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Author Topic: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries  (Read 1398 times)

RifleMech

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #30 on: 08 August 2020, 01:15:50 »
The problem is that the 1 slot Hoff-DSHS have been retconned out of existence. There's mention of how corrosive they are and that they're more compact than SLDF DHS but there isn't a single unit with them. Even the Super Griffin has DHS-Ps.

Yes, they were corrosive and dangerous to use. The fluff for the Bombard 010 talks about how the internal structure's been damaged by them. The Bombard was introduced in 3054. It also can't use DHS or DHS-Ps as it doesn't have enough internal space. The only double that it could use would be the Hoff single slot DSHS. So even with their being expensive to maintain and dangerous to use I can see a place for them. I don't know why rules couldn't be written for them. The Bombard just isn't as effective without them and part of it's fame was that it could keep firing it's 2 AC/20's without heat build up.

I also don't think that that Hoff-DSHS were ever able to be mounted in the engine. Even the original illegal Super Griffin didn't. But I don't think they need to. It makes them unique. Better in that they take up less crits outside the engine but not so good that they can be in the engine. Plus the internal damage they do.

As far as timelines go, the Hoff DHSH were used in 3022. The 4th Succession War Blackjack appeared in 3029. And the Fed Suns make DHS in 3040. If the Hoff single crit DSHS were kept there's still 7 years for the Capellans to create DHS-Ps and for them to be spread around for the War of 3039. Then after the war the FedSuns perfects them and produces standard DHS.

In a way that would help explain the Blackjack-3X. Not in heat sinking ability. Not even single crit DSHS could do that. But the DHS-Ps would be a technological improvement over the DSHS. They're not as dangerous and are closer to SL DHS.

At least that's what I'd wish had happened, and head canon says happened.


I do agree that before the Clans the chances of an average merc unit having more advanced tech is slim and most likely came as salvage. I also think that many upgrades weren't as efficient. Canon actually has mechs who's upgrades weren't that thought out. I do think that there were some refit kits with prototype tech to upgrade units with before the War of 3039. I also think the most efficient units would have had to be factory upgrades.








Hellraiser

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #31 on: 08 August 2020, 16:00:05 »
The Hoff-DHS could be mounted in the engine.
If you look at the scenario where they are introduced.
The mechs chosen ONLY had engine heatsinks for most of them.

Going from memory here......  but it was 2 lances of an ELH company both under strength with 3 mechs available from each.
The rule was pick 1 lance of the 2, and apply 20 Hoth-DHS to the 3 mechs however you choose.
The 1st lance & obvious choice was a Fire Lance w/ 2 Archer & a Rifleman.
The 2nd lance was a Recon lance IIRC with a Pixie & 2 other mechs that I can't recall, maybe bugs?

Archers & Pixie have 10 HS in the engine...... Riflemen have 9 HS in the engine & 1 external.
The obvious choice was to put 10 in the Rifleman & 5 in each Archer allow for some majorly improved heat management.

The one possibility here is if the scenario pack came out before the rule where mech had HS in the engine?
I honestly don't recall the exacting timing of that but I know that change was REALLY early in the game.
Not sure if it was a switch from Battledroids to Battletech-2E or from 2E to Citytech of it was when boxed sets switched over to the first rule book... the BT Manual? 

IIRC the Blackjack was originally fluffed as using 10 of the Hoff style DHS.
Later when they were coming up with date changes they nerfed the 3 into the 3X & gave the 3 a later intro date.

I just try to head canon it as the Hoff-DHS were all just test bed options used on prototypes or tested w/ units like the ELH & as soon as possible they were swapped back out for SHS or DHS-P's externally & eventually proper DHS.

3041: General Lance Hawkins: The Equalizers
3053: Star Colonel Rexor Kerensky: The Silver Wolves

"I don't shoot Urbanmechs, I walk up, stomp on their foot, wait for the head to pop open & drop in a hand grenade (or Elemental)" - Joel47
Against mechs, infantry have two options: Run screaming from Godzilla, or giggle under your breath as the arrogant fools blunder into your trap. - Weirdo

RifleMech

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #32 on: 09 August 2020, 06:34:49 »
The Hoff-DHS could be mounted in the engine.
If you look at the scenario where they are introduced.
The mechs chosen ONLY had engine heatsinks for most of them.

Going from memory here......  but it was 2 lances of an ELH company both under strength with 3 mechs available from each.
The rule was pick 1 lance of the 2, and apply 20 Hoth-DHS to the 3 mechs however you choose.
The 1st lance & obvious choice was a Fire Lance w/ 2 Archer & a Rifleman.
The 2nd lance was a Recon lance IIRC with a Pixie & 2 other mechs that I can't recall, maybe bugs?

Archers & Pixie have 10 HS in the engine...... Riflemen have 9 HS in the engine & 1 external.
The obvious choice was to put 10 in the Rifleman & 5 in each Archer allow for some majorly improved heat management.

