Although smaller ships, such as the Na-D2-1b Atlas-Class Destroyer, are useful for delivering soldiers to an area, they are unable to deploy a large force on their own. The Shaika is meant to remedy this with a massive compliment of Marines, hardware to keep them fighting, and cloning and fabrication facilities to allow them to throw them back into the fray should the going get too rough. It serves as both a troop transport and planetary support vessel.
The class can be modified to serve as a dedicated Fleet Carrier. While it is not as powerful or spacious as a Rok'Veru Carrier, the Shaika is far cheaper to produce and maintain as opposed to its larger cousin.
The ship stands out with its ability to transport Nepleslian Space Marine Corps ground forces to a hostile environment as well as to deploy and support them throughout the campaign. This is the role it was designed for and excels in it.
However, like any good design, the Shaika can be modified to serve as a dedicated Fleet Carrier. Ships that have been modified are capable of transporting large numbers of fighters to the battlefield
The Shaika's primary purpose is to ferry a large military force to a target location and deploy them into the battle. It also serves a secondary purpose of providing logistical as well as combat support to the troops.
The Shaika is a large, boxy ship with an asymmetrical shape. While its shape does not hinder the efficiency of the Shaika, they do add an amount of aesthetics that is often lacking in the normally-spartan Nepleslian designs.
Since the formation of NAM, Nepleslia has been attempting to move away from NDI influence over its military-industrial complex. The Shaika is no exception to this movement towards Nepleslian independence, as before its design, the NDI's Byakko-class Joint Strike Carrier was the only vessel of its class available to NAM. Designed by NAM in the opening month of YE 30, and borrowing many elements from other NAM designs, the Shaika is meant to rapidly deploy massive amounts of troops to wherever their empire needs them.
The class was originally named the Freedom classed but was changed to a less provocative name that matched its role in support of the Marines. Hence the name “Shaika,” reminiscent of the Marine Shaiks.
Since their inception into the armed forces, Shaikas have become a very visible symbol of Nepleslia. Many have served as flagships for fleets or squadrons. One very well-known Shaika is the NSS Vanderhuge, Flagship of the 1st Assault Fleet.
Retrofits made in YE 35 to existing hulls and modifications made to the plans include an extended range, new shield systems, upgraded AI, and improved weaponry. The tradeoff for this was a reduced troop capacity.
Crew: 1250 operators are recommended, but only 700 are required. Air Wing: When configured as a starfighter carrier, an additional 2000 personnel are required Maximum Capacity: There are accommodations for up to 4000 troops and their equipment. In emergency, up to 10,000 may be crammed aboard but supplies and life support would be severely taxed.
Length: 2467 meters Width: 808 meters Height: 413 meters Decks: 16
Combat FTL: 12,500c Hyperspace Fold Drive: .70 LY/Minute Sublight Engines: .36c Range: 50 Lightyears Lifespan: 40 years Refit Cycle: Must be refueled/ restocked once every six months to maintain full operational capacity.
There are thirty of these rooms spread across the ship. They are designed with defense in mind, and as such can quickly be turned into small fortresses against attack, with a number of Durandium deployable cover sections, as well as reinforced Nerimium bulkheads. The armories are large, bright, white rooms with green edging and dozens of olive drab weapon racks. It should be noted that all of these rooms are laden with heavy explosive devices that may be detonated by a command from the bridge should they fall under enemy control. This is the reason none of these rooms are located near the outer hull or essential ship systems.
The bridge of the Shaika is quite large due to the need for large amounts of personnel to man the vessel. The room is long, with sides slanting towards the front, which is a flat, imposing screen. The floors are covered in a dark green shag carpet, with a white ceiling lined with fluorescent lights. The Captain and Executive Officer both have stations on a raised platform, overseeing much of the bridge, and directly on top of the entrance to the room, which is comprised of two heavy Nerimium bulkhead doors. This platform is accessible by two long staircases, and the entrances to the CO and XO suites are located there as well. Below them are several dozen consoles for controlling various ship functions organized into two groups split by a walkway, further divided into three diagonal rows in each group. The walls are lined with view screens, which may display either random images of the captain's choice (Yes, including Aethersperm music videos), or video feeds from the outside of the ship. The bridge is located towards the front of the ship, but still quite far away from the outer hull. It is lined with very thick Nerimium for protection.
