by Max Barry

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by The Despotic Dictatorship of Despoticania. . 299 reads.

Despoticanian Air Force

Despoticanian Air Force (DAF), responsible for aerial combat and defense, employs extremely advanced technology and destructive but precise weapons to overcome opposition. Like all branches of the Despoticanian military, the Air Force relies mostly on AIs and autonomous drones and thus employs a surprisingly small number of living personnel.

The supreme commander of the Despoticanian Air Force is General Cheiro Aripaltura.

Despoticanian Aircraft

Misanthropy class command cruiser

This unusual hybrid of airship, battleship and aircraft carrier was designed under direct orders from The Despot, who informed his engineers that he wanted "something outré". With a wingspan of over one kilometer, the two command cruisers currently in service are the largest and most advanced aircraft wielded by the Air Force. While they can carry over two hundred drone aircraft over intercontinental distances, they are equally powerful in direct combat, with a varied armament of magnetohydrodynamic cannons, AI-guided missiles and automated laser turrets.

In service: 2

Avenger class helicarrier

A scaled-down version of the Misanthropy class, the Avenger has less armor and carries only defensive armament. Their main function is to act as mobile bases for Despoticanian aircraft over land, and they are never used in direct combat.

In service: 6


"TELOS", supposedly short for "Transatmospheric Electrogravitic Low Observability Surveillance platform", is the unofficial name of an advanced prototype recon/strategic bomber aircraft developed by the DAF. Not much is known about the TELOS because, aside from a confirmation of its existence, no official records are available. During its first test flights, the TELOS was responsible for several UFO sightings.

In service: unknown

DAF-TP9 Mule

A massive cargo plane ideal for transporting vehicles, troops or equipment. The Mule has only minimal armament, but can release countermeasure flares to counter enemy homing missiles.

In service: 41

DAF-G7 Valkyrie

A true flying behemoth, the Valkyrie is a heavy gunship with enough firepower to level entire city blocks in a matter of seconds. They are armed with various missiles, railguns, Gatling guns and defensive lasers.

In service: 18

DAF-B13 Cloudhammer

The DAF-B13 Cloudhammer is a supersonic long-range strategic bomber. It is capable of carrying over 50,000 kg of weapons and has a typical combat range of 20,000 kilometers. With a standard crew of 2, the Cloudhammer is also one of the few remaining manned aircraft of the DAF. For defence, it has an automated network of laser turrets and can spray clouds of utility fog to sabotage enemy aircraft and missiles.

In service: 78

DAF-B15 Stealthblade

The DAF-B15 Stealthblade is an unmanned, AI-piloted stealth bomber. It has shorter range and lower weapon capacity than the larger Cloudhammer, but more than makes up for it by having an advanced thermoptic camouflage system and a hull constructed from radar-absorbent materials. The Stealthblade also employs several non-sentient AIs for electronic warfare.

In service: 27

DAF-F19 Striker

A heavy, multipurpose drone fighter, the Striker is armed with a variety of powerful wepons, including guided missiles, laser guns and a heavy 35 mm cannon. It is operated either remotely by a tactical AI found in most Despoticanian carrier ships, or by its own onboard AI when distance or other conditions make communication with the carrier unfeasible.

In service: 1250

DAF-F20 Stinger

The Stinger is a light, fast drone aircraft with a relatively short operational range. They rely on the superhuman reaction times of their AI pilots and sheer numbers to punch through enemy defences. They are armed with missiles and machine guns.

In service: 3318

DAF-F21 Scourge

A medium drone aircraft specializing in strikes against ground forces, the Scourge is armed with both missiles and minimally guided free-fall bombs. For defense against hostile aircraft and missiles, it employs a powerful automated laser gun, and can also release several smaller, floating defense drones.

In service: 504

DAF-F12 Marauder

The only human-piloted fighter remaining in service, the Marauder is a heavily armed VTOL fighter used mainly as an attack aircraft. All Marauder pilots are cyborgs bonded with non-sentient AIs and linked directly with their craft via neural implants.

In service: 319

DAF-I8 Inhibitor

The DAF-I8 Inhibitor is a hypersonic interceptor. Like most other Despoticanian aircraft, it is controlled by an AI. The main armament of the Inhibitor consists of micro missiles and laser guns.

In service: 1490

DAF-AH23 Dragonfly

A heavy attack helicopter with modular weapon systems, the Dragonfly is a highly versatile and fuel-efficient craft. It is one the two attack helicopter classes in use by the DAF. It can operate independently under AI control, but usually has a human pilot whenever possible.

In service: 260

DAF-AH24 Beetle

A smaller, lighter attack helicopter, the Beetle is by far the more common of the DAF's two attack helicopter classes. Like the Dragonfly, it can operate under either AI or human control.

In service: 1518

DAF-TH15 Whale

An extremely powerful cargo helicopter capable of transporting heavy vehicles and even small buildings.

In service: 32

DAF-TH14 Elephant

A heavy-lift cargo helicopter capable of transporting troops or light vehicles.

In service: 85