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Author Topic: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth  (Read 8954 times)

Trace Coburn

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Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« on: 07 September 2011, 07:10:45 »
Ostrogoth OmniFighter — 75t, TRO3085

  All proposed fan-variants should be posted in the corresponding “FotW Workshop” thread.

“These go up to ‘11’.”
“Why not just make ‘10’ louder?”

  Of course, the counter-question promptly asked by any true rock fan - and apparently by the Spook Teddies - was “... why not do both?” ;D

  The Jihad played hell with everybody’s production-facilities and logistics, and the Ghost Bears were no exception.  Losses of their preferred medium OmniFighters, the venerable Visigoth and the jaunty Jagatai, were reaching a critical point, and with the other Clans hoarding spaceframes for their own toumans, obtaining replacements was getting harder and harder.  Even the low-cost/high-value Ammon was used mainly because the Bears were screaming for anything with wings, guns and an engine, and formidable as it might be for its price-tag it simply wasn’t capable enough on a kilo-for-kilo basis to compete with MD OmniFighters, exacerbating already horrific losses in their piloting corps.  (This also meant that the intended use of low-cost fighters, the ‘Sherman swarm’, was not only philosophically repugnant to the Bears, but just downright not practical.)  Thoroughly fed up with the situation, and ferociously motivated by that (oh-so-convenient!) rumour linking the Manei Domini to their Clan’s especial boogeyman, the Ghost Bear Dominion went back to the drawing board and came up with an OmniFighter they could build domestically that could do all the jobs the old Omnis could, but better (especially in terms of survivability).
  Leaving aside the evidence of Bear proclivities provided by the Leviathan class and its variants, the name alone tells you how that design-process went: they started with the Visigoth and said “Make it bigger, tougher, and meaner.  Oh, and building it smarter wouldn’t hurt, either”.  The result is a fighter that squeaks into the heavy category by mass and firepower, but boasts mobility many medium ASFs would envy.

  At seventy-five tons and a 7/11 thrust-curve, the Ostrogoth can out-turn any heavier platform I can think of, at least as long as the customary five-ton fuel-fraction lasts.  (Y’know, if the Bears were bigger fans of the Mad Cat, that’d make for a great bit of logistical simplification - their key OmniFighter and key OmniMech would share the same engine - but instead, their heavy ground-forces focus on the Vulture.  Ah, well - it’s not like the Wolves are too keen to share the good toys anyway, right?  ::) )  Unlike a number of earlier OmniFighters, the Ozzie uses only the base ten DHS, a deliberate choice for maximum pod-space that makes me wonder if something resembling sense is actually seeping into the heads of Clan engineers after twenty-odd years’ exposure to real warfare.  Certainly the armour layout is suggestive: twelve and a half tons of ferro-aluminium, 77/61/41, is slightly ‘gamed’ to negate danger of TACs by the metrestick threat, the IS medium laser, and even Clan mediums can only punch through the tail-section.  The full fifteen-point bomb-load slows the ship down to 4/6, but you can carry that max-load and still break atmo, which is not a small concern if you want to nail a Blaker DropShip with anti-ship Arrows or, Kerensky forfend, nukes.

  The Prime loadout is more proof, if you needed it, that the Ozzie is the Visigoth’s bigger, meaner kid-brother.  A nose-mounted ERPPC is rarely a bad way to open the conversation, providing all-range hole-punching capability that can generate all-aspect threshold-checks on all but the merest handful of known ASFs.  Following this are the ‘back-up’ weapons in each wing, triple ER mediums and an Artemis-IV’d LRM-15 with two tons of ammo per launcher, making for a fine way to exploit breached armour.  The tail is protected by another ERML, in case any of the folks who mistook the Ozzie’s mass-/emissions-profile for the Bears’ favoured Jengiz get that close and don’t get swatted down by this bird suddenly out-turning them.  An ECM module bolsters the type’s defences by nobbling Artemis systems or futzing with the other guy’s primary fire-control solution (or countering enemy ECM to make life easier on the attack), a targeting computer(!) makes the energy-weapons even more dangerous than their raw firepower would otherwise suggest, and five additional DHS do their best to manage the heat-curve.  Personally, I’d hazard that the intended combination is ERPPC + LRMs before the merge, or better yet during a sustained stand-off bombardment if the other guy lets you, switching over to the PPC and the ‘engaged’ wing’s ERMLs when the knife-fight begins.  Though Strat Ops rules mean that full Stars of Clan OmniFighters aren’t auto-win buttons anymore, and you really need to juggle which systems you’re engaging with at which ranges, the potential for a half-Star to rip chunks off of a ’Ship to the tune of up-to-7 Capital for the PPCs, 6 Capital for each LRM bay, and 11 Capital for each ERML mount(!) means that smart opponents will make such formations prime targets.  :P

