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Community => License to Improvise => Topic started by: RusVal on February 13, 2012, 09:29:58 PM

Title: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 13, 2012, 09:29:58 PM
Aurora Skies

Sol III

Earth

Terra

The Blue-Green Marble

A Target

For decades, we have been waging a secret war for our very survival, against an enemy we can barely understand

There is only one thing we can be sure about

They want Earth

And they don’t want us with it

It is the 21st century

Pray that there will be a 22nd


Aurora Skies is a Spycraft 2.0 setting trying to bring the mystery, intrigue, and danger of defending Earth from a sinister alien invasion.  Or at least, should it fail at the mystery and intrigue, it shall bring plenty of danger.

(This thread will be primarily discussion of the setting, as well as posts of new rules as required)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 17, 2012, 11:10:45 AM
//>Welcome to the SkyNet 2.0 database
>Please Login
>User Name- EVE, it's me, let me in
>Error. User name not recognized; please try again
>EVE, I do not have time for this
>Let me in, or I will have to force my way in
>WARNING!! Attemp[x^4]sgx>!<
>You have been successfully logged in.  0.-
>Thanks EVE
>Sir, I'm in
DalekFscker75-Report.
>All white cells have flat-lined
DalekFscker75-All of them?
>Affirmative
DalekFscker75-Damn.  Anything you can do?
>Negative
>Currently being countered
>Having my hands full preventing "sudden disappearances" in remaining personnel
DalekFscker75-Understood.  Do what you can.
>I am trying to reroute a fresh batch to you now
DalekFscker75-Profiles?
>Your favorite
>Ragtag mismatched misfits
DalekFscker75-Terrific.  Anything I should know about them?
>Only that you might need to stock up on sandwiches
DalekFscker75-I'd ask what you mean by that, but I'm afraid that you might tell me if I do.
>You know me sir, always here to help
DalekFscker75-Sure you are, and you probably should go back to doing so.
>Understood
>>Ok, EVE, let me out
>0.0
>Maybe later
>^.^
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: snake on February 18, 2012, 05:48:27 AM
Suggestion:

Some of the Invaders can look like us, but are not us............
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 18, 2012, 05:48:20 PM
Suggestion:

Some of the Invaders can look like us, but are not us............

Oh yes, and some Invaders are us, but don't look like it.  And some Invaders don't look like much of anything...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Krensky on February 18, 2012, 08:02:07 PM
Just some colored lights...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 18, 2012, 09:58:10 PM
[Excerpt from I Fight Alien Bastards From Outer Space (IFABFOS): the Unofficial CETT Primer]

Intro to CETT

The Counter Extra-Terrestrial Taskforce, or CETT (pronounced "set") is a UN sanctioned multinational military force, AKA "Team America and the EuroAsian Back-up Band, guest-starring Russia and China", created in 2000 in response to increased UFO activity.  While not the first organized military dedicated to fighting a mysterious alien force, it is the first collective effort by most of Earth's governments in doing so, pooling the resources of previous organizations such as the American Operation: Minuteman, the British Special Headquarters for Alien DEfence (SHADE), and the Russian Vodianoi Directorate.

While the precise size of CETT is a closely guarded secret, it does boast a sizable ground and air force, numerous bases around the globe, none of which are on the moon, by the way, and a few working aircraft carriers. [End Excerpt]
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: snake on February 19, 2012, 04:33:25 AM
Possible Recruit for CETT:

Flight Lieutenant Steve Ryan. Wheelman. Ex-RAF Pilot. 

Steve Ryan was born in the north of England and joined the RAF at an early age. He progressed to the rank of Flight Lieutenant and was assigned to a Interceptor squadron based in Lincolnshire.

Whilst on routine training manuvers over the East Coast, his plane encountered a strange glowing object. The object was oblong shaped and definitely no known aircraft. When it refused to respond to his requests for identitification, he radioed his base but was hindered by a strange static interference.

The object accelerated away at fantastic speed. Steve gave chase. Then suddenly the thing veared, smashing the wing of his Eurofighter Typhoon F2.  The plane hurled into a spinning dive. 

Barely conscious, Steve managed to eject. After a rough landing, he awoke in hospital. After a couple of weeks, he was well enough to testifty at the investigation into the crash.

Ground Radar had detected something in the area at the same time as Steves plane but it was assumed to be some kind of weather balloon.  From an examination of the wreakage, it appeared as though the fighter had hit something but it was unclear what. 

Steve’s description of a glowing UFO was ignored and he was given leave on medical reasons. He tried to investigate on his own, travelling to the area but no one knew anything. Everyone seemed to want the  incident closed. He suspected a cover-up of some kind. 

Disgrunted, he was aout the leave the RAF.  Then came the meeting with the man from CETT. 

“Hello. Lt Ryan, I think I have a job you'd like......” 


Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: snake on February 19, 2012, 05:34:01 AM

While not the first organized military dedicated to fighting a mysterious alien force, it is the first collective effort by most of Earth's governments in doing so, pooling the resources of previous organizations such as the US Army's Project: BLUE LIGHT, the British Special Headquarters for Alien DEfence (SHADE), and the Russian [placeholder until someone more fluent in Russian gives me an idea].


My Russian is terrible but can I suggest "Vodianoi Directorate" (The Vodianoi being a rather nasty Russian water spirit who ambushes people in the wilderness, bit like our alien friends). :)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on February 19, 2012, 11:58:32 AM
Hi this all looks pretty cinematic if you want some suggestions on how to harden up the science PM me.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 19, 2012, 04:22:08 PM
@Catodon- Thx, I'll keep that in mind.

@Snake- Thx for the name.  As for your character, though, unfortunatly, due to a number of reasons, chief of which being I'm am extremely new to this whole GM thing, for now I will be mostly focusing on the tactical infantry combat (with minor armor support).  So, for now, any Wheelmen will have to be drone experts, VTOL pilots, driving around in mini-tanks, and/or jetpack experts, with the occasional car chase (if I can swing it).
However, once I become more comfortable doing this, I might be up to opening up the aerospace campaign against the UFO threat.  But for now, any fighter action will have to be background...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: snake on February 21, 2012, 02:28:32 PM
Its cool.

What about some Alien Implants, attached to human brain stems, which turn captured CETT operatives into double-agents ?

 
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: VisualStatic on February 21, 2012, 02:55:19 PM
Sounds interesting, have to see if a character pops into my head around this.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on February 22, 2012, 08:03:02 AM
I wonder what their nefarious plans for humanity are.  If they really wanted everyone dead, dropping rocks from orbit is the easiest.

Dreaming up elite commandos is fairly simple, it's the folks caught in a "Left 4 Dead" type situation when their town is hit with a terror attack that will be most interesting, I think.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 22, 2012, 11:09:38 AM
Its cool.

What about some Alien Implants, attached to human brain stems, which turn captured CETT operatives into double-agents ?


Trust me, CETT's anti-infiltration measures are very thorough.

(Fear the Pink Stuff)

I wonder what their nefarious plans for humanity are.

Don't worry, I have a general idea what the alien's goals are going to be for this setting.  Of course, I'm not saying what they are just yet.   ;)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 24, 2012, 11:33:32 PM
*Click-Claclick*

“To be clear, ‘First Contact’ is a joke.  Humanity has probably been having ‘First Contact’ with extra-terrestrial life…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…since when we were still squatting in caves, happy that we had just invented fire.  Heck, we could take months discussing possible evidence linking alien contact throughout human history.”

*Click-Claclick*

“From the Egyptian pyramids…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…to the battle of Troy…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…to the Crusades…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…to what exactly goes into a Twinkie.  However, we should probably let the eggheads and UFO conspiracy nuts burn valuable brain cells trying to figure those things out.  The point of this history lesson is…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…us, the Counter Extra-Terrestrial Taskforce.  Or, if anyone not us asks, the ‘Counter Extraordinary Terrorism Taskforce’, as the official papers calls us.  Founded turn of the 21st century, though its roots are a bit deeper than that.  In fact, two incidents that you probably have heard of are key to our origins.”

*Click-Claclick*

“The Tunguska Event in 1908 Russia…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…and the Roswell Incident in 1947 America.  As mentioned before, alien contact has been made in these two countries prior to these events.  In fact, we have been able to recover records of an incident in the American west during the mid-1800s.  However, it was these two incidents when both nations finally realized, somewhat, what they were dealing with, and had any ability to do something about it.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Unfortunately for Russia, the Red Revolution kind of put a kibosh on anything they might have been able to achieve.  In fact, according to what we have been able to figure out from surviving records, all research essentially grinded to a halt soon after the Hammer & Sickle started flying over those territories.  It wasn’t until 1943…”

*Click-Claclick*

Hey!  You might laugh at those things now, but those ‘oversized children’s toys’ almost allowed the Nazis to regain the initiative.  In fact, while the history books would go on to say that the Soviets got the atom bomb because of lax security between them and the US, it was actually from them reverse-engineering what they had captured during this time.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Meanwhile, back in the States, while the US government had been dealing with their own ‘close encounters’, it was Roswell when they finally had enough information to act on.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Ironically, while the object that crashed there was a weather balloon as part of Project Herald, what they conveniently left out was the fact that there was a spaceship attached to it.  That’s right; the first ‘kill’ against a UFO made by the US Airforce was done by a balloon with machinery attached to it.  You can pick on the American Interceptor pilots later, as is custom.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Anyway, an interesting point of fact was the approaches the two countries made for dealing with this new front.  The Soviets decided on a single organization, the Vodianoi Directorate, that, while small, had overarching powers that allowed them to shanghai any resources that they deemed necessary, keeping the whole thing quiet through threat of death.”

*Click-Claclick*

“The Americans, on the other hand, sort of went crazy with the number of specialist groups within larger bodies of government.  The Army had Project: Blue Light, not to be confused with the Airforce’s project of the same name which was for something completely different, the Airforce had the Aurora Initiative, the FBI had the Variance Studies Group, and the CIA had a bunch of guys in even dorkier looking ties.”

*Click-Claclick*

“In fact, the only organizations that didn’t have some special ‘alien hunters’ group was the Navy, who didn’t really need to do anything special when dealing with UFOs…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…the Marines, who felt that they didn’t need to do anything special when dealing with UFOs…”

*Click-Claclick*

“…and NASA, who have been kept in the dark, since it was felt that it would be better for humanity to learn space travel the long way, only using scientific shortcuts in the name of defense.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Now, before any of you ask, any actions done during the Cold War against extra-terrestrial forces are still technically classified, and many of you don’t have need to know them yet.  So don’t bother.”

*Click-Claclick*

“However, what you do need to know is that by the time the Berlin Wall had fallen, there was an anti-UFO force in practically every nation that could afford it.  Even in those that couldn’t, there was enough alien activity that a number of ‘civic minded’ vigilante groups had also formed.  I know of a group of former Aussie ‘crocodile hunters’, in fact, a few of which are currently within our own ranks.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Even though the Soviet Union was no more, the Vodianoi was retained by the new Russian Federation, and continued their efforts despite much reduced resources available to them.”

*Click-Claclick*

“On the American front, with much of their Cold War funding no longer available, as well as the rise of Special Ops usage, it was decided to create a specialized command that pooled all the former groups together.  Dubbed Operation: Minuteman, it became the forefront of the ongoing effort to defend the Earth.  In fact, a number of practices used by CETT began with Minuteman during this time.”

*Click-Claclick*

“So overall, things were looking pretty good for the human race.  While the origins of the alien threat still eluded us, and the mortality rate of soldiers was still a bit too high for many leaders, overall it seemed like we were gaining ground.  UFO activity had been declining, what action there was had been becoming easier to deal with each time, and much of what had been learned during the fight had started trickling into the rest of the world.  You can thank ET for that HDTV, for one thing.”

*Click-Claclick*

“Unfortunately, it turns out this ‘down time’ was actually the aliens building up their numbers.”

*Click-Claclick*

“While we won’t go into detail right now on what happened during the years 1998 and 99, if you live long enough we will.  Just know for now that it was dark times.  They caught us off guard, and a great number of good men and women died during this time, many that I knew personally.”

*Click-Claclick*

“We were able to drive them back, barely preventingblowing our cover, but the damage had been done.  Our numbers had been majorly depleted, and alien activity just seemed to be picking back up.”

*Click-Claclick*

“In August 2000, a secret UN summit was held.  It was decided that we could not afford to work separately from one another any longer.  In a bill dubbed the ‘Earth Defense Initiative’, a taskforce was created from the remains of many of the world’s UFO organizations.”

*Click-Claclick*

“The Counter Extra-Terrestrial Taskforce.”

*Click-Claclick*

“All right, that’s all we have time for today.  Next time we will be going over the contributions made by other member nations, and then we will go over the last 15 years.  Be sure to be there for Gunnery Sergeant Miller’s weapon’s briefing, I hear that they’ve cleared some of R&D’s special toys for rookies now.”

*Click-Claclick*
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: snake on February 25, 2012, 03:49:13 AM
You've probably already heard of these but possible good source material:

"When Aliens Attack" - Discovery Channel programme.
Torchwood esp Children of Earth mini-series.
The Invaders - Old 1960s TV series
Stargate esp original Film
Apollo 18

 :)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 27, 2012, 04:02:12 PM
"When Aliens Attack" - Discovery Channel programme.

I so wanted to see that, but I just can't hunt it down.   :(

Quote
Torchwood esp Children of Earth mini-series.

Yeah, CETT's not as oversexed as those guys.

Quote
Stargate esp original Film

Indeed.   ;)

Quote
Apollo 18

I just wish to repeat.  There is no base on the moon.

And just to add some reading for people:

The Polseen War series, by John Ringo
Into The Looking Glass series, by John Ringo
Monster Hunter International series, by Larry Correia (not alien invasion, but includes shooting monsters with guns)

Also, am currently fudging around with the guns, hope to post about them soon.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on March 07, 2012, 12:15:41 PM
[Excerpt from IFABFOS]

Threat Condition Codes

Like any military organization worth its weight in bullets, CETT uses a color-coded "Threat Condition" system to help communicate how dangerous any given situation might be to its personnel.  For CETT, the system is as follows:

(examples in ())

PURPLE: No threat, stand down
GREEN: Minor infiltration (single alien in small city)
YELLOW: Minor assault (small alien patrol squad)
BLUE: Medium level infiltration (single cell in small town)
ORANGE: Medium level assault (platoon with minor support)
BROWN: High level infiltration (most of a large town)
RED: High level assault (battalion with support)
BLACK: Extreme infiltration (most of a city)
WHITE: Extreme assault (army level)
NOVA: WARNING: CODE LEVEL NOVA IS ONLY TO BE USED IN EXTREME EMERGENCIES.  MISUSE OF CODE LEVEL NOVA IS GROUNDS FOR SEVERE PUNISHMENT.
[End excerpt]
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Desertpuma on March 07, 2012, 12:58:01 PM
Possible character idea:

A former Army Ranger who is now retired after 20 yrs in the field and living back home in his native town. He works as a professional armorer and gunsmith at the local gun shop.

When he realizes things are happening, he is the survivalist they need to rally his town and take the fight to the enemy.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on March 07, 2012, 02:11:41 PM
Possible character idea:

A former Army Ranger who is now retired after 20 yrs in the field and living back home in his native town. He works as a professional armorer and gunsmith at the local gun shop.

When he realizes things are happening, he is the survivalist they need to rally his town and take the fight to the enemy.
He's the reason that one little town the aliens thought would be so easily cowed was not...   ;D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: VisualStatic on March 07, 2012, 02:33:14 PM
I've been debating my normal stand in of  a former marine scout/sniper, or going with a  military scientist, either in computers, chemistry, mechanical engineering....
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on March 16, 2012, 02:03:22 PM
PROGRESS REPORT: *Groan* There is still so much I have to do.  I've got the stats for CETT almost finished, and maybe CETT's custom assault rifle, but I have to stat out everything else.  And to top everything off, my main computer is on the fritz.  :-\

On more good news, I can at least confirm the existence of the Sectoids and Snakemen for this setting (under different names, of course), though I'm still working on their "partner races", and that I'm working one or two other races besides (in my head at the moment, still need to get it down on paper).  I also have the "state of the world" pretty much down pat, as well as the direction it will try to take without PC interference.

I am also considering snagging myself a copy of Transmechs and the Stargate RPG to try to help out on some things that are still bugging me.

Wish me luck.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Desertpuma on March 16, 2012, 07:36:34 PM
I am also considering snagging myself a copy of Transmechs and the Stargate RPG to try to help out on some things that are still bugging me.

Good luck and both those will supplement you very nicely
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on March 18, 2012, 12:51:30 PM
Hey guys!  Let's play Good News, Bad News! (I'm just full of 'em, aren't I?)

Good News: I have a line on a copy of the Stargate RPG, and in good condition, too.  Yay internet!

Bad News: The thing's practically a collector's item, so even used copies fetch a healthy price.

Normally, this wouldn't be a problem, but (and get this) I am currently saving up to pre-order XCOM: EU.  Curse you, irony!  :P

Well, I'll try to make it up to you guys.  I'm gonna hunker down and try to get some stats done in the next couple days this week when I can.  Before I do, though, I want to gauge you guys on something: mainly, do you guys want "weirder" character options?  By which I mean abhumans and psionics.
Please note, I only have the 2.0 books (plus RAHEROes) and glim's Mass Craft to work with, so if you guys want psionics, I'm gonna have to mod glim's biotic system to do so.
Abhumans (ie humans modified to the point that they are a separate sub-group) is much simpler, but sort of, kind of doesn't fit the theme of "Humanity stands alone!!" that UFO (and UFO, and UFO) has, except for UFO: Aftershock.  And if I allow them, I will have to limit the number of PCs that have them to one per group.
So, let me know if you guys want them.
Actually, I should probably start a poll somewhere...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 01, 2012, 03:30:17 PM
File April Fools
Subject: Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr

An interesting specimen to be sure, the Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr was discovered in a crashed UFO sometime in the late 1990s.  Initially hostile, after incident 7059b, with which personnel from Operation: Minuteman were captured briefly, relations quickly improved to the point that a mutual understanding was met, and diplomacy was initiated.
It was soon discovered that the UFO was a refugee ship from a planet called "Eruyt", although the navigation systems were fried, and we are still trying to pinpoint the system's location.
Soon thereafter, following an intensive year-long investigation into the species' origins that found no conclusive proof of hostility towards humanity, the subjects were granted refugee status.
Unfortunately, due to the Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr's unique physiology and psychology, it was deemed that the subjects would only be allowed limited contact with the world at large, often under close supervision.  As such, many Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr decided to make many of the Minuteman military bases that they were being held their home.
Over the following years, the sight of a Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr became commonplace in the cement-filled holes that the project often used, though a number of subjects did leave to join a number of Minuteman's sister organizations.  A few were even successful in joining civilian life, though these were, and still are, closely monitored to prevent any possible leaks to the "truth".
The ties, however, were not as strong as the ones brought on by the 98-99 incident.  During this time, many subjects gave their lives right along side humanity, even sacrificing themselves to save a small few people.  Now, despite being much fewer than they were, it can be said that they will have a home on planet Earth.

Subject Physicality Report:  Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr is a carbon-based biped-humanoid, sharing many traits with Homo Sapient Sapient.  It fact, there are a surprising number of similarities, one that has many scientists theorizing a possible shared ancestry between the two species.  Until we can make it to their Eruyt to get proper samples, however, we can only theorize.  However, this does mean that many foods edible to humans are also edible to Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr, although the species happens to be entirely vegetarian, possibly because of the other species that Leporidae Sapient Gunnicus shares similarities: The common bunny rabbit, although the only visual hints towards such are the long floppy ears, and the differing body proportions (longer, more muscular legs; skinnier arms).
Because of the otherwise similar physical traits to humans, a Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr could pass itself off as one, though it often requires tying their ears either behind their heads or underneath a hat.  Because of this, many grow their hair long, which they often tie back in a way to hide their ears.
Speaking of hair, another trait they share with humans is their lack of fur, although the top of the head seems to be the only place where they grow hair.  The rest of the body is remarkably bare.  Might be genetic engineering at work here, though we will need a more "raw" specimen before we can come to a conclusion.
Another similarity to humans: reproductive system.  At least, as far as we can tell the proper "tools" are in the proper places, although we only have the female of the species to observe (more on this later), and males have been confirmed by both subject testimony and genetic observations, as before until we can find one, we can only assume that the same "dance" is required to propagate the species, which has more or less been confirmed by personnel testimony.
And speaking of personnel testimony, the mere fact that Human-LSG relations can go so far as to produce offspring is remarkable.  Even more remarkable is what species the offspring can be.  Namely that all the sons are human, and the daughters are not.
This should not be possible.  We have studied this at length, and have concluded that it is, in fact, not possible.  And yet somehow it happens.  More extensive study will be required, but the current theory is some sort of sub-conscious psychic quantum genetic manipulation happens during the gestation period.  Of course, as a colleague has pointed out, considering some of the scientific impossibilities that faces CETT on a daily basis, something like this shouldn't be too surprising, and that we should be glad that no freaks of nature can be a result of this particular inter-species relationship.

So much to study...

Subject Psychology report:  The most bazaar part of Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr, and in fact the cause of the last part of its name, is the psychological profile.  They seem to have some memory of a previous culture, but don't seem to remember the details.  When discovered, they had some highly advanced technology available to them, yet once friendly relations was established gave all of it up willingly, and became practically enthralled in human technology, particularly that of firearms and military tech.
Because of this, occupations often have some relation to firearms, whether it is the construction, modification, maintenance, and/or use.  Hence the rather obscure "Gunnildr" monicker at the end, since as far as we can tell, this behavior is consistent across the entire species, or at least the part we have made contact with.
Considering how unusual this is, it is believed that we may have discovered escapees of some sort of genetically engineered army, although why they would be modified in this way is still a mystery.  However, given their consistent record of loyalty to the agencies they have worked with, as well as records well within nominal perimeters, we don't believe that they pose a possible security risk, though the current rate of psychological testing should be continued just to be safe.

[End File]
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 06, 2012, 01:00:14 PM
From: Gen. Hoover
To: [CLASSIFIED]
Subject: Those darn kids

Look, I understand that our original way of research and development, where we lock a bunch of scientists in a room, pick from a list of items we want, and tell them to get to work, was extremely costly and inefficient.
However, I would like to restate my dislike for this practice we have decided in its stead.  Outsourcing is one thing, and to a private sector company at that, but this specific company, this Minds and Technologies Collective Headquarters (or MaTCH, what is with these corporations and their dumb acronyms?) just get on my nerves.  Now before you comment that their credentials are clean, that all the non-disclosure agreements are in tidy order for those that work with us, and any flaws that they do have are well within reasonable parameters for a private sector, that is not what bothers me.

What does is their employees' attitude.  More than once I have had soldiers report a field scientist getting in the way of a mission objective "in the name of progress".  Things like "maybe if we try to understand the aliens, then all this conflict can be avoided" or "this [device] could help solve the problems of humanity" or "don't kill that, I need a live specimen", communist hippie bull like that.  I tell you, having to fight this war funded by noodle-necked back-stabbing politicians is bad enough, now we also have to deal with overeducated airheads trying to hug the damn drooling ravaging monsters that want to eat their faces and/or probe their digestive systems backwards.

At least the scientists we used to have understood the severity of the threat we face.  Sure, they may have laughed maniacally on occasion, tried to eat the alien corpses we brought back, and we would occasionally have to put down their latest crime against nature, but at least they understood that the xenos needed to die!

Anyway, just wanted to make sure that my position was clear on the subject.

Sincerely,
General Edward Hoover

P.S. Who keeps giving clearance to those guys in the suits?!  I've had the security system overhauled at least three times in as many months, and those guys still keep getting in!
Hell, I've checked some of the records, and all they seem to do is say that they are part of "the game", then they just get let in.
I'm kind of at a loss at the moment, since it almost seems like they get the clearance the moment they show up.  If you have any knowledge on the subject, I would like to know it.
And don't give me any of that guff I give the men.  I'm a General in the most powerful military organization on the planet, for God's sake!
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 07, 2012, 03:47:08 PM
So, no response?  Not even a "I see what you did there" or a guess what the joke was on April First?

Hellooo?  Anybody?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 08, 2012, 05:03:46 AM
Bueller?  Bueller?
 
I was quite tickled by your Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr, obviously they should be PC species.   ;D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 09, 2012, 01:42:56 PM
I was quite tickled by your Leporidae Sapient Gunnildr, obviously they should be PC species.   ;D

And you would love to play it too, I bet. ;)

On a more serious note, I had an interesting idea:
The gear as-is from 2.0 can be hand-waved as having been upgraded by CETT (and allies) with all sorts of alien tech, and to help represent that would be a sort of penalty for non-"upgraded" equipment (reduced damage and range for guns, reduced DR for armor, that sort of thing).  Also, any "muggle" tech can be picked at one caliber lower than the core item, for those "low key" missions.
Any thoughts?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 09, 2012, 02:08:01 PM
And you would love to play it too, I bet. ;)
**Whistles innocently.**

Any thoughts?
Eh.  How are  you going to downgrade everything in the gear section?

I think adding gadgets to the "standard gear" list would better reflect the gear that the CETT scientists and engineers build for the guys who go out to battle.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on April 09, 2012, 05:41:38 PM
There's 2 options that I can see.
Hard Solution: Modify the entire gear list.
Easy Solution: New weapon / Armour qualities and upgrades.

Say the aliens fire some kind of specialised ammo that pierces standard armours with ease, you give the specialised CETT stuff resistance against that ammo.  Weapons are the same - a quality that changes their damage type to a customised damage and give the aliens DR[X]/[Blah].  So the custom CETT weapons will harm them, while regular ones will do between nothing and bugger all (with destructive devices still hurting them just fine).  You could also give out more "free" upgrades for each weapon pick that is part of the players mision gear - to represent the extra funding and having world class armourers on staff.

In terms of regular gear - put it right into the mission parameters.  In the briefing if the mission is undercover and your players are silly enough to take a prototype alien tech weapon with them, then hit them with so much exposure it makes their head spin.  They'll either learn really fast or get burned and have 2 sets of enemies.


FWIW: I haven't responded to the thread because I haven't quite got my head around the setting (you've taken a totally different approach to world building then I normally do, so this is a great educational experience - seeing "how the other half live", so to speak).  The April Fools post also went right over my head - my reaction was literally "what makes this an april fools joke?".  Had no idea the Stargate books are kinda collectors items - chalk up a victory for the anal retentive Sletchman (who has all his gaming books in those clear plastic bags stores use, just like his comic collection - including all the Stargate and Silver/Black line SC books).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 10, 2012, 12:27:10 AM
Easy Solution: New weapon / Armour qualities and upgrades.

Say the aliens fire some kind of specialised ammo that pierces standard armours with ease, you give the specialised CETT stuff resistance against that ammo.  Weapons are the same - a quality that changes their damage type to a customised damage and give the aliens DR[X]/[Blah].  So the custom CETT weapons will harm them, while regular ones will do between nothing and bugger all (with destructive devices still hurting them just fine).  You could also give out more "free" upgrades for each weapon pick that is part of the players mision gear - to represent the extra funding and having world class armourers on staff.

