Revised Rifts Torpedoes:
Types of Torpedoes Sizes of Torpedoes Torpedo Guidance Systems Rocket Boosted Torpedoes
Torpedoes in Rifts are similar to those of the early Twenty First which the readers are likely most familiar with. Like might be expected, they use warheads similar to those used in missiles. Most torpedoes use special ducted propellers for thrust although a few use rockets instead. Rifts Torpedoes have a greater speed and range than those used in the early part of the Twenty First century. Torpedoes come in several different sizes that correspond to missile sizes. In some cases, smaller torpedoes can be substituted for a larger torpedo. In many cases, torpedoes can be launched from special missile launchers of the same size.
Most torpedoes are sonar guided although there are advanced torpedoes with additional guidance systems. These include Wake Homing, MAD (Magnetic Anomaly Detector), and SQUID (Super Quantum Induction Device) guidance systems. SQUID guidance system is very rare and is only definitely known to the New Navy and Triax. It is believed that the British had the system before the coming of the Rifts and it is possible that Japan has the technology as well. It is also likely that the Splugorth minions have the technology as well but none have been seen. None of these governments would likely share the technology with even their allies. The Coalition has been unable to recover any pre-rifts examples of the system. All they have is older torpedo technology. All torpedoes, except rocket launched torpedoes and aircraft dropped torpedoes, have a wire guidance system that allows the launching vehicle to control the torpedoes.
One interesting invention is the multi-warhead torpedo which is an effective anti-torpedo weapon. These break into four smaller torpedoes just before they reach their target and strike like a missile volley. In many cases, surface ships will fire multi-warhead torpedoes against incoming torpedoes from their medium torpedo tubes. In the case of medium torpedoes, the multi-warhead will be slightly smaller than mini-torpedoes. Heavy torpedoes have smaller torpedoes slightly smaller than light torpedoes and Super Heavy Torpedoes have multiple warheads around the size of medium torpedoes. The sub munition type torpedoes have half the range of the torpedo class that they are closest to.
These torpedoes are normally the main torpedoes carried by most vessels. While they are not as fast as Interceptor torpedoes, they have a much better chance of hitting their targets and have a much longer range than the faster interceptor torpedoes. Mini-Torpedoes have a range of 0.86 nautical miles (1 mile / 1.6 km), light torpedoes have a range of 4.3 nautical miles (5 miles / 8 km), medium torpedoes have a range of 17.4 nautical miles (20 miles / 32 km), heavy torpedoes have a range of 34.7 nautical miles (40 miles / 64 km), and super heavy torpedoes have a range of 52.1 nautical miles (60 miles / 96.6 km).
Mini-Torpedoes and Light Torpedoes have a top speed of 69.5 knots (80 mph / 128.7 kph.) Medium, Heavy, and Super Heavy have a top speed of 104 knots (120 mph / 192 kph.) Larger types of torpedoes including Medium, Heavy, and Super Heavy torpedoes have multiple speeds. A torpedo traveling at its maximum speed is easily detectable in the water and when the torpedo is traveling at high speed they have a +10% to be detected. Because of this, all larger torpedoes can travel at their maximum speed or can cruise at the slower speed of 21.7 knots (25 mph / 40.2 kph.) While traveling at the slower speed, the torpedoes are at -20 to be detected. If a torpedo misses its target, standard torpedoes will attempt to turn around to strike their target again. It is rumored that just before the coming of the Rifts, the Russians developed a line of standard torpedoes which their top speed was twenty five percent faster than normal torpedo speeds.
If on wire control, the operator can decide when the torpedo goes to full speed and can control the course of the torpedo. Otherwise, the torpedo can be programmed to go to full speed or begin maneuvering at a specific time. Smart torpedoes can be programmed to go to full speed or make specific maneuvers based on conditions such as the target going to full speed. Sensors can be activated by the same method. The advantage of this is so the torpedo can keep its active sonar off until the torpedo reaches a specific point.
Standard Torpedoes have a +3 to strike except for Mini Torpedoes which are not self guided and rely on bonuses of the operator. Most mini-torpedoes have wire guidance systems. Heavy, and Super Heavy torpedoes can be smart guided although they are more expensive. These have +5 to strike and +3 to dodge. Only heavy and super heavy torpedoes can carry additional guidance systems.
