Appendix 2 - Additional Technology Definitions

Antifighter Missiles : Anti-fighter missiles are built with homing systems that strongly prefer fighter-sized targets. An anti-fighter missile can and must carry a seek tag to select hull 1-3 targets. Anti-fighter missiles are otherwise priced and built as any other missile. Flak capability would be handy but is not required or necessarily available at the same time; larger warhead values without flak capability are generally wasted but not prohibited.

 

Assault shuttles: This system is also known as ramships. An assault shuttle is essentially an advanced breaching pod, with improved maneuverability, better internal weapon facilities, short-range scanners to assist the would-be boarding to find a good spot to penetrate and some idea of the layout of the immediate target area, and more powerful explosive bolts for penetration. Overall, it’s much more like a sleek, mean military marine machine and less like a limpet mine with angry armed people trapped inside until it goes off. Assault shuttles are otherwise treated just like breaching pods, with the following exceptions. First, the AR of troops going in by assault shuttle is multiplied by 2. Second, the range of assault shuttle based boarding attacks in TCOM is five hexes rather than 1. Breaching pods are a technical prerequisite of assault shuttles.

 

Automated Repair Drones: This is a drone fitted with repair bays; enough of them may be able to act as a repair ship for the carrying unit or others if the number of repair bays total equal or exceed the hull size of craft to be repaired.

 

Autonomous Combat Vehicles: ACVs were designed as replacements for fighters by the Saurians who, though capable of enduring enormous gravitational punishment, are not comfortable with single-pilot vessels. An ACV is treated as any other fighter but does not have a pilot aboard. Cost is as per a normal fighter. Surviving ACVs may be recovered and reused following combat just like fighters.

 

Barrage Barges: Also known as Remotely Operated Mass Delivery System, Suicide (ROMDSS), the barrage barge carries a very large number of standard missile weapons, launching them together in one massive volley. Barrage barges must be towed into position by another ship and are built as STL ships, with the usual 25% discount and 25% increase in available equipment spaces. The barge takes a VOLATILE tag for being essentially nothing but missile launchers and an AMMO 1 tag. Barges that survive combat may be recovered and reused.

 

Battlecomputers: A Battlecomputer is a sophisticated fire control system that allows better targeting of enemy ships. Battlecomputers are size-0 systems that are also "free" as they consist primarily of fire control software. Battlecomputers provide a 10 point target bonus initially. This increases by 5 points for each Research plus Development stage thereafter.

 

Battlecomputer Scrambler Systems: In response to being whacked by the TFR a couple of times the Pyronians developed a computer virus which could be broadcast on a widebeam communications systems and which would inevitably be picked up by an enemy’s battle computers. The virus then temporarily scrambles the battle computer’s systems, locking down all firing control. This effectively gives the ships using the Scrambler a 1st-shot effect in combat. There is no unit cost for this technology, but it is a wildcard technology. As such, it will be automatically and routinely be countered by an enemy following an encounter with it.

 

Battle Riders: Battle riders are STL starships designed for carriage on battle rider racks.

 

Battle Rider Racks: These are ship-based facilities for the carriage and repair of battle riders. Only ships built specifically as battle riders may take advantage of them. Any ship built as a battle rider can never be refitted as anything other than a battle rider, and no non-battle-rider can be refitted as a battle rider.

 

Each battle rider rack can carry 2 Hl of battle rider. A ship must have enough battle rider racks to carry its full complement of battle riders; no battle rider hull may "hang out" in excess of available racks. Battle riders on the racks are tight enough in to benefit from the tender's cloaking device, if any, and are carried without speed loss without the need for any tug modifications for the tender. Lastly, battle rider racks serve as repair facilities for the battle riders.

 

Biocomps: These are living individuals merged with a ship and its systems intimately and permanently enough to constitute a sort of brain for it. They are treated for game-mechanical purposes as cybercomps, except for being both vulnerable to psionics and capable of using them (assuming the biocomp came from a race capable of using them). The potential psychological problems and loyalty issues of the biocomp are not identical to those of the cybercomp but they aren’t to be taken lightly either. Pilot from Farscape can be regarded as an instance of a biocomp.

 

Biosensors: A specialized LR scanning system designed to detect and nullify the effects of the chameleon skin stealth coating. Cost is the same as a standard LR scanner (i.e., size-1, 1-pt (3.33 RPs)). A unit equipped with biosensors would receive a TARGET 15 tag against units equipped with chameleon skin stealth coating.

 

Burrowing Ground Units: A burrowing ground unit is capable of rapid and extensive underground movement. This might be due to tunneling equipment, mole-like claws for digging, an earthworm-like ability to eat soil to create tunnels, or other means. A burrowing ground unit pays a +15% surcharge. Burrowing units defending a planet enjoy surprise during invasion combats, and burrowing units that break off successfully from combat remain available to support any uprising on the planet however many turns after the invasion it takes place, at least until the planet is assimilated.

 

Chameleon Skin Stealth Coating: An ECM system which can be applied to the hulls of starships making them more difficult to detect by EWS and LR scanners. As a byproduct, the coating also gives a DEFENSE 15 tag to any ship equipped with the coating. Cost: 15% of ship’s base cost.

 

Cloaking Stealth System: This is also known as tech-based cloaking, by contrast with psionic varieties. A cloaking stealth system prevents detection of an appropriately “quiet” unit by others using broadly conventional detection systems. A unit with a cloaking stealth system pays a 15% unit surcharge for it. In exchange, under the right conditions, it is invisible. This will allow it to take hostile forces by surprise tactically, for early initial combat advantage.  Under less ideal circumstances, it will offer if not surprise then at least early combat difficulties firing on the decloaking unit. Lastly, it will allow the unit to travel unknown and unmolested through sections of space in which it would otherwise be detected.

 

The conditions which will void the cloaking effect are, unfortunately, not few. First, high profile drive emissions will reveal the cloaked unit. WF 5 or faster travel under warp drive, or any similar real-space drive, will void the cloak. Second, active sensors will void the cloak. Third, weapons fire will generally void it as well, although stealth weapons that wouldn’t that could be fired using passive sensors might form a hypothetical exception. Fourth, launching units that aren’t otherwise as stealthy will at least let an enemy know that something’s there, unless fighters suddenly sprout out of hard vacuum. Fifth, entering weapons range with almost anything will void the effect, as will extended periods near that range. Lastly, sheer general sensor or electronic warfare superiority will void it. Cloaking systems can be voided as sensor ghosts may be, with parallel races to defeat cloaking systems and defeater-counters. While they do not void the cloaking effect, drives that do things to the sensor profile of large areas of space, such as jump drives, hyperdrive-B, or tesseract drives, for instance, will point out to an aware enemy that, despite not seeing anything there, chances are there’s a cloaked unit somewhere in that area. These effects will likely ruin surprise effects or the ability to hide one’s presence in a section, but are less likely to upset the first round defensive virtue difficulty being hit while decloaking.

