Teleportation

The sci-fi Universal Skirmish System

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Pneumonica
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Teleportation

Postby Pneumonica » Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:01 am

So, here's a question. Visible in many areas of science fiction, and yet not present in Defiance outside of the realm of magic (literally), is the possibility of teleporting troops (either teleporting from off-board or hopping about on the board). Has anybody worked on rules for this? I could conceive of it as an infantry (or vehicle) CDW, as an Augmentation, or just as a thing you can put on your troops for a certain PV.

I kind of want to throw down a Pfhor army, and the ability to teleport troops into (and possibly out of) the thick of things is part of their schtick. However, by the same token, I don't want to make it unimaginably awesome to the point of gamebreaking, so if anybody's put work towards this already I'd be heartily pleased to see ideas.
Can you conceive the birth of a world, or the creation of everything? That which gives us the potential to most be like God is the power of creation.
-Durandal, from Marathon

Sirrob01
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Re: Teleportation

Postby Sirrob01 » Sun Apr 24, 2011 12:42 am

Nothing directly myself.

I have no direct knowledge on the Pfhor race other than the 10secs of wiki reading I just did, anyways some of the cuff thoughts :) (My assumptions are it's unlimited use and you can within reason pin point the location you wish to appear)

You could make it an Infantry unit Augmentation instead of CDW, I'm unsure if the teleportation ability is a built in species trait or technology and if all units/frames have it available. Aug's can be made available or not available for a frame simply by listing or not listing them under that frames description, Conversely CDW's tend to be available to every frame.

If you went with a straight I can teleport anywhere with pinpoint accuracy and fire afterwards I'd make it cost a lot in pv to balance you might be looking at as much as 40-100pv per figure fielded not per unit. To give you a frame of reference Pv on Infantry frames increases by about 25% per movement point increase if AR stays the same.

To help lower the effectiveness and hence lower pv cost per figure, although you'll probably need to pick what fits the spirit of the PfHor army/race;
~ I'd look at adding some limitations 1-2 uses only
~ limited range eg max tele of 10-15inch's
~ No firing after a tele
~ Making it less pinpint accurate, ie you could use the stock IF rule + smokingwreckages altered IF fire scatter rule
~ Make all figures (not elite) jump and appear at the same time, so not 1 figure teleports and lands and opponent then decides to cover fire or not (again assumed not elite). Instead all figures jump at the same time and appear at the same time hence your opponent can cover against all. This makes them very vulnerable to cover fire

I can see teleportation being powerful but if you balance it out with some disadvantages + appropriate pv costs it should not be to unbalancing. You'll probably need to do some play testing to get the pv value right. Your going to need to play a lot of games as defiance can throw you a lot of curved balls resulting in unexpected whole of unit death which is not indicative of the the frames effectiveness/abilities over multiple games.

Anyways others with more experience with the rules than me check in semi-regularly so hopefully they'll chip in some thoughts :)

Good Luck

Pneumonica
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Re: Teleportation

Postby Pneumonica » Mon Apr 25, 2011 1:41 am

I'm doing other projects, so more than one mechanism might be in place (teleportation can and should be handled in more than one way - I'm not seeking to replace Supernatural Presence, for instance). To make it clear about the teleportation:

The Phfor teleport troops into and out of locations. The teleportation is handled from central locations. It's "reasonably pinpoint" - that is to say, limited information leads to limited accuracy, as might interference (there are several times in the game that Durandal can't fold you into where you need to go, so you have to schlep yourself there). The Phfor are unusual in that they don't need transit pads to teleport (those would be handled as terrain). Thus, I'm thinking of making teleportation a Tactical Advantage for them. On the other hand, it would be a really beefy Tactical Advantage, since their VP Advantage would be Capture (they don't need to haul someone off the map). This would probably include a beefier version of Reserves, allowing them to teleport reserves into the field deeper than simply a limited deployment area. (Yes, I'm expecting this to be expensive.)

Augmentations are sensible methods of handling it, but the individual unit does not have the ability to teleport. It's handled from a remote location. While this might reflect registry and infrastructure, I'm less certain of using that as the solution.

