Another early sketch of mine, this one was part of the initial First Contact war that had deWulf and Sintillan forces fighting over a deWulf Colony. Given the state of technology, I imagined something akin to Battletech Aerofighters as the kind of combat aircraft that would be in service. A bit bigger, heavier, and without the same kind of fuel/reaction mass concerns by gulping air in and using it to cool a fusion engine (which would then provide propulsion). Admittedly I have VERY little understanding of aerodynamics, so I went with a simplistic “delta dart” kind of airframe. The Rassler in particular was envisioned as an air superiority craft first, with some multi-role functionality as a side benefit.
The Rassler originated in pre-contact air superiority fighters, with earlier versions operating with conventional air-turbines and automatic cannons as their integral weapons. The first major upgrade to the propulsion plant was a liquid fission drive core, first seen during the liberation of Yutani. While far more powerful than a conventional turbine, the radioactive exhaust left much to be desired. True fusion-powered versions would come later during the Binary war, which extended range and gave it proper single-stage-surface-to-orbit capability.