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Drydocks and Heists
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JediJones
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 10:13 am    Post subject: Drydocks and Heists Reply with quote

Hello from a lurker and first time poster.

So my players have gotten the idea in their heads that they are going to steal a capital ship from a drydock. Details are sketchy on Wookiepedia on drydocks or shipyards, like the one at Kuat. Anybody know any sources, either Star Wars or other science fiction, where I can get a write up of what an orbital capital ship repair dock would be manned and run like? I am going to have to run the whole thing like a heist Oceans 11 type adventure, and for that I need details.

Also, even some of the smaller capital ships require crews of 2,200 men. What would you estimate a skeleton crew supplemented by droids would be?

Thanks!
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Bren
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Drydocks and Heists Reply with quote

I'm sure at least one of the EU books featured the Kuat Drive Yards docks. And I think the Platt's Guide to Starports supplement provided some details on Kuat Drive Yards. Also I think in one of the Thrawn Trilogy books Thrawn's fleet stole some ships out of an Alliance controlled dock using Spacetroopers.

JediJones wrote:
Also, even some of the smaller capital ships require crews of 2,200 men. What would you estimate a skeleton crew supplemented by droids would be?
The WEG ship stats include numbers for a skeleton crew. Typically for a capital scale warship those numbers are large, e.g.
    Imperial I Stardestroyer = Crew: 36,810, gunners: 275, skeleton: 5,000/+20
    Victory I Stardestroyer = Crew: 4,798, gunners: 402, skeleton: 1785/+15
    Interdictor Cruiser = Crew: 2,783, gunners: 24, skeleton 1500/+10
    Loronar Strike Cruiser = Crew: 1,972, gunners: 140, skeleton: 800/+10
    Carrack Light Cruiser = Crew: 1,007, gunners: 85, skeleton: 500/+10
    Lancer Frigate = Crew: 810, gunners: 40, skeleton: 375/+10
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I expect the Skeleton crew numbers are the minimum numbers required to fly and fight the ship at the same time. If their only goal is to fly the ship from the spacedock / airdock out to safe hyperspace distance, then that number might be appreciably reduced.

I recall Star Trek III, where a half-dozen men rigged up the Enterprise so that it could be operated almost entirely from the ship's bridge by an absolute minimum crew. But then those automatic systems didn't fare too well when they unexpectedly had to take that ship into combat.

I suppose my biggest question, is this something you want to allow them to do? If no, simply make the Difficulty of operating the ship without enough crew too high for them to pull it off.

If yes, on the other hand, build an adventure around them sneaking around inside the ship to tie all of the necessary systems in to a handful of consoles on the main bridge / auxiliary bridge / whatever. Plenty of opportunities for sneaking around, blaster fights with security patrols, Tech rolls to reprogram the systems, piloting rolls when making their escape, etc.

In other words, let them do it, but don't just let them declare, "I make a Computer Programming & Repair roll and take over the entire ship."
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heck, even the corelllian corvette, iirc has a 30 man skeleton crew...
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Drydocks and Heists Reply with quote

JediJones wrote:
Hello from a lurker and first time poster.

Welcome to the Pit!
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JediJones
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:19 am    Post subject: Re: Drydocks and Heists Reply with quote

Whill wrote:
JediJones wrote:
Hello from a lurker and first time poster.

Welcome to the Pit!


I feel very welcome.

And thanks for the help.
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Bren
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
I recall Star Trek III, where a half-dozen men rigged up the Enterprise so that it could be operated almost entirely from the ship's bridge by an absolute minimum crew.
I don't think Star Trek ships and technology, especially computer technology, is a good model for how those things work in Star Wars. SW ships don't seem to have the large central computers found on nearly all ST ships. And some of the EU material talks about Hive Viruses and such as a rationale for why Star Wars ships aren't all synched together using central computers or droids in series. Later the Clone Wars showed us Separatist ships that seemed to have many droids as "crew." But if you want ST as a model, in TOS episode, "The Ultimate Computer" a single computer, M5, was connected to and ran the old Enterprise. In TNG episode "11001001" two Bynars steal the Enterprise and run it without any other crew. Alien energy beings taking over the ship computer was

If as the GM I really wanted to allow the characters to steal a large ship I'd do one or more of the following:

1. As CRM says, make them go to some effort to modify systems. Have them jury rig different control systems together and by patch multiple systems to a single console using long cables, a series of droids, and/or comlinks.

