ELEVENTH HOUR INDUSTRIES ARROW 01 INTERCEPTOR/STARFIGHTER
Story - Shawn Hagen (www.netroute.net/~hagen)
Artwork - Team NMM (www.geocities.com/tokyo/2027)
HTML Sheet - LITTLE LOCUS (www.geocities.com/Area51/Chamber/6243)
Main Systems: x2.65
Powerplant XS: 1
Space, EM & Re-Entry
Transform: Fighter, Transat
+2 Verniers (mated thrusters)
ACE +100%, Virtual Controls
EHI Arrow 01
ECM (vs. missiles, level 4)
Anti Theft (Thumb Scanner)
2 x Weapon Pylons
2000 Km Fuel (9.1 Tn)
Weight Eff. (-14.8 Tn)
Thruster (12 MA)
Thruster (12 MA)
Right / Left Hand
1 / 1
Ex 1 Plasma Cannon
Burst Value 5
Notes: From the production Diary of Tess Belin, dated 2180.09.10
The Arrow 00 was everything I wanted, unfortunately it was not everything that the Battalion wanted. The main problem, as pointed out to me often By Dr. Mako, was the cost. We managed to achieve everything we wanted, but the cost was too high.
The Arrow 01 is a compromise. We made changes to it, balancing a reduced cost with the need to keep its combat effectiveness rating high. We looked at the Arrow 00 and asked what the big ticket items were. What were the most expensive features.
The first thing to go was the ECM suite and the expert system we built to run it. I was not surprised, the system was dangerously close to an AI in many ways and no one seems willing to break the law on their construction. Instead of a full ECM/ECCM suite we simply put in a missile jamming system of lesser quality.
The next thing were the engines. By accepting a slower top speed we were able to cut the costs significantly. The Arrow 01 is still a fast craft. In its slowest form only the Zephyr, the Cavalier starfighter, the Viggen, and the Vogel starfighters are faster, and none of them are more maneuverable. When it converts to fighter form it will easily be able to leave all the above craft behind it.
Weapons saw the next change. We initially replaced the two Lyon Class rail rifles with Roberts type plasma rifles in the 00. The 01 was given only one cannon, with a bit more power than the weapons the 00 was equipped with. Then we pulled the forearm shields.
Overall, the 01 will serve admirably. Initial reports from the test pilots seem good. There are few complaints and all those are easily enough dealt with. We expect to go into production in two to three weeks.
Report on the Arrow 01, Lt. Bernard Sims, Test Pilot.
Basically, the thing that threw me the most about this plane is its transformation sequence. It is just unbelievable. I thought it would be jerky, you know, kind of like getting bounced around in a roller coaster, but it was nothing like that. It was so smooth. I'll admit, the way the sensors picture shifts around you, and your cockpit chair spins about (has to so you maintain proper seating within the craft -not important in zero-G but in gravity it would be a major problem if it didn't) can be a bit disorientating. Made me feel nauseous for s few seconds the first five times.
Another little shock comes from the way the engines perform. Once you've shifted, they put out twice as much thrust. I had the suit pushed to the max when I shifted and was almost blown away by the sudden acceleration. I've never flown anything that fast before the Arrow. As long as your ready for it, no problem. Any pilot not expecting it will be in a lot of trouble.
Overall, I like the weapons. They are simple, functional, and do their job. The main cannon is a dream, just keeps firing, not a worry about ammunition, and it will blow an interceptor away with a single burst. Against bigger suits, I figure you've got to be fast, push the suits speed and maneuverability, hit and fade, hit and fade until your target goes up.
The laser pod in the head is great as well, I love just being able to hold a trigger down and watch missiles go up. The chaf/heat launchers in the shoulders are a nice addition. They blow a cloud of garbage out that confuse the hell out of the missiles. All of those combined with the ECM make it possible to slip a huge amount of missiles and get in close to your target.
The universal pylon mounts on the wings confused me a bit. That you couldn't initiate the transformation sequence with them on (well you can, but you shear loose all the missiles) bothered me. Still does, but I see the value in it. We've practiced bombing runs were we have a big old torpedo on each wing, and small target runs were the wings just bristle with cluster missiles.
You go in their fast, release your payload, shift over, and finish targets up with proper application of the main cannon. Shift back into fighter, and your out of the area before your targets are sure what happened.
Still wish I could keep the missiles when I shift, and use them. I guess you can't have everything.
So, it handles like a dream, has speed to spare, fights like a cornered rat, and looks, well it just looks beautiful. All sleek and everything. It almost looks fragile. That's deceiving though, it can take hits that cripple other suits and it can keep going.
Only problem, no close in weapons. I know we're supposed to avoid getting in close, to just beat the hell out of our target from a distance, but I must admit, I like getting in close.