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Canadian Ontario class Air Defense / Anti-Submarine Frigate:

In was originally planned by the Canadian Navy to retire the Iroquois or Tribal class of air defense destroyers around the year Twenty-Ten and it was planned for a replacement class to be coming into service around the same time. Their service lives were extended to around Twenty-Twenty however without an actual replacement coming into service. As a result, the Halifax class frigates were the only surface combat ships of any significant displacement operated by the Canadian Navy for over a decade. Otherwise, the navy consisted mostly of smaller coastal vessels.

Finally the British Navy decided to retire the first batch of Daring class destroyers and the Canadian Navy was able to snap them up. These three British destroyers was a partial solution to a lack of hulls by the Canadian Navy but still quite inadequate. In addition, with the introduction of high strength composites and alloys, it was argued that the Halifax class frigates were not worth upgrading with the new materials and it was time to retire them. Not even considering the revolution in new materials, the youngest was still already over thirty years old.

The debate between the navy and the Canadian government was torturous with the government extremely reluctant to provide funding. Many in the government pushed for the refitting of the old Halifax class frigates instead. Eventually however, Canadian navy finally received authorization for the development and construction of six additional vessels. This was later increased to ten vessels due to the retirement of the Halifax class frigates.

Unlike the previous Halifax class frigates, it was decided that these new vessels would be a multi-role designs capable of both air defense and anti-submarine warfare. Concerns were raised during development because there were several designs that had been aborted during development and it was decided to be conservative with the actual design to minimize both development times and costs.

Prior to this, the Canadian navy had considered a stretched version of the Halifax class patrol frigate as replacement for the Iroquois class. It would have had improved active phased array radar and the capacity for a greater number of missiles including RIM-156 Standard missile and RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM.) Unfortunately, the program was no pursued at the time. This design was used as the basis for the design for the new program to save development costs. Major changes to the program included the introduction of the new high strength composites and alloys.

There were a number of delays in laying down the first pair of these vessels with none of these being the requirement to refit the Daring class destroyers prior to entering service. The British destroyers had been build prior to the introduction of high strength composites and alloys and required rebuilding in order to take advantage of the new materials. In addition, a variety of systems used by the Canadian navy needed to replace systems not used by the Canadian navy.

The lead ship of the new class was laid down as HMCS Ontario with the first pair laid down in the mid Twenty-Thirties. For political reasons, the Canadian Navy decided to classify the new vessel as a frigate even though it might more accurately be considered a destroyer both due to size and capabilities. The Dutch Zeven Provinciën class frigate was classified as a frigate for a similar reason even though it might also be considered a destroyer. A second pair was followed a few years later with additional pairs laid down every couple of years. The final pair of these frigates were laid down in the late Twenty-Forties.

Even though the three refitted Daring class destroyers were important assets in the Canadian navy, the ten Ontario class frigates were considered by many to be the heart of the Canadian navy during the mid part of the Twenty-First Century. While fine vessels, the Daring class destroyers still used a lot of equipment not used aboard other Canadian warships.

Due to increasing tensions, the Canadian Navy did eventually add additional vessels. Even so, there were no plans to decommission the Ontario class frigates. With the use of advanced strength composites and alloys, they were still in good shape. Unfortunately all of the vessels appear to have been lost with the coming of the Great Cataclysm. Still, it is quite possible that one or more of these vessels might have survived in a remote area of Canada and be restored with minimal work. Of course, Free Quebec would love find one or more of these vessels intact.

Compared to the previous Halifax class frigate, one of the most major changes is the addition of a forty-eight cell Mk 41 vertical launch missile system mounted forward of the superstructure. While the smaller Mk 48 Sea Sparrow launchers carried on the Halifax class are deleted in the Ontario class were deleted, the Mk 41 launcher with the ability to carry a far greater number of missiles was considered to more than make up for the deletion. When they entered service, a common missile payload was thirty-two long range missiles and sixty-four medium range missiles.

