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War Machine Profiles

War Machine Profile #8: NG Spider/Bandito Tarantula

By Brian Hardwick

Overview: The Spider is Northern Gun's knock off of the Bandito Tarantula robot vehicle. First introduced in World Book 14: New West, the Spider seems to be the forgotten robot of Northern Gun by the Rifts community. The Spider is equipped with stealth features as well, however no real game stats are given other than its low noise feature (ie prowl). Generally I like to give it the following: Radar absorption and composite structure impose a -30% to detect by radar. Infra-red dampening gear imposes a -40% to detect by heat sensors.

Firepower: The standard Bandito Tarantula version has dual head mounted rail guns that are equal to the NG-202 model; they provide excellent anti-infantry capabilties. Also on the Tarantula's back is a dual ion cannon, mounted on a turret. This is used to provide defense to the rear and side. To differentiate between the Bandito and Northern Gun version, I suggest using the ion cannon from the NG-56 Multi-Bot in a dual configuration. The overall height of the robot is only 11 feet, so with multiple gunner's the robot can fire both its rail and ion guns at a single target of suffecient height, providing a powerful one-two punch. To provide a slightly longer range bombardment the robot is fitted with a mini-missile launcher holding 24 mini-missiles. These are used to blast enemy armor or low flying aerial targets.

Armor Protection: The Spider/Tarantula provides a slightly lower than average armor protection. It's main protection comes from its stealth ability and speed.

Speed: Able to move at a top speed of 100 mph, excellent leaping ability and decent underwater movement the Spider provides its crew with true all terrain capability.

Deployment: In the West and Southwest, the Bandito Tarantula has proven to be popular with mercs and hi-tech bandits alike. With Northern Gun introducing it to the Midwest and Canada, the design is proving just as popular. The Spider is best used to spring a ambush (hence the bandit popularity) or as a strike/infiltration unit, getting behind enemy lines and causing damage.

Upgrades: Other than the noted change with the ion cannons above, the Spider would benefit from a improved armor package. Grenade launcher's added to the legs could also be added to keep sapper's from closing with the robot.

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