This is a large, posh room. Invariably, it contains the same deep green shag carpeting of the bridge, a large desk containing a powerful computer work station, a small kitchen, a full bathroom, and a view screen on the wall. As for furniture, this is left up to the captain, although there are several sets of furniture available, including an old-fashioned layout, with expensive mahogany dressers, a four-poster bed, and other such elegant things, and a more modern-looking arrangement.
Slightly smaller than the captain's suite, but still quite nice. Has many of the same details, although lacks the kitchen, and the carpet is blue as opposed to green.
Located aft of the bridge, this is an extremely nice dining room and recreation area for the officers of the ship. It comes with hand-crafted wooden tables, a comfortable green shag carpet, and stained wood wall panels. A sizable bar is located in front of the kitchen, with a very wide range of drinks. Meals are usually served buffet style on a long table running along one wall. As for recreation, there are several nice chess boards present in the room, as well as a cluster of comfortable furniture located in front of a large television.
The shaika contains two Nepleslian Starship Brig in the stern and bow of the ship each containing dozens of cells.
Five of these cavernous rooms can be found in the Shaika. They contain large quantities of food, extra clothing, and various technical supplies. They are white paneled rooms with green edging.
One of these rooms houses 50 men (about a company of marines), with 800 of them throughout the ship. They are rather large, with green shag carpets, white walls, and a single massive-screened television, both for receiving orders and for entertainment. Bunkbeds line much of the room, with three bunks stacked high. The beds are made of very comfortable memory foam. There are several couches situated in front of the television. In the aft of the room is the entrance to the showers and bathroom, along with a changing room. Footlockers for the marines are located under the beds.
These are very much similar to the troop barracks, although they eschew a third level bunk in favor of more locker space for the men. There are 300 of these rooms onboard the Shaika class. Sailors are expected to “hotbunk” so as to save space.
Dozens of these rooms are present on the Shaika. They contain various games, such as pool, very large televisions, at least one bar, and various other fun activities. They are decorated in the standard green and white, although are usually more dimly lit than most rooms. There are 500 scattered throughout the ship.
These are large rooms filled with simulation modules to allow for training, although they are sometimes used by the crew for recreation. There are fifty simulator modules in each room, with several large viewscreens mounted on the rear wall of the facility, with a raised platform for an officer to watch the simulation from. There are one hundred of these on the Shaika class carrier.
Located near almost every barrack room and the bridge, these are simple, automated centers designed for dispensing quick medical assistance for minor injuries.
Twenty of these rooms are present on the ship. They're usually staffed by around six medical officers each. The rooms are much like the medical bay found on the NSS Alliance, although slightly larger. The medical bay contains twenty surgical beds, with a large, spider-like surgical implement mounted on the heads capable of complicated surgery without the help of the medical staff. Two of the walls of the room are lined with absorbent memory foam beds, capable of generating small stasis fields for wounded marines. The wall across from the entrance holds a large viewscreen, surrounded by a number of drawers filled with various drugs and medical supplies, as well as a small charging station for the AwesomeCorp DataJockey issued to the medical staff. When there are no personnel located in this room, the AI automatically locks down the center, and initiates a cleaning cycle, including a blast of microwaves to kill bacteria and various cleaning chemicals which drain through a number of drains in the floor usually used for blood.
Contains a large number of cloning tanks capable of producing a working body quite quickly. This is one of the most important parts of the carrier, as it allows the Shaika to replenish its forces easily. There are one thousand tanks in this facility, and enough biomass present to reproduce the crew up to four times. The tanks are linked to a central database containing the genetic signatures of onboard crew, as well as another containing Cerebral Chip backup data for them. The cloning center is located right next to one of the Supply rooms, which is heavily stocked with clothing.