 

Close-In Defense Packs: CIDPs were developed in conjunction with SDSs as a means of enhancing the protection available to a starship inherent in spreading an enemy’s firepower. Each CIDP is a series of small blister-like “packs” attached to the outer hull of a starship. Filled with high-velocity, explosive, sensor-reflective material, each pack provides a cloud of explosive chaff which has the effect in combat of adding to the fleet file to the fleet file a 1 Hl unit with a [x multi 1 ammo 1] tag, where x is twice the mounting unit’s base hull value. For example, a ship with Hl=7 could deploy a 0,0,14,1 [14 multi 1 ammo 1] pack. A set of CIDP racks costs one half the base hull rating of the unit. To continue the previous example, that hull 7 ship would pay 3.5 points (11.67 RP’s base) for its CIDP capability. Each CIDP also has an ammo limitation of one shot. Once used, the CIDP must be replaced. A CIDP replacement pack costs .25 RP’s per point of mounting unit base hull value. For example, that Hl 7 ship with CIDP’s would pay 1.75 RP’s for a reload.

 

Communications Headquarters (AGA): ComHQ are very large ground facilities intended for tying ComNH and DSCR together in a gigantic command and control network. ComHQ are generally located at Starbase and Fortress locations, at Sector Capitols, and especially on an empire’s homeworld. Cost: +15% to the standard cost of the Starbase.

 

Communications Network Hubs (AGA): ComNH are ground facilities which are used to relay signals between DSCRs and Communications Headquarters and individual ships or fleets. Each ComNH also generates a number of ComP for use by the empire in activating various units and transferring orders and commands to an empire’s various commanders, ships, fleets, and ground forces. Cost: As per a standard ground base.

 

Continental Siege Units: Continental Siege Units, or CSU’s, are starship-scale vehicles used for planetary combat. A CSU is built as an STL starship, with a 25% cost discount. No weapons or sensors on a CSU may be used in space. However, unlike starships, CSU’s may participate in ground combat. A combat-drop-capable CSU can be used in the first stage of an invasion, securing a planethead. This capability requires a +15% surcharge. Any CSU may participate in an invasion after a planethead is secured. A combat-drop-capable CSU may also serve as a dropship for any ground troops stationed within it. On garrison duty, a CSU can serve two functions. First, if it has a base hull size equal to 1/10th or more the colony’s RP potential and has a headquarters unit (a flag bridge for ground combat), it can serve as a 4500 person unit for garrison purposes, assuming at least that many personnel of conventional garrison units are available. Second, if it has at least 1 LRS per 50 RP’s of the colony’s RP potential and a headquarters unit, it can provide the benefits of an orbital surveillance system.

 

Control Leeches: This creatures are implanted into the nervous systems (or equivalent) of populations to make them mindless slaves. A population to be implanted with control leeches requires a full standard garrison during a turn in which no uprising occurs. After implantation, the colony produces 75% of standard production at all times, regardless of tax rate or SR. SR is simply not relevant to the population with control leeches implanted, and rebellion of any sort is no longer possible there. Use of control leeches might have negative political and diplomatic fallout, at least among populations that themselves do not yet have them….

 

Cybercomps: These advanced computer systems are capable of operating spacecraft without the need for a crew. The cybercomp installation requires one equipment space and costs 10 points (33.33 RP’s base). A unit run by a cybercomp installation cannot use psionics and is not affected by psionics. Crew casualties may be ignored, unless simple passengers are aboard. No bonuses or penalties for crew grade or graded officers in command are given to the cybercomp-controlled unit, although it may still enjoy the bonus provided by an overall fleet commander. Any special tech-based targeting systems enjoy doubled effect when used by a cybercomp unit. While a cybercomp installation is normally going to be both reasonably flexible and loyal to the empire that built it, players should realize that it is subject to subversion in ways that live crews are not and may not have the full common sense and open-ended capacity of judgment that live officers (the good ones anyway) provide. If you ever wondered where all those hostile Von Neumann Devices came from, you may now attribute many or most of them to cybercomp “accidents”.

 

Datalink: A datalink is a specialized set of equipment that allows several ships to tie in together and concentrate their firepower against one particular target. Datalink equipment is primarily software oriented and has no additional costs. Datalink may initially be used to tie the firepower of only 2 ships together. Further refinements allow increasingly larger numbers of ships to be tied together in massive firepower “platforms”. This system can be tied together with multitargeting and flak systems to provide massive barriers to fighter, missile, or swarm attacks.

 

Deep Space Communications Relay (AGA): In FOTS:AGA, communications are significantly slowed from standard FOTS. Thus, specialized communication equipment is necessary for the far-flung regions of an empire to remain in touch with the central government. DSCRs are actually satellites with specialized precise station keeping drive systems that allow them to be tied into an empire’s communications net. Each DSCR also contributes a number of Communications Points (ComP) towards an empire’s overall communications. Each DSCR is actually a separate Signals Unit which ties into Communications Network Hubs. Cost: As per a standard Space Station.

 

Drones: A drone is a very small, automatically piloted spacecraft. Typical uses for drones include recon and remote attack roles, though these are hardly exhaustive.

 

A drone has the building requirements of a Hull 1 unit. They are launched from, recovered into, and serviced in drone bays. A drone bay takes one equipment space and costs 3.33 RP’s; 20 drones may occupy a drone bay. Any drone has Hl 1 and 2 equipment spaces. These equipment spaces can be put to very limited uses; in fact, there are only two standard uses for them. A drone equipment space may carry a long-range sensor or a warhead. Additional possible applications of those equipment spaces generally require specific research.

 

Drone warheads do up to 10 points of damage per equipment space. Note that this makes the drone a big, powerful missile that won’t come back after use, and that the drone does not enjoy the cost savings of a missile. The cost of the warhead is treated as a standard, pay-by-rating system. In return for being able to fire at targets whole light-years away rather than light-seconds, a drone-based FTL missile is a very expensive proposition.

 

Drones are built to have one sort of FTL drive; this will normally be a warp drive for standard FOTS races, but drones using various other drive types are also possible. Warp drive drones have a fixed cruising or maximum speed equal to the current maximum warp speed for the empire building them. Jump or wormhole drive drones will be capable of movement appropriate to the safe, cruising-speed use of such drives by ships. Generally, other drives will treat FTL drone movement as they would treat FTL fighter movement.

 

When drones are researched, part of the technology is an ability to provide the drones a stealth capability similar to technological cloaking and sufficient artificial intelligence to follow targetting instructions far out of communication with friendly units. Use of these capabilities requires a +15% unit surcharge for stealth systems and a +25% unit surcharge for the AI. (It should be noted that a stealthed drone can move at speeds faster than a ship could remain cloaked. This is due to the very low size of the drone and a tighter practical ability to control emissions.) Additionally, a drone with a warhead, like the Starlance torpedo, requires an LRS system to guide it to the target. After datalink is discovered, a datalinked group of drones may share one LRS per datagroup, allowing the other drones more space for bigger warheads. Drones may be built without stealth capability – in which case they’re simply not hidden – and/or without AI – in which case they’re incapable of operating outside of close contact (around 30 light seconds) from a control unit. It is even possible to build STL drones for a 25% discount, although the uses of such drones are naturally limited.

