• Welcome to the new COTI server. We've moved the Citizens to a new server. Please let us know in the COTI Website issue forum if you find any problems.

Suggestions wanted for player's ship



I'm wondering if any of you can supply some advice.

I'm running a T20 game (currently playing the Kursis Charter adventure set in the Linkworlds/Ley/Gateway) set in year 993.

If the game continues after the current adventure, I'd look to move the players off their current ship (an old A2 Far Trader). As the Gateway Domain sourcebook will hopefully be out soon, I want to get involved in more quasi-military/espionage/scouting type adventures, rather than trade-focused.

The ideal way for that to happen strikes me as a pirate attack. Players manage to take over the pirate, and then get a mission from the Imperium to investigate the origins of the ship, as evidence will point to it being Solomani-sponsored. And off they head towards the edges of Imperial space...

So - suggestions are wanted for what would be a suitable ship to give to the pirates (and eventually the players).

I'm looking for something that:
  • Would be strong enough to take on an A2 far trader (said trader only having one turret)</font>
  • Might find the A2 plus a Type-S scout more of a handful, possibly running</font>
  • Is Jump-2 or better, preferably Jump-3</font>
  • Could be operated by a small crew (5 players + 1 or 2 NPCs)</font>
  • Would have room for an air-raft and/or ATV</font>
  • Doesn't need a large amount of cargo space available</font>
  • Preferably is a 'canon' ship, and</font>
  • Preferably, has T20 deckplans or, at minimum, an illustration/image available on the web or a T20 book</font>
So - am I asking the impossible? :p

Suggestions welcome...

A type T patrol cutter variant.

Only four turrets. (Avoid the barbette versions.) Several NPC's will be needed for crewing with a typical 4 -6 plyer party. Some cargo space. 5G J3 works. Plus, it's an airframe. So maximal atmosphere ops.
Mr. Anton,

Well, if you're asking...

(The rotund reprobate pulls a battered kazoo out from under his equally battered boater. After drawing a huge lungful of air, the portly pariah honks mightily on said kazoo until a coughing fit stops him.)

cough... cough... 'scuse me... cough... Surf on over to Mr. Zeitlin's Freelance Traveller site and check out the Shipyard. I've a 300 dTon CT design there; the 'Grote Clan Trader'. It's a jump2, 1 gee merchant that can haul 100dTons of cargo. Mr. Alan Spik has produced a MT version of it plus some very servicable deckplans.

Crew size fits your requirements, as does the air/raft aboard. Plenty of room for passengers and NPCs too. It has three turrets plus plenty of room in the hold for a bigger M-drive and/or powerplant. There are a couple of variants posted too, including a Q-ship that might be too much of a good thing.

It's not canonical however, nor is it ever likely to be. It's a CT/MT design and how easy that can be 'ported into T20 I have no idea.

You find it nicely 'odd'. Its a tail lander and 'weeble' shaped to boot!

There's also the "corsair" from Supplement 4.

400 dtons, Jump-2, 3-G. Three triple turrets (but only one beam laser in each at the start). Model/2 computer. 10 staterooms (minimum crew of 6: pilot, nav, med, three engineers), 160 tons cargo, 20 low berths. This ship can literally fit a 100-ton scoutship into her cargo bay (which has large clamshell doors for just that purpose). She also has variable identification features that can disguise her appearance and she has a variable transponder as well. The ship is unstreamlined.

This ship is practically designed for your purpose. It will also need a few NPCs to run the ship at full effectiveness and you'd have to give up some cargo space to get the air/raft and Jump-3. I'd also recommend a better computer (needed for higher jump anyway).

But it is canon.
As a GM, I might point out one thing for you to consider regards to crew size...

Depending on your Game Mastering style, it sometimes happens that a character bites the big vacuum and finds his rest in the great incinerator of the sky (or at least the character sheet does ;) )

Having preambled with this - keep in mind that NPC's are wonderful replacements for lost player characters. In fact? If I might be so bold as to suggest it? Why not have your players build their own replacements - and let them know they are doing it?
You achieve two things when you do that. One, you remind them they may lose their character somehow. Might make them nervous or something ;) Two, it lets them do all the hard work detailing the NPC (who might become a PC someday).
And last, but not least <drum roll inserted here> Ain't nothing like having an extra NPC handy to provide some extra GM advice/aid to the game run.
There is also a Vargr Corsair in the 400T range. There are deck plans available for both the "Standard" Corsair and the Vargr Corsair. Both are cannon, both fit your concept but would require a few NPC recruits to run it at full capacity. (Though a good mix of PC's usually have enough skills to double up.) I have seen two cannon versions of the "Standard" Corsair, one has three triple turrets with a single laser and the other one has three triple turrets with a single laser and a triple Missile rack as the standard armament. The ship is Jump-2 3G acceleration. All depends on how much juice you want to give the party.

The Vargr Corsair has pretty much the same specs. Why anyone would build a Corsair without a Ships Boat for boarding operations is beyond me. After all isn't that the point in Piracy?

