Airship Armaments



To arm an airship its weapons must purchased and mounted to its hardpoints. Various weapons are available, ranging from mundane ballistas to arcane cannons. Some armaments have engine requirements, in this case the airship must possess that type of engine for the armament to function. Armaments take up hardpoints and cargo tonnage. All armaments are rated by class, much like airship hulls. There are three classes of armaments , light, standard, and heavy. Light armaments are small, short-range, and less powerful, and usually found installed only on airships of the cruiser class or lower. Standard armaments are found on every class of airship except cutters, and are the mainstay of many fleet. Heavy armaments are normally installed on cruiser class ships and larger, but the rare frigate, and sometimes destroyers will carry heavy armaments into battle.


Armaments are considered exotic weapons. A creature with the Siege Engineer feat is proficient with all armaments, including siege firearms. A creature that is proficient in firearms is also proficient in siege firearms, but not other armaments.

Firing Armaments

Modern armaments are essentially direct fire siege engines.

Armaments, in general, launch their projectiles on a relatively flat trajectory, allowing them to more easily target creatures or pummel barriers directly in front of them.
An armament uses a normal ranged attack roll, with the normal penalty for non-proficient use if none of the crew operating it have proficiency in armaments. In addition, a direct-fire weapon takes a penalty on attack rolls of –2 per size category that the weapon is larger than the creature aiming it. Creatures with ranks in Knowledge (engineering) are not adversely affected by their size when firing direct-fire armaments.

Sheer manpower can also reduce the penalties for size. Increasing the crew of these weapons by 1 or more can reduce the attack roll penalty for creature size: as long as an extra crew member is no more than three size categories smaller than the direct-fire weapon, it can reduce the penalty due to the aiming creature’s size by 2. For example, a Huge ballista fired by a Medium creature that is part of a crew of four (one more than the minimum number of crew members required) takes only a –2 penalty on attack rolls, and a crew of five would negate the penalty altogether.

Unlike normal ranged weapons, armaments do not deal half damage when attacking objects.

Load Ammunition:

In order for a armament to fire, it must be loaded with ammunition. Loading ammunition takes a number of full-round actions depending on the armament (this time can be reduced to move actions if the crew leader has the Master Siege Engineer feat. For example, a light ballista loaded by two creatures takes 1 round to load the weapon, since the creatures each take one of the two necessary full-round actions to do so.

Aiming a Armament:

Armaments must be aimed in order to attack a desired target. Aiming takes a number of full-round actions depending on the armament. Aiming a armament with a diminished crew doubles the amount of time it takes to aim the armament. Each time a new target is chosen as the target of a armament’s attack, that armament must be aimed anew. For example, a firedrake aimed by two creatures would have to spend a turn aiming the firedrake in order to fire it on the next round, since a firedrake takes two full-round actions to aim. If the same firedrake were instead crewed by three creatures, two could spend full-round actions aiming it and the remaining creature could fire it with a standard action.

Mishaps and Misfires:

Rolling a natural 1 on an attack roll or a targeting check made by an indirect-fire ranged armament produces a mishap. Usually a mishap applies the broken condition. A non-firearm armament with the broken condition takes a –2 penalty on attack rolls, targeting checks, and damage rolls. It also moves at half its normal speed. If the creature that serves as crew leader has the Siege Engineer feat, that creature does not generate a mishap on a natural 1 when firing the armament. Firearm siege weapons do not gain a mishap on a natural 1, but instead have a misfire value, like other firearms do. An attack roll or targeting check that falls within the misfire range causes the firearm armament to misfire. A misfire always misses, and applies the broken condition to the armament firearm. A firearm siege weapon with the broken condition takes all of the penalties and limitations that non-firearm armaments do, and the misfire range of the firearm armament is increased by 4. If the firearm armament already has the broken condition when it misfires, it explodes. When a firearm armament explodes, it deals its damage to all creatures within a blast range (those within the blast can attempt a DC 20 Reflex save for half damage). The normal misfire range of a firearm armament and its blast range are given in the individual firearm armament description. Crew leaders with the Siege Engineer feat do not lower the misfire value of firearm armaments.

Constructing and Repairing Armaments:

A armament is a complex device requiring a DC 20 Craft (siege engine) skill check to build or repair.

Magical and Masterwork Armaments:

Armaments can be masterwork, increasing their Craft DC by 5 and costing an additional 300 gp. A masterwork armament can be enchanted at twice the cost for a normal magical weapon. The enhancement bonus of a armament applies on attack rolls and targeting checks (in the case of indirect ranged armaments), and in the case of magical armaments, the enhancement bonus also applies on damage rolls.

Defense and Hit Points:

All armaments are objects. A armament has a Dexterity of 0 (–5 penalty) and a further penalty based on its size. Each type of armament has its own hardness and hit points. armaments can be armored—treat the armament as a creature of its size to determine the cost of the armor. Masterwork armament armor can be enchanted for twice the normal cost to enchant armor. Armored armaments have an armor bonus equal to that normally granted by the specific armor (shields have no effect on a armament), a hardness and hit points equal to that of the armor, and bonus hit points equal to the armor bonus × 5.