Much faster than normal torpedoes, the interceptor are used to intercept incoming enemy torpedoes or are fired as a fast shot against enemy vessels to attempt to disable the vessel before it can fire back. They are similar to some early Twenty First Century Russian torpedoes. Many of the interceptor torpedoes use rockets and super cavitation to reduce water resistance. The main disadvantages of interceptor torpedoes are that the torpedoes are very easy to detect, have a much shorter range than standard torpedoes, are easily dodged at longer ranges, and do not have different speeds.
Interceptor torpedoes travel at 260.5 knots (300 mph / 482.8 kph), which is almost three times as fast as the top speed on standard torpedoes. Because of the incredibly high speed of the interceptor torpedoes, they cannot turn around to attempt to reacquire their target if they miss.
Interceptor torpedoes have a +40 bonus to be detected due to the huge amount of noise that the torpedo makes. Because the torpedoes are active on launch, the torpedo also makes the vessel launching the torpedo very obvious.
Mini-Torpedo style Interceptors have a maximum range of 1000 feet (304.8 meters), light torpedo style interceptors have a maximum range of 2000 feet (609.6 meters), medium torpedo style interceptors have a maximum range of 4000 feet (1219.2 meters), heavy torpedo style interceptors have a maximum range of 8000 feet (2,438.4 meters), and super heavy interceptor system torpedoes have a maximum range of 12,000 feet (3657.6 meters).
At close range (1000 feet / 304.5 meters) it is very difficult to dodge interceptor torpedoes and they have a +3 bonus to strike their target. However, at this range virtually all other weapons are within range as well and any enemy vessel will have a very clear idea of the launching vessels position and can return fire. At longer ranges, the torpedoes have a -4 penalty to strike. The noise of the torpedo makes it virtually blind.
Mini-Torpedoes are the equivalent of mini missiles and have a fairly
small warhead. They are most often used on power armors and small craft.
There are some examples of these mounted on vessels and ripple fired at
enemy submarines in a similar fashion to Pre-Rifts Russian ant-submarine
mortars. Mini-Torpedoes are not self guided and rely on the controller
for targeting. Normally, the torpedoes are wire controlled but when fired
from aircraft, they are fired with no guidance. Standard Mini-Torpedoes
have a range of 0.86 nautical miles (1 mile / 1.6 km) and a speed of 69.5
knots (80 mph / 128.7 kph.) Interceptor Mini-Torpedoes have a range of
1000 feet (304.8 meters) and travel at 260.5 knots (300 mph / 482.8 kph)
|High Explosive||1D4x10||3 feet (0.9 m)||3||2,500|
|Armor Piercing||1D6x10||2 feet (0.6 m)||3||3,500|
|Plasma||2D4x10||8 feet (2.4 m)||3||3,500|
Light Torpedoes are the equivalent of short range missiles and have
a relatively small warhead. They are often fired from missile launchers
or special anti-torpedo launchers. They are also carried on some aircraft
to be launched in large numbers against submarines. Standard Light Torpedoes
have a range of 4.3 nautical miles (5 miles / 8 km) and a speed of 69.5
knots (80 mph / 128.7 kph.) Interceptor Light Torpedoes have a range of
2000 feet (609.6 meters) and travel at 260.5 knots (300 mph / 482.8 kph)
|High Explosive (heavy)||2D4x10||10 feet (3 m)||8||6,000|
|Armor Piercing (heavy)||2D6x10||3 feet (0.9 m)||8||8,000|
|Plasma (heavy)||2D6x10||12 feet (3.7 m)||8||8,000|
Medium torpedoes are the equivalent of medium range missiles. They are
most often the anti-submarine weaponry of surface vessels although they
are carried on some small submarines as their main weaponry. Examples include
the 12.75 in (324 mm) torpedo tubes carried on most American surface combatants.
