how to go about attacking a spaceship.....(questions)


General Discussion


While either hanging out an open port or on the outside of your own with spaceship with pc weapons. It was done in firefly with a heavy mounted weapon. You have to hit the ships ac and work though the sheild.... theres something on pg.292 that says it can be treated as an object while landed and there are rules for drive bys. Would you just have to work through the ships hardness to start hurting it (doing hp dmg)?

All that aside doing a small amount of damange to the sheilds would still be helpful to the gunners in the turrets and doing just a couple hp dmg might be enough to save your crews lives. Hanging out the side a spaceship maybe hazardous but spaceship weapons can't target you, your too small. Going back to the ships can't target individuals or small groups (but can be used as environmental hazards).

Grenade sized magnetic triggered mines/grenades. I do not see any rules on the use of minelayers. But triggering a open crate full of the formentioned grenade/mines out in front of a chasing spaceship. Thoughts?


Where do I find a ships hardness?


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ghostunderasheet wrote:

While either hanging out an open port or on the outside of your own with spaceship with pc weapons. It was done in firefly with a heavy mounted weapon. You have to hit the ships ac and work though the sheild.... theres something on pg.292 that says it can be treated as an object while landed and there are rules for drive bys. Would you just have to work through the ships hardness to start hurting it (doing hp dmg)?

All that aside doing a small amount of damange to the sheilds would still be helpful to the gunners in the turrets and doing just a couple hp dmg might be enough to save your crews lives. Hanging out the side a spaceship maybe hazardous but spaceship weapons can't target you, your too small. Going back to the ships can't target individuals or small groups (but can be used as environmental hazards).

Grenade sized magnetic triggered mines/grenades. I do not see any rules on the use of minelayers. But triggering a open crate full of the formentioned grenade/mines out in front of a chasing spaceship. Thoughts?

Currently you cannot "personally combat" a starship in Starfinder. It is not possible. It may have been something in Firefly, it isn't something in Starfinder.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

If the GM is writing an adventure then he's more or less going to have to make his own adaptation. If I was to wing it, I'd divide the PCs weapon damage by 10 and use 5 + 2*ship tier for hardness. If the PC is using a tank (or heavy military vehicle) or starship caliber fixed emplacement, then it should do damage akin to a fighter sized starship in my opinion.


Personally, I would treat a starship as a vehicle, as vehicles are objects, but even then they don't really give rules on how to properly make a custom vehicle. Assuming they did, I would treat a tiny starship as a huge vehicle, small as gargantuan+, and medium and above as colossal. I assume the object's item level is equivalent to it's starship tier.

As for shields, they don't as much as give you a clue as to how they interact.


The other thing to remember is how much starship weapons do if they hit a PC. Which, if I remember right, is like 10 times what the weapon does to another starship?

So, if you had an autobeam artillary, advanced longarm (4d8f) and were level 16, and you fired it at a starship, by the token of damage, your weapon would do 1/10 of its total damage.

So, you would roll, 4d8, which averages out to 18, and add your +16, which comes to 34, then you would divide that by 10, 3.4, which you would drop the fraction, 3 damage.

You wouldn't factor the hardness because starship weapons don't, and there you go. A level 16 character shooting a level 16 weapon, might do enough damage to maybe take 3-4 damage off of an enemy ship's shields. Which, at level 16, you're looking at like a Vindicas Tyrant that has 600 HP and 50 shields per side.

Whereas an actual Starship weapon, like linked coilguns, does 4d8 or 18 damage average per shot, vs your 3.

Now, the more amusing question is... If you are going to go through all of this effort, why not just mount a set of guns on your ship and use them. That would be more efficient and effective.


I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.


I'd be inclined to think personal combat vs ship might work in a low speed setting, like aiming at a stationary window portal while you're drifting straight towards the station, or 'lure ship into stopping in front of my firing arc by playing dead'.

But in actual combat, presumably ships are moving fast, less like boats and more like planes. You might get a lucky shot with your rifle, but not usually.

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Starships are designed withstand the stresses of space travel and engage in combat with similarly powerful vehicles. You can't reasonably affect them with infantry weapons.

If you want to deal decent damage to a ship, you need a weapon designed specifically for attacking ships. You can probably homebrew a mounted version of one of the starship guns. Otherwise, you'll have to board the ship and disable it from within.


Sauce987654321 wrote:

I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.

Sauce - If a starship weapon deals 10x damage to PCs, then PC weapons deal 1/10 damage to starships. It is the closest we have to scale.


Though, now I'm tempted to try statting up something similar (In role, not fluff) to 40k's meltaguns. Infantry weapons that can punch a hole right through even superheavy vehicles and cut chunks out of spaceships in a boarding action.

Honestly though: I think some half-decent boarding action rules would help here. Not full on 'take over the ship' boarding but skirmishing and hit and run to damage it. Low damage high on disabling stuff.


HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:

I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.

Sauce - If a starship weapon deals 10x damage to PCs, then PC weapons deal 1/10 damage to starships. It is the closest we have to scale.

It sounds logical, sure, but if it doesn't say it, then it's not 1/10. It tells you to treat it as an object and nothing more.

If this were an exact conversion, as your assuming, then the Oma would have 850 hit points instead of 285, since its base frame has 85 Hull Points. The Endbringer Devil would have roughly 2,550 Hit Points on ground rather than 415 Hit Points, since it has 255 Hull Points.

The point is, the x10 damage isn't meant to be used as a metric, or else it would say that instead of treating it as an object.


Sauce987654321 wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:

I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.

Sauce - If a starship weapon deals 10x damage to PCs, then PC weapons deal 1/10 damage to starships. It is the closest we have to scale.

It sounds logical, sure, but if it doesn't say it, then it's not 1/10. It tells you to treat it as an object and nothing more.

If this were an exact conversion, as your assuming, then the Oma would have 850 hit points instead of 285, since its base frame has 85 Hull Points. The Endbringer Devil would have roughly 2,550 Hit Points on ground rather than 415 Hit Points, since it has 255 Hull Points.

The point is, the x10 damage isn't meant to be used as a metric, or else it would say that instead of treating it as an object.

If we are going by just pure rules then... You can't.

Like you can't attack a starship in starship combat without using starship weapons at all.

If it is on the ground, maybe, but since we actually *don't* have the stats for them as objects, and it doesn't say treat them as such with any comparable hardness, then we can't.


HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:

I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.

Sauce - If a starship weapon deals 10x damage to PCs, then PC weapons deal 1/10 damage to starships. It is the closest we have to scale.

It sounds logical, sure, but if it doesn't say it, then it's not 1/10. It tells you to treat it as an object and nothing more.

If this were an exact conversion, as your assuming, then the Oma would have 850 hit points instead of 285, since its base frame has 85 Hull Points. The Endbringer Devil would have roughly 2,550 Hit Points on ground rather than 415 Hit Points, since it has 255 Hull Points.

The point is, the x10 damage isn't meant to be used as a metric, or else it would say that instead of treating it as an object.

If we are going by just pure rules then... You can't.

Like you can't attack a starship in starship combat without using starship weapons at all.

If it is on the ground, maybe, but since we actually *don't* have the stats for them as objects, and it doesn't say treat them as such with any comparable hardness, then we can't.

The rules actually say you’re supposed to treat starships like terrain so you can’t do any damage to them or target them for that matter

Pg 272


Robert Gooding wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:
HWalsh wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:

I'm noticing the "divide damage by 10" talk concerning PCs attacking a starship, and really it's not necessary nor does the game suggest that they interact this way. While, yes, you can potentially deal x10 damage with a starship weapon against a person, at the GM's discretion, though you still can't target and damage people in this fashion, unless simulated as hazards.

The game simply tells you to treat it as a rather massive object. The problem is how are you supposed to create said object. The game doesn't even properly tell you how to make any vehicle, as there is no consistent formula I can find when trying to determine where all of its HP comes from. If someone knows, please tell me.

Sauce - If a starship weapon deals 10x damage to PCs, then PC weapons deal 1/10 damage to starships. It is the closest we have to scale.

It sounds logical, sure, but if it doesn't say it, then it's not 1/10. It tells you to treat it as an object and nothing more.

If this were an exact conversion, as your assuming, then the Oma would have 850 hit points instead of 285, since its base frame has 85 Hull Points. The Endbringer Devil would have roughly 2,550 Hit Points on ground rather than 415 Hit Points, since it has 255 Hull Points.

The point is, the x10 damage isn't meant to be used as a metric, or else it would say that instead of treating it as an object.

If we are going by just pure rules then... You can't.

Like you can't attack a starship in starship combat without using starship weapons at all.

If it is on the ground, maybe, but since we actually *don't* have the stats for them as objects, and it doesn't say treat them as such with any comparable hardness, then we can't.

The rules actually say you’re supposed to treat starships like terrain so you can’t do any damage to them or target them for that matter

Pg 272

That's for really massive starships, like capital starships, generally those that are out of reach of the players. A 20-60ft. starship isn't terrain, and really this rule doesn't really supersede the one given in the starship section.


It’s for ships larger than a colossal creature, so anything bigger than a tiny or small ship and people aren’t going to be raiding a fighter they’re going to raid a transport or a freighter most of which are medium or larger ships so terrain

Edit correction small ships are larger than colossal creatures so only ships on the smaller end of tiny don’t qualify as terrain


Robert Gooding wrote:
Edit correction small ships are larger than colossal creatures.

Colossal monsters have no upper limit, also the Oma is colossal as a medium starship. The most important part about that rule, however, is the GM decides what's terrain and what's an object, as mentioned in that section.


Were talking about the general rules not the final line cop out that says unless the gm says it isn’t or else none of the rules make any difference because the gm always has the final say

And it says larger than a creature of colossal size not larger than any conceivable creature in a size category with no upper limit. So since the only defined dimension of the colossal creature category is a space of 30 ft or a height/length of 64 ft that’s what we have to go with


Robert Gooding wrote:

Were talking about the general rules not the final line cop out that says unless the gm says it isn’t or else none of the rules make any difference because the gm always has the final say

And it says larger than a creature of colossal size not larger than any conceivable creature in a size category with no upper limit. So since the only defined dimension of the colossal creature category is a space of 30 ft or a height/length of 64 ft that’s what we have to go with

Okay, I read through the rule you were talking about, and it gives a bunch of examples (including starships) that include vehicles larger than a typical colossal creature or bigger. A typical colossal takes 30ft. of space, but objects follow similar sizing rules as a monster and a colossal vehicle, starship, or whatever on ground will typically take up a 30' square. Only the the exceptionally large vehicles are treated as terrain, and starships from tiny to medium aren't even larger than the Oma (which has a 30ft square) and again is a medium starship, mind you.

And no, it's not a cop out line if it says it's up to the GM, because it's entirely up to them if they agree with what should be terrain or not. You think a small starship can be terrain, except another GM may think that's nonsense, since that's smaller than a number of colossal monsters and wouldn't think it makes for good terrain.


A landed tiny ship would take Between a 20ft and 60ft square and a small even more than that how is this still an argument?


Robert Gooding wrote:
A landed tiny ship would take Between a 20ft and 60ft square and a small even more than that how is this still an argument?

I'm convinced that you are either confusing Pathfinder's rules for vehicles, or that you are just glancing through what I'm saying. Vehicles use the same space as a creature and you can read the same from Starfinder's Design Lead here. A vehicle's space is not equal to its given length.

Also, not for nothing, but stop trying to convince me that a small or even tiny starship is somehow bigger than the 150' long, 250 ton creature that functions as a medium starship and occupies a 30' square space that I gave in my examples. It makes absolutely no sense and is actually kind of ridiculous. The Oma obviously fits the criteria for a typically sized colossal monster since it has the typical space of one, and it just seems like you want to pretend that it somehow isn't.


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Unrelated to the riveting discussion about creature and vehicle size on a grid, CRB P.408 provides statistics for various walls, doors, and materials. A "starship bulkhead" wall is typically 5 feet thick and has a hardness of 35 and 2400 HP for each 10x10 section. If you want to treat it as a material, it has a hardness of 35 and 40 HP per inch. A GM could reasonably use the slightly stronger nanocarbon or slightly weaker adamantine alloy instead, if they wanted to stick with roughly comparable numbers on the table.

The "starship interior" wall type has the same HP per inch, though it only has a hardness of 30, making it identical to adamantine alloy. This may be a more suitable option for smaller ships than the sturdier numbers provided by the reinforced starship bulkhead.

These numbers can help figure out how ineffective your attacks are against the hull of a starship, but they won't help you figure out how ineffective you are against its shields. I would recommend skipping weapons and simply casting Disintegrate if you have a shot at the hull, but that's not a practical solution for most characters.

The short version is that you should ask your GM if they're willing to go with whatever you have in mind for the situation as it comes up. If you are the GM, pick the model you like for handling it and wing it from there.


I've been trying to figure out how to work Dragonstar and/or Star Wars into Starfinder. These systems handle vehicles differently from Starfinder. Both use vehicles and starships on a level where characters can interact.


The treat landed ships as objects is in vehicle combat. no sorry i was wrong. it's in Starships on page 292 "shooting Starships shooting starships and regular pc level weapons works on a different and artman and a Starship or cast a spell on it while it's on the ground, the GM should treat the starship as an object a particularly mass of one at that at DM's discretion if the Starship weapons are ever brought the bear against buildings or people they deal veal pinpoint damage equal to 10 times they're listed amount of damage. However Starship weapons are never precise enough to Target a single individual or even small groups and cam if the GM decides be stimulated as deadly hazards instead of weapon attacks." Read word for word.


Not threat I meant thread


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

While I think the object/terrain damage rules are more than a tad overblown, I do think the general answer to the question of 'How do you shoot at a ship with personal weapons' is "You don't". It is entirely up to the GM what effect you can have by doing so, and the answer is very likely going to be "none", because your shooting a very small weapon at a very large and durable vehicle.

In general, I would go with the idea that you can't hurt a starship with personal weapons, in a Starship Combat sense. However, if you get close enough to actually use them ( which is, note, not possible during normal Starship Combat, as hex size is almost always going to be *vastly* beyond the range of any personal weapon )? You could conceivably cause damage to *portions* of the ship. Blast a hole into an airlock, punch out a porthole, shove an anti-tank missile into an engine intake. Stuff like that. These would do little or no structural damage to the ship usually, but they would produce other useful effects, like "I just depressurized their cockpit", or "I can now board the ship".


On page 402 listed underzero gravity bullet pointed weapons

Current weapons have their range increments increased X10 in zero-g. In addition, all ranged weapons no longer have a maximum number of range increments-They're willders simply continue to accrue penalties the further away the target is.


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Using a heavy anti vehicle weapon with the penetrating special feature should work. if you can hit.


ghostunderasheet wrote:

On page 402 listed underzero gravity bullet pointed weapons

Current thrown weapons have their range increments increased X10 in zero-g. In addition, all ranged weapons no longer have a maximum number of range increments-They're willders simply continue to accrue penalties the further away the target is.

edited in correction i missed


Really, though, the only thing that doesn't seem present is rules for making objects like vehicles. If we had those, then a GM could just simply treat, for example, a tiny starship as a huge vehicle, so your weapons would work just fine, provided it can bypass its hardness (5+2xlevel).

I'm still seeing a lot of "you can't because starships are too big and tough" talk. The game already says to treat it as an object. Only the really gigantic ships like capital ships should be treated as terrain, not the smaller ones that your PCs have access to, especially lower tier ships. Honestly, lower tier ships should have no business being essentially invincible to a higher leveled party, anyway.


Sauce987654321 wrote:

Really, though, the only thing that doesn't seem present is rules for making objects like vehicles. If we had those, then a GM could just simply treat, for example, a tiny starship as a huge vehicle, so your weapons would work just fine, provided it can bypass its hardness (5+2xlevel).

I'm still seeing a lot of "you can't because starships are too big and tough" talk. The game already says to treat it as an object. Only the really gigantic ships like capital ships should be treated as terrain, not the smaller ones that your PCs have access to, especially lower tier ships. Honestly, lower tier ships should have no business being essentially invincible to a higher leveled party, anyway.

Ships are allegedly constant hardness, not level dependent. See page 410 (typically hardness 30-35 on the inside, apparently).


quindraco wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:

Really, though, the only thing that doesn't seem present is rules for making objects like vehicles. If we had those, then a GM could just simply treat, for example, a tiny starship as a huge vehicle, so your weapons would work just fine, provided it can bypass its hardness (5+2xlevel).

I'm still seeing a lot of "you can't because starships are too big and tough" talk. The game already says to treat it as an object. Only the really gigantic ships like capital ships should be treated as terrain, not the smaller ones that your PCs have access to, especially lower tier ships. Honestly, lower tier ships should have no business being essentially invincible to a higher leveled party, anyway.

Ships are allegedly constant hardness, not level dependent. See page 410 (typically hardness 30-35 on the inside, apparently).

It would seem so, but in my example I'm using object rules, not rules for terrain/environment. You use walls such as these when you're building terrain, which is technically not an object, which I'm pretty sure is stated on page 272. For any object, we use level dependent hardness, likewise metal vehicles don't have 20 hardness, but rather they use level dependent hardness.


My big thing is I would like some boarding rules for space combat.

Lets say I want a specially developed space craft designed to ram into another craft and breech the hull so that my team can get on-board and initiate "hand-to-hand" combat. How's that work?


Sauce987654321 wrote:
It would seem so, but in my example I'm using object rules, not rules for terrain/environment. You use walls such as these when you're building terrain, which is technically not an object, which I'm pretty sure is stated on page 272. For any object, we use level dependent hardness, likewise metal vehicles don't have 20 hardness, but rather they use level dependent hardness.

8+2*level could work. That would imply ship hulls are mostly aluminum and adamantine alloyed, and as they level, they approach pure adamantine.

Hit points for normal objects are 15+3*level, which matches this theory fairly well.

Here's the breakdown of punching a hole in the ship's hull, assuming 5 feet of hull (this should let you stop a ship from being spaceworthy), using this approach:

Level.....Hardness.....Hull Breach HP
01...........10...........1080
02...........12...........1260
03...........14...........1440
04...........16...........1620
05...........18...........1800
06...........20...........1980
07...........22...........2160
08...........24...........2340
09...........26...........2520
10...........28...........2700
11...........30...........2880
12...........32...........3060
13...........34...........3240
14...........36...........3420
15...........38...........3600
16...........40...........3780
17...........42...........3960
18...........44...........4140
19...........46...........4320
20...........48...........4500


quindraco wrote:
Sauce987654321 wrote:
It would seem so, but in my example I'm using object rules, not rules for terrain/environment. You use walls such as these when you're building terrain, which is technically not an object, which I'm pretty sure is stated on page 272. For any object, we use level dependent hardness, likewise metal vehicles don't have 20 hardness, but rather they use level dependent hardness.

8+2*level could work. That would imply ship hulls are mostly aluminum and adamantine alloyed, and as they level, they approach pure adamantine.

Hit points for normal objects are 15+3*level, which matches this theory fairly well.

Here's the breakdown of punching a hole in the ship's hull, assuming 5 feet of hull (this should let you stop a ship from being spaceworthy), using this approach:

Level.....Hardness.....Hull Breach HP
01...........10...........1080
02...........12...........1260
03...........14...........1440
04...........16...........1620
05...........18...........1800
06...........20...........1980
07...........22...........2160
08...........24...........2340
09...........26...........2520
10...........28...........2700
11...........30...........2880
12...........32...........3060
13...........34...........3240
14...........36...........3420
15...........38...........3600
16...........40...........3780
17...........42...........3960
18...........44...........4140
19...........46...........4320
20...........48...........4500

I guess this can work for some people. For me, personally, I think it's way too many hit points for my taste, as it kind of rubs me the wrong way when I see a first level object with over 1k hit points, lol. The objects I had in mind were vehicles as stand-ins for a starship not in space. The issue is that there are no rules I can find to build your own vehicles.

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