 

Some example drones:

 

Starlance Warp Torpedo – Hull: 1; Equipment: 2 (1 10 pt warhead, 1 LRS, WF 7 cruise/max, stealth capable (+15%), AI (+25%)); Stats: 0,0,10,1 (uses MSL tag); Cost: 56 RPs

Recon drone – Hull: 1; Equipment: 2 (1 LRS, WF 7 cruise/max, stealth capable (+15%), AI (+25%)); Stats: 0,0,0,1; Cost: 10 RPs

Bombardment drone – Hull: 1; Equipment: 2 (2 10 pt warheads, STL); Stats: 0,0,20,1 (uses MSL tag); Cost: 53 RPs

(The bombardment drone would operate close to a control unit to provide massive damage as a sort of super-missile. The cost makes it a weapon of dubious worth despite the damage capability. [An SFB suicide shuttle may operate with similar rules, albeit most likely with a smaller, cheaper warhead.])

Repair drone – Hull: 1; Equipment: 2 (2 repair bays, STL); Stats: 0,0,0,1; Cost: 8 RPs (This is an example of a drone that can be developed with further research. A ship may use them to enjoy a “portable”, integral repair facility, if enough drones are available to provide a total number of repair bays equal to or greater than the hull size of the unit to be repaired. Stealth systems could be used to keep the unit hidden if it’s stealth-capable itself, and FTL repair drones could be used by ships underway.)

 

ECM Drones: An ECM drone is fitted with ECM gear and is used for the defense of the ship deploying the drones, or designated accompanying friendly units. Each space of ECM gear gives the defended unit +5 DEFENSE. Multiple ECM drones may defend a given unit only up to the maximum datagroup size. For example, without datalink technology, only one ECM drone may defend a unit; two drones may add up their effects defending a unit when two-unit datalink is available, and so on.

 

Datalink: Datalink is an electronic warfare and fire control system which allows two or more ships (depending on the level of the Datalink technology) to link their fire control systems and concentrate fire on a single target. Datalink is a size-0 system that does not affect the overall cost of a ship.

 

Electronic Counter-Measures: ECM (and its sister system ECCM) is an offensive/defensive system that can modify friendly and enemy targeting and fire control systems. ECM is usually used in the defensive role while ECCM is usually used in the offensive role. ECM/ECCM systems are size-0 systems that do not add to the cost of a ship. Initially, 10 points of ECM/ECCM are available. This increases by 5 per additional Research plus Development effort. ECM/ECCM points are divided between ECM and ECCM in any given battles. ECM points add to units’ DEFENSE value. ECCM points counter enemy ECM on a one-to-one basis and have no application in case the enemy is not using ECM.

 

Empathic Amplifiers: These systems are designed to increase basic empathic abilities to spread what may as well be called good vibes through a population. Empathic amplifiers are one equipment space, 3.33 RPs base systems installed in mechanized ground units. Each amplifier provides +5 SR for up to 100 RP’s of friendly colony. Empathic amplifiers can also be used on captured colonies in an attempt to bring them into the fold more easily. Each amplifier increases the chance of assimilation by 5% per 100 RP’s of captured colony, up to a maximum of double the chance before empathic amplifier effect. A unit using empathic amplifiers is not available for combat or for conventional garrison duties; as a result, units with empathic amplifiers will tend to be specialized units with little other than the amplifiers. Empathic amplifiers will normally require psionics as a prerequisite for research.

 

Expense Management Tech: Each level of Expense Management Tech decreases all RP costs by 5%. EMT is limited to 5 levels.

 

External Ordnance (XO) Missiles: XO missiles are mounted on XO racks at a 1 missile per 1 rack ratio. XO missiles are launched at the beginning of battle and serve to enhance the “throw weight” of a fleet.

 

Fanatics: These are individuals driven to extreme zealotry in the name of an ideology or religion. Any ground unit may be trained as a fanatic unit. Fanatic ground units have a 100% break off level and cannot be assigned one any lower. Untrained units may not be made fanatic units; they haven’t had the time for proper indoctrination. Fanatic units may not be fully loyal to the state if the state appears to be violating or straying from the ideology that binds and drives the fanatics. This can cause problems if the player needs to be politically flexible. Also, fanatic units will tend to behave somewhat differently at very low SR levels. They may remain fully loyal to an ideologically pure but unpopular leadership and so give the player a solid core of supporters in case of insurrection. However, they may take low SR’s as an opportunity for a revolution to install a purer, fundamentalist regime. (Just what “fundamentalist” amounts to is entirely circumstantial. Fanatic believers in secular political liberalism aren’t quite impossible, for instance.) Players raise fanatic units at their own risk. Fanatics may be taken as a background ability in race design for 5 AP. For 0 AP, a player may choose to have fanatics as the only available option in ground units. The race in ineligible for the fanatical society disadvantage in this case. Untrained fanatic troops have the same political baggage but suffer normal break offs on account not of broken morale but from combat confusion. Appropriate societies may research a culturally specific, non-transferrable form of fanatics with only a Development phase. Players should expect fanatics to occur most often and most naturally as a background ability or option rather than as a transferrable technology.

 

Fighter Standoff Missiles: These are LR missiles used by fighters.

 

Flak Systems: Flak Systems are a special modification to a ship’s weapon systems that allow the ship’s total firepower to be broken down into 1-pt. blocks. Units with flak systems get a FLAK tag, which will divide fire into 1 point packets whenever an enemy unit is present with a FIGHTER tag. Cost: 1 point (3.33 RPs) per point of weaponry with flak fire control.

 

Flagstations: A ground facility equipped with LRCom which contributes a certain amount of “global” ComP to units under its command plus allows a modification to the die roll for LR communications with the rest of a player’s empire. Cost: In standard FOTS, none (aside from the addition of a flag bridge and CIC); In FOTS: AGA, +15% to cost of ground facility.

 

Floater Mines: Minefields which possess their own small station keeping drives, these weapons are designed to be deployed in the atmosphere of a gas giant to deny its use to gas giant natives or to imprison them on a particular world. Cost: As per minefields. Stats: As per minefields.

 

FTL Fighters: Fighters belonging to any race in FOTS begin the game as sublight-capable only (i.e. without warp drive or any other type of FTL drive). Via the R&D rules, FTL-capable fighters may be developed with increasingly longer ranges. FTL fighters do not receive the 25% discount standard fighters receive for being STL.

 

Gas Giant Igniter Mines: A weapon system designed to collapse and compress gravitically the material of a gas giant to ignition temperatures. The resulting explosion completely destroys the gas giant and disrupts the orbits of any satellites nearby turning them into asteroids. Ships and bases in orbit of an ignited gas giant are also destroyed in the explosion. Designed as a means of dealing with gas giant natives. Cost: 4000 RPs. Stats: 4000,0,0,1

 

Gravitic Asteroid Deflectors: A specialized shield system designed to deflect asteroids from impacting any planet or installation. Designed specifically to protect planets against the effects of Warp-Capable Mass Drivers. Naturally, the installation required to deflect such asteroids is approximately the same size and cost as the device needed to toss them around the galaxy – the system takes a number of equipment spaces aboard a base equal the Hl size of the largest asteroid it can deflect. Cost: 1 pt (3.33 RPs) per equipment space.

