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Cargo and its Effect on Performance
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My point was that, while I like the system for its simplicity, I'm flexible on the numbers. Specifically, I meant that while I put the cut-off points on the various steps at 50%, 100%, 150% and 200%, I'd like to hear your opinion on what would be better, more realistic percentages to use.
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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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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 12:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

After the recent discussion of Lost Moves, it got me thinking about this again. When I first posted this, it hadn't even occurred to me that a system already existed to penalize the movement of a starship.

Embarassed

Anyway, here is the new concept:
    % Cargo Capacity Used = Temporary Lost Move
    0-50% = Move as normal
    51%-100% = -1 Move (Can not move faster than Full Speed)
    101%-150% = -2 Moves (Can not move faster than Cruising Speed)
    151%-200% = -3 Moves (Can not move faster than Cautious Speed)
    >200% = Immobile. On any Move attempt, roll 1D, then compare the result to the following table:
      1-3 = Systems Overload (Ship takes 1 Controls Ionized result as engine systems temporarily short out)
      4-5 = Engine Malfunction (Ships engines are Lightly Damaged)
      6 = Major System Failure (Ships engines are Heavily Damaged)

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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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CRMcNeill
Director of Engineering
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Giving this a bump, as I've had both some new thoughts on it and a specific request to flesh out the idea into a workable rule.

Now, I'm reasonably certain that this new thought is closely related to a similar rule from D6 Space, but for the life of me, I can't track down the specific reference. If anyone can jog my memory, it would be greatly appreciated.

The short version of what I'm thinking is this...
    -A ship can carry up to its maximum Cargo Capacity with no degradation of performance.

    -However, if it exceeds that maximum (usually by dint of cramming a high-density cargo onboard), it suffers a +5 Difficulty penalty to all Piloting rolls.

    -For every additional 50% increase in the tonnage of cargo carried above the ship's listed Cargo Capacity, increase the Difficulty by an additional level.

    -Finally, for every level of increased Difficulty, increase the ship's Acceleration / Deceleration time by 1 round.
EXAMPLE:
    A stock YT-1300 has a Cargo Capacity of 100 metric tons and 50 cubic meters of cargo volume. The captain has a contract to haul 180 metric tons of minerals; at 36 cubic meters, it will fit into the cargo bay with room to spare, but exceeds the ship's listed cargo capacity by 80 metric tons.

    Because the ship is overloaded by more than 150% but less than 200%, all Piloting Difficulties are increased by +10 (2 levels), and all Acceleration and Deceleration times are increased by 2 rounds.
So long as a heavily loaded ship limits itself to Cruising or Cautious Speed and doesn't make any sudden maneuvers (Dodging or maneuvering through obstacles and other terrain), it should be able to operate normally, as no Piloting rolls are required at that level.

I'm somewhat on the fence as to whether or not to use this system or to use 50% of the ship's listed Cargo Capacity as the baseline for increasing Difficulty, though.

Thoughts?
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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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Whill
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2019 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I agree that miraculous technology of inertial compensation and anti-gravity should have their limits. If not then you could haul as much as you could jam into the ship and that's silly. And some ships with deck plans have a lot of cargo space with a disproportionately low Cargo Capacity stat, like the Deepwater. So going over the CC at times should happen.

But unfortunately for a lot of ships using this will still include some guesswork by the GM because cargo volume is not something that is known for most ships, so the GM has to make a judgement of how much cargo can fit on the ship, and then worry if a cargo goes over the Cargo Capacity stat, by how much, and what the effects of that are.

CRMcNeill wrote:
...For every additional 50% increase in the tonnage of cargo carried above the ship's listed Cargo Capacity, increase the Difficulty by an additional level....

I'm somewhat on the fence as to whether or not to use this system or to use 50% of the ship's listed Cargo Capacity as the baseline for increasing Difficulty, though.

Thoughts?

I may be missing something. Isn't this system already using 50% of the ship's listed Cargo Capacity as the baseline? What two things are you comparing for your question?
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CRMcNeill
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It could go either way. The above version assumes that a ship's inertial compensator has enough power to handle 100 metric tons of cargo with no loss of performance, but that as a ship begins to overload, its performance begins to degrade. So, at 101-150%, it suffers a +5 modifier to all Difficulty rolls, then a +10 modifier at 151-200% and so on and so forth. I felt this seemed a better fit with the RAW, as there is no mechanic for performance degradation when adding on after-market equipment with the weight still below the ship's maximum cargo 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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CRMcNeill
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Joined: 05 Apr 2010
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2019 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as Cargo Volume, I believe WEG offered a generic conversion rule in one of the Pirates books: 1 cubic meter for every 2 metric tons. Someone who wanted to design their own deckplans could probably come up with something a lot more granular, but it’s as good a place to start as any.

