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Punning Pundit

No Star Destroyers, Please

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I left this as a comment over on the Google Plus X-Wing minis community (A very friendly bunch, check it out! http://goo.gl/YUpd5C). It's something I've said a few times before. But I thought I'd come here and say it on Fantasy Flight's home turf. For the record: I've preordered 2 of the Transports, and 1 of the Corvettes. Comment is below:

 

 

Something to consider when thinking about scale: it can mean something different than the physical size of the model. It can also mean the scale of the battle.

Currently, it is entirely possible to enjoy a game of X-Wing with Luke Vs Dark Curse and Mauler. I just whipped up a squad using nothing but Core box components and I could have an entertaining scrimmage at 36 v 36 points. (let's not quibble about how good or bad those squads would be!)  

That's the "scale" of this game. Even more than being psychically the  on 1/270 scale, the game is "about" fights that happen at the individual pilot scale. This game has to care if, behind that control yolk, it's Wedge Antilles or some Red Squad pilot who has yet yo earn a name. 

Lucas understood this- at least in the first movie. That's why the exhaust port exists. That's why the Death Star turbo lasers have trouble hitting targets that small. 

And that's why Darth Vader has a distinctive fighter.

If you want human-scale drama where one side has a weapon the size of a small moon- and the firepower to destroy a planet- that target better have a serious weakness. And, hopefully, can't smack down mosquitoes very well.

I do think- absolutely 100%!- that huge ships have a role to play in this game. Escort carriers, transports, big thwacking ships that bombers exist to take shots at. But at a certain point big ships become invincible to fighters. Or big ships become obsolete. I don't want either invincible or obsolete ships in this game. 

So no Star Destroyers. No Death Stars. No Mon Cal cruisers. Even if they fit on the table, the scale of the battle is just all wrong for Luke to make a difference. 

But that Nebulon B? I've got some money set aside for when FFG gets around to make it.

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I honestly think the Nebulon-B is as high as FFG can go in a system like this, and even then it would mostly be stationary because moving would send it off the board.

 

Let's be honest here: X-Wing is too small of an area to fit capital ships. The ships we have now and are getting are set-pieces for our starfighters to fly around, shoot at, and shoot past. This is not a capital-grade game, and not designed for capital ships to be trading blows like we'd be expecting out of starfighters.

 

Some argue that the Star Destroyer is a definitive icon of the Empire. Well, so are TIE Fighters. In a game that focuses on starfighter combat, guess who is representing the Empire here?

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And single pilots have never been important in big ship battles before...

Arvel

Luke

Han

Wedge

Lando

Any number of other characters and squadrons throughout the novels.

You don't have to buy one when they make one. But I most certainly will.

Edited by Aminar

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It really comes down to size and scale, and I dont mean the ships! X-Wing is wildly popular and new players are joining all the time. With the introduction of huge ships and soon to be two more formats to play in, the community could become spread thin. I love the idea of massive ships having it out for space dominance. The scale of the capital ships would not fit with the current ships in X-Wing. So a new format would be needed to represent them. This new format would cut into the current field of players as who stays and who goes. We are even hearing players talking about being dedicated to one side, rebels or imperials, as they can't keep up with both.

I personally would rather have ships after ships come to our current format the begin a new one just to have a Star Destoyer. One of the things I believe help contribute to the success of X-Wing was the recognition of the ships from the original trilogy. With the soon to be 14 ships in the game all but one are from the movies. You will not get that same recognition with capital ships, with only 2 per side really. The EU offers many more but you limit the crowd you can attract to the game.

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It's a different format. What do you care what they print, so long as the 100 point tournament rules remain the same?

 

You missed the point entirely.

 

It's not about whether it's a different format. It has to jibe with the starfighter combat rules for painfully obvious reasons, otherwise why not make an entirely new game?

 

And he doesn't care what they print. He cares about all these people who keep thinking that Star Destroyers are a viable opponent in a game designed around pilots who fly starfighters that, realistically, wouldn't be able to make a dent in a Star Destroyer's shields.

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It's a different format. What do you care what they print, so long as the 100 point tournament rules remain the same?

 

You missed the point entirely.

 

It's not about whether it's a different format. It has to jibe with the starfighter combat rules for painfully obvious reasons, otherwise why not make an entirely new game?

 

And he doesn't care what they print. He cares about all these people who keep thinking that Star Destroyers are a viable opponent in a game designed around pilots who fly starfighters that, realistically, wouldn't be able to make a dent in a Star Destroyer's shields.

 

 

 

I'll see your SSD, and raise you one 23 point A-Wing. Realism and Star Wars are mutually exclusive terms.