CDWs might also be useful for this purpose, as a single-use "escape" function. This doesn't reflect the plenary use of remote teleportation by the Phfor, though.

On analysis, I am liking the Tactical Advantage system, but I'm still hobbled as to how it would be handled.
Can you conceive the birth of a world, or the creation of everything? That which gives us the potential to most be like God is the power of creation.
-Durandal, from Marathon

Sirrob01
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Re: Teleportation

Postby Sirrob01 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:24 pm

Have a look at Air strikes as well, as it's an off board event these might fit as a base model guide slightly better re points costs etc.

Good idea on the TA, although you'll need to hammer yourself with the costs, be careful using reserves as a basis. Admittedly I've only seen it used once but the rule in it's current form (see discussions in other thread). Make it highly effective for a cost of 1 TR. If I was building a rule exploiting army Reserves would be one of my top picks for TA at this point.

To do it as a TA you could base it on reserves but remove the requirement for 12" in from the sides. Depending on how often the Pfhor fold space you could make it 1 use only for a cost 2-3 TR or you could increase the TR costs upwards by the base multiple for each usage avaliable. Depending on the limitations you built into the TA would alter the TR costs for example force the unit "teleported" to be considered on maneuver orders of sprint/jump/charge.

Pneumonica
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Re: Teleportation

Postby Pneumonica » Tue Apr 26, 2011 11:03 pm

I wouldn't base it on Reserves so much as consider it an inclusion. Teleportation is a fairly powerful gift. It'd probably come in two versions - one (for fewer points) allowing for Reserve inserts and for escapes from the map without going "off the map", and one allowing for teleporations from one part of the map to the other (more points). I'd use Supernatural Presence as a starting point, although obviously that's applied on a different point scale. However, the rules seem to match up.

As for orders, I'd probably have a special "apport" order. Thus, a troop has to prepare for teleportation (and if they fail to teleport, they sit there looking like jerks for a round). Forces that gain VPs from Capture would gain a serious advantage from this, so I need to make sure that the TA is appropriately costed and limited. It would be expensive.
Can you conceive the birth of a world, or the creation of everything? That which gives us the potential to most be like God is the power of creation.
-Durandal, from Marathon

smokingwreckage
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Re: Teleportation

Postby smokingwreckage » Thu May 05, 2011 11:15 am

If I can suggest something, it would be that Defiance ONLY considers the skirmish itself when assessing morale and so on.

While teleporting out is a strategic advantage, it still leaves the other guy at an advantage for a few minutes or hours at the original skirmish site.

Vobians who leave the table aren't dead, they're not even cowards. They've just withdrawn because it seemed prudent.

Defiance abstracts broken troops out of the fight if they don't rally. Just set up individual and unit morale to provide the appropriate actions for troopers who are requesting a teleported evac.

SO, teleported escapes would be the racial / cultural / species Unit Morale Failure. On a morale fail the unit would do whatever they need to to prep for teleport-out. If they don't rally in the next resolution they have teleported out. So, if prep allows them to take cover, use Regroup, if it requires them to stand still use Communications Breakdown. If individuals are likely to take cover when threatened, use Cower, if they are confident of getting teleported out by their superiors then use Cool Head.

This is part of your answer. It works fine for teleporting troops out if the going gets tough, but if you want to be able to teleport them back in at will, I'd say... well, forget it, or just use it for scenarios and don't try to directly cost it. Facing an army where troops could teleport out and then back in I'd want 2-1 odds in my favour.

Now, using teleportation as your means of moving instead of walk, sprint, jump or fly, might be reasonably reflected by Phase Walking which is rumoured to have been costed but hasn't been published. I can't help with that! Getting to teleport a single squad into position per game might be a more expensive and versatile version of Reserves, ie., it's a Strategic Advantage. Using teleport to set-up attacks or defence is a strategic level ability and could be reflected by scenario choice (eg., it's Advance to Contact but we're teleporting troops to the front line).
-Sam


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