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Author Topic: Omni Configuration Alternates?  (Read 1523 times)

Colt Ward

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Omni Configuration Alternates?
« on: 15 September 2022, 13:51:07 »
The new Shrapnel #10 has a very interesting line in one of the first stories set in the Clan Invasion.  The POV character is using a Nova B, and because the warrior had a tendency to over-use the Ultra function her Star Commander was going to have the techs swap out the Ultra for a LB-5X.  Now the config did not happen because the warrior won their Trial of Refusal . . .

 . . . but it was a long ago 'fix' to offer more variants for the Clan Invasion era Omnis before we got more in the last 15 years and especially the TC & era appropriate RecGuide options.  It would also address Clan Invasion era lack of LB-10X & -20X on canon configs.
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Church14

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #1 on: 16 September 2022, 10:06:57 »
My headcanon has just been that the published omni configs are examples of a popular weapons layouts, not fixed configs.

So not every Timber Wolf “prime” is identical. Someone might prefer Artemis so they drop the LRM20s to 15s to add Artemis and keep the over under large and medium lasers. Some drop backup weapons for ammo, heat sinks, or changing to pulse lasers.

An example I can give would be still calling Aiden Pryde’s Timber Wolf a “prime” but with his personal flair on it.


This doesn’t help pickup games where there’s no customs allowed, it just make my headcanon work a lot better

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #2 on: 16 September 2022, 13:32:25 »
Most of the alternative configurations reflect the basic fighting styles of clan warriors.

IMHO, for merit, the commander can allow you to assemble personnel configuration. Or the warrior himself announces a trial for his own weapon configuration, if the commander is against it.

Also, IMHO, in 3025, most of the battlemechs are custom because of combat damage, field repairs and what could be found on the black market. It is unlikely that captured mechs will be repaired with original parts.
Either you fix yourself with anything, or you fight on a half-mech.

But for convenience, the game is played with official configs with some specified exceptions.


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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #3 on: 16 September 2022, 16:37:03 »
The way I think about it, the official configs are set loadouts that are already coded into a Mechs loadout computer, so to swap out to it you just enter your selection on a computer menu and the gyro is all set for the different weights spread through the frame, the targeting computer is set up with the set weapons, etc...

Any custom setups will require a tech to do calculations for the gyro, and all that

So I feel that makes custom loadouts easily doable if there's time for the techs to do all the calculations, but for the sake of ease, standard configs are already setup to go so you can hot swap in the middle of combat even
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wantec

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #4 on: 16 September 2022, 17:55:21 »
I would expect there to a bit of a logistics requirement as well. At home base it's one thing, but when you deploy you need to bring spare parts with you, which would limit the customization once you depart. Prior to deployment the unit commanders might have specified configs picked and maybe a favorite alternative. Then the techs pack up a certain ratio of spares. In the field there wouldn't be the opportunity for everyone to get a custom config, there's only so many parts to go around.
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #5 on: 16 September 2022, 20:38:22 »
I would expect there to a bit of a logistics requirement as well. At home base it's one thing, but when you deploy you need to bring spare parts with you, which would limit the customization once you depart. Prior to deployment the unit commanders might have specified configs picked and maybe a favorite alternative. Then the techs pack up a certain ratio of spares. In the field there wouldn't be the opportunity for everyone to get a custom config, there's only so many parts to go around.

Or everyone has their own configuration and only the parts needed to maintain those configurations are brought on a deployment.  I wonder how often Natasha Kerensky or Nicolai Malthus deviated from their own signature configurations for something else.
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #6 on: 17 September 2022, 03:20:26 »
In I Am Jade Falcon, Widowmaker seemed to have been in the A configuration rather than Natasha's unique loadout.  I recall it having a Gauss Rifle in place of the Ultra 20.
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #7 on: 22 September 2022, 14:32:09 »
By memory, aren't omnis classified in order of ubiquity (at least for the first year or so of their life)? So the "Prime" variant is almost always the most-commonly seen configuration deployed, the "A" being the second-most common, and so on? I remember the TRO 3075 Septicemia/Pariah entry describing it as such. Reading that, I always had the thought that custom configs were common enough, but that just one or two 'Mechs out of a few hundred or more doesn't qualify for it own letter-designation. Also, and I admittedly don't remember an exact source for this, but if memory serves weren't some very common and popular custom configurations eventually considered ubiquitous enough to be given their own letter-designation, much like how many of the most popular I.S. field refits eventually got their own designations and sometimes even production lines?
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ShroudedSciuridae

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #8 on: 03 October 2022, 17:55:02 »
Omnis were completely modular (within system limits of course) and there weren't really restrictions on using them. Part of the issues that gave Coyote scientists such fits at first were developing the plug and play nature for the TTS and gyro. I'm sure ammo feed as well, but that was never really addressed in the lore. The configurations came about because 1) The BattleTech Centers required some set options, 2) In-universe there would be MechWarriors equally overwhelmed with the options available, and 3) Each frame can only excel at a handful of tactical roles and there's only so many variations within those roles. Hence some degree of standardization with alternate configurations.