  Probably intended as an air-to-mud configuration for knocking down enemy ’Mechs quickly, although its additional electronics reflect SO rules for how those systems play into the capital-’Ship EW battle, the Ostrogoth Alpha doesn’t veer too far from the Prime’s formula.  The nose houses twin ERPPCs for cracking the shells (or headcapping), while each wing mounts an SSRM-6 with a ton of ammunition per launcher; the aft-mounted ERML remains, as do the ECM system and targeting computer, while an active probe allows Ozzie Alpha units to use their EW for simultaneous offence (AP for capital ECM-busting) and defence (ECM for fire-confusion) and nine additional DHS mean that you needn’t worry about heat on a full forward alpha-strike, even if both of your Streak-6s actually lock-and-fire.  And considering that a five-ship formation can deal out a maximum PPC bay of 15 Capital(!) damage, smaller WarShips need to be very wary of this arrangement of the Ostrogoth.

  Ostrogoth Bravo comes swooping down on enemy ground-units the Ozzie Alpha has already breached and does its best to finish what the Alpha started with lots and lots of crit-seeking clusters.  I’m not really sold on the primary weapon of this loadout; it might be because I haven’t examined the fluff-description thoroughly enough to find a mental fit for it, or maybe just that the Hyper-velocity Assault Gauss weapons have abysmal ammo-endurance for their mass.  In any case, a nose-mounted HAG30 allows the Bravo to sandblast a target with five-point groups as long as its three tons of ammunition last (all of twelve turns of firing!), and a trio of ERMLs give you some additional crit-seeking and/or ‘getting-home guns’.  The wing-mounted Streak-6s and ammo remain from the Alpha, as do the targeting computer and ECM suite, and three additional freezers mean that only if you get a double Streak-lock will nudge the heat-gauge over the ‘even’ mark.

  People saying ‘Okay, so it’s an OmniFighter - where’s the Obligatory Fire-Support Loadout?’ clearly didn’t read down to the Ostrogoth Charlie:D  Two additional DHS are provided, along with the seemingly-mandatory ECM suite and token ‘go-home’ guns, an ERML in the nose and an ERSL aft; the rest of the ship’s internal volume is devoted to the sort of missile-spam that makes people think Scott Bernard was a piker.  No fewer than five Artemis-IV-equipped LRM-15s are installed on the Ozzie-C, one in the nose and two in each wing, with a total of eight(!) tons of ammunition.  ‘In the air-to-mud role, does this OmniFighter loadout punch holes or find crits?’  ‘Yes.’  ;D  The Ostrogoth Charlie doesn’t have a weapon with knock-out power to deal with heavier fighters, but any squadron of light ASFs that comes into its range will regret that circumstance for both seconds of the rest of their lives, and it can be not only a flying ’Mech-flayer but a ferocious mine-layer - I don’t recall how Clan honour-codes view Thunder LRMs, but against the Blakers there are no rules, so the ability to hobble enemy ’Mechs and/or channel the movements of other ground-units should not be discounted.  (Frankly, the only time when I could possibly prefer the Ozzie Bravo over this loadout was if I knew the other side was fielding ridiculous amounts of AMS and counter-missile capability.  ::) )

