Poll

What is the best Era

Star league
14 (4.3%)
Succession Wars
94 (28.9%)
Clan Invasion
80 (24.6%)
Civil War
22 (6.8%)
Jihad
38 (11.7%)
Dark age
14 (4.3%)
ilClan
63 (19.4%)

Total Members Voted: 202

Author Topic: Best Era  (Read 6237 times)

butchbird

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #60 on: 13 April 2024, 17:02:31 »
My own takes on the eras go like this:

Age of War: Just kind of "there", and much of it was BattleTech without the BattleMechs, meaning the most unique thing about the setting isn't even present. It is interesting from a "how we got here" standpoint to be sure.


Can't resist saying more about that era.

The thing with the age of war is its "introtech potential".

The battlemech (in its primitive form) only sits out the first 60 years or so of this 170 years long war. By 2490 everyone has functional battlemechs ready for combat.

Now, primitives are but a gimmick, kind of stuff that while interesting, I doubt many use them. But late age of war offers the perfect setting for introtech: few mechs, few weapons and the "ares convention" effect which fits snuggly whithin the whole BT mechanics. It would be perfect to ease in new players. This is also true of a rejuvenated space battle aspect of the franchise.

We know the major factions all had fleets, but little beyond that. It could be fleshed out as seen fit and would, again, make great introtech for a "battlespace 2" or whatever.

Then there's all the "niche products" within the franchise. From battleforce on, the "gentle man's war" of post-ares age of war (which is pretty much all of it) is again a perfect setting. And with the early phase, I bet you could make an interesting game out of the "abstract combat system" with all the combined arms plus the use of tactical nukes, chemical weapons and orbital bombardment. But again, most if not all of it are but niche products whithin a niche, some even whithout the main draw of the universe.

Lore wise, I know there's quite the few of us battletech enthusiasts whom love learning about minor factions. I loved the small Hindu Collective rundown in "era digest:age of war", I'd bet many others appreciated it.

So yeah, much potential, if mostly in the introtech and/or niche departments.

Also, the dragoons indeed. The 4th SW breaks what is pretty much a centurys long stalemate and the 'goons are THE pivotal unit. The 4th SW would've been very different whithout the marik civil war, which would've been simply impossible whitout the dragoons, and then they litteraly tie up the only other major contender in that war. Hanse's deck was stacked, and yes, he did play very well to stack it up... but in all fairness he was dealt a fabulously good hand as soon as he sat at the table.
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Hellraiser

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #61 on: 13 April 2024, 23:03:45 »
Hanse Davion is considered kinda the prototypical "genius faction leader" but the differance between him and pretty much every other attempt is Hanse Davion didn't go into a fight where he was behind and manage to win via a genius BS tactic, Hanse's genius was stacking the deck so hard in his favor, victory was all but assured.

this is rather differant from say, SunTzu, or Alaric

Agreed.

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Gray_Noton_4lfe

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #62 on: 17 April 2024, 10:44:53 »
The late Succession wars and Clan Invasion I think did pretty well. Haven't really tried any eras above that.
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Prospernia

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #63 on: 17 April 2024, 13:46:40 »
The Succession-Wars have the best literature about them, from military-books to house-books. The writings about the Jyhad and even the Clan-invasion, don't seem as, "Enthused". 

ThisACforHire

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #64 on: 17 April 2024, 20:14:56 »
I grew up as a Succession Wars grognard, and it took me a long time to warm up to the Clan Invasion era due to getting smacked down so hard for so long in the early 90s.
But I gotta say, I am loving the IlClan era so far! It's streamlined the experimental craziness from the Jihad and Dark Age eras into a more standardized set of weapons you can expect to find on mechs. The leveling of the playfield between factions that came with the clans being so thoroughly integrated into the innersphere now has made list building pretty fun in my opinion. The new loadouts in the Rec Guide Vol.1 Classics allows the oldest miniatures to be used in the newest era of the game, as well as minis from the AGOAC box set.
I have so much love for all of this. In my opinion it's the best era that's been introduced to the game in a long long time. I've been enjoying introducing my other Succession Wars and Clan Invasion grognard friends to the 3150s.  :grin:

Prospernia

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #65 on: 18 April 2024, 14:46:36 »
I grew up as a Succession Wars grognard, and it took me a long time to warm up to the Clan Invasion era due to getting smacked down so hard for so long in the early 90s.
But I gotta say, I am loving the IlClan era so far! . . .

