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Author Topic: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]  (Read 1653 times)

Formerly Wu

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The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« on: 23 March 2022, 19:37:55 »
Thought I'd share some of my unit history that I've been working on. Largely interpolated from experiences during my various modded HBS Battletech careers plus some deep dives into the excellent Brush Wars sourcebook.

The Crashlanders

History
The mercenary outfit known simply as the Crashlanders began as Revenant Company, a part of the Fifth Regulan Hussars under the command of Captain Leon Shay. Alongside the rest of their regiment, they joined Anton Marik’s revolt against the Free Worlds League in 3014. In January 3015 the Principality of Regulus officially declared for the Captain-General under growing evidence of Capellan involvement in the rebellion, decisively turning the tide against Anton’s forces. With the political position no longer tenable and his MechWarriors facing either destruction on the battlefield or dispossession and exile, Shay chose to desert. In March, the already mauled Fifth was attacked by their fellow First and Second Regulan Hussars on McKenna. During the confusion of the retreat, Shay commandeered part of the regiment’s transport reserve and fled, first to Westerhand and then onward to the Rimward Frontier.

With no experience running a mercenary company, few resources, and many enemies, the former Revenants had a difficult first year.  By mid-3016 attrition, desertions, and a disastrous encounter on Úr Cruinne had reduced the company to a single lance in strength. It was during this time that the survivors began to refer to themselves as the Crashlanders, referring to a cheeky local’s description of their ignominious arrival on Westerhand.

A months-long rebuilding effort managed to revive the company’s fortunes somewhat. In December 3016 the unit merged with an independent recon lance led by the Taurian expat Sylvia Ruiz. This merger brought with it an experienced new executive officer in the form of Commander Meifeng Kincade. A longtime professional in the business aspects of war, she has made an effective team with Captain Shay despite their tendency to butt heads. A successful one-year trade protection contract with the Aurigan Coalition stabilized the company’s finances, and as of early 3018 they are garrisoned on Lyreton and seeking new employment.

Insignia
Stylized meteorite impact in monochrome.

Color Scheme
No fixed scheme. While the Revenant Company survivors initially maintained the Fifth Hussar camouflage scheme, they have mostly converted to the bold, individualist designs preferred by their new Periphery cohorts. Only Lt. Wieczorek’s Orion retains the unit’s original tan-and-brown.

Force Description

2 BattleMech Lances/Regular/Questionable
CO: Cpt. Leon Shay
XO: Cmdr. Meifeng Kincade

1 Infantry Platoon/Regular/Reliable
CO: Lt. Ricardo Davies

MRB Rating
28 [C+]

Quote
Roster [3018]

Recon Lance
LCT-1V Locust
STG-3R Stinger
HER-2S Hermes II
ASN-21 Assassin

Battle Lance
GRF-1N Griffin
TBT-5J Trebuchet
MAD-3M Marauder
ON1-K Orion

Quote
Roster [3014, as Revenant Company]

Recon Lance
WSP-1A Wasp
FLE-4 Flea
HER-2S Hermes II
WVR-6M Wolverine

Battle Lance
MAD-3M Marauder
ON1-K Orion
TDR-5S Thunderbolt
SHD-2H Shadow Hawk

Fire Lance
TBT-5J Trebuchet
TBT-5N Trebuchet
CN9-A Centurion
ARC-2R Archer

Support
The Crashlanders have two Leopards, FWLDS Powell and FWLDS Akatsuki. Both have been modified to replace their aerospace bays with the additional accommodation and cargo space required for independent operation. However, the limits of the Leopard chassis means that they cannot support any significant auxiliary forces.

A single platoon of infantry supports BattleMech operations. One squad serves as a reconnaissance and SAR section, equipped with a Ferret light scout VTOL. The remaining squads provide DropShip security and jeep-mounted escort for salvage and resupply operations.
« Last Edit: 27 March 2022, 15:35:16 by Formerly Wu »

Formerly Wu

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #1 on: 23 March 2022, 19:38:14 »
Combat Personnel

Force Captain Leon Shay
Callsign: RICOCHET
BattleMech: MAD-3M Marauder
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: Shay is a veteran of the Regulan Hussars. He is a cunning and tenacious commander, but his career consistently suffered from his insubordinate ego and a reputation for backroom dealing. His defection was the culmination of a long term rivalry with Col. Nathan Pierce, whom Shay considered unfit for command but was unable to effectively challenge via Regulan Hussar duelling traditions. He cultivates a roguish “silver fox” affect, complete with a piratical eye patch and a wry sense of humor. His Marauder is painted in a teal and dark grey scheme with a prominent horizontal white stripe.

