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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Clone Project: Naval Combat and Actions

Here are the basic actions a ship crew can take:
  • Ship/Unship Oars (Galley only): 1 turn
  • Raise/Drop Anchor: 3 crew, 1 turn
  • Make or Take In Sail: 3 crew per mast, 3 turns
  • Step/Unstep Mast (Galley only): 10 men, 3 turns
  • Patch hole: 10 crew, 5 turns
  • Bail Water: 10 crew, 5 turns (restores 1/4th Move)
Only a few of these are actually listed in Vol. III; from the few examples listed, I derived the following generalizations:
  • It takes 3 crew for minor tasks, 10 for major tasks; handling oars is special and depends on how many rowers are assigned to each oar.
  • Moving something from one place to another takes 1 turn.
  • Making a large change on the ship takes 3 turns.
  • Making a critical change takes 5 turns.
When a ship encounters an enemy, it can join in naval combat. Small ships can take 1d6+9 points of damage, large ships 1d6+18 damage; boats can only take 3 points of damage. Combat actions are:
  • fire catapult: treat as attack by 0-level human on AC 5 (AC 3 if target is a warship.)
  • fire arrows or other missiles: treat as attack on enemy crew instead of ship. Successful attack roll results in loss of enemy crew based on 25% to 100% of archers involved (5 x 3d6+2.)
  • fire flaming arrows: as above, but defender makes an Avoid Danger roll to avoid fires breaking out.
  • shearing off oars: kills half of the rowers on the side affected.
  • ramming: ram-equipped galleys only; must unstep the mast and speed up to the fastest speed, then back oars immediately after contact. Does 10 x 1d6 % damage, and defender must make Avoid Accident roll to avoid a hull breach below the waterline, causing the ship to sink. Vessels rammed in the side lose 1/5th their crew (1/6th of which are rowers, on galleys;) vessels rammed in the stern or bow lose 1/20th of their crew (no rowers.)
  • grappling: only within 1", up to three times per turn; make Change Situation roll to grapple, or cut enemy grapples.
  • boarding: possible only if ship is grappled; a boarding party can cross anywhere that two ships are adjacent, or jump overboard to swim to and climb aboard the enemy ship.
I think I'll move melee combat on board a ship to a separate post, since it can be generalized to apply to other melee situations as well. For example, the rules for forcing defenders overboard can apply to a battle on a bridge over a chasm.

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