire Bolt, but 20d10 damage.
Lesser Concussion: You make an attack roll as if firing a shipboard weapon. The bolt deals 8d8 points of concussive damage. It is not considered energy and bypasses both ballistic-only and energy-only shields.
Lightning Strike: As electric touch, but deals 10d8 electrical damage.
Mind Darts: Create a psychic shock through the enemy ship that deals 2d6 points of damage to the entire crew.
Missive: As missive, but sends at the range of one of your communication systems. Cannot be jammed or detected.
Negate Psionics: Use targeted negation against the enemy ship, or disable the ship's psi-cannon and electroanimus for 1 round/manifester level.
Short Sharp Shock: As lightning strike, but 10d12 damage; roll 1d20 + manifester level + your Constitution modifier against the target's engineer's Repair check. If you succeed, the enemy ship is stunned for 1d4 rounds.
Telempathic Projection: As normal, but affects the entire enemy crew. Use the captain's Will bonus for non-heroic crewmembers.
Whitefire: As Fire Bolt, but 16d10 damage.

Electroanimus

Sometimes referred to as a ghost in the machine, an electroanimus is a device made from the same psion-infused elemental matter as the psi-cannon. An electroanimus is usually hooked into the ship's computer network, which serves as a kind of nervous system for the ship. When a psychic talent is transferred into the electroanimus, the power spreads through and infuses the ship. Range for all Electroanimus psionics is Personal, with a target of You (the ship). Cost and duration remain unchanged unless otherwise noted.

Biofeedback: Whenever your ship sustains damage, you gain a number of points of ship power equal to your strength modifier.
Bite of the Tiger: You manifest a phantom point-defense system that deals damage as if your ship were one size category larger.
Burst: The manifester's ship gains +500 ft. base movement speed for one round.
Claws of the Bear: You manifest a phantom point-defense system.
Combat Focus: You gain a +4 initiative bonus and a +4 bonus on Knowledge [Tactics] checks made to discern your enemy's actions.
Combat Precognition: Your ship gains a +1 insight Defense bonus.
Combat Prescience: Your ship gains a +2 insight bonus to attack rolls.
Darkvision: Your ship's sensor system behaves as if it were one class higher.
Detect Psionics: As Detect Psionics, but functions at the range of the ship's sensors.
Greater Bioweapon: As lesser bioweapon, but the phantom cannon deals 16d12 damage.
Improved Biofeedback: As Biofeedback, except you gain power equal to twice your Strength modifier.
Lesser Bioweapon: Your will manifests as a phantom cannon that deals 10d8 ballistic damage, with a range increment of 5,000 feet. It lasts for 4 rounds, +1 per manifester level, and can be fired just like any other shipboard weapon.
Lesser Natural Armor: Your ship's armor strengthens by 5 for 1 round.
Valor: Your ships' gunners gain a +1 morale bonus on their attack rolls for 1 round.
Metaphysical Weapon: One shipboard weapon gains a +3 bonus to attack rolls and deals 3d6 additional damage.
Natural Armor: Your ship's hardness increases by 20.
Painful Touch: Your shipboard weapons deal an additional 2d6 points of damage. This can affect phantom weapons, as well.
Psychofeedback: You may spend psionic power points to generate ship power points. For every psionic power point you spend, your ship gains 5 points of power. As long as the power lasts, you can choose to expend points to recharge your ship.
Verve: Your ship gains a psychic shield capable of withstanding 20 hit points of damage. This lasts for one round.
Vigor: For 1 minute per manifester level, your core's PR increases by 1.
White Noise: Your ship manifests a sensor jammer. If you already have one, the effects stack.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 01:17 AM
Engines

Aside from the power core, the engine is the most important part of a starship. It determines the ship's speed, maneuverability, and rang of operation, as well as how costly the ship is to run.

Engines come with several statistics.

Power Cost: The amount of ship power the engine requires to function. Engines are notoriously power-hungry, but for good reason.

Tactical Speed: The speed of a ship powered by this engine in tactical scale combat.

Cruising Speed: The speed at which the ship moves while cruising with no stops or distractions, in multiples of the speed of light. This only applies in campaigns that feature fantastic travel times. Campaigns using realistic travel times should simply use the Progress Level of the engine to determine its speed.

Thrusters are unique in that regardless of the campaign setting, this engine always uses realistic travel times.

Maneuverability: The maneuverability of a ship that possesses this engine. The ship's size decreases this maneuverability, by one step for every size category the ship is above ultralight.

Fuel DC: The wealth check required to purchase more fuel. The number after the slash indicates how many battles or interplanetary journeys this fuel will last before it must be purchased again.

Purchase DC: The wealth check required to purchase this engine.


{table=width=95%;head]
Engine|
Power Cost|
Tactical Speed|
Cruising Speed|
Maneuverability|
Progress
Level|
Fuel
DC|
Purchase
DC

Thrusters|
0|
(2,500 feet) 10 hexes|
Realistic|
Clumsy|
5|
31/1|
10 + 1/2 Ship

Ion Engine|
8|
(3,000 feet) 12 hexes|
1|
Average|
6|
29/5|
15 + 1/2 Ship

Fusion Torch|
6|
(3,000 feet) 12 hexes|
1|
Poor|
6|
23/3|
10 + 1/2 Ship

Photon Sails|
0|
(2,500 feet) 10 hexes|
0.75|
Average|
6|
-|
10 + 1/4 Ship

Particle Impulse Engine|
12|
(3,500 feet) 14 hexes|
5|
Average|
7|
-|
10 + 1/2 Ship

Induction Engine|
16|
(3,500 feet) 14 hexes|
10|
Good|
7|
-|
15 + 1/2 Ship

Gravitic Redirector|
24|
(4,000 feet) 16 hexes|
10|
Good|
8|
-|
10 + 1/2 Ship

Inertial Flux Generator|
32|
(4,000 feet) 16 hexes|
15|
Perfect|
8|
-|
15 + 1/2 Ship

Spacial Compressor|
40|
(4,500 feet) 18 hexes|
25|
Perfect*|
9|
-|
15 + 1/2 Ship
[/TABLE]

Thrusters: Thrusters can propel a ship through a planetary atmosphere and land it safely on a planetary surface. Thrusters also serve as secondary engines when primary engines fail or shut down. Common types of thrusters include the scramjet, chemical rocket, repulsion thrust, or powered airfoil, although the exact form doesn’t matter.

A ship with thrusters as its primary source of propulsion must refuel after every battle or every orbital mission. Thruster fuel has a purchase DC of 31.

Fusion Torch: This engine consists of a fusion reactor with one wall of the magnetic bottle missing, directing the thrust in the form of super-heated plasma. The fusion torch is intended for space-only applications; its exhaust stream would melt anything it landed on and incinerate everything within a few hundred yards of ground zero; it also expels a tremendous amount of radiation. Many ships fitted with fusion torch rockets use thrusters for atmospheric travel. Otherwise, they must remain permanently in space, relying on shuttlecraft to reach a planet’s surface. The fusion torch uses hydrogen for fuel.

A ship using a fusion torch as its primary source of propulsion must refuel after every three battles or interplanetary trips. Fusion torch fuel has a purchase DC of 23.

Ion Engine: The ion engine generates power to break down molecules of a fuel material to create ions, and then expels them by means of a magnetic impeller. It doesn’t provide as effective a mass-thrust ratio as the fusion torch, but it’s more fuel efficient, and its exhaust is not nearly as dangerous. Ion engines don’t function in any kind of atmosphere, so most ships with this kind of power plant also come equipped with thrusters.

A ship using an ion engine as its primary source of propulsion must refuel after every five battles or interplanetary trips. Ion engine fuel has a purchase DC of 29.

Photon Sails: Photon sails are immense but extremely fragile foil structures only a few molecules thick. Light pressure from a nearby star (or laser drive station, when available) provides motive force. The sails’ acceleration rates drop to half if the ship is beyond the edge of a star system and drop to one-quarter if the only available light is starlight. The sails can be wrecked by minor damage, but every ship equipped with photon sails carries at least three spare sets. Unfortunately, it takes 12 hours to replace damaged sails, though deployment or stowage of the sails takes only 1 minute.