Lieutenant Sylvia Ruiz
Callsign: LARK
BattleMech: GRF-1N Griffin
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: Lt. Ruiz is the Crashlanders’ new second in command. Hailing from the Taurian Concordant, her somewhat eccentric personality never adapted well to the regimentation of military life. After a few unsuccessful years serving in planetary militias, she struck out on her own to form a mercenary band of fellow misfits and iconoclasts. Upbeat and optimistic to a fault, she has become the core of the new unit’s morale. Her Griffin is a battle-scarred family heirloom decorated with a rotating series of her artistic endeavors, currently a teal and white alpine gradient scheme.

Lieutenant Ibrahim Wieczorek
Callsign: LONGSHOT
BattleMech: ON1-K Orion
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: A professional soldier through and through, Lt. Wieczorek is the longest serving member of the group except for Cpt. Shay, having begun his career in the Marik Militia. A stolid and dependable anchor on the battlefield, he has also had the most trouble adapting to the loose, unpredictable life of a mercenary. He does not relate well to the new additions to the company, preferring to spend his time grousing with the captain and support crews. Still, he appreciates no longer being required to act as the unit’s XO, a role in which he was competent but very uncomfortable.

Serjeant Vivian Kashani
Callsign: RIVET
BatleMech: TBT-5J Trebuchet
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: Sjt. Kashani is the only survivor of the company’s fire lance, which was wiped out in the Úr Cruinne debacle. The loss of her comrades hit the formerly dependable MechWarrior hard. She became personally withdrawn, overly cautious in battle, and let her ‘Mech fall into disrepair. The recent influx of new blood seems to be bringing her out of her shell, however. With help from Lt. Ruiz and Sgt. Thomas she has recently redecorated her olive green Trebuchet with dedications to her fallen comrades.

Serjeant Mario Kristoff
Callsign: KILO
BattleMech: HER-2S Hermes II
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: Sjt. Kristoff is a thick-jawed, muscular man with a heavy Italian accent. His size and deliberate speech patterns often give the impression of a dull thug, but this is far from the truth. Fiercely loyal to his compatriots, he is often found in the thick of combat, drawing fire to protect his lance mates. His Hermes II, nicknamed “Eddie,” sports a pristine, painstakingly maintained paint scheme in black, blue, and white.

Sergeant Sten Hayashizaki
Callsign: SNAKE
BattleMech: LCT-1V Locust
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: A ronin from the Draconis Combine, Sgt. Hayashizaki still follows the bushido spirit even as he flagrantly rejects its conservative social strata and presentation. He can often be seen practicing swordsmanship in the MechBay during transit, the traditional martial forms contrasting with his punk attire and flippant attitude. He pilots his grey, red, and white Locust like he has a death wish- intentionally dashing across enemy lines of fire before disappearing into cover, only to re-emerge and continue harassing from another angle. What dishonor drove him from the Dragon’s service and to fight with such little regard for his life is his secret to keep.

Sergeant Eli Thomas
Callsign: FLEX
BattleMech: STG-3R Stinger
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: [See Below]

Sergeant Lydia Mendez
Callsign: VESPA
BattleMech: ASN-21 Assassin
Status: Operational [3018]
Personal File: Sgts. Thomas and Mendez form a cohort of deliberately obscure origin. Their odd dynamic has prompted rumors that they are siblings, reconciled ex-lovers, or many stranger things. The two refuse to discuss the matter, instead saying that they are just old comrades. Despite their very different personalities they appear to have an intuitive understanding of the other’s thought processes, making them excellent lance mates in the field. Thomas is the more talkative and bombastic of the two, although he tends to be more cautious in combat. His Stinger sports a garish green and yellow paint scheme. Mendez is reserved and standoffish in person, but in combat tends to overcommit and needs Thomas to rope her in. Her battered Assassin, nicknamed “Lefty” by the company’s techs for the number of times it has lost its arm, sports an applejack camo pattern in red, black, and white.

