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Equipment of the Gods: Bishop Arsenal – Pt.1
Date October 27, 2042
Author Clint Westeel
Internal Name gear_1
Internal Series Gear, #1 

October 27th, 2042:

Equipment of the Gods: Bishop Arsenal - Part 1

By: Clint Westeel

The Consortium employs some of the most skilled soldiers the world has ever seen. They call them Bishops. Even when outnumbered by staggering odds, a Bishop can turn the tables through force or diplomatic means. They will appear almost instantly anywhere in the world where their help is needed, and they've proven to be practically indestructible.

But do you really think this is all because these men and women are super-human? Yes, they are well trained and know what they're doing, but let's not forget about one crucial thing: their gear. Some tech being incredible to behold and nearly all of which had its production at least indirectly influenced by big money maker David Schelter, C.E.O. of Worldview Industries. Schelter is a famous and incredibly brilliant scientist who vanished from the face of the Earth a decade ago, leaving the Consortium and his Worldview Industries to make it out on their own. They succeeded at that feat because as you know - nobody messes with the Consortium.

In this first part I thought it best to discuss the history of the Consortium C-3800 aircraft, and then the same for a few pieces of mostly protective equipment: the Battle Utility Suit, the Consortium Issue Assault Helmet, the Storm Proof Freefall Suit, and the Bishop's most used Hard-Point Devices.

See Part Two for more similar timelines on weapons and other Consortium Bishop equipment.

The Consortium C-3800 Aircraft

October 21st, 2029 - Dr. David Schelter needed a plane. He needed a plane specifically tailored for an elite and still highly-secret paramilitary organization he was preparing to unveil to the world. Worldview Industries met with Global Industries and magic was made, the first two space-capable C-3800 aircraft were conceived and put into almost immediate production. And the price tag? $620,000,000 EUD each.

November 5th, 2031 - Construction of the C-3800-A ("Stormbird") was completed. Six months later, the nearly identical and later made-famous C-3800-B ("Aether") finished construction. Some major features on these two vessels include: fully fusion-based primary engines coupled with a self sustaining energy collection system, Strommon-made automated defences including satellite targeting support, and state of the art stealth technology manufactured by Paragon Industries specifically for this project.

March 12th, 2034 - The C-3800-C ("Tiamat") finished construction and joined the slowly growing Consortium fleet. This variant of the C-3800 was very similar in construction to the Stormbird and Aether, although it included the first ever Virtual Trainer. The Virtual Trainer was famously developed by Alannah Boyle and the Consortium King and has become a staple for the King's well publicised consumption of the world's most groundbreaking technologies.

February 18th, 2037 - After several successful years of Consortium operations, the C-3800-D ("Zenlil") was built and the C-3800-E ("Hesperus") only eight months later. With the recent creation of the Cargo Containment Unit (C.C.U.), Zenlil and Hesperus became the first C-3800s to house one of their own. The physical space saved allowed for the housing of two recently developed Consortium Mission Pods.

Battle Utility Suit (B.U.S.)

November 24th, 2030 - Initial development of the Battle Utility Suit began; a three-way endeavor between Worldview, Strommon, and Global Industries, the suit was built to be the ultimate in customizable body and limb protection. Made from an extremely light-weight composite Spider Silk Kevlar and carbon alloy plating, together with a processor for the deployment of healing and repairing nanites, the B.U.S. is best at stopping blunt force or traditional weapon's fire but on its own is less effective against energy weapons. The first model ever produced for the Consortium had a single built in Deflector Shield Node component that was automatically fed by the user's Personal Containment Unit (P.C.U.) and worked by deflecting energy attacks and helping either entirely disintegrate or at least slow down traditional weapon's fire.

September 28th, 2033 - An upgraded version of the B.U.S. was completed. Instead of only the one built-in Shield Node, this new suit allowed for four different "nodes" to be inserted and removed from the suit at will. This let Consortium Bishops now customize their suits with soon-to-be-released utility Hard-Point Devices such as Deflector Shield Nodes, Shock Absorbers, and Inertial Dampeners.

October 9th, 2036 - A second version of the B.U.S. was completed. This new suit allowed for up to an incredible eight hard-point devices at the same time and was also improved upon for overall durability. The downside is that it also turned out less flexible and more cumbersome than the original model, now dubbed the "BUS Light."

April 20th, 2039 - With the threat of groups like the Long Dragon Syndicate still a problem for the Consortium, they needed a B.U.S. specifically built for extremely dangerous situations. This is when they began using their "Heavy" model of the B.U.S., one capable of holding twelve total Hard-Point Devices and can also likely protect its user from a point blank tank blast. This naturally became the most cumbersome of all for Bishop use and is only seen worn on missions where the threat of advanced or explosive weaponry is expected.

