“Thunderstroke” Modified Dwarven Iron Ship (T.W. / U.W.W.):

There are only a comparative handful of Dwarven Iron Ships outside of United World Warlock naval service. One of these is the “Thunderstroke.” She gets her name from the fact that the ship has an enchantment which surrounds the vessel with ball lightning. The ball lighting created a lightning storm around the vessel which helps protect it against missiles. As long as operating in space, missiles tend to detonate when they are within the field instead of striking the ship. Of course the electrical field does not protect against X-Ray laser warheads, which tend to detonate outside of the protection, but only major military forces tend to be armed with them.

At present there are only about one hundred Dwarven Iron Ships outside of the United Worlds Warlock Navy. However, with the “Morgana le Fay” and “Mandrake” class cruisers entering United Worlds Warlock naval service, it is likely that far more Dwarven Iron Ships will find their way into independent service. Most Dwarven Iron Ships are reasonably unmodified but a number of operators have come up with unique modifications to their vessels to make them more effective.

Often when a class is retired, the first ships to be retired are those which are damaged or have been operated hard and require extensive work. The Dwarven Iron Ship “Prince Imara”, as she was named at that time, was heavily damaged in battle. When it returned home, the ship was judged to be beyond economic repair and was retired from service.

For a short period of time, the Dwarven Iron Ship acted as a parts hulk. During that time, most of what could be stripped easily was removed. This included all of her weapons with the exception of her rifts projector cannon. It was simply considered too much work to strip from the vessel. Even many of her hull plates were stripped from her to use for repairs for other vessels. Along with the rifts projector cannon, the “Armor of Ithan” force field generator, the rifts jump drive, and the mystical energy battery were considered too difficult to strip.

Eventually it became time to auction her off. It was thought almost certain that whomever got her would scrap her completely. Instead, a True Atlantean temporal warrior with the backing of several techno-wizards were able to purchase her with the express purpose of refitting her. Most of those looking at the ship did not consider her worth rebuilding and actually considered the group to be fools. As a result, the group was able to get the ship for an excellent price even with her being stripped.

In order to reduce costs for rebuilding the Dwarven Iron Ship, it was decided that the crew would do most of the work on the vessel. They already had something of a plan on how they might refit the vessel and had purchased most of what they thought they might need and had also purchased an old cargo vessel which was planned to be retired soon. It was planned that most of her weaponry would be replaced by weapon systems from older scrapped or refitted vessels.

One of the techno-wizards involved in refitting the vessels had been rescued by the temporal warrior and had come initially from Rifts Earth. The techno-wizard had been aboard a naval vessel with the ball lightning enchantment which he saw no reason why the enchantment could not work on a starship as well. The starship has a special rift to the elemental plane of air which the magic is pulled from.

While the field is active, a dozen lightning balls surround the ship, orbiting around it. These lightning balls can be fired at close range targets but if the ship loses more than four, the lightning field goes down. They balls can also be destroyed although they are extremely hard to target. One weakness of the field is that while it is active, most enchantments will not work to conceal the vessel. These include chameleon, invisibility, and shadow meld. This is because while the ship is hidden by the enchantment, the lightning storm is visible outside of the ship. The spell of cloak of darkness can be effective if the radius of the darkness covers the entire lightning field.

As rebuilt, she was designed to be far heavier armed than she was in United Worlds Warlock service. Instead of mounted a pair of heavy flame cannons and four laser cannons, she mounts two 28 cm particle beams and four 18 cm particle beams. These weapons do not pull power from the fusion plant but instead are powered from the rift to the elemental plane of air. Because the ship cannot fire missiles itself with the lightning field active, it needed to be extremely heavily armed with regard to energy weapons.

For secondary weapon, it was decided to arm her with techno-wizard weaponry. The advantage was that the techno-wizards themselves could create the weaponry instead of purchasing expensive energy weaponry or rail guns. The ship mounts eight Sub Particle acceleration mounts with each mount having two cannons instead of one for greater damage. These mounts also pull energy from the rift to the elemental plane of air and do not require recharging. In addition, the vessel mounts four quad heavy telekinetic machine gun mounts. Beyond having an effectively unlimited payload, one advantage the telekinetic weapons have over rail guns is that they can be fired while the lightning field is active.

One issue with United Worlds Warlock designs is that outside of military service, there is no real access to Bottle Demon missiles. As a result, there was no effort made to replacing the original missile launchers. Instead, the medium range missile batteries were stripped from the merchant ship and fitted to the Dwarven Iron Ship in their place. Of course, the Thunderstroke does have more magazine space than the merchant ship did. As the standard Dwarven Iron Ship does not have much magazine space, cargo space was cut to increase the ship’s magazines. Even so, the vessel is limited to only about eight hundred missiles. Most often missiles are multi-warhead fusion missiles with smart guidance.