  Even with the thicker armour than most previous OmniFighters and the ECM suites standard on all four canon configs, the Ostrogoth is far from rivalling the resilience of an Eisensturm or the Hydaspes, so you shouldn’t be doing any stand-and-deliver stuff with it; after all, the engineers invested that much mass-fraction in a bloody great engine (instead of Eisensturm-level armour) for a conscious reason, so stick-and-weave wherever possible.  Make shameless use of your EW suite for fire-confusion; in aerospace, that’s normally just a +1 penalty for fighter-grade ECM, but every little bit counts.  (As a side-note, a multi-layered screen of Ostrogoths between your DropShips and enemy fighters will nobble their fire-control but good; again, make shameless use of this fact wherever and whenever you can, especially against the Blakers.  After all, it wouldn’t be the first nor last time Kerensky’s Clans rationalised the abrogation of their self-proclaimed honour-code in the name of genocide, now would it?  :P)  As long as you mind the cardinal rules, you probably can’t go too far wrong.  ;)

  Ostrogoths are tougher than Visigoths, but they’re hardly invincible.  An IS LPL will threshold any portion of the Ozzie, and an LGR will punch through the wings or tail, so Blaker players will be quite happy to throw Rusalkas or Lancers at the Ghost Bear machine - both can match its agility and hit it hard enough to matter.  Lyran commanders will reach for the Seydlitz in a heartbeat - ideally the all-foundtech SYD-Z4, but the base model will do in a pinch - since the SYD can get behind the Ozzie and TAC anything it can hit from that angle, and if the interceptor drivers are supporting Morgenstern-Cs or even Eisensturms, they’re probably going to have a few more bearskin rugs for their O Clubs come morning.  ;)





  (PS: Hell with it.  I meant to get through reposting all the old material before I went on to the new ships, but hitting the Stinger LAM just blocked me solid, and Jellico’s recent ‘Tell me about...’ columns struck my guilty conscience as kind of a pointed hint.  :-\  The rest of the currently ‘outstanding’ reposts are still available through the forum archive for those who want to read up on them; I can and will go back and transfer them at a later date, hopefully before the archive gets taken down.  Dunno yet if I’ll be able to keep up to the pace of the old-style weekly schedule, since I’ve decided to take on so many other (incomplete!) BT-related projects since I last did all-new FotW columns, but I guess we’ll just have to see what we’ll see, won’t we?  ::))


NEXT WEEK:     S-2 Star Dagger (XTRO: Primitives)
UPCOMING:      MSF-42 Bluehawk/ASF-23 Protector (HB:MPS)
               MM-* Dragonfly (H:RW)
« Last Edit: 03 December 2013, 23:47:16 by Trace Coburn »

Neufeld

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #1 on: 07 September 2011, 08:03:55 »
Glad to have you finally back. I recommend that you skip the LAMs for now, and focus on the real fighters.

As for the Ostrogoth, I like it and the configurations are solid. It is the heaviest 7/11 fighter, and really impressive, ... but it just seems a bit lacking in character. I guess that it is because it is solid as a brick, it has then also the character of a brick. In fact, this is really something that it shares with all the heavy omni-fighters, both Clan and IS. The mediums designs are really more interesting.

EDIT:
BTW, The Star Dagger is from XTRO:RetroTech, not Primitives. The Primitives fighter is the Hurricane.
« Last Edit: 07 September 2011, 08:07:53 by Neufeld »

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Jellico

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #2 on: 07 September 2011, 09:36:29 »
My eeeeevil plan worked  }:)

How do different environments effect things? In space an Esiensturm can act as a turret and tough out an Ostrogoth. Is turn and burn more effective in atmosphere, or was it just a waste of time?

Higher thrust translates into more mobility with external weapons. You mentioned its 4/6 bomb load. Is this a viable platform for loading up with Anti Fighter missiles at say 6/9? I must admit its a great way to say hello to a flying brick.

Little note on squadron rules. Most Clan players have accepted that using 5 fighter squadrons = dead aircraft due the the quirks of the rules. So most players group their ASF into 6s. In that group of 6 there is only a single Wing bay, firing all the Wing weapons of a single type. In the case of the Prime, a LRM Bay and an ERML Bay. So at long range, the Nose PPC, and LRM Bay for (15+24) x 6 damage. At medium range (36) x 6 damage. You are looking at a 50% chance of fatal critting an Eisensturm on average (4 hits) strikes.