You know I think you're right.  :thumbsup:  Rereading the rule it doesn't say that they can't be mounted in the engine. It just says that they replace standard heat sinks and take 1 critical slot. I think I got hung up on the critical slot part.

Quote
The one possibility here is if the scenario pack came out before the rule where mech had HS in the engine?
I honestly don't recall the exacting timing of that but I know that change was REALLY early in the game.
Not sure if it was a switch from Battledroids to Battletech-2E or from 2E to Citytech of it was when boxed sets switched over to the first rule book... the BT Manual? 

The switch was from Battledroids to Battletech 2nd Ed. I'm not sure if the 2nd Ed or the Scenario Pack came out first though. They both came out in 85. It'd make more sense if the Scenario Pack came out first but since it doesn't say "cannot be used to replace engine mounted heat sinks" the door is open to putting them in the engine. And it would work on the Bombard.


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IIRC the Blackjack was originally fluffed as using 10 of the Hoff style DHS.
Later when they were coming up with date changes they nerfed the 3 into the 3X & gave the 3 a later intro date.

Totally nerfed it.  :'(


Quote
I just try to head canon it as the Hoff-DHS were all just test bed options used on prototypes or tested w/ units like the ELH & as soon as possible they were swapped back out for SHS or DHS-P's externally & eventually proper DHS.

My head cannon goes the other way. I think some would see the increased heat sinking and the smaller size of the DSHS worth the increased maintenance. Even after DHS-Ps and DHS were in production, some would see DSHS as a good, and in some cases only alternative. They're obviously not the best heat sinks but when you've got a space and weight crunch they're pretty much the only option. Compact Heat Sinks can take care of the space but are heavier. Everything else take up more space.


I think by the War of 3039 that DSHS might be one of the few things open to mercs. Mostly because of the maintenance issue.
« Last Edit: 09 August 2020, 06:38:29 by RifleMech »

Hellraiser

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #33 on: 09 August 2020, 16:19:20 »
I'd think that Solaris is the one place that for sure the Hoff/Corrosive models would be used.

Your doing maintenance on those mechs ALL time.

So the Hoff sinks being replaced & rebuilding the corroded areas would be part of regular work since the mechs are seeing combat on the monthly basis at least.

Some unit sitting on garrison duty for years on end probably wouldn't want the work of maintaining them when other mechs in the unit get regular oil chances w/o the work of rebuilding damaged sections.

And the fact that inside the engine sinks would probably doubly bad since the damage is inside the expensive fusion plant.

3041: General Lance Hawkins: The Equalizers
3053: Star Colonel Rexor Kerensky: The Silver Wolves

"I don't shoot Urbanmechs, I walk up, stomp on their foot, wait for the head to pop open & drop in a hand grenade (or Elemental)" - Joel47
Against mechs, infantry have two options: Run screaming from Godzilla, or giggle under your breath as the arrogant fools blunder into your trap. - Weirdo

RifleMech

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #34 on: 10 August 2020, 00:46:30 »
Totally. Solaris is also where mechs tend to be maxed out to their limits. Plus all kinds of tech seems to find its way there. It's a natural environment for the Bombard which was created there. However, the fluff says that there are older Bombards with the corrosive heat sinks that were still suffering from the internal damage they caused. I'm going to guess they were sold to lower tier warriors and stables who couldn't perform that kind of maintenance.

I'm leaning towards agreeing Militia units might be reluctant to use them do to the increased maintenance. Then again maintenance might be the most that happens. I'm leaning more towards the increased operating costs, not just for the maintenance but also for the chemicals, their handling and their disposal. I think that'd be the biggest turn off for Militias.

Other than Solaris VII, the next most likely users would be frontline units. They're expecting to see heavy repairs and even losses. Losses of these units also helps in that they complicate the enemy's salvaging. They're not going to know which units have those heat sinks. That'd make it easier to counter attack and gain back more salvage for your troops.

Mohammed As`Zaman Bey

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #35 on: 10 August 2020, 02:01:20 »
I'd think that Solaris is the one place that for sure the Hoff/Corrosive models would be used.
  Agreed. Using components to boost performance, even short-term, isn't new. The Luftwaffe used nitrous oxide boost for high-level, fast aircraft. N2O feeds oxygen into combustion engines and results in boosted power, with a possible risk of structural damage due to increased pressure, which has cracked cylinders, damaged crankshafts and pistons.

  What happens is the pilot weighs the benefits against the risks. If doubling HS capacity, even limited to the engine, may significantly increase completing a successful, lucrative mission, expensive repairs might be worth it. I could see mercs keeping Hoff-DHS in storage, ready to use for that single raid where they might score big and afford the time and expenses for subsequent repairs.
  You just have the weigh the costs vs benefits.

  I'd say the BTU should have more "questionable" prototype equipment that sensible units would avoid like the plague while other, less well-supplied units may embrace.

