Author Topic: Warship Arms Race III  (Read 4133 times)

VensersRevenge

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Warship Arms Race III
« on: 13 February 2024, 17:20:03 »
As there has been a lot of recent discussion in the previous Warship Arms Race thread about launching a new version of the game, I figured I would make a clean thread to gauge interest in it. So if you are interested in playing, could you please leave a reply stating what faction or factions you are interested in, whether you are willing to co-GM, and if you want to start in 2300 again.

List of currently interested players and faction choices:

VensersRevenge: GM/Terran Hegemony
FastConcentrate8: Federated Suns
Daryk: Lothian League
Truetanker: Marian Hegemony
Tyler Jorgensson: Lyran Commonwealth
AlphaMirage: Outworld's Alliance
GermanSumo: Rim Worlds Republic
Gorgon: Free Worlds League
Lagrange: Draconis Combine
Smegish: Capellan Confederation
« Last Edit: 24 February 2024, 20:27:14 by VensersRevenge »
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Warship Arms Race III
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AlphaMirage

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #1 on: 13 February 2024, 17:22:06 »
For a further shakeup, could you instead choose a Clans changeup?

Post-KLONDIKE and Wolverines the war-exhausted SLDF-in-Exile is living in dire fear of whether the Wolverines made it back to the IS and might find their way back for revenge. Run through the Clans as they evolve, extinct, and rebuild themselves through the Golden and Political Centuries.

You start with a Clan and any NPC factions just get gobbled up due to a poor leadership. Much smaller space to manage, but plenty of space to grow, and motivation to do so.

FastConcentrate8

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #2 on: 13 February 2024, 17:24:22 »
I am interested.

If we run with just canon factions, Dibs on Davion.

If we allow for custom factions, I will run my idea when the decision is made.

VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #3 on: 13 February 2024, 17:26:10 »
For a further shakeup, could you instead choose a Clans changeup?

Post-KLONDIKE and Wolverines the war-exhausted SLDF-in-Exile is living in dire fear of whether the Wolverines made it back to the IS and might find their way back for revenge. Run through the Clans as they evolve, extinct, and rebuild themselves through the Golden and Political Centuries.

You start with a Clan and any NPC factions just get gobbled up due to a poor leadership. Much smaller space to manage, but plenty of space to grow, and motivation to do so.

It's an interesting idea, and it would certainly limit the amount of GM record keeping in comparison. I don't know how much interest there would be for it though. But if there are multiple people who want to do it, then I would be willing to.

I am interested.

If we run with just canon factions, Dibs on Davion.

If we allow for custom factions, I will run my idea when the decision is made.

Sounds good.
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Warship Arms Race III
https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=84031.0

FastConcentrate8

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #4 on: 13 February 2024, 17:27:19 »
It's an interesting idea, and it would certainly limit the amount of GM record keeping in comparison. I don't know how much interest there would be for it though. But if there are multiple people who want to do it, then I would be willing to.

Sounds good.

Another idea is to do something like ConcertVerse. The First Succession War breaks the Great Houses and now new states are arising from the Warlords.

Daryk

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #5 on: 13 February 2024, 18:17:36 »
I'm partial to the Lothians (who didn't exist in 2300), but would be interested in any small faction making a break for it (with NO intention of coming back).

Gorgon

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #6 on: 13 February 2024, 18:18:01 »
I'm interested, mostly in a minor or middling power. The early Clans would make for a cool scenario, with everyone starting on similar terms.
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Smegish

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #7 on: 13 February 2024, 20:07:27 »
I'm willing to play, either as a major IS power or as a clan, though I don't see the clans going on much of a warship building race. What with the massive caches floating around and total lack of infrastructure.

VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #8 on: 13 February 2024, 20:13:47 »
Yeah, it might be better as a Grand Council sirt of game instead.
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Warship Arms Race III
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FastConcentrate8

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #9 on: 13 February 2024, 20:31:00 »
Yeah, Clan Game would just become a Ground Race game rather than a WarShip Arms Race.

I personally vote for IS, either 2300 Great Houses or post Balkanization Rising Powers.

truetanker

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #10 on: 13 February 2024, 20:50:40 »
Marian Hegemony for truetanker.

And If we are going Clans, then I'd like to claim the world of Fasa.

TT
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AlphaMirage

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #11 on: 13 February 2024, 20:56:11 »
I'm willing to play, either as a major IS power or as a clan, though I don't see the clans going on much of a warship building race. What with the massive caches floating around and total lack of infrastructure.

All of that stuff could be broken in a tougher and more extensive but importantly off screen Pentagon Civil War. Infrastructure can be built, each PC Clan might just be working with NewGranges at first, with limited hull capacity.

