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Thread: Thin-skinned B-wings

  1. #1
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    Question Thin-skinned B-wings

    So why does the B-wing have a 3D hull in this game?

    Relatively speaking if you look at the stats of the fighter in Star Warriors, and in the various TIE Fighter PC games, the fighter gets much better hull plating as compared to its contemporaries.

    Does anyone know why???
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

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    No idea. It is very strange that a 'dedicated heavy assault' fighter such as the B-wing has LESS hull than does either an Xwing OR Y wing does..
    You cannot dodge it if you don't know it is coming, and you cannot shoot at what you don't know is there!

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    The problem dates back to 1987 on page 15 of the SWSB. Makes no sense to me when you look at the Star Warriors boxed set published in the same year depicts a robust B-wing. This may be one of the great unanswered questions of the game.
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

  4. #4
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    Yeah, this always puzzled me as well. And unfortunately it has been carried through to so many things. Considering what it's job was listed as, you would think it could take a lot more pounding.
    Try not. Do or do not, there is no try.
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    I sent an email to Peter M. Schweighofer in the hopes he might shed some light on the subject. If I get any answers, I'll share them here.
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

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    Maybe the easy way to rectify it is to just upgrade the hull to 5d.. So it IS tougher than the xwing and ywings..
    You cannot dodge it if you don't know it is coming, and you cannot shoot at what you don't know is there!

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    Wolverine, this is where it gets weird.

    In "Strikeforce Shantipole" page 31 the "Two-man" B-wing has a 4D hull and the B-wing/E and B-wing/E2 found in "The Jedi Academy Trilogy Sourcebook" page 126 are both 5D hull.

    Clearly something is amiss.
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

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    Maybe the two seater was a special case for an upgraded hull, and the one in the jedi academy is easily seen as an updated one so it's hull was redesigned to be stronger..
    You cannot dodge it if you don't know it is coming, and you cannot shoot at what you don't know is there!

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    Exclamation I have a headache

    Wolverine my favorite way to diagnose a problem is chronological study. You put all the data in age order and often the start point of the problem shows up. Lets see what we can figure out on our own here.

    • "The Star Wars Sourcebook", first edition, published November 1987: first stats for the B-wing, first use of 3D hull.
    • "Star Wars Campaign Pack", first edition, published January 1988: another example of the 3D hull.
    • "Strike Force: Shantipole", first edition, published June 1988: first use of the two-seat model with 4D hull.
    • "The Star Wars Rules Companion", first edition, published January 1989: there are rules for converting stats from the SWRPG to Star Warriors stats. There is an offset chart on pages 26-27. On the offset chart you have to add 2 to the body stat for the standard B-wing and you have to add 1 to the body stat for the Shantipole two-man model. Perhaps there was an error in translation???
    • "Rebel Alliance Sourcebook", first edition, published October 1990: another example of the 3D hull.
    • "Star Wars Gamemaster Kit", first edition, published September 1991: another example of the 3D hull.
    • "Heir to the Empire Sourcebook", first edition, published July 1992: another example of the 3D hull. It mentions "By combining speed, armor and armaments, the new fighter was to be a fit opponent for anything up to a frigate-sized vessel." The description does not match the stats.
    • "Rebel Alliance Sourcebook", second edition, published April 1994: It mentions "The B-wing features a very sophisticated but fragile gyroscopically-stabilized command pod, as well as a ranging mode for the laser cannon." Could the "fragile" been the motivation for a 3D hull?
    • "The Star Wars Sourcebook", second edition, published June 1994: Also here it mentions "The B-wing features a very sophisticated but fragile gyroscopically-stabilized command pod, as well as a ranging mode for the laser cannon." Again could the "fragile" been the motivation for a 3D hull?
    • "The Jedi Academy Sourcebook", second edition, April 1996: B-wing/E and B-wing/E2 introduced both with 5D hulls. Paul Sudlow seemed to understand something was wrong with the B-wing and boosted the hull by +2D in his New Republic models. I am unsure as to whether the 5D hulls in "The Jedi Academy Sourcebook" represent an upgrade from the Rebel Alliance model or was this a correction to the stats and 5D was what the hull should have been in 1987???
    • "Star Wars Gamemaster Screen, Revised", second edition, published December 1996: another example of the 3D hull.
    • Classic Adventures: Volume Five, second edition, published 1998: two-seater switched over to standard stats with 3D hull. WEG was at the end of their financial life in 1998 and I greatly suspect when the scenario "Strike Force: Shantipole" was converted, to second edition rules in "Classic Adventures: Volume Five" the stats for the B-wing were just simply copy/pasted into the publication without realizing the Shantipole B-wing was not the production model.


    I am very fond of West End Games but the company is infamous for bad editing and copying mistakes. After all this page flipping, I'm still extremely confused. I also suspect there may be an error in scale as there have been three different sets of scale rules for the game and as you may recall in my older posts, weapon systems have been lost or hopelessly "Nerfed" in the translation.

    I'm still waiting for an answer from Peter M. Schweighofer. I may send out some inquiries to other former WEG employees.
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

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    I would like to add a footnote to the copy/paste woes of the B-wing Fighter. I have also noticed the long range atmospheric range for the laser cannons on both the A-wing and B-wing is listed as 1.5 kilometers in numerous sourcebooks instead of 2.5 kilometers. I strongly suspect these were originally a fat-finger mistake that got copy/pasted all over because no one caught it. This is my primary piece of evidence for why I think the B-wing has an erroneous 3D hull in publications from 1987 to 1998.
    Frank V Bonura - STAR WARS Deckplans Alliance Founder

  11. #11
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    My take on it is that the Hull stat isn't just the exterior "armor" protecting a ship's innards, it's also an overall measure of the "robustness" of a ship's "systems."


    With the "fragile" gyroscopically mounted cockpit module, I can see the B-Wing's Hull being only 3D. IIRC, there's a blurb in one of the d6 book's B-Wing description to the effect of (paraphrasing from memory) its shields being strengthened to offset it's weaker Hull; but I could be wrong, as it's been a long while and I don't have all of the d6 books.


    Or it could be an issue of "game balance," a deliberate choice among WEG's SWRPG creators/editors; the B-Wing possesses incredible firepower, so a "weakness" was left in to offset its strengths.


    Later iterations of the B-Wing (d20 material) have bumped the B-Wing & B-Wing/E2's speed until the base model is just as fast as the basic X-Wing, and the E2 is just one step behind the T65AC4, the latest/greatest New Republic/New Jedi Order/Yuuzhan Vong X-Wing (short of the specialized "Jedi" model of X-Wing, which is basically an A-Wing in terms of speed, a B-Wing's in terms of firepower, and better than a Y-Wing in terms of "toughness"). But the B-Wing/E2's d20 stats retain the d20 equivalent of the d6 Hull and Shield stats (3D & 2D, respectively); it's firepower, on the other hand... :shudder:
    A. DuQuennes

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