Techno-Wizard M18 Hellcat Tank Destroyer:


Sergeant Bobby Sterling wanted impatiently in the commander's cupola of her M18 Tank Destroyer with her fingers on the butterfly triggers of her automatic grenade launcher mount. Her team of techno-wizard tank jocks had been brought together to bring down a Coalition seek and destroy mission consisting of six Coalition Spider Skull Walker and an unknown number of SAMAS Power Armors operating in the area. Her unit consisted of only four M18 Tank Destroyers and eight techno-wizards in Mystic Power Armor. Her heavy units was hulled down behind a set of low rises and using Chameleon magic to hide themselves. They would have to get their licks in fast and furiously if they were to win. She was ranging her main cannon on the lead Spider Skull. All four tank destroyers were aimed at the same target with the hope of taking it out quickly. The plan was to fire a couple of rounds at it and hopefully taking one out before retreating back to their fallback position. They would then find their way to a new position to wait in ambush. They had to be very careful with their ammunition, they had a strictly limited payload of 120 mm rounds. That meant that it would be best to fire from fortified positions.


As soon as the four tank destroyers had range on the nearest Spider Skull Walker, they opened fire as one. The six legged robot vehicle suddenly had four armor piercing sabot-discarding rounds hit the skull portion and massive damage was inflicted. The Spider Skull Walker stumbled even before a second volley of rounds was fired. When the smoke cleared from the second volley, the whole top of the Walker had been virtually blown off. The rail guns on the Spider Skull walkers were out of range and the commander of the remaining Walkers must have ordered his power armors forward because a swarm of around twenty SAMAS power armors broke off from the larger robots and attempted to swarm the tanks. It was time to retreat and deal with power armors while they found their next fortifications.


As the SAMAS approached, the Hellcats let loose with a large volley of short range missiles. The Hellcats concentrated on just four of the SAMAS and knocked three of the four out of the sky. The SAMAS closed to mini- missile range just as the Hellcats fired a second volley of short range missiles. Every SAMAS concentrated on two tanks. Before the battle had begun, the tank crews had engaged an impervious to energy enchantment and the SAMAS were all carrying plasma rounds. The plasma rounds did little but ding the protective force field from the casing of the warheads hitting. At the same time, four more SAMAS were blotted from the air. The eight supporting Mystic Power armors engaged the surviving SAMAS while the Tank Destroyers supported them with light mounts. A few SAMAS were able to strafe the Hellcats but they were a spent force and damage was minimal with most of the attacks hitting the tank destroyers' force fields. Sergeant Sterling shredded one of the SAMAS with her automatic grenade launcher. Four of the SAMAS broke off to support the five remaining Spider Skull walkers.


The tank destroyers retreated back at full speed to their next prepared position and settled in to wait for the Spider Skull Walkers to attack. The Sergeant was a bit worried, the battle seemed to be going too well. Still, nothing could be done but to wait.



Background:

Many Techno-Wizards like to copy famous designs from the past including aircraft, naval designs, and armored vehicles. Most of the Techno-Wizards which armored vehicles are their primary focus prefer vehicle designs from the various historic wars including World War One and Two. Designs similar to World War One designs include the Lightning Knight and Iron Mark. World War Two designs include several American tank designs including the M18 Hellcat Tank Destroyer. In mainland Europe, several of the famous World War Two German designs are copied as well. The M18 Hellcat was the fastest armored fighting vehicle of World War and had an excellent record in combat even though it had very light armor. The tank destroyer was designed for fast ambushes and was very lightly armored. The techno-wizard version is designed to fill the same role as well as for scouting. The Northern Gun Lightning Fist is designed to fill a similar role. The Techno-Wizard Hellcat has been used to great effect against robot vehicles. Unlike the Iron Mark, the Techno-Wizard Hellcat is a fairly conventional tank design. Several Hellcat tank destroyers were preserved in military museums and it is likely that the Techno-wizards found a copy of the original tank destroyer.


