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Author Topic: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck  (Read 18368 times)

RunandFindOut

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #60 on: 27 August 2017, 07:29:57 »
Short response: You're wrong. BV accounts for heat, period. If using a prototype PPC will negatively effect a unit's performance it will have a lower BV.
Not to dogpile on you but could you prove that by providing the math?  Because there are more than a few places in BV where the result does not appear to bear that out.
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Sabelkatten

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #61 on: 27 August 2017, 09:56:46 »
Can't find my document with the formulas, but every weapon that the heat sinks can't cover counts for half value. There are some extra rules for which weapons have to be halved first and last to try and avoid some of the exploits possible in BV1, and you count a number of heat sinks that's a bit higher than what you actually have (SSW says 6, I thought it was 4). The last is supposed to represent the advantage of "pushing the heat".

So if you put 3 prototype PPCs on a standard Awesome the last one should be halved.

Now, a big caveat on this: I don't remember all the "special cases" rules added to BV2 heat calculations and I can't look them up. There are probably a lot of silly faults in the system still. I know the theory is sound, but the actual execution leaves a lot to be desired.

William J. Pennington

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #62 on: 27 August 2017, 10:02:41 »
Techmanual, page 303. Calculating BV for mechs,

STEP 2: CALCULATE OFFENSIVE BATTLE RATING

Quote
"If the total heat generated by all off ensive weapons fi re is
greater than the ’Mech Heat Effi ciency, then the player should
adjust the BV of some weapons to refl ect the ineffi ciency of
the ‘Mech design. Follow the steps listed below:
• Consult the appropriate Weapon and Equipment Battle
Value tables (see pp. 317–319) to fi nd the weapon that generates
heat when fi red and has the highest Battle Value.
• If more than one weapon has the same BV, choose the
one which generates the least heat. If multiple weapons
of the same type are mounted, just choose one. Always
choose rear-mounted weapons over forward-fi ring ones
of the same type (see Rear-Firing Weapons, below).
• Add the full BV of the weapon, and add its Heat Value to
the running heat total, beginning at zero.
• If this new heat is less than the ‘Mech Heat Efficiency,
repeat the above steps. Otherwise, add half the BV for
all remaining weapons to the Base Weapon Battle Rating,
then continue to the next step. The BV for the fi rst
weapon to equal or exceed the ‘Mech Heat Effi ciency is
counted at its full value, however.
• If this new running heat total is less than the ‘Mech
Heat Effi ciency, repeat the above steps, which value the
next weapon at full BV. Otherwise, add half the BV of all
remaining weapons to the Base Battle Rating, then continue
to the next step. (This method values any weapon
whose heat increases the total running heat from below
the ‘Mech Heat Effi ciency, to above it, at full BV.)"

TigerShark

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #63 on: 27 August 2017, 16:40:23 »
Can't find my document with the formulas, but every weapon that the heat sinks can't cover counts for half value. There are some extra rules for which weapons have to be halved first and last to try and avoid some of the exploits possible in BV1, and you count a number of heat sinks that's a bit higher than what you actually have (SSW says 6, I thought it was 4). The last is supposed to represent the advantage of "pushing the heat".

So if you put 3 prototype PPCs on a standard Awesome the last one should be halved.

Now, a big caveat on this: I don't remember all the "special cases" rules added to BV2 heat calculations and I can't look them up. There are probably a lot of silly faults in the system still. I know the theory is sound, but the actual execution leaves a lot to be desired.
You mentioned an Awesome. I presume you mean the AWS-8Q.

Stock BV: 1605
BV with 3x Prototype PPC: 1600

A savings of 5 BV. Total. For the complete inability to fire more than 2 PPCs in a turn without going +17 over. Here's the BV calc to back it up. And why? Because the heat calculation is busted. For some reason, they've (developers) miscalculated at +6 for the heat, then added in the maximum heat for running/jumping. As a refresher, this means that anything firing over [ weapon heat + 6 - movement heat - heat sinks] gets discounted at 50%. It should be +0. [weapon heat - movement heat - heat sinks ]. A lot more weapons should get getting the 50% discount; especially on SHS designs.

But even further, even IF that 50% discount were applied to the extra Prototype PPC, it would only discount the entire design by 88 BV ( 176 * 0.5 = 88 ). 33% of your firepower gone and only a 5.5% total BV discount. That should immediately stand out as "broken."

Code: [Select]
Defensive BV Calculation Breakdown
________________________________________________________________________________
Total Armor Factor (240) * Armor Type Modifier (1.0) * 2.5                600.00
Total Structure Points (122) * Structure Type Modifier (1.0)
    * Engine Type Modifier (1.0) * 1.5                                    183.00
Mech Tonnage (80) * Gyro Type Modifer (0.5)                                40.00
Total Defensive BV of all Equipment                                         0.00
Excessive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Explosive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Explosive Item Penalty                                                      0.00
Subtotal                                                                  823.00
Defensive Speed Factor Breakdown:
    Maximum Ground Movement Modifier: 1.20
    Maximum Jump Movement Modifier:   0.00
    Defensive Speed Factor Bonus from Equipment: 0.00
    Minimum Defensive Speed Factor:   0.00
    (Max of Run or Jump) + DSF Bonus = 1.20
Total DBV (Subtotal * Defensive Speed Factor (1.20))                      987.60


