Metalworks Incorporated LPA-20 “Ferret” Light Power Armor:

Metalworks Incorporated has made a deal with Triax to produce several of their designs. The Terrain Hopper is almost considered a non military design and there was little problem negotiating the contract for Metalworks to produce the design. In addition, the armor is extremely popular. Many owners though wanted to version with better weaponry.

As a result of interest in such a design, Metalworks decided to develop a better armed version of the Terrain Hopper. Instead of being based on the standard T-21 design, it is based on the T-C20 version of the terrain hopper. This version carries some light weaponry while also carrying a bit heavier armor. The name chosen for the armor is the “Ferret” most likely because the Ferret is a small yet dangerous predator.

Rumor is that Metalworks and Zilka Industries have a strong working relationship with each other. This has lead many to wonder about the Metalworks' LPA-20 design and the Zilkia Z-Universal power armor. The Z-Universal is based off of the K-Universal which is a knock off from the T-21 Terrain Hopper. Both are designed to fill virtually the same role and even their styling is quite similar. Still, some of their other designs fill similar roles to designs produced by the other although none are as close as these two in basic design.

It should be noted that the skill to pilot the T-21, the T-C20, the K-Universal, the Z-Universal, and Ferret are virtually identical. As well, the designs are incredibly agile. These are two of the reasons why the designs are all quite popular. In basic chassis, the LPA-20 is little different than the T-C20 although in some cases a few components are changed out for easier production in North America. It shares many of the weaknesses as the standard Terrain Hopper including that it will overheat in flight after only two hours. It can travel in the standard hopping method though at speeds up to almost three hundred kilometers per hour.

The big change is in the weaponry. The LPA-20 adds a combination laser rifle and grenade launcher to the back of the armor. Basically a copy of the JA-12 Juicer Assault Rifle, this weapon has excellent range and has the ability to fire three shot bursts for greater damage. Power for the rifle is pulled directly from the armor's reactor and it is targeted by an automatic servo system. This compensates for the leaping motion of the armor. The grenade launcher has a total of four grenades and also only has about half the range of the pulse laser.

The gun mount takes half of the space which the T-C20 mounts mini-missiles. The remaining space is modified slightly on the Ferret so that a total of four mini-missiles can be carried compared to six to the T-C20 design. The lasers mounted on the standard T-C20 are also replaced. This is likely as much for manufacturing reasons as anything else. They are replaced by a particle beam in each hand. The particle beams are much shorter ranged but are quite a bit more powerful than the lasers. Several other Metalworks' design seem to carry similar weapons although only a single one is mounted in each forearm instead of a pair. These seem to be copies of the particle beams mounted on the Coalition F.I.W.S. Like the standard Terrain Hopper, handheld weapons can also be used.

Metalworks does produce a special flight pack system known as the "Hawkwing." More adventurous pilots of the Ferret, as the Terrain Hopper, love the flight system. It also adds addition weaponry to the armor, both missiles and energy weapons. Many pilots of the Ferret also have added to the armor a Naruni Force Field for greater ability to withstand damage.

Model Type: LPA-20 “Ferret” Light Power Armor
Class: Strategic Armor Military Exo-Skeleton
Crew: One

M.D.C. by Location:

[1] Rear Jet Pack (1):50
Rear JA-12 Combination Pulse Laser / Grenade Launcher40
Rear Mini-Missile Launcher (1):30
[2] Chest Headlight (1):2
[2] Forearm Particle Beam (2, one each arm):15 each
[3] Head:70
[3] Main Body:200

[1] Destroying the jet pack will make power jumps impossible.
[2] These are small and difficult targets to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,”, but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.
[3] Destroying the head/helmet has a 1-70% chance of knocking the pilot unconscious. If conscious, the pilot has two problems, one: no power armor combat bonuses to strike, parry, and dodge, and two: the human head is now vulnerable to attack. Note: The head is a small and difficult target to hit (shielded by exhaust tubes). Thus, it can only be hit when a character makes a called shot and even then the attacker is -3 to strike.
[4] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will shut the armor down completely, making it useless. Note: Destroying the jet pack will make flight and power jumps/leaps impossible.

Running: 40 mph (64 km) maximum. The act of running does tire its operator, but at a fatigue rate of 20% of normal, thanks to the robot exo-skeleton.
Leaping: A height of approximately 15 feet (4.6 m) straight up or lengthwise is possible unassisted by the thrusters. A jet thruster assisted leap , from a stationary position can propel the unit up to 200 feet (61 m) high and across without actually attaining flight or requiring a running start.
Power Jumping and travel: Same as the T-21: Up to 300 feet (91.5 m) lengthwise, average height of a controlled power jump generally ranges between 20 to 50 feet (6 to 15 m); with 20 or 30 feet (6 to 9 m) being the norm. Maximum ground speed via power leaps is 170 mph (272 km). Range is effectively unlimited. Directional control by the pilot is excellent.
Limited Flight: Same as the T-21: Hover stationary up to 200 feet (61 m). Maximum flying speed is 100 mph (160 km), but cruising speed is considered to be around 60 mph (96. 5 km) . Maximum altitude is limited to about 200 feet (61 m).
Flying Range: The nuclear power supply of the armor gives it a decade of life, but the jet rockets get hot and need to cool after a maximum of two hours of continuous flight. In many cases, the jets will start to sputter and speed will fluctuate after one hour. This is especially true if the jets have been damaged . Remember, traveling by power jumps can be maintained for an unlimited number of hours at a greater speed of 170 mph (272 km) .

Statistical Data:
Height: 7 feet (2.1 m)
Width: 3 feet (0.9 m)
Length: About 2.5 feet (0.76 m)
Weight: 165 lbs (74.84 kg) with jet pack, combination laser / grenade launcher, missiles and additional armor..
Physical Strength: Equal to P. S . 23 .
Cargo: None
Power System: Nuclear, average life is 10 years.
Black Market Cost: 850,000 credits for a new, undamaged, fully equipped suit complete with jet pack and weapon systems.

Weapon Systems:

  1. Rear Mounted JA-12 Pulse Laser / Grenade Launcher: Basically identical to the Juicer weapon and quite powerful with the capability of firing three shot bursts. Power for the laser is pulled directly from the armor's fusion reactor. The weapon is mounted on the back of the armor in a very similar fashion to that of the boom gun mounted on the Triax Glitter Boy. It tilts upwards when not in firing position. The weapon also carries a fire control computer and automatic tracking system so that it does not suffer the penalties of handheld weapon systems.
    Weight: 13 Ibs. (5.85 kg).
    Maximum Effective Range: Laser: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters). Grenade Launcher: 2,000 feet (610 meters).
    Mega-Damage: Heavy Laser: 4D6 for Single Shot and 1D6x10+10 for 3 simultaneous blasts. Grenade Launcher: 3D6 to 10 ft (3 m) radius for high explosive or varies special warheads.
    Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand (usually 5 or 6)
    Payload: Heavy Laser: Effectively Unlimited Grenade Launcher: 4 Grenades, reloaded individually or by speed loader.
  2. Forearm Particle Beams (2): Short ranged but extremely powerful energy weapons which are copies of the particle beam weaponry of the Coalition F.I.W.S. For virtually unlimited payload, the weapons pull power directly from the armor's fusion reactor. The suit's operator need only point and shoot. The forearm lasers can be used in combined attacks if the person has the skill Paired Weapons: Energy Pistol
    Maximum Effective Range: 500 feet (152 meters)
    Mega-Damage: 5D6 each
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the number of combined hand to hand attacks of the person in the suit (usually 4-6) .
    Payload: Effectively unlimited.
  3. Back mounted Mini-Missile Launcher: A small mini-missile launcher is hooked onto the back of the jet pack. Because of the JA-12 mounted on the back of the light armor, the number of mini-missiles had to be reduced from six missile to four missiles. Any mini-missile can be used, but standard issue is armor piercing or plasma. Fragmentation will be used for anti-personnel operations .
    Maximum Effective Range: Usually about one mile (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega-Damage: Varies with Mini-Missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or volleys of two (2) missiles.
    Payload: Four (4) missiles. <
  4. Energy Rifle, Light Rail Gun, and other man-size weapons can be carried into combat. Sidearm (pistol), knife, sword, hand grenades, etc . , can be carried on a belt at the waist or across the chest. The LPA-20 pilot is - 3 to strike when leaping or flying (Not applicable to main pulse laser)

Special Equipment:
Has all the normal sensors of power armors on Rifts Earth plus the following special features.:

[ Altarain TM, Bandito Arms TM, Brodkil TM, Chipwell Armaments TM, Coalition States TM, Cyber-Knight TM, Federation of Magic TM, Free Quebec TM, Golden Age Weaponsmiths TM, Horune TM, Iron Heart Armaments TM, Kankoran TM, Kittani TM, Kydian TM, Larsen’s Brigade TM, M.D.C. TM, Mechanoids TM, Mega-Damage TM, Megaversal Legion TM, Millennium Tree TM, Mutants in Orbit TM, Naruni Enterprises TM, Naut’Yll, New Navy TM, New Sovietskiy TM, NGR TM, Nog Heng TM, Northern Gun TM, Phase World TM, Psyscape TM, Rifter TM, SAMAS TM, S.D.C. TM, Shemarrian TM, Splugorth TM, Stormspire TM, Sunaj TM, Tolkeen TM, Triax TM, Wellington Industries TM, Wilk’s Laser Technologies TM, Xiticix TM, and Zaayr TM are trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

[ Beyond the Supernatural®, Heroes Unlimited®, Nightbane®, Ninjas & Superspies®, Palladium Fantasy®, and Rifts® are registered trademarks owned by Kevin Siembieda and Palladium Books Inc. ]

Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2010, Kitsune. All rights reserved.