Techno-Wizard M103 Heavy Tank:

The M103 Tank was developed to be able to fight the heavy Soviet tanks such as the T-10. The tank was first introduced in 1957 and was the heaviest American tank until the introduction of the M1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. Three hundred total were produced with over two thirds going to the marines. It was armed with a 120 mm rifled cannon which fired two piece ammunition and was extremely heavily armored. Using many of the same drive components, the heavy tank had some design problems including being underpowered and having a fragile drive train. Even so, the tank was not replaced completely by the M60 in Marine Corp service until 1972. A surprising number, almost two dozen in total, of these tanks were preserved in military museums.

Many Techno-Wizards love historic military vehicles and the M103 Heavy tank is no exception. After the first one was discovered and rebuilt, groups of techno-wizards went out to see how many more of these tanks that they could find and recover. A total of over a half dozen of these tanks have been recovered in total. The rebuilt of the tanks is most similar to that for the M48 and M60 tanks. In many ways, the heavy tanks offer excellent support platforms for the lighter tank designs.

Like most of techno-wizard modified tank designs, the tank is fitted with additional armor using new high strength composites and alloys. Still, as far as armor, the tank is far from the equal to fully modern heavy tanks such as the Iron Hammer. Like other converted techno-wizard tanks, the tank mounts a magical force field which vastly increases the ability of the tank to withstand damage. This enchantment can be activated up to three times per day. A large amount of weapon found on Rifts Earth is energy weapons and the tank also has the enchantment of “Impervious to Energy.” The tank carries the enchantments of “Chameleon” and "Breath Without Air." Unlike the force fields, these enchantments are powered by the magical energy of the crew. Various optics are added to the tank to allow it to complete in a modern battlefield and has “See the Invisible” optics as well.

The M103 original mounted a gasoline engine, only having a range of only around 80 miles, although in most models the engine was upgraded to a diesel engine which more than tripled the range. The techno-wizards convert the tank to an electrical engine to run on magical energy. A lightning bolt is cast into the engine and the tank has a range of around a thousand miles before a second lightning bolt has to be cast. This is far cheaper than powering the tank with a fusion reactor. The power train is rebuilt to a large extend with top speed being increased to almost forty miles an hour. Still, the heavy tank is slower than modern tanks and even the techno-wizard converted M48 and M60 tanks.

The 90 mm electro-thermal cannon on the M48 and M60 was not considered adequate for the heavy tank design. A number of 125 mm electro-thermal cannons were recovered from old Chinese tanks in either South or Central America and the tanks have been adapted to mount this weapon instead of the original M58. It is believed that several dozen were recovered from a single battle zone. There is believed to be a 120 mm electro-thermal design as well but none have been fitted to these tanks although performance would likely be similar. It is kind of Ironic that a design meant for fighting Soviet tanks now mounts a weapon derived from Soviet designs. Because an electro-thermal weapon does not require a large propellant charge, the cannon can carry over twice as many rounds as originally could be carried. A total of eighty rounds can be carried in total. Even though the tank lacks an auto loader, due to the smaller and lighter weight ammunition, the tank only requires a single loader. Special missiles can be fired in place of standard ammunition although each takes the place of a pair of standard rounds. The tank mounts a pair of techno-wzard batteries to charge the main gun. Each one stores enough energy for fifty firings and they are recharged in the same manner as the main engines. A lightning bolt recharges the battery. New fire control and sensor systems replace the original optics and this enables the heavy tank to target enemies while on the move.

The heavy tank originally mounted a pair of .30 caliber machine guns. These are upgraded to a pair techno-wizard telekinetic machine guns. This gives them virtually unlimited payload although the guns need to be recharged once a month even if they are not fired. The twin guns give double the firepower of the techno-wizard M60 tank. The tank also has a commander heavy machine gun mount. About half of models carry a telekinetic machine gun in place of this while the other half replace it with a grenade launcher. Payload for the grenade launcher is 600 rounds.

Like the two "Patton" designs, the techno-wizard modified M103 mounts mini-missile launchers on each side which look like smoke grenade launchers. The heavy tank mounts six per side for a total of twelve mini-missiles. er side. The tank mounts a magical chaff and flare system as a last chance to decoy incoming missiles. The defense system can be used a total of ten times before requiring recharge.

