Author Topic: Greatbow Clan Assault mech  (Read 997 times)

Lagrange

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Greatbow Clan Assault mech
« on: 02 December 2022, 12:21:32 »
The Greatbow hits with 3.3x the missiles and absorbs 2.3x as much damage as a baseline ARC-2R.  Designed around a balanced defense and offense, the Greatbow leverages a mixture of inner sphere and clan technologies to absorb and dish out overwhelming return fire. 

The defense consists of 34.5 tons of hardened armor, clan endosteel, a small shield in the left arm, an Angel ECM suite, and a Chameleon Light Polarization Shield.  The Greatbow is best used by a pilot with a dermal armor implant (1.5M, but doesn't affect BV) which makes the pilot immune to damage from head hits.  Between the shield and the hardened armor not even the improved heavy gauss can guarantee a head kill in a single shot.  More importantly for something like the Headhunter which is designed to kill mechs with cluster fire the shield increases survivability up to about an expected 9 Arrow IV cluster hits.  An Angel ECM suite adds EW defense to degrade advanced missile systems, provide ghost targeting, and disrupt enemy ECM with ECCM.  The Chameleon Light Polarization Shield makes the Greatbow nearly immune to return fire at long range, it's preferred location in a battle.

The offense consists of 16 Streak-5 launchers, 8 tons of ammunition, and 10 free heat sinks.  The 16 Streak-5s provide 80 points of damage potential at long range, substantially exceeding even the Hellstar and rapidly disassembling even assault mechs.  Antimissile systems offer very limited value due to the overwhelming number of missile salvos.  While this might appear heat-sink light, it generates 0 heat in expectation if the target number is 7+ with the CLPS on or 6+ with CLPS off.  Furthermore, since there are 16 Streak-5s, the odds of heat 6 (13 or more hits, -1 movement) are <10% and the odds of heat 8 (14 or more hits, -1 move, +1 to hit) are even smaller.  For elite gunners out there, you can effectively leverage called shots for far more lethal targeted damage while retaining a low heat profile.  The 8 tons of ammo provide 960 points of damage, well exceeding what even heavily armored mechs can absorb.  At short ranges damage can be further augmented with a lethal kick bringing the damage potential up to a full 100 points per round.

Due to the use of a shield, the layout of this mech is necessarily asymmetric.  The shield protects the head, the left torso including ammunition (also protected by Case II), center torso, and left arm.  The Streaks are arrayed in the right torso( 8 ) and right arm ( 8 ).

A Greatbow is best used as a sniper, standing off at long range and raining heavy destruction on enemy units.  If enemy units penetrate to medium range, walking backwards can help keep the range open for a longer time while keeping up the intense firepower.  At short ranges the Greatbow turns off the CLPS to escalate destruction even further and closes to range 1 where a devastating kick can be employed to generate up to a full 100 points of damage in a round.  Fast light mechs coming in for a backstab discover that the rear armor can absorb a full AC-20 round and the right armor can deliver a 40 point attack back.  Overall, the Greatbow provides both firepower and defense which exceeds nearly all adversaries in both.

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Greatbow Mech

Mass: 100 tons
Chassis: Endo Steel Biped
Power Plant: 300 XL
Cruising Speed: 32.4 kph
Maximum Speed: 43.2 kph
Jump Jets: None
     Jump Capacity: 0 meters
Armor: Hardened
Armament:
     16 Streak LRM 5
Manufacturer: Unknown
     Primary Factory: Unknown
Communication System: Unknown
Targeting & Tracking System: Unknown
Introduction Year: 3150
Tech Rating/Availability: F/X-X-X-F
Cost: 27,865,000 C-bills

Type: Greatbow
Technology Base: Mixed (Experimental)
Tonnage: 100
Battle Value: 3,653

Equipment                                          Mass
Internal Structure            Endo Steel              5
Engine                        300 XL                9.5
Walking MP: 3
Running MP: 4
Jumping MP: 0
Double Heat Sink              12 [24]                 2
XL Gyro                                             1.5
Cockpit                                               3
Armor Factor (Hardened)       276                  34.5

                          Internal   Armor   
                          Structure  Value   
     Head                    3         9     
     Center Torso            31        43   
     Center Torso (rear)               13   
     R/L Torso               21      30/28   
     R/L Torso (rear)                  10   
     R/L Arm                 17      30/27   
     R/L Leg                 21        38   


Right Arm Actuators: Shoulder, Upper Arm
Left Arm Actuators: Shoulder, Upper Arm, Lower Arm, Hand

Weapons
and Ammo                              Location  Critical   Heat    Tonnage
Chameleon Light Polarization Shield RT/LT/RA/LA/RL/LL1/1/1/1/1/1    -       0.0   
8 Streak LRM 5                           RT        8        2       16.0 
Angel ECM Suite                          LA        2        -       2.0   
Shield                                   LA        3        -       2.0   
CASE II                                  LT        1        -       0.5   
Streak LRM 5 Ammo (192)                  LT        8        -       8.0   
CASE                                     LT        0        -       0.0   
8 Streak LRM 5                           RA        8        2       16.0 

