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Japanese Haguro class Nuclear Guided Missile Cruiser:

In the late Twenty-Eighties the Japanese Navy felt increasing pressure from Chinese Air Force and Navy aircraft. There were several incidents where massive flights of aircraft buzzed over Japanese task forces despite Japanese warnings. The worst of these incidents resulted in four Chinese and three Japanese aircraft being downed.

 With tensions at an all-time high, Japanese officials realized that their air-defenses had nearly been overwhelmed by the mass assault tactics of the Chinese. The Shimakaze and Hyuga class destroyers simply did not have sufficient anti-aircraft capability to be effective at fleet defense if the Chinese mounted a full scale attack. A larger more specialized anti-aircraft command ship was required.

The Japanese fleet design team started with the main sensor array and weapons systems and designed the rest of the ship around them. Forming the heart of the new cruiser’s defenses, four American ninety-six cell Mk 59 vertical launch systems provided 384 long-range missiles at a moments notice with an additional 384 ready to back them up in fifteen seconds. Two launchers would be mounted forward of the bridge with the second pair aft of the superstructure.

Backing them up were a pair of eight-cell Mk-55 medium-range vertical launch systems mounted on both sides of the superstructure. These would be used to deal with any air attacks that might leak through the main defenses and required far less of a deck footprint than the Mk 59 launchers. Finally for close range defense against air attacks, the new cruiser would mount four Mk 44 “Sea Sabre” point defense mounts. These combined a short range missile battery with a powerful rail gun.

For surface warfare, the cruiser was armed with a pair 100 mm high velocity rail guns in single turrets were mounted forward and aft of the main launchers. The rail guns were chosen over the 155 mm cannons for both the sake of ammunition capacity and damage capability. A secondary advantage however was that the rail guns required a smaller deck footprint than a 155 mm cannon might require.

 Although the Haguro class were built primarily as anti-aircraft cruisers, a pair of quad tube anti-submarine torpedo launchers were included in the design. A total of sixty-four torpedoes are carried for the two mountings with an automatic reloading system.

The SPY-5D radar system was originally mounted on the Ise class destroyer. The Japanese negotiated with United States Government and the main contractors who designed the SPY-5D active phased array radar system to develop their own system based on the American radar system. The new system they came up with was the most advanced anti-aircraft detection and tracking system on the planet. The United States Navy studied the improved radar system and classified it as the SPY-5J. The phased array radar system was to be upgraded to this standard on all the Hyuga class destroyers, but was interrupted by the Great Cataclysm in 2098.

An advanced hull sonar was included in the design to defend against submarines, but no towed array was incorporated. It was not considered essential because the cruiser was never meant to operate as an anti-submarine warfare platform. While similar to hull sonar systems mounted on United States warships, the hull sonar was developed in Japan for their own requirements. To give an additional measure of self defense against torpedoes, the cruiser does mounts towed decoys.

There is a single hanger and planting platform built into the after part of the superstructure. It is expected that the cruiser would operate a single EV-84A Kingfisher VTOL anti-submarine aircraft. In addition, there was a small complement of power armor and marines assigned to provide ship defense.

The composites and ceramics used in the construction of the hull and superstructure of the cruiser were designed to be radar absorbent. In addition, the ship was designed to have a generally minimize radar cross signature. Even though a relatively large vessel, it still is surprising hard to detect on radar. Both the hull and propellers were fitted with a bubble masking system in order to reduce the ability to detect the cruiser using sonar.

The Haguro class were far larger than previous Japanese surface combatants. Only the Taiho II class carriers and Amagi class escort carriers were larger in length and displacement. Automation was standard throughout the ship, as was common with almost all warships of the time. This meant the crew was far smaller than a comparable ship from 50 years earlier.

Part of this was because of the propulsion systems. Fusion reactors were incorporated in the design from the start and required much less man-power to remain at peak performance. They provided excellent power and acceleration. The propellers were variable pitch and gave great maneuverability in close quarters. Top speed was recorded at 35 knots, more than enough to keep up with the other ships of the fleet.

