Ability Score Used: Varies (by vehicle class being piloted) Armor Check Penalty Applies? No (even if the vehicle class is STR- or DEX-based)
Piloting is generally only used in conjunction with the Vehicle Combat rules, and measures the skill with which a character is able to pilot and fight with a particular type of vehicle. If the vehicle combat rules are not being used in a campaign, these skills are probably less useful than a comparable Profession skill, such as Crewman.
As with all skills, the uses below are merely suggestions, and by no means the full gamut of possible ways a skill can be used. Players and GM's are encouraged to find additional ways to use each skill.
The ability score used by piloting is always chosen by the player who takes the skill. This means it is nearly always based on the character's best ability score. Furthermore, like a natural talent, Piloting never suffers from Armor Check Penalty, even if it is mapped to Strength or Dexterity. Once a character chooses the ability modifier that Piloting will be mapped to, it cannot be changed, except through the re-selection process.
There are four broad types of vehicles, but a character with the piloting skill can pilot any of them; there is no need to purchase the piloting skill multiple times for each vehicle type. The vehicle's type determines what medium it is able to travel across or maneuver (and fight) within, as well as which piloting skill is needed to control it.
Vehicle Type(s) Description Aerial / Aether Flying vehicles that can move through the air of the Prime Material plane, or the Aether between the planes. Subaquatic / Subterranean Subterranean vehicles burrow through the earth, and subaquatic vehicles slide beneath the waters of the seas (or other liquids). Ground Land-based vehicles, such as chariots, stagecoaches, and Crassus engines, which require solid, relatively level land. Also includes managing and directing teams of draft animals, when required, though it does not include knowledge of how to train them (see Handle Animal). Naval Vehicles which traverse the surface of liquids, such as sailing ships, skimming over the seas and taming the winds.
Riding on the back of a creature, such as a dragon, or colossal tortoise, utilizes the Ride skill, and operates under the mounted combat rules (see Ride skill), rather than vehicular combat rules.
During Vehicle Combat, the piloting skill may be used to increase the character's focus. As a standard action, make a Piloting skill check versus the CR of the encounter.
- If you achieve an Easy success, you generate 1 point of focus.
- If you achieve a Challenging success, you generate 2 points of focus.
- If you achieve an Impossible success, you generate 3 points of focus.
If you have any Stress when you generate Focus, you must immediately expend the Focus to get rid of the Stress, on a one-for-one basis.
During Vehicle Combat, the piloting skill may be used to repair damage to your vehicle. As a standard action, make a skill check versus the CR of the encounter.
- If you achieve an Easy success, you restore 1 point of durability.
- If you achieve a Challenging success, you restore 2 points of durability.
- If you achieve an Impossible success, you restore 3 points of durability.
Damage Control can never be used to repair hull damage above your maximum durability.