Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Post and discuss your custom / house rules for the MFZ: Rapid Attack.
Forum rules
This is a game - This is fun - All of your posts should reflect this.

Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby CmdrRook » Mon Feb 02, 2015 8:53 am

I've occasionally chimed in to discussions about non-frame combat units to share my philosophies and recommendations on how to treat the subject. I think it's high time to lay all the cards out on the table, as it were, and consolidate those views into a single post for your collective consideration. Despite these being my opinions, I have no delusions about what is the "right way to play" in regards to something as arbitrary as house-rules, but I hope they make sense, fall in line with the source material, and are appealing to those reading. Without further ado...

Generic properties of non-Frame Combat Units: To paraphrase the MF0 rule-book; "Frames are the best at what they do, and that's everything. Racing. Combat. Labor. Nothing can do it safer, faster, or more effectively than a Frame." Without altering the game's mechanics to specifically hutch over vehicles, the easiest and most sensible way to limit their effectiveness is to take away their utility.
Non-Frame units do not receive d6W d6W in their Dice Pool.
This hampers their reliable damage output, their flexibility in combat, lowers their hit-points, and even makes sense, fluff wise. If a Jeep loses its wheels (d6G), it has no limbs to drag itself along. If a tank's armor is compromised (d6B), it can not dodge. Hopefully, you get the idea. It should be noted that there is no way to install white dice as a system, nor should there be, in this context. This rule also has no effect on PPA, number of frames, or number of systems in an army. We're not quite done yet, though. At first this may seem like a low blow, but trust me on this one, I'm hoping to make it up to you.
Non-Frame units do not receive bonus d8G for carrying no ranged weaponry.
Alright, everyone survive that huge-ass nerf? Good. Since we've done our jobs and made vehicles an inferior choice to Frames, let's go ahead and try to ease the sting with a bit of unique functionality with specific rules tweaks.

Infantry Units: Powered Armor; Micro-Frames; Drone Troopers; Standard Infantry; Grey-Goo; a squadron of highly-trained and heavily-armed Chimpanzees
I love the idea of power-armored troopers or dispersed groups of standard infantry working together to topple a big scary combat machine like a Frame. The concept of anti-tank infantry in historical context, or the infantry and BA squads in Battletech always appealed to me. I am perfectly satisfied with using unmodified frame-combat rules (albeit I prefer to represent them in a dispersed-systems format), so we're going to give them a miss.
Infantry units are not subject to the above rules because Humanity itself was the original Mobile Frame.
If you're worried about the amount of hit-points a human(or non-human) has compared to a frame, remember that it's rarely a single person who is capable of crippling a mighty war-machine. Teamwork, and thus dispersed casualty, more than justifies their application here. If you're still not convinced, just pop off one of their white dice. Simple. MOVING ON!

Ground Vehicles: Tracked; Wheeled; Hover; Watercraft; Trains; Transformed Frames; Skimmers; Horse-drawn Battle Chariots driven by Gladiator Gorillas
Ground Vehicles do not ignore obstacles for movement purposes due to having movement systems.
Ground Vehicles have the ability to perform a Ramming Special Attack utilizing their d6G in lieu of any Red System.

To use a Ram Attack, declare the intent to do so- and the attack's target- during the Start-Of-Activation phase, as if it were a weapon range specifically available to Ground Vehicles. A vehicle must have the option to move in order to Ram, but is not compelled to do so. When a Ram is executed, the d6G are only rolled once, with the result being used for both movement and attack. The vehicle's d6G becomes a replacement for any Red Dice that would be rolled, in addition to allowing the vehicle to move that many Segments of the Ruler. As long as the Vehicle ends its movement within 1 Segment of its target, the attack is successful. Compare (Attacker's d6G + Defender's d6Y - Defender's d6B) and roll Damage.
Image
You'd be right to think this is a risky endeavor. It's a last-resort attack best reserved for when your options are limited and a daring play could make-or-break you. Also, the ability to crash through a wall, Kool-Aid-Man-style, is always a blast.

Flyers: Jets, Aerospace, Prop-Planes, Helicopters, VTOLs, Transformed Frames, Gliders, Rocketeers, UAVs, The Wicked Witch of the West's Flying Monkeys
All Flyers' movement systems are d8G.
Flyers ignore obstacles for movement purposes.
If ever a Flyer has no movement system, it is destroyed.
Flyers may never benefit from Cover.
Flyers never have the option to Ram.
Every turn, a Flyer's movement path both exits and re-enters the battlefield from any edge.