Consortium Issue Assault Helmet

November 24th, 2030 - Made in tandem with the Consortium Battle Utility Suit, their Assault Helmet has not undergone many changes over the years and still remains the best on the market for head and face protection. It covers every space around the Bishop's head and when used with the Battle Utility Suit provides 100% coverage against projectiles. The helmet is mostly made from composite S.S.K. and carbon alloy plating, though the section over the eyes is a partly transparent aluminum composite. All breathing is filtered through the helmet's built-in filtration system and speech is output through a small speaker under the chin.

The Consortium Storm Proof Freefall Suit

October 2nd, 2016 - The very first Freefall Suit (v1.0) was invented by Paragon Technologies and sold almost immediately to Global Industries for mass-market production and distribution. It eventually found its place amongst the highest selling pieces of equipment during the Resource Wars. An entirely new form of stealth infiltration was born.

August 15th, 2018 - After two successful years of military deployment, the freefall suit hit the public market. All stealth and armour components were removed and it was considered an immediate success as rich thrill-seeking enthusiasts around the world bought them up in droves. Mass market media glamorizes the suit through television and movies, before long the public unofficially call it the "Ironman Suit."

January 3rd, 2021 - Version 1.2 was released and allowed for higher altitude jumps through a far more sophisticated respirator and pressure equalizer. Also included was an upgraded flight control chip which, among other things, displays life-like representations of the ground below the free-jumper through the suit's heads up display (HUD).

December 19th, 2026 - Version 1.3 was specifically a militaristic upgrade. Included were the most modern sound and radar stealth technologies and a built-in, highly-concentrated sonic weapon, fully controllable through the suit's HUD.

February 21st, 2033 - With the creation of the C-3800 aircraft, the Consortium required their own version of the Freefall Suit, specifically tailored to their Bishop's needs and capable of being worn through the center of a storm. After a lucrative deal was struck between the Consortium and Paragon Technologies, the Consortium Storm Proof Freefall Suit (V 1.4-C) was born. Paragon's job was to create a custom made suit that only the Consortium could use; meaning building a lightning deflection system and cutting back on unnecessary components like the entire windshield HUD and built-in sonic weapon. This version also required space for the Bishop's Personal Containment Unit and special conductors on the hands for P.C.U. deployment.

Consortium Issue Hard-Point Devices

November 18th, 2032 - Even when the initial version of the Battle Utility Suit was built in 2030, Dr. David Schelter knew what the next step was to be - a version of the B.U.S. which allowed for Hard-Point Devices to be slotted into special hard-point sockets situated across the suit. The first Hard-Point Device ever created was the Strommon Deflector Shield Node and this was simply a removable version of what the original B.U.S. model already housed.

October 3rd, 2033 - Both the Shock Absorber and Inertial Dampener were put into circulation. The Shock Absorber can be worn and at first only allowed a Bishop to fall from great heights - something required to negate any unwanted impact damage from a Bishop landing in a Freefall Suit. The Inertial Dampener, on the other hand, is worn when a Bishop wishes to negate the 'push' of external forces such as high winds or sonic and energy weapons - this is only often equipped by Bishops wearing the heavy model B.U.S.

October 15th, 2033 - Worldview Industries, in cooperation with Chard Labs, created and began manufacturing their own version of the Shield Node - a greatly improved version from the Strommon equivalent which was immediately put into field use by all Consortium Bishops at the time. This version of the device could take a much more sustained beating while also overall decreasing the amount of Utility Energy required to recharge it.

December 5th, 2036 - Worldview Industries and Chard Labs this time turned their attention to the Shock Absorber, and began work on an upgrade. Version 2.0 was thus born which includes two specific improvements: a footfall sound dampener and a muscle enhancement system. The muscle enhancement system works in tandem with the latest Battle Utility Suit to allow for much faster run speeds.

March 24th, 2039 - One of the several measures put forth to the King following the death of Bishop Two was to construct more militaristic Hard-Point Devices in order to better combat their more dangerous enemies. Here are some initial ideas that were actually prototyped but thankfully never absorbed by the Consortium: 1) A Personal Containment Unit fed auto-targeting self-propelled multi-rocket launcher - this thing could have decimated an entire building in the blink of an eye. 2) An auto-targeting micro-laser powered by propelled proton technology - exactly what it sounds like. Build on the same technology behind the proton bolts fired from the Kinetic Assault Rifle, though with lethality ramped up. This HUD-activated laser would have cut through adversaries like butter. 3) My personal favorite, the "sonic brain scrambler." This was another proposed auto-targeting hard-point device that aimed to do anything from rupture its victim's brain to induce a mild headache to even induce projected hallucinations or phantom sounds.

January 15th, 2040 - After what it later called "humoring the board" and numerous field tests of the above mentioned equipment, the King declined to any overtly lethal equipment being used by the Consortium. According to a later interview with its closest scientist and friend, Walter Greenberg, the King was terrified by the field tests of the equipment. The Kinetic Assault Rifle was as lethal as it said it was willing to take the Consortium into the new decade.