Thursday, June 29, 2006

Happy Accidents of LBB3 Generation Create Cool Stuff

So, Looking at Grand Festeria (the 9 subsectors) I've identified two empires so far (having re-analyzed two subsectors.) There's the Berlings Reach, and there's Fester.

Fester's by far the bigger of the two; it's tech 15, and has benefit of the largest Jump-1 main in all 9 subsectors. Berlings is a handful of worlds, scattered among several small clusters.

Fester's a type 5 government, a "feudal technocracy," (reference TML, CotI threads somewhere to figure this one out) with a moderate law level, 6 or so.

Berlings is a Charismatic Dictatorship with law level B.

Both are sufficicently high pop and high tech that they're the naturally dominant space-powers in their regions; where A and B ports exist on worlds unable to support them via their own resources, it's a cinch that the major local starfaring power's behind it. If there's a captive government, it's likely that the major local starfaring power is doing the capturing.

So what's really cool is the way that the surrounding worlds "ended up."

Berlings's neighborhood has a disproportionate number of captive governments within its reach, and a few scattered naval bases.

Fester is surrounded, mainly, by smaller-pop worlds that can't maintain their own fleets, but who tend to be self-governed: only a few captive governments. There are a fairly even distribution of Naval bases near Fester, virtually none of which could have been made by the worlds they're on (low tech, low pop, or both.) There is nowhere in Fester's home subsector that is more than 3 parsecs from a Festrian Naval base.

So what I'm seeing is this:

the Festrian Empire is a Spacer empire. It extends its power across the space-lanes between its worlds but really doesn't give much of a damn what goes on dirtside unless it affects the flow of trade (and taxes/tribute) to Fester. Basically, you don't mess with the Black Ships, you don't maintain a rival fleet, everything's fine. Fester will expand its borders in space, continually projecting its Naval and Trade power outwards, but local government generally will keep its own, dirtside. Fester's fleets will be heavy on carriers, cruisers, and patrol craft, but there will be very little need for landing forces.

Berlings is different. Berlings takes worlds, clears out the old government and puts in its own. Half of what Berlings holds are captive governments. Half of the rest look like thinly disguised puppets to me. Berlings will have its patrol ships and carriers, certainly, in order to maintain its space against the vast Festrian empire (Fester has a naval presence pressuring Berlings' space) but a major element in the Berlings fleet will be troop carriers.

This is leading me to say that the Festrian Empire is not such a bad thing as empires go. They're hell on smugglers and pirates; they welcome the influence of the TAS in terms of merchant price control (large corporations seem to do nicely in Festrian space, and Festrian nobles seem to do well with large corporations.) The Scouts generally approve of the Festrian record, although they're concerned with the worlds that get skipped over by the big Jump-3 routes in Festrian space. There's also a number of worlds that Fester has Red-zoned, and the Scouts are pressing for some sort of observer status there.

The Scouts and the TAS will be much more worried about Berlings.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Reassessing It All: 1 of 9, the Berlings Reach

Well, I'm not scrapping Festeria.

But it's changing, largely because I really like some of what follows from an independent Travellers' Aid Society and an independent Scout Service, and because I like having a multiplicity of different stellar governments rather than one big one.

If I can find a program that allows me to enter in UPPs on a Mac, and print up a nice subsector map, I'll put some charts up. In the meantime, they're all hand-drawn, so I can't yet. I got a PC at work, that'd do fine with a number of programs out there, but I don't want to spend any more worktime at this than I already am.

Anyhow, this weekend I re-copied my subsector data *abandoning* the old trade routes I'd put in place, and started interpreting different worlds' spheres of influence. It's been fun. I'm 3/4 finished with subsector 1 of 9 (top left;) the Berlings subsector. The subsector takes its name from the population 9 tech E world near the middle; it's one of two worlds in the region that has both the tech, population, and starport to field a real navy; everywhere else in the subsector is either too low tech or low population to have one of its own. The fact that Berling's government is a Charismatic Dictatorship with intrusive law just adds to the interpretation: the subsector is home to an expansionist military dictatorship.

There's a disproportionate number of captive governments in the subsector, and it's pretty easy to say who's doing the capturing.

There's worlds that aren't captive, but where combinations of trade classification, government and tech clearly put worlds in dependent relationships with their neighbors. So while nominally independent, they're added to the Berlings Reach.

