WWII era Skyships

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Kakaze
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WWII era Skyships

#1 Postby Kakaze » Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:07 pm

So, I'm about to start a new game of piracy in the carribean. The trick is that it's set in 1935-36 or so after the Tesla's invention of the Electromagnetic Altitude Stabilizer. It doesn't make things go, but it does allow a super heavy ship to lock in at certain altitudes (Low, Cruise, and High--thanks sundered skies) and change between them with a bit of difficulty. It's up to good old propellers to do the rest.

So Americans vs Nazis with rocketpacks and flying ships, fighting a secret war for the political future of South America and the Carribean. The problem here is that I want a catchall name for the flying ships and related technology that sounds pretty cool.

I was thinking of calling them Clamps as the tech locks in at certain heights, but that sounds like Futurama to me. I want something low tech and slang soundy.

Any thoughts?
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#2 Postby Wiggy » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:43 pm

Do the EASs make any noise? They could be called Buzz-Ships (or Buzzers).

As an aside, the Daring Tales of Adventure Rocket Rangers supplement might contain some useful ideas for the rocket pack aspect of you game.
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#3 Postby Dirty Ernie » Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:47 pm

Strata(o)-

-Tech (or Stratavionics)
-Cruiser
-Destroyer
-Carrier
-Boat
-Squadron
-Wing
-Fleet
-Escort
-Frigate
-Fighter
-Bomber...etc.

By the way, this sounds pretty cool :cool: . Gives me a Rocketship Empires vibe.
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#4 Postby Kakaze » Thu Jun 23, 2011 5:27 pm

I was thinking the engines that power the EASs make noise, but not the device itself. It might hum or crackle with electricity, but the ships would mostly sound like planes or ships.

Though I do like the word Buzzer, so the fluff could change. Nothings been set in stone yet.

Here's an idea I've been toying with for wierd science:

Field Engineer
Skill: Engineering (Int)

You have worked closely with a national government for some time, developing technology for a war that seems inevitable. For your own reasons, you've decided that the life of a cloistered scientist isn't for you so you've struck out on your own.

You have access to devices that seem to be science fiction. Repeating rifles, propeller less flying machines, and incredible healing kits are all within your reach.

Also, depending on your national background, you have access to fantastic ship upgrades that haven't reached the civilian sector.

American: 50% increased cargo space. Americans know that warfare is as much about moving troops and material as it as about fighting.

German: +2 to damage rolls. Limitations on the German military forced them to focus on quality over quantity in their military.

Russian: +2 to base toughness. Russian armor, on the ground or in the air, is the best in the world.

British: +2 to Notice checks for detecting ships and skyships. The UK has placed an emphasis on radio based detection and ranging.

Japanese: +1 to Handling. The Japanese military has created some of the best skyships the world has seen, much to the amazement and fear of western powers.


Most of the skyship stuff is based off a combo between Pirates of the Spanish main and Sundered Skies, so I figured field engineers could provide an extra edge to the ship they are working on. They stack with already purchased edges as well.
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#5 Postby Timon » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:37 am

Hmmm. If movement is not needed to create lift then they are more like Zeppelins, or floating castles than aeroplanes. You could call them Zepps or Bricks (as in Flying Brick) or Tessies (for the stabilizer) or, more fancifully, Iron Clouds.

I think this tech would lead to permanent flying bases with slow movement, kind of aircraft carriers/redoubts, with stocks of fast fighters. There would also be Dreadnoughts with heavy long-range guns and conventional aircraft would still be useful for their sheer manoeuvrability. In essence you have moved the ground upwards so intense dogfighting can take place around and below massive naval engagements.

Or something like that.
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#6 Postby VonDan » Fri Jun 24, 2011 4:05 am

I'll just put this here if any one wants to take it home


Image

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#7 Postby OSIAdept » Fri Jun 24, 2011 9:10 am

From the Leviathan minitures game right was just thinking of it as soon as i saw the title of the thread

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#8 Postby Kakaze » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:36 pm

My plan for weapons and combat is based off of pirates of the spanish main. Tessies (good one Timon!) have between one and five wounds and use the same base stats as the ships presented in the book. Everything has a Climb of 1 and there are 3 combat levels.

Instead of 4, 8, or 16 pound guns we have Machine Guns, Howitzers, and Torpedoes. They are all Heavy Weapons, and would do more damage if used in other combats

Machine guns have ROF 3, 2d4+2 dmg, AP2, and a range of 3/6/9 (these are primarily anti fighter weapons).

Howitzers are 3d6+1 dmg, AP 4 normal and a flak round that does 3d6 dmg, +2 to shooting.

Torpedoes are mini-buzzers that take multiple rounds to travel to target. They have an acceleration of 6, a top speed of 8, and a toughness of 5. Every round, the shooter picks a target at the max distance it can travel and makes a shooting check. Success means it travels true, failure means it deviates +/- 2 inches to either side. When it gets with in 1 square of a non-Fighter Tessie, it explodes in a small burst template doing 3d8+1 AP8.

