Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

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Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Sat 15 Jun 2013 03:45

Daz has finished the final revision of the SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02 document!

That means that later today, June 15th 2013, we will begin accepting emails to orders@starfiredesign.com for existing SOLAR STARFIRE owners to upgrade to the newest version. This is the last extension version from the initial rules (6.00) and is still a free upgrade.

In addition, we'll be switching over the e-commerce download and the CDs to use the new version. If you are planning on purchasing tonight, you might want wait until we announce the releases have been updated tomorrow!

So what's new in SSF v6.02? Aside from (literally) hundreds of minor typo fixes, added definitions, wording changes, and further breaking large rules into smaller sub-rules for ease of reference, the major changes are:

* Through-out the rules, 6 and 12 months indicating half and whole years have been replaced with the proper 5 and 10 month indicators.

* The addition of A10, and the start of some pseudo-science explanations from the background history that are driving some of the technology changes. As we add more definitions, they will be explained here.

* Allowing half-sized engines to be mounted, by themselves, on a ship where it will provide 1 or more MP.

* Better rules about ramming planetary surfaces, along with rules for DF-based large units being unable to ram the surface due to para-gravity (see A10). Ramming a populated body is now considered bombardment.

* Improvements in both the C11 (LEL engines) and Cp rules, hopefully this time it will be much easier to understand.

* Clarification that LEL engines do not use engine rooms

* Wrecks will now begin to orbit the nearest large body as soon as the wreck is formed

* SS are now treated completely as weak hulls, even for ramming.

* Added D4.03.4 to codify the "Damage Over Time" rules for damage from sources like nebula or pulsars.

* Scanning now automatically occurs after the expenditure of each MP. This will more accurately reflect the close-in and active nature of scanning

* Sensors are no longer degraded by a %, they are degraded by -generations. Everything from terrain effects to LOD are using this method. So, for example, your nice Yb with a -1 generation of degradation will function as a Ya instead. This not only makes applying the changes easier (no more calculating!), but it has made it much easier to balance as well. The only exception is for populations, who still have a 1x, 2x, or 3x modifier to sensor range based on population size.

* Scanning occurs EVERY MP expended, instead of just at the end of movement.

* PDC datalink cannot be jammed. Everyone was thinking it, now it's actually in the rules. SS modules are all datagrouped together as long as they are attached.

* Drones can now be launched from the surface of a planet.

* Tractor beams can no longer operate inside the paragravity limit.

* Maximum grade is now BG+5 or Legendary, whichever comes first.

* Squadron internal ordnance is now declared on construction and can only be changed by refit.

* Section H has been completely re-written.

* The "Advanced Science" racial ability now only benefits that race, it cannot share the SL reduction.

* We've better delineated from the basic rules and the GG5.06 unusual life forms and, especially in Section L, made it clear where they could interact when using the alternate rule.

* Minimum population has been declared at 1 PU.

* AB/HGT populations ALWAYS have a PU/PTU conversion of 1, can never qualify for free colonization PTU no matter how big the total belt population gets, and never gains EL growth bonuses.

* Table L1.03 system body environment type has been added to clarify the "non GG5.06" game environments. Sorry about the confusion.

* The CFN will deliver, but no longer deploy AP that have weapons, active defenses, or weapon related systems.

* Addition of ammunition depots -- bases that act in the same manner as an ammunition collier.

* ground industry can be used to build PDCs and facilities on moons in the same planetary system (and vice versa), but at a cost.

* LEL populations now qualify for ground industry as EL0 and with limited facilities

* Refitting systems that are from the same tech branch and the same size no longer count as a new class

* Optional rule to require Individual Asteroid Surveys to find AF-sized asteroids. Pretty easy in a system with AB, it's much harder in a system without AB.

* Only one breakthrough can be applied to a project in the same month, no matter how it is applied.

* Uplifted LEL races with an LEL engine

* Clarification on the CTJ rules; non-CTJ branches are not limited, branches using EL instead of SL are not limited, and racial adjustments to SL have no affect on the CTJ requirements

* Reordered the approximate WP location rules to make more sense

* WP surveys in starless systems must now survey to find the center of the system before they can start the actual WP survey

* empires are now limited to promoting only a single captain to admiral each month

* T3 now has a definition for political state instead of launching into the rules

* MANY minor modifications in the political rules, mostly for clarification

* Troop supplies are now known as "Hv"

* Table V6.04.1 Reciprocal Genocide Results has been decloaked.

