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Сообщение DeJaVu » 24 июн 2011, 08:12

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The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Seven
Welcome to this week’s Rankar’s Deep Report.
The match between Acca Haig and Tyler Boyer this week indicates how serious hostilities are between the Black Eagle and the Regulus Wrath Stables.
Boyer came into this week leading the Class Two division, after beating Star Rangers’ Steve Miller last week, while Calidia Raines lost to Broken Chains’ Cindy Santos. Acca Haig is at the bottom of the division and has only won two of her six matches.
Chief Referee Garret Foster told RDR that the League worried about the match and their fears were justified. Boyer’s Stinger entered with the Regulun Hussars’ emblem on its chest. Haig’s Panther, painted in FWL purple, had the Marik eagle prominently displayed on the torso. Neither gladiator spoke except to acknowledge their readiness. When the signal was given, both exploded into attack.
It quickly became obvious that both had modified their ’Mechs. Boyer’s lasers struck the Panther at longer than normal range, only to do little damage to the Black Eagle ’Mech’s glazed armor. Haig fired her PPC and the powerful beam nearly took Boyer’s head off.
The next twenty-two minutes were ugly, as it became clear that each warrior was out for blood. Unable to do serious damage to the Panther quickly, Boyer kept moving to avoid Haig’s ER PPC, which was clearly not the Panther’s normal weapon.
Boyer’s odds finally gave out when one of Haig’s PPC blasts vaporized his right leg. Boyer tried to fight on, but officials, fearing that things would get out of hand, quickly called the fight and awarded Haig the win. The Wraths have filed an official protest, which will be ruled on next week. We’ll stay on this.
Stay tuned for next week’s Rankar’s Deep Report!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

Banshees on Skye?
The McQuiston family were the first rulers of Skye, and originated with an impetuous young Scotsman seeking fortune in the Exodus. Ian McQuiston came from a family of traders and used his savvy to create a shipping monopoly that became a full-fledged government. His family died out but his legacy remains in the Lyran Commonwealth.

The McQuistons may have contributed something more to Skye than a government, though. A descendant of the chiefs of the Clan MacDonald of Skye, as genealogist Richard Kavanaugh confirms. “McQuiston's great-great-grand father Perry married the last daughter of one of the sub-branches of the Clan,” he told host Werner von Schattenberg. “That made the McQuiston family one of the few surviving families with any clan authority.”
And it was the chiefs of the Gaelic clans that were entitled to a funeral dirge by the banshees. McQuiston had no siblings on Terra so the clan authority traveled with him to his manor outside the Bannockburn Bogs on Skye. The first instance of an apparition, covered in the New Glasgow Gazette, mentioned a specter of a woman wailing at the death of McQuiston's first wife. The Banshees reappeared before Archon Marsden's coup, the Kurita invasion of 2407, and after the doomed marriage of Regina McQuiston. The McQuiston line died with Regina, but the Banshees have been sighted again when Skye comes under threat, most recently at the beginning of the Jihad.
Video from Skye of a recent apparition is causing a renewed interest in the phenomenon. The shadowy figure and its unearthly keening are striking and eerie. Does it signal further tragedy for the Lyran Alliance with the end of the Jihad in sight? Only time will tell.
Join us next week as we look at the dark secret of Coordinator Hohiro Kurita!
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Count Proposes Budget Cuts
(Sharpsberg, Antietam, Federated Suns, April 10)

At the opening of Antietam Planetary Parliament’s yearly session, Count Philip Mallory laid out his vision of a post-Jihad Antietam
Antietam itself was spared from any Blakist attacks, though there were a few raids on Antietam’s asteroid belt mines. But the casualty rates among the Antietam soldiers serving in the AFFS were seventy percent.
In a twenty-minute speech, the count summed up Antietam’s current state, then started laying of his plans. There were a few eyebrows raised when the count strongly suggested to Parliament that this year’s planetary budget be cut fifteen percent, “…because of the shattered state of the Inner Sphere economy.” He stated that the Mallory family will be cutting their own budgets by fifteen percent and contribute five million pounds to local social and volunteer groups.
The count became tearful when he talked about the horrendous loss of so many young Antietam men and women. The count, a veteran of the Fourth Succession War, took several minutes to eulogize them, promising “that their sacrifice will be remembered as long as they are kept in our collective hearts.” He asked Parliament to find a strip of land that would be given over to a privately funded monument to those fallen soldiers.
The rest of the speech outlined the way to put Antietam on a solid financial keel, draw business to the planet, and ride the wave of the recovering Federated Suns economy.
Reaction on the floor of Parliament was mostly favorable. Sarah Matterason, MP-Springfield, said the speech, “was timely and shows great forethought.” But Giles Megan, MP-Downs End, called the speech, “Fearmongering of the worse kind.”
NobleWatch will keep you appraised of this matter as events warrant it.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: Drones
Most of the Inner Sphere holds the idea of drones in contempt, if not outright fear. The Hegemony Casper system proved devastatingly effective, but unfortunately was turned against its creators when Amaris overthrew the Camerons. After that, Inner Sphere leaders seemed to shy away from any widespread use of automated and remote operated drones. But despite the belief that these were not in use at all, certain industrial and highly-specialized military drones were still in use during the Succession Wars, most notably those carried by the Hi-Scout Drone Carrier.

It was the Word of Blake and the Capellan Confederation that brought these systems back into play in a major way. The remote operating system can weigh up to and over three times what a typical cockpit and manual operating system takes up. This is not counting the operating system required on the carrier units—unlike true Casper AI system used by in the Star League, the hesitancy about friendly fire and hacking left current users unwilling to have a mobile autonomous system in use during combat.
This is almost a purely defensive system. This not to say a drone system cannot be used effectively on offense, but during those key moments at a jump point, launching the drones after getting over the disorientation of hyperspace leaves the carrier just as vulnerable as a normal fighter carrier. The quick destruction of the drone carrier will leave all those remote operated units useless, while at least manned fighters can shift to other transports. On the flip side, while defending a jump point the carrier can leave their drones floating, mostly underpowered without worry of life support in pre-positioned locations waiting to ambush an unsuspecting vessel.
Next week we look at the innards of most combat units, the engines and the gyros and recent upgrades they've been receiving!
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.

Strategos: Mallory’s World Pt 7
When the Second Sword of Light retreated from Colterville it had split into two parts to keep from being trapped by the more numerous and more swift-moving Fourth Davion Guards. But while this could keep the decisive battle from happening—the Dragon’s Bane couldn’t bring enough firepower to bear to overwhelm the heavier Steel Dragon, and the Second Sword couldn’t catch enough of the Fourth Guards to matter—it did nothing to end the battle.
Until the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars drove the Seventeenth Avalon Hussars back into Colterville.
With no one to watch the backfield, the Fourth Guards were forced to devote too many resources to holding their lines of supply. They halted their pursuit mission and withdrew into an evasion pattern, which allowed the Second Sword of Light to reconsolidate and begin an orchestrated push to isolate and destroy the Fourth Davion Guards. If the Dragon’s Bane was to have any hope of survival, more Davion troops would have to be brought to Mallory’s World—but all the AFFS regulars were too far away. The only troops conveniently nearby were the mercenary Kell Hounds, who arrived on 21 October.
Even the Kell Hounds—who would grow to claim a famed reputation the equal of any other mercenaries—weren’t enough. Next week, we go to Desolate Pass.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Eight
Welcome to this week’s Rankar’s Deep Report.

