Finally we have the Raven’s Claw. This one was tougher as the ship…doesn’t actually have a formal ship designation and canon…so I just made my own. Yes, new ship model and a unique version of it. For the Raven’s Claw I was heavily inspired by the artwork of MatMoura who did a great interpretation of the Raven’s Claw and its interior. While it may not be canon I feel it gives the ship a very ‘agent’ feel and so went with it.
HWK-2200 Fast Courier
Following the end of the Clone Wars and the declaration of the New Order, the Corellian Enginering Corporation sought to revive it’s HWK-series with the HWK-1000, unfortunately this product was ultimately doomed thanks to Imperial Authorities and regulations requiring CEC to go back to the drawing board.
While the HWK-series was known for being a light freighter, an extensive amount of market research done by CEC found people using the HWK-290 for courier and transport duties more than as a light freighter with people preferring larger cargo spaces if they were going into the shipping business. Instead of simply increasing the ships size and cargo bay like they had with the HWK-1000 concept, CEC designers decided to take the ship into a bold direction.
Marketing their new ship as a fast courier vessel, CEC leant heavily into the use of the ship as a sleek executive vessel perfect for courier work whether that be transporting data quickly or a small collection of valuables or important pieces of cargo. To that end the HWK-2200 doesn’t boast a large cargo space but it makes up for it in speed and relative comfort for a ship it’s size. The marked responded accordingly and while HWK-2200s’ were not common in the galaxy when they were seen it was often in the hands of wealthy individuals using them as their personal shuttle.
While many would not call the HWK-290 an ugly design, CEC focused on making the HWK-2200 visually striking, with a cockpit reminiscent of the HWK with a pointed hooked tip giving it a aerodynamic flare to the design. The cargo and maintenance area of the ship was accessed via a crawlspace or a cargo lift at the back of the vessel, large enough to accommodate a small two man speeder or whatever important valuables the ships new owner might be transporting. Finally, the most distinctive feature was the two huge cylindrical sublight engines with two stabilizing wings that propelled the HWK-2200 to dazzling speeds.
The performance of the vessel did come at a cost, with less bulk people did complain the ship was more fragile than the HWK-290, although this was often argued to be compensated by the advance shield systems the HWK-2200 boasted.
The ship came out at the right time as while the HWK-1000 was marred with objections regarding its speed compared to that of Imperial ships, the HWK-2200 came out much later after advancement in ion engine technology and development of more advanced fighters like the TIE/IN interceptor, resulting in far less objections from an Empire that saw itself as invulnerable. Ironic that the first HWK-2200 would formally roll off the production line the same day as the Battle of Yavin.
One of the first HWK-2200’s to be constructed, the Raven’s Claw started it’s life as the personnel shuttle of Imperial Prison Warden Dec Worthbury III, which he used as his personal shuttle in lieu of formal military craft such as the Lambda-class and other official vehicles. During a prison raid by the recently formed New Republic lead by Rebel Operative Kyle Katarn, the ship was stolen by Katarn and Jan Ors.
While the Warden had not made any modifications from stock, that would change under Ors and Katarn’s tenure with the two heavily modifying the ship’s offensive capabilities with a retractable nose mounded heavy laser cannon turret, wing mounted ion cannons, a hidden nose tip mounted proton torpedo launcher, and a rack of seismic charge mine launchers at the rear of the craft.
On top of that Katarn extensively modified the ships onboard sensor and communication station allowing him and Ors to receive long range communications from almost anywhere in the galaxy. Most of these modifications took the place of space reserved for what little cargo or crew the ship could previously take, but the Raven Claw’s new armaments saw Kyle and Jan through to the end of their careers.