Mineral & Fusion Carrier ‘Hermes’

The Mineral & Fusion Corporation has long since been known for their ‘cookie cutter’ designs.

It often works to their favour in that such designs are cheap and easy to manufacture, but there is historically little in the way of the MFC faction directly influencing space-based warfare. They normally focus on the current fad – producing ships to fill the ranks rather than tip the balance, but every now and again as luck might have it, they strike gold.

MFC Hermes
A ‘Hermes’ Carrier with MFC faction hull markings

The ‘Hermes’ in principle was designed to provide part of a carrier group solution, intended that two or three are deployed as a wing. Compare that to the PLC factions ‘Sadalbari’ which was designed as the mainstay of a group; dedicated to both that and Command, you might think it falls a little short of the mark but then again in both procurement and production, the Hermes is nearly half the cost.

The Hermes might also carry half the number of Carried units but it matches the Sadalbari’s might in armament with 2 Extra-Large (XL) and 2 Large (L) turret hard points. On paper that makes it an exceptional ship, but its influence on the arena of Shallow Space was far more pronounced that the ships mere specification.

Before the Hermes came along Carrier operations were out of reach for many, reserved for the highest echelons within a respective faction. But now with some skill, a Carrier can be deployed cheaply as part of an attack force rather than a dedicated combat function and with that; sales of the Hermes blueprint sky rocketed.

The Hermes is credited with truly diversifying the art of space-based combat beyond even the Battlecruiser, because it indirectly forced the Terran Confederate Navy to drastically consider the way it applied itself to the theatre. Previously, Naval fleets would occupy planets in the imperium applying martial protocols to space traffic as the need arose but when that big Naval fleet arrived everyone else made a swift exit. The Hermes exaggerated this game of cat and mouse by enabled guerrilla operatives to deliver precision raids with the deed long done before even the picket could arrive.

It was not a situation gone unnoticed and so the Highest Honourable James Thorensenan, Field Marshall of the Terran Confederate Navy, petitioned the Council of Admirals for federal approval of an elite Naval force known as the ATU or ‘Adaptive Tactical Unit.’ The force has a very broad remit, with the usual restrictions on the building of ships and acquisition of personnel lifted. The ATU can disguise their identity, even adopting custom hull markings, but remain attached Naval personnel under the general jurisdiction of Federal Fleet Command. The ATU is designed to ‘seed’ naval presence in a system, not enough to deter full-scale campaigns, but enough to supplement allied faction forces in local defence, and operate in other capacities as the council sees fit.

As a consequence once rogue pirate forces gathered into a serious organisation and the previously enumerable mercenary entities started to band together into an alliance. With the notion of a lone trader now a proverbial death sentence, strength lay in numbers and factions as absolute entities arose polarising space traffic; all this leading to the very premise of Shallow Space.

History accredits this largely to the inclusion of this mere ‘cookie cutter’ ship into the ranks and nobody denies it; for the Hermes by namesake alone, is the most infamous ship of the century.

Something to add Commander?

MFC Capital Battleships ‘Cambridge’ & ‘Nottingham’

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These puppies have history, and if you’ve been with the project for a while you’ll notice that the ships bare resemblance to two older Capital vessels that have been in the project since the start. Those old models don’t really fit into the new order, but we just couldn’t leave them out in the cold so we had them reimagined.

After the great voyage, the worldships set the premise for the basic design of the majority of the Human ships. Huge lumbering hulks were produced that were slow and all but useless in conventional combat. The ‘Battle for Pleiades’ saw quick and innovative change to space combat bringing smaller, more agile ships into fashion but there is still call for these big bastions to house the Command staff and support facilities.

The ‘Cambridge’ is a 4th generation mid-range light Battleship, Capital class.

