* Cobra Viper Pilots will generally have either Boxing or Martial Arts as a skill, but not both unless they are exceptional fellows. If a Trooper goes with Boxing, he or she will have a d code for Strength and a c code for Agility; this is the standard Viper Pilot choice for the most part. On the other hand, if they go with Martial Arts, a Viper Pilot will have an x code for Strength and a b code for Agility.
Like the teeming masses of Cobra troopers they come from, the Cobra Viper pilots are faceless hordes who act to further the aims of the Cobra Command. They aren't as numerous as their land-based fellows, but they are highly trained aerial combatants, skilled in the use of the Viper Attack Glider. They are trained to use the Viper in commando-style raids or as air cover in a firefight.
Hindrances / Augmentations:
Dragunov Sniper Rifle (a): this Russian-built, semi-automatic rifle is built primarily with assassinations in mind, though it can be used in a firefight in a pinch. The gun itself fires rather large shells, making it act as a +5 weapon, though it can also be used to fire a small burst that allows it to act as a +6 weapon if necessary. It is also equipped with a scope, offering +1 to hit in sniping situations.
Helmet (s): all Cobra Viper pilots wear a helmet, to increase relative safety on the field and to protect from the ever-deadly head shot. Made of material strength 10 metals, this helmet offers its wearer intensity 8 (+2) protection from any non-frontal head attacks. This may not be enough to deflect all damage in a given instance, but it nonetheless helps to save lives.
Knife (s): though they'd rather not do so, all Cobra Viper pilots are equipped to fight hand-to-hand in the event that they completely run out of ammunition (and they usually carry several spare magazines to prevent this). These blades are of material strength 12, and in a Cobra Viper pilot's hands, they can be used as +2 slashing weapons with each deadly strike.
Pistol (a): in the event that one's Dragunov is disabled, a Cobra Viper pilot always has a spare firearm handy, stored in a convenient shoulder holster for quick access. These guns can be used to fire a single shot, acting as a +4 weapon, or a short burst which drains the entire magazine, but increases their effectiveness to +5. The magazine can presumably hold 8 rounds before it needs to be reloaded.
Viper Attack Glider (i): this one man aerial attack vehicle is a relatively low-tech item, but is nonetheless useful in attaining aerial superiority in a firefight. Being a glider, it doesn't move under its own power, but it can nonetheless make significant altitude in the hands of a skilled operator. See the Viper Attack Glider's entry for more information.
Aerial Combat (a): the skill that separates Cobra Viper pilots from ordinary Cobra troopers, this talent describes the advanced training in air-based combat situations and glider operation that these fellows have received. In aerial combat, Viper pilots can use Agility instead of Strength in combat, and may use Agility instead of Intellect to determine their order of declaration.
Boxing (s): all Cobra Viper pilots are trained in at least one form of unarmed combat once they hook up with the group, if they don't already have one under their belt. A majority learn the fine art of boxing, allowing them to divide their pre-card play action score between two unarmed melee attacks per exchange, the last of which will occur as a contingent action.
Guns (a): a given prerequisite, all Cobra operatives must have the ability to use a gun in combat; if they don't have it upon joining Cobra, they are trained - and quickly. Any Cobra Viper pilot can use a regular, semi-automatic, or fully automatic rifle or pistol with proficiency, doing so at one difficulty level lower than is normally required.
Martial Arts (a): a rare few Cobra Viper Pilots transform their unarmed fighting style into an art form. Those who have managed to do so will be able to resolve unarmed attacks with either their Strength or Agility score (whichever is most convenient), and may reduce the difficulty of actions intended to catch thrown objects, lower falling damage, or strike in unarmed combat. *
Military (w): a quasi-military organization, Cobra encourages an easily recognizable (to those within, at least) command structure. As such, those not bringing experience in such matters tend to pick it up quickly, to rise through the ranks; those who don't typically don't get this far. This skill gives Cobra Viper pilots an edge concerning military protocols and regulations.
* Remember: Cobra Viper Pilots will have either Boxing or Martial Arts, but not both. Were some to indeed have both they'd be quickly promoted out of this rank into something more flashy and/or better paying.
Cobra Viper pilots theoretically have the entire organization of Cobra as their contact, in that they are members of the group and supposedly have the same goals. However, if it is more convenient to let one of these specialized troopers get captured or killed, the Cobra Command is more than happy to let this happen. Unless a specific Viper pilot has something the Command needs, they are ultimately expendable.
Various Callings: the vast, vast majority of Cobra operatives have joined up for their own, evil purposes, so choose a villainous calling and go with it! Nominally, Cobra Viper pilots are motivated by Greed or aspirations of World Domination, but anything else can really apply. For instance, Storm Shadow hooked up with Cobra to gain Vengeance, etc.
The standard Cobra Viper pilot uniform consists of a blue jumpsuit, accompanied with a blue helmet and blue gloves, and bearing the Cobra sigil, in silver, on the front upper torso. The uniform is then complemented by black boots, black knee-pads, a black strap-on knife sheath, a black, pouch-riddled belt, black webbing with a shoulder holster for the trooper's pistol, and a black face mask.
The Cobra Viper pilots represented the beginnings of an air arm for the Cobra legions, and those who successfully trained to become airborne eventually found themselves moved up into other, more glamorous positions. While they were here, however, these guys helped provide air support during minor missions, and were also charged with one-man raids on enemy positions.
Cobra directories featuring a version of the Viper Pilot:
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