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Ships of Velyri

Ship Technology

  The world of Velyri has TL4 galleys and sailing ships. The oar-powered vessels include: galleys (square or lateen sails, typically single masted, clinker built, often with fore and sterncastles), longships (square sail, single masted, clinker built), and balingers (square sail, single mast, no forecastle, shallow draft, clinker built). The sailing vessels include: dhows (single or double masted, lateen rigged), caravels (two to four masts, mostly lateen rigged, but often with the foremast square rigged, also had forecastles and stern castles, clinker built), carracks (three masts, fore and mainmast square rigged, mizzenmast was lateen rigged, high fore and stern castles, clinker built). Caravels and carracks are primarily used for trading or cargo; oared ships are used for river trading, military ships of the line, and pirates.   The goblins of J'radi have developed a few other technologies regarding ships. They have figured out carvel hulls, which are more rigid and can make the ship a bit faster. They have taken the carrack and modified it into the galleon, stretching it’s length, adjusting the length to beam ratio, and lowering the fore and stern castles for weatherliness. They also have figured out a couple of new sail plans, which have given them the schooner rig, spinnaker, and the fully rigged ship (brig, brigantine, and barque). They haven’t developed the galleon farther than that, yet. They have figured out that sails act as wings, providing lift, though (which is how they developed their new sail plans). They also have the fastest small sailboats (spinnaker rig).   The stats below combine both in-world notes, and Earth historical notes. The historical notes were left in for context/interest, although they are largely irrelevant for Velyri.  

Ship Stats

 

Dhows

This style of ship was originally developed long ago by the Elves. They are clinker-built, lateen-rigged, and come in a variety of sizes. Elven designs (as opposed to other races’ designs of this class of vessel) are typically artistically decorated, and, like most Elven objects, are considered works of art.   The Dwarven nation Kingdom of the Lake uses modified dhows, copied from the Elves, except they use junk-style battened sails.   Dhow, (90’, two masted) (Attatyulma)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 160†
Hnd/SR: -3/2
HT: 11c
Move: 0,2/5
Ewt: 34t
Lwt: 128t
Load: 94t
SM: +8
Occ: 20
DR: 3
Range: -
Cost: $27K
Locations: 2M, O, S
Draft: 5’
  Dhow (60’, single mast) (Eryatyulma)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 138†
Hnd/SR: -3/2
HT: 11c
Move: 0,2/5
Ewt: 20t
Lwt: 70t
Load: 50t
SM: +6
Occ: 12
DR: 2
Range: -
Cost: $17K
Locations: M, O
Draft: 4’
  The word dhow has been used to describe any of various lateen-rigged sailing vessels that were used in the Red Sea and along the coasts of the Indian Ocean. Dhows are associated with Arab traders in the mind of Westerners, but the vessel was constructed with timber from India and the word itself may be of Swahili origin. The Arabs that sail these craft refer to dhows by names specific to each type, determined principally by size and hull design, but the Western convention of identifying a vessel by its sail plan mean that the four principal types and various subtypes are all familiar to us merely as dhows.   These vessels typically had a raised poop, a raked stem, and one or two masts. They ranged in size from 300+ ton baghlahs and boums to jalboots of only 20 tons. The most common are probably sambuks, about 50 tons burthen (displacing about 70 tons). The two examples given here are a two-masted baghlah of moderate size and a single-masted sambuk with a crew of twelve, both fairly typical for a trading dhow in their size. Note that the statistics assume that the vessel is loaded with cargo. A dhow carrying no cargo can reach speeds of 11-17 knots (Move 0,3/7 or more), but is very hard to handle with such a small crew, suffering a -1 penalty to its Hnd. The draft will also be about 1-2‘ less.   Optional Modifiers: A dhow is not intended to sail against the wind and will make much less speed on that point of sail than a comparable vessel with a more versatile sail plan. Dhows also suffer a -1 to Hnd on any attempt to sail windward. Attempts to tack or veer a dhow are at a -2 to Hnd due to the limited crew size and the lack of provisions for such actions in the sail plan.   Notes: A length of 90‘ and a tonnage of 90 were somewhat incompatible with a crew of only 12. Also, the larger dhows had two masts by the time of the Age of Sail. The speed was fine for an unladen racing dhow (such as those used in the modern al-Shandagha race in Dubai, UAE), but much too optimistic for a laden merchant dhow.  

