The Phoenix is the primary command vessel for the G-Force Team under command of the International Science Organization (ISO) and for use by the G-Force Team during deployment.
The Phoenix has three Primary Modes: Standby Mode, United Phoenix Mode and Fiery Phoenix Mode. Most of the information on the ship is classified such as Length, Width, Height, Weight and Top Speed but the ship is known to possess TBS Nuclear Missiles, TBX Nuclear Missiles, The Fiery Phoenix Mode as an offensive weapon and a Limited Range EMP Pulse Blast.
The Phoenix acts as the Command Vessel for the G-Force Team and can combine with the other vehicles of the team, the G-1 Summit Plane of Mark, the G-2 Space Mobile of Jason, the G-3 Galacticycle of Princess, the G-4 Space Buggy of Keyop with the Phoenix being the final vehicle with the Call Sign of G-5. The Phoenix is piloted by Tiny.
The Phoenix is stored in the Neptune Research Complex underwater in a specialized hangar. The craft is capable of operating underwater and in normal flight even including the ability to operate in space. The underwater and space operations are handle by on board ship systems in order to protect the crew such as pressure control and gravitational control as needed. The ship has a variety of support systems on board including a fully stocked sick bay and various sensor stations located at different areas of the main cockpit/bridge.
The top of the ship has a “bubble” which is a high tempered glass dome with an elevator that allows the team to leave and enter the ship from the top as well as a lower external rescue hatch for emergency operations. Other support systems include fog lights, a ghost field cloaking device and full spectrum scanners.
The primary weapon of The Phoenix is the Bird Missiles. Located on the top of the ship in a retractable pod are missiles which can be fired through use of a launch button on the bridge. The rate of fire for the missiles are controlled by the gunner and can be launched as a single shot or in volleys up to the entire capacity of missile compliment. A secondary weapon for the ship is a solar-powered energy blaster though not often seen in use. As a plot device, the solar-powered energy blaster use is often attempted on cloudy days. The most powerful weapon of the ship is the Fiery Phoenix Mode described later in this article.
The Standby Mode of the Phoenix is when all of the other team vehicles are not on board. In this mode, the ship is at its weakest and is configured with the wings canted slight down and the nose section of the ship retracted and showing a blunt nosed appearance. Least powerful in this mode, The Phoenix cannot use any of the on board weapons and can do little but fly around with limited maneuverability provided by the twin engines that supply thrust from the rear or that can be directed through two large VTOL (Vertical Take Off and Landing) ports on the underside of the ship. The combined thrust does little more than keep the ship horizontal and in motion until the other vehicles are able to be joined with the Command Ship. In this mode, the ship does not have a vertical tail fin as the G-1 Summit Jet forms the vertical tail fin when docked.
United Phoenix Mode
The United Phoenix Mode requires that all vehicles of the team be joined together in order for The Phoenix to perform at full capabilities. In order to do this, each pilot must maneuver their vehicle close to The Phoenix in order for Tiny to operate the controls to either lift the vehicle in place or, in the case of the G-1 Summit Jet, fly into the rear “hangar.”
Each vehicle has a designated section in which to dock and adds to the balance, ballast, of the main ship. In the United Phoenix Mode, the ship is at its most functional and is capable of great maneuverability and performance.
Located at port and starboard of The Phoenix are pods at the tips of the wings where the G-3 Galacticycle and the G-4 Space Buggy are stored. When in flight, the G-3 and G-4 can maneuver under the ship and be lifted in place by docking arms (G-4) or lowered ramp (G-3). Leading from the pods into the interior of the shift are pathways that Princess and Keyop can quickly access in order to move to the bridge.
The nose section of The Phoenix can retract and is where the G-2 Space Mobile is stored. Hovering or in slow flight, The Phoenix lowers lifting arms which lift the G-2 Space Mobile into place and secure it before the nose section slides into place concealing the Space Mobile. At that time, Jason can move from the Space Mobile into the ship proper and join the rest of the crew.
The rear or tail section of the ship houses the G-1 Summit Jet. During flight, the G-1 Summit Jet will maneuver behind The Phoenix and will dock by retracting the wings of the Summit and sliding into place to form the main vertical tail section of the Phoenix. Mark is then able to join the remainder of the crew through use of an access tunnel to the main bridge.
Fiery Phoenix Mode
By far the most powerful, and most dangerous, mode of The Phoenix is the Fiery Phoenix Mode. This mode of the ship is only considered as a “last ditch effort” due to the stresses placed on the ship and its crew. In the Fiery Phoenix Mode, the ship is nearly indestructible and it is questionable if Spectra has, or will, find a way to counter the ship in this mode or whether they can actually destroy The Fiery Phoenix.
In order to engage the ship in this mode, the outer hull of the ship is heated to extreme temperatures and heat and friction from the outside of the ship causes the ship to “burst into flames” and resembles a giant flaming bird, a Phoenix. At this time, the ship can literally fly through any adversary and destroy it, most commonly flying through the most vulnerable part of the ship. Due to the danger to the crew and the stresses to the ship, as well as the potential danger of flying too close to populated areas, this mode is the least used and is avoided unless no other option remains.
The Phoenix can be seen in the Japanese Anime Science Ninja Team Gatchaman as well as in the English Dubbed Battle of the Planets of the late 70's and the television show, Eagle Riders of the 90's. The original Japanese title is Kagaku Ninjatai Gatchaman translated as Science Ninja Team Gatchaman.