While I was typing this though I remembered some in-universe restrictions, freebirth that luck into an OmniMech are restricted to default configurations for a Trial of Position . MechWarrior Companion p. 68, perhaps later but that source is fresh in my mind.
« Last Edit: 03 October 2022, 18:00:52 by ShroudedSciuridae »

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #9 on: 04 October 2022, 01:35:13 »
I think of the different configurations are like ordering at a fast food place. It's a lot faster and easier to pick a number and customize it than to order everything individually.

It's;
The Star Captain, wants a  ______ Prime, two As, a B, and C with onion rings instead of fries.
vs.
The Star Captain wants 5 _____, one with blank, two with blank blank, the fourth with blah blah, and the fifth with onion rings instead of fries.

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #10 on: 04 October 2022, 03:39:18 »
mmmm, give me a Turkina with 2 ERPPC's, 2 Gauss Rifles, 2 SSRM6, LRM 10 or 15, and maybe 2 ER M Lasers, if it can fit :thumbsup:
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #11 on: 04 October 2022, 03:41:56 »
....an OmniMech are restricted to default configurations for a Trial of Position . MechWarrior Companion p. 68, perhaps later but that source is fresh in my mind.

Reminds me of one of my first Trials of Position, wiped the floor against the Summoner and other mech, which I cannot remember, with a Nova Prime 8)
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grimlock1

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #12 on: 04 October 2022, 14:43:20 »
My head cannon pingpongs between "getting a non-standard omni-config requires Grand Counsel approve, co-signed by the saKhan, and counter-signed the Primus," and "if you can sell your Star Commander, and it will fit, you can probably have it." 
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #13 on: 04 October 2022, 15:07:10 »
"getting a non-standard omni-config requires Grand Counsel approve, co-signed by the saKhan, and counter-signed the Primus,"

this is roughly the level of clearance required to get new conifgs into products

Colt Ward

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #14 on: 04 October 2022, 15:35:12 »
My head cannon pingpongs between "getting a non-standard omni-config requires Grand Counsel approve, co-signed by the saKhan, and counter-signed the Primus," and "if you can sell your Star Commander, and it will fit, you can probably have it."

Well, the canon story I used indicates it is up to the Star Commander.  The Star Commander was tired of the mechwarrior riding the UAC's ultra mode and burning out UACs during Trials that resulted in a drop of firepower.  The Mechwarrior declared a Trial of Refusal . . . and won, no UAC swap for LBX on her Nova.

Never mind all the references in canon sourcebooks and fiction about how warriors and commanders had the techs create minor modifications to those standard configurations to account for the tactical situation.
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RifleMech

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #15 on: 04 October 2022, 15:56:34 »
mmmm, give me a Turkina with 2 ERPPC's, 2 Gauss Rifles, 2 SSRM6, LRM 10 or 15, and maybe 2 ER M Lasers, if it can fit :thumbsup:


 ;D


My head cannon pingpongs between "getting a non-standard omni-config requires Grand Counsel approve, co-signed by the saKhan, and counter-signed the Primus," and "if you can sell your Star Commander, and it will fit, you can probably have it." 


I don't think it'd require a Grand Counsel approval. I don't think a custom configuration would be something they'd want to bother with. Plus Aiden Pryde had all of his OMNIs outfitted with Jump Jets for Tukayyid. There wouldn't have been time to get permission from the Grand Counsel for that.

Requiring permission would also make temporary configurations do to repairs, supply issues, mission requirements, and experimentation nearly impossible. So I believe lower ranking officers can order changes made. They could probably approve requests too, at least temporarily. Permanent changes might need approval from a higher rank or a trial.  Adding a new standard configuration or wide spread factory refit though would probably require the Khan's approval but changes to an individual machine would just need the commanding officer's approval.