A Patrol Cruiser would probably scrag both ships in your Far Trader/Scout Ship scenario. The Corsair would have a harder time with both ships and may choose discretion as the better part of Valor. Besides Pirates are notoriously cowardly.
Just opened my T20 rules. The ship specs for the "Standard" Corsair are on page 333. I have deck plans someplace on my computer. Email me at ImBetterThanLife@netscape.net and I'll send them to you. I have them because I ran a campaign in the Marches where the party was looking for the source of these "Standard" Corsairs. After all the Imperium hates Piracy and the concept of a Standard Design Pirate ship is actually rather funny when you think about it. Wouldn't the logical course for the Navy be to go after the source of the ships? Chasing individual pirates is time consuming, resource consuming and largely ineffective, there will always be mroe Pirates. But hitting the source of the ships, now that is worth doing. (So is taking out bases and places where the goods are fenced.)
I think that your best option is a Type T patrol cruiser, though a crew of 8 is a little light particularly since I think that the T20 Type T requires 2 engineers. Both Tanuki (Tanuki's page) and I (my page) have deckplans for Type T's online

If you're willing to consider a non canon ship, R_Kane designed a "frontier trader" which is essentially an armed and armored 400 dTon A2. Here is a thread with the design and a link to the deckplans: http://www.travellerrpg.com/cgi-bin/Trav/CotI/Discuss/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=4;t=000405#000000

If you use the Ebon Rapturious, you could claim that a modified version fell into the hands of pirates. The modified version could be damaged (making it easier for the players to take the ship) but then repaired by the players or their patrons later.

Also on Tanuki's site ( here ) is a version of the 400t fat trader upgraded as a corsair. The deckplans are excellent and the USP easily converts over to T20. It requires a crew of 8.

It could advance your plot idea since the players could be tasked with finding out if these modifications are being done locally, much like Bhoins suggests.
Lord Anton,

I am aware of your desire for a Canon Starship, but I have an concept starship from one of our Liscencee companies, Avio Astronautics, that may suit your needs. I test flew the prototype last week, and I must say its quite a nice bit of work. An interesting feature is a jettisonable rear 50-ton cargo module, the profile of which reminds me of an old terran roadside mailbox. I also took the Liberty to have the drydock install a rear dorsal bay for a 10-ton "G Hauler" a utility Grav Vehicle, and two 100vl Maintenance Robots.

Avio Starfury

Class: Starfury
Type: Role Undetermined
Architect: Avio Astronautics
Tech Level: 15

USP ?-3433441-000000-40002-0

MCr 215.015
350 Tons
Crew: 7
TL: 15
Cargo: 71.220
Fuel: 121
EP: 32
Agility: 3
Craft: 1 x 4T G-Hauler,
2 x 0.01T Maintenance Drones
Fuel Treatment: Fuel Scoops and On Board Fuel Purification
Architects Fee: MCr 2.140
Cost in Quantity: MCr 172.218

Detailed Description (T20 Design)

350 tons standard, 4,900 cubic meters,
Streamlined Airframe Close Structure Configuration,
100 Structure Points

Pilot, Navigator, 2 Engineers, Medic, 2 Gunners

Jump Drive-3, 3G Maneuver Drive, 16-Ton Power Plant, 32 EP, Agility 3

Bridge, Model/4 Computer, Model/4 Flight Avionics,
Model/4 Sensors, Model/4 Communications

3 Hardpoints

1 Single Missile Turret organized into 1 Battery (Factor-2),
2 Dual Beam Laser Turrets organized into 1 Battery (Factor-4)


1 4 ton G-Hauler (Crew of 0, Cost of MCr 0.790),
2 0.010 ton Maintenance Drones (Crew of 0, Cost of MCr 0.120)

121 Tons Fuel (3 parsecs jump and 28 days endurance)
On Board Fuel Scoops, On Board Fuel Purification Plant

6 Staterooms,
2 Acceleration Couches,
1 Sick Bay,
2 Autodocs,
1 Additional Airlock,
8 Tons of Missile Magazines (holding 160 missiles),
71.220 Tons Cargo

1 Variable Transponder (0.250 ton, Crew 0, Cost MCr 2),
1 Programmable Hull Livery Array (0.010 ton, Crew 0, Cost MCr 2)

MCr 216.125 Singly (incl. Architects fees of MCr 2.140),
MCr 171.188 in Quantity, plus MCr 1.030 of Carried Craft (Hardpoints and Turrets charged)

76 Weeks Singly, 61 Weeks in Quantity

The forward missile launcher is in a retractable "pop-turret" housing, just forward of the 8-ton Missile Magazine. It is a single Turret, but of course could be easily upgraded to a double or triple.

I shall post the Deckplan at the Design Consortium site at the link below...


Forget 400t corsairs, etc, toss in some imagination for spice. I took the 600t armed liner and converted it to T20. Although I've warned them that nothing stops the universe from blowing the ship out from underneath them and forcing alterantives.