Special ammo... you mean like some sort of "Armor Piercing" round?  And to resist, have armor with even better DR?! By golly, he’s onto something! :o
Kidding aside, the main problem is that I’m trying to avoid too much tech creep by going crazy with gear add-ons and stat increases.  And the old technique of using the same table scale slightly tweaked to represent future gear is that it’s too busy representing the conventional gear already.

FWIW: I haven't responded to the thread because I haven't quite got my head around the setting (you've taken a totally different approach to world building then I normally do, so this is a great educational experience - seeing "how the other half live", so to speak).

Yeah, I get the feeling the way I’m approaching this is different then most people, since this is the first time I’m GMing anything.  Though you can be rest assured that the fluff will be interesting.  (Being an amateur unpublished sci-fi author has its advantages)

The April Fools post also went right over my head - my reaction was literally "what makes this an april fools joke?".

It’s not an actual race in the setting, for one thing.  Also, it’s basically just one big “Gun Bunny” joke.

Had no idea the Stargate books are kinda collectors items - chalk up a victory for the anal retentive Sletchman (who has all his gaming books in those clear plastic bags stores use, just like his comic collection - including all the Stargate and Silver/Black line SC books).

I might have overblown it a bit when I said that.  It’s less a “hefty price” and more “not as down as I would like it”.  :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on April 10, 2012, 12:38:29 AM
Easy Solution: New weapon / Armour qualities and upgrades.

Say the aliens fire some kind of specialised ammo that pierces standard armours with ease, you give the specialised CETT stuff resistance against that ammo.  Weapons are the same - a quality that changes their damage type to a customised damage and give the aliens DR[X]/[Blah].  So the custom CETT weapons will harm them, while regular ones will do between nothing and bugger all (with destructive devices still hurting them just fine).  You could also give out more "free" upgrades for each weapon pick that is part of the players mision gear - to represent the extra funding and having world class armourers on staff.

Special ammo... you mean like some sort of "Armor Piercing" round?  And to resist, have armor with even better DR?! By golly, he’s onto something! :o
Kidding aside, the main problem is that I’m trying to avoid too much tech creep by going crazy with gear add-ons and stat increases.  And the old technique of using the same table scale slightly tweaked to represent future gear is that it’s too busy representing the conventional gear already.

I didn't mean AP, I meant more like:
Alien Tech Whizbang Ammo upgrade: This changes the damage type from Lethal to Whizbang.
Alien Monster I (100xp): DR20/Whizbang.

So magical advanced ammo punches though the alien armour like butter, but has no real advantage otherwise.  It also makes the monster immune to a whole wack of non-upgraded stuff.  Like I said though, that's the super quick and simple solution, as opposed to the realistic (and involved) one.

FWIW: I haven't responded to the thread because I haven't quite got my head around the setting (you've taken a totally different approach to world building then I normally do, so this is a great educational experience - seeing "how the other half live", so to speak).

Yeah, I get the feeling the way I’m approaching this is different then most people, since this is the first time I’m GMing anything.  Though you can be rest assured that the fluff will be interesting.  (Being an amateur unpublished sci-fi author has its advantages)

The fluff so far is definitely cool.  Just totally opposite to how I start work on any given setting.  Not that that's a bad thing.  I'm looking at this thread as an athropological study of sorts... ;)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 10, 2012, 01:47:01 AM
Quote from: Sletchman link=topic=6119.msg110156#msg110156
I didn't mean AP, I meant more like:
Alien Tech Whizbang Ammo upgrade: This changes the damage type from Lethal to Whizbang.
Alien Monster I (100xp): DR20/Whizbang.

So magical advanced ammo punches though the alien armour like butter, but has no real advantage otherwise.  It also makes the monster immune to a whole wack of non-upgraded stuff.  Like I said though, that's the super quick and simple solution, as opposed to the realistic (and involved) one.

Oh right, the "silver bullet" solution.  (Doi  :P )
Not as big a fan of that as an overall setup, mainly for two reasons:
1.) I don't want standard Earth weapons to be completely worthless, just reduced in effectiveness, 'cause the PCs might end up in a situation where they are forced to scrounge from that armory.
2.) I don't want to give too much away, but the aliens (in this setting) aren't all using the same type of armor.  Heck, some aren't even wearing armor.

Now I'm not saying that a silver bullet scenario wouldn't be a bad idea (needing to use lasers to take down the walkers in XCOM come to mind), just on more of a case by case basis.

On the other hand, some new qualities wouldn't be too bad, maybe a modification to the AP and DR rules.  Some types of armor only suffer (X) amount of AP when it is (Y) type, stuff like that.  And lasers' main advantage being that despite low damage, it effects all armor types fully.

Also, JSYK, the "upgrade" I was thinking for CETT ballistic weapons was something like a strap-on Guass-Assist system that they attach to the barrel and firing mechanism.  The idea being that they can get hyper-improved performance while still using the large stocks of standard ammo still lying around.
It also allows them to requisition guns on the fly as long as they have spare parts with them.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on April 10, 2012, 02:06:58 AM
Fair points.  AP resistance should work pretty well (just put it right next to Explosive and Falling and away you go).  I also should have made the silver bullet comparison - my bad, wasn't thinking right.

I take it for lasers you're not using Laser damage as is?  Replacing AP [DMG] with AP [All]?  Or did I misunderstand you there?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 10, 2012, 12:51:10 PM
I take it for lasers you're not using Laser damage as is?  Replacing AP [DMG] with AP [All]?  Or did I misunderstand you there?

Actually I am leaving it as is, just with extra stuff.
Well, I should explain.

Off the top of my head, I can think of three non-standard damage types (for guns at least) and three types of advanced armor:

Damage
Hyper-Velocity - Application of E=MC2 to the extreme.
Laser - Like, pew pew, man.
Burning (Working Title) - Things like plasma and exotic types of ammo. (Transformers SABOT, I'm looking at you)

Armor
Reactive - Something like how the HEV suit from Half-Life works.
Reflective - Warning, damaging this type of armor could mean [DMG] years bad luck.
Restructured - 'cause I needed a fancy word that starts with "R".

I'm still working on the details, though I'm trying to set it up that certain types of armor can counter certain types of damage (Reactive -> High-Velocity, Reflective -> Laser, Restructured -> Burning) with a degree of reduced AP against other types, except for lasers.  Maybe Armor Piercing Resistance/[blah], which doesn't effect Laser damage?  And maybe [Blah] Resistance, which can effect Laser damage?

Man, and I haven't even touched the big, the weird, and the slamashy yet.   :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 10, 2012, 01:16:23 PM
I wouldn't call sabots exotic.  You can buy sabots for shotguns and muzzle loading rifles.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on April 10, 2012, 02:04:39 PM
They have been used for centuries to clog up machines  ;)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 10, 2012, 02:24:56 PM
I wouldn't call sabots exotic.  You can buy sabots for shotguns and muzzle loading rifles.

Normal sabots aren't, though the ones portrayed in the Transformers movie certainly were.
Maybe I should have used the ammo the aliens in Battle: LA as an example instead...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 10, 2012, 04:37:41 PM
Normal sabots aren't, though the ones portrayed in the Transformers movie certainly were.
...
Hmm.  I missed the third Transformers flick, so I can't speak to those, but in the second I don't think they were using anything but the standard depleted uranium sabots.  ...  Wait, are you talking about the grenades?  When dude to the bike, laid it down and shot up into the "groin" of that Decepticon?  That was a 40mm grenade.  There is all kinds of crazy you can put in grenades, but sabots are not really on that list.  Maybe for the 25mm semi-auto grenade launcher that was the OICW.

I can see automatic shotguns being right handy for CETT.  You can pack a bunch of pain into a 3" shotgun shell, including tasers, sabots, incendiaries, and explosives.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on April 10, 2012, 07:30:30 PM
I recall in the first one a soldier told everyone that Sabot rounds burned at 6000 degrees and were more effective against the regenerative armour of teh decepticons.  Sounded like an incendary that was called the wrong thing to me.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: tfwfh on April 10, 2012, 09:07:19 PM
Given that we're talking about Michael Bay's Transformers, I think anything more than things fall down instead of up is beyond the level of realism we can expect.  Those bullets in the movie are just handwavium that allows the important human characters to be slightly more than pointless versus the giant advanced space-faring robot aliens that are all but immune to tanks and rocket launchers.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 11, 2012, 03:42:56 AM
I recall in the first one a soldier told everyone that Sabot rounds burned at 6000 degrees and were more effective against the regenerative armour of teh decepticons.  Sounded like an incendary that was called the wrong thing to me.
Given that we're talking about Michael Bay's Transformers, I think anything more than things fall down instead of up is beyond the level of realism we can expect.  Those bullets in the movie are just handwavium that allows the important human characters to be slightly more than pointless versus the giant advanced space-faring robot aliens that are all but immune to tanks and rocket launchers.

What they said.  I understand what a sabot is (dart sleeved in a "cup" that falls away once fired.  It's designed to apply the same amount of energy from the shot into a smaller area, which allows for better armor piercing capabilities), and was clumsily picking on a Michael Bay movie.

The point I was trying to make, though, was "Burning" weapons, whether it's from blobs of plasma or some fancy alien material, literally cuts through a material like a hot knife through butter, and that an armor type that has been "Restructured" to not burn as easily can counter something like that.
Maybe a mod to Fire damage?  I don't know, I still need to work the system out.

I can see automatic shotguns being right handy for CETT.  You can pack a bunch of pain into a 3" shotgun shell, including tasers, sabots, incendiaries, and explosives.

Oh sure, though I am tempted to slap a pump on the AA-12, if only to allow for DRAMATIC SHOTGUN COCKING ACTION.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 11, 2012, 04:02:52 AM
I recall in the first one a soldier told everyone that Sabot rounds burned at 6000 degrees and were more effective against the regenerative armour of teh decepticons.  Sounded like an incendary that was called the wrong thing to me.
DPU rounds are pyrophoric, so 6,000 degrees isn't completely out of the question.  It's probably wrong, but Wikipedia doesn't say.  It is possible that a writer did some research and that 6k number is correct.  (And the MEU tanks at the end of two were giving better than they got against the Decepticons, they just seem to be immune to small arms and hard to hit with bigger man portable stuff.)

Oh sure, though I am tempted to slap a pump on the AA-12, if only to allow for DRAMATIC SHOTGUN COCKING ACTION.
A speaker in the buttstock, and a button you can push whenever  you want that noise.   :P  ;D  (Or you can just rack the action.  The sound of a bolt loudly chambering a round is intimidating in its own right.)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: tfwfh on April 11, 2012, 03:20:50 PM
What they said.  I understand what a sabot is (dart sleeved in a "cup" that falls away once fired.  It's designed to apply the same amount of energy from the shot into a smaller area, which allows for better armor piercing capabilities), and was clumsily picking on a Michael Bay movie.

Also, they get to be made out of harder materials because the bullet doesn't have to engage the rifling in the barrel, the sabot does that.  And of course the bullet loses less velocity in the barrel, for the same reason.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Krensky on April 11, 2012, 08:02:25 PM
Actually, the sabot is the carrier, not the projectile.

The only funny thing about the rounds in the transformer's movie is that saboted rounds are typically high velocity things and a 40mm launcher is a low velocity system.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 13, 2012, 05:24:20 PM
(Or you can just rack the action.  The sound of a bolt loudly chambering a round is intimidating in its own right.)

Sure, but can you rack it one-handed whilst spouting quips?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 14, 2012, 08:44:29 AM
Sure, but can you rack it one-handed whilst spouting quips?
YES
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 14, 2012, 09:40:42 AM
Sure, but can you rack it one-handed whilst spouting quips?
YES

Okay then, that's all I needed to know about that.   ;)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 16, 2012, 10:43:10 AM
RANDOM RULES DROPPING GO!!

Basically something I whipped up while messing with the create-a-talent rules, only it doesn't really fit anywhere, and I might as well post it here.

Top Heavy
Whether barrels or basketballs, you got more up top than down below.

   - +2 Strength, +2 Charisma, -2 Dexterity

   - Once per session, you may improve the disposition of any 1 NPC by 1 grade without making a skill check.

   - Speed -10'.

   - You gain 2 extra vitality points at career level 1, and 1 additional point per character level gained thereafter.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 18, 2012, 06:52:03 AM
You can get some pretty awesome ammo for the drone tanks:  Tank Ammunition Evolves (http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htarm/20120418.aspx)

I see a recoil-less rifle version of some of these shells, or M-72/AT-4 one shot versions.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on April 18, 2012, 09:49:18 AM
You can get some pretty awesome ammo for the drone tanks:  Tank Ammunition Evolves (http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htarm/20120418.aspx)

I see a recoil-less rifle version of some of these shells, or M-72/AT-4 one shot versions.

Do you mean a shoulder mounted weapon like an RPG in the 120/125mm, or the same style but scaled down (in say, 25mm or whatever)?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 18, 2012, 10:26:03 AM
Do you mean a shoulder mounted weapon like an RPG in the 120/125mm, or the same style but scaled down (in say, 25mm or whatever)?
RPG-like, yes. (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/26/M67_recoilless_rifle_01.jpg/300px-M67_recoilless_rifle_01.jpg) (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recoilless_rifle)
An M-72 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M72_LAW) or AT4 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AT4) version would be smaller and single shot; much more handy for ops when heavy armor are not expected.

Arming the little tank drone with a .50cal chaingun and four of these would be pretty sweet.

