Steve Jackson Games Car Wars

ERRATA – Car Wars Compendium (First Edition) – Updated October 20, 1997

Copyright © by Steve Jackson Games Incorporated.

There is also an update covering the changes from the first edition to the second edition.

P. 1. David Ladyman should be listed in the credits under "Game Development," David N. Searle should be listed under "Additional Material," and Craig Sheeley should be listed under "Playtesters."

P. 2. The example vehicle diagram should have three hits of damage done to the right front tire.

P. 4. Under Control Table, delete the line that says, "A handling class of 4 or better is always safe."

P. 6. In Figure 5, the N, O, and P designators were left out. N is the lowest car in the diagram, O is the one in the middle, and P is the one at the top.

P. 9. A clarification: When skidding at high speed through multiple-inch moves, the movement part of the skid result is applied to every inch of that phase's movement. Tire damage and deceleration effects are only applied once at the beginning of the skid.

P. 11. The page reference under Conforming Movement should be to p. 35, not p. 36.

P. 24. Delete the entire paragraph at the end of the second column that starts, "If a helicopter exceeds 200 mph . . . "

P. 27. The fourth paragraph should read, "If a driver performed a maneuver or hazard during a particular phase, he may not fire weapons during that phase. In other words, if a driver intends to fire a weapon, he must move forward without maneuvering during that phase."

P. 28-29. Where text descriptions conflict with the table, use the text description.

P. 30. Under Movement in the Targeting Modifiers Table, add:

Firer is in Target's:Target is in Firer's:
Front arcBack arcSide arc
Front arc½ Target Speed½ (T Speed - F Speed)½ Target Speed
Back arc½ (T Speed - F Speed)½ Target Speed½ Target Speed
Side arcTarget SpeedTarget SpeedT Speed - F Speed*

* If cars are moving towards each other, the modifier is the target speed. If a vehicle is in more than one arc, rule in the defender's favor.

P. 31. Under burst effect, the second paragraph which talks about grenades states, "A grenade does full damage to any pedestrian within its 2" burst radius and half damage to vehicle components in the same radius." This sentence should now read "A grenade does full damage to any pedestrian within its 2" burst radius and half damage to vehicle components within a ½" burst radius" to reflect the change to grenades, which can be found in the notes section after the Hand Weapon List in chapter 4.

P. 31. A rules addition under Burst Effect. When firing burst effect weapons at a particular square on the ground (to catch a pedestrian or exposed cyclist in the burst effect), make a normal to-hit roll, adding in the target's speed modifier (if any). Use the grenade scatter rules (see p. 35) to determine the exact point of impact.

P. 34. Dropped solid weapons may be stacked for cumulative effect. That means that multiple mine counters or spike counters may be dropped on a spot. Any vehicle crossing the counters or the surrounding ¼ inch must roll for each counter and suffer damage from every counter that detonates. The same is not true of dropped liquid or dropped gas weapons. Multiple gas or liquid counters of the same type, in the same area, do not have cumulative effect. Two flame clouds at the same spot will have the same effect as one; two flaming oil counters in the same spot will act as one. However, a vehicle hitting an area with a flame cloud on top of a flaming oil will suffer the effect of both weapons.

P. 34. The reference to Grenade rules under Paint and Smoke should be p. 48.

P. 44. Under Combat, add, "Reloading a hand weapon is a firing action."

P. 45. Under Spikes, Oil and Mines, a crawling pedestrian moves on phases 2 and 4.

P. 46. The phase references in the first paragraph were not updated to match the new Movement Chart. Replace those references with "in Phases 3 and 5" and "in Phases 1, 3, and 5" respectively.

P. 47. Under Tripod Weapons, add: A tripod weapon cannot be used by passengers in a vehicle, except from a pickup bed or other large cargo area. Tripod weapons take up two spaces as cargo.

P. 49. Flash grenades do not blind opponents in the daytime, or in a well-lit arena. Change the description to read, "Any person within 2" of a flash grenade when it detonates is blinded for 1 second at night. Effects are doubled if the victim is wearing LI goggles. Naturally, if a character cannot trace line-of-sight to the grenade, he is immune to its effects. For this purpose Smoke will block line-of-sight." This is to bring the grenade more into line with the Searchlight and to close an obvious loophole tactic in the arena.