Standard Medium Torpedoes have a range of 17.4 nautical miles (20 miles
/ 32 km) and have a top speed of 104 knots (120 mph / 192 kph.) Interceptor
Medium Torpedoes have a range of 4000 feet (1219.2 meters) and travel at
260.5 knots (300 mph / 482.8 kph)
|High Explosive (x-heavy)||3D6x10||15 feet (4.6 m)||15||12,000|
|Armor Piercing (heavy)||3D6x10||10 feet (3 m)||15||12,000|
|Plasma (heavy)||4D6x10||25 feet (7.6 m)||15||15,000|
|Multi-Warhead (heavy)||5D6x10||20 feet (6.1 m)||15||20,000|
Heavy torpedoes are the equivalent of long range missiles. The are most
often the main weaponry of submarines but the torpedoes are carried on
some surface vessels as well. Examples include the 21 inches (533 mm) tubes
of the Pre-Rifts Los Angeles and Virginia class submarines. Standard Heavy
Torpedoes have a range of 34.7 nautical miles (40 miles / 64 km) and a
top speed of 104 knots (120 mph / 192 kph.) Interceptor Heavy Torpedoes
have a range of 8000 feet (2,438.4 meters) and travel at 260.5 knots (300
mph / 482.8 kph)
|High Explosives (x-heavy)||4D6x10||25 feet (7.6 m)||30||40,000|
|Armor Piercing (heavy)||3D6x10||15 feet (4.6 m)||30||40,000|
|Plasma (x-heavy)||5D6x10||40 feet (12.2 m)||30||50,000|
|Fusion (x-heavy)||2D4x100||75 feet (22.9 m)||30||80,000|
|Fusion Multi-Warhead||2D6x100||100 feet (30.5 m)||30||100,000|
Super Heavy torpedoes are the equivalent of cruise missiles and can
only be fired from special torpedo tubes designed for the tubes. They are
mounted on only a few classes of submarines. Examples of super heavy torpedoes
tubes include the 25.6 inch (650 mm) tubes of the Pre-Rifts Russian Akula
class and the 26 inches (660 mm) tubes of the Pre-Rifts American Sea Wolf
class. Small targets have a +5 to dodge Super Heavy Torpedoes before any
other bonuses or penalties. Standard Super Heavy Torpedoes have a range
of 52.1 nautical miles (60 miles / 96.6 km), and a top speed of 104 knots
(120 mph / 192 kph.) Interceptor Super Heavy Torpedoes have a range of
8000 feet (2,438.4 meters) and travel at 260.5 knots (300 mph / 482.8 kph)
|High Explosives (x-heavy)||1D4x100||30 feet (9.1 m)||60||100,000|
|Armor Piercing (x-heavy)||1D4x100||25 feet (7.6 m)||60||100,000|
|Plasma (x-heavy)||1D6x100||40 feet (12.2 m)||60||120,000|
|Fusion (x-heavy)||2D6x100||75 feet (22.9 m)||60||150,000|
|Fusion Multi-Warhead||3D6x100||100 feet (30.5 m)||60||200,000|
Torpedo is controlled through a thin wire that commands are sent through. Most torpedoes are available with wire guidance and min torpedoes are only wire guided. Torpedo relies on the bonuses of the person controlling the torpedo and the sensors of the vehicle which launched the torpedo. Wire Guidance can only be used on surface and submerged launched torpedoes. Does not work on aircraft launched torpedoes and does not work on rocket boosted torpedoes like the pre-rifts ASROC system. The wire has a 10% chance of breaking if the launching vessel launches makes any radical maneuvers. As well, there is a 5% chance of the wire breaking for every 8.6 nautical miles (10 miles / 16 km) that the torpedo travels. If the wire breaks, the torpedo is dependent on preprogrammed information.
Cost: Considered to be part of torpedo cost
Most torpedoes guided torpedoes have both an active and passive system. The sonar systems can be switched between the two homing systems. The torpedoes will usually use passive sonar to find the general position of the target and then switch to active sonar for final acquisition. In some cases, torpedoes will use passive sonar to home to target because they are much harder to detect. Sonar guided torpedoes must be at least light torpedoes in size. Besides wire guided, this guidance is the most effective at homing on targets that are not actual vessels. Using active sonar, torpedo has an additional +2 bonus to strike but is at +20% to be detected. The disadvantage is that because they are easier to detect, it is far more likely that decoys and defenses will be deployed against an active sonar homing torpedo. Torpedoes using sonar have a -1 penalty to strike a vessel for every -10% penalty for the vessel to be detected by sonar. Invisibility superior will give a -80% penalty to be targeted by this guidance. Some vessels, such as Techno-Wizard submarines protected by the spell of “Globe of Silence” are virtually impossible to hit using sonar guided torpedoes. Torpedo sonar has a maximum range of 1.7 nautical miles (2 miles / 3.2 km)
Cost: Considered to be part of torpedo cost
This torpedoes follow the wake created by vessel traveling through the water. These torpedoes are more expensive than those using sonar guidance and are limited to heavy and super heavy torpedoes. If the vessel being targeted has a shrouded propeller or other features designed to reduce propellor noise, the torpedo is at -2 to strike. As well, areas of water turbulence can sometimes confuse this guidance system. Towed decoys are especially effective when used between the vessel and the torpedo. As such, towed decoys have a 10% bonus against wake homing torpedoes. Invisibility superior will hide targets from this guidance (target leaves no wake). Wake Homing torpedoes have a maximum detection range of 0.86 nautical miles (1 mile / 1.6 km) and must detect the vessel from behind.
