2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Ship designs for the Nova Edition
Blacklancer99
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2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:11 am

So after a couple of years of tinkering and reworking the designs when I could find the time I finally have my Nova Edition 2300AD ships done. I no longer have the time in my life to put them all together "pretty" with lots of fluff and flair, but I wanted to get them posted up at least.

A couple of things about these designs...

For those familiar with the 2300AD setting you will see many ships that appeared both in canon materials and as man-made designs. I have tried to keep all of the designs true to the spirit of the setting, but these are not straight up "conversions" of any of the ships. In fact, I found that the inconsistent nature of the original design process and the differing philosophies of many fan -made ships made it impossible to establish a coherent conversion process. As a result I went back and used a modified version of Starcruiser 2300AD's Naval Architects manual to redesign every single ship. In this way I was able to produce designs that were entirely consistent, and generate the statistics that I used to build the SNE versions.

After building and testing a number of these new conversions I found that play test games were very "vanilla". So, I started to rework some if the core elements of 2300AD to add more diversity to the SNE versions. There are several examples of these changes that those familiar with 2300AD will notice.

First off, I had originally designed every fighter as a standard ship and then placed them into groups of 4 to essentially make a flotilla. Play test games showed that these were ok, but decidedly un-fighterlike. After redoing them as SNE fighter flights the designs lost some power, but added a little more fun. One thing this caused was to have to "fudge" things a little to be able to include fighters not based on ships. For planetary interceptors/fighters I just include a 3-hull ship with no other features just so I can put the fighters on the board, but we never actually include the "ship" in the setup.

The next change that I made was to submunition weapons. As built in 2300AD these are expendable direct fire weapons, that (because of their nuclear detonation nature) affect line of sight. I decided that to add flavor to the games I would change submunition weapons into Flares and Mines. I looked at the design intent of the submunition launcher, and if it was a defensive type system primarily for protecting a vessel against attacks I converted it into Flares. Conversely, if the submunition dispenser was a primarily offensive system, I converted it to Mines. Playing around with these I found that they added a lot of complexity to the play test battles without "breaking" the overall feel.

In 2300AD recon drones can play a big role allowing a vessel access to targeting and search information without exposing itself by running its own active sensor systems. I played around with a couple of things but eventually settled on converting the drones to Probes with the rule alterations that I have posted elsewhere.

In 2300AD electronic warfare plays a very important, if sometimes vague, role. To try and get this flavor I have used Active/Passive sensor optional rules and I have also included the Scout special ability on several ships, though nothing exactly as it appears in 2300AD. I have intentionally not used the Escort ability so these special scout vessels are used in the less direct role of fleet electronic warfare support (though if I ever have the time to try it I have a plan for using their ability in a campaign setting).

I decided to limit the numbers of missiles that I ship could fire in a single attack to just one salvo, with its BAS determined by the number of remote communicators that the ship had. With this I also put in a house rule that one ship can only fire 1 missile salvo per turn. This simple change kept missiles from being overly powerful compared to how they work in 2300AD. Because of this I also redid fighting missiles as weak, but potentially numerous and therefore useful fighters WITHOUT limiting how many a ship can have on the board at once. Even though this makes them quite different than the 2300AD versions, it does play ok, and helps justify the "pointing" of ships using them. In play test these tweaks made for some interesting choices for players beyond range, aim and fire.

I included Marines, but limited their number to the lift capabilities of a ship's small craft, with additional troops being lumped together as Transport. Likewise, I only included armed landers as SNE Shuttles, though a vessel may have numerous small craft in 2300AD.

The last thing I will mention is that some slight "tweaks" were necessary in a few designs to make them SNE Space Unit compliant. However, there are some units that are over the SUs by hull size. In every instance that I did this, it is to accommodate auxiliary services and has no bearing on the combat capabilities of a ship. The majority of the "oversized" ships are civvies and I would rather have a smaller Hull with "oversized" cargo. I didn't want civvies to become damage sponges... Also, players have a tendency to look at huge Hull civilian ships and say, "hey, let's fill all that cargo space with weapons." In the real world auxiliary warships are never INTENDED to fight purpose built combat vessels (though they sometimes had to). In the game ships like that quickly get outlandish. By keeping Hull down and making all civilian construction Fragile Systems I tried to keep this tendency under control.
Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are more pliable.
Mark Twain.

