“Come sisters! Do you wish the Skullcrushers to overshadow us in battle prowess or the Wolf's Path in tactical accumen? We are the Flamewing; from the skies we strike, bringing destruction upon the enemy by fire and shot. Strike hard, strike swift and leave nothing but ash in our wake!”
~Ygrane Nightfury; Flamewing Col-Taros Warchiefteness
“I am unsure of this fringe tribe; is it just me, or do they make the Blood Riders seem calm & sedate and the Skullcrushers restrained?”
‘No sister it is not just you. I just overheard the Shasydaer of the Skullcrusher delegation express concern over the actions on Helkor-Primus. 2 centuries until even NeShemarr will find it safe to begin revitalization.’
~Conversation between two Shari Modaes of tribe Wolf's Path & Silvermoon.
The Flamewing tribe’s origins are shrouded in mystery. The fact that they did in fact originate in the Tri-Galactic dimension near the inner-rim of the Anvil Galaxy, and that they exhibit many traits of post-S.C.W. Blood Rider tribes women is without doubt. What is not known is exactly how and when they were founded, and which colony of the passion fueled Shemarrians was responsible for creating the fringe tribe. Speculation among the 10-plus-1 of the formal tribes is the Flamewing were created from the surviving members of a joint expeditionary flotilla, mostly crewed by Blood Rider and either Hawkmoon (unlikely), Nightmare (probable) or Skullcrusher (most likely) that had gone into K!Zon territory; two tribes went in and went missing. What came out was a new tribe of fierce and brutal warriors, harkening back to The Maker & Shaper’s original personality template, only distilled.
Typical battle tactics for this fringe tribe is to utilize swift co-ordinated combined arms strikes, proceeded by saturation orbital bombardment of kinetic kill and fusion weaponry. Before the blastwaves, radiation and debris clouds even settle, dropships carrying winged berserker caste and heavily armored warmount cavalry fall just outside of the still molten blast craters and spread out. Rail-lance & plasma weaponry figure strongly amongst their ranks, along with energized blades and “dragon-breath’ projectors implanted in their throats. Once one hundred percent casualties have been inflicted on the enemy, the Flamewing gather their fallen for rebuild or recycling and leave. The only sign of their passing the scream of nuclear decay and ashes.
The High-Matriarchs of the 11 are leery of according these gynoid-furies council status; seeing in them the curse of the Blacksteel in their actions, even though the sparks show no signs of supernatural malignancy. Members of the Nightmare tribe have been known to say this about the Flamewing;
“Their progenitors traveled to the fringes of the abyss within the Anvil. There, they stared at the abyss, and the abyss stared back. The abyss blinked.”
|Parent Tribe(s)||Blood Rider, Possibly one other|
|Where First Encountered||Anvil Galaxy, Hakon Rift|
|Highest Caste Class||Wargoddess|
|Home Environment||Fleet, airless planets|
|Technology Level||Advanced Space Age|
|Relations With Outsiders||Indifferent|
|Relations With Other Shemarrians||Neutral|
|Prefered Mode of Combat||Blitzkreig|
A wing made of flames attached to the side of a dragons’ eye on a circle of black onyx.
Unknown; presumed offshoot of Blood Rider & Skullcrusher or Nightmare tribe.
Where First Encountered
First encountered in the Anvil galaxy, just outside of the Hakon Rift sector. They were responsible for annihilating an entire Kolnari pirate colony (over 15,000 combatants and unrecorded number of ‘civilians’), before seeking out the closest Shemarrian Star-nation Tribe enclave: The Ghost Rider planetoid Klattu .
Extensive; 120,000 members. Typically encountered in ‘wyrs’ of 100-400 warriors.
Matriarchal; Status is determined by seniority and prowess in the field establishes promotion.
Warriors make up the largest portion (50%) of their population, followed by Berserkers (25%), NeShemar (10%), Acolites (2%), Male Shemarrians (3%), and the remaining 10% is a mix of Tinkers, Warchiefs, and other miscellaneous members.
