Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

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Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:20 pm

Greetings to the sainted soldiers; scurrilous scallywags and sundry sailors upon the sea of souls.

There's been a major bone of contention as far as downtimes go, and it's the Piracy rules. Firstly, because they were not clearly and equally communicated to everyone, and secondly because (frankly) they're better than using an Obtain action to get what you want. So, the STs have undertaken Operation: Piracy Fix (name changes pending :D ).

With the expected uptick in heists; smash-and-grab operations and other thefts, and also bearing in mind that we promised more active NPCs, we thought it would be a good idea to stat out some defensive operations rules for the assemblage.


So, without further ado, Raiding, Guard and Vigil keywords. These will be in full effect in the coming downtime (opening Friday 11/03/2016), and if you have queries (or find where we've screwed up), please let us know.

Raiding Keyword
  • Used for all attempts to pirate, plunder, seize, loot or otherwise use gross military actions to get stuff from another party.
  • This is intentionally less reliable and somewhat less efficient than using an Obtain endeavour. Groups may want to consider theming Obtain actions as commando raids or elaborate heists if they have appropriate Assets.
  • Raiding is a modifier for a Destroy Type Endeavour. It increases the Difficulty by 20% of base.
  • Gain 100% of base difficulty as total value as loot
  • 50% of loot (50% of base value) can be broadly specified. Unless you know exactly what your target has before you set out, you may be surprised by what you manage to make away with. “An Archaeotech sword” or “samples of Fsheno tech” would be suitable requests, but you are unlikely to get what you’ve specifically requested if you put down “an Archaeotech power sword with +1 Damage and Dismember 1/day” or “20 units of Fsheno ship components”.
  • 50% of loot (50% of base value) is picked by the STs, appropriate to the narrative.
  • Significantly Reduced narrative damage to target compared to standard “Destroy” action. If you wish to both smash the foe’s bastions and take their stuff, the mechanically simplest way is to undertake both a standard Destroy Endeavour and a Raiding Endeavour with different assets during the same downtime.
  • There is no longer a requirement to convert a “booty” or “loot” keyword to make the sale of your ill-gotten gains possible when using Raiding. If you have any "banked", please convert as normal, with the understanding that we're not planning on issuing nay more.
  • WU and IP cannot be selected as the designated targets of raiding. These may be awarded by the STs for the narrative component, but vanishingly few people carry untraceable cash in the volumes to make up even a single wealth unit. Trade goods and equipment can be sold or traded as normal.
  • A Raiding Endeavour must be provided with a suitable narrative. This might simply be sailing the spacelanes for anyone not flying the Aquilla who looks like they might have something valuable, or may be part of a more involved scheme.
    If looting trade goods either in the void or with the intent of shipping off world, this is explicitly capped by the cargo space of any ship(s) involved.
  • Using Void and/or Beyond the Line keywords is both explicitly possible for space piracy, and explicitly not required if carrying out dirtside smash-and-grab operations.

Guard Keyword
  • Assets, skills and other contributions can be assigned on a Destroy Type Endeavour with the Guard Keyword.
    This provides protection against physical attacks, both covert commando raids and all-out assaults.
    The Cost and Difficulty are calculated as normal.
  • An applicable Defensive Action will add 150% of its Difficulty total to the Difficulty of any actions taken against the defended assets or items.
  • After completion, if assets involved in a Defensive Action are not engaged, 90% of the Endeavour Cost will be refunded.
  • A Guard Endeavour must be provided with a suitable narrative. This might simply be stationing regiments of troops around key facilities, or may be a more involved deployment.
  • When using Voidships to patrol spacelanes or set blockades, the Void and Beyond the Line keywords (and associated modifiers) are not needed.

Vigil Keyword
  • Assets, skills and other contributions can be assigned on a Convert Type Endeavour with the Vigil Keyword.
  • This provides protection against infiltration, sabotage, corporate takeovers and other non-physical attacks on your assets.
  • The Cost and Difficulty are calculated as normal.
  • An applicable Vigil Action will add 150% of its Difficulty total to the Difficulty of any actions taken against the defended assets or items.
  • After completion, if assets involved in a Defensive Action are not engaged, 90% of the Endeavour Cost will be refunded.
  • A Vigil Endeavour must be provided with a suitable narrative. This might simply be having agents keep an eye out for the schemes of others, or may be a more involved ploy.
  • When using Voidships to show the flag or courier agents, the Void and Beyond the Line keywords (and associated modifiers) are not needed.

