The Sky-ship

Skyship_Weatherlight.jpg

Found deep in Kuo-toa territory in an abandoned research facility, the Sky-ship was a lost travel prototype created by the long-gone masters of The Man in the Lonely Tower. The gem found in the Sanctuary of Alithor the Herald powers the ship.

New: The power source found in Aryas Plateau could also power the ship. The mechanics are changed as follows:

  • The ship is more maneuverable, gaining Perfect Maneuverability for a net modifier of +0 before Pilot checks.
  • The base speed has decreased to 40’. However…
  • This version can “boost,” i.e. use the run action to travel in a 200’ line, indefinitely, so the effective speed in a straight line is actually higher.
  • Can use underwater mode indefinitely, still at 40’ swim speed
  • If modified properly, the ship could support shielding with this power source.
  • The ship seems to have energy to recharge gunnery dorjes by itself, over time.
  • While still encumbered by weighing it down with armor/et cetera, not as encumbered as previous power source.

Old Stuff

The control mechanism appears, cutely enough, in the form of a floating model of the ship. As you rotate the ship or attempt to move it, it tugs gently back to its rest position. Rotation changes the facing of the ship; movement in a direction accelerates the ship in that direction. Attempting to pull an abrupt, difficult flying maneuver without deft hands (see: high DC maneuvers using the fly skill, above) causes the controls to “lock up” and the ship to attempt to perform the action in a slower, safer fashion.

The ship appears to be made out of steel-reinforced wood, but the wood hasn’t rotted and the steel hasn’t rusted. Magic items tend to resist decay, but damage may be an issue. The piloting section appears to be in the small, open air upper deck, likely for purposes of vision. The lower decks sport actual glass windows, which is something “new” on the western continent.

Ship Mechanics

Highest Knowledge check about the ship so far: 40

This being a special entity in the game, I am introducing some mechanics to govern it. There is a new trained skill named Pilot/Knowledge Sky-ship, in which you all get one free rank. To maneuver/pilot the ship, it works like pathfinder’s fly skill, found here: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/skills/fly. (Everything else still uses 3.5 flying rules.) For the purposes of the skill the ship is a colossal unarmored creature with a good fly speed, for a net modifier of -4. The knowledge portion of the skill uses a Sky-ship check with INT modifying instead of DEX, using similar rules to identifying a creature with a knowledge check (but no collector of stories). Bonuses to knowledge checks (in general) apply to this check. Aid another counts.

Knowledge DC 15:

  • Cruising Speed double moves at 60’, which is ~13 miles per hour, constantly, as the crow flies. This is much faster than land travel, and will get from point A to point B faster than basically any ship.
  • Semi-sentient autopilot, rolls Pilot Sky-ship at +5 and obviously takes 10 in non-stressful situations. Sound-based alert when something is wrong. Can emit false alarms.
  • You know that the ship can land… in theory.
  • Standard steel-reinforced wood if attacked/sundered, saving throws like an attended item (attended by current pilot). AC = 13 (-2 size, +5 “natural”).
  • The ship can also be used as a regular ship, as long as you remove the sails. Propulsion is still magical, so it’s basically “flying through the water.” No propulsion means you’re basically floating there, at the whim of currents.

Knowledge DC 20:

  • The ship can use the “run” function with a DC 20 pilot check three times per day, moving 300 feet in a straight line in a full round action.
  • You can, in theory, modify the engine or “boost” more often, but you’d need a more powerful power source.
  • Full landing functions, check equivalent to hovering, circumstance modifiers apply.

Knowledge DC 25:

  • The ship has an underwater mode. However, it takes a lot of power. With the current gem the ship has a 40’ swim speed, and lasts 2 hours before exhausting the gem. The gem recharges when not used for power after 24 hours.
  • The pilot can use “defensive maneuvers” as a full round action to replace the ship’s AC with a Pilot check. Anyone except the pilot on deck might have to perform certain checks to remain on-board… but individual flying capabilities are going to be important either way.

Knowledge DC 30:

  • The ship has two hidden gunnery positions, one in back/down and one in front/up, that rotate and hit most targets. The front is an embedded ML 5 dorje of Crystal Shard, and the back is an embedded ML 5 dorje of Energy Missile. In the former case you make a Pilot: Sky-ship check instead of an attack roll. In theory you can change out these to other dorjes, but these dorjes have the convenient property of being rechargeable with psionic energy.
  • Enemies outside the ship have LoS but not LoE on gunners, without boarding the ship or creating holes in the ship. Gunners who use the dorjes have both LoS and LoE.

Knowledge DC 35:

  • In theory, with a more powerful gem, the ship could have shielding of some sort…

(Image courtesy of WotC, oddly enough. https://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mc53 )

The Sky-ship

Champions of the Titan's Eye henkearuw