Rule Category:Skills
Rule Name:Systems Operation
Source: Star Hero (5th ed.):

As described in the HERO System 5th Edition rulebook, Systems Operation is a "cinematic" Skill - characters using it can operate any kind of system. This approach may not be appropriate for highly realistic compaigns. Instead, they may wish to break the Skill down into categories. The accompanying box presents one possible scheme for subdividing Systems Operation, though others are certainly possible given the natuve and prevalence of technology in a campaign. Character can learn any one category for 2 Character Points for a (9 + (INT/5)) roll; each additional category costs +2 Character Points, or each additional subcategory +1 Character Point; improving the roll for all categories known costs +2 Character Points for each +1 to the roll.

Technology affects Systems Operation heavily. If appropriate, apply the Obselete and Advanced Technology rules from Chapter Seven.


Communications Systems (may be purchased as a group)
  • Telephone Communications (installing and using the phone system)
  • Cellular & Digital Communications (cellular phones, pagers, and so forth)
  • Radio (standard radio systems, CB radio, ham radio, military radios)
  • Broadcast Communications (television or broadcast radio equipment)
  • Satellite Communications (use of satellites and satellite networks to transmit signals, GPS systems)
  • Communications Jamming Equipment (equipment specially designed to jam transmissions)
  • FTL Communications
  • Dimensional/Temporal Communications

Environmental Systems (may be purchased as a group)
  • Life Support Systems (breathing gases, heating, and so forth)
  • Personnel Support Systems (food synthesizers, waste management, and so forth)
  • Recreation Systems (games, holo-chambers, and so forth)

Medical Systems (may be purchased as a group)
  • Medical Sensors (x-ray equipment, MRI equipment, and so forth)
  • Surgical Equipment

Sensor Systems (must be purchased separately)
  • Air/Space Traffic Control Systems (other than radar and radio)
  • Medical Sensors (see above)
  • Metal Detectors
  • Radar
  • Sonar (passive and active arrays, towed arrays)
  • Sensor Jamming Equipment (equipment specifically designed to jam sensors)
  • FTL Sensors
  • Dimensionaly/Temporal Sensors

Weapon Systems (must be purchased separately)
  • Advanced weapons such as missiles are launched with the Systems Operations Skill. Each type of advanced weapon has its own Weapon System subgroup - Patriot missiles, antimatter space torpedos, and so forth. (This does not apply to vehicular weapons; those require WF: Vehicle Weapons.)

Weapon Systems

Systems Operation - <Weapon System> is used to remotely operate weapons systems. If the gunner is physically at the weapon and aiming and firing it directly, then the appropriate weapon familiarity is used instead of Systems Operation.

Here are most of the common Weapon Systems skills for Champions of the Empire:

Rockets and Missiles - Can fire rockets and missiles.

Energy Weapons - Can operate energy weapons such as lasers and plasma weapons.

Chain Guns - Can operate chain guns and similar weapons that fire a constant stream of physical projectiles. Note that if the chain gun is fired directly, rather than remotely, Weapon Familiarity is used instead.

Planetary Kinetic Bombarder Weapons - Can operate weapons designed to attack planets from space using extremely long range bombs.

Spinal Weapons - Can operate the extremely large weapons found in the battleships and other very large spaceships. This skill cannot be bought as a standalone. The character must have skill with Laser, Particle Beam, or Plasma Weapons. This skill will allow the user to operate the extremely large spinal versions of those weapons.

Defensive Systems - Can operate and manipulate the ship's defensive systems. Although anyone can flip the switch that turns on a standard ship's force field, this skill is highly useful with customizable defensive systems that allow expert users to manipulate the force field. In game terms, this is most useful when the ship has a variable power pool (VPP) for its defensive systems. This skill is used to manipulate the system to maximize its effectiveness.

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