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Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

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Hyena
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Hyena » Fri Jun 07, 2019 5:39 pm

I'm in as well.
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El Guapo
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:31 pm

Zenn7 will also go.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by LordMortis » Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:49 pm

How's my mech? I like tech.

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gbasden
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by gbasden » Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:55 pm

I would, given that I was for it initially, but as the titular leader I guess I should stick with the company.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Stefan Stirzaker » Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:36 pm

Not sure based upon basically a mutiny.

I think we do a good job or a half assed job. Everyone get back and anyone who didnt "mutiny" will get a bonus or double salary. The others well...their values are their bonus

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zenn7 » Sat Jun 08, 2019 1:08 am

El Guapo wrote:
Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:31 pm
Zenn7 will also go.
I thought you went off to solo Butt's Hold?

Zenn7 will not be going, he is sticking with the company as one of the founders and a commander.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by xwraith » Sun Jun 09, 2019 6:08 pm

I never knew I was such a maverick :)
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insidious insanity, an eldritch manifestation that would make Bill
Gates let out a low whistle of admiration," but it's all those, too.
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El Guapo
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:49 am

Stefan Stirzaker wrote:
Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:36 pm
Not sure based upon basically a mutiny.

I think we do a good job or a half assed job. Everyone get back and anyone who didnt "mutiny" will get a bonus or double salary. The others well...their values are their bonus
How much of the company is 'volunteering' for this at this point? Splitting off a small core of Zenn7-led volunteers seems like a good way to get them all killed. So there's some logic in Stefan's suggestion here, although I do worry that letting borderline mutineers direct company decisions is perhaps not best practice.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Freyland » Mon Jun 10, 2019 12:32 pm

I hadn't interpreted this as a mutiny. I'm happy to stay home if it's causing a problem.
I don't remember where I read this, Cort, maybe it was in the last patch notes, but they said the UAZ really handles the best when... the wheels are actually touching the ground.
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El Guapo
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Mon Jun 10, 2019 12:39 pm

Freyland wrote:
Mon Jun 10, 2019 12:32 pm
I hadn't interpreted this as a mutiny. I'm happy to stay home if it's causing a problem.
NickAragua wrote:
Fri Jun 07, 2019 3:28 pm

Morale among the Steiner-sympathetic mechwarriors and other personnel plummets, almost to the point of mutiny. The captain of the Jumbo all but turns his ship around and our jumpship captain refuses to jump out unless we allow anyone who wants to return planetside.

Before the firearms come out, to resolve this predicament, Cpt. Scrub suggests that we gather the volunteers on the Sparrow (whose captain is Steiner-sympathetic as well) and allow them to reverse course and deliver said volunteers to the planet surface via hot drop before leaving. If they survive, they can always rejoin us later. She volunteers to lead the, uh, volunteers herself.
It's not an active mutiny, but it's definitely "do this or we will mutiny".

Who loves the Steiners so much anyway? Aren't they borderline fascists, even relative to the Battletech universe?

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zarathud » Mon Jun 10, 2019 2:55 pm

Look, I love Steiners as much as the next guy (brutal economic overlords pay well and have sweet backstories) but I like my Awesome getting repaired regularly. The XL Engine is no good if you can't keep it from exploding.
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:40 pm

El Guapo wrote:
Mon Jun 10, 2019 12:39 pm
It's not an active mutiny, but it's definitely "do this or we will mutiny".

Who loves the Steiners so much anyway? Aren't they borderline fascists, even relative to the Battletech universe?
Currently, no, although it depends on who you ask. They're more known for having big, expensive mechs but a basically hereditary officer corps composed of inbred nobility. With Melissa Steiner and Hanse Davion in charge of the Federated Commonwealth, it's more of a benevolent dictatorship at this time.

A short company of mechwarriors (11 in all) and a pair of aero jocks form the core of the "volunteer" force. Normally we'd just tell them to suck eggs, but the situation is somewhat complicated by the jumpship captain refusing to jump out unless we at least and the fact that the Jumbo (whose captain is also being an ass) has most of our mechs (boxed up for transport) and supplies on board.

Scrub's thinking is that she'll at least be able to provide meaningful leadership on the ground and get these guys back in one piece. Not to mention she's pretty keen on XL engines, being pretty happy with the performance of the one on her Warhammer.

After some creative towing of mechs between dropships using two of the volunteer aerospace fighters, the Sparrow burns back towards the planet.

We watch the Kurita dropships on sensors - their three remaining LAMs and two light aerospace fighters stick with the Union, while the four heavy fighters that reinforced from their jumpship reverse course and head back (presumably lacking the fuel to get planetside). The two Triumphs make planet fall within the day - it's a little rough going for them with their damaged thrusters and they wind up having to separate when Hawk sends a harassing force of light fighters to mess with them. The Union goes with the more damaged one, the other one lands on its own.

Hawk's face lights up when Scrub informs him that we've "detached" a company of battlemechs to help out. "Then we just might have a shot at this."

The Volunteer Company's hot drop is uncontested, primarily because the Kurita guys don't really have anything to contest it with. Our supporting aircraft will be a Shilone and a Lucifer, which our techs pre-load with bombs (and with a slightly terrified aero tech riding shotgun on each fighter). The mechs wind up being most of Gamma Lance, with Freyland in the Quickdraw subbing in for Cylus, as well as Beta-Two (Flashman, Archer, Stalker, Orion) and Alpha-Two (Merlin, Griffin, Trebuchet 5J, Ostsol).

The Sparrow's techs pack up a bunch of armor and ammo reloads into boxes, and our mechs are able to carry 44.5 tons worth of supplies through the drop, in boxes in their hands. This breaks down to about 25 tons of armor and ammo reloads for all the weapons we're using. The Volunteers will have to be judicious in our ammo usage until we can engage the Kurita units and get some salvage going.

Once everyone lands and re-assembles (and, in one case, the mech has to be dug out of a swamp) the Volunteers quickly establish a base camp for their techs, then send out patrols to locate the Kurita dropships, Hawk having lost track of them. We don't have to look very far, as the Kurita guys waste no time in moving their units out. A group re-captures an orbital defense facility, easily routing the Lyran garrison there, and capturing the defensive installations. This prevents any of our air traffic moving in and out of the area - not really a big deal since we've only got the two fighters - but it is a good chance to remove a large chunk of Kurita units.

Hawk asks us to get in there and take them out. Gamma-One and Alpha-Two move in immediately, while Beta-Two is dispatched to turn aside a group of Kurita units moving to reinforce the installation.

"Any backup you can give us?" Scrub asks Hawk over the radio.

"Sorry, Captain, no can do." Hawk says. "Those dracs worked the garrison tankers over pretty good. But we did leave 'em a couple of surprises in the base." he continues with a grin. "Not sure if they found and disarmed them all, yet. Once you hit them, we'll activate the turrets they missed, and, like I said, there are probably a few land mines still scattered around. Might be useful."

Beta-Two's action happens first. They wind up spending the whole day playing cat and mouse with a reinforced company of Kurita tanks, and it doesn't go that great - we lose the Orion to multiple headshots and expend a bunch of ordnance, while Kurita hovercraft use the distraction to slip by. They don't spot our base camp (we hope?), but we'll probably be seeing them again. On the plus side, Beta-Two took down a pair of Demolisher tanks, in addition to seven other hovercraft and light tanks. PFC Carl Tuzzi gets credit for both Demolishers, although he had to expend about two tons of LRMs to do it.