In combat, any weapon hit against a sail-driven starship destroys the deployed photon sails and prevents the ship from moving until the sails are replaced. The sail-ship continues on its last course and retains its former speed until the sails are replaced. Accordingly, most sail-ships carry a secondary propulsion system (such as thrusters or an ion engine) for emergency maneuvering and sailing against the sun. Photon sails are completely useless in atmosphere—in fact, they’re instantly destroyed by atmospheric entry—making a secondary propulsion system a virtual necessity for most sail-ships.

Induction Engine: Hands-down the best engine available at this or any previous Progress Level, the induction engine uses artificial gravity to provide incredible thrust and maneuverability. The induction engine requires no fuel and produces no exhaust; it’s ideal for atmospheric, orbital, or deep-space work.

Particle Impulse Engine: The particle impulse engine is the next evolutionary step of the PL 6 ion engine. It uses magnetic fields to produce a constant stream of high-energy particles, as well as to provide vectored thrust. The major advancement of the particle impulse drive over the ion drive is that the particle impulse engine uses a negligible amount of fuel, which it also manufactures. The drive’s reaction is so efficient that the tiny amounts of matter present in interplanetary or interstellar space can be collected through weak magnetic fields and converted into a thrust medium. Better still, the particle impulse engine is capable of atmospheric entry. It causes some damage to any surface close to its exhaust ports, but nowhere near as much damage as PL 6 engines do.

Gravitic Redirector: A refinement of the induction engine, the gravitic redirector creates a gravitic singularity—essentially, a sub-microscopic black hole—in the vicinity of the ship, producing a constant pull on the ship. By changing the location of the singularity relative to the ship, the pilot can change the direction of the ship’s travel. The gravitic redirector is more powerful and more efficient than the induction engine, and at the height of the technology’s heyday, virtually foolproof. A gravitic redirector does not operate within a planetary atmosphere, and most ships fitted with this kind of engine also have secondary thrusters or rely on shuttlecraft.

Inertial Flux Engine: By precisely controlling the quantum energy level of every atom on the ship simultaneously, the inertial flux engine assumes the inertial states necessary to produce motion in any direction. In effect, by operating the controls, the pilot chooses from instant to instant what vector the ship’s atoms will next possess, and the inertial flux engine alters them simultaneously—along with everything else aboard, including the crew and passengers. An inertial flux engine does not operate within a planetary atmosphere, and most ships fitted with this kind of engine also have secondary thrusters or rely on shuttlecraft.

Spacial Compressor: The most advanced engine available, the spatial compressor surrounds the ship in a field that “folds” or “wrinkles” the fabric of space in the direction the pilot wishes to travel. This results in a continuous series of micro-jumps in which the ship flickers into and out of reality, teleporting thousands of times every second.

Since the ship has no intrinsic velocity (it’s stationary while it teleports), the spatial compressor can instantaneously stop or change direction and thrust vector without any maneuvering whatsoever. Because of this, a ship running on a spacial compressor always has Perfect maneuverability, regardless of its size.

However, the engine still needs to build up cyclic speed to increase the frequency of its microjumps, so it accelerates normally. The spatial compressor requires a lot of power, but no fuel. It is safe for atmospheric flight.

Communication Systems

The ability to communicate with other ships and bases is vital to starships. The more advanced a ship’s communications capabilities, the better informed its crew is, and the better they can coordinate with other ships in the same fleet.

Communication systems remain unchanged from those found in d20 Future. They have no appreciable power consumption and have no combat-related abilities. They are included here simply for convenience.

Radio Transceiver (PL 5): The radio transceiver can transmit on multiple frequencies in either LOS (line of sight) or omnidirectional mode, sending messages at the speed of light. A radio transceiver can handle up to ten simultaneous two-way conversations.
Purchase DC: 21.

Laser Transceiver (PL 6): This system uses a beam of coherent light to transmit messages. The laser is unidirectional; the signal cannot be intercepted or jammed unless it’s beamed directly at a hostile ship or station. However, if the comm officer doesn’t know exactly where the receiving station is, the laser transceiver is a waste of effort. This has some hidden drawbacks; a character cannot use the laser transceiver for a general distress call to all stations in the area, for example. A ship can’t receive laser communications unless it is equipped with the transceiver.

Lasers are limited to the speed of light (8 AU/hour), meaning it can take hours or days to get a response within a system, or even weeks to get a response at interstellar distances.
Purchase DC: 23.

Drivesat Comm Array (PL 7): This massive comm array provides rapid interstellar communications. The array consists of a constellation of dozens of small transmitters that transmit and receive messages through space at faster-thanlight speeds, enabling communications with a range of 50 light-years.

The signals travel at a rate of 5 light-years per hour. Because of the need for steady signal, the ship must remain stationary to transmit and receive messages. If the ship moves while its drivesat array is transmitting or receiving, the ship’s communication officer must make a Computer Use check (DC 30) to avoid losing the signal.

Only mediumweight, heavy, and superheavy ships can be equipped with a drivesat comm array.
Purchase DC: 53.

Mass Transceiver (PL 7): This device can transmit instantaneously to any point in the same star system, with no “lag” due to FTL limitations. However, its range is limited to about 1,000 AU, so the signal can’t cross interstellar space.
Purchase DC: 25.

Drive Transceiver (PL 8): The drive transceiver is the first interstellar comm system that’s truly practical for small ships or second-rate colonies. It operates like the much larger PL 7 drivesat comm array, sending a signal up to 50 lightyears distant. The signal travels at a rate of 5 light-years per hour. The target station must also be equipped with a drive transceiver.
Purchase DC: 28.

Ansible (PL 9): The ansible is a device that induces precise changes in the energy states of atomic nuclei, without regard to distance or time. In effect, it permits instantaneous interstellar communications—voice, video, or data transfer—to any other ship or station equipped with an ansible. Much like a radio, the receiving station has to be attentive to a particular “frequency,” so two ansible-equipped stations must have some prearranged communications protocols; an ansible cannot pick up any transmissions not intended for that specific frequency.
Purchase DC: 33.

Sensor Systems

If a ship's communication system is its ears, the sensors are its eyes. Sensors allow a ship, and by extension its crew, to gather information about its environment.

Long-Range (Accessory): A sensor system can be made long-range, allowing it to detect threats at a much greater distance. A long-range sensor grants its ship a +2 equipment bonus to Initiative.
Purchase DC: +3.
Power Cost: +1.
Restriction: None.

Class I Sensor Array (PL 5): This array includes radar, hi-res video, and infrared heat sensor units. As a move action, a Class I sensor array can perform either of the following functions with a successful Computer Use check (DC 15):
◾ Ascertain the location and type (ultralight, light, and so on) of all visible ships on the battlefield.
◾ Identify and ascertain the location of all visible hazards on the battlefield (such as asteroids and mines).
◾ Analyze the chemical composition of a planet’s atmosphere (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
Purchase DC: 21.
Power Cost: 1.
Restriction: None.

Class II Sensor Array (PL 6): This array incorporates hi-res video, infrared and electromagnetic sensors, and ladar detection units. (The ladar uses low-powered laser beams to locate targets.) As a move action, a Class II sensor array can perform any one of the following functions with a successful Computer Use check (DC 15):
◾ Ascertain the location, type (ultralight, light, and so on), and subtype (fighter, destroyer, and so on) of all visible ships on the battlefield.
◾ Identify and ascertain the location of all visible hazards on the battlefield (such as asteroids and mines).
◾ Identify all PL 5 or PL 6 weapons on a specific ship (number and type of weapons present), including their organization into batteries (but not fire links).
◾ Ascertain the presence of any or all of the following systems on a specific ship: grapplers, magnetic field, point-defense system.
◾ Identify a specific ship’s armor type (PL 5 and PL 6 armor types only).
◾ Analyze the chemical composition of a planet’s atmosphere (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
Purchase DC: 27.
Power Cost: 2.
Restriction: None.

Targeting System (PL 6): A computerized targeting system helps starship gunners aim weapons and track enemy ships. A targeting system provides an equipment bonus on attack rolls depending on the ship’s size: Huge +1, Gargantuan +2, Colossal +3.

The purchase DC of the targeting system depends on the size of the ship.
Purchase DC: 18 (Huge), 23 (Gargantuan), or 28 (Colossal).
Power Cost: 1.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Class III Sensor Array (PL 7): This array includes hi-res video, electromagnetic sensors, multiband radar, spectroanalyzers, and mass detectors. (A mass detector locates objects via their gravitational signatures.)

