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Typherian

Starship defense supposed to equate to shields?

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It seems like just having a defense zone to equal shields on starships is not adequately portraying what we know from our knowledge of star wars.  (did Disney change that too??)

For instance, one attack comes in and is successful so all the damage applies to the ship HT threshold (shields did nothing apparently), next attack comes in and is unsuccessful possibly because of a black die roll so no damage does through. (oh, look shields are back...)  This can go back and forth all during the fight... or if you're unlucky every attack can just go straight through so it's like you never had shields at all.  It doesn't make sense.  (and even when no damage goes through it's just a miss, not the shields actually doing anything unless you want to RP that the black die was the thing that deflected the damage that time)

Plus, as a player you can actually have the same amount of "defense" as a starship with a shield generator by getting some armor that adds +1 defense. :|

I would have thought there would be an actual amount of "hit points" labeled shields that would have to be reduced to zero before damage could be applied to the hull.  (and it should probably regenerate X amount per round or something similar)

Has anyone house ruled something to make shields more.... you know, shieldy? :P

Edited by Typherian

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1 hour ago, Typherian said:

(did Disney change that too??)

Easy there, fella. Dial down the paranoia a few notches. Neither the house of mouse nor Lucasfilm has much, if anything, to do with the particulars of how FFG's rules work.

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

 For instance, one attack comes in and is successful so all the damage applies to the ship HT threshold (shields did nothing apparently), next attack comes in and is unsuccessful possibly because of a black die roll so no damage does through. (oh, look shields are back...) 

We are never told really told exactly how ship shields work, but does seem like ships can and do take damage before shields are depleted. They might not even work the same way as in Star Trek, where the shields essentially have an HP pool that needs to be depleted. It's quite possible that shields in star wars are more constant and are depleted mostly from actual damage to the ship, rather than impacts to them. It might also be that a shield has a certain treshold value, and if exceeded by a hit, that hit might blast through the shields, hitting the ship. Also, remember that if roll fails on your defense dice, that means that, even if the attack is ultimately successful, the shields have reduced the damage.

 

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

This can go back and forth all during the fight... or if you're unlucky every attack can just go straight through so it's like you never had shields at all.  It doesn't make sense.

Well, if it makes sense or not depends on your assumption of how shields work in star wars.

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

(and even when no damage goes through it's just a miss, not the shields actually doing anything unless you want to RP that the black die was the thing that deflected the damage that time)

Yes, well, god forbid that we engage in role playing.

Look, this is a narrative system. However you want to narrate a dice result is up to you.

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

Plus, as a player you can actually have the same amount of "defense" as a starship with a shield generator by getting some armor that adds +1 defense. 😐

Technichally yes, but starship weapons would still turn you into paste, so it doesn't really matter much.

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

I would have thought there would be an actual amount of "hit points" labeled shields that would have to be reduced to zero before damage could be applied to the hull.  (and it should probably regenerate X amount per round or something similar)

That does indeed seem to be how it works in Star Trek. Go nuts if you prefer it that way.

1 hour ago, Typherian said:

Has anyone house ruled something to make shields more.... you know, shieldy? 

If you're going to use such technical terms, I'm going to be confused.

How about you search the EotE GM forum and the AoR forum for starfighter/vehicle combat tweaks. There should be several threads.

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Yeah, the current system does a crap job of portraying shields. They should really be extra armor or a regenerating bubble of hit points.

My recommendation is to swap to something like this,

 

Shield Rating X: A ship's shield generator or character's personal shield generator grants it's ship or wearer an amount of additional hit points, signified by the X value. While the shield generator has hit points left, any damage sustained from ranged attacks is first subtracted from these hit points instead of the character's wound pool or the ship's hull value. If the number of hit points left in the shield is reduced to 0, any remaining damage is applied to the ship or character as normal. Critical effects can only be triggered against a target with a shield value of 0.

For vehicles with Hull Zones, the listed Shield Rating hit points must be divided among the hull zones. A Redirect Shield's action may be performed to move hit points from one zone to the next.

Shield Regeneration X: Each shield generator has a Shield Regeneration X value. This indicates how many hit points that shield regenerates each round. For a vehicle with multiple hull zones, the pilot(Shield Operator on a large vessel, or the wearer if it is a personal shield generator) must choose where the regenerated hit points go. If there is no character to make such a decision, the automated systems will regenerate the hit points evenly across all hull zones.

Recover Shield's action: Pilot or Copilot or Shield Operator or Wearer. The character must make an average mechanic's check, and choose a Hull zone if applicable. For each success rolled, the shield regenerates 1 hit point.

I would say something like a YT-1300 would have a Shield Rating of 15 and Shield Regeneration of 2. A Star Destroyer might have Shield Rating 50 and Shield Regeneration of 10(with a bunch of Shield Operator's who can work to restore those shields)

A personal shield generator would be something like Shield Rating 10 and Shield Regeneration 2.

Edited by BadMotivator

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I remember the Order 66 Podcasts discussed this once, I dont remember which episode it was though.

But I recommend looking at the original trilogy. Shields on the Falcon seem to always work really similar to the setback dice we get in FFG Star Wars (In fact I think its where the inspiration for this comes from), sometimes they deflect a hit, sometimes they dont. 
Its only the Home One Mon Calamari Cruiser where we might get a sense of a Shield Bubble. Which from my point of view is the effect of Mon Calamari Cruiser's having multiple overlapping Shield Generators and therefore getting a metric ton of setback dice. 

