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Chameleon-class Commerce Raider


The Chameleon-class Commerce Raider was first built in the Spinward Marches before the Fourth Frontier War in anticipation of renewed hostilities with the Outworlds Coalition. It was a straight adaptation from the ubiquitous Brahmin-class (Type N) merchant, giving it a deadly disguise against both Coalition shipping, and an unpleasant surprise in the event of attack by Vargr corsairs or Zhodani privateers. Two hundred of these ships operated during the Fourth and Fifth Frontier Wars to great success against enemy shipping, though several ships were stolen when their contractor crews turned to piracy after the wars ended. The success of these craft prompted several other sector admiralties, particularly the Domains of Ilelish and Sol, to construct these craft in massive numbers. Thousands were eventually built and deployed by several factions during the Civil War/Rebellion. Of these, nearly eighty percent were controlled by Dulinor, Lucan and Margaret; and half of those or forty percent of the total by Dulinor alone sent against Lucan's shipping in Massilia and Zarushagar during the early offensives. After the naval offensives turned to raiding and scorched earth raids of the Black War, the surviving Chameleons proved efficient at inflicting the atrocities that Lucan and his contemporaries rained upon innocent worlds in the name of military expedience. The Regency of Deneb still retains several dozen of these craft, but they are all in storage and in largely unserviceable condition, the result of public outcry against the Black War. Only the Corellian League of Beyond Sector retains a large fleet of these craft in frontline service as a counter to Aslan and Garronean shipping.

Her designers, the Efate naval architecture firm of Oswald & Stuckey, made her a formidable naval craft. Ten centimeters of bonded superdense gives her respectable performance against the light weaponry carried by most civilian liners and merchants. 3G of acceleration enables her to run down the vast majority of her prey. But the real core of the vessel is the massive 2500 MJ NPAW running down her spine (though the gun is only 50 meters in length, and therefore not a true spinal mount) backed up by four 220 MJ double laser barbettes. Three smaller turrets are fitted for custom weapons fitting; most ship captains usually fitted either missles, or a mixture of fusion guns and 20mm VRF gauss guns to give their craft a devastating ground attack role. Because the class is very heavy, the ship's boat is usually detached for reconnaissance as soon as the ship begins maneuver.

As the class relies upon its resemblance to her relatively inoffensive sister in order to escape detection, her external fittings are designed to maximize the illusion. Her barbette and turret ports are constructed to very tight tolerances so that they fit flush with the hull as much as possible without compromising thermal expansion requirements. The HEPlaR is fitted with retractable hull doors to reduce the apparent size of the oversized maneuver drive. Nano-paint is applied to the hull to permit quick and easy changes of her colors and paint scheme, and can even create the visual representation of grime, wear and battle damage. The EMM suite is specially designed to mimic the EM signature of other legitimate traders; and retractable dummy booms, radiators and antennae can be shuffled at the push of a button to further confuse or mislead cursory inspections. But the most devious disguise is the result of the ships operational requirements: since the Chameleon is required to operate away from a fixed base for months at a time, real Brahmin merchants often accompany her on extended missions. These ships carry both supplies and prize crews, and have much of the same spoof equipment; it is not uncommon for Chameleon captains to utilize these ships to create an instant convoy around the raider, under the premise that the last place to look for a wolf is among the seeming sheep.

The Chameleon was originally designed for Adventure Ships 1 by J. Andrew Keith. Stats for this design from that book were provided courtesy of Richard Perks.

General Data
Displacement: 800 Hull Armor: 280
Length: 56m Volume: 11,200 cu. m.
Price: MCr 556.331 Target Size: S
Configuration: Cylinder AF Tech Level: F (15)
Mass (L/E) 11,605 tons/10,477 tons (does not include mass of Ship's Boat
Power Plant: TL-15 1620 MW Fusion (One Year Duration) (300 MW/Hit)
Jump Performance: Jump-3 (746.67 m3 per parsec, 2240 m3 for J-3)
G-Rating: 3G Heplar (400 MW/G), CG Lifters (Hi-Eff, 80 MW)
G-Turns: 56 (50 m3 each), 100.8 using jump fuel
Fuel Tankage: 5040 m3+162 m3 for power plant
Maint: 267
Computer: 3xTL-15Fb (1.1 MW)
Commo: 3x1000 AU Radio (20 MW), 3x1000 AU Maser (0.6 MW)
Avionics: Imaging EMS, Grav/Inertial Positioning, 190 km NOE
Sensors: PEMS 180,000 km Fixed Array (Range:6, 0.2 MW), 240,000 km; Folding Array (Range:8, 0.3 MW), AEMS 3x480,000 km (Range:16, 23 MW)
Workstations: 9 Bridge plus 14 Normal
50 meter 2500 MJ Spinal NPAW (Loc:1, Arcs:1, 1 Crew, 69.44 MW),
8x220 MJ Lasers in 4xRemote Double Barbettes (Loc:6-9, Arcs:2,3,4; 6.11 MW, Barbette Volume: 84m3) arranged as two batteries
3x42m3 turret hardpoints (Loc:1, Arcs:1,2,3; Loc:11x2; Arcs:2,3,4) for weapons customisation)
Weapon Performance
2500 MJ NPAW 10:250 20:250 40:188 80:94
220 MJ LB 9:1/12-37 18:1/12-37 36:1/12-37 72:1/10-31
None (though decoys are often fitted)
Fire Control
3xTL-15 msl/bm MFDs (Range:10, -6 DMs, 1 Crew, 0.06 MW)
Life Support: Extended (1.96 MW), AG/GC (6G, 56 MW)
Crew: 32 (2 Maneuver, 3 Electronics, 3 Gunnery, 11 Engineering, 4
Maintenance, 3 Small Craft, 4 Command, 1 Steward, 1 Medic)
Crew Accomodations: 6 Small Staterooms (Single Occupancy), 13 Small Staterooms (Double Occupancy)
Airlocks: 8
Cargo: 764.117 m3, 2 Large Cargo Hatches
Small Craft and Launch Facilities: Ships Boat (Docking Ring), 1 Launch Port
Other Fittings: Sickbay (0.8 MW), Electronics Shop (0.6 MW), Machine Shop (1 MW)
Features: Fuel Scoops (5%, 2.27 hours), Fuel Processing Plant (12 hours, 12.6 MW)
1.93 MW Surplus

System Damage Tables

PP: 6H LS: 36H MShp: 2H EMMR: (11h)
JD: 9H ELS: 18H EShp: 1H NPAW: 10H
MD: 2H SSR: 2h MFD: 2h LB: 2H
CG: 2H AG: 1H PEMS: 2H  
FPP: 10H SkBy: 1H EMM: 1H  

Damage Location Table

Location Surface Internal
1 Ant 1-2: HP, 3-4: NPAW, 5-17: Elec, 18-20: Qtrs
2-3 1-10: Ant, 11-15: FScp 1-3: Elec, 4-5: NPAW, 6-17: Qtrs, 18-20: Hold
4-5 1-19: Ant, 20: AL 1-12: Qtrs, 13-20: Hold
6-7 1-10: Ant, 11-15: FScp 1-3: LB, 4-9: NPAW, 10-20: Hold
8-9 1-19: Ant, 20: AL 1-3: LB, 4-20: Hold
10 Ant 1-6: NPAW, 7-20: Hold
11 1-6: Ant, 7: FScp 1-3: HP, 4-20: Hold
12-15 1-15: Ant, 16-20: LP Hold
16-19   1-10: Eng, 11-20: Hold
20 1-13: EMMR 1-3: Elec, 4-20: Eng