Triax X-8000 Gun Griffon (Also known as HIGH MACS 1):

In the wake of its continued expansion and clearing of large parts of Europe, several caches of pre Rifts technology have been found by the forces of the New German Republic. In one of these caches were several prototypes for a large, flying robot, which was meant for anti-armor operations. The prototypes and their weapons were turned over to the engineers at TRIAX, with the orders to make them operational again, so that the NGR could evaluate the combat potential of these machines. After careful study of the Gun Griffons (as their original builders had called them) the engineers at TRIAX announced that it was possible to reactivate and build more of these machines. When the army had finished testing these machines they were impressed enough to place a order of 30 of these powerful weapons. Actually they wanted more of them, but the price tag attached to each Gun Griffon was too big for a larger order without reducing orders for other military items. However, should these machines perform in combat as well as they did in the trials then it is virtually certain the NGR will order more of these incredible machines.

The Gun Griffon is a large, angular looking robot with large folding wings and two high performance thrusters mounted on the shoulders/back. The exhausts of these thrusters can be angled from straight down to horizontal in order to facilitate flight. The shoulders of the robot are rather wide and on each shoulder tip flight control surfaces are mounted. Also each shoulder houses 5 mini-missile launchers. The head is rather small, and houses a powerful optical array and laser rangefinder. Under the protruding part of the chest is a mount onto which the main cannon for the Gun Griffon is latched. The legs of the Gun Griffon are powerful and mount large shock absorbers, both to ease the shock upon landing and to counter some of the recoil of the main gun. On first sight, the robot appears to weigh about 30 tons, but this is not true. The extended use of (expensive) composites for both the armor and the frame have left the Gun Griffon at about half of that weight. If this had not been done, a fully armed Gun Griffon would simply not be able to fly at all.

The engineers at TRIAX reconfigured the electronic systems to be very similar to those on their X-1000 power armor. This way the pilots for the X-1000 can easily learn how to operate the Gun Griffon. (in game terms, they use the same piloting and combat skills). It also means that even though the Gun Griffon is large, it operates as a power armor not a robot. The most difficult thing is in fact learning to fly one of these 16 ton monsters. The life support system is fully air-conditioned and provides NBC protection, as well as 4 gallons of water in a refrigerated unit. The Gun Griffon also holds a one week supply of field rations. The radar system is very powerful, and the robot also holds a long range Thermo-Imager, Infrared optics and searchlights, and a laser rangefinder.

For weapon systems, the Gun Griffon has a total of 10 mini-missile launchers build into each of the shoulders, and a incredibly powerful large bore railgun, which can fire special Ramjet ammunition. As a matter of fact, the railgun can also fire normal ammunition, and explosive ammunition, but this diminishes its power considerably. The Railgun is a two handed weapon, and even then it has to be bolted to the main body for balance. Some pilots have mastered the skill to fire this enormous weapon in flight, but it is something which is absolutely not recommended for rookies!

The railgun takes its power from the nuclear powerpack of the Gun Griffon, but even then its power requirements, coupled with the recoil, make it a slow firing weapon. When using the Ramjet ammunition it has a range and power which surpass even the fabled Boom Gun by quite a margin though! Located under the shoulders, close to the body are two hard points that can carry a variable load of missiles.

Interestingly enough the NGR has NOT made knowledge of the Gun Griffons known to the Coalition and its allies. Perhaps it is not so trusting of emperor Prosek as he thinks.

The NGR uses the few Gun Griffons it has in "Jagergruppe", or hunting groups. Each such a unit consists of 3 Gun Griffons, 12 to 16 upgraded Predator power armors and a large very mobile support vehicle for ammunition storage and supplies. Such a group will usually set up camp in a area, after which the Gun Griffons, each accompanied by 3 or 4 Predators, start hunting. The Predators usually protect the Gun Griffons from short ranged attacks by groups of D-Bees and small monsters, while the Gun Griffon leisurely picks of large targets at long range. A group of 4 to 7 Predators will always stay with the support vehicle.

