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Author Topic: Tag and/or Narc  (Read 2775 times)

Greatclub

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #60 on: 14 September 2021, 12:41:05 »
Heh. Have one of the "shutting down the word is easy" players run through wolf and blake. The Widows have three guardians, a quarter of their force. Wolfhound, galowglas, firefly.

The OV have three and a half; king crab, makak, and deva, and a character who can pull one out of her ###.

I know who I'd expect to be winning the electronic battles a few games in. If nothing else, the pilot of the firefly is a very high priority target for other reasons.

Finally, wasn't ECCM was introduced in MaxTech? It always would have been far optional, as well as johnny-come-lately.
« Last Edit: 15 September 2021, 00:43:01 by Greatclub »

Colt Ward

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #61 on: 14 September 2021, 12:50:46 »
For sole use, Artemis does weigh less for any mech with 3 or less launchers.  Artemis is 1 ton per launcher, and NARC is a minimum of 4 tons of investment.  Now, for a Lance, that could be much different, of course.

Or one could remove the two rear-firing lasers or switch them to forward and remove the arm lasers so they can be open to punch...  Endo-Steel could also be installed (though far more difficult).  XL Engines are not the exclusive property of doing that.

True, except that as our local Battlemaster said it: "I don't want to deal with all the ECM layers and trying to deal with that mess."  With that perspective, especially with people still trying to get a hold of the standard equipment in Total Warfare and Tech Manual, I can understand leaving it to Tac Ops: Advanced Rules.

#1, you are still altering the firing platforms while with NARC you just load different ammo

#2, I was specifically refering to what I remember they did with the 3050 Archer.

#3, Without ECCM you end up with a hard advantage rather than the rock/paper/scissors.  I bring ECM and I can wreck C3, C3i, Artemis, and other various electronics I pay BV for (and in C3/C3i case, expensively) without a force planning alternative . . . it breaks BT's 'all equipment has a counter' unwritten rule.
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Greatclub

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #62 on: 14 September 2021, 12:55:04 »
#2, I was specifically refering to what I remember they did with the 3050 Archer.

The steiner and dragoons archers had XLs, but they were also the ones with the narcs. The Marik model had endo/artemis, and didn't need much more.

Charistoph

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #63 on: 14 September 2021, 13:09:04 »
#1, you are still altering the firing platforms while with NARC you just load different ammo

Not if solo, as you'd have to install the NARC on it anyway.

And if the lance has only one unit with missiles, adding a missile so that other one can use its missiles means you're altering a single mech either way.

So a lot depends on lance makeup.  A predominance of missiles boats that is looking for a minimum refit would be better off with a NARC buddy, but for a Catapult being the lone missile boat in the unit, it might be better off with just adding Artemis IV.

#2, I was specifically refering to what I remember they did with the 3050 Archer.

That's not how it read.  You stated, "the 3025 Archer has to get an XL to squeeze in the change".  No mention was made about it being changed in to a specific known variant.  Artemis isn't THAT heavy for 2 launchers.

#3, Without ECCM you end up with a hard advantage rather than the rock/paper/scissors.  I bring ECM and I can wreck C3, C3i, Artemis, and other various electronics I pay BV for (and in C3/C3i case, expensively) without a force planning alternative . . . it breaks BT's 'all equipment has a counter' unwritten rule.

I didn't argue about the balance of the situation, I talked about the ability to track it.  Hard "no's" are easier to track than a "maybe" you have to work with after every Movement Phase.

Having that balance IS nice, in fact when I install C3i for "anything goes" nights, I usually install an Angel Suite to make jamming it difficult with ECCM.
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #64 on: 14 September 2021, 20:04:10 »
If you are retrofitting Artemis there is no need to keep the same sized launcher. 15s work. A 15 and a 20. Whatever. OK loading different ammo that has a reasonable chance to be of little use. Artemis works every turn. Most units would be retrofitting Narcs anyway. Yes it would be 1 in 4 or 1 in 3 per company to be effective but a unit to unit comparison isn't meaningful. Few Fire Lances will have exclusively LRM boats as well. You have to specialize a lance to really hope to take advantage of Narc. You can field refit most units to use Artemis. Many early 3050 variants used it, so once we start seeing those, it isn't a matter of field refitting.

And as was stated earlier, an XL is not the only way to get Artemis. Such an approach is a strawman. A false choice. Easier swaps like dumping the rear ML's, reducing launcher size, Endo etc.

