Techno-Wizard Converted Destroyer Escort “USS Alfred Wolf” (DE 544):

Over ninety John C. Butler class Destroyer Escorts were built during World War Two and just after. The United States built around four hundred and fifty destroyer escorts during this period. A total of three Butler class destroyer escorts were sunk during the war including the Samuel B. Roberts. The Roberts, and its companions, went into the teeth of powerful force of Japanese battleships and cruisers in defense of the carriers of Taffy Three.

Built in the Boston Naval Yard, Alfred Wolf was not completed until just before the war ended. Her construction had been suspended for several months. It was put into mothball status almost immediately upon completion. There it sat for decades, virtually forgotten. There was some discussion at one time of leasing her or selling her to a foreign power but nothing ever came of it. During the Nineteen-Seventies, she was planned for scrapping but she was in the best condition of any Butler class destroyer escort and became one of four destroyer escorts preserved as museums.

Even as a museum ship, the Alfred Wolf was almost forgotten. The fact that she was in fresh water not salt mean that she rusted far less than would otherwise occurred. The new paints also make it so that she was incredibly well protected. Still, how she was never discarded is unknown but somehow she survived until the coming of the Rifts. One might suspect that she was haunted but she never really served so it is not likely that she would have preserved psychic impressions.

A group of adventures, including a techno-wizard, found the old destroyer escort and decided to restore the ship. These old Pre-Rifts vessels are often prized by techno-wizards. Being a relatively small vessel would also mean that it would require a smaller crew. As with many of these older vessels, it required a huge amount of work to restore her but eventually she was fully restored and rebuilt. For the most part, the crew simply called the vessel "The Wolf" and replaced the hull numbers with a Wolf head design.

The spell of “Mend the Broken” was used to restore the damage the vessel has taken from neglect and damage it had taken from the coming of the Rifts. Another battery of spells made the hull far stronger than normal steel, the equal of the super strong alloys and composites which dominate the world of the Rifts.. Modern weaponry is far more powerful than the weaponry when she was built and should would otherwise be shredded even by relatively light weaponry. Still, she is nowhere near as tough as many modern vessels. This is supplemented by an “Armor of Ithan” force field which can be activated up to three times per day. Many of the new weapon systems and equipment are made from high strength composites and alloys.

As with many old Pre-Rifts vessels, her original steam turbines were modified to run on magical energies. While this only gives her a range of five hundred miles between each recharge, the ease of recharge compensated for this. As long as a spell caster continues to recharge the engines, the ship has almost indefinitie range. When the boat was completed, the crew as in for a surprise. They were able to easily reach twenty-six knots even though she was only rated for twenty-four knots. As with several other techno-wizard vessels, the stack is modified to be able to create magical cloud of fog to hide the vessel.

Originally weaponry of the was a pair of five inch guns, multiple 40 mm and 20 mm guns, three 21 inch torpedo tubes, depth charges, and a hedgehog anti-submarine mortar. Of these, only the five inch guns were retained. New Wellington Industries ammunition is carried for the five inch gun mounts. This includes extended range rocket boosted rounds. Single barrel mounts, a total of around nine hundred rounds are carried aboard with around four hundred and fifty per gun. In addition, the mounts were modified to reduce the crew required for the guns. Originally it was around fifteen per gun but this was greatly reduced

Forward and aft, where the tubs originally housed 40 mm guns, short range missile launchers are mounted. There are basically just aft of the forward five inch gun and just forward of the aft five inch gun. These launchers are designed to have an automated tracking and reloading systems. Each launcher up to a volley of four with fifty-six missiles carried for reloads. In addition, the heavy torpedo tubes are replaced by a long range missile box launcher with a total of twelve missiles. Anti-submarine missiles can be fired instead of conventional missiles. No reloads are carried for the long range missile system. Both missile systems, short range and long range, are of Wellington Industries manufacture.

In addition, the boat carried four single telekinetic machine gun mounts with two on each side of the superstructure. There are mounted where original four of the 20 mm guns were carried with one on either side of the bridge and the stack of the destroyer escort. These mounts do not require normal ammunition but instead are charged with magical energy. They need to be recharged once per month no matter how much the gun mounts are used. These mounts include advanced fire control systems to enable them to track and engage small targets such as missiles.