  A note on cheap equipment: I used to own a pre-WW1 Moisin-Nagant battle rifle that I would shoot in local competitions. I would use Norma 7.62 x 54 mm ammo and did very well. One of my friends gave me a can of Egyptian-made bullets so I went down to the range and fired a few...I shot at the 50m target several times but could not find a bullet hole. After about a dozen shots I finally hit the target. The Egyptian-made bullets couldn't achieve a 1 meter group, which explains why so many 3rd world troops using AKs don't bother with using sights, preferring the "spray and pray" method of firing. Aiming was just a waste of time.
  Using the above example, I added a market of sheer crap weapons and ammo to the market of the games I ran, for the units and players who were on a serious shoestring budget...or didn't know better.

RifleMech

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #36 on: 10 August 2020, 02:42:17 »
  Agreed. Using components to boost performance, even short-term, isn't new. The Luftwaffe used nitrous oxide boost for high-level, fast aircraft. N2O feeds oxygen into combustion engines and results in boosted power, with a possible risk of structural damage due to increased pressure, which has cracked cylinders, damaged crankshafts and pistons.

  What happens is the pilot weighs the benefits against the risks. If doubling HS capacity, even limited to the engine, may significantly increase completing a successful, lucrative mission, expensive repairs might be worth it. I could see mercs keeping Hoff-DHS in storage, ready to use for that single raid where they might score big and afford the time and expenses for subsequent repairs.
  You just have the weigh the costs vs benefits.

  I'd say the BTU should have more "questionable" prototype equipment that sensible units would avoid like the plague while other, less well-supplied units may embrace.

  A note on cheap equipment: I used to own a pre-WW1 Moisin-Nagant battle rifle that I would shoot in local competitions. I would use Norma 7.62 x 54 mm ammo and did very well. One of my friends gave me a can of Egyptian-made bullets so I went down to the range and fired a few...I shot at the 50m target several times but could not find a bullet hole. After about a dozen shots I finally hit the target. The Egyptian-made bullets couldn't achieve a 1 meter group, which explains why so many 3rd world troops using AKs don't bother with using sights, preferring the "spray and pray" method of firing. Aiming was just a waste of time.
  Using the above example, I added a market of sheer crap weapons and ammo to the market of the games I ran, for the units and players who were on a serious shoestring budget...or didn't know better.

Too bad we can't legally mount superchargers on aerospace units.

I totally agree. There should be more questionable prototype equipment. I think there should be all kinds of equipment that regular units would never think to take into combat while other units may.

I use salvage equipment and negative quirks for cheap weapons and equipment. Not everyone can afford the best.

Mohammed As`Zaman Bey

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #37 on: 10 August 2020, 12:08:51 »
Not everyone can afford the best.
  Indeed. I still remember the "Mad max" era BTU of extreme shortage, where named, canon units fielded 'Mechs with damaged armor and broken weapons that they could not repair. After decades of fighting, using their cunning and skill instead of having state-of-the-art toys to start off with, they made it to the big league.

  As a GM, allowing players to begin with "gods of the battlefield" with the best available  equipment means they are just fighting out of personal entertainment. War is just an activity to stave off boredom, because they have already reached their goals and have no room to grow. An elite soldier with a customized Assault 'Mech is not where people begin their careers but the point where most characters would retire.

Player: I spent all of my points to start off as a general.
GM: Cool...
Player: I can't wait to lead my regiment...
GM: Hmmm, your Admin skill is really low and you don't even have Bureaucracy...
Player:I'll be in my command 'Mech, my subordinates will handle all that.
GM: You'll be inspecting FedCom Mess Halls for the next five years, or until you retire. Good luck.

RifleMech

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Re: Lostech Field Upgrades and Mercenaries
« Reply #38 on: 11 August 2020, 04:35:21 »
  Indeed. I still remember the "Mad max" era BTU of extreme shortage, where named, canon units fielded 'Mechs with damaged armor and broken weapons that they could not repair. After decades of fighting, using their cunning and skill instead of having state-of-the-art toys to start off with, they made it to the big league.

  As a GM, allowing players to begin with "gods of the battlefield" with the best available  equipment means they are just fighting out of personal entertainment. War is just an activity to stave off boredom, because they have already reached their goals and have no room to grow. An elite soldier with a customized Assault 'Mech is not where people begin their careers but the point where most characters would retire.


For me it'd depend on the campaign and the era it takes place in. Unless they happen to find something, or that unit/person has been chosen to test some new equipment the best they'll get is a standard unit. Maybe with some damage that hasn't been repaired yet. The unit's condition goes down from there. Maybe they'll fix it up or replace it. Maybe they won't.

I do wish there were more units and variants using non standard tech. Not just with downgraded units or FrankenMechs but units using available tech that wasn't available to us when BT started. Like  Mortars, Recon Cameras, Dispensers, etc.


Quote
Player: I spent all of my points to start off as a general.
GM: Cool...
Player: I can't wait to lead my regiment...
GM: Hmmm, your Admin skill is really low and you don't even have Bureaucracy...
Player:I'll be in my command 'Mech, my subordinates will handle all that.
GM: You'll be inspecting FedCom Mess Halls for the next five years, or until you retire. Good luck.

LOL!  :thumbsup:

 

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