"Wait, what was that last part?" Don't worry. It sounds more complicated than it is, and I think you'll like the rule once you feel it out. A Flyer's movement is measured and treated the same way as anything else with a d8G. It ignores obstacles for movement, and can move up to 8 ruler Segments in any direction. When movement ends, even if your unit chose not to use its movement dice and stayed in place, you are treating the model as if it had moved off the playing field and returned all in the same turn.
Image
This allows a Flyer to capture Stations quickly- like a melee-specialist Frame- while making it incapable of HOLDING a Station against a Contesting unit on its own. If you want to use aircraft as close air support, I can get behind that. But remember that it's close air SUPPORT; you need boots on the ground to maintain a hold on objectives. If you really want your chopper to be able to idle in place (tactical suicide) on an objective and camp it like a normal unit, make it a ground vehicle! Then at least you'll have the option to take cover, dice your foes up with your rotor blades, and not explode gloriously if you crash!

Joviality aside, my rules for Flyers come with a pretty serious warning. Flyers enable a tactic known as "Kiting". Kiting- if you're unfamiliar with the term- means that through no fault of your own, you may suffer attacks from an enemy with no chance to over-take them and return fire. You might come up against a Direct Fire gunboat with a sixteen-segment threat-range. You may find yourself completely incapable of getting inside an Artillery Flyer's minimum. It just pulls you along behind it, controlling the pace of the fight, like a Kite. The only reasons I am releasing rules that enable such a disruptive tactic are that a Flyer sacrifices a LOT of functionality to be able to do so, it won't be spending much time ON objectives, and if you can flank it, it's toast. Ultimately, if the dice won't cooperate, no tactic is foolproof. I trust you all as adult(?) gamers to keep the TACT in Tactics.


That's all I've got for fun rules for Non-Frames. I'd love to hear what you think, if you've used them, and how it all turned out. Suggestions, discussion, and criticism are always welcome, as long as it's all civil. (It appears that the embedded pictures have snipped a marginal segment off of the Flyer Movement figures, but no actual harm done. It still accurately depicts the movement, just barely cutting off the board edge the Flyer exits and enters from.)

[Edited to clarify the difference between ground movement and aerial movement.]
User avatar
CmdrRook
Been Around The Block
 
Posts: 478
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Western MA, USA

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby Sovietshadow » Mon Feb 02, 2015 2:36 pm

I think you just about hit the nail on its head. And do i detect a hint of my Cargen campaign for ramming? O.o :D i do like your system better though.
You laugh at fate, and fate will laugh right back at you.
User avatar
Sovietshadow
Talkative
 
Posts: 168
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 12:18 am
Location: Under a mountain of lego- AVALANCHE!!!

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby VitorFaria » Mon Feb 02, 2015 3:12 pm

I'm not sure if I like this, I prefer the "If it rolls dice, it's a frame" philosophy. Things are just simpler that way and stop you from having to disapoint your newbie friend that half read the rules and brought only a bunch of lego tanks.

Still, You gave some really clever reasoning behind your rules. Maybe in the future I will test them.
"For small creatures such as we the vastness is bearable only through love." Carl Sagan
User avatar
VitorFaria
Mod Team
 
Posts: 1691
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2015 10:21 am
Location: Belo Horizonte, Brazil

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby CmdrRook » Mon Feb 02, 2015 6:01 pm

Sovietshadow wrote:I think you just about hit the nail on its head. And do i detect a hint of my Cargen campaign for ramming? O.o :D i do like your system better though.

My rules are original, but may have a lot of parallels. I'd say I took inspiration from ramming in Intercept Orbit if anywhere at all, and even then it's just a taste. There's only so many different directions you can take a single system, though I'm grateful we haven't exhausted them all yet. I appreciate the kind words, and will do what I can to add as much constructive input to your system, as well.

VitorFaria wrote:I'm not sure if I like this, I prefer the "If it rolls dice, it's a frame" philosophy. Things are just simpler that way and stop you from having to disapoint your newbie friend that half read the rules and brought only a bunch of lego tanks.

Still, You gave some really clever reasoning behind your rules. Maybe in the future I will test them.

By all means, this is simply a system to add a bit of depth to experienced and potentially bored players, NOT a set of rules that you want to spring on a new-comer, or really anyone who didn't agree upon it before-hand. It may suit campaign play better than competitive, as SovietShadow mentioned. I also support anyone using anything they can get their hands on, rolling all the dice they can and want to, and calling it all frames. Anything that gets more folks excited and invested. A game I demoed not too long ago featured GunPla and an off-the-cuff improvised movement system, and it was great!

