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Cloaking Devices = SWU Submarines?
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Pel
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From power consumption and game balance standpoints that makes perfect sense. SG Atlantis did that same thing (and most of Trek). You could have the shield or the cloak, but not both.

Overall, the subject looks very well-reasoned and should be very fun to play.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 1:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, here we go. I picture Passive Sensors as including CGT arrays of some kind, so Passive Sensors would still partially function for both sides. Passive sensors would also allow the ship's helm to detect and maneuver around potential obstacles, but with only mass-sensing, this is at greater Difficulty. Also, I tried to structure the weight to make it challenging to fit into smaller craft, and prohibitively expensive for larger craft.

Anyway, here are stats for the Cloaking Device, as well as a few ancillary pieces of equipment that go with it.


Cloaking Device
Cost (Availability): 500,000 credits for 1D of Hull Dice, x2 for every +1D (4, X)
Weight: 500 metric tons for 1D of Hull (x2 for every additional 1D)
Effect: (Applies to Cloaked Ship, as well)
+30 to Difficulty of Active Sensors.
+10 to Difficulty of Passive Sensors (Only Mass Sensors are still functional).
Restrictions:
-Can not be mounted on a vessel of less than Frigate-Scale (+10D)
-Can not be used while Shields are up, and vice versa.
-The Ship suffers a +10 modifier to all Piloting Difficulties while Cloaked.

Subspace Mass-Pulse Transceiver
Commonly fitted to warships, this sensor sends a directional pulse of subspace energy that momentarily highlights any physical objects. This sensor is almost always kept on standby, as its primary utility is in detecting the location of ships that are cloaked or using other stealth systems.
Game Use:
-Only operates in Search Mode (one Fire Arc) at +10 Difficulty
-Ignores the Difficulty Modifiers of Cloaking Devices, Sensor Masks and Sensor Baffling.

Peri-Sensor
Fitted to cloaked ships, the Peri-Sensor is a sensor pod mounted on the end of an extendable mast. When in use, the Peri-Sensor allows the cloaked ship to make limited use of its sensors, including active sensors (although this immediately highlights the cloaked ship's location on enemy sensors, cloaked or not). In addition, the sensor mast has been discovered to cause a noticeable disruption in the cloaking field that decreases the effectiveness of the Cloaking Device while it is in use.
Game Use:
-Cloaked Ship may use all of its Sensors at +5 Difficulty, and may Move at normal Difficulties.
-Reduces Difficulty of Opposed Active Sensors by -10, and Opposed Passive Sensors by -5.

Baffled Drive
A Baffled Drive is commonly paired with Cloaking Devices to further increase its stealth while maneuvering. A Baffled Drive uses super-cooled spin-sealed hydrogen and specially-designed thrust modules that scatter the escaping gas so as to leave a minimal "wake." While not suitable for long range operations, they are much more difficult to track than a conventional ion engine. In addition, a baffled drive is equipped with a Mag-Scoop system that can refuel itself by drawing in the diffuse hydrogen gases that permeate space to varying degrees.
Game Use:
-While in use, increase all opposed Active Sensor Difficulties by +5 and Passive by +10.
-Drive has a Space of 2, and enough Fuel to travel 200 units.
-The Mag-Scoop can refuel the drive at a rate measured in SUs of fuel (4 SUs per hour if in a system's Inner Orbit, 2 SUs if in the Outer Orbit, and 1 SU if in Deep Space). However, the Mag-Scoop can not operate while the ship is cloaked, and while in use, the ship cannot use Shields, and is at -1D Hull (navigation shields are inverted to draw in particles rather than deflect them) and the ship is limited to Cautious Speed (-10 to all Terrain Difficulties if it tries to go faster).