Shallow space – Cambridge-class battleship by Shallow Space on Sketchfab

Comparatively, it has the stopping power of four Battle Cruisers and is able to provide a healthy firing solution at any arc. The ship has no blind spots and beyond its offensive capacity it is also very practical. It has a large cargo bay, is equipped with the latest technology; inorganic matter transporters, negative space encroachment and all of the turret hardpoints feature PLC’s latest trick; quantum anchoring improving both range and accuracy.

The ‘Nottingham’ is a 4th generation mid-Battleship, Capital class.

When MFC presented the design at the quarterly council of admirals, Highest Honourable James Thorensenan, Field Marshall of the Terran Confederate Navy was pictured with his mouth wide open and noted as uttering only two words; ‘utterly ridiculous’ and the craft is just that.

MFC-Nottingham class battleship by Shallow Space on Sketchfab

Essentially, it is an upscaled version of the Cambridge and is considered to be its sister ship.

It contains all of the same technology, much of the same internal specification; gyms, training facilities, holo-suites and marine/surplus crew habitation facilities. But when applied at the scale of the Nottingham, which is over a kilometre in length, it allows for the deliberate deployment of a notable task force.

But that’s not all.

Tested on Cruisers, Battlecruisers and even some Capital vessels, a broadside alpha strike from a fully loaded Nottingham can overload most shield generators and cause severe structural damage to the recipient if they are not obliterated entirely. In fact, in combat, it can hold its own against a vastly superior force. It is a ship so undeniably well designed that the Emperor himself is thought to charter its use when travelling between the core worlds. The mere presence of one is enough to route most adversaries.

If you do managed to fight your way through its surplus shield generators, you’ll have to contend with mirrored active armour that in places measures 30 metres thick, offering substantial damage reduction to any and all conventional weapon types rendering them effectively useless.

It is a veritable mobile fortress, susceptible to only the most advanced phasing tactical warheads.

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The Cambridge is in the current alpha, we’re sure you’ve been enjoying it already – the Nottingham will be in the Overhaul. Look forward to the next post, which is the next instalment of the tale ‘Paradijs Lost’ landing on Friday. If you’re hungry for more ship designs and turntables check this category on the blog, we have dozens!

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Mineral & Fusion Cruisers ‘Hexen’ & ‘Heretic’

New to the line-up this week are the MFC ‘Heretic’ Heavy Cruiser and it’s sister ship, the MFC ‘Hexen’ Medium Cruiser. These ships will be added as part of the ‘Open-world Overhaul’ update.

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More of the same from the Mineral and Fusion Corporation as they continue to evolve their Cruiser line-up. These generation 4 ships are designed to be the multifunction foot soldiers of any unit and have a versatile internal and external configuration allowing them to be used in a variety of combat and civilian roles. For example the ‘Hexen’ is often used without weapons as a Civilian personnel transport and the ‘Heretic’ has a number of variants designed for specific combat roles such as escort or assault.

The key to this flexibility is a complex interwoven power distribution lattice printed into the ships armor carapace segments at manufacture. This allows for the versatile location of turret hardpoints anywhere across 75% of the surface of the ship, with energy to power them drawn straight from engines. In contrast, the two other leading ship manufacturers PLC and INC are still using fixed conduits to provide energy to the hardpoints. Configurations are sealed at production, but regardless it allows for the creation of a highly specialized force at a relatively low cost.

Shallow Space – MFC Cruiser B by Mathias Koehler on Sketchfab

Some of the more advanced tech such as Negative Space Encroachment has been left out of the design of these budget craft, but beyond cost, it seems that MFC believes that efficiency can still be derived from clever tweaks to geometry and do prove that effort in both ships. That same winning geometry and lack of NSE tech letting the design down also however, with minimal support module capacity on either ship.

Shallow Space – MFC Cruiser A by Mathias Koehler on Sketchfab

The TCN view the craft as a natural evolution of previous MFC Cruiser offerings, but note that next to PLC’s expensive high tech ‘Pegasus’ Cruisers, or the INC’s slightly cheaper and yet more versatile modular Cruiser the ‘Armstrong,’ competition is tough. MFC ships continue to be the designs of choice within both the Navy and the subversive factions.