Even on Star Destroyers we see alot of scenes where they take fire and deflect it and sometimes they take the hit (And its not portrayed in a sense that the Shields went down first). 

I for one get none of the "Star Trecky Shieldbubble that needs to be depleted before I can take damage" feel from Shields in Star Wars, but thats just my opinion from a certain point of view. 

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3 hours ago, Typherian said:

It seems like just having a defense zone to equal shields on starships is not adequately portraying what we know from our knowledge of star wars.

And what do we know?

Not from EU novels, video games and other things that take liberties for the sake of a certain story or game mechanic, but the actual source material: the films.

Not much. There's some call outs to specific situations: Shields can be moved around, at least by some craft, and they can go down making a ship more vulnerable, and they are resistant to small arms fire... not much else is specifically said.

Some additional observations can be made that tell us a little more.

The X-wings in the battle of Yavin don't get a heck of a lot of protection from their shields, as one or two direct hits result in a kill. Though depending on what you see, lots of little hits bounce off...

Shields seems kinda non-specific in their ability to protect against a hit. The Falcons takes a solid hit from a Turbolaser and, while it is visibly affected by a physical impact, doesn't get a scratch from the blast. In Rebels we see an even crazier example as Vader's TIE attacks a corvette and his shots can be seen doing physical damage to the hull, even though I think they said the shields are still up, going down, but not down.

And for really interesting discussion...

3 hours ago, Typherian said:

(did Disney change that too??)

They seem to have actually clarified what's already been shown.

In TLJ the Raddus easily takes turbolaser hit after turbolaser hit at long range, with the hits clearly bouncing off the shield. But when attacked at close range by fighters the shields don't do much.

Which actually would explain a heck of a lot. In previous movies and TV episodes we often see capital ships getting pretty darn close to each other. RotS and RotJ being the two best examples where we see them engaging each other at point blank range. While in RotJ they had an explanation as to why, there's also a callout that at that range the rebel ships wouldn't last long, which again, hints that range is important. In RotS however we see a space battle with the ships up close blasting away like they're in a only age of sail pirate film.

So by making range an element of weapon power and/or shield effectiveness they've done some interesting things that aren't really represented with ship to ship combat in the game system being Sil heavy and range just saying how far our your weapons work. But that's not a suggestion that shields work like ablative armor.

 

So yeah, while in video games and such we Shields represented as a kind of rechargeable ablative armor, there's not a heck of a lot in the films to back that up. Certainly not enough to assume it's like Trek, where until you get through the shields the ship is pretty much safe. If anything we actually see the exact opposite:

They don't absorb hits well, and in fact are called "deflector shields" suggesting they deflect a shot. When a ship gets hit the shields have a habit of blocking a heck of a lot, or not much, but it's entirely dependent on the range, power, and angle of the incoming blast. Shields make a bigger impact at longer ranges, being best at extreme ranges, and of limited value up close.

 

I get that there's some upset about FFG making ships, especially fighters, rather squishy. But if you look at the films, especially the battle of Yavin the only battle we see 100% start to finish, they are squishy. And you can offset that, either by using things like Squadron Rules, which does work with what we see on screen, or instituting house rules like bringing over the barrel roll from Genesys.

 

 

3 hours ago, BadMotivator said:

Shield Rating X: A ship's shield generator or character's personal shield generator grants it's ship or wearer an amount of additional hit points, signified by the X value. While the shield generator has hit points left, any damage sustained from ranged attacks is first subtracted from these hit points instead of the character's wound pool or the ship's hull value. If the number of hit points left in the shield is reduced to 0, any remaining damage is applied to the ship or character as normal.

 

Not bad...

 

3 hours ago, BadMotivator said:

Critical effects can only be triggered against a target with a shield value of 0.

I'd reconsider this. After all, it happens in the source material, but also keeps the crits that affect shields relevant. If you can't crit until you drop the shields, then those crits only affect your proposed regen (which I'll get o in a sec) or later encounters if the crit hasn't been repeaired.

 

3 hours ago, BadMotivator said:

Shield Regeneration X: Each shield generator has a Shield Regeneration X value. This indicates how many hit points that shield regenerates each round. For a vehicle with multiple hull zones, the pilot(Shield Operator on a large vessel, or the wearer if it is a personal shield generator) must choose where the regenerated hit points go. If there is no character to make such a decision, the automated systems will regenerate the hit points evenly across all hull zones.

Thisis what I'd really reconsider. I get it, but from a play perspective it gets into  book keeping. Easier solution is to ditch it and just say that shields can just regen between encounters and leave it at that.

 

 

Also note that anything that give ablative wounds like that to shielded craft will unbalance them with unshielded craft quite a bit. Maybe not a huge issues as long as the players don't need to fly TIE fighters ever, but it will probably mean you need even more TIEs in an encounter to make them a threat and if you do an Imperial Campaign you'll need to either go back to official rules or make the player squadrons even larger.

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I was on the fence about letting crits still happen. Certain crits do make sense through shields, others don't. Like how did you damage the engines of the Star Destroyer while its shields are still up?