The Regulus’ Wrath’s protest of last week’s Acca Haig-Tyler Boyer match was rejected. In addition, both the Wrath and the Eagles were warned that any rules violation would result in point deductions, suspension, or expulsion from the League.
RDR takes a look at the Wrath’s matches this week. Three of the four matches were against Black Ronin Stable.
Despite Acca Haig’s win last week, she is still near the bottom of the division. This week, third-place Carlos Valdez was the opponent and both pilot Panthers.
From the start Valdez was quicker. His first PPC shot stripped the armor off of Haig’s right arm. Valdez continued to be methodical as he slowly took Haig apart. When a PPC blast destroyed the Regulus ’Mechs’ right torso, Haig conceded the match.
Tyrone Dyhr was in second place in the Class Two division, and he needed to win against Sandra Nakamura to keep pace with leader Anna Hung. Nakamura started out strong in the first few exchanges, but Dyhr used his Phoenix Hawk’s speed, mobility, and his large laser’s range advantage to stay away from Nakamura’s Ronin and slowly pick it apart. After sixteen minutes, Dhyr’s laser burned through the Ronin’s left leg and fused both the knee and foot actuators. Unable to move quickly, Nakamura acquiesced.
The third Wrath-Ronin matchup saw Rick Dekker against Calvin Frost. Both men sit in Division Four’s basement and needed the win.
The fight was brutally short. Frost used his Hachiwara’s supercharger to rapidly close on Dekker’s Rifleman. The Ronin’s combination of autocannon and vibroblade left the Wrath ’Mech a wreck and Frost the victor.
Anne Foster finished out the Wrath’s miserable week by losing to Neil Oldenwhite in a no-flash, ho-hum affair.
Stay tuned for next week’s Rankar’s Deep Report!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

The Cursed Blood of Hohiro Kurita!
The marriage of Theodore Kurita to Tomoe Sakade was justified by her descent from Duncan Cameron and Johanna Kurita, who were smuggled out of Terra by a benevolent Kuritan trading family and hidden to history. FedCom sources were quick to point out the absurdity of the story once it was publicized by Combine dissidents, and it is generally considered propaganda elsewhere in the Inner Sphere.

Why did Kurita invent such a fabrication to obscure the truth of Sakade's lineage? It is clear that no Cameron with a claim on the throne could possibly have escaped from Stefan Amaris, let alone in the circumstances claimed. But there was another possibility that host Werner von Schattenberg explores. The records of the Amaris occupation make it clear that the Usurper had many children, and one is known to have escaped. Could it be that another child of Amaris was smuggled out?
Minoru Kurita and Stefan Amaris acted like allies over the course of the Usurpation, and it is unlikely that any Kurita traders could have acted without the agreement of the Coordinator. Helping a branch of the despicable Amaris line survive would be in line with the actions of Minoru, who drove out the loyalist Eridani Light Horse and forbade General Kerensky to stage from his Combine. Taking in a child of Amaris would be among the least despicable acts of that Coordinator.
But we know that Hohiro's brother, named Minoru in “honor” of his ancestor, is a member of the Nova Cats. However the Nova Cats are no longer truly Clan. The unreasonable and violent reaction of a Nova Cat warrior interviewed by Werner proves that the Cats are also hiding the truth about the Kuritas.
Join us next week when we look at the Satanist connections of Katherine Steiner-Davion!
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Report from the Red Carpet (Part 1)
(Tharkad City, Tharkad, Lyran Alliance, April 17)

Here in the rebuilding capital some of Tharkad’s surviving society gathered together for a Celebration Ball. The rebuilt Marsden Wing of the Archon’s Palace was the site. Attendance didn’t match pre-Jihad gatherings, as Tharkad’s nobility were targets during the Word’s occupation, and most off-world nobles are still trying to piece their realms together. Few reporters covered the event.
Still, a few notables did attend. Baroness Roberta DeVire and her daughters, Belinda and Felicia, were conspicuously present. Baron John DeVire’s widow, Roberta is the acknowledged doyen of the reemerging Tharkad social scene. Despite being near fifty, DeVire still turns men’s heads without effort. Both daughters are also beauties, and rumors have them linked with several eligible bachelors. Each of the women wore dresses in shimmering green.
Baron Foster Bellman of Forkas was one of the few off-world nobles who attended. Four of the baron’s sons and two of his daughters fought for the Alliance, three of them making the ultimate sacrifice. It was clear by the Baron’s somber dress that he still is in morning.
Among the new crop of Tharkad nobility attending was the new Baron Ansgar Shurasky and his lovely wife, Wilva. The baron, a hero of both the Federated Commonwealth Civil War and the Jihad, still looks pale and drawn from years of combat. He was wearing a LAAF dress uniform with his new rank of colonel and the Alliance Star around his neck. Wilva looked stunning in an off-the-shoulder Steiner-blue dress.
Also new to the noble scene is Baron Peter Krousenhammer, whose reporting on the Word’s occupation of Tharkad gathered awards from across the Alliance. He came directly from his new job as TBS’ chief correspondent, dressed in what has become his trademark dark suit and bow tie.
More from Tharkad later!
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: Engines and Gyros
Fusion engines and gyros are probably some of the most widely produced heavy military equipment. The reason for this is simple: every modern BattleMech needs them. Sure, fission, fuel cell or internal combustion engines could be used instead, but those are so inefficient that nobody wants to mount them if they don’t absolutely have to. Even vehicles that mount fusion engines are more effective in combat than their ICE brethren. So the question becomes, if this technology is so vital, why does it seem that other than in the Star League and the Clans, standard fusion and gyros were the only variation available?

It was not until right before the Federated Commonwealth Civil War that progress was made. Wolf’s Dragoons, looking for lighter mass but Clan durability, broke through with the versatile light engine. A sensible compromise, the Dragoons intended to keep this technology for themselves until Katherine Steiner-Davion’s Lyran Alliance stole the plans for it.
Like a pebble in an avalanche the developments continued to gain speed and weight. Now with lighter and sturdier materials available, both new engines and new gyros began appearing. Designers can choose if their designs needed lighter versions of their core systems to mount more equipment and weapons, or if they are engineered to need more space by using heavier but more compact engines and gyros. Even the inherit fragility of gyros, always an issue, now has the option of being built hardened to take more damage.
It may say a lot about the efficiency of these two components that no one felt the need to improve upon them for quite so long. Nonetheless, military formations should be thankful that options are now there. Join us next as we look at another new piece of controversial equipment, sub-capital weapons!
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.

Strategos: Mallory’s World Pt 6
Once the Fourth Davion Guards broke the siege of Colterville and took off in pursuit of the Second Sword of Light, the Seventeenth Avalon Hussars looked toward the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars with a sense of vengeance. Although they’d done proud work in resisting the advances of two veteran Draconis Combine Mustered Soldiery regiments and their supports, they felt they had to prove themselves to their First Prince.

Of course, one wonders why they couldn’t have learned from the events of just a few weeks previously, but that is but one of the mysteries of history. General Drivers ordered the remnants of his regimental combat team and its transport assets and attacked the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars directly via combat drop, the very same tactic that had led to disaster earlier.
The Collector of Heads hadn’t been savaged in the breaking of the siege—the Second Sword had, not surprisingly, relegated them largely to a supporting role—and was prepared for the Seventeenth. Again General Drivers’ troops struck prepared Combine troops and were repulsed, and again they retreated toward Colterville. Only this time, they left the flank of the Fourth Davion Guards swinging in the breeze.
Which was the very thing the Steel Dragon had been waiting for.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

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Strategos: Mallory’s Word Pt 8
The Fourth Davion Guards RCT attempted to escape from the emboldened Second Sword of Light, but the Steel Dragon refused to relinquish their command of the initiative. Desperate to cut contact and gain some distance, the Dragon’s Bane cut through Desolate Pass—a narrowing that allowed only a single ’Mech through at a time. The First Prince himself, Ian Davion, held the pass as the last of the lighter Fourth Guards BattleMechs escaped through, buying them the time they needed with his life in a now-famous duel with Yorinaga Kurita.
The Kell Hounds recovered the First Prince’s body, but his sanity—indeed, his sense of duty to the Federated Suns—had fled long before.
Consider: as First Prince, Ian Davion had a responsibility to the realm as a whole, not just that contingent of citizens that made up the Fourth Davion Guards RCT. Certainly they were the closest, and the most immediate to his heart since he’d been fighting with them day and night for weeks. But his place was not to die between two pillars of rocks under the guns of a Combine samurai. His place was to lead. The Federated Suns is not some mythical wind-powered sailing ship, and Ian Davion was not a captain to go down with one.
In the end, he died a warrior’s death—a warrior, when the realm needed a soldier.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Nine
Welcome to the Rankar’s Deep Report