Three of these excellent ships were built between 2087 and 2098 with a fourth vessel under construction when the Great Cataclysm occurred. One was assigned to each carrier battle group to provide area defense and coordination. The cruisers were always intended as flagships and had special facilities installed for the purpose. The third of the class, Nachi, was escorting the carrier Ryuho and was in the port of Kure along with the rest of the battle group when the rifts came in 2098. She was transported into the Rifts era, where she continues to guard the carrier. The fate of the other ships is unknown, but given their anti-corrosive hull construction, it is possible that more of them could have survived.

Author Note: With respect to time line, these designs may or may not reflect our modern time line. The time line of these writeups diverged from our time line starting around 1999. Consider the universe that these designs are created for to be an alternate universe not bound by ours.

Model Type: Haguro class Guided Missile Cruiser.

Vehicle Type: Ocean, Guided Missile Cruiser.

Crew: 255; 27 officers, 22 Chief Petty officers, and 204 enlisted (Has a high degree of automation).

Troops: 6 VTOL pilots and crew, 20 Power Armor Pilots, and 80 Marines.

Robots, Power Armors, and Vehicles:

Power Armor Compliment:



PA-04A SAMAS Power Armors.

Aircraft Compliment:



EVS-84A Kingfisher Anti-Submarine Warfare model.

M.D.C. by Location:





[1] SPY-5J Active Phased Array Radar System (4, superstructure):

350 each.


100 mm Heavy Rail Gun Turret (2, forward & aft):

300 each.


Mk 59 Ninety-Six Cell Vertical Launcher Systems (4, 2 forward & 2 aft):

750 each.


Mk 55 Eight Cell Vertical Medium Range Missile Launchers (2, sides):

300 each.


Mk 44 Combination Anti-Missile Defense System (4, superstructure):

200 each.


Quad Torpedo Launchers (2, sides):

50 each.


[2] Chaff Launcher (4, superstructure):

10 each.


Hanger (aft):



VTOL / Helicopter Pad (aft):



Outer Hull (per 40 foot / 12.2 meter area):



[3] Main Body:



[1] Destroying phased array radar panels will destroy the ship’s fire control systems but guns have backup systems and panels can partially compensate for each other.

[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 main body causes the ship to lose structural integrity, causing the ship to sink. The ship is fitted with advanced polymer armors that allow the ship to withstand up to -1,500 M.D.C. before losing structural integrity and sinking. There are enough life preservers and inflatable life boats to accommodate everyone on the ship. There are enough life preservers and inflatable life boats to accommodate everyone on the ship.


Surface: 40.3 mph (35 knots/ 64.8 kph).

Range: Unlimited due to fusion engines (needs to refuel every 20 years and requires maintenance as well). Ship carries about four months of supplies on board.

Statistical Data:

Draft: 32.5 feet (9.9 meters) including sonar dome.

Length: 734.5 feet (223.9 meters) waterline and 755 feet (230.1 meters) overall.

Width: 80 feet (24 meters)

Displacement: 16,580 tons standard and 20,850 tons fully loaded.

Cargo: 800 tons (725.7 metric tons) of nonessential equipment and supplies. Each enlisted crew member has a small locker for personal items and uniforms. Ship’s officers have more space for personal items. Most of the ship’s spaces are taken up by extra ammo, armor, troops, weapons, and engines.

Power System: 4 Nuclear Fusion Reactors, average life span is 20 years.

Black Market Cost: Not for sale but if found on the black market would probably cost between 1 to 2 billion credits. Cost does not include embarked craft and power armors.

