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BattleTech Game Systems => General BattleTech Discussion => Topic started by: Church14 on 22 July 2019, 18:50:25

Title: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 22 July 2019, 18:50:25
I am not looking for fluff. I’m sold on trying to make the designs work because of the fluff. I just grabbed them from IWM and am looking to make them work as a force. The trouble is that they seem... inconsistent? Not nearly as threatening on paper as I’d expect given their intended use.

I like the basics of the Malak. It seems to be an effective light mech. I’m most confused by the archangel. On paper it seem really weak.

For those who’ve been playing / have played these designs previously, what works and what doesn’t? I’ll be getting some mileage in soon but would like to skip obvious pitfalls if I can
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 22 July 2019, 19:06:01
Team players, they rely on the C3i a lot IMO. (Also Manei Domini pilots but you aren't using those in pickup games, are you?) Makes force building a bit tricky though, given the BV expense.

Do look through the alternate configurations carefully, the Invictus types are a bit questionable.

The Archangel is tough, really tough. Pick a config that's dangerous, the Dominus or Comminus for example. Now, the enemy has to decide: Either they'll try to bring the Archangel down, leaving your other 'Mechs free to act as they wish, not an easy task given how tough the 'Mech is, or they can ignore it and good luck with that!

As for the Seraph, I recommend you don't focus on the TSM. It is useful if the 'Mech heats up enough, but the configurations make hitting 9 heat exactly quite difficult, so it is better thought as something that discourages heat-based weapon attacks against the Seraph or mitigates heat-caused speed penalties. (Pity about the BV cost.)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Kojak on 22 July 2019, 21:18:02
Are you sticking to canon configs, or are you open to custom poddings? If the former, I'd recommend the following:

Archangel A & D
Seraph B, C & S
Deva B & D
Grigori A & D
Preta A, B, C, D & S
Malak B, C & S
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 22 July 2019, 21:22:09
The main reason the celestials are feared is c3i + cybernetic supersoldiers

With standard pilots they’re kind of weird Frankensteins (but still fun). Kojak has the right of it. Avoid the prime configs
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 22 July 2019, 21:51:08
I’m most confused by the archangel. On paper it seem really weak.


As Empyrus noted, it's tough.  Specifically, consider the ways that a mech can be killed - destroy the cockpit, destroy 3 engine crits. (or by extension, destroy the head or centre torso)  The Archangel has only got 3 engine crits, meaning you have to hit those exact three slots to kill it.  It has five free crit slots in the centre torso, and two in the head thanks to the small cockpit.  You could mount 3 ER PPCs between the head and centre torso, the same firepower as an Awesome, and it could continue to fire with the loss of both side torsos.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 23 July 2019, 00:33:39
The relative durability of the Archangel depends heavily on what it's being shot with.

It works well against small damage cluster attacks that try to crit seek, but when faced with heavy guns that focus on simply taking huge chunks off it it doesn't hold up nearly as well.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 23 July 2019, 01:17:06
The relative durability of the Archangel depends heavily on what it's being shot with.

It works well against small damage cluster attacks that try to crit seek, but when faced with heavy guns that focus on simply taking huge chunks off it it doesn't hold up nearly as well.

Yeah, but you can't do much more than max out the armour and use a compact engine or gyro unless you want to grab some specialist armour and/or switch to a torso-mounted cockpit, all of which was advanced or experimental at the time the 'mech was designed.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: marauder648 on 23 July 2019, 01:30:36
As folks said, the Celestials are team players and would be deployed as a team. You'd not get like one or two Celestials as well as some other Mech's. You'd just face a group of them.

It would have been nice to see more of them running around with things like VSPs and other 'different' tech but oh well!

Another use for them is to trick them out with MD pilots and then in something like a campaign or something they represent the 'Big Bad' of the campaign you and your friends are playing. Possibly with them storming into battle with this playing in the background - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KyXtz2D41TA  to represent their eeeeeeeevil!

So yeah, if you're gonna use Celestials, use them as a group of Celestials. Or if you want to be sick and wanna spend some serious BV. Add some Mananaeha..manana..MD pilots to them.


Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Firesprocket on 23 July 2019, 01:58:04
As mentioned previously the millage you get out a Celestial is entirely based off of what you pair them with and whether or not you are playing with cybernetic enhancements.  The best recommendation I can give you is to not run an all Celestial unit.  You will find if you do that you are lacking and wanting for certain weapon systems that Celestials lack in quantity or simply don't have at all.  3 or 4 Celestials backed up by other C3i units is what I would aim for.  That said the Preta is the only Celestial that I feel warrants inclusion in universally every C3i force I make.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 23 July 2019, 02:06:41
At the very least, you want to do something about the small cockpit.  Either boost pilot skill or use one of the VDNI implants.

The Arcangel is best served, IMHO, as a large OpFor commander unit - much like the TRO fluff indicates.  Something of a "boss mech" to bring down once the rest have been defeated or driven off.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 23 July 2019, 02:21:12
The pilots. Cyborg pilots are in interstellar operations.

VDNI isn't a good deal. avoid in a celestial

bVDNI is where the meat is. You get (And pay for) a gunnery decrease, but it negates the small cockpit penalty, essentially getting a piloting decrease as well. The downside is the chance for pilot damage when you take crits.

Pain Shunt - pay for a piloting decrease you don't get, but your pilot becomes largely immune to pilot hits, including ones you take from bVDNI

Triple-Core Processor - +3 Pay for a gunnery increase you don't get. Your force gets +3 initiative so long as you're out of ECM range.

Start with an average pilot in a celestial. 4/5(6.) Add bVDNI and TCP. 4(3)/5, +3 on your init rolls, 140% your mechs base price. I'd suggest a Preta Infernus for the longish-range gun and jump jets. Thats your commander.

The rest just get bVDNI

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: marauder648 on 23 July 2019, 02:27:11
Aye the MD stuff gets hella expensive when you start upgrading them. this is what makes me think that a Level II of Celestials would do very well as a 'boss' of a Campaign. You trick 'em all out and you suddenly get a blindingly nasty unit that can quite happily take on Clan Mech's and Pilots. But dear Blake the BV cost is absurd. Making it largely unworkable in a BV Balanced battle. Hence going 'screw it!' throwing BV out the window and making them the big bad of a campaign.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 23 July 2019, 08:18:50
I think i saw someone noting that a full Manei Domini Level 2 of Celestials was an even fight against a binary of Clan 'Mechs and roughly the same cost...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 23 July 2019, 08:44:07
It looks like these bits of tech are referenced in jihad hot spots, so I’ll get a pdf of that.

In general, the intended use is for pickup games and we almost always run stock chassis there. We start with 3/4 pilots across the board to speed matches up. I am okay bringing in the VDNI, bVDNI, pain shunt, and TCP so long as I have the rules correct to run them legally.

The guys I’m playing with tend to go for clan tech when given a chance. I’ve been showing them how C3 and some combined arms tech can counter it.

The campaign they will start soon is the clan invasion era and they will be the clans. Not sure which clan yet so I don’t know what tech I’ll be bringing against them.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 23 July 2019, 08:46:46
It looks like these bits of tech are referenced in jihad hot spots, so I’ll get a pdf of that.

You're better off with Interstellar Operations, especially if you're balancing by BV - they changed the point costing to make the implants a little more reasonable.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: JadeHellbringer on 23 July 2019, 08:48:55
Not much to add beyond noting that the prime configs really are trash mostly, UNLESS you use the optional retractable-blade rules in TacOps. At that point they gain some usefulness- still not as good as other versions, but not bad either.

They're solid designs, but their reputation is far scarier than the actual designs are. The fluff makes it sound like they're as large of a leap forward as the Clans' tech was in '50, and they just aren't even close to that level of broken-ness. Where they shine, as others noted, is in the pilots that can run them- spend (hefty) BV on some upgrades to your special little cyborgs, and the Celestials can become pretty solid in some configs. Use them as-is, and they'll probably struggle mightily against similar-sized opponents from their era- I'd have trouble putting a Deva up against, say, newer versions of the Warhammer for example and feel good about it.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 23 July 2019, 15:40:28
I think one other thing might be look at the weapons vs terrain . . . we have had several discussion about how they lack the ranged punch of some of the other IS designs since they go in for HPPCs, large MRM racks, TBolts, Plasma Rifles, or other 'new' weapons when they rolled out.  But put those shorter ranged weapons into a urban brawl and suddenly its not a liability to not reach out with ERPPC ranges, most of the configs become acceptable.

And IMO that is where it gets into the terror weapons and the reputation that got any Celestial taken as salvage slagged.  Even when the Clans arrived, the Inner Sphere forces followed their post-2SW gentleman's agreement of avoiding combat in urban settings.  With the Clans themselves, it was a sort of mania . . . but when the Word of Blake decided to punish all man for rejecting Blake's wisdom they sought out atrocities.  Nukes, chemical attacks, released bio-agents, orbital bombardment of cities . . . none of it was hands off.  Throw in the fluff we get about how the MD as a whole looked down on the frails, especially an attitude that was pervasive among the higher ranking and thus more borg'd out who would typically be assigned the creme of WoB production- the Celestials.

And if you wanted to spearhead a assault against a defending force that had been pushed back into a city . . . who would be best, tactically, to lead the way?  The difficult to destroy Celestials piloted by elite MD who do not care about frail casualties if it means victory.  Punch through that apartment building to come up behind a assault mech by surprise?  Regular Blakist may jump over it to avoid civilian casualties, but a MD would have no problem walking through that building packed with frails to further the Master's goals.

Which leaves the civilian survivors traumatized by the sight of a Celestial's shoulder sawing through the right side of the apartment where mom & dad had been sitting on the couch with baby brother when you went to get a glass of water . . . and now that part of the apartment is just GONE.  And so are your neighbors, and if you do not scramble out fast enough, you will still be in the building when it collapses into rubble- think Pacific Rim where the girl is holding her shoe as the kaiju and Coyote Alpha duke it out.  Trauma with a capital T, and triggered every time you see a Celestial . . . and to a lesser extent, a mech- part of why Stone was able to shove his changes down society's throat.  More of the public is going to feel that way when the battles came into the cities b/c there will be more people affected or witnessing that something that happened 5 miles outside of town that went around most of the population.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 23 July 2019, 16:55:30
Most of the Comminus variants with MRMs, plasma rifles, and so on are set up for fighting conventional forces e.g. vehicles and battle armor.  The Infernus variants are high firepower for intense combat.  Luminos variants are loaded with energy weapons for endurance.

The C3i does a decent job of compensating for slightly shorter ranges but doesn't address maximum ranges.  Not sure if the intention was for this function to be handled by more dedicated designs, or if the Celestials were intended to always be "up in yo' face!" on a permanent basis rather than sitting back.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 23 July 2019, 17:03:08
Most Celestials are indeed built for medium or short-range combat. You want long-range support, include one or two non-Celestial mechs in your Level II. I haven't tried it out myself yet, but the Archer-9W looks pretty fun. Be sure to load ARAD missiles, in order to quickly take down ECM units. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 24 July 2019, 10:27:31
Hm. We use the heroscape tiles so we don’t do a lot of city fighting, but we do a lot of fights where strangely common level 1-3 hills exist. It’s not hard to break LOS and get closer in our games. We are also bringing in more and more forests. Sounds like our terrain is favorable to the celestials.

Time to go buy Interstellar Operations.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 24 July 2019, 10:54:49
Urban terrain gets interesting . . . especially if you can include certain things.  Walking through buildings, buildings with mech doors, infantry/BA/Proto movement through buildings, basements, fires, collapsing buildings, slips & skids, greater movement for vehicles, and other fun.

If you ever want to combine them with your tiles you should check out the terrain topic & sarna.net which has links to free paper building sites.  PM me and I can point out a few that I like that should be easy to access.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 24 July 2019, 11:01:08
Two of us have 3D printers and there’s some community made buildings on thingiverse. I need to tweak the scale to get things right but they should provide an options.

I think it’s okay to mention that. We use building tiles from the cities and roads pack if we use official mapsheets.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 24 July 2019, 12:09:58
We shouldn't also forget that they are Omni-mechs, hence they can carry the Demon series battlearmor into battle as well.  Fair enough, not all of the battlearmor options are excellent (and three of them can't be carried due to weight or design), but the Se'irim and the Asura are solid enough designs for what you get.

Or, bring in the Tengu with TAG lasers and get cheesy with off-board artillery while the Celestials finish the enemy off.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 24 July 2019, 13:29:31
Tengus for plasma shenanigans, Djinns for TAGing, Asuras for... style. Of course, Achileus, Longinus and Phalanx are options as well.

Personally i'm not big on Se'irim, 6 points of armor isn't really enough for medium BA. It has its uses certainly, but i'd rather have Asura or Longinus.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 24 July 2019, 13:31:32
I need to look closer at that battle armor. Some of it looked real good.

I’m starting to enjoy combined arms for better and worse. So a 5k BV trio of celestials backed by 5k on battle armor, off board artillery, and vehicles is appealing.

10k lets them get a reasonable star of clan mechs/elementals against that.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 24 July 2019, 13:33:33
I have wanted a Longinus to mount RLs instead of SRMs, I think it would be more effective since to get mobile they have to be fired off . . . the range makes that more desirable.

Word of Blake also had what are called 'Choirs' which were a double L2, 6 of mechs or vehs and 6 BA squads.  One thing to also consider with the Celestials would be the Bolla Stealth Tank, a Omni-Veh that can plug in for a mech.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 24 July 2019, 13:52:17
I need to look closer at that battle armor. Some of it looked real good.
The problem with the Se'irim is that it has only 6 armor. Makes it dubious as main battle armor, though it is acceptable urban combatant due to its fast ground speed. The Asura's 7 is a bit low but just and just acceptable (IMO, others prefer 8 minimum), it has good range with the rockets and good main gun (here the Longinus offers more armor at 9 but less range and worse main gun).

Do read the Battle Armor articles, they have some superb insight:
https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=174.msg1584#msg1584
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: OpacusVenatori on 24 July 2019, 14:06:52
Playing Alpha Strike, intend to play them without any augmentation beyond skill increases.
My favorites are all the infernus variant, except for the seraph, of which I think the invictus variant (again, in Alpha Strike) is the best variant.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 24 July 2019, 15:12:21
Six points of basic stealth armor, plus whatever implants the operator has.  Should be enough for most uses.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 24 July 2019, 16:24:51
Add a couple implants for the battle armor folks as well.  Again, the equipment itself isn't super-duper, it's the hopped-up-on-amphetamine, quasi-religious, toaster loving, cybernetic users that make it deadly; myomer leg implants to boost their MP by 1 and pain shunts to make them laugh at conventional infantry killers (inferno specifically).  There are a few others that might be worth it at well, but that is the minimum for me. 

