Examining the V-8 Romulan TOS Bird Of Prey Episodes
XON Gaming Item;
Researched, Compiled and Written by Mark_XON
write-up is based on the the Two TOS Episodes; "Balance Of Terror" and "The
Deadly Years" to explain what we are seeing and hearing on screen.
I recently expanded this write-up to include many more details on Sensors,
Cloaking Device and Communications to help study TOS Technology for use with the
FASA Starship Combat Games. While watching each episode I combined them together
to form my theories. I also viewed the Enhanced / Remastered versions of these
episodes and especially appreciated the new special effects footage in "The
Deadly Years" they made, instead of stock footage.
BoP Flagship Firing Plasma Weapon, Nearing Enterprise
Source: TOS Balance Of Terror
The V-8 Warp Drive:
The ship uses warp power but during this mission the power wasn't
channeled for warp speed but to provide extensive power to the
Plasma Weapon. The warp power also assisted in operating the
Cloaking device and providing a higher yield for impulse thrust. By
the time the Enterprise encountered the BoP the warp fuel was
exhausted and the warp systems where offline.
Scotty only detects "...simple impulse..." cause the Warp Systems
and Engines are no longer powered. Kirk says "We can outrun them?"
Note: One can assume that the V-8 had warp drive when it came
across the Neutral Zone and while it was attacking the outpost. But
chances of that are small.
BoP Impulse Engines:
The impulse engines during their outpost attacks PROBABLY had warp
power channeled to them to give a slightly higher thrust and better
acceleration. Not at any point does the BoP reach warp speed.
The outposts where attacked in the order of 2, then a hour later 3,
8, then 4. The BoP was operating on warp power but not speed during
...But it's out there somewhere. Our sensors show that much.
Enterprise, something coming on our viewing screen, coming at us
This would suggest that the BoP is within Medium Range to Close
range of Outpost 4.
The Plasma Weapon vs the Outpost's:
"Had our deflector shield on maximum. Hit by enormous power. First
attack blew our deflector shield. If they hit us again with our
deflector shield gone..."
"Some form of High Energy Plasma..."
"...My command post here. We're a mile deep on an asteroid. Almost
solid iron. And even through our deflectors, it did this..."
"...From the outpost's protective shield. Cast rodinium. This is the
hardest substance known to our science..."
"...Lab theorizes an enveloping energy plasma, forcing an
So it took One Plasma attack to knockout the Outpost's Shields and
did internal damage, then the second shot of the Red Plasma
disintegrated Outpost 4. The Plasma weapon was the only weapon
system used on this BoP, when tied into the warp drive this energy
weapon produces more damage than a typical V-8. This was
demonstrated ONLY against the outposts.
The Cloaking System:
"...The BoPs cloaking systems " ...the select bending of light..."
...power cost is enormous..."
The cloaking system on the V-8 BoP (Romulan Cruiser) blinds most
sensors from detecting it. When preparing to fire the cloak ship
must uncloak and become visual to the eye and all sensors. Once the
weapon is fired the V-8 can resume cloak. This process takes
approximately 26 seconds. (Based on Remaster-TOS Visual Effects)
Later vs the Enterprise it only took 12 seconds (Based on
Remaster-TOS Visual Effects) This make sense since less power is
being channeled into the Plasma Weapon.
"...I have a blip on the Motion Sensors..."
"...The blip has changed it's heading..."
The cloaking system on the BoP(Romulan Cruiser) blinds most sensors
from detecting it. However Motion Sensors at medium range can give
an approximate location of the possible ship, but can't identify the
cloaked ship, however maneuvers and course changes can be
"They may not be aware of us..."
"Their invisibility screen may work both ways. With that kind of
power consumption, they may not be able to see us..."
Kirk suggested If the Cloak was on, then there sensors are down. The
BoP at this point does not detect the Enterprise but the Enterprise
detects them on Passive Motion Sensors. This would suggest that the
BoP's passive sensors are compromised by the Cloak Shield, at least
at long range.
Communication's While Cloaked:
The BoP was able to send out an encrypted signal to Romulans, one of
the Romulans onboard broke the "rule of silence" without the
Commanders knowledge. Uhura picked up the signal and Spock was able
to lock onto it, he was also able to get a visual picture of the
BoP's Bridge from that signal. With this information it's assumed,
while cloaked, the BoP can communicate ship to ship / ship to base.
