Typical Starship Crew
- Pilot [Starship]: A failed Pilot [Starship] check results in no jump. In a no jump, the jump drives simply fail to operate.
- Astrogation: A failed Astrogation roll results in a misexit from jump-space. A misexit usually occurs near a world in the destination star system or in deep space as the ship exits jump-space near an unexpected stellar object, planet, comet, or asteroid. A disastrously bad Astrogation roll could result in a misexit in the starting star system as the ship exits near a gas giant or other planet in the originating system.
- Mechanic [J-Drive]: Failures involving Mechanic [J-Drive] rolls are called misjumps, and can have the most dramatic effects. A misjump can take the form of a no jump, a failed jump, or a misdirected jump. A no jump is identical to the no jump described for a failed Pilot [Starship] roll. A failed jump results in the ship entering jump-space for a week and then exiting in roughly the same place that it started. A misdirected jump or misjump results in the ship emerging from jump-space in an unintended location, usually far in distance and location from the intended destination - misjumps of 30 parsecs are not common, but they are not unheard of either. Until a ship exists jump-space, it is impossible to tell the difference between a failed jump and a misdirected jump.
- Disaster: A critical failure on any of the three required skill checks results in a disastrous outcome. In addition to the possibility of a misexit, failed jump, or misdirected jump, a disaster may result in the ship being damaged in transit, or potentially even destroyed entirely.
- Standing Jump: A standing jump is calculated to give the jumping ship the same vector as the destination system. This is usually the safest type of jump, as it minimizes the possibility of colliding with an unanticipated object in deep space.
- Running Jump: A running jump is made with high speed upon entering jump-space. If properly calculated, the ship only needs to decelerate as it approaches its destination at the end of its jump. If poorly calculated, the ship will exit jump space with a vector that may place it wildly at odds with its intended destination and might be required to make substantial course corrections.
- Micro-Jump: A micro jump is a jump within a single star system. As with all jumps, a micro jump takes about a week, and it uses up as much fuel as a one parsec jump. In some cases, a micro jump is a quicker way to move about a star system than using M-drives.
- Detection and Communication: Ships can make Electronics Operations rolls for each type of sensor they have (usually some combination of Radscanners, PESA, and AESA). If a ship has multiples of the same type of sensor, they only make one check for that type using the one with the combination of operator skill and scan are the highest. One individual may make checks for more than one type of sensor, but each extra sensor that a character tries to use imposes a -2 to all of his Electronic Operation [Sensor] rolls as he has to divide his attention among multiple systems. Note that beam weapons can only be directed against foes detected with AESA or PESA. Detecting an object with one type of sensor does not automatically detect it with other types of sensor, although it can give a bonus to do so. Radio communications must be declared in this round, but if communications are opened, they may be conducted freely throughout the round.
- Maneuver: All ships with working maneuver drives may maneuver, starting with the ships with the lowest acceleration and then proceeding in reverse order to the ship with the highest acceleration. If two ships have the same acceleration, then the larger ship goes before the smaller ship. If the ships are still tied, then their commanding officer (or pilot) must engage in a contest of tactics skill with his counterpart from the the opposing ship, with the winner going second. The pilot (or gunner for a missile) determines how the spacecraft will maneuver by placing the ship's vector counter a number of hexes in any direction to a maximum of that ship's acceleration. Ships that have an acceleration rating of less than one G can only accelerate fractions of a hex each round (meaning their maneuvers are only effective once every couple of rounds).
- Movement: In the movement phase all ships move according to their movement vectors determined in the previous phase. Basically, place a placeholder counter on the ship's current location and move the ship to the vector counter location. Then take the vector counter and place it the same number of hexes away from the ship as the ship is from the placeholder along a straight line drawn from the placeholder to the ship. Spacecraft that pass close to objects with lots of mass, such as a planet or moon, will have their motion affected by the gravity of such objects. If a spacecraft's movement intersects with a planet, the ship may collide with the planet or land on the planet. If a ship (or missile) ends its movement in the same hex as another ship, it may attempt to ram the other ship.
- Direct Fire: Ships may fire beam or gun weapons at one another in this phase. All combat is simultaneous, so all attacks are resolved before any damage is applied. Each gunner must choose whether to shoot and who to shoot at in this phase. Each gunner can only shoot at a single target in a round. Each weapon only makes one attack roll in a round - weapons with a high rate of fire gain a bonus to their attack roll rather than multiple attacks. Gunners attack using their appropriate Gunner skill, with an attack roll scoring a number of hits equal to half the margin of success of the attack roll (rounding down, with a minimum of 1). Spacecraft with at least 0.1 G of acceleration may attempt to Dodge incoming fire. Ships attempting to ram other ships may not Dodge point defense fire. Once all attacks are calculated and applicable Dodge rolls made, all damage is applied to all ships that suffered hits.
- Collision and Point Defense: Ships attempting to ram other spacecraft do so in this round. Defending spacecraft may use point defense fire as a last resort, attempting to destroy an incoming "ramming" opponent. Attacks are made as normal for beam weapons in a point defense attack, but gain bonuses due to the close range. A single gunner may make multiple point defense attacks depending upon the rate of fire of his weapon. If both spacecraft are attempting to ram one another, the collision automatically happens. Otherwise, the pilots of the respective ships engage in a contest of Piloting skill (Gunner's piloting missiles use their Gunner skill for this contest). If the rammer loses or ties, it misses the target. otherwise, the collision happens. Ramming an asteroid, moon, or planet usually won't destroy the target, but can devastate an area.
- Launch/Docking: Ships can launch missiles and other craft in order from lowest to highest captain initiative (conduct a contest of Tactics skill among the commanders of the various ships to determine this initiative order, with the ships with the better results going after the ships with the worse results). Ships can also dock with other ships if they have matched courses and velocities. One of the two docking spacecraft must be able to maneuver, and the other must either cooperate or be crippled and unable to maneuver. Neither spacecraft may maneuver in the next combat round, and the docking maneuver isn't complete until the start of the next docking round. Docking can be performed more quickly, taking only a single docking phase to complete, but doing so requires a Piloting skill roll and the ships suffer collision damage if this skill roll fails. Docked spacecraft can maneuver while docked provided they continue to match courses and do no exceed 1 G in acceleration. Undocking requires only a single phase and does not restrict maneuvering. A ship can recover smaller craft into a spacedocking or vehicle bay using the same procedures as required to dock with another spacecraft.
- Damage Control: As the name of this phase implies, engineers on the various ships can attempt to repair damage to their spacecraft. An engineer can repair either hull damage, damage to a specific subassembly such as a turret or bay, or to a major subsystem such as the M-Drive or Power Plant. Such attempts require mechanic or Engineer rolls with penalties if the hull or subassembly is disabled. A chief engineer coordinating repairs can give other engineers a +1 to their skill rolls with a successful Leadership roll. The number of points of damage repaired are equal to the margin of success of the applicable engineer or mechanic rolls. Repair teams repair damage equal to the average margin of success multiplied by the number of members of the team. A critical success doubles the points of damage repaired, while a critical failure can cause injury to the engineers working on the system and additional damage to the ship. Repairs can be rushed, potentially restoring large numbers of hit points to the ship in a short time, but any failure is treated as a critical failure.
Third Imperium Home