In this modern age, there are two kinds of people. Those who do, and those who are. At Better Future™, we are what we do. We pride ourselves on the beautiful efficiency of our Tech²nology™. You might call it "tech technology" if you haven't been with us long! Ahaha. At Better Future™, we choose to go a different way. The way of the first first humans who bestrode another world. The way of the first Shinto priestess who saw a mermaid crying and thought to herself, "top-tier bath water!". The way of the assassins we hired to kill that upstart trying to poach our customers with his stupid open-source hover techs and-
Oh, wait, was I not supposed to say that? Um. Rats.
Anyway! Where was I? Oh, yes, different kinds of people! People who are never feel the need to become more. People who do never look past what they do. But at Better Future™, we take the road less travelled. Beyond what we are, beyond what we do, to what we might become. We invite you, loyal Architects of the Future, to take this journey with us. A journey that started seven months ago, with the HoverBird™ Mk1, so small, fleeting, full of hope, yet so little compared to what would come. That journey has brought us here, today, to our latest, greatest hover tech...
The HoverBird™ Mk8!
Building on the legendary HoverBird™ Mk7, the HoverBird™ Mk8 features an engine twice as powerful as our original six-way adjustment thruster. Twice the energy, only twice as many cells, for less than three times the cost! I'm sure you'll agree that's the kind of power on which new ages are dawned. Furthermore, the HoverBird™ Mk8 features all-new and/or improved air brakes a whole cell longer than last generation's model! We know some of you like to park among the flowers for a little yoga, and now you can relax knowing that nothing short of a moderate breeze will disturb you. The HoverBird™ Mk8 even comes with two of our longest Stream Extender™ blocks. Can you say... FIVE WIDE?! That's right, friends! Our new Stream Extender™ blocks are not only five entire cells long, they're TWO CELLS WIDE!
Thank you! Thank you. Now, the HoverBird™ Mk8 is going on sale next week at 70,000BB, or a special introductory price of just 19,999BB for certain lucky members of our hover training programme. Worth every buck, I'm sure! And for just 5000BB more, you can have yours in black. Or, for a very reasonable donation to our friends at Payload Studios, you could drive away an exclusive titanium-grey classic alien HoverBird™ Mk8! Other options will include an energy-efficient repair system for all you safety-conscious drivers, as well as, um... Who is this?
Young man? Why are you looking at me like that? Where did you get that black eye? Why are you wearing a dress and a blue anime wig? Why... What's with the laser gun? Why are you standing on a pile of unconscious assassins?! Oh, God! Quick! Put the HoverBird™ Mk8's specifications on the projector and maybe they'll dazzle him!
Length: A perfect eight cells. Width: Ten cells, but who's counting?
Ow! OW! Pain! He's biting me! HE'S BITING-
Height: Three cells with landing gear retracted. Weight: Never ask a lady her weight. Cruising Speed: The correct kilometres per hour. Strafe Speed: A perfect speed for the young Financial Times reader about town.
Aaargh! You animal! Take that! No, not the projector- NOT THE FACE-!
Movement: Four stylish small hover rings, two elegant retractable landing skids, two flawless small adjustment thrusters, one sweet medium adjustment thruster, two all-new and/or improved medium air brakes, one dreamy small air brake. Special Features: One classic Better Future™ stabilising computer, two princely gyroscopes.
You tricksy rodite-nibbler, that stupid Hover Hawk wasn't even cheaper than our-!
Style: With delicious curves of pearly-white stretched over a daringly sleek hull, the HoverBird™ Mk8 is sure to dazzle the hover enthusiast set for decades to come! Dietary Information: Guaranteed 100% gluten-free. Safety Advisory: The HoverBird™ Mk8 is not suitable for hot or cold environments. Never let your HoverBird™ Mk8 get too wet or too dry. The HoverBird™ Mk8 is not rated for impacts, sandstorms, Eurasian lynx attacks, low gravity, earthquakes, steep hills or combat.
Aaargh... Can't feel my legs... Or my spleen... Damn you, Aardvark123! You may have won this round, but you'll never look good in that dress you stole! Never, you hear me?! NEVER! You'll want something wider with- *cough* w-with a bit more bodice, or some kind of blouse with... Puffy sleeves... Dirty thief...
With Better Future's absolute smeghead of a marketing vice-president off my back, I was able to make a shotgun tech as requested. Here you go:
~Shotgun-centric armoured car "Blast Wagon"~
The Blast Wagon's front is designed to maximise shotgun availability whilst minimising shotgun non-availability, allowing the highest possible quotient of shotgun per shotgun in the history of shotguns. This setup is ideal for tailgating van drivers on the motorway and taking revenge, or for blasting through heavily-armoured enemies like they're made of cardboard. An innovative wheel setup involving rockers, which sadly don't work, allows for excellent manoeuvreability while keeling the shotguns from bashing against the ground. Six side-facing shotguns on each side allow for devastating close-range broadsides. For more distant engagements, a healthy selection of autocannons are available. The Blast Wagon's thick chassis and armoured rear section hold plenty of batteries and rocket fuel.
