Author Topic: Ok, I have to know but what did Morgan Kell and Yorinaga Kurita do.....  (Read 4367 times)

OverKill

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Ok, really? This part of the novels is confusing me.

During the final battle Morgan claims "Do you know what it was like fighting all those warriors and knowing they couldn't touch me" or something to that affect. Anyways, what was going on? NOBODY's targeting computer registered either of them, they both claimed to have achieved an enlightened state and next I was expecting to read the voice of a ghost from the past "Let go Luke, let go" or something along those lines... WTF happened?

Someone wanna fill me in?
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Frabby

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It's the Phanton 'Mech incident and it hasn't been explained.

Mike Stackpole thought it was cool to put some unexplained magic mystery into BattleTech. Some fans love it, some hate it.
I'm in the hate camp. We haters prefer to think he brought some Star League gizmo (jamming device, cloaking devices, whatever) with him from the Red Corsair adventure that had also netted him and Katrina Steiner the black box faxes.
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Quote from: Blaine Lee Pardoe, foreword to The Heart of Dixie
New 'Mechs, let alone units the size of regiments were things of the past. The Star League was a legend, ComStar was a mysterious techno-cult, the Clans were unheard of, and you lived for the day that Hanse Davion was going to stick it to Max Liao soon - if he ever married into House Steiner.

God those were the days!

OverKill

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Yeah I was thinking something along those lines. He picked up some lost-tech (stealth tech) and Kurita burned a CD copy of it and they decided to show off to the boys watching their fight.

What?!?!? It coulda happened!
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roosterboy

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We haters prefer to think he brought some Star League gizmo (jamming device, cloaking devices, whatever) with him from the Red Corsair adventure that had also netted him and Katrina Steiner the black box faxes.

Which doesn't even begin to explain how Yorinaga could have replicated the ability by meditating in an isolated monastery for a few years.

Or how Patrick Kell spontaneously and without any knowledge of doing so managed to achieve the exact same effect in a 'Mech that wasn't even his own.

;)

Basically, OverKill, there are just some things in the BattleTech universe that are unexplained and probably best left that way.

Frabby

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Which doesn't even begin to explain how Yorinaga could have replicated the ability by meditating in an isolated monastery for a few years.


Echo V
Draconis Combine
27 July 3025


Wind gales blew across the barren tundra, whipping the low buildings of the monastery. A visitor had come to the unreal place. His bright white robes, a stark contrast to the monotonous colors of his surroundings, clearly marked him as a stranger.

ComStar Adept Bob was uncomfortable in the unfamiliar tristesse of the Zen monastery. Or, as he would put it, he was freaked out by being surrounded by a regiment of Kurita super ninja assassin psychos sitting around, painting ugly, boring motives, drinking tea and watching him with those calm eyes. The fewer weapons they had, the more dangerous they were - they were that kind of people who became just more lethal when they disembarked from their BattleMechs. Any of those men could kill him in ten artistically valuable ways in five seconds at any time, armed with nothing but a paint brush or a tea cup. Their demeanor was one of unnerving understatement, and the air in the monastery carried the unmistakeable message that Bob was only alive because nobody had - so far - bothered to squash him like a bug.
Bob was eager to leave this equally desolate and dangerous place again as soon as possible. The monks, for their part, were happy to be rid of him equally soon, and an unspoken consensus was reached to forego the usual courtesies and get over with his visit sooner rather than later. And so Bob was quickly ushered into the cell where the monk resided he had come to see.

Unblinking, Yorinaga Kurita's blank face met the visitor with no sign of surprise, or any emotion at all. He bowed his head slightly, barely noticeable. So slightly in fact that Bob completely missed the gesture. Unsettled by the monks' apparent refusal to acknowledge his presence, he decided to deliver his message anyways.
"Hello, Mr. Kurita. Ehm. Yorinaga Kurita-san. Or whatever. See, I'm sorry, but I don't speak Japanese. I'm told you speak Anglik though. Do-you-speak-my-language? Yes? Ah, good. Ahem. See, there's this little battle-ROM analysis you ordered 9 years ago. I'm afraid it was held up by some wrongly-intoned transmission prayer or whatever, in any case, it was delayed a bit. See, our blessed order has analyzed the sensor logs of your 'Mech, and it turns out your sensor glitch was caused by a Z-3 unit. That's some Star League era ECM technology that never really got beyond prototype - a data crystal cartridge that you put into an expansion slot of your 'Mech computer. It emits an ECM signal that messes with enemy sensor boards and effectively makes certain 'Mechs from the good ole' days unseen, like Archers and Warhammers and a few others of the classics. The 'Mechs are still there, but the system won't print them out. Curiously, the Kell Houds field those classic designs almost exclusively. Smelling a rat yet? Anyways, that Z-3 is a blast from the past really, after only a decade or so a change was implemented that rendered the whole issue mostly moot and the device fell out of use really quick."
Bob took a small box the size of a cigarette pack from a pocked and laid it before Yorinaga Kurita. "Mr. Kell sends you this. He said, and I quote, 'Tell the snake that since my trick is up now he can have one of the useless devices, we have dozends of them lying around but nobody in the universe can be fooled by that old trick anymore.' He said that and a few childish rhymes that really... don't belong here."

