VaRKi Twak: Varoer Twak Raive Kigiaiyi Vehicle in Wouraiya | World Anvil
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VaRKi Twak: Varoer Twak Raive Kigiaiyi

The intention of the varki was to establish pockets of infantry that enemy infantry couldn't overcome. By doing so, the army that controlled it could control the battlefield, and either push the enemy back or maneuver the enemy into a disadvantageous position. These missions were derived from the oitagter, a successful pre-industrial armored unit that lends the most legacy to armored battalions.

Because the construction of the varki involved metalworks, Keyrit brought industrialists from Welkwu to help design the manufacturing process. Wlitowa, still a close ally, was much too technologically behind to contribute. Keyrit's greatest military minds were put to the test, as no project of this type and scale had been attempted in all of Wouraiya. Still, as mechanized transportation was growing ever more popular, it was only natural that inquiring minds would try to apply motors to war.

When the varki prototype was created, it would still be years yet before any opportunity would arise to use it. The alkali firearms it used were much too powerful and deadly for conventional simulations, so the first crews would instead train themselves with drills. The oitagter that came before them assembled themselves into chapters, so the varki did as well. This decentralized military system was largely born out of ignorance of the evolving nature of combat, but it worked well enough to remain a permanent feature of Keyrit combat.

Varki were first deployed to assist the Wlitowan royal line against a band of pretender nobles and disgruntled peasants who took up arms against their king in the Graer. The infantry fighting vehicles proved effective, in fact insurmountable. However, while this encounter proved that tanks had a place in the future of combat, it didn't help define the strategy and tactics of tanks in combat.

That opportunity would come with the assault on the Yukuric port city of Wagra. Infantry, tanks, and special forces were deployed in a massive amphibious assault. The Yukuric defenders, which had special support and training of the Ugo-yt Empire, presented a competent defense and a professional army. The victory was pyrrhic. The city was secured and the defending army was forced into the desert wastelands of Yukur. However, the losses of men and varki in the scuffle was self-admittedly embarrassing. In fact, there were some who wondered if the battle would have been won were it not for the actions of the squad of special forces.

The Yiki Conference would reshape the Keyrit army into a more formidable mechanized force. When the Keyrit (as part of the Doyog Pact) and Ugo-yt Empires vied for control over Wouraiya, varki were a much more organized (albeit decentralized) force. Even so, they had to deal with the Ugo-yt doctrine, for which Ugo-yt tanks were much more mobile and logistically independent.

They were deployed to Yatkaugo and engaged in hit-and-run raiding parties on Ugo-yt fortifications. They were sent to the Tat'ra to protect Wlitowan holdings in Tuhra. The flat plains and moderate speed of the tanks meant that one side could take months marching from the mountains in the east to the bay in the west, only to lose that ground in a matter of days. Even though the Doyog Pact would lose Tuhra, the actions of the varki bought Keyrit and Wlitowa years to set up fortifications and make their island fortresses impregnable.

Their success would be shared by their cousins, such as the Tairtwak. While the varki would dominate its role, the tairtwak would fill complementary roles across the battlefield, partly in response to Ugo-yt tank doctrine.


The Varki was designed with the intention of marching with the soldiers; "Varoer Twak Raive Kigiaiyi" literally means "[The] tank crawls alongside [the] soldiers." At most, the tank was intended to move at twice the speed of the common soldier, but any propulsion beyond that was considered a waste. From the outset, it was designed with a steam engine and used peat to fuel the fires. The piston from the steam engine is mechanically linked to the Varki's wheels. To compensate for the large quantity of heat, the open back of the Varki allows wind to naturally cool the device. This design element would carry over when the gasoline-based piston system replaced the peat-based piston system.

Most places in which the Varki could theoretically be deployed were flat and dry enough to support wheels. Keyrit never intended to deploy infantry fighting vehicles to the more mountainous regions, as they had completely separate combat doctrines for those. However, when deploying and exercising on its own island, Keyrityi tanks had difficulty maneuvering on wheels. The jagged hills and marshy west lands required new options. Military research and development had to invent broad wheels and treads just to test the tanks. The concept stuck as the tanks moved on to the battlefield, since treads were simply more adaptable to any situation.