Ground War could be a component for resources while investing early in orbital infrastructure might yield greater benefits later on. Thus a careful balancing act must be struck between them, as your ground armies still needs to get places, like my asteroid mines, and it sure would be a shame if some Cruiser denied you SafCon.

FastConcentrate8

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #12 on: 13 February 2024, 21:15:07 »
Personally, I'd still prefer an Inner Sphere or Periphery setting. Kerensky Cluster feels a bit small all things considered and with limited industry, we probably wouldn't be doing too much since any major losses would be unrecoverable for a long ass time. It would probably boil down to the low level ground skirmishing we associate with Pre-3048 Clan Warfare.

Lagrange

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #13 on: 13 February 2024, 22:34:41 »
I'm interested and flexible about what I play.  I rather enjoyed playing underdog with the TC in the first game and it was nice to actually be able to play something that mattered in the CC in the second game.

We had a discussion about rules before the second game here, leading to:
Quote
Standard scale damage does not affect capital scale armor greater than 10 times the standard scale value.  For standard scale weapon bays use the damage of the largest weapon in the bay.  For cluster weapons, use cluster damage (i.e. 5).  Where standard scale weapons can damage capital armor, add up all damage to a facing from an attacker and divide by 100, rounding normally.  Critical hits can only be delivered by individual attacks dealing at least 1 capital damage.

In addition, there was quite a bit of discussion leading to point defense rules which make more sense.

    Point defense standard damage equal to 4 * capital damage generates a 50% chance to kill a capital missile (or a flight from a capital missile bay).  Multiple 50% chances to kill the same capital missile(s) can be generated, but all point defense applied to a capital missile passing through a hex must be designated before rolls to kill the capital missile are made.   Additional point defense may be applied in successive hexes.
    Antimissile systems and bays on smallcraft and largecraft may fire up to 6 times in a turn, generating heat and consuming ammunition each time.
    Antiship missiles do 1 capital damage.
The first paragraph seems fairly essential as without it, carriers are completely dominant.  The second paragraph seems less essential, although dropping it implies every warship with access to AMS is missile proof conferring a significant class of weapons to the dustbin of history.

  • In terms of rules, I'd prefer to keep designs rules-legal, even if we interpret the design differently.
  • I'm in favor of designing more than just large craft.  Several of us did so anyways in prior games.  Those who don't want to can just rely on some reasonable default design.
  • In terms of turn resolution, I'd suggest a deviation from prior experience where the GM's role is reduced in expectation, since in practice GM burnout is the limiting factor for these games.  The more limited role is: the GM chooses turn events (i.e. battle with force X vs. force Y).  These turn events can vary from quite fair to totally unfair ("a civil war starts", "force X was ambushed by force Y", etc...).   But, the resolution and the writeup need not be on the GM---instead the events are announced and any nonconflicted party can resolve and writeup.  (Of course, the GM could be the nonconflicted party, but historically that's the burnout path.)
  • The precise way tech advancements have been run has varied, and fiddling with it further is reasonable.  One notable experience is that if tech advancement is to slow it becomes game-play problematic.

VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #14 on: 13 February 2024, 23:47:45 »
Thanks for all the replies so far!

 

We had a discussion about rules before the second game here, leading to:The first paragraph seems fairly essential as without it, carriers are completely dominant.  The second paragraph seems less essential, although dropping it implies every warship with access to AMS is missile proof conferring a significant class of weapons to the dustbin of history.

  • In terms of rules, I'd prefer to keep designs rules-legal, even if we interpret the design differently.
  • I'm in favor of designing more than just large craft.  Several of us did so anyways in prior games.  Those who don't want to can just rely on some reasonable default design.
  • In terms of turn resolution, I'd suggest a deviation from prior experience where the GM's role is reduced in expectation, since in practice GM burnout is the limiting factor for these games.  The more limited role is: the GM chooses turn events (i.e. battle with force X vs. force Y).  These turn events can vary from quite fair to totally unfair ("a civil war starts", "force X was ambushed by force Y", etc...).   But, the resolution and the writeup need not be on the GM---instead the events are announced and any nonconflicted party can resolve and writeup.  (Of course, the GM could be the nonconflicted party, but historically that's the burnout path.)
  • The precise way tech advancements have been run has varied, and fiddling with it further is reasonable.  One notable experience is that if tech advancement is to slow it becomes game-play problematic.


