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BC.org Space RP System

     This article is designed to provide a standard reference document for the Space RP System that many that are a part of BC.org use. While it is intended to communicate the rules of this system, it also has some general useful tips on using rolls in PvE, PvP, and Strict RP settings.

     This system is presented entirely as a direct result of inquiries from players who had expressed an interest in Space Roleplay similar to the chatroom events. Unfortunately, Space Roleplay in general presents a unique challenge in that while we can represent our characters as numberless aspects when we incorporate traits, playing with a ship required something more rigid that the game system at present does not provide.
     This system is built to answer that problem. It is designed to be as minimalist as possible, needing the minimum amount of bookkeeping or tracking - essentially, once you've created your "character sheet" for your crew/ship, the sheet does all of the work for you.

     How This Works
     The system is designed using the Base 100 System as its base, adding only the layer of a "character sheet" to represent the crew/ship you will play in gameplay instead of traits for an individual character. An event utilizing this system would otherwise progress the exact same way. This system provides flexibility for events such as escort missions, assaults, plain dogfights, or even chase scenes - each with their own possibilities of objectives or outcomes, just like a normal event.
     It should be noted, however, the combat-based nature of the system (as well as most of Space in general, from games to the movies) does leave little room for a social-based setting to an event, but that should not discourage pilots playing out inter-ship communications or interactions during such an event. Characters would still be present, after all, just in a different capacity than normal.

     The Sheet
     A "character sheet" consists of two parts - the crew and the ship - that are each treated as separate components entirely, independent of one another. The crew is represented on the left side of a completed character sheet and is unique - this part would theoretically remain the same no matter what ship the crew would be operating. Meanwhile the ship is shown on the right side of a sheet and remains the same regardless of the crew behind the wheel. Thus, a completed sheet a person would use in a Space Event will have essentially two columns of information, keeping everything quick to reference and easy to use.
     Below is an example character sheet, for reference. At first glance, this may seem like a large amount of score keeping or number-checking for gameplay, but the only effort this really requires is during creation - and even then, it is easier than it appears. See the sections below for details on the individual portions.
 Pilot: Guy McFly                 Ship: Rustbucket
Piloting:8Turrets:[X] [  ] [  ] [  ]
Gunnery:  12Missiles:[X] [X] [  ] [  ]
Sensors:5Shields:[X] [X] [  ] [  ]
Intuition:8Armoring:  [X] [X] [X] [X]
Discipline:12Drive:[X] [  ] [  ] [  ]
Trait:Sharpshooter   Size:Medium