Fire Control  Controlling heat on the Greatbow is relatively easy for beginning pilots.  As pilots improve their gunnery skills they can learn to control the number of Streak-5s and whether or not they make Called Shots[high] or [low] for more focused targeting.  The following fire control table assists with that:
Target # vs Heat123456789101112131415161718192021222324
12allallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallall
11612allallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallall
103691215allallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallallall
924579111314allallallallallallallallallallallallallallallall
812456781011121314allallallallallallallallallallallall
71233456789910111213141515allallallallallall
61123345667889101011121213141515allall

Tradeoffs:
Offense vs. defense  The current ratio of streaks to armor seems to be nearly optimal.   Streaks weigh an amortized ~3 tons including a half ton of ammo and approximately half a heat sink.  Swapping for more or less armor around this tradeoff does nothing to increase damage*armor.

Heat sinks  10 or 12 heat sinks are the natural choice.  12 heat sinks seems to be preferred in an environment where external heat sources can come into play since 20 - 15(maximum outside heat)=5 leaves very little for any kind of offense while 24-15(maximum outside heat)=9 provides a significantly increased capacity for action.  At the same time, the 2 extra heat sinks provide the capacity to deal an additional 10 damage/round.   In terms of defense, the extra 2 heat sinks covers most of the heat generated by the CLPS which might halve damage received at long range and reduce damage at medium ranges significantly.

Small Shield The small shield appears quite worthwhile compared to an extra couple tons of armor except in a few corner cases.   The extra protection for the head is quite valuable in an environment with designs optimized for taking out heads.  The corner case is something like LB-X or silver bullet gauss which might rapidly strip the shield without fully utilizing the damage absorption ability.  Even there, the additional protection from the shield is modestly beneficial in protecting the head and against lucky critical hits.

Angel ECM There are two steps here: ECM and Angel.  ECM alone (1 ton) degrades opposed Artermis IV and disrupts C3 (a potentially very big deal).  Angel ECM provides the additional protection of degrading Streak and simultaneously giving the possibility of Ghost Targets which has a modest chance of modestly increasing the target number for incoming fire---that's well worth a ton.

Chameleon Light Polarization Shield? The CLPS adds 11% to the BV and 4% to the cost while increasing the target number for heat-free firing to 7+ from 6+.  However, this last doesn't seem to be a significant drawback since the CLPS can be turned off whenever the range falls to short.  Overall, this seems modestly useful for slots which are otherwise not used.

Interface Cockpit? This would undoubtedly make a more lethal mech, freeing up 5 crits and a half ton of additional armor while making the pilot even more robust.  But it's unclear what the extra crits would be useful for and the half ton of armor does not appear worth the increase in Battle Value and restriction in the set of viable pilots.

Karack Blackstone

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Re: Fifty-Fifty Clan Assault mech
« Reply #1 on: 03 December 2022, 15:28:04 »
300+ AV? Yer a half-tonne shy.

Lagrange

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Re: Fifty-Fifty Clan Assault mech
« Reply #2 on: 03 December 2022, 15:44:58 »
300+ AV? Yer a half-tonne shy.

Apologies, but you'll have to unpack that for me.  AV = what?  And what's shy exactly?  The are four half tons: XL engine, XL gyro, armor, and CASE II.

idea weenie

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Re: Fifty-Fifty Clan Assault mech
« Reply #3 on: 04 December 2022, 01:25:15 »
Apologies, but you'll have to unpack that for me.  AV = what?  And what's shy exactly?  The are four half tons: XL engine, XL gyro, armor, and CASE II.

He likely means you could get another half ton into armor to really max it out.

The center torso could handle up to 62 pts of armor, you 'only' have 60 pts.
The Legs can handle up to 42 pts of armor, you only have 40 pts.

etc.

But overall, you are right. This mech is a sheer Brute that will be very dangerous and very hard to put down.  I'd see attackers opting to use LB-X weapons to try and get head hits to take it out via Pilot hits instead of trying to chew through the armor.

Lagrange

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Re: Fifty-Fifty Clan Assault mech
« Reply #4 on: 04 December 2022, 09:29:28 »
He likely means you could get another half ton into armor to really max it out.
The tough bit here is: where do you pull it from?

You could drop a Streak-5, but that doesn't appear favored from a balanced offense vs. defense perspective. 

You could downgrade the Angel, but being able to interrupt Streak is lifesaving if you are opposed to a design like this and the ability to play with Ghost Targets + ECM is great.  Additionally, if you encounter an adversarial Angel, the ability to ECCM it out at close range is great.

You could reduce your ammo by a ton.   The damage absorption capacity of all armor, internal structure, and the shield is ~770 while the 8 tons of Streak ammo does 960 damage.  Pulling a ton of ammo would significantly increase the odds that you need to withdraw for reload early.

You could pull the CASE II, but it's extremely useful when activated, and there is a modest chance of activation.

You could pull the shield, but it's effective increase to the armor on the head is highly desirable for overall endurance.

