Problem with Piracy.


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Starfinder Superscriber

And that's how the Atlanteans are going to get their revenge.


pithica42 wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
pithica42 wrote:
Why can't the PCs stop them from connecting the two ships?
** spoiler omitted **

I read through the encounter last night and came away feeling completely different about it, it does read like a teaser for the ASE being out there and a threat but it didn't seem railroady at all; the PCs can win pretty easily since they could have an optimized tier 7 ship vs an under crewed tier 6, if they lose the PCs will still likely win in ambushing the ASE boarding party, there are options for the PCs to trick or play dead or even just be scanned and that be the end of it. It also has advice on how to handle the various outcomes to keep the player XP on track and suggests "looting" the wrecked ship as a way to explain BP increase. The only thing about it that surprised me was no BP value given for the new weapon type and no BP given for the breaching device they have... but I expect stuff like that will eventually be statted out in future materials.

But really, I expect the players to be rocking something along the lines of twin linked heavy plasma cannons by that point as well as having a skilled pilot, an engineer and a science officer so I'd put very strong odds on the players turning the ASE into abstract art handidly.


Starfinder Superscriber

Dead Suns 4:
If I get to that encounter, that's probably how I'll run it, letting the PC's win or lose the initial ship encounter in a fair fight. When I re-read it, it still feels like they're assuming the PC's will auto-lose (or want to pretend to), so that you can run the boarding encounter, and I've never had that experience with PC's in any fair fight in any game in like 30 years.


If you want to run things as written in DS4, I suggest

Spoiler:
Raising the stakes. Modify the Kloxwork Prism to be Tier 8, add a couple of lower level dudes, and maybe add some experimental EMP weapon or boarding grapple.
WIN the fight, because you know have a better ship, and then board them, giving the players the ambush, so they can defeat the Aeon Guards. Then either let them conquer the Prism, or make the azlanti to blow up their ship and the PC to barely survive and need repair

Either that, or skip that encounter, imho.


Yeah, I mean from a narrative framework, you could have a higher tier space fight and a lower tier boarding fight. So space stuff could be above party CR, while the boarding stuff more their level. But really, yknow in general I'm not opposed to a railroad experience. PCs need to be reminded there are greater things in the world, and that just because the mechanics of a game aim for throwing equal level stuff at the party, that doesn't mean they should get everything handed to them on a platter as perpetual powerups.

that said, the rules of starfinder have a limitation of the 'even a wrecked ship can still do basic stuff' so we don't really have examples of sci-fi/etc tropes of 'disabled, emergency power' ship, unless you go by rules and DESTROY a ship.


One option could be the Aeon teleporting inside the Sunrise Maiden. Yes, it is impossible normally. If Azlanti can... that means they must be more sdvsnced


Starfinder Superscriber

spoiler tags for AP stuff:
I don't actually see a problem with them 'hacking the door' so much as the module just assuming that the players are going to give up on the starship combat the second they show up, or lose an otherwise fair starship combat fight automagically.


I'm just saying, an insider sabotaging the ship and taking them out of spaceship combat into regular combat sounds like a good compromise.


Losobal wrote:

hm. Thinking a bit more about piracy, pirates in Starfinder have something of a disadvantage compared to the Pirate Kingdom of former Golarion.

Starfinder pirates have a benefit of being 'kinda hard to find' in the asteroids, but they no longer really have the protection that the big old hurricane gave the Golarian pirates. Barring the adventure hook which had the Chels do some pretty significant sacrifices/bargains to get their fleet able to pass through it, the hurricane provided access limitation and thus early warning, and it made the normal travel to the region a pain in the butt that other nations didn't just sortie their forces to crush the pirates.

In real life, the most recent example we have are the Somali pirates. Born of weakened national security local piracy popped up, harassing the international community traveling through the area. Lack of coordination by international forces, inconsistencies in law/precedent led to early piracy success.

Well...at least until the Russians decided 'yknow, if things remain unclear, we'll just revert to age old responses to pirates (f#@* em up!).

In the long run, better management and security by outside forces resulted in a pretty big reduction in piracy in the region.