Starting this week, we look at each division and their leaders in what’s shaping up to be an exciting season here at the Deep.
The Class Two division has three rookies in it and two of them lead the division. The Kroner Kings’ Jean Cuvier has been on fire, winning six of his eight matches. The Black Ronins’ Carlos Valdez is two points behind Cuvier and is looking to push past him this week. Cindy Santos and Tyler Boyer are a point behind Valdez, with Boyer’s losses the last two weeks costing him vital points and a slide down the table.
Jean Cuvier’s went up against Acca Haig in a Week Three rematch. Cuvier beat Haig handily the first time, and was favored coming in. The match was tense from the start. Haig came out fast, getting the match’s first solid hits, but Cuvier recovered quickly and hammered Haig. The match was conducted at a frantic pace, Cuvier spending nearly as much time in the air as on the ground. Haig gamely hung on, using the Deep’s outcroppings to shield her from Cuvier’s pulse lasers. Despite Cuvier’s best efforts, Haig hung on and earned a time-expired draw.
Carlos Valdez also had a Week Three rematch. Cindy Santos, determined not to have a repeat performance, came out storming in her Copperhead. Valdez was unflustered, and won the first exchanges. Santos pressed even harder, but Valdez’s Panther was more then up to the task. In a twenty-minute fight, he shattered the Broken Chains’ chances of winning the match and the Copperhead’s right leg.
After this week’s results. Valdez and Cuvier are tied for first, with Tyler Boyer and a surging Lo Yen a point behind.
Stay tuned for next week’s Rankar’s Deep Report!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

The Infernal First Princess!
It is now common knowledge in enlightened circles that Katherine Steiner-Davion was responsible for the murder of her mother, Melissa Steiner. Reginald Starling's tireless work and leaks about the existence of a “black dossier” held by her brother Victor Steiner-Davion have settled the question of her guilt. But many still wonder how she became so evil as to commit such a wicked crime.

Investigative reporter George Kerry exposed the existence of the Hellfire and Brimstone Society on the campus of the NAIS almost from the moment of its inception. In an interview with Shadows of Truth he lays out Katherine's involvement. “She was definitely invited to Society functions on campus,” Kerry notes, citing an anonymous contemporary. “At such functions the Society celebrated a Black Mass where they held orgies and worshiped an idol created from Pyramid Beer kegs which they named Baphomet.”
As Werner pointed out, Baphomet was the name of the Satanic idol worshiped by the Knights Templar before their suppression by the Papacy. “The Society has an uncertain history,” Kerry noted, “and my sources claim it was brought to New Avalon by the first Terran colonists. Certainly every scion of the First Families of New Avalon is a member.”
The support of a social elite brought together in dark Satanic rites helps account for the ease of Katherine's occupation of New Avalon. But, as Satanism expert Johann Morgenstern revealed, a buy-in would have been required. “She would have had to make a sacrifice, and the dearer and more profane the better,” he told Werner. “The murder of Melissa Steiner has occult significance as a human sacrifice, which Reginald Starling called attention to in his Bloody Princess #12.”
Join us next week as we look at the ancient Rosicrucians!
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

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NobleWatch: Report from the Red Carpet (Part 2)
(Tharkad City, Tharkad, Lyran Alliance, April 17)

We continue our look at the guests attending the first event of the post-Jihad social calendar. The Celebration Ball list of attendees was a mix of old-line survivors and the newly ennobled who earned their titles through Jihad-related efforts.
Tharkad fashion has been in disarray since the Word’s occupation. Only a few designers have gotten back to their jobs and limited funds, materials, and demand have taken their toll on the creative process. What has come out of the studios some fashion critics have called “Tharkad basic.” Simpler lines, materials and colors have made their way to those who wear the clothes everyone talks about.
An example of the new wave of fashion is Baroness Fredia Houseman, representative of Vendrell. The newest member of the Estates General’s Steering Committee, Houseman attended the Ball wearing a pale blue and gold dress, with little jewelry and makeup. The dress, by designer Levior Devore, was striking in its simplicity.
Actress Inga Jahne has also adopted the new style, showing up at the Ball in a Gloria Von Altbusser original. The royal blue backless had panels of green and white woven into the ankle-length dress.
But there are always those who buck the trend. Joanne Miles-Eddington, better known to her fans as JME, has always been one who throws convention out the wuindow. She showed up at the ball escorted by her current interest, Baron Hagle Rothham of Greenlaw. The singer wore a blood red, low-cut, knee-length kimono-style dress with the image of a large silver tiger stitched into the fabric. Whispers speculated whether or not she was wearing anything under the dress.
That concludes our two-part look at the fashion and people at the Celebration Ball.
NobleWatch will continue watching the fashion trends.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: Sub-Capital Weapons
A creation seemingly out of the blue, sub-capital weapons were evidently a Blakist attempt to export Terra's SDS to its important Protectorate systems. Just like they did to other Inner Sphere powers, the technical specifications fell into the hands of others, and the ability to produce these have spread far and wide.

Smaller than standard capital weapons, the damage-to-weight ratio proves even more inefficient than their bigger brethren, easily outclassed by bays of standard weapons of equal weight. Units and fortresses able to mount standard capital weapons often still do so instead, making them much more effective than these systems. Only the smaller ships that can’t afford the mass of the original weapons systems seem to have a reason to mount these.
Inefficient as they may be, sub-capitals are proving to be popular in many circles. Almost every new assault DropShip and variant carries one or more, giving them a reach and a mobile orbital bombardment capability that previously only WarShips possessed. There is something to be said for no longer needing such an expensive (and once again rare) weapons platform to be able to provide strategic support for ground formations.
Another use of these seem to be for mobile structures. First seen in the Blakist Protectorate, their relatively light weight allowed better use of the feared Rattler and Wyrm facilities that caused heavy casualties of those attempting to take Terra's Castle Brians. Oriente has already put these to use, creating planet-based light SDS centered around sub-capital weapons, and reportedly Sian will have a similar setup in coming years. Whether they are good or bad, sub-capital weapons seem to be on track to stay.
Next week a even more obscure weapon system, mass drivers!
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.

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Strategos: Mallory’s World Pt 9
When the DropShip carrying the Prince Ian Davion’s body boosted for orbit and the waiting JumpShip, every soldier on Mallory’s World knew that they had failed their prince even as he died for them. General Drivers, still in command of the Avalon Hussars and having seniority over the surviving Brigade of Guards officers, took a bit of time to rebuild his command and consolidate the Kell Hounds and Dragon’s Bane into his plans. Newly-promoted Tai-sa Yorinaga Kurita had led the Second Sword of Light off-world, but the Second Legion of Vega had replaced them.

One wonders if any of the Kell Hound officers present when Drivers’ staff presented their plan for the attack on the Second Legion of Vega looked at a peer and asked “seriously?” The three Davion formations would use disinformation to trick the Kuritans into believing they were going to strike at the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars, but instead struck the Second Legion of Vega. The Seventeenth’s choice of tactic: a combat drop on top of the Legion.
This time, against the dregs that made up the Legion, it worked. By the end of the assault, the Second Legion of Vega had been effectively destroyed and the Davion morale on its way to restoration. General Drivers had finally won a victory worthy of being called such.
The Twenty-fourth, upon hearing the death cries of the Second Legion of Vega, wasted no time. They bolted for the now-abandoned defenses of Colterville.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Ten
Welcome to the Rankar’s Deep Report.

