BattleTech - The Board Game of Armored Combat

BattleTech Game Systems => General BattleTech Discussion => Topic started by: pfarland on 18 January 2014, 00:57:44

Title: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 18 January 2014, 00:57:44
The title says it all.  Old friend of mine is FINALLY taking the plunge and I know I'll hook him with the boardgame/Mega Mek version, but I once I do that he's gonna want to know the whole universe.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: ANS Kamas P81 on 18 January 2014, 01:02:42
http://bg.battletech.com/?page_id=23

Big starting point for him.  Failing that, Field Manual Updates brings everyone to 3067, Field Manual 3085 is the immediate post-Jihad era, and to be current Field Manual 3145 has things to the 'present' day.  More than those, if he's interested in who's who and what's what, there's the Era Reports that cover some good timeframes to work in; I imagine 3145 would again be the most immediately relevant.

I'd say start with the website, grab the Era Report (and maybe the Field Manual) for the current timeframe, and go from there.  See what gets his attention and steer him toward the general Field Manual for that faction, or else tell him to start saving and buy them all  >:D
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: martian on 18 January 2014, 01:07:45
The title says it all.  Old friend of mine is FINALLY taking the plunge and I know I'll hook him with the boardgame/Mega Mek version, but I once I do that he's gonna want to know the whole universe.

New to BattleTech?

http://bg.battletech.com/?page_id=400 (http://bg.battletech.com/?page_id=400)

And continue from there. The "Downloads section has some free PDFs (such as the Inner Sphere at Glance  and BattleTech Quick-Start Rules).
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 18 January 2014, 01:48:54
Thanks guys!  I've tried to explain some of it, but I'm too ADHD to keep on track long enough for it to make sense. 
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: Lord Cameron on 18 January 2014, 04:20:14
http://bg.battletech.com/?page_id=23

Big starting point for him.  Failing that, Field Manual Updates brings everyone to 3067, Field Manual 3085 is the immediate post-Jihad era, and to be current Field Manual 3145 has things to the 'present' day. 

I found the FM's to be more useful as reference material than as a sourcebook. If you can find a copy of "Shattered Sphere" it gives a good look at the Battletech Universe history through the Succession Wars & Clan Invasion era. Inner Sphere at a Glance is another perhaps, but I've not read that one.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: martian on 18 January 2014, 04:34:07
I remember that the First Strike was a nice book for novice players. Descriptions of what every 'Mech from the Box Set is good at, some tactical advices, simple scenarios, IS mini-campaign, arrival of the Clans.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: elf25s on 18 January 2014, 11:16:16
when i started with battledroids (later battletech after i lost the box in move) i did not care about any of that...to be honest what got me was not the tro and art but the first publication of periphery way before clans came around...
ask first what do they know where they would like to start at..star league succesion wars clans jihad etc
i find it that people who are introduced to a time they are interested in enjoy the rpg elements with their game more
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: Maniac Actual on 18 January 2014, 18:05:44
If he's a lore junky (you made it sound like you think he will be), go with Master's and Minions.  In terms of fluff, the best battletech book ever.  Hands down and bare none.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: WarGod on 19 January 2014, 07:32:15
I hate to say it but Sword and dragon.  has a good story line, record sheets, mostly introtech plus so goodies.  plus maybe a TRO. or a era report would also no hurt.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 19 January 2014, 07:47:42
He's going to really be focused on wanting to learn the history first.  I can summarize things a bit but I tend to stray off subject and it'll go from General BT universe history into a comparison of weapons and tactics with me.  I'm really looking for about the best and most concise summary of the history and various factions to really sink the hook in deep.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: Spinosapper on 19 January 2014, 18:59:55
Perhaps worktroll's Army Reports (http://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php/topic,769.0.html) would be a good start for background info of the Big 5?  They're really good little summaries of the original 3025 house books. 
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: Ice_Trey on 20 January 2014, 07:23:22
Yep.

If you ever bought a boxed set since 2008, they've included those "Introduction to the Battletech Universe" booklets separate from the core rulebooks. I find those are good for the absolute layman, as they give you a good idea of the existing fluff up until the now-ish period, and about the Major successor states, and technologies.

After those, some of the Era Reports are nice bathroom readers, and they focus on the basics of each faction.

TROs are always a must-have. I always found that I was more likely to get attached to fluff behind a 'mech than fluff for a faction. It might also help him to get an idea of what kind of gear each faction has, so that if he's not choosing a faction based on fluff, he can at least pick a faction based on equipment.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 20 January 2014, 12:51:28
If you ever bought a boxed set since 2008, they've included those "Introduction to the Battletech Universe" booklets

Been thinking about getting the new box set once it becomes available again.  The last time I bought the starter set though, I found the original Battledroids too, if that gives you any isedas when, lol.

Catalyst probably ought to make that book downloadable as a free pdf.  We could probably draw a few more people in with it.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: martian on 20 January 2014, 13:08:25
If you ever bought a boxed set since 2008, they've included those "Introduction to the Battletech Universe" booklets
Catalyst probably ought to make that book downloadable as a free pdf.  We could probably draw a few more people in with it.

It already did. You can download it for free from official CGL page:

BattleTech Universe Guide (http://d15yciz5bluc83.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/BattleTechUniverseGuide.pdf)

I pointed out to that in my Reply #2.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: elf25s on 20 January 2014, 13:10:19
had you thought of letting him have a go at 25 years of battletech art book? its pretty comprehensive and does have a time line toward the end of it
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 20 January 2014, 13:49:46
Catalyst probably ought to make that book downloadable as a free pdf.  We could probably draw a few more people in with it.


It already did. You can download it for free from official CGL page:

BattleTech Universe Guide (http://d15yciz5bluc83.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/BattleTechUniverseGuide.pdf)

I pointed out to that in my Reply #2.

Lol, didn't realize it was the same thing you had posted earlier.  Yeah, I already put that on his reading list.
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: pfarland on 20 January 2014, 13:52:03
had you thought of letting him have a go at 25 years of battletech art book? its pretty comprehensive and does have a time line toward the end of it

Doubt I'm going to convince him to run out and buy anything right away, especially not an art book. 
Title: Re: Getting a friend into B-Tech, best sourcebooks to start him with the Universe?
Post by: haesslich on 21 January 2014, 10:28:48
I'd recommend the guide linked to in post #2, then loaning them the old House books of you have them. Between those and maybe the Historicals for what even era you want to introduce them to, you'd be set.