I would be flattered if you tested my rules, and honored if you came back with a battle-report about it.
User avatar
CmdrRook
Been Around The Block
 
Posts: 478
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Western MA, USA

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby Kayje » Fri Feb 17, 2017 7:19 pm

Damn, these are the rules I was looking for and which were, in my opinion (!), missing in the core rules! :P
Everything is integrated, from regular soldiers, over vehicles and fighterjets! :P :P :P
Thanks for the hard work and studie! Thumps up!!!
Kayje
Newcomer
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:15 pm

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby CmdrRook » Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:42 am

Well, I'm certainly glad they've piqued your interest, and I hope they satisfy the experience you're looking for. Let me know if anything remains unclear, or simply doesn't hold up under play testing. The wording and images are probably due for a revision as they were the product of a particularly sleepless night.

Good luck!
User avatar
CmdrRook
Been Around The Block
 
Posts: 478
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Western MA, USA

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby xTornOxysx » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:01 am

My only question now is how do you determine it's PPA? How does it stack up next to a Frame?

Otherwise these really make a lot of sense.

I was thinking most non-frames should only have two systems. If you think about it, that's like real life. A tank IS just tracks and a turret. You sometimes have infantry weapons bolted on, but what is that to a Frame or any mech? Helicopters and Jets and things can have pretty much any mix of short and long they like, but they normally specialize, right? Unless maybe a split system could work.
Infantry is much the same. Normally only a couple guys in the squad have the special equipment, the rest have infantry rifles and again, a frame cares nothing for those. So maybe one guy carries a laser designator (spotting) and another a mortar (I'm thinking direct fire), or they have some satchel charges (counting as melee). No movement systems, because then they'd be in an apc or something and we'd see that reflected on the board in a little model. (I'm thinking they can only move one space in any direction ever, but I'm kicking around giving them a free blue die because humans can fit into cover a lot easier than a frame, and now we don't need three PLATE high cover all over the place! XD)
I do also disagree about the white dice for Infantry, but if it makes you happy lol please do it :)
All this being said I don't think I'll ever field something other than a Frame or maybe a transformed Frame. I just don't think anything else will ever stack up, mostly because that in the official rules lol
xTornOxysx
Chatty
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:39 am

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby CmdrRook » Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:27 pm

Great questions and suggestions, TornOxyx. I think I can answer most of these.

PPA would follow the same rules as they normally do. Each non frame Asset would mount up to four Systems, and be calculated as usual.

Next to frames, the vehicles outlined here are at a severe disadvantage, hands down. They have some quirks too make them appealing, but next to no strategy could make them as capable as a frame, as was my intention. No white dice aside, ground vehicles can't move through rubble and flyers literally fall out of the sky of they lose their movement. They are not competitively advisable, just flavorful and entertaining.

Not sure I agree with the tank analogy, as most mbts in current use make use of advanced armoring technology and state of the art sensor, guidance, and communication equipment in addition to their weaponry and motive systems. Self propelled guns mount artillery, missile tanks exist, and infantry fighting vehicles mount low caliber weapons by definition. Armored wreckers and excavators fit melee in my book.

Jets and helos can mount just about anything, and to illustrate, I'll stat out an A-10 Warthog.
d8G flyer movement system (Jets)
d6B armored fuselage
d6Rd d6Rd GAU-18
d8Rd Laser Guided bombs

It's a flying tank, and a Hind D helicopter would probably stat out identically.

Dispersed casualty was how I explained how many "health points" am infantry squad could have, which is also the explanation given in intercept orbit, though that system offered a weapon range that specifically effected frame squads more harshly. In a future where frames are the engines of industry and battle, your anti frame infantry would be equipped to compete, it would simply depend on how you load them out. If the utility of white dice seems too good, just think of the ways you'd try to take out a giant mech if you didn't have anything resembling a weapon. I'd hide until one walked by, run out, and shove a big rock into it's ankle actuator, and let the weight so all the work. d6W as d6Rh , right there.
User avatar
CmdrRook
Been Around The Block
 
Posts: 478
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 3:15 pm
Location: Western MA, USA

Re: Optional Rules and Philosophies for Combat Vehicles

Postby xTornOxysx » Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:42 pm

I really have thought a lot about this, and I think now I agree. I think you've thought this through quite well. I'd also like to say, I love the flier movement rules.
xTornOxysx
Chatty
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:39 am


Return to Fan Created Rules

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron