Request: Vehicles


Pathfinder Playtest

Jon Brazer Enterprises

One thing I would like to see in the new edition is a better vehicle system, something not dissimilar to Starfinder in that it goes up in level as the players go up in level. Or maybe even a level range for certain vehicles.

I'm not requesting this be in the core book. Vehicles are not important enough for that, but if it could be better implemented than in 1e.

There's truly no reason for a 20th-level group to have an ox cart. Odds are, the fighter can carry more than the cart can hold. Similarly, 1st level players shouldn't have air ships and mechs (unless that is the premise of the campaign). So, there should be some leveling system.

My best suggestion is that a vehicle of equal level to the party should count as an additional character in the party when determining difficulty of the encounter. This means that 3 person group given a vehicle should be able to act like a 4 person party. Or a 2-person party that each has their own vehicle is a 4-person party.


Im hoping for some really cool pirate ship rules!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

One annoying thing I discovered a while back is that there is no overland travel speed listed for most vehicles. We have their maximum tactical move speed but the rules are completely silent on their overland movement speed. I was kinda shocked when I went to check on the overland movement speed of a carriage and found it didn't exist. It's a massive oversight, and completely needless too since it's literally just one number "here's your hourly overland travel speed". I definitely hope that PF2 vehicles don't make this omission, since overland travel is one of their primary roles!


Overland speed is simple enough to calculate though.

X times 600 ÷ 5,280 gives you Miles Per Hour.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

Overland speed is simple enough to calculate though.

X times 600 ÷ 5,280 gives you Miles Per Hour.

This doesn't work. The maximum tactical speed of vehicles presumes the draft animals are running, and overland travel rules are clear you cannot run at full speed. Moreover, the handful of vehicles that do have defined overland travel speeds seem to have no relation to their tactical move speeds. For instance, a wagon has maximum tactical move speed of twice the speed of the draft animal (100 ft if it's a horse) but an overland move speed of 2 miles per hour (which is slower than walking).


Dasrak wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

Overland speed is simple enough to calculate though.

X times 600 ÷ 5,280 gives you Miles Per Hour.

This doesn't work. The maximum tactical speed of vehicles presumes the draft animals are running, and overland travel rules are clear you cannot run at full speed. Moreover, the handful of vehicles that do have defined overland travel speeds seem to have no relation to their tactical move speeds. For instance, a wagon has maximum tactical move speed of twice the speed of the draft animal (100 ft if it's a horse) but an overland move speed of 2 miles per hour (which is slower than walking).

Basic cursory math would suggest that the final calculated speed is 1/5 of the total, meaning a "divide by 5" clause at the end of my equation would be correct.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:


Basic cursory math would suggest that the final calculated speed is 1/5 of the total, meaning a "divide by 5" clause at the end of my equation would be correct.

Except that other vehicles have very different ratios. For instance, with a keelboat you'd divide by 3, with a longship you'd divide by 4, and with a rowboat you'd divide by 2. The numbers are completely arbitrary and all over the map, leading us back to the GM just having to pull a number out of his hat and stick with it.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'd be fine with more support here, although compared to starfinder I don't think it is as crucial. But along this lines I would like to see mounted travel overhauled, since that seems a bit more relevant to most campaigns

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

I would like vehicle support in the game, but don't want scaling vehicle levels like in starfinder. What I do want to see in core though is that every vehicle in the equipment lists have hp, hardness, etc, and basic rules for damaging and destroying them. Same for siege equipment.

Jon Brazer Enterprises

MMCJawa wrote:
I'd be fine with more support here, although compared to starfinder I don't think it is as crucial. But along this lines I would like to see mounted travel overhauled, since that seems a bit more relevant to most campaigns

Its only not critical if there are no rules for it. Once there are rules for it, it becomes a notable part of a game's system.

  • Someone standing on the back of a chariot firing arrows: since that person is not moving, can they use an action to aim instead or does the fact that the chariot is moving require an action to be spent on not falling off?
  • Can you use expertise in controlling a ship as an attack if you are ramming something?
  • What kind of expertise do you need drop rocks from an ewok hang glider?

And that's just the mundane vehicles. Vehicle combat can be just as interesting and dynamic as guy swinging a sword if it is given proper support. But there has to be some way of saying that vehicle X is way too powerful for a 1st-level group while vehicle Y is about right. Even if it "requires X level of expertise to control it without incurring a penalty."

Community / Forums / Paizo / Archive / Pathfinder / Playtests & Prerelease Discussions / Pathfinder Playtest / Request: Vehicles All Messageboards