Model Type: X-8000 HIGH-MACS 1 (HIGH Mobility Armored Combat System 1)
Class: Anti Armor Flight-capable Assault Robot
Crew: One

M.D.C. by Location:

Hands (2):80 each
Annihilator Rail Gun:200
[1] Ammo Magazine for Annihilator:60
Jets Trusters (2):120 each
Mini-Missile Launcher (10, shoulders):30 each
[2] Wings:100 each
Arms (2):175 each
Legs (2):250 each
[3] Head:90
[4] Main Body:550
Reinforced Pilots Compartment:100
[5] Force Field:100

[1] This is a small and difficult target to strike, requiring the attacker to make a “called shot,”, but even then the attacker is -4 to strike.
[2] Destroying one wing will make flight impossible. However, even with no wing(s) the Gun Griffon can make jet powered leaps and hover stationary above the ground.
[3] Destroying the head of the power armor will eliminate all forms of optical enhancement and sensory systems. The pilot must then only on his own human vision and senses. No power armor combat bonuses to strike, parry, and dodge! The head is a small and difficult target to hit ( shielded by the air intakes). Thus, it can only be hit when a character makes a “called shot,” and even then the attacker is -4 to strike.
[4] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will shut the Robot down completely, making it useless.
[5] Ever wondered where TRIAX got the design for that rechargeable force field for their Ulti-Max power armor? This is where it came from, out of the Gun Griffon prototypes they found in the wilderness. The force field can be activated at will, usually at the beginning of combat. Depleting the 100 M.D.C. of the force field will automatically shut the generator down, with subsequent damage done to the body of the Gun Griffon.
A depleted force field needs 16 hours to recharge to full capacity. Even minor damage (25 M.D.C. or less) requires 4 hours to fully recharge.

Running: 60 mph (96 kph) maximum. Note that the act of running does NOT tire out its operator. Cruising speed is a more cautious 40 mph(65 kph). Well suited for most terrains, including underwater.
Leaping: The powerful robot legs can leap up to 15 feet (4.6 m) high or across unassisted by the thrusters. A jet thruster assisted leap can propel the unit up to 100 feet (30.5 m) high and 200 feet (61 m) across without actually attaining flight.
Flying: The wings and thrusters enable the Gun Griffon to hover stationary in mid-air or fly. Maximum flying speed is 250 mph (400 kph), but cruising speed is considered to be 125 mph (200 kph).
Maximum altitude is limited to about 1000 feet (305 meters).
Maximum Effective Range: Conditionally unlimited. The fusion reactor gives power for two decades of service, but the jet thrusters get hot and need to cool for an hour after a maximum of six hours of flight when traveling at speeds above cruising, and twelve hours at or below cruising speed. Indefinitely with rest stops.
Underwater Capabilities: Although not designed for underwater use, it can walk along the bottom of the sea at about 25% of its normal running speed. Using the jet thrusters, the Gun Griffon can travel on the surface of water at 45 mph (72 kph/38.5 knots), underwater at 35 mph (56 kph/30 knots) or fly above the water surface at normal speeds.
Maximum Ocean Depth: 2,400 feet (720 meters).

Statistical Data
Height: 26.2 feet (8 meters)
Width: 18.4 feet (5.6 meter) with wings folded, 44.6 feet (13.4 meters) with wings extended.
Length: 15 feet (4.5 meters) with thrusters fully downward, 20 feet (6 meters) with thrusters horizontal.
Weight: 16 tons (14.5 metric ton) without gun, Railgun adds 5 tons (4.5 metric ton)
Physical Strength: Equal to a P.S. 45
Cargo: A small 3 by 3 by 3 feet (0.9 meters) storage compartment for extra clothing, weapons, and personal items
Power System: Nuclear Fusion with average life span of 11 years
Black Market Cost: NOT AVAILABLE ON BLACK MARKET. New Gun Griffons costs 52 million credits per unit! The Coalition would pay many times that amount for a fully functional and armed Gun Griffon.