All of the depth charge launchers and rails are removed as well as the hedgehog launcher. In their place, two triple 12.75 inch torpedo tubes are carried. These are mounted just forward of the rear five inch gun. There are a total of twelve missiles carried for reloads although the tubes have to be manually reloaded. While primarily designed for anti-submarine warfare, these tubes can also be used against surface targets.

Sensor systems are completely upgraded on the Destroyer Escort. A medium range air search radar is mounted in the superstructure. While not quite as long range as some systems, with a range of around ninety nautical miles, it is capable of three dimensionally tracking which greatly assists with targeting missiles against air targets. At a future date, there are plans to also install a more full jamming array. A mini-hull sonar replace the original sonar and a mini-towed array is mounted on the fantail of the Alfred Wolf. Enchanted “See the Invisible” optics are fitted to the gear of the bridge crew.

Original crew was one hundred and eighty-three crew with fifteen officers. Extensive was made to reduce crew compliment. As listed previously, the crew of the five inch guns was vastly reduced. Other modifications were made to reduce crew requirements. Crew is eight officers and about fifty regular crew. Two of the crew are usually techno-wizards and two of the crew are usually other classes of magic practitioners. While the crew quarters are made to echo World War Two crew and officers quarters, they are far more spacious. It was not considered practical to refit the vessel with environmental systems so the destroyer escort instead has the enchantment of “Sustain.” Even though the enchantment makes the crew not require food, most prefer to eat. It is not always active but instead must be charged with magic periodically.

There are no aircraft embarked aboard the Alfred Wolf, not even sky cycles. Usually though a small troop compliment is carried aboard. Usually twelve techno-wizard armors are carried. Usually this includes six more common Mystic Power Armors and six “Angel of War” armors. Of course the crew have small arms and wear body armor in combat to help defend the vessel against attackers including boarders.

Beyond those previously listed, the destroyer escort has a number of other enchantments. There is a “Fireworks” chaff and flare systems to protect the destroyer escort from incoming missiles. In addition, the Alfred Wolf has the enchantments of “Impervious to Energy” and “Invisibility Superior.” There is a small magic energy battery to power the various enchantments. Unfortunately, the battery only recharges on Ley Lines and Ley Line Nexus points.

[Author Note: In real life, USS Alfred Wolf (DE 544) was canceled while under construction in 1944 and scrapped on the building ways. However, a huge number of Destroyer Escorts served during World War II both in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Some were completed only at the end of the war.]

Model Type: TW Converted DE-339 John C. Butler class Destroyer Escorts
Vehicle Type: Ocean, Magically Enchanted Destroyer Escort
Crew: 58 with usually at least two (2) techno-wizard and two (2) other spell casting types.
Troops: 6 Mystic Power Armor Pilots and 6 Troops.

Robots, Power Armors, and Vehicles:
Power Armors:

6Mystic Power Armors (Or other Light Power Armors)
6T.W. “Angel of War” Body Armors / Power Armors

M.D.C. by Location:

Mk 12 Five Inch (127 mm) / 38-cal Barrels (2, 1 each mount):60 each
Mk 12 Five Inch (127 mm) / 38-cal Single Mounts (2, Forward & Aft):180 each
Telekinetic Twin Machine-Guns (4, Sides of Bridge / Stacks):60 each
WI-66L Long Range Missile Launchers (2, 6 cells each):120 each
WI-54S Short Range Missile Box Launchers (2, Forward & Aft):40 each
Triple 12.75 inch (324 mm) Torpedo Launchers (2, Sides):35 each
[1] Compact Medium Range Air Search Radar (Superstructure):80
“Fireworks” Magic Chaff and Flare Dispensers (2, superstructure):20 each
Outer Hull (per 40 foot / 12.2 meter area):50
[2] Main Body:850
[3] Magical “Armor of Ithan” Force Field (Three Times per Day):400

[1] Destroying Compact Medium Range Air Search Radar will eliminate the ability to track air targets at long range. The ship still has backup systems equal to those on robot vehicles.
[2] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body destroys the ship’s structural integrity, causing it to sink. There are enough flotation devices and inflatable life rafts to accommodate everyone aboard.
[3] As per the spell “Armor of Ithan” - Magic, fire, lightning, and cold all inflict one-half damage. Each activation lasts for 30 minutes (120 melee rounds.)

