Background: These were to be part of the Pacifica Sourcebook -- the gliders appearing in a scenario where the authorial voice of the s-b gets a little closer to the action than he'd liked; the rocket-fighters to fill the gap left by the ban on jets. The glider rules necessitated altitude rules. These were written before the SMOCS considered the notion of "inverting" the BTN values, as discussed elsewhere, hence the need for the cumbersome "11 - BTN".
Altitude is measured in bands, numbered from 0 (lowest) to 9 (highest). A 10-sided-die with the appropriate number facing up placed next to the plane or obstacle can be used to indicate current altitude.
Climbing: A plane can climb no faster than ([current speed] + [current MA]). For each level ascended above MA, deduct 1 from current speed. Ex.: A _Defender_ plots speed 3 (its maximum) this turn; it can ascend 1, 2, 3, or 4 levels, to a maximum altitude of 9. If it ascends 1 level, it may plot any speed-3 move; if it ascends 2 levels, it may plot any speed-2 move; if it ascends 3 levels, it may plot any speed-1 move; if it ascends 4 levels, it may plot any speed-0 move (with attendant effects).
Descending: A plane may descend any number of levels; however, each level descended in excess of its MG rating adds 1G to the G-cost of the move. Each level descended adds 1 to the plane's speed that turn; the plane's maximum deceleration may be used to counter the speed increase. Ex.: The _Defender_ has a MG of 4; it may descend 4 levels straight ahead without Pushing Gs, or 3 levels on a 1G move without Pushing Gs, etc. However, each level descended also increases the plane's speed; so if it is traveling Speed 3, it can only descend 2 levels before reaching the maximum-allowed speed of 5; but the player may use the plane's inherent deceleration of 2 to cancel out 2 speed levels. [Ed. Note: Optionally, the "overspeed" rule under Rocket Fighter Movement may be employed.]
Each level ascended/descended adds 1G to the maneuver plotted. To indicate how many levels are ascended/descended, write the number of levels ascended/descended. Make a note in brackets after the plot of the effect on the unit's speed. Ex.: A 3R3C+2 indicates a 3R3C with a 2-level gain in altitude, and indicates the plane is "speed 1"; a 3R3C-2 indicates a 3R3C with a 2-level loss of altitude, and is "speed 5".
Random Movement: For each hex of random movement, lose 1 altitude level, but do not add to effective speed. (The tumbling of the unit bleeds off speed.)
Movement Example: The _Defender_ pilot is moving at speed 3, and altitude 4, when he finds enemy units behind and 1 level above him. He decides to climb and whip around. He is at Speed 3, with MA 1; he can ascend no more than [3 + 1 =] 4 levels, to a maximum of 8; as this is below the maximum ceiling of 9, he has no restrictions there. He decides to plot a 2R0D+2, to face the foe and put them below him. The 2R0D move is 5G; the 2-level climb adds 2G, for a total of 7G, 3 more than the _Defender_'s MG4, so he must roll for Pushing Gs. (We will assume he succeeds.)
On the next turn, the foes have scattered; the _Defender_ player takes after one of them. He wishes to plot a 3L3F-4, accelerating 1 from his speed of 2. The 3L3F is 1G; however, the dive is 4G, and moreover adds 4 to his effective speed, placing him at Speed 7 for the next turn, which exceeds the maximum-allowed speed of 5 He instead plots a 2SF-4 -- this is a 0G move, plus 4G for the dive; and he may use his plane's deceleration of 2 to cancel out 2 of the levels of speed gained by the dive, placing him at Speed 5 (which is still 2 more than his plane's MS3). In the move-plot box, he writes 2SF-4 This turn, he must roll for Pushes twice -- once for exceeding his maximum speed by 2, once for performing two 3+G moves in succession. He could have risked a third Push roll, this time for stalling the plane so he could lose more of the speed gain from the dive. (Again, we will assume he succeeds at both rolls.)
Combat Effect: Each difference in altitude between firer and target equals one hex of range. Ex: A target three hexes away, and two altitude levels away, is at an effective range of 5. Units in the same hex but at different altitudes may fire at each other (the pilot kicks the nose up or down as needed).
Collisions/Rams: In order to collide or ram, both units must be at the same altitude, as well as being in the same hex.
Zeppelins: Despite their size, zeps only occupy one altitude level.