There's a couple fistfuls of worlds that are isolated from the pocket empire and pertnear everything else; one that's completely depopulated apart from the scoutbase and starport (I'm calling "planetary war and stellar raiders" on this one) and there's worlds that look like good candidates for the same thing in the near future.

There's also Paxaros, a hyper-populated industrial nonagricultural world with a tech of H, that's 17 folks, and I'm calling that one a redzone: Isolationist, noninterventionist, their only contact with the rest of the subsector being trade ships that scrupulously refuse to sell anything but precious metals and buy basically nothing but foodstuffs. (They HAVE to be self-isolating: there is no other comparable tech within the 9 subsectors I've plotted out, and if they were in the least bit expansionist they'd take everything.) They're ruled by an AI; their population is pretty robotic as well: all deep-taught and hyperspecialized. The ships are all long-jump capable and are able to evade by means of matter transference, so they're virtually impossible to hit; their weaponry is a disintegrator ray that causes criticals with every hit. They even appear to be able to jump in and out of system well within the 100D limit. The Berlings navy would have learned long ago: You don't mess with the Paxari. You let their merchants go where they want to, and you treat them nice, and then they go home. At the same time, The Berlingi Navy is sort of pinned down by the local presence of the Paxari - at least to watch them. And they're neighbors with the Festrian Empire, whose fleets would likely make regular -if mostly peaceful- incursions in Berlingi space, often shepherding the Black Ships (Oh yes, I'm keeping those) as they travel through Berlings heading out to the Beyond.

The Scouts seem to be pretty busy with coordinating humanitarian missions: holding the only port open on an otherwise blasted world, maintaining relations with the pocket empire in order to influence policy.

Once I've finished plotting out the relationships between worlds throughout the 9 subsectors, I'll plug in trade routes. Fester's still looking to be the biggest of the empires in the reach, and I'll need to see how it shapes up there before I determine where the routes go ultimately.

For backstory, I need to change a few things.

I'm sticking with the Old Empire for deep history, and the initial human spread.

I'm sticking with The Dark, the Fall of the Old Empire.

Fester, Berlings, and the other pocket empires are all arising out of the ashes of the Old Empire and The Dark. Navies and other armed forces are tied to their respective Interstellar and Planetary governments.

I'm keeping much of Fester's back history: the Witch Wars and all. The animosity that Festeria seems to have held towards Psions seems to be fairly universal, if not to so great an extent. (Why should this be? Are Psions somehow tied to ancient memories of The Fall and The Dark?)

The Scouts arise to preserve and reconnect humanity's scattered children, and prevent a return of The Dark. They're an Intertellar Non Governmental Organization.

Merchants fall into several categories: Megacorporate & their subsidiaries, Official government traders & subsidy holders, and Free Traders. Corporate merchants seem to maintain TAS connections and cooperate with setting interstellar trade policy; Governmental merchants are tied to their governments. Free traders, scattered as they are, are seldom able to muster up much influence, although there may be cases where temporary partnerships and unions might form to influence local markets.

The TAS appears to have been formed to regulate interstellar travel and trade, to keep both travel and shipping within the reach of non-shipowners: it's definitely not an advocate for the Merchants themselves. They seem to monitor starport conditions, at least in the A and B ports, and may exercise considerable influence behind the scenes influence in local governments. Like the Scouts, they are an Intertellar Non Governmental Organization.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Other Things I'm Trying to Settle On

It wasn't spelled out in LBB123 what sort of artificial gravity would be commonly found on starships.

When I first got the books back in the 80s my first instinct said that there would be no "magic gravity" aboard: Ships would be zero gee unless under thrust; ships pulling high gee would be uncomfortable places.

As I got more involved with the GDW published adventures and supplements, it became clear that this was not the official vision - that the Gravitics tech that was behind the Air/Rafts and grav belts and such like also powered "grav plates" that provided gravity on shipboard, and at least dampened the effects of high-gee maneuvers.

In retrospect, this is reflected in the rules: Book 2 never addressed the issue at all, and had it done so, there would have been ship costs associated with rotational machinery for example, or some assessment of the potential damage thereto in combat. It would complicate passenger travel hugely.