The lack of any perceptible reaction on the monk was not what Bob had expected. He swallowed, bowed, and left as soon as he could. Back in the spartan cell, another elderly monk stepped out of the shadows. "Yorinaga-ji, what is the meaning of this?"
Still unmoving, Yorinaga remained in his lotus seat. "It means that I failed my Coordinator even worse than I thought. I knew that Morgan Kell went to fetch a pack of cigarettes before he climbed into his Archer and challenged me. But I failed to make the connection, to realize the ruse for what it was. Morgan Kell does not even smoke! I should have divined the nature of the device on the spot. My utter failure to immediately recognize the situation has shamed me beyond redemption. I am useless."
The stony face of the other monk remained a calm facade just like Yorinaga's, hiding the swirling tornado of thought and emotion that welled up within him - within both of them - as the extent of Yorinaga's failure hit home.
"I shall remain here to atone for this failure, and meditate on it until perhaps the Coordinator graces me with the permission to commit seppuku to restore a shadow of honor to me," Yorinaga intoned.
Understanding, the other monk nodded imperceptibly and left the room with slow, controlled steps. Yorinaga-ji was a true master warrior. With people like him, how could it be that the Combine was not yet ruling the entire universe? The monk decided that he must meditate on this conundrum, and went to the cellars for the ancient Zen doorway where he would butt his head against the door frame until enlightenment came or he passed out.

Or how Patrick Kell spontaneously and without any knowledge of doing so managed to achieve the exact same effect in a 'Mech that wasn't even his own.
He found the device and the manual in Morgan's belongings. But he died before he could tell Salome Ward; he only got to "Tell Morgan I understand..." and meant to finish the sentence with "how you fooled that Kurita jerk!"
;)
« Last Edit: 08 March 2011, 07:08:17 by Frabby »
Author of the BattleCorps stories Feather vs. Mountain, Rise and Shine, Proprietary, Trial of Faith & scenario Twins

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Quote from: Blaine Lee Pardoe, foreword to The Heart of Dixie
New 'Mechs, let alone units the size of regiments were things of the past. The Star League was a legend, ComStar was a mysterious techno-cult, the Clans were unheard of, and you lived for the day that Hanse Davion was going to stick it to Max Liao soon - if he ever married into House Steiner.

God those were the days!

ColBosch

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Degman

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Great  [applause]

Davout73

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Didn't the Kell Hounds book have rules on determining whether or not your pilot could have the Ghost Mech ability?  Mine is still in storage.

Davout73
Kiiro no Torii, a Battletech AU, found here:
http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php/topic,7316.0.html
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Tokage

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Yes Davout you are correct - the ability is in fact very specifically and clearly defined on page 12 of the Kell Hounds book both in universe and in game. It is not an unexplained mystery of the setting, it's explained ... as I say, very clearly.

Put simply, for those who don't have the book to hand;

Some MechWarriors, who are supremely experienced and skilled, and who have meditated upon philosophy and mastered a perception of non-existence, can block sensor reception and make their mechs effectively (though not actually) invisible to the weapons systems of other mechs. Yorinaga learnt the power while in a monastery for 11 years. Kell also found his way to the power during his time in a monastery.

It's basically along the lines of a super chi power - check HK-HB for notes on the use of chi to carry out almost supernatural feats by O5P Budojin for example.

