ESDF PA-X 12S EU Space Predator:
When the military of the EU started their Space Force (the European Space Defense Force, or ESDF), they decided to form it after the American USSF. And just like the Americans, they realized that they needed a power armor for their troops to use in space. Unlike the Americans however, the leaders of the ESDF had the advantage of being able to learn from someone else`s mistakes: Instead of ordering the design of a entirely new power armor like the USSF had done (leading to a incredibly expensive design which was rejected by the US Congress), they simply opened a competition for several companies which stated that the new armor had to be a modification of a existing design, and cost absolutely no more than twice the original. At the end of the competition the winner was the adapted Predator design by TRIAX.
The Space Predator is visually almost identical to its planet bound cousin, although some differences do stand out: It has no wings, as these are useless in space, and would be more of a detriment than anything else inside of ships and stations. It lacks the air intake over the left shoulder because the engines are a thruster design. Also the engineers removed all of the few flat surfaces on the design. They kept the chest headlight , as it would be very useful in space. While the engines are powerful enough for some limited flight ability in an atmosphere, they are far more efficient in space. The engine design is actually entirely new, but was designed to fit into the existing casing with only minor adjustments to the casing. The exhausts are the same size as those on the standard armor, but are movable for better control (It no longer has the two small maneuvering jets). Two tanks for reaction mass are fitted to the right side of the thruster pack. There are also small clusters of maneuvering thrusters on the main thruster pack, the front of the armor, the hips, and on the feet. This way the Space Predator can still maneuver in zero-G even if the main thrusters are destroyed.
The electronic systems are very similar to those on a standard Predator and it is easy for a pilot to learn piloting of the Space Predator (In game terms, they use the same piloting and combat skills). The only major internal change is that the space Predator has an extended life support system and the radar and communications ranges have been extended. The life support was extended because it may be expected for the power armor to operate for extended periods and the armor cannot get oxygen from the air (It is, after all, a SPACE armor). The Armor has a special recycling system that allows the power armor to operate for up to 36 hours before needing a recharge. Coupled with this is a nutrient paste dispenser, three gallons of water, and a waste recycling system. The suits thermal insulation is increased and the suit can withstand up to plus 500 degrees centigrade and minus 270 degrees centigrade. The radar system is extended in range when compared to radar systems on Rifts Earth and the power armor has a long range laser communication system.
For weapon systems, the designers used a new railgun which the firm of Heckler & Koch had specially designed for use in space. This is mounted on the shoulder like the boom gun on the Triax Glitter Boy's boom gun is except on the left side / shoulder and the engineers at Triax got the idea for the mounting of the boom gun from old plans of the Glitter Boy. The standard laser pulse cannon carried by the standard Predator is also carried. The power armor also has one mini missile launcher on the right shoulder. Both forearms also have a grapple system that launches a grappling hook and cable.
Listed is the formula to allow player and game masters to calculate the Power Armors velocity and distance traveled:
- Velocity = Acceleration x Time + Initial Velocity
Distance Traveled = Acceleration x ½ x Time ² + Initial Velocity x Time
1 G = 32 feet (9.8 m) per second ²
Model Type: PA-X 12S
Class: Space Strategic Armor Military Assault Power Suit
M.D.C. by Location:
|Right Hand & Forearm Pulse Cannon (1):||100|
|Meteor MK1 Rail Gun (1, left shoulder):||85|
| Ammo Drum for Meteor MK1:||30|
| Chest Headlight:||3|
|Main Rear Jets (2):||75 each|
|Mini-Missile Launcher (1, right shoulder):||20 each|
|Arms (2):||100 each|
|Legs (2):||130 each|
| Main Body:||350|
 This is a small and difficult target to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,”, but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.
 Destroying the head of the power armor will eliminate all forms of optical enhancement and sensory systems. The pilot must then only on his own human vision and senses. No power armor combat bonuses to strike, parry, and dodge! The head is a small and difficult target to hit. Thus, it can only be hit when a character makes a “called shot,” and even then the attacker is -3 to strike. If in space, this will also expose the pilots head to vacuum and killing the pilot in most cases.
 Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will shut the armor down completely, making it useless.