I have heard MD infantry with implants is a nightmare as well, so if you pick up a few Heavy APCs to carry a couple platoons that could also be fun. 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 24 July 2019, 22:59:17
I picked up IntOps and am a little confused. So for bVDNI and VDNI, unless you have a small cockpit, just having a better pilot is more efficient due to the increased chance of pilot damage?


Also, Ermahgerd, I’m loving the balls out crazy that is the prototype version. -2/-3 but you roll for every single damage you suffer to see for pilot hits. I missed what the BV penalty would be.


Then it looked like there is a cockpit upgrade (4tons and a crit) that would let a VDNI pilot basically ignore their gyro and just roll pilot skill no matter what?

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 24 July 2019, 23:24:59
I picked up IntOps and am a little confused. So for bVDNI and VDNI, unless you have a small cockpit, just having a better pilot is more efficient due to the increased chance of pilot damage?

yep. VDNI is gets average pilots to veteran equivalency, but that's basically a roleplaying thing.

Small cockpit (Which all celestials have) make your piloting worse. By counteracting that malus, bVDNI essentially gives you -1/-1 for the price of -1/-0.

The chance of pilot damage isn't a trivial thing, but usually doesn't become relevant until the unit is shot to garbage anyway. If it still worries you, pick up a pain shunt and become functionally immune to pilot hits for the additional cost of -0/-1.
Quote
Then it looked like there is a cockpit upgrade (4tons and a crit) that would let a VDNI pilot basically ignore their gyro and just roll pilot skill no matter what?

No celestial has that. In fact, I think there are only 2-3 units that have those systems at all.

Pick up the wolf and blake starterbook. Nice little showcase of the psychos that pilot celestials, and a campaign to play them in.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 25 July 2019, 00:26:25
For serious hilarity, try running an Archangel with VDNI pilot who doesn't have Pain Shunt and see if you can kill the mech before killing the pilot.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 25 July 2019, 06:42:50
For a chaos campaign where you pay a certain cost for different skill level pilots, would this be a high risk/reward way to game the system? A regular pilot would be a 4/5, but a regular pilot with VDNI would be a 3/4 but cost the same? I’m only just really starting to read through chaos rules.


Honestly, I’m just looking for silly ways to justify bringing this stuff
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: OpacusVenatori on 25 July 2019, 08:45:48
Honestly, I’m just looking for silly ways to justify bringing this stuff

As many have already stated, the troops of the Manei Domini are more for a flavor/rpg thing. So, there is no "real or hard" balance on using them.

If you want to use them outside an rpg scenario, just tell your opponent want you want to use and work together to find a bv2 compensation for deploy that kind of tech/troops.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 25 July 2019, 08:51:55
This is Battletech, just about any justification to do something is silly when you think about it.  For example; it is silly to justify that a platoon of infantry would have the balls to fight against a 100 ton Battlemech, but they do it.  It is silly to justify filling a coolant truck with napalm propellant and turning it into a fire truck, but people do it.  If you want to bring in an elite force of units to capture a planet (my understanding of what a chaos campaign is) then that go for it. 

I'm also a WoB fan, so if people are willing to spread the light and peace (through utter and indiscriminate destruction of their enemies  :) ) that is offered by Blake, then I will gladly get behind that person.

I do have a follow up question; not reading Strat Ops as of yet, what is their process for calculating BV costs for the implants?  I remember in the Jihad books it consisted of multipliers for the highest level implant, and everything below that was free.  Did they just change the multiplier?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 25 July 2019, 09:26:49
I do have a follow up question; not reading Strat Ops as of yet, what is their process for calculating BV costs for the implants?  I remember in the Jihad books it consisted of multipliers for the highest level implant, and everything below that was free.  Did they just change the multiplier?
Implants are in Interstellar Operations (which has a lot of tech despite its name).

Quick look indicates that augments are usually treated simply as multipliers, though others add to defensive or offensive BV.
For example, Triple Core Processor for a 'Mech adds -1 gunnery multiplier. Boosted Communications Implant is calculated like C3 network if the unit is linked to one.

This does rapidly increase BV cost of units. Say, a veteran pilot 3/4, with TCP (G -1), VDNI (G/P -1) and Pain Shunt (P -1) would be calculated as if it were 1/2 pilot.
That said, with sufficiently skilled pilot, you won't be paying extra for implants  since 0/0 pilot is the best possible and does not get further BV modifiers.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 25 July 2019, 10:50:47
I'll have to look through Interstellar Ops (and buy the PDF I guess) when I get home from work, as it seems like maybe augments have decreased in cost a bit, maybe.  In the Jihad books each implant had a level, and a BV modifier attached to it.  You took your pilots highest implant level BV modifier, added it to the pilot BV, and that was what you multiplied the mech BV by to get the total unit BV.  Gets costly AF real fast. 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: SteelRaven on 25 July 2019, 11:01:36
You know, I have been meaning to make some MD characters just for fun. This may give me a excuse.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 25 July 2019, 11:51:28
As many have already stated, the troops of the Manei Domini are more for a flavor/rpg thing. So, there is no "real or hard" balance on using them.

If you want to use them outside an rpg scenario, just tell your opponent want you want to use and work together to find a bv2 compensation for deploy that kind of tech/troops.

Actually, I would suggest that the new SPA system balances it.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 25 July 2019, 12:46:52
I've always viewed the WoB Celestials as an OpFor rather than a player controlled force.

BV makes the cost of them insane. Utilising C3i with a good player in control you can see where some of that BV goes. Although as others have mentioned a lot of the stock Celestials are shockingly bad.

As far as cannon goes you can see why Celestial units and WoB premier units were a nightmare to face. A shadow division landing on a couple of regiments I'd give less time than facing a similar Clan force. Played out by BV and balanced makes WoB nearly unplayable though even with massive changes to their stock mech builds.

An amazing OpFor though. The most devastating battlefield opponent to ever grace an IS battlefield.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 25 July 2019, 13:34:32
I would be curious to play a game with an elite group of Manei Domini, especially the Opacus Venatori and their specific equipment.  The opposing force can bring a BV equivalent force.  Potentially the sheer numbers of dice being rolled could lead to the OV getting curb stomped, but played right the OV just need to keep moving, focus fire, and keep their C3i active to neglect the range modifiers of their weaponry.  I could easily see the elite MD pilots, with skills of 2/3 or 1/2, putting up quite the show as they would more likely consistently hit with their weapons every round. 

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 25 July 2019, 13:43:05
I would be curious to play a game with an elite group of Manei Domini, especially the Opacus Venatori and their specific equipment.  The opposing force can bring a BV equivalent force.  Potentially the sheer numbers of dice being rolled could lead to the OV getting curb stomped, but played right the OV just need to keep moving, focus fire, and keep their C3i active to neglect the range modifiers of their weaponry.  I could easily see the elite MD pilots, with skills of 2/3 or 1/2, putting up quite the show as they would more likely consistently hit with their weapons every round.

A level II of 2/3 and 3/2 MD with VDNI, in Celestials works out to a Binary of normal Clanners.  When I saw this happen, the Clanners were under a fairly strict Zell, and fear of that massed fire kept the MD player from using that C3i, even though he had to pay the BV for it.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 25 July 2019, 17:28:47
TBH, if I was playing Clans against the WoB I wouldn't even give them the chance of Zell.  Every single major force in the Inner Sphere knows that the WoB fights dirty; and not standard Inner Sphere surat dirty.  The WoB, especially the MD, start their invasion of a planet with a merry little orbital bombardment utilizing ballistic, nuclear, or chemical warheads.  They then follow that up with nasty, dishonorable technology (to the clans) and ganking whoever they run across that doesn't sport their colors.  I imagine they also kick orphanages into rivers and punch puppies (probably not, but I'm trying to emphasize a point :) ). 

In the end, the WoB is supposed to fight dirty.  That is how they win and, much to my distaste to the writers of Battletech at the time (all organizations need to have some saving grace, and the WoB's wasn't emphasized enough in the lore in my opinion), is how they got to be the big bad for an entire in-universe decade or two.  Clans shouldn't give them the chance of honorable combat on the battlefield, and the WoB shouldn't attempt to be honorable.  But that is my opinion, and may not be shared by all.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: truetanker on 25 July 2019, 22:24:51
Maybe I should post officially my Tau Omega MD Infantry Platoon...

Armor Divisor of 3
Platoon, Foot...
2MP... Glides...
Other funny business stuff...
Twelve people... 39 damage...
3 Tons... 264 BV...2/2 using C3i

TT
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: idea weenie on 26 July 2019, 00:35:00
In the end, the WoB is supposed to fight dirty.  That is how they win and, much to my distaste to the writers of Battletech at the time (all organizations need to have some saving grace, and the WoB's wasn't emphasized enough in the lore in my opinion), is how they got to be the big bad for an entire in-universe decade or two.  Clans shouldn't give them the chance of honorable combat on the battlefield, and the WoB shouldn't attempt to be honorable.  But that is my opinion, and may not be shared by all.

I think a lot of the stuff that happened initially during the WoB war was the other Houses doing their sneaky stuff, and then conveniently saying it was the WoB using a false-color unit.

Basically, first the Houses blamed WoB, then they blammed WoB
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 26 July 2019, 01:32:31
A level II of 2/3 and 3/2 MD with VDNI, in Celestials works out to a Binary of normal Clanners.  When I saw this happen, the Clanners were under a fairly strict Zell, and fear of that massed fire kept the MD player from using that C3i, even though he had to pay the BV for it.

That's a great time to use C3i, you walk a mech up beside an enemy in a duel with someone else, get short range modifiers when the other guy is at medium/long.  The one your spotter is at short range to can't fire at the spotter because of Zell.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 26 July 2019, 01:41:45
C3 tech of any kind is a breaking of Zell, so gauge your opponent's mood very carefully before trying this. There is a very real chance that they will leap up and with a mighty roar of "DEZGRAAAA!!!", rip their shirt off and inform you with guns that It Is On.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 26 July 2019, 08:36:37
C3 tech of any kind is a breaking of Zell, so gauge your opponent's mood very carefully before trying this. There is a very real chance that they will leap up and with a mighty roar of "DEZGRAAAA!!!", rip their shirt off and inform you with guns that It Is On.

How would they know? I understand that the human playing the clans would know, but how would the in-universe clanner know that C3 is being used?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 26 July 2019, 09:01:47
I believe in-universe Clan and later era IS targeting equipment is good at identifying what an enemy unit is using (similar to MWO with the targeting) and would pick up on radar signals. 

Like I said in my previous post, the WoB fights dirty, especially in the eyes of the Clans that still practice Zell.  So even if the Clan machines don't pick up on radar signals being sent from WoB C3i mechs, they would still expect that is what is occurring.  At least in my mind.

The WoB has a reputation, whether it was falsely presented by corrupt news agencies or was directly because of the WoB actions.  I would argue that no one, the Clans nor the IS, would give the opportunity of honor to a WoB unit, especially one in MD colors.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 26 July 2019, 09:17:03
How would they know? I understand that the human playing the clans would know, but how would the in-universe clanner know that C3 is being used?
:o

That is an EXCELLENT question.  Passive sensors will tell you that you are being painted and give you a threat direction even on a "orderly" Clan battlefield, how can you tell "he's looking at me," from "he's locking me up so he's ready to go as soon as I kill his friend, he can jump in," from "he's painting me for a C3 shot?"  I suppose you can identify LRM indirect because "Oh, LRMs are dropping straight down out of the sky on my and the only units within LOS are a Mad Dog C, a Black Python and a Kit Fox Prime but their bid also included 2 Mandrills..."


I believe in-universe Clan and later era IS targeting equipment is good at identifying what an enemy unit is using (similar to MWO with the targeting) and would pick up on radar signals. 
But how would a Clanner, or any poor sod being dog piled by a C3 formation be able to identify the message traffic between the spotter and the shooter?  If it's a directional broadcast, then you wouldn't even know its happening.  If it's on omnidirectional signal, there's no way to know who the intended recipient is.  I suppose that C3 happens on a very particular frequency band, with characteristic wave forms, so you could tell that there are C3 units in the area and they are broadcasting.  The countermeasure to that is to constantly broadcast on the C3 band.  C3 units are constantly sharing encrypted versions of encyclopedia Britannica so that when you do send targeting data, it's a tiny change in a sea of encrypted signals.

So they in-game explanation seems like C3 uses an omnidirectional signal, and maintains a steady stream "housekeeping" transmissions that tells the enemy that a network is in the field. Then when you actually share targeting data, there is a distinct change in the signal traffic.

And once again I've started a post by saying "it shouldn't work that way" and by the time I'm done I've figured out that "it really could work that way."
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 26 July 2019, 09:57:29
C3 tech of any kind is a breaking of Zell, so gauge your opponent's mood very carefully before trying this. There is a very real chance that they will leap up and with a mighty roar of "DEZGRAAAA!!!", rip their shirt off and inform you with guns that It Is On.

Name one thing that isn't a standard Clan response to.

But at the same time, in-universe at least some of the Clans seem to respect dirty tricks when they work - The Smoke Jaguars didn't schwack Wolcott from orbit when they realised they had been tricked in the Batchall, nor did they or the Nova Cats cry foul on Luthien, or the Clans in general on Tukayyid when the Inner Sphere forces used ambushes, decoys, traps, and other deceptive tactics.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 26 July 2019, 10:23:48
Name one thing that isn't a standard Clan response to.

Flan. Even uncultured swine like Clan Warriors appreciate a good flan.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 26 July 2019, 10:27:24
Flan...?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: massey on 26 July 2019, 10:33:39
The Clans appreciate winning.  If you cheat, and I should have seen it coming, then I've got to nod my head and give you credit.  A true warrior has cunning, and tries to win with what he's got against superior forces.  Of course, at a certain point, they get pissed off.  If you keep cheating, then obviously the rules mean nothing to you and it's time for massed fire.