So as much as I might like to incorporate rotational grav and the like, I have to admit, the Classic Traveller Little Black Books imply ships with "magic gravity" aboard, and for the purposes of my project I'm sticking to that.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Nobody here but us chickens... and Here's Why: On NPCs

and Navy, and Marines, and Army, and Scouts, and Merchants, and... Other.

I'm having a little temptation away from my LBB123-ness on account of Supplement 4, Citizens of the Imperium.

I like a lot of it. But I'm holding fast.

Any character types not in LBB1, I'll make up. It's a nice, standard format to follow, and that'll be no sweat. My notional players are unlikely to carp.

And anyhow, I don't know that really need that involved a system for generating NPCs.

My assumption is that Travellers - PCs primarily - are remarkable individuals. They're accustomed to taking risks. They have abilities beyond the norm - either unusual skills, or unusually high ones. Spacer services and the Military tend to produce a disproportionate number of these, because their skill sets are conducive to high adventure, and because the nature of their service lends itself to the uprooted lifestyle Travelling calls for.

For spacer and military NPCs, then, standard chargen is useful, though not necessary. It's pretty safe to say that *average* ship crews aren't going to often be much more skilled than your *average* PC.

For redshirts, all you need are three numbers and standard armament. Weapons skill 0 with what they have on hand. Ship crews, by and large, will be skill-1.

For groundhogs, I'm inclined to give them 1 skill level per "term," loosely defined, plus they might have 0-level skills appropriate to their world and tech, along with possible higher levels in their profession. A thirtyish broker on a rich tech 8 world might have admin-3, ground car-0. A crooked one might have admin-1 bribery -2. No muss, no fuss, no worries. The main thing is to provide color: the general personality and all.

Patrons, generally, need more embellishment. But I don't see needing CharGen for them much. Assigning appropriate skills and attributes seems best.

As for particular skills - prospecting, for instance - these I'm inclined to adjudicate as they come along, rather than try to do anything all-encompassing.

I have a card-box full of generated characters in the 6 "services"- anyone who's done Traveller at all does. And I'm inclined to adapt some of them to NPC roles: not necessarily based on their service, but on their skills and abilities. Service, I may change to suit. That babyfaced Navy Ensign with a knighthood might be usable as rolled, but he might make a better "professional" noble, or some other sort of functionary.



There's the basic idea that 8+ on your roll indicates a success; +/- mods for ease or difficulty, + skills.

But then there's different little snippety angles on a lot of the skills.

Some of them make sense in their own context (bribery pertaining to law levels, etcetera.) But in general, the variations make it a little awkward sometimes.

There's the whole UTP business, was it DGP then MegaTraveller that sorts a lot of that out. But even that's a little persnickety for me.

So here it is:
Unless otherwise stated or if we just don't feel like checking, Basic 8+ on 2D for success

+skill level
+relevant attribute/5, rounding down
-3 if difficult, or - whatever I darn well think is appropriate.
If "taking time and doing it right" is an option, plus whatever.
Any mishaps due to failure get roleplayed out.

Anything all that routine doesn't require a roll. There will be no "Shoe Shop" adventure IMTU (1-6 customers/day, roll 7+ for each to buy a pair of shoes.)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

And now for the fun stuff.

I've done it, and charted out the nine subsectors of the Imperium Festerium: I've laid in the major trade routes. I did the subsectors all by hand, the old school die rolly way. I picked the major trade routes like so:

For class A or B starports, I added the following:
Population #
+2 if naval base present
+2 if class A port.

If the sum is 8+, it's a stop on a trade route.

Each leg of the route must be J-3 or less.

Where such a world is not within J-3 of another such, identify a suitable way-point between the two nearest: each leg of the jump must be no more than J-3, and the port should be able to provide refined fuel: Bare minimum being a D port with a scout base.

I've thought out the basic disposition of the Festrian fleet, typical warships being:

4000-5000 ton orbital battle cruisers, J2 or 3, 2 or 3G: primarily missile platforms with lasers assigned to antimissile duty, generally carry a complement of riderships and fighters.
4000 ton carrier: J3, 1G; typically carries 4 300 ton 6-G riders and twenty fighters
2000-3000 ton raiders: J3, 4G to 6G: carry a fighter squadron and a complement of fast-landing ships to deliver up to a company of marines; primarily armed with missiles to provide orbital support for same
1000-2000 ton destroyers: J3, 6G; larger varieties carry their own fighter squadrons as well. Typically assigned to carrier/battlecruisers as escorts.
800 ton "mercenary cruisers" sometimes employed to deliver small marine forces
400 ton "T" patrol cruisers for scutwork.