I absolutely agree that limiting the standard scale damage is essential, and I also absolutely want to ensure that capital missiles are able to be useful so I think I will maintain both rules. As to your other points: I am absolutely keeping current construction rules, I don't have the skill to create a functioning spreadsheet to allow for house rules, and will probably rely on MML. I also plan on allowing customization of all space assets. I think this will help with the balance between battleships and carriers without going to far the other way. Turn resolution is something I am not sure on, particularly when it comes to determining the results. While I am certainly not claiming to be perfect in interpreting what should happen, I worry that inconsistency in interpretations of force strength could cause discontent as well. But I certainly understand the burnout concerns, and I want this to succeed. As for tech, I also wonder if having customizable small craft will help balance the different technologies better and avoid running towards certain warship improvements. I also plan on including some more RPG elements, but I am always looking for advice and criticism to ensure this goes as well as possible.
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Warship Arms Race III
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Smegish

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #15 on: 14 February 2024, 00:20:05 »
The only solid rule change that required changing the Warship design spreadsheet (I'll link a copy when I get back to my PC) was to seperate DropShuttle bays from the KF-Drive multiplier cost. So you could have either cheap but heavy Dropshuttle bays or light but expensive Dropship collars. Naturally Dropshuttle bays limit you to 5kt Droppers, but far cheaper to run.

EDIT: Link here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1XhWiVuWMbQjF7-n3CIh8mmbgv3_o-0N8DOVvdufNyxo/edit?usp=sharing
« Last Edit: 14 February 2024, 01:09:40 by Smegish »

truetanker

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #16 on: 14 February 2024, 00:20:23 »
Would there be Ground or just Naval only?

Is there going to be a shopping list of Generics, like CF was 2.5 M each / 5 M for ASF?

More than the classic "Invader" jumper?

Can we "buy" Marines for the vessels?

And such...

TT
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That is, if true tanker doesn't beat me to it. He makes truly evil units.Col.Hengist on 31 May 2013
TT, we know you are the master of nasty  O0 ~ Fletch on 22 June 2013
If I'm attacking you, conventional wisom says to bring 3x your force.  I want extra insurance, so I'll bring 4 for every 1 of what you have :D ~ Tai Dai Cultist on 21 April 2016
Me: Would you rather fight my Epithymía Thanátou from the Whispers of Blake?
Nav_Alpha: That THING... that is horrid
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VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #17 on: 14 February 2024, 00:33:00 »
Given that the role you are playing is High Admiral or whatever you want your faction to call it, probably just Naval. I'll keep the generics and add more jumpships that can be built as technology allows it.  I'm leaning towards generic infantry marines being included in the price of their bays, with BA being more decided later as we get to it.
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Smegish

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #18 on: 14 February 2024, 01:12:17 »
Another option we didn't go with but I wish we did was a turn 0 budget, allowing people to start with a fleet of primitive-core WarShips, fighters etc.

Probably wouldn't have let them expand their existing yards or keep any leftover though.

VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #19 on: 14 February 2024, 01:42:07 »
That makes a lot of sense, I might go with no warships though, to ensure that the Hegemony keeps their advantage for longer so there is less chance the surrounding powers devour it too quickly.
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GermanSumo

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #20 on: 14 February 2024, 02:57:06 »
hey guys, bad english  speaking german is back. i played the amaris empire in arms race II. if you restart, i would like to join. interested in the amaris empire, dracs or taurians. i had lots of fun, tried many out of the box idea and really wanted to see, if my out of the box missile boats/stations would work.

so yeah, definetly in. despite having no inkling about any kind of sensible construction hehehe

Lagrange

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #21 on: 14 February 2024, 08:38:26 »
...

W.r.t. event outcomes, skepticism that random folks can resolve things effectively is healthy.  At the same time, I expect there may be other folks who can resolve an event well.  For consideration, the narrative failure modes I recall are:
  • Error in storytelling (naval lasers from all sides fire in one direction).  Very plausibly this was overload as it was the GM.  You could ask people to write things out and PM you for edit/critique before posting.  The game can survive a few storytelling errors.
  • Predetermined outcome not particularly congruent with forces available leads to somewhat awkward narrative. Not the end of the world---sometimes surprising things happen in battle.  But, it might be good to just give forces and luck/leadership rolls with the outcome undetermined for someone to work out a story.  This would be more interesting from a storytelling perspective and avoid awkwardness.
  • People other than the GM commit to doing things and don't.  I'd suggest using a race condition: no one "owns" an event until it's done.  Wedging on undone events ends the game.

W.r.t. play, one thing we consciously used was individual ranges rules as per the SO optional rules.  This is not necessary, but I expect you'll get more diverse designs doing so since more weapons make sense.  As an example, the Light Naval Gauss is a bit of a lemon in terms of damage vs. tonnage, but if you are using individual ranges it has real value as the longest range direct fire weapon.