We figure out soon enough what those hovercraft were doing - providing targeting data, as Gamma-One and Alpha-Two find themselves under artillery attack just as they start the assault on the defense facility. There are no land mines in sight, but at least Hawk's turrets power up as expected. It's pouring cats and dogs, although, this being Kiessen, you can't really call the percipitation water. Still makes it hard to aim, though. However, it's a lot worse for the Kurita tracked and wheeled units, as they basically can't moves, since the entire battlefield has turned into mud.

Round 1:
Spoiler:
Image
Freyland and Xwraith come in from the south, they will be using their jump jets to pick off isolated tanks inside the base. Scrub and Hyena will use their heavier mechs to pound the enemy units from long range, so they come in from the west for better sight lines.

The Kurita units open fire on the compromised turrets, collapsing one of the buildings. Their LRM Carriers open fire on Scrub's Warhammer at maximum range but don't do so well, the missile hitting everything but the mech. Freyland scores our only hit, blasting one of the LRM Carriers with a Listen-Kill LRM salvo, blowing chunks off the vehicle.

Round 2:
Spoiler:
Image
Those LRM Carriers really got caught out in the open. Xwraith targets the one that Freyland started on, cutting it perfectly in half with the ER laser, while Scrub blows away the other one with PPCs once she gets in range, weathering a minor amount of return fire.

Round 3:
Spoiler:
Image
With the exception of an isolated flamer turret, the suborned turrets have been destroyed, so no more "ablative armor" for us as the Kurita units turn their guns towards our mechs instead.

Xwraith gets a Maxim two-fer, disabling a pair of Maxim hover transports, one with two out of three laser blasts from the Thunderbolt's torso, and one with a few LRMs from the shoulder-mounted LRM rack. LRMs fly back out at us from the base's defenders, but mostly whiff. Freyland takes some minor damage from a nearby MG turret, but armor holds up just fine.

Round 4:
Spoiler:
Image
Scrub and Hyena disable a Manticore after putting four PPC shots (over the last twenty seconds) into it - the last pair cores out the engine and zaps the crew into temporary submission. Freyland jumps east, isolating a Condor hovertank next to some buildings and perforating it with lasers and streak SRMs. It's a little frustrating when a streak launcher doesn't fire when you press the trigger because it didn't lock on, but when it does lock on, you're virtually guaranteed that all the missiles hit - in this case, they plow through the skirt, causing the hovertank to settle in the mud.

Scrub takes some return fire from the Behemoth and a farewell PPC from the Manticore, but we've got it in range now as well, so it's next.

Round 5:
Spoiler:
Image
"About time you guys got here!" Hyena comments.

"Sorry." responds Alpha-Two's lieutenant. "Had to run off some artillery on the way here."

"Heh, that's why they stopped firing." Hyena says with a smirk.

Xwraith continues his roll, zapping a Scimitar with all four lasers. The Thunderbolt heats up, and even the "rain drops" start puffing away as they touch the mech, but the hovertank takes major damage and an armor breach. Hyena distracts the Behemoth, absorbing an AC/10 shot and some LRMs, then him and Scrub pump three PPCs and one AC/10 burst's worth of autocannon rounds into the tank, which does some damage to the motive system, but the monster's armor remains intact.

Between Xwraith and Freyland's efforts, one of the buildings housing an anti-air cannon and some short-range flamer turrets collapses.

Round 6:
Spoiler:
Image
Not much happening here, although the Behemoth takes another two PPC hits, which shorts out its turret rotation mechanism, and it looks like it got stuck in the mud as well.

Round 7:
Spoiler:
Image
Our Merlin jumps in, the mechwarrior's eyes going wide as they establish direct line of sight with a Demolisher's twin AC/20 barrels. The mechwarrior retains the presence of mind to blow away a Scimitar tank and breathes a sigh of relief as the autocannon bursts go right by. Into the right torso of our Trebuchet, which is knocked over on its left side from the impact, the center torso completely exposed. A good amount of Kurita infantry die as they fire their pop guns at the Merlin, which returns fire with a flamer and MG.

Xwraith hops over on top of the Demolisher and begins prying the turret off. Although he's forced to abandon the position, the assault tank begins driving away.

Round 8:
Spoiler:
Image
Freyland jumps north and momentarily drives back the rain as an SRM Carrier's four tons of ammo stores explode.

Our Merlin, Griffin and Trebuchet (along with Hyena) combine fire on an anti-air rocket site to cause the building to collapse.

Round 9:
Spoiler:
Image
Freyland continues dispatching tanks, taking out a Vedette's engine with a laser and streak SRM salvo, keeping it to just two lasers to cool off, while ignoring the minor rattling caused by the impact of undetonated LRMs (fired at point blank range so they didn't have time to arm) from a turret.

Alpha-Two's Ostsol finally reaches optimal laser range of a couple of Vedettes that he's been trading fire with and blasts through the armor of one. The Merlin and Griffin collapse the third of the defensive turrets.

That Behemoth may be disabled, but it's still firing - Hyena takes a beating from the twin AC/10s and has to take a knee.

Round 10:
Spoiler:
Image
Our heavies focus fire on the Behemoth to try and convince the crew to give it up. Freyland jumps the Quickdraw west, cutting out a little bit of the nearby Manticore's armor then cracking open the engine with a pair of SRMs.

Alpha-Two's Griffin disables a Condor hovertank with point-blank laser fire while the Merlin uses its mg and flamer to perforate and fry an infantry platoon scuttling around. The Trebuchet jumps over to the pair of Vedettes as they fire on the Ostsol - the Ostsol's lasers soften up the armor on one, then the Trebuchet's boot goes through and the tank is destroyed.

Hyena struggles the Striker up to its feet, but the Behemoth isn't quite ready to give it up and an AC/10 burst disables the Striker's PPC.

The remaining tanks trundle and zip away along the road to the northeast - by the time we finish securing the area (mostly by flushing out stray infantry and actually disabling the Behemoth), they're gone. No matter, they're just dinky little light tanks and hovercraft. Except for the one Demolisher which somehow manages to sneak away, despite being a hundred-ton tank.

Over the course of the day, we've destroyed twenty eight out of the maximum eighty-eight tanks that the Kurita dropships could have brought, while losing only one mech. To be fair, they also have three LAMs and a pair of aerospace fighters, but the LAMs are basically flying bug mechs, while the aerospace fighters can't hold ground. The fact that the Kurita guys either still have or have brought more artillery is annoying, but not insurmountable.

With the relief this buys Hawk's forces, he's more than happy to send couple of tech teams and recovery vehicles to help us salvage supplies from the wrecked tanks. We take over the wreckage of the orbital defense facility, although we still don't have any place to put our mechs for repairs or maintenance, which slows down repair work considerably, to the point where, when next week rolls around, our mechs are still missing armor (and Hyena's mech is still missing a PPC, as the local techs have a lot of trouble undertaking what (to us) should be a simple task of pulling a PPC off a disabled Manticore tank ("I don't get what's so hard about it, I've watched the techs do it like a hundred times." comments Hyena).

We have a brief memorial service for Pvt. Lilian Mozzafiato. And that Orion isn't going to be any good, either, the head is gone.

----

In the main body of the Overlords, as our dropships continue to burn for the jump point (a mere four days away), Stefan's suggestion gains some traction, especially after we get word from planet side of how the initial battles went. So, let's put it to another vote, before the jumpship spins up the K-F drive:

1) Reverse course and help out the "Volunteers", including issuing a bonus to anyone who didn't go AWOL. Quickly crush the Kurita forces and be on our way. Unless more of them show up via jumpship.
2) Proceed as before. The Volunteers look like they've got things under control (unless the Dracs decide to throw all their forces at the Volunteers, in which case they're in deep doodoo).