Sloops

A sloop is a sailing boat with a single mast[1] typically meaning one headsail in front of the mast, and one mainsail aft of (behind) the mast. This is called a fore-and-aft rig, and can be rigged as a Bermuda rig with triangular sails fore and aft, or as a gaff-rig with triangular foresails and a gaff rigged mainsail. Sailboats can be classified according to type of rig, and so a sailboat may be a sloop, catboat, cutter, ketch, yawl, or schooner.[2] A sloop usually has only one headsail, although an exception is the Friendship sloop, which is usually gaff-rigged with a bowsprit and multiple headsails.[3] If the vessel has two or more headsails, the term cutter may be used,[4] especially if the mast is stepped further towards the back of the boat.   After the cat rig which has only a single sail,[6] the Bermuda rig is the simplest sailing rig configurations. It is the most popular yacht rigging[7] because it is easier to sail with a smaller crew or even single-handed, it is cheaper since it has less hardware than more complex rigs, and it sails well into the wind. A limitation is that when a boat gets over 45 feet in length, the sails become so large that they are difficult to handle.[6]   The headsail can be masthead-rigged or fractional-rigged. On a masthead-rigged sloop, the forestay (on which the headsail is carried) attaches at the top of the mast. On a fractional-rigged sloop, the forestay attaches to the mast at a point below the top. A sloop may use a bowsprit, a spar that projects forward from the bow.   Sloops are a very common ship type, found all over Velyri.   Sloop (21‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 43 †
Hnd/SR: 0/2
HT: 12c
Move: 1/3
Ewt: 0.6t
Lwt: 2.4t
Load: 1.8t
SM: +4
Occ: 3+3
DR: 2
Range: -
Cost: $5K
Locations: M
Draft: 3’
    Cutter (36‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 63 †
Hnd/SR: 0/3
HT: 12c
Accel/Move: 1/5
Ewt: 0.6t
Lwt: 2.4t
Load: 1.8t
SM: +5
Occ: 2+2 (2+6, assuming 4 sleep above deck, which isn’t really doable unless at anchor)
DR: 2
Range: -
Cost: $15K
Locations: Body, Mast/Rigging (-2 to hit)
Draft: 5’
  Modifiers: A cutter is optimized for close-hauled sailing and receives a +1 bonus to Hnd when sailing windward. This can only reduce a penalty, never provide a net bonus. A cutter is also able to maintain a higher speed close-hauled than other vessels of similar size and sail area. Bermuda rigs are a bit better sailing close to the wind, but they have a smaller sailing area, so the speeds are about equivalent. For a given sail area a gaff rig has a shorter mast than a bermudian rig. In short-ended craft with full body, heavy displacement and moderate ballast ratio, it is difficult to set enough sail area in the bermudian rig without a mast of excessive height and a center of effort (CE) too high for the limited stability of the hull. Because of its low aspect ratio, the gaff rig is less prone to stalling if oversheeted than something taller and narrower. Due to its shorter mast and lower Center of Effort, its SR is 3, rather than a sloop’s 2. (I.e., you can fail a bit more without too much adverse effects.)   Trader Sloop (50‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 153 †
Hnd/SR: -2/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0,3/6
Ewt: 28t
Lwt: 64t
Load: 36t
SM: +6
Occ: 43
DR: 10/5
Range: -
Cost: $56K
Locations: M, O, S
Draft: 7’
  Large Trader Sloop (75’)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 189 †
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0,3/6,25
Ewt: 53t
Lwt: 120t
Load: 67t
SM: +7
Occ: 75
DR: 10/5
Range: -
Cost: $106K
Locations: M, O, S
Draft: 8’
  These are typical Age of Sail sloops used by pirates in the Caribbean. The term sloop describes a single-masted vessel with a fore-and-aft rig and the mast further forward than the mast of a cutter. The word acquired connotations of tactical role later on and is today used for a vessel mid-way in size between a corvette and a frigate, but is here used in its original sense.   The sail plan of a sloop is designed to optimise performance when sailing against the wind (known as sailing windward or close-hauled), but also provides a workable overall compromise at all points of sailing. This makes it manoeuvrable and able to escape from ships with a larger sail area by turning into the wind. That quality, combined with a shallow draft, made it a desirable vessel for pirates in the Carribean ocean who were frequently hunted by much more powerful naval vessels. A pirate sloop has a larger crew than a similar merchant vessel, in order to be able to man the guns and board enemy ships.   Two examples are provided. One is a fairly typical “pirate” sloop (50’), able to surprise and intimidate a merchant vessel but overmatched in a fight with nearly any naval vessel afloat. Generally, a sloop of this size armed for piracy or combat would carry 6-10 ballistae. Edward Teach‘s (the infamous Blackbeard the Pirate of TV and novel legend) Adventure might well have been similar to this ship. The larger one is at the top of the size range for sloops. It might carry anything up to a 15 ballistae. The Cost and Weight of the vessels do not include any possible armament.   Optional Modifiers: A sloop is optimised for close-hauled sailing and receives a +1 bonus to Hnd when sailing windward. This can only reduce a penalty, never provide a net bonus. A sloop is also able to maintain a higher speed close-hauled than other vessels of similar size and sail area. The size of the crew also gives a +1 to rapid tacking or veering of the vessel, but this is negated by the lateen sails which give a -1 to the same actions. The crew size can be reduced to 25 for the smaller craft and 45 for the larger one for a merchant sloop that does not carry as many ballistae or expect to board enemies.  

Galleons (Early versions only, Jrade only)

