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|Manufacturer||New Samarkand Metals|
Luthien Armor Works
|Tech Base||Inner Sphere|
|Top Speed||10.8 km/h|
|Jump Range||120 m|
|Armor Type||Basic Stealth|
|BV (1.0)|| Flamer/Machine Gun = 18|
Small Laser = 20
TAG = 16
|BV (2.0)|| Flamer = 22|
Small Laser = 24
Machine Gun = 22
TAG = 20
The Kage (Japanese: "shadow") Light Battle Armor was one of the first Battle Armor designs produced by the Draconis Combine after the Truce of Tukayyid. Built for reconnaissance and battlefield infiltration, development of the Kage was a joint operation between Internal Security Force scientists and Draconis Elite Strike Team advisers. Indeed the Kage was meant to provide an alternative to the much-respected DEST Infiltration Suit for missions in which DEST teams could expect heavy opposition, and since production started in 3056 the battle armor has virtually replaced the older Sneak Suit.
Working off of a failed prototype of the Raiden, research and development of the Kage began in March of 3051 with the first prototypes unveiled in May 3052, however it soon became apparent there was a problem in the design. Draconis commanders had insisted upon a battle armor suit which could out-jump most other BattleMechs, but the necessary jump jet configuration to achieve these distances meant a highly unstable flight characteristics, leading to the deaths of more than one test operator. Disaster was averted when the design team refined the jump controls and added a special partial wing and stabilizing fins, an alteration which took another three and a half years to implement before mass production started in March 3056. The end result though was a battle armor suit which exceeded not only its own original specifications but that of every other battle armor save the Sylph in its ability to travel through the air.
The Kage has proven to be a success since its introduction, used by both DEST and regular line units; the latter tend to use them as artillery spotters for Arrow IV units, especially when using a laser designator. One of the suit's most famous early uses was as part of Task Force Serpent's strike against the Clan Smoke Jaguar homeworld of Huntress. Three teams of DEST troopers equipped with Kage suits infiltrated onto the planet's surface with the mission of knocking out the command and control center responsible for coordinating the planet's orbital defenses. In this they succeeded, overcoming the Elementals guarding the facility and opening the way for the invasion fleet to continue the operation. In 3069 a DEST team equipped with Kage suits was also responsible for rescuing Hohiro Kurita from the Word of Blake during the Jihad. The Kage suit would continue to be used in the following years with new variants introduced. As a proof of the great capabilities of this Armour is the fact than it remains active as late to 3135, though probably customized and upgraded. Their only known users are, ironically, the Fidelis, the last remnant of clan Smoke Jaguar, once the worst enemies of the Kage creators.
Weapons and Equipment
As it is primarily geared towards intelligence-gathering and covert operations, the Kage does not carry particularly heavy weaponry: an Anti-Personnel Weapon Mount on the right forearm, typically equipped with a submachine gun, keeps both of the Armored Gloves free for other tasks. Within a Kage team one of the four troopers is designated as the support element and operates a single heavier weapon in place of the anti-personnel weapon, such as a Flamer, Small Laser, Machine Gun, or Light TAG. This weapon is carried into battle in pieces by each team member thanks to their Squad Support Weapon Mount and assembled prior to combat.
The standout feature of the Kage is its Partial Wing assembly which allows it to make assisted jumps of 120 meters at a time and clear obstacles up to 24 meters in height; when not in use the wing retracts in order to reduce the suit's visibility and radar signature. This mobility is enhanced by the suit's stealth features, 275kg of Basic Stealth armor. Although providing barely enough protection against a single hit from a Medium Laser, it incorporates aspects of a combination stealth suit with electronic and infrared suppression capabilities and can run indefinitely thanks to integral rechargers. Not even Beagle Active Probes can detect the Kage suit thanks to these features
On rare occasions DEST squads will outfit their suits with additional equipment, such as laser microphones, shotgun microphones, remote sensor dispensers and ECM suites, however these are field modifications rather than official factory variants.
Like most suits, the Kage normally requires the use of a special module to allow the wearer to slip easily into and out of the suit. However, given the nature of it's designated mission, the Kage was specially designed so that a person by themselves could get into and out of it in the field as needed.
- First appearing during brutal fighting on Luthien in 3069, this variant arms the Kage with a pair of Vibro-Claws in place of the armored gloves of the standard model. Unfortunately to make room for this alteration the use of a support weapon or AP mount was lost. BV (1.0) = 18, BV (2.0) = 22
- Gauss Rifle
- Near 3130, some Kage battle armor were spotted using infantry "Tsunami" Gauss Rifles. During Task Force Serpent early in March 3060, Kage-suited DEST teams commanded by SLDF Mayor Michael Ryan used no less than four of these Tsunami Gauss Rifles to great effect, countering four Elementals with a single shot each while infiltrating Mt.Sazabo.
- Kage C
- This is a experimental variant of the Kage. Engineers on New Samarkand at New Samarkand Metals took salvaged technology from a mimetic armor-protected Purifier suit to enhance the Kage's stealth abilities. However, for its recon role in DEST, the company added the experimental Battle Armor C3 System. In 3077 after initial trials with the Yoninisuu DEST squad were successful, the company planned to put the armor into limited production. BV (1.0) = ????, BV (2.0) = 26
- Technical Readout: 3058 Upgrade, p. 16-17
- MUL online date for the Kage
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 16
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 17
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 18
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 19
- LosTech: The MechWarrior Equipment Guide, p. 88
- Twilight of the Clans, p. 20-21
- Sword and Fire, Ch. 15
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 21
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 15
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League), p. 20
- XTRO: Kurita, p. 14, 26 - Kage C Experimental Battle Armor (Fluff & Stats).
- Technical Readout: 3085, p. 191
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Old is the New New, p. 8
- Experimental Technical Readout: Kurita
- Field Manual: Draconis Combine
- Kage Battle Armor
- Lostech: The MechWarrior Equipment Guide
- Master Unit List
- Record Sheets: 3058 Unabridged (Clan & Star League)
- Record Sheets: 3058 Upgrade
- Record Sheets: 3085 Unabridged — Old is the New New
- Sword and Fire
- Technical Readout: 3058 Upgrade
- Technical Readout: 3085