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Roberts Space Industries ®






July 29th 2015

Q&A: P-52 Merlin

Merlin Q&A

Greetings Citizens,

During last week’s Reverse the Verse, a backer requested that we have a Merlin Q&A this week. We traditionally do Q&A sessions during concept sales, but since the Merlin is such an exciting new ship we thought it made sense to offer one this week as well! These questions were chosen from the Merlin Q&A thread on the forums and answered by technical designer Matt Sherman. Enjoy!

Question & Answer

Can it carry any cargo at all? If I want to use it to fly into a station and support an assault, does it have a place to put a short rifle at least?

There wouldn’t be any cargo space, but we do want to make sure you’ll have some personal weapon space. What that will fully encompass is still up in the air, but safe bets are sidearms and SMGs at the least.

Will the engines be able to be upgraded to racing spec?

Yes, there’s still going to be room to tune/grow with a Merlin, it’s not sold maxed-out overall to make sure there’s going to be enough choices to make to really help it fit different styles.

Does the Merlin have a slip stream drive I know it does not have a jump drive but can you race across a solar system with it?

No, Snub craft are designed to be very limited range from a parent ship, so they won’t have any Quantum or Jump capabilities. If you want to go any sort of distance with a snub, you’ll need another ship to help move it.

Are there size classes for fighters like there are for weapons? Like, will I ever be able to dock another similarly sized fighter to a constellation? Or is that docking mechanism specifically designed for only the Merlin/Archimedes?

The collar on the back of the Constellation is designed specifically for the Merlin/Archimedes. It could be possible in the future that other collar options could be available, but that would be a long ways out and would need a healthy range of Snub-ship options to really support it.

As others have asked what’s the ship’s endurance like and as an extension can the Merlin launch from a typical planet surface to orbit under it’s own power?

Yes. While Snub craft won’t have Quantum or Jump drives, they will be able to take off/land from planets on their own. And this would cover the Merlin, Archimedes, 85X, ARGO, and even the unnamed ship that comes with the Carrack.

Will we see variants?

We have the Archimedes planned, which was included on the Constellation Phoenix. Other variants aren’t officially planned, but the changes we’re planning for the Archimedes would also help set up the ship for a few more possibilities.

How much Customization can we expect to be able to do on a smaller ship such as the P-52? Will we be able to color Coordinate with our larger ship such as I have a Constellation? Will I be able to make them match but be different? What About the Ability to change Equipment and other things such as Weapons, Shields, ect….?

Snubs will have loadouts like any other ship, so you’ll absolutely have things to change and tune. While not right away, you’ll definitely be able to change out the Power Plant, Shield Generator, Cooler, Avionics, and Radar for other models in the same Small/Light size class. Wing-weapons will be interchangeable, though the centerline gun is locked in, though we’ll have tuning options on that.

Will there be alternatives for the current center rotary weapon? A high ROF laser, perhaps? Or a Sucker-Punch-esque device for stripping shields?

Currently, no. The Merlin is Kruger’s first step into ship manufacture, and the gun is very much built into that design. There’ll be some tuning options for the T-19P, but unlikely to see any other guns mounted inside.

Might you include a docking attachment with the Merlin so we could use it with other ships?

This wouldn’t be something paired with the Merlin itself, but an optional piece of equipment other ships may need to enable use. Something to consider is on a larger parent ship like a Carrack, the Snub deploys from a small platform instead of a specialized collar, so a Merlin could easily be loaded into one with no additional equipment to install to the Carrack.

Can you list all current ships planned to either carry the snub, or have a future module planned to carry the snub?

Just what’s currently announced, since future-modules are to be determined in the future: Constellation-series (excluding the Taurus), 890J, Carrack, Idris, and the Javelin. There could definitely be more choices later, but we won’t really be able to make those decisions until the base ship is already built out and flyable.

Will there be a CCU/Upgrade to the Archimedes when it becomes flyable, for both Merlin and Constellation owners?

Yes, we will make upgrades to the Archimedes available when it is flyable.

Right now the Merlin cant compete with any single racing variant that is flyable today. Why is this? The Merlin cannot be considered a intro level racer, because its a parasite ship, and cannot get to races on its own in the PU.

The Merlin has just gone live, so it’s not fully tuned. It’ll still need work, but will also still have down the road tuning and customization opportunities to help tailor the performance for racing more than the current generalist setup.

How will parasite craft (or internally hangared craft in general) be handled with regard to NPC escort restrictions in the PU? Will they count as main ship crew or as separate escorts?

The current plans are they’d be a part of the parent ship crew, so if you’re already paying someone to crew your ship, you wouldn’t be paying them extra to jump in the Snub ship if needed. This is still pending full setup of crews, but it shouldn’t be a double-cost to both your ship then additional escorts.

Does CiG have an idea for how long will it take a skilled pilot to dock a Merlin to a Connie? Would it be practical to do under fire? Will there be an autodock function?

The full Docking/Deployment cycle is still in development since we need the Constellation flight ready to really answer these questions. There will probably be some level of auto-assist with the docking, but we won’t know the extents without both ships setup.

Does the Merlin get both refueled and its ballistic ammo reloaded when it docks with the Connie? Some have stated that its gets refueled but how does it get its ballistic ammo reloaded?

It will reload both, though you’ll need to make sure you have spare rounds in the parent ships cargo hold. As long as you have the bullets, you can definitely dock and re-arm before heading out for more.

During my test of the Merlin, I’ve noticed that the Merlin is capable of maneuvering at 20G vertically (strafing up and down, or pitching up and down) and 16G laterally (sideways strafing or yaw maneuvers), which is both faster than any other ship and also beyond any realistic notion of human G force tolerances.

Ultra Space Water Physics. Seriously though, it’s the first implementation of the ship, so some of the G-forces being off is not surprising. Like anything else, we’ll definitely be continuing tuning work on the ship to make sure the handling and forces don’t linger in the realm of the impossible. Keep in mind, when the Mustangs first went in, they bucked wildly like a jet-ski, but have been dialed in since. Same thing, different ship.

Technical Overview

P-52 Merlin



Snub Fighter


Originally designed to pair with the RSI Constellation, the P-52 Merlin is now available to all pilots! A dedicated parasite fighter, the Merlin is designed to be transported from place to place aboard a larger ship. Boasting a centerline Gatling cannon and a Lightning Power engine, the Merlin is a fast, maneuverable ship that packs a surprising punch! Ideal for racing, local reconnaissance and fast combat.













Cargo Capacity


SCM Speed

280 m/s

Afterburner Speed

1,450 m/s

Min Crew


Max Crew



Pitch Max

- deg/s

Yaw Max

- deg/s

Roll Max

- deg/s

X-Axis Acceleration

- m/s/s

Y-Axis Acceleration

- m/s/s

Z-Axis Acceleration

- m/s/s





Power Plants


Shield Generators


Fuel Intakes

Fuel Tanks

Quantum Drives

Jump Modules

Quantum Fuel Tanks


Main Thrusters

Maneuvering Thrusters





Utility Items

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