The Caden Tristifer-class is a frigate primarily operated by CrownForce in the Star Kingdom of Persica. The mainstay of the Star Kingdom’s anti-piracy and peacetime navy, the Tristifer frigates serve as an escort in a Patrol Carrier Force, designed to combat fast and evasive pirate groups plaguing commercial space lanes; and also operate in trios, pairs, or even solo as the task demands. Intended to replace the aging secondhand Storm of Olympus-class frigates as part of Project Blacklance, the Tristifer provides a powerful punch with more contemporary axial weaponry and improved turrets. The advanced Lord Royce Royal engines give the Tristifer the speed and agility that CrownForce is quickly becoming known for.
Figure 1 – FF-1 HMS Caden Tristifer – Full View
The third starship class developed entirely in the Star Kingdom, the Tristifer is the result of Project Blacklance – the first starship development commission with Ravendyne Defence Industries (RDI) proposing and heading the project and utilising Persican subcontractors, rather than acting as a local subcontractor for ISA manufacturers. Sponsorship and personal interest from King Cade III helped RDI secure the contract and the Ministry of Defence green-lit Project Blacklance in 3384. The designers of Tristifer incorporated lessons learned from refitting and maintaining Alliance and Threshold classes like the Storm of Olympus and Lucid frigates to produce a fast, agile platform capable of punching above its weight.
Blacklance provided an opportunity for Persican defence companies to showcase their contributions: Lord Royce Royal’s ion engines; fusion reactors from the Taerken Corporation; an array of A.I and E-combat suites from Scotia-Fausett Quantum Systems; weapons from Roth Enfield and Serapheon, and introducing a new axial plasma rifle by Excidium Arms.
Representing the beginning of a new era for CrownForce, in which starships would be developed and produced entirely within the Star Kingdom, the Tristifer class was chosen as the first to restart the hull number sequence for frigates, beginning with 1.
The earlier starship classes developed in the Star Kingdom tend to closely follow the designs of their ISA-built predecessors. Designed in the vein of the recently commissioned Vanovar-class escort carriers – with sweeping lines, a long and wide profile, and four primary engine nacelles at the aft, some proprietary aspects of the Persican shipbuilding style, such as the curving triangular bow, were included with the Tristifer.
As with typical frigate designs, the Tristifer prioritises powerful armaments over heavier armour and comprehensive defences. The primary weapon of the class is an improved 1200mm plasma rifle by Excidium Arms, supported by Ross-Enfield 150mm Kinetic Rifle Quad Turrets, Ravendyne Defence Industries Close-In Weapon System (CIWS) particle laser turrets, and Serapheon missile launchers. Defences include a 55GW shield grid from Taerken’s highly successful Svalinn series, retractable overlapping battleplate for the exposed bridge, CIWS particle laser turrets, and a hurricane of Serapheon ultralight missiles and countermissiles. The four Lord Royce Royal engine nacelles give the Tristifer tremendous sublight speed and formidable agility in combat.
The first Tristifer frigates were completed in 3392 and entered into active service the following year, immediately replacing older ISA-built frigates in the Patrol Carrier Forces. As more hulls were brought into service, squadrons were formed and assigned to system patrols, merchant escorts, and in support of cutters and corvettes. More recently, some Tristifer frigates have been seconded to assignments in Threshold, shoring up patrols and escort duties depleted by Thresholder requirements in the Selene and Odawara sectors, along the space bordering the People’s Coalition.
SHIPS OF THE LINE
There are currently (TBD) Caden Tristifer-class frigates operating in the Star Kingdom, laid down by Staak ShipWorks at the Hartsmouth Staryards at CrownForce Base (CFB) Armenica in the Persica System, and by Royal Oak Fleet Engineering at the Novaport Staryards at CFB Logria in the Bridon-Daxony System. The naming convention for the class is distinguished officers of the CrownForce Navy. Notable ships include:
FFX-001 – RDI-FF – Prototype Ship (Ravendyne)
FF-1 – HMS Caden Tristifer – first production ship
FF-7 – HMS Tanis Piscea – first of the class to destroy a pirate vessel.
FF-9 – HMS Laird LaCroix – first of the class seconded to duty in allied territory.
FF-13 – HMS Concepcia Tauros – first of the class to capture a pirate vessel.