Colonial Viper Mark VII (Battlestar Galactica - Re-Imagined):


The Viper Mark VII was the latest in a long line of Viper fighters operated by the Colonial Fleet and was the standard fighter as of the time of the new Cylon attack. Like the well known Viper Mark II, the Mark VII was the Colonial Fleets primary space superiority and attack craft.


The front-line fighter retained the basic layout of the venerable Mark II Viper but had fully integrated avionics which were designed to provide both better flight information and superior battle management. As with the Viper Mark II, the majority of the sensor systems are mounted in the fighter's nose. Slightly larger than the Viper Mark II, it is still an extremely small fighter designed for a simple pilot. Size limitations of the Battlestars, especially the launch bays, which the fighters commonly operate from precludes the Viper Mark VII from being that much larger than its predecessor.


The Mark VII was designed, like previous Viper models, for atmospheric flight. The fighter has three thrusters, even more powerful than those carried on the Viper Mark II, and has multiple maneuvering thrusters for operation in space. As well, thrust vectoring further increases the fighter's maneuverability. The Viper Mark VII does not carry a jump drive and no small Colonial Fleet craft besides the much larger Raptor carries a faster than light jump drive.


For weaponry, the Viper Mark VII carries three electromagnetic weapons instead of two which are carried on the Mark II. Two are mounted in the Wing Roots like the Viper Mark II but the Mark VII has an additional mount at the base of the vertical stabilizer. These forward firing mounts fire the same 30 mm projectile at incredible velocities and the Viper Mark VII carries 1000 rounds per gun mount. For additional weaponry, the Viper Mark VII mounts a missile bay under the main fuselage which can carry up to eight missiles or a single heavy nuclear weapon. The fighter also has two wing hard points for additional missiles, munition pods, or additional ordnance. Missile payload of the Mark VII is similar to that for the Mark II version of the light fighter.


Ironically, it was the incorporation of the new integrated electronic systems that prevented the majority of Viper Mark VII fighters from being effective during the Cylon attack. As with most Colonial Fleet capital ships, the new Vipers suffered computer system crashes when contact was made with Cylon forces. Due to a Cylon agent's intimate relationship with Dr. Gaius Baltar, the scientist and programmer of the navigation software upgrade project, the navigational software in use onboard the vast majority of Colonial Fleet ships and small craft contained back doors that allow the Cylons to infiltrate a vessel's network by wireless signals and to override its power systems and other electronics. Whole squadrons could be shut down with a single signal. While the problem could be solved by the removal of Dr Baltar's navigational upgrade compromised by the Cylons, this information is not discovered in time to be of major benefit to the surprised and hard-pressed Colonial forces. As a result, virtually of the Colonial Forces were destroyed including all but a handful of Viper Mark VII fighters.


The fighters which survive were a tiny number of fighters onboard the Battlestar Galactica, with the vast majority of her fighters being the old Viper Mark II fighters, and the Battlestar Pegasus. As well, the Pegasus has the equipment to be able to construct additional Viper Mark VII fighters. Electronics onboard the surviving Mark VII Vipers and newly built fighters have been modified to prevent the Cylons from hacking into the fighter's electronic systems.


This starfighter follows theoretical information about starships operating non chemical propulsion in space. This has meant much greater speeds and accelerations. Listed is the formula to allow player and game masters to calculate the fighter's velocity.


Model Type: Viper Mk VII
Vehicle Type: Light Starfighter
Crew: One


M.D.C. By Location:

[1] MEC-A12 30 mm Thraxon Kinetic Weapons (3):30 each
Missile Bay (1, underside):50
[1] Missile Hard Points (2, under wings):8 each
[2] Small Wings (2):50
[2] Small Rudder:50
[3] Engines (3):80 each
[1] Landing Struts (3):12 each
[4] Main Body:320
Reinforced Pilots Cockpit:120


Notes:
[1] 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.
[2] Loss of a wing or rudder while in an atmosphere will cause the fighter to loose control and crash. The loss of a wing in space has no effect on the fighter's performance but fighter will be unable to re-enter an atmosphere safely.
[3] Loss of an engine will reduce performance of fighter by one third, loss of two engines will reduce performance by two thirds, and loss of all three engines will prevent fighter from accelerate or decelerate beyond 5% of normal (This is using maneuvering thrusters) and fighter will crash in an atmosphere. Maneuvering thrusters are effectively too small as hit locations to be targeted.
[4] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will put the fighter out of commission. All internal systems will shut down, including life support and internal gravity. The ship itself will be an unsalvageable floating wreck. In an atmosphere, the fighter will crash. Pilot has an ejection seat to attempt an escape.


