The Black Guard – Sci Fi 3

Here’s the final installment of the Black Guard as a space mercenary company.  It includes one of their top money makers, which has nothing to do with combat and the woman who runs it as well as the ground vehicles they use in their forces.

The idea for Jersalyn came when I noticed that there were no rules keeping a character from having the Attractive and Very Attractive edges and the Obese hindrance in Savage Worlds.  And, that there was no charisma penalty for having the Obese hindrance.  I don’t know if this is some sort of commentary by the creators, if they just didn’t notice, or if they did notice and it occurred to them that it would be wrong to say Obese people have low Charisma or are unattractive.

I’m going to say that I’m using it as a commentary about modern ideals of beauty.

Silk Panther Refurbished Passenger Liner

Originally called the “Light of Orion” the “Silk Panther” was formerly a luxury liner. It still serves the same purpose but in a noticeably modified way and for a different clientele.

The Silk Panther came into the Black Guard’s hands when they were hired to kidnap a nobleman who was vacationing on the vessel. Security was laughable on the vessel, even with the nobleman’s body guard and they had unwisely strayed out of the patrol range of the nearest galactic fleet.

The Ebon Fist quickly realized, not only that he had several thousand potential playthings and slaves besides the nobleman they were looking for, but also a ship that could be easily refurbished into a specialized entertainment vessel. To that end, the kidnapping became a hijacking and they spirited the Light of Orion away.

Some creative manipulation of the ship’s registry as well as properly disposing of the crew and passengers soon meant that they had a vessel that was essentially unrecognizable as the Light of Orion. The crew and passengers who were willing to come to work for the Black Guard were allowed to do so while the less amenable were sold off or became part of the “entertainment.”

Like most of the other ships in the Black Guard fleet, the Silk Panther was heavily modified. Much of the passenger space has been replaced with entertainment facilities that cater to the darker desires of sentients. The Silk Panther is now a mobile combination casino, brothel and bloodsport arena. But even this is just the public face of the vessel. For those in the know and with the money, there is a hidden, dark underbelly where patently illegal entertainments can be purchased. Only the highest level VIPs even know about this portion of the ship and most of the passengers on the vessel aren’t aware of what goes on in the bowels of the ship.

The Silk Panther doesn’t always travel with the rest of the fleet. As perhaps the most legitimate of their vessels, it can stay in more civilized space and continue to generate profit while the other ships and soldiers operate on the outskirts. Still, some of their best profits come when the ship operates in wartorn space, providing much needed and quite expensive distraction from the turmoil of combat.

Gargantuan Starship: Size 24, Acc/TS 20/150, Climb -2, Toughness 52(13), Crew 3100+1400

Notes: AI, AMCM, FTL, 19x Mercantile, Speed Reduction, 2x Superstructure (Civilian Passengers,) Superstructure (Hangar)

Weapons:Dual Linked Light Laser

Range: 150/300/600 Damage: 2d10 +2 RoF: 1 Notes: +1 to hit, AP5, HW, Reaction Fire

Jerselyn is the proprietress of the Silk Panther. She is a savvy, beautiful business woman with an insatiable greed. It was this latter trait that brought her to the Ebon Fist’s attention. Originally the Madame of a series of brothels on a planet on the border between the outer reaches and the central core, she had a reputation for doing anything that would earn her a profit. While this originally began as simply accommodating the more unsavory desires of her fellow man for a price, it steadily escalated until she was selling things that went beyond immoral into the illegal.

The Ebon Fist was one of her customers and, was soon in business with her, providing many of the products that she resold. Eventually, Jersalyn’s greed overcame her good sense and she went too far, so far even the web of blackmail she’d created was not enough to protect her.

Desperate, she contacted the Ebon Fist for assistance. The leader of the Black Guard saw something of a kindred spirit in the woman and certainly a tool he could put to good use. The Ebon Fist sent Wanderlust and his personal body guard in and they extracted her only minutes before the local authorities would have arrested her.

After coming to an agreement, he put her in charge of some of his own houses of ill repute, until he came into possession of the Light of Orion. Jersalyn was integral in helping him retrofit the ship and even provided its new name.She has been in charge of the vessel ever since and her reputation for providing anything to anyone if they are willing to pay the price has only grown. Jersalyn’s greed has not diminished over the years. The Ebon Fist generally turns a blind eye to the way she skims off the top of her profits though, periodically, he finds it necessary to remind her, usually painfully, of her proper position.

Agility: d4, Smarts: d8, Spirit: d8, Strength: d4, Vigor: d6

Skills: Fighting: d4, Gambling: d6, Notice: d6, Persuasion: d10, Shooting: d4, Streetwise: d10

Pace: 5             Parry: 4           Toughness: 6   Charisma: +4

Edges: Attractive, Very Attractive, Rich

Hindrances: Obese, Yellow, Greedy

Copperhead Assault Gunships

The Black Guard does not go in for waves upon waves of small fighters as some fleets do. Instead, they prefer mid range vehicles that can both take some punishment and dish it out in return. The Copperhead Assault Gunship fits that role perfectly and several have been bought, bartered for and stolen to augment the fleet. The Warhorse and the Warhound each carry two of the gunships while the Centaur, Minotaur and Marauder each carry one, giving the fleet a total of seven.

