One of the most ubiquitous silhouettes on the planet, the Unity-produced Courage model All Purpose Aircraft is a twin-tiltrotor VTOL with nearly three centuries of variants, modifications, and options. In its default state, the Courage has a separate pilot compartment with emergency exit to the mid-hull exposable cargo/personnel bay and an inaccessible rear engineering locker containing the fuel cell array and a pair of large liquid-salt batteries.
Despite its low cost of construction and mass-manufacture design, the Courage is considered one of the safer military VTOLs produced, as it comes factory standard with a buoyant hull and power linkages to drive both undermounted drive wheels and rear inboard waterjets, as well as control options for using the main engines for surface navigation. Many a Courage pilot has made their way home across a blasted desert or stormy seas on battery power alone. Still, the courage has a smaller fuel cell array than larger aircraft, and no onboard power generation to speak of, making it one of the shorter-range military aircraft in circulation.
The Courage was the spiritual successor to the Unity’s venerable Legacy Multipurpose helicopter, a model whose original inspiration stretches back to the Collapse itself. Like the Legacy, the Courage bridges the gap between transport, gunship, and attack craft, offering the ability to deploy a small squad of infantry, perform surgical assaults, and provide aerial support. It sports heavy armor and robust systems amenable to field repair with simple technology, though the Courage’s overall weight makes it fairly slow for its size. Though it was designed in 148 and first deployed in 150, the Courage didn’t begin to phase out the Legacy until well after 220, when The Struggle for the Seas demanded aircraft capable of maintaining full maneuverability in open ocean winds. The Courage effectively phased out the Legacy by 275, and has only grown more popular since.
In 400 the Resolve was first unveiled, pitched as a modern re-imagining of the Courage using the latest engine technologies. Due to massively increased costs (more than 4 times that of the Courage even at never-achieved production-run levels), the Resolve was only produced in small quantities, and the onset of The Reformation War saw the cheap-to-build Courage rise to the top once more, only to be eventually edged out by the massive Duty Model Assault VTOL by the war’s end.
Although the Duty and Resolve are the official frontline aircraft of the Unity today, the Courage is still produced, and massive quantities of surplus have been sold off to Unity authorities in Kharak and Jah, as well as a number of private parties. Current estimates hold that over 10,000 Courage-model aircraft have been produced, with many more imitated or rebuilt. Just under half of these are believed to remain in service, making it the third most common manned vehicle on the planet.