Archives of Nethys

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Chapter 2: Starship Combat / Armada Combat

Building a Fleet

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 58
The statistics and definitions below define a fleet’s capabilities.

Name and Tier: This is the fleet’s name and power level. Fleets of the same tier are roughly comparable in strength but can vary based on their size and specializations. A fleet’s tier can at most be 1 higher than its armada’s tier.

Size: This is a relative measure of how many starships make up the fleet or the relative size of the primary starship in the fleet. A fleet’s size impacts its Hull Points, Shield Points, damage, and Base Cost.

Speed: This is the number of hexes a fleet can move each turn.

Maneuverability: This entry determines how quickly a fleet can turn. The maneuverability ratings and their turn distances are the same as those in starship combat (Core Rulebook 318).

Armor Class (AC): This value is used when determining whether an attack hits a fleet. It is based primarily on the fleet’s tier. A fleet with 1 or more Shield Points also gains a +1 bonus to AC against gunnery checks originating from its front arc.

Hull Points (HP): This is the total amount of damage a fleet can take before being defeated. Each fleet has 1 HP plus an additional number of HP multiplied by its tier: 3 HP per tier for Small fleets, 4 per tier for Medium fleets, and 5 per tier for Large fleets.

Critical Threshold (CT): When a fleet’s HP are reduced to this value, the fleet takes critical damage, reducing its effectiveness, per Table 2–20 on page 63. This value is always one-half the fleet’s HP (rounded down).

Shield Points (SP): This is the total amount of damage a fleet can take before losing Hull Points. Shield Points regenerate over time, per Table 2–19 on page 62. Each fleet has a number of SP equal to its HP divided by 3, rounded down.

Strong and Weak: Many fleets are especially strong against or vulnerable to other types of fleets. Against a fleet to which it is weak, a fleet takes +1 damage per damage die. Against a fleet against which it is strong, a fleet takes –1 damage per damage die.

Check Modifier: This is the modifier the fleet applies to d20 rolls when attacking, performing complex feats, or checking morale, similar to how a starship crew would use Computers, gunnery, and Piloting modifiers. A fleet’s base modifier is +1, and it increases by 1 at every odd tier above tier 1. An armada’s officers can grant a fleet a bonus to certain checks (see Officers on page 60).

Damage: This is the amount of damage a fleet deals when it hits a target.

Range: This is the range at which a fleet can fire its weapons, measured in hexes. A fleet’s range is broken into three distances: short range, long range, and extreme range. Attacks made against a target within short range take no range penalty; attacks beyond short range but within long range take a –2 penalty; and attacks beyond long range but shorter than extreme range take a –4 penalty. A starship can’t attack targets beyond its extreme range.

BP Cost: This is the fleet’s cost in Build Points (BP). BP are an abstract resource used for creating and upgrading fleets.

Special Abilities: These are the fleet’s additional properties that modify its statistics or provide additional options in combat. Most special abilities cost additional BP and can be applied only to particular fleet types, as shown in Table 2–18 on page 60.

Table 2–16: Fleet Costs

1 5 6 8
2 6 8 10
3 9 12 15
4 12 16 20
5 15 20 25
6 18 24 30
7 21 28 35
8 24 32 40
9 27 36 45
10 30 40 50
11 33 44 55
12 36 48 60
13 39 52 65
14 42 56 70
15 45 60 75
16 48 64 80
17 51 68 85
18 54 72 90
19 58 77 95
20 60 80 100

Table 2–17: Fleet Damage

1 1d4 1d6 1d8
2 1d6 1d8 1d10
3 1d8 1d10 1d12
4 2d6 2d8 2d10
5 2d6 2d8 2d10
6 3d6 3d8 3d10
7 3d6 3d8 3d10
8 4d6 4d8 4d10
9 4d6 4d8 4d10
10 5d6 5d8 5d10
11 5d6 5d8 5d10
12 6d6 6d8 6d10
13 6d6 6d8 6d10
14 7d6 7d8 7d10
15 7d6 7d8 7d10
16 8d6 8d8 8d10
17 8d6 8d8 8d10
18 9d6 9d8 9d10
19 9d6 9d8 9d10
20 10d6 10d8 10d10

Base Fleet Classes

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 59
A fleet’s class establishes what types of starships comprise it, as well as its base statistics.

Capital-Class Fleet

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 59
Consisting of a single immense starship, a capital fleet boasts heavy armor and utterly devastating weapons. However, these ponderous starships are slow to maneuver, and they struggle to fend off tiny attackers.


