|Tech Base||Inner Sphere (IS)|
|Power Plant||Donovan XVIII|
|Tracking & Targeting System||???|
|BV (2.0)||2,142 2,113|
One of the smallest DropShips ever to see combat, the Vampire could easily be mistaken for a heavy AeroSpace Fighter based on its speed and weaponry, but in actual fact it was the fastest Jump Infantry carrier in existence.
Conceived to minimize the time Federated Suns jump troopers were exposed to enemy AeroSpace fighters, Markesan Astronautics simply made the Vampire the equal in performance of any fighter it would encounter. When over the target, the jump infantry would be released via specialized drop hatches on the craft's ventral surface, at long range this gave the Vampire look of being an AeroSpace Fighter on a bombing run. This misidentification would prove highly effective during the brief "Border War" between the Federated Suns and the Capellan Confederation, with Liao troops thrown into total confusion when jump infantry began to rain down instead of bombs.
While highly effective in its role, the Vampire's high performance came at a cost; its engines. The powerful high-performance Donovan XVIII drive system had a relatively short lifespan and soaked considerable resources in maintenance compared to other propulsion units. Like many advanced designs that required a steady supply of spare parts to remain in operation, the destruction of the Markesan Astronautics manufacturing facilities during the Draconis Combine's First Succession War thrust towards New Avalon effectively doomed the few Vampire that survived the fighting.
Focused towards its high-speed infantry carrier role, the Vampire carried a meager weapons array more akin to the AeroSpace Fighters it superficially resembled. Two Medium Lasers and a SRM-6 were carried in the nose, while a single Large Laser and LRM-20 were mounted in each wing. As if to reinforce it's fighter like weaponry, a further pair of Medium lasers were carried aft to fend off any pursuit. Two tons of SRM reloads and a shared three tons of long range missile reloads gave the DropShip more than enough endurance for its high-speed, low loiter role.
The Vampire featured a single infantry bay capable of carrying three platoons of jump infantry in highly cramped conditions. For this reason the troops assigned to a Vampire normally traveled on other ships, only transferring to the craft for the actual ground assault. The infantry bay was linked four special drop hatches along the Vampires ventral surface, allowing the craft to continue on without stopping and leading the misidentification as a AeroSpace Fighter dropping bombs.
- Vampire II
- This version of the Vampire was created for the AFFS Rabid Foxes for battle armor infantry deployment. The design weighs half as much again as the standard Vampire, and is equipped with four battle armor infantry bays. The weapons of the Vampire II are energy based. Four Heavy PPCs mounted in the nose are supplemented by a pair of Large X-Pulse Lasers in each wing. To provide protection from missiles, each wing mounts a pair of Laser Anti-Missile systems. Another pair of Laser AMS and a pair of ER Large Lasers cover the aft arc. A small control center located beneath the cockpit is equipped with eight tons of communications equipment.
- online date for the Vampire
- Technical Readout: 3075, p. 232, "Vampire Profile"
- Record Sheets: 3075 Unabridged - Age of War, p. 135
- Experimental Technical Readout: Phantoms, p. 13
- Technical Readout: 3150, p. 224