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zenn7 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 7:01 pm

1 - reverse course.

We really don't want to have a whole company lost if things don't go so well. Not really wanting to see our merc unit downsized (especially not that way).

Stefan Stirzaker
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Stefan Stirzaker » Mon Jun 10, 2019 7:05 pm

They may be steiner sympathisers but they're our steiner sympathisers.
Option 1

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gbasden
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by gbasden » Mon Jun 10, 2019 7:56 pm

Agreed with Option 1. We should have been all or nothing from the beginning.

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NickAragua
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:13 pm

After some discussion, our dropships turn around and burn hard back for the planet. ETA, four days.

July 8, 3039
The Kurita guys don't show their noses for almost a whole week, as they took quite a drubbing. Unfortunately for us, they've got dedicated tech crews on those dropships of theirs, and their tanks are a lot easier to fix than battlemechs.

We get a call on the radio from Hawk. It seems that the Kurita units have decided to make a push for the local Hyper-Pulse Generator in force. Hawk moves the forces under his command to intercept just outside the city where the station is located, but they are surrounded and defeated in detail, inflicting only minor damage on the attacking force. More likely than not, their goal is to get into the HPG building and put in a call for reinforcements. From the perspective of our forces on the ground, this cannot be allowed to happen.

We move our mechs into the city and form a perimeter around the HPG, intending to deny access. Our aircraft are en route, but we'll need to be real careful about dropping bombs and doing strafing runs, if we hit that HPG, ComStar is going to be real unhappy with us.

The Kurita force is pretty overwhelming, but hopefully we'll be able to make use of our expertise in urban combat to reduce their numerical advantage. There are quite a lot of them, though. Also, Beta-Two and Alpha-Two are way out of position, so Gamma-One will need to hold down the fort against overwhelming odds for quite a while.

At least we have time to gently back our mechs into some reinforce buildings, so hopefully they'll absorb some of the fire coming at us.

Round 1:
Spoiler:
Image
A Kurita Sholagar buzzes Xwraith's camping spot, zapping the Thunderbolt with a laser to the leg. It takes some nasty damage from the return fire, and the nearby LRM turret puts a few LRMs into it as well. Somehow, the aero jock manages to retain control of the aircraft, though.

Round 2:
Spoiler:
Image
The Sholagar that strafed Xwraith flies a little too close to Freyland and Scrub, and takes a pair of PPC shots plus a salvo of listen-kill LRMs all around the nose and wings. The aircraft's avionics system and sensors are hit, blinding it to the salvo of LRMs from the turret still tracking it, and the fighter breaks up in mid-air.

Xwraith blasts the second Sholagar as it strafes him, noting with some amusement as the landing gear falls off the bottom of the craft after a pass by the ER laser. The Thunderbolt takes a few laser hits and SRMs from the aircraft, plus an AC/5 round from rapidly approaching hovercraft, so it's time to get out of the street.

Round 3:
Spoiler:
Image
That second Sholagar comes around again, pinging SRMs off the Thunderbolt's armor and melting more with lasers. Xwraith fires the ER laser, causing the aero jock to jink right into the path of the Thunderbolt's LRM salvo, which goes internal, and then the Sholagar explodes as its on-board SRMs detonate. That's it for the Kurita air support, unless their LAMs want to take to the air.

Round 4:
Spoiler:
Image
The lighter Kurita hovercraft (which is about 90% of what they brought to the fight - we can see a bunch of Vedettes and a very small number of heavier tracks further north) engage us up close.

Xwraith breaches the armor on a Saladin as it zips up and unloads the AC/20 at point blank range, breaking through the Thunderbolt's left arm armor. Well, nothing important there. Freyland's LRMs connect a second later, going through the armor breach and cracking open the hovertank's engine.

Scrub zaps a Harasser as it approaches, a PPC "taking a little off the top", which includes all the weapons and most of the crew.

Round 5:
Spoiler:
Image
Alpha-Two arrives from the north, engaging the attacking Kurita forces from behind. That was totally an intentional pincer move and not because they were just badly out of position! Also, our aircraft arrive. Thanks to Xwraith's work, we now have total air superiority, so they simply come in for their bombing run on tank concentrations. The bombing attacks are pretty successful, taking out six units, including a Goblin tank, plus scattering a couple of infantry squads. Our Shilone takes a hit to the avionics system from anti-aircraft fire, but remains in the air.

Xwraith jumps the Thunderbolt away from a swarm of incoming hovercraft, picking off a loose Packrat from behind a building with the ER laser, though not before the vehicle disgorges a couple of infantry squads.

Hyena notes a Harasser coming in at his position from the northwest and blasts it with the AC/10, disintegrating the light hovercraft.

Round 6:
Spoiler:
Image
A swarm of hovercraft come zipping down the super-wide avenue where Scrub and Hyena are camped out in buildings - a Harasser avoids Scrub's two PPC shots but the pair of medium lasers goes right through the hovercraft - the engine sputters out and it slides along the pavement. A Saladin weaves among the buildings, but Hyena tracks it and unloads the autocannon and lasers, perforating it. Freyland stays out of AC/20 range, continuing to fire the Quickdraw's LRM launcher, this time immobilizing another Saladin.

The hovercraft do take out the LRM turret that's been helping us out with the aircraft, sending it sky high as the ammo goes down and the building disappears in a giant puff.

To the north, Alpha-Two is engaged by the LAMs which make good use of their jump capability to avoid most incoming fire while inflicting minor damage on our force. Our aircraft take some damage from AA fire, with the Lucifer losing a large laser.

Round 7:
Spoiler:
Image
Xwraith continues hopping around between buildings, taking out a Saladin as he goes, whiel Scrub evaporates a Skulker with lasers and SRMs. Hyena lines up a shot on a Scimitar hovertank, immobilizing it, then smirking as the return fire is absorbed by the building where he's camping out. Scrub isn't so lucky, as a Saladin's AC/20 punches a hole in her building and takes a chunk out of the left leg armor.

To the north, the Merlin is engaged by multiple enemy units, taking a head shot from a Harasser's SRM spray before being able to evaporate it with a PPC. Alpha-Two's Griffin and Trebuchet work on the Rhino support tank, immobilizing it to take the LRM-loaded assault tank out of action.

Our Shilone is forced to abort its strafing run as a pack of LRMs hits it in the tailpipe. The aero jock manages to keep control of the aircraft, but the engine sputtering becomes too much and he's forced to pull out. Our Lucifer isn't looking too hot either, so that's about it for our air support.

Round 8:
Spoiler:
Image
Alpha-Two's units continue getting harassed by the LAMs as they engage a group of tanks. A Vedette almost breaches the Merlin's armor. An Ostsol becomes isolated from the rest of Alpha-Two and is surrounded by tanks which start to slowly pick off its armor with lasers and SRMs.

Everything runs away from Scrub so she has to settle for picking off individual infantry with PPCs. Hyena, meanwhile, is having a turkey shoot, from the safety of the building. Then his eyes go wide as a Saladin zips in, firing its autocannon. The Striker turns and fires its autocannon back, the two sets of shells passing by each other. The Saladin is sawed in half, while its AC/20 burst blows through the building and chews up the Striker's right torso. Then the building starts creaking.

"This is Gamma-One-Two. Gonna play possum for a bit." Hyena says.

Round 9:
Spoiler:
Image
Beta-Two's mechs are now in the area, coming from the north, but they still have a bit of time to go before they can actually participate in the fight. Still, the tide is now turning against the Kurita forces, with about a third of them having been destroyed or disabled.

