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Thread: The classic battletech topic-

  1. #1
    Chapter Master mughi3's Avatar
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    The classic battletech topic-

    CBT was my fisrt miniature game obsession starting back in the late 1980s when i was quite a bit younger.


    Over the years i have played all sorts of games, Since we have a dedicated group that still regularly plays at our FLGS i am centralizing all related content here.


    One of the many resource i have is the heavy metal pro battletech program that allows you to print out record sheets of stock designs as well as create your own.

    Since i am also a fan of classic universal century gundam i used to toys i owned and did a direct conversion over to classic battletech using the 3d terrain inch rules.


    We ended up doing one of those battles last night.

    On the federation side-
    Gundam GP-01
    .GM custom X2
    .GM cannon X1

    VS

    .Gouf custom
    .gelgoog marine
    .zaku II
    .magella tank

    https://i.imgur.com/05M8ENs.jpg

    The gundam universe mobile suits are incredibly lightly armed and armored by CBT standards. however this made them far more "mobile" than the battletech counterparts for the tonnage.

    This made every actual hit even with something like an UAC 5 dangerous.

    As to be expected it was a brutal exchange with the federation loosing or being forced to withdraw 3 of their lance to the loss of the zaku and some heavy damage to the tank and gouf.

    https://i.imgur.com/zJpPl5g.jpg


    https://i.imgur.com/ByftsuA.jpg
    Games played-DUST 1947, classic battletech, epic 40K, 5th ed 40k, BFG, B5 wars, warmachine, victory at sea, monpoc, castles in the sky, infinity, heavy gear

  2. #2

    Re: The classic battletech topic-

    What I liked about Battletech was that they came up with a really interesting design concept.

    Armor balanced with speed and armament, and also had to contend with heat buildup. If you went with munitions, you got less heat, but had to worry about how much ammunition you had. Also, a penetrating hit cause the ammo to detonate.

    Energy weapons needed no ammo, no risk of explosion if a hit penetrated, but lots more heat buildup.

    It was a neat mechanic.

    Alas, my problem was that in practical terms, there was little gain from having a really tall target. Whether using points or tonnage, lots of tanks seemed tactically superior. I did build a small ComGuard force (the armed wing of Ma Bell in space), but sold it off long ago. I think I kept the rule book, though.
    Want a better way to fight fantasy battles? Try the revised and expanded Conqueror: Fields of Victory!
    Do you like Star Wars but hate the prequels? Ever wonder what could have happened if someone competent wrote them? Look no further.
    A proud player of 2nd edition 40k.
    Check out my bestselling book about the Spanish Civil War.

  3. #3
    Chapter Master mughi3's Avatar
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    Re: The classic battletech topic-

    While it was not he most complex rule or set of rules, (CBT has enough of that already) hieght does matter when it comes to terrain. a level 1 building for example completely hides all ground vehicles, and all forms of infantry. on the other hand mechs being level 2 means they will only gain partial cover because they are so much taller. It also has an effect on aircraft/VTOLs flight elevations and pilot checks that cause loss of elevation/directional controls. given the variety of designs the abstract level system was a required design mechanic to keep the rules standardized much like how infinity uses size silhouettes
    Games played-DUST 1947, classic battletech, epic 40K, 5th ed 40k, BFG, B5 wars, warmachine, victory at sea, monpoc, castles in the sky, infinity, heavy gear

  4. #4

    Re: The classic battletech topic-

    Quote Originally Posted by mughi3 View Post
    While it was not he most complex rule or set of rules, (CBT has enough of that already) hieght does matter when it comes to terrain. a level 1 building for example completely hides all ground vehicles, and all forms of infantry. on the other hand mechs being level 2 means they will only gain partial cover because they are so much taller. It also has an effect on aircraft/VTOLs flight elevations and pilot checks that cause loss of elevation/directional controls. given the variety of designs the abstract level system was a required design mechanic to keep the rules standardized much like how infinity uses size silhouettes
    I guess what I'm saying is that the game never gave a reason for mechs to exist other than giant robots are cool. Within the game universe, a fleet of hovertanks with both more tactically effective, could hold more ground, more survivable, and less expansive to produce.

    The other issue was how terrain impacted shooting. There was one method where it gave you a minus to hit, but if you did, visible parts were more vulnerable, i.e. head shots became more common. One workaround we used was we rolled to hit as normal and if terrain blocked a given location, that is where the shot struck.

