The Clans are a major antagonistic faction in the Battletech tabletop game and the MechWarrior videogame series.
The Clans are the descendants of the remnants of the Star League defense forces, led by General Kerensky, who decided to leave Star League's space after witnessing the various great noble houses fighting each other to decide who will be the new ruler of Star League after the defeat of the tyrant Stefan Amaris.
After a civil war between the remnants, Kerensky's son, Nicholas, divided them into 20 clans with warrior and civilian castes.
After almost three centuries, the clans developed a powerful and technologically advanced army and determined to retake control of the former Star League's space at all costs and started a brutal invasion in the Inner Sphere.
An alliance between the weakened great houses managed to Drew the conflict into a standstill.
List of clans
- Blood Spirit: One of the smallest of the Clans, the Blood Spirits were also the most tradition-minded and isolationist, defined by a sense of esprit-de-corps for which they were named. Though producing excellent warriors, the Blood Spirits were weak militarily and survived over the years in part by having nothing worth fighting over. Their bitterness towards the other Clans for abandoning what they saw as Kerensky's vision ensured they had few friends. The Wars of Reaving cost the Blood Spirits heavily, and in 3084 they were destroyed by the remaining Home Clans.
- Burrock: Clan Burrock was heavily associated with the Dark Caste, a link dating back to shortly after the Pentagon Civil War and which they successfully hid from the rest of the Clans for centuries. When the truth about their dealings with the Dark Caste was revealed, the Clan was Absorbed by the Star Adders in 3059. After their attempted resurrection in 3072, the remnants of Clan Burrock were thoroughly destroyed over the next two years.
- Cloud Cobra: The only Clan defined by its incorporation of organized religions, Clan Cloud Cobra's warrior-priests were organized into Cloisters and dedicated themselves to an overarching concept known as "The Way." One of the smaller Clans, they were also the most cunning, save perhaps the Snow Ravens, and placed a heavy emphasis on their aerospace forces.
- Coyote: The Coyote Clan was responsible for the invention of the OmniMech and throughout history was one of the strongest of the Clans, though their opposition to the invasion of the Inner Sphere caused them to be the target of Crusader attacks and their strength and influence diminished. The Coyotes were also known for their mystical beliefs, based on native American religious practices, which bound its warriors together in brotherhood.
- Diamond Shark: Originally known as Clan Sea Fox, and often referred to as the "Merchant Clan," the Diamond Sharks were among the most powerful and progressive of the Clans. The only Clan where the merchant caste's influence exceeds that of the warriors, they were also the only one to allow warriors to voluntarily step down to join another caste, with many choosing to join the merchants as Warrior-Traders. The Clan took part late in the Clan Invasion when they were assigned as a reserve force and participated in the Battle of Tukayyid. After the Jihad, Clan Diamond Shark petitioned the Grand Council successfully to change their name back to Clan Sea Fox. Immediately following the Wars of Reaving, they became a nomadic Clan based in the Inner Sphere.
- Fire Mandrill: In many ways a Clan in name only, the Fire Mandrills divided themselves into groupings known as Kindraa and fought with anyone, especially each other, to resolve any issues. This fractious nature kept the Fire Mandrills from becoming a powerful force in Clan society, including participation in the invasion of the Inner Sphere. As one member put it, "to fight against their equals, the Kindraa of Clan Fire Mandrill are forced to fight among themselves." This fractiousness eventually led to the Mandrills' downfall; by the end of the Wars of Reaving, Clan Fire Mandrill had simply disintegrated.
- Ghost Bear: Among the most powerful of the Clans, the Ghost Bears were defined by their conservative "wait and see" nature and their deep familial relationship with each other. Though they were less quick to adopt new technologies or concepts than other Clans, their approach to life also ensured their survival and growth over the years. Originally of the Crusader mindset, they were one of the four Clans to first invade the Inner Sphere and blazed an invasion corridor which included the Free Rasalhague Republic and the Draconis Combine. During the Wars of Reaving, they fled the Homeworlds and settled into their Dominion in the Inner Sphere.
- Goliath Scorpion: The Goliath Scorpion Clan was obsessed with recovering any and all lost artifacts of the fallen Star League, sending Seekers far and wide to recover them. Such roaming knights-errant were often inspired by the use of Necrosia, a deadly toxin which induced "visions" of where these items could be located. Among the Clans, they were the strictest adherents to zellbrigen and valued strength, speed, and precision in every action. A Trial of Abjuration was declared upon the Clan, and they fled to the Inner Sphere, where they conquered Nueva Castile, renaming it Escorpion Imperio.
- Hell's Horses: Known for their prominent use of combat vehicles in front-line forces, the Hell's Horses lived by the motto that man came before machine and all members were valued as being part of a greater whole, including freebirths. While not the most powerful of Clans, the Hell's Horses were among the most stable and held their own against others. The majority of Clan Hell's Horses were of the Warden mindset while its leadership were ardent Crusaders.
