1st Somerset Strikers
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- This article is about the irregular unit. For the animated TV series featuring the unit and for the sourcebook about the series and the unit, see BattleTech: The Animated Series and 1st Somerset Strikers (sourcebook).
|1st Somerset Strikers|
The 1st Somerset Strikers was an irregular Federated Commonwealth unit formed by then-Major Adam Steiner in the wake of the conquest of his homeworld Somerset during the Clan Invasion in 3050. The unit included the Isesaki Shipping JumpShip Katana and its DropShip Kwaidan from the Draconis Combine and their crews, which had been impounded for smuggling and were requisitioned by Steiner. In the face of the Clan threat the Draconis Combine consented with the requisitioning and ordered the crews to cooperate with Steiner.
A "poorly regarded holovid show" based on the unit's exploits was later produced, with many inaccuracies and considerable artistic license.
The 1st Somerset Strikers were introduced in BattleTech: The Animated Series, a 1994 TV series that was fairly popular in its time, but took great liberties with established canon. To reconcile as much of the show as possible with BattleTech canon, the 1st Somerset Strikers sourcebook was produced which explained many apparent inconsistencies and provided game stats for some new pieces of technology that had been introduced by the show.
This (fully canonical) sourcebook, as well as tidbits from numerous later sources, established the 1st Somerset Strikers and their exploits as shown in the show as canonical at least in broad strokes.
The genesis of the Strikers stems from its overall commander Adam Steiner. A member of the cadet line, descended from Simon Borge-Steiner, who refused the Archonship in 2914 in favor of his more capable sister Tatyana Steiner, Adam was born on Somerset and attended the Military Academy of Somerset as a MechWarrior. Graduating with honors, while many attributed it to his famous last name, the untried Adam quickly secured the rank of Major and a position as an instructor at the famed Nagelring on the basis of his tactical and strategic acumen by 3049.
Upon learning that his homeworld had fallen to Clan Jade Falcon during the opening waves of the Clan Invasion, Steiner successfully convinced the Armed Forces of the Federated Commonwealth that he be allowed to launch a "reconnaissance mission" behind enemy lines to gain valuable intelligence on the invaders, with the implied true aim of retaking Somerset. His unconventional ad-hoc, seven member multi-national unit which was dubbed the 1st Somerset Strikers would take an indirect route to Somerset and, against all odds and after several adventures, succeed in defeating the second-line forces in control of Somerset and retake the world for the Federated Commonwealth in November of 3050. However, with Somerset now so far behind the Clan line of advance, the AFFC refused the Strikers' pleas for reinforcements to hold the world and instead ordered the Strikers to retreat back to FedCom space. Clan Jade Falcon effortlessly recaptured Somerset during their fifth invasion wave.
Unbowed, in early 3052 Steiner was able to successfully convince the AFFC high command to let him lead another raid behind the lines, this time aimed at Barcelona. Leading a larger body of troops based around the core of the original Strikers, Adam built upon the lessons of his previous success and succeeded in recapturing the planet for the Federated Commonwealth. The Strikers would be disbanded after the initial invasion.
During their brief time in service, the 1st Somerset Strikers would play a significant role in the technological advancement of the Federated Commonwealth. In a daring raid against a Jade Falcon base on Twycross, they captured Clan technical data and material for the Vulture OmniMech and Elemental battle armor. This data had a considerable impact on FedCom R&D efforts, most notably providing solutions to overcome development problems plaguing the Bushwacker BattleMech, as well as the Infiltrator and Sloth battle armor programs. The Strikers would be rewarded for their assistance when they were selected to perform live-fire testing of these three prototype designs on (reportedly) Waldorff V.
Shortly after the Battle of Tukayyid, the Tharkad Broadcast Company released a semi-fictionalized holovid series based on Steiner's exploits during the invasion, mixing the battles on Barcelona into his initial raid and recapture of Somerset. The holovid featured numerous inaccuracies, including anachronistic or misplaced technologies and BattleMechs, incorrect recreations of events, and conflation of multiple events and individuals. Intended as a morale boosting exercise, the poorly-reviewed series would successfully help to instill national pride in the Lyran youth and sell trillions of S-Bills of merchandise in the process. 
|Commanding Officers of the 1st Skye Rangers|
Other Officers & Members
- Major Adam Steiner, Commanding Officer. Pilots Axman and Awesome.
- Rachel Specter, Intelligence and Tactical Officer.
- Captain Zachary Miles Hawkins, MechWarrior. Pilots Mauler and Wolfhound (the 'Mech reported as a Mauler would technically in fact have been a Daboku).
- Lieutenant Ciro Ramirez, MechWarrior. Pilots Wolfhound.
- Captain Valten Ryder, MechWarrior. Pilots Centurion and Bushwacker.
- Cadet Katiara Kylie, aerospace pilot. Pilots Banshee aerospace fighter.
- Franklin Sakamoto, All trades. Pilots Awesome and Hatamoto-Chi.
- Masters and Minions, p. 86-87
- Era Report: 3052, pp. 12-13 "Of Myths and Reality"
- Era Report: 3052, p. 14 "Small Victories"
- 1st Sommerset Strikers, p. 31 "Episode 7: In the Belly of the Beast - Intelligence Secretariat Internal Document No 64821/CTC"
- LosTech: The MechWarrior Equipment Guide, p. 84 "Armor and Combat Garb - Infiltrator Mk. I"
- LosTech: The MechWarrior Equipment Guide, p. 99 "Armor and Combat Garb - Slot"
- Technical Readout: 3058 Upgrade, p. 14 "Inner Sphere Battle Armor - Infiltrator Mk. I"
- Technical Readout: 3058 Upgrade, p. 34 "Inner Sphere Battle Armor - Sloth"
- Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade, p. 70
- Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade, p. 32