Xwraith continues picking off tanks, disabling a Vedette after breaching its armor.

Freyland moves north to rescue the Ostsol, briefly rotating the Quickdraw to the left to blow away a Saladin with lasers and streak SRMs while avoiding the AC/20 burst.

Alpha-Two's Merlin continues taking a beating, including a left leg armor breach after a few too many Vedette autocannon rounds hit it. The Trebuchet lancemate takes out one of the Vedettes while Beta-Two's newly arrived Flashman wipes out a Scorpion tank with laser fire.

Round 10:
Spoiler:
Image
"This is Moonraker to all Octopus Overlords. We are coming in hot. ETA for hot dropped units, thirty seconds. Launching fighters now, ETA 20 seconds."

Xwraith steps out from the cul-de-sac and gets pinged by autocannon fire, lasers and SRMs, but manages to punch through the armor of a Galleon tank and give the crew some serious laser burns.

After being surprised that a Pegasus took a pair of PPC shots and a bunch of lasers, Scrub continues tracking the recalcitrant hovertank and this time its SRM ammo explodes. No more absorbing multiple PPCs for you.

Freyland continues moving forward to bail the Ostscout out, and turns to fire at a Scorpion tank. The mechwarrior instinctively jerks back as an LRM salvo goes flying by, but it turns out to be Beta-Two's Stalker blowing away the Pegasus coming up behind our Quickdraw. "Thanks for the cover." Freyland mumbles as the Quickdraw's foot crunches the front of the Scorpion.

It appears that the Kurita forces have reached their "Combat Loss Grouping", as their light and medium tanks start dropping like flies.

Round 11:
Spoiler:
Image
With the Stalker taking care of the Ostsol, Freyland turns back and goes hunting a pair of Kurita units that have gone in pursuit.

A lance of mechs drops out of our Union - Cylus in the Grasshopper, Madmarcus in the Wolverine, LordMortis in the Atlas and Isgrimnur in the Hatchetman. They take a little fire from the ground, but nothing serious.

Since the Kurita tanks are lined up in a nice column, our fighters go on a bombing run. It's pretty effective, taking out or crippling a total of five tanks, although they're nimble bastards and we could have gotten more. Beta-Two and Alpha-Two up north blow away another pair of tanks.

Round 12:
Spoiler:
Image
With our Union dropping in and that devastating bombing run, the Kurita force starts breaking up, although their remaining assault tanks are still putting up a stiff fight, with our Archer taking a beating from the Von Luckner as it takes down one of the LAMs and our Lucifer disables a nearby Saracen.

Paingod pulls of a pretty slick mid-air PPC shot on a tank as the Griffin descends, although it's disappointing that the shot doesn't destroy the tank. Zarathud then zaps a nearby Hunter with three PPC shots, achieving the same kind results. "Showoff." Paingod chuckles.

Xwraith continues moving north, zapping a Vedette with the chest-mounted lasers, then hitting a Pegasus with the ER laser. The hovertank breachis the Thunderbolt's leg armor with SRMs, however.

Freyland gets a two-fer, cracking through a Scimitar's armor with lasers and SRMS, then kicking a Saracen into a building.

Round 13:
Spoiler:
Image
This is basically mop up at this point, now that we've got twenty three active mechs on the ground (although El Guapo and Stefan are just landing). The Von Luckner breathes its last as the Merlin and Archer finally take it out (although not without taking heavy damage first). Freyland gets another two-fer, taking out a Scimitar and a Skulker with lasers and kicks.

Xwraith occupies a pair of Vedettes, then LordMortis "sneaks up" behind them and blows one to bits with the Atlas' AC/20. The other one tries to turn around, but is squashed by a Thunderbolt foot.

At this point, we've got overwhelming force in the area and broadcast a general surrender demand. The Kurita forces comply, although a few stragglers manage to get away.

The armor readout on the Quickdraw is starting to look a little bit like a disco party, while the Thunderbolt looks like a pirate with a peg leg. The less said about Hyena's Striker the better, but none of the critical core components got taken out so it should be good to go in the long run.
Last edited by NickAragua on Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Isgrimnur » Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:15 pm

Didn't we just leave this party?

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Freyland » Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:39 pm

The Quickdraw is starting to look a little bit like a
??

I was going with "karaoke-spewing death machine", but inquiring minds want to know.
I don't remember where I read this, Cort, maybe it was in the last patch notes, but they said the UAZ really handles the best when... the wheels are actually touching the ground.
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:30 pm

Freyland wrote:
Tue Jun 11, 2019 5:39 pm
The Quickdraw is starting to look a little bit like a
??

I was going with "karaoke-spewing death machine", but inquiring minds want to know.
Whoops. Wanted to re-write it a bit but got distracted. Updated text on the bottom of the post. Karaoke-spewing death machine is about right in this battle though.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:16 pm

That was a pretty crushing victory. With the Kurita forces having maybe twenty tanks in various states of damage (and two beat-up LAMs) left, we don't even bother unpacking the stuff in the Jumbo, and just deploy patrols and aircraft to try to locate their dropships.

We do, but they figure out we're coming and lift off, ditching our pursuit craft - an aerospace fighter has much better acceleration than a dropship, but a lot less fuel, and they started out a quarter of the way around the planet.

Hawk is happy enough, and tells us he's put in a request to have the three XL engines released to us, as well a putting us on the wait list for an Overlord. He also might not have the cash for contract payment, but he manages to appropriate about 21M to buy up the tank salvage, after we grab a bunch of armor and replacement parts. Even with the wrecks that are only good for spare parts, the garrison now has a decent "hovercraft swarm" defensive force, backed up by a couple of Manticores and a pair of assault tanks. Won't be enough to hold out against any kind of serious attack, though.

"Damn glad you guys came back after all. Not sure we would have been able to hold the place."

"Uh, aren't the Kurita guys just going to come back?" Scrub asks with a raised eyebrow.

"Maybe, maybe not. I've read intel reports indicating that they don't have that much reserve depth." Hawk replies. "I dunno, though. It's weird. We've been ordered to hold our position here. I've asked for clarification and reinforcements, but we have to use uh... civilian channels... since Comstar put up their interdiction. Again." He sighs. "It'll be a few weeks before I get anything back." He offers his hand again. "I'll see you guys around, I'm sure."

This time, Scrub is ready. She's no Sarah Connor, but a couple of years wrangling heavy battlemechs and the necessary exercise have given her a pretty solid grip, too.

We pack it up and burn for orbit. This time, no Kurita forces emerge from any pirate points, and our jumpship fires up the K-F drive without incident.

The Kurita forces counterattack again and retake the planet a month later anyway.

-------------------

"You know what sucks?", Scrub tells Madmarcus as she downs another slug of "coolant fluid", "There wasn't anything I could do about it. Autocannon round just went right through the poor kid's cockpit. She never even had a chance."

The two of them are drinking in the engine room, taking advantage of the still the techs have set up.

"I mean, it'd be one thing if we were getting paid for it, but I just wanted a crack at those XL engines. If I hadn't helped them go down there..." she sighs.

"Don't know what to tell you." Madmarcus responds. "They'd have probably all gotten themselves killed without you." then adds, chuckling "Guess next time you should try to remember that fancy new toys break down all the time. Remember that LBX autocannon that Hyena had on his Striker? Stupid thing would jam all the time." the two mechwarriors chuckle. "Wonder if the FedCom guys ever figured out how to make it stop jamming in the middle of a fight."

"Doubt it." Scrub says, then smirks. "How many Marauders has El Guapo gone through?"

