Burning the Skystreams
Airships are flat-bottomed hulls with sails, designed to carry small, high-value cargo — like herbs, silk and other exotic goods or rich passengers quickly from one end of The Land to the other.
The airships “fly” by means of silver Slivers, which are magically bound into the hulls. Specially trained helmsmen can use the controls to vary how much gravity affects the hulls, controlling elevation. They also use more mundane steering to angle sails to catch the wind. Because of the magical power required, airships are small, and are usually crewed by just a handful of people (5-10 at most). On longer journeys, they will typically set down at night or hover just out of reach of the ground, rather than fly blind.
Airships are made by the Shipwrights, who carefully guard their secrets, handed down for generations.
Pirates and privateers make a lucrative trade preying on the normal trade routes.
Shipboard weapons are usually firecannon powered by orange Slivers and manned by trained gunner’s mates — not usually more than one or two to a ship. Fireballs will clear packed decks of crew and reduce rigging and sails, forcing either descent or loss of maneuvering without holing the ship and risking cargo. After that, grappling becomes a simple matter and ships can be offloaded or even captured by armed boarders.
Mechanics: Ships will require a “helmsman” skill and cannon a “gunnery” skill to operate properly. Operators also require the Magic Device skill — see notes on Magic
Mechanics: ship-to-ship combat will probably use some variant of range-and-cover and/or the naval combat suggested on the forum and then quickly go to individual character melee/ranged.