Serjeant Emile Jansen
Callsign: SLIDE
Mech: WSP-1A Wasp
Status: MIA, Holt [3014]
Personal File: In December 3014 the Fifth Regulan Hussars launched an ill-conceived assault on the Stewart Dragoons Home Guard stationed on Holt. The attack ran afoul of two supporting loyalist regiments of heavy armor. Their line broken, the Hussars tried to pull back, but the Home Guard proved impossible to shake off. Sjt. Jansen was separated from the rest of the Revenants during the early stages of the counterattack. Despite sporadic contact over the course of the battle, the confusion of the retreat meant that he was never able to rejoin the company. His battered Wasp was found after the battle by loyalist recovery crews. Evidence suggests that he successfully ejected, but he has never been found and his fate remains unknown.

Serjeant Brooke Bustelo
Callsign: HOT CHIP
Mech: CN9-A Centurion
Status: KIA, Holt [3014]
Personal File: [See Below]

Serjeant Soren McVey
Callsign: CRICKET
Mech: TDR-5S Thunderbolt
Status: KIA, Holt [3014]
Personal File: In many ways Sjts. Bustelo and McVey could not have been more different, but their fate was the same. McVey was the youngest member of the battle lance, piloting his father’s Thunderbolt. Considered a “babyface” by the rest of the company, he seemed well poised to follow in his family’s footsteps of upright service to the Principality. Bustelo, on the other hand, was a chronic troublemaker only retained due to Shay's indulgence of her vices. During the retreat on Holt, McVey’s Thunderbolt was immobilized by leg actuator damage from an ambushing Harasser. A recovery team was called up, but the other members of the battle lance had expended their ammunition and were unable to provide cover. Bustelo volunteered to step out of the fire lance and provide a rear guard. Unfortunately, the pursuing Home Guard forces arrived sooner than expected. The two ‘Mechs were overrun and both pilots killed in action.

Serjeant Denzel La Paz
Callsign: FRACTURE
BattleMech: FLE-4 Flea
Status: Deserted, McKenna [3015]
Personal File: A true believer in Anton Marik's cause, Sjt. La Paz was the only member of the company that declined to desert with Shay in 3015. Despite this, he remained loyal enough to the captain to not betray his plans prior to his departure. With so few forces remaining, Colonel Pierce could not afford to discipline him, and so La Paz remained active in the Fifth until the regiment’s surrender on Fuentes in May. During the following reprisals he was summarily dispossessed of his ‘Mech, and eventually chose to defect to the Capellan Confederation. He currently serves as a combat vehicle pilot in the Fifteenth Dracon.

Lieutenant Fabian Lew
Callsign: MULLIGAN
BattleMech: TBT-5N Trebuchet
Status: KIA, Úr Cruinne [3016]
Personal File: [See Below]

Serjeant Priska Drodsinski
Callsign: GRANDMASTER
BattleMech: ARC-2R Archer
Status: MIA, Úr Cruinne [3016]
Personal File: Neither Lt. Lew nor Sjt. Drodinski were natives of the Principality of Regulus. Lew was a refugee from the Capellan Confederation, whereas Drodinski was widely ribbed for her thick Rimward accent. However, the two were reliable members of the company until the disaster on Úr Cruinne. Deployed as part of a non-MRB approved mercenary contract in a desperate attempt to shore up finances, the Revenant’s fire lance found itself atop a forbidding, icy bluff, supposedly awaiting a pirate convoy. As a blizzard moved in, their employer’s supporting forces turned on them. The lance found itself trying to defend itself against tanks and infantry at point blank range with nowhere to maneuver. Sjt. Kashani’s TBT-5J had jump jets that allowed her to disengage, but the others were not so lucky. Lew was killed outright and Drodinski forced to eject. The suddenly hostile environment forced Shay to evacuate, precluding any attempts at rescue or recovery.

Lieutenant Suneeti Ravati
Callsign: BLACKBIRD
BattleMech: WVR-6M Wolverine
Status: Deserted, Úr Cruinne [3016]
Personal File: [See Below]

Banner Elyse Kotokis
Callsign: UNDINE
BattleMech: SHD-2H Shadow Hawk
Status: Deserted, Úr Cruinne [3016]
Personal File: The Úr Cruinne incident was the last straw for Bnr. Kotokis. After a year of deprivation and misfortune, she considered Shay’s failure to properly vet their employers responsible for the deaths of their comrades. Following Regulan Hussar protocol, she challenged him to a duel for company leadership. Shay refused, simply stating that they were not Hussars any more, but also did not contest her claims. Instead, he offered any who wished to leave a discharge with their ‘Mech. Kotokis and Ravati both took him up on the offer and together contracted transport to the Magistracy of Canopus. Shay regrets the loss of Lt. Ravati the most, as he considered her quiet but keen mind the lynchpin of the force’s tactical operations. No contact has been made with the two since their departure, leaving the company in the dark about their fortunes.
« Last Edit: 31 March 2022, 13:31:41 by Formerly Wu »

