Janek Kos is a hero of the Polania Republic. A crack shot and patriot turned cyborg, he is Anna's brother and the son of Piotr Kos, appearing as an NPC and controllable unit in all three current campaigns.
Janek is a fairly average man for his age, but interestingly does not have red hair like his father or sister. This is possibly a trait he inherited from his mother (if she indeed was brunette), the sister of Lech Kos. He wore a dark grey shirt with red lining and cuffs with a white shirt underneath, as well as dark pants and boots.
In St. Petersburg, he discarded his jacket for his white shirt, rolled up at the sleeves, and carriers a bolt action rifle as powerful as Anna's although without a scope. He also had a scar on his face and noticeable stubble.
In his later cyborg form, Janek is unrecognizable in every way. His suit is a heavily-modified SHM-60 "Groza" exosuit with all sorts of experimental technology haphazardly bolted on. On his left arm is a huge five-pronged claw for grabbing objects as well as a lightning launcher. On his right arm is a massive energy cannon the size of a man on its own. What little skin of his that shows, mainly on his head, is largely obscured by a breathing apparatus and the rest is horribly marred by burns.
Janek is a fairly strong anti-infantry and dueler unit, especially after leveling up at which point his lightning ability and rocket launcher can each insta-kill a whole squad in one shot. His cannon is deadly against infantry and light mechs alike. Thus he deals well with small groups of lighter units and lends a lot of firepower to one's own infantry force. However, his armor is fairly light and he is not the fastest, and thus can be quickly overwhelmed.
- Great damage against lighter units
- Good against small groups
- Light armor grants him some protection
- Abilities one-shot infantry squads later on
- Rocket is very powerful against mech units and infantry
- Light armor and low health
- Vulnerable to larger groups and heavier armor
- Abilities have fairly long cooldowns
Janek was born to Piotr and Liliana Kos while his father worked at The Factory. In 1905, when Janek was a young boy, Rusviet attacked and attempted to seize the city for themselves, but were repulsed. Unfortunately, Janek's mother was killed in the fighting, so Piotr took them to start a new life in the Polania Republic. He grew up with a strong patriotic streak, but was very tender and protective of his sister.
One day, when Anna was still a little girl, she got in a snowball fight with a bunch of the village boys. They pinned her down with relentless snowballs until Janek arrived with an armful of his own, sending the boys packing. Anna then begged Janek to learn how to shoot a rifle, which he eventually agreed to do. Together they tracked down a deer, but as Anna was still a beginner he had her hide in a bush with the rifle while he chased the deer to her. Finally, she succeeded in the killing the buck. While showing her how to harvest the meat, a brown bear attacked the siblings. They were saved by a pair of Polanian soldiers with PZM-7 Smialy mech units, and Janek guided the soldiers to the village.
Back home, he met his uncle Lech, a military officer who was in the area looking for recruits to fight invaders from the Rusviet Tsardom. Piotr protested strongly, but the idea of adventure, his pride, and a desire to operate mechs drove Janek to agree to enlist. Anna also tried to get him to stay, even begging to come along, but he refused. He promised he would always be there for her before he left.
The Great War
Although the Great War was supposed to be over by Christmas, it dragged for half a decade and saw untold destruction and death. Janek survived much of the fighting and became a hardened soldier, his skill with a rifle serving him well. He fought in Książ Castle near Polania's eastern border, defending it against the Saxony Empire.
During the 1920 peace summit in St. Petersburg, Janek sat on the wall top of a nearby fort to spy on the proceedings with a spyglass. He was ambushed by the Rusviet head of security Olga Morozova, who attacked him with her sword but the two called it a draw. She pointed out that he could have been a sniper, but Janek argued not if he did not have a rifle. The peace talks were then interrupted by revolutionaries who attacked the palace, forcing Janek and Olga to fight their way through to the barracks where all the guards had been poisoned. Joined by Olga's tiger Changa, they made it to the palace and went into the burning building to find the Tsar. Unknown to Janek, however, just outside, the duplicitous Colonel Zubov used his cannons to weaken the building's stability and it collapsed onto Janek.
Rebirth as "Victor"
Amazingly, Olga managed to find Janek and pull him out, but he was horrifically injured and had to be put into an advanced exosuit with life support to keep him alive. Because of his disfigured face, she was able to swap his identity with that of a Rusviet soldier named Victor Popov. In the process, he was listed as killed in action, the news of which devastated his sister back home.
Waking up in a remote Rusviet testing facility, completely confused and horrified at his condition, Janek broke loose and rampaged around the base trying to escape. His suit gave him increased durability and firepower once he figured out how to move, but the pain was excruciating and he desperately wanted out of it. He was eventually recaptured but Olga managed to speak to him about Fenris, a shadowy organization that controlled all the nations and started wars, orchestrating the attack that left him maimed. Once she confirmed that Zubov was a part of this group, she managed to convince Janek to infiltrate the organization by gaining Zubov's trust.