The artists always leak images ahead of the announcements, we try to stop them, but they just don’t listen, can’t blame them really it’s an exciting business! – anyway follow the twitter to stay ahead of the game @shallowspace1!

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Mineral & Fusion Capital ‘Vindicator’

Look forward to the ‘Vindicator’ being featured in UPDATE 8!

Another classic MFC design that is still in use during today’s operations. The ‘Vindicator’ is designed for long range tactical engagements with static targets such as stations and platforms, it is also equally suitable for indirect fire missions against larger vessels and light conventional combat.

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A ‘Vindicator’ uses it’s twin top mounted XL turrets in the heat of battle.

The ‘Vindicator’ is a very suitable all-rounder boasting 3 XL sized and 4 L sized weapons turrets and 4 XL support slots. As with all Gen. 3 MFC craft, the basic tech level suffers from inadequate generator capacity to comfortably fit energy weapons but some of the more expensive tech variants are fitted with the latest model Stellarators with a far higher energy output.

The Vindicator features a ‘multiple launch environment’ which is capable of dispensing salvos of 10 missiles at a time. The crafts integrated launcher can fire both M and L sized missiles. The craft is also fitted with a forward facing XL torpedo launcher capable of launching probes and huge offensive projectiles.

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The ‘Vindicator’ is an exceptionally versatile combat craft although fully loaded configurations can be very expensive.

In organised warfare between the core factions the craft is often used to head up indirect fire parties in large battlegroups, in smaller battlegroups it can be used as the lead command vessel. Lesser variants are also used extensively by the subversive factions.

Weaknesses to the vessels otherwise strong offering include substandard sub light thrust and weak armour.

As with all Capital vessels, its usefulness is undermined in today’s theatre by the ready availability of Generation 4 Cruisers and Battlecruisers, so as with any vessel of its size the ‘Vindicator’ benefits from well construed scout, support and defensive parties.

Shallow space – Vindicator-class Battlecruiser by Shallow Space on Sketchfab

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Musings of a Festive Break [40% off!]

It’s that time of the year where developers and Players both set aside their sanity and participate in the festive sales! We’re not sure about you, but our wallets have magically flopped onto the table and opened themselves up whispering ‘steam sales are here’ in a somewhat creepy voice.

We’re on the other side of the fence this year as we welcome new players from the four corners with a 40% discount! Naturally the period dictates that the team wind down to spend time with their families but it has to be said, me personally, I can’t help but feel this uncontrollable itch to get back to coding and so UPDATE 8 is well underway.

I’m not the only one bitten by that bug it seems (no pun intended!) As the artists are still busy churning out ships. The latest one to arrive; the MFC ‘Vindicator’ is an absolute beast and is the first Capital ship to be featured with missile launchers.

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New Capital ship, the MFC ‘Vindicator’

The MFC faction are getting Carriers and assortment of Corvettes and the first Corvette that will be unveiled in a future update is the ‘Z-23’ shown below. This puppy also comes in a missile equipped variant (the Z-23M) and wait… What’s that you say? You don’t like the name? Well if you have any suggestions we’ll be listening, it wouldn’t be the first ship in the game to be named by a Player and we’re sure it won’t be the last!

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A Fighter Corvette, the MFC ‘Z-23’

Of course the game isn’t all about the pretty ships; we’re also busy preparing additional maps for you to play with. These maps will feature allied forces, NPC traffic flying between stations and chained Objectives that evolve as you complete varying stages of the mission. We also want to make a bigger deal of Corvette vs. Corvette action, with improvements to the way the ships move and dogfight and finally, randomized ship and fleet configs are in for both Player and AI.

So if you’re new to the project welcome aboard, check the roadmap and get involved in the forums and to all our followers; have a great festive break!

Something to say Commander?