     How To Build A Crew/Ship
     Creating the sheet is as simple as following two rules, one for Crew and one for the Ship. The intent is that this flexibility allows for different kinds of piloting tactics and ship types: A 'crew' could be only one pilot or a hundred people who might be more skilled at sensor analysis and intuition than aiming and flying, while a missile boat will obviously be more focused on missiles than a freighter. It also allows the possibility of players attempting to play 'roles' such as 'Tank' or 'Support' should that be their desire. The ship given as the sample would fit well for someone desiring to play a 'Tank' and run cover for other pilots more suited to attacking, but still can deal damage and take care of threats in its own right.
     The Crew
     The Crew skills are Piloting, Gunnery, Sensors, Discipline, Expertise, and a Trait. The first five of these stats are represented by numbers; these are static bonuses to any roll which involves that skill. For example, firing your turrets at a target would require a Gunnery roll, which in the case of the example sheet is 1d100+12. What situations receive what bonuses are described below.
     Piloting - Maneuvering the ship, positioning, anything involving flying the vessel falls under this.
     Gunnery - Attacking with onboard turrets or firing missiles takes this bonus as its base.
     Sensors - Targeting, scanning, jamming, communication, and locating objects or enemies outside visual range receives this bonus.
     Intuition - Initiative receives this bonus, as well as rolls that require cunning over skill.
     Discipline - Situations that require a crew to keep their composure or that require determination use this skill.
     Trait - A unique aspect of the crew and how they interact with their ships, grants unique actions or bonuses.
     You have 45 points to spread among Piloting, Gunnery, Sensors, Intuition and Discipline. Each can only a maximum score of 20. This allows for an even spread of (9, 9, 9, 9, 9) if you were attempting to be even across the board. The Trait skill is a single focus that changes how your crew interacts with their ship, creating unique changes to your gameplay. See below for a list of the traits available to pilots:
     Acceleration Control - Your exceptional success range with the 'Maneuver' and 'Flyby' actions start at 81 instead of 91.
     Surgical Strike - Your exceptional success range with the 'Fire Turrets' and 'Fire Missiles' actions start at 81 instead of 91.
     Electronic Warfare - You may take an action to prevent another enemy from being able to attack. 1d100 + Sensors - A success prevents the targeted opponent from using one action. An exceptional success prevents the targeted opponent from using their turn.
     Evasive Maneuvering - Whenever an enemy misses your ship, treat the attack as a successful hit against another enemy.
     Sharpshooter - Your regular damage with Turbo-Lasers is 2 instead of 1. (Exceptional hits are still 1 + Turrets)
     Motion Prediction - Your Exceptional hit damage with Missiles is 3 instead of 2. (Regular hits with Missiles are still 1 damage)
     Shield Management - Damage does not bleed over to your armor from your shields. (i.e. if you have 2 shields left and are hit for 3 damage, you will only take 2 damage but have no shields. The next hit depletes armor as normal.)
     Jury Rigging - You may use the 'Recharging Shields' action to instead repair one point of armor.
     Instant Recall - A character with this trait does not lose an action when rolling a critical failure.
     The Ship
     The Ship stats are represented by 'points' to help give a visual feel for the role of a ship. These stats show more of the hardware of a ship and its design: what it is made to accomplish. What benefit a higher score in each area gives is described below.
     Turrets - Points in Turrets will be added to laser damage on an Exceptional hit. Zero points in this skill results in no extra damage. (See "Firing Turrets" action for more information.)
     Missiles - Points in this stat will determine how many targets can be fired on with missiles. Zero points in this skill means you can not fire missiles. (See "Firing Missiles" action for more information.)
     Shields - Points in Shields determine how much HP your shields have. Shields are depleted before armor, and can be recharged. A ship cannot have more shields than it has armoring, but they recharge automatically after each wave of combat. (See "Recharging Shields" action for more information.)
     Armoring - Points in Armoring reflect the ships base HP. At least one point is required in this stat.
     Drive - Points in the Drive stat reflect how many actions are open to players on their turn. This can reflect an extremely speedy ship, or a ship with a large crew able to handle multiple tactics at once. Zero points in this skill means a ship can not take an action in combat.
     Size - Similar to the crew traits, the size of a vessel alters how it can perform in roleplay.
     You have 10 points to spread among Turrets, Missiles, Shields, Armoring and Drive. Each can only have a maximum of 4 points. This allows all five stats to be set at 2 points if you were attempting to be even across the board. The Size stat reflects the advantages and disadvantages of the ships class. See below for a list of effects of a ship's size:
     Small - Small ships are more nimble on battlefield, but have weaker defenses due to their size. They receive an additional point to Drive, but lose a point in both Shields and Armoring, while the Crew of these vessels also receives a +10 to their Piloting rolls.
     Medium - The baseline for the system, Medium ships receive no benefits or penalties from their size.
     Large - Large ships gain a benefit from increased hull strength over smaller vessels, but are harder to maneuver because of their size. They gain an additional point in both Shields and Armoring (allowing them to go above the 4 cap), but their crew piloting skill is reduced by -10.
     Capital - The biggest vessels of the stars are also among the sturdiest. Capital ships gain an additional two points in Shields and Armoring (allowing them to go above the 4 cap), but are not able to use any of the Piloting combat maneuvers. Further, their size reduces the crew's Piloting skill -10 and they restore 2 Shields when using the "Recharge Shields" action.