Offensive BV Calculation Breakdown
________________________________________________________________________________
Heat Efficiency (6 + 28 - 2) = 32
Adjusted Weapon BV Total WBV                                              532.50
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Small Laser                                                          4.50
Non-Heat Equipment Total NHBV                                               0.00
Excessive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Mech Tonnage Bonus                                                         80.00
Subtotal (WBV + NHBV - Excessive Ammo + Tonnage Bonus)                    612.50
Offensive Speed Factor Breakdown:
    Adjusted Running MP (5) + ( Adjusted Jumping MP (0) / 2 ) - 5 = 0.00
    0.00 / 10 + 1 = 1.000
    1.00 ^ 1.2 = 1.0 (rounded off to two digits)
Total OBV (Subtotal * Offensive Speed Factor (1.0))                       612.50


Total Battle Value (DBV + OBV, round off)                                  1,600
« Last Edit: 27 August 2017, 21:06:08 by TigerShark »
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Hptm. Streiger

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #64 on: 28 August 2017, 05:22:18 »
Example of what I'm looking for. As a note, this weapon DOES NOT EXIST. Its calculations for BV, however, are canon and are what's used currently. (http://www.heavymetalpro.com/bv_calc.htm)
..
..
The problem I have here is that weapon BV doesn't account for heat, crit space, or the ability to jam. Notice that on the website, there is NO FIELD for any of these factors. And I'd have to say that those are some pretty big factors.

What if the IS Medium Pulse laser incurred 6 heat? Would it still be worth 48 BV? How about 10 heat? Or, conversely, if it generated 0 heat every turn, would it not be more useful than 48 BV? You see, this value (Battle Value) is missing some parameters which DEFINITELY affect how useful a weapon is. And rather than throwing them on, willy nilly, I prefer to have these things accounted for in the calculation.

But that's not being accounted for currently. And, to get this back to the OP's post, that's a big reason Autocannons "suck." The weapons themselves are fine. The BV attached to them is flat-out incorrect.
The BV is an abstract value it does reflect some "Battle" impacts - range and average to hit probability.
The base to hit number is not modified (you hardly need only a +4 in average combat - and this differs from target to target)
For example the -2 bonus of the LPL might be the only mean that you are able to hit some targets at all.

Also a -3 modifier would not change the values for short range because they are already at 2+ = 100% with -2 to hit modification.

for weight and heat you can use a "benchmark of your own" (consider, heat ammunition and weight (maybe crits)) and compare it with the BV

as mentioned before at intro level there was no BV necessary because the tonnage was a good benchmark - or at least would have been if you would ignore the free heat sinks.

However as mentioned heat and weight are not directly considered in the weapon calculation because this are mech interna. The weight of a weapon does not have effect on its ability in battle (maybe with some tac-ops optional rules) - same for heat and if you can't fire 3 weapons without overheating doesn't mean you can't fire them at all.
So a Mech with 2 PPCs should always have less BV when compared with a Mech with 3 PPCs but only heat sinks to use 2.

However - I'm working at a thing I called "thread value" for each weapon system. The goal is a global value that reflect the number of shots fired with this weapon to destroy a single target. Had some "generic" targets before and I'm improving the system now to reflect different Mechs with different criticals - I will add the target mobility into the construct as well.


Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #65 on: 28 August 2017, 07:37:25 »
Is there actually a cannon rule for how BV is calculated for s single piece of equipment? As far as I know that has been kept from us. If I am wrong, would someone point me to the book and page number?

Hptm. Streiger

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #66 on: 28 August 2017, 07:47:12 »
the rules are hidden, but you can calculate them backwards (like we did for the Sub Capital Weapons - and the Abstract aerospace brackets)
first the BV weapon calculator give some insight

to hit probability * damage (average number for cluster) - sum together

for example ((33+26+15)*3)/36 for the Small Laser * 1.5 for energy weapon = 9
for the small pulse laser it would be ((33+26+15)*3)/36 because of the -2 to hit modificator

http://www.heavymetalpro.com/bv_calc.htm
for switchable ammo - LBX the calculation is for the Slug - 148 to 108 for cluster


there are lots of loop holes - so you should use common knowledge to prevent "custom" weapons
TigerSharks example of the Med Pulse
what about a Snub Med Pulse

Code: [Select]
BV: 42
Damage: 6/3/1
Range: 4/5/6
To-Hit
Modifier: -4

(not to mention that different optional rules might cause a extreme different performance.

What you can do to "solve some issues"  - you could change the to hit modifier to +3 for standard weapons (you still have +4 for MRMs)
you also could reduce the damage at long ranges when you use ammunition depended weapons

Code: [Select]
MPLAS BV: 31
Damage: 6/6/6
Range: 2/4/6
To-Hit
Modifier: (+1)-2

Code: [Select]
MLAS BV: 21
Damage: 5/5/5
Range: 3/6/9
To-Hit
Modifier: (+3)0

Code: [Select]
ERMLAS BV: 28
Damage: 5/5/5
Range: 4/8/12
To-Hit
Modifier: (+3)0

this would make the "Snub Pulse of above more expensive compared to the MPLAS (would be 40)with this change


« Last Edit: 28 August 2017, 08:00:35 by Hptm. Streiger »

Sabelkatten

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #67 on: 28 August 2017, 10:43:39 »
You mentioned an Awesome. I presume you mean the AWS-8Q.