AlphaMirage

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #16 on: 04 October 2022, 16:15:23 »
I mean it's an Omni it can be easily reconfigured based on mission needs or personal preference. If a certain MechWarrior fights better in their slightly modified unit that's how it is. I expect a Star Commanders approval is all that is required as long as the parts are available. Parts might be scarce though so a Star Commander might force a modification to normal configuration

grimlock1

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #17 on: 05 October 2022, 08:46:32 »
I don't think it'd require a Grand Counsel approval. I don't think a custom configuration would be something they'd want to bother with. Plus Aiden Pryde had all of his OMNIs outfitted with Jump Jets for Tukayyid. There wouldn't have been time to get permission from the Grand Counsel for that.
I was being hyperbolic. In that case, he was tasked with a mission, and he needed jump jets. All the jump jets.

Requiring permission would also make temporary configurations do to repairs, supply issues, mission requirements, and experimentation nearly impossible. So I believe lower ranking officers can order changes made. They could probably approve requests too, at least temporarily. Permanent changes might need approval from a higher rank or a trial.  Adding a new standard configuration or wide spread factory refit though would probably require the Khan's approval but changes to an individual machine would just need the commanding officer's approval.
In the field?  Just accomplish the objective. Who cares how you do it.  But if the mission of the day is LRM bombardment, don't be that guy and bring nothing but Streak SRMs. Back at the base?  It could be different. A friend, retired USMC, had a story about military bureaucracy.  He was an aircraft maintainer and he explained how all their tools were broken down into kits or boxes.  If you are going to do X, then grab Y box off the shelf and it will have have everything you need.  Well they wanted to ADD a tool to a particular kit.  They ultimately needed permission from a major or lieutenant colonel to do this.

With Omnis and the Chatterweb, I don't think it would need much more than Star Commander approval for something to be added to the standard catalog. Once somebody has a good setup, it will go viral.   
A:  My technician was able to fit 8 Streak 6's, a pair of PPCs and TC in my Turkina and this thing is a BEAST!
B:  Huh.  That is not a lot of long range fire and a Turkina is pretty slow.
A:  Snipe with the PPC while you close.  Once there is a soft spot, not a breach, a soft spot in the armor, switch to the Streaks. Enemy mechs go away.  I killed 2 Dire Wolves and a Kodiak and none of them lasted more than 45 seconds.
B:  I may have to try that...

Okay, that may be a bad example because it hogs a particular weapon system. Turkina pilots suddenly hoarding every Streak 6 might mess with the supply chain a bit.
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wantec

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #18 on: 05 October 2022, 09:36:21 »
Not to mention if you start needing too many of one type of weapon, then you might have to start issuing trials for additional production runs of the weapons or raw materials to make more.
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Colt Ward

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #19 on: 05 October 2022, 10:11:05 »
Not to mention if you start needing too many of one type of weapon, then you might have to start issuing trials for additional production runs of the weapons or raw materials to make more.

It is the Clans, is that really a draw back?
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #20 on: 05 October 2022, 10:26:22 »
By memory, aren't omnis classified in order of ubiquity (at least for the first year or so of their life)? So the "Prime" variant is almost always the most-commonly seen configuration deployed, the "A" being the second-most common, and so on?
Yes, that is how C* named them during the invasion.
The Prime was called prime not by the clans but by the intel analysts going through battlefield reports.
So the D versions were often "seen rarely" or "seen 1x in X clan only"
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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #21 on: 05 October 2022, 10:31:41 »
I expect a Star Commanders approval is all that is required as long as the parts are available. Parts might be scarce though so a Star Commander might force a modification to normal configuration

Not to mention if you start needing too many of one type of weapon, then you might have to start issuing trials for additional production runs of the weapons or raw materials to make more.

Based on the example of the Jade Falcons at Twycross, I might even go so far as to say the Cluster Commander might declare a standard configuration for the entire unit.
Every omni in that book is only using the same configuration IIRC.
Every Kitfox was the A.
Every Hellbringer & Timberwolf were the Prime
Every Summoner was the LPL/Gauss variant.
Etc etc.
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AlphaMirage

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #22 on: 05 October 2022, 11:05:24 »
That maybe just how the Falcon Guards are configured. It is a unit steeped in tradition led by a Malthus with access to whatever they want. Eyrie or Dark Wing Clusters would likely use more 'eccentric' layouts while other line units might use groups of combinations selected for the mission at hand or Mechwarrior in question.

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #23 on: 05 October 2022, 15:45:37 »
I was being hyperbolic. In that case, he was tasked with a mission, and he needed jump jets. All the jump jets.


 In the field?  Just accomplish the objective. Who cares how you do it.  But if the mission of the day is LRM bombardment, don't be that guy and bring nothing but Streak SRMs. Back at the base?  It could be different. A friend, retired USMC, had a story about military bureaucracy.  He was an aircraft maintainer and he explained how all their tools were broken down into kits or boxes.  If you are going to do X, then grab Y box off the shelf and it will have have everything you need.  Well they wanted to ADD a tool to a particular kit.  They ultimately needed permission from a major or lieutenant colonel to do this.

