Crossroad Prototype LAMs (AU)

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08/12/19 01:54 AM

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[Alternate Universe]

Crossroad's roaming Humanitarian Fleets picked up thousands of survivors during the chaotic Wars of Reaving. During the conflict the Crossroad forces encountered Society separatists several times in combat, fighting, destroying, and capturing salvage samples of Protomechs. Many less fanatical scientist caste members involved in Protomech projects were extracted as well.

After the Wars of Reaving and the Jihad, Crossroad citizens returned home from off-world campaigns with liberated scientists, engineers, and plenty of spoils. The experiences of the volunteers involved in the campaign to liberate Terra, in particular, captured the Republic's imagination, and Parliament passes measures to encourage scientific research and development in hopes to develop as impressive a world as Terra. From this, the integration of some liberated Clan and Inner Sphere scientists, and the salvaged samples from the off-world campaigns, began a golden age of Crossroadian Technology.

Curiously, the Crossroad Republic chose to venture into LAMs once again. Despite the Republic still having around a Company's worth of Phoenix Hawk LAMs in their register (Legacies of the Star League and the Exodus Fleet), there was absolutely no doctrinal need for new LAMs at all. It's rumored that the head of CARPA (Crossroad Advanced Research Projects Agency), a former Phoenix Hawk LAM pilot, was behind the decision to pursue new LAMs.

The goal of the LAM program was to come up with new designs to side-step most of the limitations that had hobbled previous LAM designs, especially with regards to weight-saving technologies like endo-steel, advanced armors, and lightweight engines. Other goals of the program included functional LAMs above the 55-ton threshold, non-bipedal protomech designs like Quads and Tripods, and integrating omni-technology into a LAM chassis.

The first of the prototypes is the Kite. The Kite exists as a prototype testing platforms, and is not intended for actual combat: Commercial-grade armor and composite internal structure mostly provides limited protection for the pilot against high-speed crashes. As such, it's strictly not designed to operate in an actual 31st century battlefield- at least, the KITE-0X is not.

The Kite isn't much more than a test platform, but as a test platform it is designed to be quite flexible. Republic Engineers, on pondering solutions to the issues that bulky engines posed for the LAM, came up with a radically simple idea: "Why bother transforming the torso?" Virtually no LAM-related moving parts are located in the torso, and are instead all located in the arms, legs, and head area. The torso itself resembles an Aerospace Fighter fuselage more than it does a traditional battlemech. The legs and arms are designed to be modular and easily replaced, with the arms being designed to accept another set of legs for an additional test phase.

With the first Kite X0 chassis finished in 3082, several planned experimental variants to push the envelope of LAM designs were planned. The X1 is a simple swap to an XL engine, which should hopefully be an easy swap due to the torso design and be complete by the same year. The X2 aims to replace the armor with a ferro-aluminum alternative. The X3 is to replace the arms with "omni" arms for very basic omni-technology compatability tests. The X4 will replace the arms with legs, converting the LAM to an ad-hoc quadrupedal configuration. The X5 is to be the same general chassis built on an endo-steel frame, and is scheduled to be completed last in 3086.

If all or at least some of the experiments are successful, these experimental designs will be succeeded by a X6 prototype with successful components integrated into one frame, and then followed by an A0 pre-production model, most likely filling some sort of "interceptor role". However, critics and military watchdogs are quick to point out that the Kite is, ultimately, "a weapon in search of a role" rather than a needed and useful component of the Republic's military.

Kite KITE-0X
Mass: 30 tons
Chassis: Composite LAM
Power Plant: 210 Fusion
Cruising Speed: 75.6 kph
Maximum Speed: 118.8 kph
Armor: Commercial
2 Micro Pulse Laser
2 ER Medium Laser
Communication System: Unknown
Targeting & Tracking System: Unknown
Introduction Year: 3082
Tech Rating/Availability: F/X-X-F-F
Cost: 3,218,703 C-bills

Type: Kite
Technology Base: Mixed (Experimental)
Tonnage: 30
Battle Value: 1,310

Equipment Mass
Internal Structure Composite 1.5
LAM Conversion Equipment 3
Engine 210 Fusion 9
Walking MP: 7
Running MP: 11
Jumping MP: 7
AirMech Cruising MP: 21
AirMech Flanking MP: 32
Safe Thrust: 7
Max Thrust: 11
Double Heat Sink: 10 [20] 0
Gyro: 3
Small Cockpit: 2
Armor Factor (Commercial): 105 4.5

Structure Armor
Head 3 9
Center Torso 10 10
Center Torso (rear) 10
R/L Torso 7 7
R/L Torso (rear) 7
R/L Arm 5 10
R/L Leg 7 14

and Ammo Location Critical Tonnage
2 Jump Jets LL 2 1
Jump Jet CT 1 0.5
Double Heat Sink RT 2 1
Micro Pulse Laser RT 1 0.5
ER Medium Laser RT 1 1
Jump Jet RT 1 0.5
Double Heat Sink LT 2 1
Micro Pulse Laser LT 1 0.5
ER Medium Laser LT 1 1
Jump Jet LT 1 0.5
2 Jump Jets RL 2 1
Extended Fuel Tank HD 1 0.5


The Starscream is much simpler in scope.