In order to take advantage of the high capacity missile system, these air defense frigate carried the Signaal APAR active phased array radar system for missile guidance backed up with by the longer ranged Signaal Smart-L. Even though not adopted when it entered service, the Canadian navy assisted with the funding of the development of the APAR radar system.

While anti-ship missiles could be carried in the Mk 41 launchers, it was decided to retain the eight Mk 141 missile canisters as well. Originally designed to fire the RGM-84 Harpoon missile, they were modified in order to fire a variety of long range missiles. These were mounted on the sides of the Ontario class forward of the main hanger.

Forward of the vertical launch system, the frigate carried the 57 mm Bofors Mk.3 Dual Purpose gun. The gun mount is an upgraded version of the gun which was carried on the Halifax class frigate. Even though relatively short ranged, it was considered to be very effective against air targets including incoming missiles. In addition, it was a comparative lightweight design at only around 7,500 kilograms not including ammunition.  

For close range missile defense, it was originally planned for the frigate to have two American Mk 15 Phalanx 20 mm Vulcan CIWS mounts. One was to be carried above the main hanger while the other was positioned above the bridge. During construction however, it was decided to replace the original Phalanx mounts with SeaRAM mounts firing the RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile. While Phalanx mounts could have been acquired cheaply from retired American naval vessels, they were considered of limited effectiveness against missiles.

In later refits, the SeaRAM mounts were replaced by American Mk 44 “Sea Sabre” Combination Anti-Missile Defense Systems. These were considered far more effective with short range missiles to initially engage incoming missiles with the heavy rail gun to engage any leaking missiles. Some navy leaders wanted to refit the Canadian Daring class destroyer with SeaRAM mounts removed from Ontario class but was not done due to the age of the former British destroyers.

On either side of the hanger of the frigate were two twin 12.75 inch torpedo tubes for anti-submarine warfare. In addition, the frigate could carry rocket boosted torpedoes in the Mk 41 vertical launch systems. Sonar systems were of Canadian design with the Ontario designed with the Westinghouse SQS-510 hull mounted sonar and the CDC SQS-501 CANTASS towed array. While basically the same sonar systems as carried on the Halifax class, they did have a number of upgrades.

To incorporate the forward Mk 41 vertical launch system, the frigates are lengthened by about ten meters. The beam is identical to the older Halifax class and as such had a greater length to beam ratio for higher speed. During the design phase, there was debate about the propulsion system. Eventually it was decided to retain a pair of General Electric LM-2500 gas turbines and a single SEMT Pielstick Diesel engine although each were upgraded. A major change was the replacement of the original geared turbines with electrical transmission system to bring power to the twin propellers. With the upgraded gas turbines, the Ontario class could easily make thirty-two knots in service and on sea trials made slightly more

While these vessels entered service prior to the introduction of practical fusion power plants, it was decided to replace the original gas turbines with fusion turbines. At the same time, the diesel engine was stripped from the frigates. Top speed with the fusion turbines was increased to just over thirty-four knots and the new engines gave virtually unlimited endurance.

In addition to the hull and the variable pitch propellers being protected by a bubble masking system, the hull was protected by anechoic tiles in order to reduce radiated noise levels. One weakness that the Ontario class is that the vessel only had minimal reduction in the radar cross signature compared to American vessels of the same time period.

Initially, the crew was planned to be around two-hundred but this was reduced by about one quarter by the addition of automation. The ship had space for an additional fifty personnel but was not fitted with true flag facilities. Even so, the Ontario class occasional acted as flagships when they were first commissioned. Later, larger ships which were more capable of operating as flagships were commissioned and the Ontario class were not needed in the flagship role.

Also later in service, twenty-four flight capable power armors were carried with the extra berthing being taken up by the power armor troopers. The American PA-04A “Silver Eagle” SAMAS were the most common power armors carried. The frigate only had a single position hanger which was slightly enlarged compared to the Halifax class frigate.

Author Note: With respect to time line, these designs may or may not reflect our modern time line. The time line of these writeups diverged from our time line starting around 1999. Consider the universe that these designs are created for to be an alternate universe not bound by ours.