Installing and Removing Armaments:

Armaments require one hour of work per hardpoint that the armament occupies. This likewise applies to removing armaments, to remove an armament from an airship, it requires one hour of work per hardpoint the armament occupies to remove the device. Armaments generally require DC 10 Craft (siege engine) skill check to install or remove, and some large or complex armaments may require access to the appropriate tools (GM discretion).
Disabling Armaments: A armament is considered a difficult device to disable, requiring 2d4 rounds of effort and a DC 20 Disable Device check to do so. When a armament is disabled, it either doesn’t work or is sabotaged and stops working 1d4 minutes after use. Fixing a disabled armament requires a DC 20 Craft (siege engine), Disable Device, or Knowledge (engineering) check. It takes 10 minutes to fix the device, and the check can be retried if the fix fails.

Armament Qualities:

Armaments have the following qualities: cost, damage, critical, range, damage type, crew, aim, load, capacity, hardpoints, and cargo.

  • Cost – The base cost of the armament, not including the cost to install. Damage – The normal damage the armament deals. If the armament has a special mode of attack, it will be noted here. Certain armaments can be loading with special ammunition, in which case the damage of the ammunition overrides the base damage and damage types of the armament.
  • Damage – The amount of damage the armament does on a successful attack.
  • Critical – The critical threat range and damage multiplier of the armament. Armaments can deal critical damage to objects.
  • Range – Any attack at more than the distance listed is penalized for range. Beyond this range the attack or targeting check takes a cumulative -2 penalty for each full range increment (or fraction of) of distance to the target. Some armaments have a minimum range of effectiveness. If this is the case, the minimum range is marked in parenthesis.
  • Type – The damage type the armaments deals.
  • Crew – The number of crew required to use the armament, assuming medium sized creatures. Armaments can be crewed by smaller creatures, but take an additional round for the aim and load actions for each size category smaller than medium.
  • Aim – This is number of full-round actions (or move actions if the crew leader has the Master Siege Engineer feat) required to aim an armament. If the armament is being controlled by less than its normal crew complement, the number of actions it takes for the crew to aim the armament is doubled.
  • Load – The number of full-round actions (or move actions if the crew leader has the Master Siege Engineer feat) required to load a armament.
  • Capacity – The number of shots it can hold at one time.
  • Hardpoints – The number of hardpoints the armament occupies. Light armaments and standard armaments require 1 hardpoint, and heavy armaments require 2 hardpoints.
  • Cargo – the amount cargo capacity is reduced when an armament is installed. Light armaments do not reduce the cargo capacity of the ship, while a standard armament requires 1 ton of cargo space, and a heavy armament requires 4 tons of cargo space.
Light Armaments
Armament Cost Dmg Critical Range Type Crew Aim Load Capacity Hardpoints Cargo
Autocannon, light 8,000 gp 2d6 19-20/x2 100 ft. B and P 1 0 5 10 1
Arcane cannon, light 10,800 gp 2d10 x3 100 ft. B and P 1 0 0 1
Ballista, light 500 gp 3d8 19-20/x2 120 ft. P 1 0 2 1 1
Demi-cannon 3,000 gp 4d6 x4 80 ft. B and P 2 1 2 1 1
Standard Armaments
Armament Cost Dmg Critical Range Type Crew Aim Load Capacity Hardpoints Cargo
Autocannon 16,000 gp 4d6 19-20/x2 120 ft. B and P 1 0 5 10 1 1 ton
Arcane cannon 27,000 gp 4d10 x3 150 ft. B and P 1 0 0 1 1 ton
Ballista, heavy 800 gp 4d8 19-20/x2 180 ft. P 3 2 3 1 1 1 ton
Cannon 6,000 gp 6d6 x4 100 ft. B and P 2 1 3 1 1 1 ton
Firedrake 4,000gp 6d6 fire 3 2 5 1 1 1 ton
Heavy Armaments
Armament Cost Dmg Critical Range Type Crew Aim Load Capacity Hardpoints Cargo
Autocannon, heavy 32,000 gp 6d6 19-20/x2 160 ft. B and P 1 0 5 10 2 4 tons
Arcane cannon, heavy 50,400 gp 6d10 x3 200 ft. B and P 1 0 0 2 4 tons
Ballista, gate breaker 1,200 gp 6d8 19-20/x2 100 ft. P 5 3 5 1 2 4 tons
Cannon, fiend’s mouth 9,000 gp 8d6 x4 150 ft. B and P 3 1 3 1 2 4 tons
Firewyrm 6,000 gp 6d6 fire 3 2 5 1 2 4 tons

Autocannon – holds 10 rounds, can fire 1 shot per round

Arcane Cannon are always at least +1 weapons, and must be installed in a ship powered by a Spirit Engine. They consume no ammunition.

Airship Armaments

Saroth Pretakor Pretakor