Speed 4 hexes; Maneuverability average (+0 Piloting, turn 2)
Strong destroyer; Weak fighter
Range 5 hexes
Special Ability Access: array, damage threshold, EMP, flagship, point defense, self-destruct, superweapon

Destroyer-Class Fleet

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 59
Consisting of a handful of Large or larger starships, a destroyer-class fleet balances raw firepower and armor with maneuverability and versatility. Destroyer fleets often boast an array of mid-sized weapons well-suited for eliminating numerous, smaller targets.


Speed 5 hexes; Maneuverability good (+1 Piloting, turn 1)
Strong fighter; Weak capital
Range 4 hexes
Special Ability Access: array, boarders, EMP, flagship, gravity mines, point defense, self-destruct

Fighter-Class Fleet

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 59
Consisting of a dozen or more Medium or smaller starships, a fighter squadron is unparalleled in speed and agility. The fighters’ numbers can quickly overwhelm larger targets.


Speed 6 hexes; Maneuverability perfect (+2 Piloting, turn 0)
Strong capital; Weak destroyer
Range 3 hexes
Special Ability Access: agile, boarders, bombers, EMP, flagship, interceptors, self-destruct

Special Abilities

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 59
When creating or upgrading an armada, you can enhance one or more fleets with special abilities to expand their abilities or shore up their weaknesses. Each special ability increases a fleet’s BP cost by the amount listed, and a fleet can add only those special abilities allowed by its fleet type.

Table 2–18: Special Abilities

Array 3 Capital, destroyer
Boarders 2 Destroyer, fighter
Bombers 2 Fighter
Damage Threshold 3 Capital
EMP 3 Any
Flagship 0 Any
Gravity mines 3 Destroyer
Interceptors 0 Fighter
Point defense 2 Capital, destroyer
Self-destruct 1 Any
Superweapon 3 Capital

Array: The fleet’s weapons can damage multiple targets. During the gunnery phase, the fleet can attack up to three fleets in a single firing arc. The fleet takes a –2 penalty or –4 penalty to gunnery checks when attacking two or three fleets, respectively.

Boarders: When the fleet succeeds at a flyby stunt, a portion of its crew boards and begins damaging the enemy fleet. During the gunnery phase, the fleet attempts a bonus gunnery check to resolve the boarding party’s attack. If it succeeds, the boarders deal half the fleet’s damage and continue attacking on subsequent gunnery phases. If the gunnery check fails, the boarders are captured, and the effect ends.

Bombers: The fleet fires heavy ordinance that grants it a +1 bonus to gunnery against capital fleets, and the fleet’s attacks ignore the damage threshold ability.

Damage Threshold: The fleet’s thick armor reduces incoming damage by 1 per damage die rolled.

EMP: During the next round, when the fleet’s gunnery check exceeds its target’s AC by 5 or more, the fleet’s disruptive weaponry inflicts a random critical damage condition on its target.

Flagship: The fleet contains the armada’s flagship and serves as a command center; only one fleet per armada can have this ability. Officers assigned to this fleet can affect targets within the fleet’s extreme range with their actions, and the fleet gains additional HP equal to its tier. A fleet’s flagship ability can’t be disabled by critical damage.

Gravity Mines: Once per combat, at the end of the helm phase, this fleet can disperse gravity mines in 2 hexes, with a range of 2 hexes from the fleet. These mines activate at the beginning of the next round. While active, gravity mines slow fleets moving through the mines’ hexes and any adjacent hexes; the first time that any fleet enters an affected hex each round, the fleet must expend 2 hexes of movement. Gravity mines remain active for 3 rounds, and they can be destroyed by attacks (AC 5, HP equal to half the fleet’s tier).

Interceptors: The fleet is designed to chase and disable smaller starships. The fleet is no longer strong against capital fleets but becomes strong against fighter fleets.

Point Defense: The fleet’s close-range weapons grant it a +1 bonus to gunnery checks against fleets within 2 hexes, and its free attacks deal full damage against fleets that fail flyby stunts.

Self-Destruct: When this fleet would be disabled, it can instead be destroyed and make a free attack against one fleet in an adjacent hex.

Superweapon: When attacking, this fleet can activate a superweapon that takes a –2 penalty to its gunnery check but, if it hits, deals additional damage equal to the fleet’s tier and critical damage. Once activated, a superweapon can’t be fired again until the end of the next round.