Weapons & Armament

The oitagter before it, whose role sizably influenced the role of the varki, was incredibly varied in its arsenal. Before the age of firearms, the weapon was either the user's choice or a standard fit to a chapter's doctrine. Even as the firearm was introduced to combat, the weapon was intended to be personally maintained by the user. Alkali weaponry were often modified or even secretly slotted out for a different weapon, as the user could afford and appreciate.

At the dawn of the varki, there was a call for similar customizability. It was an open secret at this point, but the standardization of manufacturing jeopardized the freedom the gunners once had. Most alarmingly, a gun was mounted through one of the slits and welded to the front side, ensuring that repairs and replacements could only come from certain channels. When the grievance was presented to the military command, they relented and passed the duty of armament doctrine to the chapters of varki. To accommodate for this, research developed an interchangeable turret to be welded onto the front and sides of the varki, from which operators could slot one of a number of weapons. These would eventually include small arms, machine guns, cannons, and grenade launchers.

With the expanded armament availabilities of the varki, certain patterns began to arise. Operators that were given full freedoms often chose small arms because they were cheaper, more maneuverable, and easier to use. Even so, small arms were far too ineffective for the armor that the varki brought with it. This was also a problem shared by the pre-mechanized oitagter. To combat this, operators would stash five or six alkali firearms beside the gunner (which was still a cheaper option than most others). An operator behind the gunner would load the ammunition while the gunner maintained a steady barrage of accurate fire. The varki in this sense was a small mobile pillbox, and was fairly effective against enemy infantry. However, when command demanded that certain battlements be captured or brought down, these kinds of varki were wholly inadequate.

One assault in the port of Wagra exemplified the issue. Keyrit forces had punched a hole in the enemy lines, through which a battalion of varki charged. The leader sent them to a compound where the enemy strategic command resided, and ordered the compound to be turned to dust. The varki that made it through had no cannons or other such items that could destroy from a distance. Rather, the foremost tank parked inside the compound while the captain got out. She affixed demolitions charges to the compound from spare supplies in the vehicle. She was caught in crossfire between the Yukuric general's personal bodyguard and her supportive comrades. The commander was wounded as she made her way back to her vehicle, and they were sitting ducks as the varki rushed out of the compound. For all that, the explosive was a dud. The general fled his post when half of his bodyguard died, so the varki could claim a very humiliating victory.

Keyrit was lucky that the Wagra assault was an isolated incident; it gave the military time for some much-needed doctrinal reform before a major conflict. The Daskalarchy's chapters, who still had control over weapon choice, were all summoned together to figure out a solution. The Yiki Conference, as it would be known, solidified Keyrit tank doctrine for future wars. They decreed the following elements:
Tanks would be designed to support infantry, and would be included in deployments greater than 400 infantry at a rate no less than one chapter per 400 infantry.
Infantry fighting vehicles would be deployed only in concentrations at or smaller than one tank per twenty infantry.
Tank crew would have helmets and small arms for personal usage as necessary.
The tank itself would have at least one long-range weapon installed and running at all times, of a choice determined by the chapter.
The varki chapter would have autonomy over varki equipment before battle and varki tactics during the battle, but those decisions could be vetoed by military command in critical cases.

Because of the reforms of the Yiki Conference, Keyrit found its niche in tank operations and was the foremost nation in those operations at the dawn of the Ugo-yt War. Most varki were equipped with a cannon, though some were equipped with high-powered grenade launchers.

Armor and defense

In the heritage of the oitagter, the front of the Varki is a solid rectangle, the thickest armor on the entire vehicle. Originally, that was going to be the only element of armor on the entire vehicle. However, tank crews began to get concerned about attacks from their flanks. The armor curved around to shield them from alkali fire. In order to keep the two sides relatively sturdy, a metal top held the three sides together. Optimally, the Varki would have armor on all four sides, but heat mitigation necessitated that the back of the Varki have no armor. In fact, it's completely open! This would in theory help the crew. If some part of the Varki was on fire, or if the whole hulk was unsalvageable, the crew wouldn't have to worry about blocked or difficult exits. They'd simply get up and run out the back of the vehicle, though potentially through the inflammed area.