BoP Becomes Visual:
"...We grow visible. Attend the cloaking system..." "...It consumes
much power, Commander. With no enemy to concern us..."
Apparently one of the Romulan Pilots turned off the cloaking device
to conserve power and the Commander noticed, ordering the Cloaking
Device to be re-activated. This of course allowed the Enterprise to
get a visual and to follow the BoP even closer, match it's course
and study the enemy.
Comet and Cloak:
"A comet, magnitude seven, dead ahead, and the intruder changing
course toward it." Comet Icarus four. Composition?": "Quite
ordinary. An ionized mass, a trail of frozen vapor particles." And
when an object passes through it, even an invisible object?": "It
leaves a visible trail..."
"The moment he begins entering the comet's tail, he becomes visible.
End run, gentlemen. We'll swing around the other side and catch
The Comet's particles would naturally produce an outline of the
majority of the BoP's surface, making them visible for targeting,
Apparently the "Escape Maneuver One" that the BoP used, steered them
on the other side of the comet's particle trail just as quick as
they entered, they exited it. This left no time for the BoP to
become visible to the Enterprise.
BoP Sensors Again:
The BoP throughout its encounter with the Enterprise was detecting
the Enterprise by using passive sensors, since passive sensors are
less accurate than active sensors the BoP thought the Enterprise was
a sensor shadow because the Enterprise was following the BoP on a
parallel course. Later the BoP discovered that the sensor shadow was
actually the Enterprise when the Enterprise broke off and changed
Comet and Sensors:
"Its many particles will obscure their sensing device, Centurion..."
The Comet's particles had blocked the Enterprise's sensors and they
loss track of the BoP. The BoP also lost detection of the sensor
reflection (The Enterprise).
The Proximity Phaser Blasts:
"Attack, without a visible target? How do we aim our phasers?" Aim
with sensors. Not accurate, but if we blanket them..." And hope for
a lucky shot before they zero in on us?"
"Phaser Weapons Energized, Set for Proximity Blast..."
The Enterprise is capable of using the standard phasers as proximity
detonations, these where used by the Enterprise with a best
guess(sensor only) targeting since the Enterprise only had an
approximate location of the close range BoP. They Fired Blind with a
???? pattern. Phaser One fired with three blasts hitting the BoP
atleast two times with minimal damage, and then they fired Phaser
Two with three blasts hitting the BoP each time doing minimal
The Plasma Weapon vs the Enterprise:
The Romulan Commander is reluctant to fire because it "...waste
energy. He has estimated we have only enough..." to get home.
At one point the Enterprise evaded a Plasma Bolt by reversing at
full warp power, the Bolt was able to gain on the Enterprise despite
full warp power, its unclear if the Enterprise or the Bolt actually
entered warp (its unlikely) but the Bolt continued to follow and it
impacted the Enterprise after the Bolt diminished in
strength(limited range)....it didn't do full damage AND the Plasma
Weapon was not fully powered. Not at any point did the Bolts fired
from the BoP steer in any direction.
So it's clear in TOS Era you can't simply out run the Plasma weapon,
you must turn port or starboard aswell.
"...If we can get one phaser working, sir, one shot might detonate
Assuming this is correct, a single Phaser Shot (one weapon in a
bank) would destroy it, assuming maximum power.
BoP Becomes Visual Again!:
Commander, the reflection returns." "Activate our cloak."
"Commander, our fuel runs low."
Not sure why they would get a reflection only when they are not
cloaked, perhaps they are still using passive sensors, or that's all
they have left after getting hit prior.
The Proximity Phaser Blasts Again! (Remastered TOS):
"...A Phaser hit at this distance would be the wilds struck of
At Super long range and while at near maximum Warp: Phaser One fires
three blasts, at least one of them hit the BoP.
Out of Warp and at close range: Now again three Phaser Blasts are
Now again one Phaser Blasts is fired and hits.
"...All debris in Disposal Tubes..."
This is an old trick to fool the attacking ship into thinking they
have destroyed another ship, by scattering debris.
Phaser Blast Again and hits, Again a possible hit.