P. 50. Several items were left off the Alternate Encumbrance lists. Add:

P. 54. Under Turbocharger, the VP Turbo costs $2,000 + $1/added power factor, and adds 25% to the engine's power factors. A car may only mount one turbocharger system.

Pp. 59 and 74. Cycle Windshells and Hovercraft Vertical Stabilizers should be changed to reflect the changes to spoilers and airdams. Since these vehicles may mount only one of the items mentioned, they gain the +1 to handling class, but may not gain the D1 from maneuvers.

P. 59. Under Reversed Trikes, a normal trike can use a spoiler; a reversed trike can use both a spoiler and airdam.

P. 68. Under Boat Power Factors, the "see below" reference should refer to p. 70.

P. 73. The Hovercraft Power Factors Table is missing a line. Add: At least 1, but less than 2; 10 mph/turn acceleration, top speed 180.

P. 77. The Recoilless Rifle carries 10 shots ($35 and 5 lbs. each). The Spike Gun's loaded magazine costs $450.

P. 78. ATGs – ATGs may be mounted on oversized vehicles without restrictions. Non-oversized vehicles may mount ATGs to the side, however, the vehicle will suffer a D1 hazard for each ATG fired in a phase if the weapon is side-mounted. Trikes mounting an ATG to the front or rear will suffer a D1 hazard for each ATG fired, and a D2 hazard for each side-mounted ATG fired, even if the side-mounted weapon is firing into the front arc of the trike. (This is a modification to the old restriction on ATG mounting that got dropped somewhere along the way.)

P. 79. When ripple-firing a VFRP with a laser other than a targeting laser, the laser does area effect damage. That is, roll damage for the weapon once. Each target hit takes half damage. VFRPs must be ripple fired against multiple targets.

X-Ray Lasers – X-Ray Lasers are not affected by smoke or paint, other than the to-hit modifiers because of partially blocked line of sight. X-Ray Lasers are unaffected by Laser Reflective Armor and do full damage to any vehicle so equipped.

Flamethrowers – A vehicle firing flamethrowers while traveling at 30 mph or faster will take full damage and burn modifiers from its own weapon if the weapon is fired in its direction of travel. Example: a car with a front mounted flamethrower traveling at 80 mph forward will take damage from its own weapon if it fires the weapon into the front arc of the vehicle. If the car were traveling backwards at 30 mph or more then firing the weapon to the rear arc would damage the rear armor. No to-hit roll is required for this damage.

The Flame Cloud Ejector creates a ½" × 1" flame cloud when fired.

Pp. 79-80. In the Dropped Gas section of the "Weapons" chapter, the description for the Gas Streamer includes the sentence, "Unlike other dropped weapons, gas streamers can be aimed like regular weapons. If a gas streamer is put on automatic, it will fire immediately and then once per turn, in the same phase on which it was originally activated." This also applies to the Flame Cloud Gas Streamer.

P. 80. The page reference under Ice Dropper should be to p. 8, not p. 7.

P. 81. Shotguns may use Anti-Personnel Ammo; this includes vehicular shotguns.

P. 82. Pulse lasers cannot laser-guide rockets.

P. 83. The page reference under Link should be to p. 34, not p. 27.

Smart LinksAny time two identical weapons are mounted in different positions and are to be aimed and fired together, they must be linked with a smart link. Example: A Turreted VMG with front-mounted VMG must be linked with a smart link. Weapons mounted in EWPs on opposite sides of a car that are to be aimed and fired together must be smart linked. Two weapons in the same EWP may use a regular link. Weapons mounted on opposite sides of a trike that can be fired together in the front arc of the trike must be smart linked (this also holds true for boats).

P. 91. Replace the descriptions of Rocket Boosters with:

Rocket Boosters: $50 per 10 lbs., 1 DP and 1 space per 100 lbs., or fraction thereof. Volatile. Acceleration, or deceleration, gained by a vehicle using Rocket Boosters is calculated using the following formula:

(Weight of fuel burned × 1,000) ÷ weight of vehicle.