* Yellow-White Star has been added to fill the gap between white and yellow stars.

* Nebula effects are a little different now.

* Neutron stars, which after intense study have been determined to be a form of Pulsar, have been removed. Magnetars and Asteroid Clusters (for Starless systems) have been spotted during recent surveys.

* Orbital distance has been formally declared as "from the center of the center sH" and the rumors of calculations from the edge of the hex, or the edge of the star, have been put to rest.

* Some eccentric scientist noticed that binary systems where either component is a blue or red giant, will not have planets at EITHER binary component no matter the type of binary star.

* Archaic definitions of "inner biosphere", "biosphere" and "outer biosphere" have been modernized as the "Hot Rocky Zone", "Liquid Water Zone", and "Cold Rocky Zone"

* Lest anyone forget, the planetary definitions in W6.06 have been noted as belonging to the standard game for T/ST races only, and when using GG5.06 unusual life forms that the HI will have to be rolled for practically every planet.

* Asteroid Belt width has been rewritten to be less confusing to the player and be less likely to give an astronomer a heart attack.

* WPs are now more difficult to detect during WP overrun situations

* A number of NPR government types have been tweaked both for realism and to make the races a little more interesting.

* Hive mind mass death penalties are now in table format.

* AA7 magazine rules have been severely tweaked.

* Smcft sensors have been tweaked to the new way of doing sensors. They use the best sensors, -1 generation, but have varying ranges: gunboats use medium range, fighters use combat range, other smcft use short range. Smcft have a scan range of 0. Gigs have been altered to only have 3 tH range navigational sensors, without scanners.

* shuttles, heavy shuttles, assault shuttles, and heavy assault shuttles have all been tweaked for capacity and cost.

* A handful of technology descriptions have been tweaked.

* LEL races can build an LEL-version of buoy1 when they reach the tech, but have not yet researched an HEL engine.

* Launcher Boxes (W) have been temporarily removed from the game until we can balance them properly.

* Daz tweaked a number of the tables in section EE. He rebuilt the sysgen charts so they are AWESOME! and more useful than before.

FUTURE CHANGES -- some stuff is known to be coming, but not yet done. It's not a long list...

-- Section V rewrite of the ground combat, raiding, etc. rules

-- Impending BASV system changes. Hush hush.

-- GG1-5 re-writes for full compliance with SSF rules (instead of ULTRA)

-- New examples in FF based on the history

-- Another LEL engine is coming soon...
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby mcb1968 on Sat 15 Jun 2013 21:36

This needs to be updated to the main web page. They I would have an excuse to post it to Table Top Gaming News :) I just posted it to several facebook groups.
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Sat 15 Jun 2013 22:36

It will be updated when it is released...

And I'm here to give an update on the release. Of course, the day I go to upload the data to the publisher for the new CDs... I'm having upload problems. I have one of the two images uploaded and verified, and I'm 37% of the way through the second.

After that I will upload the new product information and digital download data and we'll be ready to go. Hang tight, almost there.
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Sun 16 Jun 2013 01:30

IT IS DONE!

SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02 is now officially released. The Ultimate Starfire Package and the Solar Starfire CD have been updated. The digital download has been updated.

And most importantly to all you guys waiting, I'm now accepting emails to orders@starfiredesign.com for requests to upgrade from any version of Solar Starfire to v6.02

Any questions? Comments? Suggestions?
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby wievil on Thu 11 Jul 2013 11:28

Wonderful. Sent in my order.

Cralis, sorry I know this probably isn't the correct place for this :oops: but you did say if there were any questions ;)

Just one question. Why are there (Bfx) and (Bgx) bays? x is the generation. Why are there not just (Bvx) bays that just service both? How would that be different than (XOLx) racks? Having to have two seperate bays, one for fighters, the other for gunboats makes carrier group operations complicated. A carrier is after all just a platform that moves smallcraft about. Why are we forced to have two seperate designs of a given size of ship to do the same function. Not a critisim. Really just wondering.