  Galleons were large, multi-decked sailing ships used primarily by the nations of Europe from the 16th to 18th centuries. They had three to five masts, with the foremast and mainmast being square-rigged and the last mast using lateen sails. The hull was usually carvel-built. The term ‘galleon’ has been used for vessels ranging in size from around 100 tons to the largest ships afloat in their days which could reach 2000 tons displacement.   Galleons were an evolution of the earlier Carrack and Nao ship types, combined with influences from caravel design which resulted in more slender hull lines than those ponderous vessels (which could have a length-to-beam ratio of 2:1). The typical length-to-beam ratio of a galleon was 3.5:1 or greater and the height from keel to gunwales was half of the beam. Galleons were longer, lower and narrower than the earlier vessels and had a square tuck stern instead of a round tuck. One of the most recognisable features of the galleon was the ‘snout’ or head which projected forward from the bows below the level of the forecastle.   Galleons were used both for commerce and warfare from their invention. The popular modern image of them is as Spanish treasure galleons (the gargantuan Manila Galleons) bringing home gold and jewels from the New World, but during much of that time they were already eclipsed as front-line vessels. The Spanish, though, did retain some galleons in use until the 19th century.   Optional Modifiers: Typical galleons, with their high castles on deck, were more stable than the Carrack, but unweatherly compared to later ships. Penalising them by -1 to Hnd (and at the GM’s option also -1 to SR for ships with extremely high centres of gravity) in high winds would not be unfair. They are also poor sailors to windward and suffer a -1 to Hnd when attempting to sail close-hauled.   Galleon, medium (130’)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 295†
Hnd/SR: -3/5
HT: 12c
Move: 0.07/4.5
Ewt: 200t
Lwt: 490t
Load: 390t
SM: +8
Occ: 45+70
DR: 30/15
Range: -
Cost: $390K
Locations: 3M, O, 2S
Draft: 9’
  This galleon is fairly typical for an ordinary Portuguese galleon and can be used to represent ships of nearly any nationality. In this game’s context, it is a “cutting edge technology”, invented by the clever shipwrights in Jrade, and their construction and engineering are trade secrets. There are very few of them built, but can be found in the northern areas of the continent Endrica in the hands of wealthy Jrade traders.  

Viking Ships

  These ships are likely to be the most often seen ships, especially around the coasts and in rivers. Knarrer, Karves, and Byrding are the most common, and are primarily used for trade and cargo hauling. The longship types are used as war vessels, anti piracy, and tariff collection at seaports. The military also uses karves, especially as artillery platforms and transport.   Not all vessels used by the Scandinavians of the so-called Viking Age were dragon-prowed longships. I realise that this is shocking and nearly as painful as the news that we didn‘t wear horned helmets and charge into battle naked and screaming, but it‘s the truth nonetheless.   The Danish and Norse were great traders and it is unlikely that most of their legendary voyages were made in longships. Those longboats were meant for warfare and carried a crew much too large to be practical in a trading or exploration vessel. Even when a large group of men set sail to settle a new land, it‘s probable that they did so in the seaworthy and versatile karves, not in dragon-prowed longboats that could not carry enough food and water for journeys of that length.   All Norse boats and ships of the period are constructed using the same clinker-built method. The keel is usually made of oak, with pine used for masts and decking. The most common vessels are boats known as færings (four-oarings), which literally refers to the number of oars used to propel the boat. They were used as fishing boats and sometimes carried by larger vessels as ship‘s boats. A larger færing is called a sexæring (six-oaring) Both types can reach lengths of over 20‘ and carry a similar single-mast as Norse ships.   Larger vessels may be broadly (for the purposes of gaming, at least), by divided into three types of ships. Knarrer and smaller trading craft such as the byrðing had rounded keels and higher freeboards, being designed primarily as sailing ships that carried cargo and having oars only as a back-up to the sails. Karves were all-purpose craft, adaptable for both war and trade. They were long and narrow, but not as narrow as a swift-running longship. The freeboard was also higher than on most longships.   The most famous vessels of the Vikings, the longships, ranged in size from the small snekkjas at just over a 50‘ to the monstrous 150‘ long Serpent-Ships of kings and great lords. No wreck of a longship over 120‘ long has yet been found, but enough evidence for their existence can be found in contemporary sagas to make it credible that such ships were used in warfare, at least.   Byrðing (46‘) TL: 3
ST/HP: 86
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/5
EWt: 5t
LWt: 9.6t
Load: 4.6t
SM: +5
Occ: 6
DR: 3
Range: F
Cost: $5K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 3‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.03/2.5.
  Byrðings are coastal trading vessels, probably used in the Baltic and the waters around Denmark. It is the kind of boat that might be used by a well-to-do farmer to travel to market. It has two to three oars on either side and a small open hold for cargo or personal belongings. This example is based on the Skuldelev 3 wreck, reconstructed as the Roar Ege.   Optional Modifiers: Byrðings are a small craft, open-decked with a low freeboard, and not intended for deep sea sailing. As such, Hnd penalties for weather and high seas are increased by 1 each. These penalties are cumulaltive when appropriate.   Knarr (52‘) TL: 3
ST/HP: 115
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6
EWt: 12t
LWt: 36t
Load: 24t
SM: +6
Occ: 8
DR: 5
Range: F
Cost: $12K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 4.2‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.02/2.
  A knarr is a versatile, fast, seaworthy and cheap merchant vessel that can operate almost anywhere in the world. As such, it dominated trade over a large part of the known world for a very long time. Knarrer routinely crossed the North Atlantic carrying livestock and stores to Norse settlements in Iceland and Greenland as well as trading goods to trading posts in the British Isles, Continental Europe and possibly the Middle East.   The knarr was a merchant vessel and as such did not carry enough rowers to be as fast and manouverable under oar as longhips. There were only four oars on board, for example. As sailing ships, however, knarrer were exceptionally fast and only needed a very small crew. This example is based on the wreck Skuldelev 1, reproduced as the vessel Ottar.   While knarrer were more comfortable than longships, long journeys in them still subjected their crew to hardship nearly undreamed of for a modern man. It was far from unknown for a large proportion of settlers‘ ships to be lost in transit and no man could be sure of returning to shore when he set sail on a knarr.   Optional Modifiers: Knarrer are amazingly seaworthy and capable of crossing great oceans, but they remain an open-decked vessel with little in the way of shelter. As such, any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1.   Karve (77‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 141†
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/7
EWt: 22t
LWt: 71t
Load: 34t (+5t ballast)
SM: +7
Occ: 35+35
DR: 5
Range: F
Cost: $44K
Locations: M, O
Draft: 3.3‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.1/3.
  An all-purpose vessel useful for both war and trade, it has sixteen oars on each side and usually carries two sets of oarsmen that can spell each other at the oar. Karves are almost as seaworthy as knarrer and have the additional benefit of being a warship. As such, they are a very good vessel to go viking (raiding). Their cargo capacity is enough for the crew, weapons and armour and perhaps some seized loot on the way back. There is no proper hold and little shelter, however, as in longships.   This vessel is based on the Gokstad wreck. Many reconstructions of it have been made, including the Viking and Íslendingur, both of which have sailed across the Atlantic to America. This demonstrates the seaworthiness of the design.   Optional Modifiers: Since karves are a open-decked vessels, any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.   Karve (80‘) TL: 3
ST/HP: 141†
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/7
EWt: 22t
LWt: 80t
Load: 53t (+5t ballast)
SM: +7
Occ: 35+35
DR: 5
Range: F
Cost: $44K
Locations: M, O
Draft: 5.5‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.1/3.
  This is the replica Íslendingur, with a deep draft for a Viking vessel and a much larger displacement than other replicas. This does not appear to affect the seaworthiness of the craft and enables it to carry enough food and water for a long journey.   Optional Modifiers: Since karves are a open-decked vessels, any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.  