And while it would somewhat weaken unshielded fighters, well its cool if the PCs can mow down wave after wave of TIEs. And in the event of an Imperial campaign, I think the PCs would either not be flying TIEs OR you'd be playing a much more... lethal... campaign. Imperial PCs should probably have access to TIE Defenders or Gunboats fairly quick.

Of course its not like it would take long for the shields to be whittled down. A freighter sized ship would still have to shuffle its 15 shield points between 2 arcs, and once they're down they'll start taking damage quick. It just gives a little safety buffer which can be regained with good rolling. TIE Fighters could make good use of gain the advantage to hit the weakest shield zone.

Edited by BadMotivator

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Hm, little bit Offtopic but, I ran a really fun imperial campaign for a year now, featuring imperial pilots. 

And my players liked not having access to more than a Tie's for a very long time. They got their hands on some Tie Phantoms and another time Defenders for some missions, but they even prefered going back to their normal Tie's after that.(They really played up the attitude of superiority of being better pilots). In the end, when they got selected into Vader's own Squadron they did go with their new Defenders and Avengers though 😃
On that note: We used Genesys Vehicle Rules with the addition of Star Wars' Defense Zones.
(They clear up alot of weirdness and bookkeeping issues, I can only recommend them. Just add Defense Zones selection into Gain the Advantage just like in Star Wars)

 

But on topic again: 

19 minutes ago, BadMotivator said:

I was on the fence about letting crits still happen. Certain crits do make sense through shields, others don't. Like how did you damage the engines of the Star Destroyer while its shields are still up?

Its your decision in the end. If you want more of the Shieldbubble feel, I think your Rules should work well. It may lead to having 2 categories of crits (Shields online / Shields offline) though.

Edited by Fl1nt

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8 hours ago, BadMotivator said:

Yeah, the current system does a crap job of portraying shields. They should really be extra armor or a regenerating bubble of hit points.

My recommendation is to swap to something like this,

 

Shield Rating X: A ship's shield generator or character's personal shield generator grants it's ship or wearer an amount of additional hit points, signified by the X value. While the shield generator has hit points left, any damage sustained from ranged attacks is first subtracted from these hit points instead of the character's wound pool or the ship's hull value. If the number of hit points left in the shield is reduced to 0, any remaining damage is applied to the ship or character as normal. Critical effects can only be triggered against a target with a shield value of 0.

For vehicles with Hull Zones, the listed Shield Rating hit points must be divided among the hull zones. A Redirect Shield's action may be performed to move hit points from one zone to the next.

Shield Regeneration X: Each shield generator has a Shield Regeneration X value. This indicates how many hit points that shield regenerates each round. For a vehicle with multiple hull zones, the pilot(Shield Operator on a large vessel, or the wearer if it is a personal shield generator) must choose where the regenerated hit points go. If there is no character to make such a decision, the automated systems will regenerate the hit points evenly across all hull zones.

Recover Shield's action: Pilot or Copilot or Shield Operator or Wearer. The character must make an average mechanic's check, and choose a Hull zone if applicable. For each success rolled, the shield regenerates 1 hit point.

I would say something like a YT-1300 would have a Shield Rating of 15 and Shield Regeneration of 2. A Star Destroyer might have Shield Rating 50 and Shield Regeneration of 10(with a bunch of Shield Operator's who can work to restore those shields)

A personal shield generator would be something like Shield Rating 10 and Shield Regeneration 2.

This is pretty much how I see things too.   I was thinking somewhere around 12-16 points of "shielding" for a YT-1300 type ship would be about right, so we are in agreement there.

 

As a general point of reference,  I don't know a **** thing about Star Trek shields, I'm not a Trekkie.  My thoughts on this subject come strictly from things I've seen in the movies or read in the books or played in other Star Wars games over the many years since 1977.

For instance:

From ANH when escaping Mos Eisley; Han tells Chewie to "angle the deflector shields, try to hold them off while I make the calculations for the jump to light speed;  they've been taking fire from a capital ship for a bit and then Luke says "what's that flashing?"  Han's answer: we're losing the deflector shield...           Just from that bit in the first Star Wars movie we ever saw we can assimilate that shields prevent damage while they are active, but taking damage causes them to dissipate over time until they no longer work.     

(to be fair, later in ANH while escaping the Death Star, the Falcon does appear to take some damage.  There's no specific mention of shields or angling them or anything, but they "lose the lateral controls", and R2 has to put out a small electrical fire, while Han tells everyone not to worry, "she'll hold together" and then proceeds to talk to the Falcon encouraging "her" to hold together.)  (spoiler alert: she does, in fact, hold together.)

In Ep. 1, Droideka shields and Gungan shields seem to deflect or absorb large quantities of blaster fire while not letting any damage through.

In some of the dozen's of star wars books there have been references to shields preventing damage.  I don't have those all memorized, but if anyone wants to point some out, have at it.

And finally in Star Wars Galaxies Jump to Lightspeed expansion which I'm guessing had to be based on a general understanding of how shields worked in Star Wars, you had to completely defeat shields from the direction of attack before you could do damage to the ship or ship components.  And they regenerated over time.

 

To reiterate something I said in my OP that may or may not have been taken the wrong way:  the game mechanic that lets a character with a set of armor that adds +1 defense roll a single black die to reflect that defense; then lets a starship with shield generators roll that same single black die to reflect the existence of the shields just seems off to me.   I did not mean that a character could wear their +1 defense armor into space and resist starship weapons.  I'm aware of the different scale of damage between personal weapons and starship weapons. :|

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26 minutes ago, Typherian said:

In Ep. 1, Droideka shields and Gungan shields seem to deflect or absorb large quantities of blaster fire while not letting any damage through.

