Anvil Aerospace was founded in 2772. To this day, it remains one of Terra’s success stories. The company’s focus has been on delivering military-grade equipment to the UEE navy. Anvil’s entry into the civilian market is relatively new. While there had been internal debate over the company making this move, the UEE weighed in favorably on the idea. The government thought outfitting civilians with military-styled capabilities was a prudent cautionary measure for solidifying our general defenses. Equipped with Anvil ships, these pilots could be called upon as local militia, especially in distant frontiers.
Many of us will undoubtedly explore the star systems that comprise the Star Citizen universe. Participating in player missions and pursuing careers will necessitate some travel. I can’t imagine anyone playing Star Citizen without some intention to explore. That said, they’re exploring in the vein of sightseeing and then there’s the career or more serious pursuit of exploration.
To perform exploration as a career choice in Star Citizen, necessitates that at a minimum you can, navigate jump points, scan areas to identify space anomalies, categorize the information and accurately document your findings. Several ships will fit the bill of performing minimal exploration, like the Aurora ES. However, for more serious pursuit there are other modules and amenities that improve the overall experience for you and your crew. This is where a ship like the Anvil Carrack comes into play. It’s designed with sustained deep space exploration in mind. And includes features that support longer duration self sustained exploration excursions.
The Anvil Carrack is a multi-crew ship that supports 5 crew stations. Like several of the other ships manufactured by Anvil Aerospace, the Carrack was originally a military exclusive. Here are the features that set the Anvil apart as a dedicated exploration vessel
As of this posting the Carrack is in the concept / early design phase. Backers who pledged to Star Citizen development via the Carrack are likely looking for the “Go where no man has gone before” experience. At a minimum, we know that exploration will include locating and charting new jump points, surveying and charting systems, detecting other space anomalies such as black holes, etc. Opportunities for this much is already evident in the ARK Starmap published by Cloud Imperium Games. For more information on the system discoveries that await, please see my article about this subject here on Redacted.TV.
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The majority of MISC’s business comes from the production of their heavy industrial division. One of MISC’s claims to fame is their technology partnership with the Xi’an, which came about due to the popularity of MISC ships within their culture. That popularity led to MISC becoming the only Human spacecraft corporation to sign a lend-lease agreement with the Xi’an. The details of which, are a closely guarded secret.
MISC Hull A
The Hull A is the smallest and least expensive in the Hull series. It’s ideal for someone who is just starting out in freight hauling and is looking for a dedicated cargo vessel. In size, it’s most similar to the Aurora, Mustang or Reliant Kore but is less versatile. The aforementioned ships are configured with more firepower, allowing them to also be used in combat. This is not the case for the Hull A.
The Hull A is 22 meters in length. Has a mass of roughly fourteen thousand kilograms. Supports 1 crew station. And holds 48 cargo units. In addition to being a dedicated hauler, the Hull A is often used as a station-to-orbit ferry. The size and limited capabilities is one of the reasons the Hull A didn’t meet my needs even as someone who will only casual participate in cargo hauling. But I think it’s a good starter option for a dedicated hauler.
MISC Hull B
Next in the Hull series is the Hull B. It’s a larger and more rugged option than the Hull A. It can be compared to the Freelancer base model but here again, it’s less flexible in the non-cargo hauling features, lacking a long range scanner and is only equipped with one crew station. However, the lack of versatility is compensated for by providing additional storage capacity. Even the Freelancer MAX’s storage capabilities don’t match the Hull B.
The Hull be is 49 meters in length and weighs roughly sixty-seven thousand kilograms. It supports 1 crew station and can transport 384 cargo units. As you can see, that’s a significant jump in storage units from the Hull A’s 48.
The Hull B is the variant I purchased. For smaller, on the go hauling, I have a Reliant Kore. And although I also own the Freelancer Mercantile, I’m going to be using that for multi-crew missions and tour bus for family and friends. For opportunistic hauling with a bit of intent, the Hull B hit the right chord for me.
MISC Hull C
The Hull C. This is where the Hull series makes a significant leap in cargo transport size. The Hull C is one of the more common ships seen transporting cargo around the galaxy. It’s the variant most produced from the Hull series and is considered the most versatile.
