Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
'Mephisto' Drop Suit by MikeDoscher 'Mephisto' Drop Suit by MikeDoscher
The so-called 'drop suits' of the early 22nd century were the result of not so much advances in surface tactics or materials engineering as applied biology. While the idea of inserting surface-mobile combat assets from orbit had been attractive for some time, the limits of either pilot physiology or telepresence made this difficult in practice. Manned units were subject to deceleration limits that increased approach time and made them vulnerable to ground defenses, while remote units were vulnerable to control lag as well as link spoofing. Autonomous AIs were also not suitable, for both technical as well as political reasons.

However, with the passage of the Sapiency Acts in 2206 the modification of human genetics became a matter of practical concern once again. It was revealed later that many of the Ninth Wave programs had never actually been terminated, but rather moved offworld. Theoretical fears aside, it meant (among other things) that it would be possible to modify pilots to withstand the g-forces involved without jeopardizing their legal status. Typically the suits were carried externally below unmanned booster and weapon packs, but many configurations were possible.

Here we see the 'Daisy Pusher' a Block 10 'Mephisto' suit being used in operations against Trans-C Separatists on Titan. The terraforming of that moon served as a sort of mirror for the strange civil war that wracked the settlements there. The conflict was noted for both questions of sapiency, humanity, and the moral weight of aesthetics.

Naturally, none of these questions were decided to the satisfaction of anyone involved.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2012
I like the compact look of this suit.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2012  Professional General Artist
I have a horrible urge to make a joke about loli pilots.

Thanks. I found myself wondering about a mech/suit that could be deployed from some sort of bomb bay or external hardpoint. I really should work out a walk cycle for those accordion legs.
Reply
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2012
In most sci-fi all the ships are big or oddly shaped. They're always never built for easy transport or storage.

That's why I like the Hornet and Super Hornet (even though it's pretty big), they're built to work on a carrier.

Vipers in BSG are built to work on a BattleStar.

I think the same goes for mechs. They're always flashy and good looking but never designed with practicality in mind.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2012  Professional General Artist
I agree. Depending on the mood you're trying to convey, I think there's a fine line between having it look like something anthropomorphic and something practical. I think that the F/A-18 and Viper share a lot of subtle cues both in terms of fittings and a general compactness (though with the Hornet/Super Hornet that compactness isn't so evident unless the wings are folded). The way the rotors and tail fold up on the Sea Stallion was something of an inspiration here as well. I kind of picture the Mephisto as being able to deploy from some sort of containerized hangar on a cargo vessel, a little like the Harriers during the Falklands war.

Even something flashy would be a little better if there were hints of the handling equipment it would need to be launched, recovered, and serviced in some sort of non-magic facility. I kind of like what Giant Robo did here.
Reply
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2012
Harriers are cool
Reply
:iconp0liticallyinc0rrect:
P0LITICALLYINC0RRECT Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2012  Student General Artist
it looks almost like the invid mechs from robotech or which i like to call it by its original name mospeda
Reply
:iconquesocito:
Quesocito Featured By Owner Oct 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
really nice drawing and i love the description as well! Great work man!
Reply
:iconp0liticallyinc0rrect:
P0LITICALLYINC0RRECT Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Student General Artist
thats biwinning!
Reply
:iconkydoon:
Kydoon Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I always loved how your art was two-fold: Imagery and description. Your matter-of-fact references to concepts and events that the audience isn't aware of give a feeling of depth like you wouldn't believe. Your slice-of-life technical pamphlets are always enthralling.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Professional General Artist
Thank you for saying so- giving hints of a broader world is central to what I've been trying to do. :)
Reply
:iconquesocito:
Quesocito Featured By Owner Oct 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I agree!! :)
Reply
:iconxthesnarf4everx:
xthesnarf4everx Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
Gives me a sort of Metal Gear feel. Nice work
Reply
:icontemplar127:
templar127 Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
NICE!
Reply
:iconbaumjunge:
BaumJunge Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
First I thought it's smth from MGS ._______.
Reply
:iconraxater:
Raxater Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
Dont know if it comes from anything particular but hell, I'ld sure love to ride that up to school.
Reply
:iconingkells:
Ingkells Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012
looks badass man
Reply
:iconsagittarius-a-star:
Sagittarius-A-star Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Nice work!! The arm laser looks a bit like the alien weapons from "District 9". The "industrial (alien) laser cutter" look is cool, though!! The pilots are modified to withstand higher G-forces, right? For us mere unmodified humans, immersion in oxygenated fluid tanks will allow us to withstand extreme G loads while piloting space fighters and such. The claustrophobic need not apply. :D I suggest that humans modified for extreme G loads may be designed to be fully aquatic.

Orbital drops are hard due to high accelerations and the high speed of reentry- and powered armor will probably require infantry support, just like tanks and such. Armor suits can't search from house to house, crawl around under bushes, or conduct a proper hostage rescue so infantry will still be vital. Suits also need protection from those guys in black pajamas armed with rocket launchers, who have a tendency to attack from behind. We'll have to drop the grunts in re-entery capsules like the ones discussed here: [link]. Another concern is that your troops and mecha could get scattered over a large area of the target planet's surface, much like paratroopers jumping into enemy territory often do. Hypersonic landing boats might be more practical- maybe there is room for an engineless reentry glider, like a space version of those things they used in WW2? I imagine these orbit drop troops would be used to capture important assets like spaceports in preparation for a full scale invasion, or to carry out special missions in areas of political unrest...
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Professional General Artist
Thank you. I think that structural changes would need to be made at a basic changes to permit humans to be subjected to such forces without injury. Some sort of fluorocarbon media would be useful, but there's still the problem of the aorta and various other pieces of viscera tearing open above about 22g.