I must say the 3145-books are getting good; the Clan smack-down was hard to get around. I got decimated, in the reverse traditional Roman-way, (only 10% survived). It took me a while to figure out how to beat them.  In a Mechwarrior RPG or a Mercenaries' game, when the Clans have to worry about repairing their mechs and support-points, the Clans don't do so well, especially against asymmetric-warfare.

The IlClan era, is much like 3050 was back in the day, unknown territory. 

Orion

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #66 on: 20 April 2024, 21:18:09 »
In my games and writings, the world mostly stops after 3039.  Clans are never mentioned.  I'll do FedCom Civil War stuff if friends really want the advanced tech, but won't suggest it.  I have some stuff that continues up to 3057 for Operation Guerrero, but it's a small until on the edges of the action and is never involved in the main events of the universe.  For all practical purposes, it's still 3030 for them.  So for me, Succession Wars is the best, hands down.  I'll admit the Clan stuff was good for the game, and some of it well done, but it leaves me cold.  Civil War had potential, but didn't get the treatment the earlier stuff received.  Jihad, Dark Age, IlClan - I don't consider these Battletech.  Similar rules, different game, to my way of thinking.
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Rebel Yell

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #67 on: 21 April 2024, 18:31:27 »
In my games and writings, the world mostly stops after 3039.  Clans are never mentioned.  I'll do FedCom Civil War stuff if friends really want the advanced tech, but won't suggest it.  I have some stuff that continues up to 3057 for Operation Guerrero, but it's a small until on the edges of the action and is never involved in the main events of the universe.  For all practical purposes, it's still 3030 for them.  So for me, Succession Wars is the best, hands down.  I'll admit the Clan stuff was good for the game, and some of it well done, but it leaves me cold.  Civil War had potential, but didn't get the treatment the earlier stuff received.  Jihad, Dark Age, IlClan - I don't consider these Battletech.  Similar rules, different game, to my way of thinking.

+1
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Prospernia

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #68 on: 29 April 2024, 21:43:45 »
+1


+2

Had the House-Books not been the first real Battletech-material I read, while my friends were reading the 3050, I wouldn't agree; but I still like the Clans; they are embedded from my youth.

Pistol Pete

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #69 on: 18 May 2024, 20:15:14 »
Succession Wars for me.

I feel like the tech-jump from succession wars to Clan Tech was too jarring, especially when Clanners automatically get better pilots too. Elementals also leave a foul aftertaste.

I also find the Clan culture to be equal parts annoying, cheesy, and cringey. The mechs also just have an odd, ugly look that just doesn't endear them to me like the IS stuff does (artistic shifts are always tricky).

That said, Clan Invasion is still interesting in a lot of ways that other eras aren't. A lot of hard work was poured into it and it shows.

But I'd rather FASA had given us say, 150 years, to play out the succession wars instead of going straight from 3025 to the clan invasion in 25 years.

Gray_Noton_4lfe

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #70 on: 18 May 2024, 20:55:08 »
But I'd rather FASA had given us say, 150 years, to play out the succession wars instead of going straight from 3025 to the clan invasion in 25 years.

Yep, I agree, waaay to short
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Hellraiser

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #71 on: 19 May 2024, 15:13:33 »
But I'd rather FASA had given us say, 150 years, to play out the succession wars instead of going straight from 3025 to the clan invasion in 25 years.

Yep, I agree, waaay to short

I think the real problem was they fiction basically skipped the entirety of the 3030s AND 3040s outside of the 6 months of the Wo39.

We got 2 Trilogies & some Single novels to go from 3024-3030.
Then 1 Book Jumps around & covers the previous years AND shoots us all the way to 3040 or so.
And BAM, then its 3049/50 & a new Trilogy.

I know they wanted to keep things "big & splashy" to essentially bring back that lost SLDF army, but, I certainly wouldn't have minded if we got a couple more single novels.

Say, something covering the Skye Crisis of 3034/35 that delayed the Wo39 by 5 years.
Maybe a book dealing w/ the inner workings of the CapCon during Romano's Purges.
The Early/Mid 40's conflicts in the Dieron region as the FC/DC continued to jockey around for a few worlds, or maybe something like the Kell Hounds Ambergrist event.
Or the MAC on Marlette in the 40s
I also feel like there was also something about the Kathil Uhlans on the CC border in the 40's too, from a BT Mag article.

Point being, several of those would follow characters we saw in the Warrior Trilogy & could have made a few stand alone novels to give us some fleshed out stories from that 20 year period outside of 1 stalled out border clash that resulted in a total of less than 10 worlds change hands IIRC.

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Greatclub

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #72 on: 19 May 2024, 15:49:04 »
I think the real problem was they fiction basically skipped the entirety of the 3030s AND 3040s outside of the 6 months of the Wo39.