 

Gravitic Implosion Bomb: An enormously powerful warhead which temporarily generates an artificial singularity in a small area of space. The effects are similar to generating a blackhole which lasts for 1 combat round, but has the full effects of a standard blackhole as described in Fire On The Suns: Tactical Command. The device is approximately as dangerous to its users as it is to the users enemies as anything in the vicinity of the device is instantly destroyed, ripped apart, and plated across the surface of the singularity which then collapses into nothingness. It is also enormously expensive at 1553 RPs per bomb. Stats: 600,0,0,1,0,0,0,MULTI 3 PEN 1

 

Ground Minefields: These are systems placed around a static position that can, in the course of combat around that location, go off and attack besieging units. Each minefield is a 1 point, one shot per combat system with a cost of 1 RP. A base with 20 minefields based on it would have a [20 multi 1 ammo 1] tag for them, assuming all are to fire off within the first round of combat. Following a single firing, that minefield is located well enough that the attackers can avoid it thereafter, or to have fired off all the rounds in position to have a role in that battle. Minefields may not normally be placed where an attacker has to drop to establish a planethead in a planetary invasion, since the attacker after all has the choice of most of the planet and minefields can’t be everywhere. Minefields are also not usable in case of orbit-to-ground combat.

 

Gunboat Warp Booster Packs: A specialized high-speed drive system only usable by races that can endure several weeks of multiple gravities. A warp booster pack allows a gunboat to accelerate and maintain speeds of up to +2 warp factors above the standard cruise/maximum speeds for that race. For example, a 2nd gen warp drive gunboat with warp booster packs would go from a cruising speed of WF 6 and a maximum speed of WF 7 to a cruising speed of WF 7 and a maximum speed of WF 9. Usable only on gunboats as the drive stresses will tear larger ships apart. Each booster pack is specifically tuned to a single gunboat and raises the cost of the gunboat by +25%. Booster packs can be jettisoned by their crews, but cannot be recovered thereafter as the process of jettisoning the pack destroys it.

 

Hypermines: These are minefields that can be deployed in hyperspace (presumably by minelaying units with hyperdrive) and function there.

 

Hyperspace Torpedoes: A specialized missile system which, if linked with Hyperwave Sensors, can lock onto and track objects moving in hyperspace, follow them, and then popup into hyperspace and conduct a surprise attack against those objects. Cost: As per a standard missile +25% (for mounting a short-range hyperdrive).

 

Hypervelocity Asteroid Invasion Packs: These are asteroids fired by a warp-capable mass driver put to a different use. The asteroid is fitted with spaces for ground troops to ride along on it. The asteroid may be fired to approach the target but not hit it, or to go and attack the target normally. In the first instance, drop-capable ground troops launch off the asteroid and attack the target as per a normal planetary invasion. In the second instance, the target suffers the normal asteroid attack of the warp-capable mass driver and the troops proceed to launch the invasion on whatever is left. However, the troops suffer 50% casualties before they launch, given the dangers of landing on a planet on a massive shell. The troops are killed if the asteroid is destroyed before reaching the planet. An asteroid may carry 4500 personnel per Hl. Troops will suffer for lack of supplies if the asteroid takes multiple turns to reach the target.

 

Hypervelocity Asteroids: These are the asteroids used by warp-capable mass drivers; the asteroids themselves are nothing special.

 

Hypervelocity Railguns: These are railguns capable of accelerating railgun shells to light speed or above it; such weapons are suitable for space combat between 1st gen and higher spacecraft.

 

Hyperwave Sensors: An LR scanning system capable of scanning hyperspace for any detectable ships or fleets. Cost: As per other LR scanners.

 

Increased fire rates: Weapons are normally fired once per turn. This fire rate may be increased, with proportionate increases in the weapon rating and cost.

 

Industrial colonies: This technology allows a state to make certain colonies truly and massively industrialized, built specifically for heavy construction projects. To be made an industrial colony, a colony must have a heavy industry complex and an additional 400 RP’s must be paid. The colony may be made an industrial colony in the same turn a heavy industry complex is put down there. An industrial colony differs from any other colony only in the following respects. First, if it at any time loses its heavy industry, it produces no RP’s until one is rebuilt there. Second, there is no limit on the number of facilities that can be built on an industrial colony at a time. Third, the cost of any mining station, other facility that increases RP production for a colony, subassembly plant, automated construction line, factory, or similar facility with a clear industrial focus is halved on an industrial colony. Fourth, any spacecraft built over an industrial colony receive a 10% cost discount; this is included in the 25% cap for Expense Management Tech. There is no limit to the number of industrial colonies a state may have, although it is unlikely that most states will have a real need to shell out 400 RP’s and a heavy industry complex for most or all of their colonies. A colony may be made an industrial colony no longer by spending 200 RP’s, or by simple declaration on the part of the player if the heavy industry complex is lost or destroyed.)

 

Industrial Tech: Each level of Industrial Tech increases RP production 5%.

 

Intruder Defense Systems: This technology allows a unit to get a DR bonus against boarding party attacks equal to its base hull rating for a +15% unit surcharge. These systems include anti-personnel gas systems, automatic weapons, passageway surveillance, selective decompression, and internal force fields, among many other possible devices.

Ion Storm Generators/Ion Bombships: Apparently, this is also a weapon system, but one which is designed to deny other races the use of their smaller ships, fighters and gunboats over a very large area of space. The weapon is known to be able to generate up to Force 2 storms and can probably generate larger storms than those so far demonstrated. The bombship involves the use of a capital ship-sized vessel (Hull=12+) which carries a device specifically designed to generate massive ion interference waves. Detonation of the device automatically destroys the carrying vessel. For one tactical combat turn, the detonation results in a massive outpouring of energy which takes the form of a 600 pt. beam attack coupled with multitargetting capability. The result is up to 200 3-pt. attacks which can result in widescale damage to an enemy fleet, in particular against an enemy’s fighters and gunboats. Cost: 4040 RPs (for a 600,0,0,12,MULTI 3 bombship).

 

Jump Gate: (Note: this system bears no relationship to ‘jump gates’ associated with hyperdrive or alterspace drives beyond somewhat accidental sameness of name.)

 

Jump gates are devices that allow virtually instantaneous travel between one jump gate and another regardless of distance between. A jump gate is generated and defined by jump gate generators. Jump gate generators are 1 space, 1 point (3.33 RP’s base) base systems; jump gates have a minimum size of 3. A jump gate allows the entry or exit of ships no larger in hull size than the number of jump gate generators used to generate that gate. For example, a base with 16 jump gate generators could generate a gate usable by Hull 16 cruisers or two Hull 8 destroyers at a time but not by a Hull 18 battlecruiser. A unit attempting to enter a jump gate too small for it fails, as does a unit attempting to move from one large-enough gate to one that is too small for it.

 

Any jump gate of one nation may be used to reach any other jump gate of that nation. Sections linked by jump gates are effectively adjacent for tracing lines of communication or trade. One state may grant the use of some or all of its jump gates to another; this amounts to special clause in treaty terms extending rights of passage and refueling. Additional research may allow the (hazardous) use of enemy jump gates as exit points from friendly jump gates.

 

Long Range Communications Gear (AGA): LRCom allows a ship or fleet to tie into the empire’s communications network. The cost for a ship to mount LRCom is +15% of the ship’s original cost. Ships without LRCom must have orders or other communications transmitted through DSCR, if one is in range, and then through ComNH and then to ComHQ and back resulting in potential delays in the reception of orders, making reports, sending survey data, transmitting alerts, etc.

