This self-propelled missile launcher is a classic vehicle of fire support. Varan is equipped with long-range missiles so it threatens
enemy forces already at a distant approach and its armor ensures the uninterrupted operation for a long time.
Varan is a strongly armored caterpillar fighting machine with guide rails for heavy missiles mounted on it. Actually this is a heavy
self-propelled missile launcher. Slow-moving Varan isn’t very dangerous at a short distance, but it is dreadful at long ranges. Varan is
a classical machine of fire support. It “covers” actions of assault forces with its fire from a long distance. In contrast to other heavy
machines, Varan isn’t designed on the basis of the monoblock. This common, though strongly armored caterpillar machine is supplied with
energy from the reactor of the same type as on other machines. Varan’s distinction is a powerful ballistic computer controlling the missile
launcher. Thanks to this, a single person can operate the machine. Varan was developed at the very end of the war. There were only few cases
of application of these machines in combat. For example, on Velian, the counterattack of the division of robo-infantry under the command of
Marc Chang seemed at first suicidal, but it was crowned with success mostly because of the fact that three batteries of Varans were supporting
the counterattack with their fire on the Empire attacking units. Usually self-propelled artillery is used to support with its fire bodies of
troops like a battalion or larger. But strange though it may seem, Varan got a wide popularity during the Raid War, when by definition elements
larger than a reinforced company didn’t act. Evidently, Varan’s reliable armor and notable firepower had done its part – many commanders
preferred to include such a self-propelled launcher into their raid groups, so as to neutralize the opponent’s resistance from a long distance
at once. It worth mentioning, though the firepower of Varan can impress anyone, this missile launcher is lacking in light antipersonnel weapons.
This imperfection became particularly seen when Varans were applied not only for the fire support of large operations, but also included in
raid groups where these missile launchers had often to fight in the first ranks of attackers.
The armament of the self-propelled missile launcher Varan:
-- Twin missile launcher MDB-17 for long-range missiles “Thunder Arrow”, produced by General Rocketry Tiranon Corporation. Actually the missiles
“Thunder Arrow” are air-to-surface class, which were carried only by the shuttles for fire support of landing parties. The long-range missiles
are the most powerful instruments of the Protectorate ground forces. The Empire has not got any mobile launching platforms similar to Varan.
Like many other models of missile weaponry, the long-range missile is inefficient at short ranges – its control unit switches on the detonators
of the warhead only at a considerable distance from the launcher. But these missiles are able to cause much destruction.