You could upgrade to an interface cockpit and drop the gyro for a half ton.  This is "free", except that:
a) In character the set of viable pilots is radically constricted and cost increases.  (Pilot survivability is slightly improved.)
b) For gameplay purposes the x1.3 cockpit modifier is not worth it.  It's better to just upgrade gunnery and piloting BV-wise.

You could swap to a small cockpit, but two penaltiies to piloting skill rolls accumulates towards unfortunate accidents.

The center torso could handle up to 62 pts of armor, you 'only' have 60 pts.
The Legs can handle up to 42 pts of armor, you only have 40 pts.
Yep.  Do you see a better armor spread?  (Keep in mind the shield.)
But overall, you are right. This mech is a sheer Brute that will be very dangerous and very hard to put down. 
Thanks :-)

The one thing that I wonder about is CLPS.  Worth it or not?  At long ranges where CLPS works you'll often have free heat capacity due to larger to-hit numbers.   At short ranges, you'll turn it off.

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Fifty-Fifty CLPS Mech

Mass: 100 tons
Chassis: Endo Steel Biped
Power Plant: 300 XL
Cruising Speed: 32.4 kph
Maximum Speed: 43.2 kph
Jump Jets: None
     Jump Capacity: 0 meters
Armor: Hardened
Armament:
     16 Streak LRM 5
Manufacturer: Unknown
     Primary Factory: Unknown
Communication System: Unknown
Targeting & Tracking System: Unknown
Introduction Year: 3150
Tech Rating/Availability: F/X-X-X-F
Cost: 27,901,000 C-bills

Type: Fifty-Fifty
Technology Base: Mixed (Experimental)
Tonnage: 100
Battle Value: 3,757

Equipment                                          Mass
Internal Structure            Endo Steel              5
Engine                        300 XL                9.5
Walking MP: 3
Running MP: 4
Jumping MP: 0
Double Heat Sink              10 [20]                 0
XL Gyro                                             1.5
Cockpit                                               3
Armor Factor (Hardened)       292                  36.5

                          Internal   Armor   
                          Structure  Value   
     Head                    3         9     
     Center Torso            31        45   
     Center Torso (rear)               15   
     R/L Torso               21        32   
     R/L Torso (rear)                  10   
     R/L Arm                 17      32/27   
     R/L Leg                 21        40   


Right Arm Actuators: Shoulder, Upper Arm
Left Arm Actuators: Shoulder, Upper Arm, Lower Arm, Hand

Weapons
and Ammo                              Location  Critical   Heat    Tonnage
Chameleon Light Polarization Shield RT/LT/RA/LA/RL/LL1/1/1/1/1/1    -       0.0   
8 Streak LRM 5                           RT        8        2       16.0 
Angel ECM Suite                          LA        2        -       2.0   
Shield                                   LA        3        -       2.0   
CASE II                                  LT        1        -       0.5   
Streak LRM 5 Ammo (192)                  LT        8        -       8.0   
CASE                                     LT        0        -       0.0   
8 Streak LRM 5                           RA        8        2       16.0 
You lose a hand but the plan was to kick at short range anyways.  BV increases by 11%, and cost increases by 4%.  Worth it?

I'd see attackers opting to use LB-X weapons to try and get head hits to take it out via Pilot hits instead of trying to chew through the armor.
Yeah, this is why I mentioned the dermal armor.  It's an operation that costs something like 1.5M, makes the pilot immune to head hits, and has no impact on BV.

For a normal pilot, the shield will at least fully intercept ~3 head hits from LB-X / SRM spam before degrading to uselessness implying you need ~7 head hits to achieve a knockout.  That's better than the typical ~4.

Lagrange

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Re: Greatbow Clan Assault mech
« Reply #5 on: 14 December 2022, 16:56:30 »
Various updates:

(1) Added a real name.  Greatbow seems nice---it's Archer related.
(2) Added CLPS.   This makes it an excellent Sniper mech, able to deal continuous serious damage at long range.
(3) Upped to 12 heat sinks which has several advantageous effects.
(4) Added a fire control table which makes it obvious how many streaks to fire as a function of target number and desired heat.
(5) Reduced armor a bit to compensate for (3). 
(6) Added a bit more discussion about the tradeoffs.

Obvious comparison points are the Bane 3 (8x LRM-15, BV 2941) and the Archer (2x LRM-20, BV 1477).  Although the Greatbow (16x Streak-5, BV 3653) is more expensive it's plausibly better on an actual  vs. 2.0 battle value basis and reasonable on a actual battle value vs. cost basis despite the XL engine.

Comparing to Bane 3, it has about 90% of missiles on target and 62% of the ability to soak damage while having 81% of the BV and 81% of the cost.   I'd favor the Greatbow in a 4-vs-5 game, and there's even a decent chance a single Greatbow could handle 2 Bane 3s with the CLPS chipping in. 

Comparing to Arc-2R, it has 30% of missiles on target and 43% of the ability to soak damage while having 40% of the BV and 23% of the price.  I'd favor the Greatbow in a 2-vs-5 game.  1 Greatbow vs. 4 Arc-2Rs seems challenging but a potentially winnable fight.

 

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