APAGear II Archives Volume 2, Number 4 May, 2000


Okavangan Bayou Skimmer

Scott R. Blow

The bayou skimmer is an inexpensive and versatile watercraft commonly found traversing the marshy canals of Okavango. Less demanding and technologically complex than the hovercraft, and less utilitarian than the cargo-hauling barges, the skimmer is an unsurpassed small pleasure craft and light-duty cargo vessel.

Part of the reason for the skimmer's success is its mechanical simplicity and rugged construction. Although dozens of companies manufacture nearly a hundred different models of the skimmer, the basic design remains the same: a flat rectangle or almond shape with a powerful fan mounted on the rear. All Okavangan watercraft feature a shallow draft, providing increased resistance to hull breaches and entanglement with underwater vegetation, and the flat-bottomed skimmer is no exception. In fact, a number of small wing-like hydrofoil vanes lift the bulk of the hull out of the water completely, reducing friction even further when the vehicle is traveling at high speeds.

The skimmer is an open-topped vehicle, although canvas canopies are available as an inexpensive option. The basic layout of the craft's interior is fairly typical. Three center-facing seats line the left and the right sides, with the captain's chair centered slightly above and to the rear of the craft, just in front of the two-meter-wide fan. When passengers are absent, the space allotted as foot room can serve double duty as cargo space.

While this describes the stock model, invariably each skimmer is customized to suit the owner's needs. Some are outfitted for charter sport fishing or serve as floating tour busses, while private owners often detail their skimmers or load them with luxury options. A few younger owners enjoy racing super-charged skimmers along out of the way canals, although this practice is discouraged by local law enforcement.

As civilian vehicles, bayou skimmers are sold without armament. However, all common models are equipped with a multi-purpose mount at the craft's bow, a short pipe that can easily be converted into a machinegun-bearing pintle mount. This modification is most common among Emir Bhravo's palace guard. In fact, homemade versions of these cheaply armed and armored vehicles were crucial to Bhravo's insurrection.


Vehicle Specifications

                   Name: Okavangan Bayou Skimmer
           Vehicle Type: Naval (Hydrofoil)
        Production Type: Mass Production
                   Cost: 131,005.14 Dinars
           Manufacturer: Various
                    Use: Pleasure Craft / Light Transport
                 Height: Hull .5 m, Engine 3 m
                 Length: 3.5 m
                  Width: 2.5 m
   Avg. Armor Thickness: 36 mm
         Armor Material: Aluminum
    Standard Op. Weight: 2500 kg
      Primary Move Mode: Naval (180 kph)
    Secondary Move Mode: -
       Deployment Range: 300 km
           Sensor Range: 0 km
    Communication Range: 10 km
             Powerplant: Gas Turbine Fan
          Engine Output: 200 hp

General Stats

           Threat Value: 184.19
        Offensive Value: 0
        Defensive Value: 312
    Miscellaneous Value: 240.56
                   Size: 4
  Original Default Size: 6
       Indv. Lemon Dice: 3
                   Crew: 1
          Bonus Actions: 0


      Primary Move Mode: Naval (Hydrofoil)
           Combat Speed: 15
              Top Speed: 30
               Maneuver: -4


                Sensors: -5
         Communications: -3
           Fire Control: -5


           Light Damage: 6
           Heavy Damage: 12
               Overkill: 18

Vehicle Availability

Availability Threshhold: 3
    Max Number on Field: Unlimited


Name                  Rating Game Effects

Easy to Modify	             +2 to repair and modify rolls
Low Profile           1      +1 to Concealment while in cover
Passenger Seating     6      Seats for six passengers 
Pintle Mount                 Forward-facing
Searchlight           2      AUX


Name                  Rating Game Effects

Annoyance                    Loud engine noise
Exposed Crew Compartment     Crew damage is one step worse
Exposed Movement System      Movement damage is one step worse
No Sensors                   Can only detect targets visually


Name                  Rating Game Effects


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APAGear II Archives Volume 2, Number 4 May, 2000