While the outward appearance of the Techno-Wizard Hellcat is designed to emulate closely that of the original including having a relatively low silhouette, the internal layout is vastly different. The techno-wizard version of the Hellcat is about ten percent larger than the original tank destroyer and is a bit heavier as well. Power is supplied by a small fusion reactor which produces much greater power than the original engine and the vehicle has virtually unlimited range. The tracks are wider so that the tank destroyer is more stable and unlikely to sink into the softest ground. As well, the suspension and transmission is designed for even greater speed. The top speed of the tank destroyer is eighty mph on roads and sixty mph off road. The Tank Destroyer is enchanted with a special magical speed boost which increases top speed by around thirty mph but the duration is strictly limited. The speed boost is doubled in both speed and duration on ley lines and nexus points. Still, it gives the tank destroyer a great tactical advantage over most tanks even in normal circumstances and becomes more nimble when the enchantment is engaged. The Tank destroyer is relatively light and has been modified so that it can operate amphibiously using the tracks for propulsion. The crew compartment is completely environmental and the tank destroyer carries modern sensors equal to those carried on most robot vehicles. The crew of the tank is three like the original world war two model but the crew is far more comfortable. The techno-wizard version of the tank destroyer also carries much thicker armor and can withstand a large amount of abuse before being destroyed. The armor is made from high tech composites and alloys to reduce cost of repairs compared to magical materials. The original Hellcat has an open top but this is protected by armor in the Techno-Wizard version. The tank destroyer also has an Armor of Ithan Force field for additional protection.


One of the key visible external differences between the original version of the Hellcat and the Techno-Wizard version of the tank destroyer is that a much larger 120 mm low recoil cannon is carried in the place of the 76 mm cannon. The larger cannon also has a fume extractor on the barrel and is similar in design to the cannon carried on the M1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. The payload on the heavy cannon is relatively small with a total of only twenty-eight rounds. The tank destroyer uses an automatic reload system to increase the rate of fire and reduce crew fatigue. There are some plans on replacing the conventional cannon with a slightly smaller caliber but more powerful electro-thermal cannon. Beside the main barrel is a heavy flame cannon which has unlimited payload and used against targets which do not warrant the main cannon. Above the turret is a secondary mount which is controlled by the vehicle's commander. Some crews prefer a second flame cannon while others prefer a telekinetic machine-gun or a conventional automatic grenade launcher. On the sides of the turret on what appear to be storage boxes, the Hellcat carries short range missile launchers. A total of eight short range missiles are carried on each side for a total of sixteen short range missiles. The missile launchers can be ejected when empty or if there is a danger of explosion. They are often retained once empty to add additional armor to the sides of the turret. On the forward part of the turret are box mounts which open up to reveal a magical chaff and fare system for protection against missiles.


Model Type: T.W. M18 Hellcat Tank Destroyer
Vehicle Type: Tank Destroyer / Armored Scout Vehicle.
Crew: Three (Driver, Gunner, and Commander).


M.D.C. by Location:

[1] Tractor Treads (2):80 each
Weapons Turret:150
120 mm Low Recoil Smooth-bore gun:80
[2] Coaxial Heavy Flame Cannon:40
[2] Commander Modular Weapon Mount (Top of Turret):60
[3] Ejectable SRM Box Launchers (4, Sides of Turret):30 each
[2] “Fireworks” Magic Chaff and Flare Dispensers (2):20 each
Magical “Armor of Ithan” Force Field (3 times per day):100
[4] Main Body:350


Notes:
[1] Depleting the M.D.C. of a tread will immobilize the tank until it is replaced. Replacing a tread will take 1D6x10 minutes by a trained crew (2 replacements are carried on board) or three times as long by the inexperienced. Changing the tread is only advisable when the vehicle is not under attack.
[2] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a "called shot," but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.
[3] Once the missiles have been expended, or in an emergency, before they have been fully expended, the launcher can be ejected from the tank. Though disposable, they do not have to be disposed, and can be re-used indefinitely.
[4] If all the M.D.C. of the main body is depleted, the vehicle is completely shut down and unsalvageable, but crew may survive in their reinforced compartments.