Weapon Systems:

  1. Two (2) Hyper Velocity 100 mm Heavy Rail Gun:  One turret is mounted in the front of the vessel and the other turret is mounted on the rear. The 100 mm heavy rail gun has better range than comparable sized standard cannons, inflicts greater damage to armored targets, and has a higher payload due requiring to no storage of propellant charges. While this rail gun normally fires a solid dart of high strength alloy material that does massive damage to targets that it hits, it can also fire explosive warheads for softer targets and against aircraft. The rail gun mount has the ability to rotate 360 and can tilt up to 90 degrees and is considered useful against both ground and air targets. In addition, the weapon system is also gyro-stabilized and has an advanced fire control computer. However, using solid dart rounds, the cannon is less effective at targeting fast moving targets such as aircraft, missiles, and flying power armors.

    Maximum Effective Range: 15 miles (24.1 km).

    Mega-Damage: A single solid dart round inflicts 5D6x10+20 M.D.C. (optional rule is that cannon gets a critical on a natural 18, 19, or 20 due to its high penetration). Can also use Standard High Explosive rounds that inflict 1D4x10 with a blast radius of 16 feet (4.88 meters). High Explosive Armor Piercing inflicts 2D4x10 with a blast radius of 8 feet (2.44 meters).

    Rate of Fire: Maximum of four (4) shots per melee round.

    Payload: 600 rounds per gun for 1,200 rounds total. Ship normally carries 600 solid dart rounds, 400 high explosive rounds, and 200 high explosive armor piercing rounds.

    Bonuses / Penalties: +2 to strike against ground / surface targets. Solid dart rounds have -2 to strike against aircraft, missiles, and flying power armors. No penalties for explosive rounds against fast moving targets.

  2. Four (4) Mk 44 “Sea Sabre” Combination Anti-Missile Defense Systems: One system is mounted on each corner of the superstructure. This anti-missile defense system combines both a rapid fire rail gun and a short range missile launcher. While mounted in one system, both defense systems have separate tracking and fire control systems. The short range missile launchers can target up four targets and can fire a volley up to twice per melee. Quite powerful, the rail gun is capable of destroying any missile or inflicting serious damage on aircraft. The rail gun can fire on automatic at up to six targets per melee (Has +3 to strike missile and +2 to strike aircraft). In its design, the rail gun is very similar to those carried on the Sea King cruiser and it is likely that the Sea King’s rail guns came from a prototype of this system. The system also can be used against other ships and ground targets. The system has a 360 degree rotation and can elevate up to 90 degrees to fire at targets directly overhead.

    Maximum Effective Range: Rail Guns: 11,000 feet (2 miles / 3.2 km). Short Range Missiles: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: Rail Guns: 3D4x10 M.D. per burst of 40 rounds (Can only fire bursts). Short Range Missiles: As per short range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Rail Guns: Six (6) attacks per melee round. Short Range Missiles: Two (2) attacks per melee round, can fire short range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (4) or four (4) short range missiles.

    Payload: Rail Guns: 8,000 rounds (200 burst) each. Short Range Missiles: Sixteen (16) short range missiles each.

  3. Four (4) Mk 59 Vertical Launch Missile Systems: Two launchers are located forward behind the rail gun and forward of the superstructure. Two more are mounted behind the superstructure but in front of the aft gun turret. The system is similar to the vertical launch system employed on many ships in the late twentieth century to launch the SM-2 series missile but since the missiles are smaller they have a reload system that reloads from under the launcher and can reload within 15 seconds. The launchers have a total of ninety-six each and are eight missile cells longs by twelve cells wide. The launchers can launch up to half the capacity of the cells per melee. The launcher can use a vast variety of missiles including surface skimming missiles and rocket propelled torpedoes (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.) Each cell can carry one long range missile or two medium range missiles. The reload for the cell must carry the same load as the main cell. Long range missiles are normally used against large targets and aircraft further out where the medium range missiles will normally be used to engage closer targets. About half of all long range missiles carried are fusion warheads and most missiles are normally smart missiles.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per long or medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per long or medium range 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), eight (8), sixteen (16), thirty-two (32), or forty-eight (48) missiles per launcher per melee round. Missile cells are automatically reloaded and are ready to fire next melee.