Madmarcus starts counting. "One... two... working on his third, I think. That last one had the streak launchers? It left a streak, all right."

Scrub shakes her head. "I don't know, though. Some of those guys that went down there, you could really see a sense of purpose in their eyes, like they're fighting for something meaningful. I mean, I get it, C-Bills pay the bills, but what's the point of it? Nothing we do ever really makes a difference, and most of us buy the farm eventually."

Madmarcus shrugs. "Difference to who, the great houses? Probably not. But it's not like I'm going to settle down on Tharkad and get a desk job. I'm a mechwarrior, it's what I do. Better to have some agency than get ground to a pulp when some house noble needs to flex his muscles and show how big and powerful he is." Another coolant fluid slug goes down the hatch. "But yeah, it's a rare mechwarrior that gets to retire in peace and quiet."

"A six foot hole in the ground is pretty peaceful." Scrub muses.

"All hands secure for jump. Five... four... " comes the announcement over the intercom.

"Ugh, here we go again..." Scrub grits her teeth.

-------------------

Once we get back to Outreach, we'll have three XL engines available to us. It's a pretty big upgrade, and pretty much any unit will benefit greatly from having one.

Additionally, one of the LAMs that we recovered had some pretty advanced tech: high-efficiency heat sinks (doubles), nine of them (one got blown up). The LAM also mounted some pretty cool rapid fire lasers - much shorter range but very likely to hit the target.

Also, we have the two Gauss rifles we recovered earlier.

Finally, we get a note from the Outreach HPG that will let us place an order for an advanced weapons system available in FedCom space. This means either an Ultra AC/5 or an LB-10X, and several tons of ammo. Alternately, we could load up on Listen-Kill LRMs, since those work pretty well.

Some thoughts, there's a lot of re-fitting work to be done:

Trying to put an XL engine into an Awesome seems kind of pointless - it's already got maximum armor, and the weight savings is only 5.5 tons, not even enough to put another PPC on. We could add a few more heat sinks for continuous triple PPC action, but that'll leave us with an unused ton, and there's not that much that you can do with a spare ton on an Awesome. So, probably not a necessary upgrade here.

The Atlas gains a whopping 9.5 tons, but there's not enough room in the right torso to stuff both an AC/20 and the fusion engine, so that's no good. However, it'll fit a Gauss rifle just fine, and with the Gauss's reduced heat compared to the AC/20, we can easily take off a couple of heat sinks to pack in a comparable ammo load. LordMortis complains that a Gauss Rifle isn't really the same as an AC/20, though.

The techs come up with a way to stuff a Gauss Rifle into the Marauder, replacing the AC/5 with it ("just have to reinforce this section here, here and here, and we'll have to put the ammo bins on back on the other side, and it'll still tilt way the hell to the right even when we recalibrate the gyro") This means we'll also have to turn the engine into an XL.

The Striker worked pretty well with an LB-10X autocannon before said autocannon got destroyed, so I'm thinking we re-visit that upgrade.

The Hatchetman could benefit from an XL engine - we could up the speed to a respectable 5/8/5 and add another half ton of armor so it doesn't get blown up as much. Alternately, we could stick the LB-10X or a UAC/5 in there to replace the AC/10.

A Thunderbolt wouldn't benefit too much from an XL engine, although Xwraith's mech heats up quite a bit and we could make it *almost* heat neutral (not quite, though).

If we stick an XL engine into Archinerd's Dervish, we could upgrade the LRMs from 10s to 15s and add a bunch of heat sinks to keep up with the heat curve. Hopefully the extra reinforcement will keep the torso sides from collapsing with all the extra equipment.

MadMarcus' Wolverine (once we convert it to a 6M first) would support additional heat sinks and armor, same with Paingod's Griffin. Not very critical.

Freyland's Quickdraw really benefits from an XL engine, gaining a whopping 9.5 tons of extra weight to play with. We'd use the savings to mount more heat sinks and up the armor factor quite a bit, turning the Quickdraw from a fast but fragile raider into a bruiser that almost never overheats.

Cylus' Grasshopper doesn't really need it, that mech already runs cool, is maneuverable and has basically maximum armor.

The spare Hunchback could also house a Gauss Rifle without any additional fundamental modifications.

A Wolverine 6R could also house one, if we upgrade it to an XL engine, replacing the AC/5.

Obviously we're not putting an XL engine on anything light. Those damn things are expensive, not to mention irreplaceable at this point.

Not really sure what to do with the medium pulse and the small pulse laser. They're pretty short range, so we could probably mount them on one of our mechs as upgrade, although they're heavier than the standard versions, so we'd have to cut something else out. And we don't really have the means to get more. Alternately, we could probably trade them to the FedCom guys for another sample of genuine FedCom high tech, so we can get a second LBX or UAC.

So, welcoming thoughts on what to do with our high tech loot.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Isgrimnur » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:23 pm

The Hatchetman could benefit from an XL engine - we could up the speed to a respectable 5/8/5 and add another half ton of armor so it doesn't get blown up as much.
I like this option. I'd prefer to cross into solely energy weapons if the opportunity presents itself.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Freyland » Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:51 pm

Freyland's Quickdraw really benefits from an XL engine, gaining a whopping 9.5 tons of extra weight to play with. We'd use the savings to mount more heat sinks and up the armor factor quite a bit, turning the Quickdraw from a fast but fragile raider into a bruiser that almost never overheats.
In addition to my personal, selfish feelings, you did a great job of really making that sound appealing! I suspect an engine in a 5/8 mech is quite large.
I don't remember where I read this, Cort, maybe it was in the last patch notes, but they said the UAZ really handles the best when... the wheels are actually touching the ground.
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by gbasden » Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:49 pm

Freyland wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 5:51 pm
Freyland's Quickdraw really benefits from an XL engine, gaining a whopping 9.5 tons of extra weight to play with. We'd use the savings to mount more heat sinks and up the armor factor quite a bit, turning the Quickdraw from a fast but fragile raider into a bruiser that almost never overheats.
In addition to my personal, selfish feelings, you did a great job of really making that sound appealing! I suspect an engine in a 5/8 mech is quite large.
Upgrading the Quickdraw does sound really appealing, as does the Hatchetman. Anything we can do to reduce the fragility would be a plus. Would modifying the Marauder actually keep it from blowing up as often? I'd hate to put an advanced engine and a gauss into it just to have it implode a few missions later.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zenn7 » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:35 pm

gbasden wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:49 pm
Would modifying the Marauder actually keep it from blowing up as often? I'd hate to put an advanced engine and a gauss into it just to have it implode a few missions later.

It would still have the Guap and his mad skillz piloting it so... :angry-extinguishflame:

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Hyena » Wed Jun 12, 2019 10:04 pm

I'd like the LBX again, if you think my curse won't affect anything...
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zenn7 » Wed Jun 12, 2019 10:34 pm

XL engines:
We have 1 already in Scrub's Warhammer, getting 3 more. Let's keep one for spare parts so we aren't screwed if one gets smacked up in the field maybe?
Sounds like Freyland's Quickdraw is our best bet.
Hatchetman seems like a good one for #2.
Alternates I like are the Wolverine XL w/ replaced AC/5 with Gauss and Guap's Marauder XL w/ replaced AC/5 with Gauss.

Definitely like giving the Stiker the LB10x again.