Virtually none of the capital ships are typically encountered within Imperial borders: most are assigned out beyond the frontier. Naval encounters, especially commercial ones, will generally be with the ubiquitous T; fleet encounters will generally never involve more than the fighter screen, or perhaps a cutter.

On the Trade Routes: 4000 ton Imperial Merchants: J3, 1G: when they hit port, speculative cargos vanish, sales prices plummet, and for purposes of cargo and passenger availability, the world's effective population # drops by 2 (such a large ship creates a huge imbalance in local trade, with Imperial trade representatives purchasing cargos in bulk below rates by Imperial Requisition Edict.)

Monday, June 12, 2006

Book 2 Detection and Ship Tactics: The Military

Sensor Drones: IMTU, missile sensor drones typically behave just like missiles, except that instead of blowing stuff up they transmit sensor data.

Since missiles are understood to be able to home at humongous ranges, I allow basic detection-type data to be picked up at around half a light-second. For more detailed analyses, I require interception by the missile: 25mm/2500km.

A fleet jumping into a system will have several envelopes of scan about them.

1)The fleet's capital ships have their own scan, two light seconds.
2)The fleet will launch fighter patrols: slow patrols at tracking range from the fleet, (adding another threelight seconds of scan between the fleet and anybody else) and high velocity patrols sent to run scan on any fleet destinations (the gas giant, the primary world, what have you.)
3) patrols will, themselves, employ sensor drones to scan any particularly risk-laden body: basically, anywhere a ship can hide.

Essentially, if two fleets are in system employing these tactics, the capital ships should never be able to just stumble upon each other. They'll hit each other's patrols first, and even these will often be spotted by means of sensor drone.

Hunt and Seeky
Military ship encounters, then, will ideally be initiated at or beyond tracking range: any fleet proceeding cautiously will, by means of drones and reconnaissance fighters, be able to acquire targets well outside of 3 light seconds. Assuming both fleets are using such tactics, most initial targets will be the opposing fighter patrols. Each side's fighters will attempt to neutralize the others, then trace back their vectors in an attempt to target the opposition's main fleet.

Ultimately, one side will acquire the other side's main fleet as targets. A fleet wishing to attack such targets will wish to avoid lasers: any military target will certainly employ return fire software as a matter of course, and in any case laser fire beyond 500,000km is little more than harrassment. Certainly, any long range salvos will be fired via missiles: the fleet launches missiles, which boost, then coast to within about half a light second, then accelerate to adjust course, intercept, and impact. The target fleet will be able to trace missile vectors out to their detection range, but by then the launching fleet will have shifted position. The target fleet will send missiles back up the missile tracks to acquire targets, probably in concert with sensor missiles. But by the time the target fleet is able to mobilize and target its attacker (likely operating a good three light seconds away) the attacking fleet will have been able to launch several turns worth of missiles.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Book 2 Detection and Ship Tactics

On the face of it, detection's simple in book 2. If a target is within detection range, it's detected. Detection range can vary based on the quality of the sensors, and certain countermeasures by the target.

-----------------(15 bands)--(8 bands)----(2 bands)

------------------60 bands)--(30 bands)----(8 bands)

Any ship can track a detected target to 900,000km. (9000mm,90 bands)
Planetary masses and stars completely conceal a ship from detection.

I interpret Book 2's "Maintaining complete silence" as "not transmitting radio and not running power plants;" a ship maintaining complete silence cannot maneuver or fire lasers, cannot jump, cannot communicate with other ships, and cannot guide missiles actively. Passive ordnance may be launched without breaking silence, but reveal the launching ship the movement phase following launch.

Who Gets to be Intruder?

The "Intruder" in book 2 combat moves first, fires first, and overall enjoys an advantage. It stands to reason that whichever ship sees the other first may naturally be the intruder.

If only one ship detects the other, it may avoid the encounter, or it may begin space combat as the intruder. As long as the intruder does nothing to reveal its position, it will remain undetected.

What About Ties? Houserule
Loosely based on book 1 surprise: If both ships detect each other, each must roll 1D, adding the ship’s Navigator’s skill to the roll. The higher roll is the Intruder.

