Editor's note: The following is very interesting, but extremely unofficial.
Car Wars is a really great game, though there is a major problem with the current maneuvering rules. The safest way to turn 90 degrees is in a single tight bend (D6). This involves a 6-point drop in handling status and (if needed) a single control roll. Now, make the same turn in a series of six 15-degree turns, and you still have a 6-point drop in handling status, but you may have to make up to four control rolls.
In theory, the gradual bends may be safer because you can straddle two turns, recovering in between. In reality, however, a turn's difficulty is determined by the speed and the radius of the turn, not what time it is.
Also, there are some specialized maneuvers that vehicles can make that are not available in the Car Wars rules. With these problems in mind, I have developed and playtested some optional rules for Deluxe Car Wars, although they can be used with the original Car Wars as well.
These rules are designed to replace the current maneuvering system in Car Wars in much the same way that the advanced collision and optional fire rules have almost totally replaced the basic collision and fire rules. In general, the rules regarding losing control, handling class recovery, and Crash Table results are unchanged. These rules involve a greater variety of bends and new special maneuvers, as well as rules covering vehicle base HC, spoilers and airdams.
These remain unchanged from the current rules
These maneuvers have been eliminated and replaced by bends.
In this system, there are six bends, all of which can be found on a standard turning key (see diagram). The difficulties of each maneuver are as follows:
15 degrees - D0
30 degrees - D1
45 degrees - D2
60 degrees - D3
75 degrees - D4
90 degrees - D6
With this system, the difficulty in making a 90 degree (or any other) turn is determined by how many maneuvers it takes to make - that is, how sever the turn is. For example, using a 90-degree turn as our base -
6 maneuvers - D0 total hazard
5 maneuvers - D1 total hazard
4 maneuvers - D2 total hazard
3 maneuvers - D3 total hazard
2 maneuvers - D4 total hazard
1 maneuvers - D6 total hazard
As you can see, the tighter the corner, the more dangerous the maneuver becomes. Although the 15-degree Bend is a D0 maneuver and does not affect the vehicle's handling status, a control roll must still be made if your current handling status indicates one is needed.
This maneuver is pretty much as described in the current rules, but it now may be performed at speeds ranging from 20 - 40 mph. Also you may accelerate or decelerate in the same turn that you do a bootlegger. A bootlegger reduces a vehicle's speed by at least 20 mph, or more if desired. At the end of a bootlegger, a car is traveling at any speed from 0 to 20 mph in reverse - driver's choice. Tires still take damage, but only one point per full 20 mph of deceleration. Bootleggers may also be attempted in reverse, at the same difficulty.
This maneuver allows a driver to "spin out" the back of his car in a fishtail. This is a hazard, and can hurt the rear tires of the car, and can slow you down.
A deliberate fishtail must be done in conjunction with another maneuver, which may not be a drift or a skid - it must be a bend, a bootlegger, or braking. The fishtail is added to the end of the maneuver. If a fishtail is part of a bend, you must fishtail in the direction of the rotation of the bend. If the fishtail is part of a bootlegger, T-stop, or braking, it can be in either direction. The possible fishtails are as follows:
Light Fishtail - 15 degrees, +D1 hazard, -1 on weapons fire, no speed loss, no tire damage.
Heavy Fishtail - 30 degrees, +D2 hazard, -3 on weapons fire, speed drops 5 mph, 1 point of damage to all rear tires.
Severe Fishtail - 45 degrees, +D4 hazard, -6 on weapons fire, speed drops 10 mph, 2 points damage to all rear tires.
Speed changes are applied immediately. A deliberate fishtail cannot rotate a car more than the maneuver the fishtail is a part of; for example, if a 30-degree bend was made, a Light or Heavy fishtail could be tacked onto the back, but not a Sever one. If the fishtail is part of a braking maneuver, the fishtail hazard cannot be greater than the braking hazard; for example, if a 20-mph deceleration was performed (a D3 hazard), the a Light or Heavy fishtail could follow it, but not a Severe one.
This maneuver allows a driver to "slide" his car in a skid. This is a hazard, can harm the car's tires, and slow you down. It's main benefit is move in a direction other than the one your car is facing or to slow down in mid-turn.
The intention to do perform a deliberate skid must be announced at the end of the vehicle's last movement phase before the maneuver. The skid is executed in exactly the same manner as the Crash Table result. No other maneuver may be made in the phase that a deliberate skid is executed. The possible skids are as follows:
¼" skid - D1 maneuver, -1 on weapons fire, no speed loss, no tire damage.
½" skid - D2 maneuver, -3 on weapons fire, 5 mph speed loss, 1 point of damage to all tires.
1" skid - D4 maneuver, -6 on weapons fire, 10 mph speed loss, 2 points of damage to all tires.
Speed loss is applied immediately.
This is an extreme maneuver used for emergency deceleration. It consists of rotating your car 90 degrees and skidding to a stop. To do a T-Stop, rotate the vehicle 90 degrees to either side and move forward one inch - the exact same move as in beginning a roll. The vehicle will decelerate 20 mph per inch of movement. Each tire will take one point of damage for every full 20 mph of speed lost. The hazard for the maneuver is D1 for every 10 mph of deceleration - this modifier is in addition to the regular speed modified on the Control Table.
Tire damage is not considered a hazard during a T-Stop, but losing a tire, incoming weapons fire, and other regular hazards still apply. Once a vehicle goes into a T-Stop, it may not fire any weapons (Except those that were set on automatic fire before the maneuver began) until the vehicle stops. Motorcycles cannot perform this maneuver.
Anti-lock brakes do not protect from tire damage caused by maneuvers or loss of control
HC 3 is no longer the upper limit on non-racing vehicles. For example, a luxury with Heavy Suspension, and Active Suspension, and PR Radials would have a HC of 5.
Any maneuver or less of control that affects shooting possibility or accuracy will affect it for exactly five phases after the maneuver or Crash Table result is completed.
If only two racing slicks are placed on a vehicle (both on the front or back, not left or right), the HC goes up by 1. Wheelguards fitted to racing tires costs twice as much and weigh 1½ times as much as normal.
No vehicle can use accessories to boost its HC more than twice the level determined by the base suspension. For example, a luxury with light suspension (HC 1) cannot raise its HC to more than 2 with accessories, while the same car with heavy suspension (HC 3) could be boosted to HC 6 with various gadgets.
New Item to add to suspension list: Heavy Airfoil Suspension - 8 times body cost, base HC 4. When this suspension is put on a car, spoilers and airdams can be added at no additional cost, but at the regular weight.
A vehicle can use its base HC as a negative modifier when rolling on a crash table. At less than 60 mph, use half the base HC (rounded down) as a negative modifier; at 60 mph or more, use the full HC, with a +1 bonus at 90 mph, and another +1 at 120 mph. The adjusted modifier can never be less than 0. This is to counteract the "instant death" modifiers at very high speeds. For example, a vehicle with HC 3 is traveling 50 mph when it loses control. The speed modifier on the Crash Table is 1, but the car gets a -1 modifier for its HC of 3, so the adjusted modifier is 0. The same car loses control at 80 mph. The speed modifier is 2, but the car gets a -3 modifier for its HC of 3, so the adjusted modifier is, again, 0. Now, the vehicle loses control at 190 mph. The speed modifier is 8, but the car gets a -5 modifier for its HC of 3, with bonuses for going over 120 mph - the adjusted modifier is 3.