Most common attack actions are described below.
As a single attack action, a starship can fire one or more of its ranged weapons at any target or targets within range and within line of sight. A target is in line of sight if there are no solid obstructions between the attacking starship and the target. The maximum range for a beam weapon is 10 range increments. Weapons that fire projectiles have an unlimited range in space.
If firing several weapons, a starship does not need to specify the targets of all of its attacks ahead of time. It can see how the earlier attacks turn out before assigning the later ones.
If a starship fires a ranged weapon at a target that occupies a square adjacent to an ally, it takes a –4 penalty on its attack roll because the gunner must aim carefully to avoid hitting the ally.
Attacks of Opportunity: A starship can fire its ranged weapons without provoking attacks of opportunity from enemy ships.
Attack An Object
Attacking objects follows the same rules for starships as for characters. Table: Space Objects lists the Defense, hardness, and hit points of objects commonly encountered in space and on the cosmic battlefield. Colossal objects occupy four 500-foot squares (a 1,000-footby- 1,000-foot fighting space). All other objects occupy a single 500-foot square.
|Table: Space Objects|
|Debris cloud, Colossal||–3||0||1,600|
|Debris cloud, Gargantuan||1||0||400|
|Space hulk, Colossal||–3||10||3,600|
|Space hulk, Gargantuan||1||10||900|
|Space hulk, Huge||3||10||450|
Grapple Another Ship
For rules on using grapplers and tractor beams to hold and immobilize starships, see Grappling Systems.
Escape A Grappling Ship
Grappler arms and tractor beams allow starships to hold and immobilize one other. See Grappling Systems for rules on escaping grapplers and tractor beams.
A starship can help an ally attack or defend by distracting or interfering with an enemy in weapon range. The aiding starship makes an attack roll against Defense 10. If the attack roll succeeds, the starship doesn’t actually damage the enemy ship—but its ally gains either a +2 circumstance bonus on attack rolls against that opponent or a +2 circumstance bonus to Defense against that opponent (your choice) on its next turn.
See the expanded Bluff skill description for details.
Instead of attacking, a ship can use its attack action to defend itself by performing complex evasive maneuvers. This is called a total defense action. A ship that uses the total defense action doesn’t get to attack, but it gains a +4 dodge bonus to its Defense for 1 round. The ship’s Defense improves at the start of this action, so it helps against any attacks of opportunity the ship is subject to during its move action.
Fighting Defensively: Instead of diverting all of its attention to defending itself, a starship can choose to fight defensively while taking a regular attack action. If it does so, it takes a –4 penalty on its attacks in a round to gain a +2 dodge bonus to Defense during the same round.