Author Topic: Silent Death and vector movement.  (Read 4250 times)

Offline Horned Owl

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Silent Death and vector movement.
« on: October 03, 2011, 06:48:22 AM »
Horned Owl:
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Aw, but that´s a matter of taste. I loved the idea of vector movement, and the mechanic translated wonderfully when I applied it to Silent Death and Renegade Legion Interceptor. It simply felt more "right" to me. Though I agree that cinematic movement is a lot easier to keep track of.

Dmcgee:
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I haven't tried it, yet, with Silent Death.  How does movement translate with regard to turning, etc?  In other words, in Silent Death, one pays 3 points of movement for a one hexside turn, and 3 + (Pilot roll) for a two hexside turn; do you simply apply thrust to turn, giving fast fighters the advantage?  If Full Thrust is supposedly more realistic, wouldn't this lead to extreme g-forces during those turns, making structurally fragile craft rip apart?

Yes, I realize that I am being a bit technical, but I am curious about gameplay and fun, and do believe that the current movement system for SD is flawed.  I would appreciate the insight.

Also, forgive the thread hijacking.  We may have to move this discussion to the General Section.


Oh, a SD player!  ;) It´s always nice to exchange views. We used the vector movement from 2nd edition Full Thrust (which is quite different from 1st edition). We let all fighters turn for free, with a pilot roll for every 60° – which meant that ships could veer terribly off course if you failed your roll with a fast fighter. Gunboats could only turn 90°, and warhounds only 60°, in between applying forward or reverse thrust. We also borrowed the Interceptor system of rolling to avoid losing consciousness for rapid thrust changes (over 8 units difference), which balanced out the faster fighters nicely. In addition, the smaller fighters usually have nose-mounted weapons whose limited fields of fire counteract the advantage of manoeuverability.

By changing the firing restrictions of the larger weapons systems from [the target fighter´s thrust rating] to [actual vector speed], gameplay became quite interesting. There was actually quite a lot of satisfaction to be had waiting patiently for one of those pesky Darts to slow down for a turn, and then nailing it with the Seraph´s laser. We also decided that if movement vectors matched with less than 30° difference (either tailgating or meeting the enemy ship head-on), firing restriction speeds were doubled.

Torpedoes were already hard to keep track of in the original system, and really became something of a nuisance with vector movement.
The idea we finally stuck with was to let torps ignore vector movement, always turning towards their target at the start of their activation and then travelling in a straight line for their full movement allowance. Firing torps was decided before movement orders for the ships were revealed. When fired, their first activation was in a straight line from the nose of the ship. This worked well in cluttered battlefields – we had endless fun dodging behind asteroids or trying to manoeuvre the slower enemy ships in place to catch the torps meant for us.

Missile salvoes worked great with the 2nd edition Full Thrust missile rules. By ignoring the Gunnery roll and just placing the missiles where you thought the enemy was going, missiles suddenly relied on the skill of the gamer and not on dumb luck.
"How was I supposed to know he was an unarmed man? His back was to me."

Offline dmcgee1

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Re: Silent Death and vector movement.
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2011, 12:26:58 PM »
It sounds cool; it really does.  I never found torps to be tedious, honestly.

Allowing fighters to turn for free (any ship, for that matter, seems a bit wrong, though.  I thought that thrust points had to be used to turn; am I wrong?
If sing, sang, and sung, sink, sank, and sunk, and drink, drank, and drunk, how is it that it isn't bring, brang, and brung, think, thank and thunk, and ding, dang, and dung?

Don't even get me started about bad, badder and baddest.  Run, ran AND run...again?  C'mon!

Offline Horned Owl

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Re: Silent Death and vector movement.
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2011, 07:53:38 AM »
The rationale was that fighters in a (largely) gravity-free continuum actually have to expend only a minimum of thrust to turn around their axis. One burst from the front right and rear left thrusters to start turning, then the same amount of thrust to stop the turn. This does not change their heading (vector), only their orientation (where the nose of the ship points to).

To change heading, a fighter has to expend thrust. (Remember the old computer game Azarian, or Asteroids?) The beauty is that, automatically, the faster you are already going, the more thrust you have to expend.
"How was I supposed to know he was an unarmed man? His back was to me."

Offline dmcgee1

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Re: Silent Death and vector movement.
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2011, 02:26:38 AM »
I get what you're saying, but if one uses the rules because of realism, shouldn't one then make that thrust burn (even directional thrust) cost something from the available pool of thrust points?  After all, the pilot needs to spend time (along with available thrust) to change orientation, thereby affecting vectored movement; in other words, it isn't just a simulation of the ability of the ship, but also of the time spent by the pilot to manuever the craft.

In my opinion, a 60° turn should cost 1 Thrust Point to offset the time and thrust.  Even in the game, Asteroids, one had to hold the button in order to turn the craft.  This still gives the advantage to the speedier craft, as there are more points available for orientational change.

I am going to have to try this with Dodge; he has always been a proponent of FT rules.
If sing, sang, and sung, sink, sank, and sunk, and drink, drank, and drunk, how is it that it isn't bring, brang, and brung, think, thank and thunk, and ding, dang, and dung?

Don't even get me started about bad, badder and baddest.  Run, ran AND run...again?  C'mon!

Offline Horned Owl

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Re: Silent Death and vector movement.
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2011, 02:44:23 AM »
Of course, that would be more realistic. We considered it, but dropped it because vector movement favoured faster fighters anyway (disproportional to the cinematic rules). Turning costs add to this issue. You´ll also find that you need to change points costs to reflect this.

By all means, try it! I´d love to hear your opinion!
"How was I supposed to know he was an unarmed man? His back was to me."

Offline Horned Owl

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Re: Silent Death and vector movement.
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2011, 10:55:17 AM »
Anyway, are you using 1st or 2nd edition Full Thrust vector rules? They´re much different.
"How was I supposed to know he was an unarmed man? His back was to me."