The Hammerhead is the only other bird this big and fast.
« Last Edit: 07 September 2011, 10:20:05 by Jellico »

Grave

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #3 on: 07 September 2011, 10:03:57 »
Dear lord, this is awesome.  I have zero experience playing Aerotech, but your writing is excellent.  More, please.   :D


Yea, it really is that fast....

sillybrit

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #4 on: 07 September 2011, 11:42:17 »
The Ostrogoth is quietly one of those optimized Clan war machines, just like the Timber Wolf and Stormcrow, sitting right on the tonnage sweet spot for 7/11 thrust, with overall good configs as well. Personally, I would prefer 1 ton less payload to bump the aft armor up & have it immune to cERML threshholds from all angles with a slight rearrangement of armor, but I'd also reclaim that 1t payload by following the standard Clan idea of having a smaller basic fuel load, with pod fuel bringing it back up for high endurance configs.

You've pretty much covered what I'd say about the canon configs. I'm not immensely fond of Streaks on ASFs, but the bang per buck is hard to match, and they particularly come into their own when an Inner Sphere opponent gets cute with reflective armor. I've found the B config to be of decent usage for long range crit seeking when the enemy is packing a lot of AMS, and the accuracy of the weapon combined with the TC is nice too, but normally I'd much prefer twin LRM15/Art over a single HAG30 or switching to long range hole punching instead with a ERLL, LPL, ERPPC or Gauss Rifle - if only the Clans could get the cRAC5 out of the prototype stage.

A couple of observations: ECM doesn't effect Artemis in aerospace fights, it just provides the +1 hit penalty to enemy fighters and small craft that you noted, and under the base rules you can't arm aerospace units with specialist ammo such as Thunder LRMs.

How do different environments effect things? In space an Esiensturm can act as a turret and tough out an Ostrogoth. Is turn and burn more effective in atmosphere, or was it just a waste of time?

If using the standard movement rules in space, the thrust obviously does become more important, but as you say when using advanced movement rules it often becomes turret-time, with mutually supporting formations typically more important than high maneuverability in a pure dogfight, although I find high thrust can still help during the mid to close stages of attack runs when you're perhaps still having to play turret while trying to adjust to a target vessel's movement.

In an atmosphere it definitely helps if you end up with a close range furball, although often I find potential dogfights cut short due to long-range fire causing a PSR.

Quote
Is this a viable platform for loading up with Anti Fighter missiles at say 6/9? I must admit its a great way to say hello to a flying brick.

Yes. While I've not done this with an Ostrogoth, I've used this tactic with my own 7/11s, and sometimes going full hog with three AAAs and rippling them off as soon as the enemy is in range so that the fighter is clean by the time you start to have to worry about the merge.

Nightstalker

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #5 on: 10 September 2011, 06:05:03 »
I'm not much of an ASF guy, and know next to nothing about them game wise.  But, I always enjoy reading your articles Trace.  And I have to say, that is a dead sexy looking fighter.

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #6 on: 13 September 2011, 16:53:07 »
I completely agree with Nightstalker. Weirdly, since Trace is a New Zealander, I always hear his articles in Rhys Darby's voice when I read them.

Oh and as for this:

Quote
Of course, the counter-question promptly asked by any true rock fan - and apparently by the Spook Teddies - was “... why not do both?”

"I wonder if in some weird Freudian way, Kojak was sucking on his own head."
- Steve Webster on Kojak's lollipop


Trace Coburn

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #7 on: 14 September 2011, 06:13:48 »
I completely agree with Nightstalker. Weirdly, since Trace is a New Zealander, I always hear his articles in Rhys Darby's voice when I read them.
   :o   >:(   ::)

  ... I'd be a little more flattered if the comparison was to Sam Neill or Karl Urban. 

  Rhys Darby, indeed.  ::)  That twerp?  That's like saying all Americans sound like Carrot-Top or Pee-Wee Herman....  :D
  ... On the other hand, I suppose I should be grateful for small mercies: at least he didn't say Anna Paquin.  ;D

Jellico

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #8 on: 17 September 2011, 12:49:11 »
Great. Now I will think of you doing beef ads with an orangatang. And start thinking of sheep jokes.

