Blackjack (BattleMech)

(Redirected from Arrow)
This article is about the 45-ton BattleMech. For the 50-ton OmniMech, see Blackjack (OmniMech).
Blackjack (BattleMech)
Production information
Manufacturer General Motors, Ceres Metals Industries
Production Year 2757[1][2]
Model BJ-1
Class Medium
Cost 3,147,225 C-bills
Technical specifications
Mech type Inner Sphere BattleMech
Mass 45 tons
Chassis GM BJ-I
Armor Durallex Medium
Engine GM 180
Communications System Dalban Micronics
Targeting Tracking System Dalban AQ
Heat Sinks 11
Speed 64.8 km/h
Jump Jets Whitworth Jetlift
BV (1.0) 795[3]
BV (2.0) 949[4]


The Blackjack was designed by General Motors in the decades before the fall of the Star League, as seditious revolutionaries began popping up while the League's authority was eroding, mainly in the Periphery. In 2757, to combat the increasing threats of the separatists, the League contracted for a medium BattleMech to be built with anti-insurgency and fire-support capabilities. General Motors' original prototype was equipped with a large fusion engine supplying increased speed and endurance and flamer weapons, but these were eventually replaced with more reliable autocannons and a smaller engine supported by Jump Jets. The final production model met all of the production requirements and by all accounts was destined to be regarded as a good, reliable 'Mech.[5][6]

General Motors was blindsided by the bad press the Blackjack received upon its introduction. Chief among its critics was the charge that the StarGuard II armor was brittle and tended to fall off, and that its footpads were too narrow and made it susceptible to falling. None of these claims were ever substantiated, but the damage was already done. The Blackjack quickly fell out of favor and only spent a few years in service to the Star League. It wasn't long before production was halted altogether and those still in service were either given to Terran Hegemony militia units or sold off to the Member States. When the Star League was eventually dissolved and the Succession Wars began, few shed a tear as the Blackjack production line on Kathil was destroyed in 2796.[5][6][7]

While all the Successor States had Blackjacks the majority ended up with the Capellan Confederation and Federated Suns, and all but the Suns largely abandoned the design based on its reputation. Tinkering with the 'Mech, Davion techs soon discovered that the reputed claims about the Blackjack's flaws were without foundation, although it was still largely relegated to the March Militias. It wouldn't be until 3022 that the myth received its first mortal wound on Xhosa VII. In battle for control of the planet the infamous Tai-i Mercer Ravannion attempted to test his "Horde" tactic against the local Davion garrison. Led by New Avalon Institute of Science cadet Michael Ubodo, the garrison's Blackjacks took the brunt of the Kuritan attack, destroying wave after wave of light 'Mechs attempting to overwhelm their position, and earned great honor for their successful defense.[5][6][7]

In the aftermath of the battle other Davion units began to take renewed notice of the Blackjack, and even Hanse Davion was sufficiently impressed with their performance on Xhosa VII to commission new variants be built. For their part the Confederation continued to treat the design with utter contempt, although the breakaway nation of St. Ives Compact couldn't afford to be as discerning and adopted the Blackjack, experimenting with new variants of their own. These efforts culminated with the introduction of the BJ-2, built by Davion techs using newly-recovered lostech, which was first a refit kit before limited production restarted at General Motor's Kathil plant in 3054. Further variants would continue to be produced by both St. Ives and the Federated Suns, and eventually a new OmniMech version of the Blackjack was completed in 3058.[7][8]

Weapons and Equipment[edit]

The Blackjack carries a 40mm Whirlwind-L Autocannon in either arm for long range, direct fire support. While these autocannons provide excellent reach and were sufficient for combating mostly non-'Mech insurgents, they lacked the firepower to deal with well-armored targets. Both weapons are fed from a single ton of ammo located within the center torso. For close combat, the Blackjack has four Intek Medium Lasers, one in each arm and both the left and right sides of the torso. These lasers, when combined with its maneuverability, make the 'Mech very dangerous and an entire lance or company of Blackjacks can lay down impressive firepower.[5][6]

Two Whitworth Jetlift Jump Jets in either leg give the Blackjack a jumping distance of 120 meters. These were added late in the design's development, compensation for using the GM 180 fusion engine which was smaller than in the original. Eight and a half tons of armor protect the Blackjack while eleven heat sinks keep it cool during combat.[5][6]