Longships

  The Tondene Imperium primarily uses longships for it’s policing and military functions. Snekkja are the most common in the river byways: they are fast and maneuverable, and have a tight turning radius. Some have a bow-mounted ballista. Tariff collectors will also use this ship. Larger longships are used for coastal defense.   Not all longships are dragon ships, though nearly all dragon ships were longships (those few that were not would have been karves). Longship describes a shape of hull while dragon ship refers to a social and tactical role, i.e. the ships that went raiding. A ship could be a dragon ship while it carried out a raid on Ireland and then remove the prow to sail into London as a peaceful merchant.   As the existence of a dragon prow does not make a difference to the GURPS stats of a vehicle, I have chosen to present each type and ignore the consideration of whether or not that is considered a dragon ship.   Snekkja, Danish (54‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 63†
Hnd/SR: -2/2
HT: 12f
Move: 0.2/7
EWt: 2t
LWt: 6t
Load: 6500 lbs. (+1500 lbs. ballast)
SM: +6
Occ: 27+3
DR: 3
Range: F
Cost: $6K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 1.6‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.2/4.
  The smallest vessel to be termed a longship, the snekkja is swift and handy. Its shallow draft allows it to operate where others ships cannot go and it is relatively cheap for a warship. Unlike some larger longships, a snekkja does not carry a complete fresh team of oarsmen and thus cannot maintain her speed under oars as long. It is also too small to carry supplies for a long trip.   While larger and more seaworthy examples existed in Norway and formed a major part of many invasion fleets to England, those vessels gave up some of the advantages of the design, such as the shallow draft. This then, is a Danish snekkja that is decidedly superior in the more protected waters of the Baltic, but somewhat too light to be taken for long voyages over the Atlantic. It based on the wreck Skuldelev 5, which has been reproduced as the Helge Ask and Sebbe Als.   Optional Modifiers: As a small open-decked craft, any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1 and due to its low freeboard; any Hnd penalties for high seas are increased by 2. These penalties are cumulative, if appropriate. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.   Snekkja, Norse (70‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 95†
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/7
EWt: 6.6t
LWt: 14t
Load: 5.2t (+2.2t ballast)
SM: +7
Occ: 31+4
DR: 3
Range: F
Cost: $14K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 2.25‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.2/3.5.
  This is an example of the larger king of snekkja, a vessel that might have been used for longer sea voyages. The longships of William the Conqueror would have been very similar to this ship. It’s based on the Ladby wreck, reproduced as the Imme Gram, but differs from that reproduction in having only 15 pairs of oars (instead of the sixteen that were chosen for that replica).   Optional Modifiers: As a small open-decked craft, any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1 and due to its low freeboard, any Hnd penalties for high seas are increased by 1. These penalties are cumulative, if appropriate. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.   Leidangskip (100‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 115†
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6
EWt: 12t
LWt: 35t
Load: 23t
SM: +8
Occ: 45+45
DR: 7
Range: F
Cost: $24K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 3.5‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.15/3.
  Unlike the other vessels provided here, this ship is not reconstructed from an archaeological find. Instead, it is a projection of what a standard longship of this size might be like, based on other wrecks and contemporary documentary evidence. This ship would form a standard part of Norwegian coastal defence and warfare, as the ship that each group of men was required to maintain for their own use when called out (similar to an Anglo-Saxon fyrd, but on water).   As such, it has room for twenty oarsmen on each side. It is broader and has a higher freeboard than the faster skeide, being classified as a busse (longship with a broader keel). This makes it able to carry more supplies and men than its more narrow-hulled cousin, but costs it some speed.   Optional Modifiers: Any Hnd penalties for weather or high seas are increased by 1 because of the open-deck and low freeboard of the longship. These penalties are cumulative, if appropriate. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.   Skeide (98‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 107†
Hnd/SR: -3/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/7.5
EWt: 9.6t
LWt: 25t
Load: 15.4t
SM: +7
Occ: 61+20
DR: 5
Range: F
Cost: $30K
Locations: M, O
Draft: 3‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.2/4.
  The skeide is a narrow-hulled and fast vessel built purely for warfare. It cannot sail long distances without revictualing (research showed that more than 5 days of water for the crew are prohibitively heavy) and while it can survive Atlantic gales, no captain would welcome the chance to prove it. But it is a marvellously fast vessel.   The ship has thirty oars on each side, each one manned by a single man. It does not carry a full replacement crew, but can manage enough extra oarsmen to allow some respite. As with all Viking vessels, though, the primary form of propulsion outside of battle is the sail.   This ship is based on the Skuldelev 2, reproduced as the Havhingsten fra Glendalough (The Sea Stallion from Glendalough), which is the holder of the current speed record for a Viking ship replica (13.4 knots), although claims abound of faster speed achieved by some of the competiors.   Optional Modifiers: Any Hnd penalties for weather or high seas are increased by 1 because of the open-deck and low freeboard of the longship. These penalties are cumulative, if appropriate. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.   Serpent Ship (150‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 190†
Hnd/SR: -4/3
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 54t
LWt: 118t
Load: 64t
SM: +8
Occ: 140+140
DR: 10
Range: F
Cost: $120K
Locations: M,O
Draft: 5‘
Notes: Listed move is for under sail. When being rowed without a sail, Move is 0.1/2.
  A Serpent-Ship is a huge longship that usually serves as the flagship for a Norse leader. They are attested to in writings from the 13th century and purportedly existed as far back as the 10th century. Even so, their heyday was after the Viking Age proper had passed.   There is some dispute about their precise form, in that they appear to have carried as many oars as smaller longships, but unequivocally had a larger crew. This probably means a broader keel, but by how much is not certain. The freeboard was also reputed to be much higher than on other longships, according to one source ‘as high as a merchant vessel’. I have chosen to make this ship very broad and heavy compared to other longships, reasoning that cargo capacity and the ability to serve as a fighting platform for a large number of warriors trumped weatherly lines or a racy keel.   This vessel is meant to represent Ólaf Tryggjason’s flagship Ormr inn langi or a similar vessel for a later king. It carries 34 oars on each side of the ship and two men handle each oar. A full reserve crew stands by and serves as warriors in battle.   Optional Modifiers: Any Hnd penalties for weather are increased by 1 because of the open-deck. Hnd under oars gets a +1 bonus when turn radius might influence it.  

