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Author Topic: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser  (Read 10771 times)

Jellico

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WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« on: 28 December 2013, 18:31:20 »
Cruiser-class Cruiser, Field Report 2765:DC


The Cruiser-class cruiser comes to us from a throwaway line in the Star League sourcebook. These were very early hegemony cruisers that took part in James McKenna’s “persuasion campaigns”. The actual origin of the Cruiser-class goes back well before then. The original concept dates to the 22nd century as a combat unit based around nuclear warfare in space. Actual combat realities in the 24th century made the limitations of this combat style apparent, but this wouldn’t be immediately apparent. However the early 24th century was a period of experimentation as the Hegemony navy found its feet so the Cruisers saw production.

At 500,000 tons the Cruiser is small by what we understand a cruiser to be. Even the contemporary Dar-class LIGHT cruiser was 680,000 tons as was the Lola-class destroyer. Despite its small size the Cruiser packed a lot of firepower. The NAC bays make it quite comparable to the Dart. The Dart has more armour, but the Cruiser’s capital missiles make critical hits far more likely. The capital missiles probably give us the reason for the Cruiser’s existence. They far outrange the Dreadnought’s light AC AA batteries. While aerospace fighters were not the dominant force they are now, they existed as did combat small craft. It is also interesting to note that the Quixote offering very similar capabilities in a more capable package was introduced in 2350 with the last Cruiser being decommissioned by 2400. Coincidence?
Besides tactical obsolescence the Cruiser suffered from some unplanned for ergonomic problems. Most notably the bow mounted cargo bays and flight deck meant that the Cruiser was vulnerable to large changes in its centre of gravity, sometimes unpredictably. 
Oh, and the Cruiser was ugly.
Retired by the Hegemony, the Cruiser was a convenient buy for the Great Houses. We have no idea of numbers but at least one ended up in the service of the Draconis Combine. We have to assume some made it through to the Reunification War at least, but it is notable that the WarShip poor Capellan Confederation wasn’t operating any in 2765.

How do we use a Cruiser? Despite its heavy missile battery the Beercan Battleship stacks up remarkably well as a straight broadside fighter. In straight combat terms it is superior to a Sovetski Soyuz though the later heavy cruiser was more focused on its docking collars. Realistically the Cruiser was comparable to the high end destroyers and frigates. The single 10,000 ton capacity DropShuttle Bay really shows its biggest limitation. A lack of supporting units. The missile bays offer some interesting tactical options, though the 10 reloads are a little lacking if one wants to try risky bearing shots outside 50 hexes. As an AA platform the Cruiser’s armour restricts its survivability, however its actual throw weight is better than an Avalon meaning the Cruiser is very useful as an escort platform.

Killing a Cruiser is all about shooting up the light armour. It is harder to kill than a Lola, but easier than late SLDF cruisers. This is one of the few ships I wouldn’t suggest sending fighters after. If you do have to use ASF, try and get the quick kill. The more time spend under those missile batteries the more fighters you will lose.

« Last Edit: 30 May 2014, 19:42:52 by Jellico »

Wrangler

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #1 on: 28 December 2013, 23:02:41 »
Thank you for this review, Jellico.  This is a curiousity and frankly a welcome addition.  I personally won't had suspected that the ship was a Missile Cruiser.  I'm kinda disappointed about the ruling about when the ship appeared, it really should came out when Dreadnought did.  :/

I'm not keen on the advanced Strat Ops rules, would the (metioned else thread) waypoint method of firing the missiles help this thing to nail targets little bit better?   

The Surface-to-orbit escort small craft could help fend off incoming attack craft maybe as good any.  Do we know of other attack craft during this era?
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mbear

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #2 on: 06 January 2014, 14:12:52 »
What about using this as an orbital artillery platform? Granted that's kind of a waste of a WarShip, but knowing one or more of these was permanently assigned to my SLDF division would warm the cockles of my heart.

Dragon Cat

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #3 on: 06 January 2014, 16:02:41 »
I personally would like a squadron of them O0

cray

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #4 on: 08 January 2014, 23:29:34 »
The Cruiser-class cruiser is a cruiser.

That was a fun ship to write-up, more for the fluff than anything. It's a shame the introduction date was set in 2325 instead of 2300.
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mbear

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #5 on: 09 January 2014, 08:38:07 »
The Cruiser-class cruiser is a cruiser.
Right, when it was introduced that was definitely true. But as time passes and it was superseded by new models, re-assigning them to SLDF ground divisions as orbital support platforms could be useful. (Of course I'm cheap and I want to get the maximum amount of work out of anything I buy, so that can affect my decisions as well.)

Evil thought: Refit some of these with ATACS systems as part of an SDS. (Obsolete? Nope. They're RetroTech!)

VhenRa

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #6 on: 09 January 2014, 09:28:53 »
I see it more as a mobile extermination platform. Load it up with nukes, use it to bomb Taurian worlds into submission.

