This ship, the Light Heldanic Warbird, fits the best out of all the Mystaran Skyships into a Spelljammer campaign. It has a very evocative appearance, combining both elements of a seagoing vessel and a natural animal. Of all the ships that were in Champions of Mystara, this one (and the Schooner) are the ones I’d most likely add to the list of relatively common ships in wildspace.
Name: Striking Hawk
Built By: Humans
Used Primarily By: Humans
Cost: 50,000 gp
Tonnage: 35 tons
Hull Points: 35
Maneuverability Class: C
Armor Rating: 8
Saves As: The best of Thin wood and Leather
Power Type: Minor or major helm
Ship’s Rating: As per helmsman
6 Light ballistae (2-360°, 2-F, 1-FS, 1-FP)
Crew: 1 each
1 Light catapult (360°)
1 Heavy catapult (A)
1 Bombard (360°)
2 Grappling rams (2-F)
Cargo Capacity: 18 tons
Keel Length: 175′ (including tail)
Beam Width: 225′ (wingspan)
Description: The Striking Hawk is a recent human design which focuses firepower in a swift and maneuverable package. To achieve the high degree of maneuverability, it trades off the better armor that would come from a metal or thicker wooden hull, using light wooden planking on the main hull and leather hides on the wings. The complicated construction is reflected in the higher cost of the ship, despite the materials.
The light ballista in the beak is always fixed, granting it an attack bonus of +2 against targets directly forward. In some configurations, the aft heavy catapult is also fixed into position, gaining the same +2 attack bonus against aft targets. While the weaponry complement of this vessel typically includes a turreted bombard, it is often swapped out for medium catapult if smoke powder is scarce. For a heavier loadout, the two light ballistae on the wings and the light ballista in the beak are sometimes upgraded to medium ballistae (with the two on the wings also getting turrets); this requires a sacrifice of 5 tons of cargo space and extensive time refitting the support structure of the ship.
In order to successfully grapple another vessel, the Striking Hawk’s helmsman must successfully hit with both rams. Upon successful hits, each ram deals one Hull Point of damage. Should only one grappling ram score a hit, it still deals damage, but the target vessel can break free by moving out of the hex, although it will suffer an additional hull point of damage as it tears loose. If both rams score a hit, the target vessel is grappled and cannot break free. The Striking Hawk can disengage from the grapple without issue.
The Cargo Deck is reverse gravity from the decks above. Changes to the deckplans as follows:
1. Bombard (or other medium weapon). The Blight Belcher is essentially a magical once-per-day disintegration weapon with a 300 foot range, for those wishing to create something similar to what the original ship had.
4. Alternate Bridge/Helm location
8. Weaponeer’s quarters
9. Weaponeer’s quarters
14. Helmsman’s quarters
19. Additional crew quarters/storage
20. Additional crew quarters/storage