In some of the dozen's of star wars books there have been references to shields preventing damage.  I don't have those all memorized, but if anyone wants to point some out, have at it.

We have stats for both the Gungan energy shields and the Droideka ones. They add 2 defensive dies, Droideka one also upgrades the difficulty once since they're better. That's it, they don't act as soak. As the GM and the player, you narrate what happens when an attack fails. If it fails because you rolled more fails on the difficulty while still rolling a few successes, then you still had some success. Which can be narrated as some hits going in but their defense held up, which could be either shields or parrying strikes if it's melee combat. Same thing in space with ships both big and small. Which is consistent with the things we see in the films, damage seeps through the shields and a well aimed shot can get through the shields while they're still up. Shields also seem to not be that good against close range bombs or torpedoes, we quite often see those things go straight through defenses.

 

Either way, you can do you. I wouldn't go the route of giving shields a numerical value that needs to be depleted. It adds extra housekeeping and some pretty weird stuff with some of the actions that you can take while in combat with a ship. For instance how does it work with Angle Deflector Shields where you remove shields from a section of the ship to beef up another? Does the YT now have 24-32 extra HP in the front or the back (without using gain the advantage you're assumed to attack a shielded section)? What about boosting the shields? That adds another shield value to the shield with a check that a decent mechanic has no problems succeeding on, the hypothetical YT-1300 can now be rocking 36-48 extra HP, which is quite a bit more than the hull threshold. Yeah that costs 1 system strain, but there is an action to recover strain as well. To me it seems like this would make even freighters into blaster sponges that take an absurd amount of time to work through, not to mention what it would be like against a proper military ship.

 

Anyway, you do you. I prefer the more narrative shields, they feel more in line with Star Wars for me. 

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Arguably we could have two types of shield.

Deflector shields - Smaller emitters, so generally what is used on commercial ships and personal defenses.

Absorbing shields - Need larger emitters, or being designed around it, used on Droidikas, buildings, planetary shields and some huge ships (Death Star 2).

The former would add black dice as now (to anything outside the shield), the second would add soak (to avoid bookkeeping), and be impenetrable except at very slow speed. Double triumph could overload them, forcing them shutdown until repaired and safely discharged.

We also probably want ship lasers to drop off a point of damage per range band outside close, or something like that, to represent how the danger of them changes with distance.

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12 minutes ago, Darth Revenant said:

Anyway, you do you. I prefer the more narrative shields, they feel more in line with Star Wars for me. 

That's the way I see this too. 

Yes the Defense Shield mechanic isn't perfect, but rarely any RPG System is. 
From the sessions I ran with my players, I can only say that the Systems does what it needs to for us. It keeps focus on the narrative, which for us makes this system so great and fun, and it represents some kind of protection against attacks.

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I'd say that the reason why Shields work the way they do in the game is because ships also have armor, which actually soaks incoming damage, and the system doesn't allow stacking of Soak. As such, they have Shields work as a Defense value  to "deflect" the shot away from the ship before it even hits. And this is how we see shields  work in the canon too. The shot bounces off the energy shield and never even touches the ship itself unless it manages to blast through the shields.

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5 minutes ago, Tramp Graphics said:

I'd say that the reason why Shields work the way they do in the game is because ships also have armor, which actually soaks incoming damage, and the system doesn't allow stacking of Soak. As such, they have Shields work as a Defense value  to "deflect" the shot away from the ship before it even hits. And this is how we see shields  work in the canon too. The shot bounces off the energy shield and never even touches the ship itself unless it manages to blast through the shields.

I'm aware of what armor does.  I'm not advocating for another soak mechanic, what I think works best is rather like another set of "hull trauma" points.  Soak takes damage away from each hit and doesn't deplete from taking damage.  My personal understanding of how shields work is that they deflect or absorb damage but are depleted with each hit until you hear things like "what's that flashing?  We're losing the shields!    I think there have been plenty of references to shields working that way throughout the Star Wars movies and books.

 

 This theory was borne out in SWG where shields depleted from hits and when they were gone the armor took hits, and when that was gone the ship itself could only take a few hits and the ship was destroyed.    That being said, I think using the armor value for soak here in Edge works fine.

Ok, here's what prompted this.  I played through the Escape from Mos Shuuta, and when the Tie fighters attacked one ended up with a  single success for 7 points of damage plus advantages to activate the linked quality for 14 points of damage.  14-3 soak = 11 points of hull trauma from a 22 point ship in one hit. :|   In the whole history of Star Wars I've never seen or read about a single Tie fighter hit being able to half destroy the Falcon.  While I understand the Krayt Fang is not the Falcon, it still felt like something was wrong with how that mechanic worked.

 

I guess the best thing is we all don't play at the same table and we can have various house rules. :) 

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9 hours ago, Darth Revenant said:

We have stats for both the Gungan energy shields and the Droideka ones. They add 2 defensive dies, Droideka one also upgrades the difficulty once since they're better. That's it, they don't act as soak. As the GM and the player, you narrate what happens when an attack fails. If it fails because you rolled more fails on the difficulty while still rolling a few successes, then you still had some success. Which can be narrated as some hits going in but their defense held up, which could be either shields or parrying strikes if it's melee combat. Same thing in space with ships both big and small. Which is consistent with the things we see in the films, damage seeps through the shields and a well aimed shot can get through the shields while they're still up. Shields also seem to not be that good against close range bombs or torpedoes, we quite often see those things go straight through defenses.

