This Thread is intended to be a compilation of player RP ship hull conversions from the available choices we have in-game, and the player lore behind them. Anyone can contribute to this thread, and are encouraged to have fun with this, within reason(subjective as that is, generally speaking, 'within reason in this context means generally, no titan doomsdays on battleships or similarly extreme hyperpower things, as that’s a bit of a step too far). Keep it clean, and enjoy what others write up!
Hull Conversion Across The Cluster (Contributed by @Attn_Thaddeus_Reynolds )
The hull conversion process takes significantly longer than standard modular systems, or even standardized modification packages like those of rigs, though bears some semblance to the latter in that they are fundamental restructuring of the hull’s internal systems to fit new purposes.
Such modifications aren’t generally considered to be a good option to sell on the open market, indeed it is usually illegal to do so without a proper derivative license from the rights holder for the original hull, but it remains somewhat common practice among independent operators throughout the cluster or even within specific nation-states.
Usually, conversions arise out of a need to fill a specific niche that the market can’t readily fill or to fit a hull significantly better to said niche. Most common adaptations this way or the addition or conversion of turret or launcher hardpoints to one or the other, augmentation of shield or armor systems, or the like. Most independent ship captains will encounter this at one point or another, ships with additional weapons systems than what the standard version of the ship can ordinarily accommodate, with defender missile launchers being a surprisingly common addition to baseline ships, and internal pod gantries being something of a favored additional system on Capsuleer vessels.
‘Sand Devil’ Ground Support Conversion - Orca
What began as a stopgap hull conversion of a number of Orca class Industrial Command Ships by Mordu’s Legion Planetary&Station Operations Squadrons during Operation Frostline in YC117 after a number of more fragile dedicated hulls were damaged or disabled beyond combat efficacy, the Sand Devil configuration became popular amongst Mordu’s Legion Frontier Operators, smaller mercenary companies, fringe special sperations units, and even Warclone Pilot squadrons and Clonesoldier clans over the intervening years due to the robust nature of the underlying base hull design.
With significant segments of its mining and ship maintenance bays converted over to dropship and aerospace fighter racks, vehicle bays, limited en situ macrofacturing units, or warclone grade CRUs, the Sand Devil can act independently, or in concert with other vessels for Frontier ground support operations.
Capable of providing munition deployment with a 3 meter margin of error with ground unit telemetry using Sentry Drones from low exo-atmospheric distance, or more direct fire support from medium and light drone, and fighter deployments, the Sand Devil has taken its place alongside conversions of the Bowhead class freighter as a reasonably effective ground operations support platform, though it lacks the same capability as more dedicated Warbarges and Planetary Support Vessels.
The inclusion of an advanced Launcher hardpoint to the hull is largely seen as a novelty, but has proven useful as a delivery system for loitering munition swarms into atmosphere for ground unit tasking or direct bombardment.
Orca Warbarge Conversions ( Contributed by @Attn_Thaddeus_Reynolds )
Warbarge conversions were common around the Warlords era of Warclones, with focus on different size operations, cruisers being fairly common for individual or small groups of warclone operators, with Battleships or the like being common for larger groups or for those with a particular focus on large amounts of vehicles in their typical kits
The Orca represented an already highly versatile platform that lent itself well to conversion, with the capacity to launch larger auxiliary craft already available, in addition to the more common intrasystem shuttle bays common on almost all hulls destroyer sized or larger, its cavernous ore holds and cargo bays being excellent for conversion to a variety of purposes.
Most commonly for warbarges, the power runs for the Command Link/Burst systems were repurposed to operate planetary bombardment arrays which, while not offering nearly the same firepower as dedicated gunboats such as destroyers, were able to provide significant augmentation to a ground force’s ability through precision orbital artillery strikes. Often times missile systems would be added to both facilitate organic defense (augmenting the respectable drone combat ability of the Orca platform), but also to provide a potential intercept capacity for incoming anti-orbital missile platforms, or precision missile strikes on planets. Ore hold spaces were often converted to multiple purposes, such as clone bay infrastructure for maintaining warclone blanks for the ground force, a ground jump system for interfacing with standard drop uplinks, and manufacturing facilities to rapidly replace small-arms and ground vehicles used in the operational area.