"...Motion sensor signal stopped..." "Cease Fire..."
The BoP has not stopped moving intentionally and remains cloaked. Of
course with there final maneuver they moved away from the debris to
"...Debris scattered ahead Sir..."
"...We Hit Them..."
Sulu visually see the debris on the main viewer. Unfortunate for the
BoP that Spock says there is an in adequate amount of mass to
represent a Starship.
"...No Motion at all..." "...We lost them..."
"...No reaction on our motion sensors but believe the Romulan vessel
to be somewhere close by; With all engines and systems shut down,
the Enterprise is also playing the silent waiting game in hope of
The Bird of Prey choose to halt all movement and to power its
systems down to hide from the Enterprise. The enterprise did the
same. This hiding lasted over 9 hours and 47 mins until the BoP
picked up from the Enterprise a signal from one of the Enterprises
accidental powered on Bridge console. At very close to close range
ship energy can be detected, computer consoles, voices, internal
"...We have them, move toward them..."
The BoP moves in at very close range of the Enterprise.
The Proximity Phaser Blasts - Very Close Range (Remastered TOS):
Phaser One fires three blasts, at least one of them hit the BoP.
Now again Phaser Blast is fired and hits.
"...All Debri into the tubes..." ...old style Nuclear Warheads..."
...Only for self destruction..." ...Place one in with the debri,
Now again Phaser Blast is fired and hits.
The BoP moves away from the Enterprise. But Later it is said the BoP
apparently was damage by the nuclear warhead. Cloak still Active.
"...More wreckage Sir..." ...Cease Fire..."
"...One metal cased object..."
Now Phaser Fire "Point Blank"(Less than 100 meters) to destroy the
Nuclear Weapon. Before it got too close.
"...we only have the foreword Phaser room..."
BoP Becomes Visual Again and Prepares too Attack:
"...Forward Phasers standby..."
Phaser One fires three Proximity blasts, at least two of them hit
the BoP. The BoP is done and chooses to self-destruct.
BoP Flagship Firing Plasma Weapon
Source: TOS-R Balance Of Terror
The Plasma Weapon (Original UN-enhanced Version.):
This weapon was of the typical configuration and not assisted by the warp
engines in the way that they where in "Balance Of Terror". The BoP's weren't
using full power. They where just pounding the Enterprise with multiple shots.
Visually, they reused special fx footage from two other episodes, not giving us
a true sense of the weapon. With the footage used it showed the "Balance Of
Terror" full size Plasma weapon, but when it hit the Enterprise they used
footage from "Errand of Mercy" showing a completely different weapon hitting the
Enterprise in different locations on the underside of the Saucer section.
The Plasma Weapon (Remastered Version.):
This weapon was of the typical configuration and not assisted by the
warp engines in the way that they where in "Balance Of Terror". They
where just pounding the Enterprise with multiple shots. In fact I
don't know if the weapon they used was Plasma or Torpedo, or
possibly a combination of the two. But every shot did appear to
steer, some more than others, and they it the Enterprise forward,
starboard and port sides. The visual size of the weapon was much
smaller than seen in "Balance Of Terror." Suggesting they where not
using full Plasma Power.
Cloaking Device (Remastered Version.):
At least one BoP was cloaked and it uncloaked to fire at nearly the
instant the cloak was undone. No power build up of the weapon such
as in "Balance Of Terror."
The Enterprise went to warp five and then the Romulan's attack, the
Enterprise dropped out of warp and then 10 Romulan ships surrounded
the Enterprise at a range of 50 to 100,000km, after getting hit
thirteen+ times with Shields UP but failing, the Enterprise then
went to Warp 8, Warp was visually seen in the Remastered version.
Romulan Plasma Weapon, Travelling Closer
Source: TOS-R Balance Of Terror
The BoP that we see in "Balance Of Terror" was tailored for there mission and
doesn't represent the typical V-8. The V-8 was tailored for high power output,
with fuel being used up rapidly. The V-8's in "The Deadly Years" where of
typical configuration. The FASA ship stats are of the typical V-8 configuration.
Since the -steering- weapon in the Remastered version wasn't in existence when
FASA did there design of the game, this has to be ignored when comparing FASA's
The BoP's Cloaking Device (Invisibility; as its called during the show) is not
entirely practical, it can be detected with passive sensors if one knows where
to look at short or medium range.
