Josh Peters
▶ Stars Without Number

A couple of maneuvers for Bridge crews in SWN Revised ship combat. These two are intended primarily for "starfighter" combat in case that's a thing in your game:

Tail (4CP): The pilot attempts to gain advantage on another craft, by maneuvering to get behind it. Roll an opposed Pilot skill check. If the "hunter" wins the check, all gunners on board gain a bonus to hit equal to the pilot's skill level. This lasts until the next round. As well, the pilot can fire a single weapon at the tailed ship at a cost of 0CP.

A ship being tailed cannot fire on its pursuer with fixed-forward weaponry, and all turret-mounted weapons suffer a -2 penalty to hit.

The Tail maneuver must be re-rolled each round in order to gain the bonus to hit.

Shake Tail (2CP): The pilot of a tailed craft initiates this maneuver, forcing an opposed Pilot skill check against the "hunter" craft. Success means that the tail is lost.

As much as single-crewed starfighters are a thing in science fiction, the command point system doesn't specifically model "dogfights". If a group wants WW2-style dogfighting in their science fiction, then pilots would constantly be jockeying for position, and taking shots with their fixed-forward guns (using the Pilot skill). I'm not sure if this should be used for larger vessels.


Dave Sherohman

I haven't read the SWNR rules yet, so take this with a large grain of salt, but it looks reasonable to me and, yes, I would use it with larger vessels, assuming abstract positioning. (If you're using a map and miniatures, then I'm not sure I would use it even for single-seat fighters.)

The one change I would consider would be the -2 to hit for turreted weapons on the pursued ship. I think I would only apply that to weapons fired by the pilot (assuming that SWNR allows pilots to fire turret mounts at all). If the turrets are being fired by dedicated gunners, I'm inclined to say they should not be penalized. Going back to the WW2 examples, I don't really see a B-17's gunners taking penalties for firing on more maneuverable fighters in general, and shooting down tailing fighters is basically the entire purpose of their tailgunner mounts.

Josh Peters

The -2 penalty reflects the fact that the tailing vessel is maximizing its ability to stay in turret blind spots.

Brian McGillivray

I'd agree that the -2 penalty for turrets isn't really fitting the concept of the pilot tailing another ship. Staying in turret blind spots should probably be a separate manoeuvre entirely.