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Author Topic: Most capable Marines?  (Read 2048 times)

Lagrange

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Most capable Marines?
« on: 17 October 2021, 12:59:22 »
I've been thinking about a good general purpose battle armor design to complement ASFs.  Does the following work?  And is there a way to do it better?

We want something which works in space or on planet.  It should work well under any chosen set of rules (marine points, TW play, AToW play).  This necessarily involves some tradeoffs, but we can limit the tradeoffs somewhat by relying on ASF (or mechs) for open space (or open field) combat, allowing the battle armor to specialize in the things that only infantry can do (i.e. enter and take over buildings/large craft without destroying them.)

Code: [Select]
Marines I (anti-Infantry)
Type: Assault Marines I (anti-Infantry)
Manufacturer: Unknown
    Primary Factory: Unknown

Tech Base: Inner Sphere (Standard)
Chassis Type:  Biped
Weight Class: Assault
Maximum Weight: 2,000 kg
Battle Value: 289
Swarm/Leg Attack/Mechanized/AP: No/No/No/Yes

Equipment                                     Slots      Mass
Chassis:                                               550 kg
Motive System:                                               
     Ground MP:          2                             160 kg
     Jump MP:            0                               0 kg
Manipulators:                                               
    Left Arm:            Heavy Magnetic Battle Claw           40 kg
    Right Arm:           Heavy Magnetic Battle Claw           40 kg
Armor:                   Advanced               5      640 kg
    Armor Value:         17 (Trooper)                       

                                         Slots           
Weapons and Equipment         Location (Capacity)   Mass 
Machine Gun(Heavy)      Body       1       150 kg
Cutting Torch                 Right Arm     1        5 kg 
Space Operations Adaptation     Body       1       100 kg
Anti Personnel Weapon Mount   Right Arm     1        5 kg 
Needler                         Body       1       50 kg 
Machine Gun(Heavyy)          Left Arm     1       150 kg
Modular Weapon Mount   Right Arm    1      10 kg
Needler                       Right Arm     1       50 kg 
Marine points: 21.25/suit (space) or 20.25/suit (not space) (1 trooper, 4 (assault BA), 8 armor, 2 Burstfire weapon, 1 Flame weapon, 1 Space ops (space only), 3 paired magnetic claws, .5 heavy claw, .5 cutting torch, +.25 AP weapon mount) using the latest errata.
Space insertion: Landing on a hull control roll -1 = +2 (no jump jets) -1 (space ops) -1 (magnets) -1 (heavy battle claw)
Ground insertion: Taxiing ASF or battle armor drop chute.
Anti-infantry: 10d6 burst fire damage +antipersonnel weapon --- enough to take out an entire conventional platoon if everything hits or kill most of one inside a building.
Anti-battle armor: ~10 damage in anti-battle armor configuration (below) is solid (or ~9 damage in this config).
AToW BAR: 10 melee/10 Ballistic/9 Energy/9 Explosive --- solid armor, enough to significantly reduce most sources.
Move 2: Superior to foot infantry and slower forms of battle armor.  The only faster units in buildings are significantly lighter.

In addition, there are several good alternate loads using the modular mount.  The anti-battle armor loadout uses an MG instead of the Needler.
Code: [Select]
Marines B (anti-battlearmor)
Battle Value: 299
Machine Gun                   Right Arm     1       100 kg

The ECM variant provides ECM protection for the squad.
Code: [Select]
Marines E (ECM)
Battle Value: 288
Single-Hex ECM                    Right Arm     1       100 kg

The remote sensor variant can plant remote sensors.
Code: [Select]
Marines R (Remote Sensor)
Battle Value: 282
Remote Sensors/Dispenser          Right Arm     1       40 kg 

The sensor variant has extra sensitive sensors for scouting missions.
Code: [Select]
Marines S (Sensors)
Battle Value: 288
Improved Sensors                  Right Arm     1       65 kg 

And the TAG variant can call in heavy fire support from friendly arrow IV.
Code: [Select]
Marines T (TAG)
Battle Value: 282
TAG                               Right Arm     1       35 kg 
Configurations E, R, S, and T function well in a mixed squad with a mixed mission while variants I and B are for fire mission specialization.

Tradeoffs: assault vs. heavy.  Heavy battle armor is the same as far as basic marine points (+magclamps, assault->heavy) and is more transportable (1.5 tons each vs. 2 tons).  The extra weight allowance provides somewhat more armor and room for an extra heavy machine gun.  Overall, it's pretty close.  I'm giving an edge to assault armor just because of the extra armor and weapons.

Assault vs. Light.  It's quite possible to make a Light marine suit which only requires a half ton of transport.  On a marine points per transported ton basis, this is superior.   However, light suits are much weaker under AToW or TW games where armor and quantity of weapons matters.