An undetected ship will be detected:
1) If any action it takes causes it to fall within the other ship’s sensor range:
a. by movement of either ships, or
b. causing its detection range to expand by breaking complete silence.

The following are more house-ruley, but still based on Book 2 rationales:

2) A ship outside normal detection range may fire its lasers and remain undetected UNLESS the target has a Return Fire program active.

3)An undetected ship may launch passively guided ordnance without being detected. If the ordnance's vector can be traced back to the ship's present position, however, it will be detected.

An example: A (T)Patrol Cruiser approaches a world under power, around which an (A) Free Trader is orbiting and maintaining silence. The type A will detect the type T first, because the T can can only detect a silent, orbiting target at a range of 75,000km, while the A detect a normal-running ship at a range of 150,000km. Therefore the type A will be the intruder in this encounter.

If the type A wishes to remain undetected, it cannot operate its power plant, and so cannot maneuver or use lasers. It may launch a missile undetected, however. When the missile moves, its vector can be traced to its point of origin - but since the type A is in orbit, its vector will have taken it away from where it was when the missile began movement. The type T will see that a missile has originated from planetary orbit, but not knowing the direction in which the type A was moving, it will be unable to target the launching vessel. The type T will have to close within 75,000km to do that, which may prove difficult while evading the missile salvo streaking towards it.

The Type A's captain will likely cross his fingers and hope that his missiles keep the T busy long enough for his orbit to take him behind the planet, at which point he'll either land, or make a run for 100D.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Thoughts on Book 2 Combat

Maneuver/Evade, Auto/Evade, Maneuver:

My Question: A/E is described as working at a lower level than M/E. Yet at –2, and taking up only 1 slot of CPU, it is a more effective evasion program than almost all of the M/E programs. At the same time, it is much cheaper than the weakest of these! What’s missing?

My answer: I follow MAYDAY’s lead in interpreting these programs:
Maneuver allows the unrestricted use of the ship’s maneuver drive.

Maneuver/Evade allows use of the maneuver drive while inserting evasive maneuvers to defeat laser fire. In order to do so, the ship must sacrifice forward acceleration: A ship running M/E operates at 1G less than the ship’s potential acceleration. A 4G ship can maneuver at 3G while evading: a 1G ship cannot maneuver while evading.

Auto/Evade allows evasive action, but does NOT allow maneuvering.

Mayday does not allow A/E to be operated simultaneously with maneuver.

I actually came up with a houserule close to this on my own, years before I read MAYDAY.

Pulse Lasers:

My question: LBB2 (2nd ed) says Pulse lasers are better at causing damage than beam lasers, but that beam lasers are better at scoring hits than pulse lasers -but there's no mechanic stated. What's up with that?

My answer: Pulse lasers are -1 to hit, but get 2 damage rolls per hit. (as per LBB2 first edition.)

My question: What about when pulse lasers are used in conjunction with the "select" program?
My answer: Only one of the two hits gets the selection roll: the other is assigned normally. Pulse lasers are hamfisted weapons.

My questions: Do missiles actually move? How far? Where to?

My answers: Aside from missiles of an Unusual military sort, I'm assuming missiles to behave this way:

cr.5000 50kg, 1D hits; 6G with fuel for 3 full burns (18 at 1G) Can home passively or actively. Subject to ECM.

Conventional: cr 20,000 where available, 50kg. 1D hits. 6G with fuel for 6 full burns (36 at 1G) Can home passively or actively. Not subject to ECM.
Fusion missiles:
1 Mcr where available. 50kg. 10D hits. 6G with fuel for 2 full burns. Can home passively or actively. Not subject to ECM.

Passive: Missile must move at full available acceleration to the target's present position. Launching ship does not transmit and remains silent.
Active: Missile may move at any or no acceleration, to whatever position the launching player wishes. Launching ship transmits signal, and breaks silence.

My questions: How big a cloud of sand does a sandcaster round make? Does it last? Do they stack?

My answers:
Sand creates a 25mm radius cloud. It keeps the vector it was launched at, persists, and is cumulative.
lasers fired through sand fire at -3 per 25mm. Missiles can be damaged by sand: for each 25mm of sand a missile passes through, roll 2D. On a 12+, the missile is incapacitated. (So sand provides some missile protection, but not enough.)