Instead of trying to replace the missing and damaged armor plates, it was decided to replace the enchanted iron plates with modern alloys and composites. Part of the cost of the refit actually was paid for through the selling of the enchanted plates back to the United World Warlock navy. In addition, the ship was reinforced in several key areas, partially to deal with unrepaired structural damage. Interestingly, she is now actually tougher than she was originally due to the use of the stronger modern materials. In addition, the modern materials are far lighter than the iron plates which they replace.

The original reactor powering the ship produced far less power than even a modern civilian reactor. As a result, even though it was a complex operation, the original reactor was replaced by a modern fusion plant. A second advantage of the reactor is that it requires a smaller crew than the original reactor and does not even require a techno-wizard to monitor it. At the same time, a new contra-grav normal space drive was fitted. As with the fusion plant, the drive is civilian in design. While the acceleration curve is essentially the same as the original, the drive is quite a bit smaller.

While initially the Dwarven Iron Ship only mounted the medium range missile batteries, it ran into a group of four Berserker class attack ships. The Kreeghor vessels initially fired a volley of X-Ray laser warheads but the ship was protected by being impervious to energy. A second volley of missiles, this time fitted with gravity warheads, detonated in the lightning field. Engaging at close range, the Thunderstroke took out one of the Berserkers with its particle beam battery and dropped out of combat a second with engaging with her rifts projector cannon. In the end, all four Berserkers were destroyed with no damage to the Dwarven Iron Ship.

From the battle, the crew of the Thunderstroke were able to recover a pair of capital missile batteries. It took a bit of work but the two batteries were able to be mounted on the Thunderstroke, giving the warship more of a long range battery. Some missiles, including X-Ray laser and gravity warheads, were also recovered however they have been long expended. Usually the best the ship can get are multi-warhead fusion missiles. The usual tactic is to fire several volleys of capital missiles before bringing up the lightning field although anti-ship missiles are conserved if possible.

With fighters, the techno-wizards used a unique approach. They decided to buy a squadron of old Tiger IV medium and three squadron of old Starling class light fighters. As time went on, they made repairs to the old fighters. In addition, they began both upgrading them and transforming them into techno-wizard enchanted designs. This includes being protected by the same lightning field as protects the Thunderstroke. This also allows the fighters to be launched from the ship when the ship’s own lightning field is active.

With the marine compliment, it was decide to in effect divide it into three sections. One was the conventional ground troops, a second operating space power armors, and a third various specialists. They train together so they might better be able to combine their skills and be more effective.

With regard to the ground troops, the ship has seized several Splugorth vessels and has managed to capture a fair number of K-Universal power armor. In fact, more than enough for the entire troop compliment with the ship being able to sell the surplus. Those which were retained have been converted to “Silver Sabre” configuration.

The space power armor compliment is composed of ten Flying Warlock space combat armors and another ten Stormcrow space combat exoskeletons. The Stormcrow is one of the better knock-off designs off of the Consortium Silverhawk exoskeleton. As one might expect, the Stormcrows are fitted with additional techno-wizard enchantments.

The final section is a mixture of different ground combat types including powerful psychics, combat techno-wizards, and others. Some are equipped with mystic power armors of various types to further augment their combat skills. Often they will be broken up and assigned with the ground power armors.

In a similar manner to the weaponry, the crew spaces had been mostly stripped when she had been a parts hulk. It was decided to use enchanted wood in the interior to fit with an ancient nautical theme. In addition, the ship has a lot of highly polished brass. Several of the crew are quite artistic and the interior is quite beautiful as a result. Often when the crew does not have other duties, it is a hobby to work on decorated the interior of the vessel.

This starship design uses modified starship speed and weapon range rules. See Revised Starship Rules for Phase World / Three Galaxies for more details.

Model Type: UW-C15 (Upgrade).

Class: Space Cruiser (techno-wizard).

Crew: 238, including a magic team of 12 techno-wizards (levels 2-6).

Troop Capacity: 60 Marines (Typically 30 stay on board for ship defense) - 40 fitted with “Silver Sabre” armors, 60 fighter pilots, 20 space power armor pilots, and can carry up to 10 passengers in addition to crew and troops.


Power Armors & Robots:



SC-MM-1000 Stormcrow Space Combat Exoskeleton (With Techno-Wizard modifications.)



