German WS-8 “Wespe” Power Armor:

Given the name “Wespe” for “Wasp,” this power armor might be considered the German equivalent of the SAMAS power armor. In appearance it is quite different however, sharing many similarities with the Triax X-10 Predator power armor. Most engineers who have seen the Wespe consider it likely that the Triax power armor was developed based on the Pre-Cataclysm German armor.

It is believe that development of the Wespe was started only a few years after the American design. At the time, relations between the United States and many of the nations of Europe had deteriorated quite a bit. While the United States is believed to have shared their development with a number of nations, it is believed that the Wespe was effectively an independent development.

While believed to have never been produced in the numbers of the American SAMAS power armor, the Wespe was exported to a number of nations around the world. Even so, most Wespe were destroyed during the Great Cataclysm and the power armor is relatively rare. Of course, the original American SAMAS power armor is also surprisingly rare as well.

As far as is known, the New German Republic appears to have not operated these power armors, at least in any numbers. Still there are a number of mercenary units that have operated these power armors since the Great Cataclysm. In general these armors are considered quite effective. As an older design, they are less heavily armed and armored than most power armor designs produced after the cataclysm however. They are quite rugged however and are surprisingly easy to maintain.

As described previously, the WS-8 Wespe appearance is quite similar to the X-10 Predator. The older German design is slightly heavier however, massing around five hundred and twenty kilograms. While it carries more actual armor than the X-10 Predator, it is not quite as well protected generally. The Wespe however was better armored than the contemporary American SAMAS power armor.

Top speed flying is considered to be around three hundred and sixty kilometers per hour with a normal cruse speed of around one hundred and eighty kilometers per hour. Cooling systems allow the power armor to fly for up to eight hours above cruising speeds and around sixteen hours above that. Otherwise, the fusion reactor gives the power armor years of service before needing to be refueled.

For weaponry, the Wespe is armed with a pulse laser and mini-missiles. The pulse laser is mounted in the right arm of the power armor inside a claw hand. This appears quire similar to the laser on the X-10 Predator although is slightly less powerful. Otherwise, the WS-8 is armed with four mini-missiles with two above each shoulder. The intakes of Wespe are more streamlined to allow these mini-missile launchers to be mounted on both sides.

Model Type: WS-8 “Wespe.”

C1ass: Strategic Armor Military Assault Suit.

Crew: One.

M.D.C. by Location:


Shoulder Wings (2):

30 each.


Main Rear Jets (2):

50 each.


[1] Lower Maneuvering Jets (2):

25 each.


Right Hand & Forearm Pulse Cannon (1):



[1] Twin Mini-Missile Launchers (2, shoulders):

20 each.


Chest Headlight (1):



Left Forearm (1):



Shoulders & Upper Arm (2):

120 each.


Legs (2):

100 each.


[2] Head:



[3] Main Body:



[1] 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.

[2] Destroying the head of the power armor will eliminate all forms of optical enhancements and sensory systems. The pilot is forced to rely on his own human vision and senses. Furthermore, all power armor Combat bonuses to strike, parry, and dodge are lost! Note: The head is a small and difficult target to hit, shielded by an exhaust tube, wings, and shoulder plating. Consequently, it can only be hit when a character makes a called shot and even then the attacker is - 4 to strike.

[3] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will shut the armor down completely, making it useless. Note: Destroying a wing will make flight impossible. However, even with no wing(s) the WS-8 can make jet powered leaps and hover in a stationary position above the ground.


Running: 50 mph (80 km) maximum. Note that the act of running does tire out its operator, but at 10% of the usual fatigue rate thanks to the robot exoskeleton.

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) lengthwise without actually maintaining flight.

Flying: The WS-8 Wespe is equipped with a newer and more powerful rocket propulsion system that enables the Predator to hover in a stationary position up to 492.1 feet (150 meters) or fly. Maximum flying speed is 223.7 mph (360 kph), but cruising speed is considered to be 111.9 mph (180 kph). Maximum altitude is limited to about 492.1 feet (152 meters).

Flying Range: The nuclear power system gives the WS-8 Wespe years of life, but the jet rockets get hot and need to cool after a maximum of eight hours of flight when traveling at speeds above cruising, and sixteen hours at cruising speed, but can fly indefinitely with rest stops.

Underwater Capabilities: Swimming: The WS-8 Wespe can swim by using the same types of paddling leg and arm movements as a human at a maximum speed of roughly four mph (6.4 kph/3.4 knots). It can also walk along the bottom of the sea at about 25% of its normal running speed. Using the jet thrusters, the WS-8 Wespe can travel on the surface of water at 50 mph (80 kph/42.5 knots), underwater at 40 mph (64 kph/34 knots) or fly above the water surface an normal speeds.

Maximum Ocean Depth: 820.2 feet (250 meters).

Statistical Data

Height: 9.19 feet (2.8 meters) from head to toe, but 11.48 feet (3.5 meters) with wings raised and extended.

Width: Wings Down: 5.25 feet (1.6 meters). Wings Extended: 13.78 feet (4.2 meters).

Length: 4.76 feet (1.45 meters).

Weight: 1,146.4 lbs (520 kg).

Physical Strength: Equal to a P.S. 34.

Cargo: None.

Power System: Nuclear fusion, average energy life is 8 years.

Black Market Cost: If available runs around 1.5 million credits in good condition with all weapon systems operational. The WS-8 “Wespe” power armor is rarely available however due to most being destroyed during the coming of the Rifts.

Weapon Systems:

  1. One (1) PLC-8 Pulse Laser Cannon: Mounted in the right arm between the claws of the hand, this pulse laser was considered quite powerful when first developed. Due to the fact that the weapon is connected directly into the power armor’s fusion reactor, the pulse laser has effectively unlimited payload.

    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters).

    Mega-Damage: 6D6 per multiple blast volley of three simultaneous energy pulses (counts as one melee attack / action) or can fire a single pulse inflicting 2D6.

    Rate of Fire: Equal to the number of combined hand to hand attacks of the person in the suit (usually 4 to 6.)

    Payload: Tied to power supply so duration is effectively unlimited.

  2. Two (2) Dual Shoulder Mini-Missile Launchers: Above each shoulder is mounted a small mini-missile launcher with a pair of mini-missiles. Common missile load outs are armor piercing and plasma warhead types. Fragmentation may be used for anti-personnel operations.

    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, mini-missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Mega-Damage: Varies with mini missile types (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)

    Rate of Fire: Can fire mini-missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2) mini-missiles.

    Payload: Four (4) mini-missiles total; two (2) per launcher.

  3. Other Energy Rifles or Light Rail Guns: Light hand-held weapons can be substituted in an emergency or used as a back-up weapon. Space limitations and the bulk of the armor limit additional weapons to one. The weapon can only be fired by the left hand, thus all right-handed pilots are -2 to strike.

  4. 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 RPG, page 45. All abilities are the same except as follows:

    -1 to dodge penalty.


    Normal Punch:

    1D6+1 M.D.

    Claw Punch:

    2D4 M.D.

    Claw Power Punch:

    3D6 M.D.

    Claw Crush or Tear:

    1D6+1 M.D.

  5. Sensor System Note: The WS-8 Wespe has full optical systems including laser targeting, telescopic, passive night vision (light amplification), thermal imaging, infrared, ultraviolet, and polarization. Plus all other features common to all power armor.

    Sensor Bonuses: Has +2 to strike with long range weapon combat only but not hand to hand. See Power Armor Combat Training in the Robot Combat section for additional bonuses.

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2018, Kitsune. All rights reserved.