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SampleShips

While the various kingdoms build and maintain several types of craft for military, industrial, commercial and consumer needs, there are a number of standard designs, usually due to economies of scale. Variants exist. Kitbashes definitely exist. One-off ships are common in medium-integration systems where there's enough industrial base for it but not enough incentive for an oligopoly to form.

For example, the Hauberk corvette and Cuirass destroyer were designed and manufactured during the Empire’s peak power, and still exist as standardized ship classes largely because of the ready availability of spare parts. While they are not very modular from a space engineer’s perspective, they are designed so that entire sections of a ship can be replaced in drydock, with the damaged section recycled.

Interceptors are small, one-pilot ships designed to take out bombers and perform short range patrols. They can usually fight in the upper atmosphere if they need to, but need a booster to get back to space from the ground (on most planets).

Bombers are small, two- or three-crew ships designed to take out larger ships. They can usually take off to space from a planet unless they have a full load.

Corvettes are medium, four-to-ten crew ships designed to perform long range patrols, piracy interdiction, and border enforcement. They’re the smallest warships designed to operate on their own.

Destroyers are medium ships with at least ten crew, designed to protect outposts, perform force projection, and act as a semipermanent presence in a system while being able to easily travel between systems. Imperial destroyers are the largest warships designed to take off from planets.

“Starfighter” means any small ship that can take an aggressive stance and carries most of its weapons frontally: interceptors, fighters, dive bombers, armed packet ships, robot drones, etc.

Larger warships are generally built as one-offs. “Battlestar”, “Capital Ship”, “Dreadnought” and the like act as a catchall term for them; ships larger than a destroyer are usually built one by one, in that not even the Imperial Remnant factions can afford a production line for capital ships absent a major war, and at any rate large ships tend to be highly modular and carry modules depending on their mission (or, often, the resource availability of where they are being built or deployed).

Most large warships keep being upgraded throughout their careers; eventually, when the structural stress becomes enough that sudden accelerations start to cause damage, they are generally hulked and turned into space station components. Many warship hulls spend more active time as hulks than as spacefaring ships.

The designation generally indicates role, rather than size. Capital ships can carry anywhere from 15 (laserstars) to hundreds (carriers) crew.

CruiserCapital ship built around offense, generally intended to operate in a flotilla and provide screening for battleships and carriers.
BattleshipCapital ship built around defense, generally intended to operate in a flotilla and take on the brunt of an enemy's assault.
LaserstarCapital ship that exists as a support system for one large weapon system (not necessarily a laser - it can be a missile control system, an artificial-mass kinetic weapon, or even stranger things). Generally kept at the centre of a flotilla.
InterdictorCapital ship that exists as a support system for a wide-volume GGG interdiction field. The field uses a lot of energy, so interdictor systems that aren't mounted on stations are generally highly specialized. Like laserstars, generally kept at the center of a flotilla.
Jeep carrierLightly defended carrier, generally intended to operate in a flotilla and launch, rearm, and repair fighter craft as needed.
Fleet carrierHeavily defended carrier that can launch, rearm, repair and construct starfighters and other small support craft.
BattlecarrierHeavily armored multirole capital ship with the functionalities of a battleship and fleet carrier, generally intended to operate alone or in a fleet. Imperial fleets used to be built around one of these behemoths, but with the evolution of naval doctrine, they are mostly being kept around for reasons of propaganda and national prestige.

If you own Space Engineers, you can download the sample large ships here: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2626851296

LASH transports, ribclackers, kangaroo ships, or skeleton carriers are unarmored GGG "spines" that are highly optimized for intersystem travel, to which smaller vessels can attach to. They have almost no ability to change course, taking several minutes to make a full turn. While not difficult to build, they represent a significant investment, and rarely get closer to a star than one or two standard light-days after having been built; for repairs and refits, it's generally cheaper to cut up the fore and aft section, take them to a dock, and rebuild the spine entirely once the job is done. A few ribclackers offer amenities such as a galley or concourse, most don't. A single ribclacker can take a whole trade convoy or a carrier group near where it has to go. Their distinctive long and narrow shape is an artifact of GGG operating principles. Much like with warship hulls, ribclacker spines that have used for too long and start to exhibit structural stress often find a useful final home as station trusses. While riding on a kangaroo ship is not mandatory for anything except interceptors and civilian runabouts, the time savings during the interstellar portion of the journey well makes up for the transport fee.