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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Fri 12 Jul 2013 04:29

wievil wrote:Cralis, sorry I know this probably isn't the correct place for this :oops: but you did say if there were any questions ;)


You could have posted it to the Solar Starfire forum, but that's ok. I'm flexible :) If you'd like I could move these messages to a new topic over there...

Just one question. Why are there (Bfx) and (Bgx) bays? x is the generation. Why are there not just (Bvx) bays that just service both?


Two reasons... a game reason and a realism reason.

First, the game reason. The biggest reason is because you can have different SLs in FQ and GB, so you'd have different generations in the bays for each. True... we could have combined them, but then...

Second, the realism reason. We presume FQ are five units of 4 DP each. For GB, we presume they are six units of 5 DP each. The DP number increases as your squadrons get more DP. So we realized that there are different numbers of craft, are different sizes, and in reality would have different gear and equipment to support them.

I've tossed around the idea of an "either/or" bay before, but it would have to be larger and more expensive than a regular bay so I didn't think anyone would use it.

How would that be different than (XOLx) racks?

An XOL rack is an exterior mount that your squadrons can dock with. It isn't a true landing location and the squadrons can't be completely serviced, but they have more combat-oriented reasons for existing.

Having to have two seperate bays, one for fighters, the other for gunboats makes carrier group operations complicated. A carrier is after all just a platform that moves smallcraft about. Why are we forced to have two seperate designs of a given size of ship to do the same function. Not a critisim. Really just wondering.


True.

If you don't like this, make a home rule that says there is only Bfx and let either GB or FQ land in them. It will make your game more unique anyway!
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby wievil on Fri 12 Jul 2013 08:25

Yes please move it and I'll explain. :D
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Fri 12 Jul 2013 22:19

Oh geez, you might as well explain. Because this an announcement I can't split the topic. I'll do it later.
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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby wievil on Sat 13 Jul 2013 21:39

Cralis wrote:
Why are there (Bfx) and (Bgx) bays? x is the generation. Why are there not just (Bvx) bays that just service both?


Two reasons... a game reason and a realism reason.

First, the game reason. The biggest reason is because you can have different SLs in FQ and GB, so you'd have different generations in the bays for each. True... we could have combined them, but then...


Isn't that already covered under B?.01 You can have a (Blb) or is it (BLb), I've seen both, serve as launch bay for a (Bfa) and a (Bgb) on the same smallcraft carrier.

Cralis wrote:Second, the realism reason. We presume FQ are five units of 4 DP each. For GB, we presume they are six units of 5 DP each. The DP number increases as your squadrons get more DP. So we realized that there are different numbers of craft, are different sizes, and in reality would have different gear and equipment to support them.

I've tossed around the idea of an "either/or" bay before, but it would have to be larger and more expensive than a regular bay so I didn't think anyone would use it.


Interesting factoid. Sounds like that means fighters are actually larger than gunboats and a complete reversal of the numbers of each per squadron from Galactic on back. In any case are not the bays (Bfx) and (Bgx) exactly the same size and march lockstep in size up each generation.

Here's my analogy.

I had the great fortune to live and work in Charleston S.C. for about 14 months about 8 to 10 years ago. While there I had the pleasure of touring the CV-10 Museum "USS Yorktown". Not quite as impressive as one of the operational super carriers around today I am sure but still pretty cool. Her form fit her function. She's a platform for moving aircraft to where they need to be employed. It didn't matter what kind of aircraft. Small, large up to a certain size, fixed wing and rotary she could service them all and in the post WWII part of her career she even handled jets. The hanger bay made the most impression on me. It is a cavern.

Taking that concept to the world of Starfire I wouldn't necessarily increase the size of a fighter/gunboat combo bay beyond the current per generation. Cost maybe, but only a 10% to no more than a 30% premium over a standard bay cost of the same generation. And I'd use it unless the cost were truly prohibitive (or so says the bean counter in me).

How would that be different than (XOLx) racks?

Cralis wrote:An XOL rack is an exterior mount that your squadrons can dock with. It isn't a true landing location and the squadrons can't be completely serviced, but they have more combat-oriented reasons for existing.

