Recently, the WCPedia team has focused on improving the Ship pages on the project. We've been working hard on compiling and organizing all the information for each ship. The first area we've started to tackle is Confederation fighters. We thought it only prudent to show that information off to the whole community. As we continue to work on the various ship articles, we'll continue to highlight them as they get close to completion.
Today we look at the F-36 Hornet, the first ship wingnuts fly in the original Wing Commander. Over the last few months, we've worked hard to gather all the known information about the Hornet. We plan on giving every single reference in the Wing Commander universe the same treatment. To start off we've included the History text from the Hornet article. Enjoy!
Designed by Origin Aerospace, the F-36 Hornet served as a light fighter for the Terran Confederation during the Terran-Kilrathi War. Many of graduates of the Terran Confederation Space Forces Academy spent time flying a Hornet trainer variant during their rookie year. It was included in Joan's Fighting Spacecraft Vega Sector Supplement for 2654.092. Typically, Hornets engaged in reconnaissance, escort, patrol and light anti-shipping duties. Mounting two MK. 25 Laser Cannons and three missiles, two Dart DumbFires and a Javelin Heatseeker, and a maximum speed of 420 KPS, the Hornet was capable of either fighting or fleeing its way out of most combat situations. The Confederation used the Hornet extensively during the Vega Campaign of the 2650s. Noted Hornet squadrons included the Yellowjackets and Killer Bees assigned to the TCS Tiger's Claw during the campaign. Future Commodore Christopher Blair and leader of Lancelot Flight began his Tiger’s Claw career in the Killer Bees squadron. The Hornet squadrons of the Tiger’s Claw performed combat operations in the Enyo, Gateway and Cheng Du systems during the Vega Campaign. Later, they served in the Goddard system during Operation Thor’s Hammer and the Firekka system during Operation Crusade.
The Confederation officially replaced the Hornet in favor of the F-54 Epee in 2661, although Hornet squadrons served in Confederation colors through the Battle of Earth in 2668. Following the war, the Free Republic of the Landreich and the Union of Border Worlds purchased a significant number of the spaceframes the Confederation was removing from the Fleet and used them in combat squadrons into the mid-2670s.
Commander Darlene "Babe" Babcock, squadron commander of VF-12, the Flying Eyes off the FRLS Independence, former TCS Tarawa, were the first members of Operation Goliath to provide images of KIS Karga prior to the survey in 2670. The squadron was modified specifically for fleet reconnaissance utilizing the Mark VI APSP. It was a specially mounted sensor pod containing a battery of cameras, imaging systems, and other survey gear that was normally used to conduct long-range scans ahead of a fleet or target identification runs in a planetary atmosphere. Later, it was the Hornets of the Flying Eyes to first engage Zachary Banfield’s Guild attack. Broadswords were launched from a modified ore transport turned carrier named Bonadventure. Their goal was to destroy the tender FRLS Sindri. In the ensuing battle a number of Hornets were lost before additional fighters were launched to aid them. Eleven Hornets were subsequently transferred from the Independence to the renamed Karga, now FRLS Mjollnir in honor of the crew of the Sindri and Eric “Viking” Jensson, a Hornet pilot killed during the attack. During the transit from the Vaku System to the Hellhole System, the Mjollnir added the Hornet squadron VF-16, the Stingers, commanded by William "Willie Pete" Peterson. The Flying Eyes later served with distinction during the Battle of Baka Kar acting as a blocking force in low planetary orbit of Baka Kar itself.
Hornets continued to see use into the 28th century. The January 2701 issue of Star*Soldier listed a classified ad selling an F-36 Hornet . The seller was firstname.lastname@example.org.