Surface: 29.92 mph (26 knots/ 48.15 kph). The ship can operate at three quarters speed on one boiler
Range: 575.4 miles (500 nautical miles / 926 km) for each full recharge (requires 50 P.P.E.) Each boiler can propel the ship for 287.9 miles (250 nautical miles / 463.3 km) with 25 P.P.E. each.
Life support is “Sustain” spell and has effectively virtually unlimited duration (Requires 24 P.P.E. or 48 I.S.P. and has a duration of six days per activation.) The destroyer escort carries about three months worth of supplies on board (“Sustain” provides all food requirements.)

Statistical Data:
Draft: 9 feet 4 inches (2.84 meters) light and 13 feet 4 inches deep (4.06 meters.)
Length: 300 feet (91.44 meters) waterline, 306 feet (93.27 meters) overall
Width: 37 feet (11.28 meters)
Displacement: 1,350 tons standard and 1,745 full loaded
Cargo: Can carry 60 tons (54.4 metric tons) of nonessential equipment and supplies. 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 aircraft, extra ammo, armor, troops, weapons, and engines.
Power System: Was original steam propulsion with two boilers and two shafts but has been converted to a Magical power supply.
Black Market Cost: Not for Sale. Such a vessel, if available for sale, would probably cost 80 or more million.


