09 December 2014

Pulsing Beams

I've been reading my Little Black Books again.

In Book 2 there's no combat difference between the beam and pulse lasers.  Despite descriptions that imply that beam weapons are more likely to score a hit and pulse lasers do more damage; neither gets a die modifier that differentiates them.

The pulse laser is half the cost of the beam laser, so I'd go with those.

You'd have thought I'd have noticed this thirty years ago, but I've honestly never used Book 2's combat rules.

Book 5 rewrote the entire combat system and there is a difference between beam and pulse lasers there that make beams worth paying extra for; it takes fewer beam lasers to increase the USP code rating for a given battery.  A single triple beam laser turret has the same rating as two triple pulse laser turrets.

Book 5 also adds plasma guns, fusion guns and particle accelerators in both turreted and barbette form.

Most of this is now trivia since GURPS: Traveller uses an entirely different combat system derived from 3e GURPS: Vehicles.

The difference between beam and pulse lasers there is a firing mode and not a physical difference in the weapons.

Traveller Tuesday officially belongs to Erin, I'm just dangling from her coat tails on the idea.


  1. On a sort-of-related note, do you have the Azhanti High Lightning game/add-on? It's very cool, has deckplans of a cruiser, including the barbette that runs the spine of the ship.

  2. I do! I originally bought it JUST to get the deckplans.


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