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January 7, 2017, 11:41 am

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Fortress Maximus


Non-Canonical for the Cosmic Era, written for Battleship Freetext Challenge

The vanguard of the Dynasts, the Chariot of their divine wrath and boundless grace.

The Fortress Maximus

The Fortress Maximus is the centerpiece of the Imbrian Navy, the ultimate Imbrian warship, and in fact, the very last ship they built.


The Fortress Maximus is a circular dome shaped vessel, with rigging and railing reminiscent of sailing ships or a vast celestial orrery. Between the tall golden spires and gently rotating wings and wheels an energy field both provides the vessel with immense protection, but also contains it's atmosphere. The sailors and marines aboard the Fortress Maximus go about in casual dress, and are not troubled by bulky concerns like spacesuits or armor. The main hull is 5 kilometer across, and has 20 decks. There is a central command spire that rises a kilometer and a half from the center of the main hull on the dorsal side. This has many decks and is the central command center of the Fortress as well as coordinating operations across an entire planet by itself. The bottom of the Fortress is heavily armored, and has hundreds of material bays holding the deployable weapons, typically a mixture of autonomous warstriders, warkites, and smaller sentient missiles.

Power Source

The core of the Fortress Maximus is a 29 meter wide dimensional rift that powers no fewer than 7 dimensional sink reactors, providing the ship with an immense amount of power. This power supply allows the ship to operate indefinitely.


The primary weaponry of the Fortress Maximus is the ventral mounted Purifier weapon. The weapon generates a high energy stream of Higgs bosons (gravitons) and then uses that beam as a sheath to deliver an incredibly high power positron/anti-proton pulse to the target. With matter already being vaporized by the Higgs beam, the resultant packet of anti-matter detonates with extreme efficiency, mimicking the function of a Fuel Air Explosive, but on an atomic scale. The blast generated by this weapon can shatter small moons, disrupt biospheres, and shatter the husks of even some of the Outer Gods should they foolishly interlope into the Solar System.

Defensive weaponry comes in an array of exotic particle beam weapons, long range lasers, and the deployment of sentient drone weapons. Gardes are humanoid robots of exceptional size engineered for close range combat with aliens and dimensional horrors, and are as such armed with powered melee weapons and short range high power anti-horror weapons. Sharpes are avian shaped robots built for high speed interception and function like fighters. Sharpes and Gardes work together with Sharpes boosting Garde speeds, often 'jet-packing' them into battle, then providing fast strafing attacks or evac as needed. Bulettes are sentient weapons that fly into their targets and explode, and are somewhere between fighters, torpedoes, and suicide bombers.

The typical Fortress Maximus marine is armed with a slender psigon blade, a personal shield projector, and officers carry a short range pulsar pistol. These marines are typically ceremonial in nature.


The Fortress Maximus has a number of propulsion systems. It's main mode of transport is teleportation via dimensional folding. It can travel to any place in the solar system in the matter of a few minutes, but it can take several hours between folds for the dimensional tear inside the core to stabilize. Should it jump too frequently, the rift and the space folding engines can interact with each other, which could turn the ship inside out, teleport it through it's own power core, or simply cause a massive and catastrophic dimensional collapse, imploding the ship.

It has a robust levitation system, but this is dependent on the gravity of another object to work, the further away from a planetary body the ship gets, the less effective the levitation system is.

The final mode of propulsion is a matter/anti-matter version of an Orion drive. The two components are mixed and their resultant energy release is directed to provide thrust for the massive ship. This is the least common form of propulsion used as it places the most stress on the massive spaceframe of the Fortress Maximus.


The Fortress has a crew of 1100, including 120 officers. It can accommodate up to 10,000 passengers in relative comfort.


The Fortress Maximus wasn't needed, nor was it particularly wanted. It was a demonstration of the wealth and power of the Imbrian Dynasts on Luna, and to show the rest of the Empire that the dynasts, despite being conservative reactionary relics, still had the power to dominate the solar system.

The sip was built in the declining Space Period, and faster than light travel had proven insurmountable to the Dynasts and their scientist caste. Teleportation was well established, but attempts to gate to another star had either failed, or failed to return any information of their success. Given that there was little need for ships to carry passengers or cargo from destination to destination, there were fewer and fewer ships built, and then, once there were no more ships built, the number in service rapidly diminished. The only ships left in service were military vessels and pleasure craft. Teleportation rendered even these ships obsolete as there were no shipping lanes to police, and the only thing left was to prance out the ships as a show of power.

The Fortress Maximus was built in this last gasp of ship building, and broke records for largest, most expensive, largest crew, most ridiculous accommodations, and so forth. As the Dynasty became increasingly insular and incestuous, the Fortress Maximus became something of a security blanket, and they believed so long as they had the ship, they were completely safe from anyone who would threaten them.


The Imbrian Dynasty ended in a quick succession of lobbed Caldera Devices (incredibly powerful matter/antimatter gravity bombs) and when it was realized that there was a threat against Luna that was serious, the Fortress was called to the surface of the moon, just above the Royal Palace, to extend it's shields around the palace and protect it from the stolen Caldera devices deployed by the terrorists.

The Dynasts couldn't imagine that it was one of their own behind it all. The Queen herself, wearied of the wickedness, gave the rebels Caldera devices, and the last she carried herself into the Royal See, under the gleaming lights of the Royal City, inside the glowing shell of the Fortress Maximus impervious shell, and detonated it. The Fortress was vaporized, along with the Royal City, and the great archives of the Empire, the entire Royal family and their Phoenix Engines were reduced to space dust, and the gardens of Luna were blasted away until there was nothing but airless void and dust on what had been the most opulent and beautiful world in the Solar System.

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Comments ( 3 )
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January 7, 2017, 11:41

Update: Written in 35 minutes, whew

Main visual inspiration was the Protoss Mothership, but with design influences from Sailor Moon, the main visual reference for Imbria. The Imbrians doles out things like the Neam Octillio as a sort of insult to the colonies, giving them the manual on how to make a dock for their space city battleship to land on when aside from the sheer size and power of it, it was an antique, a floating museum in and off itself.

I considered letting the FM be destroyed in mid fold, perhaps coinciding with a Caldera blast, but being an old Battletech player, the ship lost in mid jump is cliche, almost as cliche as the fortuitous hit to an ammo bin giving the protagonist the win in a pitched battle.

Voted Cheka Man
January 10, 2017, 0:20
Why would the Queen destroy her own world?
Voted Aramax
January 10, 2017, 9:40
This should be canon
Voted Dragonlordmax
January 20, 2017, 14:20
Conceptually, this is quite nice, but I struggled for a bit to think of how it might come up in a game. I think I would be inclined to say that it disappeared with that last explosion - perhaps vaporized, or perhaps teleported away. Then one can imagine people hunting for it as a sort of Once and Future King (of Battleships) in the future.


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