|Used Primarily By||Thri-kreen|
|Cost||3,100 gp (includes cost of built-in greek fire projector)|
|Crew (Min/Max)||1/1 (total weapon crew: 4)|
|Man-Days of Fresh Air||120|
|Landing - Land||Yes|
|Landing - Water||Yes|
|Power Type||Crystal throne|
|Standard Armament|| 1 Light Ballista (crew: 1)
1 Greek Fire Projector (crew: 3)
|Source||SJA2 Skull & Crossbows|
The thri-kreen Thorn-ship is a light combat craft intended to serve as a screening vessel for the larger Leaf-ship. Each Leaf-ship always carries 4 Thorn-ships, unless it has lost one or more in combat. Like the Leaf-ship, the Thorn-ship is grown from living crystal, and is constructed with an integral spelljamming device known as a crystal throne. This crystal throne functions as the crystal throne of the Leaf-ship in all respects, aside from the different SR that it provides.
The tiny Thorn-ship is little more than a powered platform for its weaponry, which is significantly more than could normally be mounted on such a small ship. This heavy firepower is achieved by building the greek fire projector into the very hull of the craft as it is grown. Even so, the Thorn-ship cannot properly support all of its weaponry, and is very limited in the amount of ammunition it can carry. Typically a Thorn-ship will carry a standard amount of ammunition for the ballista, but only a single charge of greek fire. In part this is because a Thorn-ship will typically not carry enough crew to operate the greek fire projector at peak efficiency anyway, so it is generally used as a single-shot weapon. In some cases, however, the situation will be reversed, and the Thorn-ship will carry only a single ballista bolt, but up to 10 charges of greek fire. This is usually only done when the ship will be used as a suicide weapon.
A Thorn-ship will typically be crewed by 3 thri-kreen. One of these sits on the crystal throne and serves as the pilot, one mans the light ballista, and the third mans the greek fire projector. Since the Thorn-ship is usually only used for short-range support and screening of Leaf-ships, this overloading of the vessel's air envelope is not seen as a problem.
Screening Vessel: It is virtually unheard of for a Thorn-ship to be used as anything other than a screening vessel for its parent Leaf-ship. In this role, the Thorn-ship provides combat support for the Leaf-ship as needed, and generally serves to protect the Leaf-ship. In some cases this may include short-range scouting and courier missions to keep the Leaf-ship from being put at risk. These short-range missions are always performed within visual distance of the Leaf-ship so that the parent vessel will be aware of any misfortunes which may befall the Thorn-ship, and act appropriately. Sometimes Thorn-ships will be used to crash into enemy vessels while carrying quantities of greek fire. This is only done in cases when the parent Leaf-ship is unlikely to survive the combat otherwise.
Thri-kreen modify their vessels only under extreme circumstances, and as a result there are no other significant configurations for the Thorn-ship.
- Spelljammer reference: SJA2 9286XXX1401
- TSR reference: TSR 9286
- ISBN: 0-88038-845-5