Model Type: FFG-351 class Frigate.

Class: Ocean, Air Defense / Anti-Submarine Frigate.

Crew: 158 total; 15 officers, 17 chief petty officers, 126 enlisted (Has a high degree of automation.)

Troops: 4 Helicopter / VTOL pilots / crew and 24 Pilots for SAMAS Power Armors.

Robots, Power Armors, and Vehicles:

Power Armor Compliment:



USA-PA-04A “Silver Eagle” SAMAS Power Armors.

Aircraft Compliment:



Helicopters or other VTOL Aircraft (V-22N Osprey - Anti-Submarine Model.)

M.D.C. by Location:





[1] APAR Active Phase Array Radar Systems (4, superstructure):

100 each.


[1] Signaal Smart-L Air/Surface Search Radar (superstructure):



[2] Bofors / BAE Systems 57 mm / 70 Mk 3 Barrel (1, gun mount):



Bofors BAE Systems 57 mm / 70 Mk 3 Gun Mount (1, forward):



Mk 44 “Sea Sabre” Combination Anti-Missile Systems (2, superstructure):

200 each.


Mk 41 Strike Length 48 Cell Vertical Launch System (1, forward):



Mk 141 Missile Canisters (8 total, 4 on each side):

100 each.


Mk 32 Dual 12.75 inch (324 mm) Medium Torpedo Launchers (2, sides):

35 each.


[2] Plessey SHIELD Decoys Launchers (4, superstructure):

10 each.


Hangar (aft):



VTOL Pad (aft):



Outer Hull (per 40 foot / 12.2 meter area):



[3] Main Body:



[1] Destroying both APAR and the Smart-L Air Search System radar system will eliminate the ship’s long range air search ability but weapon systems have backup fire control systems. Both air search systems are separate so both systems are not likely to be disabled from a single hit, and the four APAR panels can compensate for the loss of one or two panels.

[2] 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.

[3] 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.



Surface: 39.1 mph (34 knots/ 63 kph).

Range: Effectively Unlimited due to fusion engines (needs to refuel every 10 years and requires maintenance as well). Ship carries six (6) months of supplies on board.

Statistical Data:

Draft:    20.0 feet (6.15 meters) including sonar dome.

Width:   53.8 feet (16.4 meters).

Length:  442.5 feet (134.7 meters) and 472.0 feet (143.9 meters) overall.

Displacement: 5,650 tons light and 6,450 tons fully loaded.

Cargo: Can carry 100 tons (90.7 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 extra ammo, armor, troops, weapons, and engines.

Power System: Originally conventional combination gas turbine and diesel propulsion, converted to two nuclear fusion turbine reactors with an average life span of 10 years.

Black Market Price: Not for Sale but costs around 100 million credits to build. If found and sold on the black market, it would probably cost 120 to 250 million credits. Cost does not include embarked craft and power armors.

Weapon Systems:

  1. One (1) Bofors / BAE Systems Single Barrel 57 mm /70 Mk 3 Gun Mount: A very rapid firing weapon, with a rate of fire of over 200 rounds per minute, but relatively short ranged. The cannon is mounted on the front of the vessel. This weapon is an original weapon system and was carried on many naval vessels until well into the Twenty First century. The guns can be used against other ships, ground targets, aircraft, and even missiles. Has a +2 to hit on 10 round bursts when using high explosive or plasma on aircraft or missiles.

    Maximum Effective Range: 5.2 miles (4.5 nautical miles/8.3 km) for standard projectiles.

    Mega-Damage: High Explosive: 5D6 with 6 foot (1.8 meter) blast radius per single shot and 3D6x10 M.D.C. with 30 foot (9.1 meter) blast radius for ten round burst. High Explosive Armor Piercing: 1D4x10 M.D.C. with 2 foot (0.6 meter) blast radius per single shot and 4D6x10 M.D.C. with 10 foot (3 meter) blast radius for ten round burst. Plasma: 1D6x10 M.D.C. with 8 foot (2.4 meter) blast radius per single shot and 6D6x10 M.D.C. with 40 foot (12.2 meter) blast radius for ten round burst.

