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Hammer's Slammers Commission by Shimmering-Sword Hammer's Slammers Commission by Shimmering-Sword
Another commission for :iconmihoshik: *MihoshiK, had a great time working on it. If you're interested in commissioning me check out my journal [link]

Here I did a redesign of Hammer's Slammers mercenary hover tanks. The tank runs on a fusion generator, which powers their lift fans and plasma weaponry.
The main gun will melt enemy armored units to slag, while the tri-barrel plasma gun on top handles point defense against infantry, aircraft, and incoming projectiles. A final defensive measure is an array of ball shot mines surrounding the tank, which can kill incoming infantry and missiles.

I tried out some matte painting for the landscape, otherwise it's all hand painted. Made in PS CS4 with a Wacom Intuos3.
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:icondark-vengeance912:
Dark-Vengeance912 Featured By Owner May 13, 2015
Is there a meaning behind the coat of arms on the turret of the tank? Looks really similar to the Norwegian coat of arms without the axe. 
Cool field of view :)
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:iconderekrestivo:
DerekRestivo Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Hammers Slammers! It's so cool to see a series like this comissioned.
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:icontrollius2:
Trollius2 Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2013
This is a fantastic interpretation of hover tanks from Drake's universe. The next time there is a 'Slammers book I really, really hope they contract you for the cover artwork.

Also, I would argue that the back of the turret is NOT a bad design for two reasons:
1: Yes, since WWII (and probably through the next dozen decades or so) such a design would indeed be a "shell trap" from the rear, but in the time of Hammer's Slammers the primary direct fire weapon is a bolt of plasma with missiles as a distant secondary weapon. Shell/grenade type weapons do exist, but are more in the vein of "mortar" type weapons.
2: The turret shown is perfect for rotating and NOT blocking the intake fans for the plenum chamber. That is a very logical design if the turret needs that amount of mass and not block the airflow when it rotates.

Thanks for sharing this beautiful artwork with us!
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:iconpaladincarter:
PaladinCarter Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
"Hard Candy" Best tank name EVER!
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:iconthenkle61:
THenkle61 Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2013
Awesome work! I'm a big fan of David Drake's work and loved reading Hammer's Slammers.
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:iconmetalarch:
MetalArch Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Just great.
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:iconmillianalennie:
MillianaLennie Featured By Owner May 21, 2013  Student Digital Artist
magnifique!
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:icongunny-kilroy:
Gunny-Kilroy Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013
Ooh-fucken-rah! Hammer's for the win man! Great work!
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Apr 26, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks.
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:iconlostcolonel:
LostColonel Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I love it. The battlefield would be large and the tanks in small packets, spread apart, as you have depicted here.

(Meaning no offense, but scratching up the skins a bit would make them look more "used" and not like they just rolled off the assembly line.)
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:icontheelevateddeviant:
TheElevatedDeviant Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2012
"<Point at Enemy" Simple directions.
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2012
I never really get Hover tanks - yes, hovering allows much greater speed and mobility to armored vehicles, but it requires so much energy to maintain the hovering, especially when your main gun is a solid shooter that has a huge recoil to compensate. A battle could often last a day or so. How often do you need to recharge? And what's the point of hovering if it's just cheaper to slap conventional tank treads on them?

If hover tanks are a must, I would suggest an alternate design (Just my own opinion, without technical know-how) where the tank could alternate between hovering and conventional engines/tracks for mobility. Hovering would be for situations where the tank requires to conduct rapid offensive or evade enemy fire, and only for a short period of time. Its internal machinery would allow it to retract its conventional tracks-and-road-wheels/engine/whatever and tuck it inside a holding compartment just behind the Armored Skirt, while it switches on the antigrav engines and goes into hover mode. Otherwise, in normal combat situations, it'll be using conventional engines and tracks-and-road-wheel design of normal tanks.

That way, the energy burn from the tank's powerplant out of having to power the anti-gravity engine or whatever constantly would be drastically reduced.

Nice artwork by the way, nice use of colour and shading. The countryside looks good and the hover tanks look positively BADASS. Maybe some day I will go read that Hammers Slammers series.
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:iconorr8571:
Orr8571 Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Random deviant here with a moderately informed reply (I'm reading the Hammer's Slammers books now as i can find them, and they are very well done), don't mind me!

The tank carries a cold fusion reactor, making recharging not an issue. It's also an armoured hovercraft as opposed to a grav tank, using two (i think) very powerful fans under the armoured skirt to lift the tank. Here Drake's science fiction softens a little, as the vehicle weighs about 170t when combat-ready and that's a lot for ducted fans to lift, but supposedly with the power output available it's not much of a problem. The range of the vehicles hasn't been discussed in any short i've read, but offhand references to crossing continents because Hammer wants to exploit a strategic advantage he's just noticed (he does that) makes me think refuelling isn't an issue so much as hostile action.

