How much for that tactical nuke in the window?

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 29, 2017 - 2:28pm
Tactical nuke have been an old school staple in science fiction. There was a movie about an expidition? to Mars that involved defeating a Jaws like creature with a head like Godzilla, Silent Running had convient nuclear charges on a Commercial freighter, the Predator seemed to use the smallest possible tac nuke as a weapon of last resort.

So my question is how much to buy a pocket nuke in setting?
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!
Comments:

Sargonarhes's picture
Sargonarhes
April 29, 2017 - 5:53pm
Maybe about a quarter the cost of a small atomic engine? Because depending on how small we're talking here it's still likely to be restricted or at least controlled. And then there are other sci-fi that comes up with devices called a nuclear dampener or at least in Gundam Seed they called it an N-Jammer which restrict neutrons prohibiting a nuclear reaction.
Which for sci-fi sounds reasonable, because if just any one could get a nuke. The last thing any one wants is nuclear terrorism.
In every age, in every place, the deeds of men remain the same.

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 29, 2017 - 8:12pm
The price of the Torp in KHs is 20,000 credits. isnt it supposed to be nuclear tipped?
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

ChrisDonovan's picture
ChrisDonovan
April 30, 2017 - 8:17am
^Nuke tipped and fueled, IIRC.

jedion357's picture
jedion357
April 30, 2017 - 4:04pm
Sci fi (ish) mnovies with nuclear bombs or charges in civilian hands

1. Beneath the Planet of the Apes- bomb was a planet killer and did take out Earth in an alternate reality

2. Goldfinger- bad guy plans to detonate nuke in Fort Knox, but thank God the British Secret Service had and asset around to save America since our own agents weren't up to snuff.

3. Lost, the TV series plane crash survivors travel back in time to detonate a nuke to create an alternate reality where their plane never crashed.

4. Armegeddon: NASA recruits oil rig workers to fly to an asteroid and nuke it! Oh yeah, that is always a great idea letting red necks play with nukes. What could go wrong?

5. Superman IV; The Quest For Peace. Lex Luthor combines superman's DNA with a nuke to create Nuclear Man a super villian to match Superman.

6. Every Predator movie- If that self destruct device worn by the Predators is not a low yield tac nuke it certainly is in the same category as one.

7. Star Trek (TOS) episode: "For the World is Hollow and I have Touched the Sky" featured an hollowed out iron asteroid with an orion drive- nuked detonated for propulsion

8. Silent Running- nuclear charges which were very small were used to destroy the jettisoned domes

9. Cant find the name of the 1950/60s Mars Mission movie I saw where the astronauts battled a martian creature with a nuclear bazooka

On that note of a nuclear bazooka we have the Davey Crocket weapon- the smallest nuke every produce for the US military. One man could fire this weapon from a bazooka like launcher on a tripod.
2,100 warhead produced for half billion thats $238,095.

So nukes turn up in sci fi and not always under military/government lock and key. And in the case of movies where they are stocked equipment on the space ship means they cant be too expensive.



I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

iggy's picture
iggy
April 30, 2017 - 8:27pm
You forgot Dark Star and the intelligent Thermostellar bombs (a very high yield nuke).  It takes a genious to make a bomb that is is smart enough to decide on its own to blow up.
-iggy

KRingway's picture
KRingway
May 1, 2017 - 3:26am
jedion357 wrote:

So nukes turn up in sci fi and not always under military/government lock and key. And in the case of movies where they are stocked equipment on the space ship means they cant be too expensive.


But those examples are mostly working around an Earth-based premise and rationale as to who owns and operates them. Perhaps the UPF has different rules for them. That said, the ability to buy torpedoes shows that perhaps there is some wiggle room - it depends on how many hoops one has to jump through to procure nuclear-capable systems. Judging by things in KH, one can buy nuclear material in various forms as long as one has the necessary funds.

jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 1, 2017 - 5:05am
True enough KRingway, and frontier will have 4 points of view in nukes reflective of the four primary species. 

One thing that stands out is the postscription of orbital bombardment in KH- that could be aimed at both kinetic strikes and nukes as both do similar damage ignoring the fallout of the nuke. 

And miss handling nuclear material is probably a crime Star Law handles or handles under certain jurisdictional situations. 
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 1, 2017 - 5:10am
iggy wrote:
You forgot Dark Star and the intelligent Thermostellar bombs (a very high yield nuke).  It takes a genious to make a bomb that is is smart enough to decide on its own to blow up.

Dope slap to head, I saw that one in theaters and again years latter on TV. Yeah those bombs might qualify as level 6 robot in SF.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

TerlObar's picture
TerlObar
May 1, 2017 - 5:46am
And don't forget that every atomic fuel pellet is raw nuclear material.  You can pick it up at any space port.  That plus a little TD-19 and you've got yourself a "dirty" bomb if not a full up nuclear one.  There's more than enough fissile material in a fuel pellet that with a little bit of research and engineering you could build a basic atomic weapon.
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jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 1, 2017 - 6:04am
So atomics are going to be part of the setting, that just can't be helped. So the question remains: what price?

And it began the question of how many times were they used? In the modern Frontier?

Were they used during Laco's War? Could that account got the high casualty numbers?

How many mercenary and terrorist outfits in setting have the bonb?
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 1, 2017 - 6:09am
What tonnage would we ascribe to a KHs torp?

