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Gargi

Deflector shields

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Hopefully this question wasn't already asked, but yesterday we started EotE by the beginner's game set. There was one question about the deflector shields worth to think about and I didn't have an explanation yesterday.

 

In SF movies like Star Trek shields are blocking shots until they are taken out. In EotH the deflector means a setback dice and sometimes a shot hits and sometimes not. How would you explain, why sometimes the deflector works and at the other time a buzz goes through it.

 

It wasn't a big deal yesterday since my players are reasonable enough to accept it as a game mechanic (we had a great time by the way), but since last night I'm thinking about it  :)

 

  

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I think the way its supposed to work is like a Military helmet (think the WW2 metal ones).  If the helmet is hit at some angles, it deflects the bullet and there is a little scratch mark where the bullet hit it.  If its hit at just the right angle, the bullet will pass straight through it.

 

Since theres no mechanic for shield power and how many shots they can take, the only alternative is the metal helmet model.  This is actually a bit of a benefit because its one less thing to track and its always on.

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Long ago, in a game far far away, shields in X Wing/Tie Fighter were reflected by multiple rings.  As the shields took hits, the shields were damaged, and you didn't take damage to the ship, until the shields were down on that side.  

 

That being said, EoE is not a ship combat game.  It's a narrative game and they don't want to track shield damage, and angle deflectors and all of that fun stuff.  

 

I like PhiB's explanation.  IN EoE, at times the shield deflects the blast just right.

 

I miss X Wing /Tie Fighter.  The end of flight sims for me.

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You could also, narratively at least, explain hull trauma and the like as resulting from smaller overloads and internal crap happening as the shields drain energy from the ship, sometimes breaking a fuse or fifteen... temporary overloads that allows laser bolts to penetrate, temporary losing shields altogether... stuff like that.

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You could also, narratively at least, explain hull trauma and the like as resulting from smaller overloads and internal crap happening as the shields drain energy from the ship, sometimes breaking a fuse or fifteen... temporary overloads that allows laser bolts to penetrate, temporary losing shields altogether... stuff like that.

This is pretty much what I was going to suggest.  And there's film evidence of it too, namely the Falcon in ANH and ESB, suffering various bits of internal damage even though the ship's shields are still holding.

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It seems that a shield can get weaker at specific point and before the system will balance the shield`s strength, the hits can pass through the weak spot. That is why the Torpedo Sphere was created.

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Yea, I like the idea of angles and temporary collapsing energy fields. That also fits the idea, that some of the hull trauma could be repaired while flying, and the rest for a fistful of credits in the bay. I guess that will do it for my people! :)

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First of all, Star Trek shields work differently depending on if you are referring to The Original Series, or the Next Gen series.  The basics of ToS is you use energy to create a barrier that absorbs hits, similar to Armor, only its gets weaker as it takes more hits, when the shields fail, you start taking damage.  In Next Gen you had "Shields down to X%" which would only deflect the energy based on what % the shields were at.

 

But that is Star Trek.

 

In Star wars we have 2 types of shields.  Particle shields, and Ray shields.  Most star Fighters use Ray shields which have the ability to deflect energy, by angling shields you increase its ability to deflect energy.

 

The X-wing series of games (as much as i liked the series) does not correctly portray how the shields worked in the movies.  The shields in the X-wing games were damage sponges that could be recharged.

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First of all, Star Trek shields work differently depending on if you are referring to The Original Series, or the Next Gen series.  The basics of ToS is you use energy to create a barrier that absorbs hits, similar to Armor, only its gets weaker as it takes more hits, when the shields fail, you start taking damage.  In Next Gen you had "Shields down to X%" which would only deflect the energy based on what % the shields were at.

 

But that is Star Trek.

 

In Star wars we have 2 types of shields.  Particle shields, and Ray shields.  Most star Fighters use Ray shields which have the ability to deflect energy, by angling shields you increase its ability to deflect energy.

 

The X-wing series of games (as much as i liked the series) does not correctly portray how the shields worked in the movies.  The shields in the X-wing games were damage sponges that could be recharged.

Yes, there are two types of shields and all ships have at least one, the particle shields. They aren't something activated for combat, but are part of the ships hull integrity (in EotE they'd be hidden in the base soak for a vessel). Ray shields are the added shields that are used to help defend against blasters and lasers.

 

And as you noted, the video game does not match the source material for how shields function.

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You could also, narratively at least, explain hull trauma and the like as resulting from smaller overloads and internal crap happening as the shields drain energy from the ship, sometimes breaking a fuse or fifteen... temporary overloads that allows laser bolts to penetrate, temporary losing shields altogether... stuff like that.