Communication Tools & Systems

The varki's communications system has joint heritage from those of the urailu and the Keyrit military. The urailu would hang flags off the side of its balloons in order to communicate to passers-by from a distance. Similarly, operators would wave flags at the back of the vehicle, visible to the commanders behind them and to their comrades beside them but not to their enemies before them. There were numerous issues with regards to visibility, but it was the simplest and least technical option that worked.

The urailu communication system was color-coded, often according to inventory and weather. The varki generally went into battle with full knowledge of the weather and utter disregard to any inventory except for ammunition. The color system, then, was heavily modified. The meaning behind a green flag, for example, went from "I have nothing to sell; let's trade" to "I have no current orders; assign some to me." Flags of all necessary colors were attached to the inside wall of the varki.

Keyrit command has flags of its own, though these flags have a completely different language. Descended from the organizational ranks of the military, the commanders use a variety of colors, shapes, and heights to convey their messaging. Colors usually represent battalions, or individual tanks in smaller engagements. The colors are established well before the battle ever takes place. Shapes refer to specific commands, such as "stay here" or "patrol." Heights designate locations on the battlefield, relative to the commander. A low height means close by, while the farthest height signals the call to charge. Some commanders sway the flagpoles to the left and right to indicate flank, while others position themselves to give their orders better clarity. Because visual communication has its limitations, commanders often ride in their on varkis at the back of the squadron they command. They might themselves take orders from higher-ups, which would reach all the way back to the commander of the operation.

Additional & auxiliary systems

The varki was never designed to do anything but shoot at the enemy from a well-armored mobile position. As the chapters familiarized themselves with the infantry, though, the varki became not just a formidable fighting vehicle but also a gathering place. On a cold night on the plains of Yatkaugo, a steam or gasoline engine provided much-welcome warmth to the everyday riflemen. The tank crew (very much against regulations) would unhook their engine system and use the extra fuel and/or warmth to make a fine cooking stove for the surrounding guests. It certainly beat the fires made by the standard kit. One individual from many varki crews would take on the role of chef for the army. If one didn't appear, they'd collect aficionados from the general corps to help them. The individual varki was a place to gather, to discuss rumors, to play games and to tell stories. This was a rather informal affair, neither condoned nor discouraged by the brass. Still, if the varki twaks were to be placed elsewhere, there might have been riots.

Some chapters took it upon themselves to bring along large tarps and blankets in the varki. If they didn't catch fire from being too close to the engine, they could provide an extra layer of insulation as they slept inside the tank. Further, colored blankets and tarps could give the tank much-needed camouflage. The topmost brass didn't find this element particularly necessary; on the flat terrain where varki would be deployed, anything that large and moving would catch attention. Still, proponents argued, anything that would make the enemy think twice would offer the varki a few vital seconds, and those seconds meant the difference between victory/life and defeat/death.

Hangars & docked vessels

Because Keyrit is an island continent, the VaRKi has to be shipped overseas to the continents where it is deployed. However, infantry fighting vehicles take up large amounts of deck space even when tightly fit. As a result, it is commonplace to stuff the inside of the Varki with all manner of military equipment and supplies. Alkali firearms are the most common accompaniment, but foodstuffs take a close second. It is considered the logistics coordinators' job but the tank operators' obligation to unload the equipment from the vehicle. Often a firearm or two would be left on the floor when all was said and done, and the tank crew confiscates it as their unloading fee.

The varki was supposed to work in a pack, but everyone on all levels of command knew that it would be best if the varki was prepared to fight alone, for days if the need arose. Units could accidentally get lost in a logistical hiccup, or the supply chain could break down. The crew of the varki would have to be prepared for anything. To this end, every varki was offered two days' worth of preserved rations, as well as a pack of flimsy sleeping bags for use on the road. They weren't much, and a good mattress always reigned supreme. That said, sleeping on an insulated metal surface was a better bet than resting on the dirty, hard ground. At least bugs and beasts wouldn't surprise you inside the vehicle.
VaRKi (Varki)
Military Formation Usage

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27 Jan, 2022 00:38

Excellent tank very well detailed well written

Let's have fun creating the impossible, building new worlds, and all types of possibilities. Valcin
Benjamin B
28 Jan, 2022 06:42

Thanks; I'm glad you like it!