So with the Starfinder stuff...the 'pirate kingdom' (not yet developed) is kinda localized, and anyone could probably figure out where pirate attacks happen over time. In a sense, the biggest thing the pirates have going is that they haven't done enough to really trigger a response. The smuggling stuff probably pays for the piracy cover, the illegal trade stuff providing enough cash to non-pirates, but the corrupt dudes outside the pirate zones that are the market that corruption/influence gets used to keep things on the down low a bit. But if you end up getting more hijackings and murders and the like, that'd probably go beyond what can be protected easily.

But if Pirates in starfinder try to pull the "Lets be Pirate KINGS!" that might just be the push needed for the...

Pirates have one big advantage: drift drives. They could base out of anywhere in the galaxy and be anywhere in a few weeks.

All they need is one nation willing to house them and other nations won't be willing to start a war over it. Or maybe they run a mobile base of operations. Jumping to different spots all over the galaxy. Or the Pirate King found an ancient defense base that only he knows the secrets to.

Lots of options.


Lord Fyre wrote:

How is Space Piracy accomplished in Starfinder?

We know that there are space pirates, but without some kind of tractor beam or grapnel how is this accomplished below the Capital Ship level?

The Heavy Weapon "Gravity Gun" had the "Tractor Beam" Special Property. As a Heavy Weapon it can be put on a Medium Sized Ship. So If I were stating out a Pirate Ship, it would have a Gravity Gun.


The way I'm seeing piracy in Starfinder is either illegal salvage operations, or shooting a ship until it's disabled. Taking the crew off, and illegally salvaging the ship. Evil pirates might kill the crew, a less evil pirate might ransom the crew (ala Somali Pirates), while a much, much less evil pirate drops the crew off at some space station or other planet they can return to civilization.

But in my Starships, Stations and Salvage Guide by Edward Moyer, that I just published last week includes bandits (pirates) and salvage ships. Some with towing fixtures that can pull a dead ship to a salvage station to take it apart, others with mechanical arms to hold the ship while boarding. Illegal salvage though is the primary activity of space pirates in my opinion.


The Free Captains likely just approach an inferior ship where it can't get help, tell them to allow boarding and give up their cargo (or a percentage, depending on Free Captain customs) without a fight. The victim puts out a distress call, gets answers that no one will be there very soon, scans the pirate ship, sees it can defeat the victim's ship in combat, and relies on the Free Captains' reputation to surrender and presumably keep their lives, probably their ship, and maybe some of their cargo.

If it's a close match maybe you fight, and if you aren't sure it's actually a Free Captain you maybe prefer to go down fighting even if its hopeless.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
johnlocke90 wrote:
Losobal wrote:

hm. Thinking a bit more about piracy, pirates in Starfinder have something of a disadvantage compared to the Pirate Kingdom of former Golarion.

Starfinder pirates have a benefit of being 'kinda hard to find' in the asteroids, but they no longer really have the protection that the big old hurricane gave the Golarian pirates. Barring the adventure hook which had the Chels do some pretty significant sacrifices/bargains to get their fleet able to pass through it, the hurricane provided access limitation and thus early warning, and it made the normal travel to the region a pain in the butt that other nations didn't just sortie their forces to crush the pirates.

In real life, the most recent example we have are the Somali pirates. Born of weakened national security local piracy popped up, harassing the international community traveling through the area. Lack of coordination by international forces, inconsistencies in law/precedent led to early piracy success.

Well...at least until the Russians decided 'yknow, if things remain unclear, we'll just revert to age old responses to pirates (f#@* em up!).

In the long run, better management and security by outside forces resulted in a pretty big reduction in piracy in the region.

So with the Starfinder stuff...the 'pirate kingdom' (not yet developed) is kinda localized, and anyone could probably figure out where pirate attacks happen over time. In a sense, the biggest thing the pirates have going is that they haven't done enough to really trigger a response. The smuggling stuff probably pays for the piracy cover, the illegal trade stuff providing enough cash to non-pirates, but the corrupt dudes outside the pirate zones that are the market that corruption/influence gets used to keep things on the down low a bit. But if you end up getting more hijackings and murders and the like, that'd probably go beyond what can be protected easily.

But if Pirates in starfinder try to pull the "Lets be Pirate KINGS!" that might just be

...