Bulk cargo ships generally do not land on planets as a unit; packet ships are small transports that can land on terran-type planets and operate last-AU transpot networks. Tug-and-barge arrangements are common for long distance cargo transport, with a tug taking the cargo at each end of a LASH transport trip.

If you own Space Engineers, you can download the sample LASH transport system ships here: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2621166931

Passenger liners go from the spartan (long, narrow train-style intersystem transports using similar shape optimization to ribclackers) to the luxurious (tourist-trap cruise ships that can move freely, if not very fast, between asteroids as they do between star systems -- the slow GGG acceleration, after all, gives more time for the honored guests to spend at the cash bar or casino).

What follows is a simple description of common ship types as used by the major kingdoms' navies; it's not uncommon for private concerns to own corvettes, and a bank or mining conglomerate will likely have a few destroyers on call (For the Phoenicians, this is actually how most of their navy works, with government large ships largely used for coast-guard duties).

Faction InterceptorBomberCorvetteDestroyer DesignNotes
Empire BolaCravatHauberkCuirass RoundedLots of ships, not very good, average pilots.
Imperium PapillonAscotHauberkCuirass RoundedLots of ships, worse than the Empire’s, but with better pilots.
Bel Riose BolaAscotHauberkCuirass RoundedTakes the best from Empire and Imperium. Motivated and skilled pilots, no daredevils.
Stra-Kuhl PapillonCravatVentureCuirass RoundedOlder Imperial/n equipment. Favors boarding tactics (assault Cravat for example).
Zarth-Arn BolaDragonVenturePike SpikyObtained some Black Lance Dragons, up-armored them, and keeps them flying as bombers.
Phoenix RazorBroadswordPirañaPike BeveledWide variance in ship and pilot quality.
Lowrule RazorBroadswordVentureCataphract StuddedMiddle of the road in every sense.
Kalradia DestrierHuscarlKnightCataphract OrnateMiddle of the road gear. Great dogfighters, poor marksmen.
Zardoz BatonTruncheonGavelDrumhead BlockyGood shields, flimsy armor, almost all destroyers have interdictor systems.
Magmatrons HammerCrucibleAnvil/FAnvil/A GraniticRock armor, low acceleration but good maneuverability. Generally can’t do atmo flight. The Anvil frigate can be Fast or Armored.
Black Lance DragonDragonHydraHydra SleekNo ejection seats. Very few fighters. Very good pilots. They use fighter/bombers and frigates rather than the usual four classes.
Fwee CaracalJeopardLionWarmaster SpheroidThis is for modern Fwee ships that are designed specifically to engage in naval combat with other races. They favour small unit boarding tactics using a mix of commandos and Battlemen. Even Caracals can be configured as boarding craft. Quality is generally a bit below par, but their boarding teams are often elites.
BolaA cheap interceptor with excellent acceleration and maneuverability but poor GGG performance. Cannot fly in atmosphere, and must be flown with a spacesuit. The "eyeball on strings" look make it a small target, but means flimsiness and low range. A drone version exists.
PapillonThe Papillon is an older, less optimzied version of the Bola that is nevertheless preferred by Imperian pilots, largely because it has some more redundancy than (but about the same win rate as) its successor. Can land in atmosphere, but not fight or take off.
RazorRazors are mass-produced and sold by the dozens by the Phoenicians. They feature high speed and a small frontal cross-section, but aren't very maneuverable. They can fly in atmosphere, but wouldn't be much good in a fight, although the capability is advertised.
DestrierDestrier interceptors are lovingly crafted by Kalradian artisan families, and heavily customized by their pilots. Notably, they can fly with full function in atmosphere. Very maneuverable, but poor acceleration, and the wings make for a large target.
BatonThe Zardoz interceptor of choice is easily recognized by its stark profile, which the Zardoz consider to almost embody geometric perfection. Its glaring weakness is its asymmetrical acceleration; however, it features excellent liquid armor and redundant GGG teeth. Batons that underperform are ritually "tried" and "demoted" to utility shuttles.
HammerDesigned with fleet engagements in mind, the Hammer is highly maneuverable and capable of taking out other interceptors by sniping them or by ramming them into its reinforced front plating. However, it has no atmo capability, and low GGG performance make it unsuitable for even interplanetary travel.
DragonAn extremely expensive, high-tech fighter-bomber built in small series by the Black Lance. Zarth Arn has been able to either capture or finagle some, and flies them as bombers (with additional ablative armor so as to keep them intact). Uses supercooled GGG and a fission cannon.
CravatThe Cravat bomber is intended to line itself up for a bombing or torpedo run and strike the target before "flaring up" and breaking off. For this purpose, it uses extensible GGG teeth to switch between "fast" and "maneuverable" mode. Looks like its namesake.