The nice thing about the armed liner was the few fighters it carried. Gave a few players different ways to participate in the game.

Also, on my site I have an armed version of the 1kt Tender. Very fun.

Just have fun,

They are right about one thing it is fun to purpose design your ships. You can easily build what you are looking for. For "standard designs" the two corsair variants and the Type T seem to fit the bill. (The type T being a bit more crew intensive than you were looking for but is Jump-3.) One other thing to keep in mind. And this is key, The party may not have a bank loan to pay to operate these ships but there are definitely operating expenses. Annual maintanence, fuel, life support do add up. Since they are not dealing with the bank payment it isn't that big a burden but it does exist. (And how are they going to pay for all that battle damage plus unless the ship they were on that got destroyed was paid off or had Piracy Insurance, they do still have a loan to deal with. Anyone ever have a car totaled and owe more than it was worth still? It is funny trying to make far Trader Payments with a Type T. Though the Type P or the Vargr Type P would easily make them.

You don't need to inform your players of this but when they put in for maintanence the bill for the maintenance could make a good adventure hook.

I do also think it is funny that cannon won't put a hard price on the Type P but it is the price, new, of the ship that determines the annual maintenance cost.
Not quite T20, but is a good canon mod. Tracking down the yard that did the mods should be interesting.

Express boat tender pirate mod.
Start with a Book 7 1000 ton Express boat tender
Install a bulkhead down the center of the bay, sealing the left side, with the lifts.
Install decks at 3M intervals in the left side of the bay.
The top 3 new decks are for troops.
Put a 200ton fuel tank in the bottom of the new deck space.
Remove the jump 1 drive and replace with jump 3 drive.
Add a 80 ton TL 10 power plant for the extra 20 EP needed for the new jump drive and to power the extra weapons.
Remove the popup turret and replace with a Pacc barbette.
The turret tracks already reinforced as hardpoints all the way around the ship so new turrets can be added on them.
Lock the two track turrets in place and add laser and sandcaster turrets on the tracks.
Cut new hatches to access the new turrets
The right bay can hold 2 50ton cutters and up to 6 light fighters if brackets are installed.
The cutters and fighters are needed to outmanuever and disable the target vessesl.

Design notes
Express boat tender TL 10
Book 2 Size Mod tons MCr
Hull 1000 100
Manuver drive 1 H 15 32
Power plant 1 H 25 64
Jump drive 1 H 45 80
Bridge 20 5
Computer 3 3 3 18
Staterooms 10 40 5
Low passage 20 10 1
Fuel 150 150 0
Cargo 60 60 0
Hardpoints 3 .3
Turrets 2 2 6
Popup turret 1 5 3
Bay 600 600 0
Totals 983 314.3

Crew 6
Communiications specialist
Engineers 3
Passengers 4

HG2 stats L10
Book 2 Size tons MCr
Hull 1000 60
Manuver drive 1 20 30
Power plant 1 40 160
Jump drive 1 20 60
Bridge 20 5
Computer 3 3 18
Staterooms 10 40 5
Low passage 20 10 1
Fuel 150 150 0
Cargo 60 60 0
Harpoints 3 .3
Turrets Laser 2 2 6
Popup turret 1 1 3
Bay 600 0
Totals 966 348.3

Now for the pirate mod
HG2 stats TL12 (for Jump 3)
Book 2 Size tons MCr
Hull 1000 60
Manuver drive 1 20 30
Power plant 3 90 270
Jump drive 3 40 120
Bridge 20 5
Computer 3 3 18
Staterooms 25 100 5
Low passage 20 10 1
Fuel 330 330 0
Cargo 60 60 0
Harpoints 9 .9
Turrets Laser 6 6 18
Turrets sand 2 2 1.5
Pacc Barbette 1 3 4
Bay 300 0
Totals 984 533.4

Edited to make columns line up.
Originally posted by vegascat:
Anyone know how to make columns actually line up like they are supposed to?
use the [ code ] tag, and imbedded tabs (In Safari, use ctrl-i to insert a tab into the text.

remember also that defualt tabs are 8 characters wide, as the code tag uses the HTML <pre> tag, which normally switches to a monospaced font.

But this is a little off topic.
While I have always liked the Type T, another option is to take a standard ship and just "mod" it.

My current favorite for this is the Type R. I have made both a Type R2 and a Type R3, but not in T20.

So, I would suggest taking a standard Type R, but then giving it jump-3 (or just jump-2), upgrading the maneuver to 2 and increasing the fuel, all at the expense of cargo. When done, you will still have 50-100 dton of cargo, still have the launch, and still have the 13 staterooms. Plus, it should still be in its "plain brown wrapper", allowing more covert operations, if necessary.

(You can do the same thing with a Type A/A2, but you will have almost no cargo in the end. The Type R is better to build from.)

Once again I am super-impressed with the helpfulness of people on this board!

In the end I've decided to go with Ron and Roger's Ebon Rapturious - which fits my needs almost perfectly - especially in it's current, 50-year-old incarnation.

Thanks to everyone who contributed.