Campaign of the Month: June 2014
Battletech : The Farscape Campaign
Mark VII Landing Craft
Landing Assault Ship
Mark VII Landing Craft (150 tons)
Type : Small Craft (Aerodyne)
Tonnage : 150 tons
Length : 21.4 m
Width : 20.0 m
Crew : 2 : 1p, 1e.
Cargo Complement: 65 tons.
Bay 1 : Cargo – (65 tons) : (1 Door)
Armament : 6xML, 2xSL.
Ammunition : None.
Drive System : Faxxen-70A : (8.5 tons)
Heat Sinks 0 + 10
Thrust : 4
Overthrust : 6
Structural Integrity : 6
Fuel : 15 Thrust-Points (1.84 tons per Burn-Day) : 3 tons
First Introduced : 2841
Armor Factor(16 points per ton) : 14.5 tons
Nose – 116 : 2xSL
Right Side – 35 : 2xML
Left Side – 35 : 2xML
Engine – 46 : 2xML
The Mark VII Landing Craft is a heavy aerospace craft with improved armor and capable of carrying a heavy payload.
Capabilities : Massing 150 tons, the vessel is capable of transporting 65 tons of cargo, vehicles and equipment from orbit to a planet’s surface, and is able to defend itself as well as the heavy aerospace fighter it was designed after. The craft’s boxy fuselage is well-armroed with 14.5 tons of armor plating. The vehicle is equipped with the FAxxen-70A fusion drive, which although quite powerful, is just enough to get the vessel fully-loaded back into orbit. Poor maneuvering is the craft’s greatest weakness.
The Mark VII carries a number of weapons to defend itself and provide covering fire for embarking and disembarking troops and cargo. In a small weapon’s bay beneath the craft’s nose cockpit, lies a pair of Kajuka Light Lasers, meant to assist in a dogfight. Mounted under the wings are several Kajuka Medium Lasers, along with a series of pylons that allow the mounting of bombs and infernos to clear landing zones. Because of the craft’s lack of maneuvering power, any payload can severely hamper the ship’s performance, and it cannot achieve orbit without first expending or jettisoning any wing-mounted ordinance.
Unlike most other small craft, the Mark VII is equipped with a set of bottom-mounted chilled-mixture thrusters. These thrusters allow the craft to take-off and land vertically, granting it unparalleled ability to land in difficult positions or clearings. The cool-air mixture emitted will not damage wing-mounted ordinance.
The interior of the craft is mostly an open cargo bay, approximately 14 meters long and 8 meters wide, with a clearance of 5 meters. The entire floor of the cargo bay is an elevator capable of lifting up to 80 tons. With the elevator lowered to the ground, the vessel is rapidly and easily loaded and unloaded. The walls of this bay are are covered with numerous heat ducts, coolant circulation pipes, and electrical conduits. At its front end, is a pressure door that leads to the nose cockpit, seating the pilot and co-pilot/engineer of the crew.
Deployment : The vessel is somewhat rare, being mass-produced only in the Capellan Confederation, a handful are built in both the Draconis Combine and the Lyran Commonwealth.
Variants : _House Liao has developed a large number of these craft with upgraded weapons, a more powerful engine, and no cargo-carrying ability. This version, known as the “Assault Lander”, retains the same outward appearance, and has fooled many Marik and Davion forces during planetary assaults. Thinking the craft an easy kill, AeroFighters often approach the vessel, and find themselves rapidly out-gunned.
The Assault Lander carries an extra two tons of fuel, a Rawlings 300 fusion drive, and fifteen (15) heat sinks. The remaining space acquired through the loss of all its cargo capacity, is a nose-mounted AC/10 wiht 2 tons of ammo, and a third small laser. An LRM-20 is mounted under one wing, with three tons of ammo, and the the medium lasers on the wings and aft are replaced with three (3) large lasers.
To improve the Mark VII’s maneuverability, House Steiner installed a Pitban 300 in some of their vessels, which reduces the cargo capacity to 55 tons and scarifices a half-ton of armor plate. This version is popular among pilots for its better flight characteristics, however, they do not allow the deployment of heavy Rommel or Patton tanks so popular in the Lyran Commonwealth army, meaning few such conversions were ever made.