The Pilot PSA (Primary Skill Area) allows characters to operate air-, water- and spacecraft. The ground vehicle equivalent is Driver.
There are different types of Pilot skill depending on the type of craft the character wishes to operate. Each type of pilot learns the ins and outs of their particular craft. Characters taking Pilot skills must chose which type they wish to pilot when the skill is chosen.
Pilots may chose this skill more than once, but must maintain and pay for each skill separately. In addition, the character must specify if he has received civilian or military training. Military pilots have two additional sub-skills (see descriptions below).
Flight Skills Edit
A rotorcraft pilot is master of rotary-wing aircraft (ie, helicopters). This would include aircars that are dependent on rotors or ducted fans for lift as well as forward propulsion.
The Rotorcraft skill includes the following subskills:
- Throttle and Stick: (1/2 Dex + 10%/level) The basic skill of directing the craft where you want it to go. It does not include flying in combat. If the character is not a military pilot and attempts to participate in aerial combat, reduce the skill bonus to 5%/level
- Flight Engineer: (30% + 10%/level) Allows the character to deal with in-flight mechanical emergencies such as engine flame-outs, damaged systems and other problems by re-configuring his craft's system settings. This skill does not grant the ability to fix any physical damage, but simply work around it until he can get the craft landed and seen to by a Technician.
- Navigation: (30% + 10%/level) Most aviation navigation is done by the on-board flight computers which utilize a variety of sophisticated instruments to keep the craft on course. Such systems can malfunction however, and pilots are trained how to manually estimate and calculate a course without such aids if they have to.
Military Rotorcraft Subskills Edit
- Air Combat Maneuvers: This is the same as Throttle and Stick, but the character gets the full +10%/level while flying in combat.
- Weapons Systems This sub-skill permits the pilot to use onboard weapons that are designed to be under his direct control. Typically this will mean fixed, forward-facing weapons and missiles. Battery weapons (door guns, etc) require a separate character to operate.
This skill applies to tilt-rotors (aircraft that can perform as either a helicopter or a fixed-wing aircraft). The sub-skills are the same as those applying to Rotorcraft pilots.
This skill applies to fixed-wing aircraft (whose only means of lift are their wings). The sub-skills are the same as those of the Rotorcraft skill.
This skill is similar to the fixed-wing skill, but also includes familiarity with the unique maneuvering characteristics of vehicles in space.
Ship Piloting Skills Edit
Piloting a ship, either on the water or in space, is much different from flying. Therefore it is necessary for characters wishing to pilot such vessels to take a separate skill. Pilots of larger ships are more properly referred to as Helmsmen.
Sail piloting involves operating a sailing ship (one powered by the force of wind, rather than an engine).
The Sail piloting skill includes the following sub-skills:
- Helm: This is the same skill as Throttle and Stick, applied to sailing craft.
- Ropes and Rigging: This is the same skill as Flight Engineer, applied to sailing craft
- Navigation: This is the same as the Flying skills version, applied to sailing craft.
Military Sail piloting sub-skills Edit
- Evasive Action: Same as Air Combat Maneuvers, except applied to sailing craft.
(Note that the Sail Piloting skill does not include a sub-skill for weapons systems as sail pilots have all they can do just to maneuver the ship.)
Surface Vessels Edit
Same sub-skills as with Sail piloting, but for powered vessels. Very small surface ships (equivalent to hull size 1-2) may have appropriately mounted weapons so the Weapons Systems sub-skill may apply.
Piloting, Submarine Edit
Same sub-skills as Surface piloting, only applied to submarines.
Piloting: Spacecraft Edit
Same sub-skills as the surface piloting skill, with one exception: plotting inter-system jumps requires sufficient time and effort that it is assigned to a separate officer, who has the Astrogation skill.