AscotAn evolutionary improvement over the Cravat that features three working configurations rather than two, allowing pilots to use a middle-of-the-road setting. More armored than the Cravat, but carries a smaller payload. One of the few sanctioned Imperian inventions.
BroadswordThe Broadsword is a long-range bomber designed for a large crew (pilot, bombardier, and three gunners) and the ability to operate independently for days on end. Broadswords have a configurable GGG that allows intersystem travel, and carry heavy torpedos for strike missions.
HuscarlHuscarls are the only dive-bomber that can perform their missions in space or in atmosphere with equal ease, thanks to semi-retractable wings. However, they pose a large target - and present a large expense for Kalradian nobles who fly and maintain them.
TruncheonEssentially a pair of Baton interceptors joined together and carrying a bomb bay, Truncheons have been known to split in half after a run in order to evade interception. Zardoz assert that this is intentional. Others aren't so sure.
CrucibleMuch to nobody's surprise, Crucible heavy bombers are slow, tough, and capable of inflicting extreme damage to any capital ship that they catch. The "surprise" is that they are able to shed part of their armor for silent kinetic strikes.
HauberkThis type of corvette is the most common design across the galaxy. It's not a pure combat craft and can be used as an atmospheric packet, exploration ship, armored transports or courier, and so on. Phoenicians make a compatible version for export, under the name "Venture".
VentureA reverse-engineered Hauberk variant from captured husks obtained during a small war - however, Phoenician manufacturers maintain that it's simply a parts-compatible design. Many minor factions standardized on it, and even Imperian Hauberks use Venture parts when they can't get the originals. Phoenicians tend to stick to export this design rather than using it, officially, at least.
PirañaPirañas would be considered large gunships by most standards, but redundant GGG, artificial gravity and onboard living quarters allow their two-person crews to operate independently for weeks at a time if need be. These small corvettes are the keystone of internal security in Phoenician space. They privilege area control over range, and are used as pickets across Phoenician territory. Phoenicians normally use LASH carriers to transfer this sort of craft between systems.
KnightKnight-class corvettes are heavily customized (or even kit-built) Ventures, usually rigged for better atmospheric performance, employed by minor Kalradian nobility, often a wealthy knight-errant and squires). They generally trade armor for maneuverability, and will usually carry the knight's personal fighter or bomber on the back docking port.
GavelGavels look like, and operate as, corvette-sized versions of the Baton, and are used by Zardoz judges as personal craft. They have redundant GGG teeth allowing for magnetically locking onto interceptors and bomber clusters and carrying them along on longer trips, but no ability to sustain crew for longer periods of time. Judges maintain that this is done on purpose, to hone their stoicism. Excellent shielding, at the cost of other qualities.
AnvilThe Anvil frigate is used by the Magmatrons. Its most visible characteristic is the ability to carry extra armor hewn from asteroidal rock; Anvils can be "fast" or "armored" depending on how much of it they carry. The low range is offset by their self-contained refinery systems.
HydraThe Hydra frigate is used by the Black Lance as a support craft for Dragon squadrons, and effectively acts as a tender for the superfighters. While it has no long range weapons, it bristles with point defense turrets. Hydras are designed to resemble a common type of LASH transport with the spine retracted both visually and on sensors.
CuirassThis destroyer was designed and built in series during the Empire's maximum prosperity, and it shows - its elegant design gives their captain a well-balanced mix of features, with the notable exception of fuel efficiency.
PikePhoenicians use this destroyer design to complement their Pirañas when anti-capship support is required. Like the Piraña, it does not have much range or endurance, and depends on LASH carriers for any substantial travel. Helmsman visibility is terrible, but all weapons are turreted, to circumvent the issue.
CataphractCataphract destroyers are essentially mini-battleships, privileging defense over offense or maneuverability. They are optimized for atmospheric operation and sieges from high altitude: some Kalradian noble families and Low Rule bureaucrats make their seat of power in one of these vessels, holding them in libration on top of the lands they lord over. The Cataphract is, accordingly, not particularly effective once in space.
DrumheadZardoz destroyers are built around their interdiction capability; while they are not fast or maneuverable, they can operate alone for months and effectively be their own self-contained frontier post. They carry immense quantities of energy with which to keep Batons topped up.

If you own Space Engineers, you can download the sample small ships here: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2613682454

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Page last modified on October 13, 2021, at 10:10 AM