    Payload: Ninety-six (96) missile cells in launcher with reload systems for each cell [Three hundred and eighty-four (384) missiles cells total with one reload each cell.] One (1) long range missile or two (2) medium range missiles may be carried per cell but reload must be the same load out as well. The ship will often carry eighteen (18) cells in each launcher (72 cells total) with two medium range missiles each and the other cells loaded with one long range missile each.

  4. Two (2) Mk 55 Vertical Medium Range Missile Launchers: Unlike most vertical launch systems, these launchers fire the missiles on a six degree angle to the side. This is because the system was initially designed for carriers and is to prevent a missile that fails on its launch from crashing into aircraft on the flight deck. The missiles are arranged in a two by four pattern, and each launch cell has six reloads. One launcher is mounted on either side of the hull of the cruiser and require much less deck space than a Mk-41 or Mk-49 vertical launch system. Each system can launch up to eight missiles simultaneously each and the launcher is automatically reloaded. These launchers often act as the ship’s middle point defense and are normally used to engage incoming air targets and missiles.

    Maximum Effective Range: As per medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: As per medium range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Each launcher can fire medium range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), or eight (8) medium range missiles. Each launcher operates independently.

    Payload: Eight (8) medium range missiles in each launcher, with forty-eight (48) medium missiles in each magazine for automatic reloads, for a total of one hundred and twelve (112) medium range missiles for both launchers including missiles in launchers.

  5. Two (2) Quad 12.75 inch (324 mm) Medium Torpedo Launchers: Mainly design for anti-submarine warfare but can be used against surface targets. There is one launcher on each side of the ship with four tubes each. The tubes have an automatic reloading system and can be fired quickly. The ships carries a total of 64 torpedoes for reloads. Treat warheads as medium range missile warheads.

    Maximum Effective Range: 20 miles (32 km).

    Mega-Damage: By medium torpedo warhead type (See revised Rifts torpedoes for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire medium torpedoes one at a time or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) medium torpedoes per side, launcher can fire a maximum of two volleys of torpedoes per melee each launcher.

    Payload: Has sixty-four (64) medium torpedoes for reloads.

  6. Two (2) Chaff / Decoy Launchers: Located on the superstructure of the ship, they are designed to confuse incoming missiles. Both launchers must be operated or effects will be reduced. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not be effective against Phase World / Three Galaxies missiles due to technological difference. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles) and reduce effects of launchers by 10% per launcher not used (Add +10% to rolls per launcher not used.) Only useful against missiles, not useful against torpedoes underwater.

    Range: Around Ship.

    Mega Damage: None.



    Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.



    Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)



    No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.

    Payload: Twenty-four (24) each for a total of forty-eight (48) canisters.

  7. Four (4) Advanced Towed Decoys: The vessel carries four advanced towed decoy drones. They are each a small automated vehicle that creates a false sonar image designed to mimic the vessels. The decoy is dragged behind the destroyer using a cable. If decoys are not destroyed, they can be recovered and repaired. Rifts Earth decoy systems are assumed to not operate against Phase World / Three Galaxies weapon systems due to technological difference.

    M.D.C.: 20 each.

    Range: Not Applicable although decoy is deployed approximately 1,000 feet (304.8 meters) from the vessel.

    Effects: The decoy has an 80% chance of fooling ordinary non military sonars and non smart guided torpedoes, the decoy has a 50% chance of fooling military level sonars (like those of the Coalition) and non “smart” torpedoes, and the decoy has a 25% chance of fooling advanced military sonars (Like those of the New Navy and Triax) and “smart” torpedoes.

    Rate of Fire: One can be deployed at a time and requires two (2) minutes to deploy (reel out) another decoy.

    Payload: Four (4) towed decoys.

Special Systems:

The ship has all systems standard on a robot vehicle 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. ]

Vessel drawing is created and copyrighted by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune) & Mischa (E-Mail Mischa).

Mischa has no art home page at present but many other items on my site.

Writeup by Kamikazi ( & Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2003 & 2017, Kamikazi & Kitsune. All rights reserved.