 

I think I get the point just fine. If he doesn't care what they print, why does he care about what other people think? If another format satisfies the desires of a different segment of the player base, why should FFG be compelled to limit their products to satisfy the whims of the one person who will never play it?

Edited by WonderWAAAGH

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We need Star Destroyers.  Sorry OP.   Star Destroyers WILL happen.

I disagree completely.

I'm not even going to start talking about how wrong the scale is for this game, all I will say is this:

The largest ship produced for this game to date (that we know about) is the Corvette, and it is slightly longer than the diameter of just ONE of a Star Destroyers three main engines.

The most they could do is release a model of the bridge, which in my opinion would be really dorky to see floating on top of a space or nebula themed gaming mat.

If FFG makes a shrunken ISD that some dude will try to plunk onto my game board, I'm turning in my wings.

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They have already made the star destroyer.  It is in the transport pack.  Or was it the corvette, im not sure now.  It sits off of the table, and just fires in at the other huge ships that actually fit on the board.  Done deal.  Not a model, just a game effect.

 

If they wanted to have it in the game, I think they might make it as a play matt, with models to represent the turrets.

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Star Destroyer would be too big as a model, and if it uses the same ramming rules as huge ships, one bank and it wipes everything clean off the board.

 

If I were FFG I'd implement it as a 3x6' playmat. Then your small ships can fly on top of it and you can place some turret and shield gen-counters on it too (which can be destroyed of course).

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You mean the Super Star Destroyer? Yeah great. Lets imagine a 20-30P Interceptor kills the 150P Corvette. Great heh? How many Points should a Star Destroyer have in your opinion? A Star Destroyer can eleminate a 150P Corvette without any problems + has ~ 100 Fighter in his hangar.

Edited by SchLoTTiX

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I think they will just make a new game called "Star Destroyer" for capital ships, but not anytime soon.

 

I was just thinking about this very idea last night. But I named it "Star Wars: Fleet Wing"

 

Our current HUGE ship, CR-90, would be a humble little ship in such a game where it would probably be about as long as an A-Wing. With other ships scaling up from there. The stars of X-Wing, the starfighters, would be little more than tokens or tiny little ships which would come five to a small base.

 

I've already posted my opinions on possible huge ships. My guess is that the biggest ship will be twice the size of a CR-90, which a Star Destroyer is not...it's much bigger.

 

As for the invincibility of Star Destroyers, I have piloted an X-Wing and caused significant damage to many. Granted I was playing Battlefront II, but you take down the shields, destroy the turrets, engines, life support and you've got one dead Star Destroyer. Was Much easier in a Y-Wing though. Only time I didn't use this strategy was when I landed in the hanger and set about sabotaging it from the inside.

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We need Star Destroyers.  Sorry OP.   Star Destroyers WILL happen.  

 

A Star Destroyer is 1600m long (six metres at 270 scale). The Tantive IV fits in its hangar bay. It carries 72 TIE fighters: its fighter complement alone is at least 864 pt. The actual ISD would be creeping into thousands of points. Every gun on an epic ship shoots each phase. Look up how many an ISD has.

The Corvette is already at an approaching silly price point for a ship. A Star Destroyer? Even if you did have more money than sense to such a degree that you could afford the thing, how'd you afford to take it on? Do you feel like doing a minimum of about 29 activations a turn?

Yes, you can scale it down a bit, but to fit it into the Epic Play format you'd need it to be less than the equivalent of two corvettes. Two Tantive IVs taking down an ISD?

There's no way they could represent the ISD at its canonical power and expect to sell it, and to scale it down to 5 Epic Points would be to diminish it to the point where it isn't an ISD any more.

That being said, I would love to see an ISD tile set...

Edited by Lagomorphia

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I think what would be cool is to have a two-layer playing board separated by plexiglass. 

 

Capital ships on the bottom duking it out with the occasional shots lobbed up to the dogfighters on the top who are engaged in standard X-wing dogfights.

 

Of course, you can make bomb runs, etc, but you could have capital ships and dogfights in the same game with a lot more depth. 

 

I know it's a rough draft at best, but without some kind of separation I think adding big capital ships would severely impact dogfighting nature of the game.

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We need Star Destroyers.  Sorry OP.   Star Destroyers WILL happen.

 

A Star Destroyer is 1600m long (six metres at 270 scale). The Tantive IV fits in its hangar bay. It carries 72 TIE fighters: its fighter complement alone is at least 864 pt. The actual ISD would be creeping into thousands of points. Every gun on an epic ship shoots each phase. Look up how many an ISD has.

The Corvette is already at an approaching silly price point for a ship. A Star Destroyer? Even if you did have more money than sense to such a degree that you could afford the thing, how'd you afford to take it on? Do you feel like doing a minimum of about 29 activations a turn?

