Author Topic: (Answered) Difference between old and new BT rules?  (Read 848 times)


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(Answered) Difference between old and new BT rules?
« on: 12 November 2023, 18:54:47 »
Hi, all!

I am a long time Battletech fan (played the Tesla pods once as a kid, played MW3 when it was new, read the books for several years, played MC2 a bunch, and played HBS Battletech), but I am just trying out the tabletop version.

Played it with a friend last night using Flechs Sheets, which were really helpful. We're thinking we'll give Mega Mek a try, too. Our question is, were the old BT rules this complex?  My friend played it a long time ago, and he didn't remember it being this number-crunchy.  He didn't seem certain, though, so his memory may have dropped that part. Is old Battletech simpler than the current ruleset?  And do you all have recommendations for speeding up/simplifying the game?
« Last Edit: 13 November 2023, 05:43:46 by MoreEnthusiasmThanSkill »


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Re: Difference between old and new BT rules?
« Reply #1 on: 12 November 2023, 21:52:42 »
The short answer is that things have remained relatively consistent rules-wise. The central game mechanics for mech combat today remain largely unchanged from their original presentation in Second Edition from 1985. Added gear options have since increased complexity, but only relatively so. Most equipment today is a series of iterations on items that appeared around 1989-91.

Obviously practice makes the game move faster. Having a firm grasp on the hit location table and cluster hits chart saves substantial time. Existing threads like this one have community suggestions for speeding up play,50596.0.html

There is a version of the game called Alpha Strike that is designed for a much larger number of units. It reduces that record sheet to a card

Cards for units with published record sheets can be found at The current rules are

Hope that helps!

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Re: Difference between old and new BT rules?
« Reply #2 on: 13 November 2023, 05:43:03 »
Thank you; that helps a lot! If the old rules were substantially simpler, I was going to buy the PDFs of the old rulebooks. Since they're not, I think I'll invest in the BattleMech manual, just so each of us can have a rulebook to reference. I will also look over the thread of suggestions; thank you for that, as well.

I appreciate the referral to Alpha Strike.  At this time, I think we'll stick to the classic rules, but I have looked over the Alpha Strike manual, which does simplify things a lot.  I'm going to mark this thread as answered.  Thanks again!