Though the Hive does not carry any of the escort vessels, their most important function is generally defending it during its most vulnerable moments, namely when it is descending into the atmosphere. Given that the larger warships cannot attend it, the Copperheads and Centaur and Minotaur are the transport’s only defense against anti-aircraft defenses and atmospheric fighters.

The Copperheads perform exceptionally well in this role. While they are incapable of running down smaller, faster fighters, they are quite capable of swatting down such fighters when they attack.

Medium Starship: Size 8, Acc/TS 25/200, Climb 2, Toughness 37(18), Crew 5

Notes: AI, AMCM, 3x Armor, Atmospheric, Planetary Sensor Suite, Sloped Armor, Speed Targeting System


2x Dual Linked Light Laser

Range: 150/300/600 Damage: 2d10 +2 RoF: 1 Notes: +1 to hit, AP5, HW, Reaction Fire

Missile Launcher with 12 Light Missiles

Range: 200/400/800 Damage: 6d6 RoF: 1 Notes: AP8, HW, MBT

Dual Linked Rail Gun 4

Range: 100/200/400 Damage: 4d12 +2 RoF: 1 Notes: +1 to hit, HW, effective range is tripled in space

Headhunter Battle Walker

In keeping with the preferences of the Black Guard, their mecha are designed for brutal combat, both when dishing out damage and taking it. Whereas most mecha focused on close combat depend on speed and maneuverability, the Headhunters depend on simply being durable. Headhunters simply run down their prey, accepting the damage they take in the process with little fear.

The technique is all the more effective because it is demoralizing for the enemy to attack with little or no effect as they are being stalked.

Medium Walker: Size: 8, Strength: d12+6, Toughness:45(22) , Pace: 18 (2d6 Run)

Notes: AMCM, 8x Armor, Close Combat Weapon, 2x Reinforced Frame, Sloped Armor, Strength Enhancement, Targeting System


Dual Linked Rail Gun (4)

Range: 100/200/400 Damage: 4d12 +2 RoF: 1 Notes: +1 to hit, HW, effective range is tripled in space

Missile Launcher with 8 Heavy Missiles (Half are EMP)

Range: 200/400/800 Damage: 8d6 RoF: 1 Notes: AP15, HW, MBT

Battle Axe Damage: d12+6+2d10 Notes: AP8, HW

Hellstorm Assault APC

The Hellstorm is a fast, durable vehicle with the primary function of carrying Black Guard troops into battle. It performs this task admirably and with impressive maneuverability. A full 17 man squad of troops can comfortably ride inside a Hellstorm and navigate through rough terrain or smooth city streets.

They serve as fire support for the squads as well, and the heavy lasers utilized for this function also allow them to serve their secondary function: armored warfare. A Hellstorm has approximately the same armor and firepower as a light tank and can serve in this function as well as its primary function as a personnel carrier. Given its speed and agility, it is often capable of outmaneuvering enemy units and is especially effective as a skirmisher when partnered with Furies who can go head to head with other tanks while the Hellstorms maneuver for position.

Heavy Vehicle: Size 6, Acc/TS: 15/35, Toughness: 32(17), Crew: 20

Notes: 6x Heavy Armor, 3x Crew Space, Four Wheel Drive, Handling, Sensor Suite, Sloped Armor, 2x Speed, Targeting System


Medium Auto-Cannon

Range: 50/100/200 Damage: 3d8 RoF: 3 Notes: AP6, HW

Dual Linked Heavy Lasers

Range: 150/300/600 Damage: 4d10 +2 RoF: 1 Notes: +1 to hit, AP15, HW

Fury Strike Hover Tank

The Fury is a relatively normal Hover Tank design. A good mix of speed, maneuverability and toughness, the basic design is unremarkable.

Where it particularly suits the Black Guard is in its armament. With the usual projectile based cannon replaced by a Super Heavy Laser that is powered by the internal nuclear generator, the Fury is able to operate for extended periods without resupply. While the missile rack requires periodic reloading, this weapon is generally only used for harassment and as a backup if the main cannon is damaged so the need for resupply is small.

Heavy Vehicle: Size 6, Acc/TS: 5/15, Toughness: 56/44/32 (41/29/17), Crew: 4

Notes: AI, 12x Heavy Armor (Frontal), Crew Reduction, Hover, Sensor Suite, Targeting System


Super Heavy Laser

Range: 150/300/600 Damage: 6d10 RoF: 1 Notes: AP25, HW

Missile Launcher with 12 Light and 8 Heavy Missiles

SW_Fan_SmallRange: 200/400/800 Damage: 6d6 RoF: 1 Notes: AP8, HW, MBT Range: 200/400/800 Damage: 8d6 RoF: 1 Notes: AP15, HW, MBT

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