|Manufacturer||Hollis Incorporated (C1; destroyed 2791)
|'Mech type||Inner Sphere BattleMech|
|Chassis||Hollis Mark II|
|Communications System||O/P COM-211|
|Targeting Tracking System||O/P 1078|
|Heat Sinks||15 single|
|Jump Jets||Anderson Model 21|
The Catapult is an offense oriented, second-line fire-support BattleMech initially produced from 2561 to 2563 on a limited contract for the Terran Hegemony. Representing Hollis Incorporated's first foray into the 'Mech market, the Catapult was produced in record numbers over its initial three-year period from the company's brand-new, state-of-the-art factory. However, when the contract came up for review in 2563, the Hegemony decided not to renew it; while the Catapult had performed adequately at its role, it was not quite what they wanted. With large numbers of the 'Mech still in the field, the Catapult would continue to see use in the Star League Defense Force with second-line and specialist formations such as mountaineering regiments. When the factory constructing them switched over to the more-successful BattleMaster, Hollis' limited production of spare parts couldn't keep the design's numbers from dwindling.
When the Star League fell, many of the remaining Catapults joined Aleksandr Kerensky on his Exodus. The Capellan Confederation collected most of the Catapults that remained in the Inner Sphere, and the Hollis factory on Corey briefly produced new models and spare parts. At the same time, the Draconis Combine managed to seize a sizable force in their capture of Dieron. The renewed production ended when the Corey factory was destroyed at the onset of the First Succession War, ensuring the rarity of the Catapult during the rest of that bloody era. Entire invasions were commenced simply to seize the remaining number of these 'Mechs, particularly those launched by the Federated Suns against the Confederation.
Many variants of this venerable design were produced through its lifetime, and the Catapult's rarity began to reverse in 3033 when Yori 'Mech Works was contracted by the DCMS to restart production of the CPLT-K2 on Al Na'ir. The greatest change to the chassis came later, with the introduction of the CPLT-C3, which swapped out the original's LRMs for much larger and more powerful artillery missiles. These models were put to excellent use, especially when paired with Ravens, and paved the way for new design advancements.
In the years prior to and after the Clan Invasion, the Confederation and Combine retained the largest number of existing Catapults, though many Periphery realms would field some of the centuries-old models, and more variants would be produced for decades.
Weapons and Equipment
The primary weapons of the Catapult are two Holly LRM-15 launchers which allow the Catapult to give friendly units fire support at ranges of over 600 meters. In case an enemy closes to within the LRMs' minimum range the 'Mech carries four Martell medium lasers, which are usually enough to dissuade most light and medium 'Mechs from closing with the Catapult. Since the Catapult was designed to stand well behind the main line of battle, it lacks anti-infantry weapons or arms for close-quarters combat. Its greatest weakness though is ammunition: only one ton, or eight reloads, for each launchers gives the Catapult a level of endurance which is barely acceptable.
Ten tons of armor, fifteen heat sinks and a cruising speed of 43.2 km/h serves the Catapult well in its mission of launching Long Range Missiles on the enemy from great distances while minimizing the risk of return fire. The use of four jump jets in the left and right rear torso gives the Catapult a jumping distance of one hundred and twenty meters and the ability to pace faster units over broken terrain. The original Anderson 21 model jump jets tended to break down over prolonged use, venting into the machine's interior and overheating the 'Mech. A general recall in 2566 to replace the 21s with improved Anderson 25s solved the issue, though some Catapults never received this retrofit. The 'Mech is also unique for having a sideways ejection system which, while generally safe, can be quite a surprise to new Catapult pilots.