Speed:
Driving on Ground: Not Possible
Flying; In atmosphere: The fighter can easily achieve escape velocity (Mach 32.6 / 25053 mph / 40320 kph) within about 3 minutes. Fighter can reach a top acceleration of 9 G but is limited by the fighters computer to 7 G to prevent pilot blackout. When the fighter is operating within an atmosphere, pilot will normally keep velocity below Mach 7.5 (5771.25 mph / 9288 kph). It is a VSTOL design, it cannot be launched from a standstill, but needs a short runway (700 meters when fully loaded)
Flying; Space: The fighter does not have an effective top speed but is limited by acceleration. Fighter can reach a top acceleration of 9 G but is limited by the fighters computer to 7 G to prevent pilot blackout. The fighter normally operates at 1 G except in combat to conserve fuel.
Stardrive: The fighter does not have a jump drive.
Maximum Effective Range: The fighter has enough fuel for 60 minutes at maximum normal performance of 7 G. Can only operate for 15 minutes at 9 G. If fighter is operating at less maximum performance, the fighter's range is vastly increased. The fighter has 64 hours of endurance if operating at only 1 G and for every increase of 1 G, the fighter burns reaction mass twice as fast. Fighter uses Tylium (likely some hydrogen or helium isotope) for fuel for a fusion reactor. The fighter can operate with engines on standby to increase fighters range.
Fighter has supplies for pilot for 6 days.


Statistical Data:
Length: 32.363 feet ( 9.8643 meters)
Height: 9.681 feet (2.9508 meters) not including landing gear. Increase height by 1.64 feet (0.5 meters) with landing gear extended.
Width: 18.406 feet (5.610 meters)
Weight: 13.779 tons (12,500 kg) unloaded
Power System: Nuclear Fusion with average life span of 20 years. Requires reaction mass for thrusters.
Cargo: Minimal (Storage for small equipment).
Market Cost: 15 million credits to build.


Weapon Systems:

  1. MEC-A12 30 mm Thraxon Kinetic Energy Weapons (3): Two are mounted on either side of the pilots cockpit as part of the fighter's wing roots and one is mounted on the vertical stabilizer. All mounts are forward firing. The weapons are powerful but have only average ranges. The weapons are used for dogfighting, anti-missile defense, and strafing runs. These electromagnetic weapons fire high density projectiles at incredible velocities and are the main weapons of the fighter.
    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters) in an atmosphere and 32,000 feet (9,600 meters) in space.
    Mega Damage: 6D4x10 for a ten round burst from all three cannons. For each cannon destroyed, damage is reduced by 2D4x10 per cannon
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the pilot (usually 4 or 5).
    Payload: 1,000 rounds (100 bursts) per weapon mount.
  2. Missile Bay: Under the main fuselage of the fighter is a missile bay which can carry eight medium range missiles or a single heavy anti-ship nuclear missiles (equal to a cruise missile) in place of the smaller missiles. Missile are assumed to accelerate at 2 times normal mach speed in Gs greater than the starships 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.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, assume powered range is 8 x normal in space (Use new missile/bomb tables).
    Mega Damage: Varies with missile types (Use new missile/bomb tables).
    Rate of Fire: One at a time or in volleys of 2 or 4.
    Payload: 8 medium range missiles or one cruise missile (normally nuclear)
  3. Missiles Hard Points (2): The fighter can carry missiles externally under its wings. The fighter normally carries two medium range missiles per hard point but can carry a long range missile per hard point or four short range missiles. Missiles are assumed to accelerate at 2 times normal mach speed in Gs greater than the starships 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. Missiles can be mixed and matched at the rate of four shot range missiles or two medium range missiles for one long range missile.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, assume powered range is 8 x normal in space (Use new missile/bomb tables).
    Mega Damage: Varies with missile types (Use new missile/bomb tables).
    Rate of Fire: One at a time or in volleys of 2 or 4.
    Payload: one long range missiles, two medium range missile, or four short range missiles per hard point.


Special Equipment:
The fighter has all the standard features of a standard Rifts Earth fighter (Not Phase World / Three Galaxies) plus these special features listed:


COMBAT BONUSES: The Colonial Viper Mk VII is very maneuverable and very accurate. Use the Phase World Starfighter combat (Elite or Basic) skill. These bonuses are in addition to those from the piloting skill and are due to greater maneuverability and computer systems.




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[ Battlestar Galactica  is copyright © by Glenn Larson and Universal Pictures. ]


Image is from Zoic Studios.


Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).


Rifts Conversion Copyright © 2006 & 2013, Kitsune. All rights reserved.



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