We look at the Class Three division this week. Red Jians’ Anna Hung is the only unbeaten MechWarrior in any of the divisions, a hard-fought draw with Soren Murphy her only non-win this year. Tyrone Dyhr would be leading any other division. Instead, he is four points behind Hung and trying to keep the gap from getting wider.
Hung’s opponent this week was People’s Will’s Wan-Choi Cole. Cole was 2-8 coming in, the worst record he’s ever had. His older-model Tsunami has been a problem all season, and word is that the Stable will dispose of it at season’s end.
Hung stayed cool throughout the match, using her Vindicator’s LRM/PPC combo to keep Cole on the defensive and wear him down. With ten minutes left, Cole decided to gamble and launched a death-from-above attack at Hung. Hung waited until Cole reached the jump’s apex, then pounded him with everything she had, punching through weakened armor, ripping the gyro apart and destroying two jump jets. Cole’s Tsunami slammed to the ground, and officials gave Hung the victory. Cole was stunned, but okay.
Tyrone Dyhr’s match was against Wyren Claw’s Hiroyuki Hojo. Hojo, at 6-4 and in fourth place, has been a tough opponent all season.
Dyhr used his speed and jumping advantage to literally run circles around Hojo, staying away from the Bushwhacker’s Mydron autocannon. Hojo did score several missiles hits, but Dyhr targeted Hojo’s legs, burning away most of the armor located there. Hojo retreated toward the Deep’s center, but Dyhr kept the pressure on, forcing Hojo to keep backpedaling. At sixteen minutes, Dyhr’s lasers blew Hojo’s left leg apart. Hojo was knocked unconscious in the fall, giving Dyhr the win, and Hojo a headache.
Stay tuned for next week’s Rankar’s Deep Report!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

Alchemist Masters of the Inner Sphere!
Scholars of the occult are familiar with the Rosicrucian Order, an esoteric sect that first surfaced during the 17th century with a mysterious manifesto and a call for enlightenment. The alchemists Francis Bacon and John Dee were among the members of the sect, whose secrets were hidden away in enigmatic code such as the infamous Voynich Manuscript. What such scholars have been reluctant to credit is that the Rosicrucians did not disappear but have continued to prosper and thrive behind a veil of secrecy thrown up by misguided propaganda about the Illuminati.

“The so-called Illuminati were an invention of the Rosicrucians to throw off their mortal enemy, the Roman Catholic Church,” historian and occult expert Christian Weishaupt explained to host Werner von Schattenberg. “There is no real evidence for the existence of any such hidden political society and it is facile to believe mere temporal power could bind such a shadowy organization. Some other tie is needed; the mystical knowledge of [Order founder] Rosenkreutz and the alchemical formulas of Bacon and Dee are what create the solidarity of the Rosicrucians.”
That the Rosicrucians survived can be proven with an examination of the secret societies touched by their influence. The Freemasons, the Order of the New Dawn, the Brotherhood of Trismegistus. and the Society of the Saints Cameron all bear Rosicrucian elements to their rituals and ordinances. The known association of the Comte de Saint-Germain with all four societies provides another link, as the most likely identity of the Comte is none other than Francis Bacon. Having demonstrated an immortality Elixir at the height of the Star League, and influenced Jerome Blake, who can tell how much power his Order wields behind the scenes?
Join us next week as we look at the shadow hanging over Marik!
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Noble’s Divorce Hearing Turns into Brawl
(South Sutton, Saginaw, Federated Suns, April 24)

The Smallwood case took another turn this week as a preliminary hearing in the divorce case turned into a brawl in the courtroom.
As regular NobleWatch readers will remember, the divorce started as an attempted murder case brought against Baroness Linda Smallwood. She was found not guilty by a jury last month and, three days after the verdict, filed for divorce from Baron Baldwin Smallwood.
The last weeks have been a press duel. The baron took every opportunity to tear down his estranged wife, while the baroness has made fewer but more damning statements. She has released the names of the women the baron apparently has had affairs with, as well as a list of gifts he has given them. The baron has hotly denied the baroness’ charges, calling them “…cheap stunts designed to elicit sympathy!”
The hearing started civilly enough. Judge Tyman Korrel began with a request to both sides to avoid insulting or antagonizing the other party. But within ten minutes, both attorneys were verbally sniping at each other, causing the packed courtroom to mutter or mummer, depending on which side they were backing. Several times Judge Korrel was forced to admonish both sides and the crowd.
Soon a shoving match began between several audience members. The shoving turned to punches, and the courtroom exploded into a brawl. Extra police and bailiffs were called in, and after twenty minutes got things under control. Six participants in the brawl were hospitalized, and four people were arrested. Judge Korrel has placed both sides on notice that any more outbursts will result in both sides being arrested and spending the rest of the case in a jail cell.
NobleWatch will keep you appraised of this matter as events warrant it.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: Mass Drivers
One of the many mysterious projects of the first Star League, mass drivers were rumored to be a project in the works by the Hegemony to strategically wipe out space stations and massive military fortifications. As with much of the Hegemony’s technological advances, this too was lost to the centuries of war.

The Word of Blake attempted to bring it back, with rumors of them mounting them on massive WarShips, cracking the planetary crust of a planet with a few well placed volleys. Specifications have this acting like a naval Gauss rifles on an even more epic scale, hurling solid masses at unheard of velocities to use kinetic energy to destroy anything in its trajectory.
These are apparently massive weapons. Only large WarShips seem to be able to mount one, and retrofitting one into a ship is a story for the scandalvids. We expect them all to be rumors, until one contemplates the destruction of the Azami world, Necromo and Taurus by supposed asteroids (though Taurus was hit by confirmed asteroids, another engineering feat for another time).
With the Blakists gone, and the lack of WarShips, this system is destined for the history books or bedtime stories to scare or awe young naval officers with its tale. We may never get the true details.
Next week, advances in BattleMech internal structure!
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение Leonid » 24 июн 2011, 08:24

Ньюсмейкеры всякие важны! :popkorn:
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 24 июн 2011, 08:30

Strategos: Mallory’s World Pt 10
Even as the Fourth Davion Guards RCT and the Seventeenth Avalon Hussars RCT were crushing the Second Legion of Vega, the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars were marching on Colterville. The rear-echelon Davion troopers left in the city—the technicians, the medical staff and the rest of the logistical support—scrambled to man the inner line of defenses, but the Collector of Heads was already nearing the outer defenses. There they found their previous positions, from when they had laid siege to Colterville before the First Prince’s arrival. The leading units marched directly toward their own old positions, and those of the Second Sword of Light.
But the Davions and the Mallory’s World auxiliaries had not been idle.
The first bunker occupied—an infantry machine gun nest—exploded as soon as the hatch was closed behind them. A half-dug tank fighting position swallowed a Vedette medium tank when the false bottom collapsed into a sandpit. Anti-personnel mines littered the trenches dug between positions. The Davion had booby-trapped the Kuritan fighting positions. Although they couldn’t keep the DCMS from reinvesting the city, it did cost the Collector of Heads time. Time it did not have.
Again the Avalon Hussars boarded their DropShips, and again they dropped from the sky in flaming jump jets and weapons fire. This time they fell upon the disorganized Twenty-fourth Dieron before they could consolidate in the face of the booby-traps. With the Fourth Davion Guards and the Kell Hounds coming up behind, the Collector of Heads retreated.
All the way off of Mallory’s World.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Eleven
Welcome to the Rankar’s Deep Report.

The Class Four division is still tight, with new leaders almost weekly. David Santos is currently in first, but Lee Lumley has been 6-0-1 since Week Four and trails Santos only by a point. Tracy Vanberechum is a point behind Lumley.
Santos squared off against Wyren Claws’ David Sanada. Sanada is on a two-match losing streak and looking to avenge a Week Six loss against Santos. Santos’ Thunderbolt and Sanada’s Orion, promised a slugfest and they did not disappoint. Using the Deeps’ cover only sparingly, both went for an early win. Sanada scored the first critical hits, damaging Santos’ LRM launcher and swinging the match in his favor. Santos kept moving, trying to snipe his way to victory, but Sanada kept the pressure on, drilling through the Thunderbolt’s legendary tough armor and damaging internals. Santos was quickly down two medium lasers, some engine shielding, and a damaged gyro. Still he hung on, refusing to concede the match. Sanada continued his assault, and struck Santos in the head with several missiles. Stunned, Santos fell, and the officials stepped in and awarded Sanada the match, despite Santos’ protests.
Lumley dueled Star Rangers’ Peter King. King was 4-6 coming in, ninth in the division. With both warriors using LRM-heavy ’Mechs, a long-range duel was expected.
After the first three missiles volleys, Lumley’s Crusader clearly looked worse off. Lumley moved to cover, but King was patient, using his Archer’s heavier missile launchers to pound Lumley whenever he showed himself. After twenty minutes, the Crusader was little more than a blackened shell, forcing Lumley to admit defeat.
While both Santos and Lumley faltered, Tracy Vanberchum seized her chance and quickly pasted Wyman Mateo for the victory and a share of first place.
Stay tuned for next week’s RDR!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

Vampires of Marik?
When the planet Marik was discovered by the Terran Alliance grand survey it became the target of a colonization corporation established by a cabal of former European aristocrats. Chief among the group was Marshik Marik, a pretender to the Duchy of Marik in Bohemia. Like most former Austro-Hungarian nobles the family also had lands in Hungary, especially the mysterious province of Transylvania.

