Issue: 3
System: Space 1889
Publisher: GDW

H.M.A.F. Lion
An heavy aerial cruiser for Space 1889
by Neil Simpson


The Admiralty placed an order for a large aerial warship when it became clear that the French and the Germans were planning on building craft bigger than any that had yet been seen. The British response to the German Wotan was the Lion class of heavy aerial cruiser.

Production ot the Lion was authorised by the Admiraly in September 1887 with a further four being ordered in May 1888. The Lion was commissioned in August l888 and the Panther, Tiger, Puma and Jaguar were commissioned in April 1889. The Lion is serving with the British Carribean Sguadron. The Panther is based at Syrtis Major and the Tiger, Puma and Jaguar are serving with the Channel Aerial Squadron based at Plyanuth.


The Lion class of ships are approximately 400 feet long with a beam of 80 feet. They are powered by a twin airscrew forced draught boiler producing twenty knots with lift provided by Liftwood panels and slats.

The Lion class of ship has 3" of armour both on its hull and its turrets. Tne ships are armed with two 6" Breech Loaders. six 4.7" QF Breech Loaders, six 4" Breech Loaders, four 1pdr Pom-poms, two 6pdr Hotchkiss Revolvers, a Smutts Aerial Torpedo Launcher and ten tether mines. This class of vessel is designed for use in support of heavier aerial units like the Warhammer.

The crew consists of the Captain, six Officers, ten Petty Officers, eighty seven Ratings and eleven Marines. The class has received praise from tbe RNAS for its adaptability, it can be used either independently or in support of a fleet and makes a good partner for the Intrepid class of cruiser.

Game Information

Hull Size - 30, Hull Type - Steel. Lift - Liftwood. Max Weight - 3000 tons. Max Altitude - High. Cost - 300,000.

Propulsion - Forced Draught Boiler with two airscrews. Engine size - 20. Weight - 100 tons. Cost 40,000. Coal Bunker Size - 50. Weight - 500 tons. Endurance - 25 days. Speed - 4.

Armour Value - 3. Weight - 900 Ions. Cost - 9000.


Crew - Captain plus six officers. Helmsman, Trimsman, eight Petty Officers. Thirty seven Gunners. Twenty Engineers. Thirty Deckhands. Eleven Marines.

Quarters for Marines. Weight - 27.5 tons. Cost - 220. Cargo space - 1.5 tons.

Total Cost - 370,360.

The ship was designed using the rules given in Cloudships and Gunboats. The above information allows you to use a Lion in any of your Space 1889 et al games. If you do encounter a Lion it will probably be operating independently "showing the flag" so to speak. Think of how the Government uses the Royal Family for goodwill visits and flag waving and you'll know how to use the Lions in non-combat situations.

Intorductory Scenario:

Mistaken Identity (Britain v Germany)

Russia and Germany are at war. In order to protect British shipping the Government sends a fleet to the Baltic to convoy British ships out of the war zone. Unfortunately as the British ships steam out of the Baltic, they are mistaken by the Germans for a Russian Squadron and are attacked.

British Squadron (Crack, Leadership +2)

German Squadron (Trained, except where noted, Leadership +0)

Set Up:

The British enter from the east. The Germans from the North and South. The table is 20 cables by 10 cables..

Victory Conditions:

The Germens win by sinking at least six transports and two warships. The British win by getting five transports and one warship off the western edge of the table.