In the alternate worlds of Muv-Luv Unlimited/Muv-Luv Alternative, Tactical Surface Fighters are only the tip of the spear of humanity's fighting force, with support vehicles, warships, aerial craft and aerospace vehicles augmenting the deadliness of TSFs on the field either directly or indirectly.
Aircraft, while nearly rendered obsolete during the initial introduction of the Laser and Heavy Laser-class BETA, did not entirely die out. While fighter craft have made the transition to TSFs, many large-scale types and smaller aircraft remain; these machines serve a wide variety of different roles in combat, and their continued existence is a testament to the importance of air superiority. From mass transportation to large-scale suppression bombing and tactical fire support for ground troops, no amount of risk from the ground can be balanced against the tactical and strategic advantages aircraft provide.
Ranging from precision strike on heavy targets to mass eradication of enemy troop formations, bombers are a rarely-seen but still very much alive aspect of aerial-based warfare. With the capability to deliver enhanced munitions in numbers or with speed that even TSFs will find difficult to match, all that a bomber needs is uncontested airspace; something that is, unfortunately, a rarity in conflicts involving the BETA.
- An extremely long-range subsonic bomber, this veteran aircraft from the immediate post-World War II era has undergone heavy refitting to be able to once again serve the US military.
- A modern bomber aircraft of the USAF, the original A-variant of the Lancer never entered production, and was superseded by the B-variant upon approval for service. With a respectable top speed, and capability to carry a wide variety of warheads, bombs, and other munitions, the speed, agility, and firepower of the Lancer is not to be underestimated.
- Several were deployed during the Yukon Base Incident, but were engaged and shot down by Laser-class released by the RLF from the base' underground labs.
- Known to NATO forces as the Blinder, the Tu-22 was an ambitious early attempt at a supersonic bomber, lacking the fuel range and firepower that was expected of it. Nevertheless, the Blinder remains a high-priority asset thanks to its high speed and airstrike capabilities as a supersonic bomber.
- Known to NATO as the Backfire, the Tu-22M is a reworked variant of the Tu-22 with very little resemblance to the original craft. A swing-wing design allows for improved flight handling and range.
- Known to NATO as the Bear, this long-range subsonic carpet bomber was developed sometime after World War II. The BETA invasion saw it being sent into combat despite its age, and while its payload is impressive even by modern standards, the Tu-95 is slow, incapable of any kind of low-level flight that could reduce its chances of being targeted from long range. In addition, a complete lack of armor, coupled with a fragile structure, means that it can be easily shot down by Laser-class BETA.
Transport aircraft operate by the mass movement of materials from one location to another. While the presence of Laser and Heavy Laser-class BETA have restricted their operating range to far behind the frontlines, the speed and convenience that air transport offers over naval shipping and land transport, respectively, means that transport aircraft are still vital to the war effort against the BETA.
Despite the threat of Laser-class BETA, transport aircraft remain an important part of every world's military; the possibilities afforded by large-scale transportation of materials via air, without the obstructions, delays, dangers, or just sheer time that a land or sea route might require, is enough incentive for these aerial behemoths to remain.
A large-scale transport aircraft built by Lockweed Corporation for the US military, built to ferry supplies and heavy machinery over long distances. The new Type-94s for Special Task Force A-01 were delivered via C-5 transports to Yokohama Base.
A twin-turbofan light transport designed as a STOL-capable aircraft (Short Take-Off and Landing). The An-72 is still in use by the Soviet Union, providing airlift capabilities alongside heavier transports.
- An earlier model of transport aircraft preceding the later An-225, the An-124 Руслан (Ruslan) is used by the Soviet Union to transport large amounts of supplies to areas that need them.
- A massive aerial transport craft, the An-225 Мрія (Mriya)currently holds the world's record for being able to carry the most cargo. Built by the Soviet Union and exported to willing customers all over the world, the An-225 has built a reputation for itself in its area of expertise. With the capability to mount a Re-entry Cargo Shell on its back, this has allowed the An-225 to function as a long-ranged airborne transport of TSFs.