Silver Sabre Techno-Wizard Light Power Armors.



United World Warlock W-F1 Flying Warlock Combat Armors.

Fighter Compliment:



TW-SF-4 “Thunder” Techno-Wizard Tiger IV Medium Fighters.



TW-SF-5 “Thunder” Techno-Wizard Starling Light Fighters.

M.D.C. by Location:


Rift Projector Cannon (One, in front):



28 cm Main Particle Beam Batteries (2):

1,500 each.


18 cm Secondary Particle Beam Batteries (4):

1,200 each.


Twin Sub Particle Acceleration Cannons (8):

150 each.


Quad Telekinetic Machine Gun Mounts (4):

225 each.


Cruise Missile Batteries (2, sides):

1,000 each.


Medium Range Missile Batteries (6):

400 each.


[1] Main Bridge:



[1] Auxiliary Bridge:



[2] Main Body:



Hangar Bay:



[3] “Ball Lightning” Balls (12 total):

20 each.


[4] Magical “Armor of Ithan” Force Field:



[1] In reality this is how much damage needs to be done for a weapon to hit the bridge through the ship’s armor. This ship also has an auxiliary bridge. Even if both bridges are taken out, the ship can still be piloted from engineering but ship is -3 to dodge and all weapon systems will be at local control. Weapon hits near the bridge that do not penetrate the ships integrity can injure crew members on or near the bridge.

[2] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will put the cruiser out of commission. All internal systems will shut down, including life support and internal gravity. The ship itself will be an unsalvageable floating wreck.

[3] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,” but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.

[4] This is not a variable force field, but a magical shield that must be completely depleted. Once the shield has been knocked down, it will cost 1,000 P.P.E. and require one minute (4 melee rounds) of spell casting to restore the force field. Magic, fire, lightning, and cold all inflict one-half damage. Magical force field can be activated under Ball Lightning field.


Driving on the Ground: Not Possible.

Water Surface: 40 knots (74.1 km/46 mph).

Underwater: 30 knots (55.6 km/34.5 mph).

Sublight: Has a special sublight engine that allows the ship to travel up to 60 percent of the speed of light. Star Ship can accelerate/decelerate at the rate of 0.8 percent of light per melee.

Atmospheric Propulsion: Maximum speed is 200 mph (321.9 kph), can enter an atmosphere and can leave but is not designed for atmospheric flight.

Star Drive: Rift Jump Drive; maximum safe jump distance of 20 light years every four hours (Jump costs 4,000 P.P.E. per activation.)

Range: Life support will keep crew alive for up to ten years, as long as the P.P.E. generators are kept in working order.

Statistical Data:

Height:  80 feet (24.4 meters) main body; 160 feet (48.8 meters) from the bottom of the main body to the top of the bridge.

Width:   83 feet (25.3 meters) main body; 104.5 feet (31.9 meters) including cruise missile launchers.

Length:  800 feet (244 meters).

Weight / Mass: 125,000 tons (113,400 metric tons).

Power System: Conventional Advanced Fusion 20 year life span. Also uses a magical rift to elemental dimension of air to generate additional electricity (Indefinite duration).

The cruiser also has a P.P.E. generator that produces 6,000 P.P.E. per hour / 25 P.P.E. per melee round (Activating the Rifts Jump drive costs 4,000 P.P.E.) and can hold up to 20,000 P.P.E. in storage. This P.P.E. can be used to power the Rifts Jump Drive or can be used to power spells cast by the cruiser’s crew.

Cargo: Cargo holds can hold up to 2,000 tons (1,814.4 metric tons) of cargo in addition to standard compliment of supplies and ammunition. Each enlisted crew member has a small locker for personal items and uniforms. Ship’s officers have more space for personal items. Most of the ship’s spaces are taken up by extra ammunition, armor, troops, weapons, engine, and other equipment.

Market Cost: The Dwarven Iron Cruiser would costs 22 billion credits to construct. The ship is no longer in production or for sale. Upgrade costs around 4.0 billion credits. Cost does not include embarked craft.


  1. One (1) Rifts Projector Cannon: In the nose of the warship is large opening which is the main barrel of the cannon. The cannon creates a huge rift in front of the cannon that has a variable effect. This weapon can become a danger to the ship if it fails. The cannon has a 0.5% cumulative chance of failure (i.e., becomes 1% after two shots, 2% after four, and so on.) This cannon has penalties to strike small targets. For more information on the Rifts Projector Cannon, refer to page 155 of Dimension Book 2: Phase World (Except ranges are 1,000 times range in book in space.) Weapon can be fired through the lightning field.

    Maximum Effective Range: 50,000 miles (80,000 km) in space and 50 miles (80 km) in an atmosphere.

    Mega-Damage: Roll on table in Dimension Book 2: Phase World on page 156.

    Rate of Fire: Can fire once per minute (4 melee rounds/ 60 seconds).

    Payload: Requires 1,000 P.P.E. each time fired.

  2. Two (2) Main 28 cm Particle Beam Batteries: In the sides of the ship are two 28 cm particle beam cannons. Weapon has standard minuses to hit fighters and small targets. These can be fired forward and can be angled up to 120 degrees aft (can only fire one cannon at a target at that angle but can spin to be able to bring both batteries to bear) and can fire at a 30 degree angle up or down. The weapon system cannot be used to engage targets while traveling at faster than light velocities. Weapon can be fired through the lightning field.

    Maximum Effective Range: 70,000 miles (112,650 km) in space and 70 miles (112.7 km) in an atmosphere.

    Mega Damage: 1D4x1000 M.D.C. each (Both can be linked for 2D4x1000 M.D.C. combined.)

    Rate of Fire: Maximum of three (3) times per melee per particle beam.

    Payload: Effectively Unlimited.

  3. Four (4) Secondary 18 cm Particle Beam Batteries: These 18 cm particle beams are also mounted in the forward area of the ship. Batteries can be fired up to 120 degrees toward the rear on either side (can only fire one cannon at a target at that angle but can spin to be able to bring both batteries to bear) and can fire at a 30 degree angle up or down. The weapon system cannot be used to engage targets while traveling at faster than light velocities. Weapon can be fired through the lightning field.

    Maximum Effective Range: 70,000 miles (112,650 km)in space and 70 miles (112.7 km) in an atmosphere.

    Mega Damage: 3D6x100 M.D.C. each (6D6x100 M.D.C. for two).

    Rate of Fire: Maximum of three (3) times per melee per particle beam.

    Payload: Effectively Unlimited.

  4. Eight (8) Sub Particle Acceleration Cannons in Dual Mounts: Mounted on top of the ship and along the sides of the ship’s hull in turrets. Cannons turrets can fire at up to a 90 degree angle up or down and can rotate up to 180 degrees side to side. The gun does not have penalties to strike small targets. Uses the spell of the same name from page 143 of World Book 16: Federation of Magic (although has far greater range.) The weapon pulls its energy from the elemental rift and does not need to be recharged. Weapon can be fired through the lightning field.

    Maximum Effective Range: 200 miles (320 km) in space and 2 miles (3.2 km) in an atmosphere.

    Mega Damage: 2D6x10+20 (1D6x10+10 per cannon.)

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (Usually 4 or 5).

    Payload: Effectively Unlimited.

  5. Four (4) Telekinetic Heavy Machine Guns in Quad Mounts: These cannons are identical to those mounted in the Shadow Bolt Starfighter but are in quad mounts. Mounted on the sides of the ship in turrets. Heavy machine gun mounts can fire at up to a 90 degree angle up or down and can rotate up to 180 degrees side to side. The gun mounts do not have penalties to strike small targets. Because the machine guns inflict damage by impact, they inflict full damage to targets that are using the spell “Impervious to Energy.” The spells must be renewed every two months (costs 400 P.P.E. and 20,000 credits per machine gun) but during the period the weapon can fire unlimited blasts. Weapon can be fired through the lightning field.

    Maximum Effective Range: 200 miles (320 km) in space and 2 miles (3.2 km) in an atmosphere.

    Mega Damage: 2D6x10+20 per burst (6D6 per heavy machine gun.)

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (usually 4 or 5).

    Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every two months whether the cannons have been used or not.

  6. Two (2) Cruise Missile Batteries: Mounted on either side of the hull, these cruise missile launchers are from a wrecked Kreeghor Berserker attack vessel. The ship carries batteries with ten cruise missile launchers each to launch cruise missile. Missiles have a top speed of Mach 25 in an atmosphere and have an acceleration of 10% of light per turn (far faster than any starship) in space. Whether missiles can be shot down is calculated from the speed of target, launching starship, and missiles. When drive goes dead, missiles will continue to travel in a straight line unless set to self destruct or receives a destruct code, but have very low odds of hitting star ships (Great for hitting bases and planets because target does not move and missiles, when unpowered, are at -25% to be detected.) Cruise missiles have penalties to hit small targets but almost always smart missiles. Each battery can be used to launch against multiple targets but is rarely used that way. Missiles cannot be fired through the lightning field due to the fact that they would be destroyed / detonated by the field.