The Blast Wagon was designed and built by local polymath and weirdo Aardvark123 by request of one stickman_king_28. He didn't need to bathe in any mermaids' tears beforehand; every block came from the heart.
Size: Large. Weight: Heavy. Speed: 45 miles per hour, ish. I didn't put a speedometre on it. Maybe 70 with boosters? Agility: Decent. Movement: Eight angled bike wheels, four Warhorse wheels, two large jet engines, several Exfil adjustment thrusters. Armament: Ten Axis shotguns, four Bayonet shotguns, six 360 shotguns, four autocannons. Defences: Aggregated carbon nano-rod armour, Better Future shield and repair bubbles. Special Features: Radar, fuel and energy metres, two booster engines. Weaknesses: No rear weaponry. Limited effectiveness at long range.
~Small package that contains big things, namely missiles, "Hortator"~
The Hortator is an agile missile tech designed to take on larger opponents without fear. Its missile silos don't care how fast it's charging along, all they care about is lazily drifting into the target and blowing it up, and don't even get me started on the cruise missiles. While it does lack in battery power, the Hortator shouldn't be getting hit much if driven properly. It also has autocannons.
Size: Medium. Weight: Medium. Speed: 50mph. 85mph when boosting. Agility: Good, although rather shaky when turning at high speeds. Movement: Two Garrison wheels, two of the other medium Hawkeye wheels, two straight bike wheels, one Warhorse wheel, two Exfil adjustment thrusters, two small jet engines. Armament: Four missile pods, two cruise missiles, two autocannons. Defences: Patches of angled aggregated carbon nano-rod armour, GSO repair bubble and shield. Special Features: Fuel and energy metres, booster jets. Weaknesses: It's a bit of a glass cannon.
The Bismillah is a powerful tech combining speed, manoeuvreability and power into one lethal package. Its lower hull is laden with contact shotguns for close-range devastation and its front end features an array of sonic lances to push enemies away... and out of reach of its strongest armament. That might not have been the best idea. Anyway, the Bismillah also features a selection of longer-range weaponry for backup. Many concealed adjustment thrusters and a secret second layer of wheels allow it to reach impressive speeds, which it needs in order to get close enough to damage opponents, especially since its own weapons are actively working against it. It is also useless at stripping shields.
Size: Large. Weight: Heavy. Speed: 75mph, up to 110 with boosters. Agility: Fair. Movement: Six MuddyDog wheels, eight Garrison wheels, two straight bike wheels, about a dozen medium Better Future adjustment thrusters, two Venture Zero propellors, six two-way adjustment thrusters, one large Better Future booster, one large Venture booster. Armament: 44 Contact shotguns, four dual autocannons, eight OOZEE SMGs, two Needle lasers, four sonic lances. Defences: Plumbite and carbon fibre hull plating, two Better Future shields, Hawkeye repair bubble. Special Features: Rocket boosters, on-board AI, some gyroscopes, fuel and energy metres, radar, speedometre. Weaknesses: Relies on Contact shotguns for heavy damage. Has sonic lances.
The Lumbermaven was designed to quickly harvest trees, convert the wood and rubber into rugged fiblar and sell them at a tidy profit. It makes use of three mobile refineries to quickly refine resources without any loss and three large silos to store them until they are ready for use. Upon anchoring, the Lumbermaven will (if properly set up) immediately begin crafting fibre plating, which it will further refine into rugged fiblar, which is then passed to the front delivery cannon. It can also charge itself and make use of two SCU units whilst anchored. Four additional delivery cannons with filters allow the operator to sell unwanted resource chunks it picks up on the way.
The Lumbermaven's hull contains plenty of batteries for a long operating life as well as several adjustment thrusters for easier manoeuvreing. While not made for combat, its weaponry are sufficient for taking on opportunistic bandits as well as cutting down forests. An undermounted conveyor belt can take newly-mined resources from the front to the rear, where the main collectors are. It also has boosters.
Size: Large. Weight: Heavy. Speed: 50mph, up to 80 with boosters. Agility: Responsive when moving forwards and backwards. Struggles to turn. Movement: Ten GeoCorp middle tracks, four Techa tracks, eight Ripsaw tracks, four small Better Future hover rings, a grab bag of adjustment thrusters, two large Better Future boosters, four medium Better Future boosters. Armament: Two large excavator wheels, two diamond-tipped drills, one Talon laser, four front-facing lasers which really ought to be inside a proper hull, eight Better Future plasma cutters, two Rapid cannons, fourteen Megaton cannons, six GSO missile batteries. Defences: Three GeoCorp repair bubbles, three Hawkeye shields, one Hawkeye repair bubble, titanite hull plating. Special Features: Two component crafters, three mobile refineries, storage capacity for 270 resource chunks, ventral solar panels, Better Future sky anchor, five delivery cannons. Weaknesses: Messy, cobbled-together look, especially on the undercarriage.
