Spartan Josh

Fleet Action 2.0 Design Notes

Fleet Action 2.0 Design Notes   28 members have voted

  1. 1. What do you want to know about first concerning the updated rules for Fleet Action?

    • Changes to the Damage Table
      18
    • Changes to the Disorder Mechanic
      1
    • Changes to MARs and Generators
      5
    • Changes to National ORBATs
      2

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24 posts in this topic

Hi there everyone!

The updated Rules for Fleet Action will be available very soon. They appear in the 2.5 Dystopian Wars Rulebook funded by the recent Kickstarter campaign but will also be available as a free download on the website!

In the run up to the download being posted I though I would go through some of the main changes here to give a sneak peek at what to expect. Please vote for what you want to know about first!

I will post a summary of the most popular option on Saturday. Information on other options will be rigorously suppressed and never see the light of day.

... Or posted at a later date I haven't made up my mind yet.B)

 

Josh

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I might be wrong, but it looks like the Damage Table wasn't exactly what players loved about Fleet Action :lol::lol::lol:

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3 hours ago, Venter said:

I might be wrong, but it looks like the Damage Table wasn't exactly what players loved about Fleet Action :lol::lol::lol:

Not necessarily. It might be everyone's favourite aspect and they are worried about the changes!! :-D

Venter and tansalus like this

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Hello Josh, the best change for the damage table would be if it sinks at the bottom of the ocean and new solution is found (no tables, please :-) )

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Eh, the damage table had some decent points, but clearly no one actually ran any statistics on it because the distribution was pretty funky.  The main reason I want to see the changes though is the fact that it has a major impact on every other aspect of the game and without knowing how it changes then changes to MARs and Generators don't mean as much, same with changes to ORBATs and disorder.  It doesn't matter what anything else does if almost everything sinks without too much trouble just from normal shooting before those other aspects really have a chance to play out.

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Ok so it is Saturday. Let me check the results.

...

Damage table it is! :-P

I have attached the new Damage table (sorry Sleeping Squirrel)! As you can see we have a far easier to remember distribution! The simplified table speeds things up while playing. You will notice that the damage increases towards the middle with the highest being 3 damage on the result of a 7. This makes damage dealing more predictable but still likely to be very bloody! 

If you double the DR of the target then rather than altering your roll on the table you roll again and apply both results, 3 times if you triple DR and so on. So any particularly successful attack still has the ability to take things out in one go.

There is a third column on the table for Boarding Damage. As you might expect this is where you roll when you successfully complete a boarding action! While you cannot get to the same maximum damage as a normal attack you also avoid the 'shallow ends' of the table giving you more consistent damage from your boarding teams wreaking havoc!

Keep voting for what you would like to hear about next!

Josh

Capture.PNG

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That sounds like a great improvement, @Spartan Josh! So boarding damage is rolled with a single D6 then? This is stuff that might tempt me to play "quick" rounds of fleet action in the future!

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That looks promising, but a little confusing. At first glance, I'd guess that during a boarding action, you roll 2d6 and on a roll of, say 9, you apply the Boarding Damage Result number 5 which would be explained in the text outside the table which is probably not what you are going for. In fact, I'm with varnos's interpretation regarding a single d6. Maybe the table could be made clearer in the next iteration.

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Varnos is right, So if I launch a boarding action and score more hits than the defender I roll 1D6 and apply that result. So if I roll a 5 that will be 2 damage.It is more clearly explained in the Boarding rules. :-)

 

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I must admit that layout of the damage table is a bit confusing. Any chance it can be changed or the book is already in print?

 

22 hours ago, Spartan Josh said:

I have attached the new Damage table (sorry Sleeping Squirrel)! ...

I can live with this version if it speeds up the game :-)

 

Are there going to be any major chances in ORBATS? (so I know if I can test the new damage table or should I rather wait for the official release)

Anyway, my first game with the new rules will be:

Kingdom of Britannia vs Chinesse Federation or Royal Austrailans vs Covenant of Antarctica.

What would YOU like? :-)

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Thanks Josh

I like the new table - it certainly makes results less random.

Are there any changes to Generators?  (I'm thinking especially of the Disruption Generator when used in conjunction with a node...)

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Morning everyone (well it is morning here)

Seems like a good day for some more information! MARs (and generators) today.

So some MARs have had small fixes, for example clarifications on Combat Deployment and Minefields and changes to Punishing to bring it into line with the new damage table (you can now add or remove 1 from your roll).

there are a few other notable changes.

Indirect fire is now allowed at Long and Effective range. Some of you may think that this invalidates the Russian National Special Rule, we will need to wait for the ORBAT update to see how that might work out... :ph34r:

Disruption fire: this MAR has been renamed Lethal this is to help differentiate from the Generator to avoid confusion.