We got 2 Trilogies & some Single novels to go from 3024-3030.
Then 1 Book Jumps around & covers the previous years AND shoots us all the way to 3040 or so.
And BAM, then its 3049/50 & a new Trilogy.


Stackpole is on record saying that he tried to write the original red corsair set in 3004 but got told by ROC (Not FASA, ROC, the novel publisher) to move the timeline forward instead. Pretty much tied FASA's hands, and now we've been told succession wars doesn't sell as well as invasion and DA+ products.

klarg1

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #73 on: 19 May 2024, 16:11:52 »
But I'd rather FASA had given us say, 150 years, to play out the succession wars instead of going straight from 3025 to the clan invasion in 25 years.

 :huh:

The 3rd Succession War is almost 160 years long by itself. There is lots of room for new fiction set in that period (and an endless variety of games), but the defining feature of the era is that it was a slow grind with no major changes for over a century.

Greatclub

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #74 on: 19 May 2024, 18:17:33 »
Are there any products that talk about the pre-3000 3sw other than the house and handbooks? And even then they go into far more details about the first two iirc

Hellraiser

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #75 on: 19 May 2024, 21:27:34 »
I don't think we have any products set in the 2900's outside of each house's "History" section.

That said, the 3rd SW was "long, low, & slow" because they had universally beaten each other into submission.

You had a century & a half of "low intensity raiding".
3041: General Lance Hawkins: The Equalizers
3053: Star Colonel Rexor Kerensky: The Silver Wolves

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rebs

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #76 on: 20 May 2024, 00:15:58 »
2900 to 3025 has a ton of potential for compelling stories and scenarios.  It's loved for a reason.
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klarg1

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #77 on: 20 May 2024, 05:58:41 »
I don't think we have any products set in the 2900's outside of each house's "History" section.

That said, the 3rd SW was "long, low, & slow" because they had universally beaten each other into submission.

You had a century & a half of "low intensity raiding".


True.

Fasa also published quite a number of scenario packs which cover the period from 3000 to 3025. It should be representative; The preceding 130 years would have been similar.

Church14

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #78 on: 20 May 2024, 12:58:24 »
2900 to 3025 has a ton of potential for compelling stories and scenarios.  It's loved for a reason.

The era has plenty of room for compelling player campaigns. Small forces mattered a lot then.

But narratively, there really isn’t much to do beyond “plucky lance raids/conquers planet Pig’s Knuckle” with 2900 to 3000 that 3000 to 3048 doesn’t already give us. It’s the prequel problem. We know the result, and we know there wasn’t anything of note. So either break canon, or write the same low key stories.

Church14

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #79 on: 20 May 2024, 13:09:33 »
Jihad, Dark Age, IlClan - I don't consider these Battletech.  Similar rules, different game, to my way of thinking.
You’re welcome to embrace the succession wars and enjoy the mad max with mechs vibe. But “not real Battletech” is one of those comments that can get to people. It might help to rephrase it to “I don’t follow anything past civil war era.”

Whether or not you intend it to be, your phrasing says “what others like is inferior” and instead of “I just like doing me thing.”

I intend to embrace all forty years of the good, bad, and great. If I end up playing a game with you, I’ll delve back into the tiny part of the game and setting that is the 3rd succession war, but I’m going to play the ilClan era when I can because it’s panning out to probably be the best era of the game.

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #80 on: 20 May 2024, 14:57:23 »
embrace the succession wars and enjoy the mad max with mechs vibe.
I would point out that the whole Dark Age Clickytech story line was created as a 3SW Feel Reboot or so I've heard, because they wanted to get away from Regimental sized battles & IDK, I guess people like the MadMax feel.

Myself, I don't really care about battle size & my biggest complaint about the Jihad+ was that they removed Regiments/Warships as "options" for the most part.
I think options should be open & really enjoyed the Clan Invasion era with it's mix of SW, SLDF, Clan tech.
That said, I'm not a huge fan of "lots of weapons/tech" so even the 3060 era stuff that came out, ATM/Heavy, Added IS Ultra/LBX, ER everything, HAG, etc etc Blah, just added tables of stuff.  Let alone how "X-TacOps Armor Type" rules mostly just slow things down. IMO. 
I don't mind playing SW & having just Intro Tech games for some simplicity at times too.  But Big Fleet engagements is also fun.
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Church14

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #81 on: 21 May 2024, 07:46:32 »
I would point out that the whole Dark Age Clickytech story line was created as a 3SW Feel Reboot or so I've heard, because they wanted to get away from Regimental sized battles & IDK, I guess people like the MadMax feel.