I think you've got to separate behavior that the Clans would not engage in from truly dishonorable conduct that they hate.  For instance, you don't get any honor from an artillery kill.  When you're basically fighting for breeding rights, to pass on your genetics, getting stuck in a Naga shooting Arrow IVs at distant targets really sucks.  Nobody wants to do that.  Nobody wants to pilot the Naga and nobody wants to spot for the Naga.  It's a punishment assignment.  Now, for Star Colonel Dave, using artillery to wipe out a company of tanks that are over that ridge would be fine.  There's no real opportunity for honor in smashing vehicles, so you might as well just bombard them.  And if an Inner Sphere mech company is dumb enough to leave themselves wide open to artillery bombardment, well it sucks to be them.  You can always play it up that you are full of wisdom and not blinded by raw ambition ("and I'm really humble too...").  But for the warriors piloting the mechs, well they hate it.  Therefore the Clans don't use artillery all that much, even when it would make sense to do so.

I think that's probably why they don't use C3 networks.  While it's an advantage overall for your side, it's basically like asking for help.  You are making it easier for your buddy way over there to assist you in killing your target.  Most Clan warriors wouldn't use C3 because they don't want to.  There's nothing necessarily dishonorable about it (as in it's not treacherous), but it sure makes you look like a wussy.  You might as well say "I'm gonna call my dad!"  I don't think it's the kind of thing that would make Clan warriors immediately froth in rage if they Inner Sphere used it against them.

That said, I also don't think the example given, of a Celestial pilot walking his machine up next to a duel between two other mechs, is a particularly good one.  I think the average hyper-cocky Clan warrior would simply say "Fine, I'll kill you both!" and unload on the guy dumb enough to make himself an easy target.  He's not going to interfere in somebody else's duel, but if an enemy mech is clearly not engaging the guy he's supposed to be fighting, and instead comes wandering over to you?  Fair game, man.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 10:38:08
Flan. Even uncultured swine like Clan Warriors appreciate a good flan.

they would probably initiate a trial of refusal over japanese gas station flan
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 26 July 2019, 10:43:13
The Clans, as far as I can tell, consider the WoB to be bandit scum rather than an enemy worthy of respect.  By the time the Shadow Divisions started appearing, the Blakists had already been making extensive use of NBC weaponry and that alone was enough to get them declared permanently dezgra.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 26 July 2019, 11:13:52
Flan. Even uncultured swine like Clan Warriors appreciate a good flan.

Yeah, but you know they'll go into overdrive and start calling for a Trial of Possession for that Spheroid two tables over's flan because he's using a fork instead of a spoon and that's dishonourable.

That said, I also don't think the example given, of a Celestial pilot walking his machine up next to a duel between two other mechs, is a particularly good one.  I think the average hyper-cocky Clan warrior would simply say "Fine, I'll kill you both!" and unload on the guy dumb enough to make himself an easy target.  He's not going to interfere in somebody else's duel, but if an enemy mech is clearly not engaging the guy he's supposed to be fighting, and instead comes wandering over to you?  Fair game, man.

And if the guy that's moved close to you is in a duel of his own?  And that guy happens to be at short range of the guy you're duelling?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 26 July 2019, 11:14:21
Alright. So outside of warships scale nuke/chem/bioweapons, What are the dirty and dishonorable equipment/weapons brought by WoB. This thread is kind of becoming a WoB strat guide in general to me.

We have:
Celestial designs
Damn near everything has C3i
Sticking Unstable and psychosis induced upgrades into your people


Are their chem weapons or artillery that are more mech scale?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 26 July 2019, 11:44:55
Are their chem weapons or artillery that are more mech scale?

Chemical weapons tend to be outside the scope of your average tabletop game, and generally mechs and combat vehicles are sealed so the crews are safe.  There are rules for playing in hostile environments including radiation, biological and chemical weapons in Tactical Operations, and there are rules for deploying WMDs in Interstellar Operations.

Artillery is far more common, though with the exception of Arrow IV launchers it tends to be vehicle mounted as opposed to on mechs, rules are in Tactical Operations.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Empyrus on 26 July 2019, 11:50:58
Are their chem weapons or artillery that are more mech scale?
Interstellar Operations has rules for chemical weapons. They tend to go heavily to "GM/player judgment" territory though, since delivery methods are up to players.
Like, players can rule that an Arrow IV (which can be carried by 'Mechs) has missiles with chemical warheads. Becomes very complex fast though.

IO includes other WMDs as well, with nuclear weapons having most complete rules.

In practice, those don't really work in normal games, being too complex and too powerful. If you want to spice your game with special weapons, normal artillery and air strikes are probably good bets. BattleMech Manual has "support powers" for simple artillery and air strikes (and countering those), and one could modify them a bit with rules from Tactical Operations for inferno warheads or the like. Fire is simpler, yet fits the Word of Blake doctrine well enough.

Some 'Mechs can carry Arrow IV artillery missiles, but i can't off hand name any the Word of Blake has except the very limited Catapult C3 which has only one ton of missiles (C5 is better but pretty much Capellan-exclusive, though the Word of Blake could always have stolen some, or bought few, whatever works on your table).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 26 July 2019, 11:59:40
Agreed.  Unfortunately many WMDs don't have BV costs associated with them, as they are meant to be a Game Master tool.  I looked forever to find the BV cost of a Davy-Crockett as I am using the WoB in a small campaign.  Needless to say I came up empty handed. 

If you are looking for artillery, the Marksman is a good option in my mind.  It is fairly inexpensive for BV, and was commonly used by the WoB, who stole a bunch from ComStar before getting a manufacturing plant to build their own (I believe the WoB captured a manufacturing plant to build Marksman).

In the end, I play the WoB that they can field just about anything the Inner Sphere has to offer and will use any tactics to win.  They were very hateful of the Clans so they would not inherently use Clan equipment, however.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 12:03:22
the mad cat and ryoken show up on their jihad list, but that's it. there is also a celestial config and a variant for each LAM (nine total) that is mixed tech.

so 99% anti-clan  ^-^
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: massey on 26 July 2019, 12:13:40

And if the guy that's moved close to you is in a duel of his own?  And that guy happens to be at short range of the guy you're duelling?

Then you get a one turn advantage when you can group fire but the Clans haven't yet?

If everybody is engaged in combat, then it doesn't really matter.  WoB can basically declare a Grand Melee if they want.  Firing (especially group firing) on somebody who is already engaged in a duel will do that.  I'm talking about a somewhat different scenario.  The way I read your idea is that there was an extra C3 mech who just decides to get as close as possible to a Clan target, counting on the Clanner not engaging yet.  And meanwhile he's feeding info to other mechs.  I don't think that's a safe assumption.  I think the Clan warrior might decide to just blast him anyway because he's not actively involved in a duel, and he's made himself an easy target.  Clan honor does allow one mech to engage multiple opponents as part of their duel.

I suppose you could get a situation where two Clan mechs are fighting two C3 mechs, where each is standing next to their buddy's target.  Like they're on opposite ends of the map, shooting at targets on the other side.  And as long as the duels stay honorable looking on the surface, the C3 mechs could be sharing data and nobody would ever know.  In that situation I guess the C3 mechs would have an advantage, but I don't think that layout would be very common.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Orin J. on 26 July 2019, 12:47:00
Flan. Even uncultured swine like Clan Warriors appreciate a good flan.
(https://i.imgur.com/rZ8HhaW.jpg)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 26 July 2019, 13:41:08
Then you get a one turn advantage when you can group fire but the Clans haven't yet?

If everybody is engaged in combat, then it doesn't really matter.  WoB can basically declare a Grand Melee if they want.  Firing (especially group firing) on somebody who is already engaged in a duel will do that.  I'm talking about a somewhat different scenario.  The way I read your idea is that there was an extra C3 mech who just decides to get as close as possible to a Clan target, counting on the Clanner not engaging yet.  And meanwhile he's feeding info to other mechs.  I don't think that's a safe assumption.  I think the Clan warrior might decide to just blast him anyway because he's not actively involved in a duel, and he's made himself an easy target.  Clan honor does allow one mech to engage multiple opponents as part of their duel.

I suppose you could get a situation where two Clan mechs are fighting two C3 mechs, where each is standing next to their buddy's target.  Like they're on opposite ends of the map, shooting at targets on the other side.  And as long as the duels stay honorable looking on the surface, the C3 mechs could be sharing data and nobody would ever know.  In that situation I guess the C3 mechs would have an advantage, but I don't think that layout would be very common.

IMO what is described is more of the discussion Clan players have about ECM/ECCM in Trials involving duels . . . or even blocking movement, taking/destroying woods or buildings, and other 'incidental' benefits for the warrior on your side in their duel while you are engaged in your own duel.

For example . . .

One warrior on my side is piloting a Timber Wolf B against a Falcon Hellbringer Prime.  I am piloting a isorla Black Lanner Prime against a Cougar H, so keeping my distance to use ERLL & LRM10 is fighting smart . . . but I also do not 'need' the ECM in my fight against the Cougar, so its switched the ECCM mode.  I just happen to move to place the ECCM bubble to cancel out the ECM between the Hellbringer & Timber Wolf LOS so the Artemis IV on the TWolf's LRMs & SRMs get their benefit.

C3 & C3i, IMO, are in the same situation as described above . . . but you can add the RP element of 'how would the Clan warriors know'  . . . they are either going to assume the IS pilots are more elite than they expected (after getting hit a lot b/c its easier), or custom mechs with TCs, etc . . . WE know OOC that its C3i- though I would say the WoB player should/would not reveal it- but its not something a Clan warrior is going to know absolutely.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 14:47:06
I suspect c3 is detectible by sensors - not necessarily the specific data being shared, but that you can tell it’s active in the vicinity. If that is the case, the clans might have just started declaring shenanigans the second it popped up on their sensors. I feel this, or something similar, is the case because:

Quote from: tw pg 275
A Clan warrior’s response to an Inner Sphere unit declaring an attack using such a system against a Clan unit depends on the honor level in use. At Honor Level 1, the Clan warrior upholds all the rules of dueling, regardless of the type of weapon used. At Honor Level 2, the duel degenerates into a free-for-all, with the violators—the unit that fired the area- effect weapon, designated with TAG or used a C3 system— open to attack by any Clan unit. At Honor Level 3, the use of area-effect systems renders the entire ritual of zellbrigen null and void.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 26 July 2019, 15:15:42
C3 is sited b/c the Master acts like a TAG, and is reinforced with the previous & post mention of area-effect weapon.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 15:32:27
No I don’t think so

Previous paragraph

Quote
Area Affect Weapons (as well as any system that requires multiple units to operate, such as TAG, C3, semi-guided LRMs and so on) by their nature violate Zellbrigen.

C3 is listed discretely. If they meant c3 master tag they would have said that.

Using c3 in any form violates zell and whatever in-universe magic you want to use to explain it allows clanners to know it’s being used. Honor level 1 will ignore it and overcome. 2 and 3 will not
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: massey on 26 July 2019, 16:25:59
I think calling them "Honor level 1" and "Honor level 2" really just shows that they're gameplay rules.  I think the Clans themselves wouldn't use that terminology or follow those exact codes.  That's for us, the players, to use in games.

My guess is that they can figure out that mechs are using C3 equipment.  If nothing else, they should just know that those mechs normally carry it.  Theoretically they might not know if it's turned on, but I think any Inner Sphere pilot in a C3 machine who starts making really accurate shots would be suspected.  And if you're a Clanner who is looking for a reason to break the rules, that's all you need.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 26 July 2019, 16:38:08
IMO what is described is more of the discussion Clan players have about ECM/ECCM in Trials involving duels . . . or even blocking movement, taking/destroying woods or buildings, and other 'incidental' benefits for the warrior on your side in their duel while you are engaged in your own duel.

For example . . .

One warrior on my side is piloting a Timber Wolf B against a Falcon Hellbringer Prime.  I am piloting a isorla Black Lanner Prime against a Cougar H, so keeping my distance to use ERLL & LRM10 is fighting smart . . . but I also do not 'need' the ECM in my fight against the Cougar, so its switched the ECCM mode.  I just happen to move to place the ECCM bubble to cancel out the ECM between the Hellbringer & Timber Wolf LOS so the Artemis IV on the TWolf's LRMs & SRMs get their benefit.

I think that a lot of Clan warriors would call shenanigans on that, too.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 16:43:01
I think calling them "Honor level 1" and "Honor level 2" really just shows that they're gameplay rules.  I think the Clans themselves wouldn't use that terminology or follow those exact codes.  That's for us, the players, to use in games.

My guess is that they can figure out that mechs are using C3 equipment.  If nothing else, they should just know that those mechs normally carry it.  Theoretically they might not know if it's turned on, but I think any Inner Sphere pilot in a C3 machine who starts making really accurate shots would be suspected.  And if you're a Clanner who is looking for a reason to break the rules, that's all you need.

The second observation is a good one. Eventually you’re going to know who’s got the master and to snuff it either by PPC fire or ecm ASAP

Honor levels are just a general characterization of attitude that gives you a gameplay guideline. The attitudes themselves in turn  are probably reflective of in universe codification, prescribed reactions ingrained by social norms. Every clanner is going to have their own foibles and peculiarities but largely fall into a few select groups. Virtually all of them are opportunists at some level and the whole system is a big facade, especially politically. I wouldn’t expect many clan vets past tukayyid to be anything but cagey about using traditional clan ROE against IS forces

A level 1 is an insufferable idealist who will die rather than win by breaking the code. Level 2 wants to fight by the ROE but won’t suffer fools that break the code. Level 3 is for opportunists just waiting for an excuse to go ham.  Level 4 is for dezgra like wobbies who don’t even deserve the chance.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: idea weenie on 26 July 2019, 19:22:37
Chemical weapons tend to be outside the scope of your average tabletop game, and generally mechs and combat vehicles are sealed so the crews are safe.  There are rules for playing in hostile environments including radiation, biological and chemical weapons in Tactical Operations, and there are rules for deploying WMDs in Interstellar Operations.

Artillery is far more common, though with the exception of Arrow IV launchers it tends to be vehicle mounted as opposed to on mechs, rules are in Tactical Operations.

The closest you might get on the tactical scale is the enemy force is moving missile launching units (Arrow IV, Thunderbolt, or LRM) towards a certain location.  Your job is to immobilize or destroy those units so they cannot get in range of a nearby population center.  Think Objective Raid/Assassination mission, where you have to get to a location, or destroy certain enemy units.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 26 July 2019, 21:49:49
Wars of reaving designated the zell levels 'strict zell', 'opportunistic zell' and something else I can't remember.

