* Note: Aero-Vipers may generally choose between Boxing and Martial Arts as a personal defense skill, the former raising their Strength's ability code to d, and the latter raising their Agility's ability code to a. A rare few will have trained hard to master both self-defense skills.
Unlike their Cobra contemporaries, Aero-Vipers are not surgically modified, nor are they cybernetically augmented. No, these pilots simply train incredibly hard, building up their innate toughness to withstand the forces a Condor readily applies to their bodies.
Hindrances / Augmentations:
the Condor Z-25 (i): a high altitude fighter-bomber, the Condor Z-25 can rain inordinate amounts of doom upon those below without their ever seeing the aircraft, or it can split into two distinct assault craft. The Condor Z-25 is described in its own vehicular entry.
Helmet (s): like all Cobra pilots, Aero-Vipers generally wear helmets which completely obscures their features, and that have a practical benefit. Their bronze headgear provides Aero-Vipers intensity 8, or +2, protection against physical attacks striking them anywhere in the head.
Knife (s): serving mostly as a tool to cut parachute lines, Aero-Vipers always carry a blade with them. They can use these implements, of m.s. 13, to cut through items of up to like m.s., or to inflict +2 slashing damage in melee when necessary.
Sidearm (a): most Cobras carry at least one backup piece, and Aero-Vipers are no exception to this rule. They can discharge a single round from these weapons to inflict their Agility +4 in damage, or a semi-automatic burst of such to inflict their Agility +5 in damage.
Aerial Combat (a): one does not become an Aero-Viper without being an effective fighter pilot, whether they brought that skill with them to Cobra or picked it up on the job. As such, they may attempt combat card play while flying any aircraft at a reduced difficulty.
Boxing (s): Aero-Vipers are well-versed in the art of self-defense. For some, this takes the form of the boxing skill, which lets them divide their pre-card play action score between two unarmed melee assaults, the second of which will occur as a contingent action.
Guns (a): all Cobra operatives have the ability to wield firearms in combat, and Aero-Vipers are no exception to this rule. They may discharge any standard, semi-automatic, or fully automatic rifle or pistol at one difficulty level lower than is usually required.
Martial Arts (a): Aero-Vipers are well-versed in the art of self-defense. For some, this takes the form of the martial arts skill, granting them a reduction in the difficulty of actions intended to dodge attacks, catch thrown weaponry, or to strike in unarmed melee.
Military (w): Cobra pilots cannot earn the rank of Aero-Viper without mastering this skill, even if they got their start as civilian pilots. It allows them to function effectively within a combat unit, and gives them insight into Cobra's byzantine organizational structure.
Piloting (a): the skill which Cobra recruited them for, Aero-Vipers are all highly competent pilots, and more than a few of them are true experts in their field. Aero-Vipers may attempt actions to control aircraft while in the air at a reduced difficulty.
Aero-Vipers can generally rely upon the Cobra organization for assistance should they request it, for they have proven themselves to the group on numerous occasions. Mind you, despite their skill, Aero-Vipers are a bit more disposable than a Star- or Strato-Viper.
Various Callings: the vast majority of Aero-Vipers joined Cobra due to their insatiable Greed for material possessions. Others, however, reflect the nature of Soldiers attempting to prove their skills, or are even intent on World Domination, after a fashion!
The Aero-Viper uniform primarily consists of a dark green flight suit beneath black and bronze trunks, which is complemented by light gray web gear and gloves, black leather boots and belts, and a black mask worn beneath their bronze flight helmets.
Most Cobra pilots who wish to advance beyond the rank of Air-Viper must meet a common string of requirements. They must all have over 1,500 logged flight hours on multiple fixed-wing aircraft, those ranging from one to four engines, and must possess verifiable combat experience.
While further progress through the ranks often involves surgical modification of some sort, this is not always necessary. Those Cobras who don't wish to be augmented, whether through mundane or cybernetic means, are often the sort that aim to become Aero-Vipers.
These brutes achieve with a staggering exercise regimen what Star- and Strato-Vipers can do, though without going under the knife. Oh sure, Aero-Vipers can't operate above Angstrom's Line, but they can get somewhat close - and they get to fly the Condor Z-25.
This revolutionary fighter-bomber can obliterate ground-based opponents without them ever knowing Cobra was flying overhead. And should it be menaced in the skies, it can split apart into two separate fighter jets, each with its own unique capabilities.
While it keeps them in the gym almost all day, the routine that Aero-Vipers undergo to manage all of these things isn't without side effects. They have flying on the brain so much, it is said, that they routinely dream of soaring through the skies unaided!
the Hydra (i): Sky Sweeper jets acquired from the GI Joe team and repurposed by Cobra, Hydras are B-2 bombers in miniature. Cobra Blue in hue, they're not quite as stealthy as their parent jets, but are nonetheless quite effective, as is described in their own vehicular entry.
The second Aero-Viper uniform primarily consists of a grass green flight suit, minus the original's trunks, which is complemented by light gray web gear and gloves, black leather boots and belts, and a grass green mask worn beneath their bronze flight helmets.
Cobra directories featuring a version of Aero-Vipers:
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