Stock BV: 1605
BV with 3x Prototype PPC: 1600

A savings of 5 BV. Total. For the complete inability to fire more than 2 PPCs in a turn without going +17 over. Here's the BV calc to back it up. And why? Because the heat calculation is busted. For some reason, they've (developers) miscalculated at +6 for the heat, then added in the maximum heat for running/jumping. As a refresher, this means that anything firing over [ weapon heat + 6 - movement heat - heat sinks] gets discounted at 50%. It should be +0. [weapon heat - movement heat - heat sinks ]. A lot more weapons should get getting the 50% discount; especially on SHS designs.

But even further, even IF that 50% discount were applied to the extra Prototype PPC, it would only discount the entire design by 88 BV ( 176 * 0.5 = 88 ). 33% of your firepower gone and only a 5.5% total BV discount. That should immediately stand out as "broken."

Code: [Select]
Defensive BV Calculation Breakdown
________________________________________________________________________________
Total Armor Factor (240) * Armor Type Modifier (1.0) * 2.5                600.00
Total Structure Points (122) * Structure Type Modifier (1.0)
    * Engine Type Modifier (1.0) * 1.5                                    183.00
Mech Tonnage (80) * Gyro Type Modifer (0.5)                                40.00
Total Defensive BV of all Equipment                                         0.00
Excessive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Explosive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Explosive Item Penalty                                                      0.00
Subtotal                                                                  823.00
Defensive Speed Factor Breakdown:
    Maximum Ground Movement Modifier: 1.20
    Maximum Jump Movement Modifier:   0.00
    Defensive Speed Factor Bonus from Equipment: 0.00
    Minimum Defensive Speed Factor:   0.00
    (Max of Run or Jump) + DSF Bonus = 1.20
Total DBV (Subtotal * Defensive Speed Factor (1.20))                      987.60


Offensive BV Calculation Breakdown
________________________________________________________________________________
Heat Efficiency (6 + 28 - 2) = 32
Adjusted Weapon BV Total WBV                                              532.50
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Prototype PPC                                                      176.00
    -> Small Laser                                                          4.50
Non-Heat Equipment Total NHBV                                               0.00
Excessive Ammunition Penalty                                                0.00
Mech Tonnage Bonus                                                         80.00
Subtotal (WBV + NHBV - Excessive Ammo + Tonnage Bonus)                    612.50
Offensive Speed Factor Breakdown:
    Adjusted Running MP (5) + ( Adjusted Jumping MP (0) / 2 ) - 5 = 0.00
    0.00 / 10 + 1 = 1.000
    1.00 ^ 1.2 = 1.0 (rounded off to two digits)
Total OBV (Subtotal * Offensive Speed Factor (1.0))                       612.50


Total Battle Value (DBV + OBV, round off)                                  1,600
..."should".

Yeah, I didn't remember all the rules. Most of my memories is from back when BV2 was new and people were discussing how it ought to be, and I misremembered. I thought it was the first weapon that ran over that got halved, not the second.

Anyway, my point stands: BV does account for weapon heat. It doesn't do it well, but it's still in there.

Now if you can come up with a better way of doing it I'll cheer you on, but I'll have to warn you that a lot of people have tried - and failed. :(

Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #68 on: 28 August 2017, 11:14:42 »
the rules are hidden, but you can calculate them backwards (like we did for the Sub Capital Weapons - and the Abstract aerospace brackets)
first the BV weapon calculator give some insight

to hit probability * damage (average number for cluster) - sum together

for example ((33+26+15)*3)/36 for the Small Laser * 1.5 for energy weapon = 9
for the small pulse laser it would be ((33+26+15)*3)/36 because of the -2 to hit modificator

http://www.heavymetalpro.com/bv_calc.htm
for switchable ammo - LBX the calculation is for the Slug - 148 to 108 for cluster

Does that calculator produce BV numbers that match all of Total War's weapons? Or are some of them off a bit?

TigerShark

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #69 on: 28 August 2017, 11:33:00 »
Anyway, my point stands: BV does account for weapon heat. It doesn't do it well, but it's still in there.
No, it doesn't stand, IMO. As shown, it accounts for weapon OVER-heating. Whether a weapon does 15 heat or 10 heat or 1 heat, the BV of the weapon itself remains the same.

Well, it wouldn't be incredibly complex to do so. Discounting a weapon's final BV by "penalties" would go a long way in accounting for heat. For example (just hypothetical), at the end of the calculation, you count each point of heat generated and this becomes a percentage subtracted from the final BV (rounding down). Since every weapon in the game that generates heat would get a discount, this would end up balancing out in the end.


Or, conversely, if we simply repair the erroneous addition of 6 heat to the threshold, that would also qualify the third PPC for a discount. Removes (some of) the need to account for heat in weapon BV:

AWQ-8Q (current): 1605
AWS-8Q (standard PPC, remove 6 threshold): 1605
AWS-8Q (prototype PPC, remove 6 threshold): 1512 (5.8% drop)

It would also help eliminate some of the nonsensical problems involved with converting units over to Double Heat Sinks. For example, a PXH-1 with single heat sinks and one with double heat sinks is the same BV. This is obviously in error and it's directly caused by the +6 in the heat calculation.