Obstructions: A normal obstruction occupies all altitude levels from 0 up to its indicated "altitude". Some unusual obstructions may have gaps at certain altitudes (ex.: A canyon may occupy levels 0, 1, 3, and 4; level 2 is a gap eroded by wind over time); these can be indicated as the players see fit.
Construction: Gliders may be fixed-wing, or gyros*. MA is always 0; do not allocate mass for this stat. MS cost and mass are both 0.1x normal (round normally).Towplanes must be equipped with a Towplane Hook (per BTN of glider permitted to be towed: $750; 75 lbs.). Due to practical limitations, Towplanes may not tow more than one Glider at a time.
A Towplane towing a Glider may not perform a maneuver of greater than 1G; if it does, the tow is broken.
If either plane of the pair must Push Gs, the tow automatically breaks.
Towplane and Glider occupy a single hex, and face the same direction at all times. Collision is not possible.
When released, Glider acts as an airplane with no functioning engine. It must land when Speed = 0; it may land when Speed = 1.
Glider Release occurs in Step One of the turn; releasing the Glider does not preclude either pilot performing other tasks.
Glider begins plotting its own moves immediately upon release.
Once separated, the Towplane and the Glider may maneuver freely (within normal limits).
While towing, MS of the pair is reduced to [(MS of towplane) - ((11 - Towplane BTN) + (11 - Glider BTN))/(11 - Towplane BTN), round down]. If result is 0 or less, Towplane may not tow Glider.
While connected, Glider may not fire out hex-facing A; Towplane may not fire out hex-facing D.
If incoming fire arrives through hex-facing A, Towplane must be targeted; if arriving through hex-facing D, Glider must be targeted.
(*: Since gyro rotors are unpowered, there is no problem with torque.)
Construction: Fixed-wing only; no gyros. Uses Rear-Engine Fighter template.
Engine -- per (11 - BTN) of unit: Cost: $1,000; mass 100 lbs.
Fuel -- per point: $100; 50 lbs. (Ex.: 40 pts. fuel: $4,000; 2,000 lbs.)
MS: 0.1x normal cost and mass.
MA: not allocated; all rocket-powered units have MA3, with Poor Throttle SA.
May not use engine-related SA, or Extra Fuel Tanks.
Units may be towed into combat by Towplanes, as per Glider rules.
Movement: During plotting phase, the unit may accelerate (as "MA" above), or decelerate a minimum of 1; it cannot maintain speed.
Each acceleration uses (11 - BTN) fuel points.
If unit plots a speed of 6 or more, the move must be [n]SA. If unit is at Speed 6+, and is forced to perform any maneuver besides [n]SA, unit is automatically destroyed (bailout BTN 20). Note this will force a MS5 design to Push Top Speed.
Fuel Tanks: The unit must designate the wing, and fuselage, tanks as either "solid-fuel" or "liquid-fuel" tanks; all tanks of a given type must hold the same fuel type (ex.: if "wing tanks are solid-fuel", then all "wing tank" damage boxes are considered to have solid fuel in them, and all "fuselage tank" boxes are then liquid-fuel tanks).
When solid fuel is hit, treat as a non-fuel-tank box (MG has no add'l effect, etc.).
When liquid fuel is hit by any damage, unit is destroyed (bailout BTN 20).
Flare: BTN 8 ($3,750); MS5 ($235; 120 lbs.); MG5 ($2,550; 1,200 lbs.). Engine: ($3,000; 300 lbs.); 18 pts. fuel ($1,800; 900 lbs.). Armor: 6 pts. [ea. facing; 1] ($150; 180 lbs.). 2x 0.30-cal. [3, 4] ($360; 300 lbs.); 3x Hardpoint ($150). G-Efficient Cockpit ($250); Fire-Linked Weapons [3, 4] ($36). $12,209.
Skybolt: BTN 1 ($250); MS3 ($141; 330 lbs.); MG3 ($1,530; 3,900 lbs.). Engine: ($10,000; 1,000 lbs.); 60 pts. fuel ($6,000; 3,000 lbs.). Armor: 29 pts. [F, FL, FR, AL, AR: 5: A: 4] ($725; 870 lbs.). 1x 0.60-cal.  ($590; 600 lbs.); 2x 0.30-cal. [6, 7] ($360; 300 lbs.); 10x Hardpoint ($500). $20,096.