The Kunai Fighter was developed after the First Interstellar War as a sturdy and reliable fighter craft designed to be used in various locations and roles except for being used in the atmosphere due to the PITGED’s inability to function properly in gravity. While the Federation never had any use of fighters during the First Interstellar War, the Federation knew that it needed fast, small, agile craft in situations where a larger vessel was not a viable option or was unwise to use.
The Kunai (“dagger” in the old Japanese language) measures 8 meters in length and houses a single pilot in the cockpit, located just aft of the center of the craft. 2 PITGED drives are mounted with one on each side of the fighter and supply the craft with power for thrust through the three engines nozzles located in the aft section of the craft. The PITGET drives also power the nano-laminate armor of the Kunai. However, while the armor is not as thick as ship armor, it does increase the survivability of the pilot in a dogfight. The Kunai is equipped with 2 Gatling guns located between the PITGED drives and the fuselage on either side of the cockpit and can fire several rounds a second. The Kunai has room for up to 200 rounds total. The fighter also has two missile launch bays under the fuselage with two missiles per bay. When a Kunai runs out of ammo, the pilot must return to the ship it launched from (unless the vessel is destroyed) and rearm before it can return to combat. The Kunai’s top speed is between 7 to 8 G’s, or 70 to 80 meters per second squared. The Kunai is equipped with an inertia dampener to reduce the effects of the acceleration. The fighter is not equipped with artificial gravity or a Fold Drive.
The popularity of these fighters at space flight shows has prompted a planetary model of the fighter to be deployed. These required the removal of the PITGED drives in exchange for wings, the thrusters were replaced with three electric jet engines, and installing air intakes at the front of the fuselage to feed air to the jet engines. The engines are powered by a single fighter-grade graviton reactor allowing the craft continuous flight time for several hours. Additional air control and stability wings are mounted on the tail of the craft that was also installed. These aircraft were not designed for high altitude operations and are only capable of Mach 2 in an atmosphere. The installation of the air intakes also reduced the amount of ammo down to 100 rounds. The number of missiles were unaffected.
While the Kunai has not seen combat after the First Interstellar War in peace time, drills and flight tests are still held to keep the pilots’ skills sharp in case war ever comes. The Kunai’s chance to prove its metal came with the start of the Second Interstellar War against the fighter craft of the GAIN. While proving successful against the GAIN fighters, they are unable to penetrate the shields of their ships, leaving that to the task of the Federation Navy ships.