General Discussion

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General Discussion

Postby Moonsword on Mon 07 Aug 2017 05:17

I'm up to turn 66 and the war is effectively over although the linguists need a little time to figure out how to tell everyone that. "Cooling Debris" was written after the first WP assault I'd ever played turned into a one-sided slaughter with just a few damaged ships and one lost frigate on my side.

The second time around, with the Confederation probing an unfamiliar WP in heavy force, was rather less one-sided. Nearly thirty ships or bases were complete losses, three more were crippled (including both flagships), and the enemy surrendered their flagship under a slightly over-generous interpretation of the "no life support" rules in D7.04.3.2 (Q was shot out, they're surrounded in a hopeless meat-grinder, but they were probably not down to an hour, nor were weapons gone). At that point, the outcome of the battle was clear. Continuing to fire wouldn't have noticeably kept me from rolling over him but might have convinced my admiral and government that the enemy was completely irrational.

The second time around, I probably should have committed some of the forces I left guarding the WP to the HW assault but the end result was several crippled cruisers and frigates, one more dead frigate, and the enemy's homeworld surrendered to my forces. At this point, it's all over but the shouting while we establish full communications and try to negotiate some sort of mutually acceptable treaty. Frankly, two WP assaults, one of them large and followed by a second significant fleet action is enough for me to feel satisfied I've gotten my money's worth out of this war. I'd prefer not to have to interact with the invasion rules and the NPR is at this point feeling rather more rational.

I'll see if I can scrape together some more plotting on what's happened and how the political maneuvers are coming along later on. In the meantime, TCN Vice-Admiral Frederick Dyer was reminded of a line by one of his countrymen: "Believe me, nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won."
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Cralis on Tue 08 Aug 2017 02:14

"all over but the shouting" -- that's the best description of "conquered politics" that I've heard yet.
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Moonsword on Tue 08 Aug 2017 06:39

A few observations from this whole series of exploding ships in no particular order:

  • My SRW frigates were about as useful and as vulnerable as I'd expected. I suspect I'll be keeping them around at least a little longer but I need to get S1 into them pronto.
  • Having a solid phalanx of mixed-range cruisers has been very useful for me, with two of them being the only ships present in all four battles of the war (TCS Zanzibar and TCS Correintes) and the class formed the core of the fleet throughout. Pre-war, I was entertaining thoughts of refitting them to a pure LRW design. After this, they can pry the force beam mounts out of my cold, dead hulls.
  • Not investing further in specialized Ib-equipped WP assault ships beyond the squadron of CLs I built was a costly mistake I need to rectify before I run into another NPR who's feeling a mite unreasonable about things. The TS reduction on a squadron of BCs would have made that opening turn or two much more impressive than three CLs and six FGs could.
  • Defenders with Pg are spectacularly unpleasant to deal with in a WP assault. Pg also performs poorly in any scenario where you need some sort of extended engagement range. This is not a surprise but it was amply confirmed to my satisfaction in the two engagements in Turn 66.
  • As a shipboard weapon G has issues, but I found it pretty handy as an option for XO racks. While it's pretty expected on the 20 HS BS1 attrition bases, my favorite moment with it was when the enemy's battle squadron (two BC, one BBb) salvoed a dozen Gb off their XO racks into the face of a frigate that was annoying them to rather lethal effect.
  • I need to get armed buoys into the field on an expedited basis to make defending my own WPs easier.
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Cralis on Tue 08 Aug 2017 15:46

Moonsword wrote:[*]My SRW frigates were about as useful and as vulnerable as I'd expected. I suspect I'll be keeping them around at least a little longer but I need to get S1 into them pronto.


I engined FG are a little bit lackluster. They aren't as fast or maneuverable as a CT and they are underpowered compared to a DD. But FG really shines as a J engine hull...

[*]Having a solid phalanx of mixed-range cruisers has been very useful for me, with two of them being the only ships present in all four battles of the war (TCS Zanzibar and TCS Correintes) and the class formed the core of the fleet throughout. Pre-war, I was entertaining thoughts of refitting them to a pure LRW design. After this, they can pry the force beam mounts out of my cold, dead hulls.


Do you think that is (or would be) true with E or L instead of F?