  1. Two (2) Mk 12 Single Barrel Five Inch (127 mm) 38 Caliber Naval Guns: These are original five inch gun mounts on the ship. One is mounted forward and one is mounted aft on the destroyer escort. The barrels can be elevated up to 85 degrees and the mounts can rotate 360 degrees. They have been reinforced with mega-damage materials and are still quite useful. The guns can be used against other ships, against ground targets, and against aircraft. The five inch guns can also use rocket assisted projectiles for extended range.
    Maximum Effective Range: 12 miles (10.4 nautical miles/19.3 km) for standard projectiles, 20 miles (17.4 nautical miles/32.2 km) for rocket propelled rounds.
    Mega-Damage: Standard Projectiles: 2D6x10 to a blast radius of 25 feet (7.7 meters) for High Explosive, 3D6x10 to a blast radius of 6 feet (2 meters) for High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 4D6x10 to a blast radius of 25 ft (7.7 meters) for Plasma. Rocket projectiles: 2D4x10 to a blast radius of 20 feet (6.1 meters) for High Explosive, 2D6x10 to a blast radius of 4 feet (1.2 meters) for High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 3D6x10 to a blast radius of 20 feet (6.1 meters) for Plasma. Double weapons damage if the gun is firing both cannons simultaneously and for special purpose warheads use the statistics for 105 mm artillery warheads (Go to Battlefield Artillery for Rifts for more information - standard or rocket assisted as appropriate.)
    Rate of Fire: Four shots per barrel per melee.
    Payload: 900 rounds (450 rounds per weapon mount). Ship normally carries usually carries 200 High Explosive, 200 High Explosive Armor Piercing, 200 Plasma, 100 Rocket Propelled High Explosive, 100 Rocket Propelled High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 100 Rocket Propelled Plasma rounds. Ship will carry special rounds when employed in artillery roles.
  2. Four (4) Single Barrel Telekinetic Machine-Gun: Two are mounted in the sides the superstructure besides the bridge and two are mounted on the sides where the stack is located. These are enchanted by a series of spells so the cannon acts as a more powerful version of the Telekinetic Machine-Gun. This increases the weapon's damage and instead of being reloaded, the cannon must be recharged by the spell Telekinesis and 50 P.P.E. per barrel each once per month. The cannon does full damage to targets that are impervious to energy. Weapon mounts have advanced fire control to track and target missiles and other small airborne targets.
    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,220 meters).
    Mega Damage: 6D6 each
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the observer / gunner (usually 4 or 5).
    Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not (costs 50 P.P.E. per barrel / mount.)
  3. WI-66L Long Range Missile / Rocket Launchers (2): Both launchers are mounted together as a single rotating mount. Mounted behind the stack where originally was mounted the torpedo tubes. Each launcher can carry a total of six long range missiles for a total of twelve long range missiles. No reloads are carried although launcher can be reloaded rapidly. While not normally carried, rocket boosted anti-submarine torpedoes can be fired from the launchers. The launchers can rotate 360 degrees.
    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: Varies with long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or six (6) missiles (both launchers fire together)
    Payload: Twelve (12) Long Range Missiles.
  4. WI-54S Short Range Missile Box Launchers (2): One is mounted forward of the bridge and the other is just forward of the after 5 inch gun mount. Take the place of 40 mm gun mounts. The launchers can rotate 360 degrees and have a 90 degree arc of fire. The missile launchers reload extremely rapidly and are ready to be fire on the next attack. The system is designed to be able to target multiple incoming missiles simultaneously.
    Note: SAM style missiles are missiles that sacrifice payload for higher speeds, see Chris Curtis' modified missile table for specifics.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies by short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details - SAM style missiles normally.)
    Mega-Damage: Varies by short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details - SAM style missiles normally.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) missiles each launcher. Launchers retract and are ready to fire for next melee attack.
    Payload: Four (4) short range missiles each launcher for eight (8) total. The vehicle carries twenty-four (24) missiles as reloads for each launcher for a total of fifty-six (56) missiles total. If a launcher is damaged, those missiles cannot be accessed except manually. (Sometimes additional missiles are carried in the cargo hold for reloads)
  5. Two (2) Triple 12.75 inch (324 mm) Torpedo Launchers: There is one launcher on each side of the ship forward of aft five inch gun mounts. Each torpedo launcher has three torpedo tubes and tubes are 12.75 inch (324 mm) wide. Torpedoes are normally used against submarines but can be targeted on surface targets as well. Ship carries twelve reloads for torpedoes. For the most part torpedo warheads are equal to medium range missile warheads.
    Maximum Effective Range: 20 miles (17.4 nautical miles / 32 km)
    Mega Damage: By Medium torpedo warhead type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire torpedoes one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or three (3) torpedoes per side, Reloading takes one full melee
    Payload: Three (3) torpedoes each launcher for a grand total of six (6) torpedoes [Has twelve (12) torpedoes for reloads]
  6. Two (2) “Fireworks” Anti-Missile Chaff/Flare Dispensers: In many ways this system is similar to technological versions of the Chaff/Flare system. When the system fires, it looks like fireworks firing. The anti-missile system works by combining three spells. The three spells are Fire Bolt, Apparition, and Telekinesis. The physical effects of the system are similar to the Triax Anti-Missile chaff but instead of being reloaded, it is recharged by spells.
      01-35 - Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.
      36-60 - Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)
      61-00 - No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.
    Also note that the chaff cloud will also blind flying monsters that fly through cloud. They will suffer the following penalties: reduce melee attacks/actions, combat bonuses, and speed by half.
    Duration: 1D4 melee rounds.
    Payload: 10 Uses before being recharged. Each launcher is recharged by the spells Apparition (20 P.P.E.), Fire Bolt (7 P.P.E.), and Telekinesis (8 P.P.E.). The cost for all launchers to be recharged is 70 P.P.E. All launchers must be activated at the same time to operate correctly.
  7. Magical “Cloud of Fog” Generator: This system is built into the ships smoke stacks and unlike most magical systems, does not require magical from a spell caster and instead uses the steam from the ship’s engines to produce the cloud of fog.
    Maximum Effective Range: 6,000 feet (1,830 meters) in all directions
    Effect: Produces a fog bank that obscures vision. Visibility is reduced to 60 feet inside the cloud and even with thermal sensors, a penalty of -2 to strike parry and dodge
    Payload: Effectively Unlimited.
  8. Techno-Wizard Modifications: The Alfred Wolf has the following Techno-Wizard Modifications built into the vessel. These require P.P.E. or I.S.P. from the boats crew or P.P.E. battery.
    Special Features:
      Sustain (6th Level) - 24 P.P.E. or 48 I.S.P.
      Impervious to Energy (6th Level) - 40 P.P.E. or 80 I.S.P.
      Invisibility-Superior (6th Level) - 40 P.P.E. or 80 I.S.P.

Sensory / Special Equipment:

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2012, Kitsune. All rights reserved.