PXH-1 (double heat sinks): 1041
PXH-1 (single heat sinks - current): 1041
PXH-1 (single heat sinks - proposed): 997 (4.2% drop)
« Last Edit: 28 August 2017, 12:29:47 by TigerShark »
  W W W . M E K W A R S - D O M I N I O N . C O M

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TigerShark

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #70 on: 28 August 2017, 11:33:18 »
Does that calculator produce BV numbers that match all of Total War's weapons? Or are some of them off a bit?
It matches. Try it out. :)
  W W W . M E K W A R S - D O M I N I O N . C O M

  "You will fight to the last soldier, and when you die, I will call upon your damned soul to speak horrible curses at the enemy."
     - Orders of Emperor Stefan Amaris to his troops

Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #71 on: 28 August 2017, 14:02:41 »
Awesome.... in that case I'm going to use it to fill in the BV for all those random scattered infantry weapons that don't have BV, but do have total war stats lol. (sorry, off subject, I know).

Sabelkatten

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #72 on: 28 August 2017, 14:28:39 »
No, it doesn't stand, IMO. As shown, it accounts for weapon OVER-heating. Whether a weapon does 15 heat or 10 heat or 1 heat, the BV of the weapon itself remains the same.

Well, it wouldn't be incredibly complex to do so. Discounting a weapon's final BV by "penalties" would go a long way in accounting for heat. For example (just hypothetical), at the end of the calculation, you count each point of heat generated and this becomes a percentage subtracted from the final BV (rounding down). Since every weapon in the game that generates heat would get a discount, this would end up balancing out in the end.

The weapon BV remains the same because the weapon's heat output doesn't effect the weapons performance!

A standard or prototype PPC has exactly the same effect when used, thus the same BV.

However the mounting unit is effected by the increased heat output, so when you look at the entire unit you can calculate a penalty to its final BV based on its heat efficiency.

The most obvious demonstration on the ridiculous effect on changing weapons' BV depending on their heat is that you now need two BVs for every weapon - one for vehicles and one for mechs!

Or, conversely, if we simply repair the erroneous addition of 6 heat to the threshold, that would also qualify the third PPC for a discount. Removes (some of) the need to account for heat in weapon BV:

AWQ-8Q (current): 1605
AWS-8Q (standard PPC, remove 6 threshold): 1605
AWS-8Q (prototype PPC, remove 6 threshold): 1512 (5.8% drop)

It would also help eliminate some of the nonsensical problems involved with converting units over to Double Heat Sinks. For example, a PXH-1 with single heat sinks and one with double heat sinks is the same BV. This is obviously in error and it's directly caused by the +6 in the heat calculation.

PXH-1 (double heat sinks): 1041
PXH-1 (single heat sinks - current): 1041
PXH-1 (single heat sinks - proposed): 997 (4.2% drop)

Tweaks like that could make things better, but you'll still have problems with bracket fire units vs. alpha babies, "every-other-turn" units (IIRC that's the reason for the 6 heat), heavy laser abuse (currently, adding powerful high-heat weapons to a mech can actually lower its BV!) and probably some more cases that I can't think of right now.

The only way that I know of that might actually give a good BV account for both heat, range, and damage is to set up optimal firing solutions for every range from 1 to maximum and calculate a value from that - needless to say, that gets ridiculously complicated real fast!

theagent

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #73 on: 28 August 2017, 16:02:49 »
the rules are hidden, but you can calculate them backwards (like we did for the Sub Capital Weapons - and the Abstract aerospace brackets)
first the BV weapon calculator give some insight

to hit probability * damage (average number for cluster) - sum together

for example ((33+26+15)*3)/36 for the Small Laser * 1.5 for energy weapon = 9
for the small pulse laser it would be ((33+26+15)*3)/36 because of the -2 to hit modificator

http://www.heavymetalpro.com/bv_calc.htm
for switchable ammo - LBX the calculation is for the Slug - 148 to 108 for cluster


there are lots of loop holes - so you should use common knowledge to prevent "custom" weapons
TigerSharks example of the Med Pulse
what about a Snub Med Pulse

Code: [Select]
BV: 42
Damage: 6/3/1
Range: 4/5/6
To-Hit
Modifier: -4

(not to mention that different optional rules might cause a extreme different performance.

What you can do to "solve some issues"  - you could change the to hit modifier to +3 for standard weapons (you still have +4 for MRMs)
you also could reduce the damage at long ranges when you use ammunition depended weapons

Code: [Select]
MPLAS BV: 31
Damage: 6/6/6
Range: 2/4/6
To-Hit
Modifier: (+1)-2

Code: [Select]
MLAS BV: 21
Damage: 5/5/5
Range: 3/6/9
To-Hit
Modifier: (+3)0

Code: [Select]
ERMLAS BV: 28
Damage: 5/5/5
Range: 4/8/12
To-Hit
Modifier: (+3)0

this would make the "Snub Pulse of above more expensive compared to the MPLAS (would be 40)with this change

One small problem:  if you're going to have a 'Mech have 3 Prototype PPCs, then you have to consider when those were in use.  In other words, if you're using 'primitive' weapons, that means you're putting them in a Primitive 'Mech.  That means a Primitive Cockpit, Primitive Fusion Engine, & Primitive Armor,  since the Prototype PPC ended production in 2460, but even the Terran Hegemony didn't switch over to non-primitive equipment until 2470.