Also, for convenient reference and with no changes applied, Void and Beyond the Line:

Void
  • Represents operations in deep space.
  • Requires at least one Voidship asset.
  • Increases Difficulty by 15% and Cost by 20%.
  • Increases the result of the outcome by 20%.

Beyond the Line
  • Represents operations beyond the Line of Control and outwith Imperial space
  • Requires at least one Voidship asset and the application of the Void keyword.
  • Increases Difficulty by an additional 15% and Cost by an additional 20%.
  • Increases the result of the outcome by an additional 20%.
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:22 pm

Example 1: Basic Raiding
Commander Skall wishes to lead his Free Companies to plunder the hoard of Clan Jera. He decides to undertake an Endeavour, and assigns it the Destroy Type and the Martial Method. Looking at the resources available, and mindful that his foe may have increased defences, he places his base difficulty at 350.
The base Cost is ¼ of the base Difficulty (87.5, rounded up to 88). By adding the Raiding keyword he increases the Difficulty by 20% to 420. As he knows that he has a market for the Trade Goods “Slaves” and “Personal Weapons & Armour” on-planet, he chooses these to be his target.

The contributions are:
Difficulty:
  • Melee 4 – 80
  • Melee 4 – 80
  • Mercenary Battalion – 60
  • Mercenary Battalion – 60
  • Mercenary Battalion – 60
  • Influence (Mercenaries) – 90
  • Influence (Reaver Clans) – 40
Total – 470, which leaves a margin of 50 Difficulty should the foe have left additional guards.

Cost:
  • Mercenary Battalion – 30 MP
  • Mercenary Battalion – 30 MP
  • Mercenary Battalion – 28 MP
Total – 88 MP, which meets the cost. Skall has no reason to exceed it.

Skall then has his scribes fill in the Endeavour spreadsheet and submits this as an Endeavour to the downtime system, along with the Downtime Actions for himself (both his skill actions) and his Assets (three military units and two influences, which he puts under the same Influence Action box as they are going to the same endeavour), and strides off to gain riches.

When the STs look upon what Skall has wrought, they become as the Warseers of old Varyaga, taking the form of great shadow ravens and surveying the battle to determine the victor.
Clan Jera has assigned an additional Company of their warriors as Guards, increasing the Difficulty by 45, but this is not enough to dissuade Skall’s mighty host. They decide that a bounty of 350 WU value shall be his! Half the total (175 WU) is returned as what was asked for, modified by the STs to fit the narrative and the target’s assets:
  • 14 Units of Slaves
  • 8 Units of Personal Weapons & Armour
  • 2 Units of Military Weapons & Armour
  • 1 Unit of Mobile Armour
The STs then determine what the other half (175 WU) will grant. They decide that Clan Jura had in their possession strange and powerful weapons, many of them no doubt ripped from the hands of their dead warriors.
  • Flamer – +1 damage 6 times/combat (75 WU value)
  • 5 Units Archaeotech Personal Weapons & Armour

As Skall has a market for such goods on-planet, he is well satisfied. Next downtime he will submit a Trade to sell his items, perhaps even sell back to Clan Jura if he feels bold, or he may arrange shipment offworld to other markets.
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:23 pm

Example 2: Swashbuckling Privateers of the Spaceways!
The Rogue Trader Tobias Bernd of the Veritas Dynasty will dispatch his ships against the unscrupulous vagabonds who ply the spaceways Beyond the Line, starving those who would associate with the Great Enemy of the wealth to continue their perfidious existence!
The course is set! The Method chosen is Martial, the Type is Destroy!
As a Rogue Trader of considerable means, he sets the base Difficulty of his action at 2000, the base Cost being 500. He will apply the Void Keyword, increasing Difficulty by 15% and Cost by 20%. Further he will apply Beyond the Line, representing the greater risk and reward to be had so far from Imperial control, and increase again Difficulty by 15% and Cost by 20%. Lastly, he adds the Raiding Keyword, increasing Difficulty by 20%.
As all of these modifiers are additive, this results in a total Difficulty increase of 50% to 3000 and a Cost increase of 40% to 700. Seeking to fill his hold with the riches of the foe, and mindful alike of his own impending costs, he designates that Gem Stones and Precious Metals will be his target for this Endeavour, along with “some kind of commercial bonus item” to keep his scorned Seneschal happy.