Put some of those heavy/short range accurate lasers on some of our light, fast mechs maybe? Ones that are likely to get up close and personal anyway. Otherwise, trading for the Listen-Kill missiles seem like the best bet

Shove some of the double heatsinks on our hot mechs (the Awesomes, maybe Xwraith's Thunderbolt are things you specifically called out; I have no where near the expertise to know if there is anything else other than maybe Scrub's Warhammer that might seriously benefit from these). Any chance if we provide one to FedCom, it might help them develop more so we might be able to get more?

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:43 am

Zenn7 wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 10:34 pm
XL engines:
We have 1 already in Scrub's Warhammer, getting 3 more. Let's keep one for spare parts so we aren't screwed if one gets smacked up in the field maybe?
Sounds like Freyland's Quickdraw is our best bet.
Hatchetman seems like a good one for #2.
Alternates I like are the Wolverine XL w/ replaced AC/5 with Gauss and Guap's Marauder XL w/ replaced AC/5 with Gauss.

Definitely like giving the Stiker the LB10x again.

Put some of those heavy/short range accurate lasers on some of our light, fast mechs maybe? Ones that are likely to get up close and personal anyway. Otherwise, trading for the Listen-Kill missiles seem like the best bet

Shove some of the double heatsinks on our hot mechs (the Awesomes, maybe Xwraith's Thunderbolt are things you specifically called out; I have no where near the expertise to know if there is anything else other than maybe Scrub's Warhammer that might seriously benefit from these). Any chance if we provide one to FedCom, it might help them develop more so we might be able to get more?
This makes sense, although I don't see much reason to keep one XL engine on the sidelines. I'd rather be at max capacity in terms of what we can do. In the unlikely event that one of the engines gets damaged beyond repair without the mech also getting destroyed, we can always just hot swap that pilot into a spare mech for the rest of the campaign anyway.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by LordMortis » Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:08 pm

LordMortis complains that a Gauss Rifle isn't really the same as an AC/20, though.
That sounds like exactly something LordMortis would do, only his compatriots would say whined instead of complained.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by xwraith » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:51 pm

Double heat sinks sound good for my T-Bolt -- what would the swap look like?
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by gbasden » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:14 pm

I'd dig on some double heat sinks for the Awesome as well. Being able to use the 3rd PPC more frequently would be excellent.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Zenn7 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:49 pm

LordMortis wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:08 pm
LordMortis complains that a Gauss Rifle isn't really the same as an AC/20, though.
That sounds like exactly something LordMortis would do, only his compatriots would say whined instead of complained.
Your C.O. knows you well enough he didn't bother to suggest that "upgrade". ;)

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:57 pm

[see near bottom of post for double heat sink discussion - bottom line, it's gonna be rough]

On the way back to Outreach, our techs initially occupy themselves by fixing the mechs damaged in the latest surface battles. We also start putting out calls to the manufacturers who make the XL engines - these things don't grow on trees and take a while to make, so they may as well get an early start manufacturing them.

As it turns out, the pulse lasers aren't really a good replacement for their standard counterpart: for example, the medium pulse laser weighs two tons, while the standard medium laser weighs only one. So if we shove one into a mech, that's an extra ton that has to come out of something else, and, as it also generates extra heat, that means we'd need more heat sinks. If our mechwarriors were crappy shots, it'd be worth it. But they're not.

So, we arrange to exchange the pulse lasers for listen-kill ammo for our missile launchers. That's both LRMs and SRMs (but not the one remaining Streak launcher). As advertised, they're basically just slightly better homing missiles. Freyland and the guys that volunteered to help Hawk's people out are pretty happy with their performance. Production for these isn't quite in full swing yet, so we'll be getting them in fits and starts as they become available, but we'll snap up as much as we can.

A few of the jumpship and dropship members (including the jumpship and the Jumbo captain) decide to retire (or "retire"), so we wind up having to spend money to find additional spacecraft crew.

Zenn7's Awesome appears to have developed a fault with the gyro, so we'll have to replace that, or at least parts of it. Moley's Thunderbolt must have taken a few many rounds to the head, as our techs report that it's becoming increasingly difficult to maintain as well.

The news on the war front is confusing. The initial wave of FedCom attacks appears to have been successful, but then Kurita reinforcements arrived and the offensive appears to have bogged down. Also, we find an amusing tidbit about a Davion battalion commander running off from a battle, absconding with the mechs under his command, as well as a jumpship and several dropships. Gonna be a while before we get that Overlord, I guess.

We get to Outreach on September 29, and begin our refits immediately, making good use of the Wolf's Dragoons factory facilities.

First up, the Quickdraw. A 300XL engine allows us to bring the heat sink count up to 18 and add 3.5 tons of armor. The techs give out a couple of little bonus enhancements two, sticking a pair of heat sinks in each leg so the Quickdraw can finally jump into a lake to cool off. One more heat sink is added to the head, helping keep the mechwarrior nice and frosty. The cost of the refit is 4.8M C-Bills, which is almost the cost of buying an entirely new Quickdraw, and the techs estimate it'll take 15,400 minutes (a little over a month of full time work by an elite tech team). Once the XL engine arrives from nearby Epsilon Eridani in 18 days. "Field testing" shows that the mech's torso locations can now absorb two PPC shots before the armor starts degrading.

Next, the Hatchetman. A 225XL engine boosts the mech's top speed to a respectable 86.4km/h. We actually drop one of the heat sinks, as Isgrimnur assures us that he can jump to maximum range and alpha strike, and the heat gauge will still remain in the yellow. The rest of the weight is used to pack in 1.5 tons of extra armor, to improve armor levels across the board, including increasing the head armor to the max allowed by the structural rating. Just so the head doesn't get blown away by a stray PPC shot. While they're ripping apart the internals, the jump jets get moved out of the legs and into the upper torso section, so Isgrimnur can also enjoy a nice, relaxing dip in the water without having to worry about jump jet nozzles getting clogged up. All this moving around of components means that the mech winds up needing a new gyro, but we're swimming in C-Bills, so the attitude at this point is "screw it, let's get it done". Upgrade cost is 3.6M C-Bills (which is more than the cost of a brand new Hatchetman), taking 23,000 minutes - a month and a half.

Third, the Marauder. The bulk of the work involves taking the autocannon assembly apart and reinforcing the shoulder to account for the much greater recoil generated by the Gauss rifle. As a bonus (since the gauss rifle ammo does not explode), the techs move the ammo bins to their original location. The mech still tilts way the hell to the right, though. The XL engine allows us to mount the Gauss and two tons of ammo (sixteen shots), plus an extra heat sink. We also allocate another half-ton of armor to bring the left and right torso sections to a point where they can absorb two PPC shots before the armor effectiveness drops. Refit cost is 6M C-Bills exactly (mostly because we already have the Gauss rifle, but still almost the price of a brand new Marauder), and it takes 14,500 minutes - about a month. We also have to ship the XL engine in from Carver V over the course of almost three weeks.

Fourth, the Striker. This is a straightforward upgrade we've carried out before. The main difference is that the Davion guys have improved their LB-10X construction techniques (thanks partially to our feedback on their prototype), and it a) no longer jams randomly and b) weighs a ton less. So we can either cram more ammo in or put on another ton of armor. Thirty rounds is usually a little much for a single battle, so we opt for extra armor, the extra plating distributed mostly around the arms and legs, but adding the maximum possible to the torso. Upgrade cost is only ~1M C-Bills and takes 3200 minutes, chump change compared to the XL projects.

We also refit the second Atlas we own. While the standard refit is to simply rotate the rear-facing medium lasers forward, one of our techs comes up with the idea of removing most of the short range weapons (except the AC/20) and putting a pair of PPCs and a shit-ton of heat sinks on it. Apparently, this variant was popularized by a house Kurita warlord back in the third succession war, during one of the many invasions of Galtor III. It's a radical departure from the standard Atlas principle of up-close and personal, but I think we might go for it anyway. It only takes ~3700 minutes and costs nothing since we already have all the parts.