That means:
  • Drop down to a Primitive 195 engine to save 3.5 tons on the engine & 1 ton on the Gyro. Defensive BV multiplier drops down to X1.1, Offensive BV multiplier drops down to x0.77
  • Primitive Cockpit uses 2 of those 'saved' tons.
  • The other 2.5 tons is used for more armor, but because it's Primitive you lose 13 points.
  • Because of those changes, Defensive BV drops to 759.55 & Offensive BV drops to 471.625.  Final BV is now 1231...significantly lower than the stock Awesome.
A better example would be the MSK-5S Mackie, since the 'PPC' it has would have originally been the Prototype version.  Unfortunately, it's not as useful because BV calculations show it getting full weapon BV with the standard PPC, but it drops half the AC/5's BV with the Prototype PPC.  But you could always change it out for 3 Prototype PPCs.  You get the same BV whether they're prototypes or regulars, but you're also massively overheating both in combat & in BV calculations.

theagent

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #74 on: 29 August 2017, 15:03:08 »
For some less theoretical comparisons:
  • CN9-A Centurion has AC/10 (2 tons ammo), LRM10 (2 tons ammo), & 2 MLs (1 rear-facing), with 10 heat sinks & 8.5 tons of armor.  BV formula lets it get full value for all weapons (half for the rear ML).
  • CN9-AL model swaps out the AC/10 for a LL & a SL, plus 2.5 tons more armor & 6 more heat sinks.  BV formula still allows for full values.
  • BV increased from 967 to 1091...but only because of the extra Defensive BV.  Offensive BV actually dropped (from 463.68 to 440.16).

Alsadius

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #75 on: 29 August 2017, 20:45:05 »
Unfortunately, many factors just aren't accounted for in BattleValue.

  • Heat: 0 damage and 10 heat? Same BV as 10 damage and 15 heat.
  • Jamming: 10 damage per shot, 2 shots max (Ultra AC/10). Same BV whether it jams or not.
  • Tonnage: Whether it's 100 tons or 10 tons, it doesn't matter. Tonnage doesn't count.
  • MASC Failure: A MASC system that propels a unit to 8 MP (4/6[8]) gives the unit the same BV as a natural 8 (5/8).
  • Ammunition: A weapon with 0 shots of ammo is the same BV as one with 100 shots.

A few of those are false. Heat does get included in BV - any weapons that take a mech above +6 heat with movement are only counted at half their base BV. If you're a mech with 10 DHS and have no other weapons, a Clan ERPPC and a Gauss Rifle will have basically the same BV(assuming 2t of ammo and if you fuzz over their slightly different range brackets), but if you're trying to mount one on a mech that already has half a dozen MLs, the numbers will be very different. (Technically, the highest BV weapons are counted first, so the hypothetical Gauss and ERPPC would have the same BV, but the MLs would be different - probably four of them would be counted at half, saving you 92 base BV)

Tonnage is directly included in the formula - one point of BV per ton is included in the offensive BV formula.

Ammo is accounted for, though it's done poorly IMO. A non-ammo-using weapon has 25% more BV than an identical ammo-using weapon has when it's dry, and ammo adds 1/8 of the base BV per ton. So a weapon with 2t of ammo has the same BV as an otherwise-identical energy weapon does. This is pretty reasonable for most weapons, where a ton is perhaps 8-20 shots, and thus two tons will be enough for most engagements. But for weapons like a HAG40, it falls apart, and with machine guns it's kind of silly. IMO, it should be done by shots per gun, not by tons, but that's probably annoying.

MASC is an odd one, because the published TechManual actually had it penalized on the offensive BV side by the text of the rules, but because the tables didn't penalize it, they errata'd it to match up with the table. I agree, that's an issue.

Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #76 on: 29 August 2017, 21:23:12 »
Tonnage is directly included in the formula - one point of BV per ton is included in the offensive BV formula.

Only Mech's and vehicles count the unit's weight in the BV calculations. For vehicles it is weight/2. Nothing else does. For mechs I assumed it was to represent the battlevalue of kicking and punching, and vehicles their ramming, but Protomechs don't add anything for the possibility of a frenzy, battle armor don't account for swarm, and aerospace stuff doesn't account for ramming, so your guess is as good as mine on that account.

TigerShark

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #77 on: 29 August 2017, 23:09:57 »
A few of those are false. Heat does get included in BV - any weapons that take a mech above +6 heat with movement are only counted at half their base BV.
...Tonnage is directly included in the formula - one point of BV per ton is included in the offensive BV formula.

As I showed above, heat is not tracked. And because 50% is only taken off of the lowest-BV weapons, you'll never see a reasonable discount. So if your 'Mech has, say, three Clan ER PPCs and that's it, you won't be getting a discount on the big guns that you can't use since there's an odd exception for the weapon that actually crosses the threshold. It SHOULD be that any weapon going over the threshold is 50% BV, not the SECOND weapon to do so.

Quote
Example: I have a Mech with 16 DHS (32 heat dispersal). I have (3) Clan ER PPCs and it can only walk. 32 + 6 - 2 (walking) = 36 heat threshold. That means that all three ER PPCs will be counted, despite my being +15 heat if I choose to fire the third one and run in the same turn.

Example 2: I have a Mech with 16 DHS (32 heat dispersal). It has (2) Clan ER PPCs and (6) Clan ER Mediums. 36 heat threshold. That means (4) of the Clan ER Mediums will be at 50% BV (54 BV drop for each) meaning this 'Mech gets a 216 BV discount for heat.

That's a rather silly rule and it creates a big disparity in usefulness vs. BV. If we apply the fixes I proposed (remove the +6 and discount any weapon going over the threshold), both 'Mechs would receive (roughly) the same discount (206 for the 3rd Clan ER PPC).

