Sign in to follow this  

[Challenge 2][Cat A] Flight of the bumblebee

Recommended Posts

+Sue Damoness, personal log, start recording++

Transition from military to civilian life has been an interesting one. I do miss how clearly defined everything was in Galaxy Squad and the routine. Though I don't miss the boredom that comes from waiting for things to happen. One perk though is that I get to do my hair however I want. No more short cropped hair for me!

I guess I'm lucky in that pilots are needed in both spheres, especially for aces like myself. I got several offers, but I decided to go with Octan for the simple reason that my supervisor appears to be a well meaning idiot.

I've served under officers who were either super intelligent or sheer morons, but always with their own selfish agendas, and nothing pisses me off more than being deliberately sent into a bad situation or left in one. The way I see it, this Pombe guy won't screw me over...on purpose, anyway.

Best of all, it seems he's aware of what he's not aware of, and has left most of the piloting related decisions to me.

There's word that a giant fleet of unknowns is heading our way from Andromeda's galactic core, and in response, Octan is developing its own fleet to intercept it. Pombe wanted me to put forward design specifications to an engineer based on my own combat experience to build a new highly effective starfighter. Seriously? I get to design my dream starfighter? How lucky can a girl get?!


He recommended Big Z as the engineer to go to, which is fine. I mean, I have nothing against him...I just...well...he's a pretty boy, and I just can't...not after that incident. I do see why Eshey is all crazy about him. But no, I had to find someone else.

Remember when I mentioned that my supervisor is an idiot? I don't know how this started, but he's utterly convinced that Wick Nole is a legendary explorer. Except that Wick Nole is an engineer. And how he's convinced everyone else on the team that Wick Nole is an explorer is beyond me. I mean, I'm not saying that engineers can't explore...but that's just not Wick Nole's job title.

And speaking of Wick Nole: as one of the branch executives and one of the main corporate strategists here in Andromeda, I figure I would ask him to help me design my dream starfighter.


I told him I had three criteria for the new starfighter:

1) it had to be as fast as possible

2) it had to be as agile as possible


3) all its weapons had to be either turret mounted or guided.

The first one is easy, especially for someone coming from Galaxy Squad's Red Team. Combat in space takes place over incredible distances and in order to win, one needs to cover those distances quickly. The ability to respond to a rapidly changing situation quickly is absolutely critical to victory. I've seen so many engagements whose outcomes were literally decided by which side could respond faster. And if your plan fails, which happens all the time, your speed determines if you bug out or die. Speed is victory, speed is survival.

Agility is often ignored in starfighter designs, and I don't understand why. Because of the distances in which space combat occurs, often times in the tens of thousands of kilometers, all weapons fire is calculated by targeting computers. The computer triangulates the distances, determines the relative speeds, projects the most likely path of the target, and fires according to calculated probabilities. And those computers are exceptional at placing a projectile, whether it's a slug, a missile, or a beam of light, at the same location in space and at the same time that it will be occupied by the target. No one manually aims their weapons in space. No one.

However, the more agile the target is, the greater the range of probable paths, and the less likely the computer will be able to hit the target. And I don't like getting hit. Now, I get that the g-forces that a minifigure can endure without passing out pretty much dictates the limits of how agile a starfighter can be. Galaxy Squad already selects for pilots that can withstand high g-forces, and my flight suit is designed to boost those tolerances even further. While it's not for rookies, it's my dream starfighter, designed for improving the survivability of experienced pilots.

Finally, I don't get this fascination of fixed forward firing weapons on starfighters. It just makes your flight path more predictable, since you have to manuver and line up your approach vector before you can even fly at your target to shoot it. And I've seen enough mutual destruction by opponents flying straight at each other to know that such designs are suicide. Turret mounted and/or guided weapons allow you to never have to fly directly at a target and makes it even harder for the opponent's computer to predict where you'll be.

Well, let me tell you: Wick Nole does not disappoint. She was as beautiful as she was deadly. She was designated as the OF-44. While Wick was the one who built her, he was kind enough to let me name her. I christened her Killer Bee.


Now, to achieve what I wanted, Wick had to make some necessary compromises. She was small and light, lightly armored, lightly armed, and had limited range. That pretty much meant she would need to operate out of a local starbase or carrier ship, but everything else was not a drawback in my book. She was still capable of performing CAP assignments and act as an interceptor if necessary.


Though lightly armored, she was unlikely to get hit, given the speed her three massive engines gave her, two of which were designed for maximum 360 degree manuverability, ensuring she would be near impossible to track. She could even fly backwards! How many starfighters can do that? Best of all, not only was she a space superiority fighter, her variable engines gave her VTOL capabilites to fill the ground support role of a gunship if no enemy air assets are present.


Her weapons were minimal, a turret mounted cannon and a missile pod with four guided rockets with MIRV warheads. This may seem like a disadvantage, as starfighters with big guns and large payloads look impressive on paper, but combat takes place at speeds several orders of magnitude higher than the speed of sound. Any starfighter hit by an object no larger than a typical nut or screw would be obliterated anyway, given how much energy would be released in such a collision. That's why only morons fly through the debris field created by an exploding target. Only the larger capital ships needed to be hit with such firepower, because of how heavily armored they are, and that's a role delegated to either bomber class fighters or other capital ships.


I took her for a test flight, and she flew like a dream. Everything was smooth and easy, and it felt like she could almost predict what I wanted her to do before I hit the controls. Afterwards, I gave her my stamp of approval, and Wick is now in the process of getting her into full production.


Whatever it is that's coming at us from the galactic center had better beware. Squadrons of Killer Bees will be waiting.


++Sue Damoness, personal log, stop recording++





Edited by pombe

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice choice with a story to go along with the ship! I really like it, reminds me of VTOL gunships from stuff like Mass Effect and Halo!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Reminds me of an OV-10A Bronco mixed with a VTOL drop ship. Cool design and good you are getting into the backstory of your full crew.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice ship Pombe! You really captured the sleek and smooth Octan feel! :thumbup:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The shape and color blocking is fantastic here, but I do think the landing gear is a bit cluttersome when it's folded up. Of course the big honkin' engines make me smile! :sweet:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The engines are superb and I really like the use of telephones :thumbup:

Edited by LittleJohn

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.