I assume anti-missile fire to take place at extremely short range, so one's own sand does not interfere with one's anti-missile fire, but it does interfere with any outgoing fire.

In range band combat, I would say that sand only persists as long as the ship that launched it keeps the same vector: if it maneuvers, it's leaving the sandcastle.

Friday, June 02, 2006

DRIFT missiles?

Suppose this: take the book 2 rules as written, and don't give a missile its own vector. Just take the ship's vector, and assume that a missile's fuel all goes to the swift, twisty, precise maneuvering of actually closing and hitting when it intercepts. That's still looking at missile ranges of something like 2500km, if we use SS3's assumption that missiles intercept at 25mm.

Missile tactics then look like this:

A ship at extreme range builds up an intercepting vector with the target, and releases a missile. It then corrects and releases another the next turn, and so on: or perhaps the ship decelerates and lets the missiles go on ahead. Those missiles, if they're well placed, will force maneuvers on the part of the target: maneuvers that overall will make the targets more vulnerable to laser fire: Slow ships won't be able to evade, ships in sand will be forced to leave it. Ships that do get intercepted by missiles will have to target them with lasers, that won't be available for targeting ships.

Even so, fast ships, even 2 or 3 gs, will be able to outmanevuer most missile tracks with ease. These ships must be engaged with lasers until they're disabled and drifting, at which point they're vulnerable to missiles employed as ship killers.

There's something attractive about this, isn't there? It means that ship maneuvering has to be really precise. It means that vectors really mean a lot: to make a missile hit, you really have to match trajectories carefully. Even so, a lot more missiles have to be expended to achieve hits. That's my next smoke test: Book 2 drift missiles ONLY.

In the end I'll probably settle on something in between: Actually, now that I'm using the calculator to build them, SS3 is growing on me again. But if I can make book 2 drift missiles work at ALL then I'll stick with them.

More On Missiles, Ship Combat


Misinterpretations re SS3, maybe not scratching it after all?

The balance is that the tables seem to be right, after all; one of the EQs was wrong. I've got a spreadsheet program that works to build missiles that makes sense, pretty much, and so for missile design at least in the background I think I can use it after all. (find it at ctstarships,files section)

I ran a smoke test, using hex based book 2 movement at a starting range of about 600,000km, between two patrol cruisers. Each packed missiles that could go 6G 36, or 6 G's for 6 rounds at full acceleration. I did *not* use SS3 damage calculation: I went with straight book 2 for that, because I wasn't concerned with that aspect of SS3, more trying to figure what Book 2 combat worked like with missiles that were moderately speedy. Now, the calculator makes a working 6G36 discretionary-burn, mass-sensing missile for somewhere in the vicinity of cr.10,000. The "standard" cr.5000 missile cost can buy something similar with less range: 4G12, which I'll experiment with next.

I found that at that range, and those fast velocities, basically any missile fired should intercept, and only antimissile countermeasures should make a difference. The two ships pummeled each other: one had a hotshot gunner on one turret, and was able to do a little extreme range potshotting which had some effect; the other had to try to close to less than 500,000 in order to use lasers at all. The presence of laser fire kept ship velocities down somewhat, to 3G overall until hits started scoring.
I experimented with missile spreads, having missiles not automatically homing directly towards the target but trying to anticipate future positions somewhat, and the only missiles that missed were ones that I'd futzed with. The ships just pummelled each other; both lost maneuver drives to critical hits; both had their power plants and jumps whittled down. Both suffered many hull hits. So the two fought basically to a standstill; one lost its ship's boat, the other launched its own and that's where it sits now. Both ships are dead in the water, coasting with maneuver destroyed. One has jump destroyed: the other has jump and power damage but can still leave the system, so I *guess* it'll win on those grounds.

No crew casualties, assuming that entering combat, military crews are already suited up. I'm thinking that's not right: literally DOZENS of hits, some by missiles, and not a soul is hurt? I think I'm going to include MAYDAY's casualty system or something like it: if there's a turret hit, its gunner may be liable to take damage. if there's a drive hit, engineering crew on station should be liable. Hull hits might well involve a number of crew - I'd think computer hits would involve some risk to bridge crew: they're right next door. I think a 9+ to avoid injury should do it: 3D+4 hits sounds about right. Perhaps a positive demo for vacc suit skill if suited up...

I've got another idea in mind though... see next post.