CharacteristicsEditThe JDF-1 is a robust, all-around starfighter with above-average firepower, armor, shielding, and mobility. Four fire-linked laser cannons spread between wing pylons and the fighter's "chin" allow for a wide dispersion of fire at a blistering rate. Ion cannons, mounted coaxially against the furthest laser cannons, allow the fighter a greater degree of versatility in engaging its targets. Finally, two large missile launchers flank the cockpit, rounding out the fighter's armament with a total of ten proton torpedoes. While compact, the use of relatively simple and somewhat aged but well-honed components means the JDF-1 leaves plenty of space for additional cargo and thick armor without sacrificing any speed. The use of simple parts also eases maintenance and repair.
The JDF-1 began as the PF-15, or "Patrol Fighter Model 15," a project under Incom Corporation in 230 meant to succeed the F-14 Switchblade. However, it wasn't conceived until immediately following the release of VMEW's Aurek Starfighter. Intending to compete with the Aurek and reclaim lost ground in the shared market, Incom hoped to outperform VMEW's offering with a cheaper fighter using older components that nonetheless performed favorably. The project dragged on for nearly a decade, during which Koenseyr Manufacturing joined the project to aid in its development.
The resulting fighter was only marginally cheaper than the Aurek, but boasted comparable performance, especially in its thrusters, which provided slightly more acceleration than the Aurek in space. However, its reliance on older, more heat-efficient components meant its total armament lacked the raw firepower of the Aurek's heavy lasers and rapid-firing ion cannons. It also devoted very little space or emphasis to computer or sensor systems, making it practically blind over the long distances which patrol craft generally must be able to react. Rather than marketing the PF-15, the project was renamed to the "Joint Defence Fighter" project, and emphasized its role as a heavy close-defense and escort fighter.
The JDF-1's development had eaten most of the project's allotted investment, so even cheaper and older parts, fabricated by both Incom and Koenseyr, were used to streamline production. This kept the cost relatively low, but not low enough to offset a relatively small profit margin gained from the fighter's barely competitive price tag, a mere ten thousand credits less than the Aurek.
The JDF-1 never caught on, and was never adopted by any established military force or security organization. Within a short amount of time, the project was cancelled.
JDF-1s are incredibly uncommon craft to encounter due to their short production run, however their unusual history make them sought-after by collectors. The fighter's versatility and firepower also means it goes for a high price on the black market, being especially sought after by mercenaries and pirates.