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B-17: Queen of the Skies» Forums » Rules

Subject: Random engine failure…or repair? rss

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Alex Mauer
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The random event table (and the rulebook) state that on a roll of 2, you have suffered an engine failure.

The rulebook further states that if this is random event is rolled again, the previously failed engine restarts.

This brings up a few questions for me:

1. Does this "previously failed engine restarts" result only apply to engines that failed randomly? What if it was shut down for some other reason (i.e. an "engine out" or "oil tank leakage" result on table BL-1 #9)?

2. Do you need to roll the specific engine for a restart, or does it cancel *any* (random) failure?

For example, say that engine #1 has randomly failed, and engine #3 has failed due to an oil leak. I roll the "random engine failure" result again. Do I auto-repair the failed #1 engine? (due to this being the "previously [randomly] failed engine"?) Or do I have to roll to determine which engine is affected by the engine failure roll?

I’m assuming I have to roll to determine the affected engine, since I guess it’s possible that all four engines fail randomly. On the other hand, it’s probably more likely that an engine that randomly failed will randomly start working again, than that an engine which has taken a hit will randomly start working again.

But…say I roll a 5 which means that the random failure affected engine #3. Is it back online, despite being shutdown due to the oil leak (after all, it’s a “previously failed engine”, right)? Or has it merely failed in two different ways?

My own interpretation:
1. Random engine "failure-repair" rolls apply to an engine that failed for any reason. Logic: If an apparently-good engine fails at random, why can’t an apparently-failed engine continue operation at random?
2. You need to roll the specific engine though. Logic: unlikely though it may be, it should be possible to lose all four engines through random events, not just have one engine cutting in and out.
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craig grinnell
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The random failed engine is the one that restarts.
Basically, it "stalled" for whatever reason and was able to be restarted whereas a combat damaged engine can't be repaired in flight.

If it's shut down as the result of damage, such as the aforementioned oil leak, it can't be restarted or it'll overheat and catch fire.
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Jim P
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I agree with Craig. The damage engine cannot be restarted. As for the restart of the previously random engine failure, I would say the rules mean to restart the previous randomly stopped engine automatically. Yet a house rule that one must re-roll that engine to restart it or else the newly rolled engine fails would be interesting. If you roll up a "battle damage engine" then there is no event.

Jim P cool
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Alex Mauer
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Thanks for the advice, guys.
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Alex Mauer
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OK, I’m back again. I’ve read some of the variants, and found this comment in The General, Vol. 26 no. 5 (page 47):

Quote:
On to another concern-namely, a wings roll of "9" that results in an engine out. While it is a fact that an engine in a B-17 could be knocked out of action due to damage or other causes, the rules do not allow for the possibility that the engine could be restarted (as they often were). Therefore, in any zone after an engine has gone out due to reasons other than a runaway or oil tank fire, the player may roll to restart that engine.


(I assume “oil tank fire” actually refers to “oil tank leak”, unless there’s some variation for a fire specifically on the oil tank)

Obviously this is a rules variant and not official, but it seems possible that the rules actually do allow for this situation (contrary to the above quote) — if you take the random event note about “the previously-failed engine” to apply to that. What do you guys think?
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Jim P
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I played with a house rule for this issue after your first post, here is what I came up with:

Multiple Engine Failure house rule, which covers multiple #2 Engine Random Events and Engine Restart.

Random Event #2 Engine Stops – Revision

If a second roll on the Random Events table produces a #2 Engine Failure apply the following die roll.

Engine Incident:
Process: roll on the Random Event for this occurrence to see which engine has failed. If you roll a functioning engine then that engine has failed and is now out.

If you have rolled an engine that is out due to enemy damage then there is no engine event. Continue with the game.

If an engine that was knocked out by a previous Random Event then the engine restarts and is now fully operational.

Notes:
* If an engine fails due to a Random Event then subsequently receives combat damage that would cause it to also fail then this engine cannot be restarted.

**Any engine that fails due to non-combat related damage may be restarted using the following table.

Engine Restart:
Roll 1D6 ^
1 = Engine restarts.
2-5 = Remains out, try again next turn.
6 = Engine seizes and is out for the remainder of the mission. On a second 1D6 roll of 6 this engine catches fire. (Attempts may be made to extinguish the fire per Bl-1)

^ If either your Engineer or Command Pilot have 10+ missions then there is a -1 modifier to this roll. If both of these crewmen have 10+ missions then the modifier is -2.

...as you can see the last bit came from this article you pointed out.
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Frank
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jasta6 wrote:
Engine Restart:
Roll 1D6 ^
1 = Engine restarts.
2-5 = Remains out, try again next turn.
6 = Engine seizes and is out for the remainder of the mission. On a second 1D6 roll this engine catches fire. (Attempts may be made to extinguish the fire per Bl-1)

Jim, I don't understand the underlined sentence. Doesn't it miss some result on the 1D6 roll to catch fire?
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Jim P
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Thanks for pointing that out Frank. I missed that one. I have fixed it to read "On a second 1D6 roll of 6 this engine catches fire. (Attempts..."
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