As a move action, a Class III sensor array can perform any one of the following functions with a successful Computer Use check (DC 15):
◾ Ascertain the location, type (ultralight, light, and so on), subtype (fighter, destroyer, and so on), and mass of all visible ships on the battlefield.
◾ Identify and ascertain the location of all visible hazards on the battlefield (such as asteroids and mines).
◾ Identify all of the PL 5, PL 6, and PL 7 weapons on a specific ship (number and type of weapons present), including their organization as fire-linked weapons and batteries.
◾ Ascertain the presence of any or all of the following systems on a specific ship: grapplers, magnetic field, particle field, point-defense system, tractor beam.
◾ Identify a specific ship’s armor type (PL 5, PL 6, or PL 7 armor types only).
◾ Identify the type of engines a ship has.
◾ Determine the number of life forms aboard a specific ship.
◾ Analyze the chemical composition of a planet’s atmosphere (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
◾ Analyze and chart the topography of a 1,000-square-mile area on a planet’s surface (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
◾ Determine a planet’s prevailing meteorological conditions and weather patterns (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
Purchase DC: 33.
Power Cost: 4.
Restriction: None.

Improved Targeting System (PL 7): A starship equipped with an improved targeting system gains an equipment bonus on attack rolls depending on the ship’s size: Huge +3, Gargantuan +4, Colossal +5. This system replaces the PL 6 targeting system.

The purchase DC of the improved targeting system depends on the size of the ship.

Purchase DC: 22 (Huge), 27 (Gargantuan), or 32 (Colossal).
Power Cost: 4.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Class IV Sensor Array (PL 8): This array includes hi-res video, electromagnetic sensors, spectroanalyzers, multiphase radar, and mass detectors.

As a move action, a Class IV sensor array can perform any one of the following functions with a successful Computer Use check (DC 15):
◾ Ascertain the location, type (ultralight, light, and so on), subtype (fighter, destroyer, and so on), and mass of all ships on the battlefield.
◾ Identify and ascertain the location of all hazards on the battlefield (such as asteroids and mines).
◾ Determine a specific ship’s PL 5, PL 6, PL 7, and PL 8 design specs (engines, defensive systems, sensor systems, communication systems, and weapons, including fire-linked weapons and batteries).
◾ Detect the presence and location of ships and mines using active cloaking screens (targets still gain the benefits of total concealment).
◾ Determine the number and type of life forms aboard a specific ship (“type” refers to the creature type).
Analyze the chemical composition of a planet’s atmosphere (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
◾ Determine the number and type of life forms within a 4,000-square mile region on a planet’s surface (the ship must be orbiting the planet, and “type” refers to the creature type).
Analyze and chart the topography of a 4,000-square-mile area on a planet’s surface (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
◾ Determine a planet’s prevailing meteorological conditions and weather patterns (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
Purchase DC: 39.
Power Cost: 16.
Restriction: None.

Hyperspace Sensors (PL 8): In a campaign setting in which hyperspace, or other alternate-dimension travel, is used, a hyperspace sensor may appear.

These sensors are attuned to hyperspace and can sense ships or other bodies travelling nearby. A hyperspace sensor can detect passing ships within 1 light year, as well as their direction.

A ship equipped with hyperspace sensors can use their normal sensor system to scan ships in hyperspace.
Purchase DC: 26
Power Cost: 3.
Restriction: None.

Achilles Targeting Software (PL 8): Any starship with a targeting system can have Achilles targeting software. The software is part of the targeting system and takes up no additional power.

Achilles targeting software enables the ship to better train its weapons on an enemy’s critical systems. Achilles targeting software increases the critical threat ranges of the ship’s beam, projectile, and missile weapons by 1. This effect stacks with other systems that expand a weapon’s critical threat range, such as weapon batteries.

The purchase DC of Achilles targeting software depends on the size of the ship.

Purchase DC: 26 (Huge), 31 (Gargantuan), or 36 (Colossal).
Power Cost: +0.
Restriction: Restricted (+2).

Class V Sensor Array (PL 9): This array is an amplified version of the Class IV sensor array.

As a move action, a Class V sensor array can perform any one of the following functions with a successful Computer Use check (DC 15):
◾ Ascertain the location, type (ultralight, light, and so on), subtype (fighter, destroyer, and so on), and mass of all ships in the star system.
◾ Identify and ascertain the location and trajectories of all hazards in the star system (such as asteroids and mines).
◾ Determine a specific ship’s design specs (engines, defensive systems, sensor systems, communication systems, and weapons, including fire-linked weapons and batteries).
◾ Detect the presence and exact location of ships and mines equipped with cloaking screens, and negate the effects of stealth screens, displacers, and cloaking screens.
◾ Determine the number, type, and species of life forms aboard a specific ship (“type” refers to the creature type).
◾ Analyze the chemical composition of a planet’s atmosphere (the ship must be in the same system as the planet).
◾ Determine the number, type, and species of life forms on a planet’s surface (the ship must be orbiting the planet, and “type” refers to the creature type).
◾ Analyze and chart the topography of a planet’s surface (the ship must be orbiting the planet).
◾ Determine a planet’s prevailing meteorological conditions and weather patterns (the ship must be in the same system as the planet).
Purchase DC: 45.
Power Cost: 16.
Restriction: None.

Defense Systems and Accessories

Many systems or addons that a ship can be equipped with do not fall into one of the other categories. This section includes most of the combat defense systems as well as miscellaneous systems that do not fall neatly anywhere else. Unless otherwise noted, a defense system functions just like it does in standard d20 Future. They are included here simply for convenience and with the addition of their power cost.

Autopilot System (PL 5): The autopilot is a simple AI designed to fly the ship when its crew occupied, whether it be with eating, playing games in the cargo bay, sleeping, or being dead. It relies on simple distance and trajectory calculation and has no creativity or real effectiveness in combat, but it's better than letting the ship careen through space unattended.

An autopilot has no class bonus to Defense and a +2 effective Dexterity modifier.

They come standard with all ships and have no power cost.

Damage Control System (PL 5): A starship equipped with a damage control system can perform damage control, initiated by its engineer. With a successful Repair check (DC 15), the ship regains a number of hit points depending on its type, as shown on the table below. Damage control cannot be performed if the ship has been reduced to negative hit points.

Purchase DC: Varies by starship type (see table)
Power Cost: 3 for Ultralight, 6 for Light, 8 for Mediumweight, 12 for Heavy, and 16 for Superheavy ships.
Restriction: None.

{table=head]
Ship Type |
Hit Points Restored |
Purchase DC
Ultralight | 1d10 | 18
Light | 2d10 | 22
Mediumweight | 3d10 | 27
Heavy | 4d10 | 33
Superheavy | 5d10 | 40[/table]

Sensor Jammer (PL 5): A sensor jammer interferes with radar and enemy sensor scans. It also confounds missile guidance systems.

Sensor checks made against a ship with an active sensor jammer take a –5 penalty. In addition, the ship gains one-half concealment against missile attacks (20% miss chance).

Any ship with a Class III sensor system (or better) is not subject to the effects of the sensor jammer, ignoring the penalty and miss chance.

Purchase DC: 5 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: 2.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Improved Autopilot System (PL 6): As autopilot system, but has a +3 effective Dexterity and a +2 class Defense bonus.

Chaff Launcher (PL 6): Chaff consists of a cloud of millions of tiny metal strips or particles. This detritus interferes with sensors and missiles. Deploying chaff— usually via a small bundle from the rear or underside of a starship—is a move action. The chaff fills three adjacent 250-foot hexes with these strips or particles. Sensor scans directed at anything within the area take a –10 penalty, and scanning something on the direct opposite side of the chaff field incurs a –5 penalty. Any missile that passes through the chaff field to reach its intended target suffers a 30% miss chance (as though the target has three-quarters concealment).
Purchase DC: 20 for chaff launcher and one chaff bundle, 15 for each additional chaff bundle.
Power Cost: 4 to deploy.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Improved Damage Control System (PL 6): As damage control system, but the ship recovers an additional 1d10 points of damage.
Purchase DC: +5
Power Cost: 4 for Ultralight, 7 for Light, 10 for Mediumweight, 14 for Heavy, and 18 for Superheavy ships.