With Omnis and the Chatterweb, I don't think it would need much more than Star Commander approval for something to be added to the standard catalog. Once somebody has a good setup, it will go viral.   
A:  My technician was able to fit 8 Streak 6's, a pair of PPCs and TC in my Turkina and this thing is a BEAST!
B:  Huh.  That is not a lot of long range fire and a Turkina is pretty slow.
A:  Snipe with the PPC while you close.  Once there is a soft spot, not a breach, a soft spot in the armor, switch to the Streaks. Enemy mechs go away.  I killed 2 Dire Wolves and a Kodiak and none of them lasted more than 45 seconds.
B:  I may have to try that...

Okay, that may be a bad example because it hogs a particular weapon system. Turkina pilots suddenly hoarding every Streak 6 might mess with the supply chain a bit.


There's some care since the Clans dislike waste. Not having units fit the warriors needs generates waste. In most cases I think standard configurations are good enough. Occasionally though a warrior's unit needs a bit more customization. However, they can't just go into the shop and help themselves. They need permission from someone. That would at least be the Star Commander, maybe the Star Captain, to authorize the change.

I don't think they'd be allowed to change things just because either. There would need to be a good reason for the change. Like the mech running hot so you'd want to swap a couple high heat weapons for lower heat weapons. Or constantly missing at long range so swapping out ammo based weapons for energy to conserve ammo, or a targeting computer. 

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #24 on: 05 October 2022, 15:47:32 »
That maybe just how the Falcon Guards are configured. It is a unit steeped in tradition led by a Malthus with access to whatever they want. Eyrie or Dark Wing Clusters would likely use more 'eccentric' layouts while other line units might use groups of combinations selected for the mission at hand or Mechwarrior in question.

I don't know about after but adding jump jets to all units was mission specific for Tukayyid.

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #25 on: 05 October 2022, 16:36:13 »
I was being hyperbolic. In that case, he was tasked with a mission, and he needed jump jets. All the jump jets.
 In the field?  Just accomplish the objective. Who cares how you do it.  But if the mission of the day is LRM bombardment, don't be that guy and bring nothing but Streak SRMs. Back at the base?  It could be different. A friend, retired USMC, had a story about military bureaucracy.  He was an aircraft maintainer and he explained how all their tools were broken down into kits or boxes.  If you are going to do X, then grab Y box off the shelf and it will have have everything you need.  Well they wanted to ADD a tool to a particular kit.  They ultimately needed permission from a major or lieutenant colonel to do this.

With Omnis and the Chatterweb, I don't think it would need much more than Star Commander approval for something to be added to the standard catalog. Once somebody has a good setup, it will go viral.   
A:  My technician was able to fit 8 Streak 6's, a pair of PPCs and TC in my Turkina and this thing is a BEAST!
B:  Huh.  That is not a lot of long range fire and a Turkina is pretty slow.
A:  Snipe with the PPC while you close.  Once there is a soft spot, not a breach, a soft spot in the armor, switch to the Streaks. Enemy mechs go away.  I killed 2 Dire Wolves and a Kodiak and none of them lasted more than 45 seconds.
B:  I may have to try that...

Okay, that may be a bad example because it hogs a particular weapon system. Turkina pilots suddenly hoarding every Streak 6 might mess with the supply chain a bit.

Slight veering off target. The USMC/Navy example was a vague description of tool control methods used by the USN and USMC aviation units, per the NAMP (Naval Aviation's bible, so to speak). The boxes/tool kits (Clam-shell type) typically used are very specifically built with the exact tools needed (nothing more, nothing less) to the point that there are publications dedicated to exactly how those tool kits should look, identical from one command to another. Anything else or extra is kept in the tool room, usually in more common civilian-style rolling toolboxes (that's where the Lt Cdr/Cdr/Major/Lt Col comes in; You submit the usual requests to add stuff like particular tools to the TOOL ROOM via the MMCO aka the guy with the purse strings. Anything added to the clam-shell tool boxes is a publication change, since your change request affects the entire type command's tools boxes, not just your own)

The rest of his example is accurate; hogging resources because you're trying to impose limits to what equipment you desire will result in someone getting into your crap because you are diviating from what ever version of The Namp 4790.whatever the Clans use... i think. I could be overthinking all this, because i am having NAMP (and missing tool reports) flashbacks...
« Last Edit: 05 October 2022, 16:38:27 by ThePW »

grimlock1

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #26 on: 06 October 2022, 11:14:05 »

There's some care since the Clans dislike waste. Not having units fit the warriors needs generates waste. In most cases I think standard configurations are good enough. Occasionally though a warrior's unit needs a bit more customization. However, they can't just go into the shop and help themselves. They need permission from someone. That would at least be the Star Commander, maybe the Star Captain, to authorize the change.