Blacklancer99
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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:13 am

French Battle Fleet
The primary mission of the French fleet is the defense of its core system assets. The secondary mission is the protection of its many colonies. Despite its size, having so much shipping wrapped up in these missions leaves few combat vessels available for commerce protection. The majority of merchant escort is handled by a number of auxiliary cruisers converted from commercial hulls while true warship types are employed elsewhere.

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Blacklancer99
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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:14 am

British Battle Fleet
The primary mission of the British fleet is protection of its colonies, relying on their alliance with the French to cover their core system assets. As such, most of British warships are scattered at various locations with a relatively small "reserve fleet" at Sol. The secondary mission of the British fleet is merchant protection and many light vessel types are deployed throughout human space for this purpose.
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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:15 am

American Battle Fleet
The primary mission of the American fleet is protection of its vast merchant fleet. Large numbers of escort types are deployed throughout human space to accomplish this. The secondary mission is commerce warfare, and a small, scattered force of hunter-killer type ships are tasked with crippling an adversary’s ability to move freely. The last component of the American fleet is colonial defense, composed primarily of older or smaller vessels with largely reserve crews

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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:16 am

German Battle Fleet
The primary mission of the German fleet is maintaining a "fleet in being" sufficiently strong enough to oppose France if needs be. Strong squadrons are never broken up to cover larger regions, but held in strategic "choke points". The secondary role of colonial defense is the province of large numbers of planet-based fighters and a handful of patrol craft. German naval assets are totally inadequate to provide merchant protection, but many commercial vessels carry some defensive weapons and a few auxiliary cruisers are available for some duties.
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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:16 am

Manchurian Battle Fleet
The Manchurian fleet is built around the concept of commerce warfare. Most offensive units are intended to avoid contact with enemy fleet elements while striking at vulnerable merchant and auxiliary shipping. In addition, Manchuria maintains a small but potent fleet of main combatants mostly in defense if their core holdings. Colonial defense is limited at best with a handful of patrol craft supported by planet- based fighters.

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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:17 am

Argentine Battle Fleet
Argentine naval doctrine is divided between forces capable of conducting long range patrol and strike missions, and maintaining a core fleet strong enough to oppose Brazilian forces if necessary. The bulk of argentine ships are "cruising" type ships employed along the "Latin Finger" of human exploration. Assets in the core systems are considerably more modern but far less numerous. Argentina relies on its close alliance with Mexico to bolster its combat fleet in the event of open hostilities. Because it is stretched so thin, and has a meagre merchant fleet anyway, Argentina has little or no commerce protection capability.

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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:18 am

Japanese Fleet
The Japanese is a mix of modern, heavy combat units and mostly older escort type vessels. Through its close ties with France, Japan has in the past been able to secure licensing agreements to build their own versions of French warships. More recently, the Japanese have been expanding their fleet, mostly through domestically designed craft. With a small merchant fleet and colonies within areas they can count on French protection, the Japanese have localized their fleet into a few, strong squadrons.

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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:18 am

Brazilian Fleet
The Brazilian fleet has some very difficult tasks that have very different requirements. First, the Brazilians must maintain a strong "fleet in being" to oppose Argentina and their Mexican allies in the core systems. Beyond this, Brazil must also be able to support its colonies at a great distance from earth. The greatest number of Brazilian ships can be found at the core, to be a strong presence should hostilities begin. However, most of Brazil's most capable and powerful vessels are typically on long patrols to their colonies or into areas where they can strike at Argentina's holdings if necessary.
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Re: 2300AD/Starcruiser 2300AD Fleets for Nova

Postby Blacklancer99 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 1:19 am

Russian Fleet
The Russians have no extra-solar colonies as of yet, however, they have been ramping up for a colonial effort somewhere along the French arm. Because of this, their meagre space forces have seen a recent surge. To back up the older, second hand French frigates and handful of auxiliary cruisers, the Russians have ordered new construction frigates from France and have begun deployment of their own home-grown frigate and destroyer types. While these vessels are at least a generation behind the current cutting edge, they represent a huge leap forward in capability for Russia.
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