 

Either way, you can do you. I wouldn't go the route of giving shields a numerical value that needs to be depleted. It adds extra housekeeping and some pretty weird stuff with some of the actions that you can take while in combat with a ship. For instance how does it work with Angle Deflector Shields where you remove shields from a section of the ship to beef up another? Does the YT now have 24-32 extra HP in the front or the back (without using gain the advantage you're assumed to attack a shielded section)? What about boosting the shields? That adds another shield value to the shield with a check that a decent mechanic has no problems succeeding on, the hypothetical YT-1300 can now be rocking 36-48 extra HP, which is quite a bit more than the hull threshold. Yeah that costs 1 system strain, but there is an action to recover strain as well. To me it seems like this would make even freighters into blaster sponges that take an absurd amount of time to work through, not to mention what it would be like against a proper military ship.

 

Anyway, you do you. I prefer the more narrative shields, they feel more in line with Star Wars for me. 

What books have the Gungan and Droideka info?  I'd like to see, but as you say it just adds a second black die.  We can do the same thing to ships by adding Reinforced Shield Generator E:CRB page 270.  /shrug I'm sure that's better than 1 black die, but still not really what I'm looking for.

Where do you find Boost shields?  I haven't been able to see that yet.

Sorry to keep referencing SWG but that's the only game where I flew ships and used shields before this.  There were droid commands that moved shields around such as Double Front.  This did double the front shield hit points while minimizing rear shields to a tiny amount.  If I recall correctly there were other commands to equalize shields back to normal and to move them to the rear as well.  So yes, I am used to having a system that allows doubling shields at one end, the trade off being minimal shields and the vulnerability that comes with that at the opposite end.  I'm also used to having shields be the primary point of defense and once they are gone you can be fairly easily destroyed.

As has been suggested, in the end I'm going to take the advice to "you do you".  I feel like having substantial shields doesn't take away from any RP and in fact felt like RPing that the ship could withstand a good amount of Tie fighter hits without significant hull damage while trying to fight them off and wait for the calculations to make the jump to lightspeed and the safety therein was very much how I envision Star Wars stories going.

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39 minutes ago, Typherian said:

ne ended up with a  single success for 7 points of damage plus advantages to activate the linked quality for 14 points of damage.  14-3 soak = 11 points of hull trauma from a 22 point ship in one hit.

   So, first thing, that would be 8 points of Hull Trauma, not 11.  The first hit does 7-3 for 4 damage, and the second does the same.  You don't add the damage all together for the linked quality before applying Armor.  But yes, that's still a nasty hit.  This is why it's a good idea for someone with the Computers skill to "Hike up those deflector shields!  Angle them to double-aft!"  Now that TIE is rolling against 3 black dice instead of 1.

   So then, with a single Success and two Advantage, there's a 2/3 chance that single shield die prevented things from being even worse.  Sure, it may have come up blank, which always sucks.  However, if it rolled a failure, it prevented 2 more points of damage.  Not too shabby.  If it rolled a Threat, it prevented a Critical Hit, because it takes 3 Advantage for a TIE to crit.  That shield might have kept the navicomputer functioning, which is pretty important.

   Also, being at 11 Hull Trauma is NOT half-destroyed, which people have been pointing out since this game was released.  When you exceed your Hull Trauma, there is a dramatic explosion on the hull, the lights go dim, and the key grip shakes the camera while the heroes stumble around the cockpit.  Suffer a Crit while you're at it.  The freighter drifts lifelessly, and the TIE fighters radio for a boarding crew.  The GM decides whether it would be more fun to have the heroes try to fight off some stormtroopers, or to perform an emergency landing as the ship careens toward the surface of Tatooine.  Let them make a Piloting check to make a soft crash.  If they succeed, they were able to get a little bit of juice out of the engines, or fire the deflector shields at the moment of impact.  They still crashed the ship, but everyone is okay.  If they fail, hit them with some wounds and maybe a Crit.
   Heck, they can always make a Hard Mechanics check to bring the ship back to life (EotE, top of page 243).  The ship is still in terrible condition, and you do not want to take it into a fight (or even try to leave the system, probably).  But it's flying again, so you can probably land it wherever you like.

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15 minutes ago, The Grand Falloon said:

   So, first thing, that would be 8 points of Hull Trauma, not 11.  The first hit does 7-3 for 4 damage, and the second does the same.  You don't add the damage all together for the linked quality before applying Armor.  But yes, that's still a nasty hit.  This is why it's a good idea for someone with the Computers skill to "Hike up those deflector shields!  Angle them to double-aft!"  Now that TIE is rolling against 3 black dice instead of 1.

   So then, with a single Success and two Advantage, there's a 2/3 chance that single shield die prevented things from being even worse.  Sure, it may have come up blank, which always sucks.  However, if it rolled a failure, it prevented 2 more points of damage.  Not too shabby.  If it rolled a Threat, it prevented a Critical Hit, because it takes 3 Advantage for a TIE to crit.  That shield might have kept the navicomputer functioning, which is pretty important.