- Several An-225s of the IJMDF were used by Captain Sagiri Naoya of the 1st Tactical Armor Regiment during the 12/5 Incident, in a daring maneuver to airdrop his troops straight into the combat zone.
- A twin-turbofan medium lift transport aircraft manufactured by Kawazaki that provides tactical lift for the Empire of Japan's Imperial Forces. A C-2 ferried Lieutenant Takamura Yui of the Royal Guard to Yukon Base when she was assigned as the development chief of the XFJ Program.
- There is only one aircraft of the An-225 model in real life; unlike its Muv-Luv version, the line was not mass-produced.
Perhaps less affected by Heavy Laser-class BETA due to their similar capabilities to TSFs, helicopters are nonetheless under threat by the smaller Laser-class BETA in the immediate area of a battlezone, which can aim higher and shoot faster. Nevertheless, the airborne firepower an attack helicopter squadron can bring is no laughing matter, and helicopter transports, for example, allow for insertion of supplies in hard-to-reach areas without exposing larger, more cumbersome transport aircraft to the range of Heavy Laser-class BETA.
AH-64D Apache LongbowEdit
- A modern, all-weather multi-environment attack helicopter, the Apache Longbow is equipped with the latest in ground-attack avionics and sensors, as well as an impressive air-to-ground payload. The Apache Longbow is in heavy use with both the US Army and UN forces as their main option in close air support firepower.
- Apache Longbows participated in the Defence of Yokohama Base as part of the UN forces stationed there. While they dealt great damage to the BETA, which were unable and unwilling to retaliate with the present Laser-class, the Apaches were forced to divert to other bases for landing and resupply once the BETA had penetrated into the inner regions of the base.
- Apachine Longbows were present during the Seattle Food Plant Hijack.
MH-53 Pave LowEdit
- A multi-purpose helicopter. Aside from transport, many of these are also used for data gathering during TSF combat trials and can be found around military bases worldwide housing the latest in information acquisition equipment.
- Another multi-purpose helicopter, the SH-60 is a highly capable helicopter suited to take on all kinds of missions. The success of its design has seen it assigned to any seagoing craft that can support helicopters.
- A tilt-rotor helicopter with the capability to function both as a VTOL craft for quick takeoffs and a turboprop aircraft for excellent cruising flight performance. These attributes, usually found on different aircraft, affords the Osprey many more options than any single aircraft of its class and size.
Ka-50 Black SharkEdit
- The Ka-50 Black Shark (Чёрная акула, Chornaya Akula), known to NATO forces as the Hokum, is an advanced Soviet attack helicopter boasting an impressive amount of firepower and maneuverability in combat.
Mi-24 Mk. IIIEdit
- An improved variant of the original Mi-24, the Mi-24 Mk. III boasts improved engines, systems, and increased attack power.
- The Mi-8MT also known as the Mi-17 is an early multi-purpose helicopter, the Mi-8MT is an improved version of the original Mi-8 in terms of speed and range and it can be adapted for a wide variety of roles.
- Known to NATO forces as the Halo, the Mi-26 is the world's most powerful helicopter in terms of flight power. The load and lift capabilties of the Mi-26 are comperable to the US C-130 Hercules transport aircraft.
While not widely used due to their relatively simplistic flight patterns and lack of speed and maneuverability, drone aircraft are still an important aspect of aerial warfare against the BETA. Capable of providing tactical reconnaissance when orbital assets are unavailable for use, drones on the battlefield allow a commander to get a clear grasp of the situation; and were the drone to be shot down, there would be no loss of life.
A secondary use of drones is in training, where they serve as mobile targets for target practice in various scenarios.
- A basic drone, seen in use at Yukon Base as a low-value training target. Capable of carrying ordinance when used in combat.
- A delta-wing drone that saw deployment by the Imperial Japanese military during the BETA Invasion of Japan, primarily in a reconnaissance role.
- While the drones in this article are named, they bear a few visual differences from their real-world counterpart for reasons unknown.
- The X-47B, in the real world, is a prototype unmanned air combat vehicle currently being tested by the USA. It is not known if the version in Total Eclipse shares any capabilities with it.