Group Profile - Cobra Force, a mercenary company
Note - While I spend some time of the political stuff in this, the personality of the thing is the operational part.
Mike Mayhew and Jay p. Hailey
Number of Members:
Over 1000, including administration and support.
Nature of Members:
Humans and other sentients from around the galaxy who make their living by fighting.
Military. Very Military. With a bizarre profusion of ranks medals and other bits of military status so that one must be studied in Cobra Force Lore to understand.
A Humorous Encounter for the PCs, possible rivals or antagonists over any given confrontation, Rarely, back up for PCs who need a Fire power bump.
Military force for hire.
Minor, although they equal any single pirate band in available force.
Public or secret?
They try to make their existence, availability and successes public, and keep their failures secret, with very limited success on both sides.
Publicly Stated Goal:
To ensure their clients military goals are met with efficiency and professionalism. To blow stuff up, real good.
Cobra Force is a successful mercenary company. It has serious influence in any given sector it's operating in. It's successes and failures can effect politics and standings of whole worlds. They are relatively wealthy, but their own overhead makes keeping ahead of the curve a constant struggle
Cobra Force has heavy military arms and a licensee to use them. Usually diplomacy is someone else's problem.
Cobra Force is manned by a unique collection of battle hardened looney toons that are used to chaos and crisis. You may surprise them, you may even panic them but who could tell?
Mercenary bands often benefit from PR benefits on the frontier. Once hired, they don't leave until the contract is up, and their approach to pirates is direct, practical and violent. However, Some mercenary bands gain reputations as little better than pirates themselves.
Most Starfleet officers and Civilians from the core worlds consider Mercenaries left competent and more criminal minded than Starfleet, and by and large they're right. But frontiersmen like the back up when the can afford it.
Cobra Force has contacts with planetary governments all over the Orion Main and the Frontier. Cobra force probably has contacts inside Starfleet command, Where they may be used as a deniable strike force. They may have contacts inside the Orion culture where they may be used as force multipliers and purchasers of military grade equipment.
Cobra Force as one special ability relative rare for a mercenary company. They own an old Klingon Light Carrier/Troop-transport which allows them to conduct a wide range of operations. This ship also poses a serious drain on Cobra Force's cash flow.
People in Cobra Force tend to start out with or develop emotional disturbances. Many members of Cobra Force are violent sociopaths who have managed to find a barely socially acceptable outlet for their violence. Still others are incompetents who have drifted to a relatively stable environment. Still others are outcasts for different reasons.
Cobra Force has a well-earned reputation for violence both on and off the battlefields and is banned from many Federation and neutral worlds for violent crimes. Some Cobra Force members serve in jails all over known space until this day.
The one time Cobra Force was involved in a covert operation, the situation eventually devolved to the point where a tactical nuclear device was detonated in the bay of a small resort town along the ocean. No one has asked Cobra Force to do a Covert mission since.
Cobra Force is notably lacking in subtlety and tact.
Cobra Force often takes casualties, ones that would make a more professional outfit quit the field.
Due to a little known clause of Federation Law, Cobra Force can be declared an Auxiliary force of Starfleet
People who enlist. As far as is know there is no background screening to become a member of Cobra Force.
Who doesn't belong:
Anyone who hasn't enlisted. Anyone who is *currently* shooting at Cobra Force.
Those who favor them:
Colonists who fear attacks by Pirates, Raiders or hostile nations. People who like to be able to hire a bloodthirsty mercenary band.
Those opposed to them:
Starfleet. People who fear collateral damage. People with a concept of "appropriate force"
Area of Operation:
The frontier near Klingon Space and The Orion Main.
Planet Regina, the Spinward Marches sector.
A Professional band of soldiers with lots a spanglies and an underlying hint of great violence.
Force Vice-Admiral Lawson. A former Starfleet Captain. In the late 2350s he decided to try and capitalize on his Starfleet Military experience and Form a Mercenary Group to help protect colonists on the frontier.
Lawson is a pompous man, convinced that he is some sort of military genius. But he is also very good at self-promotion. In his organization, Kissing Lawson's butt is a good survival tool.
Senior Force Captain Linda Chandler. A former Starfleet Security Officer, she found her career stalled because of her ruthless and pragmatic approach to solving Starfleet security issues often violated Starfleet policies.
When Lawson approached her, Chandler jumped and now enjoys having a job where loaded phaser bank means never having to say you're sorry.