   Also, being at 11 Hull Trauma is NOT half-destroyed, which people have been pointing out since this game was released.  When you exceed your Hull Trauma, there is a dramatic explosion on the hull, the lights go dim, and the key grip shakes the camera while the heroes stumble around the cockpit.  Suffer a Crit while you're at it.  The freighter drifts lifelessly, and the TIE fighters radio for a boarding crew.  The GM decides whether it would be more fun to have the heroes try to fight off some stormtroopers, or to perform an emergency landing as the ship careens toward the surface of Tatooine.  Let them make a Piloting check to make a soft crash.  If they succeed, they were able to get a little bit of juice out of the engines, or fire the deflector shields at the moment of impact.  They still crashed the ship, but everyone is okay.  If they fail, hit them with some wounds and maybe a Crit.
   Heck, they can always make a Hard Mechanics check to bring the ship back to life (EotE, top of page 243).  The ship is still in terrible condition, and you do not want to take it into a fight (or even try to leave the system, probably).  But it's flying again, so you can probably land it wherever you like.

Good catch on that damage.  I forgot to do the soak for each hit.  :/    I guess it's hard to get away from old habits of looking at things like HT points as a finite thing equaling destroyed.  (I did know that exceeding hull trauma wouldn't necessarily blow us to smithereens, but floating there disabled seems like destroyed.  I liked the ideas you had for either boarding or crashing softly or various other ways out.  Good food for thought.

While we're on the subject of things we probably did wrong in that scenario, we had the Ties represented as 4 individual ships rather than 2 groups of 2 minions.  Going back and re-reading things it sounds like maybe we were supposed to use the Tie fighters as two 2 group minions.  It said: Tie figher pilots are minions and use the same minion group rules as stormtroopers. Note that some of the fighter pilot's statistics aren't relevant for this encounter - he's flying a Tie Fighter!  Then we looked below that at the stats for a Tie Fighter where there's no mention of minion rules and ended up just having 4 separate ships attacking.   (we thought minions on the ground like stormtroopers but individual ships while flying)  Later we re-read the Tie fighter pilot stats and saw under skills Pilot (both vary; 2 green, one yellow for a wing of 2, three green for a single pilot and realized a probable mistake in how we ran that encounter.

 

Edit: I wanted to ask where do you find the info on the hike up the deflector shields?  (is that boost shields?  I've seen others mention it, but not sure what book its in.  I see angle deflector shields in E:CRB page 233.

Edited by Typherian

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1 hour ago, Typherian said:

What books have the Gungan and Droideka info?  I'd like to see, but as you say it just adds a second black die.  We can do the same thing to ships by adding Reinforced Shield Generator E:CRB page 270.  /shrug I'm sure that's better than 1 black die, but still not really what I'm looking for.

Where do you find Boost shields?  I haven't been able to see that yet.

Sorry to keep referencing SWG but that's the only game where I flew ships and used shields before this.  There were droid commands that moved shields around such as Double Front.  This did double the front shield hit points while minimizing rear shields to a tiny amount.  If I recall correctly there were other commands to equalize shields back to normal and to move them to the rear as well.  So yes, I am used to having a system that allows doubling shields at one end, the trade off being minimal shields and the vulnerability that comes with that at the opposite end.  I'm also used to having shields be the primary point of defense and once they are gone you can be fairly easily destroyed.

As has been suggested, in the end I'm going to take the advice to "you do you".  I feel like having substantial shields doesn't take away from any RP and in fact felt like RPing that the ship could withstand a good amount of Tie fighter hits without significant hull damage while trying to fight them off and wait for the calculations to make the jump to lightspeed and the safety therein was very much how I envision Star Wars stories going.

Gungan energy shield is in Nexus of Power, http://swrpg.viluppo.net/equipment/weapons/2948/ stats can be found here. Droideka is in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper, stats can be found here http://swa.stoogoff.com/#droideka-destroyer-droid. Droideka and Gungan energy shield is two black dice, which can be pretty **** handy.

 

Page 237 in the EotE core rulebook has boosting shields. It's in all the core rulebooks under vehicle combat and additional actions. Anyway, hope you get the shields as HP to work for you. I would honestly find it to be too much book keeping added for not enough value.

 

Read your previous example now as well. When something is linked that means you apply the soak twice as well. If there is an additional hit then there is soak against that as well. So it would be 8 damage getting through, not 11. Reading through more I see someone already mentioned this. Well the edit will have to stand.

 

As for the shields flashing, there is a crit that takes out components such as shields, one that specifically makes the shields fail and for 3 advantage you can disable the shields rather than damage the ship. So that part is already in the system.

Edited by Darth Revenant
I should read all the posts before responding.

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4 minutes ago, Darth Revenant said:

Gungan energy shield is in Nexus of Power, http://swrpg.viluppo.net/equipment/weapons/2948/ stats can be found here. Droideka is in Chronicles of the Gatekeeper, stats can be found here http://swa.stoogoff.com/#droideka-destroyer-droid. Droideka and Gungan energy shield is two black dice, which can be pretty **** handy.

 

Page 237 in the EotE core rulebook has boosting shields. It's in all the core rulebooks under vehicle combat and additional actions. Anyway, hope you get the shields as HP to work for you. I would honestly find it to be too much book keeping added for not enough value.