Peri-Scoop
The Peri-Scoop is an evolution of the Mag-Scoop concept. Utilizing the same concept as the Peri-Sensor, it mounts a smaller Mag-Scoop on a mast that can be extended outside of the cloaking field, allowing the ship to refuel its Baffled Drive at a reduced rate. Unfortunately, the Peri-Scoop is not as efficient as the main Mag-Scoop, and use does increase the likelihood of detection, even while cloaked. Still, it has proven a useful compromise of allowing a cloaked ship a degree of stealth.
Game Use:
-Refuels the Baffled Drive at a reduced rate (At Mag-Scoop rates -1)
-Reduces the Difficulty of Opposed Passive Sensors by -15 (this is due to the energy signature of the scoop field). The cloak remains fully effective against active sensors.
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"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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Last edited by CRMcNeill on Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:03 pm; edited 4 times in total
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Pel
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's pretty comprehensive. Do you think the perisensor would negate all or some of the cloaked vessel's piloting penalty while it's deployed?
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pel wrote:
That's pretty comprehensive.

It's a good start. I have more, but I was getting pretty tired when I wrote it up last night, so I just hit Submit and figured I'd polish it up today.

It's intended to be combined with this Sensors rule, and I'm going to be adding a few more features:

    -Folding the basic Mag-Scoop into the Baffled Drive, then adding an Extendable Mag-Scoop that can be used while Cloaked, but at reduced efficiency and a greatly increased chance of being spotted on passive sensors.

    -Torpedo rules, folded in with my re-think of torpedoes, where torpedoes are the only weapon that can be used with the cloak without a sizeable launch transient. I'm picturing a range of around 3-10/25/50, where Long Range is at +5 Difficulty and takes an additional round to hit, as well as using the Marksman Advanced Skill to generate even longer ranges (Extreme Range) that take 2 rounds to hit.

    -I'll also be adding a rule for escort ships providing Cover depending on how close they are to the line of fire, or how many of them there are. A Star Destroyer with a strong escort force might get a +4D Cover modifier, whereas one with a minimal escort would only get a +1D, and a Star Destroyer operating alone would get no Cover at all.

    -A rule for a "Depth Charge" of some kind, likely drawing on the WWII-era hedgehog to fire proximity detonated concussion warheads (ala seismic charges) into the area where a cloaked ship is suspected to be. The mechanic I'm envisioning is that, under the Sensor rule above, weapons can only be fired at a target that is Located (as opposed to merely Detected), but that an area effect weapon like this can be fired at a target that is merely Detected at a penalty of -4D to Fire Control.

    -Decoys and Mines are going to be a lot more prominent in this system, since cloaked ships won't be able to "go deep" to avoid detection.

Quote:
Do you think the perisensor would negate all or some of the cloaked vessel's piloting penalty while it's deployed?

Yes, but at the cost of reduced Sensor protection from the cloak.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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Pel
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the link to the sensors topic. I was wondering about Frigate-scale!

One last question: Your cloaking device only adds +10 to passive sensors. Does that mean it doesn't actually make the ship translucent to the visible light spectrum? I'm suddenly getting a vision of C-3PO peering out a window at a "cloaked" attacker and wondering what to do. Smile
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pel wrote:
One last question: Your cloaking device only adds +10 to passive sensors. Does that mean it doesn't actually make the ship translucent to the visible light spectrum?

Actually, I just clarified that in the Cloaking Device Stat (along with the revisions I mentioned in my previous post). Basically, Passive Sensors are a mix of EM, gravitic and radiation sensors, but only the gravitic/mass sensors are still effective against a cloaked ship. So the ship is still invisible in the EM spectrum (apart from heat & radiation from its drive wake, but that's what the Baffled Drive is for), but does still show up on the mass sensors. As such, Passive Sensors overall take a hit (-10 Difficulty), but are still functional in a limited capacity.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, I'm considering adding Seismic Charges as an anti-cloak weapon, with TIE Bombers or other ordnance-carrying craft flying through the suspected location of a cloaked ship, dropping the charges and high-tailing it out of there before the charges detonate. The charges themselves would have an area effect (as seen in AotC), and would be particularly damaging against slow-moving, unshielded craft.

Cloaked ships could, in turn, be capable of launching homing missiles to engage starfighters, as well, and force them to keep their distance...
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"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cloaked Combat
Cloaked combat is subject to the same rules as normal combat; you can only shoot what you can see (as defined here and here). Cloaking devices just make it a lot harder to see what you're shooting at, for both sides.