The Hull C is intended to hit the ‘sweet spot’ between the smaller single-person transports and the massive super-freighters that make up the rest of the line. It offers modularity while maintaining a modicum of maneuverability.
Considering the Hull series sequentially, the Hull C is the first in the series to employ the spindle modularity cargo support mechanic. This unique design allows the ship to shrink and grow to match your cargo hauling needs.
The ship itself is 105 meters in length and weighs just under 290,00 kilograms. It supports 3 crew stations and 4608 cargo units. That’s more than 10 times what Hull B can haul.
MISC Hull D
Now we enter the realm of large operation super-freighters. It’s the Hull D, a massive ship built around a rugged frame. The Hull D is affordable enough to be operated by mid-sized organizations and companies. It’s often used as a flagship for mercantile operations. However, their bulk means that they should be operated with escort fighters while not in safe space. While it is equipped with Size 2 and 3 gimbal mounts as weapons support, it’s size would make it an easy target regardless. The UEE military uses modified Hull D as part of their supply chain, arming and refueling the soldiers on the front line.
The Hull D cab is 206 meters and weighs over 1 million kilograms. It supports 5 crew stations and 20,736 cargo units. This is for serious…dedicated…cargo transport.
MISC Hull E
Last in the series is the behemoth, Hull E. It’s the largest specialized freighter available on the market. The Hull E is generally owned by major corporations and operated with a high degree of planning. To make your excursions profitable, you want to do careful logistics planning that optimizes your route for pickup and delivery. And ensure you have payloads big enough and profitable enough to warrant undocking a Hull E.
It’s essential to understand that the lack of maneuverability inherent in such a large ship means that it is a target for pirates and raiders. Anyone planning to operate one should be careful about equipping turrets and providing reliable escort. The Hull E isn’t for the fly by night cargo operator. It’s intended for large scale dedicated transport operations.
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Casual Citizen Episode 16 – MISC Hull Series
The majority of MISC’s business comes from the production of their heavy industrial division. One of MISC’s claims to fame, is their technology partnership with the Xi’An, which came about due to the popularity of MISC ships within their culture. That popularity led to MISC becoming the only Human spacecraft corporation to sign a lend lease agreement with the Xi’An. The details of which, are a closely guarded secret.
In recent years, MISC has turned its attention to advancing its two ship lines marked for personal use – the Freelancer and Starfarer. They’ve funneled profit from their corporate revenue to break into this crowded segment, battling against giants such as Roberts Space Industries and Drake Interplanetary.
Our discussion of the Starfarer will be solely on the refueling variant. We’ll save discussion of the Gemini for a future show.
The Starfarer is a niche spacecraft which has become the defacto standard for fuel transport. Its design is the result of an 18-month survey that yielded a 15,000 page study on ship roles and the deficiencies faced by pilots. That insight influenced the core design philosophy for the Starfarer. And led to it being fitted as a dual-role fueling craft, capable of collecting fuel in space and refueling ships in-flight.
The Starfarer’s massive internal fuel tanks are welded directly to the ship’s core superstructure. This makes safer for fuel transport than ships modified to carry out this role. The tanks use external probes and pressure access nodes to provide easy access. In this manner, the ship can scoop hydrogen from a gas giant and just as easily funnel fuel to a nearby ship.
Starfarers can be upgraded to include a basic refinery to allow for processing unrefined fuel themselves. The hydrogen tanks can also be modified to carry liquid food products. Although this modification isn’t popular, you can replace the tanking machinery with a cargo chassis to transport bulk goods.
Even though the Starfarer can be modified for other roles, remember that it’s primarily a dedicated fuel platform. And designed from the ground up to be that. It won’t perform in these other roles, as effectively as a dedicated option.
Although the Starfarer supports multiple crew stations, it can be run as a solo operation. Management of the ship and its resources will take more time and require a lot of running back and forth. But it is possible.