Cogs

  These ships are common all over Endrica; they carry a lot of cargo and are found throughout all of the main trade routes. Some can be seen on the larger rivers.   The vessels known as cogs probably trace their descent to open-decked Frisian coasters and first appeared around the mid-10th century. Many of the features of the early cogs were probably borrowed from Viking vessels, but the clumsy transports eventually outcompeted the sleek Viking ships and became the premier vessel of the North Atlantic and Baltic.   Until relatively recently, there was not enough evidence to reconstruct what historical cogs might have looked like. Around the beginning of the 20th century, people living in the areas were cogs had been extensively used were familiar with the term, but applied it indiscriminately to any merchant vessel of more than a century old design. It is only with archaeological finds such as the Bremen Hanse Cog and a number of later discoveries that a definite picture has formed of the primary transport ship of northern Europe during the medieval period.   Cogs were round-bellied transport ships that could carry a lot of cargo for a relatively small crew. The length-to-breadth-ratio was usually close to three to one. They had a high-boarded hull with a steep stem and straight keel. A solid, continuous deck was installed to protect the cargo from the elements and a ship intended for war might have one or two castles on deck.   Features common to all cogs include a single mast rigged with a yard sail, clinker outer planking at the sides of the hull, straight stem and sternpost (as opposed to the rounded Viking stem) and strong cross-beams, which usually protruded through the ship's sides and served to hold the sides together. The hull was built of overlapping plates of oak fastened together with iron rivets. Caulking was generally tarred moss that was inserted into curved grooves, covered with wooden laths, and secured by metal staples called sintels.   The first cogs still had an old rudder on the starboard side, much like Viking ships, but this was later on was replaced by a stern rudder. As the stern rudder is considered an important development in the history of sailing ships and one of the chief advancements of the cog class, no vessel is presented here with an older fashioned starboard rudder.   Optional Modifiers: While the clinker-built method makes it relatively easy to armour the sides and decking of the vessel simply by adding more timber, the hull is usually weak. As a result, the DR of a cog struck below the waterline (such as by reefs or rams) is halved (if two DR scores are given, use the higher DR before halving) and any HT checks caused by underwater damage receive a -1 penalty. Also, cogs are square-rigged, which makes them very difficult to sail into the wind. Unless a greater penalty is given for the vessel in question, Hnd is -1 to windward and speed is slower than a vessel with a lateen-sail or a full rig.   Cog, Early (60‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 192†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 55t
LWt: 91t
Load: 36t
SM: +6
Occ: 12
DR: 12/8
Range: -
Cost: $44K
Locations: M, O, s
Draft: 6‘
  This is an example of the kind of cog that might be seen in the Baltic and the Atlantic around the Low Countries between the years of 1000-1200 AD. It is an inefficient design compared to later cogs and compared to knarrer it is heavy, slow and expensive. But the closed-deck provides added comfort to the crew for long voyages and protects the cargo from wave and weather, which is an important consideration when sailing the Atlantic Ocean.   Optional Modifiers: This vessel has a more primative square-rig configuration than later cogs and consequently Hnd is -2 to windward and speed is negliable compared to a lateen-sail or a full-rigged ship.   Cog, Standard (70‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 186†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/3.5
EWt: 50t
LWt: 133t
Load: 66t (+17t ballast)
SM: +7
Occ: 14
DR: 15/10
Range: -
Cost: $40K
Locations: M, O, 2s
Draft: 7‘
  This was the primary trade vessel of the 13th and 14th century, with some variation in size. While the earlier models could ill compete with knarrer on other points than comfort, these vessels can transport much heavier loads and hence enjoy efficiency of scale. In the 14th century, this vessel is somewhat outdated compared to the best cogs of the day, but it remained in use among people whose shipwrights were not as accomplished as those of the Hanseatic cities.   Hanse Cog, Small (50‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 171†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 37t
LWt: 64t
Load: 27t
SM: +6
Occ: 10
DR: 14/9
Range: -
Cost: $30K
Locations: M, O, s
Draft: 6‘
