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Month Index: October, 1996

From:     TLHawkins@???.com
Date:     Mon, 7 Oct 1996 00:24:00 -0400
Subject:  Re: Astromundi: Antilan Warbird
Two corrections to the AC Encounters post.
1) The Horg can be found in the Grayspace supplement.
2) The Oortling can be found in Polyhedron #55 and Realmspace.

One of the things that needed refinement in the AC boxed set was "fightable"
villans.  The neogi were within range of the average player character
parties, and could be adjusted to suit the DM's needs.  The Illithids and
Antilans were another problem.  Mind-flayers are very powerful creatures
(even if you use the magic-like version in the MC, for those of you who do
not want deal with Psionics in Spelljammer) and a Nautiloid is an extreamly
dangerous ship to get near.  I resolved that by having the illithids also use
Squidships and Lamprays as  their "light" cruisers and scouts.  Most ships
contain only one to four illithids with the balance being Varan henchmen.
 This will bring encounters down to survivable levels should the players
deside to not use negotionation and attack (a foolish endevor indeed).  The
Antilians present a different problem with their huge Crystal Ships
(dreadnaught class in my opinion).  Dreadnaught are usually expensive to
build and maintain, so I created a less formitable and expensive ship for the
Antilians to rely upon (and players to encounter/fight): the Antilan Warbird.
 I used the cardstock picture and deckplan of the Light Heldannic Warbird
from the Champions of Mystara boxed set (I believe it also appeared in an
issue of the Dragon; Heroes of the Princess Ark series), but gave it the
following stats:

Built by: Antilans
Used by: Antilans
Tonnage: 125 tons
Hull Points: 90
Crew: 10/60
Maneuver Class: C
Landing-Land: Yes
Landing-Water: No
Armor Rating: 7
Saves as: Thick Wood
Power Type: Major Helm
Ship's Rating: As spelljammer
Standard Armament:
   3 Medium Ballista, Crew: 2 each
   2 Medium Catapult, Crew: 3 each
   1 Bombard, Crew: 3
Cargo: 10 tons
Keel Length: 175'
Beam Length: 225'

No major changes need to be made to the deckplan key since it already had a
helm room and weapons locations.  I assigned a standard crew of the following
Captain: Fighter, level 1d8+1
3 Officers: Fighters, Levels 1d6
4 Helmsman: Mages of levels 1d6, specialists possible, usually War Mage kit.
 One will be at the helm, one studying, one resting, and the last will be
battle ready.
Psionicists: 1d4 at levels 1d6+2 on a telepathic progression.  (In a
non-psionic campaign, use the Mentalist from Players Options: Spells &
Priestess's of Gelanicus: 1d4 at levels 1d4+3, can spelljam in an emergency.
 They act as ships security and can override the captains orders in rare
cases. (Flavor: Tal'Shiar of the Romulan Empire)
Additional Security: 3d4 fighters at levels 1d4+1, usually of the Marine kit.
Standard Crew: 30-40: 1st level fighters (or 0-level humans) without weapon
specialization, they also arm the heavy weapons.

Note: After an encounter or two, players should learn to recognize the rank
of an Antilan crewman by the markings/style of their masks.

Still a deadly challenge, but a little more managable for higher level
characters (This is intended for a role-playing encounter such as a boarding
to search for escaped slaves or suspected Illithid spies.)  These ships are
also encountered outside the Antilan Empirer (near the sun), since they are
not dependent on the Firefall's rays to increase its power.


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