 

Long-Range Missiles: This system allows ships to launch a “standoff” attack with their missile weapons. LR Capable missiles allow a “1st Strike” effect with a ship’s Tp rating during the first combat. Only cloaking will negate this effect (since you can’t shoot what you can’t see). Cost: Double standard launcher price.

LR Rapid Mine Deployment Systems: These are minelayers installed on an FTL drone to allow for minelaying by cheap, uncrewed, and expendable stealth units.

 

LR Scanner Buoys: These systems are bought and deployed as mines, with one LRS each instead of a warhead. A packet of 20 LR scanner buoys costs 33 RP’s. Each buoy detects units as per its LRS capability, and communicates detection information at appropriate communications speed back to designated units.

 

Mecha: FOTS mecha are treated as a sort of hybrid of fighter and ground unit. They might be best thought of as space-deployed artillery. A mech unit has a Hl rating within the range of an empire's fighter hulls - e.g., Hl 1 or Hl 2 for starting races. They are transported in mecha bays with a capacity of 8 Hl per equipment space for 2nd gen races and above, or 4 Hl per equipment space for 1st gen races. It has, at 2nd gen, 3.0 x Hl in equipment spaces and an ability to purchase one set of XO racks like a gunboat. Equipment spaces are figured at 50% more than the current starship rate. A mecha unit takes a FIGHTER tag - while mecha are tough, they're just not up to shrugging off nukes individually any more than an unshielded fighter is. Mecha may get shields when and only when fighter shields are available. As a sort of ground unit, mecha operate just as fighters would in a ground attack role (as far as game mechanics go), with the following addition: mecha may be used to help constitute the garrison of a conquered planet. However, they can only do this when there is at least 4500 personnel of garrison troops paired with each mecha. While they provide terrific fire support, they just can't be in 4500 places at once like an infantry unit can and so can't fill out all garrison duties. Mecha may also be used for defense against boarders in space combat. They don't make good boarders themselves - they, like fighters, are still too darn big to fight it out in the passageways of an enemy vessel. (GM's may allow them to function as boarders under exotic circumstances, such as in attacks on a Hl 100 base consisting mostly of hangar bays.) But a ship can designate some or all of its mecha as performing fire support against boarders on the outer hull. Such mecha contribute their AR (note: AR, not DR) to the ship’s DR, to represent fire on EVA or ramship based boarders. They have no effect on boarders delivered by transporter, and any mecha so used is not an independent unit in the BE in that battle. Like ground troop units and unlike fighters, mecha receive no cost break for being STL. FTL mecha, if they are developed at all, would take a 15% unit surcharge. The cost for mecha is determined using the standard formula, with one hull point free, without the STL cost break multiplier of .75. Mecha development takes a successful Research phase and Development phase; empires that do not possess both heavy powered armor and fighters must do a Discovery phase too. Mecha were inspired by various Japanese anime features)

 

Modular construction: Modular ship construction technology allows a ship to be built from parts, modules, that are built separately, and can be added to and/or removed from a ship to alter its performance envelope. The end result is a degree of ship flexibility and increased construction efficiency.

Modules:

Each module is built as a small individual unit. However, no single module or collection of modules can move or fire or be anything in combat but a target without including an engine module. Furthermore, no module or collection of modules can operate if the total hull size of the modular ship is smaller or larger than the range of hull sizes the owning empire can currently build. (However, a modular ship may have modules added to it as larger hull types become available, allowing a modular ship to in effect be refitted to a larger hull.) Each module has a hull size value, typically 1 or 2, and an equipment space value based on it. If the figured equipment space value for a module is not a whole number (as for 1 Hl 1st generation modules, with 1.5 equipment spaces), then the module can be built with the next higher value of equipment spaces. However, the total modular ship cannot function if the total equipment spaces of its modules is larger than that possible for the ship as a whole; some other module(s) will have to be smaller than they could be if some take up the round-up equipment spaces.

 

All modular ships require an engine module. An engine module has a minimum size of Hl 2. If the building empire has any technologies that provide additional free equipment spaces of beams, torpedoes, shields, or whatever else (for example, +2 Tp per unit) on a per unit basis, the engine module is the only module that gets that.bonus and no more than one engine module per completed functional modular ship may have such a bonus. Any flat per-unit surcharge for special weapons (HEAT, PEN, etc.) is paid for with an engine module; any other additional special weapon charge is paid with the module containing the weapons. Furthermore, no engine module may carry any additional beam or torpedo equipment spaces; the interfaces with other modules don’t allow for it.

 
Construction:
Each module is constructed as a tiny unit. This allows for very rapid completion of the modules, and for the parts of a larger ship to be built at several smaller shipyards. The assembly of the modules into a modular ship is treated as a repair: all the modules are assembled at a shipyard or repair facility, and the time it takes to put them all together is figured as it would be to repair a ship of that size: half the build time of a standard ship of that size. Shipyards, for this purpose, work at the same rate as a repair yard would; in effect, shipyards can treat putting a modular ship together as a “refit” of the modules into a full ship. Modules can be removed from or added to a ship at the same rate; multiple modules may be added to or removed from an existing ship only one at a time. Thus, to add 6 Hl 1 modules to a Hl 6 modular ship and get a Hl 12 ship in the end with a build rate of 6 hull per turn, a shipyard would require 1/12 of the turn to add each module, and an available yard capacity equal to the growing size of the vessel at any given stage of the addition.
 
Example of initial construction:
A player would like a modular ship with these ratings: 6,6,6,12, 2 cargo bays, 1 LRS, 3 hangar bays. The modules that will comprise the ship are:
 
3 2,0,0,1 beam modules, for 10 RP’s each
3 0,0,2,1 torpedo modules, for 10 RP’s each
1 0,4,0,2 engine module, for 20 RP’s
1 0,2,0,1 shielding module, for 10 RP’s
1 0,0,0,1 cargo module with 2 cargo bays, for 3 RP’s
1 0,0,0,1 mixed function module with 1 LRS and 1 hangar bay, for 10 RP’s
and 1 0,0,0,1 hangar module with 2 hangar bays, for 10 RP’s.
 
The empire has a build rate of 6 hull per turn. The construction is going on at a shipyard of capacity 40. First the modules are built. This requires 7 of the yard’s spaces for 2/6ths of the turn. (2 of the slips for 2/6ths of the turn for the engine module, 5 more for 2 Hl 1 modules each, at 1/6th of the turn per module or 2/6ths of it per pair.) Then the modules are put together, requiring 12 of the yard’s spaces for another 6/6ths of a turn (12 Hl of ship, at the 6 hull per turn rate, halved because it’s only modules being attached to one another. The modular ship is completed 1/3 rd of the way into the turn after work began on its modules, freeing up the shipyard’s bays for the remainder of that turn for other construction projects.
 
Multiple Independent Remote Torpedo Systems: MIRTs – also known as missile pods - are independently deployable torpedo launchers which can be carried onboard ships to increase its missile firepower. Each MIRT is built as a fighter. It differs in the following respects. First, it has no crew. Second, it has no internal systems. Third, it has no limitation on missiles fired from XO racks per round. Fourth, it enjoys no free improved maneuverability, and in fact carries a NOMOVE tag. MIRTs are recoverable after combat for reloading.

