Defender (WarShip class)

Defender (WarShip).jpg
Production information
Manufacturer Federated Suns
Introduced 2360
Production Year 2360
Use General Combat
Command Vessel
Tech Base Inner Sphere
Technical specifications
Mass 960,000
Length 870
Sail Diameter 1,300 Meters
Fuel 3,000 tons (7,500)
Burn Rate 39.52
Safe Thrust 5
Top Thrust 8
Sail Integrity 5
KF Drive Integrity 20
LF Battery None
Armament 5 x NAC/35s
21 x NAC/25
82 x AC/5s
47 x Machine Guns
Armor Standard Armor
DropShip Capacity None
Crew Listings
  • 60 Officers
  • 200 Enlisted/Non-Rates
  • 70 Gunners
  • 100 Bay personnel
Grav Decks 2 (120-meters diameter each)
Escape Pods/Life Boats 35/35
Heat Sinks 900
Structural Integrity 40
BV (1.0) N/A
BV (2.0) 173,687[1]


The Defender Class Battlecruiser was the Federated Sun's first operational WarShip design.[2] Designed to counter the newly-formed Terran Hegemony's Dreadnought-Class Battleships, the Defender was built to have superior speed and firepower. Deliveries of the class proved to be slow, in no small part due to costly difficulties involved in production of the massive engines required. A full decade passed before the appearance of the second example of the class. By this time, the Hegemony began producing its superior Monsoon Class-Battleships which eclipsed the Defenders in armor protection and firepower. These ships would be outclassed by the 2380s, when Davion authorities ceased production. A total of six vessels were produced.

The ships saw active service irregularly, being reactivated several times after their initial service period. By 2765, a few surviving members of the class were reactivated and served in the fleets of the Federated Suns. Two ships were active near the end of the Star League Era, and formed part of the Crucis Fleet of House Davion's navy. One of this pair, FSS Golden Lion, served as the flagship of the entire FedSuns Navy, under the command of Fleet Admiral Alexi Viscoff.

The Defenders would be immortalized by the Golden Lion's actions at the Battle of Cholame, where the battlecruiser's efforts in the massive battle blunted the Draconis Combine fleet's attack, severely hampering that faction's efforts during the early years of the First Succession War.[3]

Weapons and Capacities[edit]

The Defenders were designed for speed, and boasted a high rate of acceleration for their day. These ships could outrun and outmaneuver the Terran Hegemony's Dreadnoughts and the early Black Lion Battlecruisers. The ship carried 765 tons of Standard Armor concentrated in the bow, forward-sides, and in the aft section protecting the massive engines.

The Defender's main armament consisted of an array of Class 35 and 20 Naval Autocannons, which were sited in the ship's forward sections and broadsides. One of the Defender's noted weaknesses was the lack of capital weaponry covering the aft-facing sides and aft section. Due to this limitation, a ship's crew needed to use speed and agility to bring the heavy weapons to bear.

The ship's lighter weaponry included a large array of Class-5 Autocannons mounted in weapons bays throughout the entire ship. The autocannons clustered most heavily around the ship's aft, to counter the threat of small craft and fighters attacking this more vulnerable section. The design also included a large number of Machine Guns, mounted throughout the ship and serving in the point defense role.[4]


This design predated the use of DropShips, and included no bays for their handling. In their place, the ship had four large DropShuttle Bays. It also housed a Small Craft hangar able to house as many as 20 small craft, as well as a large general-use cargo bay.

  • Bay 1: Small Craft (20) - 10 Doors
  • Bay 2: Cargo (105,890 tons) - 2 Doors
  • Bay 3: DropShuttle Bay (20,000 tons capacity) - 1 Door
  • Bay 4: DropShuttle Bay (20,000 tons capacity) - 1 Door
  • Bay 5: DropShuttle Bay (20,000 tons capacity) - 1 Door
  • Bay 6: DropShuttle Bay (20,000 tons capacity) - 1 Door

Named Vessels[edit]

The full list of ships belonging to this class can be found here.


  • The Golden Lion originally appeared in House Davion (The Federated Suns) sourcebook published in 1988. The ship became the basis for the Defender Class, which would appear in name for the first time decades later in the Strategic Operations rule book as part of a list of first WarShips entering service for various factions.
  • It also should be noted that the Defender — aside from being the oldest original Federated Suns WarShip to be produced — was also the largest.


  1. Field Report 2765: AFFS, p. 26 & 30 Defender-Class Battlecruiser - BV2 listed.
  2. Strategic Operations, p. 15 - House Davion/Federation Suns - List of First includes First Warship - the Defender.
  3. Field Report 2765: AFFS, p. 6, 25 Naval Defense Doctrine & Defender-Class Battlecruiser - Defender Class's background and its history up to 2787.
  4. Field Report 2765: AFFS, p. 26 & 30 Defender-Class Battlecruiser - BV2 listed.