His first mission under Zubov was to help capture a scientist named Heinrich Steinmetz at a Saxony Empire missile launch facility, and although the target was not there he eliminated all forces in the area, obtained valuable data, and covered his and Zubov's tracks. Janek barely restrained himself from murdering Zubov when the latter ordered a tavern burned down with everyone inside, fantasizing throwing the Colonel onto a bonfire. They followed the trail to the city of Kolno back in Polania, which was quickly blockaded.
However, Lech, Anna, and the Polanian resistance had broken through to deliver supplies and weapons to the people, resulting in a mass uprising and widespread chaos which saw Zubov's forces in the city completely routed and Zubov himself nearly captured. Janek helped him escape, and then confronted Anna with the fact he was still alive and how he came to be the way he now was. After explaining everything, he left to continue his mission to infiltrate Fenris despite his growing urge to kill Zubov for his massacring of civilians and, as he later found out, for killing his father.
Shortly after, they finally caught up to Steinmetz hiding in Książ Castle. Janek, familiar with the terrain, laid waste to a nearby military place and captured chokepoints. Although Steinmetz almost escaped via a secret tunnel, he was quickly captured. Rather than reveal important information and give up any technology, the scientist blew himself up, prompting Janek to shield Zubov from the blast with his mechanical body.
Assault on Tesla's City and the Destruction of Icarus
Even with Steinmetz dead, Zubov revealed to Janek that he still possessed his father's mechanical arm, and, most importantly, its Factory Transponder, which they fitted to his exosuit. Janek and Zubov set about laying siege to Tesla's city of the future, with Janek able to bypass and disable the city's Tesla Coil defense array. Even then, their force had to fight through hordes of hyper-advanced mechs, exosuits, and many armed civilians loyal to Tesla who come to fight back. To make matters more difficult, they could be deployed anywhere in the city via the city's tunnels and elevator system.
Against the odds, Janek and Zubov eventually broke through the gate in the latter's goal to help Fenris. Upon entering, the Polanian Army led by Anna arrived shortly after to combat the Rusviet armed forces still left in the wake of the assault on Tesla's gate. Finally they found Tesla in his house and Zubov ordered him to be taken to Rusviet. However, Janek had a different plan: after confirming that Tesla could remove him from the suit without killing him, Janek finally attempted to kill Zubov. He was shut down by Zubov with a control device mere moments before Gunter von Duisberg arrived. At that moment, however, the Icarus Protocol activated: a massive machine that would explode and melt any metal within 20 kilometers away. Zubov escaped in the chaos, dropping his controller allowing Anna to reactivate Janek. Together with Anna, Gunter, Michael Sikorski, Olga Morozova, and Freida Reute, the heroes had their new goal: stop Tesla's ultimate creation as it charged up and prepared to fire.
Initially, the group could not pierce its hull unless it was charging, and after doing some damage friendly troops from Gunter's Saxony rebels, the Polanian Army, and formerly Zubov-led Rusviet fighters entered the arena to help hold off Icarus's escort mechs. Luckily, the group was successful in taking down the monstrous creation.
Now the alliance of the three armies and their heroes must dig in and prepare to take the fight to Fenris themselves. Understanding that he is more useful in his suit than without it, Janek postponed Tesla removing him from it.
As an infantryman, Janek carries a bolt-action rifle similar in power and range to that of Anna's, albeit without a scope.
As a cyborg, his main weapon is an energy cannon that does heavy damage to infantry and lighter armored units but fires fairly slowly. His secondary weapon fires a blast of high-voltage electricity that arcs between grouped enemy units, and his ultimate is a rocket that does great damage in a wide AOE.
- Chain lightning: Fires an arc of electricity that jumps between close units.
- Rupture: Fires a rocket launcher at a specified target, dealing heavy blast damage
- Static discharge: Enemies take damage while attacking Janek in melee
Gallery of Young Janek
Gallery of Cyborg Janek
- Janek does not exist in the Scythe lore, instead it is Anna's grandfather who teaches her to hunt and shoot.
- Janek is hinted at having an interest in Olga based on how her sizes her up.
- His pet name for his little sister is "butterfly."
- He seems to exhibit symptoms of severe PTSD from his experiences, including vivid hallucinations of violence.
- Janek means "Yahweh/God is gracious"
- Janek, being a cyborg, is technically an exosuit, making him both infantry and mechanical and thus can be healed/repaired by medics or engineers like other exosuit infantry.
- His name, as well as his skills as a sharpshooter, might be a reference to "Jan Kos" from a popular series in Poland: "Czterej pancerni i pies" (Four tank-men and a dog) which follows the adventures of a Polish T-34 tank crew in the second World War.
- Janek’s status of sustaining severe injuries, becoming a cyborg, and to a small degree his cyborg appearance maybe reference Darth Vader from Star Wars, though not in their morality; Janek for the most part remains a protagonist while Vader fulfilled his role as a villainous adversary. However, they both infiltrate the confidence of the main villain of their storylines, betray their leader, and seek redemption in the process.
|World of 1920+
Federal Union of Usonia
United States of Aztlan
Dominion of Laurentia
|Polanian Characters||Saxon Characters||Rusviet Characters|
|Gunter von Duisburg
Nacht and Tag
Prince Wilhelm of Saxony
Kaiser Friedrich of Saxony
Lev Alekseevich Zubov