The particulars of such a large engagement would consume much space on the cogitor banks. Suffice to say that between Ships, Skill Actions and Influence the Veritas Dynasty will muster 3000 Difficulty and 700 Cost. The fleet can hold a sizable 200 units of trade goods, and they judge this sufficient to the task.

The great Tobias Bernd scorns his Seneschal taking up the electro-quill, and enters the data himself in both spreadsheet and downtimes submission. He then spends whole weeks wrangling the rest of his dynasty to mark also their contributions, finally receiving confirmation as the deadline to set sail approaches.

The STs survey the outcome, looking upon sundered ships and hulls now barren of loot. All was successful, and no additional forces lay in wait for him. Ordinarily, the value of the loot would be equal to the base Difficulty, but Void and Beyond the Line increase the value by 20% each, for a total return of 2800.

As there are no additional considerations, the STs grant the initially requested booty. They judge that WU are appropriate to the narrative:
  • 51 Units of Gem Stones
  • 66 Units of Precious Metals
  • Fsheno Trade Methodology Volume: +2 Commercia
The STs then consider what else to grant as part of this mighty haul, and as the reports come in from the Veritas Dynasty’s pursers of what they have gained, their pious master begins to show concern at some of what he now holds. Still, one can hardly give it back to the victims and ask for exchange:
  • 31 Units of Xenos Origin Animal Meat
  • 26 Units of Unprocessed Food (Natural)
  • 4 Units of Archaeotech Automata
  • 14 Units of Xenos Origin Narcotics
  • 3 suits of Heavy Carapace
  • The Tome of Chyak: +2 Permanent Forbidden Lore (Demons), possibly Corrupting.
  • The Needles of Exquisite Agony: +3 Interrogate 3/day, possibly Corrupting.

Tobias Bernd’s coffers are looking healthy as he has an impressive selection of goods to trade, which is good. On the other hand, if he tries to sell some of these items within the Imperium there may be attention paid to him by the Inquisition, which is almost never good. Perhaps an elaborate plan is in order?
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby theresponsibleone » Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:45 pm

I've heard people talking about Conspiracy endeavours - but can't find rules for them. Could these be posted as well? And are there any other keywords people are using?
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Fri Mar 11, 2016 12:51 am

A good and valid point.

However, as I'm on the verge of falling asleep here. rather than giving you a half-assed answer now I'll put this together tomorrow afternoon / evening and post it up here (unless one of the other STs beats me to it).
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Fri Mar 11, 2016 8:27 pm

The Keyword system is incomplete and not entirely in use. The Keywords Matrix, which I would love to just refer everyone to, isn’t in a place where I can say “just look it up”. The below are in place until further notice. With the exception of Void and Beyond the Line, mentioned previously, these are primarily Destroy modifiers, though I’d imagine that Conspiracy will see a fair bit of other use.

All of the below are subject to clarification from the STs, and a fair amount of interpretation may be needed in places, but I'm hoping that the intent is clear.

Conspiracy
  • ”A knife in the dark is worth a thousand swords at dawn.”
  • A Conspiracy may be undertaken without a single shot fired, though this is rare. Infiltration, assassination and other acts of espionage use this Keyword.
  • Collateral damage is minimised, and the perpetrators of a well executed Conspiracy may be hidden altogether.
  • Increase Cost and Difficulty by 20%.
  • Many assets are utterly unsuited for Conspiracy operations. In particular, Military and Exploration units without either the Special Ops or Agent qualities will usually do more harm than good.

