- Geschko redirects here; see Notes.
Sibko is a Clan compound word for "sibling company," the primary means by which Clan warriors are raised and trained. Trueborn children will be placed in a sibko after having survived training in a crèche. Here they begin training in skills necessary for their individual role, whether as MechWarriors, aerospace pilots or Elementals, until around their 20th birthday when they either pass their Trial of Position and become a full warrior, or fail.
Sibcadets often form a lifelong bond with each other, sibkin being the next closest thing to family in Clan culture which otherwise generally seeks to de-emphasize family ties beyond regarding the Clan as a whole.
Each warrior type is trained separately to keep competition fierce yet balanced, and judging a cadet's worth begins early in their career, though the weeding-out process generally doesn't begin until they reach maturity. Each cadet is tested for intelligence, command ability, reflexes and strength, and above all martial skills, all while being indoctrinated in Clan history and philosophy. The severity of this testing depends on the individual Clan's policy: stricter testing guidelines during this period means fewer warriors though theoretically of a higher quality, while others may conduct sibko life under less stringent rules yet use a more difficult Trial of Position to ensure high-quality cadets enter front-line units.
Sibkos are generally collections of trueborn children produced by the same geneparents and can number upwards of one hundred children at the onset. Regardless of the measures used, by the end as few as four or five cadets will pass their initial Trial of Position and graduate to full-fledged warriors. Those who fail this final test are relegated to the civilian castes, though some progressive Clans do allow a secondary Trial of Position to allow potential warriors the chance to rank in a second-line unit.
Some Clans will stock an entire sibko from offspring of a prestigious Bloodname or from a particular Bloodright, though having offspring of several different Bloodnames is common. Clan Wolf in particular is known for creating sibkos from a number of different Bloodnames and subcastes, and while such units tend to number only twenty, greater emphasis is placed on cooperation.
Freeborns who have proven themselves fit for warrior training are also placed into sibkos and undergo a training regimen designed to make them the best warriors possible. High casualty and dropout rates from these freeborn sibkos are only compounded by the callousness of the training officers assigned to them, as happy to see these cadets dead as pass their Trial of Position.
Training Instructor Appellations
Sibko training instructors are addressed (or referred to) by different appellations, depending on their Clan, as is true for their charges:
- Clan Coyote: Pack Master
- Clan Jade Falcon: Falconer, a cadet is called an Eyas (plural, Eyasses)
- Clan Ghost Bear: Den Mother or Ursari apocryphal German novel calls them "Petzmeister" (Petz Master), "Meister Petz" being the German folklore equivalent to (Master) Bruin the Bear.
- Clan Hell's Horses: Wrangler or Stablemaster; cadets are called Colts
- Clan Ice Hellion: refer to their cadets as Whelps
- Clan Sea Fox (after having changed their name back from Clan Diamond Shark around 3100): Shiv-trainers, while sibkos are referred to as Shivers. Cadets are called Shivs
- Clan Smoke Jaguar: Kit Masters, cadets are called Kits
- Clan Snow Raven: Warder
- Clan Steel Viper: Handler
- In German products, the term was translated literally as "Geschwisterkompanie," shortened to Geschko.
- Classic BattleTech RPG, p. 39
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 18
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 17
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 170
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 162
- Classic BattleTech RPG, p. 201
- Classic BattleTech RPG, p. 37
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 46
- Way of the Clans
- Way of the Clans
- A Question of Survival
- Katze unter Bären, p. 121
- A Living Epitaph, p. 2
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 176
- MechWarrior's Guide to the Clans, p. 46
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 81
- Hunters of the Deep, pp. 5, 14, 34
- Exodus Road, prologue
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, pp. 125, 127
- Seven Years' Bad Luck, p. 2