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Vessels for SAGA volume 1.0

by Byron Molix

This is my first shot at writing up building and vehicle statistics and sub-rules for interacting with them. It doesn't cover captains or navigation skills, or working together on specific actions like modifying rigging or defending against a siege attack. Let me know what you think.

Buildings and Vehicles each have a small set of statistics.

Magic Resistance

They can also have Weapons and Notes, which includes Powers, Vulnerabilities etc. Weapons will have varying degrees of damage classes, and siege weapons are weapons with protective armour or buildings built around them. Certain building materials will make the final object, building or vessel, vulnerable to specific kinds of attacks. Wood is vulnerable to fire for instance, and metal is vulnerable to Lightning unless it is not touching the ground or a water source.


This ability refers to how agile the vessel or object is versus other vessels or mobile objects. It is not necessarily intended to work versus characters directly, but more often than not, people will try to launch missiles at a boat, or smash in a castle door. If an object doesn't have a score in this ability, it means it is immobile. It's motive power is none. Some objects may have no motive power but still be manoeuvrable. If an object is completely immobile, characters attacking a portion of the vessel or building should make Average Strength (Structure) or Average Dexterity (Structure) actions. They are trying to defeat the strength of the walls, not simply hit in this instance.

Anything else works as a modifier to all attacks made to the vessel or object. When a character uses regular weapons or magic to attack an inanimate object, the modifier to their action check is Ma -4. For slow or awkward vessels this translates into a bonus to hit. Any time a character uses a ship class or siege weapon versus a vessel, the Manoeuvrability statistic is used unmodified. In most cases, this ability score also determines about how fast the vessel can travel. A schooner with Ma 6 is faster than a Merchantman with Ma 4, even though they are roughly the same size.

Here is a chart to help determine the Manoeuvrability.

Small 7 Wagons, Small Yachts, Coaches, Rowboats
Medium 5 Small Ships, Caravans, Siege Towers, Small Buildings
Large 3 Warships, Engines of Destruction, Small Castles
Huge 1 Large Fortresses, Small Floating Islands

Body Shape
Sleek +1
Average +0
Bulky -1

Control Scheme
Magic +1-5 Includes motive power caused by magic spells or artifacts.
Wheels +1
Rudder +0
Animals -1


Sometimes called Hull or Walls, this is the ability that reflects the strength of the vessel or building's makeup. This score repels physical attacks and withstands the elements. Since this also takes into account the size of the vessel or building, any ramming damage would be determined by this ability. Note, when attacking characters will often not directly assault the walls or the hull. The sails, windows and doors are much easier targets. As the narrator you should either decide on a value for each of these things, or simply halve the Structure value and use that. In most instances it will make the action challenging enough that teamwork and co-operation will yield better results.

Small 10
Medium 16
Large 24
Huge 30

Made out of...

Wall Thickness
Cloth -4
Soft Wood -2
Hard Wood +0
Soft Metal +3 Copper, Gold
Hard Metal +6 Bronze, Silver
Strong Metal +8 Iron, Steel
Super Metal +12 Adamantite, Mithril
Dirt -2
Rock +2 includes Brick
Stone +6
Thin -2 an inch at most
Average +0 at least two inches
Thick +2 at least six inches
Very Thick +4 at least 1 foot
Super Thick +6 at least 2 feet

Magic Resistance

This rare ability means that the structure is enchanted to resist magic or is made of a naturally magic resistant material. Simply add the value of this ability as the opposition score to any magic cast on the vessel or building.


This ability works just like armour for players. It is determined by what the walls are made of, and how thick they are. Enchantment adds directly one for one, and a ship can be enchanted on a one point of magic per point basis, but the spell has to be long-lived if not permanent to gain any real effect. Defence works better for buildings and vessels than it does for characters. Magic and magical abilities that cause physical damage have their damage rating reduced by the Defence before they are taken off the structure.
Cloth -3
Wood -6
Metal -9
Hard Metal -12
Stone -9

Wall Thickness
Thin +2 an inch at most
Average +1 at least two inches
Thick +0 at least six inches
Very Thick -2 at least 1 foot
Super Thick -2 at least 2 feet

For instance, a small Fortress made out of Rock, with foot thick walls would have the following statistics. Structure 36 Defence -10. Anyone trying to break in the reinforced gates would have their strength action opposed by a value of 13, and anyone trying to blow a hole in the wall would have their strength action opposed by a value of 26. If someone were to cast a spell on the walls, or if it were under assault from dragon breath, subtract the defence of -10 from their damage.

Weapons Action ability is Dexterity
Ballista +6 to +10
Canon +8 to +16
Catapult +12 to +18
Greek Fire +9, and one less each round.

Cloth No defence versus Fire or Acid
Wood No defence versus Fire, Half Defence versus Electricity
Metal No defence versus Electricity if grounded, Half Defence versus Fire
Stone Half defence versus Cold and Acid