In "Balance Of Terror" The Enterprise was using most of the time a passive
sensor (and at times Active Sensors) and the BoP was using passive sensors only
to detect, this also allowed the other to hide from each other. The BoP didn't
have a choice actually, all they had where passive sensors while cloaked and
later their active sensors where damaged. The Enterprise used primarily "Sensor
Probe: Motion Sensors" to detect the moving BoP, but when the BoP halted
movement the Enterprise couldn't track her anymore.
Not at any point did the Enterprise know they hit the BoP with their Phaser
Blasts. Only when debris where scattered did they assume they made a hit.
The TOS Enterprise has midship Phaser Banks, and most likely aft Phasers based
on the dialogue.
When this episode was made the Photon Torpedoes where not yet implemented into
the show, though the special effect used for the Proximity Phaser Blasts was the
same one used for photon torpedoes in later episodes.
Special Episode Note:
The Romulans have improved their cloaking system since "Balance of Terror"
(2266) and "The Deadly Years" (2267). In Balance Of Terror, Spock refers to it
as an "invisibility screen" that can mask a Bird-of-Prey's appearance, but not
its motion. In "The Enterprise Incident" (2268), the cloaking device now renders
a ship undetectable while moving, and not even the Romulans themselves can track
a vessel so equipped, not even the newly cloaked fitted Enterprise. Also It was
stated in the first script draft of The Enterprise Incident that the Romulans
and Klingons had an exchange of technology, where Romulans received four Klingon
heavy D7 battlecruisers and the Klingons were given Romulan cloaking technology.
In the Remastered version we see that the now Romulan D-7's have a painting of a
BoP on their underside and that the D-7's are actually Romulan owned. Also in
this Remastered version the V-8 BoP is seen along side the Romulan V-11
I hope this write-up puts to rest any questions anyone would have about these
episodes and the V-8. It looks like FASA reproduced the effects and behavior of
the plasma weapon accurately.
Here's Some stats made up by Varlenn on Nov 29 2010 made with FASAs' 2ed
These new stats should be used to represent the V-8 BoP Prototype seen in TOS
Episode; "Balance Of Terror." While the stats in the FASA manual should be used
to represent the 'typical' V-8 BoP as seen in TOS Episode; "The Deadly Years."
Most of the simulated battles about regarding a FASA Constitution Class Ship
and a FASA V-8 went hopelessly one-sided to the Connie's favor really fast ...
Romulan V-8 Flagship Prototype
Source Of Image: SFB Manual Cover
Model Number: Prototype
Date Entering Service: 2249
Number Constructed: 1
Ship Class: VI
(10 required + 12 extra SS for varying reasons, including
uncertainty about the RPL-2 demand on the ship, and the necessity
for the ship to return home to report the effectiveness of the new
weapon; later "production" models would have less SS than this ship
simply due to resource limitations)
Weight: 77533 mt
(59533 "required" + 18000 for extra SS)
Total SCU: 40 SCU
Cargo Capacity: 2000 mt
(wasn't planned as a long-term cruiser at that point, but a test bed
for the RPL-2)
Landing Capability: None
Computer Type: R4M
Cloaking Device: RCC
Power to Engage: 15
22-Person Emergency: 2
(based on the "required" mass, not the reinforced amount)
Total Power: 35
Movement Point: 4/1
Warp Engine Type: RWC-2
Power Units: 15 ea.