Thanks!  I see the boost shields in that table on 237.  I'd read it before but by the time we ran that encounter I had forgotten that part and we didn't use any of those things from that table except manual repairs.

I don't have either of the books with the gungan shield or Droideka's.  Are those Force and Destiny books? 

I hit the link real quick, didn't realize we were talking about personal energy shields, I thought we were talking about the giant energy dome from the Battle of Naboo. 

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1 minute ago, Typherian said:

Thanks!  I see the boost shields in that table on 237.  I'd read it before but by the time we ran that encounter I had forgotten that part and we didn't use any of those things from that table except manual repairs.

I don't have either of the books with the gungan shield or Droideka's.  Are those Force and Destiny books? 

I hit the link real quick, didn't realize we were talking about personal energy shields, I thought we were talking about the giant energy dome from the Battle of Naboo. 

Ah, no that would be a different thing. Thought you meant the shields the gungan troops used. Don't think the big static sector shields have really been stated anywhere. They're more of a narrative device rather than a piece of gear. Especially seeing as how we have seen one of those take the pummeling of a fleet including Star Destroyers in Rebels. So they seem to pretty much never run out of juice and there is now way to work them down. You have to get in through the shield and take out the generator.

 

Chronicles is an adventure book. Nexus of Power is a F&D source book with planets. It has Weik, possibly one of the coolest planets in wild space and I place I would really like for my campaign to go to, never going to happen in the current one though.

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3 hours ago, Darth Revenant said:

They're more of a narrative device rather than a piece of gear. Especially seeing as how we have seen one of those take the pummeling of a fleet including Star Destroyers in Rebels. So they seem to pretty much never run out of juice and there is now way to work them down. You have to get in through the shield and take out the generator.

Of the really big shields, we've seen like... four get knocked down?

Two of them (Hoth and the Gungans on Naboo) were dealt with by troops slowly moving through the shield and shooting the generator. At Endor the rebel fighters might've been able to slow down and move through the death star shields, but when there's a death stars worth of guns are pointing your way, it's abad time to come to a near halt. Luckily the ground team knocked out that shield.

This pretty much leaves one instance where a theater shield has been breached by force; Scarif. I think it's safe to assume that the shield gate was the weakest spot, as otherwise the rebels would've been idiots attacking such a well defended point. Still, it takes smashing TWO Star Destroyers into it at the same time to take it down. We also see that slow items do not pass through it, as the x-wing that wrecks against it slides to a near stop on its surface without falling through. The Scarif shield might be exceptionally strong though, as the rebels seem somewhat surprised that their X-wing cannons are having little effect.

But yeah, I think the notion of wearing shields down is mostly from the video games, because we dont really see it in the movies.

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23 hours ago, Fl1nt said:

I remember the Order 66 Podcasts discussed this once, I dont remember which episode it was though.

But I recommend looking at the original trilogy. Shields on the Falcon seem to always work really similar to the setback dice we get in FFG Star Wars (In fact I think its where the inspiration for this comes from), sometimes they deflect a hit, sometimes they dont. 
Its only the Home One Mon Calamari Cruiser where we might get a sense of a Shield Bubble. Which from my point of view is the effect of Mon Calamari Cruiser's having multiple overlapping Shield Generators and therefore getting a metric ton of setback dice. 

Even on Star Destroyers we see alot of scenes where they take fire and deflect it and sometimes they take the hit (And its not portrayed in a sense that the Shields went down first). 

I for one get none of the "Star Trecky Shieldbubble that needs to be depleted before I can take damage" feel from Shields in Star Wars, but thats just my opinion from a certain point of view. 

Actually the lack of a "bubble" shield on the Falcon is a constraint of limited special effects at the time of the original trilogy.  In a Phantom Menace, when Anakin takes the fighter into the enemy ship, he activates his shields and it is portrayed as a field around the ship that completely stopped the small arms fire of the the enemy droids.  It was also portrayed this way in the EU/Legends material.  We also see the rebel cruisers shields in TLJ as a bubble that completely stops the enemy's cannons.  So FFGs portrayal of shields is actually pretty inaccurate.  Though I'm not sure how I'd fix it in the current system.

A side note, in TLJ, fighters could apparently get close enough that they were under a capital ships shield.  This would make close range strikes by fighters a true double-edged sword.  They can do damage directly to the ship, bypassing the shield, but would be at threat from numerous anti-fighter turrets!

Edited by TalosX

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If the Op is looking for a simple fix just have shield provide an equal amount of extra armor (damage reduction, this is similar to having low hit points that regenerate very quickly, and provides an incentive for angling deflector shields when approaching or fleeing a big slow adversary with big guns.  Remember defense can't greater than 4 so you're limited to 4 extra damage reduction with this house rule.  I haven't tried it but it seems like it should work.  Also defense isn't just shields.. look at the defensive driving talent for an example of a different source.

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10 hours ago, TalosX said:

Actually the lack of a "bubble" shield on the Falcon is a constraint of limited special effects at the time of the original trilogy.  In a Phantom Menace, when Anakin takes the fighter into the enemy ship, he activates his shields and it is portrayed as a field around the ship that completely stopped the small arms fire of the the enemy droids.  It was also portrayed this way in the EU/Legends material.  We also see the rebel cruisers shields in TLJ as a bubble that completely stops the enemy's cannons.  So FFGs portrayal of shields is actually pretty inaccurate.  Though I'm not sure how I'd fix it in the current system.

