Turtle Ship
Built By Lizardmen
Used Primarily By Lizardmen, humans, mind flayers
Cost 128,000 gp
Tonnage 40 tons
Hull Points 80
Crew (Min/Max) 12/40 (total weapon crew: 6)
Man-Days of Fresh Air 4,800
Maneuver Class D
Landing - Land Yes
Landing - Water Yes
Armour Rating 3
Saves As Metal
Power Type Major or minor helm
Ship's Rating As per helmsman
Standard Armament Blunt Ram

3 Light Ballistas (crew: 1)
1 Medium Catapult (crew: 3)

Cargo 28 tons
Keel Length 95'
Beam Length 70'
Source SJR1 Lost Ships

The Turtle Ship is a spelljamming ship built by lizard men and used by lizard men, humans, and illithids.


A rugged scalykind trader-ship design popular with humans (especially pirates and free-traders who run dangerous routes and fight often), Turtle Ships have a distinctive shape and appearance. A recent design, and possibly the best one yet devised by lizardmen, they are now beginning to appear in numbers. Mind flayers have been quick to seize Turtle Ships, turning them to slaving uses.


An average lizardman crew is 26. The captain will be a powerful warrior, usually of 9th level or higher, and at least 16 of the crew are veteran warriors of 3rd level. There are also at least 2 shamans. These shamans may serve as spelljammers, or a human mage may be hired to serve in this capacity. Humans tend to use similar crew arrangements, while illithid crews tend to be organized along the same lines as the crew of a Nautiloid.

Ship UsesEdit

Trader: Turtle Ships used as traders are not cheap, but have good cargo capacity, and are well-protected against pirates. The inside of a lizardman trader is dank and dark, dominated by a central pool on the cargo deck, although human crews will generally run a ship which is drier and more well-lit.

Warship: Lizardmen now primarily use the Turtle Ship as a combat vessel, exploring dangerous sectors of space, escorting traders, and defending major scalykind colonies. These ships often mount heavier weaponry, frequently 3 heavy ballistas and 1 heavy catapult. These powerful ships typically travel in twos and threes in order to ensure that such a ship doesn't fall into the hands of an enemy.

Slaver: Mind flayers use the heavily armoured and enclosed Turtle Ship as a slaving craft, fitting the cargo deck out as a massive slave pen filled with manacles and cages. The helm is often replaced with a series helm.

Other ConfigurationsEdit

Heavy Turtle: Some Turtle Ships used as warships have been modified as Heavy Turtles. These ships invariably mount all heavy weapons, and have their hulls thickened and fitted with extra plating. The resulting ship has an impressive AR 1, but cargo space is reduced to 11 tons, and the maneuverability class is reduced to E. Despite these disadvantages, the Heavy Turtle is a powerful ship, which is nearly invulnerable to damage.

Dragonturtle: A few Turtle Ships have been modified by humans of Shou Lung. These ships have been stripped to make room for more cabins, reducing the AR to 5, and a superstructure has been added to the prow, much the same as that found on a Dragonship, although strengthened to allow it to serve as a blunt ram. The interiors of these vessels have been entirely rebuilt to serve the purposes of the Shou captains, most of whom have been powerful wu jen.