For simplicity's sake, the rules for a ship being automatically Located / Detected when it fires a weapon will also be applied to a cloaking device. This is explained as the energy from a laser or ion cannon having a highly disruptive effect on the cloak field itself. As such, cloaked ships are limited to projectile-firing weapons, particularly torpedoes for anti-ship attacks and missiles for close-in defense. Ships that have been modified for service as cloaked attack ships will often have 50% or more of their weaponry stripped out to make way for Cloaking Device and associated systems.

Heavy Torpedo Launcher
Scale: Destroyer (+12D)
Crew: 4
Skill: Capital Ship Gunnery
Fire Control: 1D
Range: 3-10/25/50*
*Long Range attacks take 1 round to reach the target, but are not Located until the beginning of that round.
Rate of Fire: 1/4
Damage: 9D
Special: When fired, torpedoes are encapsulated an energy sheath that disrupts other energies on contact. This includes a targets shields and point defense weaponry. In game terms, a Torpedo may ignore up to 3D of Shields on a successful hit, and has a Hull of 4D (Starship-Scale) when targeted by point-defense lasers and blasters.
Note: Torpedoes may make use of the (A) Marksman skill to take shots from even greater range, but attacks made at Extreme Range take two rounds to reach the target.

Escorts & Cover
Torpedo attacks can be greatly complicated by the presence of enemy warships or starfighters between the torpedo-launching ship and its target, as escorts and sentries can often provide advance warning to allow the target time to evade the attack. In game terms, any ships closer to the attacker than the target, and in the same fire arc, count as cover on the following chart:

    One Frigate-Scale ship / Flight of Starfighters = +1D
    Two Frigate-Scale Ships / Flights of Starfighters (or combination) = +2D
    Multiple Frigate-Scale Ships and/or Starfighter units = +4D

_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barrage Pod
Cloaked ships are relatively rare, enough so that no serious effort is being made to design ships specifically to combat them. A Cloaking Device provides no protection against an actual attack apart from the extreme difficulty of spotting the cloaked ship in the first place. If a cloaked ship can be Located on Sensors, turbolasers and ion cannon are just as effective as they would be if the cloak wasn't there at all.

However, a need has been demonstrated for a weapon that can be effective against cloaked ships even if their exact location can only be approximated. The result was the concussion multi-missile pod, also known as the Barrage Pod. Roughly the same size as a standard escape pod, the unmanned barrage pod is deployed just outside of its mothership's shield perimeter. Controlled by a droid brain, it has minimal propulsion ability, and uses a tractor beam to latch onto its mothership, which in turn pulls it along as it moves. A Frigate-Scale ship may tow one pod for every 1D of Hull without any decrease in performance. However, for every additional pod above that number, the ship's Space is reduced by -1, and its Maneuverability by -1D.

When fired, a Barrage Pod launches dozens of time-detonated concussion missiles that saturate a targeted area of space with overlapping kinetic shock fields (ala Seismic Charges in AotC). While not particularly accurate, the missile barrage affects a wide area, and can be used effectively even if a target's location can only be approximated.

This pod system can be carried and launched from any shipboard landing bay, and allows ships to carry an anti-cloak armament without requiring permanent modification or installation.

Scale: Frigate (+10D)
Crew: 4
Skill: Capital Ship Gunnery
Fire Control: 2D
Range: 3-7/15/30*
*Long Range attacks take 1 round to reach the target, but are not Located until the beginning of that round.
Rate of Fire:
Damage: 7D
Blast Reduction: -1 Miss = -1D Damage
Special: This area-effect weapon may be used against a ship that is Detected (instead of Located) at -4D Fire Control.
Note: The Pod itself is considered a separate target from its mothership, with a Hull of 3D (Starship). It takes one round to deploy from the mothership, during which it can't be fired. After firing, it requires 1 round to recover aboard ship, and 2 full minutes to reload and refuel.
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"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, here's an example of a ship converted into a cloak-combat vessel...


