I'm exhausted tonight. Got some writing in on clone soldiers and the war for Mars, which is good. However, I dont have much left in me to pontificate on the nature of the game and why I made the choices I did. So, in an effort not to think too much, I see that the OCRI entry is getting the most hits, so I figure give the people their bread and circuses and post some more content...
|Not a Jammer - but one of the images I use for inspiration (from Front Mission)|
The Future of Warfare -- Joint Atmospheric Maneuver / Orbital Regression Vehicles (JAMOR-V or “Jammers”): Jammers were created in a joint venture between Australia and the United States, with the Aussies taking the lead. As both countries developed colonial assets farther and farther away from Earth’s immediate orbit, a new class of vehicle was mandated for a series of very diverse missions. The original design challenge was for a vehicle that could fight effectively on land, sea, air, orbit and the deep void of space while also being as fuel efficient as possible to allow long deployments. Not surprisingly, when the media got wind of the design demands for the proposed vehicle, both the Australian and American militaries were humiliated.
In what can only be called a fortuitous development, the program was not scrapped. In part, this was due to both governments being focused on the population crash of the ‘80s and neither legislature getting the time to simply axe the experimental program. So, despite a considerable cloud hanging over the project, requests for concepts were solicited. Two proposals came back, one of which made it to the design stage.
BAE Systems Australia in partnership with Lockheed-Martin proposed creating a war machine based on the human form, using a number of innovative technologies to ensure it could operate in just about any environment. Two core technologies proved to be the key to the operations of Jammers. The first was the creation of the Wibe True Gyroscope, and the second was the use of Spaulding-series of Direct Neural Interfaces (DNIs). Both technologies were used for the first time in conjunction with another to allow for a large, mobile, humanoid form.
The advantage of building a humanoid machine were enormous. Tests showed that pilots that operated humanoid exoskeletons using DNI learned faster and generally reacted faster for longer periods of exposure. This meant the prototype Jammers required relatively little initial training and allowed the pilots to operate at higher degrees of difficulty at later stages of their career. The Spaulding DNIs also allowed pilots to subconsciously use energy-saving techniques by tapping into autonomic responses that maximized the output of the their own bodies. Rather than need to invest considerable energy to building vectoring units across an entire craft so that it could maneuver in a war-time environment, the pilot only needs to shift the weight of the Jammer to get the same results - with much less energy wasted. Better yet, each pilot already had a life’s worth of training by the time they interr’d into the Jammer.
A Jammer’s humanoid form allows it to effectively and efficiently transit each of the original design demands - land, sea and air (though, admittedly, aerial and void/space techniques normally require extra training). Looking back, the 2090s are considered the beginning of the era of the Jammer. The early part of the decade saw the battles of Valparaiso Downport, the Mare Imbium insurrection, and a host of minor conflicts in NEO and UEO. Time and again, Jammers proved their worth, particularly in the running battles of Valparaiso and Mare Imbrium which both involved combat shifts through radically different environments. Historical records show that from 2090 to 2100 Jammers were used in successful contacts on all the inner planets, Ceres, and the Jovian L4.
It should have come as no shock to a student of human society or pop culture that once unveiled, Jammers and their pilots would prove to be enormously popular. Holovids quickly grabbed on to the merging of man and machine and glamorized the process. In short order, Jammer pilots were romanticized as daring warriors harkening back to a bygone age of action and adventure.
Truth is stanger than fiction, because while the Holovid industry was getting ahead of itself portraying Jammer pilots as devil-may care superstars, the real Jammer pilots were inadvertently proving the entertainment industry correct. The first handful of engagements by OCRI Jammers and traditional combat vehicles operated by insurgents and pirates proved the worth of the Jammer concept. The Holovids got it right, to some extent.
... In other news, I have an artist in the wings. We are finishing up another project and will then start talking about doing up some art for the Game That Has No Name. Jammers will be at the very top of the list of things that need visuals, stat!