Another good example would be the Orion ON1-K. This 'Mech is PLAGUED with overheating problems, especially if it takes an engine hit or is hit with inferno missiles of any kind. By moving the heat threshold from 14 down to 8, you discount both Medium lasers, giving it a ~52 BV discount ((23 + 23) * 1.12 speed factor). It's still a bad design, but at least it's not paying full price for weapons it couldn't possibly fire in the same turn as the LRM-15 and AC/10. This would bring the heat discounting in parity with bracket firing, which is where it should be.
« Last Edit: 29 August 2017, 23:15:46 by TigerShark »
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Alsadius

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #78 on: 30 August 2017, 09:17:39 »
The heat formula is a bit oversimplified, of course. Ideally, the weapon that crosses the threshold will be pro-rated accordingly - there's a big difference between the third PPC on an AWS-8Q that's mostly-sunk, and a hypothetical AWS-8Q2 that is otherwise identical except that it drops 5 HS to add a C3 master(or whatever). The current formula treats both identically, but then so does your proposed amendment, and I think that's a mistake.

That said, I disagree about your claim that the discounts are unreasonably low. Let's look at a fairly reasonable multi-range mech, the Stalker 3F. 2 LRM-10, 2 LL, 4 ML, 2 SRM-6, on 20 HS. At long range you fire the LRMs and LLs for +4 heat, and at short range you fire the MLs and SRMs for +0 heat, but in most cases it'll be one or the other. The LRMs are 90 BV, the LLs are 123, the MLs are 46, and the SRMs are 59, so it'll be added as LL > LRM > SRM > ML. The LLs and one LRM will add no heat, and the second LRM won't take it above the +6 even with movement heat, so those will be added at full price on BV. The MLs and SRMs will be half price, so you'll save 92 on the MLs and 59 on the SRMs, plus another 7 on SRM ammo, for a total of 158 BV - that is not a small discount. Maybe the second LRM should be half-price as well, for another -45, but that's arguable either way.

Also, I never thought the ON1-K was particularly bad for heat. Like the Stalker, it's a multi-range mech - LRM and AC at long range, SRM and MLs(or 1 ML and the AC) at short range. It has good alpha potential, but it can be used quite sustainably. That said, you're right about the +6 being particularly brutal in its case - trying to use it the way that BV says it could be used makes it a flamethrower very quickly. I understand the concept behind having a bit of excess to allow mechs to start playing in the 1-4 heat range, but +6 is too much for that. Probably a victim of simplification, but it's unfortunate sometimes.

TigerShark

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #79 on: 30 August 2017, 12:56:15 »
The heat formula is a bit oversimplified, of course. Ideally, the weapon that crosses the threshold will be pro-rated accordingly - there's a big difference between the third PPC on an AWS-8Q that's mostly-sunk, and a hypothetical AWS-8Q2 that is otherwise identical except that it drops 5 HS to add a C3 master(or whatever). The current formula treats both identically, but then so does your proposed amendment, and I think that's a mistake.

That said, I disagree about your claim that the discounts are unreasonably low. Let's look at a fairly reasonable multi-range mech, the Stalker 3F. 2 LRM-10, 2 LL, 4 ML, 2 SRM-6, on 20 HS. At long range you fire the LRMs and LLs for +4 heat, and at short range you fire the MLs and SRMs for +0 heat, but in most cases it'll be one or the other. The LRMs are 90 BV, the LLs are 123, the MLs are 46, and the SRMs are 59, so it'll be added as LL > LRM > SRM > ML. The LLs and one LRM will add no heat, and the second LRM won't take it above the +6 even with movement heat, so those will be added at full price on BV. The MLs and SRMs will be half price, so you'll save 92 on the MLs and 59 on the SRMs, plus another 7 on SRM ammo, for a total of 158 BV - that is not a small discount. Maybe the second LRM should be half-price as well, for another -45, but that's arguable either way.

Also, I never thought the ON1-K was particularly bad for heat. Like the Stalker, it's a multi-range mech - LRM and AC at long range, SRM and MLs(or 1 ML and the AC) at short range. It has good alpha potential, but it can be used quite sustainably. That said, you're right about the +6 being particularly brutal in its case - trying to use it the way that BV says it could be used makes it a flamethrower very quickly. I understand the concept behind having a bit of excess to allow mechs to start playing in the 1-4 heat range, but +6 is too much for that. Probably a victim of simplification, but it's unfortunate sometimes.

You're accounting for single rounds. I'm thinking of an entire battle. The Stalker STK-3F can fire (2) Large Lasers, (1) LRM-10 and run in the same turn. ( 8 + 8 + 4 + 2 = 22 (+2 heat), 21 damage average, 26 max ) So what happens next turn? What's your bracketing then? If you go over +4, you lose the ability to generate a movement modifier without going "negative" and running for a +1 THM -- Something a better-sinked unit doesn't need to deal with.

( 2 (heat) + 8 (LL) + 8 (LL) + 4 (LRM) + 2 (running) = 24 (+4 heat) ). That's your turn 2, presumably. 21 damage average, 26 max, yes? But that's not what the BV formula states. According to the formula, both large lasers and both LRMs are available each turn. The discounting doesn't occur until the SRM-6s come into play during the calculation. So even though the 2nd LRM or 2nd Large Laser are only going to be fired every-other-turn (aka 50% of the time.. looks familiar, right?), they're being dinged at full BV. If you keep this same curve, you can only fire the LL and stay under the +5 threshold.