The MechWarrior enters a state of supreme no-mind, to the extent he is effectively and spiritually 'not there'.
Now listen to me you benighted muckers. We're going to teach you soldiering. The world's noblest profession. When we're done with you, you'll be able to slaughter your enemies like civilized men. - HRH D. Dravot

OverKill

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Man I hate it when that happens lol

Thanks I'll see if I can dig up the official blurb as I think my buddy has the Kell book
Colonel Mason Grimm
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Frabby

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Keep in mind, however, that supernatural abilities were removed from recent publications.
When prodded about the issue, Herb explicitly said that "Magic" is "not in BT". I take that to mean the Phantom Mech Ability as written was retconned out of the BT universe.
Author of the BattleCorps stories Feather vs. Mountain, Rise and Shine, Proprietary, Trial of Faith & scenario Twins

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Quote from: Blaine Lee Pardoe, foreword to The Heart of Dixie
New 'Mechs, let alone units the size of regiments were things of the past. The Star League was a legend, ComStar was a mysterious techno-cult, the Clans were unheard of, and you lived for the day that Hanse Davion was going to stick it to Max Liao soon - if he ever married into House Steiner.

God those were the days!

Tokage

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Keep in mind, however, that supernatural abilities were removed from recent publications.
When prodded about the issue, Herb explicitly said that "Magic" is "not in BT". I take that to mean the Phantom Mech Ability as written was retconned out of the BT universe.

But ... Jump travel involves trans-dimensional travel. That's fairly beyond the rules of science as we know them.

Hard to take the phantom mech ability out - it's integral to the story of Yorinaga and Kell.
Now listen to me you benighted muckers. We're going to teach you soldiering. The world's noblest profession. When we're done with you, you'll be able to slaughter your enemies like civilized men. - HRH D. Dravot

Frabby

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But ... Jump travel involves trans-dimensional travel. That's fairly beyond the rules of science as we know them.

Hard to take the phantom mech ability out - it's integral to the story of Yorinaga and Kell.
The story of Kuria & Kell remains as one of the many legends and mysteries of the BT universe.
What was removed was the explicit canonical explanation that it was a psi-power, without giving a (canonical) substitute explanation so far. The current official stance is that magic, divination, chi-/psi-/Jedi-/HarryPotter-/whatever powers are as "real" in BattleTech as in the real world, i.e. they exist in stories and through implication but there is no solid evidence of them. Just canon rumours, ISP style. The stories about Morgan Kell becoming a ghost at will are canon, not the fact. And maybe Theodore Kurita really heard voices. That's cool with me. FASAfysix and FASAnomics (and walking tanks that can't hit a barn door a kilomteter out) is about as much "magic" as I care to have hard-coded into my game.  :)
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Quote from: Blaine Lee Pardoe, foreword to The Heart of Dixie
New 'Mechs, let alone units the size of regiments were things of the past. The Star League was a legend, ComStar was a mysterious techno-cult, the Clans were unheard of, and you lived for the day that Hanse Davion was going to stick it to Max Liao soon - if he ever married into House Steiner.

God those were the days!

Tokage

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Well .. martial artists can do some amazing things by believing they are channelling chi. I don't have a problem with that being represented rarely in the setting.

(I know it's not how things work officially but for myself I almost always favour old over new with canon clashes in BT.)
Now listen to me you benighted muckers. We're going to teach you soldiering. The world's noblest profession. When we're done with you, you'll be able to slaughter your enemies like civilized men. - HRH D. Dravot

YingJanshi

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After checking my copy of the Kell Hounds, I'd like to point out that while it gave the mechanics to get the Phantom 'Mech ability it was extremely hard to get and that after you did, you should basically retire that character. Said the psychological shock was huge. Why Kell and Yorinaga had to spend decades as hermits.
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Davout73

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Keep in mind, however, that supernatural abilities were removed from recent publications.
When prodded about the issue, Herb explicitly said that "Magic" is "not in BT". I take that to mean the Phantom Mech Ability as written was retconned out of the BT universe.

I'll remember that the next time i fight those Shadow division Manei Domini "supah cyborgs" after they trans warp jumped 1000 light years to the planet I am garrisoning....

 ;)

Davout
Kiiro no Torii, a Battletech AU, found here:
http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php/topic,7316.0.html
Interview with a Mercenary, found here: http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php/topic,319.0.html
Against the Bot Campaign Rules found here:
http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=1135

blackjack

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Yes Davout you are correct - the ability is in fact very specifically and clearly defined on page 12 of the Kell Hounds book both in universe and in game. It is not an unexplained mystery of the setting, it's explained ... as I say, very clearly.