[*]Not investing further in specialized Ib-equipped WP assault ships beyond the squadron of CLs I built was a costly mistake I need to rectify before I run into another NPR who's feeling a mite unreasonable about things. The TS reduction on a squadron of BCs would have made that opening turn or two much more impressive than three CLs and six FGs could.


Is that because of their smaller sizes? Most players that I've seen do this make the largest size possible and then build specialized small units (CT, FG, etc.) to match with that hull to maximize WP transit capacity. Do you think that this would that have been a better implementation of the concept?

[*]Defenders with Pg are spectacularly unpleasant to deal with in a WP assault. Pg also performs poorly in any scenario where you need some sort of extended engagement range. This is not a surprise but it was amply confirmed to my satisfaction in the two engagements in Turn 66.


Particularly in WP defense because the defender controls the engagement range. Large ships or bases bristeling with Pg are downright evil at range 1.

[*]As a shipboard weapon G has issues, but I found it pretty handy as an option for XO racks. While it's pretty expected on the 20 HS BS1 attrition bases, my favorite moment with it was when the enemy's battle squadron (two BC, one BBb) salvoed a dozen Gb off their XO racks into the face of a frigate that was annoying them to rather lethal effect.


Later versions of G really come into play in the same way that CAM did in Classic Starfire. Later versions cando quite a bit of damage, especially when flushed in a datagroup alpha strike.

[*]I need to get armed buoys into the field on an expedited basis to make defending my own WPs easier.[/list]


Yes sir. While you can't make enough to stop a determined WP assault, you can certainly use them to chop the legs out from under an assault, or just burn the first couple waves to stellar ash. Of course, they can return the favor with weaponized drones!
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Whitecold on Tue 08 Aug 2017 16:14

Is that because of their smaller sizes? Most players that I've seen do this make the largest size possible and then build specialized small units (CT, FG, etc.) to match with that hull to maximize WP transit capacity. Do you think that this would that have been a better implementation of the concept?


I am quite taken with the idea of fitting out CLs with Icb, which would get a total of +4 TS, plus the engines save quite some cash, and they still have respectable speed 4. You can cram quite some of these through a WP, but I never got to test their effectiveness in TPoD
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Moonsword on Tue 08 Aug 2017 19:49

This was tactical game #4 I've played and the second WP assault, as well as the single largest engagement I've dealt with. I'm still figuring out what I'm doing. In hindsight, I know I bungled part of the WP transit movement rules, for instance.

My response is going to be kind of long, with a few designs dropped in and commentary on the strategic side I was looking at to give more context to the decisions I made. The NPR - their name is the Eridellan Hoplarchy, but my "player" side doesn't know that yet - was actually a very small multi-system with a low population homeworld (the result of a berserker attack in their backstory), just some very advanced hardware and a few peculiar notions of how to build a large warship. If the Confederation had realized what they were dealing with, they would have gone on the offensive a lot earlier, but they feared that the higher tech meant that the NPR had been in space longer (true) and was potentially significantly larger (very much not true).

If anyone's curious, I can put provide a reasonably up to date WP map for the Confederation.

Cralis wrote:I engined FG are a little bit lackluster. They aren't as fast or maneuverable as a CT and they are underpowered compared to a DD. But FG really shines as a J engine hull...


At the time the decision was made to build that class, the Confederation was EL 5 (EL 6 as of turn 65) with a build rate advantage from section K, so they're able to build frigates in one turn and the frigates have a better balance of firepower and passives than corvettes with F, which was the only SRW available at the time they were designed. If I keep playing this game that long (and I probably will), EL 7 and (AM1) are probably going to see an SRW DD replace them in the role of "designated cannon fodder" if I keep the light SRW niche alive.

The defenses actually held up reasonably unless they were being utterly pummeled. This was a high mortality engagement where I threw a dozen Argo Navis frigates high in the WP assault queue because they were SRW specialists that carried a relatively high percentage of passives for their size (especially compared to the other choice for that slot, the CAs). Once they actually broke off the WP and had larger ships around and hurling fire to distract the enemy, they did a respectable job and the maneuverability edge over a DD was helpful as the battle developed.

