Skyfurnaces and Overstrikers might be the factual heirs to the mighty armoured trains of the Revolution (see the comic’s Sword of Lies arc to see the trains in action) but they are not without direct successors which still ply the endless tracks running over – and under – the Lands of the Red Star.
As far as size is concerned, the modern armoured trains of the Red Fleet have more in common with the lighter trains which ran escort for the great rail battleships than with those rolling fortress cities themselves. Still, technological advances make these latest generations the equal of even their largest predecessors despite their comparatively diminutive size.
Armament not withstanding, the Red Fleet no longer treats armoured trains as frontline assets. Instead, trains such as the Echelon class are used as mobile headquarters and bases for garrison and border troops, to preserve nuclear second strike capabilities, to secure the airspace behind the frontline with stratospheric artillery, or to defend against attacks on supply trains and the rail network itself.
During the fighting in Nokgorka, the rail troops and their armoured trains were called upon to perform tasks for which many units were ill prepared, as guard duty started to constantly spill over into active combat.
Echelon Armoured Train
The Echelon itself in an armoured super-heavy train engine mounting four 315mm forward cannons in separate turrets, backed up by four heavy DSHK deck guns and two Zhukov capacitance cannons in its most common configuration.
The crew of 42 consists of a commander, a first officer, an infokaster, two drivers, a sorceress engineer assisted by a squad of 20 zeks, a supply kaster, a medikaster, ten gunners and four loaders. In addition to the crew, the Echelon can carry an infantry detachment of up to 60 troopers.
The engine can pull up to five armoured train cars without losing performance. For each additional car after the fifth, the train’s speed decreases by 10 (1). The Echelon can pull a maximum of ten cars.
The special train cars available for use with the Echelon include
artillery cars with two turrets each mounting a 2000mm frontal cannon, the crew consists of two gunners, two loaders and four zek assistant loaders (as the train car dedicates more space to ammunition and loading equipment than would be possible aboard a Hydra class krawl, the shells do not have to be individually teleoported into the chamber precluding the need for supply kasters to handle the loading);
command cars equipped with full command facilities including working spaces for staff officers and a kasting deck complete with gate chambers;
heavy freight cars capable of carrying up to 400 tons of cargo each;
infantry cars which can house and deploy half a battalion of troops (300 troopers) along with up to 15 Kleaver halftracks;
krawl cars designed to carry and deploy up to five Hammer class krawls or Dragunov assault guns as well as house their crews;
strategic missile cars carrying a single Grifon nuclear strategic ballistic missile, its launcher and command and control equipment, its crew of ten is responsible for the missile which is protected by a 30-strong special security detachment of hailer guards;
stratospheric defense cars carrying a single light stratospheric cannon (see Hydra variants for rules and statistics) and its gun crew of 14; and
weapon cars with multiple hardpoint mounted weapons, usually a mix of DSHK deck guns, Katyusha rockets, and telekinetic autocannons for air defense (see Hydra variants for rules and statistics), crewed by up to 30 gunners manning the weapon stations.
|Name||Crew||Pass||Cargo||Init||Maneuver||Top Speed||Defense||Damage Reduction|
|Echelon||42||60||5 tons||-8||-8||110 (11)||2||50 (+10)|
|Artillery car||8||0||80 tons||-8||–||–||2||40 (+8)|
|Command car||40||80||120 tons||-8||–||–||2||50 (+10)|
|Heavy freight car||0||0||400 tons||-8||–||–||2||20|
|Infantry car||0||380||275 tons||-8||–||–||2||40|
|Krawl car||0||100||295 tons||-8||–||–||2||40|
|Strategic missile car||10||60||220 tons||-8||–||–||2||50 (+10)|
|Stratospheric defense car||14||0||50 tons||-8||–||–||2||40 (+8)|
|Weapon car||30||0||60 tons||-8||–||–||2||40|
|Name||Hit Points||Size||Weight||Harpoints||Purchase DC||Restriction||Weapons||Extras|
|Echelon||190||C||1800 tons||6 (0)||51||Mil (+3)||Forward cannon, 315mm (4); composite Zhukov capacitance cannon (2); heavy DSHK deck gun (4)||Protocol-reinforced armor, protocol shielding systems, Crypsis systems|
|Artillery car||105||C||450 tons||0 (0)||45||Mil (+3)||Forward cannon, 2000mm (2)||Protocol-reinforced armor, protocol shielding systems, Crypsis systems|
|Command car||105||C||450 tons||6 (6)||49||Mil (+3)||–||Protocol-reinforced armor, protocol shielding systems, Crypsis systems|
|Heavy freight car||105||C||450 tons||0 (0)||32||Mil (+3)||–||Crypsis systems|
|Infantry car||105||C||450 tons||2 (2)||39||Mil (+3)||–||Crypsis systems|
|Krawl car||105||C||450 tons||2 (2)||39||Mil (+3)||–||Crypsis systems|
|Strategic missile car||105||C||450 tons||0 (0)||50||Mil (+3)||Grifon launcher||Protocol-reinforced armor, protocol shielding systems, Crypsis systems|
|Stratospheric defense car||105||C||450 tons||0 (0)||51||Mil (+3)||Light stratospheric cannon||Protocol-reinforced armor, protocol shielding systems, Crypsis systems|
|Weapon car||105||C||450 tons||30 (0)||45||Mil (+3)||Quad telekinetic autocannon (2); heavy DSHK deck gun (12); Katyusha, 600mm (4)||Crypsis systems|
Sample train layouts
Dedicated second strike trains consist of an Echelon engine and two strategic missile cars with additional protection for the missiles provided by two weapon cars and a single infantry car.
Supply trains evolved considerably during the course of the Nokgorkan conflict, starting with a single weapon car and up to nine heavy freight cars and ending up with more than half of their car complement dedicated to combat functions in the form of four weapon cars, one artillery car and two infantry cars protecting the four heavy freight cars fulfilling the train’s primary function.
The Red Star and all related characters are ™ and © Christian Gossett. Used with kind permission.
The Red Star Campaign Setting is © Green Ronin Publishing, LLC.
The Red Star und alle verwandten Charaktere sind ™ und © Christian Gossett. Verwendet mit freundlicher Genehmigung.
The Red Star Campaign Setting ist © Green Ronin Publishing, LLC.