History Main / PrivateMilitaryContractors

28th Nov '17 5:51:02 PM nombretomado
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Note that although this trope description uses the terms "PMC" and "mercenaries" interchangeably, in RealLife the distinction between them is extremely SeriousBusiness. This is because the international treaties that establish TheLawsAndCustomsOfWar explicitly ''forbid'' the usage of mercenaries in warfare. While traditional mercenaries might be tolerated in ''practice,'' legally they are neither lawful combatants, nor non-combatants, and thus aren't eligible for protection and respectful treatment under, for example, the Geneva conventions. When captured, they are treated as a criminal gang at best, and at worst as complete outlaws.

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Note that although this trope description uses the terms "PMC" and "mercenaries" interchangeably, in RealLife the distinction between them is extremely SeriousBusiness. This is because the international treaties that establish TheLawsAndCustomsOfWar UsefulNotes/TheLawsAndCustomsOfWar explicitly ''forbid'' the usage of mercenaries in warfare. While traditional mercenaries might be tolerated in ''practice,'' legally they are neither lawful combatants, nor non-combatants, and thus aren't eligible for protection and respectful treatment under, for example, the Geneva conventions. When captured, they are treated as a criminal gang at best, and at worst as complete outlaws.
18th Nov '17 10:20:17 AM dmcreif
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Added DiffLines:

* ''Series/ThePunisher2017'': Billy Russo, after leaving the Marines, started a military contractor firm called Anvil, and he recruits former soldiers to serve as his operatives and do wetwork for Rawlins.
29th Oct '17 10:50:03 AM nombretomado
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* ''Literature/TheDogsOfWar'' by Frederick Forsyth, later a film starring ChristopherWalken.

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* ''Literature/TheDogsOfWar'' by Frederick Forsyth, later a film starring ChristopherWalken.Creator/ChristopherWalken.
18th Oct '17 11:21:20 AM AHI-3000
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* ''Franchise/MetalGear'':
** The [=PMCs=] are also used as a callback to the original ''VideoGame/MetalGear'', where Big Boss built Outer Heaven as a refuge where disillusioned and disavowed soldiers could go, effectively becoming mercenaries, or a sort-of proto-PMC. His goal of creating a world where soldiers are always needed is essentially fulfilled by the War Economy ([[spoiler:which is probably one of the reasons why he renounces his original beliefs at the end, it's clearly not a good thing]]), and the parent company that owns the five major [=PMCs=] is ''actually named'' "Outer Heaven".

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* ''Franchise/MetalGear'':
Mercenary organizations play a big role in some of the ''Franchise/MetalGear'' games:
** The [=PMCs=] are also used as a callback to the original ''VideoGame/MetalGear'', ''VideoGame/MetalGear1'', where Big Boss built Outer Heaven as a refuge where disillusioned and disavowed soldiers could go, effectively becoming mercenaries, or a sort-of proto-PMC. His goal of creating a world where soldiers are always needed is essentially fulfilled by the War Economy ([[spoiler:which is probably one of the reasons why he renounces his original beliefs at the end, it's clearly not a good thing]]), and the parent company that owns the five major [=PMCs=] is ''actually named'' "Outer Heaven".
15th Oct '17 7:17:18 PM PaulA
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* The ''Literature/FalkenbergsLegions'' books have a ton of mercenaries, ranging from independent military companies (such as the eponymous Mercenary Legion) to planetary armies sold out to pay for their expenses.

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* The ''Literature/FalkenbergsLegions'' ''Literature/FalkenbergsLegion'' books have a ton of mercenaries, ranging from independent military companies (such as the eponymous Mercenary Legion) to planetary armies sold out to pay for their expenses.
15th Oct '17 7:17:04 PM PaulA
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* In the ''Literature/CoDominium'' series, the ''Falkenberg's Legions'' books have a ton of mercenaries, ranging from independent military companies (such as the eponymous Mercenary Legion) to planetary armies sold out to pay for their expenses.

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* In the ''Literature/CoDominium'' series, the ''Falkenberg's Legions'' The ''Literature/FalkenbergsLegions'' books have a ton of mercenaries, ranging from independent military companies (such as the eponymous Mercenary Legion) to planetary armies sold out to pay for their expenses.
29th Sep '17 9:02:04 AM SebastianGray
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*** The Kroot who serve the Tau Empire as auxiliaries secretly do some mercenary work on the side, to ensure that they get [[CannibalismSuperpower plenty of useful genetic traits from their prey.]] There used to be an official Kroot Mercenaries army list, though it hasn't been updated for recent additions and most of its units had to be converted in some way.
*** [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orks]] and [[SpaceElves Eldar]] have bands of [[SpacePirates Freebooters and Corsairs]], respectively, that occasionally hire themselves out to clients - which sometimes include Imperial nobles, or even TabletopGame/{{Inquisitor}}s, who want some plausible deniability. Some [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Dark Eldar]] bands make the same offer, [[FateWorseThanDeath which most of their customers regret later.]]