‘Fisher King’ Strategic Mobile Command Center - Bowhead( contributed by @Galm_Eskola-Fae )
The Fisher King -class were a series of two ships developed by the Bosena Accords in the leadup to the Skarkon War. These ships were the first step towards redeveloping the concept of the dedicated ‘capital-class warbarge’ following the Warlord Uprising of YC118 in Molden Heath, where thousands were seized or destroyed under DED Red Warrants. Increased cost of biomass and increased competition from empire-affiliated pirvate military companies afterward further hampered independent warclone operations until nearly all freelance warbarge vessels found themselves repurposed, mothballed, scuttled, or decommissioned. By YC122 though, conflict in the region began to return as the Bosena Accords moved toward war against the Krullefor Organization. The conflict required the mass mobilization of weapons and materiel heretofore absent since the Warlord Uprising, and ships capable of transporting that materiel to the frontlines of Molden Heath.
Necessity proved to be the mother of innovation, with then-Warden Galm Eskola-Fae commissioning a Bowhead-class freighter to be modified to support large-scale warclone deployments by “shitting out an entire fleet” of makeshift Mobile Command Center vessels. The first prototype, originally named Settov’s Hammer, was an older hull laid down in Videeum & mothballed in Apanake before being transferred to the Avalon Warclone Refuge in Teonusude by Thaddeus Reynolds. There, it was renamed Fisher King and underwent a series of alterations.
“All or nothing” armor design was adopted where the bulkheads were significantly reinforced along the deckplate to withstand concentrated, sustained enemy fire from planetary defenses.
Automated rear cargo gantry was reworked into a dedicated munitions storage utilizing wet-rack containers with blowout panels to prevent magazine detonation and internal fire. “Just-in-time” autoloading mechanisms were installed to deliver munitions to the ship maintenance bay prior to sortie as-needed.
Main cargo hold was converted into a rudimentary clone-vat capable of sustaining a large number of warclone ‘blanks’ and nanite clusters. Though Fisher King could transport a titanic number of warclone blanks, it lacked the ability to print more and required eventual resupply.
Rather than develop and produce dedicated Mobile Command Centers (MCCs) the Bosena Accords opted to use off-the-shelf technology available in the Bifrost and Pontifex command destroyers. Planned to operate in tandem, the Bifrost ships would act as command and control vessels capable of delivering ground forces while the Pontifex utilized its already robust drone suite to deliver vehicles, logistics, air support, and even small caliber orbital bombardment on request from beyond visual range. Later, these were replaced by cheaper Talwar and Dragoons if command destroyers could not be manufactured or sourced.
The ship maintenance bay was redesigned from the ground up to launch both the command MCC and drone-tender in rapid succession. Two oversized magnetic catapult sleds were mounted in tandem on the bows lower glacis, each fed by a “hopper” capable of holding ten destroyers. The remaining maintenance bay was used as flexible storage for a small support fleet launched from the elevator on the lower deckplate.
A separate hangar bay on the bows upper glacis was used to store dropships and fighters, although they could only be launched by deploying an experimental launch-assist device that required external mounting by a support fleet. Ultimately, carrier-capability was never fully realized and the ships fighter squadrons would only be stored in this hangar until they could be transferred to planetary airbases.
According to former crewmen, the first Fisher King prototype was cursed with bad luck brought by her name-change. Facing a series of mechanical breakdowns and lengthy rebuilds as the Bosena Accords struggled with the task of maintaining her one-of-a-kind systems, it ambled through a series of low-intensity skirmishes with the Krullefor through YC122-- including the assault on Muttokon II responsible for killing Krullefor underboss Sals Armarthen. Ultimately, she was lost to pirate forces while transporting an additional shipment of warclone blanks from Teonusude later that year. Fisher King II was built to improve upon mechanical design flaws prevalent in the first prototype, making its maiden voyage under UNF escort from Bosena to support the initial invasion of Skarkon. Fisher King II amassed a storied career over the course of the war, surviving the Weaving of Pochven and remaining in-system to this day.
The Fisher King class was an ambitious, cost-effective stepping stone in the development of warclone support technology after the Warlord Uprising. Lessons learned from its development would prove foundational in the creation of the ARVNN program, and inspire similar Bowhead-conversions in other organizations for years to come. Its no surprise then that when a Mordu’s Legion Bowhead carrying warclone technology was shot down over Hevrice III in YC125, similar designs were observed that seemed to improve upon that foundation Fisher King helped pioneer.