One of the Crusaders we salvaged from the battlefield gets refitted to a 3L variant (jump jets), plus a reduced MG ammo load, like our other one. The hatchet-less Hatchetman will be getting refitted to a proper Hatchetman variant. Isgrimnur supervises the refit, suggesting that a laser move from the right arm to the left arm - apparently an elite Davion mech unit had that customization done and the AFFS was willing to share the specs on how to do it.

We also take our collection of Phoenix Hawks and refit them to a mixture of 1Ds (no machine guns, extra heat sinks) and 1Os ("Overlords" variant, half-ton machine gun ammo) for a good mixture of anti-mech and anti-infantry capability. A Rifleman 3N gets converted to a 3C, the two Marauders get converted to the "Overlord" variants with the AC/5 ammo less exposed.

The collection of Thunderbolts (five in total, in addition to Xwraith's and Moley's) gets refits as well. One is refitted into a spare 5SE, one is refitted into a 5SS (with a PPC instead of large laser and flamer instead of the machine gun assembly, as well as more heat sinks), and one gets the custom treatment - we remove half a ton of machine gun ammo and add an extra machine gun. With three MGs in the left arm, this thing will mow down infantry with great efficiency, and can still fire those MGs continuously for almost three minutes. That's "continuously", as in "holding down the trigger without letting go". The last one gets turned into a TDR-5D, which trades in the energy armament for an AC/20. It's not really a widely-known variant, but the manufacturer has the specs for it, so we'll give it a shot.

We briefly consider putting some of the LAMs into service, but, as mentioned before, they're basically flying bug mechs. Maybe if there was a Phoenix Hawk LAM in the mix somewhere, but these ones might as well be called mosquitos. On the plus side, they sell for several million C-Bills to novelty collectors and merc groups that are less practical than ours ("whoa dude, a battlemech that can fly?")

Double heat sinks are going to be a little rough until we can get at least one more (and in the case of an Awesome, we'd need at least five more) - the techs inform us that 99% of all battlemechs *require* that exactly ten heat sinks be installed in the engine (even if the engine can't fit them all, in which case they're located outside the engine but run piping into there). We have nine. Two are easily pulled out of the shot-up LAM, the other seven we have to extract directly from the engine, which the techs tell us will take about a month. After that, our options for acquiring more are a bit limited. We might reach out to some, uh, corporate sponsors, or maybe a future employer will want to let us in on the action.

Looking forward into a rosy future where we all have double heat sinks, a Xwraith's Thunderbolt would be able to lose 7 tons worth of heat sinks, which opens up room to upgrade the LRM launcher to a 15 and re-install the SRM launcher that normally gets taken out during the 5S to 5SE conversion. That'll significantly increase the mech's available firepower.

An Awesome upgrading to double heat sinks would actually start running into space issues, rather than tonnage issues. The initial proposal is to simply take the original mech and add another PPC, but in order to do that, we need more heat sinks than we'll physically be able to fit into the available space. So the alternate approach is to take a page from the "weird" Awesomes and mount some non-PPC weapons that generate less heat.

Well, it's a problem for when we do have double heat sinks.

A couple more decisions:
The Wolverine 6R is ok, but Madmarcus feels it needs a little more "oomph" in the firepower department. Our options are, at this point, either a 6M (energy-heavy) or 6D (AC/10 in place of AC/5, SRM rack and one of the lasers). Thoughts?

Also, to our great dismay, we discover a Jagermech in the dark recesses of the Jumbo. It's the stock variant, with about as much armor as a Firestarter, which is almost half its weight. Obviously, this won't do. Our options are to either ditch it entirely or refit it to a JM6-A, which trades in two AC/5s for a pair of LRM/15 racks and enough armor to bring it up to par with a Phoenix Hawk. Still kind of thin, but at least a stiff wind won't blow it over. Thoughts?

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Freyland » Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:17 pm

Thanks for the upgrade, but even more thanks for the effort to write all this stuff up!

I'm in favor of the jager-variant. Long range fire power with survivability.
I don't remember where I read this, Cort, maybe it was in the last patch notes, but they said the UAZ really handles the best when... the wheels are actually touching the ground.
--RedF1ve

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AWS260
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by AWS260 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:54 pm

Can I take this opportunity to volunteer to be a Robot Jock?

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El Guapo
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:27 am

NickAragua wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:57 pm
(since the gauss rifle ammo does not explode),
Wait wait wait....there's ammo that *doesn't explode*??

I'm going to have to have a chat with HR.

Freyland
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Freyland » Fri Jun 14, 2019 12:40 pm

El Guapo wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:27 am
NickAragua wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 4:57 pm
(since the gauss rifle ammo does not explode),
Wait wait wait....there's ammo that *doesn't explode*??

I'm going to have to have a chat with HR.
Bear in mind that firing a gauss rifle from your blimp will cause you to look like Charlie Brown just after Lucy pulls the ball away.
I don't remember where I read this, Cort, maybe it was in the last patch notes, but they said the UAZ really handles the best when... the wheels are actually touching the ground.
--RedF1ve

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Hyena
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by Hyena » Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:11 pm

Dear lord that Atlas would be a terrifying thing to behold.

I'm excited about my Striker though! More armor, less jamming of a lighter, just as dangerous weapon? Yes, please.
"You laugh at me because I'm different; I laugh at you because you're all the same." ~Jonathan Davis

"The object of education is to prepare the young to educate themselves throughout their lives." ~Robert M. Hutchins

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El Guapo
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by El Guapo » Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:21 pm

Hyena wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:11 pm
Dear lord that Atlas would be a terrifying thing to behold.

I'm excited about my Striker though! More armor, less jamming of a lighter, just as dangerous weapon? Yes, please.
Yeah, the Atlas upgrades sound great. Not sure why the Atlas is usually built around close-in fighting when it's super slow - if you have a very slow mech, isn't it *more* important to have range? While also having some short-term capability as well.

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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by NickAragua » Fri Jun 14, 2019 2:53 pm

AWS260 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:54 pm
Can I take this opportunity to volunteer to be a Robot Jock?
Sure! Pick a company:
Alpha: Command company. Mostly medium and heavy battlemechs.
Beta: Assault company. Mostly heavy and assault battlemechs.
Delta: Recon. Fast mediums and lights.
Gamma: General. Mixture of all mech types.

---
El Guapo wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:27 am
Wait wait wait....there's ammo that *doesn't explode*??

I'm going to have to have a chat with HR.
The gauss rifle ammo may not explode, but the gauss rifle itself does. That's just the way it is - if it's ballistic or missile, something explodes. Hell, you can even get a PPC to explode if you turn off the field inhibitors.
El Guapo wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:21 pm
Hyena wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 1:11 pm
Dear lord that Atlas would be a terrifying thing to behold.

I'm excited about my Striker though! More armor, less jamming of a lighter, just as dangerous weapon? Yes, please.
Yeah, the Atlas upgrades sound great. Not sure why the Atlas is usually built around close-in fighting when it's super slow - if you have a very slow mech, isn't it *more* important to have range? While also having some short-term capability as well.
In an open field, yeah, the standard Atlas is pretty useless - all it's got is an LRM/20 rack with 12 shots. But put it in a city with no sight lines and anything that sees that thing come around the corner is going to be sorry.