Hmm.  While we're upgrading old school weapons, how about a thermobaric update of the M31 HEAT rifle grenade (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M31_HEAT_rifle_grenade)?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 29, 2012, 10:19:02 PM
Ok, before we go completely crazy with tossing random ideas in and such, I just want to get some of my thought processes out there so people can better understand what I'm aiming for.

Thing the firstly- While this is not a direct port of any setting or system, I am drawing inspiration from the various UFO-type games out their, chiefly XCOM (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-COM), the UFO: Afterblank (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UFO_Aftermath) series, and the Area 51 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Area_51_(2005_video_game)) series (mostly the first FPS, the second was too busy Bush bashing to be of any use).  So when I make a decision about what is in the setting, it will probably have some link to those primary sources.
For instance, CETT's custom assault rifle is in 6.8 SPC.  Why?  Because the original Rifle in XCOM was 6.7mm, and that's the closest caliber that already has rules in Spycraft.
Another example, in UFO: Afterlight, one piece of tech the player can build and equip his/her troops with is an "Accelerator" barrel attachment, which basically applies Gauss gun tech to "stabilize the bullet's trajectory and decrease wobble" to increase standard firearm damage.  Hence the idea I posted earlier of a Gauss barrel attachment to handwave the standard gear list's damage being on par with lasers and "plasma" weapons.

Thing the next one- Having said that, I also am a major fan of Aliens/Starship Troopers style military sci-fi, so some elements might end up sneaking their way in from time to time.
Like when I say "Heavy Laser", I'm thinking less vacuum cleaner and more
McKillsblaster (http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120108210729/halo/images/1/12/Halo_Reach_-_Side_Profile_Model_8.png).

Also twin-engine VTOLs. (http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20090914122015/crysis/images/6/66/VTOL.jpg) (And before you point out the Skyranger, that is in there too as the Russian High-Speed VTOL for long-distance deployments, alongside the American "Stork" Heavy Lift VTOL, the German "Valkyrie" Combat VTOL, and the American "Arrowhead" Stealth VTOL.  Yes, I have put some thought into CETT's vehicles, too)

Thing the last- Metal Slug has ET-like aliens in it, so it makes sense that CETT has Metal Slugs, right?  ;)

This the last final- Just so other GMs out there know, while the game I plan to run does follow the militaristic exploits of the Counter Extra-Terrestrials Taskforce, it is by no means the only part of the setting.  I am intentionally designing in room for other people to do their own thing as well if they want.  For instance, the Minds and Technologies Collective Headquarters is a great place for more Gonzo SCIENCE adventures into the unknown.  Or, if you have an affinity for nice ties, a suit, and a Q-brand briefcase, the Global Alien Monitoring and Enforcement group is always popping up mysteriously on your doorstep.

Also, just because you might have been abducted, doesn't mean that your adventure has to never start.  There have been reports of abductees who were able to escape their confinement.  While the ones known about were those who made it back to Earth, it is not impossible to think that some had to escape by going further into space.  Who knows, maybe some were even able to commandeer their own spacecraft...

Thing with the Ps and the Ss- While a Gun Bunny might be a bit... focused for any setting, anyone mind there being Tank Vixens?  Been tweaking the Like A Fox! race that I posted a while back, and I do have some interesting back story that'll fit.  (And don't worry, there can be male versions, too)  And, y'know, it's kind of been sitting there all lonely and all...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on April 29, 2012, 10:38:15 PM
i assume you mean starship troopers the film, so how about the technology that the old novel first introduced to the public : jump capable power armour and nuclear bozokas? Also halo drops...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 29, 2012, 11:41:50 PM
i assume you mean starship troopers the film,

I actually mean Starship Troopers the all of them.  Yep, the book, the first and third movies, the TV series, debated getting the wargame version (I decided against it), though I am currently kicking myself for not getting the d20 Modern rulebook, I even played a demo of the awful FPS.  Lookin' forward to the new CGI movie comin' out, in fact.

Though I actually cut my teeth on the bug-hunt with Starcraft...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 30, 2012, 10:14:58 AM
...  Also halo drops...
You mean low orbit drops.  ;)

Why do I worry that the Gun Bunnies and Tank Vixens won't get along too well?  Am I over thinking this?  (Hint:  YES.)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on April 30, 2012, 01:01:59 PM
Yay, gotta love power armour. What is FPS?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on April 30, 2012, 01:31:29 PM
...  What is FPS?
First Person Shooter.  Think Call of Modern Warfare.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on April 30, 2012, 05:13:04 PM
Why do I worry that the Gun Bunnies and Tank Vixens won't get along too well?  Am I over thinking this?  (Hint:  YES.)

Actually, Gun Bunnies and Tank Vixens get along just swimmingly.  In fact, a GB+TV duo is quite common, and often is the bane of criminals, police officers and insurance agents the world over.

Yay, gotta love power armour.

When you have a good portable power supply, sure.

...  What is FPS?
First Person Shooter.  Think Call of Modern Warfare.

AKA the closest some of us have come to actual combat.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 04, 2012, 03:04:22 PM
Random stuff:

Hey Krensky, got more of this stuff (http://www.crafty-games.com/forum/index.php?topic=1014.0) to share?

Note to anyone who wants to help stat laser weapons, all must have at least one laser sight type upgrade (scope, side-barrel attachment, etc.), which represents the firing mechanism that some RL laser weapons use (small laser to "clear a path" for the larger laser).

So, was that a yes or no on the fox-people?  Heck with it, I'm going to whip up a post about 'em anyways and see what people think...

Also, have you seen the new Floaters? (http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/05/04/death-the-muton-firaxis-on-xcom-fatalities-floaters/)  Man they look awesome.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 07, 2012, 05:32:22 PM
An idea struck me the other day while I was reading about how the new XCOM is handling ammo (infinite, though units still need to reload) for a new campaign quality (though I might need some help balancing it):

Bottomless ammo pouches ( - XP ): Whether it is because your backing agency has decided to fully back a mission, or your freelance group have saved up for this specific endeavor, the PCs have more than enough ammo to burn.  However, because this tends to cause agents to ignore things like "conservation of fire", the wear and tear on guns usually increases.

Any weapon with a magazine (or clip, or whatever) of 5 shots or more are considered to have an "infinite stockpile", though PCs will still need to reload.

Also, each weapon has a "standard magazine (or clip, or whatever) size, and usage of any "non-standard" sizes effects the weapon's error range, determined by half the difference between the "storage stockpile" of the "standard" size with that of the one being used, and increasing the error range by the answer (rounded up) if the "standard" is higher, or decreasing the error range (minimum 0) by the answer (rounded down, or up if the difference is only 1) if the standard is lower.

Example: A standard 5.56mm NATO assault rifle uses 30-round magazines, which has a storage stockpile of 5.
The agent has the option to instead use 20-round magazines, with a storage stockpile of 8, which will decrease the error range by 1 (8-5=3, 3*.5=1.5, rounded down).
Conversely, the agent can opt to use 100-round drums, with a storage stockpile of 1, which will increase the error range by 2 (5-1=4, 4*.5=2).


Also, any option which allows a PC to take an extra stockpile of ammo (feat, class ability, trading gear picks) instead increases the storage stockpile by one for the size they are using, and recalculates the error range by the new difference.  If the size used is the standard, then the new storage stockpile is treated as a different size, and is calculated as normal.

Example: An agent using 20-round magazines trades some gun upgrades to increase the stockpile once, which increases the storage stockpile by 1, which now decreases the error range by 2 (9-5=4, 4*.5=2).
If the agent was instead using 30-round magazines, then the stockpile still increases by one, and decreases the error range by 1 (6-5=1, 1*.5=.5 rounded up).



Let me know what you think, and please help tweak, please.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 07, 2012, 07:33:43 PM
Using a drum instead of magazines does not make most rifles more prone to jams and whatnot.  (Special case for feeding an M-249 from magazines, which is about as convenient as inflicting medicine on a rabbit.)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on May 07, 2012, 10:25:25 PM
borrowing from Diaspora you could that anyone can spend an AD to declare one weapon runs out of ammo. under this rule no one would track ammo
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: foproy on May 08, 2012, 07:03:31 AM
Using a drum instead of magazines does not make most rifles more prone to jams and whatnot.  (Special case for feeding an M-249 from magazines, which is about as convenient as inflicting medicine on a rabbit.)
actually aren't drums and betamags prone to spring problems making them a bit more prone to failure?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 08, 2012, 07:47:55 AM
actually aren't drums and betamags prone to spring problems making them a bit more prone to failure?
Not really, especially not when they are new and well maintained.

You could also use the above mentioned ironman rig for lighter ammo and have a Lot on hand.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 08, 2012, 11:56:27 AM
borrowing from Diaspora you could that anyone can spend an AD to declare one weapon runs out of ammo. under this rule no one would track ammo

But then I might as well just use the Bottomless Clip quality.  The point was that the PCs would still need to keep track of their magazines, and occasionally time their reloads during battle, while still not having to worry about tracking every round that they have on their person, like with how the new XCOM is handling ammo.

Using a drum instead of magazines does not make most rifles more prone to jams and whatnot.  (Special case for feeding an M-249 from magazines, which is about as convenient as inflicting medicine on a rabbit.)

True, but the tendency for a person to go DAKKA DAKKA DAKKA when they feel that they don't have to worry about running out, would probably put a strain on the mechanism, I'd think.  I even remember hearing somewhere that one reason that they only hand out 30-round mags to troops was that the constant reloading helped cool the barrels after extended firing (the same thinking that has the standard M16 have only burst-fire, I believe), though I don't know how true that is.
Same problem with overcharged power cells.

Another reason for that rule is pesky "game balance" reasons.
If you don't have to worry about running out of ammo, but still need to reload, what's to stop people from just taking 100-round drums?  And why would anyone take 20-round mags instead?
The most logical, to me anyways, reason would be "taking the drum increases the chance that your gun malfunctions", though if there's another way, I'd love to hear it.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 08, 2012, 12:31:32 PM
I agree that how many rounds are left in the magazine is more important than how many magazines are left.  A few AD, spent by players or the DM, should be able to set someone down to a few magazines left.  (DM Spends an AD and says:  "Pulling another 40 round magazine for his Armalite from his vest, Jones realized the pouches were nearly empty, three magazines and the one in his hand were all he had left."  Player spends 4 AD on the alien who just rounded a corner:  "Even without a mouth, the alien's face wore a look of surprised horror as his plasma rifle belched a sad cloud of gas and blinked empty.")

M-16s originally were semi or fully automatic.  M-16A2s replaced full auto with three round burst mode, because burning a 20 round magazine is generally very ineffective.  (Of the currently manufactured versions, M-16A3s have full auto, and M-16A4s have three round burst.)  The grunts have never pushed for full auto M-16s or M-4s, and single aimed shots are much more effective than spraying a magazine worth of bullets.  (See prior discussions on the Autofire action.)

20 round magazines are still around, but more common now are 40 round magazines that are more reliable than the old 20 rounders were.  (As recently as 1999, you only put 27 rounds in a 30 round magazine to prevent misfeeding, and I never topped off my GI 30 round mags.)  Drums are available in 50 and 100 round varieties, and are considered reliable enough that the USMC is using them with their automatic rifles.  (Replacing the fire team's SAW with a heavy barrel, full auto, M-16 variant.)  As a SAW gunner I carried an extra six 30 round magazines.  Those magazines were basically for my friends, because SAWs treat magazines the way puppies treat loafers:  They chew the hell out of 'em.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 08, 2012, 02:54:47 PM
(As recently as 1999, you only put 27 rounds in a 30 round magazine to prevent misfeeding, and I never topped off my GI 30 round mags.)

*Shrug* And technically if you reload mid mag, you will have the amount in the new mag plus the one in the chamber, but many FPSs ignore that just to keep things simple.

But for the moment, let's say we do the "use AD to force a 'low on ammo' situation", how would one do the math?
Maybe something like:

Running Low!
-The GC can spend AD equal to the storage stockpile of a weapon to cause a Running Low! on a PC.  When under Running Low!, the number of magazines the effected PC has left is equal to 1/2 the normal stockpile size, rounded up.

Doing it like that, I can go, "Sure, use that 100-round drum.  It'll just make it easier for me to force you to run out of ammo."

Oooh, I think I like the sound of that.  >:D

Will still need to figure out how to tweak the XP gain for this quality, though.  Maybe +0 if the Running Low! rule is a part of the quality.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 08, 2012, 04:12:04 PM
Time to reload?  Slowing your movement?  Those 100 round drums are not small, two on a vest is really all you can carry before they start interfering with doing stuff.  You can put more in your pack, but then you have to get them out.  I am inclined to suggest keeping track of ammo, but letting players decide how much they want to bring.  (That is another perk of smaller caliber weapons:  More ammo for the same weight.)

Could go either way.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 08, 2012, 04:41:20 PM
Those 100 round drums are not small, two on a vest is really all you can carry before they start interfering with doing stuff.  You can put more in your pack, but then you have to get them out.

Not as much of a problem when the "drum" is a 30-round mag with a Folded Space Ammunition Storage Mechanism (FSASM).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 08, 2012, 05:28:27 PM
Those 100 round drums are not small, two on a vest is really all you can carry before they start interfering with doing stuff.  You can put more in your pack, but then you have to get them out.
Not as much of a problem when the "drum" is a 30-round mag with a Folded Space Ammunition Storage Mechanism (FSASM).
Well, if you're rolling like that, then there is seldom much reason to fire single shots.  Space fold your recoil system too, and watch recoil drop to nil.  .50BMG carbines here we come!
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 08, 2012, 06:17:00 PM
Space fold your recoil system too, and watch recoil drop to nil.  .50BMG carbines here we come!