    Maximum Effective Range: Cruise Missile range is 8,000 miles (12,875 km) in an atmosphere and 4,000,000 miles (6,437,376 km/ 21.5 light seconds) in space.

    Mega-Damage & Properties: See revised Phase World / Three Galaxies missile tables for details (Anti-Matter multi-warheads inflict 5D6x100 M.D.C. each and Fusion multi-warheads inflict 3D6x100 M.D.C. each.)

    Rate of Fire: Fires volleys of ten (10) cruise missiles per launcher, per melee round, for a total of twenty (20) cruise missiles per melee round. Launchers are reloaded on the same melee and can be fired again on the next.

    Payload: One hundred (100) cruise missiles total, fifty (50) cruise missiles per launcher.

  7. Six (6) Medium Range Missile Batteries: These are standard merchant type batteries modified for greater magazine space. Each battery is on the port and starboard side of the ship. Weapon system is used for hitting enemy robots, fighters, and missiles (both cruise and long range missiles.) Missiles have a top speed of Mach 15 in an atmosphere and have an acceleration of 6% of light per turn in space. Weapon system can be used on multiple targets simultaneously. Missiles cannot be fired through the lightning field due to the fact that they would be destroyed / detonated by the field.

    Maximum Effective Range: Medium Range Missile range is 160 miles (257.5 km) in an atmosphere and 80,000 miles (128,750 km/0.43 light seconds) in space.

    Mega-Damage: Varies with medium range missile type (Multi-warhead heavy warheads inflict 5D6x10 M.D.C. each - See revised Phase World / Three Galaxies missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire medium range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) medium range missiles per battery, per melee attack.

    Payload: 128 medium range missiles per battery for 768 total.

  8. Magical “Ball Lightning” Bolts: The cruiser can generate up to a dozen ball lightning bolts. This creates a field larger than possible on smaller vehicles such as fighters. While this field is active, the cruiser glows a bright blue and cannot be concealed using the spells of Chameleon, Invisibility, or Shadow Meld. While the field is active, the warship (and the crew) is immune to all forms of electrical attack including ion weapons and magical lighting. As well, any missile or projectile must pass through the electrical field before striking the warship. Assume an object will make it about half way through the energy field before detonating to calculate to see if the blast radius will still affect the cruiser (reduce damage by half in that case.) Also effective against attempts to board the vessel by conventional means. Theoretically, the electrical field may be used as a weapon to attack targets by edging close to a target but piloting rolls are at -30% and is considered stunt piloting. The ball lightning may be fired at a greater range than the electrical field but reduces the power of the electrical field for each ball lightning that is fired. If more than four ball lightning are fired in a melee (less than eight remaining around the warship) then the electrical field will drop. As well, if more than four balls are destroyed (each ball has 20 M.D.C.), the electrical field is also lost. In either case, the balls will come back at the beginning of the next melee round and the field will be restored.

    Maximum Effective Range: Electrical Field: In an atmosphere, field is in a globe 80 to 120 feet (24.4 to 38.6 meters) globe around vessel. In space, field is in a globe 640 to 960 foot (195.1 to 292.6 meter) globe around vessel. Reduce field by 10 feet (3 meters) / 80 feet (24.4 meters) from 120 feet (28.6 meters) / 960 feet (292.6 meters) for every ball lightning fired / destroyed. Ball Lightning Bolt: In an atmosphere, 600 feet (192.9 meters). In space, 4,800 feet (1,463 meters.)

    Mega Damage: Electrical Field: 2D6x10+40 to anything within the electrical field (not including the vessel or crew.) Reduce field damage by 10 M.D.C. for each ball lower than twelve (Must maintain at least eight.) Ball Lightning Bolt: 3D6+6 each.

    Rate of Fire: Electrical Field: Active as long as eight or more ball lightning are around cruiser. Ball Lightning Bolt: One per melee attack of gunner (Usually 4 or 5).

    Payload: Twelve “Ball Lightning” Balls per melee. Balls are renewed at the start of each melee round.

  9. Techno-Wizard Modifications: The “Thunderstroke” has the following Techno-Wizard Modifications built into the ship. These require P.P.E. or I.S.P. from the ships crew or P.P.E. battery.

    Special Features:

      Shadow Meld (8th Level) - 80 P.P.E. or 160 I.S.P.

      Impervious to Energy (8th level) - 160 P.P.E. or 320 I.S.P.

      Invisibility-Superior (8th Level) - 160 P.P.E. or 320 I.S.P.

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2016, Kitsune. All rights reserved.