2. Make the ship an experimental model with a nearly fully automated ship that uses lots of droids, a central computer connecting all systems, or both.

3.
Only allow the characters to fly and jump the ship, but not fight it. Use the existing difficulty numbers for flight and navigation or even increase them another +5-10 if you want to make things really difficult and if the PCs have skills that allow at least some chance of success.

4. Add a few complications: one or more system go offline, e.g. life support shuts down or engines redline without a full crew to operate them.

5. Assume they only need to get away from the dock and make one jump to a location where a larger Rebel crew will be waiting. If for some reason they have to fly farther or jump more than once, see #4.

6. Give them supporting NPCs waiting in the wings who can help crew the ship once the PCs do the difficult and interesting tasks like getting access to the space dock, disabling security systems, creating distractions to get the guards away from the dock of the ship you want to steal, and slicing into the ship's security and computer systems. Once that is done, you can show a couple of cuts scenes or a montage where the NPCs fill out the many (boring) duty stations and the PCs give the orders.

7. The Rogue Squadron novels had Booster Terrik get control of a Stardestroyer which he then ran as a floating casino. It seems difficult to believe that a single smuggler would be able to quickly and easily hire thousands of people to crew his ship which sort of implies that Stackpole thought that running a ship with fewer crew was possible thus providing some justification.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

garhkal wrote:
Heck, even the corelllian corvette, iirc has a 30 man skeleton crew...


In the Star Wars Tales #2 story "Routine," Han and Chewie are flying a Corellian Corvette, Jaina's Light, and are repeatedly stopped for inspection by the Vigilant, a Carrack-class cruiser on border patrol duty. The ship's captain, Deyd Llnewe, suspects the duo of smuggling but his inspection teams find nothing. After the third inspection, Llnewe realizes Han isn't smuggling cargo...he's smuggling ships! Han and Chewie escape as the Vigilant brings its guns to bear.

Though not the most reliable source, this comic book story featured some interesting ideas, such as the first depiction of a Carrack bridge, a capital ship flown by only two people and Level One, Two and Five inspections.

Also in Legends, Niles Ferrier, a character introduced in the Thrawn Trilogy, is a ship thief who successfully stole three Sienar patrol boats for the Empire, as well as numerous others before the events depicted in Dark Force Rising. His crew consists of only seven individuals: five humans, a Verpine and a Defel.
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Naaman
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SPOILER ALERT

In Episode VIII, a single person pilots an entire capitol ship and sets a course for lightspeed, and successfully jumps thereto.[/b]
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evilnerf
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a good picture of a refueling station. Might give you some ideas.
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JediJones
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 28, 2017 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just wanted to report back, that there are dangers in over prepping for an adventure. I spent time writing notes and thinking about a drydock heist, and in the end after the players realized how tough it might be once they did some recon, so they decided to go do a bank heist in Imperial space instead. The decided to just steal some money in order to buy a used Corvette with the credits they already have saved.

Thankfully, I've seen enough bank heist movies that I ran it on the fly. They forgot about the silent alarm on the vault once they had it opened...security is on the way when I ended it a cliffhanger.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If they kill anyone in the getaway, will that endanger them of getting DSPS??
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

garhkal wrote:
If they kill anyone in the getaway, will that endanger them of getting DSPs???


I can't help but think that garhkal is asking this with his tongue in his cheek (i.e. as a bit of a joke). Which is fine, because it can be considered funny as it's sarcastic, but it could also be considered a serious gaming rules question. If the former, then I salute garhkal's moxie. Wink If the latter, then my serious response follows:

FWIW, I'd say yes, of course. That's felony murder: any death that is directly or even indirectly caused by the perpetrator during the commission of a felony is considered murder, even if the perpetrator never had any intent to kill. And in most American jurisdictions (being an American lawyer, I can't speak to how other countries deal with this legal concept), felony murder is considered first-degree murder (the highest degree of murder charges) even though there wasn't any premeditation or even any intent to kill. The thinking is that if you commit a violent crime and you cause a death during it, you're responsible for that death because you committed the crime that specifically led to that death.