Put simply, for those who don't have the book to hand;

Some MechWarriors, who are supremely experienced and skilled, and who have meditated upon philosophy and mastered a perception of non-existence, can block sensor reception and make their mechs effectively (though not actually) invisible to the weapons systems of other mechs. Yorinaga learnt the power while in a monastery for 11 years. Kell also found his way to the power during his time in a monastery.

It's basically along the lines of a super chi power - check HK-HB for notes on the use of chi to carry out almost supernatural feats by O5P Budojin for example.

The MechWarrior enters a state of supreme no-mind, to the extent he is effectively and spiritually 'not there'.

Fought a guy like that once. I was a bloody pulp he was untouched.
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Put simply, for those who don't have the book to hand;

Some MechWarriors, who are supremely experienced and skilled, and who have meditated upon philosophy and mastered a perception of non-existence, can block sensor reception and make their mechs effectively (though not actually) invisible to the weapons systems of other mechs

Ah! No problem. I'll weld some iron sights to the front of my cockpit, lock my mech's lasers and autocannons to zero deflection / zero elevation and walk my shots in on my target. Probably quicker than waiting on that damn computer anyway  ;)
We hear that there are tumults and riots in Rome, and that voices are raised concerning the army and the quality of our soldiers. Make haste to reassure us that you love and support us as we love and support you, for if we find that we have left our bones to bleach in these sands in vain, then beware the fury of the legions.


Captain Vlad

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I have the Kell Hounds book somewhere;  the Phantom 'Mech rules didn't explain why it'd be an effective ability versus an Axman pilot with a grudge against you.

ScrewySqrl

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Ah! No problem. I'll weld some iron sights to the front of my cockpit, lock my mech's lasers and autocannons to zero deflection / zero elevation and walk my shots in on my target. Probably quicker than waiting on that damn computer anyway  ;)

In the books that's exactly what Daniel Allard did when testing his Wolfhound -- turned off the automated targeting system and told the computer to fire the lasers in a straight line at an object behind Kell's Archer.  Took out the Archer.

abou

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If you read the HTP: Mallory's World PDF, the writers have gone for a drastically different take on the issue.  The "Phantom 'Mech Ability" still has some benefits, but it isn't quite the ridiculous thing it was before.  It seems they went with a more, how can I put this, zen approach: a level of concentration and acceptance of the situation where everything comes together as long as that concentration isn't disturbed.  That would be an explanation for how Yorinaga Kurita was able to achieve it after years of meditation.

As a result, this new definition of the "Phantom 'Mech Ability" is much broader.  Ian Davion displays it in the opening story of the scenario book.  I would even say that we could look through other stories and apply it to Minobu Tetsuhara during his last battle in Wolves on the Border while in the cockpit of his Dragon.

Wolverine

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Cripes, I see middle school and High school boys doing "No mind"and  "Not there" mind trick all the time, my girls even do it sometimes such as when we ask them to do some chores, get ready to go out somewhere, finish your homework, etc.... no big mystery to me.
J
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abou

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Huh?  I don't even know how that compares.

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Keep in mind, however, that supernatural abilities were removed from recent publications.
When prodded about the issue, Herb explicitly said that "Magic" is "not in BT". I take that to mean the Phantom Mech Ability as written was retconned out of the BT universe.

I'm pretty sure that Herb never explicitly said that, but rather that magic isn't part of BattleTech's core aesthetics.
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The real important takeaway here is that Ian Davion was the first Phantom MechWarrior. :)

Frabby

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I'm pretty sure that Herb never explicitly said that, but rather that magic isn't part of BattleTech's core aesthetics.
In Herb's own words, "Magic" is the first item on his list of "Other things not in BattleTech" which followed a list of technologies that positively do not exist in the BT universe.
The original posting was apparently lost when the forum archives came down after the latest forum crash, but luckily I archived a reference copy on the Talk Page of the Sarna article on the Phantom 'Mech.
Author of the BattleCorps stories Feather vs. Mountain, Rise and Shine, Proprietary, Trial of Faith & scenario Twins

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Quote from: Blaine Lee Pardoe, foreword to The Heart of Dixie
New 'Mechs, let alone units the size of regiments were things of the past. The Star League was a legend, ComStar was a mysterious techno-cult, the Clans were unheard of, and you lived for the day that Hanse Davion was going to stick it to Max Liao soon - if he ever married into House Steiner.

God those were the days!