Covert
  • ”Walk softly and carry a big Multi-melta.”
  • Targeted strikes, commando raids and stealth recon operations all use the Covert keyword.
  • Increase Cost and Difficulty by 10%.
  • Collateral damage is minimised.
  • Certain assets are unsuited to this Keyword, and will contribute reduced value or even act against you. This will be determined narratively, but includes the likes of artillery or heavy war engines.

War
  • ”Losses are acceptable. Failure is not.”
  • When subtlety is a distant memory, use the War Keyword.
  • Increase Difficulty by 10%. The Cost remains the same.
  • As a full-scale and unrestrained combat, collateral damage is likely to be extreme.
  • Several assets benefit from this environment, as their full destructive potential is unconstrained by the normal, stricter rules of engagement.

Total War
  • ”Victory? What use is victory? Let me have a battle of annihilation!”
  • As the name suggests, this is used for all-out and unrestrained combat, utilising the full spectrum of weapons and implements. Expect a preponderance of big guns.
  • Increase Difficulty by 10% over the War Keyword, for a total of +20%. The Cost remains the same.
  • Collateral damage is maximised, and targets of a successful Total War Endeavour are likely to be shattered or pulped rather than temporarily neutralised.
  • Attempting to loot the dead will seldom yield more than shattered remains, and even the ground itself may be so littered with craters and ordinance to make it unfit for habitation for years to come.
  • As for the War keyword, various assets benefit from being fully unleashed and provide bonuses to War and Total War.
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Hazel » Tue Mar 15, 2016 7:54 pm

Thank you for the detail in all of this (particularly the examples, which are very helpful).
I have a pile of questions, some of which may be me over thinking things, so apologies if some of this is nonsense!

Raiding actions that are *not* beyond the line are cheaper (albeit less productive) - are there expected to be mechanical and/or uptime-social consequences for Raiding endeavours in Imperial space? Or is this just a keyword for 'the more you put in, the more you get out'?

How do non-financial actions that require void or beyond the line keywords work? E.g. how can we find out 20% more of 'who killed the ambassador' or get 20% more of 'kill the ambassador'? Do land-based actions in non-imperial space require Beyond the Line keyword?

If I do a guard or vigil action that is not needed and gets 90% cost refunded, but that action is paid for using MP or EP which has already been resupplied using a separate bolster action, how does the refund work?

Where a Guard or Vigil action adds to the difficulty of an endeavour attacking an asset, I'm assuming that means the attacker does not know in advance and thus unless they have overspent by a guessed amount, the attack will fail? Can we do investigative endeavours to find out how much (if any) an asset is defended, and if so, how do we do these in the same DT as the attack endeavour (as any defensive set up might change between events). Will Hidden, Covert or Special Ops assets used for Guard or Vigil actions be harder to investigate, and if so, how will that work?

Do these new rules mean people (PCs or NPCs) can steal items from me? If so how will that work? Do I now have to specify which of my goods or equipment are stored on which ship at any given time (which I don't currently)? Or can they only raid downtime assets like ships and troops and titles?

Do these rule changes mean it is now more efficient to gain wealth through exploring than it is to gain wealth through violence? Or does it work out about the same?

Can we do Raiding actions that use both the Void/Beyond the Line keywords *and* the Covert or Conspiracy keywords? Or are Covert and Conspiracy actions land-based only?
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Tue Mar 15, 2016 8:56 pm

Hazel wrote:Thank you for the detail in all of this (particularly the examples, which are very helpful).
I have a pile of questions, some of which may be me over thinking things, so apologies if some of this is nonsense!

Raiding actions that are *not* beyond the line are cheaper (albeit less productive) - are there expected to be mechanical and/or uptime-social consequences for Raiding endeavours in Imperial space? Or is this just a keyword for 'the more you put in, the more you get out'?

Since I appear to be taking point on these, I'll try and hammer through the questions.

There will not necessarily be consequences for Raiding in Imperial space, but it is more likely. For example, the good ol' bank heist is not beyond the pale for Rogue Traders, and snatch-and-grab operations against criminals on the Imperial side of the line may be explicitly allowed by some warrants.