Weirdo

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #7 on: 09 January 2014, 10:33:07 »
I'm not so sure about using them for ground support. Sure, they'd be great precision bombardment platforms, but they're also fragile and slow. If I weregoing to assign WarShips to ground units, I'd want stuff that's either zippy enough to quickly shift orbits(or climb to a higher orbit) when confronted by ground-based weapons or fighter flights, or tough enough to take what they can dish out until their current orbit takes them to safety. A Cruiser can do neither.
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UnLimiTeD

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #8 on: 09 January 2014, 13:05:43 »
You're not thinking nuke enough.^^ >:D
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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #9 on: 09 January 2014, 13:10:30 »
I was responding to mbear, not VhenRa. Besides, anything can throw nukes around. If I'm going to use a Cruiser in an ortillery role, I'm going to take advantage of the increased accuracy of missiles in that role, and provide my ground forces with close support. Nothing says fun like using a Barracuda bay to clear out a pesky building full of infantry while leaving the next building over largely intact. }:)
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Alexander Knight

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #10 on: 09 January 2014, 13:46:45 »
Nothing says fun like using a Barracuda bay to clear out a pesky building full of infantry while leaving the next building over largely intact. }:)

Just because that's the rational response to Stone's Trackers.....

Weirdo

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #11 on: 09 January 2014, 14:25:57 »
Just because that's the rational response to Stone's Trackers.....

Funny thing is, as long as they're not in the open, a Barracuda won't be enough. ;D
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mbear

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #12 on: 09 January 2014, 16:14:34 »
I'm not so sure about using them for ground support. Sure, they'd be great precision bombardment platforms, but they're also fragile and slow. If I weregoing to assign WarShips to ground units, I'd want stuff that's either zippy enough to quickly shift orbits(or climb to a higher orbit) when confronted by ground-based weapons or fighter flights, or tough enough to take what they can dish out until their current orbit takes them to safety. A Cruiser can do neither.
That's a good point. My thinking was that the divisions would likely be supported by other SLDF Navy units, so the Cruiser would probably be protected from enemy forces.

Weirdo

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #13 on: 09 January 2014, 16:36:35 »
There are dedicated Fire Support squadrons for this task. As a result, I'd prefer that all vessels in such squadrons be surivable in the lower orbitals.
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Gryphon

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #14 on: 14 February 2014, 05:11:00 »
I'm sorry Wierdo old boy, it's not often you miss the point quite so badly, but...you see, the intent isn't to use the Cruiser as an Ortillery support platform...its to use the Cruiser AS ortillery itself!    :D

*Insert maniacal laughter here!*

On second thought...how much damage would an inert 10,000 ton vaguely smallcraft shaped block of metal do on impact?!

I like this thing for three solid reasons really. Heavy dependence on solid munitions might suck, but it gives it character.  It's extremely simplistic shape, while being closer to what reality would demand, is so oddball as to stand out. And lastly, that ridiculously generic name HAD to have started to weigh heavily on it as time passed, right? I mean, it might have started out as such a general purpose cruiser that naming it as such sounded good, but when it eventually started to see destroyers and frigates catching up or surpassing it, how ere you going to re-designate it then?!

"Well, sir, we are expecting reinforcements soon, including two Cruiser class destroyers...I mean...wait, let me go look that one up to be sure I have it right."

The only thing better would have been a 100 years or so younger class of destroyer called the Destroyer, and packing mid range cruiser firepower and armor instead, just to further muddy the waters!

Ruger

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #15 on: 27 October 2014, 17:58:50 »
And lastly, that ridiculously generic name HAD to have started to weigh heavily on it as time passed, right? I mean, it might have started out as such a general purpose cruiser that naming it as such sounded good, but when it eventually started to see destroyers and frigates catching up or surpassing it, how ere you going to re-designate it then?!

Thread Necro!!!!

Concerning the name of the Cruiser-class Cruiser, I was reading up on some older ship names a few days/weeks ago, and low and behold, what did I find?

HMS Cruizer (sometimes HMS Cruiser)!

Between the early 1700's and the early 1900's, there were 10 different Royal Navy ships named HMS Cruizer and 1 named HMS Cruiser...these vessels were mostly sloops, although there were a couple cutters and sixth rates in there as well...two of these were even the class vessels for two different classes of sloops and brig-sloops (the latter had 110 vessels of the class built!)...

Guess the name actually has a lot of history for a warship name...

Ruger
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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #16 on: 27 October 2014, 21:56:02 »
I personally would like a squadron of them O0
wouldn't that be called a six-pack?

Intermittent_Coherence

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #17 on: 27 October 2014, 23:56:44 »
Thread Necro!!!!

Concerning the name of the Cruiser-class Cruiser, I was reading up on some older ship names a few days/weeks ago, and low and behold, what did I find?

HMS Cruizer (sometimes HMS Cruiser)!