Decoy Drone Launcher (PL 6): A decoy drone is a small, self-guided missile that mimics the electromagnetic and infrared signatures of the ship that launched it.

Deploying a decoy drone is an attack action taken by a gunner or sensor operator, and the drone occupies the same fighting space as the ship it imitates.

The decoy drone negates the equipment bonus on attack rolls granted by an enemy ship’s targeting system. Launching multiple decoy drones grants no cumulative effect.

A deployed and intact decoy drone can be recovered or captured with a successful grapple. It can also be targeted and destroyed. A decoy drone has a Defense of 12 and 10 hit points, and it rolls 1d20+4 on opposed grapple checks.

Purchase DC: 28 for drone launcher and one drone, 25 for each additional drone.
Power Cost: 6 to activate and deploy.
Restriction: Restricted (+2).

Magnetic Field (PL 6): This does not exist. It is replaced by the Togcha shield.

Point-Defense System (PL 6): A point-defense system serves two functions: It targets all incoming missiles, and it discourages boarding or grapple maneuvers. The point-defense system consists of batteries of automated weapons programmed to fire when either of these two conditions is met.

A point-defense system does not fire upon mines, cannot be controlled manually by the crew, and cannot be used to make normal attacks.

Destroy Missiles: A point-defense system has a 20% chance of destroying any incoming missile. A destroyed missile deals no damage to the ship.

Make Attacks of Opportunity: A starship equipped with a point-defense system threatens the space it occupies as well as all adjacent 250-foot hexes. Whenever an unauthorized ship approaches within this range, the point-defense system makes an attack roll, with an attack bonus equal to the targeting computer's bonus. If it hits, it deals ballistic damage dependent on the size of the attacking ship.

As long as the offending ship remains within range, the automated turrets continue to attack once per round.

Point-Defense systems cannot score critical hits.

Purchase DC: Varies by starship type (see table).
Power Cost: 2 passive, 6 active.
Restriction: Res (+2).

{table=head]
Starship Type |
Point-Defense Damage |
Purchase DC
Ultralight | 1d12×10 | 31
Light | 2d12×10 | 34
Mediumweight | 3d12×10 | 36
Heavy | 4d12×10 | 38
Superheavy | 5d12×10 | 40[/table]

Radiation Shielding (PL 6): Radiation shielding protects a ship’s crew and passengers against the harmful radiation of neutron stars, solar flares, and other external causes. The shield outright blocks Light radiation. All personnel aboard the ship gain a +5 circumstance bonus on saves to resist the effects of radiation poisoning from stronger radiation sources outside the ship.

Purchase DC: 5 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Restriction: None.

Self-Destruct System (PL 6): A self-destruct system ensures that a starship cannot be captured, dissected for information, or used against its builders. It is also sometimes used as a suicide attack. Installing a starship self-destruct system requires a Demolitions check (DC 30) instead of a Craft check and takes an amounts of time as determined by the ship’s type: ultralight 1 hour, light 10 hours, mediumweight 30 hours, heavy 60 hours, superheavy 120 hours. If the Demolitions check fails by 10 or more, the system detonates, destroying the ship and possibly harming others nearby.

A self-destruct system can be programmed to activate only under specified conditions—usually the voice authorization of the ship’s commander, and usually only after the crew has had sufficient time to evacuate (see Starship Evacuation).

Additionally, a self-destruct system can be programmed to wait until the power core's buffer has been maxed out or filled to a specified point, and can even be allowed to automatically disable systems to achieve an overload faster.

If an engineer succeeds at a Repair check (DC 25), the power core's safety limitations on maximum energy can be removed, allowing the buffer to overload; once the maximum has been surpassed, the self-destruct cannot be stopped.

Once its conditions have been met, the self-destruct system obliterates the starship (killing all aboard) regardless of how many hit points it has remaining. A starship destroyed by its own self-destruct system has no salvageable parts.

The starship’s self-destruction triggers an explosion of shrapnel that deals collateral ballistic damage to all other ships in its space and in a sphere around it. A successful Reflex save (DC 15) by the pilot reduces the damage by half.

Purchase DC: Varies by starship type.
Power Cost: Variable.
Restriction: Restricted (+2).

{table=head]
Starship Type |
Self-Destruct Damage |
Blast Range |
Purchase DC
Ultralight | 1d20×(10+1 per 10 PP) | 250 feet (1 hex) | 26
Light | 2d12×(10+1 per 10 PP) | 500 feet (2 hexes) | 32
Mediumweight | 3d20×(10+1 per 10 PP) | 1,500 feet (6 hexes) | 38
Heavy | 4d12×(10+1 per 10 PP) | 3,750 feet (15 hexes) | 44
Superheavy | 5d20×(10+1 per 10 PP) | 6,000 feet (24 hexes) | 50[/table]

Stealth Screen (PL 6): An improved version of the sensor jammer (see above), the stealth screen is a sophisticated electromagnetic transceiver capable of detecting incoming electromagnetic energy from radars, ladars, and other sensor devices. When it detects such energy, it responds by generating an electromagnetic interference pattern. In addition, it monitors the ship’s own EM emissions and cloaks them in a similar manner. Finally, the stealth shield masks the ship’s mass signature. Sensor checks made against a ship with an active stealth screen take a –10 penalty.

Additionally, a deployed mine has a 50% chance of not detecting the screened ship as it enters or leaves its detonation area.

Finally, a starship with an active stealth screen gains one-half concealment against all attacks (20% miss chance).

A mine can be equipped with a stealth screen.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship or mine.
Power Cost: 8 for Ultralight, 16 for Light, 32 for Mediumweight, 64 for Heavyweight, or 128 for Superheavy ships.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Displacer (PL 7): Using the same technology that will someday drive the PL 9 spatial compression engine, the displacer “shifts” the ship a few hundred yards several times a second in a random series of short-range teleportations.

All enemy attacks against the displacing ship have a 30% miss chance, as though it has three-quarters concealment.

A mine can be equipped with a displacer.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship or mine.
Power Cost: 15.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Light Fortification (PL 7): The starship’s structural integrity is reinforced so that the ship can shake off attacks that would cripple it otherwise. Light fortification converts 25% of all critical hits into regular hits.

Installing light fortification requires a Craft (structural) check instead of a Craft (mechanical) check.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: 0.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Particle Field (PL 7): Does not exist. Replaced by the particle shield.

Repair Drones (PL 7): Repair drones are Small spider-like robots that rapidly deploy to damaged sections of a ship’s outer hull. They are programmed to repair damage quickly and efficiently.

A ship with repair drones performs damage control on itself, without requiring an action from its crew. A ship without a damage control system cannot be fitted with repair drones.

Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: 2 passive and 3 when active.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Damage Control, Advanced (PL 8): As damage control system, but the ship recovers an additional 2d10 points of damage.
Purchase DC: +10.
Power Cost: +2.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Cloaking Screen (PL 8): An improvement of the PL 7 stealth screen, the cloaking screen warps light and energy around the ship’s hull, rendering the ship invisible to visual and electronic sensors.

A cloaked ship has total concealment. To attack a cloaked ship, an attacker must guess in which square the ship currently is (or determine its position based on where it attacked last), and even if the guess is accurate, there is a 50% chance that the attack misses.

Additionally, a deployed mine cannot detect a cloaked ship and does not detonate when the ship enters or leaves its burst area. The ship’s pilot must make a Pilot check (DC 5, +5 per additional mine) to avoid a collision with the mine if the starship enters the mine’s square; on a failed check, the mine detonates.

A cloaking screen cannot be used in conjunction with chaff, since the chaff cloud would give away the ship’s position. It also cannot operate simultaneously with any sort of shield, as the shield gives away the ship’s position.

A mine can be equipped with a cloaking screen.

Purchase DC: 15 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship or mine.
Power Cost: 30.
Restriction: Military (+3).

Medium Fortification (PL 8): As light fortification, except that the medium fortification system converts 75% of all critical hits into regular hits.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: None.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

Nanite Repair Array (PL 8): The final refinement of damage control systems, the nanite repair array consists of numerous nodules filled with nanites—microscopic robots—scattered throughout the ship. The nanite repair array can repair a ship with negative hit points; however, not even nanites can repair a destroyed ship.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: 0.
Restriction: Restricted (+2).