Craft: Corellian Engineering Corporation's CR90 (Modified)
Type: Multi-Role Corvette
Scale: Frigate (+10D)
Length: 150 meters
Skill: Capital Ship Piloting: Corellian Corvette
Crew: 65 (30 @ +10) & 29 Gunners
Crew Skill:
Astrogation 5D
Gunnery 6D+1
Piloting 5D+2
Shields 5D
Sensors 5D+1
Passengers: 20
Small Craft Complement: 2-4 utility craft
Cargo Capacity: 100 metric tons
Consumables: 1 year
Hyperdrive Multiplier: x2
Hyperdrive Backup: x10
Nav Computer: Yes
Maneuverability: 2D
Space: 6 (Baffled Drive: 2)
Atmosphere: 330; 950 kph
Hull: 4D
Shields: 2D
Sensors:
Passive 40/1D
Scan 80/2D
Search 100/3D
Focus 5/4D
Weapons:
6 Heavy Torpedo Launchers
Fire Arc: 4 Front, 2 Rear
Scale: Destroyer (+12D)
Crew: 4
Skill: Capital Ship Gunnery
Fire Control: 1D
Range: 3-10/25/50*
*Long Range attacks take 1 round to reach the target, but are not Located until the beginning of that round.
Rate of Fire: 1/4
Damage: 9D
Ammo: 18 (in central magazine)
Special: When fired, torpedoes are encapsulated an energy sheath that disrupts other energies on contact. This includes a targets shields and point defense weaponry. In game terms, a Torpedo may ignore up to 3D of Shields on a successful hit, and has a Hull of 4D (Starship-Scale) when targeted by point-defense lasers and blasters (Very Difficult Target)
4 Heavy Laser Cannon (Fire Separately)
Fire Arc: 1 Front/Left, 1 Front/Right, 1 Rear/Left, 1 Rear/Right (+5 Difficulty to all shots in Front & Rear Fire Arcs)
Scale: Starship (+6D)
Crew: 1
Skill: Starship Gunnery
Fire Control: 2D
Range:
--Space: 1-3/12/25
--Orbital: 2km-6km/24km/50km
--Atmosphere: 100m-300m/1.2km/2.5km
Damage: 7D
1 Homing Missile Launcher
Fire Arc: Turret (Mounted on Peri-Sensor Mast)
Crew: 1
Scale: Starship (+6D)
Skill: Starship Gunnery
Fire Control: 5D
Space Range: 1-5/12/25
Atmosphere Range: 100m-500m/1.2km/2.5km
Duration: 4 rounds (Once duration ends, the missile runs out of fuel and self destructs).
Damage: 6D
Ammo: 16
Special: Follow-Up Attack
If the missile misses, compare the degree of miss to the following chart:
    Missed By = Result
    <10 = Weapon is still homing, and may attack as normal the following round
    10-20 = Weapon has lost lock, but may roll to reacquire in the next round. If lock is reestablished, the weapon may attack as normal in the following round. If the lock is lost, the weapon's safety settings engage and it self destructs.
    21+ = Weapon has lost lock and can not re-engage. Safety settings engage and the weapon self destructs.
Missile makes Follow-Up attacks at Short Range with a Skill of 3D.
Special Equipment:
    Cloaking Device
    Effect: (Applies to Cloaked Ship, as well)
    +30 to Difficulty of Active Sensors.
    +10 to Difficulty of Passive Sensors (Only Mass Sensors are still functional).
    Restrictions:
    -Can not be used while Shields are up, and vice versa.
    -The Ship suffers a +10 modifier to all Piloting Difficulties while Cloaked.