 

Multitargeting Systems: Multitargeting technology enhances the targeting options of units tremendously. Once multitargeting technology is available, any unit using weapon batteries may combine the batteries into single fire packets in any combination between battles. However, any “virtual batteries” so formed must still consist only of the same sort of weapon, they inherit all the penalties of any of the component batteries, and they inherit no bonuses that do not apply to all the component batteries. This capability is available as a software refit.

 

Nanoswarms: This system was developed to launch swarms of nanites, extremely small robotic devices programmed for a specific function, against an enemy ship during combat. The nanite swarms are programmed to disassemble an enemy’s shields and hull, thus having a destructive effect in combat. The nanites are purposefully constructed with extremely limited lifespans so as not to present a post-combat danger. The nanoswarm itself is a reusable delivery system, which is purchased, built, carried, and deployed much like a missile pod. The nanoswarm requires its own form of bay, and missile pods cannot carry nanite loads nor may a nanoswarm carry missiles. Also, the nanoswarm is not immobile like a missile pod is, but the only movement it performs is one steady run to deliver the nanites into attack range of the target(s); it still takes a NOMOVE tag, as this doesn’t represent the sort of movement that would allow flight from battle. The nanite loads are priced and built as though they were missiles deployed on the nanoswarms “racks”. However, the nanoswarm does not use a MIS tag but instead uses a MULTI 0 3 tag, to deploy the nanites in 3 point packets. Nanites are not vulnerable to point defense. Nanite loads cannot normally be deployed directly from units other than a nanoswarm, as firing “live” nanites clear across a battlefield is too unlikely to hit the targets and too likely to hit friendly units, in addition to being a hazard just to fire.

 

By way of example:

A standard Hee'Dra nanoswarm carries 4 nanite loads. It is a 0,0,12,1 unit when carrying the standard 3 point nanite load in 4 racks, and costs 5 RPs. (This cost is figured as a fighter with 4 XO racks.) One combat load of nanites costs 1.5 RP's (3 pts "warhead strength" times .125 is .375 per nanite load; 4 loads at .375 RP’s each is 1.5 RP’s). The ship data line for the nanoswarm would be:

 

"Nanoswarm",0,0,0,0,12,12,1,1,0,0,0,"NOMOVE FIGHTER MULTI 0 3 AMMO 1"

 

Neural Scramblers: These weapons are based on research on thought eater monsters. The neural scramblers target an enemy crew directly, destroying their minds and so their ability to support ship functions. This can be achieved by using BE crit table 12 (special) which specifically targets crew)

 

Example

[6 special 12]

 

Point Defense (PD): PD systems are defensive weapons systems designed to shoot down incoming missiles, but can also be used on incoming suicide fighters, etc. PD's are size-0 systems which cost 3.33 RPs each. Each PD gives a ship a 5% chance of shooting down an incoming missile or kamikaze. A maximum rating of 90% PD may be applied to any ship (i.e., a ship may have a maximum of 18 PD systems onboard it).

 

Quantum Torpedoes: A weapon system doing an incredible 32-points of damage, with the stats of MIS00W1 and a cost of 4 RPs each. The technology used to construct the warhead is 6th Gen Warp and the warhead is so massive that only one can be carried by a fighter at any time. The detonation of the weapon is so violent that it temporarily rips a hole in the fabric of spacetime. Fortunately, the weapons so far deployed by the Unspeakable Ones have all been sublight.

 

Ramships: Ramships are small, shuttle-like craft specially designed to penetrate an enemy ship's hull and deliver boarding parties to an unshielded enemy vessel. Ramships are also known as assault shuttles and are elsewhere described as such.

 

Reconnaissance Drones: This is a drone used for reconnaissance. The drone is fitted with at least one LRS and programmed to search a certain area and either return with the report or broadcast messages back. Drones in general are covered under their own heading.

 

Regenerating Hulls: Regenerating hulls allow for the recovery of Hl points in combat. Prerequisites for research into regenerating hulls are hull durability tech, some other armor advance, or backup systems. Regenerating hulls cost 33.33 RP's base per 1 point per turn of regeneration of Hl rating in combat, and a 15% surcharge in addition for needing very few repairs between battles. Research increases the amount allowable from 1 point per turn base to 1 additional point a turn per advance. Bioship and conventional ship regenerating hulls are different techs. However, bioship using races get the Discovery of regenerating bioship hulls free, and the Discovery phase is waived for the one sort of regenerating hull for any race with the tech for the other sort of regenerating hull.

 

Regenerating Shields: Regenerating shields allow for the recovery of Sh points in combat. Prerequisites for research into regenerating shields are some other shield advance, such as two or more shield points per space. Regenerating shields cost 33.33 RP's base per 1 point per turn of regeneration of Sh rating in combat, and a 15% surcharge in addition for needing very few repairs between battles. Research increases the amount allowable from 1 point per turn base to 1 additional point a turn per advance. There is no space requirement above those for the basic shields themselves.

 

Resistant Armor: AR systems are non-ablative defensive systems that stop or deflect a certain specific number of points of damage. AR is usable with resistant shields, standard ablative shields, and standard ablative armor. Each AR system is a size-1 system capable of stopping or deflecting 1 or more points of damage. For each level of resistant armor development, a unit may mount 1 point of AR per 20 points of Hl, rounding mathematically. For example, a hull 6 starship with 1 structural reinforcement and 4 points of armor has 11 points of Hl rating, and so can support AR 1 (.55 rounding mathematically). AR costs 1 point (3.33 RP’s base) per point per 5 Hl. To continue the example, the unit above would pay 2 points (6.67 RP’s base) for its AR 1 – 11/5, rounding up to 2, times AR 1. Resistant armor survives as long as the unit does.

 

Resistant Shields: SR systems are non-ablative defensive systems that stop or deflect a certain specific number of points of damage. SR is usable with resistant armor, standard ablative shields, and standard ablative armor. Each SR system is a size-1 system capable of stopping or deflecting 1 or more points of damage. For each level of resistant shield development, a unit may mount 1 point of SR per 20 points of Sh, rounding mathematically. For example, a starship with 15 shield points can support SR 1 (.75 rounding mathematically). SR costs 1 point (3.33 RP’s base) per point per 5 Sh. To continue the example, the unit above would pay 3 points (10 RP’s base) for its SR 1 – 15/5, time SR 1. SR is lost only when a ship loses shields. Resistant shields are not available as starting technologies under normal circumstances.

 

Satellite Defense Systems: The SDS is a screen of small, autonomous combat vehicles, each having stats of 1,1,0,1 and a cost of 5 RPs, that surround their parent ship and are more or less specifically designed to be targeted and destroyed by enemy fire thus drawing that fire away from the parent vessel. They are armed with a single light energy weapon and lightly-shielded, and do contribute somewhat to a fleet’s firepower, but their primary value remains the spreading of enemy firepower over a larger number of targets, acting in much the same way as ancient barrage balloons. SDS attach to the outer hulls of their parent vessels via magnetic slings or other non-specialized attachment methods (although, if XO racks are used, SDS would replace other weapons on a 1-to-1 basis). Ships can carry a number of SDS equal to their size in hull points with no cost for ship modifications or to the vessel’s weapons load. Ships can carry both SDS and fighters or gunboats.

