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Old 06-01-2020, 01:09 PM   #12
Join Date: Jun 2008
Default Re: The shurkin challenge.

Shiruken Trainer by Swordtart:
Luxury; Light chassis; Light suspension;
Medium PP;
4 Standard tires.
Vehicular Shotgun w/10xStandard.
Fire Extinguisher.
46 pts. Plastic Armour (F: 10 R: 8 L: 8 B: 6 T: 4 U: 4);
1x10 pt. FP CA (plant), 1x10 pt. FP CA (VS)
Cost: $4,660, Wgt: 3,580.
HC: 1, Top Speed: 100, Accel: 5.
Cargo 601lb, 9 spaces.

You want your kids to learn to fight safely. You don't have the budget for fancy gear and you don't want them getting dependent on fancy electronic gizmos. You really don't want them taking the family car out and getting themselves killed.

Family Custom take surplus Shirukens (which frankly is all of them), strips out the unnecessary complications and stiffens up the internal protection on every component. The reliable Vehicular Shotgun allows even novice shooters a reasonable chance of success in practice bouts. Even teens who push their luck in peer battles are only likely to end up with scars to underline their learning (Family Custom recommend paint ammunition for pre-teen duellists - tough love only goes so far). As a final safety consideration we put the plant behind the crew compartment to discourage head-on collisions (the primary cause of death for teen drivers).

The trainer is technically Division 5 legal but is not designed to be competitive. The plant can handle over 600lb cargo and there is plenty of space for a dedicated gunner, some passengers for cruising or even a grocery run if you are angling for a higher allowance.

The original Shiruken was a poor design and where it reached its intended market was criminally weak. Taking that poor design and weakening it further was a risky strategy for Family Custom and whilst it never quite hit its advertised target audience (most parents still preferred to use simulators to train their offspring), the Trainer found a surprise outlet in dirt poor provincial arenas.

Nicknamed "The Coffin" by the unfortunates slated to compete in them, it was popular with arena management due to its comparative durability. Comparative that is, to the drivers (and occasionally Gunners in team events). Where several identical cars were pitted against each other, most breaches ended up incapacitating the crew before any internal components took damage. The injury to event ratio was higher than for the majority of common amateur event vehicles and easily satisfied the blood for treasure ethic of the arena.

With crew vulnerability designed in, surrender on breach was common and this, plus the fire extinguisher and the low damage yield of the Vehicular Shotgun, meant that whilst injury was higher than average, competitor deaths were significantly lower than average. This and the low cost per round of ammunition also made the vehicle cheap to maintain and run for the Arena. With the only payout usually a minor cash prize to the winner plus an appearance fee per competitor that was probably best invested in event medical insurance, once the capital costs were dealt with, each event might cost the Arena less than $1-2000 to stage in recurrent costs.

An eggshell armed with a pea shooter, bouts were often of equivalent length to more costly matches easing the budgets of small town arenas. For many in these economically depressed places, arena success was their only route out of poverty. Surprisingly, the Shiruken Trainer may not have been the worst vehicle for that journey.

Last edited by swordtart; 06-01-2020 at 03:51 PM.
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