Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

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Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby Moonsword on Sun 09 Mar 2014 07:30

The usual rule of thumb in Starfire past a certain point is all other things being equal, the larger the ship is, the more technologically advanced the builders were. What if we alter that assumption? This is just a hypothetical question. Keep in mind I don't know that much about Starfire.

The biggest risks I can see are the paired advantages of speed and range going to the smaller vessels with their better engines. Unless they're compelled to stand and fight because the behemoths are closing on a target they must defend, the behemoths are simply never going to be able to bring them to action. Good enough datalinks on the small fry combined with poor enough defenses on the behemoths might see them getting stung to death by LRWs from beyond their reach. The difference in ?/?d capabilities could also be problematic.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby Cralis on Sun 09 Mar 2014 12:03

Moonsword wrote:The usual rule of thumb in Starfire past a certain point is all other things being equal, the larger the ship is, the more technologically advanced the builders were. What if we alter that assumption? This is just a hypothetical question. Keep in mind I don't know that much about Starfire.


That is possible if the "less advanced" race has a scan of a large ship beyond the capability of the "more advanced" race. Say, for example, a HT1 race gets a scan of a monitor (MT) and is fighting a HT5 race that has not.

One thing to consider is that the cost of those larger units is much harder to swallow by a smaller, less advanced race. They simply don't have the income to build many of them. However, if they were to build a couple of MT they'd be powerful even if they didn't have weapon technologies as good as the more advanced race.

The biggest risks I can see are the paired advantages of speed and range going to the smaller vessels with their better engines. Unless they're compelled to stand and fight because the behemoths are closing on a target they must defend, the behemoths are simply never going to be able to bring them to action. Good enough datalinks on the small fry combined with poor enough defenses on the behemoths might see them getting stung to death by LRWs from beyond their reach. The difference in ?/?d capabilities could also be problematic.


And in my example above this would clearly be the case. The capital missile would outrange ANYTHING that the HT1 race can throw at them, and unless used in WP defense or used to attack a planet, they'd get destroyed from range before they could fire a shot in response.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby PracticalM on Sun 09 Mar 2014 21:08

One of the reasons the larger ship is assumed to have better technology is because the EL of the larger hull would be often assumed to be the EL of the empire using the hull. Under ULTRA rules Y18 (War Check) having a perceived low EL can lead to NPRs making attacks on you more frequently.

As a player I have found that letting an NPR think I'm weaker and getting them to attack can be more fun then attacking the NPR (especially if I have some defensive military agreements to activate).

As a SpaceMaster, I try not to let NPRs misjudge their possible opponent's EL simply because it can frequently end badly for the NPR to make failed attacks just because the player showed up in a stripped down EX.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby Cralis on Sun 09 Mar 2014 23:23

Heh, I've had players in multiplayer games show up in DD with SL1-2 systems and have SOP's that follow the NPR rules exactly so they can trick other players into thinking they are "just another NPR."

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It has provided some amusing moments.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby AlexeiTimoshenko on Mon 10 Mar 2014 07:25

Haven't been able to post due to RL issues (posting from phone at work is frowned upon). A good example of the postulated issue is the opening of ISW-4. in many areas the TFN was more advanced than the Bugs. The difference was that the TFN was at a peace time posture with their capital units at central bases or in mothballs, while the Bugs were ready for war. In many of the early battles both the TFN and KON used their speed and range advantages to inflict far heavier damage even if the result was a lost battle.
Charles Rosenberg.

Alexei Timoshenko is the name of my protagonist in the fanfics, although I wish it could have been me.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby Moonsword on Mon 10 Mar 2014 09:57

Cralis wrote:Heh, I've had players in multiplayer games show up in DD with SL1-2 systems and have SOP's that follow the NPR rules exactly so they can trick other players into thinking they are "just another NPR."

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It has provided some amusing moments.



Oh, I like that trick. Any fun stories?

