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Jukey

Planets and atmospheric gameplay

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So seeing the new u-wing and tie striker are both atmosphere fighters got me thinking about the possibility of planets becoming a thing in armada.

Obviously, they wouldn't be to scale, but maybe have an obstacle twice the size of a space station that obscures all line of sight. Throw in some rules like at distance one a ship is dropped to zero(entering atmosphere), and squads like the u-wing and striker gain certain abilities.

All purely wild speculation, but I'd enjoy the addition.

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I would like atmospheric and planetary rules. I wanted them for X-wing before it became a dumpster fire that it currently is(to be fair, following their recent announcements I wouldn't be sure if they aren't trying to fix that) I don't want to see planet tokens on board though, its to disruptive to the scale for me. Removes my suspension of disbelief.

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Perhaps it would be better played/simulated as a mission objective. Maybe it could be one of the new objectives in the correlian campaign (given that you're hopping across systems). Perhaps the one defense mission that hasn't been spoiled is a "planetary defense." Or maybe Planetary assault. The green objectives themselves could be entirely planetary based.

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According to Wookieepedia, the first Death Star is 100 times the size of the Home One (120 Km vs 1.2 Km). The Death Star is described as being the size of  small moon. Therefore, I would say that Planets are a little out of scale to be obstacles in this game.

 

edit: If using FFG's mats, it might be interesting to do something with those planets, though.

Edited by Felswrath

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Make it a very small moon then, I just want to be able to hide my fleet on the far side of endor.

Really couldn't go more then about a foot in diameter, otherwise the play area would get squished.

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I played a very cool game that is being developed by the creators of Drop Zone Commander called Drop Fleet Commander, and the game is directly about the space superiority mission to land troops.  Their solution was to play the game over a satellite level image of a given landmass (no stars) and distribute target cities and mission objectives around the board.  Ships going in for the landing would drop to progressively further range bands, but the largest ships were restricted to staying at orbital level and would take damage if they started losing altitude.  The goal was to hold the landing sites and destroy the enemy landing craft before they got to the surface.

One of the cooler things is that this allowed players to directly link both games at the campaign level, moving smoothly from the fleet scale game in orbit to then playing the ground combat game when landing groups successfully reached the surface.

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I played a very cool game that is being developed by the creators of Drop Zone Commander called Drop Fleet Commander, and the game is directly about the space superiority mission to land troops.  Their solution was to play the game over a satellite level image of a given landmass (no stars) and distribute target cities and mission objectives around the board.  Ships going in for the landing would drop to progressively further range bands, but the largest ships were restricted to staying at orbital level and would take damage if they started losing altitude.  The goal was to hold the landing sites and destroy the enemy landing craft before they got to the surface.

One of the cooler things is that this allowed players to directly link both games at the campaign level, moving smoothly from the fleet scale game in orbit to then playing the ground combat game when landing groups successfully reached the surface.

This.

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Maybe Rogue One will change this, but there isn't really that much to go on in Star Wars canon for major land battles. Apart from the silly droid armies of the Prequel Trilogy where they move like Roman legions and Macedonian Phalanx in George Lucas' yet another entirely illogical translation of Earth's history (at least the spaceship battles modeled after sea warfare is kind of cool), all we ever see is a ragtag and outnumbered group of rebels basically  buying time against all odds so that the Jedi hero and the fleet can accomplish whatever task they need to thwart the empire. 

 

I think that transitioning from Armada to Imperial Assault is too drastic and an interim game would be needed for major land engagements but I don't see that coming any time soon. 

 

.

.

.

Unless Rogue One revolutionizes land warfare :) 

Edited by Hamanu1

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There are multiple episodes and arcs in The Clone Wars all about breaking through the space fleet guarding a planet to that planetary surface. It's also common through the books and the comics. It's actually a necessary element of galactic warfare, as orbital strikes would be too imprecise and destructive to use near cities.

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Battlefleet Gothic used to have rules for playing near planets, IIRC. There might have even been missions where you made runs past a planet to unload dropships. If I remember correctly, turning toward or away from a planet at a certain distance provided bonuses/penalties due to gravity. But then again, it's been several years so I just might be misremembering.

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You could try a 3' planet edge terrain. Question would be the rules. If within range 5 you may add 1 yaw click in the direction of the planet.

 

 

I'd make one change.

 

Replace "May" with "Must"...  With a Toward-Planet click cancelling out a Click away if need be...

 

 

VSD only have one Click at Speed one?  Too Bad, So Sad, better not be aiming towards the planet, or you better be plotting Navs...

 

Means Thruster Failure actually makes it harder to maintain "orbit" without plummeting towards it...  You know...  Just like in RotS when they flew half a ship to another happy landing...  No matter how many people they killed by ploughing through that command tower, and anyone else in the way...  I Mean, sheesh, that would be wrong, caring about those...

Edited by Drasnighta

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You could try a 3' planet edge terrain. Question would be the rules. If within range 5 you may add 1 yaw click in the direction of the planet.

 

 

I'd make one change.

 

Replace "May" with "Must"...  With a Toward-Planet click cancelling out a Click away if need be...

 

 

VSD only have one Click at Speed one?  Too Bad, So Sad, better not be aiming towards the planet, or you better be plotting Navs...

 

Means Thruster Failure actually makes it harder to maintain "orbit" without plummeting towards it...  You know...  Just like in RotS when they flew half a ship to another happy landing...  No matter how many people they killed by ploughing through that command tower, and anyone else in the way...  I Mean, sheesh, that would be wrong, caring about those...

