Tactical Battle Pod [Regault]
The Tactical Battle Pod is the most common of all the Zentraedi war machines. It is highly dependable, non-transformable, Mecha assault system that is issued to every infantry soldier. Although not equipped for hand to hand combat the battle Pod is designed for exceptional balance, speed, and a variety of short and long-range weapon capabilities.
The construction and operation of the Tactical Battle Pod is extremely simple. The pilot sits cradled inside the bulbous body of the pod with immediate access to all controls. The legs are controlled by foot pedals which respond to the pilot's manipulation. Weapon systems are operated by hand. Rear thrusters, mounted on the sides, and mini-thrusters in the legs, provide for mobility in space, while the massive ostrich-like legs give the pilot exceptional stability, balance and speed on land. The legs are so powerful that the entire pod can actually leap, bound, and kick without losing balance. Even after a fall, the pod can get on its feet quickly to rejoin the battle.
This impressive mobility is largely the result of the symbiotic relationship between man and machine via protoculture. Protoculture is the mysterious energy source of the Robotech masters, which instils an almost alive quality to the machine. As a result, the machine responds to physical manipulation as if it were an extension of the pilot. of course, the Zentraedi have no real understanding of how the mecha works, the use of protoculture, or even how to repair damaged Mecha. From a practical viewpoint, the principals are identical to the Earth Defence Force's own mecha.
In contrast to human Mecha, with roomy and reinforced pilot compartments, the Zentraedi pilot literally fills the pod's body cavity, is cramped, and has no additional protection beyond the light armour of the pod itself. This makes the pilot extremely vulnerable to attacks.
Zentraedi soldiers are often forced to discard extremely damaged Mecha, but the pods are very inexpensive, and mass produced--on a mind boggling scale--at fully automated weapons plants scattered throughout the universe (and under control of the Robotech Masters).
It is important to note that, while there are four, different types or styles of the Battle Pod, they are almost identical in body operation and movement. Only weapon systems change (this does not include the Officer's Pod). Like the human Destroids and Veritech, the pod's energy source has a life span of about 8 years when used constantly (20 years is normal, average).