     Core Gameplay
     As stated before, this is based on the Base 100 System the chat events have used multiple times. To recap, the roll table is reprinted here:
     1-10 - Critical Failure
     11-40 - Failure
     41-90 - Success
     91-100 - Exceptional Success
     It is important to note that besides the roll table, this system uses NO OTHER parts of the Base 100 System.
     This system is based on the idea of having each ship act during a 'turn', using initiative first to instill an order to the scene. Since space combat always has forward motion, movement is assumed in any given turn even for ships with no actions, and shouldn't be rolled for naturally. Each action is given one roll, based on the stat that it relates to. While in most RP games we have had freedom to describe our actions, the system is designed with predetermined actions in mind - though describing the action and the flavor of it should be RPed and unique for each player. That's part of the fun, after all.
     There is a minor difference in how the Space RP System treats the results of a critical failure, however they play very much the same as a normal RP event. Critical failures do not result in the ship taking damage like they sometimes do in other events using the Base 100 System. While a normal failure indicates that your attempted action did not succeed, a critical failure has you also you lose your next action.
     Note that during a turn, a player must announce all actions they are taking in their turn BEFORE rolling and then rolling for each. Space combat is intended to be fast-paced, and there is no way to do one action and see its result before taking the next. This is better separated by turns.
     Below are the "Actions In Turn" a player may take.
  • Initiative - 1d100 + Intuition - This is not truly an 'action', but is used at the beginning of each 'wave' of a battle or RP encounter to determine the order of players and NPCs.
  • Firing Turrets - 1d100 + Gunnery - Attack a single target with your ships onboard turrets. A success deals 1 damage. An exceptional success deals 1 damage PLUS your points in Turrets. (i.e. 3 points in Turrets would deal 4 damage on an exceptional success.)
  • Firing Missiles - 1d100 + Gunnery - Attack multiple targets with your missiles. A success with Missiles deals 1 damage to each target. An exceptional success deals 2 damage to each target. Your points in Missiles determines how many targets you can attack with this action. (i.e. 3 points in Missiles allows attacking 3 enemies, while zero points in Missiles means you cannot use this action.)
  • Maneuver - 1d100 + Piloting - You focus on flying and taking evasive motions, making this equivalent to a 'Dodge' action. A success for this action negates the next 1HP of damage you would receive this turn. An exceptional success negates the next 3 HP.
  • Hold Composure - 1d100 + Discipline - While not a particular action that one will decide to do, this might be called upon to avoid crew panic or to recover from a particularly harrowing situation.
  • Lock On/Use The Force - 1d100 + Sensors - You pinpoint or narrow your accuracy against a given target; this is similar to an 'Aim' action. A success grants a +5 bonus to your next attack. An exceptional success grants a +15 bonus instead. (i.e. Using the example ship above, the player takes the Lock On action and succeeds, then next turn fires lasers at an enemy. His roll would be 1d100+17, 12 from his gunnery skill and 5 from the Aim bonus.)
  • Flyby - 1d100 + Piloting - You may use your action to intercede in an enemy's attack, placing yourself between the enemy and an ally they are attacking, effectively making this a 'Guard' action. A success on this action allows you to take a hit instead of your ally for the next turn. An exceptional success negates the hit entirely instead.
  • Baiting - 1d100 + Intuition - You intentionally draw an enemy onto your ship, tricking them into the attack of another ally. A success allows an ally of your choice a free "Lock On/Use The Force" action on the enemy you have baited. An exceptional success allows the "Lock On/Use The Force" action AND a free laser shot using the Lock On bonus, if any. A failure will cause the enemy to attack you.
  • Sensor Linking - 1d100 + Sensors - You can link your ships systems with another friendly ship, expanding how much both ships are able to see and detect. A success on this action grants you and an ally of your choice a +5 bonus to their next 'Maneuver', 'Flyby', or 'Baiting' action in addition to their normal bonuses. An exceptional success confers a +15 bonus instead.
  • Recharging Shields - Spend an action to recharge 1 point of shields. This action requires no roll.
  • Ramming - 1d100 + Discipline - One of the most daring of maneuvers, you can set your ship on a collision course with any ship your size or larger. A success deals half of your Armoring as damage to both you and the target. An exceptional success deals all of your Armoring to the target.