There is also the question of how much cargo volume is taken up by add-on systems... It could simply be treated as generic High Tech Cargo, which converts at a rate of .5 metric tons per cubic meter...

EDIT: Actually, it’d probably be simpler to just got with a straight 1 metric ton / 1 meter^3 for aftermarket equipment.
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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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Naaman
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2019 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What if the rule was applied retroactively?

For example, the ship's baseline stats assume that it is loaded to capacity, and for each 25% (or whatever) that you get rid of, you increase all the performance rolls by +1 pip (or something)?

Alternatively, you could just reduce the stats of cargo ships by x pips, and then "increase" it back towards its RAW stats as it drops weight.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2019 7:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's work, too. If you wanted to get that granular, +1 Difficulty for every 10% of cargo carried would be a better fit, with a +1 round penalty to accel / decel at every +5 in Difficulty. The simpler middle ground would be to just do +5 Difficulty & +1 round of acc/dec for every 50% of max cargo carried.
_________________
"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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CRMcNeill
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Location: Redding System, California Sector, on the I-5 Hyperspace Route.

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 11:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple thoughts...

One of the optional upgrades for the YT-1300 is a set of strap-on external cargo pods (see the Rebel Alliance Sourcebook), which apparently increase the ship's cargo capacity by 100 metric tons. In combination with this rule, I'd suggest that the cargo pods shouldn't change the ship's maximum tonnage at all, but would increase its cargo volume by 50 meters^3.

Another thought is that the YT-1210 seen in Tramp Freighters could be designed to pair with an external cargo pod of some sort, sacrificing internal cargo volume (but not cargo tonnage) by moving equipment that was placed in the cargo mandibles on the YT-1300 into the leading edge of the hull.
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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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Whill
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 10:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
One of the optional upgrades for the YT-1300 is a set of strap-on external cargo pods (see the Rebel Alliance Sourcebook), which apparently increase the ship's cargo capacity by 100 metric tons.

That RAS strap-on cargo pod option is evidence that WEG's original concept of Cargo Capacity stat (measured by weight/mass) is purely a function of cargo space (volume), which of course is contrary to the premise being discussed here, that cargo weight/mass matters to how much hauling power the ship has and allowing for ships to be overloaded with an impact to its performance.

CRMcNeill wrote:
In combination with this rule, I'd suggest that the cargo pods shouldn't change the ship's maximum tonnage at all, but would increase its cargo volume by 50 meters^3.

I concur.

CRMcNeill wrote:
As far as Cargo Volume, I believe WEG offered a generic conversion rule in one of the Pirates books: 1 cubic meter for every 2 metric tons. Someone who wanted to design their own deckplans could probably come up with something a lot more granular, but it’s as good a place to start as any.

The Far Orbit Project p.22. Yes, this was the formula you reminded me of so that I could calculate the cargo volume of the ship I designed and determine a Cargo Capacity stat that would not be too far off from this congruence, so that the ship doesn't have too much cargo space for the cargo mass it can haul. Thanks.

And this works to an extent for ships without deckplans. If you just have a bunch of stats and need to know the ship's approximate cargo space, apply the simple formula and voila. But ship Length is almost an arbitrary figure in WEG stats so this equation still can still result in some incongruent results as in, 'How could a ship that big possible have a cargo bay so small?'

And this formula really begins to fall apart when you apply it to ships with deckplans. Sure volume is a function of three dimensions and deckplans rarely give any indication how tall a cargo bay's deck ceiling is, but you still have some ships with gargantuan area cargo bays and yet a proportionally little itty bitty cargo hauling power, such as some of the ships in Stock Ships.

So if you are applying the realism that Cargo Capacity is a measure of ship hauling power and not purely cargo space, then this formula is only a good place to start but should not be the end-all if you also want the realism coming from the ship's size having an influence on the cargo volume.

CRMcNeill wrote:
There is also the question of how much cargo volume is taken up by add-on systems... It could simply be treated as generic High Tech Cargo, which converts at a rate of .5 metric tons per cubic meter...

EDIT: Actually, it’d probably be simpler to just got with a straight 1 metric ton / 1 meter^3 for aftermarket equipment.