 

Security Forces/Secret Police: SecPs are specialized ground force units which cost 100 RPs (and 1 PopP in FOTS: AGA) to build, but which contribute 50 RPs per turn towards an empire’s internal security. The 50 RPs is deducted from aggressor success rolls. For example, 2 SecP units would subtract 100 RPs from the 250 RPs that an enemy Cryptographic unit contributed towards intercepting internal communications before the die roll for success was made, thus the success roll would be made based on 150 RPs rather than the 250 RPs normally contributed to this purpose).

 

Sentient Antivirus Software: Developed as an antidote to the effects of the World Killer Virus, this software package had the added bonus of being able to remain in a system long after a virus had been purged and to act as a virtual “guard dog” against further attacks. The package comes with a wide array of software “weapons” with which it can wage virtual war against any attacking virus detected. Cost: 500 RPs

 

Sharks & piranhas: The Swarm has 2 “special” ship types not normally listed in their setups due to the extreme danger these ship types represent. These types are the “Shark” and the “Piranha”. Both of these ship types are “alive” in every sense of the word.

 

Shark,5,0,6,7,60 RPs

Pirahna,3,0,3,3,30 RPs

 

Both Sharks and Piranhas are organic, living weapons. They are capable of firing energy weapon-like bursts from eye-like generators and of expelling “spores” which explode on contact with shields or hulls like torpedoes. These weapons are highly accurate. The true danger behind these weapons is that, once deployed, they are uncontrollable and are fully capable of breeding between themselves. Two Sharks will produce a pod of 2 offspring every turn. Two Piranhas will produce a pod of 6 offspring every turn. These offspring mature within 1 turn and then breed themselves. Breeding populations will expand exponentially if released and will attack any world or fleet indiscriminately, including other Swarm worlds and fleets.

 

Aggressive control measures are the only known method of control. Breeding populations also establish territories and aggressively defend this territory by “schooling” together. Sharks and Piranhas are capable of speeds up to WF 9.

Behaviorally, sharks and piranhas are very aggressive, but also highly territorial. Encountered in the "wild" deeps of space, sharks and piranhas will invariably attack any moving starship or bioship until either they are destroyed or the target is. If an enemy escapes, it is doubtful that sharks or piranhas will pursue very far from the star system in which they are encountered. Shark and piranha populations will migrate from one star system to another only when population pressures are high or available food sources are depleted.

 

Sharks and Piranhas, being biological weapons, take critical hits from the Bioweapons Critical Hit Table.

 

Shieldbreaker: Shieldbreakers are weapons used specifically and exclusively to neutralize shields. A shieldbreaker occupies one equipment space, costs one point (3.33 RP’s base), and does two points of damage to target shields but none to target hull. This is implemented through a CRACK or crack tag. Shieldbreakers cannot be combined in a battery with conventional weapons for technical reasons. They do not receive any discount on the regular weapon batter surcharge, even though they will typically be organized into one or more batteries independent of the unit’s conventional weapons. Shieldbreaker rates of fire, rating per space, range, and other values may be improved through research as normal for standard weapons.

 

Snapshields: A snapshield system is actually a combination of a large, expensive computer, and equipment to deform locally the electromagnetic shields of the unit. The computer tracks incoming missile strikes. The system then concentrates the unit’s shields in precisely the direction from which the missile’s blast will reach the ship at precisely the split second to nullify its damage value. The system is not by any means perfect, but the end result is nevertheless a PD 50 value for the unit. A snapshield system occupies two equipment spaces and costs 5 points (16.67 RP’s base). No unit may use a snapshield system without at least beginning the battle with operable shields.

 

Special Weapons Attack & Control Platforms: An SWAC is a small craft using ECM Generators. Each ECM generator gives a +1 DEFENSE and +1 TARGET bonus to all friendly craft in a battle. Only one unit per side may provide this benefit.

 

Spinal Mount Weapons Systems: A spinal mount weapon system is simply an extremely large standard weapon system built along the spine of the ship. The larger size of the weapon allows the ship to fire a double-strength Bm or Tp rating. Only one weapon system may be doubled as hull stresses limit the amount of firepower a ship can generate. Cost: 2xWeapon pt value (e.g. a size-5 spinal mount generates a 10 pt beam for purposes of figuring costs).

 

Standoff Antifighter Missiles: These are simply long-range FLAK missiles.

 

Standoff Antiminefield Torpedoes: These are synonymous with long-range antiminefield torpedoes.

 

Starlance Warp Torpedoes: The Starlance is a long range, autonomous, FTL cruise missile that travels at a speed 2 warp factors above a race’s current nominal cruise speed (e.g. for 2nd Gen races, this would be WF 7). The Starlance has stats of MIS00A1 and costs 54 RPs each (0+0+10+1+1 (for LR scanner)=12/3=4x10=40x0.15 (for cloaking) +0.25 (for AI)). Each torpedo also possesses the special systems LR Scanners and Cloaking Systems. Starlances can be launched singly, to maximize cost effectiveness, or in “wolfpacks” consisting of multiple torpedoes, which maximizes potential damage effectiveness on any enemy target. Once launched and out of friendly scanner range, the actions of a Starlance will remain essentially unknown to its user. The weapon travels under heavy passive ECM cloaking, including communications silence to a specific set of programmed coordinates in which to attack targets, including a desired target size. Starlances can also be set to patrol a pre-designated area using passive LR scanners to find a suitable target. When a suitable target is detected, the Starlance pursues at maximum warp, decloaks, and rams it. The torpedo can be set to transmit a burst message of its attack run back home (providing its user with a copy of the Battle report) or to die anonymously. Starlance torpedoes normally attack from positions of surprise with break off levels set to 0% to simulate the weapon’s single-minded impact and destruction. No matter the results of the engagement, all Starlance torpedoes engaged are considered lost at the conclusion of 1 round of combat. Starlance torpedoes can be modified to carry MIRV warheads, effectively giving them multitargeting capability.

 

Stasis Shields: This technology can only be developed following the discovery of a Stasis Field artifact and following a successful R&D program to determine how the system works. The initial success allows the development of a Stasis Snapshield, a last-ditch defensive system which drains a ship’s power, but effectively surrounds a ship with an impenetrable bubble of spacetime. This also cuts the ship off from any interaction with normal space or other objects until after a battle has been completed (i.e. it cannot move or fire in any fashion). Stasis Snapshields cost 25% additional to a ship’s base cost. Improved versions can be developed, but require equally enormous power requirements.

 

Targeting Priority: Targeting priority technology allows a player’s fleet to specifically target a particular hull size of the enemy (for example a fleet could target ships of Hl=10 in the enemy fleet). Once fleet target priorities have been set, the Battle Engine makes five passes through the enemy fleet looking for an enemy ship of the proper hull size. If it does not target an enemy ship of the proper size after five such passes, it targets the next randomly selected target. Once developed using the R&D rules, ships may use targeting priority at no additional cost.