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (Ten round bursts count as one attack.)

    Payload: 1,000 rounds. Ship normally carries usually carries 350 High Explosive, 350 High Explosive Armor Piercing, and 300 Plasma.

  2. Two (2) Mk 44 “Sea Sabre” Combination Anti-Missile Defense Systems: One system is mounted above the bridge and the hanger of the frigate and replaces the original SeaRAM mounts. This anti-missile defense system combines both a rapid fire rail gun and a short range missile launcher. While mounted in one system, both defense systems have separate tracking and fire control systems. The short range missile launchers can target up four targets and can fire a volley up to twice per melee. Quite powerful, the rail gun is capable of destroying any missile or inflicting serious damage on aircraft. The rail gun can fire on automatic at up to six targets per melee (Has +3 to strike missile and +2 to strike aircraft). In its design, the rail gun is very similar to those carried on the Sea King cruiser and it is likely that the Sea King’s rail guns came from a prototype of this system. The system also can be used against other ships and ground targets. The system has a 360 degree rotation and can elevate up to 90 degrees to fire at targets directly overhead.

    Maximum Effective Range: Rail Guns: 11,000 feet (2 miles / 3.2 km). Short Range Missiles: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: Rail Guns: 3D4x10 M.D. per burst of 40 rounds (Can only fire bursts). Short Range Missiles: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Rail Guns: Six (6) attacks per melee round. Short Range Missiles: Two (2) attacks per melee round, can fire short range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) short range missiles.

    Payload: Rail Guns: 8,000 rounds (200 burst) each. Short Range Missiles: Sixteen (16) short range missiles each.

  3. One (1) Mk 41 Strike Length 48 Cell Vertical Launch System: Mounted behind the 57 mm gun mount, this forward launcher has forty-eight cells able to fire a variety of missiles. As these are the longer strike version of the missile launcher, they can carry the longer cruise missile. From the beginning, the launchers have been found to be very flexible and adaptable. The launcher was originally design for the Tomahawk and Standard SM-2 Missile. In later service,, these launchers have been adapted to hold one cruise missile, two long range missiles, or four medium range missiles per cell. Cruise missiles are usually used against hardened fixed targets, long range missiles are normally used against aircraft and other large targets, and medium range missiles are normally used against closer targets such as incoming missiles. Anti-Submarine rocket launched torpedoes also can be fired from the launcher (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)

    Maximum Effective Range: As per cruise, long range, or medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per cruise, long range, or medium 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), sixteen (16), or twenty-four (24) missiles for both launchers per melee and can be fired at multiple targets at the same time.

    Payload: Forty-eight (48) cells for missiles in forward VLS launcher (possible total of 96 long range missiles). One (1) cruise missile, two (2) long range missiles, or four (4) medium range missiles may be carried per cell. Ship carries no reloads. The ship will often have thirty-two cells loaded with sixty-four (64) long range missiles and sixteen cells loaded with sixty-four (64) medium range missiles, for a total of one hundred and twenty-eight (128) missiles.

  4. Eight (8) Mk 141 Long Range Missile Canister Launchers: These launchers are special canisters amidships on the ship’s superstructure. They mount on the deck of the vessel and are effectively bolted on. While the launchers are reusable, they are still inexpensive and are easily jettisoned if damaged. Originally designed for the RGM-84 Harpoon missile but adapted for a larger variety of ordnance. While any long range missile type can be carried, usually special surface skimming missiles will be carried in launchers and are used against surface targets only.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (Surface skimming missiles have 25% less range than normal long range missiles, see revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega Damage: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire long range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) long range missiles with all launchers operating together.

    Payload: One (1) long range missile each launcher for a grand total of eight (8) long range missiles (Has no missiles in storage for reloads.)