OK.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would you say that's the fault of the rule or of the deckplans? The amount of trouble you've gone through re-doing the Deepwater is indicative of the quality control issues encountered so far. The problems with "official" deckplans are myriad.
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Whill
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
Would you say that's the fault of the rule or of the deckplans? The amount of trouble you've gone through re-doing the Deepwater is indicative of the quality control issues encountered so far. The problems with "official" deckplans are myriad.

I can't really speak to how accurate the equation is because starships with repulsorlift and sublight engines hauling cargo is completely fictional, but as you said it is as good a place to start as any. The Far Orbit Project book with that rule actually came out after Stock Ships with the deckplans, so the damage was already done. The Far Orbit rule is better than the GG6 1e rule it was based on because the 2e rule comes up with a lesser discrepancy between hauling power and cargo space. The amount of trouble I had re-doing the DeepWater prompted me to not even redo the DeepWater and instead make a different class of ship. For Stock Ships, the various writers of Length and Cargo Capacity stats of ships, the artist of the exterior ship images, and graphic designers of the deckplans were all different people and they obviously did not coordinate in any way.

I wasn't attacking the rule. I was just merely stating that if you go strictly by the rule only to calculate cargo space from the Cargo Capacity stat, you are going to end up with some really wacky results for ships we have deckplans for where the amount of visible cargo space is clearly off from what it appears on the deckplan.

So what's the solution? Do you suggest throwing out the deckplan when that happens? Sure, disposing of one side of the contradiction will help, but then you are faced with either making your own deckplan to replace the one you threw out, or doing without one. I can tell you from experience that making your own deckplan is a difficult and time consuming process, and most gamers aren't going to go through the trouble of doing that. Doing without a deckplan is an obvious solution because we already do that for a lot of ships that don't have a deckplan, and sure some fans don't care about deckplans. But deckplans can add something to the game, an increased sense of realism, or rather a boost of disbelief suspension. Deckplans can be a setting imagination aid.

And even without a deckplan, having the stat block's Length alone (and maybe an exterior image) can still result in the formula producing some incongruent results for cargo space that don't make sense. One possible solution may be to simply increase the Cargo Capacity of the ship if its size would have a lot of space for cargo, allowing the volume side of the equation to dictate some of the hauling power. But then a significant increase in Cargo Capacity should maybe effect the ship's price, when price is something almost arbitrary as it is in this fictional economy.

I was just emphasizing that the rule is a guideline for starters but not the only and final consideration for cargo space. The ship I designed has a very similar overall size to the DeepWater. My ship's deckplan has a significantly reduced cargo area compared the DeepWater's deckplan, and yet the ship has a drastically increased Cargo Capacity stat, just to come closer to the equation of that rule (still over 50 tons less!). The DeepWater, even if the cargo holds have ceilings heights of less than 2m, has a ridiculous amount cargo space for hauling power. I do fault the deckplan. I wrote my ship as a follow-up to the DeepWater improving on it main flaws.

But using the missing chart from GG6 2e (BASE COST AND WEIGHT TABLE) along with the Far Orbit 2e rule allow cargo space to have an impact on what your ship can carry. The large cargo volume ships do allow you to carry more low density cargo. (The DeepWater is the king of lightweight cargos - It hauls a lot of raw hydrogen in its cargo bays to wherever there is a market for that.) And implementing a proposed rule of this thread would allow us to overload large cargo space ships according to their hauling power, so it gives these ship's deckplans another reason for existing.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not entirely sure; it's definitely more complicated than WEG made it out to be.

If my trucking experience has any parallels, there may also be legal limits on how much mass a ship can transport, with overloaded ships subject to fines and penalties.

I have never once maxed out on both volume and weight on the same load; the heaviest loads generally took up less than 1/3 of the volume in a full size trailer, while the loads that did take up the full trailer were some of the lightest, ~10% of the maximum legal amount.

It's possible that a ship could be designed with a lot of cargo volume, but cost-cutting by the manufacturer limited the total tonnage it can push, so the vast majority of that volume will rarely if ever be fully utilized.

When it comes to deckplans, though, yeah, I actually would throw out most of the WEG published ones in favor of stuff like the stuff on Deckplans Alliance. Most of their write-ups for deckplans include specific values for internal cargo volume, and even get into what shapes of cargo can be loaded through the various hatches. The "What Might've Been" deckplan for the Millennium Falcon actually roughly matches up with the 50 cubic meters rule of thumb.
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Whill
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the DA stuff, but they are very limited in what deckplans they have.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whill wrote:
I like the DA stuff, but they are very limited in what deckplans they have.

I'll have to see about getting you a copy of my deckplan folder. The SW Design Alliance produced a lot of stuff in a similar vein.
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