This. Also if your course includes a Yaw toward the planet while traveling within distance (1-3? 1-2?) you may increase your speed by one (or increase your speed by one for the duration of the maneuver?) If your course includes a yaw away from the planet (while within the afore mentioned distance) you may decrease your speed by one. This will allow you to utilize slingshot and aerobraking maneuvers strategically as well.

Incidentally, an idea I came up with for using hyperspace to exit a game (allowing you to save damaged ships in campaigns where losses matter) is that a hyperspace jump happens by using a nav token and a nav command at once. This means things like tractor beams and the ion cannon upgrade that discards tokens on a blue crit gain new value for keeping opponents in the fight (and upgrades like raymus and commanders like Garm and Tarkin worth their weight in GOLD.)

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I think that when you start using planets as terrain, you start really getting the scale screwed up for what you're representing.  Sure you can do it, but at that level of scale I'd argue that you may as well just call every shot obstructed and be done with it given all the things you could theoretically add in.

 

Further, I think that Star Wars technology seems to frown on the idea of ships having difficulty maneuvering around planets.  We see some massive star ships having no movement restrictions at far closer distances to planets than where you'd need to start worrying about gravitational interference at an abstracted board game level.  Basically, you'd need to be more or less on top of all but the largest of them to even achieve a stable orbit.

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I'd make one change.

 

Replace "May" with "Must"...  With a Toward-Planet click cancelling out a Click away if need be...

 

 

VSD only have one Click at Speed one?  Too Bad, So Sad, better not be aiming towards the planet, or you better be plotting Navs...

Isn't the VSD the only type of Star Destroyer that is actually capable of atmospheric entry?

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I'd make one change.

 

Replace "May" with "Must"...  With a Toward-Planet click cancelling out a Click away if need be...

 

 

VSD only have one Click at Speed one?  Too Bad, So Sad, better not be aiming towards the planet, or you better be plotting Navs...

Isn't the VSD the only type of Star Destroyer that is actually capable of atmospheric entry?

 

 

The Venator is capable of actual landing, complete with massive landing struts.  The ISD per the new Rogue One trailer seems perfectly capable.

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Wasn't Tarkin promoted for landing his ISD on a protesting town?

He wasn't punished for it, anyway:

 

http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Ghorman_Massacre

 

though his promotion to Grand Moff was a few years later.

 

Also - it's not clear what class the ship was.

 

 

The Venator is capable of actual landing, complete with massive landing struts.  The ISD per the new Rogue One trailer seems perfectly capable.

 

Yup - it was the very early Legendsverse, prior to the PT, that portrayed the Victory as the largest atmosphere-capable ship used by the Empire - and since then, several sources contracted it. Including the Rebels TV series, some time before Rogue One.

Edited by Ironlord

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I bought one of these for a decent sized small moon. It's a flattened 11.5" diameter hemisphere, designed to be a wall mounted echo-hippie wholemeal mood setting gadget.

 

Remove the screws and place it on the table.

 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wall-Lamp-Decor-Phases-Moon/dp/B00BLMKPEW/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1473084495&sr=8-8&keywords=moon+phase+led

 

81BT0FV0mrL._SL1500_.jpg

Edited by Mad Cat

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You could try a 3' planet edge terrain. Question would be the rules. If within range 5 you may add 1 yaw click in the direction of the planet.

 

 

I'd make one change.

 

Replace "May" with "Must"...  With a Toward-Planet click cancelling out a Click away if need be...

 

 

VSD only have one Click at Speed one?  Too Bad, So Sad, better not be aiming towards the planet, or you better be plotting Navs...

 

Means Thruster Failure actually makes it harder to maintain "orbit" without plummeting towards it...  You know...  Just like in RotS when they flew half a ship to another happy landing...  No matter how many people they killed by ploughing through that command tower, and anyone else in the way...  I Mean, sheesh, that would be wrong, caring about those...

This. Also if your course includes a Yaw toward the planet while traveling within distance (1-3? 1-2?) you may increase your speed by one (or increase your speed by one for the duration of the maneuver?) If your course includes a yaw away from the planet (while within the afore mentioned distance) you may decrease your speed by one. This will allow you to utilize slingshot and aerobraking maneuvers strategically as well.

Incidentally, an idea I came up with for using hyperspace to exit a game (allowing you to save damaged ships in campaigns where losses matter) is that a hyperspace jump happens by using a nav token and a nav command at once. This means things like tractor beams and the ion cannon upgrade that discards tokens on a blue crit gain new value for keeping opponents in the fight (and upgrades like raymus and commanders like Garm and Tarkin worth their weight in GOLD.)

 

Maybe make it optional at range 4-5 but must at range 1-3

 

I think that when you start using planets as terrain, you start really getting the scale screwed up for what you're representing.  Sure you can do it, but at that level of scale I'd argue that you may as well just call every shot obstructed and be done with it given all the things you could theoretically add in.

 

Further, I think that Star Wars technology seems to frown on the idea of ships having difficulty maneuvering around planets.  We see some massive star ships having no movement restrictions at far closer distances to planets than where you'd need to start worrying about gravitational interference at an abstracted board game level.  Basically, you'd need to be more or less on top of all but the largest of them to even achieve a stable orbit.

 

Which is why I think using one of the 3' table edges preserves the scale. Sure the planet is big enough you can hide a fleet behind it but most battles take place near a planet so having a terrain set up where you could go near it (not around it) will work in Armada.

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