Thunder Gear Sidestory: Snake Eater/Fox Wolverine
[b]USMF-1spec Special Operations Wolverine[/b]
[b]Height:[/b] [CLASSIFIED] (Estimated around 17 meters)
[b]Unstable Nuclear Engine:[/b] Like the standard Wolverine, the Special Operations Wolverine are powered by a nuclear reactor with a fatal design flaw. If the reactor is too badly damaged, the unit will catastrophically explode. However, the CIA actually prefers this, as it eliminates any evidence that could tie the unit back to them.
[b]Dual Cockpit:[/b] While the normal Wolverine was designed to be controlled by a gunner and a pilot, the special operations wing of the CIA was not yet manned enough to make this a feasible option. As a result, they had all their Special Operations Wolverines reconfigured to be able to switch between single and dual pilot modes as required.
[b]Camo Index:[/b] As the Special Operations Wolverine was designed to be used in clandestine operations where remaining hidden from enemy detection is key, it features a number of recent technologies designed to hide the Wolverine from enemy eyes. To begin with, all the joints and moving parts (where practicable) were coated or surrounded in rubber in order to reduce the noise they generate. Secondly, the Wolverine is painted in a dark black paint that incorporated some early attempts at radar absorbing materials, though in practice this paint was revealed to be almost entirely ineffective. Lastly, the Wolverine is equipped with a number of rollers over it's body that can be loaded with a number of camouflage rolls. When extended, these rolls attempt to increase the Wolverine's stealthiness by blending in with the terrain, and breaking the pattern of it's body. All of these features are less effective (or completely ineffective) when the Wolverine is in motion, but can make even the massive robot undetectable when it is stationary.
[b]Operations Pack:[/b] Since the Special Operations Wolverine was intended to operate in the field for long periods of time outside of a "home base", each unit is equipped with a very large "operations pack" mounted on their back. Each operations pack contains field repair kits to allow for quick repair of minor damage, shelter equipment when the pilot must "camp out" in an operation, and lastly storage for weapons, equipment, and other materials that the operative may recover on a mission. While the pack is designed to allow the Wolverine to drop materials into it while in motion, the unit must be deactivated and the pilot must manually access the pack in order to retrieve anything inside of it, in case they wish to use weapons previously stored.
[b]Underwater Adaptation:[/b] Special Operations Wolverines are intended to infiltrate their target location through a variety of means, including underwater. Though the Special Operations Wolverine is still not fully amphibious, it is fully water-tight, and has a few deployable propellers to help it move underwater.
[b]M34 Smoke Flare:[/b] A variant of the M15 smoke grenade, modified to be used as a rifle grenade. Generally used to signal aircraft or other recovery vehicles, the M34 can also be used in a pinch to obscure the Wolverine in combat.
[b]Chaff Grenades:[/b] Instead of launching shrapnel when detonated, these grenades release a large amount of small, thin aluminum in the air in order to interfere with various targeting systems.
[b]Anti-WT Combat Knife:[/b] Based on the KA-BAR combat knife, this is specifically made for use against walking tanks.
[b]Mk22 "Hush Puppy" Pistol:[/b] The Mk22 is a double-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, and recoil-operated handgun. Unlike the M1911, the Mk22 used by the Special Operations Wolverine is chambered to fire a prototype round that is intended to try to stun enemy walking tanks with a short-burst, high-charge electrical shock. The round is non-destructive, so (hopefully) the affected pilot will just think his unit malfunctioned.
[b]Mk 1 Underwater Defense Gun:[/b] Since all other firearms can't function underwater, the Special Operations Wolverine is equipped with a prototype underwater pistol. Firing tungsten darts instead of standard bullets, the rounds are able to travel through water without as much resistance, and the weapon itself is fully self-contained so there is no weapon flash or shockwaves caused by escaping gasses, which helps increase the Wolverine's stealthiness. The only downside is that the weapon cannot fire very quickly, and does not hold very many rounds.
[b]CAR-15 Commando:[/b] A recent addition to the walking tank weapon market, the CAR-15 Commando is a lightweight, ruggedized assault rifle with a shortened barrel and more standardized and modular components for easy replacement, intended for use in special operations. While the weapon was intended to use a standard sized clip, limitations enforced by the design of the weapon itself meant that most magazines that are compatible with the CAR-15 carry less then the normal number of rounds.
[b]M31 HEAT Rifle Grenade:[/b] The M31 HEAT is a fin-stabilized anti-tank rifle grenade that is made to be fired from a rifle. The Special Operations Wolverine uses a modified launcher mechanism in order to support the CAR-15, and carries a small compliment of these grenades for use in the field.
[b]M40 Rifle:[/b] Another recent addition, the M40 is a bolt-action sniper rifle with an integral box magazine. While scaled to the size of a walking tank, the weapon can actually be chambered for both anti-WT and anti-personnel rounds, allowing the operative the ability to take out "soft" or "hard" targets as necessary.
[b]Technical and Historical Notes[/b]
Even though the peace agreement between the US and Russia included the deactivation of all nuclear walking tanks, the CIA stashed a number of USMF-1 Wolverines and modified them for use in various special operations. The CIA was well aware of the problems with the nuclear reactor, and in fact were intending to make full use of this "flaw" to destroy the Wolverines in the case they should become compromised. As a result, each Special Operations Wolverine was equipped with a small explosive device near the engine that can be activated by the agent, in the event that the unit is captured.
Only a few Special Operations Wolverines were prepared, and almost all of them were placed in the newly formed FOX unit.