Detailed Design Doc Still Incoming
A detailed design document will be made available as soon as all of the mechanics involved the refueling process have been finalized. That said, here are some aspects which have been more or less “confirmed” based on CIG Q&A responses:
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Our first encounter with the Banu occurred in the Davien system. In 2438 an independent nav-jumper named Vernon Tar, opened fire on what he thought was another privateer trying to steal his meager claim in the system. The pilot of the other ship turned out to be Banu. Luckily, the incident didn’t lead to any deaths and became humanity’s first introduction to the Banu Protectorate.
Baachus is believed to be the Banu’s home world. We say “believe” because the they haven’t been forthcoming on the subject. The Banu Political System is a Republic of Planet-States, each run under its own policies. The representatives of each planet gather for a quorum to debate legal and trade issues that affect the entire species. Otherwise, each planet is left to their own devices.
The Banu do not maintain a standing army. Local militia keep the peace within their systems and they’re not especially selective. Even criminals can and do serve. However, don’t be fooled into thinking this makes the Banu worlds an easy target. On the contrary, they have the means to muster a formidable fighting force if necessary.
In comes the Merchantman
The Banu are the traders and culture-hounds of the universe. There are a lot of things they’re willing to overlook in pursuit of commerce. They trade with the Vanduul and if you’re looking for shady, check the back alleys of any Banu city.
Their planets are varied and colorful and they take pride in being unique in their culture and traditions. However, their pursuit of wealth through trading is their one true ring. And why the ship designed to support that lifestyle, The Merchantman, is prized above all others.
The BMM is categorized as a trade vessel within the cargo ship classification. As far as available cargo size units, it’s carries more than the Hull C, coming in at 5018. It’s 100 meters in length and supports a maximum of 8 crew stations. Compared to the other cargo ships, the BMM on paper has more defensive and offensive technical capabilities – wolf in sheep’s clothing. However, remember this is still concept ships and such, things are subject to change.
Why is the Banu Merchantman a lifestyle?
One of the things that sets the BMM apart from other cargo ships is that it’s designed for sustainable deep space travel. A traveling business with residential accommodations. Instead of bunks stashed conveniently in a passageway or galley-like area, there the BBM contains dedicated living quarters a short distance from the cockpit. It also boasts an observation room where business negotiations take place and allows customers to view a portion of the cargo hold. The BMM is designed for you to go to your customers and reside at that location for a time while conducting business. When you’re done, you close up shop and move on.
The BMM Can’t be an Island
While the features and lifestyle of owning a Banu Merchantman may instantly sound appealing, having one is only part of the equation. Unlike a pure cargo hauler whose primary role is transport goods, not sell them, the BBM needs merchandise to sell. I doubt you’ll be running NPC cargo hauling missions with your BMM. That’s doesn’t sound like an efficient use of the vessel. Therefore you need a consistent means of filling up your cargo bay.
Pairing the BMM up with a resource acquisition ship like the Orion, Reclaimer or Endeavor could be an option. Like an airplane segregates seating into economy, business and 1st class, you might consider the same strategy with the Merchantman. Commonly needed ore, food supplies, industrial materials, etc., could be your economy merchandise. While the more exotic lower quantity higher margin cargo. For your planning, you’ll need to know which systems produce luxury items that are in demand elsewhere. For a headstart in ideas, you may want to start reading the Galactic Guides and taking a look at where those locations are in relationship to each other on the Starmap.
CIG has said that not all merchandise is available in every system. Therefore savvy merchants will need to stay informed on pockets of consumer demand for merchandise versus where the items can be acquired. In that scenario it doesn’t have to be exotic or luxury to be profitable. I wonder if we’ll be able to purchase wholesale quantities of goods from NPC managed businesses?
Although pirating and unlawful conduct isn’t my cup of tea, I recognize it’s a valid play style and the BMM can play a role in such activities. CIG has suggested that the capabilities of the Banu Merchantman make it viable as an armored smuggling ship or blockage runner. I wasn’t a pirate in EVE Online but I owned a blockade runner for transporting salvage and low level manufactured goods into hostile territories, where listing them on the auction house was considerably more profitable. I also used it to transport my own ships and equipment to whatever system our organization was defending during Faction Warfare – a form of territorial PVP in EVE.
