Thursday, 4 February 2016

First Look at the 15mm Xin Trade Fleet coming releases!

The Xin Precinct is made up of the eight central star systems along with a number of smaller outposts all contained with a constricted pocket of stellar space that has only now become accessible once more after a thousand years of isolation caused by the detonation of the Aldan Crucible during the first Khanate War.  Contained by Dolorous Clouds that resulted from the detonation which also decimated the Prydian Precinct there is now a slim open passage for navigation by Ancep Drive.  Our knowledge of the Xin comes from archives that are from ancient times and also a more recent  partially successful expedition mounted in 4303IC by the Starvaulters and of course from the Great Trade Fleet dispatched to Prydia in 4327IC.  Commanded by Grand Admiral Hong Tu Quin the hundreds of vessels that make up the fleet have visited a third of the systems in the Precinct thus far. Trading in exotic goods, rarities as well as information and technology they have made allies and some enemies.

While the hegemony maintains its own imperial army and fleet officially under the command of Princess Xin Meiying the grand admiral has his own military that is embarked upon his starships.  Collectively known as the 'Sanbao' the gifts or protectors we refer to them as Trade Fleet Soldiers for the most part.  Refer to other entries in AAT Series 77 for the Sanbao in detail.  These troops are very effective and have aided our regiments in actions against the Khanate Empire.  The Xin hegemony is centred on the three core planets in the central Xin Precinct system of Jinhong.  From the lotus throne on the planet of Wei the princess rules in troubled seclusion while the planets of Zhao and Yan are in an uneasy alliance.  We know of the rebel Prince Tang and his efforts to marry the princess though these actions seem to be taking place in the holdings of all three planets of the Jinhong system outside of the core system.  All three core planets have the other systems in the Xin Precinct split between them.  Refer to other entries in AAT Series 77 for details.

The Council of Addans has deemed the Xin Trade Fleet has a nominal ally though it is up to each Knight General and Marcher Baron to establish their own relations with the vast fleet as it passes through.  As yet Grand Admiral Hong Tu Quin has not responded to the ongoing campaign in the Carmarthen cluster.
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

On the 11th of February 2016 the Ion Age will be releasing an entire new space opera Chinese themed force into the 15mm range.  This article gives you the first look at all the new miniatures along with a list of the coming codes and some fiction too.  These miniatures are all sculpted by our lead designer Sam Croes and are white metal typically in one piece.   Here is the list of coming codes with the number of contents.  Visit the Xin page HERE.

IMP30 Xin MonkeyBot (Free in Every February Order)

IAFP06 Xin Trade Fleet Platoon (20) 
(IAF113-IAF116 + Unique Free Officer)

IAF113 Xin Trade Fleet Rifles (5)
IAF114 Xin Trade Fleet Support (5)
IAF115 Xin Trade Fleet Assault (5)
IAF116 Xin Trade Fleet Command (5)

IAF117 Xin Warrior Monks (3)
IAF118 Jade Ape Battlesuit (1)
IAF119 Xin Youxia (3)

Exciting!  Here are pictures of these codes for you to look at each with its code and title and a short fiction extract placing it in The Ion Age.  Click on the images to enlarge them.

The Xin Trade Fleet has a military arm under the direct command of Grand Admiral Hong Tu Quin.  They are called the Sanbao or 'protectors'.  These troops commonly called 'Xin Trade Fleet Troops' are a separate entity to the hegemony army in their own Precinct and their primary role is the defence of the vessels that make up the fleet.  Second to this role is the protection of the merchants and their stores in any locations where they choose to trade.  They have the additional task of armed action against threats which the Grand Admiral deems worthy of destruction.  An example of this would be the encounter with the Shia Khan in the Neraga System in 4332IC.  Typically deployed at the five member fire-team, platoon or company level alongside the merchants the Sanbao make use of Kuijia MkIII powered armour which is roughly comparable to older Alwite in protection but with less bulk and features a compact and variable jump jet system.  They are highly mobile troops and a primarily energised plasma weapon system is used by them.  The Gonglu Blast Rifle alongside an SMG version which is often wrist mounted to leave the hands free and a heavier support version make up the bulk of Sanbao weapons.  Xin troops favour powered blades of many kinds and often prefer close range combat situations.  They make use of robotic auxiliaries brought across from cargo loading and management duties for battlefield use such as the Onyx Monkey and Onyx Serpents.  The use of dual purpose support continues with the Jade Ape battlesuit which is an effective war machine and cargo loader both.  Highly motivated they are a match for any Muster regiment and have proven capable of defeating the Retained Knights of the rebel Baron Everest in 4328IC. While Sanbao are the mainstay of the Xin military in the Prydian Precinct they have with them other warriors including heavily armoured Monks and far ranging Youxia.
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