AlexeiTimoshenko wrote:Haven't been able to post due to RL issues (posting from phone at work is frowned upon). A good example of the postulated issue is the opening of ISW-4. in many areas the TFN was more advanced than the Bugs. The difference was that the TFN was at a peace time posture with their capital units at central bases or in mothballs, while the Bugs were ready for war. In many of the early battles both the TFN and KON used their speed and range advantages to inflict far heavier damage even if the result was a lost battle.


True.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby procyon on Mon 08 Dec 2014 00:07

Moonsword wrote:
Cralis wrote:Heh, I've had players in multiplayer games show up in DD with SL1-2 systems and have SOP's that follow the NPR rules exactly so they can trick other players into thinking they are "just another NPR."

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It has provided some amusing moments.



Oh, I like that trick. Any fun stories?


We have a bunch. I just don't have lots of time tonight to type.

But ALL my players have '1st contact ships' that are simply an EX with SL1 systems and nothing else. Just to make sure they give away nothing to an opponent.

[2] H H Qa Xa Ya Ica [4] - this, or some variation thereof.
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Cralis wrote:I would point out that the "what was" which is different from "here and now" can easily change in the "future then."
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby Cralis on Mon 08 Dec 2014 01:21

Moonsword wrote:
Cralis wrote:Heh, I've had players in multiplayer games show up in DD with SL1-2 systems and have SOP's that follow the NPR rules exactly so they can trick other players into thinking they are "just another NPR."

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It has provided some amusing moments.


Oh, I like that trick. Any fun stories?


The one I was thinking about, the player used the GSF equivalent of T1.01.3 C to move his contact ship back to his WP so he'd be near his fleet on the other side. What he didn't know was that his "NPR contact" was really a player who intentionally delayed first contact to move a fleet into position and then surprise attack through the WP after a couple months of "failed first contact" hoping to get a quick drop on his opponent's fleet. He knew that he was talking to another player.

It worked. But he didn't get any intel from the fleet he destroyed and he had to survey 2 or 3 systems before reaching any populations. By that time the CDs that the destroyed fleet sent had reached home and the player was frantically pulling back other fleets and moving them to intercept.

It was just the email I got back after telling him the message of his CDs that was so amusing. I looked for it but I can't find it... not sure I still have it, but you could tell the poor guy was absolutely panicked.
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby procyon on Wed 10 Dec 2014 07:47

Hanging around after shift so this will be quick.

My players like using that EX contact ship with another FT0 of nearly the same design packed with maintenance so that the two ships can stay on station nearly indefinitely. They will never actually put a diplomat in danger until they have been in contact for over a year (just to make sure the other folks aren't on a slow burn to war) and then the diplomat is just there to improve an already existing treaty.

But this way, they can hold their 'higher tech' warships on the 'back side' of the warp point - but invariably the other race is forced to bring some of their more 'advanced' warships up to prepare for a possible attack. That way the player can get a bit of an idea what the race is before they attack, without giving the NPR any tech item to scan that would be above SL1.
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Cralis wrote:I would point out that the "what was" which is different from "here and now" can easily change in the "future then."
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Re: Advanced Small Fry vs Primitive Behemoths

Postby rincewind on Fri 10 Apr 2015 18:48

I've had mock battle with SL 20 BCs vs their opponents. It's essentially the swarm of SL 20. The biggest advatage to smaller hulled ships is that they are generally cheaper than their larger brethren, which means that you can build more of them. When I build fleets, I don't tend to make to many larger ships, just because maintanence isheck for those things, but also because I like the idea of a faster, speeder fleet that can outpace the enemy. I'll explain in more detail later.

Edit: Got your intital question wrong. Okay, the poor race has a few options in my book.

1. Turtling: If all the advanced race can build is smaller ships for some reason, my first reaction would be to seal off the warp points. Small ships are the least effective warp assualt units, and the bulkier ships of the primitive race can probably fit a lot of SRW's into their bigger ships. Meanwhile, the primitive race can explore other warp points and build new techoology to counter. Naturally the bigger race can do the same, so this is just a stop gap measure for the big race, but it gives them time to us.

More to follow.
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