Techno-Wizard M4 Super Sherman Tank:


Sergeant Corrine Sanchez watched as a column of Pre-Rifts Russian tanks come swarming up from the South. Another so called warlord from the Pecos Empire wants to carve a pocket empire for himself. He probably found an old cache of tanks somewhere or somehow got them from South America. She put her tanker's helmet over her glossy black hair and simply waited, sighting her 120 mm cannon on one of the tanks. It looked like an old Russian T-80 tanks she had seen in Pre-Rifts military books which was being lead by a couple of newer tanks. The newer tanks looked like Iron Hammer tanks. This is the third time that they had raided north and this time, they would be stopped. There were ten old tanks and two new tanks fielded against her unit of four Techno-Wizard Super Sherman tanks. There was a unit of four Techno-Wizard Hellcat Tank Destroyers on the way but they would not get into position to support in time. It would be up to the Super Sherman tanks to hold the field. The techno-wizards tanks were hiding in a ruined town behind barriers which they had built from rubble of collapsed buildings. The building had been constructed from Cerama-Crete and could take several hits. The chameleon enchantment made them virtually invisible, at least at first. She was waiting on the commander to tell her if they would target the old Russian tanks first or the newer tanks. Orders finally can in, all gunners would target turrets on the old T-80 tanks with their main gun while short range missiles would be fired by the commander at the two Iron Hammers. She rechecked the sighting of her 120 mm cannon on the turret of the lead T-80 tank.


Suddenly, her commander flushed eight missiles at the Iron hammer and virtually at the same time, she opened fire with her main gun. It was a perfect hit and the turret literally flew from the hull of the tank. Unfortunately, none of the other gunners got such perfect shots and nine of the old tanks remained. One of the Iron Hammer tanks was also destroyed but the remaining tank fired a volley of missiles on her tank's position. Luckily, the magical chaff and flare system decoyed most of the missiles. Unfortunately, two of the medium range missiles were not decoyed and her Sherman's force field was knocked flat. Luckily, the tank itself only took minor damage. Her commander and one of the other tanks fired their remaining missiles at the surviving Iron Hammer and the already damaged tank virtually disintegrated. From the explosion, she assumed that it had been liquid fueled. She engaged her thermal optics to see through the smoke created by the missile explosion and with the other gunners, continued firing at the nine old Russian Tanks. The turrets on two of the tanks were already damaged and it required only one more round to put them out of action. Unfortunately, she was unable to repeat her feat with the first round and was only able to damage the turret of her target. All remaining missiles were flushed at four remaining tanks. Two of the tanks targeted survived but were badly damaged. Still, it was now five against four instead of twelve against four. The first volley of Russian 125 mm cannons had mostly hit rubble and the only tank hit was still protected by a force field and received no damage. She hoped one of her crew was bringing back up the force field but was too busy to bring up the force field herself. She fired a third round, hitting the T-80's turret again. This time, the turret collapsed and she had her second tank kill for the day. Instead of targeting the turret of the missile damaged tanks, the Sherman tanks targeted the hulls and managed to start one burning. At the same time, the T-80 that had its turret hit twice was finally disabled. Only two tanks remained and she could hear a radio transmission in Spanish of surrender. As the smoke cleared, she could also see one of the T-80 commanders waving a white flag.



Background:


Techno-Wizards are an interesting group of individuals. Some of them chose to create enchanted designs based on famous military vehicles from history. While some prefer aircraft or naval vessels, others prefer tanks and other armored vehicles. Designs copied include those from World War One and Two. Techno-Wizards in North America generally prefer American designs but there are exceptions and in mainland Europe there is a group of Techno-Wizards who prefer World War Two German designs as a basis.


The M4 Sherman is the most famous American Tank of World War Two. The Sherman and the M1 Abrams of the late Twentieth and early Twenty-First centuries might be considered the most famous American tanks in history. Much has been said about the Sherman tank being inferior to German designs, such as the Tiger and Panther, during the same period but the American tank was very reliable and very effective in the right environment. It was also relatively fast and had good range for the time of development. A number of the tanks were preserved in military museums after World War Two and a few, mostly those kept inside of museums, survived the coming of the Rifts. It can be considered almost inevitable that Techno-Wizards would decide to design a Techno-Wizard version of the Sherman. It is a very dangerous opponent for robot vehicles and can engage even advanced tanks with a good chance of success. The cannon also has a much longer range than that carried on the Iron Mark tank and many crews prefer the Techno-Wizard version of the Sherman over the Iron Mark for this reason.