    Head (and leg) shots get back to the problem of the mech. A conventional tank has all its armor up front, theoretically facing the enemy. There is no "head" or other vulnerable point on that facing.

    The artwork is cool, the background interesting, but the core concept doesn't work in my sometimes very literal brain. It's kind of like the Japanese monsters flicks where rather than use standoff munitions, jets fly so close that they get swatted like a mosquito. No, That's not how those things work.

    I think Battletech did have two really great strengths vs GW: the setting and the rules quality.

    The artwork of the Five Houses was excellent. I remember the t-shirts and merch back in the day. Very cool, and what I liked from a rules perspective was no special rules to reflect the houses, just different weapons/vehicle choices.

    GW not only had too many factions but also constantly changing rules systems and special rules for them. FASA's solution to selling more figures was to grow the game and also roll the timeline back and forth, not simply reprint the books every four years.
    Want a better way to fight fantasy battles? Try the revised and expanded Conqueror: Fields of Victory!
    Do you like Star Wars but hate the prequels? Ever wonder what could have happened if someone competent wrote them? Look no further.
    A proud player of 2nd edition 40k.
    Check out my bestselling book about the Spanish Civil War.

  5. #5
    Chapter Master mughi3's Avatar
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    Re: The classic battletech topic-

    I guess what I'm saying is that the game never gave a reason for mechs to exist other than giant robots are cool. Within the game universe, a fleet of hovertanks with both more tactically effective, could hold more ground, more survivable, and less expansive to produce.
    I suggest this video-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Vkv...88AVh&index=14


    The short
    multi-role, multi-environment, minimal manpower.(and yes mechs use the rule of cool)

    Yes tanks are cheaper to produce and are effective which is why many of the periphery states rely heavily on them, however they are also manpower heavy. the involvement of training entire tank crews VS a single mechwarrior for the same or better combat platform becomes an issue.


    I think Battletech did have two really great strengths vs GW: the setting and the rules quality.
    Well yes it equals GW in depth of lore. other than a few minor changes the core rules have been effectively the same for over 30 years. the added touch of putting out an entire book of optional rules is also a nice option, without invalidating anything in the player bases collections.
    Games played-DUST 1947, classic battletech, epic 40K, 5th ed 40k, BFG, B5 wars, warmachine, victory at sea, monpoc, castles in the sky, infinity, heavy gear

  6. #6

    Re: The classic battletech topic-

    Quote Originally Posted by mughi3 View Post
    I suggest this video-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Vkv...88AVh&index=14


    The short
    multi-role, multi-environment, minimal manpower.(and yes mechs use the rule of cool)

    Yes tanks are cheaper to produce and are effective which is why many of the periphery states rely heavily on them, however they are also manpower heavy. the involvement of training entire tank crews VS a single mechwarrior for the same or better combat platform becomes an issue.
    What's the abbreviation? TL;DW

    Look, I get the core conceit behind the thing, my point is that the battlefield performance simply isn't there. I also disagree that its harder to train conscript tank crews than elite mech pilots.

    I feel the mechs should have been more of a dominating force, effectively invulnerable to conventional munitions. While their damage system was...interesting, the concept wasn't realistic. Armor either holds or fails, but it doesn't erode in a predictable fashion. As one of my friends pointed out, using the system, you could disable the frontal armor of an M-1 Abrams simply by firing 100 machineguns at it.

    That always got under my skin.

    Well yes it equals GW in depth of lore. other than a few minor changes the core rules have been effectively the same for over 30 years. the added touch of putting out an entire book of optional rules is also a nice option, without invalidating anything in the player bases collections.
    Yes, and despite the fact that I can't get into it, I do have a fondness for the game and even built an army so I could play along with my friends who were really into it.

    The storylines are far more interesting than any of GW's stuff largely because the Battletech universe has actual, relatable people, not cartoonish buffoon orks fighting cartoonish bellowing Chaos Marines with caricatures of the Spanish Inquisition running around.

    GW built a fun gaming environment, but Battletech had an actual setting.
    Want a better way to fight fantasy battles? Try the revised and expanded Conqueror: Fields of Victory!
    Do you like Star Wars but hate the prequels? Ever wonder what could have happened if someone competent wrote them? Look no further.
    A proud player of 2nd edition 40k.
    Check out my bestselling book about the Spanish Civil War.

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