The Marid is a fast, deadly tech designed to get up close and personal with the enemy and burn them to a crisp. It makes use of Venture flamethrowers and shotguns on a hull cobbled together from Venture's strongest blocks, which isn't saying much. It boasts enough battery power to last through a few engagements and can handle hilly terrain.
The Marid was built by Odegon, leader of the Firestarters, while on holiday from her native video game Crossout. Once she'd stopped asking about "tonnage" and "energy" she got the hang of TerraTech's building mechanics pretty fast. She also ate all the paprika-flavoured crisps my mum brought home from Lidl. Apparently there's no decent food where Odegon lives.
Size: Medium. Weight: Medium-light. Speed: 65mph, up to 80mph while boosting. Agility: Good, if a little bouncy. Movement: Four Bumper wheels, four hub wheels, four Dune wheels under the chassis, two of Venture's two-way adjustment thrusters, four five-way adjustment thrusters, two Tetrox booster jets, two small booster rockets. Armament: Eight Reaper X-1 flamethrowers, eight 360 shotguns, four Needle lasers, two Pip machine guns, two dual autocannons. Defences: Carbon fibre bumper, Better Future shield and repair bubbles, some Better Future hull plating over the cab. Special Features: Boosters. Weaknesses: Parts fall off easily. Relies on fragile weapons for close-range combat.
The Silver Typhoon is one of the GSO's finest racing cars. Its hull was ergonomically sculpted by (what else?) Shinto priestesses who bathe in mermaids' tears for maximum aerodynamism, allowing it to reach a high cruising speed, while upside-down Little Lift aerofoils give it plenty of downforce. It also has some mortars for some reason.
Size: Medium. Weight: Light. Speed: 85mph. Around 130mph when boosting. Agility: Good cornering at speed, but lacks on-the-spot turning. Sort of like a real racing car. Movement: Two MuddyDog wheels, four Hub wheels, four steering hovers. Special Features: Rocket boosters.
~Pink accented racing car "Amethyst Flash"~
Amethyst Flash is a fairly standard Venture racing car, nothing special. It drives fast, corners aggressively and bashes its poor, innocent spoiler into every rock, tree, ramp or slightly raised patch of ground on the way.
Size: Medium. Weight: Light. Speed: 90mph. Reaches 130mph when boosting. Agility: Fast and responsive. Good turning at speed, but lacks on-the-spot cornering capabilities. Movement: Four small F1 wheels, some boosters. Special Features: Some boosters.
~Next-gen hover racing tech "Whisper"~
The Whisper is Better Future's most recent entry into the world of racing, and it can really move. Ion thrusters, powerful boosters and a lightweight hull allow it to zip along at speeds few cars could hope to meet. In the hands of a skilled driver, it could finish the Home Run course in under forty seconds.
Size: Medium. Weight: Medium. Speed: 100mph, up to 150mph when boosting. Agility: Corners somewhat predictably at speed, may spin wildly on the spot. Movement: Six small hover flippers, two small hover rings, four Orb boosters, four small ion thrusters, four six-way adjustment thrusters. Special Features: Guess what?! It has boosters! ^.^
~Lightweight Aeronautical Scouting and Assault Craft "Aeroboat"~
Her Majesty's Modular Navy is delighted with the prototype for its newest Scouting Vessel, assembled by the Empire's Finest Minds and dozens of overworked, underpaid labourers. The first Half-Dozen are expected to roll out of London Docks next week and should be oppressing half the Known World- sorry, blessing half the Known World with Civilisation and Megaton Shells by early February. God save the Queen and tally-ho!
~*.'#Beautiful Sailor of Tarmac: Dazzle Dream#'.*~
The Dazzle Dream is a robust racing car suited for the toughest off-road courses, with fast turning, a good cruising speed and powerful boosters. The new mission they just came out with, for example, was a cinch in this thing. It can cope with jumps, ice, tight corners and rough ground, although the undermounted adjustment thrusters may be damaged during long races.
The Dazzle Dream was built by Sailor Moon and her friends after a group of Pretty Cures challenged them to a rally race. The design proved very popular among magical girls, although it's no 2017 Ford Fusion, is it?
Size: Medium-large. Weight: Medium. Speed: High cruising speed, very high straight-line speed with rockets active. Agility: Good cornering and jumping. Decent but unstable on-the-spot turning. Movement: Four MuddyDog wheels, two hub wheels, four Redux mega-boosters, front and rear spoilers, many adjustment thrusters. Special Features: Rocket boosters.