Most modern military commanders view tracked vehicles as outmoded throwbacks to a bygone age. Such vehicles, however, tend to be reliable, sturdy and cheap compared to their futuristic alternatives. The Halfpenny Dukes are a perfect example of this logic.
Their main force is comprised of 100 ‘Steelbug’ tanks. The short, squat vehicles are basic and without frills but have myriad advantages in the context of the lower tech Outer Rim battlegrounds. They can be landed on a planet from small, non-specialised ships and quickly prepared for battle by their crews. They are easily repaired and cope well in a range of environments from airless asteroid to snow-covered tundra. Their low profiles mean that many larger foes (like the Wun’Tux armour or choice) have trouble targeting them at middle to long distances.
The group is known for their role during the defence of the human-Gnobo settlement on Rotan VI. A minor Wun’Tux BroodClan launched an unexpected offensive against the planet, whose government put out an urgent plea for mercenary assistance. 50 Steelbugs arrived prior to the Wun’Tux forces making landfall; augmenting the militia of larger Gnobo tanks. The Steelbugs fought a delaying battle against the invading Voidwalkers, keeping them at mid-to-long range before retreating. They utilised their mobility in the streets of the settlement capital, splitting the focus of the Wun’Tux ground troops whilst their Gnobo allies attacked on the flank.
It was the arrival of a Second Sabre fleet rather than the ground troops which eventually forced the Wun’Tux to retreat, but the planet’s population were most grateful to the defenders on the ground. Half of the Steelbugs were badly damaged or destroyed but the generous payment from the settlers and governments helped cushion the blow.