This is pretty much what I was going to suggest.  And there's film evidence of it too, namely the Falcon in ANH and ESB, suffering various bits of internal damage even though the ship's shields are still holding.

 

I feel though that that should really only apply to System Strain...especially since it's the sort of thing that the engineer (normally R2) can actually address during a fight, unlike Hull Trauma.

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I just reinstalled X Wing Alliance on my laptop last night.  If you look up "X-Wing Alliance on Windows 7" there will be a web site that explains how to install it so it works.  Also I ran across X-Wing Alliance upgrade, which is a group of fans re-textured a lot of ships.  The screenshots alone are worth looking at.


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I also found some additional informations on page 80/81 in the Haynes Millenium Falcon Owner's Workshop Manual (cool book by the way  :) )

 

They speak of two different shield types (particle shielding and ray shielding) too. Deflector shields are projected just a few molecules underneath hull plating. With some different power settings you may be able to extend the shielding farther away from the hull. That also could be an explanation why not always absorbing the damage. 

 

Also interesting thing: The Empire does not allow high-energy shieldings. That's for their tactical advantage. You also have to gain a permission to be allowed to install ray-shieldings. But the manual also says a "Fear of Piracy" is usually sufficient to get the wanted permission  ;)

 

cu

Pierre

Edited by Gargi
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I feel though that that should really only apply to System Strain...especially since it's the sort of thing that the engineer (normally R2) can actually address during a fight, unlike Hull Trauma.

I don't know if it should only apply to System Strain. While Ion Cannons certainly have that effect and it is one side of the whole thing (so I'm not necessarily disagreeing with you), I'd also consider powerful hits, where the overload not only puts strain on the ship's systems, some of these overloads can also result in stuff breaking, fires starting, and the like. Which to me at least could signify Hull Trauma.

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Sorry for copy-paste here XD

 

The shield idea concept its fine for most cases shields aren't 100% effective but, I would like to know what interpretations you make about some scenes like Auto-Blasters vs Droideka's Shiels (their own), Federation Station Bitten-Donut Ship (XD) that Naboo Fighters with lasers and Torpedoes think that its almost impenetrable, Gungan Shields vs B1 droids and Artillery Vehicles. Maybe a few cases like lasers againts big ships but, with those ones will be enough.

 

I mean, yep, I don't like videogame concept that you can sustain a lot of shots and recharge shields with F5, and also I understand that shield fluctuate and aren't always on but, in those cases where SURE shield can fight those kind of fire, how to do you deal with them?

 

Just 2 or 3 Setbacks seems not enough to recreate those scenes.

 

Another consideration its that I like oppinions about consider three different scales instead two.

Personal, Vehicle x5 and Ship x10. With those damage and armor adjustments, maybe a few more things will work.

 

What do you think?

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The shield idea concept its fine for most cases shields aren't 100% effective but, I would like to know what interpretations you make about some scenes like Auto-Blasters vs Droideka's Shiels (their own), Federation Station Bitten-Donut Ship (XD) that Naboo Fighters with lasers and Torpedoes think that its almost impenetrable, Gungan Shields vs B1 droids and Artillery Vehicles. Maybe a few cases like lasers againts big ships but, with those ones will be enough.

 

I mean, yep, I don't like videogame concept that you can sustain a lot of shots and recharge shields with F5, and also I understand that shield fluctuate and aren't always on but, in those cases where SURE shield can fight those kind of fire, how to do you deal with them?

 

Just 2 or 3 Setbacks seems not enough to recreate those scenes.

 

Another consideration its that I like oppinions about consider three different scales instead two.

Personal, Vehicle x5 and Ship x10. With those damage and armor adjustments, maybe a few more things will work.

 

What do you think?

 

         I think the deflector sheilds are fairly balanced for ship to ship combat, they are useful but not the end-all of defenses. For the droideka v. starfighter scenes I would do it fairly narratively. I haven`t seen any reasources for a droideka but I would imagine they would have some cross between vehicle stats (meaning that nothing short of a missle will do much to them with their shields up) and rival stats, once you get over their shields they tend to drop just as fast as anything. The droids shots bouncing off the starfighter are just a mechanic of the fact that no matter what they do they could never effectively hurt the ship (armor of 2-3) once it's shields are up. Before the shields I would rule could do called shots for weak points (Like the pilot in the glass cockpit). The ships weapons are going to do x10 damage so there is pretty much nothing that isn`t a ship that would survive that sort of firepower.

        As for shields failing in starwars they seem to either be on or off, no precentage or anything like that. One of the critical hits actually has the shields fail, and I think you could narritively explain some of the setback die or advantage dice playing with the shields effectiveness.