Stress Charts: N/Q
Safe Cruising Speed: Warp 4
Emergency Speed: Warp 6
Impulse Engine Type: RIB-3
Power Units: 5
(the power curve of this ship REQUIRED that it uncloak to fire the
RPL-2; in this case, to power the forward shield to full - for
anticipated reply shots-, and the weapon, would leave 6 power left
for anything else, forcing it to drop the cloak, and limiting its
movement in a radical way... this would also justify the way the
RPL-3 stats turn out, as well as the events in Balance of Terror, in
that the V-8 was mainly striking outposts... and lost against a
starship... it was intended that the weapon would only be needed to
be shot once to obliterate or incapacitate a UFP ship; later
"production" models had to use lower quality but more abundant
Beam Weapon: RB-4
(back-up weapon that wasn't used in the episode, but it would be
irrational for a Romulan ship not to have one in desperation)
Firing Arcs: f/p/s
Firing Chart: J
Max Power: 6
Torpedo Type: RPL-2
Firing Arcs: 1f
Firing Chart: M
Power To Arm: 15
Damage: see chart
Shield Type: RSJ
Shield Point Ratio: 1/1
Max Power: 14
(I figured this shield type would be the best of the time, and meant
mainly to offset any return damage to the Romulan ship in case the
RPL-2 detonated too close to the ship that fired it; later
"production" models would aim for more efficient, although less
Source Of Image: SFB Manual Cover
I made the ship overall "too tough" regarding shields and superstructure in that
these kinds of excesses (or glaring deficiencies) tend to appear in prototypes.
I figured that Romulan paranoia over efficiency would be the rationale.
I favored a much too strong superstructure, since the V-8 cannot engage shields
at the same time as cloaking....and manages to withstand repeated bombardments
by photon torpedo spreads from the Enterprise - while cloaked! This tells me
that this prototype had one nasty amount of SS to be rattled that much, and
still function as long as it did...My assertion is simply that given the way
that encounters between V-8's and Connie's go in FASA battles, that to reflect
the beating that the prototype took in the TOS episode, its SS had to be
"significantly" better than a normal one according to the FASA Recognition
Manual...The justification being that the "production" ship would then wind up
as described in the FASA Recognition Manual...
When putting together a prototype, built around a really potent new weapon, and
sent to be tested against enemy installations (and ships, for full understanding
of the weapon capability), that the designers would be wanting to slap on a lot
more armor "just in case", especially given that, while cloaked, it is only such
armor (in terms of SS) that will protect you.
The V--8 from the FASA Recognition Manual has a SS of 15, but its component mass
would not be far from the 10 that I tallied for my version, so it is already
specially "armored up" by that 5 points. This is already a 50% boost on its base
mass simply for armor sake, and speaks volumes to me about the paranoia levels
of the Romulans in battle. They wanted the ship to survive encounters. As such,
while it is that the total SS of the prototype I designed has a full 120% over
its "required" SS in terms of armor, again, it is really only 50% over that
which is there for the V-8 from the FASA Manual, where THAT ship has 50% more SS
than necessary. It follows the logic trend of the Romulan designers, as well as
gives the prototype (remember, there is ONLY one), a clearly hoped for ability
to return to base with data about the functional use of the plasma weapon as
well as the cloaking systems...
"1 or 2 extra SS" would not have given the Prototype that edge, and frankly
would not give it any kind of statistically better odds of longer survival
against a Connie.... especially not to the duration showed in the TOS episode. 7
extra SS over the RM version DOES give it that duration...Hence my design for
While I agree that the SS of a prototype should be higher than was represented
in the SRM, it is more from an engineering standpoint and a safety issue than a
need for additional armor protection.
In the end analysis, though, the effect being...the V-8 took one hell of a
beating, even without being "directly hit"...and I was more interested in
remembering how many times that ship was rattled in my Prototype design....
If you assume -as I did - in my Prototype design, that each truly effective
rattling did even ONE SS point of damage, then it being a really tough prototype
of the design I made holds out.
If someone could run the encounter in simulation to see if it indeed gives a
longer life to the V-8 than a standard encounter does, I would be hoping that it
would last proportionately as long as that in the tv episode, assuming the
tactics are similar (flee vs attack, etc) and proper custom Proximity Phaser
Blast rules are used. I think that alternate rules would be the only way to
really reflect the BoP episode.
Source Of Image: SFB Manual Cover
The following is work in progress and is not designed to be used (other than for
testing) until completion.
PROXIMITY PHASER BLASTS (TOS)
Thinkers: tdshannon , vanowen , jaynz in Nov 2009
Varlenn, Lee, Keith S Holmes in May 2011
Enterprise Firing PHaser Prox Blast
Source: TOS-R Balance Of Terror
The TOS Enterprise is capable of using the standard phasers as proximity
detonations, these where used by the Enterprise with a best guess (sensor only)
targeting since the Enterprise only had an approximate location of the
CLOSE/SHORT range BoP.
So how would these be used in STCS vs a cloaked ship?
