Electronic Warfare for Starfinder
E-War is a real world fact. In a game based in some far flung future with spaceships and faster than light travel it should probably be as ubiquitous as aliens, droids and laser pistols.
Starfinder rules provide some rudimentary E-War through crew actions and such. I’m not really satisfied with their generality though so I’m leveraging some EVE Online mechanics to flesh out the science and clarify the fiction with both equipment and crew actions.
E-War, for this exercise, is broken into the following categories.
Electronic Counter Measures – Reactive Module/Action – This is a module that emits sensor noise in an attempt to break existing target locks. This module operates in two modes: Burst and Targeted. Burst mode is less powerful but could break multiple target locks while targeted jamming requires a target lock on the aggressor but operates with greater effectiveness.
Mechanics-wise I would say an opposed Computer (defender) vs Targeting (attacker) check to determine if the lock is maintained. This would happen once the attacker has managed to hit the target’s AC or TL value.
Weapon Disruption – Proactive Module/Action – Turret Tracking & Missile Guidance Disruption. This is a module that will enhance the defensive values of a ship. Each module is specific to disrupting Direct Fire turrets or Tracking weapons like missiles or torpedoes.
Upon activation the module effectively increases the AC or TL value as appropriate based on the class/level of the module.
Sensor Dampening – Proactive Module/Action – Reduces range and resolution of a targeted ship’s on-board scanners. This is an ideal solution to keep from getting locked onto by a opposing targeting system.
Activation of this module imposes a penalty for anyone attempting to use sensors to scan or target the host ship.
Target Painting – Makes the target easier to lock by increasing it’s sensor signature. This is a fairly lightweight module that requires a target lock before activation. Once activated the AC and TL values of the affected ship decrease making attacks easier.
As is the case in all complex systems there are details and bugs to be worked out. But this could make space encounters a bit more dynamic and require more of positions that see little use during a conflict.