Really, the celestials are a boogeyman in chaos campaign, for when the GM rolls too many 6s in a row when determining the bad guys. Running into an elite level II with all the toys, when you were expecting a low-intensity recon scenario? Unfun.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 July 2019, 21:59:33
Quote from: tw pg 274
The table gives three different levels of interpretation. A strict interpretation means that the Clan’s warriors generally follow zellbrigen against almost all opponents (except
those considered extremely dishonorable, such as bandits and pirates, or against a long-hated enemy). An opportunistic interpretation means that the warriors follow zellbrigen unless mitigating circumstances dictate otherwise (they are outnumbered/outgunned, they think they can get away with it, and so on). Clans following a liberal interpretation use zellbrigen only against other Clans, and then only if they have the advantage.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 26 July 2019, 22:19:09
Alright. So outside of warships scale nuke/chem/bioweapons, What are the dirty and dishonorable equipment/weapons brought by WoB. This thread is kind of becoming a WoB strat guide in general to me.

We have:
Celestial designs
Damn near everything has C3i
Sticking Unstable and psychosis induced upgrades into your people


Are their chem weapons or artillery that are more mech scale?

A lot of the WoB dirty tricks won't work well in a pick up game.  They are more for role play and/or campaign systems where BV isn't so much a force build tool as a GM check to ensure things don't get too out of balance on the table.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 27 July 2019, 02:34:51

I suppose you could get a situation where two Clan mechs are fighting two C3 mechs, where each is standing next to their buddy's target.  Like they're on opposite ends of the map, shooting at targets on the other side.  And as long as the duels stay honorable looking on the surface, the C3 mechs could be sharing data and nobody would ever know.  In that situation I guess the C3 mechs would have an advantage, but I don't think that layout would be very common.

That's exactly what I'm talking about, and well, its how I generally aim to use C3.  Maybe not opposite ends of the map, but the plan is more to manoeuvre linked units to give a mutual targeting advantage
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: massey on 27 July 2019, 11:16:20
I don't see how that's really possible.  I mean, maybe in a vague general sense.  But your opponent is going to know you're using C3.  I suppose if he's just not very good you might be able to position yourself like that.  But he should realize what you're doing and move to counter.

Theoretically in a real battle, your enemy may not know that you've got this particular technology, but not in a game.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 27 July 2019, 11:22:00
Running into an elite level II with all the toys, when you were expecting a low-intensity recon scenario? Unfun.

one of my favorite mechanisms in a chaos campaign is to have a scenario option called Intel Blunder that has variable levels of a huge reward but the players know it's going to be horrible.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 27 July 2019, 13:15:53
one of my favorite mechanisms in a chaos campaign is to have a scenario option called Intel Blunder that has variable levels of a huge reward but the players know it's going to be horrible.

Have sealed envelopes, have them pull one from the stack.

Nice idea.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 29 July 2019, 10:05:48
That said, I also don't think the example given, of a Celestial pilot walking his machine up next to a duel between two other mechs, is a particularly good one.  I think the average hyper-cocky Clan warrior would simply say "Fine, I'll kill you both!" and unload on the guy dumb enough to make himself an easy target.  He's not going to interfere in somebody else's duel, but if an enemy mech is clearly not engaging the guy he's supposed to be fighting, and instead comes wandering over to you?  Fair game, man.

IIRC, So long as that Celestial that just walks up next to you during your duel with that Seraph has not been engaged by anyone else, Zell allows you to engage the second target, thus "inviting" it into your current duel, without declaring a Grand Melee.  If you shoot at a Wobbie who's already fighting your starmate, well, that's just not how we play cricket in the Kerensky Cluster.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 29 July 2019, 11:05:29
now that i thought about it, i'm of the mind that after about the first ten minutes of the jihad the clans weren't even giving wobbies the chance to break zell in the first place
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 29 July 2019, 11:07:37
Pretty much.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 07 August 2019, 09:52:59
Alright. So I have an okay idea of what to do with the Celestial series. bVDNI seems a must and worked out okay in the test match.

Now I am more focused on getting the vehicles, BA, and infantry right.

BA is the 6 demon series models and purifiers (adaptive and terra)?

Infantry appears to be Tau Zombies, Tau Wraiths, and just generally available IS infantry? Are there any other standout types to use here? I found RS3085u and am still going through what feels like a hundred-ish pages of infantry
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Maelwys on 07 August 2019, 11:09:43
BA is the Demons, the Purifiers and they'll have access to the FWL's Achileus, Longinus and Phalanx. Also the Standard IS suits, and they also produce the Nighthawk and Tornado suits.

You can also make your own infantry, which would let you do things like build 36 man WoB infantry units using their armor kits and Mauser 1200s....
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 07 August 2019, 11:14:00
CS/WoB infantry Level IIs are tricky because you, by the rules, have to split them into two 18 man platoons. notice on the MUL that conventional infantry are only listed by Level I.

now, if you want to just go ahead and make the super platoons, no one is calling the compliance police.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 07 August 2019, 12:39:36
CS/WoB infantry Level IIs are tricky because you, by the rules, have to split them into two 18 man platoons. notice on the MUL that conventional infantry are only listed by Level I.

now, if you want to just go ahead and make the super platoons, no one is calling the compliance police.

Or depending on what you want infantry for, you make 6 six-man squads . . . or it could be two six man squads as demi-squads.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 07 August 2019, 13:26:54
Hm. I thought CS/WoB Infantry came in 30 person units.

Either way, I’m most interested in this Tau Zombie. I just neeed to figure out how the armor divisor works and what the 1.75 Modiifer for MD means. They start at 93. Does 93 include all the MD stuff? Do I need to pay 163 for the whole unit?

I’m assuming I could take the 6 man squad, triple the BV, and bring it as an 18? Or is there a specific reason for them to only be 6 people
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 07 August 2019, 13:36:47
They used to be standard but were changed to match their base six philosophy
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 07 August 2019, 13:51:56
6 man squad is not a problem- other non-Clan factions have smaller & larger squads.  MH is 5 man squads, regular infantry for the Houses are 7 man squads, foot platoons have 4 squads and jump have 3 IIRC, and I am sure there are more set ups.  My preference for my combined arms merc unit is a 10 man squad, 4 squads to the platoon w/ a command section of 4, and base 4 up from there since infantry will be holding territory & garrisoning . . . base 4 is better for occupation, 3 is better for manuever (2 up & 1 back).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 07 August 2019, 14:53:28
The zombies and wraiths from TRO 3085 are more specialist units (assault and recon, respectively).  They're not really intended to be deployed in large numbers. 

For a more conventional infantry force, I'd recommend using a standard WoB size with an armor divisor of 2 representing various combinations of dermal implants and body armor.  If you're feeling extra nasty, ignore extra damage from infantry burst fire (e.g. MG platoons) and reduce burst fire damage from heavy weapons by 1d6.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 07 August 2019, 15:15:15
Ok. So then the 6 man squad is 93 BV but lists a 1.75x for MD

So they cost 93 without the mountain of text by them and 163 to get all the goodies? What does that 1.75 get me.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 07 August 2019, 15:23:47
I know for some implants installed on Manei Domini infantry you can make them pretty darn deadly.

Myomer implants boost their ground MP by +1, so now ground infantry can move two hexes.  Pain Shunts changes Flamer damage to 1D6 or something along those lines.  There are some sensory implants that can bump up accuracy. 

Those are the three I know of, but I imagine there are other useful implants out there.  I played against someone who brought two Level II's of Manei Domini infantry that had dug into woods; they were the stuff of nightmares with long range, highly accurate, and absurd damage.  When it came down to it, I chose to face his King Crab, Marauder II, and Archangel instead of dealing with the infantry. 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: truetanker on 12 August 2019, 14:58:04
Maybe I should post officially my Tau Omega MD Infantry Platoon...

Armor Divisor of 3
Platoon, Foot...
2MP... Glides...
Other funny business stuff...
Twelve people... 39 damage...
3 Tons... 264 BV...2/2 using C3i

TT

Ahem...

I can PM you the full stats if your interested...

TT
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Nahuris on 12 August 2019, 18:35:29
I have used WOB a great deal and I have found that the celestials work best as fill ins for other units .. rather than working together ... but I do disagree with the aversion to the Invictus variants. I have found them useful in the right circumstances.  Using an Archangel, in a city, and running into another mech, going physical, and getting that possible crit, while spotting for others can be brutal.
Another thing is the prevalence of C3i .... and the fact that we have every clan mech, except the Uller and Vulture, on our list.
Hype it up, and let your opponent flood the table with ECM .... so many people will spam that ECM, expecting C3i, that if you don't use it, you leave them flat footed. For every variant that has the C3i, we have one that does not, along with the ability so seed the forces with clan mechs, as well, Especially combining mechs like the Marauder 9M, or 9M2, with support from something like a clan Puma .... no C3i, but a whole lot of hurt in that combo.
In addition, combined arms are your friends .... use the Tau Wraiths. Individually, they are not much, but the boosted communications gear they carry in their heads is a strong advantage when they are used as spotters. Coupled with their mimetic armor ability, you can plant them in good defensive locations, and call in large volumes of indirect fire. Tau Zombies are very tough, and you can spam them, as they are individual squads, so can be transported in any infantry transport. We get a bunch of tanks, as well, and many have C3i ... to include a variant of the LRM carrier ... having it indirect, for wraiths spotting, while it is connected to another level 1, is very doable, which means that when those mechs are in close, you can have it roll into direct fire, drop some pain with short range modes, and then roll back, and take targeting from the wraiths for indirect.

In the end, though, and especially with TW, you are going to pay a lot for a little .... learn to use things like LRM Flatbed trucks, and other filler units to build formations, and control the battlefield. Artillery, mines, and support fire with tag, etc ... those are your friends, just as much as the C3i.

Nahuris

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 14 August 2019, 10:05:53
I’ve wholeheartedly embraced the combined arms aspect. I’ve been building 5-10k level IIs for pickup games. It’s common for me to have 3 mechs and 3 vehicle/BA/infantry points as well. I feel like I have an ok grasp of the infantry and BA and am now working on figuring out vehicles. The Burke, Chaparral and Bolla all look fun.

Unless I’m gonna do the Opacus Venatori exhibition match where I bring a 24k-ish BV level II and have fun. That will be all mechs.


Also, 164 BV for a seven man Tau Zombie squad that peaks at 7 damage at range seems so steep until I remember that it fires out to 15 hexes.


Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 03 September 2019, 17:59:14
Bringing this back up,  because I just noticed something interesting: If you're playing with quirks, ALL of the Celestials have the Improved Sensors quirk. Unless you work really hard at it, you're going to find it extremely difficult to hide from any of these guys...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Firesprocket on 04 September 2019, 02:46:39
That's fairly obnoxious.  Another reason for me to hate quirks too.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 04 September 2019, 07:59:14
I rather like it. It helps showcase the bleeding edge tech the Blakists deployed, and means that certain tricks won't work on them, pushing their role as the Big Bad.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 04 September 2019, 13:28:46
I’m introducing our local guys to Battletech and we aren’t at a point where quirks are in play. So Improved Sensors doesn’t mean much to me.

So far since this thread I’ve gotten a few games in with the celestials. Typically 3 celestials and some BA. One match included a Bolla.

Most of our matches are symmetric objectives and balanced by BV.

A few notes (let me know if it sounds like I did something wrong):
-The Bolla is awesome as a carrier for BA. One platoon inside and one riding it. Once dropped off, the BA hit objectives and the Bolla drops back to use MMLs in a support role.
-Purifier Adaptives are very irritating in king of the hill or hold a location scenarios. I need to print out sheets for other MD BA to try them out.
-bVDNI is not nearly as risky as I had thought. Though I’m not typically running the Archangel or something that takes that much abuse.


Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 04 September 2019, 14:52:41
You think Purifiers are annoying, try the Nephilim.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 04 September 2019, 15:48:25
The Gauss variant of the Nephilim is quite nasty as well.  BVDNI isn't terribly concerning, and you can ignore almost all the negatives by throwing in the Pain Shunt.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 04 September 2019, 16:54:10
So it says 1 David light gauss and 2X Magshots. Do I get to fire all three weapons every turn?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 04 September 2019, 17:04:02
Heck yea you get to fire all three every turn.  It would be similar to the standard Elemental firing its standard weapon and one of the SRM-2 launchers.  As far as I am aware ammunition isn't tracked for those weapons, however I would consult someone more experienced in battle armor rules to confirm that.  I just recall printing out the record sheets specifically for the Gauss Nephilim and not seeing any ammunition trackers.

What's really nasty is the stealth armor on the Nephilim.  If you can drop them off somewhere, they can remain stationary and get a massive bonus to be shot at (I think +2 or +3 if they don't move at all). 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 04 September 2019, 17:18:12
Ammo for things like any BA weapon outside of missiles is not tracked at the BT scale.  It IS tracked for AToW, which makes some suits better than others- even energy have a certain number of shots.

Is it the King David or just David light gauss?  One of the TacOps rules I like is that certain BA weapons work better against BA targets than against mechs.  The KD Gauss will collanderize opposing BA while the Plasma weapon on the Cappie Trinity suit will slag them.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 04 September 2019, 17:59:17
It's the King David.

Also, those guns only get the extra damage if it's a BA using them. A King David used by conventional infantry or mounted on a support vee gets no extra damage.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 04 September 2019, 19:10:50
Hm 81 per trooper so my normal MD is 486BV before becoming veteran unit. 12 tons so they ride on the Bolla/celestial and can’t ride in it.

Looks like I’ll be buying a PDF of 3075 record sheets for these suckers. I’m enjoying immensely that it seems like MD infantry/BA can make a difference
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 04 September 2019, 19:19:33
In TW rules, BA transport is not by suit weight but a straight 1 ton per suit.  TacOps has an optional rule for considering actual suit weight.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 04 September 2019, 22:02:30
Hm 81 per trooper so my normal MD is 486BV before becoming veteran unit. 12 tons so they ride on the Bolla/celestial and can’t ride in it.

Looks like I’ll be buying a PDF of 3075 record sheets for these suckers. I’m enjoying immensely that it seems like MD infantry/BA can make a difference

BA weights is a TacOps rule . . . under normal rules, each and every BA suit can fit in a 1 ton slot.  Assault BA troopers get really tired of their squad leaders shouting 'Think Skinny!' before they climb into that APC.

BA can always make a difference- question is, does someone know how to use them and have they brought the critical mass?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 04 September 2019, 22:42:14
BA weights is a TacOps rule . . . under normal rules, each and every BA suit can fit in a 1 ton slot.  Assault BA troopers get really tired of their squad leaders shouting 'Think Skinny!' before they climb into that APC.

BA can always make a difference- question is, does someone know how to use them and have they brought the critical mass?
I’m the one bringing them. I can give you a soft maybe on both questions.