These are wide hallways with white floors, walls, and ceilings, lined with green. There are LED lights built into the siding that may be used by the AI to guide personnel to wherever they need to go. In most hallways, there is at least one heavy Xaser turret built into the ceiling to assist against boarders.
Blast doors line the hallways, ready to seal if a hull breach is detected.
Due to the immense size of the ship, the largest passageways contain self-propelled walkways. However, the Spinal corridor (That reaches from engineering to the nose of the ship) has a small tram. There are also two tracks that circle the mid-deck of the ship. In case of boarding action, these systems are usually shut down.
Blast doors line the hallways, ready to seal if a hull breach is detected.
These massive sections are essentially upscaled versions of the launch bays found on Atlas destroyers. There are a number of launch tubes for planetary deployment, in addition to a heavily shielded and reinforced airlock door for space deployment. The bays hold numerous NAM Power Armors and a number of mechs. The rooms are three decks tall, with Power Armor storage and launch tubes on each, with the airlock on the lowest. Two are located on either side of the ship, with four in total. Each of the bays also contains a Fabrication System for replenishing its Power Armor forces.
This bay starts about two hundred meters from the nose of the ship, and uses the launching system. It contains all of the fighters present on the ship, as well as a number of mechs. It uses a launching system, explained down below, to help propel and protect the units it launches. The actual launch bay itself takes up the space of close to four decks, with fighters packed closely together on each floor. There is also a Fabrication facility located in this bay.
Big, thick plates of Nerimium provide the primary protection for the vessel. They are installed in large panels for easy repair. There are two layers of Nerimium plating present: the lower section being comprised of smaller, but thicker sections while the outer panels are wider with less depth.
This is a rather simple system compared to the more advanced construction systems seen on the NOZH Power Armor, as this is meant solely for repair purposes. This system is located between the armored plating, and the Durandium inner hull. It contains enough raw material to replace both hulls completely one time over before it is expended.
These are essentially just the walls of the rooms. The inner hull is a thick layer of Durandium Alloy added to protect the crew and to contain the NCS system.
Essentially the ships skeleton, this simply provides something to keep the outer armor layers in place.
Three of these systems provide the power necessary to operate the Shaika. These generators provide the requisite energy in much the same way an aether cannon works, by utilizing scalar radiation to release large amounts of energy from dead space. The downside to this energy source is that it is readily detectable by hyperspace scanners, although, given the Shaika's purpose, this is not as large a threat as it may seem.
Two Fusion Generators were installed as backups in case the Hyperspace Taps were to fail. They will provide enough energy for life support systems, weapons, sensors, and propulsion. However, they cannot provide enough to allow these systems full capacity if all are brought online.
All of these power systems are cooled and regulated by a series of automated power grids.
The Shaika originally used a Drei Artificial Intelligence to control all major ship functions, as well as assist the crew with whatever tasks they require.
Following the YE 35 retrofits, this was replaced by the newer Advanced Command/Combat Executive AI. The core is located in the wall between the CO and XO suites on the bridge.
These are massive computer banks containing the Cerebral Chip mental backups of the crew. This is located just above the cloning facility, next to the genetics databank.
Another large computer core, although this one contains the genetic data of the crew and marines as opposed to their minds.
The retrofitted Shaikas have added a powerful ECM suite to their complement, granting them greater usefulness in any support role.
Emphasizing its primary function as a ground support vessel, the Shaika class received command & control suites for ground commanders to use. These suites provide overall strategic and tactical information to commanders, allowing them to better direct and coordinate ground forces.
Retrofits in YE 35 updated the Shaika's Sensors suite to a more modern and powerful one.