I propose that the laws of the Frontier postscription mega ton level bombs but allow kiloton as what's used in ship to ship munitions. Kiloton level nukes are viewed as tactical nukes vs strategic level nukes which go into megatons . 

Let's say the KHs torp is 5 kiloton at 20,000 Cr that gives us a baseline. 15,000 for the nuke?
Then a 1kiloton would be what 7,000? And a 10 kiloton 23,000?

From there we can extrapolate the Predator vambrace nuke as .5 kiloton suicide device and give it artifact status but certainly something that could turn up for sale in the Minzii Marketplace on Faire.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Shadow Shack's picture
Shadow Shack
May 1, 2017 - 6:56am
"Maybe tactical nukes can be easily obtained at any convenience store in the 1980's, but here in good ol' 1955 they're a little hard to come by future boy!"
No, I'm not overly fond of Zeb's Guide. Nor do I have any qualms in stating why. Tongue out

My SF website

jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 1, 2017 - 7:18am
Shadow Shack wrote:
"Maybe tactical nukes can be easily obtained at any convenience store in the 1980's, but here in good ol' 1955 they're a little hard to come by future boy!"

Lol
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

KRingway's picture
KRingway
May 1, 2017 - 8:00am
Given that Earth-based stockpiles are being reduced as the reliability of the weapons (and their destructive power per unit) are improving, I'd say that the versions that exist in SF are quite a lot more advanced. This might also suggest that they're cheaper, given that torps and pellets aren't a rarity. That said, their price might be deliberately ramped up in order to hinder mass proliferation. Perhaps agreements are also in place prohibiting their general military use (as is the case on Earth with chemical and biological weapons), but this doesn't exclude them from being kept solely in military stockpiles as a counter to possible Sathar incursions.

Shadow Shack's picture
Shadow Shack
May 1, 2017 - 7:07pm
KRingway wrote:
Perhaps agreements are also in place prohibiting their general military use

I have this exact "ruling" in my campaign. Consequently I have extended it towards assault rockets, even though they're not nukes, but it isn't as strictly enforced either. 

Simply put, by default I force civilian craft to be armed with energy weapons --- which is actually a benefit considering the limited weaponry available for civilian ships (re: the up-gun rules that restrict performance and cargo capacity once a certain amount of weaponry is reached) and the choice of utilizing "free energy" instead of a limited supply of shots.
No, I'm not overly fond of Zeb's Guide. Nor do I have any qualms in stating why. Tongue out

My SF website

rattraveller's picture
rattraveller
May 1, 2017 - 7:21pm
Just to throw this out there. Nuclear material is fairly common in the SF universe but this does not mean nuclear weapons are that common or easy to obtain. While not an expert on them the fissionable material used in weapons is not the same as that used in reactors and one would surmise as that used in atomic engines. There is also the matter of the the detonators. These are pretty complicated devices which you can't just go down to your local electronic tech kit resupply store and get the parts for.

Would look for any atomic weapons to be either black market (Doc Brown we need you) or a big project for the PCs to go and complete.
Sounds like a great job but where did you say we had to go?

ExileInParadise's picture
ExileInParadise
May 7, 2017 - 3:54pm
Not mention I am sure the UPF has tons of radiation detectors around and checks how 'enriched' the ship fuel is as a matter of routine.

Shadow Shack's picture
Shadow Shack
May 7, 2017 - 6:51pm
ExileInParadise wrote:
Not mention I am sure the UPF has tons of radiation detectors around and checks how 'enriched' the ship fuel is as a matter of routine.

Not just the UPF...the Toxy-Rad Gauge is readly available in the equipment section for any PC or NPC. Wink
No, I'm not overly fond of Zeb's Guide. Nor do I have any qualms in stating why. Tongue out

My SF website

jedion357's picture
jedion357
May 8, 2017 - 9:20am
The toxyrad guage is the equivalent of idiot lights on your dash- handy to both game master's and player characters. Can't remember if one of the CAS scanners from Zebs scanned for radiation making it a default Geiger counter. I suppose the AD environmental scanner in the environmental tool kit works as well.
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Tchklinxa's picture
Tchklinxa
May 21, 2017 - 5:12pm
Well putting my mind on the way back button when I wanted to grow up and be a Nuclear Engineer...(before I found out current laws then would require my sterilization, only women of course, they changed the laws I think a bit ago, but totally typical only women getting fixed no males getting fixed back then) things I remember Nuclear Power generates spent rods (or in SF spent fuel pellets) that is then processed using a specific process to create nuclear weaopn grade materials... I do believe I read a while back on them trying to find better uses for those spent rods but not sure where they are on that tech as I am not following it that closely, but it was for a secondary energy use if I remeber correctly... now the processing of these rods is expensive, creates some really nasty liquid waiste and when equipment wears out well it is deadly dangerous parts... anyway assuming SF science is lets just say better the plants for this stuff could be off world for instance, they could have better methods of purification, recycling, multiple secondary uses... so spent fuel pellets could have a market... also planets it seems would be concerned about atomic disaster to some degree... so maybe we should consider planetary defenses past just the ship model, along with serrious rules on what sort of ships can go were... no one needs a highly dangerous fueled ship crashing into their world... oh bad for everyone. I would guess the weapons grade matterials are more expenssive than most could pay, are only allowed to governments, but aliens might be different, warrior races like the Sathar are the government... so they would have them for sure. Also there would be a black market for materials in various stages. 
 "Never fire a laser at a mirror."