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Author Topic: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"  (Read 887 times)


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Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« on: 01 March 2019, 15:55:13 »
Black Tortoise Assault Tank

Code: [Select]
Mass: 35 tons
Tech Base: Inner Sphere
Motive Type: Tracked
Rules Level: Advanced Rules
Era: Succession Wars
Tech Rating/Era Availability: D/X-C-C-A
Production Year: 3029
Cost: 511,313 C-Bills
Battle Value: 411

Power Plant: SHI 105 I.C.E.
Cruise Speed: 32.4 km/h
Flanking Speed: 54.0 km/h
Armor: SHI IndusTrucable Industrial
    2 Arrowlite SRM-6s
    3 Maxim Machine Guns
    1 SHI Bulldozer
Manufacturer: Shandong Heavy Industries
    Primary Factory: Zaurak
Communications System: CeresComm 33
Targeting and Tracking System: Dynatec 128C

The "Black Tortoise" "assault tank" was an improvised fighting vehicle employed
by Capellan forces during the battle of Zaurak during the 4th Succession War.
Designed and built at the Shantui Heavy Industries manufacturing plant on that
world. it was built to help defend against elements of the 12th Vegan Rangers
invasion during Operation RAT.

Unlike most of the planetary militias fought in that operation, the militia of
Zaurak acquitted themselves quite well. They were able to use the unique
environmental challenges of the world to their advantage, striking at Davion
military assets under the cover of hellish storms.

The Black Tortoise was designed and largely built by Elisa Yuen, a mechanic at
the nearby SHI heavy industries manufacturing plant. Yuen was not a trained
engineer. She was instead a talented mechanic who worked for the factory
testing design refinements SHI intended to make to tractors for export.

A fierce Capellan patriot, Yuen had been badly injured in an industrial
accident before the arrival of Davion forces. A falling piece of heavy
machinery crushed her left leg, leaving her unable to walk for several months.

Instead, she and her team contributed to the war effort by building improvised
combat vehicles. Though they engineered several, the Black Tortoise was by far
the most successful.

The tank itself began as a SD-35-50 heavy earthmover. These large bulldozers
were used to good effect by the locals to help tame their wild world, and they
were one of SHI's main products for export in the years prior to the 4th
Succession War.

Yuen's team up-armored the chassis with 7.5 tons of industrial grade armor.
They re-engineered the power train around a hand-built final drive that would
allow the normally slow bulldozer to move at an astonishing 50 KpH. They
trimmed down the dozer blade so that it could still be used for light duty, but
that it would no longer interfere with the driver's line of sight and would
lead a clear field of fire for weaponry.

For primary weaponry the Black Tortoise was equipped with a pair of Arrowlite
SRM racks taken from a salvaged Javelin. These weapons would give the tank a
surprising punch for an improvised armored vehicle, The targeting and tracking
equipment from the Javelin was retained, and with a great deal of work adapted
to work in place of the primitive sensor suite normally mounted on such a

Secondary firepower came from a trio of Maxim heavy machineguns intended to
protect the Black Tortoise against being swarmed by infantry. Early in the
design process these were simple pintle mounts that would be crewed by gunners
outside the vehicle. Later on these would be enclosed and given more capable
firing systems as Yuen and her team refined the tank.

Battle History:
The Black Tortoise was part of one of the key moments of the defense of Zaurak.
AS elements of the 12 Vegan rangers approached the city of Zaurak, the tank was
used as a plow following a vicious snow storm that threatened to obscure
defensive fire lanes and fill the moat that defenders had constructed around
the city. Once this task was completed, the Black Tortoise was able to dig
itself into a defensive position sheltered from the sensors of the approaching

From this position, the Black Tortoise was able to ambush a Davion Enforcer. A
swarm of Inferno missiles from the tank caught the mech by surprise and
overheated it, causing the mech to shut down. Though the Black Tortoise could
not hope to destroy the mech with just its weaponry, a few solid ramming
attacks with the dozer blade rendered the Enforcer incapacitated.

Ultimately this victory would be short lived. Following the final ramming
attack on the Enforcer the hand-built final drive gearbox broke, leaving the
Black Tortoise immobilized. Seeing that the tank was helpless, the crew bailed
out before it was overrun by Davion infantry. The Davion troops took the
opportunity to destroy the tank to prevent it from going back into battle.

Following the 4th Succession War the Black Tortoise was retrieved from the
battlefield. Though its weapons had been removed or destroyed, the tank was
repaired and placed in a location of honor outside of the militia barracks.
There it served as a symbol of Capellan resolve against Davion aggression.

Code: [Select]
Equipment           Type                         Rating                   Mass 
Internal Structure: Standard                      16 points                3.50
Engine:             I.C.E. Engine                105                       7.00
    Cruise MP:  3
    Flank MP:   5
Heat Sinks:         Single Heat Sink             0                         0.00
Control Equipment:                                                         2.00
Lift Equipment:                                                            0.00
Armor:              Industrial                   AV -  80                  7.50

                                               Front     20       
                                          Left/Right   20/20       
                                                Rear     20       

Equipment                                 Location    Heat     Spaces     Mass 
Bulldozer                                    FR        0         1         2.00
Machine Gun                                  FR        0         1         0.50
Machine Gun                                  LS        0         1         0.50
Machine Gun                                  RS        0         1         0.50
2 SRM-6s                                     RS        8         2         6.00
@MG (1/2) (100)                              BD        -         0         0.50
@SRM-6 (15)                                  BD        -         0         1.00

BattleForce Statistics
MV      S (+0)  M (+2)  L (+4)  E (+6)   Wt.   Ov   Armor:      3    Points: 4
3t         2       2       0       0      1     0   Structure:  2
Special Abilities: ENG, EE, SRM 1/1/0

Orin J.

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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #1 on: 01 March 2019, 23:32:27 »
interesting read, and nice avatar icon synergy going on.

was was expecting an actual "combat" tank, rather than a technical but it's still an decent execution.
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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #2 on: 02 March 2019, 03:09:24 »
I really like this, especially its background, its a Bob Semple tank or a ZiS 30

a desparation vehicle, but one that did its role well enough. 
« Last Edit: 02 March 2019, 03:11:37 by marauder648 »
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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #3 on: 02 March 2019, 08:08:55 »
I really like this, especially its background, its a Bob Semple tank or a ZiS 30

a desparation vehicle, but one that did its role well enough.

This was made for a "Fandom Factory Friday" challenge on Reddit, and the Bob Semple tank was specifically mentioned there. I had more in mind the NI tank, built by the Soviets during the Siege of Odessa.


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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #4 on: 02 March 2019, 15:27:17 »
Avatar by Wombat. Thanks Wombat!


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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #5 on: 02 March 2019, 20:54:25 »


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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #6 on: 11 March 2019, 18:02:29 »
Since the term "assault" has a very specific connotation with the BattleTech universe, I'd suggest calling it a support tank instead.


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Re: Black Tortoise "Assault Tank"
« Reply #7 on: 16 March 2019, 12:36:22 »
Since the term "assault" has a very specific connotation with the BattleTech universe, I'd suggest calling it a support tank instead.
Either that or keep and make enemies fear you have bigger guns!!!
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