- Ice Hellion: A fierce, quick-handed Clan bordering on reckless, the Ice Hellion Clan often grasped for prizes beyond their reach and could be their own worst enemy. Ice Hellion warriors prized the ability to strike first above other considerations, though members of the civilian caste were more even-paced in their dealings. Denied a chance to participate in the Clan Invasion, they lashed out at the other Clans during The Hellion's Fury. With almost their entire touman destroyed during Operation Ice Storm, what little remained was absorbed into Clan Goliath Scorpion in 3073. Other fragments turned to pirate attacks upon the Ghost Bear Dominion.
- Jade Falcon: Staunch traditionalists and aggressive fighters, the Jade Falcons were central in the creation of the Crusader philosophy and considered Clan Wolf their enemy. Despite their martial "might makes right" mindset the Clan treated their civilian castes well, though with a firm hand, and their mercantile efforts were second only to the Diamond Sharks, leading to an above average standard of living. The Jade Falcon Clan was one of the four original participants in the Inner Sphere invasion and confronted the Federated Commonwealth. Abjured from the Homeworlds, they moved into their Occupation Zones in the Inner Sphere.
- Nova Cat: A Clan marked by their own unique brand of mysticism, the Nova Cats were guided by visions and portents, especially through the use of pyromancy, and even its Khans first consulted with the Oathmaster before undertaking any action which could affect the Clan. Following through on these visions tended to cause conflict with other Clans though, and only through the strength of their warriors was the Nova Cat Clan kept safe over the years. During the Inner Sphere invasion, this Clan was brought in as reinforcements to assist the Smoke Jaguars in their fight against the Draconis Combine. After siding with the Second Star League in 3060, the Nova Cats were formally Abjured from all the Clans. Settling in the Draconis Combine, the Nova Cats were destroyed in 3143 after backing the wrong side of a rebellion.
- Smoke Jaguar: Clan Smoke Jaguar was among the most aggressive and warlike of the Clans, even at the expense of more peaceful endeavors, and were early supporters of the Crusader philosophy. Though all Clans prioritized the warrior caste, the Smoke Jaguars took this approach to another level and were severely repressive of their civilian castes. One of the four original invading Clans, the Smoke Jaguar Khan Leo Showers was given the honor of leading the Clan invasion and his Clan directed their fury against the Draconis Combine. Following the creation of the Second Star League, this Clan was chosen by the Star League for a Trial of Annihilation and was destroyed.
- Snow Raven: Masters of compromise and manipulation, Clan Snow Raven were opportunists of the highest order, possessing an almost un-Clanlike sense of self-preservation and a willingness to sell their services to the highest bidder. The Clan placed a heavy emphasis on aerospace and naval forces, such that for many years they possessed the largest WarShip fleet and produced the finest naval officers bred from dedicated naval bloodlines, though this came at a cost to their ground forces. Forced from the Clan Homeworlds during the Wars of Reaving, they moved to the Inner Sphere, merging with the Outworlds Alliance to become the Raven Alliance.
- Star Adder: A conservative Clan, known for their pragmatism and their strategic (rather than tactical) view towards battle, as well as treating freeborns that proved themselves as equals. Though they failed to secure a place among the invaders of Operation Revival, they made great gains in the homeworlds during that time, and would go on to Absorb Clan Burrock.
- Steel Viper: Clan Steel Viper's early history was marred by the acts of the Not-Named Khan, causing the Steel Vipers to enact a form of isolationism (though not to the same extreme as the Blood Spirits). They also had the toughest training regime of any Clan save the Blood Spirits, graduating fewer but more elite warriors, and were more discriminating against freebirths than other Clans. Straddling the fence between Warden and Crusader, the Clan participated in the Inner Sphere invasion first as a reserve force before being brought in to assist the Jade Falcons. Attempting to dominate the Home Clans, the Steel Vipers instead instigated the Wars of Reaving and were annihilated in 3075.
- Stone Lion: Named from the feline inhabiting the northern mountains of Tokasha, Clan Stone Lion was created from the remaining Homeworld members of Clan Hell's Horses after the Abjuration of their Inner Sphere portion in 3075.
- Wolf: The chosen Clan of Nicholas Kerensky, the Wolves have dominated Clan society since their inception. Less formal and more flexible than others, Clan Wolf emulated its namesake by blending caution with decisiveness to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Clan Wolf also led the Warden effort to oppose the invasion of the Inner Sphere, but were nevertheless forced to participate as one of the four original invaders. Their invasion corridor encompassed territory from the Federated Commonwealth and the Free Rasalhauge Republic. Though destroyed by the Refusal War, after a brief period Clan Wolf was reborn with a decisively Crusader mindset. They later fled to the Inner Sphere during the Wars of Reaving, taking the only copies of the Founders' genetic legacies with them.
- The Clans, more precisely the Wolf Clan, are the antagonists of the short lived Battletech animated series where they are more villainous than their gaming counterpart.