Usually, I’ll build so that my force has 6 Level Is. we typically run 7-10k BV totals to keep play time lower. So typically 2 infantry/BA, a Tank, and, 3 mechs.

Last force (10.4k) (all 3/4 pilots)
Purifier Adaptive (671)
Purifier Adaptive (671)
Bolla Invictus (1335)
Malak Mi (1241)
Archangel Berith (3302)
Seraph Havala (3218)

The celestials were in a c3i network and the Bolla was not. Is battle armor a wast Inc this? I’m usually facing mech exclusive forces though they are warming up to elementals.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 04 September 2019, 23:51:43
Might search topics, we have a lot of how to BA . . . I was making a off-hand reference to folks who will run 1 BA, send it out in the middle of the map with no cover, act surprised when it dies, and claim they suck.

For Purifiers IMO it depends on what you want them to do . . . they make excellent spotters for IDF since sitting still gives their armor a bonus and unlike regular line BA do not have to move forward to engage.  Look up the topic, it should help plan some surprises . . . the BT forum gesalt has some nasty BA plans.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Caedis Animus on 05 September 2019, 02:28:43
As someone mentioned a while ago, Celestials work really well with non-Celestials (Or at least better) that mount C3I. So if someone still wanted to slot more 'simple' or less awkward C3I omnis into a Celestial Force, it looks like the Avatar OE and Perseus W are your only options for canon configs. I don't know why I wanted to point this out, just a thought.

I think the Perseus W at least adds two hard hitting guns (Read; Above 10 damage shots) to the lineup so that you can add a much more simple alternative to the far more esoteric(?) Seraph, so I guess there's that.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 05 September 2019, 07:12:10
We are mostly playing “hold X area” objectives. So I run the BA in on something fast, drop them off in the zone, and then the BA find a comfy place to camp that requires players to put themselves out in the open if they want to hit that BA.

Since I’ve been using Purifier Adaptive, I’m not expecting a lot of damage out of them. I still get some, just not a lot.

I will admit that the first time I used BA since getting back into Battletech a year or so ago, it was Purifier Terra and they ended up out in the open and not doing jack ****. So there’s been some trial and error. I’ll look at some of the BA stories and tactics to see what I’m missing. The gist seems to be to get them out into the most likely to be important part of the map with cover as fast as you can. Then they become area denial weapons.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 05 September 2019, 07:51:20
There are exceptions, but yeah, that's pretty much the gist of standard battlesuit use. Same goes for most foot infantry, albeit with different strengths and weaknesses.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 05 September 2019, 08:11:12
I think the some of the weaknesses was done on purposes on the Celestials.  I didn't think they were that bad in some configurations, but their also omnis.  A GM could have loaded up with nastier set weapons if they choose to.   

Also their pilots change the nature of the Mech allowing them to be more potent, if not durable with those cyber implants.

I'm not sure how well their Battle Armor faired, but they seem on nastier side of the spectrum.  Speaking of which, their Spectrum Omnifighters were descent.

I was just disappointed with them having only one combat vehicle, i was hoping to see main battle tank. Maybe XTRO: Word of Blake could come out some day show what happened to it.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 05 September 2019, 09:20:34
Mech Factory, despite its name, actually has record sheets for many of the battle armor and vehicles.  They also have record sheets for mechs, but theirs use a 60 point heat scale so you just ignore 31 to 60 and auto shutdown at 30.  The only potential concern is that you do need to setup an account, however I think the only personal information is an email address, and maybe a name.  It has been a bit of time since I set my account up.  They also made an Android app, which has all the information that is on the website.

Obviously I would recommend getting TRO's and what-not as they are a good read and the artwork is cool, and it supports the company that provides all this wonderful stuff.

I assume posting this isn't breaking any rules since people post for Sarna/Mega Mek all the time, but someone will let me know.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 05 September 2019, 09:30:50
Bringing this back up,  because I just noticed something interesting: If you're playing with quirks, ALL of the Celestials have the Improved Sensors quirk. Unless you work really hard at it, you're going to find it extremely difficult to hide from any of these guys...
I know Quirks are in BMM, but what book says Celestials get that quirk?

You think Purifiers are annoying, try the Nephilim.
Heh, that's a pile of nasty.  Stack the +1 for BA and +3 for stationary mimetic, and that is a steep penalty. Although, with only 2 ground MP, getting them to the fight is an issue. And with no jump, they eat into their mimetic armor's defensive buff, with for no gain in TMM.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 05 September 2019, 09:40:20
I know Quirks are in BMM, but what book says Celestials get that quirk?

The best reason to buy BMM is the list it has, which assigns quirks to all mechs that were published before CGL started putting them in TROs.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 05 September 2019, 10:00:14
Hm. I think my next stress test of MD equipment will be to play a low BV game (5-7k) and bring just a pile of infantry/BA. Two Bolla tanks to carry them.

Two Bolla for about 2.6k BV after making them 3/4s.
So 2.4k of BA and infantry riding in and on. Get me some Nephilim, Zombies, and those XCT infantry they have.

Probably garbage but sounds fun.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 05 September 2019, 10:35:35
Depends on mission and map
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 05 September 2019, 11:52:27
Well, remember they get more than just Purfiers and the Demon series . . .

So you can have the pick of FWL BA and have plausible reasons for most anything else- like Grenadiers (hey, the Blakists stole some of them sometime somewhere).

You want to be nasty . . .

Blakists throw out a blocking force- are they retreating or hooking the mechs around your flanks?  who knows?- into some hills/woods that cut down the sight lines to 6 or 7 hexes on average and 9 hexes at most.  BA is going to chew up anyone pursuing them into such terrain- especially with hidden units.

Put some of the assault or heavy suits as bait . . . and then spring stuff like the Se'rim/Phalanx A & B/Longinus from hidden positions that put their weapons & SRMs in short range from where a mech would try to snipe at the assault/heavy suit's long range.  Then rush some Trinity BA from where the bait was . . . if you threw in some foot infantry with heavy weapons- maybe field guns you can have a low-BV force that will give mechwarriors nightmares.  Especially since you can load Infernos in any SRM racks as long as you do not mind the risk.

Depending on the timeframe (3069 not so much, mid 3070s yes) you could also trot out a 'experimental' BA as a tweak.  Regulus put the Ogre into production in 3091, but its not really revolutionary so you could fluff it as a experimental model that was being tested.

I would suggest you also use it as a test of BA for you . . .

Bait-
Kanazuchi (Drac assault)
Tengu Support
Nephilim or Nephilim Support
Phalanx A
Phalanx B
infantry

Flankers/Rush
GDL Standard (LRR)
Asura
IS Std- LRR or SL
Asterion (MRR)
Theseus (RL/MRR)

Hidden units
Asura
Phalanx A
Longinus
Se'rim
Grenadier HK

Basically position them like a fire-sack and eat the mechs up.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 06 September 2019, 10:15:25
For now I put an order in to IWM to get a few figures each of all the Demon Series BA and some Purifier Adaptives. I grabbed a PDF of RS3075 so I have official BA record sheets.

I won’t go after the complete list Colt put down for a while. At the pace I play I’ll need a few months to try each a few times and test their limits.

So it’s finding good mixes of Celestials, Demons, The Bolla, WoB Infantry (Tau and XCT), and mechs that I can proxy from RATs for WOB during the 3070s.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: JadeHellbringer on 06 September 2019, 10:25:41
Not a bad start, for sure! I'd also suggest a few more conventional-feeling units to flesh things out- frequent Blakist units include the Nexus, Raijin, Grand Crusader (though the mini isn't great, honestly), Legacy (a must-have), Buccaneer, and Gurkha. Anything used regularly by Comstar prior to the schism would work too (so, essentially anything in Comstar's arsenal outside the Viking and Beowulf. Comstar kind of stopped caring post-'58, it seems). In that regard, the old TRO:2750 becomes almost a shopping list.

Really, you could even sneak a Clan unit or two in as salvaged units if you so desired- a Thor or something like that, but don't go overboard on it. The salvage from the Dragoons on Outreach had to go somewhere, after all. That would also include Dragoon-regular designs like the Imp, Falcon, and Zhukov, if you want to go that route.

And, of course, there's no reason you can't flesh things out with units from other realms too- by '70, the Blakists had been running the show on a few heavily-industrialized worlds for a while, so they were likely reaping the benefits of places like Hesperus or Irian for all they were worth. Think of it less as a 'would my unit have access to this unit?', and more 'what story can I create for HOW my unit got their hands on it in the first place?'- doing that, you can have some real fun. That Kodiak? Yeah, we raided the Bears last fall and it got crazy- but after the MD infantry pulled the local Star Captain out of her Mech (literally), all it needed was a coat of fresh white paint... well, that and the cockpit hosed out. Those two Heavy LRM Carriers? The Taurians never knew what hit them when we hit their rear areas during their counterattacks- these were our prize afterwards.

Keep it reasonable- you might have trouble explaining a Blood Kite or a Von Rohrs- but sometimes the stories you create to back up a unit's creation end up really helping to forge them from a collection of record sheets and painted metal into something truly meaningful.

...Oh, and get a couple of SRM Carriers. Then look up the Blakist model with the Streak SRM racks. You'll thank me later.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 06 September 2019, 10:46:54
I would also pick up a Toyama.  It is a solid mech, and has some excellent variants.  As said above, the Legacy is also a good WoB mech.  What I would really recommend though, and this is personal preference, the WoB uses a very mean variant of the Thug; 2x ER PPCs, 2x SRM-6, lots of armor, double heat sinks, and C3i. 

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 06 September 2019, 11:00:08
For now I put an order in to IWM to get a few figures each of all the Demon Series BA and some Purifier Adaptives. I grabbed a PDF of RS3075 so I have official BA record sheets.

I won’t go after the complete list Colt put down for a while. At the pace I play I’ll need a few months to try each a few times and test their limits.

So it’s finding good mixes of Celestials, Demons, The Bolla, WoB Infantry (Tau and XCT), and mechs that I can proxy from RATs for WOB during the 3070s.

Well, you can proxy anything . . . just have to clearly mark the BA stand and your sheet.  I was suggesting the spread so you could see how they played and evaluate them to find what you liked.  Another good source, if you can find one you like, is old MWDA BA figures.  I already had a ton of IWM Elementals but MWDA BA let me get a wide assortment to represent nearly any faction- lol, except Blakists outside of Purifiers.  The Purifiers are one of the few Blakist designs that did not disappear at the end of the Jihad.  You do get some weird size combos, but some of that comes down to preferences- I think the Cavaliers are spot on but some are smaller in scale while others are larger.  It will be interesting to see where the new plastic Elementals fit with IWM & MWDA BA.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 06 September 2019, 11:02:49
Despite it not being on the WoB MUL, the Comstar Battle Cobra looks like a great way to fit another Omni into a Level II, and it makes prefect sense that the Blakists would have salvaged more than a few. :)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: JadeHellbringer on 06 September 2019, 13:00:08
I would also pick up a Toyama.  It is a solid mech, and has some excellent variants.  As said above, the Legacy is also a good WoB mech.  What I would really recommend though, and this is personal preference, the WoB uses a very mean variant of the Thug; 2x ER PPCs, 2x SRM-6, lots of armor, double heat sinks, and C3i.

Gah, I did forget the Toyama- the miniature is kind of static, but has good detail on it. Good call. (I still need to finish the modded 52nd SD Toyama on my workbench sometime- it got a weapon effect added to the autocannon, and the standard shoulder pauldrons were replaced by the ones from a Karhu, then painted gold)

That Thug is a nasty beast too, good call. Good mini too- I recommend the resculpt if you pick a Thug up though. The original was well-detailed, but had a weird pose.

Oh- anything FWL? That's good for Blakist forces too, they leaned heavily on Marik's industrial power while rebuilding post-schism (and absorbed several regiments into the WoBM when the Jihad began), so units like the Awesome, Orion, Ontos, etc. are very handy. If it ever was painted purple, it can easily be  justified as being painted white.  ^-^
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 06 September 2019, 13:15:55
Initiate. It's too light to carry much armor, but it is a nice toolbox mech with a better variant
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: JadeHellbringer on 06 September 2019, 13:19:55
Initiate. It's too light to carry much armor, but it is a nice toolbox mech with a better variant

I forgot all about that one- had to actually go look it up to remember which one it was. Kind of like an in-fighting Panther, or a WoB answer to the Urbanmech. It's kind of fun, in a funky 'what in the hell is going on here' kind of way, but I sure wouldn't go out of my way to add them to an army other than maybe as LZ guards or something like that.

Miniature was weird too, had kind of a strange sideways lurch if I remember right. (Or maybe that was just mine?)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 06 September 2019, 13:37:45
I admit my primary use for it is to mulch infantry.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: JadeHellbringer on 06 September 2019, 13:41:44
I admit my primary use for it is to mulch infantry.

Reasonable, though the Malak Invictus is always a good choice for that job instead if you have one.

...or just turning loose some MD infantry and letting them go have their day in the sun. "Be back by supper, wash your claws after you dismember those battle armor troopers!"
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 06 September 2019, 13:50:57
To me, the Initiate(and to a lesser extent the Blue Flame) are great units to use when you just need to pad a Blakist OPFOR out with some mooks. Your heroes can easily take them down, but you can never ignore them, and they're annoying as hell when acting as the underlings accompanying a mid-boss.

Also, a Level II of 3-4 Initiates with the rest being vees or infantry is a good force to deploy when your PCs are having a particularly hard time and you need to rebuild their morale(and pool of salvage).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 06 September 2019, 14:11:27
Yeah. The Initiate is comical amounts of infantry murder.

I had forgotten the Toyama existed. I like that design a lot. The thug has been on my radar for a while and I like what I see. I will buy both of those.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 06 September 2019, 16:04:07
During the late jihad, wob have access to anything that Hesperus, including berserkers, fafnir, their custom fafnir, battlehawks, and Steiner varients of common mechs
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 06 September 2019, 22:01:50
Whelp, I need to go buy a Toyama. Proxied one (the C3i variant) tonight. The earlier variants look good too.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 06 September 2019, 22:37:58
The Toyota is a solid Blakist mech.  I've been on both ends of it multiple times and it's always acquitted itself well.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 06 September 2019, 22:45:55
When it comes out, the Toyama is one of those mechs that prove the upper end of Apollo's Law . . . it is so well put together, about the only way you can make it better is to throw in Clan weapons- btw, to make it tougher for your players put 2 cERLL in place of the IS ones.  They will hate.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 07 September 2019, 11:47:37
The Toyota is a solid Blakist mech.  I've been on both ends of it multiple times and it's always acquitted itself well.