  Hansa (or the Hanseatic League) was an alliance of trading cities and their guilds that established and maintained trade monopoly along the coast of Northern Europe, from the Baltic to the North Sea and inland. Their power reached its zenith during the 14th and 15th century, but most historians place the beginning of the League around 1158 AD (even though the name Hanseatic League is first mentioned in 1267 AD) and it existed in some form until the end of the 16th century. At its core, the power and riches of the Hansa cities stemmed from the mercantile shipping that they controlled.   This vessel and others of similar size were the standard trade vessels of the Hanseatic League in the 13th century. As cogs went, they were fast and shallow-drafted, but they were still not well-suited for anything but bulk transport. Undoubtedly some were used in warfare, but vessels of this size do not appear to have been purpose-built as warships.   Hanse Cog, Medium (77‘) (Jrade only; it’s a precursor to their galleons)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 178†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 44t
LWt: 132t
Load: 88t
SM: +7
Occ: 16
DR: 15/10
Range: -
Cost: $39K
Locations: M, O, s
Draft: 7‘
  The continual evolution of the cog led to larger and larger vessels being built. This is an intermediate form of cog, with most of the vessel constructed using traditional clinker-built techniques, but the keel laid with carvel-built method. As a result, it’s light and handy compared to other cogs. It’s one of the most advanced hull shapes found in vessels that still remain recognisable ‘cogs’ and do not fit into the ‘holk’ category.   Many of the wrecks that have been found have been around this size and even during times when larger ships reached twice or three times the tonnage, a vessel such as this was probably the workhorse of the Hansa. It is very cheap for its capability and provides a stable archery platform if pressed into battle.   If sold outside the Hansa cities before the year 1400, it would probably go at a premium of 20%-50%, since the carvel hull represents the bleeding edge of technology. After the beginning of the 15th century, it slowly decreases in price as carvel-built holks become more widespread. Optional Modifiers: Due to the carvel-built keel of this vessel, it uses its full DR 10 against underwater damage and does not receive a penalty on HT checks versus such attacks or hazards.   Hanse Cog, Large (70‘) (Jrade only; it’s a precursor to their galleons)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 248†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.05/3.5
EWt: 120t
LWt: 320t
Load: 200t
SM: +8
Occ: 20
DR: 20/15
Range: -
Cost: $96K
Locations: M, O, 2S
Draft: 9‘
  The ability to ship more cargo with a small crew led to an ever-increasing demand for larger cogs. Technical limitations of clinker-built hulls made this an expensive initial investment, but the savings on labour costs and economies of scale made up for it. But there were hard limits on how big one could make a classic cog. That eventually led to the abandonment of the cog as a transport vessel and its replacement with the holk, a carvel-built ship that incorporated many features of the cog into its design.   Optional Modifiers: The tall castles impose a penalty of -1 to Hnd if the vessel is exposed to high winds from the sides.   War Cog (80‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 290†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 13c
Move: 0.05/3
EWt: 190t
LWt: 370t
Load: 180t
SM: +8
Occ: 40+140
DR: 25/15
Range: -
Cost: $152K
Locations: M, O, 2S
Draft: 9‘
  A large cog fitted as a warship. It features a thicker hull and a high sterncastle and forecastle that serve as firing platforms for crossbowmen or archers. While this is hardly a fast vessel, it can nevertheless be very hard for lower-decked vessels to board or sink.   Optional Modifiers: The tall castles impose a penalty of -1 to Hnd/SR if the vessel is exposed to high winds from the sides.   Cog Greatship (218‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 557†
Hnd/SR: -5/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.02/2
EWt: 1350t
LWt: 2750t
Load: 1400t
SM: +10
Occ: 200+200
DR: 30/20
Range: -
Cost: $1,296K
Locations: M, O, 2S
Draft: 21‘
  When the English warship Grace Dieu was built in 1418, it was the largest vessel in the world. It was certainly by far the largest clinker-built vessel ever attempted. Unfortunately, it never saw action and was quickly beached. It ended its days by burning down to the waterline after being struck by lightning.   Opinions are divided on whether it would have been useful in battle or not. It was certainly large enough to carry an enormous mass of soldiers (if accommodations are not needed, thousands can be packed aboard) and the imposing castles reached over 50’ from the waterline, which suggests that it would have been hard to do any harm to any archers inside them without cannon. On the other hand, the Grace Dieu was likely slow and sluggish, which might have made it irrelevant in battle. If the enemy could manoeuvre around it, the battle might be over before it could make its presence felt.   Optional Modifiers: The tall castles impose a penalty of -1 to Hnd/SR if the vessel is exposed to high winds from the sides.  

