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Vandenburg Mechanized Industries,
|Production Year||Introduction Year::2492|
|Mech type||Inner Sphere BattleMech|
|Engine||Core Tek 275|
|Communications System||Neil 6000|
|Targeting Tracking System||Octagon Tartrac System C|
|Jump Jets||Rawlings 55|
Built in 2492 the Griffin was originally classified as a heavy BattleMech, filling in the weight gap between mammoth machines like the Mackie and smaller recon 'Mechs like the Wasp, and intended for close assaults. Combining tremendous speed and firepower in one frame the Griffin briefly dominated in this role before being superseded by larger and better-equipped 'Mechs. However the Griffin was very popular among commanders and pilots alike and so Earthwerks Incorporated kept it in production, this time reclassified as a medium 'Mech and tasked with long-range fire support for medium lances. In this capacity the Griffin has excelled, combining good striking power, endurance and speed, with its only major weakness being a lack of close-range defensive weapons.
During the Succession Wars the Griffin could be found in almost every unit of all the Great Houses, thanks in part to its diverse number of manufacturers. Besides being constructed from Earthwerks' factory on Keystone the Griffin was was later acquired and built by Defiance Industries (Hesperus II), Kallon Industries (Talon), Brigadier Corporation (Oliver), and Norse BattleMech Works (later Victory Industries, Marduk). It was even manufactured in the Periphery by Vandenberg Mechanized Industries on Illiushin. Only the Capellan Confederation lacked a means of building the 'Mech, although they made up for it by purchasing a limited number from the Taurian Concordat. During the Fourth Succession War some of these manufacturers exchanged hands, with the Draconis Combine capturing Marduk from the Federated Suns and the Lyran Commonwealth taking Oliver from the Free Worlds League. This exchange also happened to coincide with several new variants being designed to exploit recently-recovered lostech. As such variants meant specifically for either Houses Kurita, Marik or the Federated Commonwealth found their way into the arsenals of all of them. During the Clan Invasion these manufacturers produced the new variants to meet the Clan threat while Vandenberg Industries continued to build original GRF-1N Griffins.
When Vicore Industries began shopping around its "Project Phoenix" initiative, Defiance and Kallon Industries signed on to begin producing the completely redesigned GRF-6S Griffin. Victory Industries later signed up as well after the legal battle between Wolf's Dragoons and the Lyran Alliance saw the famous mercenary group selling its Light Fusion technology to both the Draconis Combine and Free Worlds League. The League designed a native update to the Griffin while ComStar had their own built as well which, ominously, soon began appearing in the ranks of the Word of Blake Militia.
Weapons and Equipment
The primary weapon on the Griffin is a Fusigon PPC in the right arm. The PPC allows the Griffin to work in a long-range fire support role and is backed up by a Delta Dart LRM-10 launcher mounted in a drum over the right shoulder. The LRM launcher also gives the Griffin some indirect fire support capabilities and the two tons of reloads in the right torso allows for good endurance. The Achilles' heel of the design is its lack of short-range weapons, for when an enemy is capable of closing ranges and engaging in close quarters combat, and the fact that all of its weapons are located on the right side. The 'Mech is however equipped with two powerful battle fists for hand-to-hand combat.
The massive and efficient fusion engine of the Griffin, giving it a cruising speed of 57.1 kph, combined with five jump jets occupying the rear torso areas for a total jumping distance of 150 meters, is what distinguishes it from other medium 'Mechs and has kept the Griffin in the game over the centuries. Unfortunately, like most other early 'Mechs, the Griffin suffers from insufficient heat capacity with only twelve heat sinks installed. The result is that Griffin pilots, lacking the ability to do both, must choose at the outset of a fight whether to engage or withdraw.
Nine and a half tons of armor plating compares quite favorably to many other medium 'Mechs, although as is often the case the Griffin will find itself in combat with larger 'Mechs. For this reason, two pairs of false armor baffles were added to the 'Mech, one on its shoulders providing limited protection to the LRM launcher and cockpit, and a smaller pair on the legs protecting the knees joints.