Model Type: M103 Techno-Wizard Heavy Tank
Vehicle Type: Magical Heavy Tank
Crew: 4 (Driver, Commander, Gunner, and Loader) - Reduced from Five

M.D.C. by Location:

[1] Tractor Treads (2):100 each
Weapons Turret:240
125-mm electro-thermal cannon:125
[2] Twin Coaxial Telekinetic Machine-Guns (2):40 each
[2] Commander Telekinetic Machine-Gun:40
[2] Mini-Missile Tubes (12, 6 each side of turret)10 each
[2] “Fireworks” Magic Chaff / Flare Dispensers (2):20 each
Magical “Armor of Ithan” Force Field (3 x day):200
[3] Main Body:460

[1] Depleting the M.D.C. of a tread will immobilize the tank until it is replaced. Replacing a tread will take 1D6x10 minutes by a trained crew (2 replacements are carried on board) or three times as long by the inexperienced. Changing the tread is only advisable when the vehicle is not under attack.
[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] If all the M.D.C. of the main body is depleted, the vehicle is completely shut down and unsalvageable, but crew may survive in their reinforced compartments.

Ground: Cruising speed on land is 38 mph (61.2 kph) on roads and 32 mph (51.5 kph) off road maximum. The vehicle is designed to traverse virtually all terrain and can climb at up to a 60% grade although at a much slower speed (About 10% of maximum road speed). It can also climb barriers and ford trenches. The vehicle can also handle side slopes of up to 30%.
Maximum Range: 1,000 miles (1,610 km) before needing to be recharged. Can be recharged with a“Call Lightning” spell (15 P.P.E.) which gives another 1,000 miles (1,610 km) range.

Statistical Data:
Height: 10.49 feet (3.23 meters)
Width: 12.22 feet (3.76 meters)
Length: Main Body: 22.7 feet (6.99 meters) and With Gun Forward: 28.41 feet (8.66 meters).
Weight: 64.0 tons (58.1 metric tons)
Power Source: Techno-Wizard Electrical Engine Conversion - Replaces Original Engine (Powered by “Call Lightning” spell)
Cargo Capacity: Minimal storage space in pilot’s compartment; about three feet (0.9 m) in side dimensions for extra clothing, weapons, and personal items. Three carbines and two hand-held missile launcher with four loads each.
Black Market Cost: 15 million credits for fully upgraded model.

Weapon Systems:

  1. 125 mm Electro-Thermal Cannon: Recovered from destroyed Chinese built tanks, these replace the original 120 mm cannon. It is useful as a direct fire anti-tank weapons and as a light howitzer. The rounds were fired by vaporizing a dot of light metal at the base of the projectile, by means of a strong electromagnetic field. It can fire a variety of loads, including special discarding sabot anti-armor rounds, high-explosive (HE), high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT), and fragmentation. The cannon could also be used to launch specially modified Short Range Missiles. Unlike with the Chinese tank, the Techno-Wizard M103 lacks an auto loader and is loaded manually. Turret can rotate 360 degrees, can depress down eight degrees, and can elevate up to fifteen degrees.
    Maximum Effective Range: Direct fire range is 8,200 feet (2,500 meters) and can fire indirectly out to 32,800 feet (10,000 meters). Range for short range missiles varies by missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega-Damage: Special anti-tank rounds inflict 3D6x10+30 (optional rule is that cannon gets a critical on a natural 18, 19, or 20 due to its high penetration), High Explosive Rounds inflict 2D4x10+10 with a blast radius of 25 ft, High Explosive Anti Tank inflicts 2D6x10+20 with a blast radius of 8 ft. (Fragmentation): 1D6x10, blast radius of 45 ft. Damage varies for short range missile by missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: A Maximum of 3 attacks per melee.
    Payload: 78 rounds maximum (Each short range missile takes the space of two rounds.) Techno-wizard batteries contains enough charges for 50 shots each for 100 total before needing to recharge. Recharging requires the casting of “Call Lightning” and costs 15 P.P.E. each for 30 P.P.E. for both.
  2. Twin Coaxial T.K. Machine-Guns (2): Mounted beside the 125 mm electro-thermal cannon and used against targets which the main gun is considered to heavy to engage. They are enchanted by a series of spells so the cannon acts as a more powerful version of the T.K. Machine-gun. This increases the weapons's damage and instead of being reloaded, the cannons must be recharged by the spell Telekinesis and 50 P.P.E. each once per month. These cannon inflict full damage to targets that are impervious to energy.
    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,220 meters).
    Mega Damage: Combined for 12D6 (Single weapon inflicts 6D6)
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the combined hand to hand attacks of the gunner (usually 4 or 5).
    Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not.
  3. Commander Cupola (1): Mounted above the main turret in a protected mount is an independent gun mount. This mount is manned by the tank’s commander. The commander is not fully protected by armor but is protected by the tank’s magical force field when active. About half of models mount the telekinetic machine guns while the other half mount the automatic grenade launcher. Even though the grenade launcher has a limited payload, it is popular with crews due to its incredible firepower.
    1. T.K. Machine-Gun (1): It is enchanted by a series of spells so the cannon acts as a more powerful version of the T.K. Machine-gun. This increases the weapon's damage and instead of being reloaded, the cannon must be recharged by the spell Telekinesis and 50 P.P.E. each once per month. The cannon does full damage to targets that are impervious to energy.
      Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,220 meters).
      Mega Damage: 6D6 per shot
      Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner / commander.
      Payload: Unlimited, although the spells must be renewed every month whether the cannon have been used or not.
    2. Automatic Grenade Launcher: Weapon is WI-GL21 Automatic Grenade Launcher mounted on a spindle mount.
      Maximum Effective Range: 3,000 ft (914 m)
      Mega-Damage: 4D6 for single shot of Fragmentation with a blast area of 12 ft, 1D4x10 for a single shot of Armor Piercing with a blast area of 3 ft, 2D6x10 for a burst of ten rounds of Fragmentation with a blast area of 40 ft, and 3D6x10 for a burst of ten rounds of Armor Piercing with a blast area of 8 ft.
      Rate of Fire: Equal to combined hand to hand attacks of gunner / commander.
      Payload: 600 Rounds.
  4. Turret Mounted Mini-missile Launcher (12): Mounted on the sides of the tank’s turret are twelve mini-missile launchers. Six are on each side and appear to be smoke grenade launchers. These launchers are designed for rapid fire use to engage heavy tanks and giant robots. These weapons are designed to be able to destroy enemy vehicles quickly. Smoke warheads are often carried for special purpose uses. Weapon is mainly controlled by the tanks gunner but the pilot and commander also have controls.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with mini-missile type; Usually armor piercing or fragmentation are carried (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: Varies with mini-missile type; Usually armor piercing or plasma are carried (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), or twelve (12) missiles (all).
    Payload: Each launcher carries one mini-missiles for a total of twelve Mini-missiles
  5. “Fireworks” Anti-Missile Chaff/Flare Dispensers (2): The system is mounted on either side of the tank behind the main cannon. In many ways this system is similar to technological versions of the Chaff/Flare system. When the system fires, it looks like fireworks firing. The anti-missile system works by combining three spells. The three spells are Fire Bolt, Apparition, and Telekinesis. The physical effects of the system are similar to the Triax Anti-Missile chaff but instead of being reloaded, it is recharged by spells.
      01-35 - Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.
      36-60 - Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)
      61-00 - No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.
    Also note that the chaff cloud will also blind flying monsters that fly through cloud. They will suffer the following penalties: reduce melee attacks/actions, combat bonuses, and speed by half.
    Duration: 1D4 melee rounds.
    Payload: 10 Uses before being recharged. Each launcher is recharged by the spells Apparition (20 P.P.E.), Fire Bolt (7 P.P.E.), and Telekinesis (8 P.P.E.).
  6. Techno-Wizard Modifications: The M103 Heavy Tank has the following techno-wizard modifications built into the tank. These require P.P.E. or I.S.P. from the pilot or crew
    Special Features:
      Breath Without Air (6th Level) - 5 P.P.E. or 10 I.S.P.
      Chameleon (6th Level) - 6 P.P.E. or 12 I.S.P.
      Impervious to Energy (6th Level) - 20 P.P.E. or 40 I.S.P.

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2010, Kitsune. All rights reserved.