Ok maybe not a long time ago and maybe not even in a far, far away galaxy, upstairs in my house on a gaming table… possibly!
I have just started playtesting a new add-on to my Stars & Lasers rules, I have been asked a few times to do something that will allow people to play the game but using Star Wars ships… well I have been getting help from a guy on the Little Wargaming Worlds Discord server who knows a lot more about Star Wars ships than I do.
With his help I have already put together twelve ship cards for four Imperial ships and seven ships for the Rebels, these are based on Star Wars Armada ships.
Ships like the Imperial Star Destroyer and the MC80 Home One Assault Cruiser to name just two.
I have most things sorted for these ships including all their special “skills” things like BRACE, REDIRECT, EVADE etc. etc. these were surprisingly easy to convert over to Stars & Lasers.
One of the big changes to the stars & Laser style ships were the shields, in games of Stars & Lasers the shields go all around the ship protecting it from shots from any direction, but the Star Wars Armada ships needed shields in four arcs, which are the front, rear and of course the sides.
This was a lot easier to do than I first thought it would be.
A couple of things I am having a little more of an issue with are things like special weapons including Ion cannons and turbo lasers etc. etc. these are strange in Star Wars Armada as they don’t really “shoot” yeah I know that’s crazy ( well to me it is! )
What they use are cards which when played effect the opponent’s cards or dice etc.
Ok they do have different colour dice which do represent different ship weapons but that still seems a little odd ☹
In Stars & Lasers if you have a weapon on a turret of the ship it has stats and you roll dice to see if it hits the target and how much damage it does, that to me feels great especially if you get a critical hit as well, but to just play a card that has some weird effect on the other players card or dice roll seems really naff…
I am still working on these weapons and how best to add them, but I am certain that they will be “weapons” with stats and when they fire you will have to roll dice to see if they hit the enemy ships.
The other thing I am having some trouble with at the moment are missiles, these work really simply in Stars & Lasers ( and are deadly! ) but again in Star Wars Armada they are just represented by rolling a different colour dice! Nothing actually moves across the table and hits the enemy ships so no tactics or a need to plan your attacks.
So swapping that over to Stars & Lasers is proving to be a harder thing than I had imagined it would be.
The Armada ships get black pips on their ships cards to represent how many “missiles” are able to fire from an arc on the ship, so that would be easy to show as a number of missile hardpoints ( launch tubes ) there are in each arc, but I can’t work out how many missiles the ship carries in each arc or how many missiles the ship can carry to fire during the battle.
The first thing I thought of is just count the black pips in a fire arc and that is the number of missiles that can fire from that arc, which wouldn’t give many missiles for the game, so then I thought how about just doubling the number of pips, so if a fire arc had four black pips and you double them that would give you eight missiles that you would be able to fire from that arc during the battle.
So if a ship had four pips in both side arcs and two at the rear and three at the front that would be…. Twenty-six missiles!!!!
A ship carrying twenty-six missiles in Stars & Lasers would be a very scary ship indeed.
A way to control this would be to limit the number of missiles the ships was able to fire from each fire arc during a turn.
As you can see lots of possibilities and the whole while remembering to try and keep the rules faithful to Stars & Lasers, that means keeping things simple.
I have had a first playtest of what I have got so far using “proxy” ships as I don’t have any Star Wars Armada ships, I used a couple of my big Firestorm Armada ships, one I used as a proxy of an Imperial I-class Star Destroyer and the other would be the MC80 Home One Assault Cruiser.
I just had those two ships slug it out for a few turns and I must admit it worked really well, the four shield system worked and the special skills ( BRACE, REDIRECT etc. ) worked as well.
So I am very pleased with the first try, I do still have a few things still to do but hopefully they will be easy to work out.
Oh, in case you are interested the Star Destroyer won!!
So watch this space as they say, I am not looking at doing a huge supplement it will just be a few pages of simple rules to allow people to use their Star Wars Armada ships with Stars & Lasers rules, hopefully they will give a decent Star Wars feel to the game.
As I get in more playtest games I will put one or two on here so that you can see how things are coming along.