I don't think they'd be allowed to change things just because either. There would need to be a good reason for the change. Like the mech running hot so you'd want to swap a couple high heat weapons for lower heat weapons. Or constantly missing at long range so swapping out ammo based weapons for energy to conserve ammo, or a targeting computer.

Or putting together a report summarizing 200 simulated battles showing that your custom Nova out performs any current variant 85% of the time, at X task.

Assuming your CO A: agrees that your idea has merit, and B: is not a raging shnozweasel that will screw you any chance they get, then they push it up the chain.

Slight veering off target. The USMC/Navy example was a vague description of tool control methods used by the USN and USMC aviation units, per the NAMP (Naval Aviation's bible, so to speak). The boxes/tool kits (Clam-shell type) typically used are very specifically built with the exact tools needed (nothing more, nothing less) to the point that there are publications dedicated to exactly how those tool kits should look, identical from one command to another. Anything else or extra is kept in the tool room, usually in more common civilian-style rolling toolboxes (that's where the Lt Cdr/Cdr/Major/Lt Col comes in; You submit the usual requests to add stuff like particular tools to the TOOL ROOM via the MMCO aka the guy with the purse strings. Anything added to the clam-shell tool boxes is a publication change, since your change request affects the entire type command's tools boxes, not just your own)

The rest of his example is accurate; hogging resources because you're trying to impose limits to what equipment you desire will result in someone getting into your crap because you are diviating from what ever version of The Namp 4790.whatever the Clans use... i think. I could be overthinking all this, because i am having NAMP (and missing tool reports) flashbacks...

Thanks for fleshing out that story.  But depending on the Clan, or the IS army, custom Omni configs could be seen with similar rigidity.  The quartermaster has determined that a lance of heavy omnis shall receive this specific list of pods and ammo that will enable the creation of most configurations, most of the time, and this is enough parts to last 6 months of moderate intensity combat.  Use of non-standard configurations will mess up the quartermaster's careful planning because you will be using up one or more items at an accelerated rate. So now the quartermaster has to create a new standard spares kit, which have to replace the old standard spares kit every heavy omni lance across the army. Ergo, you will use the Prime, A, or C version of your mech and you will like it!  The standard kit only has enough spares to make one B version and Mechwarrior Smith has seniority so he gets that one.


Like I said, I can see it going either way. 
I'm rarely right... Except when I am.  ---  Idle question.  What is the BV2 of dread?
Apollo's Law- if it needs Clan tech to make it useable, It doesn't deserve those resources in the first place.
Sure it isn't the most practical 'mech ever designed, but it's a hundred ton axe-murderer. If loving that is wrong I don't wanna be right.

AlphaMirage

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #27 on: 06 October 2022, 13:25:47 »
That Quartermaster is a no good Merchant Caste anyway.
WHAT DOES HE KNOW OF THE WAYS OF WAR?
Give me my 12 Small Pulse Lasers or face me in the ring.

grimlock1

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #28 on: 06 October 2022, 15:11:08 »
That Quartermaster is a no good Merchant Caste anyway.
WHAT DOES HE KNOW OF THE WAYS OF WAR?
Give me my 12 Small Pulse Lasers or face me in the ring.

Challenge accepted.  And for the manner of the duel, I choose reconciling a 1,000 item balance sheet :-)
I'm rarely right... Except when I am.  ---  Idle question.  What is the BV2 of dread?
Apollo's Law- if it needs Clan tech to make it useable, It doesn't deserve those resources in the first place.
Sure it isn't the most practical 'mech ever designed, but it's a hundred ton axe-murderer. If loving that is wrong I don't wanna be right.

Intermittent_Coherence

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Re: Omni Configuration Alternates?
« Reply #29 on: 08 October 2022, 22:10:50 »
The standard Alternate Configs are just the most commonly used ones, typically set by the omnimech's designers or simply evolved through custom. They can be altered, but the way they're set up, every tech whether native Clan born or isorla can tell right off what parts to requisition if the warrior or officer says 'A Config' or 'B Config'.

They also make a handy baseline if the warrior or officer wants to do a true custom config. Widowmaker, Prometheus and Hohiro custom configs all started out as A Configs.