Cost: 1,000 credits
MAD stands for Magnetic Anomaly Detector and detects magnetic fields to find its target. Decoys must produce a decoying magnetic field to be effective against this type of torpedo. One problem with the torpedo is the fact that magnetic fields can confuse the torpedoes in some cases. The torpedo also cannot home on non metallic targets such as sailboats and large sea creatures. A vessel can be degaussed to reduce the vessels magnetic signature. In this case the torpedo will be at a -2 to hit the target. Invisibility superior will hide targets from this guidance. The vessel must be degaussed every sixth months for it to stay effective. Invisibility superior will hide targets from this guidance. These torpedoes are more expensive than either those using sonar guidance or wake homing guidance and are limited to heavy and super heavy torpedoes. This guidance systems also have a shorter range than wake homing and is limited to 1000 feet (304.5 meters).
Cost: 4,000 credits
SQUID stands for Super Quantum Induction Device and uses electrical fields to find its target. Decoys must produce a decoying electrical field to be effective against this type of torpedo. Since only Triax, New Navy, and a few other groups have the technology, no one else has decoys that are effective against the torpedoes. The torpedo are not effective against targets that do not have electrical systems such as sailboats and similar targets. The torpedoes can be used against large sea creatures but at a reduced range and at some penalties. Invisibility superior will hide targets from this guidance. These torpedoes are more expensive than any other kind of guidance and are limited to heavy and super heavy torpedoes. This guidance systems also have a shorter range than wake homing and is limited to 1000 feet (304.5 meters). Torpedoes have a detection range of 250 feet (76 meters) and a -2 penalty for targeting large Sea Monsters.
Cost: 10,000 credits
This weapon is a standard torpedo mounted on a missile frame. The missile travels in the air guided to the general position of the target. The weapon is fired at a distant target at which time the torpedo is dropped into the war. In most cases, the missile is launched from a missile launcher but can be fired from torpedo tubes (either surface or underwater). When launched underwater, the weapon is launched in a special canister. The missile activates when the canister reaches the surface of the water. When the missile reaches its target, it releases the torpedo. The torpedo is normally arrested by a parachute before it strikes the water. There are two basic sizes of Rocket Boosted Torpedoes, medium and long range. Smaller missiles cannot carry a large enough torpedo to be effective. The torpedo is one size smaller than the missile carrying it. A long range missile would carries a medium torpedo and a medium range missile carries a light torpedo.
This type of weapon is similar to the Pre-Rifts American ASROC, Australian
IKARA, and the Russian SSN-15 Starfish systems.
|Missile Type||Payload||Missile Range||Missile Speed||M.D.C.||Cost |
|Medium Range||Light Torpedo||40 miles (64.3 km)||1000 mph (1608 kph)||10||10,000|
|Long Range||Medium Torpedo||120 miles (193 km)||1600 mph (2571 kph)||20||40,000|
 Cost is for booster only.
To determine how far the Rocket Boosted Torpedo ends up from the target, roll a strike roll at -8. If exactly successful, the torpedo is dropped within 150 feet (45.5 meters) of the target's position. If successful and the strike roll exceeds what was needed, find the difference between the two and divide it into 150 feet (45.5 meters.) If unsuccessful, take the amount it missed by and multiply it by 30 feet (9.1 meters), and add it to the 150 feet (45.5 meters.)
Example 1: Gunner needs a 10 to drop right on the target, but he rolled a 4 (counting the -8 penalty). He needed a 15 to be successful, so the difference is (10-4)=6. That means the torpedo payload is dropped into the water (6 x 30 + 150)=330 feet (100.6 meters) away from the target.
Example 2: Determined to do better this time, the same gunner fires again. This time, he needed a 9 to hit the target, and ends up with a modified roll of 12. 12-9=3, so divide 150 by 3=50; this time, the torpedo got dropped in only 50 feet (15.2 meters) away from the target.
How to determine where torpedo splashes:
Roll on eight sided die.
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Optional Rule for Rocket Boosted Torpedoes by "GreenNova" (mailto:email@example.com).
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