Speed:
Ground: Cruising speed on land is 80 mph (128.7 kph) on roads and 60 mph (96.6 kph) off road maximum under conventional propulsion. Magical propulsion increases top speed to 110 mph (177.0 kph) on roads and 90 mph (144.8 kph) off road with a duration of 10 minutes. When on a ley line or nexus, top speed is increased to 140 mph (225.3 kph) on roads and 120 mph (193.1 kph) off roads and has a duration of 20 minutes. Super Speed can be activated up to three times per day.
The vehicle is designed to traverse virtually all terrain and can climb at up to a 60% grade although at a much slower speed (About 10% of maximum road speed). It can also climb barriers and ford trenches. The vehicle can also handle side slopes of up to 30%.
Water Capabilities: Uses tracks to propel tank destroyer over the surface of the water. Using the tracks, the T.W. Hellcat can travel on the surface of water at 10 mph (16.1 kph/8.7 knots).
Maximum Effective Range: Effectively unlimited (Nuclear Fusion power supply with 5 year duration) Armored Vehicle carries about two weeks worth of emergency supplies onboard.


Statistical Data:
Height: 9.3 feet (2.82 meters)
Width: 10.7 feet (3.27 meters)
Length: Main Body: 19.1 feet (5.81 meters) and With Gun Forward: 27.1 feet (8.27 meters).
Weight: 25.6 tons (23.2 metric tons)
Power Source: Nuclear fusion reactor; Must be refueled every five years, otherwise effectively unlimited.
Cargo Capacity: Minimal storage space in pilot's compartment; about three feet (0.9 m) in side dimensions for extra clothing, weapons, and personal items. Three carbines and two hand-held missile launcher with four loads each.
Black Market Cost: 26 Million Credits.