     Actions Outside Combat
     Not all parts stories or events that take place in space are a part of combat. Certainly, players may be in space right before boarding a derelict ship and need to scout to find said ship, or people may simply be taking part in a friendly space race, or perhaps even taking on a particularly dangerous and complicated smuggling run. Regardless of the purpose, any action outside of combat that needs a roll should fall onto one of the crew skills and allow them a bonus. Navigating a tight corridor of asteroids? Piloting roll. Trying to seek out the hidden cargo on an abandoned station? Sensors roll.
     However, due to the nature of actions in space, there will be quite often where a simple 'hit/miss' answer is not feasible or even a good idea. In these cases, it is recommended to consider the roll as a measure of degrees rather than a hard and fast success or failure. Perhaps a low roll on scanning something reveals minimal information rather than simply failing like the original table suggests. In the same vein, a 65 result might garner more information than a 40, despite both being listed as a 'success'.

     Running a Space Event
     As a GM for a Space Combat event, the nature of this system strongly urges you to keep a few things in mind.
     Each portion of space combat should be played in 'waves', constituting a number of ships for the players to take on. For example, if an event calls for the players to take on 20 enemies, you might break the event into 4 waves of 5 each or stagger it with 3 waves of 5, 6, then 9. Whenever a 'wave' is completed, or there would be a few moments of a conceivable break between combat rounds, ALL SHIELDS ARE RECHARGED.
     There is also the matter of pacing. Space combat is supposed to be fast paced and very quick in a game-time sense. This is the reasoning behind all actions at the beginning of a turn. Keep your players at only one turn/roll at a time and keep things bouncing back and forth quickly. Use dialog between ships as filler and padding for the next 'round' or reply. No player should have down time.
     That said, IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED that you allow your players to write/post the results of their actions as much as possible. For example, if you are running an event with four players, one of them fires lasers, one of them fires missiles at 4 enemies, another fires missiles at 3 enemies, and the last one chooses to "Bait"? That is 9 objects you need to respond to -before- you're even able to move onto the enemies actions against the players. However, if they are allowed to describe how their shots hit - it leaves you with only needing to worry about how the enemies will retaliate and also keeps your players feeling a part of the action. No player should have down time.
     The only concern in the above recommendation is determining when an NPC ship would be destroyed. The system is balanced on the idea that mook NPC ships have 2 points in either turrets or missiles (not both), shields, and armor (equaling 4 HP). This should average in about a 3-hits-to-kill per ship (But most exceptional hits are going to one shot them). See the below examples of enemy ships to help you balance your event.
     PLEASE NOTE - This system also supports the concept of Space PVP - be it a player controlling a significant NPC enemy or two groups of player pilots squaring off against one another. In a PvP setting, it is strongly recommended to implement an initiative turn order, as it gives another weighted balance to the Intuition stat and allows for unique strategies.
     This system was designed with these base stats for enemy ships in mind: MOOKS are your regular baddies and can only use either missiles or turrets - NOT both. 'Strong's have slightly more stats than Mooks, and can use both missiles and turrets in a given encounter. Elites use the rules of players and can have their Ship Skills placed anywhere they desire. The list below are only examples and base ideas; you should feel free to design and label your enemies as best fits your event.
Turrets: [X] [  ] [  ] [  ]        [X] [  ] [  ] [  ]        [X] [X] [X] [  ]
Missiles: [X] [X] [  ] [  ][X] [X] [X] [  ][X] [  ] [  ] [  ]
Shields: [X] [  ] [  ] [  ][X] [  ] [  ] [  ][X] [X] [X] [  ]
Armoring:  [X] [X] [  ] [  ][X] [X] [X] [  ][X] [X] [X] [  ]
Drive:  [X] [  ] [  ] [  ][X] [  ] [  ] [  ][X] [X] [  ] [  ]
Size:  MediumMediumLarge