Brandon Howell

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Brandon Howell.jpg
Brandon Howell
Character Profile
Born 3018[1]
Affiliation Clan Smoke Jaguar
Profession saKhan

Brandon Howell was an unconventional Clan Smoke Jaguar MechWarrior who became saKhan of his Clan after the battle of Tukayyid.


Early life and Clan Invasion[edit]

An exceptional strategist and tactician, the well-liked and respected Howell defeated several popular ristars to take command of the elite Jaguar Grenadiers Cluster. While fighting at the forefront of any attack as expected of a true Smoke Jaguar, rather than engaging in their stock tactic of overwhelming frontal assaults Howell attracted fame for his practice of maskirovka (the Russian loanword meaning camouflage or concealment rather than reference to the Capellan intelligence agency) inspired by his reading of a poorly translated Star League text in his youth to both misdirect his foes and overcome it when attempted against him.[1]


Commander of the Grenadiers at the time of the Battle of Tukayyid, Howell's Cluster was among those of the Khan Lincoln Osis led Alpha Galaxy selected to take the Jaguar's primary target city of Dinju Heights, defended by the veteran-ranked Com Guard Fifth Army. The assault on Dinju Heights started well for the Jaguars, with Osis's Sixth Jaguar Dragoons wiping out the green 50th Division to secure Alpha Galaxy's drop site.[2][3][4][5][6]

While the rest of Alpha assumed it was their superiority over the ComStar forces allowing them to effortlessly roll over the Com Guard defensive lines, Howell however correctly suspected the minimal resistance offered by the remains of 50th Division was but a cover for an ambush in the seemingly undefended Dinju Pass. Howell responded by sending two Stars forward to flush out any hidden Com Guard units, while the rest of the Grenadiers were ordered to rush the pass at flank speed while hugging its walls. While almost completely obliterating the probe force, the now revealed 299th and 323rd Divisions could only engage the bulk of the Grenadiers briefly before they raced past, inflicting heavy losses but unable to prevent a sizable portion of the Jaguar unit making it through to reach the outskirts of Dinju Heights.[1][2][3][4][5][6]

However Howell's success would ultimately doom Alpha's advance. Unwilling to be outdone by a subordinate, Lincoln Osis ordered his Sixth Jaguar Dragoons to make their own run, by which time the 299th and 323rd Divisions had fully emerged from hiding and were crowding the floor of the pass, creating a gauntlet of overwhelming firepower with the Jaguar Loremaster and Khan Osis both seemingly killed as the Dragoons took heavy casualties. With the Grenadiers unable to fight their way back through the pass to save the outnumbered Sixth Dragoons from destruction at the hands of the 299th and 323rd Divisions, Howell launched a desperate assault against the 82nd and 322nd Divisions outside Dinju Heights, pushing the Com Guard units back and allowing the surviving Grenadiers an opening to withdraw to their DropShips.[1][2][3][4][5][6]


One of the highest-ranking Smoke Jaguars to survive Tukayyid, Howell was originally elected Khan in May 3052, until Lincoln Osis was discovered alive by the post-battle salvage crews. Putting the needs of his Clan above his own personal ambition, Howell declined to challenge Osis for the Khanship and accepted the post of saKhan.[1]

After Task Force Serpent invaded Huntress in 3060, Howell and the Shroud Keshik arrived with the rest of the Smoke Jaguar reinforcements. Howell led the counterattack against Andrew Redburn's southern army which had taken up position in the Dhuan Mountains. Howell's troops eventually won this battle, forcing the badly mauled SLDF units into the Dhuan Swamp.[7][8]

While his ultimate fate is unknown, Osis later informed the Grand Council upon his return to Strana Mechty that "Khan Howell" had been left in charge of operations and would have been victorious had Victor Steiner-Davion's own task force not arrived to turn the tide.[9] Brandon Howell was not noted as being among the surviving Jaguar forces who fought on Strana Mechty during the Great Refusal, but his final fate - whether he was killed in battle or taken prisoner - is unknown.[10]

However, his survival appears unlikely, as it was later said than very few Jaguar officers of rank superior to Star Captain were captured alive.[11]


Although his preferred BattleMech is unknown, some evidence indicates he piloted a Timber Wolf during the fighting on Tukayyid.[3]


In Prince of Havoc, Lincoln Osis mentions a "Khan Howell" as having been left in charge of operations on Huntress prior to Victor Steiner-Davion's arrival. While Osis is almost certainly referring to Brandon Howell, it is unclear whether Howell did succeed Osis as senior Khan of the Smoke Jaguars or if Osis was simply using "Khan" as shorthand for "saKhan".


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Era Report: 3052, pp. 90–91: "Brandon Howell Profile"
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Tukayyid, pp. 29–38: "Campaign: Clan Smoke Jaguar"
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Tukayyid, p. 34: "Ambush at the Dinju Pass"
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Wolf Clan, p. 47: "Days of Armageddon - Smoke Jaguar"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Invading Clans, pp. 61–62: "Tukayyid: The Crucible"
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 ComStar, p. 70: "Battle of Tukayyid"
  7. Twilight of the Clans, p. 12
  8. Twilight of the Clans, p. 31
  9. Prince of Havoc, ch. 3
  10. Twilight of the Clans, p. 39: Howell is not listed as Lincoln Osis' second in command during the Great Refusal, implying that he did not make it off Huntress
  11. Shadows of War, p. 276