 

       I have seen the three different scales done before (starwars d20, d20 modern, and alternity). It's not bad but you still have to reconcile things like why does my speeder bike do x5 and my tank do x5? I`ve also seen someone create a scaleable damage grades where each ship silouette does x2 damage for each upgrade. That doesn`t make much sense to me either as all of a sudden larger ships are incredibly deadly where as in the movies they have trouble even hitting their targets. I did wish they had better details on grades of weapons based on size and different scales of armor. Should a speeder bike be able to sustain hit after hit from a blaster? Nope but it has armor 1 which means you cannot hurt it with anything less than 11 damage.  

 

       I have yet to see a great way to handle these things that doesn`t become bent. I`ve seen it simplified with a conversion like x10 to stats on a ship, and I`ve seen ones where they just lay it all out saying that a starship has 30 soak and does 70 damage. Shields in starwars have always added to the defense of a ship making it harder to hit but not absorbing damage.

 

       Anyone have a favorite way to do it?

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If you want to know the times when the shields block all the damage just look a the dice.  If the set back die was the reason that the attack didn't hit than you could describe it that way.  

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For me the shields work in an abstract way. They give Defence bonus which mechanically means that the shot has a bigger chance to miss, but we can imagine that the shot did not miss, but the shields absorbed the shot. However, when the target is hit then we can imagine that the shot was powerful enough to go through shields. In this simple way FFG managed to skip the problem of counting points or dice as it was in d20 and d6. They ignored recharging and we have (almost) a nice, elegant combat system. 

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The shield idea concept its fine for most cases shields aren't 100% effective but, I would like to know what interpretations you make about some scenes like Auto-Blasters vs Droideka's Shiels (their own), Federation Station Bitten-Donut Ship (XD) that Naboo Fighters with lasers and Torpedoes think that its almost impenetrable, Gungan Shields vs B1 droids and Artillery Vehicles. Maybe a few cases like lasers againts big ships but, with those ones will be enough.

It is an interesting question.

 

I don't think the shield system of EotE can represent these situations that appear in the movies. In the case of the droidekas I will treat their shields as pure soak. I don't know, +5 or +10 soak. May be with a roll of a triumph you can narrate how the PC deactivates or bypasses the shield soak.

 

Cheers,

Yepes

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It is an interesting question.

 

I don't think the shield system of EotE can represent these situations that appear in the movies. In the case of the droidekas I will treat their shields as pure soak. I don't know, +5 or +10 soak. May be with a roll of a triumph you can narrate how the PC deactivates or bypasses the shield soak.

 

Cheers,

Yepes

 

 

Anyone has any possible sollution to "emulate" or recreate those scenes? Or just a "lights on, camera...action!" thing?

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The droideka I'd just do as droids with the personal deflector shields and some Adversary talent. That's a minimum of three setback dice right there.

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The droideka I'd just do as droids with the personal deflector shields and some Adversary talent. That's a minimum of three setback dice right there.

This indedd goes by the raw rules. But I have to agree with Josep, in this situation the raw rules do not catch the flavor of the movies, there these kind of shields do not fail, there is not single way that blaster fire penetrates them, the same for the Gungan shields.

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The droideka I'd just do as droids with the personal deflector shields and some Adversary talent. That's a minimum of three setback dice right there.

This indedd goes by the raw rules. But I have to agree with Josep, in this situation the raw rules do not catch the flavor of the movies, there these kind of shields do not fail, there is not single way that blaster fire penetrates them, the same for the Gungan shields.

 

Which in a game is not fun. You can always give them 20 saok or so to emulate them.

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Maybe not 20 (or Armor 2 XD)  but this way you can just have to do some tactics instead just shoot and kill, for example:

 

Based in a Clone Wars episode, Droidekas shields are designed to resist rapid fire so, slow-rate of fire weapons (yep, like in Stargate) can ignore shields and going from the floor. The concrete sample is "rebels" throwing detonators really slow at Droidekas feets to rebase the shield and destroy them.

 

In game I could consider that, Droidekas shiels give them Armor 1 (or else, just saying random numbers) and if you get 2 Advantatges with a weapon like a detonator or something similar (raw ideas) you can ignore the extra protection.

 

Like or too ambiguos?

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Which in a game is not fun. You can always give them 20 saok or so to emulate them.

 

 

That depends how you set the encounter. If the encounter has to be resolved by sheer fire force, sure it is not fun. But you may set the encounter on a way that the PCs have to sustain the fire of the droidekas and other minions while the tech PC find a clever idea to deactivate the shields of the droidekas, or the reckless fighter gets close enough to slowly slip a grenade behind the shields, or a way to flee and counter attack later...endless possibilities.

Edited by Yepesnopes
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