Pilot action of Fly vs. Maneuver ... what's the difference?


Rules Questions

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

So the rules for the Pilot are as follows:

Fly (Helm Phase)
You move your starship up to its speed and can make any turns allowed by its maneuverability. This doesn’t require a skill check.

Maneuver (Helm Phase)
You move your starship up to its speed. You can also attempt a Piloting check (DC = 15 + 2 × your starship’s tier) to reduce your starship’s distance between turns by 1 (to a minimum of 0).

So how are these different exactly? The fly seems to allow you to move any amount up to the ship's speed. While the Maneuver ability ... allows you to do the exact same thing? I don't see the difference here...

Both allow you to move your ship up to it's movement, only one requires a check and another doesn't. Eh?

Scarab Sages

Maneuver allows you to take tighter turns. Starships have turning arcs and this check allows you to reduce them.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Imbicatus wrote:
Maneuver allows you to take tighter turns. Starships have turning arcs and this check allows you to reduce them.

Ah, so silly. The classic problem of the word "turns" meaning so many things. I read that thought "turns" was between player turns, not "turns" of the ship. Thanks.


To ask this question another way:

Why would anyone use the "Fly" action instead of the "Maneuver" action. There doesn't seem to be a penalty for a missed DC check. So if you fail it just reverts back to being a normal "Fly" action.

If the check is made up front, there should be a penalty of some sort. It would actually make more sense to make the check at each point you want to turn.


The fly action is there to give an option that doesn't require a skill check. No need to roll if you don't need a tighter turning radius.

Also, ships with Perfect Maneuverability (turn radius is 0) never need to use the maneuver action.

Liberty's Edge

Something else to remember is if a ship's engines has any been wrecked by critical damage than the pilot can't do anything that requires a DC.

Dark Archive

It also makes you choose between 'Maneuver' and 'Evade', which should be your two go-to's when you don't have anything special to do and your engines aren't damaged.


I've got a +19 on Piloting checks for my character, so I literally can't fail Evade checks (DC20, 19+1=20). This replaces the standard movement for me.

Liberty's Edge

The DC is dependent on your ship. The higher the tier of ship the harder it will become to make the check.
To get to a DC of 20 your ship tier is 3 or so.


Is the evade DC 10 + 2x Tier?

So it would have to be a tier 5 ship to get DC 20.

Liberty's Edge

Thanks! Didn't have my book handy.

Liberty's Edge

Joshua029 wrote:
I've got a +19 on Piloting checks for my character, so I literally can't fail Evade checks (DC20, 19+1=20). This replaces the standard movement for me.

That is true unless you affected by a Taunt or critical damage. Then it starts to get harder.

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