With the suggestions I made, the STK-3F discounts BOTH LRM-10s at 50%, giving the 'Mech at 90 BV discount from current. (5.77% drop). Basically, anything that exceeds +0 heat is discounted, since you'll eventually need to pause and have a turn where you're not firing. I do agree, however, that some kind of prorating would be better. +1 over isn't the same as +4 or +15.

As for the ON1-K, the problem isn't within the bracketing. It's that it's not sturdy when it comes to incurring additional heat. If infernos are on the table, if it takes an engine critical, if you're using atmospheric rules from TacOps, or if you are moving through/standing in a fire, your ability to use your weapons is either diminished or removed entirely. A single SRM-6 salvo loaded with inferno can cause your 'Mech to blow up in one turn (unless you're using the TacOps heat scale). At best you'll be hobbled with an average of +8 heat.
« Last Edit: 30 August 2017, 13:13:48 by TigerShark »
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Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #80 on: 30 August 2017, 15:10:48 »
I think the thing the canon BV heat calculations are try to account for is the fact that Mechs (and aerospace fighters) CAN actually overheat. They can operate at above net 0 heat, where every other unit in the game has to be built to maintain heat neutrality. The BV calculation for mechs and fighters tries to reflect that... or at least it seems that way to me.

theagent

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #81 on: 30 August 2017, 16:08:54 »
The main reason that the the BV for individual weapons doesn't account for heat, tonnage, or slots is because those are accounted for in other areas.  Basically, a weapon's BV assumes an ideal circumstance (base TN of 4 to hit at Short Range, which assumes a Wet Behind the Ears/Gunnery 7 operator, using remote/drone controls at +1 modifier, to fire on a gunnery range at an immobile target with the -4 modified; 7+1-4 = 4), & assumes a) any weapons that need ammo have it, & b) that all heat is dissipated by enough heat sinks for testing purposes.   It literally just measures how much damage is done over the given range.

Tonnage & slots are accounted for in the construction phase.  Available tonnage & slots for weapons is limited by engine size, allocated armor, use of advanced materials like Endo Steel or double heat sinks, etc.  You can't physically put an AC20 in a 20-ton 'Mech, & putting an AC10 in would give you a lighter & easier to kill Urbie...but only arming an 80-ton 'Mech wit an AC20 means a lot of tonnage gets wasted.

Heat comes into play with the BV calculation.  If you skimp on the heat sinks to pack as much weaponry as possible into a 'Mech, you can still have a high BV, but in gameplay you'll find a lot of the firepower wasted.  Conversely, unless you're just using the default 10 heat sinks, leaving excess heat dissipation can be just as wasteful.

Cryhavok101

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #82 on: 30 August 2017, 17:12:08 »
You can't physically put an AC20 in a 20-ton 'Mech

I present to you the H4-H4 Yesican:
Code: [Select]
H4-H4 Yesican
Clan experimental
20 tons 
BV: 526
Cost: 1,897,740 C-bills

Movement: 3/5
Engine: 60 XL
Heat Sinks: 10 [20]
Cockpit: Small Cockpit
Gyro: Standard Gyro

Internal: 33 (Endo-Steel)
Armor: 9/69 (Ferro-Fibrous)
                     Internal    Armor
--------------------------------------
Center Torso                6        2
Center Torso (rear)                  0
Right Torso                 5        1
Right Torso (rear)                   0
Left Torso                  5        1
Left Torso (rear)                    0
Right Arm                   3        0
Left Arm                    3        0
Right Leg                   4        0
Left Leg                    4        0

Weapon                         Loc  Heat
----------------------------------------
Ultra AC/20                    RT/CT     7
ER Small Laser                  HD     2

Ammo                           Loc Shots
----------------------------------------
Ultra AC/20 Ammo                RT     5
Ultra AC/20 Ammo                RT     5


Thunderbolt

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #83 on: 11 October 2017, 08:18:44 »
...Where I think we might be missing out, though, is the use of specialized ammo for the Rifle (Cannon) from Tactical Operations.  Per the note at the bottom of page 338, they only use "standard" ammo.  However, these are the cannons that truly correspond to our real-world weapons (like the old M68 105mm or Rheinmetall 120mm tank cannons)...

Comparing BT "cannons" with "autocannons" shows that the ACs are ~2X the mass of the corresponding Cs.

Similarly, rummaging around on Wikipedia, it appears multi-barrel Rotary ACs are ~2x the mass of single-barrel guns.  Also it appears that gun mass scales roughly as the square of the bore diameter, and that 120-130mm cannons mass 3.5-4.0tons.

Throwing an idea out there,

AC/2 --> 100mm RAC
AC/5 --> 125mm RAC
AC/10 -> 150mm RAC
AC/20 -> 175mm RAC

Think that would agree with some of the novel "fluff" and be physically plausible.  Inexpertly, the BT rules appear plausible, because smaller diameter guns can have proportionately longer barrels (55-66x the bore size) than larger guns (x33-44 say)... such that effective accuracy & range could wind up being inversely proportional to gun class.  Furthermore, BT already has "long barreled" (HV-) and "snub nosed" (light-) ACs that account for varying barrel length at constant bore size.

Keep all the tonnages & crits the same, just up ACs to something like TacOps rapid fire / RAC rapid fire rules.  UACs & RACs extra tons would represent "recoil compensation" affording additional bonus to-hit modifiers.

