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1st edition Mongoose Traveller.

Under the Reactions section of the Space Combat chapter on page 149 of the main rulebook, there's rules for shooting down missiles, and how it costs 1 reaction for each attempt.

Reactions are entirely based on the ship's initiative score, but point defence implies the existence of a manned turret with which to shoot down the missile. Similarly, firing sand requires a sandcaster and one reaction.

But it doesn't say anything about whether turrets are limited in how many times they can react in a turn.

Can one sufficiently motivated gunner use all of a ship's reactions to shoot down missiles and/or fire sand with their single turret?

Assume it's a double turret with a laser/sandcaster combo.

Primarily looking for RAW or errata for this in case I missed something important, since I'm otherwise planning on house-ruling this to avoid ship loadouts where the party's elite gunner can render a ship immune to huge numbers of missiles on their own.

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A given turret may only be used for a single "Firing Beam Weapons" action or "Point Defense" reaction per turn, as stated on p.147:

A gunner may fire any or all of the weapons in his turret or bay but each turret or bay may only fire once per round.

Note that each turret may only fire once per round, not each weapon. If there are two lasers in a turret, you cannot fire one laser as an action, then use the other in a second action or save it for a point defense reaction.

When a laser is used for point defense fire, it may attempt to shoot down an unlimited number of missiles as part of that single reaction, limited only by the gunner's skill and the number of missiles within point defense range, per p.149:

The gunner must make a Gunner (turrets) check against the missile. If successful, the missile is destroyed. A gunner may keep making Gunner checks against missiles until he misses an attack; each attack suffers a cumulative –1 penalty. Attacks may be directed against different incoming missiles.

It is not clear how point defense is intended to work for turrets with multiple lasers. Personally, I would allow the gunner to continue firing until each laser rolls a miss, rather than making him stop on the first miss by any laser. Otherwise, it would be extremely disadvantageous for a single gunner to use multiple lasers for point-defense fire, as the additional guns would provide more chances to miss, but give no additional benefit on a hit (since any hit on a missile is an automatic kill).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ To clarify on the "till each laser misses" clause, I assume you mean that the flow of such would go something like: - Gunner declares intent to fire - Laser 1 fires until it misses - Laser 2 fires until it misses - etc? \$\endgroup\$ – Quil Sep 15 '17 at 14:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Quill - I'd actually roll to hit with both lasers against each missile, even though only one needs to hit to kill it. Doing it the way you describe effectively assumes that laser 2 automatically hits if laser 1 does, which makes additional lasers a much bigger benefit than if you give each laser a chance to miss on every shot. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Sherohman Sep 15 '17 at 18:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ Ah, I get what you mean - Effectively you fire in salvoes: All X lasers in the turret fire at the first missile, if it's dead at the end of the salvo you get X shots at the second missile at -1, etc. I'd have to run the numbers but that's probably a more sensible way. \$\endgroup\$ – Quil Sep 18 '17 at 8:03
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From p. 149 of the Core Rulebook:

"A gunner may keep making Gunner checks against missiles until he misses an attack; each attack suffers a cumulative -1 penalty. Attacks may be directed against different incoming missiles."

However, from p. 147 under "Firing Beam Weapons" (emphasis added):

"A gunner may fire any or all of the weapons in his turret or bay but each turret or bay may only fire once per round."

So a turret could be used to shoot down as many missiles as the gunner can hit, but only against a single incoming missile salvo. A different turret would have to be used against subsequent missile attacks.

Using your double turret with a single laser and single sandcaster as an example, that turret could do one of the following things per round:
-fire its laser as part of an attack against an enemy ship
-fire its laser as part of an attack against an incoming missile/boarding party
-fire its sandcaster at an incoming beam attack/boarding party

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't think it says anywhere that individual weapons have a restriction on fire rate; only that turrets may fire once; given that the clause on p149 isn't "until he misses or runs out of lasers" it seems to imply that while the latter part of this answer is correct in terms of possible actions, there's no actual limit on the number of missiles one can shoot at as long as you keep hitting. \$\endgroup\$ – Quil Sep 15 '17 at 15:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hi and welcome to the site! Your two first posts are quite good, keep up the good work ^^ \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Sep 18 '17 at 5:22

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