Artemis IS lighter considering the idea that to be effective you'd want more than 1 launcher, otherwise that fancy ammo is a wasted cost. (In game world terms, twice as expensive as typical ammo, the Artemis ammo gets the benefit unless countered) Why? Assuming 4 tons for NARC is a big assumption. 6 shots in that single ton of ammo? Even if you hit 50% of the time with the beacon (no guarantee at all) 3 marked units. That assumes your marker unit isn't killed because it has to close to 9 hexes or less (and 6 or less if you want to have much chance of hitting those 3 times) 5 or even 6 tons for a single unit. That's the weight a single

If we are going to assume ECM is common sure, Artemis gets negated pretty easily. If that's the case, Narc will be negated fairly easily as well, especially considering how infrequently the narc is going to be active.

I consider Narc wasted space unless you have sold out to it. 1 unit in every lance should have it at a minimum and probably 2 in a unit used for marking or in a fire lance itself. (Depending upon what you are doing). If not, why bother. It becomes a gimmick rather than a force multiplier. 4 units with Narc in a company with adequate ammo (say 2 tons) would be 20 tons of equipment in that company. Is a Company going to have 20 LRM launchers? Maybe. My company might have 10 and I didn't have to sell out to use the Narcs.

Yes TAG and Artemis use different ammo. Tag is even easier and lighter to use. With the update to the TAG errata in 2018, TAG ignoring terrain penalties and the to hit mod for the moving spotter for IDF. Yeech (on top of Ignoring the targets move mods and the +1 for IDF) Narc doesn't come close. You could retro fit TAG into half a company for 6 tons and let it RAIN!

Narc has a very strong effect, no doubt about it. It's weight, difficulty to use and relative ease in countering makes it an inferior choice to Artemis or TAG. Excepting perhaps if you really sell out to it.

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #65 on: 14 September 2021, 20:41:10 »
Narc has a very strong effect, no doubt about it. It's weight, difficulty to use and relative ease in countering makes it an inferior choice to Artemis or TAG. Excepting perhaps if you really sell out to it.

NARC and Artemis have the same negations- and as stated above by someone else, NARC is superior in the ECM environment b/c that NARC'd machine has to stay in the ECM bubble while the Artemis advantage is lost if the target is in the ECM bubble or the flight path goes through a ECM bubble.

TAG is only really useful when Semi-G & Homing A4/tube roll out, the former is rare outside the League (and Blakist theft) until after the Jihad.  Loading up on the homing artillery also increases the BV and is more common among players than it is 'in universe.'
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #66 on: 14 September 2021, 21:15:26 »
It seems that operationally, a NARC launcher swaps 1:1 with an SRM6 launcher. Same tonnage, crits, and range.
The range is especially important, since you want a Mech or vehicle that is good at using an SRM6. In my view, being good at SRMs requires both speed and armor, since the enemy likely has a ton of stuff it can respond with.

But there aren't a ton of 'Mechs that I'd consider "good" as an SRM6 platform in the 3050s.
Further, I'd agree that for a Mech to be truly good at it, it needs 2 launchers, and 2 tons of ammo for each. So even a Wolverine mod wouldn't really be the way to go. You'd have to look at things like the Javelin. Or grab a Vulcan and use its AC2 tonnage.

I think that's kind of a tricky proposition in the 3050s.

DevianID

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #67 on: 14 September 2021, 23:35:56 »
Really tag and narc come down to short term or long term application.  As mentioned, 1 narc hitting is good for the whole game on that target.  Tag must be applied every turn.  So just like no mech wants the job of placing a narc, no mech wants the job of being in the enemy LOS every turn of the game for TAG.

The main TAG advantage is putting tag on infantry forces since they do a good job hiding.  Narc on infantry would also be ideal but they dont have good options, so NARC probably wants a vtol or conventional fighter to boom overhead, deliver a NARC to an ECM-less enemy, and retreat.  If the narc misses you can still use narc ammo as normal.

Charistoph

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #68 on: 15 September 2021, 00:57:25 »
Assuming 4 tons for NARC is a big assumption.

It is an assumption of minimum mass to dedicate to its use, and to be frank, it is not uncommon for standard variants to only dedicate one ton of ammo to those it is installed.  Of course, there are a lot of times when they haven't included more ammo than one would desire in a game, or MORE than one would normally desire in a game.
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #69 on: 15 September 2021, 17:34:31 »
There's actually a few light, fast designs carrying Narc during the Clan Invasion on the IS side. Vehicle wise there's the Zephyr Hovertank (Royal), Scimitar Medium Hover Tank (TAG), and later on the Striker Light Tank (Narc). 'Mech wise the Kintaro KTO-19, Kintaro KTO-19b, Jenner JR7-K (Grace), and Raven RVN-3L all appear before the start of the Invasion, with the Phoenix Hawk PXH-1bC and Raven RVN-3M appearing slightly later on.

