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Section of Site: Starships D6Belongs to Faction: Subtype: EQUIPMENTEra: Canon:


Model: NLR-4 Rotating Launch Ring
Type: Starfighter launch system
Scale: Starfighter
Skill: Starfighter Piloting/Space Transports*
Fire Arc: Front*
Crew: 1
Cost: 10,000 credits
Weight: 100 metric tons
Availability: 2
Difficulty: Moderate
Fire Control: 1D
-Space: 2/7/15
Speed: 15
Ammo: 4 starfighters
Rate Of Fire: 1


   When starfighters are docked with the launch frame, it can launch them at high speed from the base ship at a Space Speed of 15.  This is faster than most starfighters' Space Speed, and their engines can maintain this speed as long as they fly in a straight line after launch.  Once they change direction, the are reduced to their normal Speed.  Great for getting these starfighters into combat or where ever they need to go in realspace quickly, but it is not useable in an atmosphere.  When not made ready for launch the starfighters can be stored in the base ship's hangar or cargo hold if it is large enough to hold them.  Otherwise, starfighters can stay docked with the launch ring when not being used.


   The launch system can be operated either by a pilot in a starfighter docked with the ring, or by a member of the crew such as an engineer or dock master/cargo master, or from the bridge.  When installed, players/GMs can decide where the controls for the launch ring are installed and which crewmate can use them.  Extra Weapon Control Linkages (Galaxy Guide 6 Tramp Freighters page 41)  can installed so the launch system can be used and operated in other locations and by other people.

Fire Arc

   The default fire arc for the direction starfighters are launched is "Front", and the starfighters are effectively launched as a weapon (keep in mind, starfighters could in theor be launched to hit other ships or objects and use the ramming rules to decide damage, and some crafty players may even want to develop this as some kind of weapon if the damage pay-off makes it worth while).  Other Fire Arcs are possible, if the base ship is large enough to support this.  If so, this must be decided when installed.

Availability Chart:

1 - Readily available throughout the galaxy.
2 - Available only in large cities or spaceports.
3 - Specialized item, normally available only on planet of origin.
4 - Rare item, difficult to find anywhere.
F - Fee or permit often required for purchase.
R - Restricted on most planets, and normally may not be bought or sold withithout appropriate Imperial or other relevant license.
X - Illegal on most planets.  Possession or use often violates Imperial or local laws except for specially authorized individuals; penalties may be severe.

Comments made about this Article!

18/Oct/2023 22:32:32 Posted by David Gipe

This is a great idea and remind me of the Starfury deployment form the Excalibur. I could use this for "Broadside" launches of fighters for a military or pirate vessel. Imagine dripping out of hyperspace, launching fighters, then with an astromech or other precalculated Nav coordinates jump out leaving the fighters to do their thing as you go to drop more off at an other location.

19/Oct/2023 07:05:28 Posted by Hellstormer1

I like this idea! Nice one!

19/Oct/2023 21:56:06 Posted by Hellstormer1

Another idea I had over the past day/night. Converting this to be a “ ‘Roid Launcher”. Grab appropriate asteroids (1D-5D), attach them to the launcher, and “fling” or “throw” them at targets at Space Speed 15, and use the rules on Ramming Damage to figure out how they damage targets. Range: 1-2/7/15. For extra, add cheap thrusters to said asteroids to keep them moving, and they have Space Speed 15 to move in a straight line until they hit something (or don’t). Have a ship equipped with multiple ‘Roid Launchers, and flood a space combat area with a flood of space rocks, and the affected parties could then be living out the old game Asteroids as they attempt to dodge and shoot the space rocks.

24/Oct/2023 12:20:04 Posted by Hellstormer1

Update on the Launch Frame. So I recently found myself hunting down the rules for ramming, and it led me to bouncing from page to page. I made a cheat sheet to reference it all easily when I need to now, reminded me about these speed categories (Cautious, Cruising, Attack, and All-Out). And I realized I never applied these in any way to the launcher here, and probably should have.

So, if GMs wish, the launcher can launch starfighters at Attack or All-Out speed. If Space Speed 15 seems to fast, it can be lowered to 12, but the idea of such a launcher would be to get starfighters out there as fast as possible, so the 15 could stay. Especially since, as the rules I wrote up state, the starfighter can maintain that speed as long as they keep going in a straight line, in the direction they were launched, using their starfighter's engines to maintain the speed *except now, they could launch out not at 15, but at a Speed of up to 60!).

The main reason I thought this was worth mentioning isn't because of the starfighter speed when launched, but the extra idea I commented here about using asteroids. The speed category used at launch decides what the ramming, or collision, damage will be upon impact.

All-Out (x4) speed is 10D, with other factors that adjust the damage.

An asteroid launched from the Rotating Launch Frame at All-Out Speed would cause minimum Damage 7D, maximum Damage 13D, depending on the angle it impacts the target.

If anyone knows any other modifiers to that damage, please let me know. I could have sword there was more, like involving a ramming ship's Hull Dice or something, but I currently cannot find it and don't know where to look.
- - - - - - - - - -

To ram, a vehicle must pass very close to the target vehicle during its move.

Add +10 to the movement Difficulty for the ramming vehicle. Ramming also counts as a separate action: the pilot suffers an additional -1D penalty.

If the pilot's Repulsorlift Operation (or other skill roll) is higher than the Difficulty, the attacking vehicle rams the target vehicle.

If the pilot's Repulsorlift Operation (or other skill roll) is lower than the original Difficulty number, the pilot fails; see "Movement Failures".

If the pilot's Repulsorlift Operation (or other skill roll) is equal to or higher than the original Difficulty but lower than the new movement Difficulty, the vehicle completes the move successfully, but the ram attack misses.

Target vehicles can make a vehicle Dodge to avoid a ram attack. Ram attacks damage both vehicles: the attacker suffers damage as if involved in a sideswipe (-3D to normal damage), but the victim suffers damage as if involved in a T-bone (normal damage).
- - - - - - - - - -

The amount of collision damage depends on how fast the vehicle was moving (don't forget to take into account scale differences where pertinent).

Speed Collision Damage

Cautious 2D
Cruising 4D
High-Speed 6D
All-Out 10D

Roll the collision damage and compare it to the vehicle's body/hull dice roll. "Vehicle Damage" or "Starship Damage" explains what happens.

If the vehicle runs into another vehicle, the damage changes based on the angle of the collision.

Head-on crash +3D
Rear-ender/sideswipe -3D
T-bone 0D

You may want to adjust collision damage to reflect what a vehicle runs into. If a vehicles smashes into a hardened plasticrete wall, it suffers full damage. On the other hand, something with a little "give" - for example, a primitive ship with a weak hull (starships), or like a wooden fence or thick bushes (for other vehicles) - may absorb some of the impact while slowing the vehicle down: you may want to reduce collision damage by -1D, -2D or more.

You should describe collisions in colorful detail since they're one of the "emotional payoffs" of chase scenes.

For further related rules on this, check out the Vehicle/Starship Damage Charts, Vehicle Movement Failures, Lost Moves, Passenger Damage, Falling Damage, and Vehicle/Starship Speed Charts.

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