August 24th 2016
Another Concept Sale, another Question & Answer session. Since last Friday, we’ve been collecting questions from the dedicated Q&A post here and today our designers working on the ship will answer 10 questions for the community. Tune back in this Friday to see the answers to 10 more questions.
The Terrapin was developed near the end of the 28th century to serve as the first ship in the Empire’s defensive restructuring of the Navy. The Terrapin’s watchword is protection, with extensive shield systems and armor layers designed to provide the maximum possible defense for pilot and crew. While it lacks the maneuverability of a dedicated fighter, it does maintain an advanced, hard-hitting array of weapons intended to keep the most fearsome Vanduul raider at bay.
Special thanks to Will Maiden and Todd Papy for taking the time to answer these questions for us.
No, the Terrapin’s Scanning station is plugged directly into the upper and lower utility mounts and provides the operational heart of the ship. As a military hardened exploration and reconnaissance ship, its role is firmly in data gathering.
A medium-sized component has the potential to create a large signature for a small ship. In making it heavily armored, the ship just doesn’t have the capacity to vent its heat as efficiently as pilots would want. The revolutionary retracting armor allows the panels to lift apart, weakening the ship but improving venting, allowing players to effectively ‘come up for air’.
No, the pilot and optional crewman escape through the side door. Ejection seats tend to require a ‘soft spot’ to launch out of. While many other small fighters can perhaps blow the canopy, ships like the Terrapin were designed to not compromise the hull integrity by making an ejection seat egress point.
The Terrapin is tough as boots. It’s designed to be able to handle any eventuality in the dark unknown of space. From a military perspective it’s also extremely usable as a recon ship. Able to survey fleet movements and sustain a lot of direct fire if discovered, the Terrapin’s secondary use is a way to insert or rescue people from combat zones is also highly appealing.
Very long. The Terrapin packs much bigger Hydrogen and Quantum Fuel tanks to increase its operational range. It’s designed to stay out in the verse for as long as possible.
No, there is no ‘official’ cargo capacity for the Terrapin.
I will say, though, that players can put down cargo wherever they choose, allowing salvage to be dropped in the rear if they can find the space for it, but that loose cargo and salvage will not be as safe and those inside dedicated cargo holds on other ships. Transporting loose cargo is done at a pilot’s own risk and is not recommended.
The Terrapin is solid, heavy, and therefore somewhat slow to accelerate. Turning takes time in both space and atmosphere. In combat scenarios, Terrapin pilots are encouraged to focus on escape techniques other than simply running, relying on the ship’s defensive capabilities rather than trying to outmaneuver their opponent. Ultimately though, advanced threat detection and avoidance is the preferred strategy for most capable Terrapin drivers, due to its superior scanning capabilities. In storms and bad flying conditions planetside, where increased maneuverability is needed to break for orbit, pilots may wish to just lock the ship down and ride it out.
No, there are no docking rings on the Terrapin. Pilots wanting to dock will need to land and travel on foot through the boarding ramp.
Yes, for long-range missions, the pilot could potentially be spending days, if not weeks and months, out of port. In fact, you can even see it in the far corner of the cutaway image.
The utility mount fits equipment, rather than anything offensive, something we’re going to be seeing more of as further support and non-combat ships are revealed. The Terrapin’s Radar Dish and Scanning Array will enhance the range and capabilities of the installed Radar and Scanner, making it far more capable than one without but as utility gear is revealed, the usefulness of an armored utility platform like the Terrapin will grow.
Outfitted with long-range scanners and encased in heavy armor and oversized shields, the U4A-3 Terrapin can face potentially hazardous circumstances with confidence, making it the ultimate combat scout and reconnaissance vehicle, at least according to Anvil.