The Techno-Wizard Super Sherman should be considered a modern tank and nor simply a modified version of the original Sherman. While the designed to emulate the outward appearance of the Sherman as closely as possible, the internal layout is vastly different. One external change is that the Techno-Wizard Sherman is about ten percent larger than the original Sherman and is both wider and slightly heavier. This is to accommodate the heavier gun and new equipment. Power is provided by a small fusion reactor which is basically a modified version of those carried in power armors. The new engine produces far more power than any tank engine in World War Two and gives the tank virtually unlimited range. To take advantage of the greater power, the suspension and transmission are entirely new and are designed for much greater speed. The tracks are slightly wider so that the Super Sherman is more stable and less likely to sink into very soft ground. The top speed is around fifty-five miles per hour on roads and around forty-five miles per hour when driving off road. The Techno-Wizard version of the Sherman tank is not amphibious but can drive underwater due to having full life support. The tank also carries modern sensors which enables it to engage at incredible ranges. The sensors are similar to those carried in most robot vehicles but also includes optics which can see invisible objects. The original Sherman carried a crew of five but this was reduced to four in the techno-wizard version of the tank. Crew includes a driver, hull gunner, commander, and main gunner. The main gunner controls the heavy cannon and the hull gunner controls the light mount in the tank's hull. The crew is far more comfortable than those in the original tank. Armor has been greatly increased on the techno-wizard version of the Sherman tank and it is able to stand up in combat with post rifts tanks of around the same weight class. The tank's armor is made from high tech composites and alloys which reduces repair costs compared to the use of enchanted materials. One advantage the Techno-Wizard version of the Sherman has over most technological is the use of an Armor of Ithan Force field for additional protection.


Even though the Techno-Wizard Super Sherman is larger than the original version of the Sherman, the size difference between the 120 mm cannon on the techno-wizard version and the 75 mm or 76 mm cannon carried on the original tank. Even so, the Techno-Wizard Sherman is likely armed compared to many post Rifts tanks. The cannon is designed for low recoil and also has a fume extractor on the barrel. The cannon is similar in design to the cannon carried on the M1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. Payload is relative good with a total of 48 rounds for the cannon. Part of the reason for the large payload is because the gunner is replaced by an automatic loading system. The designers have considered replacing the conventional cannon with a slightly smaller caliber but more powerful electro-thermal cannon. A secondary advantage would be an increase in the number of rounds carried. In a coaxial mount, the tank carries a heavy flame cannon which has unlimited payload and is mostly used against targets which do not warrant the main cannon. The tank has an additional mount in the front of the hull which a second flame cannon is mounted. There is a mount on the top of the turret which is controlled by the vehicle's commander. Some commanders prefer a third flame cannon while others prefer a telekinetic machine-gun or a conventional automatic grenade launcher. Early versions of the Techno-Wizard Sherman did not mount any missiles and this was seen as a serious weakness. In later versions, special mounting were designed to carry missile on the sides of the turret. One rack of eight short missiles is 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. Instead of carrying short range missiles on the sides of the turret, a large capacity mini-missile pod can be carried above the turret. It called "Calliope" missile launcher after the rocket launcher version of the original Sherman and has a payload of sixty mini-missile. The biggest problem with the mini-missile launcher is that is restricts the commander's firing arcs and view. For additional defense, a magical chaff and flare system is mounted on either side of the tank.


Model Type: M4 "Super Sherman" Techno-Wizard Tank
Vehicle Type: Magical Battle Tank
Crew: 4 (Driver, Commander, and two Gunners)


M.D.C. by Location:

[1] Tractor Treads (2):100 each
Weapons Turret:250
120 mm Low Recoil Smooth-bore gun:80
[2] Coaxial Heavy Flame Cannon:40
[2] Hull Heavy Flame Cannon:40
[2] Commander Modular Weapon Mount (Top of Turret):60
[3] Ejectable Short Range Missile Launchers (2, Side of Turret):50 each
[3] Ejectable "Calliope" Mini-Missile Launcher (Above Turret)120
[2] “Fireworks” Magic Chaff and Flare Dispensers (2):20 each
Magical “Armor of Ithan” Force Field (3 times per day):200
[4] Main Body:500


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 55 mph (88.5 kph) on roads and 45 mph (72.4 kph) off road maximum. 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%.
Underwater: Buttoned up, it can travel under water at 20 mph (32 km).
Maximum 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: 10.7 feet (3.26 meters)
Width: 11.6 feet (3.54 meters)
Length: Main Body: 22.7 feet (6.91 meters) and With Gun Forward: 29.5 feet (8.99 meters).
Weight: 47.3 tons (42.9 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: 34 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): 3D4x10. (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: 48 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. Heavy Flame Cannons (2): One is mounted in the turret beside the main cannon and is controlled by the same gunner who controls the 120 mm cannon and the other is mounted in the hull and is controlled by the secondary gunner. The cannon 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 gunners (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. Missile Launcher Hard Point: Mounted on either side of the turret is an attachment to carry two short range missile launchers or a single large mini-missile launcher. The mini-missile launcher fits above the turret and restricts the visibility and arc of fire of the commander of the tank. The launchers are designed to be able to be quickly ejected. The missile launchers can be controlled by either the gunner or the commander of the tank.
    1. Disposable Short Range Missile Launchers (2): Mounted on side of the turret, 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.
      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: Eight (8) short range missiles per launcher for sixteen (16) total.
    2. Disposable "Calliope" Mini Missile Launcher (1): Mounted on the sides of the turret but actual launchers are above the turret. The launcher has 2 sets if 12 tubes on bottom and a single row of 36 tubes on the top. The launchers can be ejected when no longer needed or if they are in danger of exploding.
      Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, mini-missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Mega-Damage: Varies with missile types, mini missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
      Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), five (5), ten (10), or twenty (20) missiles.
      Payload: Launcher carries a total of 60 Mini-missiles.
  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 Sherman 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:




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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).


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



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