Myself, I don't really care about battle size & my biggest complaint about the Jihad+ was that they removed Regiments/Warships as "options" for the most part.
I think options should be open & really enjoyed the Clan Invasion era with it's mix of SW, SLDF, Clan tech.
That said, I'm not a huge fan of "lots of weapons/tech" so even the 3060 era stuff that came out, ATM/Heavy, Added IS Ultra/LBX, ER everything, HAG, etc etc Blah, just added tables of stuff.  Let alone how "X-TacOps Armor Type" rules mostly just slow things down. IMO. 
I don't mind playing SW & having just Intro Tech games for some simplicity at times too.  But Big Fleet engagements is also fun.
Dark Age felt like a bunch of good ideas and not great execution. I did appreciate the intent to get back down to stories where a couple mechs altered the fates of planets, but it didn't quite stick the landing. ilClan feels like it struck a better balance of most planets requiring a battalion-ish to conquer. More room for individual actions to affect a single world, but not requiring some serious nonsense to justify extreme low numbers. That, and ilClan's presentation has been significantly easier to follow for me.

The feeling like there is just too much for tech is a legit complaint. I was vehemently against playing anything past FCCW for a while because of the weird newer tech. Also, for some reason I had a huge hangup on mixed-tech designs.

CJC070

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #82 on: 21 May 2024, 09:55:37 »
I voted for Third Succession War and iClan era.  I choose these eras mostly due to the fact that they both embrace the concept that a Battalion can take a standard planet.  The only difference now is the tech you play with.  Not always a fan of Clan Invasion mostly due to the fact that some Clanners had the maturity that my 12 year old nephew grew out of 3 years ago.  We unfortunately have enough grown up brats in real life.

rebs

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #83 on: 21 May 2024, 16:34:20 »
But narratively, there really isn’t much to do beyond “plucky lance raids/conquers planet Pig’s Knuckle” with 2900 to 3000 that 3000 to 3048 doesn’t already give us. It’s the prequel problem. We know the result, and we know there wasn’t anything of note. So either break canon, or write the same low key stories.

Survival is a struggle that creates its own tension.  The stories one can create are limited more by the individual imagination than the framework of BattleTech's various stories, novels, and other lore surrounding the timeline.
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Re: Best Era
« Reply #84 on: 21 May 2024, 16:46:17 »
The stories one can create are limited more by the individual imagination than the framework of BattleTech's various stories, novels, and other lore surrounding the timeline.

Given how often BattleTech writers recycle the same story framework over and over and over again (little guy and/or merc unit on Planet X defeats bigger guy, seasoned with generic man-pain for flavor), this feels so sadly true.
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Re: Best Era
« Reply #85 on: 21 May 2024, 18:03:13 »
Survival is a struggle that creates its own tension.  The stories one can create are limited more by the individual imagination than the framework of BattleTech's various stories, novels, and other lore surrounding the timeline.

Isn’t this true of pretty much every era though? You can always come ups with something new, the point of existing settings is to have stuff you can use as-is.

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #86 on: 21 May 2024, 19:15:28 »
I don’t feel like I can pick a “best” era, but I can name a “least favorite”. Even then, it’s not primarily down to story line.

The Civil War feels too brief and too indistinct to me to be its own era. For me, it should either get rolled in as the prelude to the Jihad or the last coda of the Clan Invasion.

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Re: Best Era
« Reply #87 on: 21 May 2024, 20:39:48 »
I like the time right after the FedCom Civil War and the start of the Word of Blake fun. It seemed like the peak of the new tech, and new designs.
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Re: Best Era
« Reply #88 on: 21 May 2024, 22:03:55 »
The Civil War feels too brief and too indistinct to me to be its own era. For me, it should either get rolled in as the prelude to the Jihad or the last coda of the Clan Invasion.
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Re: Best Era
« Reply #89 on: 21 May 2024, 22:27:50 »
The Civil War feels too brief and too indistinct to me to be its own era. For me, it should either get rolled in as the prelude to the Jihad or the last coda of the Clan Invasion.

I can't disagree here.

It feels like 3057  (Refusal War/Op:Guerrero) to 3085  (Tikonov Treaty)  should be lumped together into the  "Everybody was Kung-Fu Fighting" Era, or, you know, "Kill Em All / Blitzkrieg!"
3041: General Lance Hawkins: The Equalizers
3053: Star Colonel Rexor Kerensky: The Silver Wolves

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Against mechs, infantry have two options: Run screaming from Godzilla, or giggle under your breath as the arrogant fools blunder into your trap. - Weirdo