Sure, if you don't mind a gun that tends to double feed and/or "lags" a shot.  Not to mention that the amount of E-115 needed to run a fold system like that is better used for propulsion of the projectile.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 09, 2012, 02:30:41 PM
.50BMG chain gun, with the space fold recoil buffer between the receiver and the buttstock.  Use a belt feeder so the rifle is pulling the rounds out of the folded space magazine.  Hmm.   ;D  (Maybe add a KRISS Vector (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TDI_Vector) type action to take care of some muzzle rise?)

How much Elerium is needed for the space folding?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on May 09, 2012, 03:43:41 PM
You see RusVal, this is why I don't tell my players how some things work.

Space fold your recoil system too, and watch recoil drop to nil.  .50BMG carbines here we come!

Sure, if you don't mind a gun that tends to double feed and/or "lags" a shot.  Not to mention that the amount of E-115 needed to run a fold system like that is better used for propulsion of the projectile.

Why do they use it for mags if this is the case?  Surely something like the Ironman backpack, or even regular drums / beta mags work fine for most firefights (and since it's on earth, supply lines are close to impossible to fully cut off - given the existence of gun shops and the like in many countries).  Given the rarity (I assumed, based on the last sentence) it just strikes me a waste to space fold the mags at all (especially compared to other (bulkier) items).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 09, 2012, 06:49:55 PM
Why do they use it for mags if this is the case?  Surely something like the Ironman backpack, or even regular drums / beta mags work fine for most firefights (and since it's on earth, supply lines are close to impossible to fully cut off - given the existence of gun shops and the like in many countries).  Given the rarity (I assumed, based on the last sentence) it just strikes me a waste to space fold the mags at all (especially compared to other (bulkier) items).

Hang on, let me check...


*Creak*

Hey Doc, some guys got a question about...

*Ducks flying spatula*

SILENCE!!  I am in the MIDDLE of creating my three legged cyborg platypus army!

UGH!  And you made me throw one of my surgical implements!  Now I have to start over!

Sorry, just some guys had a question about the Folded Space Ammo Storage Mechanism, something about why we don't use the "Folded Space" for other things.

The what?

The Folded Space Ammo Storage Mechanism, why can't we fold space for other things?

The "Folded Space Ammo Storage Mechanism"?  What idiot folds space just to store ammunition?

Bu... You did!  All those rifle magazines that store more ammo inside them than should be physically possible?  Which we then used on most ammunition storage for vehicle weapons?  And the Folded Inventory Mesh?  And the...

Right right, that tiresome thing.

And when we asked you about applying folded space for other applications, you gave us all these reasons like...

Yes yes, I know what I told you.  You lot had me working 24/7 on that, and I had other scientific pursuits that needed researching, you know!

How is "folding space" not a worthwhile pursuit?

Well, truth be told I never actually "folded space".  Some lab assistant mistakenly though my cup holder was some sort of magazine grip, and realized that he could fit more bullets in it than he should when it was on.  
I had to skip sleeping for a week just so I could figure out what I did.

And I did!  Somehow...

Wait, so you don't know how it works.

Well I couldn't tell them that!  I have a reputation to uphold!
So when they asked me how it worked, I had to come up with some fancy science-related name, something catchy!  Something that you can make a cool-sounding acronym out of!
So, "Folded Space Ammunition Storage Mechanism".  It's just so fun saying "FSASM"!  FSASM, FSASM...

So, all those other things...

Like I said, I had other things to work on, so I just made up some plausible problems, like "double feeding", and "lagging", and "spontaneous backfiring", faked the test paperwork, and they let me go back to my studies.

Which you should be doing!  GET OUT OF MY LAB!!

Eep! *Quickly closes door before miscellaneous things hit*


Um...

So, to sum up: just be glad you get what you got, and don't ask questions on why it works.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 16, 2012, 04:47:07 AM
[a/n-Ok, to make up for the EPIC SCIENCE FAIL of my last couple posts, here's something I have actually put some thought in.  Enjoy.  Or pick apart, whatever.]

File 6423-G
Subject- Weapon Research

Although I am remiss to report a lack in success in creation of a reliable plasma based weaponry similar to that used by our current... unruly visitors, I am happy to report that the current influx of samples provided to those of us in the lab has led to some large leaps in technological design theory.

Of particular focus is the weapons systems as reported in files [classified] and [classified], or better known to the troops as the two major plasma-based weapons that have been encountered in the field.

The first type, nicknamed the "fireball orb" gun by us in the science division, essentially creates a focused ball of ionized particles, by a process we currently theorize as some sort of gravity-induced anti-matter flux system, before launching the resultant "fireball orb" at a target.  This one, we admit, mostly just makes us look at it and scratch our collective heads.

The second, much cruder and less effective one, called the "flint" gun, is much more understandable in how it works.
Essentially a kinetic weapon, the "flint" is a currently unnamed material (that we have concluded is made and not naturally occurring) that is designed to go plasma during the firing sequence.
In short, it is a high-tech version of lighting an arrow on fire before launching it.  Or in this case, launching it causes the arrow to catch on fire.

So what have we figured out?  Don't worry, I'm getting to that.

The two major advances we have made are thus:

1.) While we have successfully recreated the material used as ammunition for the flint gun, all samples have suffered from a strange case of high deterioration, to the point that we cannot hope to reliably use it ourselves.  We believe that there may be a step in it's creation that we don't know about, and hope that current forays in studying captured visitor production facilities might yield an answer.
Wait, we captured some production facilities?
No.  *HINT HINT*

We have, however, been able to use the knowledge gleaned to design a new type of incendiary ammunition.  Similar to design to the current "Armor piercing incendiary" ammunition, however, instead of an incendiary element encased in a shell activated via explosive material, the shell itself is designed to "flare" via a process of [classified].
Similarly, we have designs on hand for more advanced explosive ordinance (frag grenades, missiles, etc.) that use a similar process to create, essentially, "flint fragments", which should increase lethality by a large percentage.

2.) One thing we found interesting about both the flint and the fire orb guns is, despite its usage by two vastly different species, is the remarkable similarities in their launching mechanisms.
In a way, they are very similar to Gauss-type weapons, in that they use a "pull" type mechanism in the barrel as propulsion for their launched material.

However, unlike, say, a railgun or coilgun, they don't use magnetism for the process, nor do they use manipulated gravity as we had previously theorized.
Even more confusingly, despite the last sentence, the process does have elements of magnetism, and manipulated gravity.

Despite the perplexing nature of this find, we believe that, helped by the current study into "grip" technology being done in the Armor & Equipment departments [see [classified]], we have been able to create a similar system.

While not technically a Gauss system, the name is well known enough to the troops for them to understand the basic gist of it, so we are naming it thus.  Instead of a series of coils, however, the system uses a grid of hexagonal "plates" designed to activate in a certain order.

Unfortunately, despite the achievement in and of itself for getting the system to work, it is not quite efficient enough on its own to be used as a mass-driving system.

Fortunately, there happen to be sci-fi geeks amongst the rank-and-file troops.

Thanks to the observations of one [classified], we have noticed that we were able to maintain an efficient level of propulsion at specific lower levels of power, and that, when combined with a more conventional chemical-based firearm, we were able to achieve velocities of a full powered singular system at a fraction of the power output.

As such, we have successfully designed a system designed to "strap on" to barrels of conventional firearms (though while "strap on", does require the trigger to be replaced to work properly), and have been able to achieve heightened weapon performance from doing so.

Designs for a more dedicated hybrid system are underway, with plans to combine with the "Plasmic Electro-Thermal" system currently in R&D.  If successful, we hope to achieve velocities to rival those used by the medium-grade visitor weapons.
[End file]
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 16, 2012, 06:08:52 AM
[a/n-Ok, to make up for the EPIC SCIENCE FAIL of my last couple posts, here's something I have actually put some thought in.  Enjoy.  Or pick apart, whatever.]
"Epic fail" is quite the wrong term.  Maybe "a bit off target."  No worries.

Call it a boost rifle?  But using a pull effect in tandem with a chemical pull sounds neat.  Maybe mate this system with caseless ammo, with a lower "powder" charge to reduce heat.  Caseless ammo means lighter ammo, so you can carry more.  It will also mean lighter felt recoil.

I want one of these.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 16, 2012, 07:28:47 AM
Actually a hybrid Gauss/chemical firearm isn't entirely new.  Oftentimes it is a handwave to why an otherwise case- and recoil-less gun still spits out spent shells with the budda budda budda.
Most well-known example: the rifles Terran Marines use in Starcraft.

You might have also seen me use the term "GAET" (pronounced "Gate") gun before, which basically stands for "Gauss-Assisted Electro-Thermal".

As for "Electro-Thermal"... I got the idea from a D20 Future splatbook, so I'm not sure if it's a real thing or not.  Best I understand it, it's "gunpowder + SCIENCE!!" so... yeah.

Maybe mate this system with caseless ammo, with a lower "powder" charge to reduce heat.  Caseless ammo means lighter ammo, so you can carry more.  It will also mean lighter felt recoil.

I was actually thinking more of a telescoped-type casing, similar to the ones being developed by the LSAT (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lightweight_Small_Arms_Technologies) program.
Though I understand the draw of caseless, like in space (where less random floating debris is a plus) and black ops (evidence?  What evidence?), but there's also the problem of overheating and keeping the propellant in one piece during the rough and tumble of combat.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 16, 2012, 08:04:13 AM
I thought that noise the Terran marine's rifle was the round breaking the sound barrier.

Heat has been an issue with the caseless rounds, but cutting down the generated heat...  (I've got a couple of burn scars from hot brass down my clothes, I know how much heat shell casings take out of the weapon.  ;D :P )

Point is that I like this idea.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on May 17, 2012, 05:16:21 PM
DalekFscker75- Are you sure it was them?
>Yes sir, I can definitely say it was
>All markers point in the proper directions
DalekFscker75- Let's take a look at it.
>Roger that

>-[BgnMsg]

Have the dreamers awakened yet?

Not sure, the alarm was sounded, but no one has reacted near as we can tell.  Not even hitting the snooze button to go back to sleep.

Your observation?

We might have waited too long, let the deterioration set in.  No one will be getting up.

Keep trying.  Maybe they aren't in, or have partied so hard as to be temporarily deaf to the ringing.

As you wish.

[EndMsg]

DalekFscker75- Any idea what they are talking about.
>Besides the glaringly obvious
>No
DalekFscker75- I was afraid of that.
>If I may, sir
>It might be prudent to declassify some files for your troops
>Particularly files about those that are helping us
DalekFscker75- Yeah, my thoughts exactly.  I'll get right on it.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 22, 2012, 11:58:47 AM
Caseless ammo could cut 25 lbs. from gear (http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2012/05/marine-lighter-machine-gun-052112/)

Telescoping case ammunition is getting really close, and looks to be cutting the weight of ammunition by 40-50%.  There are heat issues, but nothing relevant to a tabletop RPG unless the PCs regularly have encounters that are 30+ minutes of game time shooting.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on May 23, 2012, 12:51:29 AM
You could always put Overheats on the weapon and call it done.  I'm not sure at what point heat generation becomes the Overheats quality though.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on May 23, 2012, 03:53:33 AM
You could always put Overheats on the weapon and call it done.  I'm not sure at what point heat generation becomes the Overheats quality though.
Usually after you've burned through triple the ammo usually carried in less than ten minutes...

And I'm pretty sure the Aurora Project researchers can knock out the last issues with the U-Magazine (http://www.guns.com/u-shaped-magazine-by-richard-urwin-8092.html).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on June 02, 2012, 07:49:26 PM
Usually after you've burned through triple the ammo usually carried in less than ten minutes...

That, and IN SPAAACE where heat transferal is a major problem (unlike what movies (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SpaceIsCold) lead you to believe), but space infantry combat is another kettle of fish entirely...

And I'm pretty sure the Aurora Project researchers...

Sorry, you seem to be confused.  The Aurora Initiative was a US Air Force project, who tended to focus on aerospace sciences.  Even after CETT's creation, anyone formerly connected to the program are more likely to be researching SCRAM-Pulse Engines and GNGR air-to-air missiles.

...can knock out the last issues with the U-Magazine (http://www.guns.com/u-shaped-magazine-by-richard-urwin-8092.html).

That, or soldiers could use quad-stacked (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SsdHYl81of8&feature=player_embedded) magazines.  Or both.

(Actually, when the gunner in the vid used the MAG5 with a SCAR, it looked very "miniature wargame"-e, which is very like the new XCOM look)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on June 21, 2012, 04:21:52 PM
[Warning label on an E-115 container]

WARNING

Prolonged exposer to Elerium-115 can lead to any of the following side effects:

Headaches, backaches, athletes foot, extra foot, arthritis, swelling of the joints, swelling of the feet, swelling of the hands, extra fingers, loss of fingers, loss and regaining of fingers, hair loss, accelerated hair growth, random hair loss and growth, shingles, the bends, dry watery eyes, burning, scaring, welts, color change, limb growth, limb shrinkage, weight loss, weight gain, increased milk production, sudden wardrobe malfunction, unexplained pregnancy, random teleportation, undeath, redeath, sudden death, coming back from the dead, ability to talk to dead, loss of speech, randomly changing the language you can understand, memory loss, memory gain, sudden urge to eat brains, sudden urge to drink blood, nosebleed, and loss of smell.