Detachable weapon pack or not:  It's easy to make a similar assault armor with move 1 that uses DWPs and has an extra 2 points of armor.   I went with no DWPs because the ability to move 1 is common at the AToW level while a move of 2 is super human.  Being able to control the distance seems very powerful here.

Vibroclaws vs. Magnetic claws: The magnets are needed for space boarding ops and a cutting torch provides means to cut through walls anyways.

Heavy claws vs. normal claws: The heavy claws provide a modest benefit in marine points and space insertion.

Modular Weapon Mount and AP weapon: The adaptability provided by each of these seems quite handy.

Weapons vs armor: It's possible to increase battle armor damage at the expense of armor, trading 4 points of armor for 3 points of damage.  This actually decreases burstfire damage though, so it doesn't quite seem worthwhile.  You could also downgrade the HMGs to MGs to upgrade armor to 18 points, but this also doesn't seem quite worthwhile.

Edits: Shifted to a move 2 design, because that seems to matter significantly in aToW and infantry play in buildings, updated for errata, shifted to have more armor and use needlers given discussion with Coldstone.

VhenRa

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #1 on: 08 November 2021, 07:38:15 »
Quote
Marine points: 8.5/suit (space) or 6.5/suit (not space) (1 trooper, 2 paired vibro claws, .25 heavy claw, .25 cutting torch, 1 burstfire weapon, 3 (assault BA), 1 space ops) using the latest errata.

Clearly not using latest errata...

Because with latest errata it would be (1 Trooper, 4 Assault, 6 Armor, 3 Paired Claws, .5 Heavy Claw, .5 Cutting Torch, 2 Burst Fire, 1 Space and .25 AP mount).
« Last Edit: 08 November 2021, 07:42:24 by VhenRa »

Lagrange

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #2 on: 08 November 2021, 22:23:35 »
Clearly not using latest errata...

Because with latest errata it would be (1 Trooper, 4 Assault, 6 Armor, 3 Paired Claws, .5 Heavy Claw, .5 Cutting Torch, 2 Burst Fire, 1 Space and .25 AP mount).
I believe the latest errata is here and (unfortunately) armor doesn't matter as silly as that seems (see page 33).

VhenRa

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #3 on: 09 November 2021, 00:57:45 »
That is old TacOps, superseded by the newer split edition.

Tactical Operations was replaced with Tactical Operations: Advanced Rules and Tactical Operations: Advanced Units & Equipment in 2020. The last errata revision for Tactical Operations is 2019.
« Last Edit: 09 November 2021, 01:00:40 by VhenRa »

Lagrange

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #4 on: 09 November 2021, 07:33:40 »
That is old TacOps, superseded by the newer split edition.

Tactical Operations was replaced with Tactical Operations: Advanced Rules and Tactical Operations: Advanced Units & Equipment in 2020. The last errata revision for Tactical Operations is 2019.
Why is the errata not listed here?

VhenRa

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #5 on: 09 November 2021, 09:44:58 »
Why is the errata not listed here?
https://bg.battletech.com/forums/errata/tactical-operations-advanced-units-equipment/

Don't ask me why. Maybe go bug them to update the website instead of forums.

Given they don't often update the site until a new printing is physically going to happen? I would guess they planned a new printing with said errata and things turned chaotic/supply chain issues/etc etc and it didn't eventuate.

Natasha Kerensky

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #6 on: 09 November 2021, 10:28:09 »

Grenade Launchers always appeared to be the best fit weapons-wise for marines.  The ability to take out defenders and crew via gas and concussion ammo without putting holes in the ship’s electronics, piping, and hull would seem critical.  And then if you did run into opposition with gas masks or their own battlesuits, you could switch to explosive ammo as necessary.
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Lagrange

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #7 on: 09 November 2021, 18:44:40 »
https://bg.battletech.com/forums/errata/tactical-operations-advanced-units-equipment/
Apparently, this one.  Armor matters makes so much sense...  I'll update the OP.  Thanks  :)

Grenade Launchers always appeared to be the best fit weapons-wise for marines. 
Grenade launchers do make good sense.  The mech-scale damage they do is iffy (1 point), but you could have one grenade launcher for unarmored foes and have the HMGs in case you bump into heavy work and are ready to vent to space to win?

Also, the clan micropulse laser looks pretty good to me for marine work---no recoil is nice in space.

Edit: Updated for the errata.  I also switched a flamer modular weapon mount default since that maximizes marine points at 19.25. 

Lagrange

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Re: Most capable Marines?
« Reply #8 on: 29 January 2022, 14:20:00 »
A conversation with Coldstone suggested a tweak---I upgraded the armor while downgrading an HMG to a Needler, which seems to improve the quality of the final configs a little bit.

 

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