Pact Worlds has the Free Captains possessing a base in the Diaspora that is heavily defended and also theoretically secret. I say "theoretically" because. . . honestly, I really don't believe that the major powers that be in the Pact Worlds System couldn't have tracked it down. My theory, which I feel fits the facts known, is that the major governments view the Free Captains as a lesser evil. Yes, tolerating their existence means their members engage in piracy. However, they have customs and standards, which they generally enforce among their members, which include things like "not simply killing everybody to take their stuff".

The perfect world would have the Free Captains, and all other pirates, wiped out, but the world is way too filled with existential threats to be perfect. So you keep the Free Captains around, they police themselves ( and compete with independent pirates ), and everyone is generally better off.


yeah, I mean we've seen how power vacuums happen here irl. If you got rid of the pirate kingdom, whos to say the next guys that set up shop in the belt won't be worse?


Pact worlds introduced one thing that could make piracy a lot easier. Basically a ship mod that allows you to dampen the ability to go into drift in an area. The more ships using that the bigger the radius effected is. Stuff like that would really help enable piracy. Right now unless your ship is really slow or they some how get really close to you to start an engagement it is hard to lock somebody down before they run away. Something like that device though would let pirates run their prey down easier. It also works against them as well jump "unsuspecting prey" only to find it is a Q ship and you can't jump away.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
kaid wrote:
Pact worlds introduced one thing that could make piracy a lot easier. Basically a ship mod that allows you to dampen the ability to go into drift in an area. The more ships using that the bigger the radius effected is. Stuff like that would really help enable piracy. Right now unless your ship is really slow or they some how get really close to you to start an engagement it is hard to lock somebody down before they run away. Something like that device though would let pirates run their prey down easier. It also works against them as well jump "unsuspecting prey" only to find it is a Q ship and you can't jump away.

Yeah, but that tech is the exclusive property of the Hellknights. You can't even buy it. So, unless you somehow managed to successfully sack a Hellknight ship and were lucky enough to recover the technology intact, odds are you don't have access to that tech as a pirate.

I'd say that is about as likely as a lowly mugger taking out a Judge.


Eh 'exclusivity' that isn't divine based probably isn't really an issue as much anymore. Kinda odd that the Triune church isn't a bit pissed the Hellys are messing with Drift related stuff tho


It's an extremely useful function, and I can't really blame them for developing it. There's not always a whole lot you can do to police a freely given gift, so having another group equipped to engage raiders is helpful. Heck, they're probably armed enough to make a good escort if you're worried about some warlord deciding they have better use for your beacon shipment.

It would have been cool if we developed it first, though.


If one faction developed it I guarantee you it will spread fast. Knowing something can be done is half the way to making it. Pirates likely are on the receiving end of that trick first from the hellknights so it is pretty likely they work to figure out how it is done and replicate it.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

That's all well and good, provided your GM agrees.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

OTOH, just because other people will *eventually* reverse engineer it, doesn't mean they have it *now*. Given Pact Worlds heavily implies only the Hellknights have it, I'd take it as a given that its recent tech. The only other people who might have it, probably got it by literally stealing it from the Hellknights, and they probably don't advertise this yet.


It seems kinda weird that the Hellknights come up with something the Triune don't already know about, especially given its their 'home turf' tech/effect.


Or any number of different organizations or corporations with strong interests in the tech. Like you know the Veskarium, Azlanti Empire, Knights of Golarion, etc. etc. etc.

Personally I don't think it's limited to them just that they're one of its biggest users.


Metaphysician wrote:
OTOH, just because other people will *eventually* reverse engineer it, doesn't mean they have it *now*. Given Pact Worlds heavily implies only the Hellknights have it, I'd take it as a given that its recent tech. The only other people who might have it, probably got it by literally stealing it from the Hellknights, and they probably don't advertise this yet.

I just read Pact Worlds and it doesn't anything suggesting only Hellknights have it. They created the tech, but it doesn't say when. It could have been around for decades. The full flavor text is:

"Created by the Hellknights to aid them in capturing enemy vessels, this device creates an area of “Drift shadow” when activated. "


Ravingdork wrote:
That's all well and good, provided your GM agrees.

Also in the description it says it was initially developed by the hellknights. It says nothing about being exclusive to them from the listed information. Just like the eco hive pod stuff it is pretty clearly designed for that one xenowarden ship but it has all the BP values to add it to any ship you want.

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