Heavy Fortification (PL 9): As light fortification, except that the heavy fortification system converts all critical hits into regular hits.

Purchase DC: 10 + one-half the base purchase DC of the starship.
Power Cost: 0.
Restriction: Licensed (+1).

radmelon
2010-12-17, 10:22 AM
This is well made. You've obviously put a lot of thought into this.

gkathellar
2010-12-17, 10:54 AM
Looks good at a glance. I will say there's no particular reason a ship would have a "front," "back" or "sides" other than engine and possibly weapon placement (unless it's meant for atmospheric entry, which most ships on the scale you're describing couldn't possibly survive).

Also, I'm getting this out of the way so we can move on: generic complaint about how starship combat would not work the way it does in sci-fi. Whine whine complain.

Zeta Kai
2010-12-17, 11:07 AM
Looks good at a glance. I will say there's no particular reason a ship would have a "front," "back" or "sides" other than engine and possibly weapon placement (unless it's meant for atmospheric entry, which most ships on the scale you're describing couldn't possibly survive).

Yeah, that pesky "propulsion" thing, get's ya everytime. And if it weren't for a velocity's vector, you could call any side of a ship the front. Just like if it weren't for my face & the direction that I walk in, you could call my back my front. There's no particular reason you couldn't, except for those dumb inherent properties. :smallwink:

Seriously though, so far this looks really cool. This is already much better than D20 Future space combat, which I read & immediately discarded years ago. Why was D20 so averse to facing?

Toothpaste
2010-12-17, 11:08 AM
Neat never tryed D20 future but I think I might buy it. Is there much fluff included or is it strictly rules. I don't mind making my own fluff though.
Definatly would be pretty cool, as most of the people I play D&D with are also SIFI, /StarTrek/ Serenity fans.

Looks pretty cool. I've never seen the in-Book combat rules to compare but these look pretty good to me.

gkathellar
2010-12-17, 11:43 AM
Yeah, that pesky "propulsion" thing, get's ya everytime. And if it weren't for a velocity's vector, you could call any side of a ship the front.

I suppose I wasn't clear - there's no particular reason that a ship will only have engines facing in one direction, or considering that this is science fiction, that it will even have visible or thrust-based engines. It depends on the OP's technology level, but my intention was to point out that "front" and "back" may or may not become irrelevant terms depending on the makeup and structure of a ship. Zero Gravity + No Friction = Variation.

Drogorn
2010-12-17, 12:34 PM
I suppose I wasn't clear - there's no particular reason that a ship will only have engines facing in one direction...
In hard scifi, there's good reason to have engines on only one side. "Down" in a spacecraft is whatever direction your reaction mass is heading. Additionally, it's trivially easy to pivot a spacecraft, so you can point your thrusters in whatever direction you like, whenever you like.

This does not apply to ships that do not have significant thrust or ships that use mumbo-jumbo to move though.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 12:45 PM
I suppose I wasn't clear - there's no particular reason that a ship will only have engines facing in one direction, or considering that this is science fiction, that it will even have visible or thrust-based engines. It depends on the OP's technology level, but my intention was to point out that "front" and "back" may or may not become irrelevant terms depending on the makeup and structure of a ship. Zero Gravity + No Friction = Variation.

Facing makes tactics, which are otherwise rather lacking, and nearly all ships I've seen in science fiction have a rather clear front or back.

But you are correct, there is no explicit need for facing, and some ships may lack it. However, even a rotationally symmetric ship could have facing, but the "back" would be the sensor array on one end and the "front" would be the wide domed shield designed to protect against solar flares and the like.

Ultimately it's the GM's decision as to what ships have facing, or even if he or she wants to have facing at all.

gkathellar
2010-12-17, 12:55 PM
So it's optional? Alright. I like your mechanics for facing, I just wanted to raise the point that (particularly in soft sci-fi with space-curling warp speed mumbo-jumbo) ships might not have it. What is your intended tech level, by the way?

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 01:37 PM
Neat never tryed D20 future but I think I might buy it. Is there much fluff included or is it strictly rules. I don't mind making my own fluff though.
Definatly would be pretty cool, as most of the people I play D&D with are also SIFI, /StarTrek/ Serenity fans.

Looks pretty cool. I've never seen the in-Book combat rules to compare but these look pretty good to me.

d20 Modern SRD (http://d20resources.com/), with Future included.

Yakk
2010-12-17, 01:48 PM
Maneuverability

More than a little air-centric.

Turning -- ships rotate, they don't turn.

Combat scale -- 250 meters per one-inch hex means that a reasonable engagement range would be on the other side of your city.

On that scale, Earth has a diameter of 51,000 hexes, and the Moon is 14,000. So you have lots of room to "scale things up".

There is nothing in the way in space, and engines are hot and bright. If you have the energy to travel interplanetary distances, let alone interstellar, easily, your weapons are going to be plenty lethal at many-km distant.

..

You keep talking about speed. You should be talking about thrust.

Each ship should have a current velocity. And each ship should have an ability to thrust. Changing your heading has no impact on your velocity, but possibly on your ability to thrust.

Of course, there are different kinds of science fiction drives. In movies, usually the battles are "WWII aircraft in space with ships that look like neo-futuristic fighter planes".

..

I'd be tempted to work on scaling rules. It doesn't matter how big you are, but rather what your relative scale is to other ships.

Then your rules would work if you are playing low-earth-orbit fights, or ships-that-cross-lightyears-per-turn fights.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 02:31 PM
Maneuverability

More than a little air-centric. Many of the traits on the table specifically state they only apply in atmosphere. Large ships, regardless of their presence in space, will still be clumsy due to their own inertia. They simply cannot rotate or propel themselves at a very high acceleration without tearing themselves to pieces.


Turning -- ships rotate, they don't turn. Is this semantics, or is there something I'm missing?


Combat scale -- 250 meters per one-inch hex means that a reasonable engagement range would be on the other side of your city. I decided to base the scale on ultralight ships rather than light. In the standard d20 Future, the grid squares are 500 feet, but that means that ultralight ships cram into a single square, so I just scaled it down a bit. I'm not 100% sure what your idea of reasonable engagement is.


On that scale, Earth has a diameter of 51,000 hexes, and the Moon is 14,000. So you have lots of room to "scale things up". The scale is designed for ships of varying sizes together. If all ships are of the same size category, it's perfectly reasonable to change the scale.


There is nothing in the way in space, and engines are hot and bright. If you have the energy to travel interplanetary distances, let alone interstellar, easily, your weapons are going to be plenty lethal at many-km distant. Exactly. They have a range increment but no maximum distance; they can continue forever but your accuracy at 100 km is going to be rather sucktastic, even with computers helping you. Your enemies could see it coming from literally a mile away and move the ship.


You keep talking about speed. You should be talking about thrust.

Each ship should have a current velocity. And each ship should have an ability to thrust. Changing your heading has no impact on your velocity, but possibly on your ability to thrust. Moving and turning are two different activities. If I move my ship forward at 500 ft./round it will continue to coast until I tell it to stop, and I can rotate the ship while still coasting if I so choose. Turning in place does not consume movement you've already acquired, it consumes movement you could put into your move action.


I'd be tempted to work on scaling rules. It doesn't matter how big you are, but rather what your relative scale is to other ships.

Then your rules would work if you are playing low-earth-orbit fights, or ships-that-cross-lightyears-per-turn fights. Rules for scaling would be nice.

gkathellar
2010-12-17, 02:49 PM
MExactly. They have a range increment but no maximum distance; they can continue forever but your accuracy at 100 km is going to be rather sucktastic, even with computers helping you. Your enemies could see it coming from literally a mile away and move the ship.

That would depend on the nature of the armament and the effectiveness of detection technology. You can't dodge lasers or energy weapons of any kind, and depending on the size of the explosion they produce, dodging missiles might well also be impossible. And dodging a missile barrage might be impossible even in the case of nuclear-size explosions. And all of this is assuming you can detect the missile in time, or at all.

Zeta Kai
2010-12-17, 03:14 PM
That would depend on the nature of the armament and the effectiveness of detection technology. You can't dodge lasers or energy weapons of any kind, and depending on the size of the explosion they produce, dodging missiles might well also be impossible. And dodging a missile barrage might be impossible even in the case of nuclear-size explosions. And all of this is assuming you can detect the missile in time, or at all.