The Mariks won their titles through a combination of warfare and marriage, and one dynastic link they forged led back to the infamous Vlad Tepes. Better known as Dracula, the bloodthirsty Vlad impaled his enemies and drank their blood even before his “death” in battle. “Peasant folk-stories from the old Marik duchy speak of savage abuses,” ethnologist Gavrilo Benes told host Werner von Schattenburg. “An official account of the Czechoslovak government from 1951 talked about the Mariks sucking the blood of the working classes.”
The uncanny resemblance between extant portraits of Vlad Tepes and Charles Marik is a testimony to this horrifying secret. And it confirms that the Mariks did not leave their vampiric tendencies back on Terra.
A newspaper account of a triple-murder in Dormuth in 2207 shows the hallmarks of vampiric attack. The victims were punctured and drained of blood, with their bodies left alone in an apartment. The gypsy hosts having sanctuary around the town of Szentgotthard have been the source of rumors of mysterious abductions by nearby peasants. The decapitated body of a man was uncovered sixteen years ago at a crossroads in Malkent, with the nearby head stuffed full of garlic. Similar complaints and similar unsolved murders have cropped up over the entire Marik Commonwealth for centuries, displaying the spread and reach of the Nosferatu.
Join us next week as we search for the lost Spear of Longinus!
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Capellan Noble Cracks Down
Mandrinn Lo has had enough.

“As of today,” he said in a released statement, “both the Blue Dragon and the Shadow Tiger triads are considered enemies of the state and will be treated accordingly.”
The two triads, long-time enemies, have recently taken their war into public here in Yin City. Two days ago a Shadow Tigers hit team tried to kill Howard Choi, the senior advisor of the Blue Dragon’s leader, Shen Chew, while Choi and his family were having dinner at a local restaurant. Choi and his family were unhurt, but three of the hit team, two of Choi’s bodyguards, and five innocent civilians were killed and another dozen wounded.
Chew struck back quickly. Six hours after the attempted assassination, two Shadow Tiger-owned nightclubs were firebombed. Fifteen customers were injured when they were trampled trying to flee the flames at one club. But at the second club, things took a tragic turn. At least forty people died when several fire doors were found locked.
The next six hours saw several more battles between the triads. More than a dozen triad members died, but thirty-five civilians were killed or wounded.
A visibly-angry Lo visited the sites and publicly demanded police do their job. When all the police managed to do was arrest a dozen low-level triad members, Lo had enough. He called in two battalions of Home Guard and declared an overnight curfew from two hours after sundown to sunrise. Lo, a retired zhong-shao, has declared war on both triads and intends to destroy both. It remains to be seen how the triads react in light of the escalation.
NobleWatch will keep you appraised of this matter as events warrant it.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: Internal Structure
Much like the engines and gyros we discussed before, the internal structure of a BattleMech is a mandatory piece. It supports all the armor, weapons and equipment mounted, and even the slightest damage to it can result in a BattleMech literally falling to pieces.

Engineers have always looked to get the most bang for their buck out of this piece of construction. Star League engineers took the first step, using zero-G manufacturing to create the first endo steel chassis. This would be the only upgrade until the spreading use of new materials allowed the production of both composite and reinforced internal structures, and later a Frankenstein-esque endo-composite version as well.
Composite and reinforced structures are so simple it almost does not require explanation. Reinforced uses thicker and heavier materials to actually armor the base structure, originally with the futile hope of being able to support more armor. An unexpected side effect of this was that it became more resistant to damage.
Composite was quite the opposite. Endo steel proved to be too bulky to be used in designs mounting lots of equipment. Advanced fiber-reinforced materials provided the necessary weight reduction but is extremely fragile and many designs equipped find themselves quickly falling apart once the armor in penetrated.
A later effort would develop endo-composite structure during the Jihad. The Lyrans were able to combine the two to create a compromise. Endo-composite structure takes up less space inside the 'Mech than typical endo steel and lacks the fragility of composite structure, but its weight savings are not as considerable as either one. A compromise similar to the light engine first created by the Wolf's Dragoons, it failed to find widespread acceptance.
Rumors have engineers working on new structures, but until that day comes, designers have enough choices now to suit their needs.
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.

Strategos: Mallory’s World Pt 11
As 3013 came to a close the Fourth Davion Guards RCT, the Kell Hounds and the Seventeenth Avalon Hussars RCT were reinforced by the First Robinson Rangers. Hanse Davion’s raid against Halstead Station was a great success, but this victory enflamed Coordinator Takashi Kurita’s ire. He directed a new attack against Mallory’s World, eager to erase the stain of one of the Dragon’s defeats.

The Second Sword of Light, under the command of Tai-sa Yorinaga Kurita, led the four regiments back into Davion space. Accompanying them were the Twenty-fourth Dieron Regulars along with the Ninth Benjamin Regulars. They dropped onto Mallory’s World and immediately fell into a stalemate against the defending Davion regiments. It wouldn’t be until 3015 that the Thirty-sixth Dieron Regular and the rebuilt Second Legion of Vega fell to ground as well, turning the balance of power against the Armed Forces of the Federated Suns and their mercenary auxiliaries.
Yorinaga Kurita, eager to ease the Coordinator’s displeasure, used his advantage. He sent regiments to pin down the Seventeenth Avalon Hussars and the Fourth Davion Guards. He ringed the First Robinson Rangers in Harrison’s Ferry, and sent the Second Sword of Light against the regiment that had taken his honor at Desolate Pass.
Colonel Morgan Kell’s Kell Hounds.
Strategos is a syndicated weekly holovid column distributed by INN. Host Mordecai Aristobulus is a Galatea-based historian and writer who works widely with various Inner Sphere presses, including Merc and the Donegal Broadcasting Company.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Twelve
Welcome to this week’s RDR.

Week Twelve showcases the Class Five division. Coming in, the top three were separated by two points. Meg Shaw was a point ahead of rookie Peter Blaine and two points over Susan Belden.
Shaw and Belden went head-to-head in a replay of the Week Six match that Shaw won. Shaw’s -3K Charger held the advantage over Belden’s Victor, but Belden’s Pontiac 100 autocannon can change the game in a heartbeat.
Right from the start, Shaw stayed away from the Victor, peppering it with LRM fire. Belden used the spires for cover and maneuvered into the Pontiac 100's extreme range. The shot, which many people are calling the shot of the year, slammed into the Charger’s left torso, penetrated the armor and ignited the LRM ammo. CASE blew the excess damage out the Charger’s back, but Shaw was defeatged by engine destruction.
Peter Blane needed to beat Star Rangers’ Neil Oldenwhite to take the lead. Oldenwhite, at 4-7, has had a poor season, but is a cagey Deep veteran. Blane started the match by trying to crack Oldenwhite’s armor at long-range. But Oldenwhite’s return fire was more accurate, forcing Blane’s Stalker to fall back. Oldenwhite continued winning the long-range fight, the Atlas’ missiles scoring armor from the Stalker. Losing the fight, Blane changed tactics and moved in, which proved to be a mistake.
At close range, the two titans traded hammer blows, with Blane coming off the worse. Oldenwhite stripped the Stalker’s armor off in chunks, leaving Blane with gaping holes in his armor. Blane fell back, but Oldenwhite went on the offense and the match ended when Blane lost both legs within seconds of each other, giving Oldenwhite the win and Susan Belden the divisional lead.
Stay tuned for next week’s RDR!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

Tortured Trail of the Spear of Destiny!
The Spear of Destiny, stained with the blood of Christ as shed by Longinus, was a relic held by the Holy Roman Emperors that was said to be a key to the destiny of mankind. Since it first appeared in the possession of Constantine the Great it passed through the hands of such powerful rulers as Charlemagne, Charles V, Napoleon, Hitler, and lastly Stefan Amaris. Their fortunes were said to rise and fall with possession of the Spear, and it was last indisputably displayed before the liberation of Terra by Kerensky.