- The original Griffin produced by Maxwell Manufacturing, Inc. weighed sixty tons (thus technically falling into the Heavy category of BattleMechs) and used primitive components. It could reach a top speed of 64 km/h and cover ninety meters with Prototype Jump Jets. It also carried a Prototype PPC and a single LRM-5 with a ton of ammunition. It was protected by fourteen and a half tons of Primitive Armor and equipped with eleven single heat sinks. A Primitive Cockpit was provided for the pilot. BV (2.0) = 1,024
- The 1DS variant of the Griffin, built by Defiance Industries, Kallon Industries and Norse BattleMech Works from their respective production lines starting in 3049, was intended to become the new standard model for the Federated Commonwealth. The engine was upgraded to Hermes 275 extralight engine, fourteen double heat sinks improved cooling and the weapons were stripped from the chassis. The 'Mech now carried a Doombud LRM-20 launcher over the right shoulder and a Thunderbolt-12 Large Pulse Laser in the right arm. It also employed CASE to protect the two tons of missile reloads stored in the left torso. The capture of Norse BattleMech on Marduk by the Draconis Combine meant this variant was also employed by the Draconis Combine Mustered Soldiery. BV (1.0) = 1,202, BV (2.0) = 1,285
- The 1S Griffin was for many years the only production variant of the Griffin, built for House Steiner by Defiance Industries starting in 2857. It attempted to rectify the 1N's lack of close range weapons by removing the PPC and in its place mounting a Large Laser and two Medium Lasers. The LRM-10 was also replaced with an LRM-5 and one ton of reloads in the right torso. To further help manage the heat load, the 'Mech also added four additional heat sinks to the design. This new arraignment essentially transformed the long-range support 'Mech into a medium-range brawler. BV (1.0) = 1,061, BV (2.0) = 1,253
- The SLDF's Royal Griffin was introduced in 2751 and mounted an ER PPC, two SRM-6 launchers, and a Guardian ECM Suite. The heat-sinks were upgraded to double-strength models and the ammo was protected by CASE. To fit all this, the armor was changed to Ferro-Fibrous and the chassis was made of Endo Steel. BV (2.0) = 1606
- The 3M Griffin was an upgraded version of the design built for House Marik by Earthwerks and Brigadier Corps starting in 3049. With production lines on Keystone and Oliver this variant sought to enhance the original's long-range capabilities. The engine was exchanged for a Hermes 275 extralight model and carried fourteen double heat sinks to improve heat management. The normal PPC was replaced by a Fusigon Longtooth ER PPC, for longer reach at the expense of more heat, and the LRM launcher had been upgraded to a Doombud LRM-20 launcher, for more indirect fire support capabilities. Finally a ChrisComp Small Laser was mounted in the head and the two tons of LRM reloads in the left torso were protected by CASE. While intended for the Free Worlds League Military the capture of Oliver by FedCom forces meant the 3M also appeared in large numbers in the Armed Forces of the Federated Commonwealth. BV (1.0) = 1,440, BV (2.0) = 1,521
- This Word of Blake design emerged in 3076 during the Jihad. It uses Improved Jump Jets to cover 270 meters at a time, and a larger engine brings the top speed to 97 km/h. This Griffin carries a Snub-Nose PPC, an MML-5 launcher, and an ER Medium Laser. Endo Steel forms the chassis, and eleven double heat sinks keep the 'Mech cool. BV (2.0) = 1,412
- This variant, introduced in 3070, uses an XL engine to max out armor protection at eleven and a half tons of Stealth Armor. As with all Stealth-equipped designs, the 5L used a Guardian ECM suite. It was armed with a Plasma Rifle and an MML-5, which could threaten enemies at all ranges. Three medium lasers provided added short-range firepower. Fourteen double heat sinks kept the 'Mech relatively cool, even when the Stealth Armor was active. BV (2.0) = 1,781
- The 5M variant of the Griffin was designed in 3066 with a distinctive flair for the Free Worlds League. Unlike other "Phoenix" 'Mechs it was powered by an extralight engine and carried, as its primary weapon, a Light Gauss Rifle. This was backed up by an LRM-10 launcher and a small laser for close range work. The variant utilized double heat sinks and also carried ten and a half tons of armor. BV (1.0) = 1,108, BV (2.0) = 1,224
- A variant of the 6S developed in 3067 for the Com Guards only to also fall into hands of the Word of Blake, the 6CS used an Endo Steel frame and was powered by an extralight engine. The 'Mech's primary weapons were an ER PPC and an LRM-15 launcher linked to an Artemis IV fire control system. The 6CS carries two ER medium lasers for short range engagements, and has an advanced electronics warfare suite, consisting of a Guardian ECM Suite and a C3i computer, to allow it to share targeting telemetry with friendly units. BV (1.0) = 1,469, BV (2.0) = 1,695
- The Lyran 6S Griffin was built in 3066 using an Earthwerks GRF Endo Steel chassis and mounted a Defiance 275 Light Fusion Engine for power. This allowed the 6S model to carry a Defiance 1001 ER PPC in the right arm, a Coventry StarFire LRM-15 over the right shoulder with Artemis IV, and two RamTech 1500Z ER Medium Lasers, one in the center torso and one in the left arm. It carried twelve tons of Starshield A armor plating using layered sections at steeper angles, which allowed it to withstand more attacks than the 6CS, but only ten double heat sinks. Two tons of LRM reloads were mounted in the right torso and protected by CASE. Although still carrying the five Rawlings 55 jumpjets and Neil 6000 communications system of the original model, the targeting-tracking system was updated to a RCA Instatrack Mk X and, perhaps most importantly, the cockpit was renovated for additional comfort and incorporate a Full-Head Ejection system. BV (1.0) = 1,461, BV (2.0) = 1,781