You really wouldn't use these as straight infantry, and you wouldn't want to use these on their own, no. The closest equivalent role would be airmobile armor. Suits on this scale would be used as initial shock troops for assault on key installations and other such targets. They would be screened and supported by a substantial number of subsapient autonomous AI units and remote drones. Infantry would be landed a short time later, to do what the infantry rifles do. The outer planets present some very complex environments, both tactically and politically. You have a combination of microgravity, macroscalar installations (gas mining, terraforming, etc.) and gas giants with serious gravity wells. Combine this with the simultaneously conflicting and interlocking interests of the powers involved and you have some tasks that are too delicate to use an armored brigade for, but need more gun than unsupported marines can muster.
Reply
:iconsagittarius-a-star:
Sagittarius-A-star Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Student Digital Artist
The human body is tougher than you'd think, though- even intense G-loads can be withstood for short periods of time. High acceleration pioneer John Stapp withstood a peak force of 46.2 times gravity, and more than 25 g for 1.1 seconds, during his rocket sled acceleration experiments- and these forces were applied "eye-balls" out, i.e. in the manner in which it feels like your eyeballs are going to pop out of your head. Stapp lived another 45 years to age 89, but suffered vision loss from his experiment. An important factor is in which direction these forces are applied, of course, and how long they are applied. Very short duration shocks of 100s of G's have been survivable in racing car crashes, for example. Human tolerance to g-forces varies, too, and training helps. If, however, the pilots of these suits must withstand high Gs for long periods, structural changes may very well be necessary...
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Professional General Artist
There's an interesting paper on plane crash related injuries here: [link]

Turns out the aorta can absorb more gees than I thought, but there are many variables.
Reply
:iconmetalsnail:
MetalSnail Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very cool!!!
Reply
:iconleonardlemaitre:
LeonardLemaitre Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Nice drawing, nice description, you sir deserve a watch!
Reply
:icontracyjb:
tracyjb Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
Striking. I don't think it gets much better than that.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2012  Professional General Artist
I think to improve it I should make you the pilot and have it moonwalk. :3
Reply
:iconnowio:
Nowio Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
the mech has a bulky appearance, i think it might be a pretty loud but somewhere useful thin :D looks awesome ;)
Reply
:iconndgmtlcd:
ndgmtlcd Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
Great looking suit.
Reply
:iconsandtrap:
Sandtrap Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
It's like Metal Gear Rex forced itself on a Mech Warrior unit.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Professional General Artist
XD
Reply
:iconsandtrap:
Sandtrap Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
Most people would find that incredibly offensive, but I just think the durn dropsuit is so cute in all it's derpy stubby-ness.

Then again, as The Emperor is likely to point out... Stubby mechs are just more practical than super-humanoid ones.

And as far as I can tell... Does that thing have an artificial human on-board, or an electronic intelligence?
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Professional General Artist
Well, it was a bit of an attempt to work out certain ideas with both the legs and the cockpit to deal with what I saw as deficiencies with the sort of power armor that we saw in Avatar. The Mephisto is manned, but the pilots have undergone some basic modifications to take higher g-loading. The aorta doesn't burst at 20-odd gees, for instance. I wanted to stabilize the cockpit as well as give the legs a better potential for absorbing and releasing energy than was typical. In many ways, humanoid mechs are the perfect storm of impractical ideas, but I keep coming back to them as a challenge. They're just too archetypal to let go.

Your comparison is funny, and not the sort of thing I would ever find offensive, by the way. For it to be valid though, there should be a two hour cutscene about... here. :)
Reply
:iconsandtrap:
Sandtrap Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
Only MGS4 is that bad with cutscenes.

Anyway, the fastest way to make a practical humanoid powered armor involves making it powered armor, not a mech. Or, strapping a black hole generator that lets it freely manipulate gravity through being a super robot.

Really, orbital drops are the most impractical aspect of dropsuits, not the suits themselves.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Professional General Artist
I'm cheating by using them on low-gee worlds, and going a little bigger instead of dealing with the problems of putting limbs outside of the cockpit area. Things like the one I'm designing aren't designed to walk so much as jump. I'm sure I've overlooked a lot of questions, but I hope to find more of them out in time as I work on these.
Reply
:iconsandtrap:
Sandtrap Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012
They're pretty well designed for that purpose, definitely. I can imagine a battlefield full of them, calculating their precise jumps and moving into position, tearing up a cluster of enemies suddenly and precisely, then moving on before another group can stop them...

Damn, why am I imagining them tearing through the Imperial Guard? OUT, HERETICAL THOUGHTS.

Freaking great design, though. As much as I love my Super Robots with their blatant disregard for physics, I love well-designed real robots just as much.
Reply
:iconmikedoscher:
MikeDoscher Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2012  Professional General Artist
It's easy to imagine them tearing through the IG: Everything else does. XD

I'm glad you like the design. Supers are such a different sort of thing, with such different stories. I enjoy them a lot, but it's like they're more different than similar to Reals.
Reply
(1 Reply)
Add a Comment:
 
×
Download JPG 1920 × 1080




Details

Submitted on
October 9, 2012
Image Size
147 KB
Resolution
1920×1080
Submitted with
Sta.sh
Link
Thumb
Embed

Stats

Views
13,751
Favourites
639 (who?)
Comments
38
Downloads
451
×