Disruption Generator: everyone's favourite (right?) piece of tech now applies D3-1 disorder markers. The rules for Nodes are now in the main rules and allow the Generator to be used at Effective Range but NOT at Point Blank.

Mimic Generator: the Mimic Generator was playing out as a bit of an odd tool as of the 3 generators it commonly had available to mimic: the Cloud Generator does not work at Point Blank range, which is the range at which you acquire one... the Kinetic Generator speeds you up, to help get into effective firing range. Which is where you already are if you can mimic it! Leaving only one really desirable target for mimicry. Furthermore there was not an option to mimic shields, a big feature of the DW rules. So Mimic generators have been changed. If you have a Mimic Generator and there is an enemy Medium Model within PB range then you increase your Pas.D by 1 if their is an enemy Large Model within PB then you increase your Pas.D by 2. So your Mimic makes your ships even tougher when in the thick of things!

Those are the changes to the existing MARs. So just the new ones to cover! :)

One thing we wanted to bring into Fleet Action was a little more differentiation between fleets and weapons. With the large number of different Munitions in DW when we get to Fleet Action certain MARs (most prominently Disruption Fire (now called Lethal) and Punishing) were representing an awful lot of different effects and weapons. To reduce this dependence we have 2 new weapon MARs.

Flame: This applies (perhaps unsurprisingly) to Flame throwers!  So expect to see it a lot in the Polish, Blazing Sun and Chinese ORBATS (for now...). Flame Weapons do not roll on the Damage Table, instead they automatically apply 1 Damage and D3 Disorder.

Corrosive: Weapons with this MAR reduce the DR of their target by 1 when resolving attacks. this MAR is a lot of help when going after targets which rely more on their DR for defence than their red or blue defences.

The inclusion of these 2 MARs means more variety in weapons abilities and options in your fleets. You have different tools for different jobs, it is up to you to decide what is useful! Of course these MARs will also appear in combination with others as usual. (Guess which nation gets both of them together on their flame throwers:P)

Josh 

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Certainly looks good so far!

Are there any changes to movement (e.g. still only turning one way?) or measuring (e.g. still measure from the centre of the model?)

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Well as it is Sunday we can probably sneak an extra designer note in. :-)

I can reveal, that due to the wonders of Dystopian Age science, deployment of some kind of generator and the application of copious amounts of Sturginium (probably) military technology has taken another leap forward, as profound as the energy shield and matter transportation.

Ships can turn in 2 different directions in one activation! :o However if you want to start turning another direction you need to perform another 2" 'drift move' in a strait line.

The reasoning behind this is to avoid the exploitation of 'snaking' (wherein the alternate swinging of a models width allows a model to get a lot more forwards movement than their basic Mv stat allows). In the main DW rules this is addressed by a specific rules section on snaking. As that approach would be an over-complication for Fleet Action we have put in the 2" strait requirement instead. This will still allow small and fast things to get where they want to be without too much trouble but keeps bigger things (which being wider can 'snake' more) limited to fewer changes of direction (usually only one!).

Tune in on Tuesday for an update on ORBAT changes.

Josh

 

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5 hours ago, Nicholas said:

Any updates on the Orbat changes? :)

Yes, because it is Tuesday. :) Did I mention I am in Hawaii at the moment? B)

So the first thing to say about the ORBATs is that there will not be any 'major' changes. The main alterations have been to move them into line with the new rules, via tweaks to wording and MAR changes. There have been numerous balance adjustments of and AD or 2 here and points tweaks there but no individual model has undergone drastic changes at this time.

That said something that has been applied across the board are some minor reductions to the effectiveness of Small units at Effective Range and a slight increase to DR of many larges. This is to bring the size classes as a whole closer to where they should be in terms of toughness and damage output. Mediums are less affected as they continue to occupy the middle ground of lots of damage output potential but less toughness. the resilience of larges is further boosted by the changes to the damage table as a lucky roll can no longer do quite as much damage!

There have been some changes to National Special Rules, there are 3 in particular I want to discuss:

Kingdom of Britannia: Due  to overwhelming demand, the KOB ability is largely unchanged :D. The difference is that instead of D3-1 you will now always repair 1 or 2 HP if you roll a 6 for your squadron. Before the pitchforks are sharpened this is a very deliberate decision as the effectiveness of the rule is impacted heavily by other changes in the game. the new Damage Table means that your models (especially large ones) will end up taking less damage at once. In V1 the ability to repair 1 or 2 (or 0!) HP was a little underwhelming when a standard damage table roll could easily deal 4 or 5 damage to your battleship, going up to 6 or more with Punishing  it now maxes out at 3 per roll. As you will take less damage fixing it becomes a bigger bonus! We have been testing this one extensively and think that the Brits now play as the bruisers that just won't go down as had been intended!

