Ship Orders are a mechanic exclusive to Valkyria Chronicles 4 which allows the player to call for support from the Federation Snow Cruiser Centurion. They become available starting in Chapter 8: The Crystal Sea.
Ship Orders are a special subset of Orders representing the powerful support abilities of the Centurion, and are available in the majority of missions after Chapter 8. They are retroactively added to Skirmishes unlocked before this, but cannot be used in prior storyline missions if they are re-fought. Where they are not allowed in later missions, it is usually due to some story reason, such as the Centurion not being nearby or something happening to her.
With the exception of Emergency Fix, Ship Orders function like regular Orders in that they cannot be given unless Claude Wallace, either as a Scout or in the Hafen, is in the field and not in critical condition.
All Ship Orders have a threefold cost: firstly, employing one costs one regular Command Point. Second, the total number of Ship Orders that can be used in a particular battle is limited, starting with a default of 2 and upgradeable to up to 5. Upgrades for the number of uses are present in the Ship Upgrades for Bombardment, Rescue Squad and Emergency Fix, as the one for Radar comes on the free upgrade given to the player as soon as they acquire the Centurion (therefore, technically the default number of Ship Order uses is actually 1). The number of remaining uses is shown in the Ship Orders sub-menu in Command Mode.
The final cost is the use of the ship's power: this, which could be regarded as a "charge," is indicated by a glowing device below the turn number indicator in Command Mode. Like the Special Command point, only one of these charges is allocated per turn and there is no way to get it back once it is used, and so Ship Orders are limited to one use in a given turn. In missions where Ship Orders are not available, the charge indicator will not be present.
The player starts out only having access to the Radar Ship Order: this is an obvious gameplay conceit, since the Snow Cruisers have been shown firing their Amp Cannons in the story already at this point. To unlock the others, they must develop the corresponding Ship Upgrades, which gradually unlock over subsequent missions just like other upgrades.
Radar reveals all enemy units within a set radius, regardless of whether any unit has line of sight to them, they are in hiding, or negative sight penalties like night or blizzard are active. They will remain revealed until the end of the current player turn, after which they will turn back into "?" blips in the usual fashion.
It is limited to being used at a set range from Claude. Ship Upgrades increase the distance from Claude at which it can be used and the radius of the revealed area.
Bombardment fires a volley of shots from the Centurion's Amp Cannons, dealing damage over a wide area. The damage is distributed evenly across the area of effect rather than concentrated in the middle like a normal blast weapon. The blast disregards cover and terrain height, and enemies struck by it are unable to evade. Its "power" rating is generic damage rather than vs Pers or vs Armor, and damages all targets equally. It cannot destroy sandbags.
Bombardment does halved damage to enemies who have not been spotted in the current mission. This is likely to prevent players from cheesing areas where they know enemies are located, but haven't spotted.
Like Radar, it is limited to being used at a set range from Claude. Ship Upgrades increase the distance from Claude at which it can be used, and the size and power of the blast. When fully upgraded it is effective against level 30 Paragon infantry other than Lancers (against the Challenge Skirmish 30+ Paragons it will leave Shocktroopers with a sliver of health) though the damage is too minor for it to be useful against Fixed Weapons and far too low to harm Tanks (since it counts as a body hit rather than a critical hit).
Rescue Squad will immediately rescue all soldiers in critical condition no matter where they are on the map or how many there are, and also gives a free heal to all soldiers who are not at maximum HP. The corresponding Ship Upgrades increase the amount of healing, from modest to significant. It does not heal vehicles.
The game will not allow this Order to be used if no soldiers are in critical condition or injured. It can be used if there are no soldiers in critical condition or no soldiers who are injured, it only requires one condition to be met.
Emergency Fix will immediately re-deploy any player-controlled Tanks that have been "forced to retreat" (ie destroyed) by enemy action, with a set amount of HP restored that increases as the Ship Upgrades are purchased. They will typically re-deploy at their starting location, though some maps have a different location that is used instead.
Uniquely, Emergency Fix can still be ordered even if the Hafen has been destroyed, though it cannot be used to save a mission where the Hafen being destroyed is a failure condition. Claude will be shown giving the Order on foot if his tank is out of action.
Emergency Fix will re-deploy all tanks currently destroyed, all with the same level of healing: it is not split between them if multiple tanks are sent out. It will also fully reload the ammunition of the Hafen and Glory, including the Hafen's smoke rounds: this is the only way to fire more than one smoke round in a turn. If the Cactus was carrying infantry when it was destroyed, they will not be returned when it comes back. The tanks still count as losses for the purpose of the "no soldiers lost" secret reward criteria in some storyline missions.
Like Rescue Squad, the game will not allow this Order to be used if no tank has been destroyed.
The Ship Upgrades menu is added to the R&D Labs when Squad E embarks on the Centurion.
The final two ranks of each of these sets of upgrades require the player to purchase the corresponding unlock from the Infirmary using Renown Points, a feature which becomes available post-game.
In these tables, "range" where present is the range from either Claude or the Hafen that the ability can be used, area is the radius of effect, and a +1 in "uses" means that purchasing that upgrade also allows an additional Ship Order to be used per mission.
|Armament Name||Healing||Uses||R&D Cost|
|Rescue Vehicle 1||125||-||12,000|
|Rescue Vehicle 2||150||-||16,000|
|Rescue Vehicle 3||175||+1||21,000|
|Rescue Vehicle 4||200||-||26,000|
|Rescue Vehicle 5||225||-||34,000|
|Rescue Vehicle 6||250||-||42,000|
|Armament Name||Healing||Uses||R&D Cost|
|Urgent Repair Bay||2,000||-||12,000|
|Repair Bay 1||2,200||-||17,000|
|Repair Bay 2||2,400||-||22,000|
|Repair Bay 3||2,700||-||28,000|
|Repair Bay 4||3,000||+1||34,000|
|Repair Bay 5||3,200||-||43,000|
|Repair Bay 6||3,500||-||52,000|