Tessie-Fighters can be mounted in the place of Howitzers. These have are basically Sky-Sails from sundered skies with gun rating of 1. Weapons cost double spaces however, and are always fix mounted forwards (so standard setup is one Machine Gun). They have one wound, and can be given an edge from the list at double the base cost of the ship.

Von Dan, that image is one of the ones that inspired me to make this game!
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#9 Postby Timon » Fri Jun 24, 2011 4:43 pm

It made me think also of my favourite anime series: the brilliant, subtle Last Exile
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#10 Postby VonDan » Fri Jun 24, 2011 4:45 pm

I have no idea ware that image is from it came up in a google image search for "Skyships"


I checked last exile out of the library as research my project then my dvd player stopped working

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#11 Postby Kakaze » Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:12 am

We played our first game and the fighter combat is totally awesome. We had two Aces in fighters and a bad eyed peg leg in command of the ship. There was a great dogfight over a desert island with crash dives and mid air spins... Tessies can do some incredible maneuvers.

Shooting a merchantman is easy... next time they are going to face a frigate. German homing torpedoes are a bitch.

Speaking of which, anyone have any good names for the 5 size catagories?

I'm thinking Corvette, Picket, Destroyer, Cruiser, Battleship...

Though most of those imply specific types of ships, not general classes. Perhaps just go Type 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Thoughts?
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#12 Postby VonDan » Sun Jun 26, 2011 5:51 am

When we speak of the class of a warship there is both the “type class” denoted by it’s size and purpose and the “design class” which is different for each country. Some of the classes and terms we have in mind for a pulp game are outmoded and the classes had a wide variance and all hull forms have gown over the years.

This will give you idea of the size of modern war ships by class and what each class of vessel is used for. Make note of ships between 1900 and 1940

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naval_ship

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hull_classification_symbol

Each country will have there own design for ships of the classes they use, as you have added in your game. The first ship of any given design class is usually the same name as the design class, thus the USS constitution was the first ship in the constitution class starship.

Often the larger the ship the more national prominence is attached to its namesake thus in the US battleships were often named for States and Cruisers for larger cites and so on down the line

Use you five types Patrol (PP), Corvette (KK), Destroyer (DD), Cruiser (CC), Battleship (BB), Carrier (CV)

If you cant think of any other names pick cities or famous people from each country in your game as class namesakes The larger the city or more famous the person the bigger the ship class.

Another idea might be to suppose that in your game the resources that would have been spent on naval vessels in WW2 went to the flying ships and you could just find naval list from WW2 and use those names

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#13 Postby Kakaze » Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:16 pm

Thanks for the class names. That's a great resource, I'm sure to use the listings.

My motto for names has always been "When in doubt, steal." I just looked up a big list of German warships and picked a few.
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#14 Postby Kakaze » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:06 pm

Since I've been asking for help pretty regularly in this thread, how about I ask for some more.

My pilots find themselves missing pretty regularly. We had four rounds of combat with only two hits (granted, they were pretty big hits. I love the critical table). I did let the machine guns use 3rb, which helped a bit. However, the -6 penalty for a fully moving fighter is pretty difficult to offset.

Can anyone think of any cool new guns I could introduce that would work thematically with a WW2 game that might be more conducive to accuracy? Or perhaps manuevers?

Finally, can someone suggest some figure flats i could use for this game. I'd need figures for the five different sizes of ships plus fighters and torpedoes.
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#15 Postby VonDan » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:45 pm

I found a game once called "Leviathan ships of the line" and the ships were made up of card stock boxes with the ships printed on them in various sizes

http://www.trollandtoad.com/p160881.html

You could try folding boxes and drawing on the details or printing them out and glueing on



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#16 Postby ogbendog » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:18 pm

why was it -6 to hit?

Obviously, Steady Hands takes away -2.

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#17 Postby Clint » Wed Jun 29, 2011 3:26 pm

Kakaze wrote:My pilots find themselves missing pretty regularly. We had four rounds of combat with only two hits (granted, they were pretty big hits. I love the critical table). I did let the machine guns use 3rb, which helped a bit. However, the -6 penalty for a fully moving fighter is pretty difficult to offset.

Can anyone think of any cool new guns I could introduce that would work thematically with a WW2 game that might be more conducive to accuracy? Or perhaps manuevers?


Instead of new guns, do you have Weird War 2 or the Pulp Toolkit? Both have rules for linked weapons which add a bonus to hit (and damage).
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#18 Postby ValhallaGH » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:25 pm

ogbendog wrote:why was it -6 to hit?

Obviously, Steady Hands takes away -2.

+1. Where is the other -4 coming from?
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#19 Postby Kakaze » Wed Jun 29, 2011 6:18 pm

The -6 is kind of arbitrary, but basically they have an acceleration of 6 and most of the ships have one closer to 2. The speed difference adds the other -4.
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#20 Postby Timon » Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:16 pm

SWEX p110 -1 for every full 10" of relative speed.

You can also have specific AA batteries with HE/Schrapnel rounds and perhaps a predictor would give a bonus if installed.
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