Battlesuits are a common sight on the battlefields of the Prydian Precinct and indeed since the resumption of the war against the Shia Khan Empire the number and types of battlesuit have increased greatly.  The largest size of powered armour which is worn rather than being piloted the battlesuit gives mobility and great strength to a soldier.  The grand trade fleet of Hong Tu Quin has its own battlesuits in the ranks of the Sanbao the most common of which is the Guaiwu II or 'Jade Ape'.  Larger than a Duxis Battlesuit but with near as much mobility and faster than a Havelock with less fire power the Jade Ape it is a suit with two purposes.  It is primarily a manual work suit for moving and stacking cargo as well as assembling encampments with its secondary role being in combat.  Fitted with a three barrelled heavy Gonglu support blaster on a tracking mount it can deal with enemies at distance.  However the Jade Ape comes into its own in a close combat situation where it would give good trial to a Duxis bladesman variant.  Its upper body is very powerful and its large fists can smash or grip with huge force.  It is deployed in ones or threes alongside Sanbao platoons.
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

The Warrior Monks of the Xin Precinct are common in the forces of the Trade Fleet or the 'Sanbao' often being deployed to toughen up a hard combat situation or to show some muscle in trade negotiations.  To enter the ranks of the Warrior Monks a soldier must first pass a test given by an experienced monk which is both physical and mental then take an oath of loyalty.  Passing these gives entry into training which prepares the new monk for wearing the super heavy Kuijia MkIII powered armour which is roughly comparable to the Noblesse worn by Desteria Knights.  Weapon training to handle the Chan Quing or 'Double Ended Monk Spade' which combines a powered blade at one end and a Gonglu heavy blaster rifle at its other end.  Lastly training to move quickly in the armour.  Once fully trained the Warrior Monk is part of a brotherhood that sits apart aboard the vessels of the fleet.  They are often deployed in small fire teams.
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

The Youxia are men and women who have devoted themselves to a search for adventure through continual wandering. They have a superficial resemblance to our own Knight Errants though only superficially.  There is no quest or baronial loyalty for a Youxia and no requirement to aid a fellow Knight in peril.  These highly trained and equipped Xin warriors serve no specific master but follow their own code centred around the idea of righting wrongs where ever they may be found.  Travelling with the Grand Trade Fleet has given Youxia access to the stellar systems of the Prydian Precinct.  In return for the transit they do offer their services to Grand Admiral Hong Tu Quin when he asks for them.  They wear personalised Kuijia MkIII powered armour and carry Gonglu Blasters and other weapons favouring exotic energy blades such as twin hook swords.  Skilled warriors to be treated with respect when encountered.
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

The arrival of the Xin Trade Fleet commanded by Grand Admiral Hong Tu Quin in a star system often brings great excitement to the peoples who live on the planets there.  The hundreds of vessels that make up the fleet will divide up and visit every world with smaller shuttles and landers descending to the ground before laying out their goods to entice and to trade. While the troops of the fleet the 'Sanbao' are only used when a threat is encountered there are other more discrete means of self defence.  Foremost among these are the Onyx robots such as the Onyx Monkey.  Programmed and built to move around cargo, to retrieve orders and to climb into places Humans would have a problem reaching there are hundreds of non-sentient bots aboard every Xin vessel.  When trouble is encountered a robot such as the Onyx Monkey can be switched to a different mode and controlled by Xin merchants, officials or commanders to fight an enemy.  The monkey bot has a long tail it uses for carrying but it can act as a whip as well.  A hidden but valuable asset when the time comes.  
Academy Auto-Trainer Series 77, New Glastonbury, 4335IC 

Missed the announcement on IMP30 Xin Monkey Bot?  See it HERE.

Thanks for Reading,



  1. Very nice figures, going on my to buy list.

    The Guaiwu II Battlesuit adds new meaning to the phrase 'Gorilla Suit'

    With the onyx robo-monkey is it a defence against Khanate giant robo-ticks?

    1. Thank you for the kind words. It does indeed. I suppose you can use it for pest control...but I prefer the evil Khanate to suffer!