|Commanding Officer||Executive Officer|
|James Lockheart||Zhao Zi Long|
|Current Roster: 11 Players||Overall Public Reputation: 27|
|Current Employers: Marian Hegemony & Capellan Confederation||Current Contracts: PY-PH-06-02 & CC-GW-06-02|
|Game Type: Play By Forum Board||Unit Founded: 7th of June, 3078|
From the Succession Wars to the Clan Invasion, from the FedCom Civil War to the current chaos of the 5th Succession War. Constant and increasingly escalating warfare destroyed worlds and killed billions. What many failed to account for, and was indeed ignored when reported, was that the years of fighting decimated something else. Something intangible - a soldier's soul. Most soldiers persevered, barely retaining their sanity by loosing themselves among their brethren and unit. Some commit suicide. Others flee, searching for a place to rediscover their direction, humanity and soul - or simply to escape from court martial charges of desertion, cowardice and mutiny.
A group of such warriors from all over the Inner Sphere and Periphery met on New Hedon, the capital of Herotitus and formed the unique and unconventional Black Stars mercenary command. Though technically a single command, the Black Stars operate like no other mercenary unit. It is basically a collective of small units ranging from individual soldiers, to an entire Battlemech lance or more. These small units sub-contract jobs from the Black Star leadership that runs the operations, and is simply called the 'Cell'. Consisting of soldiers who have stayed for the longest with the Black Stars, the 'Cell' negotiates all contracts after filtering through suitable ones and getting a majority vote from the current sub-contracted units.
The Black Stars make no preference for their recruitment. They would just as readily hire a retired Colonel from the AFFS as they would a washed out Periphery Mechjock seeking to escape gambling debts. There have been been cases of former Word of Blake soldiers fighting alongside former ComGuards within the unit. The Black Stars offer autonomy and a safe haven to individuals in the very eye of the turmoil in the current universe. The founding members of the Black Stars decided to gave the fragmented members of the unit at least a passing sense of unity and belonging by deciding on a simply black star as the unit insignia. It also reflected the fact that the unit's loyalty was to itself, which may change from battle to battle hence the preclusion of a traditional 'House' or 'Unit' colours. It may also be noted that being a simple to spray and/or stencil on design, a new unit sub-contracting under the Black Stars can put up the small logo quickly, and remove them just as easily when they inevitably decide to leave. However, as long as one is a member of the Black Stars, the unit always takes care of their own.
With uncountable number of sub-units signing up and leaving, below are the currently sub-unit commands enrolled under the Black Star banner:
Sharp Shooters: a tank unit led by Zhao Zi Long, the current nominated representative for the Black Stars since 3078, the Shooters possesses of a company of C3 linked Ajax and Manteuffel OmniTanks, and another of mixed Demolisher variants. Badger tracked IFVs support 3 Level Is of Battle Armour troops armed with Demon series suits.
Jack-O-Lanterns: one of the pioneer sub-units that signed up with the reborn Black Stars under Zhao Zi Long in 3068, the JoL specializes in scouting, recon and raiding, the unit is made up mostly of lighter Battle Armour squads, further supported by a range of equally light and fast moving conventional units.
Trouble Inc.: one of the last remaining of Zhao's founding sub-units, Trouble Inc. had grown massively since those half a decade ago, although the unit still maintained its focus on its large VTOL fleet. Unlike the JoL, Trouble Inc. went the other way and went for some of the heaviest Battle Armour, and can also currently lay claim to having a full star of Clan tech 'Mechs within its ranks.
Headhunters: one of the only two 'Mech-centric sub-units amongst the Black Stars mercenary collective, the Headhunters also accounted for half of the Black Stars' total aerospace fighter strength - with the latter being all of Clan manufacture.
Winter Hunters: in the chequered history of the Black Stars under Zhao Zi Long, two units stood out in that they were led by Clanners. The first, the Hell Falcons fell when its leadership were ironically lost to a particularly deadly bar fight rather than conventional combat. The second, was the Winter Hunters, led by a Clan Elemental simply known as Aleksei. Currently consisting of a Star of mixed Inner Sphere and Clan Battle Armour, the unit is also supported by a smattering of support vehicles.
Mortuus Legio Victrix: the strange, and some say downright eerie unit said to be of Marian origin is one of the newer sub-units that signed up with Black Stars only a few years ago. Every single piece of equipment, from Battle Armour, to vehicles, to BattleMech and aerospace fighters were chosen for one reason above all others - speed.
Alpine Rangers: the newest of the current lot, the Alpine Rangers sub-unit started off with a platoon of experienced mountain troops, and had very rapidly exploded to include BattleMechs, VTOLs and even their own DropShip transport.