- The A1 variant of the Catapult was designed without backup weapons. While it doubles the amount of LRM ammo carried and adds on two tons of armor, it is highly susceptible to close range attacks and has little defense if an enemy does manage to close in on it. BV (1.0) = 1,184, BV (2.0) = 1,285
- In 2688, Royal units were issued kits to upgrade their standard C1 Catapults to the C1b variant. The weapon array stays the same, but the ammunition has been doubled. For improved protection, Ferro-Fibrous armor is used and CASE has been added to both torsos. Finally, twelve double strength heat sinks replace the old singles. BV (2.0) = 1570
- This Civil War era variant is built using a Hollis Mk. III Endo Steel chassis and powered by a Magna 260 extralight engine, using the saved weight to make the C2 a dedicated long range 'Mech. The primary weapons are two Federated LRM-15 launchers mated to an Artemis IV fire control system, and fed by four tons of ammo. The medium lasers have been replaced with two Defiance Shredder LB-X Autocannon/2s, sharing a single ton of ammo. While this makes the Catapult vulnerable to close range attacks, it also makes it extremely deadly at long range. BV (1.0) = 1,281, BV (2.0) = 1,346
- The C3 variant takes the 'Mech's long range fire support to a new level by removing both of the LRM-15 launchers and replacing them with an Arrow IV artillery system, allowing the Catapult to stay a safe distance from the battlefield. However the design of this model was rushed through by the Capellans, causing a number of faults to reemerge, including the undependable Anderson 21 jump jets. Chief among these however is the fact that it has a single ton of ammo, giving it a pitiful five reloads and forcing it to stay close to supply lines. The 'Mech is otherwise identical to the C1 model. BV (1.0) = 1,030, BV (2.0) = 1,368
- The four medium lasers are replaced with two small lasers. Two heat sinks are removed, and both LRM racks are upgraded to LRM-20 launchers with two tons of ammunition. This gives it about thirty three percent more damage capability at long range. BV (1.0) = 1,104, BV (2.0) = 1,358
- An upgrade of the C4 model. The standard fusion engine is replaced with an extralight engine. With the extra freed tonnage, a large laser and Beagle Active Probe can be mounted. The two Small Lasers are replaced with a single pulse version. The heat sinks are upgraded to double strength models. BV (2.0) = 1,449
- An upgrade of the C3 model, this variant first appeared during the St. Ives Conflict. It retains the Arrow IV artillery system, but its chassis has been upgraded to Endo Steel and its heat sinks to improved versions. This allows the C5 to increase its armor coverage to twelve and a half tons, upgrade its lasers to ER medium lasers, and quadruple the amount of ammo carried with protection provided by CASE. BV (1.0) = 1,329, BV (2.0) = 1,748
- A field refit of the C5 pressed into service by the Capellans during the Jihad, the C6 removes the artillery and two ER medium lasers to mount paired plasma rifles with three tons of ammo and three additional double heat sinks keep heat down. Such was the nature of this refit that even the CASE is still mounted, despite lacking any systems to warrant its use. BV (2.0) = 1,874
- Breaking the mold of the Catapult, this House Kurita model removes the LRM-15 launchers and replaces them with two PPCs, allowing the Catapult to act as a direct fire support 'Mech and take a more active role in front line combat. The 'Mech mounts five additional single heat sinks to help dissipate the added heat from the PPCs and two Machine Guns to deter infantry attacks. Space is made by removing the jump jets and two of the medium lasers. BV (1.0) = 1,052, BV (2.0) = 1,319
- An upgrade of the K2 Catapult, the K2K model changes the engine to an extralight model. The twin PPCs also have been upgraded to ER PPCs. The 'Mech carries two ER medium lasers for close range firepower. To handle the added heat from the upgrades, the 'Mech uses 20 double heat sinks. Finally, the K2K model carries thirteen and a half tons of armor. BV (1.0) = 1,500, BV (2.0) = 1,716
- An upgrade of the prototype K3, this Kuritan variant carries twin Heavy PPCs and ER medium lasers, along with seventeen double heat sinks which do an admirable job keeping heat levels down, and a C3 slave unit to share targeting telemetry. Built on a standard internal structure and using twelve and a half tons of Light Ferro-Fibrous armor, the designers were forced to use a downgraded Magna 195 fusion engine instead of the normal 260, giving this design a top speed of 56 km/h and a jumping capacity reduced accordingly to ninety meters. BV (1.0) = ??, BV (2.0) = 1,880
- Another Kuritan variant, the -K5 goes back to its roots by carrying two MRM-30 launchers as its primary weapon. Built on an Endo Steel chassis and utilizing a 260 rated extralight engine for power. It also carries two Medium Pulse Lasers, a C3 slave unit and twelve and a half tons of standard armor. BV (1.0) = 1,244, BV (2.0) = 1,457
- This Draconis Combine model reduces mobility and jump range (54 km/h maximum speed with a jump radius of 90 meters) and the secondary weapons have been reduced to a quartet of ER Small Lasers. In exchange, the Catapult carries two ELRM-15 launchers, one in each AES-equipped arm, supplied with four tons of ammunition total. BV (2.0) = 1,619
- Catapult CPLT-K2 (Kasigi)
- The personal 'Mech of Combine MechWarrior Bryan Kasigi. Thanks to uneven supplies, by the initial Clan Invasion his K2 was a unique patchwork variant that combined new and old components, swapping the K2's standard PPCs for Extended Range PPCs supported by a swap to double heat sinks, removing the machine guns to restore the C1's jump jets.
