The mediocre success of dedicated-mission ships caused RAM to begin considering a more versatile class of ships. Deciding that the first such ship should be a medium tonnage cruiser, the task of designing the ship fell to a fairly young, but bright and scientifically inclined digital personality - Rammstein.dop.
Rammstein.dop, being somewhat biased in his assessment of the statistical material, decided that a scientific medium cruiser would be a good idea. Following his resentment of troopers ("stupid grunts" and "unintelligent oafs" are phrases that spring to mind), he decided to design the perfect internal security system - based totally on robots and drones.
Further, he decided that a fairly minimal compliment of weaponry on the ship would keep it from the battlefield (thus keeping "his" creation more safe), and would discourage captains of the "easy" solution of just blasting every problem that presented itself.
Lastly, he designed the parasitic Landers of the new ship class, to further extend the already considerable reach of his ship. Stumbling on a new development in R&D, he also incorporated probe drones on his ship, killing the original inventor in a freak accident and altering all records he could find to show that he, Rammstein.dop, had invented the probe drones all along. A bit of ambition never hurt anybody...
After a eight-month period of waiting, the Red Thunder (as he "subtly" had named the new class - a name that was approved of by the Board) eased out of its spacedock orbiting Mars. Although Rammstein.dop couldn't be "on board" the ship for its maiden voyage (he was too complex for the on-ship mainframe computer), he "perceived" it from an accompanying Battler.
Extensive testing showed exceptional performance in atmospheric conditions - quite unusual for such a heavy ship - and an excellent working environment for the crew. It was handed over by RAM-Space to RAM-Security with a little ceremony. Assigning Commander Valeria Konstantin to the ship, she quickly assembled a qualified crew and set about testing out the new class of ship, to see if it could be an effective weapon against RAM's enemies.
Enraged that "his" ship should be used as a weapon, Rammstein.dop tried to kill Valeria Konstantin in another one of his little "freak accidents". He was discovered and subsequently purged as a security risk. His legacy in the form of the Red Thunder still lives on, however.