Between the early 1700's and the early 1900's, there were 10 different Royal Navy ships named HMS Cruizer and 1 named HMS Cruiser...these vessels were mostly sloops, although there were a couple cutters and sixth rates in there as well...two of these were even the class vessels for two different classes of sloops and brig-sloops (the latter had 110 vessels of the class built!)...

Guess the name actually has a lot of history for a warship name...

Ruger

Kinda like the Dreadnought that way.

Phobos

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #18 on: 27 October 2014, 23:59:00 »

Oh, and the Cruiser was ugly.


What?? A giant garbage bin in space can be nothing less than an absolute thing of beauty.

Wrangler

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #19 on: 28 October 2014, 07:26:52 »
A ship so nice, they named it twice.
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Giovanni Blasini

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #20 on: 24 May 2017, 20:10:14 »
So, I'm not aware of any beer kegs small enough, so any recommendations for a mini for the Cruiser class? I didn't see one on IWM's site.
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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #21 on: 24 May 2017, 20:31:17 »
So, I'm not aware of any beer kegs small enough, so any recommendations for a mini for the Cruiser class? I didn't see one on IWM's site.

Maybe a keg miniature scaled for a dollhouse?  ;)
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Giovanni Blasini

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #22 on: 24 May 2017, 21:23:51 »
Maybe a keg miniature scaled for a dollhouse?  ;)

That...just might work:

https://www.mountainminiatures.com/1-scale-miniature-silver-beer-keg.htm

Also, anyone notice the Cruiser class has room for 500 steerage passengers in addition to a complement of marines?  That's kind of a lot.
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Wrangler

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #23 on: 24 May 2017, 22:49:07 »
I don't think it as being ugly. Mike Plog really did a fine job making this thing. 
I do wish there was miniature of it available.
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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #24 on: 24 May 2017, 23:09:41 »
Seeing this pop up again got me thinking about using a Cruiser for suppressing rebellion. Turn the dropshuttle bay into hangar space for a fleet of small craft, say, big enough to put a small assault force on the ground at a trouble spot. Support them with (reasonably) precision missile fire against hard targets. The ship even already has extra space for five hundred troops.

She missed her calling.
Good news is the lab boys say the symptoms of asbestos poisoning show an immediate latency of 44.6 years. So if you're thirty or over you're laughing. Worst case scenario you miss out on a few rounds of canasta, plus you've forwarded the cause of science by three centuries. I punch those numbers into my calculator, it makes a happy face.

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Weirdo

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #25 on: 24 May 2017, 23:53:41 »
I'm not convinced that wasn't intentional. The Outer Reaches Rebellion was the most recent major conflict(aside from the Terran Alliance Civil War) when the Cruisers were designed. Using small craft to rapidly deploy a company or so marines for a beachhead, followed up by a battalion or two of regular army troops with orbital support sounds like a pretty solid strategy for quickly bringing a settlement(or a given city on a major world) under control. I'll admit that we know next to nothing about the nature of fighting in that war, but I'm still fairly certain that kind of capability would have been invaluable then.

Probably a pretty common thing during the Hegemony's early campaigns of reconquest.
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Giovanni Blasini

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #26 on: 25 May 2017, 00:20:19 »
The Terran Alliance does appear to have been going for a one-ship task force when they designed the base design, don't they?
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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #27 on: 25 May 2017, 01:49:00 »
Seeing this pop up again got me thinking about using a Cruiser for suppressing rebellion. Turn the dropshuttle bay into hangar space for a fleet of small craft, say, big enough to put a small assault force on the ground at a trouble spot. Support them with (reasonably) precision missile fire against hard targets. The ship even already has extra space for five hundred troops.

She missed her calling.
we should dub said variant the Sulaco class.  O0

Weirdo

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #28 on: 25 May 2017, 07:49:59 »
Honestly, I'm just surprised Dreadnought got pushed through first, as the Cruiser looks so much more like what a first WarShip should look like. My guess is that the Dreadnoughts were McKenna's pet project. Either that or someone akin to Moff Tarkin was doing Terran planning, with the Dreadnoughts meant to discourage uprisings primarily through fear, with Cruisers getting the job of putting down the revolts that happened anyway. Too bad the Outer Reaches Rebellion beat them to the punch.
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Giovanni Blasini

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Re: WarShip of the Week: Cruiser
« Reply #29 on: 25 May 2017, 10:38:12 »
Honestly, I'm just surprised Dreadnought got pushed through first, as the Cruiser looks so much more like what a first WarShip should look like. My guess is that the Dreadnoughts were McKenna's pet project. Either that or someone akin to Moff Tarkin was doing Terran planning, with the Dreadnoughts meant to discourage uprisings primarily through fear, with Cruisers getting the job of putting down the revolts that happened anyway. Too bad the Outer Reaches Rebellion beat them to the punch.

I got the impression both were probably true: the Dreadnought was certainly a scary beast, and I was always under the impression that it was rammed through procurement on the force of McKenna's personality, which implied to me he was probably already a powerful political force before he turned his ship's guns planetside.
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