Lasers = Speed of Light

Energy Weapons (IE Particle Beams) < Speed of Light

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 03:29 PM
Lasers = Speed of Light

Energy Weapons (IE Particle Beams) < Speed of Light

Pretty much everything but a laser would be dodge-able at distances measured in miles (note that a mile is 5,280 feet, which is less than a cannon's first range increment.) If the sensors or communication allows FTL, even a laser is dodge-able, or if your sensors can perceive the laser weapon moving and gathering energy to fire.

But at yakk's suggestion of scale, pretty much everything would be doomed to miss. I got the impression that he/she is talking about solar system-spanning battles, for which my system is decidedly not good.

EDIT: Also, I've begun work on weapons. If anyone has any ideas for neat weapons PL 6-9, send them my way and I'll work them out. I'll browse wikipedia later for any anomalies or obscure science I can bastardize into a weapon (see Cheshire beam).

Drogorn
2010-12-17, 03:55 PM
And dodging a missile barrage might be impossible even in the case of nuclear-size explosions. And all of this is assuming you can detect the missile in time, or at all.
Actual nukes in space are point blank weapons, due to the lack of a shockwave. You can, however, use bomb-pumped laser warheads, which get around this.


Pretty much everything but a laser would be dodge-able at distances measured in miles
Particle beams easily get into high relativistic speeds, and missiles can turn, so they aren't subject to normal dodging. If you succeed in actually building a relativistic projectile, then that would be difficult to dodge as well, but the energies required there are enormous.


Also, I've begun work on weapons. If anyone has any ideas for neat weapons PL 6-9, send them my way and I'll work them out. I'll browse wikipedia later for any anomalies or obscure science I can bastardize into a weapon (see Cheshire beam).
http://www.projectrho.com/rocket/spacegunintro.php
http://www.projectrho.com/rocket/spacegunconvent.php
http://www.projectrho.com/rocket/spacegunexotic.php

http://orbitalvector.com/Space%20Weapons/MESON%20GUNS.htm <- no known way to accelerate these, so it's soft sci-fi

There, that should keep you busy for a while!

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 04:08 PM
Particle beams easily get into high relativistic speeds, and missiles can turn, so they aren't subject to normal dodging. If you succeed in actually building a relativistic projectile, then that would be difficult to dodge as well, but the energies required there are enormous. Ships dodge relativistic-velocity weapons the same way humans dodge gunfire: by sensing where the gun is pointing and when it is likely to fire, then moving out of the way before it does so. Humans are entitled to their Dexterity and Dodge bonuses against gunfire, so I figure ships should get their same defense bonuses against even light-speed weapons for the same reasons.

Thanks for the links! I'll peruse them after work.

hamishspence
2010-12-17, 04:30 PM
At really long distances, and fairly high speeds, a laser beam fired at a spot, may not all be able to be absorbed.

If, for example, it's a 1 second pulse, and the target ship is 1 km long and moving at 20 km/second, then only 1/20 of the laser pulse will be absorbed- at most. And you'd have to aim in front of it- since the laser has a way to go.

Even half a light-second to hit, requires shots to be aimed ahead of target.

The gun might be rotated during the one second pulse, so that while the "front" of the beam is aimed at where the starship's prow will be when it arrives the "rear" of the beam is aimed 20 km ahead of the front.

A ship knowing weapons (even lasers) are going to be fired in its direction- can erratically accelerate and decelerate, zig-zag unpredictable amounts, and so on, making it very difficult to target.

A counter might be to fire a cone of shots, so that no matter what, the target is likely to run into something.

Kinetic weapons might get more punch for the energy demands to operate them, than lasers, though- even if they're easier to dodge.

gkathellar
2010-12-17, 05:11 PM
Ultimately, with regards do erratic movements/prediction/dodging/etc., it all comes down to AI fights - as in, which AI can out-predict the other? And if the AIs aren't closed boxes, it may actually come down to which can out-hack the other.

See Schlock Mercenary and Martian Successor Nadesico's movie for examples - soldiers and conventional warfare are pretty much useless once you get AIs and hacker-geniuses involved.

Drogorn
2010-12-17, 05:15 PM
Ships dodge relativistic-velocity weapons the same way humans dodge gunfire: by sensing where the gun is pointing and when it is likely to fire, then moving out of the way before it does so. Humans are entitled to their Dexterity and Dodge bonuses against gunfire, so I figure ships should get their same defense bonuses against even light-speed weapons for the same reasons.

A ship can't dodge based on where a weapon is pointing. Light lag prevents it from seeing where a turret is aimed. What a ship can do is thrust randomly, so the enemy ship cannot know exactly where it is. This forces the enemy ship to fire within a region where the ship might be. The volume of space the ship might be in when the weapon arrives increases as distance increases and as weapon velocity decreases.

With two ships fighting at one light-second, their lasers will be fired using one second old data, and will take 1 second to arrive. So the target will have had 2 seconds to thrust randomly. Since this is space, non-thrusting movement is predictable and therefore irrelevant. Move out to 2 light-seconds, and there's a 4 second delay, and so on. Kinetic projectiles have it far worse. A railgun projectile moving an astonishingly fast .1c, at one light second, will be fired using second-old data, but will then take 10 seconds to travel to the target. This gives the target a total of 11 seconds to maneuver, and the target can see it coming, meaning the shot will almost certainly miss. The only way to mitigate the issue for projectiles is to fire many of them at once, so the target has nowhere to go. These projectiles could then fragment into shrapnel, which at .1c would be devastating-if they hit.

Missiles, since they can carry tracking heads of some sort, don't have this problem. Additionally, missiles have the options of constant thrusting and coasting. A missile trying to evade counter-fire needs to thrust randomly once it is in range of antimissiles and point defense, or it will likely be destroyed. The ability of a missile to ignore light lag and coast until it needs to start evading make them the longest ranged anti-ship weapons in space, by far.

http://www.projectrho.com/rocket/spacewardetect.php#longscan


Edit:
Ultimately, with regards do erratic movements/prediction/dodging/etc., it all comes down to AI fights - as in, which AI can out-predict the other?

If AIs were able to predict evasion, ships would begin to use sources of true randomeness to control their evasion, such as nuclear decay.

SurlySeraph
2010-12-17, 09:30 PM
One question on the rules, rather than on relativistic tactics: how exactly do the "turns" a gun gets work? Does this mean that it continues firing without requiring an action to fire it in the next few turns after it's fired, or that it fires within more than one of the sub-turns (gunner's turn, engineer's turn, captain's turn, etc.) within a single round of combat?

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 10:59 PM
One question on the rules, rather than on relativistic tactics: how exactly do the "turns" a gun gets work? Does this mean that it continues firing without requiring an action to fire it in the next few turns after it's fired, or that it fires within more than one of the sub-turns (gunner's turn, engineer's turn, captain's turn, etc.) within a single round of combat? Thanks, the relativistic thing is kind of annoying since it isn't actually pertaining to the rules here in any way. The relativistic problems are actually one of the reasons WHY ship battles are held within a few miles of one-another, where such problems don't really matter.

The turns shows how many extra turns a gun can fire immediately after its owner's. Such that if the rail gun is fired by the captain on turn 2, it also fires again on turn 3 while the engineer does her thing, and again on turn 4 when the pilot jinks. Guns and missiles are useful in that only initiating them consumes an action; they can continue to be effective while someone else does their thing. Extending your firing action in this way does not interfere with your friends, and they can even fire a different weapon on one of the turns you overlap.

Guns replace the autofire mechanic for starships, which was rather underwhelming.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-17, 11:02 PM
Everyone IS aware that 1 light second is 4 million hexes, right?

radmelon
2010-12-19, 12:39 PM
Precautionary bump.

Rockphed
2010-12-20, 03:21 AM
I like these rules, though I am unlikely to ever use them since I don't ever play d20 future. If I ever try to play a Homeworld RPG game thing, I will nab these like hotcakes. Speaking of Homeworld, you might consider their Ion Cannons for a write up.

Since I am unfamiliar with the D20 Future rules for space ships, what sort of limits are there on guns and other systems? Also, what does a typical ship HP value look like?