-Phaser Proximity Blasts are invented circa: 2258 , Treat them as missile fire.
A proximity blast was a special phaser setting that could be employed on
Constitution-class starships. The proximity blast function operated by firing
phasers in a concentrated bolt of energy, rather than the steady beam that was
typically employed. The phaser blast would then detonate at a predetermined
point in space, affecting any ship or object within the blast radius.
FIRING WEAPONS (insert page 34)
Proximity Phaser Blasts
(TOS) (insert page ??)
Federation Phaser Proximity Blasts have some of
the characteristics of
a missile weapon and some characteristics of a mine weapon. The
Proximity Blast weapon is armed like a missile weapon, with its
Power To Arm allocation recorded in the Weapon Track; like a missile
weapon, it may be evaded.
Like a mine chance to hit increases.
Furthermore, the blast may hit the target full
on, doing full damage, or it maybe a proximity hit to the target,
doing half damage. In the case of a proximity hit, the damage is
done to the adjacent shield side of the target.
The FASA optional fire rule maybe used as
outlined on page 17 of the STCS Manual. This allows two Phaser
Blasts to be fired separately from the same weapon bank, but into
the same targeted hex.
The Ship Data Tables for the various starships
are modified as follows; The blasting range (fused to explode in a given hex) is 25%
of the weapons maximum range. The blast damage for
all weapons is 2 points of damage. The damage given by a proximity
hit is half that of a direct hit. The Damage Modifiers are not used.
Determining Blast Hits (insert
page ??) from mine
Blasts are not sure hits because the cloaked ship
is normally not the actual target, the hex is and cloaked ships may
detect and evade them at the last minute. If a captain had a Sensor
Lock in the previous Sensor Phase and lost it or knows the direction of the
cloak ship by shield arc from another captain, he may use Proximity Phaser Blasts.
The Federation ship can do a single blast or
volleys of blasts. The amount of power allocated to the phaser
determines how many blasts can be fired; For each 2 points of power,
gives the player one blast. When a blast or blasts enters a hex, the
Federation player has to roll one die. A roll of 1 will be a direct
hit, and a roll of 6 or less will be a proximity hit. Do this for
each blast in the volley.
For an example, A Phaser with the power of 4 is
allocated. This would allow for 2 rolls; no damage Modifiers are added, Unfired shots cannot
be saved for another combat turn.
If using proximity blasts to detect a cloak ship,
there is a -5 modifier applied to the roll. A roll of Zero(0) will
be a direct hit, and a roll of 1 will be a proximity hit. Do this
for each blast in the volley. All Zero(0) or below rolls
must refer to the slim chance table page 34 of the STCS Manual
to determine a hit.
This chance increases every Firing Phase the
cloak ship spends in the hex. This roll will be repeated every
Firing Phase that the vessel remains in that hex if it is fired upon or
until the attacking ship stops firing, except that the chance of hit
increases by 1 each time.
For example, a cloaked cruiser is in a hex where
the blast or blasts are targeting. The Federation starship announces
the targeted hex and rolls a die, scoring a 9, which means that the
blast does not hit at all. During the next Firing Phase, the cloaked
vessel has not moved and is attacked by blasts again. This time the
Federation player must roll a 1 through 7 to make a hit. A die roll
of 4 is made, and the player scores a proximity hit, giving the
cloaked cruiser 1 point of damage.
Evading Blasts (insert page ??)
When a Federation Starship announces the target
hex of the blast or blasts, If the cloaked vessel under
attack is present then the target captain must decide immediately if
he will evade the blast or blasts. If he evades, as described on
page 27 of the STCS Manual, the shot
does reduced damage and hits a different shield; he may fire any
weapons in that Firing Phase with a -2 penalty as outlined on page
34 and 37 of the STCS Manual. This tactic may be of value if the
cloaked ship wants to remain invisible. Cloaked ships shields are of
course down while cloaked.
If the cloaked vessel under attack is not present
in the targeted hex a roll to evade should still be made to retain
the illusion that the cloak ship may or may not be in the targeted
hex, or a skillful maneuver should be made, see Proximity
Proximity Hits (insert page ??)