From MechWarrior Online:
- Catapult CPLT-J Jester
- The first of two MechWarrior Online Hero 'Mechs along with Butterbee, the Jester is piloted by Leigh Voss and carries an all laser weapons array, mounting a Large Laser in each arm, medium laser in each side torso, and twin small lasers in the center torso. An anti-missile system in each side torso, fed from a single ton of reloads in the head, protects against missile fire. Built on an Endo Steel frame and 295 rated Extralight Engine fitted with two jump jets, Jester features near maximum armor at the expense of heat dissipation, mounting only eighteen double heat sinks.
- Catapult II - Created by the Capellan Confederation in the early thirty-second century.
- Timber Wolf - When Operation Revival first started, the then-unknown invaders used 'Mechs not recognized by targeting systems. One such instance involved a confused targeting system identifying a Timber Wolf as either a Marauder or Catapult, due to physical similarities to both. After-action analysis of the data recording resulted in the Timber Wolf being dubbed with the operational name "Mad Cat" by Inner Sphere forces.
- Author Blaine Lee Pardoe stated in a blog entry that, according to his memory which he admitted could be wrong, the Catapult was among the BattleMechs for which he wrote the original background as initially published in TRO:3025, after being given only its name, image, and game stats to work with for the TRO entry.
- In German products, the unit's proper name was translated to Katapult. The model code was accordingly changed to KPLT-C1.
- In French products, the unit's proper name was translated as Catapulte.
Original CPLT-C1 Catapult from TRO:3025
CPLT-C3 Catapult from TRO:3050
CPLT-C3 Catapult from TRO:3050 Upgrade
Catapult from BT Record Sheets
CPLT-C3 Catapult in action from Shrapnel
CPLT-C1 Catapult in motion from CCG
A Catapult from MWDA dossiers
Model of Catapult from MW4
Model of Catapult "Jester" from MW5:Mercs
Catapult standee (front) from BattleTech, Fourth Edition
Catapult miniature from PlasTech
Catapult miniature from BattleTech Alpha Strike: Command Lance Pack
Catapult miniature from BattleTech: A Game of Armored Combat
- Technical Readout: Succession Wars, pp. 118–119: "CPLT-C1 Catapult"
- MUL online date for the Catapult
- Combat Operations, p. 122
- Record Sheets: 3039, p. 147
- Technical Readout: 3025 Revised, p. 80
- Technical Readout: 3039, p. 146
- Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade, p. 72
- Introductory Record Sheets, p. 18
- Record Sheets: 3039, p. 146
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged, p. 239
- Record Sheets: MechWarrior Dark Age I, p. 62
- Record Sheets: 3050 Upgrades Unabridged (Inner Sphere), p. 157
- Master Unit List: Battle Values, p. 76
- Record Sheets: 3039, p. 148
- Record Sheets: 3050 Unabridged (Inner Sphere), p.164
- Technical Readout: 3085, p. 190
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Old is the New New, p. 93
- Record Sheets: 3039, p. 149
- Record Sheets: MechWarrior Dark Age I, p. 63
- Master Unit List, "Catapult CPLT-K2K"
- Record Sheets: 3050 Upgrade, Inner Sphere, p. 169
- Record Sheets: Upgrades, p. 108
- Recognition Guide: ilClan, vol. 5, p. 13
- Recognition Guide: ilClan, Vol. 5, p. 19
- Technical Readout: 3039, p. 146
- Record Sheets: 3039 Unabridged, p. 225
- Combat Manual: Kurita, p. 61: "Ghost Regiments - Tai-i Bryan Kasigi"
- Combat Manual: Kurita, p. 6: "Test of Honor"
- Catapult Hero - Jester
- MechWarrior Online "November 5th 2013 Patch - Jester Released"
- BattleMech Manual, p. 90 Design Quirk Table - Catapult.
- Technical Readout: 3145 Capellan Confederation, p. 40
- BattleMech Manual
- Catapult Hero - Jester
- Combat Manual: Kurita
- Combat Operations
- Field Manual: Periphery
- Master Unit List
- Master Unit List: Battle Values
- Recognition Guide: ilClan, vol. 5
- Record Sheets: 3025/3026
- Record Sheets: 3039
- Record Sheets: 3050
- Record Sheets: 3050 Upgrade (Inner Sphere)
- Record Sheets: 3050 Upgrades Unabridged (Inner Sphere)
- Record Sheets: 3067
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Old is the New New
- Record Sheets: MechWarrior Dark Age I
- Record Sheets: Upgrades
- Steel Wolves - Sadia Wolf's Dossier
- Technical Readout: 3025
- Technical Readout: 3025 Revised
- Technical Readout: 3039
- Technical Readout: 3050
- Technical Readout: 3050 Revised
- Technical Readout: 3050 Upgrade
- Technical Readout: 3085