Walking, Using Magnetic Boots: 10 mph (16.1 kph)
Running: 50 mph (80 kmph) maximum. Note that the act of running does tire out its operator, but at 10% of the usual fatigue rate.
Leaping, in an Atmosphere: The powerful robot legs can leap up to 15 feet (4.6 m) high or across unassisted by the thrusters. A jet thruster assisted leap can propel the unit up to 100 feet (30.5 m) high and 200 feet (61 m) across without actually attaining flight.
Flying, in an Atmosphere: The rocket propulsion system enables the Space Predator to hover stationary in mid-air or fly. Maximum flying speed is 150 mph (240 km), but cruising speed is considered to be 85 mph (136 km). Maximum altitude is 1000 feet (305 meters).
Flying; Space: The power armor does not have an effective top speed but is limited by acceleration. The power armor can reach a top acceleration of 0.5 G.
Maximum Effective Range: Conditionally unlimited, while the fusion reactor gives power for two decades of service, when the power armor is using thrusters, it is limited by the power armor reaction mass. The reaction mass consists of mainly Deuterium (Hydrogen 2) and Helium 3. The power armor can be refueled at ground based facilities, space stations, and star ships as long as they have the refueling equipment. The tanks are on either side of the thrusters and can be replaced in two minutes each. The power armor carries 3.5 hours of reaction mass for travel at 0.5 G of acceleration. If the power armor uses more than half of its reaction mass when accelerating, the power armor will be unable to decelerate fully and the power armor will normally only use a third or less of its fuel on accelerating so it does not run into a problem. If the power armor runs out of fuel then it must be recovered by another vehicle traveling faster or be lost. The power armor can operate with engines on standby to increase engines range.
Underwater Capabilities: Although not designed for underwater use, it can walk along the bottom of the sea at about 25% of its normal running speed. Using the jet thrusters, the Predator can travel on the surface of water at 45 mph (72 km/38.5 knots), underwater at 35 mph (56 km/30 knots) or fly above the water surface at normal speeds.
Maximum Ocean Depth: 2400 feet (720 m).
Height: 9 feet (2.7 meters)
Width: 4 feet (1.2 meter)
Length: 4 feet 8 inches (1.4 meters)
Weight: 800 lbs (362 kg) without gun
Physical Strength: Equal to a P.S. 40
Power System: Nuclear Fusion with average life span of 11 years
Black Market Cost: If found it would probably be worth 3.7 million for a new, undamaged, and fully operation power armor complete with missiles and all weapons. The power armor would be worth about 2.6 million IOU in the orbital community.
- Heckler & Koch Meteor MK1 Railgun: Specially designed railgun for use in space. It has a special targeting system for maximum hit probability, at the cost of some damage. The guns weight is not a factor in outer space. Mounts on the back of the power armor when stowed and tilts up like the boom gun on the Triax Glitter boy. The only difference is the cannon is mounted on the left side, not on the right side. See Meteor Rail Gun for more info on the weapon.
- Laser Pulse Cannon: This is the standard Pulse cannon found on the common Predator power armor. It has good range and power.
- Dual Shoulder Mini Missile Launcher: Like the standard Predator design, the Space version comes with a mini missile launcher. Missile are assumed to accelerate at 2 times normal mach speed in Gs greater than the power armors speed when used in space. Missiles can be launched at non moving targets beyond the powered range of the missiles to hit targets without the chance of the launching ship being hit by missiles itself but penalties exist when launching missiles beyond normal missile range.
- Forearm Grapples (2): the power armor has two grapples that are used for docking with vehicles that do not have landing bays and to grab items.The grapples top is specially designed so it also acts as a powerful electromagnet. The Grapple is fired at a target and can either use the claw to grab the target or the electromagnetic to attract the object if it is metal. The grapple has a breaking strain of 8 tons and the electromagnetic on each can support up to 1 ton of strain.
- Energy Rifles & Other Rail Guns: The Space Predator can make use of any other hand held weapon including rail guns, energy rifles, energy pistols, and vibro-blades. Since the pulse cannon is mounted on the right arm, the weapons can only be used with the left hand, -2 to strike for right handed pilots.
