October 2007

Ask Admiral Growler Continued

ANSWER: A single-charge shot is limited to a range of three or less. Two charges are required for longer ranges. The fusion-charges on a Super-Stinger are no different than the fusion-charges on a Stinger-2. (Each charge is armed for one point of energy for a range-one shot, and you require two charges and thus two points of energy for a range ten shot). Hydran PF fusions are ship fusions armed at ship levels (two points of energy). This is entirely consistent with (J10.0), i.e., the heavy fighter and PF both have the same range (ten hexes), but you do not get to range ten without paying two energy points for that range.

Follow-up question: Rule (G7.9432) says "Note that as suicide shuttles and scatter-packs are seeking weapons, they cannot be launched except if targeted on the holding unit" Since remote-controlled fighters have no pilot on-board, can they be launched "at" the holding unit, especially if they are armed with energy weapons (like phasers)?

ANSWER: No; (J15.0) does not enable such a launch.

Scott Iles asks: On a carrier starting a scenario at WS-I, does the EW fighter need to have the EW pods it normally carries loaded on like the drones on the rest of the fighters?

ANSWER: Under (R1.F7) the EW pods that are listed in the EW fighter's description or in Annex #4 are already built-in. They do not have to be loaded on the fighter. Any added pods [hung on the pod rails (J11.11) or other rails if there are any] would have to be loaded by deck crews. A Federation F-20E will not have pods at WS-I (unless it was picked as one of the two fighters ready for launch in which case it could have up to two pods and its type-VI drones loaded), but a Federation F-20CE would.

Aaron Staley asks: I see plenty of references to drone-armed fighter ready racks, but for the life of me I cannot find where it says how many drones can be stored in a ready rack. I am assuming it is one complete reload for the fighter's type, but I cannot find where the rule is that says this.

ANSWER: Rule (J4.8222) specifies that the ready rack holds one complete reload for the fighter type it is supposed to service.

Follow-up question: Also, I am having a lot of trouble understanding the example for fighter-reload storage in (FD10.644). It states that the drone spaces in reload storage will be proportional to the loading of the fighters, yet I do not understand the proportion. I would think that 100 spaces would just be 50 spaces restricted, but I am not seeing how those 50 restricted spaces are broken down to be proportional to the fighter load-out.

ANSWER: As for (FD10.644), the purpose of this rule is to prevent a player from using the allotment of type-VI drones (which, with the possible exception of speed, are strictly general availability) to effectively increase the percentage of special drones in his non-type-VI stockpile.

Follow-up question: Here is another good question. Let's say I have figured out what is in my drone storage. At WS-III, can I have all my fighters loaded with nothing but restricted availability drones on Turn #1, or is there another restriction somewhere that I am missing?

ANSWER: No. Like shipboard drones (FD2.45), both the loaded drones and the reload drones must individually (and collectively) meet the availability percentages.

Follow-up question: My D7V gets 30% commander's options from (S3.223) and it adds the fighter BPV to the ship's BPV for the calculation (S3.23). So, with no refits and a squadron of twelve Z-2s, for example, that is: 123 (D7V) + 72 (12xZ-2) = 195. 195x30% = 58.5. But, now to find the difference, I need to know what the D7V was before the fighter squadron was added. 123x20%=24.6. 123x30%=36.9. 36.9-24.6=12.3 12.3 of the 58.5 can only be spent on extra/improved drones (which are for the fighters anyway). 58.5-24.6=33.9-12.3=21.6. So, out of 58.5 total Commander's Option points:
24.6 points can be spent on any Commander's option items,
21.6 points can only be spent on the fighter supplies,
12.3 points can only be spent on extra/improved drones.

ANSWER: Yes. Note that because there are things under Commander's Options that can be purchased for fractional points, you do not round the fractional points up or down, but simply lose any remaining unspent fractions. A ship that had 0.6 BPV of Commander's option points does not get to purchase an extra boarding party by rounding 0.6 up to 1.0.

Randy O. Green asks:  Module G2, Master Annexes shows the Z-YC has four type-I and two special rails. Are the special rails loaded with type-III drones, or is the default type-I? Seems like the Z-YC is not as good in the dogfighting department since it lost the two type-VI drones of the Z-YB.

ANSWER: "Special rails" can carry type-III drones and use multiple warhead (including starfish) modules. They can also hold either type-I or type-VI drones (or RALADS), just as a standard type-I rail could be equipped with either a type-I or a type-VI drone (but not a type-III drone, or a multiple warhead or starfish module). Special rules in the fighter's description might give you other options. In general, nothing stops you from equipping all six rails on a Z-YC with type-VI drones. Depending on the carrier, most of the special rails will probably have to be loaded with type-I (or type-VI) drones, and there will not be many multiple warhead modules. (A carrier with ten or more fighters can have 20% of its fighters' drone rails carry Limited Availability drones, but a carrier with nine or fewer fighters can only have 10% of the rails loaded with special drones.) A special rail on a fighter does not automatically mean there is a special drone, just as the fact that you have a drone rack space does not automatically mean that the drone rack space is something other than a standard explosive drone. The special rails represent the capability to carry some of the special drones that could not otherwise be carried.

Follow-up question: Question on Z-YC launch rates. According to (J4.24) Z-Ys can launch two drones per turn. But there is a note that type-III drones have a special launch rate. A Z-YC can have two type-III drones, so I assume that it could launch two type-Is and two type-IIIs on the same turn. Is that correct?

ANSWER: Rule (R1.F9) says you can only use the special type-III launch procedure if 'not' launching other types of drones during a given turn. Basically (R1.F9) really only benefits fighters not able to launch two type-I drones in a turn, or which have more than two special rails, and that at the expense of having type-III frames on those rails.