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Author Topic: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement  (Read 616 times)

BATTLEMASTER

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Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« on: 02 August 2021, 08:16:26 »
I've started dabbling in playing space games using vector movement through MegaMek.  MegaMek makes it very easy to track vector movement and calculates movement for the players.  I think it's really neat, like playing turn-based Asteroids!  Vector movement makes space play a lot more interesting than 'mechs in space :)

Aside from defensive maneuvers like yaws, rolls, and end-overs, I haven't quite figured out tactics that are much different from non-vector movement.  You're still best off getting at the rear arc or side arcs of enemy units, which I think is made even easier with vector movement, especially with units that have high thrust values.  Being able to pinch targets with a unit on either side is still important too.

Is there anything specific to vector movement worth considering tactics-wise?
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AlphaMirage

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #1 on: 02 August 2021, 08:45:13 »
I think you really nailed it on the head. Vector movement also forces you to really think about the facing and armor in new and different ways. You can really jam up the works by speeding up or slowing down to keep out of the broadsides at close range. This makes units that can do that (mostly 4+ safe) very powerful while limiting their exposure to the big battleship or Black Lion style battlecruiser guns

Weirdo

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #2 on: 02 August 2021, 09:23:57 »
Speed matters noticeably less if you're playing a Star League-style ship with bracket-heavy broadsides. If your goal is to stay at Long or Extreme range as much as possible, you can set a course along your edge of the map(or kinda close to it, you still want some room to maneuver if/when the other finally gets close), and pound away as your opponent tries to close.

Obviously high thrust is useful in countering this,  but there's limits as to how fast you can go, due to the need to not fly off the map edge.

A big thing to remember is that angle of attack modifiers are based off of course, not facing. If you're flying sideways relative to your opponent, it doesn't matter which part of your ship is actually pointed at them, they've got a +2 to hit you, equivalent to a full range bracket. Very useful to keep this in mind when you're rotating your ship to bring fresh armor to bear.
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AlphaMirage

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #3 on: 02 August 2021, 09:31:48 »
I always use the rolling map rules during vector. Unless it's a Clan Trial space is functionally limitless. Conducting a fast pass is an excellent counter to long range broadside fighters

Makariel

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #4 on: 12 August 2021, 15:13:21 »
Just getting back into the hobby after some time away, and Warships always appealed to me (I was the only person I knew who bought the Battlespace box ;-)) - where can I find how Megamek can be used to play space battles?

BATTLEMASTER

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #5 on: 13 August 2021, 06:26:48 »
Just getting back into the hobby after some time away, and Warships always appealed to me (I was the only person I knew who bought the Battlespace box ;-)) - where can I find how Megamek can be used to play space battles?

I was going to say that there's a YouTube tutorial for that, but it doesn't seem like there is  :o

I'll give you a quick rundown to at least let you get units on the map:

Assuming you're already in the game lobby:

1) Select units with unit selection filters.  You're looking for the aerospace-related stuff.  Remember that anything jumpship and warship are considered advanced rules now.

2) Make sure the space map is selected in the map section of the lobby.  You can adjust the size of the space map as you like.  If you're using vector movement rules and involuntarily fly off the map in-game, your spacecraft will return to the map in some turns dependent on its velocity upon leaving the map (IIRC).

3) Add a bot if you'd like an AI target to shoot at, or for one to shoot at you.

4) Start the game!

MegaMek uses the current rules for space combat found in their respective rulebooks.
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Makariel

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #6 on: 17 August 2021, 05:02:22 »
I was going to say that there's a YouTube tutorial for that, but it doesn't seem like there is  :o
Seems aerospace combat enthusiasts are a very rare breed ;)

Thanks for the rundown, downloaded the latest version of Megamek now, will be trying to have some warships flying around :)

Cannonshop

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #7 on: 17 August 2021, 08:27:48 »
Seems aerospace combat enthusiasts are a very rare breed ;)

Thanks for the rundown, downloaded the latest version of Megamek now, will be trying to have some warships flying around :)

Yes, we are.  Rare enough that we don't exist in the writing staff and the only 'example' for tactics you'll find in the fiction, is "Ramming for Great Justice!!"

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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #8 on: 17 August 2021, 13:33:04 »
I need to get the newest MM after loosing my PC last year.

I'd love to play out some AT battles in my spare time (what little there is of it)
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Re: Space Combat Tactics with Vector Movement
« Reply #9 on: 17 August 2021, 14:08:38 »
Rare is an understatement, I think...  8)