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This article is about the space fighter variant. For the ground support variant, see Type-26 Banshee.
The Elsedda-pattern Strike Fighter, formally known to humanity as the Type-27 Exoatmospheric Multirole Fighter, informally known as the Space Banshee, the Banshee Fighter, and the Banshee Interceptor, is the Covenant standard space interceptor support craft of the defunct Covenant fleet. It is a vacuum-sealed variant of the Is'belox-pattern Banshee that is designed exclusively for exoatmospheric operations, though it is capable of operating in-atmosphere.
The Type-27 XMF is similar in appearance and design to the Type-26 Banshee ground support aircraft, although it boasts several unique features. The Type-27 XMF's canards are swept forward, with the impulse engine placement making the craft more maneuverable in zero-G space. The craft sports two heavy plasma cannons, which are elongated in comparison with those of the Type-26's standard model, providing greatly increased range and firepower. A fuel rod cannon is mounted at the front of the fuselage. The canopy also includes an integrated antenna for communications. The craft features an extended tail stabilizer, which helps dampen turbulence during transitions in and out of atmosphere while docking. Unlike the standard Banshee model, the Type-27 XMF sports an enclosed vacuum-sealed cockpit. These craft can be mounted on the hangar bay walls of Covenant warships and on the undersides of vessels' hulls. Unfortunately, the Banshee is highly vulnerable to the electromagnetic pulses of human nuclear weapons, where the fighter would be left dead in space with no way to call for help.
Inside the cockpit, the pilot has access to a wide-angle viewscreen for sight. An instrument console comes complete with holographic readout panels that monitor the fighter's various systems, with at least one referencing the impulse engines. On either side of the viewscreen are control grips for piloting the Banshee. The user laid on a cushioned bed, and was held to the fighter via a stability harness that ran across their flanks and hips.
The Type-27 XMF is effective against stationary weapon emplacement and EVA-equipped infantry, as well as in reconnaissance pickets. However, the craft is most effective when used in high-volume deployments. Deployment in great numbers can allow the Type-27 XMF to overwhelm heavier fighters such as the GA-TL1 Longsword interceptor, as well as escort ships, such as cruisers and frigates. Though the Seraph is used as the Covenant's primary fighter in single ship combat, the Type-27 Banshee provides invaluable screens and support, tipping many battles in the Covenant's favor.
The Type-27 Banshee was first observed by the UNSC at some point prior to March 5, 2526, when the SPARTAN-IIs captured five of the fighters from the frigate Radiant Arrow. Before Dr. Catherine Halsey had a chance to properly inspect and document them, these same five fighters would be used by Blue Team during a mission to destroy Covenant munition carriers above Etalan. At the same battle, the Fleet of Inexorable Obedience would deploy more Type-27 Banshees in defense of their logistics fleet.
Numerous Type-27 XMFs assisted the Covenant in attacking the UNSC Epsilon Eridani Fleet and orbital stations over Reach during the invasion, particularly during Operation: UPPER CUT. During this engagement, numerous squadrons of Type-27 XMFs were used in conjunction with many of the Covenant's more powerful Type-31 Seraph to attack the UNSC refit station Anchor 9 and later to defend the corvette Ardent Prayer from UNSC boarders.
During the opening stages of the Battle of Installation 04, as the UNSC Pillar of Autumn was boarded by Covenant forces of the Fleet of Particular Justice, Type-27 XMFs, as well as Type-31 Seraphs were deployed to attack the UNSC cruiser. The ODSTs of Fireteam Raven managed to activate the vessel's M910 Rampart point defense network, inflicting heavy casualties on the attacking Type-27 XMFs and Seraphs.
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