"sarge, i think it's a late model tundra."
"call in the A4 spotters right now!"

(http://puu.sh/EetNN/40328681af.png)

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 07 September 2019, 12:39:47
When it comes out, the Toyama is one of those mechs that prove the upper end of Apollo's Law . . . it is so well put together, about the only way you can make it better is to throw in Clan weapons- btw, to make it tougher for your players put 2 cERLL in place of the IS ones.  They will hate.

We play stock for simplicity.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 07 September 2019, 13:05:49
The more I look at it, the more it feels like the Toyama is what the Orion was intended to be.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 07 September 2019, 13:45:02
"sarge, i think it's a late model tundra."
"call in the A4 spotters right now!"

(http://puu.sh/EetNN/40328681af.png)

I've been calling that mech the Toyota since TRO 3060 came out.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: mrbooth on 11 September 2019, 20:21:55
Side note, wasn't there a book that had what all the variants looked like?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 11 September 2019, 20:57:23
Side note, wasn't there a book that had what all the variants looked like?

Not that I'm aware of.  JHS:3072 had artwork for the first two configurations of each.  I haven't seen artwork for the other configurations.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 12 September 2019, 07:04:31
Hm. A minor rules question as I tried out VSPL with C3. For weapons with changing stats as range increases (hGauss, Snub PPC, VSPL): even though C3 makes it shorter ranged, I use to-hit mods and damage profile of the actual range?

So firing a VSP at long range, even though C3 made it a “short range” shot, I still use the lowest damage and the -1 to hit?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Maelwys on 12 September 2019, 07:26:03
Total Warfare spells it out on page 131.

"Variable Damage Weapons: The range, to determine the Damage Value of a Variable Damage Weapon, is always determined from the attacking  unit to the target."

I'd assume the variable to-hit modifier follows the same rule, though it isn't spelled out specifically.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 12 September 2019, 07:30:37
Vspls will act just like a snub ppc or heavy gauss rifle with C3

You can always ask on the TO rules board if you want the officialest answer

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 12 September 2019, 09:09:19
My understanding is that the range at which the weapon fires would determine the damage of the weapon.  If your target is 10 hexes out and that is medium range for the weapon, it is still medium range for the weapon.  You are just getting the target bonuses for short range if someone is granting that to you.

Just like if you are 22 hexes away, your AC2 won't be able to reach the enemy just because your C3i ally is 1 hex away from them because the AC2 is still out of effective range.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 12 September 2019, 10:10:50
I think I understand his question though . . . the Variables are said to get -1 at long range, -2 at mid, and -3 at short as a function of how the weapon operates . . . so a firing unit gets +0 as the range modifier but just like damage is linked to the distance between firing unit and target, a Variable Speed Pulse Laser's TH mod should be linked to that distance since its a function of damage.

afaik, its the ONLY weapon like that . . . only thing I could really come up with is a LRM equipped C3/C3i mech that has the range SPA where they can swap band modifiers and the target is in minimum range even if a spotter gives them the 'ideal' range b/c the swap.  The weapon does not care the spotter is in the ideal spot, it has a limitation of that minimum range to function properly.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 12 September 2019, 12:32:57
I did not know the VSPL gave a modifier to affect 'to-hit' based on range (I figured it was a base distance similar to the standard PL, but shows what I know).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 12 September 2019, 14:09:23
Here is the official ruling

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=31997.msg762243#msg762243
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 12 September 2019, 14:37:42
Here is the official ruling

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=31997.msg762243#msg762243

Nice. +1
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 12 September 2019, 17:13:01
Well now I know why Berith and his Merry Band of Misfits have such a high killing potential.  Bonuses to hit with everything they do.  Low gunnery skills, implants, and VSPLS, and sometimes targeting computers.  And Clanners thought they were the cool stuff with their pulse lasers and targeting computers.  Might as well send the Navy Seals against Cavemen.  Then they add the Pain Shunts and ignore pain like a drugged up nightmare monster.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 12 September 2019, 17:18:40
Conservatively, the Opacus were about 25k BV for their 6 mechs.

Assumptions for that #:
-2/3 pilots before bVDNI
-All mechs are in one C3 network
-I didn’t include that Triple core processor or whatever it’s called to get the initiative buff.
-I didn’t include pain shunts.

So 25k BV is a very low estimate for that unit.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Firesprocket on 12 September 2019, 23:52:34
25k would seem to be in the right ball park.  If you start giving them all BVDNI and/or other implants it quickly escalates into the 40k range and beyond.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 13 September 2019, 01:09:00
Gunneries 1 3 3 4 3 4

Pilotings 2 3 2 4 3 1

2 vdni, 3 bvdni, 1 tcp, 4 pain shunt.

One gal has no applicable cyber. Her special abilities make her an utter PITA though.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 13 September 2019, 08:36:31
Gunneries 1 3 3 4 3 4

Pilotings 2 3 2 4 3 1

2 vdni, 3 bvdni, 1 tcp, 4 pain shunt.

One gal has no applicable cyber. Her special abilities make her an utter PITA though.

Where’s this come from? If it’s any kind of official then I’m all for it
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Lorcan Nagle on 13 September 2019, 08:37:43
Where’s this come from? If it’s any kind of official then I’m all for it

Starterbook: Wolf and Blake has the skills and implant lists for each member of the Opacus and Venatori
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 13 September 2019, 09:40:36
Yeah. I just grabbed the PDF because I’ve burned $18 on worse things. Readjusting, taking P/G values, TCP, Pain Shunt, VDNI, bVDNI into account:

25979BV for the Opacus.
Berith is 7.4k BV alone.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 13 September 2019, 09:41:46
Starterbook: Wolf and Blake has the skills and implant lists for each member of the Opacus and Venatori
All the Opacus are beasts in that book.  Berith has a gun skill of0 with his bVDNI, a +2 init buff, and automatic success on Avoid Shutdown rolls!
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 13 September 2019, 09:56:04
Where auto success on shutdown rolls come from?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 13 September 2019, 11:37:13
All the Opacus are beasts in that book.  Berith has a gun skill of0 with his bVDNI, a +2 init buff, and automatic success on Avoid Shutdown rolls!

He's going to need to be a beast in a BV balanced fight.

MD players face the same problem Clanners face multiplied by two but with much worse cannon mechs. In a BV matched fight they will simply evaporate due to facing massively superior numbers. Clanners can negate that to a certain extent by using their weapons range advantage. MD can't pull that trick so well.

Playing MD in the Jihad Era using BV balancing is by far the hardest 'setting' in Battletech for a player.   

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 13 September 2019, 12:03:08
In that instance, I think BV should be used in only the grossed sense.  MD weren't noted for their sense of fair play.  Another reason why MD aren't recommended for general, straight-up play.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 13 September 2019, 12:12:03
In that instance, I think BV should be used in only the grossed sense.  MD weren't noted for their sense of fair play.  Another reason why MD aren't recommended for general, straight-up play.

I think they are probably the scariest and most fun Op-For in the game. For exactly the reasons you give. They hit hard, fast and dirty. A Shadow Division dropping on a regiment or two of regular House or militia units? Forget about it - you don't even need to roll the dice.

But I've always contended they should stay as an GM controlled Op-For. Even a very good player will have major difficulty running them with cannon units in a BV balanced play setting.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 13 September 2019, 12:17:07
Well now I know why Berith and his Merry Band of Misfits have such a high killing potential.  Bonuses to hit with everything they do.  Low gunnery skills, implants, and VSPLS, and sometimes targeting computers.  And Clanners thought they were the cool stuff with their pulse lasers and targeting computers.  Might as well send the Navy Seals against Cavemen.  Then they add the Pain Shunts and ignore pain like a drugged up nightmare monster.

Pain Shunts make a MASSIVE difference - they negate pilot damage from internals, which is a huge drawback for VDNI/BVDNI, and eliminates consciousness checks.

Add TSM (no pilot damage from falling) and/or Dermal Armor (no pilot damage from head hits), and the only way to kill them is a cockpit crit (or destroying the head outright, of course).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 13 September 2019, 12:36:07
Where auto success on shutdown rolls come from?
Starterbook Wolf and Blake, pg 62, and IO pg 82, although IO goes into more detail regarding how it behaves WRT ECM.

Its a dang handy ability to have, especially when you look at what a heat hog his custom Archangel can be. A running alpha will put that mech at +21 heat and most folks looking at a 6+ Avoid shutdown roll.  If there's any leftover heat from last turn, make that a 8+.  Berith can ignore that and the +3 To Hit will only degrade him to Veteran level gunnery.  Although the -4 MP means his basically driving a turret that can at least in theory fail a PSR.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 13 September 2019, 15:54:03
Starterbook Wolf and Blake, pg 62, and IO pg 82, although IO goes into more detail regarding how it behaves WRT ECM.

Its a dang handy ability to have, especially when you look at what a heat hog his custom Archangel can be. A running alpha will put that mech at +21 heat and most folks looking at a 6+ Avoid shutdown roll.  If there's any leftover heat from last turn, make that a 8+.  Berith can ignore that and the +3 To Hit will only degrade him to Veteran level gunnery.  Although the -4 MP means his basically driving a turret that can at least in theory fail a PSR.

You are adding huge amount of 'randomness' to your game just playing those odds. At some stage the dice will say "no".

As a turret with the heat gain the BV difference will blow the MD player off the board.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 13 September 2019, 16:12:20
Which means Berith will have to use his brain(both of them), and move to isolate enemies so that only a fraction of them can engage him at any time. This means only engaging under favorable circumstances, and using that initiative bonus to its full extent.

You want a nightmare? Face the Manei Domini in a BV fight...in a city.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 13 September 2019, 16:18:28
Well, nothing says you HAVE to do that heat load . . . but it does mean if you need to hit the big red button, its going to happen.  I mean, 50+ points of damage (20/10/10/10/mvspl) is not something most mechs can just shrug off . . . especially that 20 point hit which will go internal on a lot of mechs in a lot of places.

Celestials & MH- particularly the set mentioned, IMO DO have a effective range advantage that is better than the Clans . . . b/c C3i.  Firing a HPPC at 18 or 17 hexes from a heavy or assault will have a range advantage with the nearest C3i being a spotter is able to get down to short range while even the Clan force (w/o Nova CEWS) will still be getting +2 for med, or at the 17/18 range equivalent +4 TH for most weapons.

Might have to try the OV vs a House line battalion on MM this weekend.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 13 September 2019, 16:41:39
Out of curiosity, did the OV ever get into combat with a Clan force?  I know their fight against the Black Widow Company, but I mean actual Clan front line omnis.  Obviously we can hand wave that they faced that one force that one time on that one planet, but I am curious if there are any situations that were recorded where they fought against the Clans and, if so, how did they perform.

Also, I had heard that the Venatori (Berith and implant friends) whacked the Opacus group at some point near the end.  But now I can't remember where I heard that; I thought I read on Sarna that Berith decided the implant-free group weren't chaotic-neutral enough for the adventuring party, so he and friends ended them in an ambush. However reading through their page I don't see anything about it.  Did that happen, or was their entire group taken out with the rest of the 52nd on Gibson?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 13 September 2019, 17:06:12
He did not end on Gibson . . .

Where they along for the adventure to Arc Royal?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 13 September 2019, 17:28:51
Well, nothing says you HAVE to do that heat load . . . but it does mean if you need to hit the big red button, its going to happen.  I mean, 50+ points of damage (20/10/10/10/mvspl) is not something most mechs can just shrug off . . . especially that 20 point hit which will go internal on a lot of mechs in a lot of places.

Celestials & MH- particularly the set mentioned, IMO DO have a effective range advantage that is better than the Clans . . . b/c C3i.  Firing a HPPC at 18 or 17 hexes from a heavy or assault will have a range advantage with the nearest C3i being a spotter is able to get down to short range while even the Clan force (w/o Nova CEWS) will still be getting +2 for med, or at the 17/18 range equivalent +4 TH for most weapons.

Might have to try the OV vs a House line battalion on MM this weekend.

I'd discount C3i nearly completely in a jihad era battle because the field will be carpeted in ECM.

I'll bring four ECM Pegasus for the cost of half an MD Celestial and every other mech I bring will also rock one. C3i massively handicaps an MD force BV wise. Especially in an era where counter measures are plentiful and cheap.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: niall78 on 13 September 2019, 17:41:21
Which means Berith will have to use his brain(both of them), and move to isolate enemies so that only a fraction of them can engage him at any time. This means only engaging under favorable circumstances, and using that initiative bonus to its full extent.

You want a nightmare? Face the Manei Domini in a BV fight...in a city.

If Berith is in range he will be facing so much return firepower at his BV that he won't be around long.

Anyone facing Clan, MD or C3/C3i nets will be all over a range player like a rash. They aren't going to let you dictate range and are going to double and triple tackle you rather than giving you one mech at a time. They will exploit their numbers advantage for all it is worth.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 13 September 2019, 17:57:50
I'm not talking about range, I'm talking about cover. Because Berith is going to be winning initiative most of the time, he's going to know which side of the hill/building/woods most of your force is on. I highly doubt he will also be on that side. He'll be on the side with less enemies, rapidly making that number even smaller. A perfectly flat field where entire companies can focus their fire easily? He's probably on the next continent over.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 13 September 2019, 18:11:47
I'm not talking about range, I'm talking about cover. Because Berith is going to be winning initiative most of the time, he's going to know which side of the hill/building/woods most of your force is on. I highly doubt he will also be on that side. He'll be on the side with less enemies, rapidly making that number even smaller. A perfectly flat field where entire companies can focus their fire easily? He's probably on the next continent over.

Or he's standing juuuust out of range as bait.  Because between him and the enemy is a deep minefield, with registered artillery.  And air support.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 13 September 2019, 18:29:29
At which time you break out the Urbanmech...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 13 September 2019, 18:57:31
I'd discount C3i nearly completely in a jihad era battle because the field will be carpeted in ECM.

I'll bring four ECM Pegasus for the cost of half an MD Celestial and every other mech I bring will also rock one. C3i massively handicaps an MD force BV wise. Especially in an era where counter measures are plentiful and cheap.

That isn't what wolf and blake has you fighting, however. The widows only have three ECM units out of the gate, one on a firefly, and getting a mech with one on the random opfor table isn't common. You know, like the forces the WOB would be fighting most of the time early Jihad.