Having to have two seperate bays, one for fighters, the other for gunboats makes carrier group operations complicated. A carrier is after all just a platform that moves smallcraft about. Why are we forced to have two seperate designs of a given size of ship to do the same function. Not a critisim. Really just wondering.


True.

If you don't like this, make a home rule that says there is only Bfx and let either GB or FQ land in them. It will make your game more unique anyway!


Not a matter of not liking it but if I was running a game that was not computer assisted I would make such a house rule. Just looking for ways to simplify logistics. Going back to my earlier comment, why were bays treated different than XOL. The answer appears to be and this is just my understanding of what you said, is they are different because they don't service smallcraft. They just provide a docking point which will handle both types of smallcraft. So there are six boarding tubes that are not all used when an FQ squadron comes calling.

Well, Solar (Bfx) and (Bgx) no longer store ammunition nor provide their small craft crew with quarters unlike earlier rules versions so what makes them truly different anymore from CV10's hanger bay?

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Re: Announcing the release of SOLAR STARFIRE v6.02

Postby Cralis on Sun 14 Jul 2013 17:28

wievil wrote:
Cralis wrote:
Why are there (Bfx) and (Bgx) bays? x is the generation. Why are there not just (Bvx) bays that just service both?


Two reasons... a game reason and a realism reason.

First, the game reason. The biggest reason is because you can have different SLs in FQ and GB, so you'd have different generations in the bays for each. True... we could have combined them, but then...


Isn't that already covered under B?.01 You can have a (Blb) or is it (BLb), I've seen both, serve as launch bay for a (Bfa) and a (Bgb) on the same smallcraft carrier.


Those are the "launching mechanism" bay. The squadron bays are where the individual craft are reloaded, rearmed, and otherwise maintained. They will have different requirements. The presumption is that future squadrons aren't going to have an "open are" to sit around at like a modern aircraft carrier.

Interesting factoid. Sounds like that means fighters are actually larger than gunboats and a complete reversal of the numbers of each per squadron from Galactic on back. In any case are not the bays (Bfx) and (Bgx) exactly the same size and march lockstep in size up each generation.


Two things: first, in the example I gave the GB still had more DP and were bigger. But second, I realized that gave you some experimental number I was playing with for testing and not the presumed values. Right NOW it is presumed that FQ is 5 units of 4 DP each, and GB is four units of 7.5 DP each. My mistake for not actually looking it up before posting (like I normally do).

I had the great fortune to live and work in Charleston S.C. for about 14 months about 8 to 10 years ago. While there I had the pleasure of touring the CV-10 Museum "USS Yorktown". Not quite as impressive as one of the operational super carriers around today I am sure but still pretty cool. Her form fit her function. She's a platform for moving aircraft to where they need to be employed. It didn't matter what kind of aircraft. Small, large up to a certain size, fixed wing and rotary she could service them all and in the post WWII part of her career she even handled jets. The hanger bay made the most impression on me. It is a cavern.


I've been on a carrier too. But the modern design for an aircraft carrier is pretty much a no-go in SSF. Each bay has rearming and reloading equipment, safety equipment, plus repair equipment for each squadron. In addition, there are numerous safety features to ensure that those massive changes in acceleration and/or direction. In space these are far, far more dangerous than here on the surface of the planet.

Taking that concept to the world of Starfire I wouldn't necessarily increase the size of a fighter/gunboat combo bay beyond the current per generation. Cost maybe, but only a 10% to no more than a 30% premium over a standard bay cost of the same generation. And I'd use it unless the cost were truly prohibitive (or so says the bean counter in me).


Cost isn't a good method of ensuring usage, viability, or efficiency. If you want people to use something similar, you need to give them a game reason to do it. The differences that exist are for a reason beyond aesthetics.

Well, Solar (Bfx) and (Bgx) no longer store ammunition nor provide their small craft crew with quarters unlike earlier rules versions so what makes them truly different anymore from CV10's hanger bay?


I don't believe they had quarters in earlier versions. The current versions have reloading, rearming, and resupply stuff that the old one did not...the old method was more like a modern carrier where they used primarily manpower. In GSF/USF/SSF we assume there is better equipment for the job.
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