Archives of Nethys

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Chapter 4: Running Starship Campaigns / Space Hazards / Stellar Phenomenon

Combined Effects

Source Starship Operations Manual pg. 136
Some galactic effects combine gravity fields, damaging zones, and radiation, making for very dangerous areas for a starship. However, sometimes the PCs’ goals lie in the heart of such treacherous areas of space!

Neutron Star: The collapsed remains of a giant star can form this ultra-dense body featuring extreme heat, gravity, and radiation. Flying near such a star often exposes a starship to as much as 1d8 damage per round per 2 tiers of the starship from the intense heat, high radiation, and strong gravitational pull. This damage occurs at the end of each helm phase and is divided evenly among the ship’s quadrants.

Pulsar: This neutron star has a very short rotational period (from milliseconds to seconds) and emits ultra-high-energy cosmic rays. Represent this hazard by adding a direct-fire attack every 1d4 rounds from the direction of the pulsar during the gunnery phase. A pulsar’s ultra-high-energy cosmic ray has an attack bonus equal to 1-1/2 × the starship’s tier, has the irradiate (severe) and vortex weapon special properties, and deals 1d12 × 10 damage; this damage increases by 1d12 × 10 per 5 tiers of the starship. During the helm phase, a science officer can take a crew action to analyze the pulsar with the ship’s sensors (DC = 10 + 1-1/2 × the starship’s tier). If successful, they avoid the cosmic ray entirely that round.

Quasar: This is an ultra-luminous active galactic nucleus. The accelerating ring of gas revolves around a supermassive black hole, releasing energy across the entire electromagnetic spectrum, including bright visible light. Though beautiful to behold, a quasar is enormously dangerous; it emits high levels of radiation and heat, and its black hole has a strong gravitational pull. If a starship approaches the galaxy’s quasar core, use the rules for a neutron star (page 136) except it deals 10 times as much damage. Note that even the most stalwart ships could not survive this hazard for long.