If the target ship decides not to evade,
its captain still may reduce the damage by skillful maneuver. After
a successful hit has been determined, the target ship captain rolls
percentile dice and compares the roll to his Skill Rating. If the
roll is equal to or less than his rating, the captain has maneuvered
his vessel out of the direct path of the blast, causing it only to
exploded near his ship. Ships immobile due to damage take full
damage from successful hits with the blast; no proximity hits
are possible. The damage is done to the adjacent shield side of the
Phaser Blast Damage (insert page
??) from mine
Damage from a direct hit blast is given to the part of the vessel
that first entered the hex targeted. If the vessel moved forward
into the targeted hex, the damage is given to Shield 2; if the
vessel backed into the hex, the damage is given to Shield 5. If the
vessel side slipped into the hex from the right, Shield 1 is
attacked, and if the vessel side slipped into the hex from the left,
Shield 3 is attacked. The attack is resolved like a missile weapon
attack. All hits give the attacker (and all other ships) a +3 on the
cloak detection table. Sensor Shadows still apply.
For example, If a cloaked ship is behind a moon,
and a blast goes off on the far side of the moon, there is no bonus
to detect the ship.
Blast Detonating and Diminishing
Source: TOS-R Balance Of Terror
Since the TOS-R remastered version
of Balance Of Terror was issued and they used new special effects
just for proximity phaser blasts I thought I'd honor them with new
rules for such a weapon in the STCS. My attempt at making these
rules was to use sole FASA rules lifted directly from the book and
change a few words here and there to keep the rules FASA-Like.
Attack Roll, Instead of using the
normal attack that use a To-Hit roll, I used rules based on FASA's
-mine- rules. Essentially It would have been this: "The To-Hit chance (if the target ship is in the
targeted hex) is 50% at
minimum range(1 hex), and -10%
each hex distance there after. (the percentage chance continues
to decline the further away the target hex.)" This would
normally put the range at 5 hexes max. So a 5 hex distance would be
a 10% chance to hit. I'm still debating on if I should use two
rolls, the normal attack roll for the hex and then the -mine- roll.
Detecting Cloak Ships, For using
proximity blasts to actually Detect a cloaked ship, I currently only
have a quick rule that uses FASA's Slim Chance Table, if a To-Hit
roll is modified to Zero(0) or below, a special roll needs to be
checked on the slim chance table. That's FASA rules, so I currently
applied a negative penalty that places the To-Hit roll below zero,
forcing the player trying to use these type of phaser blast for
detecting a cloak ship. In the episode the Enterprise did do the
same thing, but after many volleys they never where successful. One
current problem with this little rule, I don't use the normal attack
rolls, so I have to find another way to force the player to use the
slim chance table.
Weapon Range, This rule that I did
use would keep the range within close and short as the majority seen
on the TOS episode. A weapons attempted blasting range (fused to explode in a given
hex) is 25% of the weapons maximum range. "Ranging the proximity
blast at a % of a given weapons range is realistic since it
automatically adjusts to the various phaser types. An
FH-1 phaser shouldn't have the same burst range as an FH-11 phaser
which has 3 times the range." So this was one of the
easiest rule to apply for phaser blasts. Originally It was going to
be a fixed hex distance of 4 or 5 hex's but that rule was thrown
Weapon Damage, I stuck with a
fixed amount of damage, 2 points max and 1 point for proximity hits
instead of using; "A weapons
direct hit blast damage is 10% of the weapons maximum damage. A weapons proximity hit blast damage is only 2% of the weapons
maximum damage." The use of percentage for modifying the weapons
was just a thought that was changed rather quickly to the current
base points of damage. I wanted to keep within the ideas of several
players that suggested the proximity hits did 1 point of damage to
the unshielded cloaked ship.
Evading and Skillful Maneuver, I
opted to use the blasts as a missile weapon based on the fact that
its similar to a plasma bolt. Also in the episode the Romulan
cruiser does alot of evasive action while being fired upon. At one
point I almost just dropped the missile reference and taken out
evading all together. I'm still un sure today if the Phaser
Proximity Blasts should be considered a missile weapon.
Disruptors, Originally the idea
was going to allow Disrupters to use proximity blasts, but after
further review of the weapon type, this is not allowed.
Web Sites about Proximity Phaser Blasts:
V-8 Flagship Schematics