Shadows of Truth traces the trail of the Spear to none other than Jerome Blake, who led resistance groups in the Terran Hegemony during the war. Previously secret accounts of a desperate mission to Amaris-occupied Vienna allow for the dramatic recreation of a raid on a mercenary convoy looting treasures from Europe. The Greenhaven Gestapo guards were overpowered and their loot, including the contents of the Hofburg treasury, recovered. As part of his civil assistance duties Blake was also in charge of repatriating historical treasures yet the spear did not resurface.
BlakeWatch veteran Elissa Chen confirms Werner's suspicions. “The Spear was definitely in the hands of Jerome Blake when he formed ComStar,” she noted. “It passed into the possession of Conrad Toyoma afterward, and then was handed over to ROM. Focht searched for it but couldn't locate it after his coup because it belonged with the ROM cabal and was handed over to Waterley's spiritual successor, the Master.”
Which brings Shadows of Truth to the mysterious disappearance of Devlin Stone with two ComStar armies in May and June of 3079. On the eve of the decisive Invasion of Terra, did Stone wrest the Spear of Destiny from the hands of the insane Blakist leader?
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Baroness Smallwood Nearly Killed!
(South Sutton, Saginaw, Federated Suns, May 15)

The Smallwood affair has taken a serious turn.
We have reported before on the case between Baron Baldwin Smallwood and his estranged wife, Baroness Linda Smallwood. But someone has taken things up a notch.
Yesterday, after a procedural hearing, Baroness Smallwood and several members of her staff left the courthouse by a side exit. As they reached the sidewalk a car parked nearby exploded. The baroness was slightly injured, but three of her staff, including her lawyer, Jason Pratt-Whitney, suffered serious injuries. Several people walking nearby were killed instantly, and a large number were injured. Windows were blown out in the surrounding buildings, and a dozen vehicles were destroyed or damaged. The explosion left a three-meter deep, six meter-wide crater and disrupted communications, water and electrical services for three square blocks.
The preliminary assessment by South Sutton Police Department is that someone planted a bomb in the car. They are still investigating to confirm the assessment, and are working to solve the case.
After being treated at the hospital for shock and cuts, the baroness made a statement. In it, she blames her estranged husband. “The baron doesn’t want me to divorce him,” she said, “because he knows that he won’t have a pound left to his name after I’m finished with him!”
“She’s insane!” the baron said, when he found out what he had been accused of. “I wouldn’t put it past her to have set up the bomb herself, so she can claim I did it!”
Judge Tyman Korrel, presiding over the divorce case, has ordered a month’s delay in the case and has threatened both sides with prison if either side does anything to the other side.
NobleWatch will keep you appraised of this matter as events warrant it.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Beams & Bullets: PPCs Aplenty
Seven tons has been the standard for the longest time. Seven tons gets you what is often considered in the Inner Sphere the most optimal combination of weight, bulk, damage and range. The particle projection cannon, or PPC, is mounted on so many ’Mechs only the medium laser seems to have been used more.

Not content, the Combine began releasing light, heavy, and snub-nosed versions of the PPC. For near equivalent weight, bulk and heat generation, these different types have allowed platforms to project damage in ways more suitable to their mission roles.
Many lighter BattleMechs, aerospace fighters and vehicles have begun mounting the light PPC. Though it takes up three times the size and space of the benchmark medium laser, having twice the range of the laser makes it a viable weapon. On the other end of the spectrum, the attempt to create an energy weapon with heavy damage has resulted in the heavy PPC, giving the Inner Sphere an energy based alternative to the popular Gauss rifle. Though its heat requirements are high, in an age of double heat sinks the heat is nowhere near the deterrent it would have been forty years ago, and ten tons is quite palatable.
The oddest one of the bunch is also one first tested in the days of the Star League: the snub-nosed PPC. Looking to somehow deal with the minimum range issues PPCs have, the result was a rather odd. Though it no longer had the issue of firing at point-blank range and even had the added benefit of including a much better short range envelope to its range profile, the snub-nosed PPC has only has a shorter overall range than normal versions, but engineers found that its damage decreased significantly as the distance increased. This has relegated it to most short range brawlers and those who often find themselves in the middle of a city fight.
Overall, these are each useful in their own ways. Those who do consider using any of these newer PPCs, should first evaluate their mission profiles before mounting one.
Beams & Bullets is a weekly column discussing recent advances, adaptations, and tactics for some of the newest and most dangerous weaponry to appear in the Inner Sphere and Clan Occupation Zones. Check back every week for new insights to the beams, bullets, and gunsights you need to survive.

Вроде бы все, если что-то пропустил - пишите
Даешь перевыполнить план по выпуску вехикулярных огнеметов в отчетном 3145 году!
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 01 авг 2011, 13:23

Xin Sheng or Feng Shui?

Few observers could have predicted the rise of the Capellan Confederation after its crushing defeat in the Fourth Succession War. Since the accession of Sun-Tzu Liao it has expanded its military, created advanced new industries, and reclaimed dozens of worlds. The Xin Sheng movement, aimed at revitalizing the spirit of the Capellan people, has been claimed as the fruit and cause of these victories.
Taoist Priest Qiu Erzhi brings a new perspective to the issue, shared with host Werner von Schattenberg. “The old Capellan state institutions were spiritually unbalanced, polluted by the blood of innocents and the corruption of his ancestors. It was a masterful insight of the young Chancellor to begin anew after the reign of his mother, but his truest genius was in bowing to the will of Heaven.”
Our source provided overlay of new construction and renamed agencies in the Forbidden City on Sian to illustrate his point. “The Chinese names of government ministries were carefully chosen for their use of auspicious characters, and I have heard, with special consultation of the I-Ching. The new promenades and avenues line up in concentric geometric forms funneling the spirits of the landscape into the parks of the capital, and most critically, deflecting negative energy from the palace out into space. The state has also encouraged veneration of Kong Fuzi, which has brought the moral balance of the nation back into a pleasing state.”
But the ancient priest has a warning for the Chancellor, whose hostility to our savior Devlin Stone has already become apparent. “Success is only possible by achieving balance in the dao. The sin of hubris will be repaid with failure if one forgets the role of Heaven in winning past victories, and believes that one can accomplish all things alone.”
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

NobleWatch: Duke Pushes New Train Line, Runs Into Protests.

(Loberg, Lyran Commonwealth, May 23)

Duke Hamilton Hager is not happy.
“Can’t they see the benefits?” he asked mournfully at a press conference yesterday.
“They” are a group of environmentalists, landowners and government watchdogs. They have banded together to oppose a proposed rail line between Loberg City, the capital, and Dartburg, a major seaport on the Spatz Sea.
In the aftermath of the Jihad, Loberg has an unemployment rate of thirteen percent and a sluggish economy. Hager supports the railroad project, calculated to take two years to complete, would directly employ twelve thousand people and create another twenty thousand in related jobs. The line would allow larger cargos to be transported cheaper than by air.
Hager is opposed by the No Dartberg Rail Group, (NDRG). The NDRG leader is noted environmentalist Cindy Smith. “I’m worry about the endangered Loberg Chipmunk,” she said. “The proposed rail line takes it through known Chipmunk nesting areas, and we can’t take the chance of any nests being damaged.”
“Nesting areas!” Hager yelled when told what Smith said. “We spent twenty thousand Kroner on environmental impact statements so we’d know where the chipmunks were! No part of the line will come with three kilometers of any known chipmunk nesting area!”
Besides the environmentalists, land owners are angry at the “cut-rate price” they’ve been offered for their land. Hager responds to that charge by saying, “The land we want is useless for farming or ranching, and has no natural resources on it. It’s worth less then we’re offering for it!”
The largest problem may be the financing. Money is tight, and Hager is under pressure not to use government money. Hager is looking into several alternative financing plans, but promises that “Loberg will get more out of it then they put into it.”
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.

