Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Type : Civilian Spheroid
Use : Civilian Light Cargo Transport
Tech : Inner Sphere
Introduced : 2720
Mass : 3200 tons
Length : 81.5 m
Width : 81.5 m
Height : 78.0 m
Drive System : Cluster 320 (Fusion)
Fuel : 250 tons
Tons/Burn-Day : 2.82
Safe Thrust : 3
Maximum Thrust : 5
Heat Sinks : 84
Structural Integrity : 7
Armor : Inner Sphere Standard (23 tons)
Fore : 105
Sides : 91
Aft : 81
Bay 1 : Cargo (1700 tons) – 2 Doors
Bay 2 : Small Craft (2) – 2 Doors
Crew : 8 (3e, 1p – 4 Gunners)
Base Crew : 4 – 1p, 1e, 2se (Bridge – 1p, 1se : Engine – 1e, 1se)
Escape Pods : 4
Life Boats : 0
Ammunition : Fifteen (15) tons LRM Ammo.
Six (6) LRM-20s
Two (2) Large Lasers
Twelve (12) Medium Lasers
Notes : 69.4 Million Cs. Ten (10) 2nd-Class Passenger Cabins; Trojan variant reduces cargo to 1550 tons and six (6) passengers.
Trojan-Class “Blockade Runner” blowing its concealed panels
Based loosely on the highly successful Union-Class ’Mecha transport, the Danais was a lighter civilian vessel that entered production in the 2720s. Often manufactured alongside its military cousin, the unarmed Danais was also among the few vessel types the Star League allowed the subjugated Periphery States to manufacture. As a result, this Dropship class soon became a favorite of small shipping lines and independent traders.
The Taurian Concordat produced the first of the so-called “Blockade Runner” Danais’. With the imposition of unfair and crippling taxation, Periphery unrest grew rapidly, and the Taurian merchant marine became actively involved in smuggling weapons and equipment. The so-called “Trojan” configuration was the perfect choice for this kind of mission, and soon most of the ubiquitous Danais were being retrofitted with weapons (often concealed beneath blow-away panels and EM screens). This added firepower and the additional heat sinks installed to accommodate their use only slightly reduced the Dropship’s original 1700 tons cargo capacity, while four of the craft’s ten second-class passenger cabins were given over to gunners.
With the outbreak of the Succession Wars, space became a very dangerous place for an independent merchant. With no SLDF navy on anti-piracy patrols, it became a common practice for captains and manufacturers to scrounge up enough weapons to convert every Danais into a Trojan blockade-runner. Many pilots took to adding false weapons ports and even false colors to mimic the tougher Union-Class Dropships, though this could back-fire.
Today, Trojan variants continue to be a familiar sight in civilian space-lanes. Equally at home with small shipping firms like Christifori Express as it is among the Excalibur Corporation Trade Fleet, this dependable and flexible Dropship has become a vital link in interstellar trade networks in Periphery space. Independent Trojan Dropships running their scheduled routes may be the only contact a distant world has with the rest of the Inner Sphere. Meanwhile, daring crews in blockade runners might employ the Trojans carrying information and lucrative cargo in and out of pirate infested territories.
The Elektra is a civilian Danais-Class DropShip, that has never been modified as a Blockade Runner. Originally owned by Five Rings Shipping, the company once controlled by Karl Lotjonen, the ship was seized by the Iron Dingoes during clandestine operations in System – Taurus.
As of early-3023, the Elektra has been refit with series of internal demountable fuel storage tanks (five such tanks, each with a 100-ton capacity) along the walls of the central cargo bay), reducing the ship’s actual cargo tonnage to 1200 tons, but allowing an additional 500 tons of bulk liquid storage. It tends to fill these tanks with extra fuel when not using them to haul cargo (traditionally water) for resale. At present, the ship has been placed under a sixteen-year lend-lease agreement with Executive Secretary Arlana Jericho, to effect her own trade network, even while on contract.
While the vessel has no set crew or commander at this time, it has been assigned a KR-61 Class Long-Range Shuttle also taken during its capture. Arlana intends to make assigning crew and a lead pilot as a priority.