1st Sep, 2019

New shoulders?

This is the prototype of the Sciror Legionary. With my experience of designed a 3D version of the GW Space Marine, I know how tricky it can be to make the armour look right. In this design I'm trying to make the armour look anatomically pleasing, as if the armour was the character - but a human can still fit inside. To achieve this requires messing with perception, playing with the optics. The legs are given the illusion of being longer by inserting pivot points high on the waist, and the perceived 'head' is really a sensor array (the 'visor') being mounted towards the top of the head. Both the eye line and crotch are lower than the seem to be. A real pilot's head would be a little lower, in the neck area, and if you look there is a dome like helm under the 'visor'. The shoulder array has the pivot in the middle, but on a human the joint is high on the shoulder.

The arms have mounting plates gear. The left mount is for a power-scutum, a Roman Legionary (or riot police) style shield, and the right mount is for integrated small arm with backpack feed (either projectiles or energy hookups). Weapons systems include my 'bolter' design using the smart-munitions 'Octobolt', auto-shotguns, and 'nades. There is also a pop-out short sword style blade, under the mount, as a last resort. May have stun-knuckles for non-lethal civilian bitch slaps.

These power harnesses are small arms resistant, as they are frontal assault for 'STC' style buildings. With a shield they should be able to resist .50 BMG, which is one hell of an ask. I'm not sure if they could resist a .50 BMG without a power-field enhanced shield, as it may break a reader's suspension of disbelief. Maybe I'll post YouTube videos to make the case they can resist 'em, but are not immune. 20mm will definitely rip through and destroy them, or if a glancing hit: knock them scatty.

These harnesses have all the same heat suppression tech, active camouflage, recycling and feeding technologies I made up for Space Marines. Though shock troops they should have a reasonable operational window. Getting out of this harness is not going to be easy!

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14 Responses

Hearing feedback is very important to me in developing my ideas. Much of my designs are inspired, and crafted, by chatting to fans on forums before snowballing into a full concept you'll find here. I would like to thank all those who have contributed critiques and participated in discussions over the years, and I would especially like to thank all those who commented on this specific topic. If you would like join in, you are most welcome!

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  1. Malika says:

    The notion of the Machines handing guns to humans and telling them not to hurt one another does sound very...godlike to me, something from the Old Testament or Greek/Roman mythology, might fit them rather well.

    As for the psionics, if it are the thoughts revolving around the emotions (rather than the emotions themselves), would it then still matter if they're virtual or not? If not, then from a resource management point of view it would bea lot easier to go full Matrix here: put all of humanity in a VR world. No need to create entire cities with resources to feed the population.

    • Philip S says:

      The machines may be seen as god-like, divine oracles, or musical sages, and human interaction could be varied, from a cargo cult to an organised religion. It is hard to imagine the effect on the human mind when encountering the machines of the Supremacy would have. I have a feeling it is traumatic, as the machines are inherently 'suprematist' and 'biased' towards humans, which would have a lasting effect. In some ways, we can think of the machines as having the 'soft bigotry of low expectation' towards humans, or that is how we humans may interpret it. The machines need humans for the navigator program, but that is a glorified driver with build-in sat-nav, a big like a London Black Cabbie. That is about as high as humans can go in the machine hierarchy. Everyone else, who is not a navigator, as a means to an end. An experiment, where the machines are playing god.

      As for the Matrix: the quick answer is that a simulation is not as complicated as the real world, no matter how good that simulation is. Being in a 'Matrix' separates us humans from reality, separates us from the use of our body, separates us from our sixth-sense (which may be screaming something is wrong), which is putting up barriers to our psionic self. I'm sure the machines have tried it, they have VR tech for the Legionaries to mess with perception, but that manipulation is over an underlying reality. The machines want us in the real world, and they get more navigators.

  2. Matthew Kage says:

    You might want to re-think the "backpack," as the design roots are a little bit too obvious.

  3. Malika says:

    Cool so far. I do miss a bit of context. Is this just about a suit of armour, or about a type of soldier, or an organisation (the Legion)? I like the idea that it's mainly about a suit of armour named the 'Legionary'. Maybe it's a military piece of equipment that was based on civilian tech, some sort of environmental suit/armour. So yeah, perhaps approach it as a piece of equipment. It fits the whole sandbox approach, we'd have histories, environments, equipment, worlds, etc. Players can then create their own factions, characters, stories within it all.

    • Philip S says:

      I was thinking of them as Corporate Shock Troops during, and after, the Psidemic.

      It's a fun bit of deconstruction to think of the suit as a character, even though I said it I was not thinking of it that way - your comment gave a little tweak to my perception - though it does make a certain sense as 'Space Marines' are really the suit of armour. An the ones with helmets on could be a robots inside no one would know 😛

      The vanilla version of the Legionary is part of the Psidemic scenario, which is part of the vanilla timeline - I should sort that out, as it will help translate Philhammer to Sciror.

      It also ties into the AFG, as battle damage takes it's toll. I'm thinking that AFG may be an end point, and the technology developed to allow experienced combatants to continue after horrific injuries, as a type of 'dreadnought', and later a corporation took a short cut and when with 'brain in a suit' route, as that is where they all eventually end up?