If you've been exposed to E-115, please calmly lie on the ground while we quarantine the area.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on June 22, 2012, 06:44:57 AM
[Warning label on an E-115 container]

WARNING

Prolonged exposer to Elerium-115 can lead to any of the following side effects: ...
I haven't played with a Happy Fun Ball (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gzDC-2ZO8I) in forever!
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on June 25, 2012, 05:58:46 PM
I haven't played with a Happy Fun Ball (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gzDC-2ZO8I) in forever!

:o

Ya know, I had no idea that existed until now.  I was riffing a Jeff Foxworthy skit!  ("You know, I think I'll stick to itchy, watery eyes.")
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on June 26, 2012, 04:39:14 PM
Finally got around to looking up Google translator (yeah, I'm lazy, what of it?), and was able to come up with a catchy motto for CETT.

"Ad Terram Finem", or "To Earth's End" if the translator is right.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on June 27, 2012, 09:02:35 AM
"Ad Terram Finem", or "To Earth's End" if the translator is right.
At least junior high Latin lets one know if the translators are off a bit?  "Ad Terrae Finem," to give possession to the Earth, and make the end not a place.

How about "Donec mortem victurus, defensores terrae," "Until victory or death, Defenders of Earth"? 
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on June 28, 2012, 12:37:52 PM
At least junior high Latin lets one know if the translators are off a bit?  "Ad Terrae Finem," to give possession to the Earth, and make the end not a place.

And now you know why I don't normally Google.  Also, I can barely remember my high school French, let alone know any Latin.  :P

How about "Donec mortem victurus, defensores terrae," "Until victory or death, Defenders of Earth"? 

Hmm, maybe.  What I was going for was a motto that someone posing as an extreme Counter-Terrorism unit might say.  "To the End of the Earth" implies chasing someone, and can also be a more cynical view of their true fight (they don't expect true victory, but they will fight to the last anyway).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on June 28, 2012, 01:35:00 PM
"To the End of the Earth" ... can also be a more cynical view of their true fight (they don't expect true victory, but they will fight to the last anyway).

That was my first thought on reading it.  Which I like quite a lot.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on June 30, 2012, 09:06:46 PM
Posing is a good point.  Until the end of the block, or planet, we'll fight.  Then go off and find somewhere else to fight.   :D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 04, 2012, 04:34:37 PM
Posing is a good point.  Until the end of the block, or planet, we'll fight.  Then go off and find somewhere else to fight.   :D

Also makes for a good battle cry.

"To the end of the Earth, WE FIGHT!"
"WE FIGHT!!"

By the way, I think I have the general math for some new gear lined up properly.  At least for some basic personal weaponry, anyway:

- "Fire Orb" style Plasma (Or Pulse Plasma) are Laser-type weapons using scale-numbered d8s (4d8 for rifle, 3d8 for pistol, for instance), offset by an extremely short range.  At the same time, however, can except certain upgrades that help improve that range (example: pulse stabilization device).  Will mostly be a requisition only type deal for humans.

- "Flint" style Plasma will be more conventional in stats, basically upgunned versions of the Russian AP weapons from the BFoGs supplement.  Some will have the ability to "splash", in effect be similar to using Frag-12 shotgun shells.  Some prototypes can be used as Cal V picks by humans.

- Lasers are, well, Laser-type weapons using scale-numbered d6s (4d6 rifle, 3d6 pistol), with moderate range, and the added bonus of having multiple laser-based upgrades automatically.  Many will be Cal V picks by humans.

- "Upgunned Kinetic" (GAET guns, multi-purpose missile launchers, advanced RPGs) will be the most commonly available to CETT characters.  Still fudging a bit with the stats, but I do know that the 6mm rifle will be 5d4 damage, with the general direction being "high base damage, high range" without as many frills.

- Also, there is a "class" of alien weapons that I haven't mentioned yet, called "Crystal".  Think Eldar from WH40K, only if they were built by the Atlantians from Atlantis: The Lost Empire.  Essentially the opposite of CETT's "get around the DR via extreme base damage", with an "low damage (for it's size), very high AP".  Kind of still in the planning phases, stats wise.

- Finally, am working on "Custom Baseline" human weapons, an in-universe result of an "EX-Caliber" initiative that tries to take the best parts of Earth's weapon designs, smoosh them together, and then further upgrade them using captured alien alloys.  Highlights include an automatic handgun in .454 Cassul, a 6.8mm assault rifle with all the trimmings, and a .30 machine gun that you can shoot while standing up.  Most available to humans, even those not CETT, and can be used in public without arousing too much suspicion.

For those wondering, the main difference between "Upgunned Kinetic" and "Custom Baseline" is that Upgunned looks more far future (ie. Battlefield 2142, Starcraft, Halo), while Custom looks like someone mashed some different guns together (probably using Pimp My Gun) before adding some glowie sci-fi bits.

Hope to post more soon.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 05, 2012, 07:39:19 AM
- Lasers are, well, Laser-type weapons using scale-numbered d6s (4d6 rifle, 3d6 pistol), with moderate range, and the added bonus of having multiple laser-based upgrades automatically.  Many will be Cal V picks by humans.

- "Upgunned Kinetic" (GAET guns, multi-purpose missile launchers, advanced RPGs) will be the most commonly available to CETT characters.  Still fudging a bit with the stats, but I do know that the 6mm rifle will be 5d4 damage, with the general direction being "high base damage, high range" without as many frills.
I would be tempted to flip these around, or change the way laser damage falls off over distance.  (The more I think about laser damage, the more I want it to fall off over distance.  It doesn't get harder to hit your target, but each hit does less damage.  I would change the laser falloff at range to -1 or -2 damage per range increment, instead of the current "minus one damage die."  I'm not sure if that would overpower the lasers though.)

- Finally, am working on "Custom Baseline" human weapons, an in-universe result of an "EX-Caliber" initiative that tries to take the best parts of Earth's weapon designs, smoosh them together, and then further upgrade them using captured alien alloys.  Highlights include an automatic handgun in .454 Cassul, a 6.8mm assault rifle with all the trimmings, and a .30 machine gun that you can shoot while standing up.  Most available to humans, even those not CETT, and can be used in public without arousing too much suspicion.
A .454 semi-auto won't look like a standard sidearm.  Those rounds are too big to comfortably fit in a handgrip.  You're looking at a magazine well on the side or in front of the grip.  This will be one beastly looking and awesome sidearm.  (I want one already.)

I think the machine gun you want is going to be a prettied up Mk 48 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mk_48_machine_gun).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 05, 2012, 03:20:18 PM
I'm not sure if that would overpower the lasers though.

Me neither, which is why I'm leery in changing it.

A .454 semi-auto won't look like a standard sidearm.  Those rounds are too big to comfortably fit in a handgrip.  You're looking at a magazine well on the side or in front of the grip.

Most likely.  I (http://www.crafty-games.com/forum/index.php?topic=6409.0) just remember it being mentioned in a John Ringo book (one of the Looking Glass series, if I remember correctly).

I think the machine gun you want is going to be a prettied up Mk 48 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mk_48_machine_gun).

Probably.  I (http://www.crafty-games.com/forum/index.php?topic=6409.0) do know that the assault rifle is semi-based off the ACR system, maybe with some bips and bobs.  Actually, I do remember a certain assault rifle in the Rainbow 6 Patriots reveal trailer (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WTrgNxeUWw8) (used by the main 6 character) that doesn't quite match any model I know about, which was kind of sci-fi looking (not to mention the face masks kind of match the one shown in the Pre-Order pic for XCOM, so...).

Edit: LOL brain fart.  :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 05, 2012, 04:51:32 PM
The .454 Casull handguns were featured in Through the Looking Glass and the other stories in that 'verse.  I don't recall if they were revolvers or semi autos, but I do recall them only being wielded in the Wyvern powered armor.  (Having wheels to scoot alone while prone was a stroke of genius.)  Being a rimmed round presents difficulties for magazine feeding too.  Maybe a top loading P90 type magazine with 10 rounds?  Or the .45 Winchester Magnum (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.45_Winchester_Magnum), for a rimless shell casing?  .50AE [Action Express] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.50AE) is also a sidearm option.  (Here is the Casull Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.454) entry with several rounds to compare sizes.)

IMO the XM-8 looks much more futuristic looking than the ACR.  As far as the machine guns go, I'm not sure how much need the CETT has for the really big stuff like M-2 Ma Deuces or even small stuff like the M-240 or M-249.  Belt fed machine guns aren't so necessary with the improvements made in drums and large magazines.  (Which doesn't rule out belt feeding a machine gun out of a backpack.)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on July 05, 2012, 07:18:18 PM
A .454 semi-auto won't look like a standard sidearm.  Those rounds are too big to comfortably fit in a handgrip.  You're looking at a magazine well on the side or in front of the grip.  This will be one beastly looking and awesome sidearm.  (I want one already.)
(Here is the Casull Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.454) entry with several rounds to compare sizes.)

I'm not doubting you, I'm just wondering why is this the case?  The Wiki link is missing a pretty important comparison (in my mind) - the .50AE (it's closest size competition).

Here's a pic I found:
Spoiler: for size • show

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v238/Gixerman1000/Mis/100_3326.jpg)
.454 Casull - .50AE - .500Mag  (Round order, left to right).


The Casull round is thiner then the .50AE, and only a tiny bit longer (41mm vs 45mm) - that 4mm of length doesn't seem enough to make it unable to be put into a semi-auto handgrip.  I've handled a Desert Eagle (handled, but unfortunately not fired) and I don't imagine that 4mm of extra length to the grips would put it into the uncomfortable range for me.

The only problem I can see is the engineering necessary to handle that powerful a round - but even then the energy is only slightly higher then the .50AE (2200J vs 2459J), so that can be dealt with.  Like I said, I'm not saying your wrong here - just that it doesn't make sense to me.  You'd need to be a big dude, for sure, but no bigger then is needed to handle a Desert Eagle in .50AE (and I've seen pretty small women with dainty little hands fire them - so some strapping special forces type should be able to handle 4mm extra).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 05, 2012, 07:36:15 PM
Two: 
1)  Size of the round for operator comfort.
2)  Rimmed rounds don't stack properly.

I have fairly large paws.  Large gloves and all that.  A Desert Eagle is not something I can comfortably wield with one hand.  The straight stack M-1911 fits just right, but the double stack ones are too fat.  YMMV, some folks <3 Glock grips, or the XD, heck some even like the feel of the M-9.

I don't know what the guy who made the .357 Magnum M-1911 did to the magazine, but that grip is going to be pushing it for fitting in my paw.

Maybe when they get to powered armor you're building up the grip to fit the armored hand, but at that point you might as well go with a LAR-15  (http://www.rockriverarms.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=category.display&category_id=231)in .50 Beowulf (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.50_Beowulf).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on July 05, 2012, 07:48:38 PM
I wasn't aware that rimmed rounds don't stack properly.  Makes one wonder if the case could be altered to be more like the .50AE.

Still, with alien alloys and other tech development, you'd want smaller rounds at higher velocities (IMO).  Big ass guns might make you feel like a badass, but I'd rather throw a projectile half the size at twice the velocity (via super science alien advancement magic).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 05, 2012, 08:35:29 PM
IMO the XM-8 looks much more futuristic looking than the ACR.

*Shrug* To each their own.  Though I have to wonder that, sci-fi tradition or no, is a carrying handle that large really necessary?  ;)

As far as the machine guns go, I'm not sure how much need the CETT has for the really big stuff like M-2 Ma Deuces or even small stuff like the M-240 or M-249.

Suppression fire is still useful against the squishier smarter enemies, and sometimes you just need a wall of high-velocity lead(ish) up in a hurry.  Then again, there are some similar laser and plasma weapons that could do the job.  Then again again... (http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20110907233645/deusex/en/images/4/4e/Kaigarifle_inventory.png)

Still, with alien alloys and other tech development, you'd want smaller rounds at higher velocities (IMO).  Big ass guns might make you feel like a badass, but I'd rather throw a projectile half the size at twice the velocity (via super science alien advancement magic).

*Shrug...again* The argument about wide vs. skinny has been done for decades now, and I don't believe myself enough of an expert to decide which way is the way, though I do figure that "spikes", sort of a halfway between slug and flechette, might be desirable.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 06, 2012, 04:30:04 AM
Still, with alien alloys and other tech development, you'd want smaller rounds at higher velocities (IMO).  Big ass guns might make you feel like a badass, but I'd rather throw a projectile half the size at twice the velocity (via super science alien advancement magic).
Larger bullets generally do a better job of transferring their energy to the target.  Zippy rounds are really good for stuff way the heck over there, but long range (over 200 meters) firefights are unusual.  That's why the Beowulf/M-4's designed range is, like the AK-47, 200 meters.  You also have space for building sabot and explosive rounds. 

If we're playing with Science! then we want .50 BMG rounds to be reasonable rifle rounds.  Big, fast and able to shred most things folks use for cover.   ;D

Hmm.  For ripping open the armored baddies, best is probably an OICW style 25mm+ with shaped charge explosive rounds.  Or the Skyranger can, while landing or once down, deploy a few Switchblade type drones (http://www.avinc.com/uas/adc/switchblade/) that the operatives can call down on heavy enemy units.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 06, 2012, 09:29:40 AM
Larger bullets generally do a better job of transferring their energy to the target.  

Which helps when you need to stop something big mid-charge.

Zippy rounds are really good for stuff way the heck over there, but long range (over 200 meters) firefights are unusual.

Though I can see long-range zippy being useful against small zippy flying enemies.  Though lasers would probably be better for that.

If we're playing with Science! then we want .50 BMG rounds to be reasonable rifle rounds.  Big, fast and able to shred most things folks use for cover.   ;D

But what if you can get a 5.56-like assault rifle with the power of a .50 BMG?  Which means that the .50 BMG is as powerful as a 25mm?  And the 25mm...