Tyler Jorgensson

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #22 on: 14 February 2024, 09:28:56 »
I’ll take Steiner then

I’ll comment later on more things

marcussmythe

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #23 on: 14 February 2024, 09:35:28 »
For my own bit, my resolution process was as follows:
I.  Identify Objectives (what is each side trying to do)
II.  Identify Intelligence:  What does each side know; and when do they know it?  Careful evaulation of the sensor rules is helpful here, and this interacts with I and III.
III.  Make Plans:  Based on what they know about who is here, what they probably want, the relative admirals intel at various points, etc - make out each sides plans.  Thesemay change.
IV.  Run those plans through the rules.  I didnt roll every shot - instead doing a rough lanchester equation at various battle stages.  (Missiles and espc fighter strikes got handled as salvos; of course).  Figure out who dies faster at each part if the engagement, and how each admiral is going to try to change those things to acheive his objective.  Im looking at resilience and firepower, absolute and relative, as a function of range and ammo and the like.  Do fighters go in first?  Or second?  Pros and cons to both. For example, do I need to blow past the enemies LNGauss to wreck the yards with NACs?  Or if I have the LNGauss, can I lay off and bombard and force them to come to me?  If the enemy has every advantage, do I retreat?  Can I use along range strike to lower their firepower enough to win a close engagement?  Admiral skill and luck and the like play in here.  Dice are rolled to create noise, but dice arent likely to change W and L unless things are quite close.
V.  After figuring out the numbers behind the narrative, I write up the narrative commensurate with the math.

I probably spend 8-12 hours on each major battle, from ‘what are each forces orders and objectives and motivation level and order of battle and maintenance status’ through ‘this is the final body count’.  Honestly, in retrospect it was a labor of love, that I could not do again (unique life circumstances gave me a LOT of spare time and mental energy - and even so I burned out fast).

That said, Im actually pretty proud of what came out, while it lasted.  That much fidelity may just not be a thing thats doable, though - and if it burns out GMs, it doesnt work, however pretty one battle report might be.

For a new game - I will try to watch, but I dont think I have the energy to play again.

AlphaMirage

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #24 on: 14 February 2024, 09:47:21 »
We could always knock everything down to Alpha Strike/Battleforce stats and roll that through significantly faster than with the regular SO/TW rules.

Also if we could run post-Exodus when Kerensky took everything away we can start with some minimal base infrastructure and/or SLDF Defectors. Run the Succession Wars if there were still Warships but never enough to go around.

That said if we do this I'd want the Outworld's Alliance.

Tyler Jorgensson

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #25 on: 14 February 2024, 11:10:40 »
I’d prefer the early start year again: it gives us time to mold the fleets our way.

I wouldn’t mind an early Clan era (immediately post Klondike pre Wolverine Annihilation ;) ) but agreed it would be a little complicated without adding some form of ground combat in. OTOH it might be slightly easier and we can just do Trials… but countering that we would have to have some basic economy in on why we are Trialing or what for. So we’d have to add that in and that might take time.

Not a BAD starting idea would actually be post Second Succession War or early Third. Consider almost no Warships exist BUT TPTB have decided we need to invest again! Most factions have been established at this point and we can claim like one or two major yards at MOST. Downside being no Hegemony of course.

Another idea… hear me out…. Empires Aflame. Either post DeChevalier taking control or the ‘current’ setting of 3095 (I think that was the date?) start with canon fleets for most factions. Admittedly less factions.

Just my two cents

Gorgon

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #26 on: 14 February 2024, 11:18:07 »
We could also go modern and start at the beginning of the Dark Age as everyone scrambles to rearm.
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FastConcentrate8

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #27 on: 14 February 2024, 11:21:17 »


Another idea… hear me out…. Empires Aflame. Either post DeChevalier taking control or the ‘current’ setting of 3095 (I think that was the date?) start with canon fleets for most factions. Admittedly less factions.

Just my two cents

I can ball with this. Only problem is that I must become friends with the Cappies.

As I also suggested, we could go with the ConcertVerse idea of a strong Terran Rump State and many small states rising from the ashes of the Great Houses.
« Last Edit: 14 February 2024, 11:23:47 by FastConcentrate8 »

VensersRevenge

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #28 on: 14 February 2024, 16:59:54 »
Thank you for all the replies and suggestions so far! To be honest, it sounds there is appetite for a lot more than I can run by myself, but multiple separate games could be an option! I want to be clear, there is no way this is going to start before March so I have more time to prepare for running all of this. I would love more feedback and suggestions, especially in what exactly people are looking to be able to accomplish.
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Gorgon

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Re: Warship Arms Race III
« Reply #29 on: 14 February 2024, 17:44:14 »
The only solid rule change that required changing the Warship design spreadsheet (I'll link a copy when I get back to my PC) was to seperate DropShuttle bays from the KF-Drive multiplier cost. So you could have either cheap but heavy Dropshuttle bays or light but expensive Dropship collars. Naturally Dropshuttle bays limit you to 5kt Droppers, but far cheaper to run.

EDIT: Link here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1XhWiVuWMbQjF7-n3CIh8mmbgv3_o-0N8DOVvdufNyxo/edit?usp=sharing

This makes DropShuttle bays so much more useful. Many canon droppers are below 5000 tons anyway.
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