Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
HAVOK Tactical Nuclear Warhead
Tactical Nuclear Weapon
The HAVOK Tactical Nuclear Warhead is one of the most powerful ground-based tactical ordinances in the former Star League arsenal, and has a thermonuclear yield of a half-kiloton.
Nuclear Weapons are the most common and well-known examples of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). While the Ares Conventions were meant to try and prevent their usage, they have played a pivotal and horrific role in shaping the nature of the Inner Sphere.
By the thirty-first century, most nuclear weapons were ancient, dating back to the time of the Amaris Crisis or the early Succession Wars, but many nations in the Inner Sphere and Periphery periodically refurbished their stockpiles, if only to maintain a secret level of readiness or as a last desperate gambit. To actually use a nuclear weapon is considered a “crime against humanity” per Articles I and VI of the Ares Conventions, however many governments are willing to look the other way when “extreme circumstances” warrant their use.
While a wide variety of tactical nuclear weapons exist, there are a number of common models which can be found in the arsenals of most military forces. There also exist larger strategic weapons, which includes anything greater than 500 kilotons up to the massive 50 megaton warheads deployed during the Amaris Crisis and the early Succession Wars.
Variants : Several variants of the HAVOK nuclear device have been developed for use in different tactical situations. These include the HAVOK space mine, and the Variant V HAVOK. The Variant V HAVOK is designed to maximize the thermonuclear yield in the vacuum of space by factor of ten (5 kilotons), and is typically mounted within a warship torpedo, to be launched for space-to-space or space-to-orbit combat. They were extensively deployed during the fighting for the core Taurian worlds during the Reunification War.
HAVOK : A versatile and compact nuclear warhead, analogous to the traditional SLDF infantry support “Davy Crockett”. The HAVOK is effectively a DC-M model, which can be modified (using specs in the Iron Dingoes techs database) to be fired by a Long Tom Cannon, notably the mercenary’s beloved Kate & Leopold units. The modified shells are heavier than standard Long Tom ordinance, but effectively deploy and fire like any other standard shells. They always attack as a Ground Burst.
Cost : 262,500 Cs each
Base Damage : 100 (Ground Zero)
AT2 Capital Damage (Crit) : 1(11+)
Degredation by Hex (Ground/Air) : 5/4
Secondary Radius (Ground/Air) : 40/53
Crater Depth : 0
Range : As Launcher (Long Tom or Arrow IV)
Mass : 1 ton
Variant V HAVOK : The Variant V HAVOK is a special modification of the standard HAVOK, that allows a special fighter-carried space-to-space (or air-to-ground) nuclear ordinance designed for use by conventional airfighters or AeroSpace Fighters. Though powerful and relatively lightweight, it occupies 10 bomb slots on a fighter, imposing a loss of 2 Thrust Points for every such warhead carried. It is analogous to the infamous Alamo-D nuclear warhead.
The Variant V HAVOK may not be fired from space into an atmosphere, nor can it be fired vice-versa. As a space-to-space, or air-to-air weapon, it has the range profile of an AC/10, and is treated as a capital missile in all other respects.
Variant V HAVOK attacks used in air-to-ground attacks are treated as an off-board artillery attack with the base range of a Long Tom, using equivalent off-board location as to where it ends its turn in the air (that is, a fighter 3 low-altitude hexes away from the target mapsheet, treats the attack as being fired three boards away). Variant V HAVOKs in flight, however, move faster than Long Tom shells, and traverse ten mapboards every turn. Variant V HAVOKs fired as an air-to-ground attack may not be targeted by ground-based anti-aircraft or anti-missile systems.
At the moment of firing, the attacker designates whether the missile is to be either an airburst or a ground burst.
Base Damage : 1000 (Ground Zero)
AT2 Capital Damage (Crit) : 10(10+)
Degredation by Hex (Ground/Air) : 23/17
Secondary Radius (Ground/Air) : 86/115
Crater Depth : 1
Range : 20 (Medium) or (as AC/10)
Mass : 5 tons
The HAVOK tactical nuclear weapon was primarily utilized in situations in which the Star League was unable to eliminate combat forces entrenched in highly fortified locations and formations, or to prevent important locations from falling into enemy control. The Star League authorized the use of HAVOK explosives to eliminate enemy naval vessels deploying infantry and equipment as well. Nuclear weapons like the HAVOK were employed often in combat against the Taurian Concordat during the latter stages of the Reunification War, as they are some of the only weapons in the Star League arsenal capable of directly inflicting catastrophic damage to advanced Concordat fortifications and massed infantry formations. However, nuclear ordnance was only authorized when all civilian and military populations had been either evacuated, or they were considered “compromised” within a target civilian area.