Finally, you might want to create some guns for light ships. Looking at your table, all the guns seem limited to either gargantuan or colossal ships, which designations don't even appear in your description of ships. Is this to imply that light ships cannot have weapons on board? There go my plans to stat out fighters(which would probably have a hard time working with your listed rules due to only having a single crew member) and have a big death star battle.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-20, 03:53 AM
The "Minimum Ship Size" is a holdover from the d20 Future weapons, since I'm not sure how I want to change that. Generally, all ships are Gargantuan or Colossal, as in creature size. Imagine a jet fighter. 1 or 2 people, but still massive in size. It appears to be to keep rather dinky unmanned ships from wielding crazy huge weapons.

4 crew starships, like the ones most spacefaring parties will start out with, have around 400 HP. The largest HP value in the core book belongs to the Dreadnought, at 24,000 HP.

Fighters would certainly have a harder time, but I don't see it logical otherwise. A ship with 8 people in it is simply going to be capable of doing more things at once than a ship with one guy in it.

The SRD on starships is here (http://d20resources.com/future.d20.srd/starships/).

I did leave some stuff out, this is still a work in progress. I think I should go through and pick through the stats, writing out how to stat up a starship from scratch.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-26, 03:30 AM
Bump because I added junk about Power Cores and energy consumption for systems and other technical stuff.

Also, engines.

Also added Max Dex and Class Defense modifiers to Maneuverability, because a Light starship and a Superheavy starship having the same Defense because they're the same size category is stupid.

radmelon
2010-12-26, 01:12 PM
This gets more and more awesome by the post. Have an internet.

Kuma Kode
2010-12-30, 12:24 AM
Recently Done:
Finished the weapon list.
Moved Engines down because I ran out of space.
Copied/tweaked armor.
Added shields.

Still to Do:
Defense systems/accessories. (Done)
Copy comm systems for the sake of completion. (Done)
Build example ships.
Fill in unchanged information for the sake of completion.
Sensors. (Done)
Psi-Cannon/Electroanimus. (Battlemind / Telepath / Psionic Agent)


*does the I-have-an-internet dance.*

The_Admiral
2010-12-30, 12:43 AM
Using these rules how can you pilot a 1 man fighter?

Kuma Kode
2010-12-30, 12:48 AM
I have failed to clarify certain aspects of moving the ship, and I apologize. Only tricks or sophisticated movement require an action. A pilot can direct his ship within its operating parameters and take attack actions at the same time. A ship with more people on it will be capable of more simultaneous actions, however, so if he plans on attacking such a ship, he'll need allies. This is why 1-man fighters tend to come in swarms.

If movement + firing wasn't the sticking point, I'll need some more information on what you (and several others who have asked the fighter question) expect a 1-man ship to be able to do.

Kuma Kode
2011-01-04, 03:37 AM
Battlemind powers have been added.

Defense systems added.

Just need to do the Telepath and Psionic Agent, then complete all the fluffy junk and build some ready-made ships and we'll be able to close this thing down as [COMPLETE].

radmelon
2011-01-04, 10:09 AM
When this is complete will something similar for the mecha be plausible?

Kuma Kode
2011-01-04, 07:05 PM
Not from me, no. My interest in mecha is so low you would need an entrenching tool to find it, and then to hopefully bury it again once found.

I would not be opposed to someone else adapting these rules to mecha and posting it, though.

radmelon
2011-01-04, 07:13 PM
It's okay, I was just posting off the top of my head. I'm not much of a mech guy either.

Knaight
2011-01-04, 07:40 PM
Taking into account that much of this works best for really soft science fiction, it is mostly solid. However, there are a few points of concern, the most notable being facing. It appears that facing is entirely 2D, despite being in a 3D grid.

Kuma Kode
2011-01-04, 08:20 PM
Facing is rotationally symmetric, so the facing diagram looks the same from the top of the ship or the side. I probably should have mentioned that.

Most of the ship components are just reworked d20 Future components, so it's as hard or as soft as you'd really want it to be. It's difficult to make hard sci-fi for thousands of years in the future, in much the same way I doubt anyone a thousand years ago could guess what kind of technology we would have now.

Rockphed
2011-01-04, 08:29 PM
If movement + firing wasn't the sticking point, I'll need some more information on what you (and several others who have asked the fighter question) expect a 1-man ship to be able to do.

I think it was a combination of not seeing any weapons that really looked like they were meant to go on a fighter and the movement + firing problem. From the look of things, a two man fighter will probably do slightly better(on average) than a one man fighter, just because the two man fighter can dodge even while it fires while a one man fighter has to pick an choose.

Yakk
2011-01-05, 11:21 AM
Many of the traits on the table specifically state they only apply in atmosphere. Large ships, regardless of their presence in space, will still be clumsy due to their own inertia. They simply cannot rotate or propel themselves at a very high acceleration without tearing themselves to pieces.
How long is a turn, and how big are the ships?

You can work out how much you get from spinning from that.

Is this semantics, or is there something I'm missing?
Ships gain a rotational momentum over time, which persists unless stopped.

I decided to base the scale on ultralight ships rather than light. In the standard d20 Future, the grid squares are 500 feet, but that means that ultralight ships cram into a single square, so I just scaled it down a bit. I'm not 100% sure what your idea of reasonable engagement is.
You have space, where there is nothing in the way. And you have enough energy to play around with that you can travel between celestial bodies.

Fighting at ranges where your opposing ships are visible to the naked eye seems unrealistic, unless you are talking non-military craft.

Pre-WW2 battleships can fire over the horizon. Aircraft carriers fought at even longer ranges. Missile frigates and subs (shooting at things with missiles, and not torpedoes) also fight at long ranges. And this is on earth, where range is restricted by gravity, the ocean getting in the way, and atmospheric friction.

In space, you have a clear shot at ridiculous ranges. Fire high-energy projectiles in a random pattern over projected trajectories of the enemy ship -- the math isn't hard. By the time you close to visible range, one of you should be dead.

If you want something other than that, you need to massively beef up defences (energy shields etc), and provide either "cloaking" fields that don't work well at short ranges or weapons that are ineffective past short ranges.

Exactly. They have a range increment but no maximum distance; they can continue forever but your accuracy at 100 km is going to be rather sucktastic, even with computers helping you. Your enemies could see it coming from literally a mile away and move the ship.
Which is why you saturate regions with high-energy "gravel", and/or fire self-propelled munitions (that deploys high-energy "gravel" when it gets close).

There is, as noted, nothing in the way. Space ships that are moving at a decent clip, with higher tech sensors, can be seen from astronomical distances -- and fired upon at those distances.

Moving and turning are two different activities. If I move my ship forward at 500 ft./round it will continue to coast until I tell it to stop, and I can rotate the ship while still coasting if I so choose. Turning in place does not consume movement you've already acquired, it consumes movement you could put into your move action.
So your ships have a velocity vector?

I mean, if I'm moving 10 squares that a way, and I turn the ship 60 degrees, I keep on moving 10 squares in the same direction I was going before I turned? Then you accellerate by 5 squares, and you move 10 squares in direciton A and 5 more in direction B that is 60 degrees off?


If, for example, it's a 1 second pulse, and the target ship is 1 km long and moving at 20 km/second, then only 1/20 of the laser pulse will be absorbed- at most. And you'd have to aim in front of it- since the laser has a way to go.
Weapons can track.

If the target is 100 km away, 10 m long, and moving at 20 km/second...

333.564095 microseconds, or 0.000333564095 seconds, is the time lag from visual identification/radar/whatever light speed sensor.

The laser then takes another 0.000333564095 seconds to get to the target.

So between "aim" and "hit", the ship has 0.00067 seconds to change position.

With a velocity of 20 km/second, that comes to 13.4 meters of movement.

If the ship can accellerate at 100 g (you'll need no human crew, or inertial buffering sci-fi tech for that), over the 0.00067 seconds the ship can change its position from the projected one by 0.000219961 meters. With the weapon tracking the position of the ship while firing, and a beam that is exactly the size of the ship, the target ship can (with 100 g accelleration) dodge 0.02% of the attack at best.

Now, building a lazer with that sharp a focus is hard.

Extend the range to 100,000 km, and the aim-to-hit lag becomes 0.67 seconds, and the dodge distance at 100 g becomes 220 meters, or 22 meters at 10 g (which is the limit if you expect human-type things to survive -- even then, they won't survive long).