Here's an example: Say you rob a convenience store and the cashier has a heart attack after you're already grabbed the money and leave. Well, he would not have had the heart attack if you hadn't robbed the store and shoved a gun in his face. Yup, that's felony murder. Robbery (a felony) + a death that wouldn't have happened if the felony hadn't happened. You're going down for 1st degree murder even though you didn't shoot the guy.

Another example: Say you decide to burn down your home for the insurance money. You set off the fire when you think that your home would be empty at the time. Unbeknownst to you, your girlfriend got home early from a girl's night out and was killed by the fire. Yup, felony murder. Arson (a felony) + a death that wouldn't have happened if the felony hadn't happened. You're going down for 1st degree murder even though you never intended to kill your girlfriend.

Yeah, felony murder is serious business.

In the Star Wars universe, hijacking a ship is already considered a Class One offense, but causing a death (or deaths) during such a hijacking could easily be made into an additional Class One charge. All we need to do is switch the terms used. Just replace "felony" with "Class One offense" and the same legal logic applies. Hijacking a ship (a Class One "felony") + deaths caused that wouldn't have happened if the hijacking hadn't happened. Yup, felony murder, so two (or more, depending on the number of deaths) possible charges of a Class One offense. And each death could be counted as a single Class One charge.

And even a single Class One offense could result in being sent to Kessel or even the death penalty. Getting caught after trying to hijack a ship and causing the deaths of innocent people during the crime? Yeah, the Empire (or whatever governing authority is involved in your story) won't look kindly on that.

And if the Empire doesn't get you, the DSPs will. You just murdered somebody (or several somebodies), after all. The Force tends to notice stuff like that and reacts accordingly.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sutehp wrote:
garhkal wrote:
If they kill anyone in the getaway, will that endanger them of getting DSPs???


I can't help but think that garhkal is asking this with his tongue in his cheek (i.e. as a bit of a joke). Which is fine, because it can be considered funny as it's sarcastic, but it could also be considered a serious gaming rules question. If the former, then I salute garhkal's moxie. Wink If the latter, then my serious response follows:


I was being very serious. IIRC a number of years back we DID have a thread on would heroic pcs gain DSPS from killing local LE (not imps here) cause one of their own got in trouble WITH the law and went on a run'n'gun to get away...
So the same imo should be looked at for if they decide to do something like a bank heist.. Kill an NPC, get a DSP...

Quote:

In the Star Wars universe, hijacking a ship is already considered a Class One offense, but causing a death (or deaths) during such a hijacking could easily be made into an additional Class One charge. All we need to do is switch the terms used. Just replace "felony" with "Class One offense" and the same legal logic applies. Hijacking a ship (a Class One "felony") + deaths caused that wouldn't have happened if the hijacking hadn't happened. Yup, felony murder, so two (or more, depending on the number of deaths) possible charges of a Class One offense. And each death could be counted as a single Class One charge.


While that's true a felony is equivalent to class one offenses, does all class one offenses rise to the level of giving a PC a dark side point??
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JediJones
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, they stunned the clerk, bank manager, and a customer before they could set off the silent alarm and the customer could call for help on her communicator. They closed the bank and set the electric windows to black, and used thermal devices to open the vault. They didn't, though, think of an alarm on the safe if it was opened without being disarmed first. The guards are on their way, and will arrive "next scene." Like Hans Gruber and gang in Die Hard, they have a couple minutes to grab the loot.

They have speeder bikes parked in front, and an associate with a landspeeder on highway to create a distraction as they make a quick jaunt to the spaceport, where they have another associate keeping their stock light freighter fired up and ready to go. It will end up being a Return of the Jedi like speeder bike race through heavy traffic on the outskirts of a largish mining colony.

I won't be giving dark side points out if it is just a chase scene, like from good action movie. If the pilot, who tends to do crazy things, starts lobbing thermal detonators at the guards as they race down the highway; well then I will hand out one or two. He almost got one already by doing something similar in another adventure; he threw one into a busy market place, but yelled for everyone to get out and run, etc. The horde of panicked citizens running away allowed them to slip away from the stormtoopers after them.
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