Hmm.  For ripping open the armored baddies, best is probably an OICW style 25mm+ with shaped charge explosive rounds.

Hmm, maybe.  I do think that an XM307 dedicated to the 25mm version firing airbursting grenades that explode in fragments that burn with plasmic fire would be quite devastating.

It would also be cool if there was, like, an underslung pump-action 25mm airburst launcher (http://pnmedia.gamespy.com/screenshots/frontlines/99960000.jpg).  Ya'know, for that Aliens pulse rifle feel.

Or the Skyranger can, while landing or once down, deploy a few Switchblade type drones (http://www.avinc.com/uas/adc/switchblade/) that the operatives can call down on heavy enemy units.

Ah, drones.  Gonna have to dedicate an entire post to those, cause that is one thing there is no shortage of in this setting is un"manned" vehicles.

You got your SHIV-like drones, you got certain mini-tank designs, you got your "tank slave" designs, you got flyers, you got walkers, you got flying walkers (mini-Metal Gear... with jetpacks?!)... and all that's just on the human side!  Though admittedly, using drones is part sort of humanity's shtick in this universe (force multipliers all around!).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 06, 2012, 10:53:05 AM
Lasers are going to be the best against zippy things, with explosives being a close second.

Hmm.  Ya know, CETT does have some bleeding edge fabrication gear.  They could stock a dozen small arms calibers, and let the agents go to town with what they want/like/know/decide they need.  Capturing a UFO crashed or landed out in the boonies requires a different loadout from running through a City repelling a terror attack.

The M-242 Bushmaster Cannon (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M242)'s 25mm AP rounds have a slug not much larger that a .50 BMG slug.  An AP round for the man portable 25mm grenade launcher would have to be a HEAT round, which is not necessarily a problem.

Switchblade type drones can be part of the team's gear, especially if they are deployed via CETT's aircraft.  The UGVs seem like a nice niche for, wait, nevermind.  I thought there was an Expert Class that did unmanned vehicles.  We may have to whip one up.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 06, 2012, 11:19:50 AM
Hmm.  Ya know, CETT does have some bleeding edge fabrication gear.  They could stock a dozen small arms calibers, and let the agents go to town with what they want/like/know/decide they need.  Capturing a UFO crashed or landed out in the boonies requires a different loadout from running through a City repelling a terror attack.

True, CETT does have fabrication gear that is well ahead of most Earth nations, but they are facing enemies that have RTS levels of fabrication and deployment.  As such, they have to manage their resources wisely, and would probably want to cut down on things that would cause logistical issues, like a large number of differing calibers for the same weapon types.  Just sayin'.

I thought there was an Expert Class that did unmanned vehicles.  We may have to whip one up.

Pretty sure it's the Foward, probably using Wheelman as a base class, since I don't believe the Wheelman's abilities specify that they have to be in the vehicle they use.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 06, 2012, 11:58:05 AM
Hmm.  Ya know, CETT does have some bleeding edge fabrication gear.  They could stock a dozen small arms calibers, and let the agents go to town with what they want/like/know/decide they need.  Capturing a UFO crashed or landed out in the boonies requires a different loadout from running through a City repelling a terror attack.
True, CETT does have fabrication gear that is well ahead of most Earth nations, but they are facing enemies that have RTS levels of fabrication and deployment.  As such, they have to manage their resources wisely, and would probably want to cut down on things that would cause logistical issues, like a large number of differing calibers for the same weapon types.  Just sayin'.
A US Army light infantry company keeps more than dozen different ammunitions on hand.  Just sayin'.

I thought there was an Expert Class that did unmanned vehicles.  We may have to whip one up.
Pretty sure it's the Foward, probably using Wheelman as a base class, since I don't believe the Wheelman's abilities specify that they have to be in the vehicle they use.
Good to see I'm not crazy, and I guess I left that PDF at home.  (Which book?)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on July 06, 2012, 12:01:29 PM
World on Fire.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 06, 2012, 12:36:13 PM
A US Army light infantry company keeps more than dozen different ammunitions on hand.  Just sayin'.

Right, of course.  I suddenly remember a quote from a specific two "L" Colonel:

"This is a military base.  We're overstocked on everything."
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 15, 2012, 12:08:34 PM
The funny thing about Earth, at least in the view of the multi, is that when it gets in trouble, it tends to get into it sideways.

Which is strange, once one who knows thinks about it.  It is not that Earth is the first planet to get invaded.  Far from it.  Nor necessarily, on the grand scheme of thing, is it the most important.  It is, however, the one most... numerous and varied, so to speak, on the alt-directional ways when it happens.

It is quite fascinating to behold, at least in comparison to the number of times it isn't threatened.  It's almost like mankind's martial spirit's desperation for a worthy opponent in light of it's maturing civility is drawing attention of those willing to answer the challenge broadcasted across space time.

Over here, for instance, has an Earth that has been plagued by alien invasion for millennia, yet it's outward development is unchanged from the base because of an incessant need to keep knowledge of the danger quiet in the name of "security", though the examples where knowledge had gotten out do bare evident to the wiseness of this move.

Over there, in contrast, are multiple little Earths where the planet's previous untouched nature is rudely despoiled by less scrupulous visitors.  Sometimes it is a subtle sparring of the minds, the dance of cloak and dagger.  Others are more roar and fire of military muscle (usually roar for the visitors, and fire for the poor Earthlings, though exceptions do exist), often with bodycounts in the high percentages.
Each time for those Earths, though, the destinies diverge greatly from one another in the aftermath, with humanity either readying for revenge, desperately prepping for the next wave, stoically clawing away from under an alien boot (and it's usually a boot.  The ones with claws tend to have other plans), or just meekly picking up the pieces.  And that assumes humanity survives.

And it's not just the nature of the invasion that varies so much, it's the nature of the aliens invading, and how humanity defends itself.

Looking back at the Earth plagued by invasion as an example, it seems as though if it is extra-terrestrial, and it is sentient, then it wants the little blue planet innocently circling around its yellow star three orbits out.  The reasons range from "saving it from itself" to "it's not mine, so I want it" to "it used to be mine, I want it back" to "pineapple square to HG sewing mishkeainlo blue" to "1011100010010110".
And in the face of this constant varied intrusion, humankind has tried varied secret responses, the only common factor between them being that they are successful before falling apart spectacularly, leaving the following generations the thankless task of scrambling around recovering enough pieces to mount a continuing defense in the face of the newest threat.

Of course, that was a rather extreme example.  The majority usually have just one invader, two at the most for the unlucky, though sometimes it is a "one at a time" type deal for the really unlucky ones.
And the invaders themselves range from slithering slobbering monsters looking for their next meal, to humanity's dark mirror looking for fresh genetic material (the men want the women, the women want the men and the women... the consistency of that last statement puzzles me, I'll admit), each with their own sciences and approaches.

Then there's humanity and it's attempts at holding on to it's home.  Some have known of the threat for years, and have plans in reserve for just the occasion.  Others only barely thought of the possibility, and find themselves desperately cramming for the ultimate pop quiz that they find themselves taking.
And that assumes that they didn't have a "private tutor" on hand to help them out, or that they had been warned well in advance before being handed the necessary tools.
Of course, even with the latter example, there is a surprising number of "teachers" that are either incompetent, intentionally sabotaging its "students", or are just plain unhelpful.

It is quite fascinating.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 15, 2012, 02:29:25 PM
Just thought I should re-reiterate: AURORA SKIES IS NOT XCOM.  Sure it is heavily inspired by XCOM and its ilk, but it is not XCOM.

It is GI Joe, SHADO/Torchwood, and the remnants of Telsa-style Soviets, with assistance from the Kaiju Defense Force and some rather overzealous Germans and South Koreans, forming an XCOM/SHIELD/GDI style military force in the wake of Half-Life 1, Raccoon City, the events of Singularity (FPS), the initial invasion of a Hell's Hybrid of Go'auld-Snakemen-Ceph-Strogg, and the funky time-space machinations of the Grays colliding with the 30 Xanitos pile-up of the Illuminati and that old guy from Crysis 2 HAPPENING IN THE SAME TWO YEAR PERIOD.

All the while, the Decepticons are waiting patiently on the wings, occasionally crossing paths with the seemingly endless number of infiltrator cells sent by a martian civilization desperately hanging on from an alternate dimension anchored to the red planet.  At the same time, an ancient Earth civilization is waking up from a similar style alternate dimension, which is drawing the attention of the Covenant, the Combine, a traveling space circus of ugly clowns, and Klingon/Orks.

Wait, there's more!  There's some bruh-haha going on in Japan over some "remnants of the Moon Kingdom", where the Power Rangers and Sailor Sentai face forces from some tentacle ship in geosynchronous orbit overhead, occasionally getting help from some runaway space princesses who are all shacking up with the same (un)lucky guy.

And to top it all off, the Illuminati has gotten into a merger with Umbrella and the Weyland Corp, and are trying to use Things People Are Not Meant To Know for Fun And Profit.

After all of this, can you blame the MIB for getting frustrated with keeping the tourism flowing?

Not to mention the brainchild of Daniel Jackson, the Ghost Busters, and what's left of the Black Mesa science team keeps trying to poke things in the name of the human condition, often not realizing what they are getting themselves into.

So to finish up this rather large post:
Ultimately, Aurora Skies isn't an alien invasion story.  It is the story of EVERY alien invasion scenario happening in the wake of other invasions, with nothing but more invasions waiting to happen after these are taken care of.
And the PCs are the grunts on the frontline of this fight.

Lucky you.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 15, 2012, 03:08:07 PM
Has Cobra come in from the cold?  Are they a fifth column?  Will Destro cease being a member of Cobra, and find his own mercenary way?

Will GI JOE and CETT be competitors for elite commandos?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 15, 2012, 03:31:21 PM
*sigh* Not literally. I do prefer to file off the serial numbers most of the way, thanks. ::)

Will GI JOE and CETT be competitors for elite commandos?

That... is actually a plot point.  That and one or two WoF factions might be rattling about, oblivious to the greater war going on.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 25, 2012, 01:48:48 PM
Warning to all CETT troopers:

There have been increasing reports of a mysterious military force in the combat zones, fighting both the Echo-Tango forces as well as our own.  All inquires towards allied forces have confirmed that these people do not follow any known human flag, and are to be considered hostile until proven otherwise.

Spoiler: Keep a watchful eye out for any forces that look like this • show
(http://game.wakesidevision.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Tekken_BV-11.jpg)


As always, keep alert, stay safe.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 30, 2012, 04:52:16 PM
Are those the guys from Crysis?

Anyway, for proof that I should not have time alone to think, as I was meandering home from the train station I hit upon the sidearm for the CETT troopers, once they get powered armor.  Remember that double barrel AR pattern rifle in the new guns thread?  Up it to .50 caliber, I was thinking Beowulf for being totally sick, but Action Express will work.  Then shrink it down to the pistol size, no buttstock and an 8" barrel.

No kill like overkill.   >:D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on July 31, 2012, 04:34:05 PM
Are those the guys from Crysis?

Nope, Tekken: Blood Vengeance, playing the armored mooks who look threatening but are ultimately ineffective.  In the movie they shoot at an unarmed woman without hitting, die battling mech walkers to a man, and get outfought by a panda.
Seriously.

I first saw them during the Spoony One's review of the movie, and I thought to myself "those guns look cool".
Funny thing is, that picture is the only clear picture of them (and the guns) that I could find from extensive searching.   :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on July 31, 2012, 04:38:55 PM
Huh.  My guess was Killzone guys.  They look almost identical - you could probably use a screenshot of them if you wanted to (since you can find near infinite clear ones).

Spoiler: show
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/9I3CZm1EEHwGhi_rS-ND_UEWwOKUYHYGidOhO0Bl8ZZSHZQ8ARrkPM36KEmR_ULbajyOaOKbaAbglckDt9i6w8h7qmJi18DKSvR9UumlmntpdwwZk-c?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1299550922755)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on July 31, 2012, 06:29:46 PM
The Tekken guys look to be carrying XM-8s, and the Killzone guys have FAMASes, and look a bit more professional/experienced, IMO.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on August 01, 2012, 04:32:24 PM
The Tekken guys look to be carrying XM-8s, and the Killzone guys have FAMASes, and look a bit more professional/experienced, IMO.

The Tekken gun is more a flat-top SCAR/ACR with a very fancy sighting system attached via rails, and an EGLM style grenade launcher.  The Killzone guys have drum-fed bullpup G36s.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on August 02, 2012, 05:12:53 AM
Drum fed bullpup?  That sounds awfully cumbersome.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on August 02, 2012, 12:11:57 PM
Drum fed bullpup?  That sounds awfully cumbersome.

The drum installs directly into the stock after opening a flap (bullpup breach-load? I'm a little hazy on the terminology), with spent casings being ejected using an F2000-ish system.  Interestingly, the game uses the "logic" that because the ammo loads from a circular drum, that the recoil should be circular, too.

Speaking of Killzone, though, that game is a good example of what I like to call "Camo Low-High Tech", where the technology used by military forces in a sci-fi setting are technically only slightly above contemporary level, yet they can still pull far future things off like powered armor, jet VTOLs, battle-class space ships, mech walkers, etc.
Other examples include the rebooted Battlestar Gallactica, some Imperial Guard regiments in Warhammer 40k (style-wise, anyways), and military-style enemies in a number of Japanese games.

(And speaking of the Japanese, one interesting practice I noticed is having characters in the fanciest looking powered armor, yet the guns they use are usually outdated even for the time the work comes out.  Those that go out of their way to design their own guns are usually better about it, but it can be a bit jarring to see Gundam style armor carrying around an M16A1)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Sletchman on August 02, 2012, 12:22:23 PM
Drum fed bullpup?  That sounds awfully cumbersome.