In recent years, MISC has turned its attention to advancing its two ship lines marked for personal use – the Freelancer and Starfarer. They’ve funneled profit from their corporate revenue to break into this crowded segment, battling against giants such as Roberts Space Industries and Drake Interplanetary
I own the Reliant Kore, specifically to zip around the galaxy doing small cargo runs solo or with a younger family member. If I didn’t already have the Drake Herald, I might have opted for the Mako news van variant instead.
RELIANT KORE – The MINI HAULER
The Reliant Kore considered the base ship in this series, is an introductory cargo hauling vessel. However, unlike the smaller hauler in the MISC Hull series, the Reliant also equipped with moderate offensive and defensive capabilities. It also supports two crew stations, which is rare at this price point. Compared to other introductory cargo ships, the Reliant Kore at $50 USD, 30 cargo units of space and combination of S1 and S3 hard points, make it a good value against its competitors.
The Aurora CL which is a mercantile ship costs $45 USD, holds fewer cargo units with its 23 and is also moderately equipped for combat with S2 hardpoints. The MISC Hull A transports 48 cargo units, is equipped exclusively with S1 hardpoints but costs $60 USD. So depending on your intent and playstyle, the Reliant Kore can be a very good fit.
If your intent is similar to mine, opportunistic small-scale cargo hauling with a friend or family member, only the Reliant will fit that bill. If you’re a dedicated hauler and this will be your primary method for earning money in the game, the single seat Hull A is a better value because of it’s larger cargo hold. If you want to transport cargo AND do combat missions right from the start, the Aurora CL is likely a better choice. Outside of combat, I want to share my experiences with others, which makes having multiple crew stations a priority, hence I opted for the Reliant Kore.
RELIANT SEN – The RESEARCHER
The Reliant Sen is starter ship focused on exploration with advanced sensor capabilities. It’s not clear to me what calling it a “mobile science platform” means, as we’ve yet to see the science profession design document. But I would assume it will support components that allow the Sen to perform some of the less intensive tasks from the science career.
if you’re in the market for a starter exploration ship, the Reliant Sen price and hardpoints configuration, pit it against the Aurora ES. Here again, for someone wanting a dedicated exploration vessel that is the primary method for initially earning money in the game, the ES is a good value. However, with 10 cargo units of space, exploration equipped, mobile science capabilities, decent combat abilities and two crew stations, I think the Reliant Sen is the better overall value.
RELIANT MAKO – The NEWS VAN
Are you an information hound? Do you want to capture what’s happening in the verse and relay events as they unfold, to civilians and citizens alike? Then a career in news and entertainment, alongside being the owner of a Reliant Mako, might be for you.
The Reliant Mako utilizes a state of the art Image Enhancement suite and turret-mounted optics, to capture every moment as it happens, allowing you to deliver the clarity and accuracy needed to make headlines. It’s a baby Herald of sorts, letting you do recon and information relay. Owners will be able to obtain the best picture and footage from the safest distance possible and spread the word. It’s scanning and broadcast capabilities won’t be as powerful as a Herald, being a starter ship, but it will get the job done. And like the Herald, it supports two crew stations.
RELIANT TANA – The SKIRMISHER
Pew-pew incoming… What would a series of starter ships be without a combat option? The Reliant Tana enters the ring as the only two-person combat ship, classified as a starter vessel. Categorized as a lightweight fighter, it brings with it high custom high-yield power plant and stronger shields due to its Xi’an technology. It possesses additional weapon mounts AND a wider coverage arc owed to its design.
Entering the game as a static duo? Want to bring someone along who’s not adept enough to fly their own combat ship? Planning to take off with one of your children? I think the Tana is an excellent choice.
Here are other factors to consider about the Reliant Series in general, that I’ve gleaned from the Concept Sale Q&A Posts.
That’s a run down of the information available for the MISC Reliant series. I hope it’s been helpful to anyone considering a pledge for it. It’s likely to go on sale when 2.4 hits the Live Server.
Casual Citizen Episode 18 – MISC Reliant Series