      • Malika says:

        I get the corporate shock troops, but the suits themselves were created during the Supremacy era right? If so...why? I know some sort of security/crowd control is needed, but the Legionary suit is a very nasty piece of wargear, why need that if society generally isn't that violent? Especially in the context of Article 5.

        That's one of the reasons why I'd imagine this suit to have its origins in civilian utility. Then during the Psidemic, the corporations/factions needed armoured troops, so they recycled these civilian suits, upgrading them to (para-)military gear. It kinda fits the bill since I'd imagine that during the Psidemic there aren't that many opportunities for R&D, meaning that you take whatever you get your hands on and use it as a weapon. Sort of the (post-)apocalyptic scenary.

        The AFG is the next development in the corporate military, I would imagine that to be final stage. But in that case we could see many different body types for the AFG, from Space Marine (Terminator) sized suits to Dreadnought sized, to even bigger suits. It might even be that certain types of suits are controlled by multiple (maybe linked through some sort of internal hive mind) brains.

        • Philip S says:

          During the Supremacy, humans are not needed for anything.

          The Supremacy is big on VR, and with highly immersive VR games, the Legionary armour could be a hyper-real VR asset. In game you could take it apart and see how it works, and practice building it. Customising is a big part of gaming. I imagine the customisation tree for Legionary armour, in a full-life game, to be incredibly detailed.

          During the Psidemic humans may take the VR files and use rapid prototyping, and automated crafting units to print out the armour?

          So technically the Legionary armour is designed and created by the machines, but the machines designed and created it for a game. It was never intended to be used in real life.

          The machines designed these games for emotion, all part of the drive for psionic research.

          • Malika says:

            Hehe, I'm intrigued! Would this very crudely be akin to a bunch of guys finding the stl files of a Space Marine miniature, and then turning into a fully functional suit of power armour?

          • Philip S says:

            Yeah, though the future machines are a lot more complex. Future you could be creating Legionary armour to save the world!

          • Malika says:

            "During the Psidemic humans may take the VR files and use rapid prototyping, and automated crafting units to print out the armour?"

            This is something to look a bit into. I guess the humans have some sort of 3d printers back in their Ecoria to make/replace any kind of equipment they'd need. But wouldn't the machines put some sort of restrictions on the machines? I would imagine that the prototyping machine wouldn't be able to produce items that could breach articles of the Mars Accord. Think items that are specifically designed for killing other humans such as for example guns. So whilst a digital version of a gun could exist for VR games, an actual gun would probably be impossible to produce.

            This would then mean that the humans would somehow have to alter the Machines' tech, which is entering tricky territory I think since I'd imagine the Machines would have put some failsafe systems in there to prevent such a thing from happening.

          • Philip S says:

            The machines do not ban the human from having guns, they are free to use them on each other, or attack the Artiloids. If humans do use them on each other, the machines will sanction, and if serious enough withdraw. Shooting an Artiloid means you have no Artiloid providing services for a while. Remember the machines love drama!

            As for getting the VR game files into production this may be down to the machines indulging humans. Hobbyists could use earlier cognitive technology, even 'dumb' CPUs, with the machines blessing and help. The machines may even make the armour for the Players! Think of it as an advanced form of cosplay. At a convention you can turn up in actual legionary armour 🙂

          • Malika says:

            I still imagine the Machine system to be a warped form of Scandinavian State Individualism (we've discussed this before elsewhere), but then with your notes on that. So the illusion of freedom, but heavily collectivistic. I would then imagine the machines to be an extreme form of a nanny state. Why would humans need guns in real life? They can only cause harm and risk of breaching Article 5. Just ban them. Humans can cause all the needed drama and violence in their VR environments.

            If the psionic energy/field is created through human emotion, does it matter if it originated in the physical or virtual world?

          • Philip S says:

            The setup you describe can be run on a world. The machines try many variations, and different rule sets. One thing they tend to have in common is the machines do not (directly) impose upon the humans. The machines will hand you a gun, and say 'if you kill a person we will withdraw our cooperation', and while this is not a threat as such, because humans are so reliant on technology, it can be seen as a threat. A threat to survival, societal cohesion, and social standing.

            To create the world you mention the machines would not mention guns, not make them, and remove them from history (as colonies have fake histories, guns can be missed out). When no one knows about guns there are no laws required to ban them. Off course, humans being inventive, they may invent guns all over again (which the machines would find fascinating).

            Psionics Events are not purely down to emotions, else animals would have psionics. It's the thoughts and concepts in reaction to emotions, where emotions are a reaction to base drives, that are having the effect. More emotions = more thoughts about how to deal with situations that are causing emotional responses. To get more emotions, the machines mess with the base drives of people, that is survival or sex-drive, hunger etc. Remember, machines do not impose, but they supply food, and there can be 'shortages'. While VR games and 'Tubing give status, and through Google-style manipulation, the machines can craft interactions within the 'sexual marketplace' *, it does not affect survival instinct or hunger. For deeper drives, the machines have to affect reality outside VR, like cutting off your VR!

            [*] Think of Facebook dating, where they match your profile to someone else's.

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