Here's the design if you're curious:
Code: Select all
Argo Navis-class FG    3-(XOa)     22 HS / 16 TS
[3] S×3 A1×6 (Ib) (Ib) (Ib) Fb Qb (Ib) Fb  [6/3]
Trg: 1     Def: 0     Cost: 329.1 / 49.4
16 HTK     S×3 A1×6      Fb×2


I'm of two minds on the question of datalink for this class. Omitting Z helps keep this a very austere design (Zb would boost the overall cost by over 12%) and in most engagements, it's not necessary for the role the Argo Navis occupies because I don't have Dz yet. Not having Z equipped turned into a liability in the WP defense battle in Turn 62, though, although I'm in the process of figuring out a better way to deploy a significant WP defense forward other than "park a fleet on the WP".

Cralis wrote:Do you think that is (or would be) true with E or L instead of F?


I don't think I'd have the same degree of attachment to its use on this particular design niche, no. I see F as a generalist weapon with decent range, decent firepower, and no frills. The Queenslands have turned into medium weight generalist sluggers that are able to guard a WP, participate in a WP assault, screen the battle line, or do any other odd job the admiral needs done with great efficiency despite being the least advanced class fielded in the war.

Code: Select all
Queensland Block II-Z-class CA    8-(XOa)     60 HS / 60 TS
[3] S×5 A×5 Zb (Ia×2) Qa Mg (Ia×2) Rb Rb M1 Qa Rb Fb Rb (Ia×2) Mg Rb Ya Rb Qa Rb Rb Qa (Ia×2) Fb  [4/2]
Trg: 2     Def: 0     Cost: 1034 / 155.1
37 HTK     S×5 A×5      Fb ×2 Rb ×8 (200 MSP)


The war caught me in the middle of introducing new hardware - hell, I was just beginning to get Zb into the CAs - and the cruisers were waiting for the BCs to come into service before they were withdrawn to the yards for major refitting. I still hadn't determined what I even wanted to refit them with for one thing. Another one of those "in hindsight" observations is that I should have shipped out the necessary components and done refits on the CAs near the front lines with an (MS) or two to bring A1 into the design and upgrade Q. Half of the CAs had their "Z" refit applied that way, in fact.

Cralis wrote:Is that because of their smaller sizes? Most players that I've seen do this make the largest size possible and then build specialized small units (CT, FG, etc.) to match with that hull to maximize WP transit capacity. Do you think that this would that have been a better implementation of the concept?


This comes back to me not really knowing what I'm doing in a lot of ways. I wasn't thinking in terms of C4.01.2
when I was designing the Cavalier CLs (5 Fb, 4 S, 9 A1), nor did I properly understand it when I set up the WP assault queue.

The choice of hull size reflected a preference for a design I could build and get into space in numbers quickly if necessary. (CLs take me two turns to build, BCs took four until very recently.) In hindsight, following up with a proper SRW BC would have been a reasonable decision. If I didn't do that, I probably should have followed up with another squadron of the Cavaliers to provide some more heft to the early assault waves. In the battle itself, that was partially compensated by an allied squadron of CLs that filled a similar role but with some heavier SRW designs, my suspicion is losses would have been lower for the TCN because those Pg bases could have been cleared out more efficiently.

With a 30 HS capacity WP, if I understand the rules correctly, I could have squeezed three BCs through per turn, which is just as many CLs as I sent in. Those BCs would have had in the neighborhood of eight Fb, have been just as fast as the CLs were, and had at least 16 spaces of passives, probably 20 given the TCN wasn't of the opinion Da was an efficient enough defense against Ptca to merit displacing some of the passives. (They've very recently introduced Dca under N9.04.2 but were attempting to wait until they could bring their first BB squadron forward to begin pulling ships off the front lines.)

As for where they got the information on BB from to begin prototyping early enough to make that plan realistic, that's part of the technology exchange President Reed suggested here.

Cralis wrote:Particularly in WP defense because the defender controls the engagement range. Large ships or bases bristeling with Pg are downright evil at range 1.


