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Saturday, 26 November 2016

Aotrs Shipyards November 2016 Release: Xyriat

Aotrs Shipyards is a web store on Shapeways.com, a 3D print house which had production and shipping facilities located in the USA and the the Netherlands.

This month we have the fourth wave of Xyriat starships!

BSG01 Vydrosa Disruptor Battleship

BSG01 Vydrosa Disruptor Battleship

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The Vydrosa is the most recent disruptor vessel to enter the Hegemonic Navy. Carrying four of the very latest spacial disruption generators, the Vydrosa's FTL disruption field is enormously effective at interdiction of enemy FTL movement, capable of even stopping UCDR magitech teleportation in its tracks.

The Vydrosa is large and powerful enough that is can still manoeuvre effectively while running the generators and is capable of a fair turn of speed for a vessel of its size.

It is heavily protected and is armed with a modest number of particle beam weapons for use against both capital ships and fighters or missiles. It also has numerous small-calibre light torpedo tubes for defence against marauding fighters or small craft or to attack any capital ship which strays too close.


FL01E Hedrast Leech Frigate

FL01E Hedrast Leech Frigate

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The Hedrast Leech Frigate has a long service history and has seen several upgrades as it is the Hegemonic Navy's primary means of disabling vessels for capture largely undamaged. Such targets include such as valuable cargo where simple precision fire to cripple a vessel is not desirable or practical

To this end, the Hedrast is armed with four forward-firing power leech cannons ("Leech" in common parlance translated to English) mounted on the "wings" on the forward hull. These disrupt and drain energy on impact, allowing a vessel to be captured without extensive system damage. The leech cannons only have a short effective range, however, requiring the Hedrast to get very close to be effective; the Hedrast thus has a considerably more powerful drive than most of the Xyriat fleet.

This technology has existed for centuries, but had hit a wall in terms or progression, with only minor incremental improvements. Xyriat technology has recently started to make breakthroughs in this area, and a proposed FL01F Hedrast mounting two larger such weapons or a perhaps even warhead-mounted leech systems are undergoing early prototyping.

The Hedrast's remaining armament consists of point-defence particle beam turrets a single light torpedo turret, typically armed with heavier warheads for helping to attack better protected vessels.

The Hedrast typically works either as support for a larger vessel to disable a ship caught in the tractor beam or as an independent pack which uses its superior speed and manoeuvrability to chase down enemy vessels and disable them.

CC01B Tyrdiy Corvette

CC01B Tyrdiy Corvette

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The Tyrdiy Corvette functions as defensive support for other vessels and occasionally as reconnaissance. It has the fastest drives of any of the capital ship fleets and relies on this agility for the bulk of its protection.

It is armed with several arrays of particle beam turrets and a pair of large-calibre light torpedo turrets. These are typically equipped with lighter warheads for anti-fighter duties, rather than heavier warheads, to sometimes the latter will be used.

The Tyrdiy operate most often as an escort vessel for small-to-mid-size ships, serving as additional point-defence or firepower against tractor beamed targets. More rarely, a pack of Tyrdiys will be used as an offensive screen to break up and attack waves of enemy fighters and small craft. While they cannot match such vessels in speed or agility, they come close enough to perform this role very well.

Next month's release is still a bit in the air. There are some Jalyrkieon ships on the drawing board, as well as more Xyriat but also the Tarrainian Federation 144th ground forces. Exactly what goes out next month I am not willing to commit to at the moment, especially with the run-up to Christmas.

Further adding to this is the preparations for releasing the Accelerate & Attack rules.

Proofing and clarifying has taken rather more effort than I expected (but shows how important it was to get UshCha to do a cold read!) It's pushed the page count up a bit, but that is because more diagrams and explanations have been added, and I've also added a lot more paragraph breaks for readability. It is maybe still possible it might be out for Recon at the start of next month, but more likely we won't quite make that. When it does come, however, it should be a lot easier to read.

I have had to more-or-less abandoned the idea of the free starter set, though. Basically, it became apparent that even cutting out all the rules which would not specifically apply to the Vivrathk and Stone Portal sample fleets did not, in fact, simplify the actual main rules of the game to learn. Basically all it gave you was less weapon system rules to learn (and that's the easiest bit of the game to learn anyway). At which point, you may as well have the main rules anyway. While it was a nice idea, and dropping it means that you can't have a look at a free sample to see if is your thing – even the starter set ran to nearly 70 pages (of which, pre this current round of main rules revisions, ran to 26 pages of rules before the sample fleet scenarios, profiles and markers and such).

I might revisit the idea some time down the line, we'll see.

The main rules are (currently) about 155 pages, a number which may still go up a bit as we edit the rest.

(The good news was that most of the time the rules have not been badly written, just needing some improved illustration or clarification.)

AccAtt was originally conceived as being part of an integral campaign system (in theory, among other things, allowing you to play a 4X game on the tabletop) – largely so that is such a system was ever needed, it wouldn't "tacked-on." That hasn't ever gotten done, but a lot of the framework is still in the rules, and I realised I had to add an appendix with the other basic frame work, just to show how it was intended to be used. It's a long way off a proper campaign system, but should plenty sufficient for you to be able to create linked scenarios and so on.

Shapeways, Aotrs Shipyards