    Subspace Mass-Pulse Transceiver
    Game Use:
    -Only operates in Search Mode (one Fire Arc) at +10 Difficulty
    -Ignores the Difficulty Modifiers of Cloaking Devices, Sensor Masks and Sensor Baffling.
    -Counts as an Active Sensor for detection by Passive (Mass-only) Sensors

    Peri-Sensor
    Game Use:
    -Cloaked Ship may use all of its Sensors at +5 Difficulty, and may Move at normal Difficulties.
    -Reduces Difficulty of Opposed Active Sensors by -10, and Opposed Passive Sensors by -5.*

    Baffled Drive
    Game Use:
    -While in use, increase all opposed Active Sensor Difficulties by +5 and Passive by +10.
    -Drive has a Space of 2, and enough Fuel to travel 200 units.
    -The Mag-Scoop can refuel the drive at a rate measured in SUs of fuel (4 SUs per hour if in a system's Inner Orbit, 2 SUs if in the Outer Orbit, and 1 SU if in Deep Space). However, the Mag-Scoop can not operate while the ship is cloaked, and while in use, the ship cannot use Shields, and is at -1D Hull (navigation shields are inverted to draw in particles rather than deflect them) and the ship is limited to Cautious Speed (-10 to all Terrain Difficulties if it tries to go faster).

    Peri-Scoop
    Game Use:
    -Refuels the Baffled Drive at a reduced rate (At Mag-Scoop rates -1)
    -Reduces the Difficulty of Opposed Passive Sensors by -15 (this is due to the energy signature of the scoop field). The cloak remains fully effective against active sensors.*

    *Penalties to Stealth are cumulative if both Sensor and Scoop are used simultaneously.

Some example Sensor Difficulty modifiers:
    Uncloaked: -6
    Cloaked: +24 to Active Sensors, +4 to Passive
    Cloaked & Using the Baffled Drive: +29 to Active, +14 to Passive
    Cloaked, Using Baffled Drive & Peri-Sensor: +19 to Active, +9 to Passive
    Cloaked, Using Baffled Drive & Peri-Scoop: +14 to Active, -1 to Passive
    Cloaked, Using Baffled Drive, Peri-Sensor & Peri-Scoop: -1 to Active, -6 to Passive

_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An additional thought...

I had left out the concept of Mass Baffling based on the ImpSB's description of Cloaking Devices, specifically the following passage:
Quote:
Cloaking fields, as they are developing now, cannot protect and CGTs (crystal gravitational traps) since the mass of the protected vessel is not affected by the field. As most of these expensive sensors are Imperial property, the need for mass baffling seems unnecessary.
Of course, the accuracy of that statement is predicated on the extreme rarity of both cloaking devices and CGT sensors, both of which I've discarded as part of this theory.

Since I'm basing this concept very heavily on the WW2 submarine "feel," with mass detection (CGTs) serving as sonar, mass baffling would parallel some of the early development of anechoic (sound absorbent) paneling, only more high-tech. Perhaps some variation on repulsorlift technology used to disguise the mass signature of a cloaked ship without blocking it out (otherwise, the ship's own mass sensors would be blind, too).

Of course, this would cut both ways, as escort ships could also be fitted with mass-baffling tech to help disguise them from cloaked ships, as well.

The actual stat wouldn't be that hard to write, just a basic +10 to Difficulty of Mass-based sensors, which includes Passive CGTs and Active SMPTs.
_________________
"No set of rules can cover every situation. It's expected that you will make up new rules to suit the needs of your game." - The Star Wars Roleplaying Game, 2R&E, pg. 69, WEG, 1996.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2018 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been doing some thinking as to which canon ship would be the best fit for a cloaked vessel in Alliance service, and I'm leaning heavily toward the MC30 frigate from Armada. Now, like with the MC75 / Profundity, I don't really think this ship's appearance fits with the Mon Cal design philosophy. My thinking is that the MC30 is a Clone Wars-era Separatist ship, from the same shipyard as the MC75 (the Free Dac Volunteers Engineering Corps). As far as the Armada stats, in general, the MC30 is a fast, fragile ship used either as a scout or a torpedo attack platform, both missions which would be greatly enhanced by the addition of a cloaking device. On top of that, with the price and mass of the cloaking device based on Hull dice, the relative fragility would make it easier to fit a cloaking device to it.

Stats to follow.
_________________
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