Holks (Jrade only; it’s a precursor to their galleons)

  Holks were a type of medieval sea craft somewhat similar to a cog and appear to have mostly replaced them during the 15th century. Many sources, however, still refer to holks as cogs or improved cogs and there is little archaeological evidence of precisely what the holks looked like. Their basic shape appears to have been a wide and heavy cargo vessel with curved stem and stern, making for a distinctive banana-like profile. They had the same kind of high castles as found on the cogs and the freeboard was similarly high. Later types of holks used a sail-plan that is identified with the vessel, a foremast with a square sail and a lateen sail aft, maybe with a square-rigged mainsail if the vessel was three-masted.   The ancestors of the holks were probably river or canal boats known as hulcs, reverse-clinker built and tracing its ancestry far into the past. At first not well adapted for deep sea travel, the vessel type was already quite advanced from its roots when carvel-built technology appeared in northwest Europe. Makers of hulcs were well placed to adopt the new method for their vessel and the resulting hull type is now known as the holk.   In the fourteenth century the holk existed alongside the cog. The divergent lines of development eventually led to the holk rivalling and eventually supplanting the cog as a major load carrier in the medieval economy, but the causes of that remain obscure. Certainly it is possible, as here is posited, that the carvel construction adopted for holks was better adapted to building larger and stronger hulls than the old clinker-built method. But it is far from certain, and in any event, some later cogs were built with a similar method combined with clinker-built techniques. But whatever the reason for the change, much of northwest Europe used the holk as its primary transport vessel until the advent of caravels and carracks. Even then, elements of holk design found their way into the design of those carracks and thereby later ships such as the galleon and full-rigged ships of the line.   Optional Modifiers: The weakest points of a holk’s hull would be the stem and stern. The usual solution was the support it with clinker-built additions, but these areas would still remain weaker than the carvel-built main hull and keel. Since the structure of most hulls tends to reinforce the stem, the frontal DR of the vessel is unaffected, but the lower DR given applies to the stern as well as the thinner superstructure decking.   While they were better sailors than their predecessors, the cogs, Holks still had a very high centre of gravity. A gale blowing from the side should penalise SR by -1. All holks with two or more masts have one lateen sail which aids them in sailing to windward, but the speed on that tack is still less than that of a completely lateen-rigged vessel or a later ship-rig.   Holk, Early (70‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 172†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 40t
LWt: 97t
Load: 57t
SM: +7
Occ: 14
DR: 15/8
Range: -
Cost: $41K
Locations: M, O, 2S
Draft: 7‘
  A contemporary of the cog, this holk is a single-masted vessel that there is no clear reason to prefer over a cog of similar size. It is not much faster than a normal cog and the hull is only slightly stronger for its weight. But it is nevertheless competitive with the best vessels of the day, depending on the personal tastes of captain and craftsman.   Optional Modifiers: A square sail makes it difficult to sail into the wind. Hnd is -1 to windward and speed is slower than a vessel with a lateen-sail or a full rig.   Holk, Transitional (85‘)
TL: 3
ST/HP: 221†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.15/4.5
EWt: 84t
LWt: 204t
Load: 120t
SM: +7
Occ: 16
DR: 20/10
Range: -
Cost: $82K
Locations: 2M, O, 2S
Draft: 8‘
  This is a two-masted vessel that appeared near the turn of the 14th and 15th century. As such, it is marked TL 3, but continued in use during TL4. It is a reliable cargo hauler with uninspiring lines by later standards, but it can carry a lot of cargo for little cost and sails faster and better than a typical cog. It was during this time that the cogs started to be overshadowed.   The castles of this vessel are not particularly large compared to some cogs or even later holks. Nevertheless, the ship can carry enough soldiers in a pinch to make it a viable warship, especially in the absence of effective artillery.   Holk, Medium (98‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 230†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.15/5
EWt: 95t
LWt: 245t
Load: 150t
SM: +8
Occ: 20
DR: 20/10
Range: -
Cost: $90K
Locations: 3M, O, 2S
Draft: 10‘
  If the earlier holks overshadowed cogs somewhat, this vessel is a clear advancement in its size category. It is fast and handy, but doesn’t require a crew much larger than a cog, and it can transport a similar amount of cargo. If not for the top-heavy design, the voyages of discovery could have been taken somewhat earlier and in holks instead of caravels.   While the speed and weatherly qualities of this vessel would seem desirable in a man of war, they were incompatible with the higher castles of purpose-built warships of the era.   Holk, Large (120‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 275†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.1/4.25
EWt: 163t
LWt: 408t
Load: 245t
SM: +8
Occ: 25
DR: 20/10
Range: -
Cost: $160K
Locations: 3M, O, 2S
Draft: 10‘
  A bulk hauler in the style of the largest cogs, this vessel was responsible for a drop in prices of imported wine and other goods from abroad in northern Europe. While neither as sturdy nor are large as the carrack, this vessel transported an extremely high proportion of cargo to its lightweight, as well as requiring a crew that was not much larger than that of other roundships of the day.   War Holk (120‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 301†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 13c
Move: 0.1/4
EWt: 213t
LWt: 413t
Load: 200t
SM: +8
Occ: 30+160
DR: 25/12
Range: -
Cost: $190K
Locations: 3M, O, 2S
Draft: 10‘
  This is a purpose built warship based on the large holk. It has a strengthened hull and taller castles, with accommodations for a large number of warriors. The later carrack is essentially a combination of hull shapes from the Mediterranean with the deck arrangement of ships like this. Its weakness lies in its lack of speed and the high centre of gravity, as with other cogs and holks.  