EotBS: The EotBS Special rule... is largely unchanged. While another case of a special rule that appears a little less 'special' it has been adjusted to incorporate the changes to turning discussed above. As well as being able to turn during their Drift move EotBS models only need to move 1" strait to change the direction of their turn rather than 2" like everyone else. This make the EotBS the most manoeuvrable faction around, a powerful ability if used well.

Russian Coalition: So the astute of you will have noticed that Indirect Fire is now allowed at EF in all cases. So the Russians needed a new Special Rule! their new rule is.... Ablative Armour (what else! :P)! This special rule means that all Medium and Large Russian models increase their DR by 1 while they have more than half of their starting HP. Now in the previous Russian Stats we had taken account of the Ablative Armour MAR in the same way as many other defensive MARs by increasing the Pas.D values of the relevant ships. By having this new rule in place you will notice that the Russians now have among the lowest Pas.D in the game, this is because they rely on their armour for protection above anything else! However due to the changes to the Mimic Generator (see above) many Russian squadrons will gain a Pas.D boost when they get in close! In terms of gameplay the Russians play a lot closer to their fluff. The Ablative Armour will hopefully get them into PB where the Mimic Generators can take over providing defence. If the enemy is not able to strip the Ablative Armour before you get into mimic generator range then you will be in trouble!

The ORBATs include all models up to the Corsican Incident box. There will be stats available for the National Expansion Box models from the Kick Starter once they have shipped.

Tune in next time for the last main topic of updates, disorder!

Josh 

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> Due  to overwhelming demand, the KOB ability is largely unchanged.

*starts to raises pitchfork*

> *Well thought out reasoning process*

Huh, that actually sounds good and reasonable. *raises glass wine instead*

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With the change to the damage table I suppose models will not be sinking so fast. In regular DW the critical table is changing as well with one of common outcome leading to 3HP damage which will lead to quicker games. Where do you guys see the strength of the Fleet Action in future as right now it seems that it will not be the speed of the game?

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On ‎22‎/‎04‎/‎2017 at 11:58 AM, sleeping_squirrel said:

With the change to the damage table I suppose models will not be sinking so fast. In regular DW the critical table is changing as well with one of common outcome leading to 3HP damage which will lead to quicker games. Where do you guys see the strength of the Fleet Action in future as right now it seems that it will not be the speed of the game?

 

I am going to have to say... that it is in the speed of the game. :-P

Now that I am done being deliberately obtuse, I will explain! While it is true that the damage allocation side of things will be slowing down FA and speeding up DW there are still a number of areas where FA ticks along a lot faster:

  • 'thinking time': with the combining mechanic and less MARs/special rules activations in Fleet Action still take a lot less time than in DW. While of course thinking time in DW decreases with familiarity it remains a factor, especially with newer players (more on this later).
  • Damage dealing: While the table now deals a lot less damage than before you will still find that things die faster in FA than DW. though the FA Damage Table deals similar amounts of Damage to the Crit table you will find that you roll on it more often as you need less successes to get a roll on the FA table and the DW Crit table on an equivalent model, and proportionally less again to get the second roll and so on. Also the (on average) higher AD pools squadrons throw out in FA compounds this.
  • Less to do: A lot things in DW are massively simplified/removed entirely in FA. So for example SAWs, Commodore abilities TACs etc. While I struggle to phrase this without sounding like a moron, if you don't have to do as many things there are less things for you to do! And things take time! :-)

I hope that answers the question!

While we are on the subject, I think it might be of interest for me to comment on some of our 'objectives' with the Fleet Action changes in regards to the intention behind the game (well it is interesting to me anyway!) specifically in regards to the damage changes. Fleet Action was put together due to a strong demand for a rules-set that could offer 3 things.

  1. A faster gameplay experience, for occasions where you might struggle to fit a full DW game in/fancy something 'lighter' etc.
  2. A System where you can play larger games with lots of models without it taking too long.
  3. a system that can be used as an introduction to DW.

the original rules fulfilled these goals pretty well (perhaps a little too well sometimes with the relative amount of violence!) though feedback received identified that we had not quite hit the nail on the head with regards to point 3 in as far as Fleet Action could feel a bit too different from DW to encourage the smooth transition from one to another. So the new damage table looking more like the DW crit table (especially for the 7 result) is to strengthen the 'common design language' shared by the 2 games. Furthermore some of the changes to MARs noted earlier (especially the new weapon ones) help to add some more character to the FA ORBATs to help fleets "feel" more like they do in DW. All in all then these changes are meant to make Fleet Action feel like it has a bit more in common with DW while keeping the faster simpler gameplay engine.

I will now stop waffling!

Josh   

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