Jellico

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #9 on: 28 November 2013, 07:56:25 »
And moving through the 3145 RSs we get to the Ostrogoth D and I get to use fancy words like "eclectic".


ERPPC, Gauss Rifle, LRM 20 with Artemis V, Targeting Computer, and Watchdog CEWS. Nose mounts and heat is neutral.

I have to say, those Watchdogs fill one of Trace's pet peeves from previous articles. Stray half tons of Clan OmniFighters.

Electronics aside the Ostrogoth D is nothing special. Two 15 point hits and 16 in five point clusters. The only thing preventing me calling this anaemic is the -1 bonus all the weapons get to their accuracy. This is surprisingly close to the average firepower of the monster Prime when heat and wing mounts are taken into account. This is true of all the Ostrogoth variants.

Probably the only reason I can think of for the existence of this variant is to get a gauss rifle in a position to hit a Koroshiya. Really it reflects the problems Clantech has with reflective armour.

UnLimiTeD

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #10 on: 28 November 2013, 14:20:08 »
That doesn't seem like a bad loadout.
Accurate, ammo efficient, and honestly, Artemis V is always a great use of mass. 6.5 tons for long range accurate fire with an average (or in Aerospace, always) 16 points of damage.
Can't complain about that; It's really more of a scalpel than the others, all long range, all with an accuracy boost.
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mbear

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #11 on: 03 December 2013, 11:27:26 »
Totally unrelated to the thread, am I the only one who gets weird characters when I view this (or any of Trace's) articles?

For example:  "...their Clan’s esp..."

UnLimiTeD

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #12 on: 03 December 2013, 13:37:11 »
Nope, that seems to be pretty common.
I guess that's copy paste with a different base formatting.
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glitterboy2098

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #13 on: 03 December 2013, 13:39:59 »
Totally unrelated to the thread, am I the only one who gets weird characters when I view this (or any of Trace's) articles?

For example:  "...their Clan’s esp..."
no, i get those too.

mbear

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #14 on: 03 December 2013, 17:06:57 »
OK. thanks. I'll stop the thread drift here.

Trace Coburn

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #15 on: 03 December 2013, 23:42:37 »
  The forum had a hiccup with the character-coding a month or so after most of these reposts were made.  I’ve been meaning to go back through and fix them all... but then again, I’ve been meaning to do a lot of things.  :-X

Gryphon

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #16 on: 06 December 2013, 02:04:03 »
Umm...yeah, how bout not?

Me thinks you have better things to do than deal with little messes like those.

If they made things unreadable, fine. But as it is, we can brain it out ourselves, and doing such would distract you from your "real" work around here, that is providing various bits of aerospace wisdom and such chief.

 O0

mbear

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #17 on: 10 December 2013, 11:31:56 »
Umm...yeah, how bout not?

Me thinks you have better things to do than deal with little messes like those.

If they made things unreadable, fine. But as it is, we can brain it out ourselves, and doing such would distract you from your "real" work around here, that is providing various bits of aerospace wisdom and such chief.

 O0
Agreed. I just wanted to be sure it was/wasn't an mbear specific problem.

Grantwhy

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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #18 on: 17 January 2014, 06:09:39 »
   :o   >:(   ::)

  ... I'd be a little more flattered if the comparison was to Sam Neill or Karl Urban. 

  Rhys Darby, indeed.  ::)  That twerp?  That's like saying all Americans sound like Carrot-Top or Pee-Wee Herman....  :D
  ... On the other hand, I suppose I should be grateful for small mercies: at least he didn't say Anna Paquin.  ;D

How about Russell (Maximus) Crowe? (speaking of which, do the Marians have their own 'theme' Fighter (aero or aerospace) yet?
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Re: Fighter of the Week, Issue #087 - Ostrogoth
« Reply #19 on: 18 January 2014, 01:14:58 »
I think it's caused by a change in character set used, for example when I load corrupted text into a text editor it looks bad if the encoding is ANSI, but shows up fine if it's Unicode, unfortunately this doesn't solve the issue in the browser

 

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