The A-14A Raptor Strike Bomber was developed by Origin Aerospace and entered service in 2639 with the Raptor replacing the obsolete Wildcat. The Raptor saw its first major combat operation during the now-famous Enyo Engagement. Even after many years, the Raptor remains one of the most powerful and respected fighters in service. While some pilots consider the Raptor to be clumsy in certain scenarios, the heavy fighter was popular with most pilots due to is heavy protection, powerful weapons array, and high speed. Many pilots have described the fighter in similar terms to the World War Two Thunderbolt, able to lose half an engine or have the fighter completely mangled yet still bring the pilot home. Most successful Raptor pilots do not concentrate on complex maneuvers but burn straight on an opponent and opening up with all guns (two mass-driver cannons and two neutron guns) in a salvo that usually decimates the intended target. While the mass drivers and neutron cannons are the main weaponry of the Raptor, the heavy fighter also has five missile hard points and carries a porcupine mine behind the fighter. The mine is not carried for the fighter to act as a mine layer but the mine is dropped in the path of a fighter directly behind the Raptor. The most accepted tactic is to launch the mine and immediately activate the auxiliary thruster. When the enemy fighter enters pursuit, it theoretically should run into the mine although the success of the weapon has been limited. The weapon has had a mixed rate of success. Another tactic with the mine has been have a squadron of Raptor heavy fighters drop a small field of mines on a jump point to attempt to block the jump point. Before the introduction of the F-57 Sabre heavy fighter, the Raptor had the heaviest shields carried on any fighter and had incredible armor compared to its contemporaries such as the Hornet and Scimitar. The Raptor was eventually re-designated the F/A-14 to authenticate the heavy fighters ability to engage other fighters.
While the F-57 Sabre heavy fighter is considered to have rendered the Raptor obsolete with the new fighters introduction, the Raptor was retained in Home Defense squadrons. The F/A-14 Raptor was constantly upgraded and updated during the fighter's reserve service and could still scrap surprisingly well with newer fighters. The Raptor was temporary brought back into service to fight in the Battle of Earth, many fighters with inexperienced pilots. While unable to hold its own against Kilrathi's newest heavy fighters, such as the Vaktoth and the Bloodfang, the fighter is a match for the Jalkehi class Heavy Fighter and the Raptor is still more maneuverable than the newer Jalkehi. Since the Battle of Earth, surviving Raptor fighters have replaced by the new F-66A Thunderbolt VII and been retired back to Home Defense squadrons where they serve wth the same dignity and worth they held on the front lines.
It is believed that a few F/A-14E Raptor fighters have been used as test platforms for mounting a jump engine on fighters with the porcupine mine being removed to make space for the jump engine. This experiment was made when developing the F-95 Morningstar. It is also believed that several Raptor fighters are in private hands and some private mercenaries have replaced the neutron cannons with longer ranged particle beam cannons. It is also believed that some fighters have been refitted so that they can carry anti-capital ship torpedoes.
Model Type: F/A-14E Raptor Heavy Assault Starfighter.
- Driving on the Ground: Not Possible.
- Sublight: Has a special sublight engine that allows the ship to travel up to 40 percent of the speed of light. Fighter can accelerate/decelerate at the rate of 0.8 percent of light per melee maximum. Fighter has auxiliary thrusters which can be used a maximum of 15 minutes before fuel is exhausted. On auxiliary thrusters, the fighter has a maximum acceleration of 1.6 percent of light per melee maximum.
- Atmospheric Propulsion: The fighter is fairly aerodynamic and is quite capable in an atmosphere. As a result, the fighter can achieve escape velocity (Mach 32.6 / 25,053 mph / 40,320 kph) but normally operates at Mach 3.85 (2,858.31 mph / 4,600 kph) or less. The fighter also has Gravitic propulsion systems enabling it to leave an atmosphere even at low velocities.
- Maximum Range: Effectively unlimited by internal fuel (10 year duration) although auxiliary thruster range is limited to approximately 15 minutes. Fighter uses a very small fusion cell system for power systems. The fighter carries one week of consumables for fighter's crew.
- Length: 118.11 feet (36.0 meters)
- Height: 60.04 feet (18.3 meters)
- Width: 99.08 feet (30.3 meters)
- Weight: 22.05 tons (20 metric tons) unloaded.
- Power System: Fusion power supply with a 10 year duration.
- Cargo: Small Storage Space, 2.5 ft x 2.5 ft x 2 ft. Used for emergency equipment and weapons.