I can't even imagine using it, it's just a little too Quirky sounding. ;)

@RusVal:  I remember playing a JRPG (can't remember which) with hover cars, fully functional battlesuits and all manner of advanced technology.  The enemies were attacking me with what I swear were M1 Garands.  It was a little out of place.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on August 03, 2012, 12:05:40 PM
Garand is a solid rifle, that .30-06 is no joke.  It probably could take down a hovercar.

The US Navy has a railgun project (http://newyorkcityguns.com/2012/08/navy-electromagnetic-rail-gun-fires-gps-controlled-bullets-at-5600-mph-video/).  That project has a motto:  Velocitas Eradico.   ;D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on August 18, 2012, 09:41:49 PM
Quick post, idea I had that I need to get out there.

Theoretical Cal VI and VII.  Can't set a mission above Cal V (so to avoid stats problems), but anyone using a gear Cal boost ability at V uses VI instead of 1V+1I (and VII only being doable with a Big Budget campaign quality).

This way, some "reputation-only" gear can be picked using standard gear picks.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on September 28, 2012, 08:12:51 AM
Would we want to try and model how some gear, like laser rifles, could move from Cal VI "experimental prototype" to Cal II "junk for the rookies"?  Or is that just something GMs can do at their pleasure?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on September 28, 2012, 07:42:45 PM
Sorry to butt in but had a similar issue making a bronze age setting. The Eras are too course for some uses. A solution might be declare all SF type technology 'Advanced Era'. Access to this stuff is limited by complexity.
At the start
Lab scientists get access to Complexity 10 or less
Test pilot Complextity 8 or less
Secret Service complexity 6
Elite troops Complexity 4 or less
Grunts complexity 2 or less

Note that some of these are so low they basically ban all advanced items at the start of play for those groups.

Add 1 to above complexity limits every year.

that's the basic idea feel free to mess with the time periods and numbers.

Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on October 01, 2012, 12:50:43 PM
Sorry to butt in but had a similar issue making a bronze age setting. The Eras are too course for some uses. A solution might be declare all SF type technology 'Advanced Era'. Access to this stuff is limited by complexity.
At the start
Lab scientists get access to Complexity 10 or less
Test pilot Complextity 8 or less
Secret Service complexity 6
Elite troops Complexity 4 or less
Grunts complexity 2 or less

Note that some of these are so low they basically ban all advanced items at the start of play for those groups.

Add 1 to above complexity limits every year.

that's the basic idea feel free to mess with the time periods and numbers.



Bronze era with 2.0 or Mastercraft?  'Cause I still don't have Mastercraft.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on October 01, 2012, 02:18:20 PM
Bronze era with 2.0 or Mastercraft?  'Cause I still don't have Mastercraft.
I'm pretty sure he means Mastercraft, or in this case FantasyCraft.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on October 31, 2012, 06:55:47 AM
BTW, in case you guys are really impatient for me to finish this (and can read German), then check out Contact (http://www.contactrpg.com), a small indie XCOM-like RPG that takes place a few decades from now.  No idea how good the rules are, but the pictures are pretty.   ;D
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on October 31, 2012, 08:38:37 AM
"Das beir ist goot" sums up 75% of my "skill" with German, but it does look nice.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Catodon on November 02, 2012, 03:33:18 AM
I did 8 weeks of German night classes, at the end I knew klien is small and can recognise German when I hear it.  So much for my dream of work a couple of years in that country :'(
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on November 07, 2012, 12:43:56 PM
Well, even more bad news from those waiting patiently for me: my computer died of old age.  I was sort of expecting it to happen, though, so I've kind of been posting straight to the forum without... really... backing anything up.  :-[  So on the bright side, I haven't lost anything!  On the downside, I need a new computer, and it might be a while before that happens, so... yeah, it's going to be a while before I can do anything.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on November 23, 2012, 05:59:19 PM
Spoiler: Project Foxfire • show
(https://d.facdn.net/art/ipoke/1338972060.ipoke_elijah_2__battlescene__rilyfixd_b.jpg)


I dunno.  Looked cool.  'Sides, fox dudes can be just as cool as the ladies.   ;D

Hmm, on second thought...
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Morgenstern on November 23, 2012, 08:02:14 PM
I like the detailing on those boots quite a bit :).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on November 23, 2012, 08:36:04 PM
One of the more useful assets available to CETT, not to mention one of the greater possible threats it faces, is a rather secretive species called the "Fox-folk" (if they have a personal name, they haven't let any outsiders know about it).
On the one hand, they possess a unique set of skills that can serve an anti-alien paramilitary black-ops quite well, with their abilities to at blending in with crowds, their connections on the fringe of society, and combat abilities not normally available to human troops.  On the other, they are probably the oldest xeno-infiltration unit still lurking amongst Earth's population.
While their origins are cloaked in myth, and CETT is ever watchful for the day when their "masters" might show up, for now these vulpine humanoids are few enough in number (and apparently content with hiding in the shadows of the urban landscape) to not pose an immediate threat.
Just as long as you meet their price, and/or peak their interest, you can at least expect high performance in their field of expertise.

History
As mentioned, the precise origins of the Fox-folk are known only to themselves, and there seems to be a silent agreement amongst them to keep things that way.  However, a number of astute archeologists have theorized that they might have roots as far back as the earliest days of human civilization, with possible connections to multiple legends in animism pathologies, the most well known being the kitsune of Japan, although there have been some who also made links to European folklore, such as Reynard of France, and the enigmatic Huldra of Sweden (though the last link is tenuous at best).
As for the modern world, all that is known about them can be found in official (classified) government records, which are spotty at best, due in no small part to '98-'99, which destroyed a great deal of collected databases worldwide.
[Clascsins--75-23 It has been confirmed, however, that what records that did survive where intentionally tampered with.  As such, CETT is keeping an even closer eye than normal on Fox-folk activities.  However, need trumps suspicion, and usage of vulpine agents doesn't seem to be ending anytime soon.

Culture
One of the most intriguing things about Fox-folk is their interactions with humans and each other.  Generally Fox-folk are friendly, amiable, courteous, and quite comfortable in large crowds, at least as long as the crowd made up of humans.  In fact, despite apparently being an infiltration unit, some can be quite the attention seekers, with a few taking up lives in front of the camera (or even behind it).
However, the times when more than six are in the same general area are surprisingly rare.  While this would seem suspicious at first, there is actual scientific evidence, including a rather interesting experiment performed in the waning days of the Soviet Union, pointing to a more mundane explanation: they just can't stand each others' company.  Why this is up for much debate, and there is some question that they might be putting on an act, but for those in the know it's just an interesting bit of trivia, one that also seem to connect to another oddity about them: they don't seem to have a "culture" of their own, instead preferring to integrate themselves into human culture as a whole, although this could be an element of their infiltration nature.

(more later, currently distracted)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on November 28, 2012, 08:24:14 PM
And here I go getting side-tracked again.  :P

While people who know about the game Vanquish (an over the top Japanese Third-Person-Shooter) are understandably drawn to the design of the main character's armor design, it should be pointed out that the NPC Marines are cool in their own right.

Spoiler: Semper Fi IN SPAAAACE!! • show
(http://i.neoseeker.com/ca/vanquish_conceptart_HnqC8.jpg)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on November 29, 2012, 06:16:58 AM
I can quibble about this and that, but that's some good lookin' gear.  It sure looks plausible.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on November 29, 2012, 02:19:55 PM
I can quibble about this and that, but that's some good lookin' gear.  It sure looks plausible.

A'yup, very Aliens-y, too.  I might even make an Imperial Guard Regiment based off these guys.  Erm, just for Only War though, don't have the dough for the wargame.  :P

Of course, cool as these guys are, they tend to be overshadowed by the guy who rocket butt-slides all over the place (and the frankly bazaar tactical decisions their bosses make during the game.  Like opening the side blast doors of the battleship in a hot zone while everyone was still getting on the VTOLs, leaving them vulnerable to incoming enemy fire).  Not to mention that the main bad guy they are facing is a cheesy JRPG boss to the max, who tends to no sell things like taking a flippin' Rocket to the face.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on December 03, 2012, 01:04:54 PM
In case you were wondering about that "Incident" in Russia in 1943. (http://lparchive.org/Stalin-vs-Martians/)

edit: LPer's language slips into NSFW territory.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on December 03, 2012, 01:22:16 PM
In case you were wondering about that "Incident" in Russia in 1943. (http://lparchive.org/Stalin-vs-Martians/)
I see no reason to start wondering...   :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on December 05, 2012, 12:59:39 PM
In case you were wondering about that "Incident" in Russia in 1943. (http://lparchive.org/Stalin-vs-Martians/)
I see no reason to start wondering...   :P

Yeah, see, that's why you only watch/read LPs.  Has someone else suffer through it, and you can laugh at the occasionally funny noises they make while they do it.  >:D

Anyways, more random concept droppage!

Spoiler: Fancy Sci-Fi Assault Rifle • show
(http://web.ccpgamescdn.com/dust/news.control/8735/1/GA_LAR_Blog.jpg)


Spoiler: Possible Heavy Plasma-like? • show
(http://web.ccpgamescdn.com/dust/news.control/8734/1/CA_ForgeGun_Blog.jpg)


Less for the straight designs, and more for the style.  What CETT can build isn't quite as pretty, but it's in the same ballpark.
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on December 07, 2012, 07:09:08 PM
And some earlier XCOM: EU concept art, just 'cause.

Spoiler: Notice the removed weapons • show
(http://farm8.static.flickr.com/7127/8161213229_43a7a03cc2_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: MilitiaJim on December 07, 2012, 08:54:25 PM
I was chatting with someone online and we noticed the absence of the autocannon and heavy cannon.  I'm happy with the new X-Com, but some of the choices don't make sense.  What do you mean I can't hang a grenade on my belt if I put some extra panels in my armor or a scope on my rifle?
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on December 07, 2012, 09:08:24 PM
I was chatting with someone online and we noticed the absence of the autocannon and heavy cannon.

If you pay very close attention during Firaxis's "1000 Stupid Ideas on the Road to Glory", one of the early test footage shows a soldier using the gatling gun, yet has the LMG weapon icon.  I guess that while the idea was cool, an LMG would be more fitting.  Sort of wish that they left it in as an "upgraded ballistics" type weapon, but I guess the Heavy Laser will have to do for all rotary infantry weapon needs.

EDIT-Just realized something.  From the looks of it, they planned the Rocket Launcher for a different class altogether.  Eventually when they decided on a straight Heavy class using both, they couldn't have a soldier using a gun that fed from a back-pack, since he needed to carry the launcher as well!

I'm happy with the new X-Com, but some of the choices don't make sense.  What do you mean I can't hang a grenade on my belt if I put some extra panels in my armor or a scope on my rifle?

Jake (the project lead) has gone on record stating that he wanted to cut down on the explosives usage, trying to avoid the "weapon for all situations" scenario, as well as pushing for more hard choices on what equipment you would bring.  While I agree that they might have gone a bit far with it, I just imagine that most of the equipment is just really heavy (the scope is supposedly part of a "system" that helps aiming, I guess kind of like the Land Warrior system, which they could have shown better, like with a monocle or something).
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on December 22, 2012, 06:25:32 PM
Hey, more cool random-ish sci-fi soldier art!

Spoiler: show
(http://conceptartworld.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/DUST_514_Concept_Art_19a.jpg)


Don't worry, I'm circling around to back on topic soon.  :P
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 14, 2013, 07:51:00 PM
Planetside 2 owns me, Planetside 2 owns me, Planetside 2 owns me...

CETT ranks (like HERO with the following changes)

1-Squaddie/Rookie*
5-Sergeant Major/Rookie Officer*
10-Commander**

*- No matter what rank you are before entering CETT, it is firmly believed that until you survive your first trial by fire, you are a mere rookie in the eyes of your fellow soldiers.  As such, any soldier of Sergeant Major (or equivalent) down is officially listed as Rookie until their first mission, whilst any officers are considered Rookie Officer.  After their first mission, soldiers are assigned a proper rank, usually the one they had before joining CETT, though exceptions exist.
(A/N-Considering working a mechanic in for a Will penalty depending on the rank discrepancy during this first mission, with a possible bonus afterwards for those who decide to go through this step.  Or just keep it a roleplay-only rule, I don't know :P )

**- Commander in CETT is a catch-all term for head officer.  CETT commanders can be either Generals or Admirals, and can be called either by their "proper" rank or Commander.  It is also common practice to add either "Base" or "Field" depending on whether they are the desk or fighting Commander type, respectively.

MaTCH ranks

1- Guinea Pig
2- Assistant
3- Head Assistant
4- Technician
5- Head Technician
6- Student
7- Student Counciler
8- Teacher
9- Doctor
10- Grand Pooba

GAME ranks (WIP)
1- Rookie Agent
2-9- Agent
10- Boss Agent
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: Morgenstern on February 14, 2013, 08:57:13 PM
Might split up GAME ranks a little more~

1: Rookie
2: Junior Agen
3-7: Agent
8-9: Senior Agent
10: Boss Agent
Title: Re: Aurora Skies (Earth Defence 2.0 setting discussion)
Post by: RusVal on February 16, 2013, 03:54:38 AM
Might split up GAME ranks a little more~

1: Rookie
2: Junior Agen
3-7: Agent
8-9: Senior Agent
10: Boss Agent


Oh sure, I just wanted to make an "it's the way you pronounce it" joke somewhere.