This acceleration is applied in the phase that the rockets are fired, and firing a rocket booster counts as a firing action. A vehicle may combine normal acceleration and rocket boost. A vehicle may only gain acceleration from rocket boosters on one phase in any turn. The amount of boost that a vehicle can safely withstand each turn is determined by the chassis:

  • Light Chassis: 10 mph
  • Standard Chassis: 20 mph
  • Heavy Chassis: 30 mph
  • X-Heavy Chassis:40 mph

Vehicles with Light and Standard chassis can fire for 10 mph boost over the limit; they have a 50% chance of bending the frame and making the vehicle undrivable (HC goes to 6 immediately and remains there for the rest of the game; this cannot be repaired). If these frames attempt to fire boosters more than 10 mph over the limit, they automatically ruin the frame as stated above. If vehicles with Heavy or X-Heavy chassis attempt to fire boosters 10 mph over the stated maximum, they have a 33% (2 in 6) chance of destroying the frame; a boost of 20 mph over the limit results in a 50% chance; boosts of more than 20 mph over the limit automatically destroy the frame.

Rockets can be purchased to burn for multiple turns; when triggered, the car accelerates in that phase and in the same phase every subsequent turn until the rocket burns out. The weight of fuel burned per turn is set when the vehicle is constructed and cannot be changed thereafter. Once triggered, the rocket cannot be shut off till the fuel is exhausted. Firing rockets is a D1 hazard for each 10 mph of acceleration or deceleration, gained (forward or back for most vehicles, any direction for hovercraft).

Booster Rockets must follow the 1/3 spaces per side rule and may be mounted in External Weapons Pods (not rocket pods). Rockets mounted in a pair of EWPs, on either side of a vehicle, must be of the same size, set for the same burn rate and fired together. If one of a pair of EWPs is destroyed while the rockets are burning, the acceleration gained must be recalculated for the reduced weight of fuel burned in a turn, and the Hazard for the new acceleration is tripled because of the uneven thrust. An Ejectable EWP may not be ejected until the booster has completed its burn. Example: A 5,000-lb mid-sized car is fitted with rocket boosters. Using the formula above, we find that 50 lbs. of rocket will accelerate the vehicle 10 mph per turn, a mid-size car can devote up to 4 spaces to booster rockets (to the rear), according to the 1/3 spaces per side rule. therefore, the vehicle can have up to 400 lbs. of rocket. Assuming the vehicle was equipped with an Extra Heavy Chassis we could set our rocket to burn 200 lbs. of rocket per turn for two turns and get 40 mph of acceleration over each of two turns, 100 lbs. of rocket per turn for 20 mph of acceleration every turn for 4 turns, etc. The rocket could be divided up into a number of separate rockets which could be fired separately so that all the acceleration does not have to occur at once, but remember, a car may only gain acceleration from rockets on one phase per turn, so multiple rockets would have to be set off at once or, if additional acceleration is needed after the first rocket is burning, any additional rockets would have to be ignited in the same phase the first rocket was, on a subsequent turn (if the first rocket is still burning).

P. 91. In the text description of Jump Jets, the "Burn Value" refers to the acceleration the rockets would add to the vehicle (use the formula provided in the Rocket Booster description above).

The minimum acceleration for Jump Jets and Rocket Boosters is 10 mph. For jump jets this means that the minimum "Burn Value" is 10 mph, which will yield an actual acceleration of 5 mph and a 20 mph speed increase for the purpose of figuring the distance jumped. Hazards for acceleration from boosters or is figured by rounding up. That is, if you have a booster which will accelerate your vehicle 15 mph per turn, the hazard will be a D2 for the higher 20 mph boost, rather than the D1 for a 10 mph boost.

Under Rocket Boosters and Jump Jets, add that they must be mounted in the body of the vehicle.

P. 92. Under Kamibombs, the first range increment is ¼".

P. 96. The Shogun 250's top speed is 180 mph.

P. 98. The Liberator minibus: Remove one BC, add two BC magazines, and add 10 pts. CA around crew, and the power plant. 14,370 lbs., $63,119.

P. 99. The Police Cruiser's power plant has superconductors.

P. 112. The abbreviation list is missing SD for Spike Dropper.