Senior Force Colonel Greg Morrison. A put upon normal guy type. He was a Civilian Starship line engineer, and administration officer. His career plateaued, and he left Starfleet to try and seek more lucrative opportunities. He is the Quartermaster and administrates ground operations.
The 6th Vipers. An attack wing, Where Claw, Mikki Ashby, Idun and Joe Little served.
History of the Group:
2357 Lawson and company Form Cobra Force and have some success as Defense "Advisors" On the Frontier.
2358 Lawson and company buy their first batch of "Cobra" assault shuttles.
2359 After Lawson is injured in combat. Cobra Force hires a doctor and begins to establish aggressive medical support.
2360 Lawson spins off a second Group of Cobra assault Shuttles.
2362 Lawson retires to a Regina to Administer Cobra Force.
2363 in a private adventure mission, Members of Cobra Force find and recover IVK "Shimmering Death Wing" A Klingon Light Carrier and assault ship. Despite minor protests from the Klingon Government the ship is declared fairly salvaged by Cobra Force
2364 First Batch of "Viper" fighters purchased. IVK "Shimmering Death Wing" now renamed CFS Anaconda begins operation.
2365 Cobra Force sees combat during the Klingon Civil war Hired out to pro-Gowron forces.
2366 Cobra Force undertakes heavy anti Piracy patrols along the Orion main. Although angered, Orion Crime lords have trouble assembling enough forces in one location to decisively defeat Cobra Force. The Orions, trying a war of attrition find that local Federation worlds and hidden backers are willing to outspend them Cobra Force grows to enormous size.
2367 Orions withdraw from local Federation space.
2368. The CFS Anaconda spends most of the year in Regina Orbit and much of Cobra force is laid off when the massive money spigot it turned off. Cobra Force reorganizes.
2369 cobra Force begins a frontier Campaign against a race of hostile insectoids. The insects make up for being less advanced by being very numerous.
2370 Cobra Force picks up Claw.
2371 the campaign against the Insectoids and sporadically against the Orions continue.
Common ships of Cobra Force -
The largest (and most expensive) single mercenary ship currently operating, a salvaged Klingon light Carrier assaults ship from the 2280s. Anaconda has been refit from surplus Klingon and Federation parts, and Orion weapons systems. The ship has enough broad side to challenge pirates and small ships. But compared to almost any front line Federation or Klingon Unit, the Anaconda's shields and weapons are weak. Anaconda has been damaged badly several times but never fatally, yet.
Lawson strives to keep the ship out of harms way. It was never meant to operate alone but as part of a fleet. Preferably one led by a K'T'inga class cruiser.
"Cobra" class assault shuttles.
A minor update to a 2280's Federation design, these boxy oversized shuttles have minor warp capability. The mission of this ship is to descend against fire and offload troops into Combat. Imagine a Trek version of an LZT. The Cobra Modification adds beam weapons turrets and missile launchers. However the shielding and armor of these ships is disappointing. In Heavy combat conditions Cobras tend to be very vulnerable especially in the turrets, missile launchers and pilot areas.
Still they are cheap to manufacture, and used properly (Theoretically with a Starship in obit providing fire support) Cobras should do just fine. Sadly the needed Starship support is rarely present for Cobra Force.
Theoretically, a group of cobras firing in concert and using heavy missiles should pose a threat to a Starship. This has not been tried against any but the smallest, rudest Pirate vessels. The results have been disappointingly mixed.
"Viper" Class Fighters
These ships are an attempt to give the Cobras the fire support they need cheaply. These are two man shuttles with the pilots sitting in a fore and aft arrangement. The Viper has heavy energy weapons fixed front, a medium weapons turret above and a missile launcher below. It warp range is even more limited than a Cobra but it's sublight maneuverability is impressive.
Against ground targets and other small ships, Viper have proven deadly. Against heavier starships and bases, they again have been disappointing. They are not armored much more heavily than a Cobra shuttle. These have a small bay that can be used for passengers and cargo, once missiles are unloaded.
Cobras, Vipers and ground troops are often transported into an operations area by a subcontracted transportation firm or a subcontracted mercenary ship.
Usually Stuff bought cheap from Klingon or Cardassian surplus supplies. These have the reputation of being robust and easy to use.
When Federation surplus material is available Cobra Force makes "reasonable" bids on it.
A lot of newer equipment comes from Orion sources who are never too proud to sell to a customer with hard cash.
Cobra Force does not buy from Ferengi dealers anymore without severe precautions being taken.
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