The Rolling Thunder

Layout of the Rolling Thunder

Note: The stats in parantheses are for a stock Galileo-class light freighter. The Rolling Thunder has been significantly upgraded by the Black Brotherhood, and as such is somewhat more capable than a stock Galileo-class light freighter.

Tonnage: 50 tons Hit Points:
     Hull  220   
     Sensors/Commo  45  
     Controls  45  
     Life Support  100  
     Fuel  160  
     Engine  160  
Armor Class: 6 (Military) (Stock: AC 8 - civillian) Weapons: 1 beam laser (concealed), 1 missile mount (concealed) (Stock: None)
    Beam laser: Rng 6, shots unl, dmg 10, hit bonus +0
    Missile mount: Rng 6, shots 4, dmg 40, hit bonus -1, reload cost 300, reload weight 400lb
Crew: 4 nominal, 8 maximum
Speed: 5 (4)
Reaction Bonus: -2 (-1)
AC Defense Bonus: -3 (-2)

Special: The Rolling Thunder possesses two weapon mounts concealed in the wingtips of the ship. Normally, this ship appears unarmed, but can at a moment's notice fold out the weaponry to give as good as it takes in a ship to ship combat.

On unsuspecting victims, The Rolling Thunder will achieve automatic surprise, and will have an effective Reaction Bonus of -6 (-3 in an atmosphere) the next round, usually allowing her two volleys from the weaponry she carries before any victim can fire back. Further, on the first volley only, the crew of The Rolling Thunder gets a +3 bonus only to offset penalties for Called Shots due to the fact that they usually can take their time targeting their first volley.

On a Hard Notice check or a Hard Ship Lore check, an observant (and suspicious) viewer will notice non-standard parts on the tips of the ship, and can make his, hers (or indeed, its) own conclusions. An Average Ship Lore will show that The Rolling Thunder is somewhat faster and more agile than other ships of her class, and that her hull has been somewhat upgraded.

All Galileo-class freighters handles badly in atmosphere, no matter how much they have been upgraded. Thus, the reaction bonus is +0 in any atmosphere up to the density of Mars' atmosphere. The AC defense bonus is +0 in any atmosphere up to Earth's density. Any denser atmosphere than that penalizes speed by -1, up to the point where immense atmospheric pressure would crush any ship like tinfoil except those specially designed for them (the depths of Jupiter and Saturn comes to mind). Obviously, this is all cumulative, so that a Galileo-class freighter in an Earth-density atmosphere is +0 reaction bonus and +0 AC defense bonus.

The crew of The Rolling Thunder are fairly experienced, considering that they often carry valuable cargo. The Rolling Thunder's captain, a Terran Male Rocketjock known as Ter Roshak is capable, but somewhat young to have this position. His rashness is balanced by the Mercurian Female Rogue Belinda MacCullum, who also handles most of the deals that The Rolling Thunder does. The other two members of the crew are the Spacer Male Engineer Seventeen, and the Belter Male Medic O'Beverly.

Ter Roshak, 6th level Terran Male Rocketjock
Str 12 Dex 16 Con 11 Int 14 Wis 8 Cha 15 Tech 15
AC 2 (smartsuit+Dex) HP 21 Thac0 17 (+1 Dex)
Special: Terran bonuses on saving throws, +3 Charisma when dealing with Human females
Commonly carried equipment: one Venusian Laser Pistol (rng 800, dam 1d8+2, wt 1, rof 3/2, shots 7), one Sonic Stunner (owns Tinker, Spacer and Terrine units - wt 2, rng 40, dam special, rof 1, shots 14, unusable in vacuum), one Mono Knife (wt 1, dam 1d6, rof "1"), Smart suit with spacesuit backup, utility belt, 2 power packs, ECM package, security pack, communications pack).
Career Skills: Drive Jetcar 66, Drive Groundcar 26, 0-G 91, Notice 38, Pilot Fixed Wing 26, Pilot Rocket 101, Pilot Rotorwing Craft 26, Use Rocket Belt 30
General Skills: First Aid 25, Repair Weapon 30, Sensor Operation 25, Astronomy 34, Mathematics 39, Astrogation 39, General Knowledge 29, Planetology 24, Ship Lore 24, Distract 20, Etiquette 30
Personality: Ter Roshak is easily excitable, and liable to run off at a moment's notice. He's also something of a ladies' man, though he tries to be more subtle in his passes on the "weaker" sex than that Rocketjocks often are. He is particularly attracted to Lunarian females, and will probably try his luck on any and all within his vicinity. His only redeeming feature there, is that he does take a no for a no.

Furthermore, Ter Roshak is somewhat naive when it comes to the Black Brotherhood. They have treated him nicely, but mostly because his excellent rocket skills makes him valuable to the Black Brotherhood. He is not aware of the fact that Belinda MacCullum has a huge crush on him, and regards her somewhere between mother, older sister, and confidante (she's about 15 years older than him).


    The increased Hull, Fuel and Engine hit points reflect the upgrading these ship systems have had. The decreased Control and Sensors/Commo hit points reflect that the Galileo-class freighter is fairly old, and that these systems thus are not exactly state-of-the-art. The to-hit penalties of the weaponry on The Rolling Thunder (the beam laser is nominally +1 to-hit, and the missile launcher is nominally +0) is because there is no dedicated gunnery platform on the ship - the weapons are fired by remote control from the bridge, making for a somewhat more awkward interface than usual.

    Apart from the upgrading, The Rolling Thunder is a wolf in sheep's clothing, concealing her teeth until she's close enough to sink them deep into a unsuspecting victim. As such, she's far from a "standard" Galileo-class light freighter, if indeed there is such a thing.