Xenophon: Grimmald’s Grenadiers (Pt 1)

The life of a professional soldier has been romanticized throughout recorded history. The group that inspired our namesake’s Anabasis is one of the earliest examples, of course, but Sir John Hawkwood’s White Company, the Rhodesian SAS, the 29th century Hard Heart Legion and of course, the Kell Hounds all continue this tradition. The reality of the mercenary life is somewhat different, of course.
In this series of articles we will profile the origins, men, equipment, tactics and mores of the mercenary assault battalion known as Grimmald’s Grenadiers. First formed in 3065, near the end of the Federated Commonwealth Civil War, the Grenadiers served honorably throughout the end of the conflict and into the Jihad. Although they never made the Sphere-spanning headlines of ComStar’s INN, the Grenadiers are nonetheless one of the uncounted milieu of professional solders that make up the honest mercenary trade.
Our first article, next week, will be a broad synopsis of the Grenadiers’ genesis and their first few contracts with the Federated Suns’ Capellan March. We will also profile Leftenant Colonel John Grimmald, the battalions commanding officer and founder, as well as several of his notable subordinates.
Xenophon is a journal of the modern professional mercenary, available wherever fine periodicals are sold. Our mission is to illuminate the real truths of the mercenary profession, destroy the hostile scandalvid perception of our peers and offer each soldier of fortune at least this slender amount of respect.
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 02 авг 2011, 19:46

Revenge of the Rim Worlds?

The year 3067 saw the beginning of the Jihad, as well as a mysterious apocalyptic struggle in the Clan Homeworlds. Even today the truth of the events of that year remain shrouded to all save the inner circle of the Word of Blake. And yet, as Werner von Schattenberg discovers, even the seemingly omniscient Blakists seem to have been manipulated by an outside force.
Captured Blakist soldiers speak of their surprise at the outcome of the Whitting Conference. Clearly the bulk of the Order never expected to be at war with the Inner Sphere. Yet, as host Werner von Schattenberg interviews repatriated Blakists, there are two constants throughout; references to a mysterious Third Transfer, and a heavy focus on the Clans. Together, they provide a vital clue.
In April 3067 a rare celestial conjunction was present in the skies of Apollo, capital of the old Rim Worlds Republic. In only the third time since the system was settled, the orbits of all the outer planets lined up exactly, as seen in the sophisticated astronomical library at the University of Madison. Similar conjunctions were seen in 2463, the year House Amaris ascended to rule the RWR, and in 2765, on the eve of the Amaris Coup. The coincidence is enough to suggest the real meaning of the “Third Transfer;” another rise in the fortunes of the supposedly extinct House Amaris.
The hatred of the descendants of Kerensky and desire to “save” the Star League to rule it point to descendants of the Rim Worlds acting from the shadows. And the tireless work of “Starling” has raised the possibility that the Hidden Worlds were settled from the Rim. Werner concludes that the darkest shadows of the Word hide secrets more terrifying than the Manei Domini.
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.
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Сообщение DeJaVu » 04 авг 2011, 08:37

NobleWatch:Romeo and Juliet Today

(Lancaster, Marik-Stewart Commonwealth, May 30)

A real-life Romeo and Juliet situation is playing out on Lancaster.
The DuValains and Weismans have been rivals for the last one hundred seventy years. The relationship between the two families has never been cordial, and has at times been violent, resulting in the deaths of two dozen people over the years. Even when they are not actively trying to kill each other, these powerful merchant families make decisions based on how it will hurt the other family. Economical, social, or legal venues are viewed as battlefields for the family to beat the other.
So it is surprising that a DuValain and a Weisman are have been seen acting like a couple in love. Alerio DuValain, youngest son of the current family leader, Baron Gian DuValain, has been seen with Gabrielle Weisman, only daughter of Baron Ravid Weisman, head of the Weisman clan. Both are eighteen years old, and both have lived sheltered lives, taught by personal tutors, and taught to think of the other family as the enemy.
It started about three months ago, the two met at a party given by the powerful Huntsman family, considered neutral by both DuValain and Weisman families. They started out as enemies, but sometime during the evening, both managed to slip their minders and met each other, either by accident or on purpose. During the meeting, they found a mutual attraction, and the two have met a dozen times since then.
But while the lovebirds seem to getting along, it is causing tension between the two families. Each side blames the other for the “problem”, and both have tried to keep the lovers from meeting, with limited success. Will love win out?
NobleWatch will keep an eye on this tense situation.
NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.
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Сообщение DeJaVu » 09 авг 2011, 23:14

The Bloody-Handed Duke!

Kalvin Liao was a collector of occult tomes who possessed the most extensive library of demonology and alchemy off Terra. Amid the copies of the Book of the Dead, medieval grimoires, and the Transmutation Mysteries, he held yet more sinister volumes. One of those was the proscribed play “The Bloody-Handed Duke,” allegedly a satire of Terran politics violently proscribed in 2217.
One of Kalvin's first acts as Chancellor was to stage a production using servants and concubines. The affair degenerated into a dark orgy that culminated in Kalvin's sacrifice of his first wife to the entity Balumat. After that night he began to act more and more erratically, leading to such infamous atrocities as the Kearny Banquet, the decimation of the Scions, and the massacre of his harem. Following his assassination the library was broken up and the “Bloody-Handed Duke” disappeared into the murky realm of occult collectors.
One such, Nyla Rustah, went on record with Werner about the play. “It's a prized artifact, never committed to electronic records,” she noted. “The Kalvin copy was traced to the Achmeeds of Muskegon afterward. The last Tyrant was openly musing about converting dead bodies into rations for the planet's poor. And the play was on Kentares when Jinjiro Kurita passed through the system. The last known sighting was on Sudeten in 3047, listed in the assets of Baron Klettering after his arrest for the ritual murder of four virgins.”
And what is it, Werner asked, that makes the play so deadly? “I've only seen parts of it, never the whole,” Rustah cautions. “But it is eerily compelling even in excerpts. It's said the climax reveals some blasphemous truth of human existence. But if I knew for sure, I'd probably be clawing my eyes out.”
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.

Добавлено спустя 8 часов 17 минут 48 секунд:
Xenophon: Grimmald’s Grenadiers (Pt 2)

John Grimmald served with the AFFC for twenty-six years. He entered a basic officer’s course on Alcyone the day AFFS forces launched into the Draconis Combine during the War of 3039, and served with distinction in the Capellan March during the Clan invasion. By the time active hostilities broke out between the Steiner-Davion siblings, he was serving on the Novaya Zemlya in a planning division. The death of his younger brother, Captain John Grimmald, in 3064 was the straw that pushed him into retirement. He had no taste for fighting against his former comrades in the AFFC. And neither did many of his comrades in arms.

As a commander John Grimmald had built a reputation of calmness under fire, deadliness when pressed, and a regard for spending his men like a miser spends coins. Soldiers—good soldiers, soldiers who will keep their head under fire and follow orders and remain true to their contracts—are not afraid of dying. But they are afraid of being wasted. No man wants to feel he doesn’t matter, and John Grimmald’s gift was being able to make each man and woman under his command feel like they mattered.
In 3065 he arrived, with a cadre of officers, on Outreach. He had little to offer but the few men and ’Mechs he’d brought with him, as well as the reputation he’d built across the Capellan March. Within a month he was joined by a hundred other soldiers, corporals and leftenants and two captains. All of whom had retired from the AFFS, unwilling to fight in the civil war. They clustered around Grimmald, willing to follow him into combat.
Dubbing his new mercenary unit Grimmald’s Grenadiers, adopting the name from a memorable deployment with the First Kestrel Grenadiers, Grimmald began to recruit local mercenaries and shop for a new contract. With the Federated Commonwealth Civil War raging, contracts were there for the picking.
And John Grimmald picked.
Xenophon is a journal of the modern professional mercenary, available wherever fine periodicals are sold. Our mission is to illuminate the real truths of the mercenary profession, destroy the hostile scandalvid perception of our peers and offer each soldier of fortune at least this slender amount of respect.

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Thirteen (Pt 2)

Welcome to this week’s RDR.