If you're playing TacOps, there are the ECCM rules, and the OV have lots of ECM of their own. So yeah, they can pull off the C3i net fairly constantly.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 13 September 2019, 20:02:28
At which time you break out the Urbanmech...

Well, that's just game over...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 13 September 2019, 22:38:19
That isn't what wolf and blake has you fighting, however. The widows only have three ECM units out of the gate, one on a firefly, and getting a mech with one on the random opfor table isn't common. You know, like the forces the WOB would be fighting most of the time early Jihad.

If you're playing TacOps, there are the ECCM rules, and the OV have lots of ECM of their own. So yeah, they can pull off the C3i net fairly constantly.

Yeah, ECCM should be TW rules IMO b/c it makes ECM too easy to counter the BV of C3.  And you are right, as OOC if you are facing WoB you are taking multiple ECM- but if you are rolling RATs, its not going to be too frequent.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 13 September 2019, 23:10:07
I'd discount C3i nearly completely in a jihad era battle because the field will be carpeted in ECM.

I'll bring four ECM Pegasus for the cost of half an MD Celestial and every other mech I bring will also rock one. C3i massively handicaps an MD force BV wise. Especially in an era where counter measures are plentiful and cheap.

I mean, hard counters designed specifically to go against a particular force would be effective against a particular force.

How common is ECM during the Jihad. 1 mech in 4? Higher, lower?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 13 September 2019, 23:13:19
In terms of mech availability or which mechs are commonly used?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 14 September 2019, 05:57:01
I’m curious about both I guess.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 14 September 2019, 11:04:35
ECM proliferation explodes in terms of number of designs after the mid 3050s and by the jihad it’s really easy to implement into your force.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 14 September 2019, 11:15:31
Of course, the important thing to remember is that ECM only has a 6 hex radius, which means that in order to jam an MD Celestial, you've got to be right next to it.  And that's rarely a position conductive of living a long time.  And also, there are a lot of long range weapons with a 7 hex short range bracket.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 14 September 2019, 11:19:00
That’s a good point. C3i does a fair job of signal intercepting by routing around units positioned in between elements
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: truetanker on 14 September 2019, 14:01:06
This...

This has merit...

Surrounding a Celestrial with ECM destroys link.

If you overlap ECM coverage for that one turn it takes to down it of course, otherwise...

TT

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 14 September 2019, 14:18:28
Remember three things:

Even the Shadow Divisions were combined arms forces.

The Blakists developed and deployed their own LRM Carrier variant.

ARAD missiles are a thing.

I think we can safely assume they had a plan to defend their C3i nets.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: truetanker on 14 September 2019, 14:30:19
Well four things really...

Urbanmech Arrow launchers!

They were built by Orguss Industries of Marcus originally, which factory was supposed to have been destroyed. It became a Word of Blake Protectorate world in '77, prime for the Jihad.

So what stops them from rebuilding it from parts leftover?

TT
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 14 September 2019, 15:02:31
Well four things really...

Urbanmech Arrow launchers!

They were built by Orguss Industries of Marcus originally, which factory was supposed to have been destroyed. It became a Word of Blake Protectorate world in '77, prime for the Jihad. So what stops them from rebuilding it from parts leftover?
TT
Orguss properly stop building everything when they made their Bronco 2 variable fighter.  (j/k it's references to anime Super Dimension Century Orguss)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 14 September 2019, 15:42:13
If a WOB player isn't using a triple core processor, with the +2 to init that provides, they aren't playing right. While I'm not sure exactly what that does to your odds of winning the dice-off, I'm sure everyone here has had the experience of losing several turns in a row. Imagine that being normal.

It's expensive, but "There are some things BPV can't buy. For everything else, there's cheating like a WOBbie"
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 14 September 2019, 15:49:43
Remember three things:

Even the Shadow Divisions were combined arms forces.

The Blakists developed and deployed their own LRM Carrier variant.

ARAD missiles are a thing.

I think we can safely assume they had a plan to defend their C3i nets.

"Nuh uh! ARAD is experimental. TW only!"
-Jackson Davion, Battle of New Avalon 3073
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Firesprocket on 14 September 2019, 22:57:58
"There are some things BPV can't buy. For everything else, there's cheating like a WOBbie"
It's only cheating if someone managed to get away to speak of it.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 15 September 2019, 10:32:29
It's only cheating if someone managed to get away to speak of it.

All´s fair in love, war and getting to the front of the buffet line.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: ANS Kamas P81 on 15 September 2019, 10:42:45
If a WOB player isn't using a triple core processor, with the +2 to init that provides, they aren't playing right. While I'm not sure exactly what that does to your odds of winning the dice-off, I'm sure everyone here has had the experience of losing several turns in a row. Imagine that being normal.

It's expensive, but "There are some things BPV can't buy. For everything else, there's cheating like a WOBbie"
And then there was that time semi-guided LRMs were used at a canon event...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 16 September 2019, 08:32:34
In many ways, the WoB and the Celestial series OmniMechs pushed long experimental tech to Tournament legal status.  Which i like since some of it isn't as OP as people make them to be.

Anyways, i still believe the Celestials were used as part effect change things up, even with what appears to be questionable builds.  I do think in part, they also did that to make them not invincible.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 16 September 2019, 09:20:38
Well, WoB - celestials specifically - have an unbroken win streak locally. Part of that is me just having more experience. Part is because somehow some weird misfortune happens to those opposing WoB.

Last time it was a heavy PPC and a kick to the chest both hitting an old 3025 Marauder’s side torso and smoking the ammo when the mech was pristine starting the turn. Time before it was a Nova that couldn’t get an ATM shot to land even when it only needed 5s. I’m gonna “fluff” this stuff as WiB sabotage because that sounds reasonable.

Honestly, I wasn’t around for Celestials moving experimental tech to tourney legal or whatever they did. I just like playing the bad guys. In battletech that’s usually both sides but with WoB fights it is always WoB.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 16 September 2019, 10:19:13
Honestly, I wasn’t around for Celestials moving experimental tech to tourney legal or whatever they did. I just like playing the bad guys. In battletech that’s usually both sides but with WoB fights it is always WoB.

Well . . . 'no man is the villain of his life story' . . . some were taken for a ride (Alice Phuong?), some believed the Blakists offered a better alternative than the old hatreds (Geoffrey Zucker), and some were true believer cultists (hello MD!).  What is funny is those who thought the Blakists were a better alternative than the traditional hatreds were in the same place the SLDF in exile was on Strana Mechty- so same problem formed the Clans, which they hated.

It comes down to the factions you represent when playing Blakists . . . but pretty soon the actions of the fanatics (Toyama/Sixth of June/Master's minions) got all the rest tarred with the same brush which forced those who did not believe in the same extremes to defend themselves- like Precentor Phuong on Luthien.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 16 September 2019, 10:36:15
I guess I always think of them as the bad guys because of the Jihad. Pre-jihad they were mostly just the zealous believers who made every conversation in the room awkward and not actually that openly evil.

Once you get to consistent use of bioweapons, chemical agents, nukes, etc. you are the bad guys.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 16 September 2019, 11:44:12
Problem is its a matter of degrees . . . the Toyama/6th of June/Masters were not even the majority IIRC, but they had a goal and sought positions that aided that goal.  Phoung was trying to be a peacekeeper and sought to avoid the fighting . . . I want to say she was a True Believer . . . but had a someone from one of the fanatical sects who was there to kick off a fight.

But not everyone was involved in atrocities . . . but after a while, it did not matter if you were- if you were a Blakist it became a fight for survival . . . a while after that, you knew you were going to lose.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 16 September 2019, 12:38:33
Early on, the WoB tried to portray themselves as being morally better than ComStar.  Few people outside the FWL bought it, so they began running a mixture of real and engineered support operations on planets around Terra to get them to sign up.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 16 September 2019, 13:08:13
Yeah, Frontlines- latest anthology release- had a great story called 'Son of Blake' by . . . I think Pardoe?  Does a really good job of getting into the recruitment of a refugee family to being Blakists.

But honestly you have to look at the way Word of Blake was formed . . . and of course the questionable decision to let a group that advocates assassination for those outside the group that opposes them have a seat at the table of power (or Circuit in this case).  The T6M cabal eliminated those who would oppose their pogrom- think of the Venus dome 'collapses' that got rid of the Shunners- and co-opted those who partially agreed like the True Believers.  A commander engaging of their own will is not any different than a commander who is placed in a position to defend themselves by fanatic in their ranks (Luthien).
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 17 September 2019, 08:58:44
Idle thought...  Would the Celestials generate so much discussion if they were still the dedicated rides of the MD, but less... quirky?  They have a buzz about them for being durable because with the exception of the Archangel, they all use LFEs and they are all 94% of max armor or better.  So are a lot of other mechs in 3075.  Yeah, they all uses small cockpits, which makes them a good deal for MD pilots, but there are other mechs out there that do the same. Light mechs and artillery/fire support machines can make good use of that extra ton. Lights generally don't survive many turns of taking 20+ damage at a clip and I think +1 PSR in exchange for an extra bin of Arrow IV is a good trade.

As a whole, the Celestials are well armored, they don't suffer from side torso kills, and assuming a pilot with VDNI, they don't suffer for having a small cockpit.   On the other hand, they don't suffer too much in the way of pod space either.  The IS Omni population is fairly small but a couple spot checks comparing the Celestials to the other IS Omnis in 3058, 3067, and 3085 doesn't show them to be overly lacking in available weight.  I didn't get into comparing free crits. 

Yeah, they use a lot of light and heavy PPCs, so do a lot of machines 3075+.  Interestingly enough, none of the Celestials VSPs until SB:Wolf and Blake, but Tengu heavy BA, and Rusalka heavy Omnifighter do.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 17 September 2019, 10:04:40
I imagine a bunch of the frustration comes from the C3i capabilities, and the pilot implants removing much of the issues that are presented with the celestials (small cockpit, use VDNI to remove the penalty, use pain shunts to remove VDNI penalty, etc.).

I think in the end these are, more or less, some of the best zombie mechs being piloted by zombies.  I would think there would be just as much frustration if someone just brought a lance of Awesome 8Q to a 3025 game, only just a slightly less amount of frustration because the pilots aren't nigh on invincible.

There is also probably some stubbornness and dislike in general at the story line.  It seems there is a big split of players that just stop playing at 3068 because everything not created by FASA is heresy and heresy is bad.  Personally I like the 3070's because every major power is in a major fight.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 17 September 2019, 10:11:11
Another thing that adds to some of the durability for the Celestials is the games they play with the gyro.

I think you get a mix of the forbidden- aka, the atrocity faction- and when we as players are told 'they stop being used within 15 years!'

Of course . . . since by the 3140s its been oh . . . 80 years, what a twist it would be to see Stone trotting out 'frails' Celestials.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Ryumyo on 20 September 2019, 00:15:25
You mean Kheper and Uraeus? The " not - Celestials " of the reborn Comguards of the 1st Division AKA Buhl's Blessed in the Dark Ages. Or others that use Celestial like chassis such as the Capellan built Vandal Omnimech?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Caedis Animus on 20 September 2019, 01:56:13
I got the sudden impression that at least some of the Celestials were actually meant to take on Clanspec configs similar to the R config of early IS Omnimechs, considering the Blakists hated the Clans so much and wanted them wiped out-if they wanted a second op bulldog, I'd imagine Celestials would've taken the lion's share of Clanspec salvage.

All the base configs, due to oddities, typically struck me as 'experimental' or 'making do'. Aside from the whole 'Optimized mechs with cyber-optimized pilots would be optimized to be devoid of 'fun'' thing.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 20 September 2019, 08:49:25
Yep.  The WoB wanted to reunite the Inner Sphere to destroy the Clan threat once and for all, and the Manei Domini were going to lead the push with all their fancy tech.  Then the WoB, understandably, got butt hurt about the Star League disbanding just as they joined.  Instead of attempting to use words to describe their feelings or attack the Invader Clans without full Inner Sphere support and lead by example, they decided to engage in the deadliest war since the 2nd Succession.  Once their backs were against a wall, it became a free-for-all in terms of weapon use.

But the WoB will return to guide the Inner Sphere to peace and put out the Clan threat.  All in due time.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 20 September 2019, 10:12:57
You mean Kheper and Uraeus? The " not - Celestials " of the reborn Comguards of the 1st Division AKA Buhl's Blessed in the Dark Ages. Or others that use Celestial like chassis such as the Capellan built Vandal Omnimech?

I know of those, and no they are not what I meant- they are not Omnis after all.  I meant something like a new Exemplar Omnimech, which curiously looks a lot like Archangel . . .
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 20 September 2019, 10:26:14
I imagine a bunch of the frustration comes from the C3i capabilities, and the pilot implants removing much of the issues that are presented with the celestials (small cockpit, use VDNI to remove the penalty, use pain shunts to remove VDNI penalty, etc.). 
Celestials seem to like their big smacky weapons over having secondaries, so that -1 To Hit, stacked on already elite pilots probably contributes to the annoyance.

I know of those, and no they are not what I meant- they are not Omnis after all.  I meant something like a new Exemplar Omnimech, which curiously looks a lot like Archangel . . .

Which book is the Exemplar in?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 20 September 2019, 10:54:54
Does not exist, I just used it as a example- hinting it was a Archangel clone with a bit of updating to be a new Republic Omni that came out after the Fortress wall dropped.  If unfrozen Stone could get a Archangel with updated tech, like Ferro-Lam armor, and those version hinted at that did not have small cockpits.  Well, its been over 70 years since the Jihad so rolling out something similar might happen . . .
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 24 September 2019, 14:20:44
An archangel with FL is... unsettling.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 24 September 2019, 14:37:15
But at that point it would have the pod space of an average medium omni.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 24 September 2019, 14:44:04
So I played with this some on MM . . . dropped the 6 Opacus into the middle of a 6x6 map and put them against a random regular battalion that was positioned around the edges . . . I will have to try again (BV was 2-1 in favor of the regulars) since the weird 'everything hits 1 location' started happening to Berith . . . barely scratched Archangel, gets LT blown through.

I did realize the Opacus were not even that great of pilots except Berith- so maybe a Shadow Division Level II of line veterans might work better than a spec ops team.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 24 September 2019, 17:26:12
Does MM have a way to implement bVDNI? It’s been quite some time since I played it
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 24 September 2019, 17:41:39
Surprised this thread hasn't brought up paralells between the WOB and society techbases, and the VS debate between the two.

A society splinter group was in JF space for a while, it's a conceivable matchup, as is WOB support for the dark caste sending a special operations force into clan space.