  5. Two (2) Mk 32 Dual 12.75 inch (324 mm) Medium Torpedo Tubes: There is one twin launcher on each side of the ship. Each twin torpedo launcher has two torpedo tubes and tubes are 12.75 in (324 mm) wide. Torpedoes are normally used against submarines but can be targeted against surface targets as well. Interceptor torpedoes are also available for launchers / tubes to use against incoming torpedoes. Ship carries 40 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) for standard torpedoes.

    Mega-Damage: By medium torpedo warhead type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire medium torpedoes one at a time or in volleys of two (2) medium torpedoes per side. Reloading tubes requires two (2) full melee rounds.

    Payload: Two (2) medium torpedoes each launcher for a grand total of four (4) medium torpedoes. Has an additional forty (40) medium torpedoes for reloads.

  6. Four (4) Plessey SHIELD Decoys Launchers: Located on the superstructure of the ship, they are designed to confuse incoming missiles. In addition to chaff these launchers also fired flares to decoy IR guided missiles. All four launchers must be operated or effects will be reduced. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies missiles due to technological differences. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles) and reduce effects of launchers by 10% per launcher not used (Add +10% to rolls per launcher not used.) Only useful against missiles, not useful against torpedoes underwater.

    Range: Around Ship.

    Mega Damage: None.



    Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.



    Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)



    No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.

    Payload: Eight (8) each for a total of thirty-two (32) canisters. Ninety-six (96) reload canisters are carried, reloading requires two melee rounds.

  7. Four (4) SLQ-25F Nixie Towed Torpedo Decoys: A special decoy which is towed behind the ship. The Coalition has not seen a need for this system so has not equipped their ships with it. It generates a sound like the ships propellers in order to confuse incoming torpedoes. Only effective at speeds 28.8 mph (25 knots / 46.3 kph) and below. Otherwise, the noise of the ship’s systems and propellers is too powerful to mask. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies guidance and targeting systems due to technological differences.

    M.D.C.: 5 each.

    Range: Not Applicable although decoy is deployed approximately 1,000 feet (304.8 meters) from the vessel.

    Effects: The decoy has a 65% chance of fooling ordinary non military sonars and non smart guided torpedoes, the decoy has a 35% chance of fooling military level sonars (like those of the Coalition) and non “smart” torpedoes, and the decoy has a 10% chance of fooling advanced military sonars (Like those of the New Navy and Triax) and “smart” torpedoes.

    Payload: One ready to use, with three more ready to deploy. It takes approximately three minutes (twelve melee rounds) to reel out another decoy.

Special Systems:

The ship has all systems standard on a robot vehicle plus the following special features:

[ Altarain TM, Bandito Arms TM, Brodkil TM, Chipwell Armaments TM, Coalition States TM, Cyber-Knight TM, Federation of Magic TM, Free Quebec TM, Golden Age Weaponsmiths TM, Horune TM, Iron Heart Armaments TM, Kankoran TM, Kittani TM, Kydian TM, Larsen’s Brigade TM, M.D.C. TM, Mechanoids TM, Mega-Damage TM, Megaversal Legion TM, Millennium Tree TM, Mutants in Orbit TM, Naruni Enterprises TM, Naut’Yll, New Navy TM, New Sovietskiy TM, NGR TM, Nog Heng TM, Northern Gun TM, Phase World TM, Psyscape TM, Rifter TM, SAMAS TM, S.D.C. TM, Shemarrian TM, Splugorth TM, Stormspire TM, Sunaj TM, Tolkeen TM, Triax TM, Wellington Industries TM, Wilk’s Laser Technologies TM, Xiticix TM, and Zaayr TM are trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

[ Beyond the Supernatural®, Heroes Unlimited®, Nightbane®, Ninjas & Superspies®, Palladium Fantasy®, and Rifts® are registered trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

Image drawn and copyrighted by Mischa (E-Mail Mischa). Click on line drawing for a better view.

Mischa has no art home page at present but many other items on my site.

Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2003 & 2018, Kitsune. All rights reserved.