If you're table allows customs I'd suggest looking to the Heavy APC lineup for vehicles to modify.

For a really out there solution allow infantry to place Narc beacons during leg attacks. Fan fact: Taking this idea and running with it I wrote a vignette about Romano banning sex toys in the CC as implements of Davion corruption, something I think Weirdo would be proud of.

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #70 on: 15 September 2021, 17:56:59 »
And none of those are common or wide spread.  For the most part you are talking about ComGuard's SL left overs and what the Dracs cobbled together.

BUT . . . a old SL NARC'er in ComGuard colors backed up by Focht's upgun'd Archers?  A buzz saw for someone on Tukayyid.
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Greatclub

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #71 on: 16 September 2021, 00:13:42 »
Didn't Kerensky MINE! almost all of the royal gear?

The -5cs, comstar's Tukkayyid buzzsaw, has Artemis
« Last Edit: 16 September 2021, 01:43:39 by Greatclub »

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #72 on: 16 September 2021, 00:42:19 »
The -5cs has Artemis. And didn't Kerensky MINE! almost all of the royal gear?

CS usually denotes a ComStar variant.  The Strider and Owens Omnimechs both have canon configs that use NARC as well.

DevianID

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #73 on: 16 September 2021, 01:19:04 »
Another interesting fact about NARC.  In asymmetric warfare, where one side only engages from out of LOS with LRMs, using hidden Narc ambushers, getting Narc'd once would literally be a reason to immediately eject as the indirect LRMs will eventually kill anything with a NARC beacon stuck to it unless it can find ECM somewhere.

Adastra

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #74 on: 16 September 2021, 06:29:25 »
Another interesting fact about NARC.  In asymmetric warfare, where one side only engages from out of LOS with LRMs, using hidden Narc ambushers, getting Narc'd once would literally be a reason to immediately eject as the indirect LRMs will eventually kill anything with a NARC beacon stuck to it unless it can find ECM somewhere.

I mean, assuming the enemy is unable to fix the LRM-boats. And if they can't manage that you could do the same tactic with like, artillery and hidden infantry or scout VTOLs, who wouldn't even have to reveal themselves or get into weapon range (they can also spot for indirect fire if necessary). In such a scenario it would probably be justified to pull out much more unfun tactics.

In a battle where the LRMs can't just dance around at will, the playbook for a NARC'd target is probably to either go aggressive and try to get in under the minimum range umbrella or stay back and mobile enough to make the target numbers unpalatable while helping hunt the NARCers.

Fun anti-NARC tactic. Get yourself an iNARC with ECM pods. Stick your friends. Instant protection at no weight to anyone but the iNARC carrier(s). Probably not useful compared to just sprinkling ECM around due to the weight, but fun. Anyone know how long in the fiction (or rules if there are some) NARC pods are supposed to last for?
« Last Edit: 16 September 2021, 06:39:04 by Adastra »

Weirdo

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #75 on: 16 September 2021, 08:18:38 »
Fun anti-NARC tactic. Get yourself an iNARC with ECM pods. Stick your friends. Instant protection at no weight to anyone but the iNARC carrier(s).

Not legal. Trust me I tried(for a different iNARC reason), but even when using TacOps rules, you're not allowed to directly target a friendly unit with a weapon system. Friendly fire had to be either a house rule or a special scenario-specific rule.
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #76 on: 16 September 2021, 15:59:37 »
Not legal. Trust me I tried(for a different iNARC reason), but even when using TacOps rules, you're not allowed to directly target a friendly unit with a weapon system. Friendly fire had to be either a house rule or a special scenario-specific rule.
And that's ignoring the other problems with this tactic, ECM pods are 'third-party' ECM, they AREN'T friendly to the firing side, so you lose all you ECM affected goodies, like C3, Artemis, and the like.

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #77 on: 16 September 2021, 16:27:19 »
Still waiting for the errata where BA can fire NARC-capable SRMs & LRMs since we have Compact NARC equipped BA.
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #78 on: 16 September 2021, 18:52:15 »
And that's ignoring the other problems with this tactic, ECM pods are 'third-party' ECM, they AREN'T friendly to the firing side, so you lose all you ECM affected goodies, like C3, Artemis, and the like.

I feel safe in assuming that the player in question would probably not choose mechs that would be overly hampered by ECM to use this trick on...
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SCC

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #79 on: 20 September 2021, 02:01:51 »
So in regards to the lack of fast, light platforms carrying these two items at the start of the Clan Invasion, I have an explanation, but it's one I suspect some people, most notably Weirdo, aren't going to like.