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*** The Kroot who serve the Tau T'au Empire as auxiliaries secretly do some mercenary work on the side, to ensure that they get [[CannibalismSuperpower plenty of useful genetic traits from their prey.]] There used to be an official Kroot Mercenaries army list, though it hasn't been updated for recent additions and most of its units had to be converted in some way.
*** [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orks]] and [[SpaceElves Eldar]] Aeldari]] have bands of [[SpacePirates Freebooters and Corsairs]], respectively, that occasionally hire themselves out to clients - which sometimes include Imperial nobles, or even TabletopGame/{{Inquisitor}}s, who want some plausible deniability. Some [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Dark Eldar]] Drukhari]] bands make the same offer, [[FateWorseThanDeath which most of their customers regret later.]]]]
*** [[OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame The Squats]] are a highly mercantile species of [[HumanSubspecies Abhuman]] who approach every aspect of life as a business, including warfare. Squat mercenaries are highly sought after renowned for their skill, determination and reliability, especially when fighting against Orks. Early editions of the ''Epic'' scale version of the game represented this by allowing any army, except [[ArchEnemy Orks]] and [[TheLegionsOfHell Chaos]], to include companies of Squad mercenaries in their force.
24th Sep '17 4:47:43 PM Aic
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** Westeros is also filled with independent sellswords and hedge knights who bounce from job to job, most notably Tyrion's lancer Bronn.

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** Westeros is also filled with independent sellswords and hedge knights who bounce from job to job, most notably Tyrion's lancer Bronn. In fact, Bronn is eventually knighted as "Ser Bronn of the Blackwater"! Though this is just a funny coincidence and not an intentional reference to the real-life PMC...
24th Sep '17 9:21:43 AM nombretomado
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* Unsurprisingly, the ''[[BattleTechExpandedUniverse [=BattleTech=]]]'' [[BattleTechExpandedUniverse expanded universe]] dedicates everything from minor side plots to entire trilogies to its own various mercenary outfits. The Gray Death Legion, the Kell Hounds, Wolf's Dragoons and Camacho's Caballeros are all rather prominent examples, while somewhat less well regarded in the fandom the Black Thorns got two entire novels dedicated to them in their time, and numerous smaller units put in occasional appearances at the very least as well.

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* Unsurprisingly, the ''[[BattleTechExpandedUniverse ''[[Franchise/BattleTechExpandedUniverse [=BattleTech=]]]'' [[BattleTechExpandedUniverse [[Franchise/BattleTechExpandedUniverse expanded universe]] dedicates everything from minor side plots to entire trilogies to its own various mercenary outfits. The Gray Death Legion, the Kell Hounds, Wolf's Dragoons and Camacho's Caballeros are all rather prominent examples, while somewhat less well regarded in the fandom the Black Thorns got two entire novels dedicated to them in their time, and numerous smaller units put in occasional appearances at the very least as well.
20th Sep '17 12:47:29 PM BeerBaron
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* ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' takes a rather unsubtle swipe at this trope with the Black''woods'' Company, mercenaries who are undercutting the legitimate Fighters Guild by taking their jobs for cheaper and then cheating on them for profit. They're also not above [[spoiler:using hallucinogens to make the Guild massacre an innocent village.]] The Fighters Guild (and their equivalent in Skyrim, the Companions) are also examples, although played heroically. None of the three field armies: they're all admin organisations for individual mercenaries and small-scale security operations.
** Though the Fighters' Guild has the ''numbers'' to field armies, just not the ability to concentrate them enough to actually form them into an army (whereas the Companions and the Blackwoods Company are regional companies, with at most a few offices and a relatively small operating area -- no more than a country or so -- the Fighters Guild have offices extending across ''most of the continent'').

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* ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** The Fighters Guild, an organization of "[[HiredGuns warriors-for-hire]]" who operate throughout most of Tamriel. The Guild is chartered by Empire of Tamriel to provide [[AdventureGuild training and employment]] to citizens of the martial persuasion. The Guild got it start during the reign of the [[{{Wutai}} Akaviri]] [[RegentForLife Potentate]] Versidue-Shaie, who dissolved and outlawed the private armies of nobles throughout the Empire. Given that the citizens of Tamriel still had a need for protective services beyond what the Imperial Legions could provide and that there was a need to prevent thousands of unemployed soldiers from straying into brigandry, Versidue-Shaie ordered the formation of the Syffim (the [[SnakePeople Tsaesci]] word for "soldier"), the group that would eventually become the Fighters Guild. Fighters Guild Halls can accept contracts from any citizen of the empire, as long as it does not violate any laws or customs. These most often involve [[RatStomp dealing with dangerous wild animals]], [[BountyHunter collecting bounties on criminals]], protection and bodyguard services, and, at the highest levels, dealing with supernatural threats including vampires, necromancers, and Daedra worshipers.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]''
takes a rather unsubtle swipe at this trope with the Black''woods'' Company, an EvilCounterpart to the Fighters Guild. They are a group of mercenaries who are undercutting the legitimate Fighters Guild by taking their jobs contracts for cheaper and then cheating on them for profit. They're They are also much more ruthless in fulfilling said contracts, not above [[spoiler:using hallucinogens to make the Guild massacre an innocent village.]] village]].
**
The Fighters Guild (and their equivalent in Skyrim, the Companions) are also examples, although played heroically. None of the three field armies: they're all admin organisations for individual mercenaries and small-scale security operations.
** Though the Fighters' Guild has the ''numbers'' to field armies, just not the ability to concentrate them enough to actually form them into an army (whereas the
Companions and the Blackwoods Company in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' are a regional companies, with at most a few offices and a relatively small operating area -- no more than a country or so -- variant that operates only within Skyrim. (Due to their presence, the Fighters Guild have offices extending across ''most [[SupermanStaysOutOfGotham stays out of Skyrim]].) The Companions trace their organization back to the original [[BadassArmy 500 Companions]] of [[FounderOfTheKingdom Ysgramor]], who slaughtered Skyrim's native [[OurElvesAreBetter Falmer (Snow Elves)]] and claimed Skyrim for the [[BarbarianHero Atmorans]] (ancestors of the continent'').[[HornyVikings Nords]]). They fulfill many of the duties that the Fighters Guild performs in other territories.
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