The 20 HS BS1s with four Pgb each were bad enough to deal with and cheap enough to build in numbers despite the NPR's very limited economy. Strategically, I should have recognized the NPR needed to move to a much more defense-oriented strategy earlier on rather than building up their war fleet. Even introduced late enough the enemy only had a half-dozen on the WP (with two more sitting in orbit waiting to be towed out - they needed more than just the one tug, too) those things were extremely painful.

Code: Select all
BS1-Pg 8a-class BS1    4-(XOe)     20 HS / 14 TS
[2] S1×6 A1×6 Pgb Qb Pgb ?a Pgb Pgb  [0/0]
Trg: 1     Def: -1     Cost: 315 / 15.8
18 HTK     S1×6 A1×6      Pgb ×4


Springing for ?a was a bit costly but the inefficiency it piled on top of the transit effects (for a total HEN of -3) was worth it in my opinion.

Cralis wrote:Later versions of G really come into play in the same way that CAM did in Classic Starfire. Later versions cando quite a bit of damage, especially when flushed in a datagroup alpha strike.


I get that impression. The NPR did introduce Gb as a shipboard weapon very late on their SRW DD (they changed design strategies in response to losing half their active battle fleet for some odd reason...) to help compensate for the lack of range in Pgb.

Cralis wrote:Yes sir. While you can't make enough to stop a determined WP assault, you can certainly use them to chop the legs out from under an assault, or just burn the first couple waves to stellar ash. Of course, they can return the favor with weaponized drones!


My thinking is the buoys are there to supplement the bases sitting on the WP (or the fleet sitting there until bases can be shipped forward and assembled, a capability I'm working toward properly acquiring). Having a wave of explosive mines or a lot of XO-rack buoys stuffed with Gb is going to take the starch out of a wave or two and give the crewed defenders more time to go to battle stations.
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Cralis on Wed 09 Aug 2017 02:45

Moonsword wrote:This was tactical game #4 I've played and the second WP assault, as well as the single largest engagement I've dealt with. I'm still figuring out what I'm doing. In hindsight, I know I bungled part of the WP transit movement rules, for instance.


Oh don't worry, we've all done it. Even those of us who write the rules! Sometimes it does lead to some funny explanations. Perhaps the funniest one I heard was from a Classic Starfire game I ran, where a player forgot to put boat bays on his space station. In the next turn's write-up he explained how the shady contractors had all be shot and shoved out of an airlock before nationalizing the company and using it's assets to refit the space stations with boat bays. It was a several paragraph explanation. Thinking about it still makes me laugh. :lol:

My response is going to be kind of long, with a few designs dropped in and commentary on the strategic side I was looking at to give more context to the decisions I made. The NPR - their name is the Eridellan Hoplarchy, but my "player" side doesn't know that yet - was actually a very small multi-system with a low population homeworld (the result of a berserker attack in their backstory), just some very advanced hardware and a few peculiar notions of how to build a large warship. If the Confederation had realized what they were dealing with, they would have gone on the offensive a lot earlier, but they feared that the higher tech meant that the NPR had been in space longer (true) and was potentially significantly larger (very much not true).

If anyone's curious, I can put provide a reasonably up to date WP map for the Confederation.


Sounds cool! You definitely should update with a map.

Cralis wrote:I engined FG are a little bit lackluster. They aren't as fast or maneuverable as a CT and they are underpowered compared to a DD. But FG really shines as a J engine hull...


At the time the decision was made to build that class, the Confederation was EL 5 (EL 6 as of turn 65) with a build rate advantage from section K, so they're able to build frigates in one turn and the frigates have a better balance of firepower and passives than corvettes with F, which was the only SRW available at the time they were designed. If I keep playing this game that long (and I probably will), EL 7 and (AM1) are probably going to see an SRW DD replace them in the role of "designated cannon fodder" if I keep the light SRW niche alive.


I actually lost a battle once because I ignored my opponent's Escorts with 1 L mounted in each. By the time I started in on them they were moving in close and those L at point blank turned the tide of the battle... but it all depends upon how good your tactics and ship designs are.

Here's the design if you're curious:
Code: Select all
Argo Navis-class FG    3-(XOa)     22 HS / 16 TS
[3] S×3 A1×6 (Ib) (Ib) (Ib) Fb Qb (Ib) Fb  [6/3]
Trg: 1     Def: 0     Cost: 329.1 / 49.4
16 HTK     S×3 A1×6      Fb×2


Interesting. I was going to say that most players prefer more shields than armor... then I realized it was A1. You're right on needing S1.