Using a very long launch tube with shield and CDD field projectors linked to the starship's main shield and CDD generators itself stuck on the sides of the tunnel, the launchtube will overlay a fraction (Which is still alot when compared to that of a fighter) of the starship's shields and CDD bubble on the craft. This will give it a short-term burst in shield and speed. The massive burst in speed allows it to close the gap between it and the target (A destination or an enemy starship) much faster, reducing the time the enemy has to fire on it, thus reducing damage. The burst in shields allows it to survive being thrown into the fray like that and a little while after. These systems greatly increase the survivability of the units using it, and has been equated with the “Spawn invulnerability” mechanic present in many modern games.
There are four of these onboard the Shaika, one in each Power Armor bay. Using various materials held in storage facilities around the module, the system is able to efficiently construct small objects, such as Power Armors, fighters, and weapons. There is enough mass held in storage to replenish the mechanical units onboard the ship twice.
Due to the massive amount of personnel aboard the Shaikia, the life support system is of a similarly massive scale. There are close to one thousand air scrubbers present on the Shaika, charged with collecting circulating air, cleaning it, and pumping it back to the ship. The bridge and engineering areas both contain Designer Atmosphere systems, which introduce various chemicals into the atmosphere which help to heighten awareness in the personnel serving in these locations.
A standard gravitic drive, much like those found in Nerimian Defense Initiative warships. By manipulating the fabric of space itself, the Na-GD-01a is able to quickly jump into motion, with very limited inertia being projected on the ship.
This propulsion system uses an array of VASIMIR assemblies to help propel the Skaika at high speeds. Drawing ionized hydrogen into a magnetized chamber, The ionized Hydrogen is then super-heated using microwave radiation. At the same time, Radio waves are passed through the plasma to impart a very powerful charge. Shortly after, it is expelled through the rear of the ship using a magnetic channeling system.
The Shaika's upgraded shielding replaced the outdated CXS system with the newer Combined Barrier System. This gives it ample protection against boarders, objects attempting to teleport into it, and modern conventional weaponry.
NAM Heavy Plasma Cannons (20): These are the Shaika's primary anti-starship batteries. They are arranged in turrets along the ship's hull to give it a powerful bow shot and a devastating broadside.
NAM Multiphase Cannons (20): These are very large, very powerful cannons that are meant to add the “Assault” to Assault Carrier. They are twin-linked in turrets arranged along the length of the ship's hull. It provides a kinetic punch to the ship's broadside and planetary bombardment options.
NAM Na-MPA-01a Massed Positron Array (30): These positron arrays are the heaviest weapons present on the Shaika, using twelve grouped Positron cannons to bombard enemy vessels. Positron weapons use anti-matter that has been excited, forced into a magnetic field, and accelerated to relativistic speeds.
NAM Twin Plasma Turret (30): Small, concealable point-defense turrets meant to swat armor and fighters out of the sky with small but potent blasts of plasma. When not in use, the turrets recess into the hull.
NAM Extended Mini-Missile Racks (50): The ubiquitous NAM Mini-missiles, DARTs, ARROWs, and BOLTs, have proven to be excellent anti-starfighter deterrents when deployed in swarms. They are useful for breaking up enemy fighter formations, disrupting attack runs and causing havoc by denying flight paths. Their cheapness, high rate of fire and ease of reload make them an ideal complement to the Shaika's HPV turrets. These models have been modified with extended range.
The Shaika can accommodate up to 4000 Power Armors in its Power Armor bays and Storage facilities.
There is space for 80 NAM Wolverine Mechs in the carrier. They may only be launched through the Fighter bay, however. Due to the increasing rarity of the Wolverine, most Shaikas do not carry them and use the space to store other vehicles.
Up to 960 FA4 and Na-F/A 02 Hammerhead-Type Strike Bomber fighters may be contained in the Shaika's fighter bay if converted into a Fleet Carrier.
No matter its configuration, the Shaika carries 24 Na-S/Sh-01 Zachitnik-class Shuttle shuttles.