Combination hover/conventional tanks have interesting potential though! it'd allow the hover vehicle to 'turtle' it's way through problems that'd only be made worse running away from, for example. My only question is, how might the conventional system (which is normally pretty bulky irl) share space with antigrav or ground-effect fans (which in many scenarios aren't much better) without meaning lots of added target for someone to shoot at?

Apologies if i'm spouting things you know, or if i come across in any way offensive!
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2013
Thanks. It's a good point, there would probably not enough room, but it could be justified given current trends at miniaturization. They probably figured something out in that setting.

Cold fusion reactor does indeed make a good justification for it in Hammer's Slammer. While the working principles in real life is... debatable, at best, it was known that IF it works, it could work at small sizes and normal temperatures in contrast to normal fusion reactors and produce just as much power.

And don't worry, I'm not exactly quite informed as you may think, it's just an observation I noted and then doing hobby research on it afterwards.
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:iconvala553:
vala553 Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2012
Nice picture.

I've read a short story collection of Hammer's Slammers once. It's a good read.
Although no close air support struck me as odd. Granted laser cannons make great AA guns (instant line of sight shooting), but that only matters if you can bring the gun to bear(We don't worry about detecting the planes; the Slammers bring spy satellites). So no A-10s or gunships, but fast fighter planes. Or fusion jets.
David Drake never covered what would happen if the spy satellites were taken out of the equation, either...
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:iconmisterartmaster101:
MisterArtMaster101 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2013
Actually, usually the sats in question are designed to be extremely hard to detect without top of the line gear (only available at the core worlds) and only can be touched by a 20cm powergun (anything else would be either too slow (missiles with sat killers) or too weak (lasers) to kill such a sat). Lasers are considered 'useless' because they're too fragile to deploy. It is outright stated in Drake's snippets, particularly when discussing the powergun.

Actually quite a bit of the time they don't have the luxury of using those spy sats.
Most of the time they use their FCS and sensors to do the work.
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:iconvala553:
vala553 Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2012
Nice picture.

I read a Hammer's Slammers collection of short stories once. It's a pretty good read.
Although it kinda struck me as odd that close air support is obsolete in that 'verse. Granted the weapons are basically lasers that instantly hit anything in line of sight, but that would only matter if the turrets could track them(sensors are handled by spy sats.) So no A-10s, but F-22s on full afterburner might make it. So would fusion jets.
David Drake never did cover what would happen if the spy sats were taken out of the equation, either...
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:iconmisterartmaster101:
MisterArtMaster101 Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2013
Not when your average 20mm tribarrel puts out more energy than the main gun of modern tanks. Aircraft today are thin skinned because the amount of armor needed would make them unable to fly (even the A-10 has this problem, and its one of the toughest aircraft in modern aircraft design). One missile and boom, bashed plane. With a power bolt, one hit and BOOM! a large chunk of your aircraft is simply GONE.

Not even the 'flying tanks' that are Battletech aircraft are immune to the horror that is the tribarrel. In-verse the aircraft have to have insane power ratios and nothing they have can produce that much juice, be light enough, and make the aircraft fast enough with the amounts of armor needed. IF its too much for the tribarrel, then the 20cm MAIN GUN WILL take it out.
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:iconvala553:
vala553 Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013
If you can line up either gun.
This is also assuming noone's using fusion powered aircraft. That would really put out the speed.
Aircraft can be oneshotted by most weapons in any case, the point of fighter design is either:
!.Don't get spotted(B2, looking at you)
2.Evade, FAST. SR-71 speeds might suffice.
Another thing; why doesn't anyone go for the spy sats? Hammer doesn't have any other recce, so if those go, there goes his eyes. It wouldn't take much; tank guns will do it, and spy sats can't evade.
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:iconmisterartmaster101:
MisterArtMaster101 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013
Actually, even the SR-71 would be taken out. The Power Guns DON'T FUCKING CARE IF YOU'RE GOING MACH 1 OR MACH 20, YOU CAN'T DODGE A HIGH-FRACTIONAL c WEAPON WITHOUT FTL SYSTEMS (the 'slow' part of the weapon is essentially the air heated to unimaginable levels that it acts like a tracer). That is what the powergun is, a high energy high fractional (as in .6c+) lightspeed weapon. The armor is also extremely heavy in order for it to take GLANCING shots survivable. Basically it has the 'if seen it dies' FCS. That means if it goes above the horizon then it dies, end of story.
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:iconvala553:
vala553 Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2013
Only if you can TRACK the plane. It doesn't matter what speed if the turret's not up to snuff.
Also if you can detect it in the first place. And if you're in LOS of said plane. Stealth bombers and nape-of-the-earth flying respectively come to mind.
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:iconmisterartmaster101:
MisterArtMaster101 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2013
Actually the tracking and turret motive systems in Slammers' verse is extremely efficient, with tracking time within nano-seconds and the sensors on those things can detect SPARK PLUGS from miles away, so you're instantly spotted if you even use anything with electronics. Even then the only other way (Buzzbombs) requires you to get within dozens of meters from the panzer or car and hope to god that you are on target and the tribarrel is distracted and they used all the blast-packs.
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:iconvala553:
vala553 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2013
Tracking and detection, I can believe. But turret motive? I have a hard time seeing a tank turret designed to whip at such speeds as to track low flying fast movers(and even if it could work, it'd snap the crew's necks.)
The minigun, maybe, but that you can defend against.