-------

After all is said and done, we wound up recruiting a lot of mechwarriors - which is good, as we lost six during the last campaign. Gamma-Three lance has to essentially be re-formed from scratch, having lost three out of four mechs and two mechwarriors. It's now composed of a Jenner, a Phoenix Hawk ("Overlord" variant), Spider and a Clint. All light mechs but with a good amount of speed.

We don't anticipate our refits to finish until late november.

On the plus side, we load up on Listen-Kill ammo for our missile launchers. Or, try to. It might *look* like there's a lot of LK-missiles available, but we're running 48 freaking mechs. After continuously snapping up every available LK warhead over the course of three months, we get barely enough to fill up our existing mechs.

Proliferation means that Streak SRM launchers are now widely available, so we pick up a couple to replace the SRM/4 launchers on our Crusaders. One of them anyway, it's not *that* easy to find a Streak launcher.

The main downer is that the techs completely screw up extracting the engine-integrated double heat sinks from the Stinger LAM. So, at this point we've got *two* double heat sinks instead of nine.

One of our refitted Wolverines develops a problem with the SRM/6 launcher - namely, that the ammo bin simply won't open, and one of the heat sinks keeps flushing its coolant no matter how many times we repair or replace it. Normally something easily addressed by the techs, but this one is pretty funny (in retrospect, from a detached perspective). Apparently, some of the wires connecting the ammo bin to the mech's computer look awfully similar to the wires connecting a nearby heat sink to the mech's computer. Some astech winds up crossing them, so whenever the mechwarrior tries to toggle the ammo bin to open it up for a reload, it flushes the heat sink coolant instead. And when he needs to flush the heat sink coolant, the SRM ammo comes tumbling out the back of the Wolverine. We spend a bunch of money trying to figure out what the hell went wrong (buying several replacement heat sinks and ammo bins) before someone figures it out.

We also decide to customize the Wyvern, removing the two small lasers and exchanging them for a heat sink, seeing as how small lasers are pretty much useless and the Wyvern could definitely use an extra heat sink. The mechwarrior is just happy to be able to walk at a leisurly pace while firing more than one weapon at a time. Of course, the techs bollocks up the ammo feeds, and we narrowly avoid total mech destruction when the mechwarrior tries to test-fire a live SRM through an LRM tube. The process takes twice as long and costs a lot more, but we've got time while Isgrimnur's Hatchetman is on the blocks.

We also blow a bunch of cash on replacing worn-out bits in Zenn7's Awesome and Xwraith's Thunderbolt, since those two mechs keep giving our techs trouble. The Marauder's refit finishes on schedule, but the installation of the XL engine on the Quickdraw takes quite a bit longer than expected, a total of a whopping three months, almost a month after the Hatchetman. On the plus side, it gives us time to acquire more listen-kill ordnance.

While we're screwing around with the designs, the FedCom - Draconis Combine war appears to have ground to a halt, with FedCom's advance having been stopped cold. We put out the feelers for some contracts, just to see what's up. Between travel times and refits, we've had about six months of down time.

Option 1:
Our old acquaintance from the Free Worlds League, Colonel Geoff Ferrerro, sends us a note via HPG regarding a "two-fer" contract. The Free Worlds League military chased down a rather large independent merc company into the southwestern periphery, and would like us to hunt them down. As a bonus, Ronin Inc is interested in having an "independent third party" field test several new technologies they've developed. We'd have to sign non-disclosure agreements, but they'll send us over the specs and techs to convert one of our Marauders to a 4X.

What's a Marauder MAD-4X, you ask? Well, it looks similar, but all the weaponry has been pulled out. Instead, it's got a pair of Binary Lasers (one in place of each PPC) and a pair of SRM/6 racks on the right shoulder where the autocannon was. The incredible heat generated by the Blazers is mitigated... somewhat... by the installation of double heat sinks.

Nitty gritty details:
4 month expected contract duration
"Liaison" command
60% salvage rights
60% battle loss compensation
100% transport coverage
Green/D "allies"
Regular/D opposition
378M expected profit
160 days travel time (one way)

These poor scrubs must have really pissed somebody off that the FWL would cough up a third of a billion C-Bills to track them down. The idea behind the liaison command is that somebody is going to be shadowing the 4X Marauder everywhere it goes, and we're expected to deploy it as frequently as possible, to maximize the stress-testing aspect of the exercise.

Nowadays, we pretty much get 100% transport coverage offers every time, since we're bringing our own jumpship and dropships, and it's an easy symbolic gesture to pay for transit. Well, it's still several million C-Bills for fuel and spare parts, but at this point in the state of our company, it's a minor expense.

Option 2:
The Lyran Commonwealth would like to hire us to guard world in the southwestern periphery named Khon Kaen. This is an extended garrison duty contract over the course of almost two years. Our role would be to repel any attacks *and* track down and destroy their sources as well. On the plus side, our cursory check of the situation reports from there indicates that the planetary militia is pretty competent, if equipped with stuff that probably dates back before the founding of the Star League.

22 month expected contract duration
Liaison command
70% salvage rights
40% battle loss compensation
100% transport coverage
Regular/F allies
Green/C expected opposition
1.5B expected profit
126 days travel time (one way)

This is basically a cushy garrison job out in the middle of nowhere, where we get paid to sit on our asses for a couple of years and relax. Although the Circinus Federation, Marian Hegemony and Free Worlds League are all very close by and might just send some raiders over. We're not being paid to guard a bunch of dirt farmers, after all.

Option 3:
We get an offer from FedCom to conduct recon against a series of facilities in the Free Worlds League producing experimental equipment, but the salvage rights are complete crap - 10%, and we don't even get to keep it, it's "exchange". The mechwarrior viewing the offer spends five minute scrubbing her hands off in disgust afterwards.

Option 4:
The Federated Suns want us to assault the Free Worlds League-held world of Bernardo. It's a nice place, lots of factories and industrial capacity. The action appears to be punitive, as the Free Worlds League military has been trying to pick off FedCom worlds while they think FedCom is distracted with the Dracs.

It's defended by the Tenth Marik Militia, so it'll be a good fight against a reasonably equipped opponent, but we'll be working alongside some battle hardened FedCom veterans. Although, we'll be doing most of the work. The objective here will be simple - seize control of the planet. The details will be left to us to work out with the liaison.

5 months expected contract duration
Liaison command
10% salvage rights
.... full stop. No salvage = no contract.

Option 5:
A quick jaunt to the southern end of the inner sphere, to pick a fight with the Taurian Concordat. Well, the Davions *already* picked the fight, it's just that the mercs they hired got themselves mired and bogged down. So, we are to get over there, bail the mercs out if we can, then hunker down and wait for further orders until the contract expires. How we accomplish that will be entirely up to us, and we'll be in charge at the tactical level.

4 months contract duration
Independent command
80% salvage rights
60% battle loss compensation
100% transport coverage
Regular/F allies
Regular/D opposition
341M expected profit
123 days travel time

Nothing like getting hired to do something... and anything else the employer might think of while you're there. But the pay is ok.

--------------------
So, the contracts we're willing to take are 1, 2 and 5.

We can probably do 1 and 2 concurrently, although if things heat up we'll be stretched pretty thin.

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AWS260
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Re: Let's play: Battletech via MegaMek

Post by AWS260 » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:24 pm

NickAragua wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 2:53 pm
Sure! Pick a company:
Alpha: Command company. Mostly medium and heavy battlemechs.
Beta: Assault company. Mostly heavy and assault battlemechs.
Delta: Recon. Fast mediums and lights.
Gamma: General. Mixture of all mech types.
Delta, please. Just wrap me in tin foil and send me into battle!

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