And humans can dodge gunfire because people suck at shooting guns. High-tech military radar-aimed weapons cannot be dodged by something that moves like a human, so long as they can see what they are shooting at.

Modern military technology is finding it hard to shoot at a missile-speed target that is closing with a target. But they are getting better and better at it.

So yes, space engagements at close range should be a matter of "who shot first".

Thanks, the relativistic thing is kind of annoying since it isn't actually pertaining to the rules here in any way. The relativistic problems are actually one of the reasons WHY ship battles are held within a few miles of one-another, where such problems don't really matter.
That only applies if your ships have ridiculous defences compared to ability to attack.

Everyone IS aware that 1 light second is 4 million hexes, right?
And your hexes are far, far to small for space engagement ranges.

Today, using modern (not future) technology, if you can see a target, you can kill it. The only exceptions are ridiculously buried bunkers, and we can still kill those targets, it just creates collateral damage (we need to use nukes).

In space, there is next to nothing stopping you from seeing a target.

In order to dodge when you are "in the open", you need light-speed lag to give yourself the ability to not be in the spot where the opponent can clearly see you being in.

Or, you need stealth so you aren't detected (which requires serious sci-fi tech). Or you need defences (shields or armor) that somehow is immune to enemy fire at anything but close range. Easier is obscuring your location (with chaff) so your opponents sensors (picking up on your hot engines and radar-reflecting body) determine that your ship is in a spot that it isn't in (seeing your flares and radar-reflecting chaff and thinking it is you), and shoot at your chaff instead of at you.

Now, I'm not saying "you cannot make a close-combat space game", I'm encouraging you to make one that makes sense -- embed the excuses in the game somehow.

Kuma Kode
2011-01-05, 12:34 PM
I am repeatedly told that my system doesn't work at "reasonable engagement distances" but I'm never actually told what this is. Miles? Thousands of miles? Light seconds?

I built for relatively short distances (if miles can be considered that) for several reasons; it's more tactically interesting, which the original system lacked; light-lag is something I am not certain is possible to account for; and long distances are still possible with larger ships, whose Defense is so atrocious that their Defense remains hittable at many range increments.

Extremely long distances, as has been stated in the earlier discussion, would be primarily AI-driven, and there's no point in having a starship battle if it amounts to nothing more than the players standing there while the NPC AIs roll dice. The system is focused on smaller craft and closer areas, where the PCs will likely be spending their time, rather than massive city-ships with complex AIs who shoot across the star system at each other with little to no human interaction.

Rather than saying "the scale is wrong," what could I do to make it more appropriate? I obviously have different expectations from a starship battle than others, and that's fine, but I cannot fix something I don't see as broken, so I need some suggestions as either variants or scale options or something.

Should I reduce the penalty for range increments? Increase the range increments themselves? Expand the size modifier for Defense to account for extremely large ships so they can be hit at greater distances?

All of the above?

necroon
2011-01-05, 01:33 PM
Currently running a D20 system and decided to use your space combat. I noticed it accomplished a really big thing: inclusion. The group has around 5 -7 players (as I usually run larger groups) and this approach on space combat gave EVERYONE something to do- as opposed to the one dex-monkey with space combat feats doing all the work while the other players either wait to receive wounded, or stood near the door hoping the ship gets boarded. Only thing that came to mind was passive power-usage based on ship size- meaning things like lights and what not. One would think simply having a large ship would have a PU drain associated with it, if nothing else for the face that Life Support is doing double time. Any thoughts?
As for the distance thing- trying it first hand... it works. I'm personally a big fan of simply saying "squares" as opposed to actual distances. Players (I've noticed) during combat, don't care about meters or feet or anything like that... they just want to know how many squares away, and what the range penalty is.
Only tweak I made was including a chart for bonuses and penalties based on system conditions.
Overall, phenomenal work, Kuma Kode! I await your next homebrew and the awesomeness that comes with it!

hamishspence
2011-01-05, 01:40 PM
Weapons can track.

If the target is 100 km away, 10 m long, and moving at 20 km/second...

333.564095 microseconds, or 0.000333564095 seconds, is the time lag from visual identification/radar/whatever light speed sensor.

The laser then takes another 0.000333564095 seconds to get to the target.

So between "aim" and "hit", the ship has 0.00067 seconds to change position.

With a velocity of 20 km/second, that comes to 13.4 meters of movement.

If the ship can accellerate at 100 g (you'll need no human crew, or inertial buffering sci-fi tech for that), over the 0.00067 seconds the ship can change its position from the projected one by 0.000219961 meters. With the weapon tracking the position of the ship while firing, and a beam that is exactly the size of the ship, the target ship can (with 100 g accelleration) dodge 0.02% of the attack at best.

The weapon would still need to move throughout the shot- at differing speeds depending on how far away the target is.
If the speed of rotation of the weapon is slightly off- a lot of the beam may miss- or be spread out, forming a "cut" rather than a "hole".

The sensor might track the target- but the gun would have to be aimed well in front of the target- and set to swing the moment it fires- and if firing is a fraction of a second off- the shot will miss.

So you'd probably need them to aim and fire themselves- after the instruction is sent to fire- making them more like robots.

Kuma Kode
2011-01-05, 07:55 PM
Currently running a D20 system and decided to use your space combat. See this? In homebrew, this is worth far more than any theoretical calculations or builds or discussions. I appreciate your field-testing, and I'm glad it went well!

Base power usage based on ship size is something I didn't think of, and I will likely add that in.

When you say system conditions, what do you mean?

necroon
2011-01-06, 01:17 AM
See this? In homebrew, this is worth far more than any theoretical calculations or builds or discussions. I appreciate your field-testing, and I'm glad it went well!

Base power usage based on ship size is something I didn't think of, and I will likely add that in.

When you say system conditions, what do you mean?

In my current group, I have a player playing an engineer and on the first session he asked me "thats great... how can I make it better?". It occurred to me that, after watching countless hours of sci-fi this and intergalactic that, that it's not usually the equipment that defines the limits of the ship... it's the engineer. I decided to combine that with my utter HATRED for d20's system damage rules, and came up with this

(note that this table is for Sensors, not ALL systems)

{table=head]Condition|Effect
Z|System Overclock:+2 to Rolls to hit, Vessel attacks as if under the effects of the “Blind-Fight” feat
Y|Target specific systems without penalty
X|+2 to rolls to hit
W|+2 to rolls to hit, +4 to initiative
V|+2 to rolls to hit
-|normal vessel standings
E|-2 to rolls to hit
D|-2 to rolls to hit, -4 to initiative
C|-2 to rolls to hit
B|Cannot Target specific systems or aid (as per sensor abilities), -2 to rolls to hit
A|Systems Offlile – Vessel Blind
[/table]
The table is used along with a 2D4 for "random system damage" (one for each system) with the 7th result being a negative shift on all tables. The damage a ship can sustain before the table is rolled upon is determined by size. The exact numbers I'm still fooling around with.
Z-V Expresses a positive shift (from normal standings) accomplished by things like superb maintenance, unorthodox enhancements, ect.

Yakk
2011-01-06, 01:13 PM
First, decide on a goal. Do you want cinematic star-wars combat, or realistic combat? Do you just want WWI in space with a veneer of verisimilitude?

How much verisimilitude?

What scale do you want battles on -- are planets walls, or part of the terrain? Do you want your system to be generic enough to handle both?

Do you want to require a map, or do you want abstract combat? (note that your "piled hexes" lead to some really strange geometry -- you are basically "square" in the vertical direction. A 3d hex-style packing does work, but location plus height it isn't). A flat table is poor at placing figures.

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To clean up your rules, move atmospheric combat to a completely different section. Having the atmospheric rules in the table with the "this doesn't apply" is really awkward.

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An advantage of abstract combat is that you can shoe-horn multiple kinds of sci-fi techs into it.

The assumptions of your sci-fi technology can change what it means to be "close" and "far", and the ability for ships to close, and how much combat occurs at "far" as opposed to "close" ranges. It can change what your defences are (dodging? stealth? shields? armor?) and how you attack.

In a sci-fi world where there are psychic humans, fighting at multi-second light-speed lag where humans control the weapons makes lots of sense (as does dodging using psychic humans).

You could also specify a specific track of advancement. Near-future space fights work like X, warp-era space fights work like Y, psi-era space fights look like W, and trans-human-era space fights look like Z.