Also, if tracking is that good, are spy sats even possible? If sparkplugs can be spotted in jungles, the noisy environments that they are, how does a heat emitting sat hide itself on a static, devoid background?(And it would have heat, from electronics and power sources. What's it going to do with it?)
And it would only take one 20cm powergun to take down one, not the regiment. And the Slammers aren't the only ones with "modern" armored vehicles...
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:iconmisterartmaster101:
MisterArtMaster101 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2013
Actually, compared to OUR turret motive systems, Slammers' turret motive tech is far superior. A Tribarrel, the one expected to be firing at ungodly amounts of fire in shells, missiles, and infantry.

With the sats, its easy to stealth them. At the core of it its probably Styrofoam with RAM paint onto it to simply start off with. Most units couldn't afford the equipment to detect and destroy these things and the Slammers are the only one of the few (which is probably measured in a dozen or so) units who can.
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(1 Reply)
:iconunusualguy1:
unusualguy1 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2012
I would make bacon with this thing.
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:iconsagittarius-a-star:
Sagittarius-A-star Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Pew!! Pew!! Cool hover-tanks, bro. I'd love to drive one of those tanks, but I have to sit on top because I want to hit the enemy with my sword... :D I have a question- what is matte painting? I keep hearing the term used for landscape paintings, but I don't know exactly what is the difference between "matte painting" and ordinary digital painting.

I like how you painted the plasma shots. A real plasma gun would probably fire a stream of plasma at hypersonic speeds down a channel of laser-heated partially ionized air, appearing as a very bright streak across the battlefield. I would not want to be standing near one of these tanks when it fired- I wouldn't be surprised if bystanders were crisped like critters by the heat from a plasma bolt streaking past. The bright glowing plasma might blind you, as well. I notice the ground near the tank gun is brightly illuminated by the glow from the plasma bolt...
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Matte painting is where you use photos to introduce texture and realism to your painting, but unlike "photo manipulation" the goal is to have a seamless transition between what is photo and what is paint, a unified appearance. It's most commonly used in film for backgrounds, where a matte painting can mix photos with advanced painting skills to create backgrounds for live action that look convincingly real.
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:iconrogue284:
Rogue284 Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2012
Love Hammer's Slammers. I have three volumes.
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Nice.
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:iconghostbirdofprey:
GhostBirdofPrey Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012
Now that's what a hovertank should look like.
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:icongeographu:
geographu Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
great job! looks awesome!
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Apr 3, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
:D
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:iconbenjireturns:
benjireturns Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2012
Hammer's Slammers is one of my favorite book series and I was happily surprised to see this! These are great, and fit how I imagined them in my head, totally badass. Great work!
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Yeah, I enjoyed giving them a more modern/futuristic look, less retro :D
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:iconphilpete13:
philpete13 Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2012
Ok, can't believe I haven't commented on this one yet. Huge Hammer's Slammers fan (gotta build a model of one of the blowers sometime).

Love the look.
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Not into the Slammers universe myself, but I did really enjoy working on this one.
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:icontemplar127:
templar127 Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2012
Future warfare never looked this good!
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
:D
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:iconjlblacksmith:
JLBlacksmith Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2012
Awesome, I just love the "point at the enemy"
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
:D
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:iconprince-arcane:
Prince-Arcane Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Go in there and Get me Back that Burger!!!!!
Soldiers: SIR!! YES SIR!!

I've always wanted to try Matte Painting o.o... wonderful work man!
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:iconabellius:
abellius Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2011
Excellent work!
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks.
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:iconchaos-sandwhich:
chaos-sandwhich Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
love the writing on the main gun barrel
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
:D
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:iconwidunder:
Widunder Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2011  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Love the landscape. Creates a feeling of the scale of the battle.
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:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks, I enjoyed putting it together.
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:iconalucardbellsing:
Alucardbellsing Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011
lol i almost missed it but i love how you named the tank i think it awsome.
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:iconalucardbellsing:
Alucardbellsing Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2011
this has to be the sweetist art i have seen and i love how the background looks thi is a great art.
Reply
:iconshimmering-sword:
Shimmering-Sword Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks.
Reply
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