Tribe Flamewing only recruits those they feel worthy of survival; typically only taking freshly slain or near-dead who have shown fierceness against their oppressors / enemies. They may also (8% chance) allow “live” recruits to be inducted if they exhibit a willingness to complete a task and/or mission, no matter the collateral damage.
Highest Caste Class
90% Female, 10% Male
Like the Darkwaters of the S.S.N., the Flamewing do not seem to take to planets, and wander the airless void of space. Small outposts may be made on deathworlds of a temporary nature, for logistical purposes and as forward bases prior to an assault on another objective.
Adavnced Space-Age. Roughly equal to Three Galaxies’ technology. The ability to produce starships and associated technologies is well within this tribe’s grasp. In fact, several unknown hull-types have been seen amongst their assault fleets, along with variations on well-known Shemarrian starcraft (the designs having been purchased and then deseminated to Flamewing constructor vessels).
Relations with Outsiders
Indifferent. Can effectively be considered Abbereant in their dealings with non-Shemar; they will respect warriors of non-Shemarrian races, but will firmly turn away any outsiders from their territories or theatres of operation. The Flamewing do not wish others to see their “necessary work”.
Relations with Other ‘Shemarrians’
Neutral. They have traded with other tribes for technologies and sometimes (rarely) sent refugees from their theatres of operation on to more peaceable tribal colonies. For the most part they wish to be left to do what the excel at; total destruction of the enemies of the Shemarrian sisterhood.
Survival. The Flamewing progenitors survived the K!zon and the energies of the Hakon-Rift; from that crucible they were born and from the ashes of their founding they came into the greater galactic theatre to wipe away the enemies of all Shemar kind: whatever the price to their soul-sparks.
Preferred Mode of Combat
Blitzkreig; the Flamewings prefer to use quick swift, brutal combined arms strikes with overwhelming force-of-arms. Collateral damage is not an issue.
The Flamewing tribal warriors all are hardened against EMP and hard radiation (they can even survive for a few seconds in a concentrated gamma-ray stream from grazers, radio-isotopes , etc) and have integrated thermo-kinetic material into their war-plate (½ damage from heat and high-velocity attacks). Their armour retains the typical baraoque styling of the original Shemarrian warriors albeit in hues of red & orange, but on closer inspection it can be seen that the plates are made to resemble dragon-scale. Even the Berserker & Accolyte castes fabric resembles well tanned fire-dragon skin (rumour has it that they breed fire-elemental salamanders for their skins). One final distinction is the eyes and antennae. The eyes are golden or reddish in colour and have the distinctive slit of a reptile or dragons’ orbs, while the antennae “grow” to resemble curving fluted horns.
Self-Sufficient. The tribe is doing well for itself, with an ample supply of material for its projects, provided they are of modest ambition, replacement weaponry and warmounts for 50% of their number, a modest surplus, and enough disposable material for some small trading. Most of their materials are harvested from worlds unwanted by biologicals or from the bounty of the stellar void. Very rarely do they take trophies or steal from their opponents.
Blood Rider (primarily) with either Skullcrusher or Nightmare as secondary contributor.
All Flamewing have the following (unless otherwise noted)
Dragon Breath Ejectors
Identical to the ‘Ninja-Borg’ from Rifts Japan.
Not as mobile as normal Shemarrian antennae but still as effective. Has an additional 10 MDC.
The eyes have dragon or reptile-slit eyes in “fire” colours.
Retracting Wings (Berseker caste only)
Resembling dragon wings. Full flight with micro-jet assist (See Rifts: Bionics sourcebook).
-MP & Radiation Shielded; only ¼ effects if any (the warrior saves on natural d20 result of 8 or better).
See ‘Unique Attributes’ for details.
None seen yet (by anyone alive that is). Rumours of sustained stream plasma-throwers & extended blast radius fusion grenades have circulated but never confirmed.
Modified “bird” mounts to resemble wyverns, dragons or drakes. Monst-rex battle-steeds are usually painted in the tribal colours and given Dragon-Breath upgrades along with full thermo-kinetic & EMP shield enhancement.
A long serpentine, four legged flying warmount armed with gamma-radiation based weapons.
Flamewing modified and redesign of the kittani Taskmaster.