Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Stars Without Number Ship Combat Control Sheet

Image (cc) desuran
I've talked about Stars Without Number a lot. I think I'll probably continue to do so; I love it. One thing I did find hard to keep track of was Ship Combat, fantastic system/minigame though it is, so I decided to make this control sheet. I also think I ran it slightly differently to the book - it felt right to me - so I'll explain how to use the sheet to run it the way I did. I'm sure you can adapt it.

I suggest you have:
  • A copy of the Ship Combat Actions for each player (I printed handouts from the free SWN rules) for reference
  • One SWN Ship Combat Control Sheet for the table - click to download from Google Drive
  • A collection of minis, markers, or tokens to help keep track.  They can represent the players directly or indirectly, it's just for visual reference on the sheet.

Command Phase
  1. The Captain decides and declares the plan of actions.
  2. Players assign their tokens to departments (top row) if they will be taking Department Actions or to the Delegate Pool if they choose "Do Your Duty" or to General if they choose another General Action.
  3. NPC crew (or passengers?) can be kept in the Delegate Pool but don't generate CP.
  4. Use a token to mark the Command Points generated by Do Your Duty.
Resolution Phase
  1. In whatever order is appropriate to the crew, each player may take one action.  Players who chose Above and Beyond should probably go first and add their CP if they are successful.
  2. Use the Command Points counter to track CP gained and spent as players take actions.
  3. Department Heads can give as many orders as they like - as long as there is CP to spend and they elected to assign themselves to departments - and can delegate to NPCs or to players who chose Do Your Duty.
  4. If there is CP left over then the GM gets to make a call as to whether the PCs can spend it!
This contradicts the book, but I like the thought of PCs running around the ship crewing weapons and helping fix stuff and I felt this definitely counted as Doing Your Duty so I ruled it was OK.  It made handling the rules on having one gunner per weapon run more smoothly when using Fire All Weapons, and it helped players whose departments weren't active still feel they were taking part.

This is what worked for me; if you disagree find what works for you.  Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

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