A side note, in TLJ, fighters could apparently get close enough that they were under a capital ships shield.  This would make close range strikes by fighters a true double-edged sword.  They can do damage directly to the ship, bypassing the shield, but would be at threat from numerous anti-fighter turrets!

Fair point, although some would argue that the new bubble shields are the consequence of star wars taking a new direction since Episode 1. 

I think it comes down to what flavour of Star Wars you and your group wants. 

Do you want new and flashy  or original and more gritty.


On the point of mechanics.

I like the suggestion of EliasWindrider, it could certainly work for smaller ships and snubfighters.

I'd just be cautious as to prevent shield boost and angling deflectors making a ship impenetrable to other starfighter's weaponry, in turn making them invulnerable without the enemy gaining the advantage.

Though this would be rare if at all likely except on capital ships, which could become invulnerable to starfighters in one zone. But that poses a lesser problem since the fighters are much more maneuverable.

 

 

Edited by Fl1nt

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1 hour ago, Fl1nt said:

Fair point, although some would argue that the new bubble shields are the consequence of star wars taking a new direction since Episode 1. 

I think it comes down to what flavour of Star Wars you and your group wants. 

Do you want new and flashy  or original and more gritty.


On the point of mechanics.

I like the suggestion of EliasWindrider, it could certainly work for smaller ships and snubfighters.

I'd just be cautious as to prevent shield boost and angling deflectors making a ship impenetrable to other starfighter's weaponry, in turn making them invulnerable without the enemy gaining the advantage.

Though this would be rare if at all likely except on capital ships, which could become invulnerable to starfighters in one zone. But that poses a lesser problem since the fighters are much more maneuverable.

 

 

Assuming as a near worst case that a starfighter had armor 3 and 2/2 shield, and they doubled up, that would be 7 points of damage reduction  in one arc and 3 in another, also assume 5 points damage (light laser cannons) damage, one success makes that 6 so it's  stopped, 2 success are also stopped 3 successes gets 1 point of damage through.  But any other opponent than the one they have gained the advantage against is facing 3 damage reduction.  Ties generally work in pairs. Gaining the advantage works against one of them.  Point is for starfighter vs starfighter angling deflector shields isn't all that useful unless the GM chooses to make it so.  Also you don't have to deal damage to inflict a critical hit, you just have to succeed at the attack, with the proposed house rule you get extra damage reduction... those aren't extra failures like would be coming from the black dice which could cause the hit to miss entirely.  Critical hits can damage subsystems like shields.    I haven't played with the rule because I like the RAW, so I can't testify to how well it would work in practice but I don't think that it would be a star fighter vs starfighter disaster unless the GM implements starfighter combat as one on one space duels.  Personally I would rule that a single starfighter can't gain the advantage against a minion group of 2 or more starfighters or rather they could but it either has no effect or maybe it reduces the minion groups group skill ranks by 1.

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2 hours ago, EliasWindrider said:

If the Op is looking for a simple fix just have shield provide an equal amount of extra armor (damage reduction, this is similar to having low hit points that regenerate very quickly, and provides an incentive for angling deflector shields when approaching or fleeing a big slow adversary with big guns.  Remember defense can't greater than 4 so you're limited to 4 extra damage reduction with this house rule.  I haven't tried it but it seems like it should work.  Also defense isn't just shields.. look at the defensive driving talent for an example of a different source.

This would put most shielded fighters around Armor 4-5. 

With Medium Lasers being Damage 6, so 7+ in use, that would give you 3-4+ HT per hit. Using GtA would be pretty critical to inflicting max damage with cannons. Not bad.

Of course weaker weapons would now be unviable. The Firespray's default Damage 3 autoblasers would kick out 4+ damage per shot, so shielded craft would often be able to shrug that off, or only be taking 1-2 HT per hit. Taking down another Starfighter with an Auto-blaster would be tricky, relying on a lot of consecutive hits to wear it down, if you can penetrate at all. Not good, but it's got it's uses. Would easily explain Jango vs. Obi mechanically, if not logically...

Larger craft is where you'd have real problems though.

An Armor 4 light Freighter is now sitting at Armor 5-6 with shields. An Armor 5 corvette is now sitting on Armor 6-7 all around, and can go up to Armor 9, and something with lots of shields like a Gozanti will get there even easier.

Killing a light Freighter or corvette is now getting tricky, requiring out-maneuvering and heavy weapons like Missiles and Torpedoes to take them out in a timely manner.

Big ships become pretty much invincible to being HTed by anything other than other big ships. Even something like the Interdictor is sitting on Armor 8 in 3 out of it's 4 arcs, while a dedicated heavy warship like the ISD is looking at Armor 13.

And of course unshielded craft will need to be deployed in greater numbers to offset the fact you'll be cutting them down like wheat by comparison (which isn't really a problem, just something that will need to be done).

 

This is part of my love/hate relationship with FFG's vehicle system. I love how they established a system that, when used in-context to both the films and the intent of a quick narrative "director's chair" approach, can do some really cool stuff, and usually mirror the films by RAW, or really close to it.

I hate how hard it is to explain that "director's chair" approach to people that are used to other systems with a more tight in tactical wargame format, and how the system is so built on that approach that any attempts to houserule anything is likely to have a ripple effect requiring more house-rules and adjustments to work at all level.

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