Rebirth: Combat Demo

Blue? Green? Red? Refuse? It's time to talk about rules for a new community edition of the VBAM rules!
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Tyrel Lohr
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Re: Rebirth: Combat Demo

Postby Tyrel Lohr » Wed Mar 07, 2018 5:05 am

The current round of combat tests came about because of a desire to address some existing criticisms (internal and external) of how combat worked. Most of 2017 was probably spent pushing these concepts around to see what stuck.

We've run into a few issues with our internal rules build in our test game and we're ironing out the details, but I like that it makes both offense and defense a more active decision than it was before. You have to choose to sacrifice firepower to screen/protect your ships, but then you get to choose what your fleet damages in the fight instead of leaving it up to your opponent.

The special abilities are in flux right now, and we're trying to find the best way to consolidate and apply them within the new context. You are absolutely correct that Scout is currently the one most in limbo, and after my last few battles it may be a case where Scout gets more of a hand in the formations department with screening being the "we can do this if we have to" option and Scouts being the preferred way to place units in a formation bonus.

The formation levels and directed damage have all been removed in favor of a standard formation bonus (2xDV to reduce) and attackers scoring all damage. Do you want to protect your valuable carrier? You had better put it in a formation bonus! That makes it the defender's job to guard those most valuable units.

I wish I had more to share on this, but I've been down with a cold the last two weeks and am finally starting to snap out of it. But I think we're making really good progress addressing rules changes with the current version of the rules, and another two weeks of play (making up for the lost time due to my illness) should have us back on track.
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BroAdso
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Re: Rebirth: Combat Demo

Postby BroAdso » Wed Jun 20, 2018 4:28 pm

So I finally got some time to work with these re-squadroned, pared-down rules! Attached is a PDF of the rules I got to using the example you posted, plus some existing rules from Galaxies and 2nd Edition.

I played a couple of battles using these, here's a representative one:
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In the setup phase, we have squadron setup and readiness. Both sides rolled normal (+0) readiness, so nothing important there. Things to notice in setup and missions:

The Cardassians place their attack corvettes in two distinct squadrons, each of which provides 3 Disruption points, enough to lower the Defense Level (aka Formation) of 3DV of ships each. If they placed those two squadrons on Disruption duty, they would have been worth 7 Disruption points each, enough to lower even more Defense Levels (aka Formation Bonus) of ships. They use the 6 DPs they have to lower the DL of the Merced class Scout Cruiser on the Federation side by one.

The Federation placed one high-AF Centaur DD in two squadrons and assigned those two ships to screening, since the Centaur provides 5 Screening points when assigned to Screening duty. Between the Centaurs and a Miranda, they can raise the Defense Level (aka Formation Bonus) of their Merced and Excelsior by one each - a real disincentive to the Cardassians to try and damage them in the fire phases.

The Cardassians opt to screen the Mokesh light cruiser which is flagging Support Squadron A, and the Birok DN which is their fleet flagship.

After all the screening and disrupting, the Federation have voluntarily given up 9 AS and 14 AF to raise the Defense Level of their Merced by 1 and their Excelsior by 1. The Cardassians have voluntarily given up 12 AS and 12 AF to increase the Defense Level of their Birok by 1 and Support Squadron A's Mokesh by 1.

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We enter the Fire Phases with the Federation's Ship fire points at 37AS / 25 AF, and the Cardassian's Ship Fire Points at 42AS / 27AF. The Federation's Flight fire points are at 12AS/22AF, while the Cardassian's Flight Fire Points are at 14AS / 21AF.

The ensuing Ship to Ship Fire Phase is ugly - the Federation rolls 50% ship-to-ship effectiveness and takes out the Mokesh class in the Flag Squadron, since it doesn't have a Defense Bonus, as well as one of the Vasad attack corvettes. The Cardassians roll 75% effectiveness, and take primary aim at the Merced, with its valuable 2 Scout points and its lowered Defence Level of 0 by the Vasads. They also aim for one of the valuable screening Centaur DDs, to significantly lower the AF facing their fighters in the last fire phase.

Flights vs Flights is high-casualty, with the Federation at 100% effectiveness and the Cardassians at 75%. The Federation uses most of its damage (12) and knocks down the two Heavy Fighter flights with 3 AS each, in order to minimize the AS they will be facing in the last fire phase.

In Flights vs Ships, all three remaining Federation flights go down to Cardassian AF guns, only managing to cripple a single frigate on their way in. The few remaining Neket fighters on the Cardassian side are more effective, rolling 100% fire effectiveness and taking down a Miranda class Frigate.

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After high casualties, both sides decide to retreat and restock their fighters, so there are no further rounds and no re-arrangement of squadrons. There are fewer crippled ships than normal, since both sides concentrated on destroying ships where possible, and there were few instances where the total AS left enough 'remaindered' damage to cripple a ship.
Attachments
VBAM_ Rebirth Squadrons Combat Notes.pdf
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