You're supposed to design your platform to fulfill this role, no joke. I've actually suspected something like this for some time, ever since I noticed that there aren't any C3 Slave units available in the same timeframe, and I'm pretty sure that what C3 Master units where around back then where all heavy/assault weight.

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #80 on: 20 September 2021, 09:25:49 »
So what you are saying is the AFFS and to a lesser extent the DCMS sent out a 'How to NARC your SRM6 ride' package?

I can buy that except that whole military controlling thing . . . if some overworked captain in the quartermaster's department proposed letting a regimental commander- let alone a battalion commander!- to make that sort of decision on their own, it would be laughed up the chain of command until it bounced back down, laughing, along with orders to shift such a incompetent officer to be the liaison logistics officer to the SIC on Warlock (why?  because it is the only frozen ball of rock I can think of offhand).

But it is a valid point, since if they sent out just a kit for one design inevitably they would arrive in a battalion without a single one of those designs.  So a kit may go out with guidance that says put it in a Javelin, Wolverine, and one or two other fast mobile SRM6 equipped common designs.
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truetanker

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #81 on: 20 September 2021, 21:07:54 »
Hi!

I'm truetanker... Did someone asked about Narc?

I have in the past Narc'd terrain for the sole purpose of IDF'ing it later as a trap!

TT  >:D
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #82 on: 21 September 2021, 01:06:09 »
...unless you're talking about collapsing a bit or Terran while someone is on or next to it, I can't imagine how that would help anything, given that nothing that works with NARC is AE.
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DevianID

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #83 on: 21 September 2021, 01:49:47 »
hmm... swarm lrms maybe?  Im reaching here...

Weirdo

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #84 on: 21 September 2021, 06:48:12 »
They don't interact with NARC.
"Thanks to Megamek, I can finally play BattleTech the way it was meant to be played--pantsless!"   -Neko Bijin
"It's just that the Hegemony had one answer to every naval problem. 'I kills it with my battleships.'" - Liam's Ghost
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Colt Ward

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #85 on: 21 September 2021, 09:17:58 »
hmm... swarm lrms maybe?  Im reaching here...

Swarm, Semi-G, NARC, Artemis IV, Swarm-I, and Std LRM missiles are all separate ammo types and do not mix guidance systems.

Other reason NARC'ing terrain, be it hill or more likely say a bridge that someone is crossing . . . has no impact, when firing at buildings (and I believe plain terrain but I have not done it) all missile/clusters hit.  You do not have to worry how many of that LRM20 are going to hit- it is 100%.

The ONLY way I could see it as a benefit is IF you were trying to use up AMS ammo- but the AMS rules no longer use X number of shots in a single turn, and I do not think AMS has provided protection to other things since maybe back when TRO3050 came out.  Or at least that was an explanation I heard for the Kit Fox with multiple AMS- consider it something like a screening warship in a IRL carrier task force.
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #86 on: 21 September 2021, 09:22:53 »
All missiles hit buildings ONLY if you're adjacent to said building.

AMS has never protected nearby units, not even when that Uller first came out.
"Thanks to Megamek, I can finally play BattleTech the way it was meant to be played--pantsless!"   -Neko Bijin
"It's just that the Hegemony had one answer to every naval problem. 'I kills it with my battleships.'" - Liam's Ghost
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Colt Ward

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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #87 on: 21 September 2021, 09:25:53 »
All missiles hit buildings ONLY if you're adjacent to said building.

AMS has never protected nearby units, not even when that Uller first came out.

Never really shoot at buildings outside MM, so that maybe a difference between game and MM.

Yeah, that was a reason I heard but I was not playing back then and had no inclination to ever go find whatever old rulebook it was supposed to be in.  Doesn't the Centurion system- or whatever that new Republic BA carries- provide protection in a single hex for incoming missiles?
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #88 on: 21 September 2021, 10:24:03 »
The APDS protects over a 3-hex radius. 8)
"Thanks to Megamek, I can finally play BattleTech the way it was meant to be played--pantsless!"   -Neko Bijin
"It's just that the Hegemony had one answer to every naval problem. 'I kills it with my battleships.'" - Liam's Ghost
"...finally, giant space panties don't seem so strange." - Whistler
"Damn you, Weirdo... Damn you for being right!" - Paul
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Re: Tag and/or Narc
« Reply #89 on: 21 September 2021, 14:38:58 »
AMS has never protected nearby units, not even when that Uller first came out.

I seem to remember a very advanced rule to do that, but I can't remember which book it was in.  There were a few books that did things like that in the 90's, and I never thought about using that rule.
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