Under the leadership of former Prefect of Prefecture IV, Kal Radick, the Steel Wolves were one of the factions to break away from The Republic of the Sphere in the early 3130s following the widespread collapse of the HPG network. They had been operating within The Republic of the Sphere's territories as opportunists (and some consider them pirates) up to the time leading up to and immediately following The Republic's partial collapse. During that same time period, the Steel Wolves split up into several smaller factions following their new leader, Anastasia Kerensky's decision to reform them into a mercenary unit called the Wolf Hunters.
Before Kerensky's assumption of the leadership of the Steel Wolves, their leader was a Clan Wolf trueborn by the name of Kal Radick. He had formed the Wolves out of warriors from both the Arc-Royal and "Crusader" factions of the Clan, with the professed intention of reclaiming Terra for the Clans. However, Kal Radick for the most part merely conducted raids on backwater Republic worlds for the goal of gaining more war material for the expected drive on Terra. He also cultivated personal loyalty to himself, in an effort to cement his grip on the command of the Steel Wolves.
However, Kal Radick's authority would be shattered by the arrival of Anastasia Kerensky. A trueborn from Arc-Royal, she joined the Steel Wolves following a battle against them in which she took part as "Tassa Kay", a freelance MechWarrior. With the Wolves, she served (disgruntled) under Kal Radick, up until his announcement of a raid against the planet of Small World. Sensing an opportunity, she decried his failings as a leader and visionary, and challenged him to a Trial of Possession for the command of the Steel Wolves. Kerensky won easily, and immediately switched the intended target from Small World to the manufacturing and provincial capital of Northwind.
The Northwind Campaign
Kerensky started her invasion of Northwind with an attack on an isolated part of the planet which happened to be the home of a large number of oil rigs. With the Wolves, she attacked one of them and took it over as her base of operations; the DropShips she brought landing underwater. From her secure base, she launched a full attack on the capital of Tara, against the rival leader Countess Tara Campbell.
The Steel Wolves, early in the campaign, avoided any large confrontations with the defending Northwind Highlanders, instead sending their units through a single mountain pass around the defenders to try to take the capital. However, their plan was discovered, and, at the Battle of Red Ledge Pass, the Highlanders destroyed a portion of Kerensky's tank forces. Kerensky, fuming over her defeat, retreated with the Wolves back to her headquarters on the oil rig.
The Highlanders, now on the offensive, began a campaign to try to find the Steel Wolves' base before Kerensky could launch a second offensive against them. Eventually, after weeks of searching, one of their patrols got a tip-off that a Clan fighter plane was seen flying out into the ocean towards the oil rig that Kerensky was on. Once they learned that their base was compromised, Kerensky and the Wolves fled in their DropShips and began to fly towards Tara once more. Once there, they proceeded to fight a bloody battle in which their total victory was only stopped by the blowing up of their symbolic prize, the ancestral castle of Tara Campbell, and the subsequent burial of many of the Steel Wolf combat units. The Wolves fled once more, this time to try to attack Terra.
Assault on Terra
The Steel Wolves attacked Terra from a remote landing zone in what was Russia. Fighting was fierce, but the Steel Wolves were outclassed and forced to retreat; this time with less available war material than after the Northwind retreat. Fighting the Steel Wolves on Terra was Tara Campbell's Northwind Highlanders, Tenth Principes Guards, with the unexpected third-party antagonist of the ex-Paladin Ezekiel Crow.
Battle of Skye
Following the attack on Terra, the Steel Wolves retreated to lick their wounds and rebuild the unit. Facing increasing dissatisfaction with her leadership, Anastasia Kerensky was forced to fend off numerous Trials of Grievance from disgruntled Steel Wolf warriors. However, with the Jade Falcons approach towards the world they were hiding by, they assumed they were the subject of a Trial of Annihilation. They readied themselves for war, but the Falcons were actually attacking Skye. The Northwind Highlanders appeared to protect the world, and fought the invaders, but were losing ground. Anastasia demanded amnesty until she was out of system if she helped. Tara Campbell granted it, and got the help she was needed. The two warriors finally met after being rivals for so long. The Wolves chased the Falcons off planet, and the Wolves left the planet soon after.
In the aftermath of the failed Skye defense, Kerensky took the Wolves to Galatea. There she made the highly unorthodox change of turning the Steel Wolves into an elite mercenary unit to be known as the Wolf Hunters in 3135. This move was met with great hostility when it was discovered that she had registered the Wolves as a mercenary unit. Kerensky announced that all those who did not agree with the move may leave.
Over the course of a week, many warriors, Binaries, Stars, Novas and entire clusters, took her offer and left, many joining or forming their own mercenary units.
The largest portion of these perceived this as the destruction of the Clan way of life and formed a "loyalist" faction under the command of one of the Steel Wolves' high-ranking officers.
The Steel Wolves after Kerensky
The unit consisted of Varnoff's mostly 'Mech cluster, limited infantry units, and Xera's Aerospace cluster, which consisted of two DropShip carriers, a number of JumpShips, and many fighters.
Varnoff began by launching raids, in a bid to build up the faction's strength, so they would be able to retake their former homeworld of Tigress. However, Xera began to be suspicious of his ways. Many times, Varnoff was not abiding by Clan ways and traditions. He began separating loyal people from Xera along the course of their campaign. After capturing a DropShip crew defending Wasat, they learned that Anastasia's Wolf Hunters would be going to New Canton.
Meeting Kerensky in October of 3136, she offered a Trial of Grievance between them to resolve their differences once and for all. Varnoff told her he agreed, but prepared to betray her and destroy the Wolf Hunters. After the sabotage and rescue of Kerensky's DropShip over New Canton, Xera learned of Varnoff's true intentions. Xera contacted him and confronted him with his agenda to betray Kerensky. Varnoff boasted that she was not worthy of a Trial and he was going to betray her anyway. Xera informed him that she had been broadcasting, openly, the entire conversation and declared that by Varnoff's own testimony, that all his trials and oaths were based on treachery.
With Varnoff's treachery fully known publicly, Xera announced that the Steel Wolves would be leaving in a week's time and any warriors remaining on New Canton were declared not Wolves, including Varnoff. She became the new Galaxy Commander of the Steel Wolves.
Steel Wolves (Cluster/Veteran/Reliable)
- CO: Galaxy Commander Xera
- - As of 3145 the Steel Wolves were an A-rated mercenary command operating at seventy-five percent of full Cluster strength and under contract to the Free Worlds League. The Steel Wolves were based on Holt.
- Era Digest: Dark Age, pp. 18-19 Steel Wolves Profile - Basic setup of history.
- Field Report: 3145, pp.23 Timeline 3132-3145 - Steel Wolves Invades attempts on Northwind and Terra in 3133-3134.
- Era Digest: Dark Age, p. 3134: Breaking Point - Northwind campaign tidbits mentioned in 3134 section.
- Era Digest: Dark Age, p. 8 3134:Breaking Point - Brief info on the Battle on Terra, which also included the Tenth Principes Guards.
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 182, "Notable Mercenary Forces"
- Blood of the Isle
- A Call to Arms
- Field Manual: 3145
- Flight of the Falcon
- Service for the Dead
- A Silence in the Heavens
- Truth and Shadows
- Wolf Hunters
- Steel Wolves Kriya Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Lisabet Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Daneel Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Sadia Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Kendrick Fetladral's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Geoff Bekker's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Cecile Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Seka Ward's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Inova Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Jeni Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Mikos Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Shin Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Broll Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Jamal Wolf's Dossier
- Steel Wolves Chin Wolf's Dossier