I'm of two minds on the question of datalink for this class. Omitting Z helps keep this a very austere design (Zb would boost the overall cost by over 12%) and in most engagements, it's not necessary for the role the Argo Navis occupies because I don't have Dz yet. Not having Z equipped turned into a liability in the WP defense battle in Turn 62, though, although I'm in the process of figuring out a better way to deploy a significant WP defense forward other than "park a fleet on the WP".


The first and primary advantage of Z is the ability to fire more units at the same time. Since a lot of firepower is directed at only a few targets on any given turn, it's advantageous to do large amounts of damage if you can get the shots in before your opponent can fire the target's weapons first.

And as you noted, it's especially true in WP defenses.

Cralis wrote:Do you think that is (or would be) true with E or L instead of F?


I don't think I'd have the same degree of attachment to its use on this particular design niche, no. I see F as a generalist weapon with decent range, decent firepower, and no frills. The Queenslands have turned into medium weight generalist sluggers that are able to guard a WP, participate in a WP assault, screen the battle line, or do any other odd job the admiral needs done with great efficiency despite being the least advanced class fielded in the war.


Oh definitely. The advantage of L or E is being able to bypass some or all of either A or S. But as you say, F does have quite a bit of range and that helps. Plus if you do manage to get in close, it does a lot of damage.

The war caught me in the middle of introducing new hardware - hell, I was just beginning to get Zb into the CAs - and the cruisers were waiting for the BCs to come into service before they were withdrawn to the yards for major refitting. I still hadn't determined what I even wanted to refit them with for one thing. Another one of those "in hindsight" observations is that I should have shipped out the necessary components and done refits on the CAs near the front lines with an (MS) or two to bring A1 into the design and upgrade Q. Half of the CAs had their "Z" refit applied that way, in fact.


That can result in you being in the middle of refits, on the front line, when the enemy attacks. Fortunately it sounds like that didn't happen to you.

Cralis wrote:Is that because of their smaller sizes? Most players that I've seen do this make the largest size possible and then build specialized small units (CT, FG, etc.) to match with that hull to maximize WP transit capacity. Do you think that this would that have been a better implementation of the concept?


This comes back to me not really knowing what I'm doing in a lot of ways. I wasn't thinking in terms of C4.01.2
when I was designing the Cavalier CLs (5 Fb, 4 S, 9 A1), nor did I properly understand it when I set up the WP assault queue.


Oh ok. I was thinking that you had designed the CLs and FGs to group together. It's an odd combination that doesn't fit many WP sizes, that's why I asked.

With a 30 HS capacity WP, if I understand the rules correctly, I could have squeezed three BCs through per turn, which is just as many CLs as I sent in.


80 HS BC with Ib would have a transit size of 69%, or 55 HS. So it would take 2 movement pulses per BC (55/30 FRU) ... yep, 3 BC per tactical turn. CL with Ib would be 31 HS. Wow... just make them 43 HS CL and you could put six through a tactical turn (assuming, of course, that my doing math at 0130 hours has not caused me to make mistakes)

And that's what I meant by designing ships for specific WP assaults...

Cralis wrote:Particularly in WP defense because the defender controls the engagement range. Large ships or bases bristeling with Pg are downright evil at range 1.


The 20 HS BS1s with four Pgb each were bad enough to deal with and cheap enough to build in numbers despite the NPR's very limited economy. Strategically, I should have recognized the NPR needed to move to a much more defense-oriented strategy earlier on rather than building up their war fleet. Even introduced late enough the enemy only had a half-dozen on the WP (with two more sitting in orbit waiting to be towed out - they needed more than just the one tug, too) those things were extremely painful.


I cut it, but that's a pretty good design. Marvin once told me about a game where a player built asteroid forts with Pg and made a nigh impassable WP defense. That was part of the inspiration behind SSF's tractor rules that limit how large of an asteroid that can be tractored...

Springing for ?a was a bit costly but the inefficiency it piled on top of the transit effects (for a total HEN of -3) was worth it in my opinion.


