Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Smoke Jaguar Dossier: Broadsword Dropship
Weight: 1850 Tons
Tech Base: Clan
Developed by Clan Sea Fox shortly before they became Clan Diamond Shark to replace the venerable Leopard-class, the Broadsword-class is superficially similar to the older design but has been redesigned to carry five OmniMechs as per Clan military structure.
The Broadsword features a balanced blend of speed, firepower and armor superior to its parent design, making it well suited to raiding or reconnaissance missions. The craft's only lack is integral AeroSpace Fighter support like that carried by the Leopard, a choice forced by the need to carry an additional 'Mech. The versatile and reliable craft is in use in the toumans of most Clans, though Clan Steel Viper field the lion-share after successfully staging a Trial of Possession for the Diamond Shark's Marshall yards.
The Broadsword features an effective armament for its size, with twin ER Large Lasers and ER PPCs, a Artemis IV FCS equipped LRM-20 and single Medium Pulse Laser mounted in its nose bays, support by twin LRM-20 launchers, a trio of Medium Pulse Lasers and a single Small Pulse Laser in each wing. Aft firepower is all short-range with a another Medium Pulse Laser carried between two Streak SRM-6 launchers. Ten tons of LRM and four tons of Streak missiles give the Broadswords missile launchers reasonable endurance, though only a single ton of reloads for its nose-mounted Anti-Missile System can quickly leave it open to attacks from enemy launchers.
The Broadsword is built around its ability to transport a complete OmniMech Star, but is somewhat restricted by its legacy of being based on the Leopard. The four side-bays are relatively identical to those of its aging father, with the fifth bay sitting within the craft's nose in the approximate position of the Lepoards two fighter bays. This problematic arrangement causes headaches for the technicians assigned to look after the 'Mech in the nose bay, as only the smallest 'Mech parts can fit through the internal passageway linking the other bays. Worse, the Broadsword’s main cargo bay is located on the vessel’s upper deck, which can only be reached via a pair of stairways, thus most of the vessel’s cargo must be manually transported between decks.
Captain Nash's Analysis: As we all know...the weak point of a drop ship is her engines. Get around to the back side and take out an engine to keep these birds on the ground.