Caravels (Jrade only; it’s a precursor to their galleons)

  A caravel is a relatively small ship used for the voyages of exploration. It was celebrated for its manoeuvrability and weatherly qualities. First recorded in use by the Portuguese, the vessel is associated with both them and the Spanish. Most examples were two- or three-masted lateen-rigged ships, but later ships could be four-masted and many larger ships were at least partially square-rigged.   Etymology variously suggests Roman, Greek, Italian or Arabic origin for the term 'caravel' (and the vessel so named). The supporters of an Arabic origin point to a small ship made in the Muslim territories Algarve and Maghrebe to suit Atlantic sailing conditions. This vessel, known as a qârib, was well equipped to travel in shallow waters and was used as a fishing boat, coaster, and light warship. It is possible that this vessel eventually evolved into later caravels, but there is far from any consensus on the subject.   From humble beginnings as a coastal fishing boat, the caravel developed into one of the most important vessels not only for the history of the Iberian peninsula, but for the world as a whole. During the 15th and 16th centuries, the caravel enabled Europeans to traverse the wide oceans and reach the New World. Bartolomeu Diaz, Vasco da Gama, and Christopher Columbus all sailed in caravels and so did many lesser known explorers of the period. The vessel was seaworthy, could be managed by comparatively few people and handled well in coastal waters.   The distinguishing features that identify a vessel as a caravel are a gently sloping bow and single stern castle, a carvel-built hull and two or more masts with one or more lateen-rigged. Generally, at least the mizzen-mast was lateen-rigged and in the vessels known as caravela latina, the mainmast was lateen-rigged as well. The caravela redonda was rigged in a similar manner to a carrack, with a square foremast and mainmast, but a lateen-rigged mizzen-mast.   No archaeological evidence in the form of a preserved hull has been found, so modern reconstructions of caravels rely on the iconographic record, written treatises on shipbuilding, port records and ethnographic parallels.   Caravelão latina (78‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 156†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/5.75
EWt: 30t
LWt: 80t
Load: 50t
SM: +8
Occ: 14
DR: 12/6
Range: -
Cost: $60K
Locations: 2M, O, S
Draft: 10‘
  Caravelão is the dimunative of caravel and refers to a two-masted vessel in the classic style of caravels. This example is fairly typical for a 15th century vessel, presented here in a latina format, or with lateen sails. The beam is 21.5’ and the draft is fairly deep for such a light vessel. This would be typical for ships making voyages of exploration on the open sea and this ship is based on the replica Boa Esperança.   Caravelão redonda (78‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 156†
Hnd/SR: -3/4
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6
EWt: 30t
LWt: 80t
Load: 50t
SM: +8
Occ: 14
DR: 12/6
Range: -
Cost: $60K
Locations: 2M, O, S
Draft: 10‘
  This is the same vessel as above, except that the sail configuration is square. This allows for more speed when sailing with the wind, at the expense of the ability to tack closer to the wind.   Optional Modifiers: A square sail makes it difficult to sail into the wind. Hnd is -1 to windward and speed is slower than a vessel with a lateen-sail or a full rig.   Caravel, exploration (73‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 165†
Hnd/SR: -3/5
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6
EWt: 35t
LWt: 85t
Load: 50t
SM: +8
Occ: 18
DR: 12/6
Range: -
Cost: $70K
Locations: 3M, O, S
Draft: 7‘
  A three-masted, square-rigged vessel that is fast and handy. This vessel is based on the replica caravel The Matthew, which in turn is based on the ship John Cabot took from Bristol on his famous voyage.   The beam is 20’ and freeboard is 5’.   Optional Modifiers: A square sail makes it difficult to sail into the wind. Hnd is -1 to windward and speed is slower than a vessel with a lateen-sail or a full rig.   Caravela latina (68‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 178†
Hnd/SR: -3/5
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6
EWt: 44t
LWt: 100t
Load: 56t
SM: +8
Occ: 27
DR: 12/6
Range: -
Cost: $88K
Locations: 4M, O, S
Draft: 7‘
  To many, Columbus’ Niña is the iconic caravel. While no plans or archaeological evidence exist, a modern reconstruction using the best data available was built in 1988-1990. When Columbus got the vessel, she was lateen-rigged, but he changed the sail plan before his first voyage. This is the original sail-plan.   The Beam is 17.3’ and freeboard is 5’.   Caravela redonda (68‘)
TL: 4
ST/HP: 178†
Hnd/SR: -3/5
HT: 12c
Move: 0.2/6.25
EWt: 44t
LWt: 100t
Load: 56t
SM: +8
Occ: 27
DR: 12/6
Range: -
Cost: $88K
Locations: 4M, O, S
Draft: 7‘
  This is the Niña with the square-rigged sail plan that she sailed with under Columbus.   Optional Modifiers: A square sail makes it difficult to sail into the wind. Hnd is -1 to windward and speed is slower than a vessel with a lateen-sail or a full rig.

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