Oh heck yeah. The extra EM modifier is absolutely worth the cost.

Cralis wrote:Later versions of G really come into play in the same way that CAM did in Classic Starfire. Later versions cando quite a bit of damage, especially when flushed in a datagroup alpha strike.


I get that impression. The NPR did introduce Gb as a shipboard weapon very late on their SRW DD (they changed design strategies in response to losing half their active battle fleet for some odd reason...) to help compensate for the lack of range in Pgb.


Heh, that's a pretty good choice because you can use the GM on XO racks whether or not you have launchers. The basic issue with G is that the effectiveness drops off like a cliff, but I could imagine combined on XO racks with Pg in a range controlled situation (like a WP defense) that's not a big issue.

My thinking is the buoys are there to supplement the bases sitting on the WP (or the fleet sitting there until bases can be shipped forward and assembled, a capability I'm working toward properly acquiring). Having a wave of explosive mines or a lot of XO-rack buoys stuffed with Gb is going to take the starch out of a wave or two and give the crewed defenders more time to go to battle stations.


Don't discount Buoy2 with APew using F. Sure they are one shot, but they can do quite a bit of damage. Either with XO or APew the buoy is a one-shot anyway.
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Re: General Discussion

Postby Moonsword on Wed 09 Aug 2017 06:12

Thanks for all the feedback, Cralis. It's nice to talk this over with someone.

Cralis wrote:Sounds cool! You definitely should update with a map.


Here you go:
http://imgur.com/a/n7FIr

I haven't updated it in a few turns - there's a surveyed system or two that are missing, plus the system beyond the Sargasso - but it should still give you the context for what's going on. Colors denote star color (with the "top" being the primary). Circles are unoccupied stars, diamonds are Terran colonized systems, and squares are enemy systems.

Cralis wrote:I actually lost a battle once because I ignored my opponent's Escorts with 1 L mounted in each. By the time I started in on them they were moving in close and those L at point blank turned the tide of the battle... but it all depends upon how good your tactics and ship designs are.


That's one of the theories behind having them operate alongside the CAs and BCs. The enemy can either ignore the cruisers that are going to be hammering them or they can let their screen try to focus on my screen while they go for my heavy ships and prevent them from having a free pass.

Cralis wrote:Interesting. I was going to say that most players prefer more shields than armor... then I realized it was A1. You're right on needing S1.


I do too although I prefer balanced passive arrangements overall. It's another recent development, though, even more so than Dca. Given system availability, I'd move toward a six HS passive/?a arrangement but ?a hasn't been a priority at any point in this war. None of the enemy's weapons are affected much by it (something the TCN was told off-screen by the ACN).

Cralis wrote:The first and primary advantage of Z is the ability to fire more units at the same time. Since a lot of firepower is directed at only a few targets on any given turn, it's advantageous to do large amounts of damage if you can get the shots in before your opponent can fire the target's weapons first.

And as you noted, it's especially true in WP defenses.


Yeah. That's one of the reasons my ally (Axanar) does use Z in their frigates despite having a lot fewer MCr to throw at the problem. I was thinking in terms of coordinated salvo fire, which is not relevant for F. I actually wound up doing fire by squadron organization anyway (for both sides) once enough ships were through for the purposes of maintaining my sanity. The first few turns were done by individual fire. Having justification to run things the way I'd rather do it anyway for a saner play experience is another reason to carry Z, I guess.

I'm hoping to avoid 30+ ship slugouts for a little while, though. :mrgreen:

Cralis wrote:Oh definitely. The advantage of L or E is being able to bypass some or all of either A or S. But as you say, F does have quite a bit of range and that helps. Plus if you do manage to get in close, it does a lot of damage.


I'm aware of the skipping effect but F has the advantage of simplicity. It doesn't "waste" damage and harmonizes well with all LRW and most SRW weapons, which is what I'm looking for.