- This variant of the 6S introduced in 3071 sported enough improved jump jets for it to vault up to 240 meters in a single bound. It also used a Defiance Light Engine, though it was built on a standard frame. It was protected by ten tons of Starshield A Light Ferro-Fibrous armor and it also incorporated a Heavy-Duty Gyro that can take more punishment than a standard gyro. It was armed with a Lord's Light 4 Light PPC, a reliable Shigunga LRM-10 along with a ton of CASE-protected ammunition, and a Diverse Optics ER Medium Laser for short-range situations. To protect the pilot it carries a Full-Head Ejection System. BV (2.0) = 1,390
- GRF-1E Griffin Sparky
- The personal ‘Mech of Elle Bennett of the 5th Donegal Guards, prior to the War of 3039 she had replaced the LRM launcher of her Griffin with five medium lasers, one mounted in each torso, one beside the PPC and two in Sparky's left arm. The additional weight saved goes towards an extra heat sink and an additional ton of armor.  BV (2.0) = 1,449
- GRF-1E2 Griffin Sparky 2.0
- The personal ‘Mech of Leftenant Natasha Ergen of the 5th FedCom RCT, her stock Griffin had been refitted with Ferro-Fibrous armor and a Light Fusion Engine. Fourteen Double Heat sinks and a Targeting Computer allowed Ergen to obtain maximum effect from an all-energy weapons array consisting of an ER PPC, two standard Medium Lasers mounted one per side torso alongside three ER Medium Lasers, one mounted in each torso component. BV (2.0) = 1,862
- GRF-6S Griffin Francine
- A vintage Griffin refitted to the 6S standard and beyond with captured Word of Blake technology, when Francine rescued the Black Widow Company at the Royal Pass of the Ridges in 3070, her 'Mech carried half a ton less armor and swapped the 6S's ER PPC for an advanced Snub-Nose PPC as well as adding an extra ER medium laser to the left arm and a rear-facing small laser. BV (2.0) = 1,820 
- GRF-6S Griffin Francine II
- After becoming part of Stacy Church's new Black Widow Command Lance, Francine's Griffin was upgraded with experimental technologies. Dropping the Artemis IV and the rear facing small laser for a Supercharger to increase its speed, her 'Mech's armor was replaced with Laser Reflective plating, making it extremely resistant to the Word of Blake's new Variable-Speed Pulse Lasers. BV (2.0) = 2,223 
From MechWarrior Online:
- GRF-AR Ares
- Featured as a custom Solaris VII 'Mech the "Ares" the unit is configured as a long ranged specialist equipped with a PPC, LRM-10 and a Small Laser.
- GRF-2N Super Griffin - Although it carries the designation GRF-2N, this is actually a new 60-ton 'Mech design based on the regular Griffin, in a similar fashion to IIC evolution of existing designs (albeit not with Clan-level technology).
- Griffin IIC - The Griffin was one of the 'Mechs taken on the Exodus by the SLDF, following the collapse of the Star League. Eventually, the model was redesigned to use exclusive Clan technology and the Griffin IIC was created. BV (1.0) = 1,492, BV (2.0) = 1,608
- Improved Cooling Jacket (Prototype PPC)
- Jettison-Capable Weapon (Prototype PPC)
- Obsolete (2595)
- Poor Sealing
MechWarrior Online art of the Griffin
- A long-time favorite with House Steiner, two Griffins of the Royal Guards traditionally stand next to the Archon's throne on Tharkad.
- The (original) Griffin variants and artwork from 3025 were part of the Unseen 'Mech designs. The Griffin was Reseen in 3067 with new variants using revised artwork.
- MUL online date for the Griffin
- Technical Readout: 3039, p. 287
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged, p. 456
- Technical Readout: 3025, p. 64-65
- Technical Readout: 3050
- Technical Readout: Project Phoenix
- Experimental Technical Readout: Primitives, Volume 4, p. 6, "GRF-1A Griffin"
- Experimental Technical Readout: Primitives, Volume 4, p. 23
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 60
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged, p. 461
- Record Sheets: Operation Klondike, p. 36
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 61
- Technical Readout: 3085, p. 239
- Technical Readout: 3085, p. 238
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 62
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 65
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 66
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 67
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 68
- Record Sheets: 3145 New Tech, New Upgrades, p. 126
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix, p. 64
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged, p. 459
- Jihad Turning Points: New Avalon, p. 11
- Starterbook: Wolf and Blake, p. 116
- Starterbook: Wolf and Blake, pp. 22, 102
- MechWarrior Online Solaris-7 Sale Page
- Blood of Heroes, Ch. 4
- Blood of Heroes (Novel)
- Experimental Technical Readout: Primitives, Volume 4
- Jihad Turning Points: New Avalon
- MWDA House Liao's dossier of C. Schiller
- MWDA Steel Wolves's dossier of Chin Wolf
- MWDA Republic of the Sphere's dossier of Avriel Sterling
- MWDA Swordsworn's dossier of Chuck Stepp
- Record Sheets: 3025/3026
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged
- Record Sheets: 3050
- Record Sheets: 3067
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Project Phoenix
- Record Sheets: 3145 New Tech, New Upgrades
- Record Sheets: Operation Klondike
- Record Sheets: Phoenix Upgrades