The Starscream's name and general design is supposedly influenced by a character from obscure fictional works from a millenia ago, discovered by chance by members of "Jason's Jolly Rogers" volunteer group in the Liberation of Terra. Unlike the Kite, the Starscream is designed to replace the Republic's aged Phoenix Hawk LAMs. Little advanced technology is used other than heat sinks and weaponry advancements already in common use by the Republic, and as such the LAM can be placed into production relatively quickly.

Equipped with a fairly basic, if unimpressive weapon package for its size, the Starscream is able to outgun most other LAMs, while retaining sufficient durability typical of a medium battlemech. But its true advantage lies in its generous fuel tank: The Starscream's extra two tons of fuel extends its effective combat radius threefold that of similar LAM designs. The cost of that range was ground speed: The Starscream's undersized engine is far slower than the Phoenix Hawk when not utilizing its jump jets. The situation was bad enough that the Starscream test pilot heavily recommended that its 'Mech mode only be used when landing and for maintenance/storage purposes, and to only use Aerospace and Airmech modes in combat.

Despite that disadvantage, the Starscream was given the green light for production.

Starscream STR-0X
Mass: 55 tons
Chassis: Standard LAM
Power Plant: 165 Fusion
Cruising Speed: 54 kph
Maximum Speed: 86.4 kph
Armor: Standard
2 Small Pulse Laser
4 Medium Pulse Laser
Communication System: Unknown
Targeting & Tracking System: Unknown
Introduction Year: 3082
Tech Rating/Availability: F/X-X-F-F
Cost: 5,931,928 C-bills

Type: Starscream
Technology Base: Mixed (Experimental)
Tonnage: 55
Battle Value: 2,556

Equipment Mass
Internal Structure 5.5
LAM Conversion Equipment 5.5
Engine 165 Fusion 6
Walking MP: 3
Running MP: 5
Jumping MP: 5
AirMech Cruising MP: 15
AirMech Flanking MP: 23
Safe Thrust: 5
Max Thrust: 8
Double Heat Sink: 12 [24] 2
Compact Gyro: 3
Small Cockpit: 2
Armor Factor: 184 11.5

Structure Armor
Head 3 9
Center Torso 18 27
Center Torso (rear) 8
R/L Torso 13 20
R/L Torso (rear) 6
R/L Arm 9 18
R/L Leg 13 26

and Ammo Location Critical Tonnage
Improved Jump Jet LL 2 1
Improved Jump Jet CT 2 1
Medium Pulse Laser CT 1 2
Targeting Computer RT 2 2
Improved Jump Jet RT 2 1
Medium Pulse Laser RT 1 2
Extended Fuel Tank RT 2 2
2 Double Heat Sinks LA 4 2
Small Pulse Laser LA 1 1
2 Double Heat Sinks LT 4 2
Light Active Probe LT 1 0.5
Improved Jump Jet LT 2 1
Medium Pulse Laser LT 1 2
Improved Jump Jet RL 2 1
Medium Pulse Laser HD 1 2
2 Double Heat Sinks RA 4 2
Small Pulse Laser RA 1 1
08/12/19 02:47 AM

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There could be a doctrine of using LAMs. Scouting worlds and asteroids from a single ship, such as a fighter carrier.
Each fighter could fly to, scout on the body, and return back and not have to move the base ship. They could also explore worlds that would require environmental suits if done by infantry or scientists on the ground.

What chassis is the Starscream based off of?
Or maybe what fighter?
Is it something the Crossroads have in stock? Or is it off something that doesn't have a mech base?
08/12/19 02:16 PM

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What chassis is the Starscream based off of?
Or maybe what fighter?
Is it something the Crossroads have in stock? Or is it off something that doesn't have a mech base?

If you mean chassis like a wasp/stinger/locust mech chassis, it's completely built from scratch as a LAM. It's loosely inspired by the Spectral LAM series that Crossroad Republic volunteers encountered during the campaign to liberate Terra.
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