Weapon Systems

  1. 120 mm Low Recoil Smooth-Bore Cannon: Very similar to the Iron Fist's and old M1 Abram's main cannon but designed for lower recoil. Cannon uses an automatic reloading system for faster loading but has a limited payload. The Cannon can fire a variety of loads, including high-explosive (HE), high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT), armor-piercing explosive (AP),and armor piercing sabot-discarding solids (APSD). The turret can rotate 360 degrees and the gun can elevate up to 55 degrees. Fired by the tank's gunner
    Maximum Effective Range: 11,500 feet (3,500 meters) for direct fire with discarding sabot round, 6,000 feet (1,828 meters) for direct fire with all other rounds, and indirect fire range of 26,250 feet (8,000 meters).
    Mega-Damage: (HE): 1D6x10 with a blast radius of 20 ft. (HEAT): 2D6x10, blast radius of 10 ft. (AP): 2D4x10. (APSD): 3D4x10 (optional rule is that cannon gets a critical on a natural 18, 19, or 20 due to its high penetration)
    Rate of Fire: A Maximum of 3 attacks per melee.
    Payload: 28 rounds.
    Bonuses: Has a special fire control computer that helps to aim the cannon. Gives +2 to strike with cannon and vehicle does not have minuses to fire when tank is moving.
  2. Co-Axial Heavy Flame Cannon: Mounted in the turret beside the main cannon is a heavy flame cannon and is designed to be used against targets which do no warrant the use of the main cannon. The weapon is a converted heavy plasma weapon. The flame cannon has a slightly better range and have an unlimited payload compared to hand held flame cannons. The weapon must be recharged once a month using the spells "Fire Bolt", "Energy Bolt", and 100 P.P.E.
    Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 feet (914 meters).
    Mega Damage: 1D6x10 per flame cannon blast.
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (usually 4 or 5).
    Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not.
  3. Commander Modular Weapon Mount (Top of Turret): Above the turret in an open mount is a position for the tank destroyer's commander and a weapon. The commander is not fully protected by armor but is protected by the tank destroyer's magical force field when active. A variety of different weapons can be carried including a second flame cannon, a telekinetic machine-gun, or a conventional automatic grenade launcher. Even though the grenade launcher has a limited payload, it is popular with crews due to its incredible firepower.
    1. Automatic Grenade Launcher: Weapon is WI-GL21 Automatic Grenade Launcher mounted on a spindle mount.
      Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 ft (914 m)
      Mega-Damage: 4D6 for single shot of Fragmentation with a blast area of 12 ft, 1D4x10 for a single shot of Armor Piercing with a blast area of 3 ft, 2D6x10 for a burst of ten rounds of Fragmentation with a blast area of 40 ft, and 3D6x10 for a burst of ten rounds of Armor Piercing with a blast area of 8 ft.
      Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner / commander.
      Payload: 400 Rounds.
    2. Heavy Flame Cannon: The weapon is a converted heavy plasma weapon. The flame cannon has a slightly better range and have an unlimited payload compared to hand held flame cannons. The weapon must be recharged once a month using the spells "Fire Bolt", "Energy Bolt", and 100 P.P.E.
      Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 feet (914 meters).
      Mega Damage: 1D6x10 per flame cannon blast.
      Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the pilot (usually 4 or 5).
      Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not.
    3. T.K. Machine-Gun (1): It is enchanted by a series of spells so the cannon acts as a more powerful version of the T.K. Machine-gun. This increases the weapon's damage and instead of being reloaded, the cannon must be recharged by the spell Telekinesis and 50 P.P.E. each once per month. The cannon does full damage to targets that are impervious to energy.
      Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,220 meters).
      Mega Damage: 6D6 per shot
      Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the observer / gunner (usually 4 or 5).
      Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not.
  4. Disposable Short Range Missile Launchers (4): Mounted on sides of the turret and almost appear to be gas cans, these launchers give the tank destroyer a reasonable missile payload while keeping the external appearance mostly unchanged. The launchers can be ejected when no longer needed or if they are in danger of exploding. When empty they act as additional armor but may still be ejected so that they can be reloaded.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with short range missile type; Usually High Explosive or Armor Piercing are carried (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: Varies with short range missile type; Usually High Explosive or Armor Piercing are carried (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time, or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) missiles.
    Payload: Four (4) short range missiles per launcher for sixteen (16) total.
  5. Fireworks Anti-Missile Chaff/Flare Dispensers (2): The system is mounted on either side of the tank behind the main cannon. In many ways this system is similar to technological versions of the Chaff/Flare system. When the system fires, it looks like fireworks firing. The anti-missile system works by combining three spells. The three spells are Fire Bolt, Apparition, and Telekinesis. The physical effects of the system are similar to the Triax Anti-Missile chaff but instead of being reloaded, it is recharged by spells.
    Effect:
      01-35 - Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.
      36-60 - Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)
      61-00 - No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.
    Also note that the chaff cloud will also blind flying monsters that fly through cloud. They will suffer the following penalties: reduce melee attacks/actions, combat bonuses, and speed by half.
    Duration: 1D4 melee rounds.
    Payload: 10 Uses before being recharged. Each launcher is recharged by the spells Apparition (20 P.P.E.), Fire Bolt (7 P.P.E.), and Telekinesis (8 P.P.E.).
  6. Techno-Wizard Modifications: The Hellcat has the following Techno-Wizard Modifications built into the Tank. These require P.P.E. or I.S.P. from the pilot or crew
    Special Features:
      Chameleon (10th Level) - 6 P.P.E. or 12 I.S.P.
      Impervious to Energy (10th Level) - 20 P.P.E. or 40 I.S.P.
      Invisibility-Superior (10th Level) - 20 P.P.E. or 40 I.S.P.


Sensory Equipment:
The tank carries all standard equipment of a robot vehicle plus this special equipment:

Combat Bonuses:



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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).


Copyright © 2003 & 2009, Kitsune. All rights reserved.



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