As we're trying to keep the keywords as consistent as possible, there is no additional difficulty for doing things on the Imperial side of the line. At the same time, Raiding will always annoy someone. The narrative will determine whether you want to annoy aliens and renegades, or nobles and Arbitrators.

Hazel wrote:How do non-financial actions that require void or beyond the line keywords work? E.g. how can we find out 20% more of 'who killed the ambassador' or get 20% more of 'kill the ambassador'? Do land-based actions in non-imperial space require Beyond the Line keyword?

I'm afraid that we're in the realm of "it depends". To give some examples:
  • A diplomatic mission, where the ships are acting as couriers: Doesn't need Void or Beyond the Line (though it needs an appropriate keyword).
  • An attack on a Chaos fleet yard: Would probably need both. the payoff from having Beyond the Line would be at the discretion of the STs.
  • A dig site on an alien world: Might or might not have the modifiers. If this is the first expedition or includes a major orbital element it would be most appropriate to include it, if this is (say) a followup dirtside it might be more suitable to leave it off.


Hazel wrote:If I do a guard or vigil action that is not needed and gets 90% cost refunded, but that action is paid for using MP or EP which has already been resupplied using a separate bolster action, how does the refund work?

Not one I'd actually considered. Unless one of the other STs ventures an opinion, I think that the Cost of the unused/redundant resupply would be refunded, but the Difficulty would not.

Background-wise, your support staff were sitting waiting to ensure that any damage is repaired and the guns fed, but all they needed to do was refueling and running maintenance.

Hazel wrote:Where a Guard or Vigil action adds to the difficulty of an endeavour attacking an asset, I'm assuming that means the attacker does not know in advance and thus unless they have overspent by a guessed amount, the attack will fail? Can we do investigative endeavours to find out how much (if any) an asset is defended, and if so, how do we do these in the same DT as the attack endeavour (as any defensive set up might change between events). Will Hidden, Covert or Special Ops assets used for Guard or Vigil actions be harder to investigate, and if so, how will that work?

As these rules have been designed with PC vs. PC attacks as a possibility from the start, there's not a mechanical way of determining if your opponent has send their fleet out exploring or left them defending their home world until time runs out and everyone has submitted.

Against NPCs, recon either in uptime or in the preceding downtime will give an idea of the enemy strength (we have no current plans to spring surprise Chaos Legion fleets without foreshadowing, though of course we reserve the right to do so). If you're looking at doing so, please contact the STs with specifics.

For Hidden, Agent etc, they will likely be harder to detect. We have not planned for this possibility (but should have). I'll add to the list of things to go over at the next ST call.

Hazel wrote:Do these new rules mean people (PCs or NPCs) can steal items from me? If so how will that work? Do I now have to specify which of my goods or equipment are stored on which ship at any given time (which I don't currently)? Or can they only raid downtime assets like ships and troops and titles?

Yes, explicitly. It's going to be fairly abstracted, and we expect that most players will be warded off mostly by mutually assured destruction as much as they are by comradeship. We're also not going to have NPCs spring out of nowhere, nick your best stuff, and disappear without giving you a chance to reclaim it.

Loot gained from PCs will be subject to a lot of abstraction, just to avoid having a constant track on every tool kit and sword in the arsenal.

Hazel wrote:Do these rule changes mean it is now more efficient to gain wealth through exploring than it is to gain wealth through violence? Or does it work out about the same?

It is the explicit intent to make Obtain actions better at getting things, and looting more random. This is in large part because MPs are easier to get, and can also be used effectively to destroy enemy assets. At the same time, killing people and taking their stuff is a long-held tradition, and one we don't intend to make unviable.

Hazel wrote:Can we do Raiding actions that use both the Void/Beyond the Line keywords *and* the Covert or Conspiracy keywords? Or are Covert and Conspiracy actions land-based only?

Yes, but bear in mind that you will be limited in what ships are suitable. Sending an escort to drop storm troopers for an orbital insertion raid is one thing (and a fine example of Covert), but unless you have a stealth ship of some kind you're unlikely to do the same for a Conspiracy without compelling narrative reasons and/or a lot of ground work.