Giovanni Blasini

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #2 on: 23 March 2022, 21:13:27 »
Wow, that's a great writeup.
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snakespinner

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #3 on: 23 March 2022, 23:02:48 »
Good write up. :thumbsup:
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DOC_Agren

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #4 on: 27 March 2022, 20:40:32 »
I like it, I hope there will be more
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Middcore

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #5 on: 29 March 2022, 17:15:59 »
I really like this writeup. One thing that does confuse me a bit is the use of the rank "Force Captain" for the CO. The FWL uses "Force Commander" instead of "Major" a Captain is just a Captain to my knowledge... unless this was a Regulan-specific thing I've overlooked?

Formerly Wu

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #6 on: 29 March 2022, 23:46:15 »
I really like this writeup. One thing that does confuse me a bit is the use of the rank "Force Captain" for the CO. The FWL uses "Force Commander" instead of "Major" a Captain is just a Captain to my knowledge... unless this was a Regulan-specific thing I've overlooked?
It is! The Hussars are a bit old-fashioned and use Andurien style ranks. Good catch!

Glad folks like the writeup!
« Last Edit: 30 March 2022, 00:15:14 by Formerly Wu »

Daryk

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #7 on: 30 March 2022, 18:26:04 »
Excellent write up!  I'm a sucker for refugees from Anton's Revolt...  8)

Formerly Wu

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #8 on: 30 March 2022, 23:13:19 »
Excellent write up!  I'm a sucker for refugees from Anton's Revolt...  8)
I saw your thread after posting mine and thought "ah, another man of culture."  8) Great work on that by the way!

Anton's Revolt is such a great background- it's got the "fought for the losing side" pathos of your Firefly Browncoats, but without the silver lining of having an actually noble cause.

Middcore

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #9 on: 31 March 2022, 08:37:53 »
It is! The Hussars are a bit old-fashioned and use Andurien style ranks.

But Staff Sergeant and Lieutenant JG don't exist in the old Andurien ranking system.

Formerly Wu

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #10 on: 31 March 2022, 09:00:28 »
But Staff Sergeant and Lieutenant JG don't exist in the old Andurien ranking system.
Ah, indeed you're correct. I'd been working off of FM: FWL and the footnotes of the Sarna military ranks table, but going back to the 1987 volume I now see the full table of Andurien ranks, including the variant spelling of Serjeant.

Consider it corrected! I appreciate the rigor.

Middcore

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #11 on: 31 March 2022, 09:07:12 »
Ah, indeed you're correct. I'd been working off of FM: FWL and the footnotes of the Sarna military ranks table, but going back to the 1987 volume I now see the full table of Andurien ranks, including the variant spelling of Serjeant.

Consider it corrected! I appreciate the rigor.

Those original Marik handbook Andurien ranks are weird as heck, especially since Andurien province is supposed to be Southern European-influenced with Italian as a commonly spoken language.

Anyway, I hope I didn't come across as pedantic or nit-picking... I had completely forgotten Andurien used Force Captain (stuff like "Thegn" and "Banner" always got my attention more) and was confused.

Formerly Wu

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Re: The Crashlanders [Mercenary, 3018]
« Reply #12 on: 31 March 2022, 09:11:58 »
Those original Marik handbook Andurien ranks are weird as heck, especially since Andurien province is supposed to be Southern European-influenced with Italian as a commonly spoken language.

Anyway, I hope I didn't come across as pedantic or nit-picking... I had completely forgotten Andurien used Force Captain (stuff like "Thegn" and "Banner" always got my attention more) and was confused.
Oh no worries at all! I'm all about nitpicking- I've edited the original post like ten times since first posting it to fix stuff exactly like that.  :D

In any case it gave me the opportunity to re-evaluate the rank structure I had set up for the 3014 force. I realized I had three lieutenants in the battle lance and none in the other two, which seemed a little less than ideal! A few posthumous promotions and demotions later and I think things should work out.