 

Thought Eater Antiboarding Weapons: These systems are based on experiments done on thought eaters. Boarding parties are subjected to horrible attacks on their very minds; prolonged exposure can make them mindless vegetables. A unit with thought eater antiboarding weapons takes a +15% unit surcharge, and a BP tag that gives it an additional DR equal to its base hull size. This does not apply against enemies that are psi-immune.

 

Thought Eater Antipersonnel Weapons: These provide nastier weaponry for ground units based on thought eater attacks. The unit takes a +15% surcharge and gets a 50% increase in weapon ratings; this does not apply to psi-immune targets.

 

Tug Pods: A wide variety of pods have been developed by various races to enhance the capabilities of cargo tugs (and in some cases, to attempt to make these vessels combat capable). Pod Technology is a unique system. Just having Tug Technology does not mean you have Pod Technology. You must research this separately. Pods are constructed much like ships are, except they gain a –25% RP savings to their cost since they have no engines. There are two types of pods, towed and integrated.

 

The first fully-developed level of Tug Technology allows a player to construct a tug that is able to tow pods. Towed pods do not ‘mate’ with the tug. They are merely towed, as train cars follow a locomotive, and can be linked into a long series of pods. Pods are constructed exactly as starships with the exception that they possess no FTL engines and therefor receive the -25% cost modification, and +25% equipment space modification.

 

The second fully-developed level of Pod Technology allows a player to construct pods that can be designed to be mated with the tug. Once mated they are integral and considered 1 ship for combat purposes. The limit to the Pod mating is the Towing capacity of the tug. This capacity cannot be exceeded when mating (i.e. there is no reduction to WF speed). The tug can still have reinforced engines to allow it tow, or ‘mate’ in this case, with a larger hull pod (or pods).

 

Transcasters: These systems are used to transport cargo, people, and even combat units around a star system at faster-than-light speeds, specifically at the maximum warp speed enjoyed by an empire at the time they are built. The system requires a transmission center and a reception unit. Each transcaster station requires one equipment space and costs 3.33 RP’s. Every three transcasters can transport at a time one cargo bay’s worth of cargo (20 RP’s); 12 Hl of crated fighter; 8 Hl of ready fighter; 2 Hl of ready gunboat; 1 Hl of starship; .2 Hl of ready base; or one hull point of ground unit. If sufficient transcaster capacity is not available to move a whole unit at once, it must be dissembled and transported as cargo. (Ground units form an exception to this requirement, as they are composed of many smaller individuals.) Reception units can generally be assumed to be present at various places in the system, permitting one-way transcasting to them. Two-way transport will require another transcaster station to transport units back.

 

A single transcaster is capable of transporting to a target vessel in combat one boarding party.. Boarding parties come equipped free with remote pods that allow them to transcast back to the home ship after attacks; the supply of remote pods is unlimited for most practical purposes.

 

Transporters: A non-existent, theoretically possible technological system that would scan a lifeform at the subquantum level, store the information in a particle buffer and then disassemble that lifeform, move the particles associeted with that lifeform to another location, and then reassemble that lifeform. A Beyond Warp or Clark Culture technology requiring extremely sophisticated computers, scanners, and assembly equipment in addition to an understanding of subquantum structure and assembly of lifeforms.

 

Warp-Capable Mass Driver: An extremely powerful mass driver capable of accelerating asteroid-sized masses to warp speed and then propelling them through space to a designated target, usually a planet. Naturally, the power supply required is enormous as is the device itself and its rate of fire is limited by the available ammunition supply. It is also difficult and time-consuming to shift targets making it valuable in the strategic sense only (which also makes it a high strategic target as well).

 

A given mass driver may fire twice per turn. This fire rate assumes that it is being fired in an uncontested system containing an asteroid belt to supply fresh ammunition. The mass driver may be mounted only in bases and requires equipment spaces equal to the maximum asteroid Hl size. (The asteroid will have a Hl value in the BE equal to half this; an asteroid’s bulk is not normally as resistant to damage as any warship hull is designed to be.) Asteroids projected from it travel at the standard warp drive cruising speed of the empire. They can be aimed only at planets or bases. The damage done by the asteroid is equal to 100 pts per Hl of asteroid. Thus, a 20 equipment space mass driver might fire an asteroid of size 20 (Hl value 10 in the BE) that might do 2000 points of damage to a base (almost certainly destroying it handily), or 2000 pts of planetary bombardment damage, which will often suffice to devastate the planet. One should note that the asteroid is comparatively vulnerable, being destroyed by 10 points of damage. Cost: 1 point (3.33 RP’s base) per equipment space. They may also be built as a standalone system at 5 RP’s per hull point of asteroid fired.

 

Warp Engine Boosters: These systems allow a ship to enjoy the speed benefits of a gunboat, although they require a significantly greater amount of tending afterward. Warp engine boosters come with a +15% unit surcharge. The ship with warp engine boosters may cruise safely at +1 WF over its normal cruising speed. However, it may do this no longer than one turn, and after any period of such increased speed, it requires that much time in a repair facility without using its drives for maintenance on the engines. If the ship exceeds one turn of engine booster use before getting the needed dock time, it has the normal breakdown chance at any warp speed at all.

 

Warp Mines: Best described as warp “speed bumps”, these are special mines that put out a gravitic “pulse” that can disrupt the warp bubble surrounding a ship in warp drive immediately resulting in forcing that ship out of warp drive, often with severe consequences due to the sudden alteration of energy fields and deceleration effects. Cost: As per standard minefields plus 15%. Stats: None - these weapons are designed to knock ships out of warp and presumably drop them into some vulnerable spot or trap (such as a cluster of minefields).

 

Web Mines: An Arachnid invention similar in nature to terrestrial CAPTOR mines from 20th Century wet navies on Earth. A webmine is an autonomous energy weapons platform wielding 2 plasma beam emitters and enough capacitors and generators for continuous fire. The platform is deployed from a hangar bay or minelayer and then possesses only limited tactical movement ability (in the BE, webmines come with the NOMOVE tag enabled; in FOTS TCOM1, webmines would be capable of no more than 6 turns movement at a top speed of 10 hexes per turn, 60-hexes total). Webmines also generate a low-level realspace inversion field which limits tactical retreat from webmined areas by enemy craft. The result is that enemy craft subjected to attack by webmines are essentially "stuck" in the minefield until/if they can fight their way out of the field (gaining the enemy fleet the NOMOVE tag as well). How this inversion field is set up and operates is unknown to the rest of the galaxy and is a closely guarded Arachnid military secret. Arachnid vessels do not appear to suffer any effect from the inversion field. Hull: 1; Equipment: 2 (2 plasma beams (HEAT); Stats: 2001,HEAT; Cost: 8 RPs.

 

World Killer Computer Virus: Introduction of this virus into any world, planet, or colony results in a 50% decrease in the RP output of that world, cripples all shipyards, and reduces the effectiveness of any planetary defenses by 50%. Cost: 500 RPs

 

Wormhole Collapsing Chaos Bombs: A weapon capable of collapsing any artificially generated or naturally occurring wormhole. Developed to destroy ships equipped with wormhole drives or jump gates. Enormously expensive, the device is also enormously destructive with approximately the same results as the Gravitic Implosion Bomb. Cost: 1553 RPs. Stats: 600,0,0,1,0,0,0,MULTI 3 PEN 1

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