Yes, you can scale it down a bit, but to fit it into the Epic Play format you'd need it to be less than the equivalent of two corvettes. Two Tantive IVs taking down an ISD?

There's no way they could represent the ISD at its canonical power and expect to sell it, and to scale it down to 5 Epic Points would be to diminish it to the point where it isn't an ISD any more.

That being said, I would love to see an ISD tile set...

5Epic points is ameaningless distinction. All it means is No more than 1 on the field.

As for the rest. Those arguments have 0 bearing on the way gameplay works. Power levels in X-wing aren't linear, they are on a compressed scale. The more powerful something is, the less the increase. 3 dice covers everything from the X-wing to the Falcon in terms of raw damage output and the the Falcon has a lot more damage out put than an X-wing. Photon Torpedoes should be a whole lot more than 33% more powerful than the X-wings cannnons. but they are also scaled. Etc.

And disservice to the ship is silly. Just plain silly. A disservice is not making it, because then nobody can drool over it as it pounds X-wings into the dust.

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We need Star Destroyers.  Sorry OP.   Star Destroyers WILL happen.  

 

A Star Destroyer is 1600m long (six metres at 270 scale). The Tantive IV fits in its hangar bay. It carries 72 TIE fighters: its fighter complement alone is at least 864 pt. The actual ISD would be creeping into thousands of points. Every gun on an epic ship shoots each phase. Look up how many an ISD has.

The Corvette is already at an approaching silly price point for a ship. A Star Destroyer? Even if you did have more money than sense to such a degree that you could afford the thing, how'd you afford to take it on? Do you feel like doing a minimum of about 29 activations a turn?

Yes, you can scale it down a bit, but to fit it into the Epic Play format you'd need it to be less than the equivalent of two corvettes. Two Tantive IVs taking down an ISD?

There's no way they could represent the ISD at its canonical power and expect to sell it, and to scale it down to 5 Epic Points would be to diminish it to the point where it isn't an ISD any more.

That being said, I would love to see an ISD tile set...

 

The ISD 1 actually only has 60 turbolasers of assorted varieties (according to the Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels). Ion cannons have been kept separate from firepower in the game so far so the 60 figure works a bit better for the game, but you could leave multiple cannon upgrade points for Ion cannons. This means while it does outclass the corvette, its not insurmountable. Also add in the fact that unless you were directly in front of an ISD, it really couldn't bring a good portion of guns to bear (even the Wikipedia article comments on this). Just as an example, take an old ISD toy or something wedge shaped and imagine different attack vectors.

 

Vectors-

Directly above or below: half guns (30)

Broadside: Half Guns (30)

Broadside but target is above or below equatorial line: Quarter Guns (15) - interesting since this is only 2x the firepower of a CR90

Directly in front: Death (almost full complement of 60, minus a few guns since some of them couldn't fire directly forward)

Directly behind - radiation poisoning?

 

It will be difficult to include an ISD in the game but firepower isn't that far out there if they get creative with arcs. The real question would be how do you illustrate the shield/hull strength? Maybe limit the ISD to cinematic play and scenarios or go the Tie Fighter game route and just let lasers hurt the shields.

 

Nothing in this game has really been a 1 for 1 representation of canon specs for the ships. The FFG has been great with the creative license that gives us minis and rules that "feel" right. The ISD is a challenge but I sincerely believe it is possible. Some people are a bit worried, understandable so, but I personally think its better to avoid the catastrophe thinking that somehow an ISD would destroy the game. Just don't include an ISD if you don't like it. It's worked for other systems as well like 40k and forgeworld in the old days.

 

As to scale, personally I don't care but some do. I was more than happy with the Kenner toys when I was a kid and having my ISD and CR90 fight each other even though they were the same size, but to each their own.

Edited by SpaceDingo

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I think they could make an epic size playmat and instead of astroids they will have "cross-fire zones" where there are continuous fire from the SD and any ship caught in these zones have a chance to take damage (for imaginations sake you can imagine there is a mon-cal crusier above it, or to the side of it if you want to make a really colossal play area).  The empire player could have "control" of the of the SD bridge for a reasonable point cost where the SD would have an attack on any ship on the mat (but rememeber the SD as a whole has bigger problems to deal with then trying to focus fire on a few small ships) and the rebel player can make runs on the bridge to try and destory it and negate this advantage (if we go with the colossal play area idea, the rebs can get control of thier own MCC bridge and get the same benefit).

 

This is just an idea, I know its not the same as having epic sized plastic model but I think this would be a good way to try to capture the feel of epic battles without lugging around a giant model around with you.

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