Class Two matches are this week’s focus. With the top five separated by three points, every win will be critical.
The division leader Carlos Valdez faced off against third-place Lo Yen. The Red Jian's captain established the tone from the start, getting in the first hits with his Stinger, while avoiding Valdez’s return fire from his Panther. It took seventeen minutes for Yen to wear away the Panther’s heavier armor, concentrating the damage on Valdez’s right arm and torso. Despite the Panther’s heavier punch, Valdez missed almost every time, unable to predict the canny Yen’s next action. When a penetrating shot damaged Valdez’s PPC was quickly followed with the SRM launcher being covered with melted armor, Valdez signaled the officials he had enough.
Jean Cuvier looked to get back on track against eleventh-place Calidia Raines. Their fight was all over the Deep, as Cuvier tried to tease Rains into wasting her SRMs. Despite losing her Javelin’s right arm and most of her right torso, the veteran caught the Kroner King’s Spider with several SRM volleys, damaging jump jets and cracking Valdez’s engine shielding. Fourteen minutes into the match, Cuvier was struck with another missile volley that removed the Spider’s left leg at the knee, dropping the ‘Mech. Cuvier tried to get up, but after two more missile strikes, he acquiesced.
Tyler Boyer needed a win to grab first place, and his opponent was Abel Dorsey. From the start, Boyer drove Dorsey all across the Deep, never allowing the Commando set long enough to deliver an effect counterstrike. This one-sided fight ended with the Commando missing an arm and leg and Boyer on top of the division.
Stay tuned for next week’s Rankar’s Deep Report!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 10 авг 2011, 20:13

NobleWatch:Baron Nearly Assassinated; Baroness Blamed

(South Sutton, Saginaw, Federated Suns, May 3)

Events in the Smallwood divorce have taken an even more serious turn. Three weeks ago, a car bomb nearly killed Baroness Linda Smallwood. Last night, a sniper nearly killed Baron Baldwin Smallwood.
The baron, along with his unacknowledged mistress, Georgina Wade, had just left Gregorio’s Restaurant in South Sutton when several rifle shots rang out. One shot struck the brickwork near the baron’s head, another hit one of the baron’s bodyguards, while two more struck and shattered windows. Moving quickly, the remainder of the bodyguard detail hustled both the baron and Miss Wade into their car and they quickly left the scene.
Police special tactical teams swept nine square blocks. They did manage to find where the sniper shot from, an empty office in a nearby building, but police are tight-lipped about what evidence, if any, they found at the scene.
While police were not saying what they found, the baron is making his opinion known. “It’s that [expletive] [expletive] of a wife!” he screamed at a reporter as he was hustled into his estate. “That [expletive] is trying to kill me!”
Baroness Linda Smallwood was quick to respond. In a press release, she said, “My husband is a well-known liar… I don’t need to kill him, when my lawyer gets through with him, he’ll wish he was dead!”
South Sutton Police Chief Nancy Nakajima, in a statement said, “I have asked the Saginaw Planetary Government for a investigational team to come in and take over the investigation of the sniper incident and the car bombing that nearly killed Baroness Smallwood. I feel that it best that a fresh look be taken by fresh set of eyes.”
NobleWatch will keep a very close eye on this situation.

NobleWatch is an in-character holovid news program, and may not represent canon events in the BattleTech universe. Any contradictions with existing sourcebooks should be ignored.
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 13 авг 2011, 06:39

Xenophon: Grimmald’s Grenadiers (Pt 3)

Before the Grenadiers could accept their first contract, they needed to shake themselves out into a combat organization. Grimmald had plenty of experience both as a small-unit commander—he’d won the Federated Commonwealth Star in 3044—and as a battalion commander, and several of the officers who’d chosen to follow him were excellent staff officers. In short order they had a rough roster sketched out, encompassing the soldiers who’d already joined, those in transit with time to arrive before the projected jump-off date, and the newly-hired mercenaries.
What emerged was the bare-bones of a combined-arms battalion. Grimmald could claim nine BattleMechs, seventeen combat vehicles and enough infantrymen to fill out two short platoons. Several aerospace pilots had been hired on Outreach, based on recommendations from officers Grimmald knew and respected, but they lacked aerospace fighters. Despite several lucrative offers, Grimmald had been rebuffed in his attempts to hire a regular DropShip.
The missions Grimmald intended for his new Grenadiers were offensive, short-term contracts. If he was going to lead soldiers, he was going to lead the best soldiers he could recruit. Nothing drew professional soldiers like successful contracts and a healthy reputation, and nothing built a mercenary’s reputation like combat. There would be few, if any, garrison contracts for Grimmald’s Grenadiers.
While John Grimmald oversaw the training of his new short battalion, his staff officers negotiated the Grenadiers’ first combat contract. With barely two months until the employer would provide transportation, the Grenadiers threw themselves into training on Outreach’s practice fields.
Xenophon is a journal of the modern professional mercenary, available wherever fine periodicals are sold. Our mission is to illuminate the real truths of the mercenary profession, destroy the hostile scandalvid perception of our peers and offer each soldier of fortune at least this slender amount of respect.
Даешь перевыполнить план по выпуску вехикулярных огнеметов в отчетном 3145 году!
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Re: Universal News BC.COM

Сообщение DeJaVu » 16 авг 2011, 20:05

The Season at Rankar’s Deep—Week Fourteen (Pt 1)

Welcome to this week’s RDR.

The Class Five Division still tight, with now six fighters separated by a total of five points. It is still nearly anyone’s division to take.
Susan Belden and Thomas Colby fought for first place. These two veterans of the Deep know each other very well, so no one expected any surprises from either fighter.
They were wrong.
No one expected the triple-strength myomers that Colby installed in his Atlas, nor the heavy PPC he had replace the heavy autocannon with. Expecting a slower-moving opponent, Belden was on her heels from the start, and the one-two-three punch of the PPC, LRMs, and large lasers forced the Victor to try and hide in the Deep’s rocks. Colby stayed outside her range, and wore away her armor in a matter of minutes. After losing an arm and never getting close enough to hit Colby, Belden sent up the surrender flare.
Next, Theo Forzine went up against Meg Shaw, with second place at stake. With that on the line, what was expected to be an exciting fight, became a game of hide-and-seek, with neither side doing much damage to the other. After thirty minutes, the match was declared a draw and both Forzine and Shaw were soundly booed as they left.
Peter Blaine, who started the week in fifth, seized the chance and bested Neil Oldenwhite, using his Stalker’s firepower to keep Oldenwhite’s Atlas from closing on him and using the massive autocannon. With the points, he vaulted into second, two points behind Colby.
The race has only gotten tighter as all six fighters are still in the thick of it, cleanly splitting from the bottom half of the table. The second half promised to be exciting.
Stay tuned for next week’s RDR!
This broadcast of the 3086 Rankar's Deep Report brought to you by Branson Breweries of Xolara. All fights are sanctioned by the Solaris Gaming Commission and the Lyran Alliance Gaming Board.

Werewolves of Tharkad!

The legendary werewolf, a supernatural curse that transforms men into ravening lupine beasts, is long-established in the local lore of Tharkad. Locals of the continent Heidelberg know to avoid the primeval forests that have taken over long-abandoned mine sites in the Harz mountains, while inhabitants of Tharkad City have come to expect trouble when Marsden shines full in the night. Many campers tell of Tharkan wolves shadowing them, too large and eyes too intelligent to be natural.
The latest news from the Lyran capital speaks of the shocking murder of Franz Wei, a hero of the resistance found torn limb from limb in his apartment. Crime scene photos leaked by the Tharkan Investigator show a room torn apart with great force, with blood stains and organs strewn out over the living room. The autopsy, revealed on Shadows of Truth, includes notes of claw marks and bone damage consistent with a powerful predator, as strong as military-grade combat bionics.
A recent visitor to Tharkad going by the handle Novez contacted Shadows of Truth with compelling eyewitness testimony. In a post on our message board, he alleged seeing a bulky, very hairy gentleman in an expensively tailored suit enter the Chinatown block where Wei had his apartment. After Novez exited a restaurant an hour later he saw the same man, this time with his suit torn and ragged, leaving the area. With this information Shadows of Truth put together an exciting recreation of the crime using the testimony and scientific forensic techniques.
Was Franz Wei a victim of the Werewolves of Tharkad? How many more innocents will fall prey to two-legged monsters stalking the Lyran capital? The refusal of Lyran authorities to take the threat seriously speaks to a darker agenda, one that Shadows of Truth will keep investigating.
Shadows of Truth is an in-character entertainment journalism show, and as such anything stated is not considered canon unless otherwise supported in a published product.
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