I'm hoping that the above make sense, and thanks for putting them in public so we've got as many thoughts as possible in public. Part of the plan was to get some extra eyes on this, and make sure we hadn't missed anything (which we have, it seems, and which we'll try and fix).
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Hazel » Tue Mar 15, 2016 9:20 pm

Cheers for the speedy response!

As these rules have been designed with PC vs. PC attacks as a possibility from the start, there's not a mechanical way of determining if your opponent has send their fleet out exploring or left them defending their home world until time runs out and everyone has submitted.

Against NPCs, recon either in uptime or in the preceding downtime will give an idea of the enemy strength (we have no current plans to spring surprise Chaos Legion fleets without foreshadowing, though of course we reserve the right to do so). If you're looking at doing so, please contact the STs with specifics.

For Hidden, Agent etc, they will likely be harder to detect. We have not planned for this possibility (but should have). I'll add to the list of things to go over at the next ST call.


To clarify - for raiding or targeting the titles of NPCs I can do 'investigations' one DT and 'raiding' the second DT, and I can do this for PCs (with the limitation that I have no way of guaranteeing their defences will be the same the next cycle) but in both cases I can't do the investigation and the attack in the same cycle?

Loot gained from PCs will be subject to a lot of abstraction, just to avoid having a constant track on every tool kit and sword in the arsenal.


So, for example, if my dynasty was raided by another PC group then they will get random piles of loot, and we might get ship damage and reduced output from a title, rather than anything in my inventory (which isn't in the downtime system) being taken away?
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Re: Raiding, Guard and Vigil Downtime Keywords

Postby Darth Fanboy » Wed Mar 16, 2016 12:50 am

Hazel wrote:Cheers for the speedy response!

As these rules have been designed with PC vs. PC attacks as a possibility from the start, there's not a mechanical way of determining if your opponent has send their fleet out exploring or left them defending their home world until time runs out and everyone has submitted.

Against NPCs, recon either in uptime or in the preceding downtime will give an idea of the enemy strength (we have no current plans to spring surprise Chaos Legion fleets without foreshadowing, though of course we reserve the right to do so). If you're looking at doing so, please contact the STs with specifics.

For Hidden, Agent etc, they will likely be harder to detect. We have not planned for this possibility (but should have). I'll add to the list of things to go over at the next ST call.


To clarify - for raiding or targeting the titles of NPCs I can do 'investigations' one DT and 'raiding' the second DT, and I can do this for PCs (with the limitation that I have no way of guaranteeing their defences will be the same the next cycle) but in both cases I can't do the investigation and the attack in the same cycle?


Hmmm...
You could send a recon/spy/whatever Endeavour in on the same downtime, but the only way I can see this actually doing anything is by making it a go-condition for a second Endeavour.

By way of example, sending in the Storm Troopers to evaluate the strength of the enemy fortress and defences, and only launching the full attack if you are sure you can win. The problem is, the main force is either committed or sitting on its hands - you can't really get feedback in time to allocate resources with the feedback loop that the system has.

If you have a suggestion on how this might be done, I'm quite willing to look at it (I'm not going to guarantee we'll impliment it, but I'll give it a look over).

Loot gained from PCs will be subject to a lot of abstraction, just to avoid having a constant track on every tool kit and sword in the arsenal.


Hazel wrote:So, for example, if my dynasty was raided by another PC group then they will get random piles of loot, and we might get ship damage and reduced output from a title, rather than anything in my inventory (which isn't in the downtime system) being taken away?


Example: Dynasty A has got Sword of Killing Everything Except Squid during the last uptime. Dynasty B wants it, but didn't get it. Dynasty B goes in guns blazing during the following downtime.

Assuming that the difficulty contribution is sufficient to meet the value of the target, and further assuming that any defences are overcome, the Sword of Killing Everything Except Squid is rewarded as loot. The other portion of the loot would be from other items, likely trade goods and currency for the most part.

We're aware that getting your shiney shiney loot taken away is going to be remarkably annoying, particularly if it puts a prop you've sunk time and/or money into out of use, butat the same time it was felt that this is something the system should support.
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