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Marascal

Small craft repair deck - per squadron or for everything?

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Another clarification called for. The small craft repair deck repairs lost small craft at a rate of 1 per tech use success after a battle. 

 

Is this per squadron or overall? So let's say I lost 2 squadrons in a fight for a total of 6 and 3 losses in each, do I get to roll twice, capped at those losses or just once against the 9 lost ships.

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I'd say once per squadron BUT you actually have to recover your damaged craft so if they were lost in such a way as to be unrecoverable or if you fled into the warp and left the system you don't get squat at all. Furthermore each character only gets one roll a week and is considered so busy in that time they can't do anything else.

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Wow.  You let them recover all their aircraft then, Larry?  I only allow the one roll, period, and only by a single person, once.  Otherwise, they never lose a single craft.  You always repair them.

 

Ok, there was that Warp rift they got sucked into, but that's a very rare occurance.

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Okay, my BFK may be wrong here, but the entry for the Small Craft Repair Deck says that on a successful Difficult Tech-Use test, every degree of success repairs and recovers 2 of the lost aircraft. Which is kinda weird since the wording doesn't allow for any repairs if you just barely made the roll (with a single hit).

 

Also, it sounds like it's in total.

 

The Abstract Method is not a very good method if you want to keep your craft around for long. Constantly running an Acquisition Test for these things is just a bad idea.

 

The Detailed Method is much better. If you were to lose 6 and 3 ships on two squadrons, then you make the test for each squadron. At least, that's how some people here interpret it as.

 

It's still very, very easy to lose almost the entire squadron with a bad roll. But that's why the God-Emperor invented fighter craft to escort bombers.

 

 

RAW, there's a very good chance that the authors meant to tally up the total ships shot down and the Small Craft Repair Deck recovers two for every degree of success. That is the suck.

 

EDIT: Also, as a House Rule, we've increased the number of recovered and repaired attack craft to 3 for every degree of success if you have a Manufactorum aboard. it makes losses manageable.

Edited by Marwynn

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I find that it's already too easy on the squadrons.  They don't take any significant attrition.  The detailed method has you rolling 1d10 to see how many craft in the squadron are actually destroyed, meaning that a fighter squadron can only be 1/2 eliminated before modifiers start coming in and those modifiers are the real kicker.

 

To start with you subtract your Crew Rating's tens-digit from the die roll, so a Crew Rating of 30 already has you rolling 1d10-3.  I've seen all the snowflake ships people run with on another thread and to say 30 is an uncommon number would be misleading.  45+ seems more common.

 

Then, Furies and Starhawks have the special ability of Durable, meaning subtract another one, meaning that (never used) Incompetent Crews lose 1d10-3 craft actually destroyed (avg. 2.5), and those more experienced crews are losing more like 1d10-5 (avg. 0.5).

 

Now throw in the small craft repair deck and you can see that a dedicated carrier with, say 16 squadrons of bombers, having lost every single squadron (never happens), wll actually only have lost an average of 8-40 actual aircraft, of which 32 are going to be recovered, assuming an Explorator can find a means of getting a 110 Tech Use roll (piece of cake).

 

I love small attack craft and carriers.  I love the flavor they bring to the game.  It's another part of the combat system that's entirely broken.  I've created house rules that increase the attrition rate, but done nothing to bring down the hurt they can put on a ship.  I'm thinking that also needs addressed.

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Another House Rule I've added is to change bomber damage to 1d10 + Crew Rating/10, but that's only effective when you keep the carrier's Crew Rating below 40.  I still like the effect, though.  It also might make light carriers more viable.  Right now, they are only good for fighter CVP, Assault boats, and Aeronautica.  Bombers on light carriers are milk toast.

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That seems intriguing but I feel there's already so much tied to Crew Rating. I'd rather they have their own rating as well, considering how bloody expensive they are. That's one more thing to track though.

 

Back to the OP:

My feeling is that the SCRD recovers the total eliminated attack craft, not per Squadron. Lost ships are already 1d10 - 4 (Crew Rating) for most people. Coupled with the Fighters providing escort duties, it's unlikely you'll lose too many. 

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I don't think there's nearly enough tied to crew rating, which is why PC ships dominate so badly over NPC ships, even NPC ships that are military in nature, while the PC ships are oriented toward trade and/or exploration.

 

And from reading the posts around here, either small craft aren't as expensive as people like to claim, or the average campaign sees lots of fudged acquisition rolls.  Take the example of the Dictator, which is a popular choice these days; kitting one out requires the use of the Warrant Path, 70 SPs get spent, leaving 20-25 SP left over, depending on PC Origin Path choices.  RAW, that dynasty can't replace ANY losses until they've gained considerable PF.  It's mathematically impossible for them to replace even 1 lost squadron, even with conscripts.

 

And nerfing the SCRD to that extent just isn't a solution to improper attrition.  The attrition rate needs to increase.  I mean, who's going to take up a space on their vessel just to reclaim 2 lost small craft?  That favors small air groups disproportionately, and that's also not a fair all-round solution.  Attrition needs to go up.

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I'm thinking about just doing a house rule where NPC ships just get to make as many shipboard actions at their crew rating as there are player characters making shipboard actions that round. It's kind of janky but yeah NPC ships always get trounced because the players get to do way more actions and the simplified "stances" suggested in BC aren't much better at pumping up the enemy ships.

 

Well you might say the solution is to just make bigger and more numerous enemy ships but then that just causes constant escalation and then you find yourself in the same situation as late game Elder Scrolls where the bandits are suddenly decked out in top tier plate armor for some reason.

 

Although the other thing that helps if the players are flying around in some terrifying bruiser of a ship is to remember that the enemy ships CAN AND SHOULD run away from fights they're losing or can't win. In fact with the exception of certain enemies who wouldn't do so per character or fluff I usually end combats the players are overwhelmingly winning by starting to roll willpower for each NPC to see if they try to run away or I'll just flat out have the senior enemy NPC present order a retreat.

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I house-ruled that a ship can only take as many actions as their crew rating allowed and PC actions counted against that number.  After all, a missionary might be the chief medicae but is still relying on a staff to actually perform all those actions.

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Hey guys, after much discussion we decided to use the repair bay once per encounter, not per squadron. The reason being that our explorator can get immense results from a tech use roll and effectively ensure we never lose any ships if we use it per squadron. Thanks for all the feedback!

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Glad that's working for you. I do notice this system seems to still assume people are going to be at Dark Heresy power levels (it was such an accomplishment when I raised an attribute to 50 in that system), and not the crazy success of Rogue Trader.

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