The Confederation picked up L (and G for that matter) when they amalgamated a minor NPR in Turn 63 but isn't in a great hurry to introduce it beyond the handful of CTs they inherited. They also haven't mentioned it to their Axanarian allies... who have never mentioned that they picked up E off that berserker they ran into, either. Both empires regard it as a source of technological surprise to an opponent and their partnership is relatively recent, although neither one regards the other as a threat at this point given the state of relations. (The Axanarians do look askance at certain vociferous portions of the Terran commentariat from time to time although as a burgeoning true democracy, they're getting their own experience with that kind of thing.)

Cralis wrote:That can result in you being in the middle of refits, on the front line, when the enemy attacks. Fortunately it sounds like that didn't happen to you.


The Z refits were extremely rapid (it's just a 4 HS refit, including system build time) and an MS could handle a half-dozen of them a turn, so I conducted them a little further back from the front line and rotated the ships out sequentially when it was their turn. Six of the CAs were in yard hands in Pavonis for refitting, so I only had half of them to deal with. It also took on an urgency that the armor refit didn't because the first battle of the war

Cralis wrote:80 HS BC with Ib would have a transit size of 69%, or 55 HS. So it would take 2 movement pulses per BC (55/30 FRU) ... yep, 3 BC per tactical turn. CL with Ib would be 31 HS. Wow... just make them 43 HS CL and you could put six through a tactical turn (assuming, of course, that my doing math at 0130 hours has not caused me to make mistakes)

And that's what I meant by designing ships for specific WP assaults...


I'll have to consider that in the future. If the Eridellans had managed to beat that assault off, I was pondering (very loosely) a CTf to push the TS down to move three through every pulse.

In this case, the assault was carried out the turn after the WP was found (the survey was turns 64-65) because the Confederation had guessed - correctly - that the enemy might not be all that large when they discovered no WP defenses in the Sargasso. They were hoping to hammer through it before attritional defenses could make that too costly to contemplate. You see some of the beginnings of why in "Cooling Debris" but I'm not sure how much of that information was metagamed since I can see both sides of the equation. They were also hoping that a quick counter-offensive and seizure of enemy territory might put them in an advantageous bargaining position to settle this affair once and for all.

Cralis wrote:I cut it, but that's a pretty good design. Marvin once told me about a game where a player built asteroid forts with Pg and made a nigh impassable WP defense. That was part of the inspiration behind SSF's tractor rules that limit how large of an asteroid that can be tractored...


I had some feedback on them from another player in the design phase, culling from a range of options including a more austere BS1 that omitted some of the firepower for equal defenses. The goal was something the Eridellans could build quickly, in numbers, to smother the WP in Pg.

Axanar is actually considering a similar approach for their home system defenses after experiencing just how unpleasant those things were although they're likely to go with a larger, tougher base instead of a small attritional design. They had a trio of Glory CLs on hand and got to see most of the Terran reports although their losses had more to do with enemy Ptcas... who got a very rude surprise when some lucky rolls from the cruiser's Dca swatted most of the first torpedoes to acquire them. It was a pretty fun game, just a bit sprawling because of the sheer number of hulls involved.

Cralis wrote:Heh, that's a pretty good choice because you can use the GM on XO racks whether or not you have launchers. The basic issue with G is that the effectiveness drops off like a cliff, but I could imagine combined on XO racks with Pg in a range controlled situation (like a WP defense) that's not a big issue.


G mounted in XO racks is turning into a front-runner for a close-in defensive buoy design.

Cralis wrote:Don't discount Buoy2 with APew using F. Sure they are one shot, but they can do quite a bit of damage. Either with XO or APew the buoy is a one-shot anyway.


That's one of the major options in play, although I'm still working on acquiring APew.

Also, forgot to answer this one last night:
Whitecold wrote:
Is that because of their smaller sizes? Most players that I've seen do this make the largest size possible and then build specialized small units (CT, FG, etc.) to match with that hull to maximize WP transit capacity. Do you think that this would that have been a better implementation of the concept?


I am quite taken with the idea of fitting out CLs with Icb, which would get a total of +4 TS, plus the engines save quite some cash, and they still have respectable speed 4. You can cram quite some of these through a WP, but I never got to test their effectiveness in TPoD


That's one definite possibility. The high strategic speed also makes them useful as "first responders" moving alongside the freighters carrying my buoys and the construction ships. I will have to think about that even if Ic puts a squeeze on my tonnage.
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