- Hand to Hand Combat: Rather than use a weapon, The pilot can engage in mega-damage hand to hand combat. See Basic and Elite Power Armor Combat Training in the Robot Combat section of Rifts, page 45. All abilities are the same except as follows:
Weight: 230 lbs. (104 kg) for the Rail gun and 250 lbs (123 kg) for the ammo drum.
Mega Damage: 2D4 X 10 per burst of 50 darts, 1D4 X 10 + 10 per burst in Deadeye mode.
Rate of Fire: Equal to the Shooters Hand to Hand attacks (usually 4 or 6). single shots and sprays not possible.
Maximum Effective Range: 5,000 feet (1,520 m) in an earthlike atmosphere and 32,000 feet (12,160 meters) in space
Payload: 2000 round drum for 40 bursts, or one 200 round clip for 4 bursts. A second drum can be hooked to the undercarriage of the rocket jets, but first the used drum must be manually removed by another Predator or character with a strength of 26 or higher before it can be replaced with the new one. Reloading a drum will take about five minutes for those not trained, but a mere one minute by somebody trained in the use of Predator power armor.
Special Features: Due to construction has +1 bonus to strike in space. When engaged Deadeye Targeting system gives a total bonus of +4 to strike in space. Deadeye gives +2 bonus to strike under planetary conditions. These are on top of other bonuses
Mega-Damage: 1D4 x 10 per burst of four energy pulses, or 2D4 per single pulse
Rate of Fire: Equal to number of combined hand to hand attacks (usually 4-6).
Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 m) in an earthlike atmosphere and 32,000 feet (9,600 meters) in space
Payload: Effectively unlimited as it draws its power from the suits reactor
Missile Type: Any mini-missile can be used, but standard issue is armor piercing or plasma. Fragmentation will be used for anti-personnel operations.
Missile Type: Any mini-missile can be used (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
Mega-damage: Varies with mini missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
Maximum Effective Range: Varies with mini missile type, assume powered range is 8 x normal in space (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in a volley of two (2) missiles.
Payload: 2 mini missiles.
Maximum Effective Range: 164 feet (50 m)
Mega Damage: None (S.D.C. Targets will take 1D4x10 S.D.C.)
Rate of Fire: Once per two melees rounds
Payload: 1 shot each but may be retracted an used again
- Normal Punch: 1D6+1 M.D.
Claw Punch: 2D4 M.D.
Claw Power Punch: 3D6 M.D.
Claw Crush or Tear: 1D6+1 M.D.
The Space Predator has all the systems standard to all Rifts power armor with the following modifications:
- Extended Life Support: Unlike most power armors, the Space Predator has an air recycling system. This allow the power armor to operate for up to 36 hours before needing to be recharged. While it is not recommended for power armor crews to operate for longer extended periods in the armor, the power armor also has an external oxygen refill nozzle. The Space Predator also has a nutrient paste dispenser with enough paste for five days, has three gallons of water, and has a waste recycling system. The suit can also withstand up to plus 500 degrees centigrade and minus 270 degrees centigrade. The suit also has improved radiation protection and polarization.
- Extended Range Radar: The Space Predator has a extended range radar system that has a range of 30 miles (48 km) in an atmosphere and 3,000 miles (4,800 km) in space. The radar system can track up to 48 targets simultaneously.
- Laser Communication System: The Space Predator has a special extended range radio and laser communication system. The radio system has a range of 500 miles (800 km) in an atmosphere and 50,000 miles (80,000 km) in space. The laser communication system is directional and has a range 1,000 miles (1,600 km) in an atmosphere and 100,000 miles (160,000 km) in space.
- Magnetic Boots: On both feet of the power armor are powerful electromagnets so the power armor can attach to ships and space stations. Each Electromagnet is capable of withstanding a strain of 4 tons.
The power armor uses Power Armor Combat: Basic and Power Armor Combat: Elite from page 45 of the Rifts Main Book with the following bonuses and penalties to the skills:
- +1 to strike in Long Range Combat
+1 to Dodge in space
-3 to Dodge in an atmosphere
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Writeup by Mischa (E-Mail Mischa.)
Minor revisions by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).
Copyright © 1998, Mischa. All rights reserved.