  • BJ-1X 
    Early Blackjack prototype differed from the production model significantly. It was armed with twin GM Flashpoint flamers and additional heat sinks in place of each autocannon, and was powered by a VOX 225 power plant allowing it for greater speed than the later models, but lacked the Jump Jet.[5][6]
  • BJ-1DB 
    The 1DB Blackjack is a Federated Suns variant intended to increase the 'Mech's lethality. Introduced in 3022 after the BJ-1's success on Xhosha VII, one ton of armor plus the arm-mounted autocannons and torso-mounted lasers[9] were replaced with two Large Lasers and six extra heat sinks added to the design to handle the extra heat load.[6] BV (1.0) = 881[3], BV (2.0) = 1,015[10]
  • BJ-1DC 
    The 1DC Blackjack is another variant inspired by the Xhosha VII battle and was introduced a year after the similar 1DB. Rather than replace the arm-mounted weapons the 1DC sacrifices the 'Mech's jumping ability in order to add two Small Lasers and an additional heat sink to deal with the extra heat load. BV (1.0) = 718[3], BV (2.0) = 917[11]
  • BJ-2 
    The BJ-2 was introduced in 3052 by the Federated Suns as the new production model of the Blackjack, based on earlier experimental designs. It upgrades the 'Mech with two Diverse Optics Sunbeam ER Large Lasers in place of the autocannons and removes the medium lasers for four Hovertec Streak SRM-2 launchers, two each in the left and right sides of the torso. One ton of ammo for the launchers is kept in the left torso while the standard heat sinks were upgraded to double heat sinks.[7] Note that the BJ-2 was errataed to use double heat sinks by FASA Corporation after its release BV (1.0) = 858[3], BV (2.0) = 1,148
  • BJ-2r 
    Introduced in the Dark Age this Blackjack variant replaces the weaponry of the BJ-2 with a Large Re-Engineered Laser in each arm, backed up by a single medium laser. It can jump 120 meters at a time, and uses eleven double heat sinks. BV (2.0) = 1,076[12]
  • BJ-3 
    Built in 3042 by the Capellan Confederation on St. Ives based on the experimental BJ-3X, created during the Fourth Succession War, this 'Mech was probably the first in decades if not centuries to feature Double Heat Sinks, a revolutionary re-discovered technology. It is implied[13] that the heat sinks were actually stolen from the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth, but in any case the BJ-3 was the first regular variant to employ them again as part of its standard loadout (as opposed to field refits or ancient Star League era 'Mechs). The superior heat dissipation allowed the 'Mech to be equipped with two Ceres Arms Smasher PPCs and four Medium Lasers. The majority of the BJ-3 models were turned over to the Federated Suns by the St. Ives Compact after the Fourth Succession War, following that state's secession from the Confederation during the war,[14] but production continued domestically within the St. Ives Compact, predominantly but not exclusively for St. Ives Compact forces, afterwards.[7] BV (1.0) = 1,099, BV (2.0) = 1,271[15][16] (The dates and ancillary data from the MUL establish that the BJ-3 featuring the Fourth Succession War Scenarios: Volume 1 was actually the BJ-3X; this would also have been the one to receive the stolen prototype Double Heat Sinks.)
  • BJ-3X 
    The prototype version of the production model BJ-3, it differs only by mounting three Prototype Double Heat Sinks plus seven engine-mounted standard heat sinks.[6]
  • BJ-4 
    Many Blackjacks in the Federated Suns were upgraded to this model during the FedCom Civil War. A half-ton of armor is removed, though it is upgraded to Light Ferro-Fibrous, resulting in almost the same amount of armor protection. All the weapons of the BJ-2 were stripped out and a Light Fusion Engine was included to free up additional mass. Each arm mounts a Light Autocannon/5 and an ER Medium Laser, while two tons of CASE-protected ammo in each torso allow the BJ-4 to make use of special munitions. A Targeting Computer makes all the weapons more accurate.[7] BV (1.0) = ??, BV (2.0) = 1,063[17]
  • BJ-5 
    Introduced in 3107 this variant carries four Light PPCs and two Light AC/2s to extend the Blackjack's engagement range. To make room for this, the 'Mech uses Endo Steel chassis, Light Engine, and Light Ferro-Fibrous armor.[18] A single ton of autocannon ammunition is stored in a CASE II protected bay. BV (2.0) = 1,165[19]

Apocryphal Variants[edit]

Apocryphal Content Starts

The information after this notice comes from apocryphal sources; the canonicity of such information is uncertain.
Please view the reference page for information regarding their canonicity.

From MechWarrior Online:

  • BJ-A "Arrow" 
    MechWarrior Online's apocryphal version of Michael Ubodo's Arrow is armed with a trio of Machine Guns in each arm supplied with two tons of ammo, supported by a Medium Laser in side torso and a Large Pulse Laser mounted in the center torso. Mounting a 235 standard engine, its variation of the Arrow is clad in Ferro-Fibrous armor on an Endo Steel frame, carrying eleven Double Heat Sinks and just two Jump Jets.[20]

Apocryphal Content Ends

Related OmniMechs[edit]

  • Blackjack - This OmniMech version of the venerable Blackjack debuted around 3058.[8]

Design Quirks[edit]

The Blackjack has the following Design Quirk:[21]


  • Confirmation of the agents responsible for the destruction of the LAW facility in 3070 was made by one of the BattleTech Line Developers on the official Catalyst Game Labs forum:
[dev-level errata]

BJ-1 Blackjack, p. 128

Variants, 2nd paragraph: change the following sentence pertaining to the BJ-1DB: "This necessitated the removal of the arm-mounted medium lasers..." to "This necessitated the removal of the torso-mounted medium lasers..."

jymset, Freelance Writer, on 12 April 2016 confirmed by Moderator Xotl on 14 April 2016
  • In German products the unit's proper name was translated to Totschläger, which is the common German expression for a baton (aka as Blackjack in american english). The model code was accordingly changed to TG-1.



  1. Record Sheets: 3039, 2nd Ed., p. 48
  2. MUL online date for the Blackjack (BattleMech)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Combat Operations, p. 126
  4. Record Sheets: 3039, p. 110
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Technical Readout: 3025 Revised, p. 46-47
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 Technical Readout: 3039, p. 128-129
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade, p. 46-47
  8. 8.0 8.1 Technical Readout: 3058, p. 88
  9. Errata report by user jymset that was confirmed by the moderator Xotl
  10. Record Sheets: 3039, p. 111
  11. Record Sheets: 3039, p. 112
  12. Record Sheets: 3145 New Tech, New Upgrades, p. 111
  13. "Proprietary"
  14. Battlepack: Fourth Succession War, p. 37 - New 'Mechs - BJ-3 Blackjack
  15. Record Sheets: 3039, p. 113
  16. Objective Raids, p.148
  17. Master Unit List: Battle Values, p. 73
  18. Recognition Guide: ilClan, vol. 4, p. 13
  19. Recognition Guide: ilClan, Vol. 4, p. 20
  20. MechWarrior Online - "The Arrow Hero Mech now available"
  21. BattleMech Manual, p. 90 Design Quirk Table - Blackjack Entry