Somewhere the "fluff" states that one AC attack represents a burst of 3-5 rounds.  And 125mm (=AC/5) rounds weigh around 10kg apiece or 100 per ton. 

So I offer that one AC "shot" is a burst of 5 rounds or "once around" (1 round per barrel), and that all AC "shots per ton" be multiplied x5 to calculate actual individual "rounds per ton".

AC/2 --> 100mm RAC (5 barrels) w/ 225 rounds per ton (250?)
AC/5 --> 125mm RAC (5 barrels) w/ 100 rounds per ton
AC/10 -> 150mm RAC (5 barrels) w/ 50 rounds per ton
AC/20 -> 175mm RAC (5 barrels) w/ 25 rounds per ton

Multi-barrel RACs can have very high RoF such that "ACs" (interpreted as advanced 5-barrel RACs) could churn through >100 rounds per BT turn (albeit with increasingly enormous "recoil" to-hit penalty modifiers).

Aposiopesis

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #84 on: 22 October 2017, 12:43:12 »
I've done this before (I actually have a full rebalance of all the weapons of Battletech that does not touch crit space, tonnage, and BV only minimally. I use it in Megamek especially).

BV is definitely not the way to go here. The problem with balancing via BV is that you're trying to use a second system to patch a broken first system. As such, it's easy to find and expose flaws with BV. It's better to correct the broken system in the first place--that is how the weapons balance and operate in reference to each other and within the mech design rules.

I took my inspiration directly from what is quoted numerous times about the Clans in the fiction--they load up on expendables for assaults because they expect a quick victory, and expendables supposedly hit harder. Well, in the current balance they largely don't, but in mine they actually do--at the cost of running out of ammo and other issues.

ACs:

First, take the optional rapid fire rule and make it function similar to how Ultra and MASC work now. Perma jam on 3, and since the AC's aren't made to fire sustained, next failure is 5, next is 8, etc.

AC2: 8/16/24/(32) range brackets, 2 damage, 0 heat, no min range. 70 shots per ton.
AC5: 6/13/21 range brackets, 5 damage, 1 heat, no min range. 28 shots per ton.
AC10: 5/11/18 range brackets, 10 damage, 2 heat, no min range, 14 shots per ton.
AC20: 3/7/12 range brackets, 20 damage, 4 heat, no min range, 7 shots per ton.

In my extensive playtesting experience, this helps AC in comparison to their energy contemporaries tremendously and gives good reason to use them.

AC2: It's still a relatively weak niche weapon, but in IntroTech it at least has a unique niche. Removing the silly min range as well as heat helps to pair it with other weapons where it can at least be properly supplementary to them (Blackjack and Jagermech, as examples).

PPC vs AC5: The AC5 has a longer long range that can bracket well with LRMs and the lack of min range helps it stack as a heat efficient pairing to medium lasers and other small weapons. This helps make designs that utilize it in such a mix like the Zeus and Shadow Hawk make a lot more sense. The PPC is still both more efficient and scarier, even with the occasional rapid fire from the AC5, but the AC5 is much more flexible. This helps offset the ammo kabooms and running out of said ammo.

AC10 vs Large Laser: The AC10 packs a bigger bunch out to ranges that can pair alongside the PPC (Banshee 3S as one possibility where this makes sense). The minor heat drop, the occasional rapid fire, and the slight range increase are really all this needed to be a bit more competitive with the large laser (one of them still goes boom and runs out of ammo, the other doesn't).

AC20 vs Medium Lasers: Even with the heat adjustment medium lasers are still more efficient within the first 10 heatsink range, but beyond that the AC20 starts to catch up. To counteract the kabooming and such, the AC20 likewise gets a longer (unoccupied in 3025!) range bracket for mid and long. Also, even if it's still not winning in terms of actual efficiency, the possibility that the AC20 can potentially double tap on you puts the proper fear of our based RNG god into people.

These changes then carry over into Ultras, with Ultra's getting a touch more range at the expense of tonnage and heat. Ultra mode simply changes where the fail on 2 is a jam you can clear. I think my IS Ultras look something like:

UAC2: 8/17/27/(36), 2 damage, 0 heat
UAC5: 7/14/21(28), 5 damage, 1 heat
UAC10: 6/12/18, 10 damage, 3 heat
UAC20: 4/8/12, 20 damage, 6 heat

Or something like that, I don't have it right in front of me.

Anyhow, I can extrapolate more on this. Or I might already have somewhere else.

RunandFindOut

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #85 on: 23 October 2017, 12:20:09 »
Those are very good house rules.  Better than messing with the weight and crits like I have done.  Consider it swiped.
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Empyrus

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #86 on: 23 October 2017, 13:43:35 »
Aposiopesis
How do LB-Xs change if at all? Or RACs? And what about ClanTech? Class-2 ACs are kinda terrible regardless of type.
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RunandFindOut

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #87 on: 23 October 2017, 14:52:16 »
I know that my solution tends to be getting rid of LB-X autocannons and just giving ordinary AC a cluster shell that does the same thing.
One does not just walk into Detroit

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Empyrus

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Re: House Rules to Make Autocannons Not Suck
« Reply #88 on: 23 October 2017, 14:58:17 »
That leads to weight/crit changes.
Not an option i'd take. Otherwise one might as well overhaul everything.
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