Monthly Archives: November 2015

Blacktron Marauder

049The Marauder is a heavy fighter design used by the Blacktron Alliance as a space superiority and assault fighter.  Though not the most manoeuvrable ship in space, the Marauder makes up for that in armament and armour; Marauders will shrug off hits that will cripple other similarly-sized vessels.

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Armed with two forward-firing lasers and a quartet of proton cannons (represented by the two stud shooters on top and the two lightsaber hilts underneath), the Marauder is one of the most armed ships for its size in space.  It is also relatively fast for its mass, and though not the fastest ship in space, it is better armoured than most similarly-sized ships of equivalent speed.

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All of this weaponry and speed takes power, and the Marauder must run its drive power plant at rates which the Federation deem beyond safe limits due to the increased radiation exposure for the pilot.  The Blacktron Alliance uses nanotechnology banned in the Federation to aid the body’s own cellular systems in repairing radiation damage, and is frequently willing to run their drive systems at unsafe levels.

The Marauder’s overcharged drive unit burns through fuel rods far faster than equivalent Federation ships, however, so its range is rather lower than its Federation counterparts.  The Alliance consider the trade-off worthwhile, however, and frequently base their fightercraft on large hyperspace carriers and base ships.


I’ve seen other people building spaceships on a corner angle before, most notably Peter Reid’s Viper from Building the Future, but also others.  And the “impossibility factor” of building something in a weird direction always makes this sort of build look extra cool – how do you get a pilot to sit right?  I decided to stretch myself and have a go at the technique.

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And it lets me use my one Blacktron quarter panel to best effect.  And, to reiterate, it’s a Blacktron ship, so it’s almost automatically awesome! 🙂

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It was quite a challenge to get the pilot’s seat and the cockpit canopy to sit at what became a diagonal angle in SNOT construction, and you might notice that the cockpit doesn’t quite cover all of the pilot’s legs.  I might be able to rectify that in a future build, but for this one it will have to stay as it is.

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I’m still lacking a proper Blacktron astronaut, too, so the pilot is wearing a Castle helmet and an old black flight-suit torso from a long-forgotten set.  Some sort of Blacktron Special Forces, perhaps.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this build.  It’s one of my favourite real-brick creations to date.

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Blessed are the Peacemakers

Space Police Peacemaker

Space Police Peacemaker

It is written “Blessed are the peacemakers”, and indeed, many a Federation freighter crew under attack by Blacktron raiders has heaped blessings upon the sudden appearance of one of these Space Police cruisers.

Massing in at over eight times the size of the Blacktron Renegade, the Peacemaker is one of the largest Space Police ship classes, serving as a mobile command ship and special response unit for bringing to justice the most entrenched and powerfully-equipped offenders.

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Ten powerful laser cannons constitute the Peacemaker’s main armament, arranged two forward, four in wing mountings and four in twin-mounted dorsal turrets.  These laser cannons are not the typical medium-power pulse lasers of typical Federation usage, but larger and more capable beam weapons able to destroy large rogue asteroids and deal with the most heavily-equipped and armoured criminals.

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The rear airlock (sans cover) of the Peacemaker

The Peacemaker is fitted with four cylindrical prisoner transport pods for the transfer of prisoners back to Space Police facilities for trial.  This is the same number as the Star Ranger-class Patrol Ship (forthcoming build), even though the Peacemaker is a much larger vessel and it might be expected to carry more pods.

The discrepancy is mostly due to the differing roles of the two vessel classes and the resultant differences in how they carry the pods.

The Peacemaker is fitted with several prisoner transport pods

The Peacemaker is fitted with several prisoner transport pods

The Star Ranger is a standard patrol ship used for general police use in typical enforcement environments – the “squad car” equivalent of Space Police hardware.  Its pods are carried exposed in exterior mountings.

The Peacemaker, however, is more like a heavy SWAT vehicle, and its prisoner transport pods are enclosed behind armoured bulkhead doors.

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Three powerful engines propel the ship through space.  These are powerful enough to require blast deflectors top and bottom, and though the Peacemaker-class is too massive to achieve the same velocities as the Shrike, it can out-accelerate most ships in its mass bracket.

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The cockpit area seats a crew of eight: two pilots, and a combination of computer specialists, weapons crew and EVA specialists adding up to six.


Believe it or not, when I started building this it was only going to be about a sixth of the size of what I’ve ended up with.  But as I began to build, I discovered that several of my design ideas were mutually incompatible at that scale.  So I reached for my normal solution: go larger.

This build incorporates at least four- and probably six-directional SNOT building techniques – sideways, forwards, backwards and down as well as conventional upwards building (which is in the minority and mostly decorative).  In particular, the main hull incorporates structural building in four directions, and I’m particularly pleased with the way the forward- and backward-built sections hold together.

Peacemaker cruiser 4

There are a lot of personal first-uses here of particular brick types; most notably the ball-and-cup laser cannon mounting elements, but also several of the windshield-type elements and other pieces as well.

To echo the Shrike and provide some sense of design continuity, I adapted the curved wings of that ship for the larger Peacemaker, but there are several changes and they are not entirely the same.

I hope you like this 🙂