Weapon Systems

  1. Annihilator Railgun: This huge weapon (8 meters in length) fires special 3.52 inch (90 mm) ramjet ammunition. It is more powerful than even the fabled Boom Gun of the Glitter Boy powered armor, but because of the huge power it needs it requires almost 4 seconds to charge between shots. Each Ramjet round weighs in at nearly 17 pounds AFTER terminal burn, at which time it is traveling at hypersonic speeds. Each of these rounds costs about 10,000 credits, which is why practice with this weapon is usually performed with more mundane and slightly shorter ranged solid slugs. Recoil is kept manageable by large shock absorbers in the weapon itself, and the fact that part of the ammo`s speed is build up AFTER it has left the weapon. The Pilot of the Gun Griffon can switch between ammo types at will, the automated magazine then feeds the selected ammunition to the Railgun. A magazine is loaded onto the underside of the railgun itself.
    Weight: 4.5 tons (4.1 metric ton) for the Rail gun with magazine. 1.000 lbs (452 kg) for a extra magazine.
    Mega Damage: 5D6x10 per round of ramjet ammo! Solid slug does 3D4x10, High Explosive Armor Piercing does 2D6x10 with a blast radius of 10 ft.
    Rate of Fire: Three times per melee. Bursts and sprays not possible.
    Maximum Effective Range: 14,000 feet (4,200 meters) with Ramjet ammunition, 11,000 feet (3,200 meters) with solid slugs and high explosive. With the help of the rangefinder, radar, and the computer, can fire all rounds indirectly to 26,250 feet (4.9 miles / 8000 meters).
    Payload: 40 round magazine for 40 shots. Ammo selection is usually 20 Ramjet, 10 solid and 10 High explosive per magazine. A second magazine can be hooked to the undercarriage of the rocket jets, but the new magazine must be manually moved from that position by another Gun Griffon, or a robot with a strength of 30 or higher. Reloading a magazine will take about five minutes for those not trained, but a mere one minute by somebody trained in the use of the Gun Griffon robot.
    Special Features: Hooks up to the Gun Griffon through a special shock absorbing and stabilizing mount. Energy from the Gun Griffon`s reactor is also supplied though this link. The size and the recoil of this weapon mean that any other type of robot would be at -2 to strike when firing this weapon, and at -1 to dodge. Being meant to fire this weapon, the Gun Griffon has a +2 to strike.
    Note: If this cannon is fired in flight, the cannon has the potential to disrupt the robots flight. This causes a -4 penalty to dodge for one melee attack after firing the cannon and pilots with power armor combat basic must make a piloting roll or crash.
  2. Mini-missile Launchers (10): Five of these are mounted on each shoulder, and are fitted flush with the armor, these are standard mini missile launchers, usually used for close in defense purposes. The reloads are fed to the launchers from a small magazine in the main body. If a launcher is damaged, its reloads can be directed to the other launchers.
    Missile Type: Any mini-missile can be used, but standard issue is armor piercing or plasma. Fragmentation will be used for anti-personnel operations.
    Mega-damage: Varies with mini missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with mini missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in a volley of two (2), four (4), six (6), eight (8), or ten (10) missiles.
    Payload: 1 mini-missile per launcher, with 7 reloads per launcher, for a total of 80 mini-missiles.
  3. Missile Hard Points (2): These hard points are located under the shoulders, close to the body. Each Hard point can carry two medium range missiles, four short ranged missiles, or a pod holding eight mini missiles. Long range missiles cannot be carried. All missiles must be of the same group, all Medium Range Missiles, Short Range Missiles or Mini-Missiles.
    Missile Type: Varies
    Mega-damage: Varies with missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), six (6), or eight (8) missiles.
    Payload: 2 Medium Range Missiles, 4 Short Range Missiles, or 8 Mini-Missiles per Hard point.
  4. Energy Rifles & Other Rail Guns: The Gun Griffon can fire any other Robot sized weapon currently in use with the NGR. Most noticeable this includes the VX-180 Maxi-RAIL gun of the Ulti-Max power armor, of which it can actually carry and fire two, one in each hand. When using other weapons the pilot has normal number of attacks (hand to hand).
  5. Hand to Hand Combat: Rather than use a weapon, The pilot can engage in mega-damage hand to hand combat. See Basic and Elite Power Armor Combat Training in the Robot Combat section of Rifts, page 45. All abilities are the same except as follows:
    -1 to dodge penalty and -2 to strike when carrying the Annihilator railgun (takes 2 melee actions to unhook). Standard abilities without railgun.
    Restrained Punch: 1D6 M.D.
    Normal Punch: 2D6 M.D.
    Power Punch: 4D6 M.D.
    Leaps and kicks ARE possible, with help from the thrusters.

Special Equipment:
The Gun Griffon has all the systems standard to all TRIAX robots with the following modifications:

Even though the Robot is large and powerful, the robot still acts more like a power armor than it does a robot and the robot uses Power Armor Combat: Basic and Power Armor Combat: Elite from page 45 of the Rifts Main Book with the following bonuses and penalties to the skills:

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Writeup by Mischa (E-Mail Mischa)

Revised By Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 1998, Mischa. All rights reserved.