Starships

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monk2024
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Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 2:09 pm

How much growth do you need for a starship and what is a reasonable PL

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Batgirl III
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Re: Starships

Post by Batgirl III » Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:35 pm

monk2024 wrote:How much growth do you need for a starship and what is a reasonable PL
Not to sound flippant, but the answer to both of these questions is "enough to do what you want."

In my Roll Call thread at the old forum, I built multiple ships. Snub fighters and captial ships for the Jovian Chronicles setting (seen starting here), the U.S.S. Enterprise-D from ST:TNG (seen here), and some stuff from the Warhammer 40,000 setting (seen here).

First, you need to decide if you are going to build the spaceship as a Headquarters, a Vehicle, or a Hero. Building it as an HQ is easiest of its mostly going to be a "backdrop" for the players to met, to plan, and to hangout between adventures (think of the JLA satellite) and any interplanetary flight can be handwaved by the GM. Building it as a Vehicle works best if the ship is something of a "mundane"'part of the setting and will not be especially focused on during the action (think of the dropship in Aliens). But if the ship is going to be a major part of the campaign almost a character in her own right, build it as a Heroic NPC (think of Serenity from Firefly).

Growth is relatively straight-forward. You need to apply enough Ranks to make it the size you want it to be. Colossal puts you roughly on par with commercial airliners and cargo planes. Awesome puts you on par with the Enterprise-D. Feel free to fudge this a few Ranks up or down within each size category if you need to.

The rest of the Power Level needs to be more of a judgment call. Starfighters and smaller transports, like X-Wings or Serenity, really aren't much different than mundane jet fighters and and commercial cargo planes, except that they can travel in space. If your building something on that scale, keep your numbers within spitting distance of those vehicles and call it good.

It's the big ships that get tricky.

As a general rule of thumb, captial ships tend to be very easy to hit and really, really tough to hurt. They also tend to have relatively low Attack Bonuses but they pack a helluva wallop when they hit (since they tend to fight equally sized things).

When I built up the Enterprise-D Inpurposely made her able to go toe-to-nacelle with Superman or multiple Green Lanterns. I've the "fighting stats" for the Galaxy-class needed to reflect the capabilities seen on screen: shields that can withstand nukes, phasers and torpedoes that can level cities, and sensors that make Superman look myopic.

The capital ships from Jovian Chronicles aren't nearly as beastly, but were still looking at massive vessels meant to fight wars. They're all going to be beefy.
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badpenny
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Re: Starships

Post by badpenny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:36 pm

Ships/vehicles are measured by their Size (not Growth, which is an effect for characters--unless you're building a ship as a character). Sizes for ships probably start at Huge and go all the way up to Awesome. Whichever version of M&M you're using, there are explanations for these in the Vehicles section or the core book and more detail in the Vehicles Gadget Guide for 3e.

PL is generally the same for vehicles as for PCs. IIRC, the vehicles examples in the book are built as PL 3 based on their Defense vs Toughness. Many things will go into PL consideration, e.g. whether the vehicle is something piloted vs it being a character itself.
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 3:53 pm

thanks, I've bought that now

its perfectly fine to sound flippant, i do it all the time and I'm definitely going to read your ships again.

I'm going to have some very big ships around including a couple which shouldn't have been built but were anyway because emperors don't get told no

Can it still be a HQ if it fights in battles?

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badpenny
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Re: Starships

Post by badpenny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:33 pm

monk2024 wrote:Can it still be a HQ if it fights in battles?
No, it'll have to be either a vehicle or a character.
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:37 pm

Can't really make it a HQ then as everything does at least some fighting

are there any hard number for how big the size categories are?

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badpenny
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Re: Starships

Post by badpenny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 6:30 pm

In reality, there's not a whopping difference aside from the starting Traits and technically what's allowed for each category. Ultimately, you can do what you like (if you're the GM or get approval).

The size categories are listed in the core book under Vehicles in the Gadgets & Gear (3e) or Devices & Equipment (2e) sections.
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 7:13 pm

I might finally buy that

I just like it when there are numbers for things you know

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badpenny
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Re: Starships

Post by badpenny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:16 pm

If you haven't bought the game, there's always the SRD. Here's a link to the Vehicles chapter
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:30 pm

thanks, the examples are useful but they just don't go big enough for me

I mean a cruise ship or battleship isn't even the biggest thing on the waves today

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badpenny
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Re: Starships

Post by badpenny » Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:49 pm

Awesome size should cover it. But if not, you can always expand the chart. Just follow the progression.
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:58 pm

I'd have to or most of the ships will be the same size category which is annoying on several levels

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Batgirl III
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Re: Starships

Post by Batgirl III » Sun Jan 15, 2017 4:12 am

M&M's size categories are based on those of D&D 3.x, or at least that's their evolutionary root. But these days, it's easier just to look at the Measurements Table. A motorcycle-sized object is Rank –2 / Six Feet; a fighter jet is Rank 1 / Sixty Feet; the U.S.S. Enterprise-D is Rank 6 / 1,800 Feet.

Note that this is where that fudge factor I mentioned comes in, as the U.S.S. Enterprise-D's "real" dimensions have it at 2,107' 11" in length. That's bigger than Rank 6, but smaller than Rank 7... I err on the side of the smaller Rank. I mean, a human-being averages six foot, but people like Shaquille O'Neil are still normal humans.
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monk2024
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Re: Starships

Post by monk2024 » Sun Jan 15, 2017 7:25 am

thats much better

So something like this

Colonial Police Shuttle - Rank 0
Small Freighter- Rank 2
Cutter- Rank 3
Corvette - Rank 4
Frigate- Rank 5
Light Cruiser/Destroyer- Rank 6
Heavy Cruiser/Battlecruiser- Rank 7
Battleships- Rank 8
Dreadnought- Rank 9
Emperors Pride- Rank 10
Homebase, Peace Vault class Space Stations- Rank 12.

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Batgirl III
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Re: Starships

Post by Batgirl III » Sun Jan 15, 2017 3:55 pm

Well, I'm not sure what the sizes of the ships in your setting are supposed to be, but bear in mind that every Rank increase is a doubling from the previous as the scale isn't linear.

"Wet navy" vessels don't increase in size exponentially like this. You could have multiple classes of vessel still be the roughly the same size as each other, but fulfilling vastly different functions. For example, the U.S. Navy's Arleigh Burke-class destroyer is (rounding off) 500'' in length and displaces a bit over 9,000 tons compared to the USCG's Polar-class icebreaker at 400' and 11,000 tons standard displacement. Roughly the same size, but fulfilling vastly different roles.

Video games, wargames, and the Battleship boardgame have made most of us think that different classes of ship must be different scales to do different jobs. That isn't necessarily the case.

thats much better

So something like this

Colonial Police Shuttle - Rank 0
Small Freighter- Rank 2
Cutter- Rank 3
Bulk Frieghter, Corvette, Frigate, Destroyer - Rank 4
Battlecruiser- Rank 5
Battleship, Dreadnought- Rank 6
Big Bad Evil Guy's Ostentatious Ride - Rank 8
Unnecessary Large Weaponized Space Station What Fights Planets and Doesn't Afraid of Nufgin - Rank 18*

* That's on par with Earth's Moon.
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