Think Tank: The Combat Engineer

In an armoured room deep in the heart of the Dark Harvest’s secret bunker, a lone ginger Igor sits and scratches away with pen and parchment; creating ideas and information for his master.

These are his musings.

Welcome to the Think Tank! Iain’s piece on fortified churches got me thinking like a PMF general – how would the Promethean Military Force have organised their ability to handle a siege? What would they have done to develop the capability to take out the church at Denndorf, for example? This is the first of two short articles – the first gives an insight into the specialists of the PMF Engineering Corps; the second will look at explosives and their use against buildings in a bit more detail. Here we go…

The Combat Engineer

For as long as mankind has been creating fortifications, there are those who have wanted them torn down. This is the role in the Promethean Military Forces filled by the combat engineer; sometimes more romantically referred to in other armies as” pioneers” or “sappers” (Victor, though, has never had a romantic view of the military). The Engineering Corps consists of one battalion of around 400 combat engineers, divided into four companies of roughly equal size. The battalion is based in Bacӑu, and as a result, regularly assist with the reconstruction of rail lines in the area which have been targetted by Resistance “troublemakers”.

This may give you a clue as to what a combat engineer does. In general terms, their duties are to perform construction, repair and demolition operations, often in the thick of battle. This may be anything from clearing a minefield, to repairing faulty mortars, to tunnelling under a fortification and then using explosives to breach those defences. The fact that they are expected to be in combat areas means that they are trained to fight as well as any PMF soldier, and an engineer or two can often be found in amongst a company of infantrymen, ready to carry out repairs on field equipment, or kill the enemy – whatever is required.

The Promethean ideology of improvement through Augmentation has been applied to this necessary military role with great success, and two major types of Augmented engineer have developed in roughly equal number. The structural engineer (nicknamed castor, or “beaver”) has received implants which greatly increase his strength, and armour to afford him some protection from enemy fire as he tackles their defences; the equipment engineer (or veveriţă – “squirrel”) has alteration to his nerves and hands which allow him to work quickly on compact equipment in difficult circumstances. Once inducted into the Engineers, a recruit will be offered the option of one of two standard Augmentation procedures, detailed below – not every engineer ends up with these Augmentations, but the surgeons have become adept at these procedures, allowing them to be performed in a single surgery, and therefore much more efficiently than at a non-Corps clinic. This means that if one of these packages is taken at Character Generation, then the reduced cost for the Augmentations can be paid.

New Augmentation Options

The “Beaver” Structural Engineer Augmentation Package

Cost: 13 Character Points

  •  1 level Armour (3 pts) – Dark Harvest, p156
  •  2 levels Enhanced Attribute [Strength] (10 pts) – Dark Harvest, p157
  •  Night Vision (3 pts) – Dark Harvest, p158

The “Squirrel” Equipment Engineer Augmentation Package

Cost: 12 Character Points

  • Small Hands (3 pts) – Resistance, p121
  • Extra Joints (3 pts) – Resistance, p121
  • 2 levels Nerve Grafting (6 pts) – Resistance, p121
  • Night Vision (3 pts) – Dark Harvest, p158

Sample Character

Name: Jani Eugenescu
Age: 24
Class: Middle
Vocation: Structural Combat Engineer, 2nd Company, Engineering Corps.

Strength: +2 [+4]
Dexterity: +1
Fortitude: +2
Presence: -1
Wits: +1
Resolve: +1

Initiative: 4
Movement: 6
Hit Points: 8
Fate Points: 8

Ad Hoc Repair (2), Blunt Weapons (2), Concentration (3), Demolitions (3), Dodge (3),
Engineer [Civil] (4), Engineer [Military] (5), Firearms (3), Fisticuffs (3), General Knowledge (2),
Might (3), Perception (2), Pick Locks (2)

Juggernaut (2)

Beaver Package: Armour (1), Enhanced Attribute [Strength] (2), Night Vision


Join us next time for more on fortifications, including how to take a building, and turn it into rubble in one easy step!

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