- Market Cost: 33.59 million credits (Used fighters can sometimes be purchased at a reduced price.)
- Twin Mass Driver Cannons mounted on the sides of the starfighter. Cannons are shorter ranged than lasers but inflict greater damage. The mass driver is a very solid weapon which is basically a rail gun that uses a linear accelerator to fire projectiles of metallic mass at a target. In addition to range, the mass driver needs to use ammunition and has a limited payload.
- Maximum Effective Range: 1,242.7 miles (2000 km) in space and 6.21 miles (10 km) in an atmosphere.
- Mega Damage: 2D6x10 per cannon per 20 round burst and 4D6x10 for both cannons firing a 40 round burst (Combined with neutron cannons, inflicts 8D6x10+20)
- Rate of Fire: Equal to pilots hand to hand (Usually 4 or 5).
- Payload: 10,000 Rounds (500 Bursts) per cannon.
- Twin Neutron Cannons mounted on the sides of the starfighter. While not as long range as lasers, they pack a much larger punch. Neutron cannons are being replaced by particle beams on most Confederation fighters. The weapon inflict about equal damage to most energy weapons carried on most C.A.F. Starfighters but, even though short range by Confederation standards, have a longer range than most fighter weapons in the Three Galaxies.
- Maximum Effective Range: 1,534.3 miles (2,500 km) in space and 7.8 miles (12.5 km) in an atmosphere.
- Mega Damage: 2D6x10+10 per cannon and 4D6x10+20 for both cannons (Combined with mass drivers, inflicts 8D6x10+20)
- Rate of Fire: Equal to pilots hand to hand (Usually 4 or 5).
- Payload: Effectively Unlimited.
- 5 Missile Pylons: The Raptor has five missile racks to carry missiles. Individual pylons must carry all the same type ordnance but each pylon may carry different types of ordnance. Long Range Missiles has a top speed of Mach 20 in an atmosphere and in space has an acceleration of 8% of light per turn (faster than any starship). Medium Range Missiles has a top speed of Mach 15 in an atmosphere and in space has an acceleration of 6% of light per turn. Since starships will no longer engage at rock throwing distances, whether weapons can be shot down is calculated from the speed of target, launcher, and missile. When drive goes dead, missile will still cruise unless set to self destruct but has very low odds of hitting starships (Great for hitting bases and planets because target does not move and missile when dead at -25% to detect.) Cruise missiles have minuses to hit small targets but are all missiles are normally considered to be smart missiles. Missiles can be launched on multiple targets simultaneously.
- Standard configuration is: 1 Inner Fuselage Hard Point, carrying One Medium Range Missile, 2 Outer Fuselage Hard Points, carrying One Long Range Missile or two Medium Range Missiles each and 2 Inner Wing Hard Points, carrying One Long Range Missile or two Medium Range Missiles each.
- Maximum Effective Range: Long Range Missiles range is 3,400 miles (5470 km) in an atmosphere and 1,800,000 miles (2,897,000 km/9.7 light seconds) in space, and Medium Range Missiles range is 160 miles (257.5 km) in an atmosphere and 80,000 miles (128,750 km/0.43 light seconds).
- Mega-Damage & Properties: See Revised Phase World Missile tables (Long Range Fusion does 2D4x100 MDC).
- Rate of Fire: One at a time or in volleys of two, three, or four missiles.
- Payload: Varies by hard point
- Porcupine Mine, mounted singly on a rear firing mount. The mine is usually dropped directly in the path of a pursuing fighter. The mine has a small drive which decelerates the mine slowly but does not have the acceleration of a true missile. The Mine accelerates 0.5% of light per turn in space. Mines cannot be used in an atmosphere. Warhead of mine is treated like that of a long range missile.
- Maximum Effective Range: 2,000 miles (3,220 km) in space.
- Mega-Damage & Properties: See Revised Phase World Long Range Missile tables (Long Range Fusion does 2D4x100 MDC).
- Rate of Fire: One.
- Payload: One
- 2 Anti-Missile Decoy Dispensers, located at the very tail of the fighter. When a missile is fired at the fighter, a decoy can be released to confuse or detonate the enemy's attack. Decoy system works against Phase World missiles although has a -10% penalty against Brilliant missiles.
- Effect: 01-50 Enemy missile or missile volley detonates on decoy - Missiles are all destroyed. 51-75 Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target). 76-00 No effect, missile is still on target.
- Payload: Twelve