Does MM have a way to implement bVDNI? It’s been quite some time since I played it

Yeah, but it still uses the point mod from the jihad books, not IO, so it overprices them.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 24 September 2019, 20:45:48
Really?  The latest set I looked at kept referencing IO to tell me what stuff does.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Maelwys on 24 September 2019, 20:48:00
Surprised this thread hasn't brought up paralells between the WOB and society techbases, and the VS debate between the two.

A society splinter group was in JF space for a while, it's a conceivable matchup, as is WOB support for the dark caste sending a special operations force into clan space.

Part of the problem is that while the WoB and the Society go for the tech angle, the Society still wants the Clans to exist, just with them in charge, while the WoB despised the Clans.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 24 September 2019, 21:19:16
Dark caste wasn't a single organization. The society could be sponsoring one group, the WOBbies the other, and both fighting over the right to sponsor the competant third.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 24 September 2019, 23:24:18
Given that Comstar had seeded infiltrators among the Clans prior to the schism, it's theoretically possible that the Word did make contact with the Society at one point, but their mutually exclusive goals mean that extensive cooperation between the two wouldn't have worked out well.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 25 September 2019, 00:36:14
They would each be too busy trying to co-opt the other...
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 25 September 2019, 01:07:07
Yeah, and the Word probably has a substantial edge up in that regard.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 25 September 2019, 08:50:33
Yeah, and the Word probably has a substantial edge up in that regard.
I would think it would depends on how mean the GM was running the scenario or if the group is even in a rare Battletech RPG group.  I would think the WoB would have at least 1 edge, unless it's important character/pilot.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 25 September 2019, 14:01:41

Yeah, and the Word probably has a substantial edge up in that regard.
I would think it would depends on how mean the GM was running the scenario or if the group is even in a rare Battletech RPG group.  I would think the WoB would have at least 1 edge, unless it's important character/pilot.
Okay one of you is talking about the rules for Edge and other is talking colloquially, and I'm reasonably sure which is which. 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 25 September 2019, 14:56:38
Where was this hint of a possible variant omni/clone of Archangel.  With all the changes the franchise gone though with new developers, is there really plausable evidence they add odd variants/new old stuff to it?  ArchAngel was shushed into razor blades because the bad memories it supposedly triggered when it was fielded.

From what i've read in source books, those mechs were arguably rare machines.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 25 September 2019, 15:42:02
Where was this hint of a possible variant omni/clone of Archangel.  With all the changes the franchise gone though with new developers, is there really plausable evidence they add odd variants/new old stuff to it?  ArchAngel was shushed into razor blades because the bad memories it supposedly triggered when it was fielded.

From what i've read in source books, those mechs were arguably rare machines.

The celestial mechs?

Per the Jihad - Blake Documents or whatever it’s called and using the RATs.
Malak is 8/36 light mechs for shadow divisions
Preta is 11/36 medium mechs
Deva is 5/36 heavies
Grigori is 11/36 heavies
Seraph is 10/36 assaults
Archangel is 2/36 assaults
From what I can tell, actual composition of forces was less heterogenous than the RATs. RATs downplay the most common designs to encourage varied forces.

So there we’re probably more Malaks, Preta, Grigori, and Seraphs then is hinted at in the RATs. That means Shadow divisions were probably closing in on %50% celestial designs.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 25 September 2019, 15:59:57
[zombie droning]
RATs are not to be interpreted as an accurate portrayal of in-universe force composition
[/zombie droning]

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 25 September 2019, 16:05:48
I would think it would depends on how mean the GM was running the scenario or if the group is even in a rare Battletech RPG group.  I would think the WoB would have at least 1 edge, unless it's important character/pilot.

Okay one of you is talking about the rules for Edge and other is talking colloquially, and I'm reasonably sure which is which.
Sorry it's my bad.  I mis-read the "Edge" thing.  :-X
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 25 September 2019, 16:09:01
[zombie droning]
RATs are not to be interpreted as an accurate portrayal of in-universe force composition
[/zombie droning]
Which is why I pointed out that they tend to have more variety than actual force compositions. So you assume that the mechs that are most common in the RATs are actually even more common than that
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 25 September 2019, 16:12:13
you can't make that assumption. they may be more or less common - their RAT frequency has no bearing on their commonness. sometimes very common units won't even appear on faction RATs
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 25 September 2019, 16:16:19
TPTB statements on the RATs are a pretty paradox . . .

Wrangler, my comments about a updated & slightly different looking Archangel was remarking how it would be interesting if the Republic had Celestial updates after the Fortress walls finally came down.  Stone kept the Blakist database, to include blueprint/design info for the Celestials and I think Demons series- the new Blakist ComGuards stole information and built their two mechs that the Republic co-opted based on Blakist design information.  My main point was the public association should have diminished since its been that long . . . for example, afaik no one gets upset over symbols associated with WWI.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 25 September 2019, 16:16:54
One thing i don't think i like these days, is CGL does not like saying how designs have how much scarcity except if it's Extinct or Yet-to-Be Introduced. 

Celestials were meant for the most elite MechWarriors of the WoB, with very few (like the light ones, like Malak) being in the regular Militias.  That does bother me. (shrugs)
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 25 September 2019, 16:17:40
TPTB statements on the RATs are a pretty paradox . . .

it only requires you to acknowledge that flavorful and representative are two discrete concepts
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 25 September 2019, 16:19:30
Except, Wrangler that IIRC, non-small cockpit Celestials and 'frail' adapted Demon series were used in the defense of Terra . . . even if we saw no RS for those.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 25 September 2019, 16:28:58
I would think it would depends on how mean the GM was running the scenario or if the group is even in a rare Battletech RPG group.  I would think the WoB would have at least 1 edge, unless it's important character/pilot.

I mean that when it comes to espionage and double-crossing people, the Society has been playing in the kiddie pool while the Word has been swimming the English Channel during hurricanes.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 25 September 2019, 16:53:45
I mean that when it comes to espionage and double-crossing people, the Society has been playing in the kiddie pool while the Word has been swimming the English Channel during hurricanes.

That´s because the Word has 200+ years´ worth of institutional history of espionage, counter-espionage, sabotage, betrayal and whatnot... whereas the Society are a bunch of (extremely amoral) nerds who only made it thus far because the jocks considered it beneath themselves to pay attention to what the nerds were doing.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 25 September 2019, 17:40:37
Exactly.  Which is why I wouldn't expect the Society to do very well against the Word.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 25 September 2019, 17:56:38
So I played with this some on MM . . . dropped the 6 Opacus into the middle of a 6x6 map and put them against a random regular battalion that was positioned around the edges . . . I will have to try again (BV was 2-1 in favor of the regulars) since the weird 'everything hits 1 location' started happening to Berith . . . barely scratched Archangel, gets LT blown through.

I did realize the Opacus were not even that great of pilots except Berith- so maybe a Shadow Division Level II of line veterans might work better than a spec ops team.

Did you use their special rules, including the 'always set up hidden' on the seraph?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 25 September 2019, 20:39:49
No, I do not have the book so I did not have their exact set up . . . but got pretty close by the BV.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 25 September 2019, 23:37:45
One thing i don't think i like these days, is CGL does not like saying how designs have how much scarcity except if it's Extinct or Yet-to-Be Introduced.

I will always be eternally grateful for every day that they don't. You've met the fanbase we're all a part of. Can you imagine the nightmarish catastrophe it would be if this public were allowed access to such information to peruse, analyze, nitpick, and inevitably use as a club tho beat CGL into a vaguely horse-shaped stain on the ground?

Releasing that information would only have one of two results.

1: CGL cuts off ALL contact with the fanbase. No Ask the Writers or Ask the Devs forums. No What's up with Catalyst presentations. No occasional forum or blog posts. Nothing ever again.

or

2: Every single CGL employee is driven irrevocably insane, and production of all products ceases forever.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 26 September 2019, 00:27:49
as the guy who cooks scenarios for my group the majority of the time, I too like the wiggle room.

I mean, I like deep, hard and accurate lore as much as the next guy, but that's a separate issue.

The old books that spelled out who was piloting what down to the last mech and infantry platoon leader? If you get a nitwit with, say, the Wolf's Dragoons book, I can imagine it might make it really hard to run turning points Misery or Death to Mercenaries.

Another one would be Day of Heroes and Turning Point: Glengary. Although at least I have both of those.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: ANS Kamas P81 on 26 September 2019, 05:10:13
1: CGL cuts off ALL contact with the fanbase. No Ask the Writers or Ask the Devs forums. No What's up with Catalyst presentations. No occasional forum or blog posts. Nothing ever again.
Like BattleChats...  (Hey I miss those, they were fun interactions, but boy howdy did it descend in the end)
2: Every single CGL employee is driven irrevocably insane
Tautology, therefore dismissed.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 26 September 2019, 07:01:03
Except, Wrangler that IIRC, non-small cockpit Celestials and 'frail' adapted Demon series were used in the defense of Terra . . . even if we saw no RS for those.
I was under the impression that small cockpits weren't restricted to just Manei Domini, just darn hard to drive.

I will always be eternally grateful for every day that they don't. You've met the fanbase we're all a part of. Can you imagine the nightmarish catastrophe it would be if this public were allowed access to such information to peruse, analyze, nitpick, and inevitably use as a club tho beat CGL into a vaguely horse-shaped stain on the ground?
I am always grateful that CGL staff and Loren Coleman saved Battletech from ash heaps and keeps us going.

That said, we can disagree with decisions made.  I like having scarcity variants available per design, Worktroll's fan made modified House books were fantastic since it balanced things. 

I won't want CGL driven insane, i certainly don't want them getting Fortress Mentality trying Battletech and CGL itself up and running.

However, we are still talking about Celestial OmniMechs.   
I don't think hard-copy of the Celestials will come up, if Devlin Stone will have anything to say about it since his return.

It's hard say if Levin walked away letting Stone do what he wants. Shattered Fortress (source book) didn't give impression of what Exarch was doing.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 26 September 2019, 07:28:23
you can't make that assumption. they may be more or less common - their RAT frequency has no bearing on their commonness. sometimes very common units won't even appear on faction RATs

Like what ones? I’m curious as I’ve been finding that RATs solid. Most of my time was spent looking at the ones for 3039 and 3052. Glancing at 3052, every military except DCMS and ComGuards run all 3 bug mechs in noticeable numbers. If the RAT is believed, then the bug mechs comprise 22-44% of the light mechs in those armies. DC gets a pass as they bulk construct Panthers. ComStar is running SLDF mechs so that make sense.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 26 September 2019, 07:40:55
Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve done any of that work and I don’t think I saved the data. It’s all rather moot as the official stance by the people who make the RATs have taken a decade long position that what you think you’re seeing isn’t the case

They should put a disclaimer in that says Any resemblance to armies real or fictional is coincidental
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 26 September 2019, 08:30:33
Exactly.  Which is why I wouldn't expect the Society to do very well against the Word.

I think the Society might have out-nastied the Word. They were better at science, more inventive, and just as ruthless.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 26 September 2019, 10:27:09
I was under the impression that small cockpits weren't restricted to just Manei Domini, just darn hard to drive.
Correct, but the +1 PSR seems to scare people away, the same way I have a near pathological aversion to Ultra autocannons.  Yet I'll use MASC, Superchargers, and PPC capacitors...

But I wouldn't even go so far as to say "damn hard."  A +1 modifier to a 2d6 roll works out to be about a 10% penalty.  Roughly.  Things are just tight enough that you can't get comfortable.  Buttons and switches may be too close together.  There might be more reliance on MFDs in place of dedicated panels.  So you map screen, damage screen and stores screen are all on the same MFD and you have to keep swapping back and forth.

I would compare it to a story a tall fighter pilot told me once.  There were switches on the left side of his cockpit that most people hit with their left hand, but he had to use his right. His forearm was too long and if he reached for the switches, his elbow would bump something, rear bulkhead, seat frame, I don't recall.

And for some mechs, it's not even that big a penalty. Lights that tend not to survive taking 20+ damage per turn don't really need to worry about that +1 PSR. Arrow IV platforms aren't expected to take much damage. Quads get a free -1 PSR, so null out that penalty and take the extra ton.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 26 September 2019, 11:04:01
From what I remember of the comments, it was not that it was done to make it easier to drive- it was that they were 'lesser' mechs b/c of no small cockpit since they were destined for the 'frails.'
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 26 September 2019, 11:10:06
I think the "lesser-ness" was having a conventional small cockpit rather than a VDNI one.  No real effects or difference for game play.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 26 September 2019, 11:41:05
I think the "lesser-ness" was having a conventional small cockpit rather than a VDNI one.  No real effects or difference for game play.

Other than a +1 for the small cockpit.  VDNI and bVDNI is in part meant to mitigate the penalties of a small cockpit, which, at least in my mind, was primarily designed so that a snub nose or light PPC could be shoved in the head since the small cockpit frees up a slot.  Ultimate zombie mechs and all that business.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 26 September 2019, 11:53:51
Other than a +1 for the small cockpit.  VDNI and bVDNI is in part meant to mitigate the penalties of a small cockpit, which, at least in my mind, was primarily designed so that a snub nose or light PPC could be shoved in the head since the small cockpit frees up a slot.  Ultimate zombie mechs and all that business.
There is something to be said for a mech that barfs lightening bolts....

From what I remember of the comments, it was not that it was done to make it easier to drive- it was that they were 'lesser' mechs b/c of no small cockpit since they were destined for the 'frails.'

Not sure which mechs you mean by "easier to drive."

Idle question:  Other than the Celestials, did WoB Militia regularly use any other mechs with Small Cockpit?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Maelwys on 26 September 2019, 12:19:33
Commando, Eidolon, Flashman, Guillotine variants, a Gurkha variant (the one that FINALLY gets TSM), King Crab variant, Lancelots, their Ostroc and Panther variants, a variant of each of the White and Blue flames, a couple of the Vanquishers, all of their LAMs, and the Raptor IIs.

That I can think of off hand.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 26 September 2019, 12:23:51
Their omnifighters do.  I know they had a few other omnimechs at their disposal as well, the Perseus being one. Their super-heavies may have mounted a small cockpit as well, but I am not sure.

If I recall, the Fed Suns were the first to develop it, and the Lyrans implemented it as well.  Generally the WoB has access to any Lyran tech since they were one of the main enemies, so any Lyran units that have the small cockpit the WoB most likely can have access to those as well.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Maelwys on 26 September 2019, 12:28:21
The Spectrals have small cockpits, the Perseus doesn't (having been designed well before the small cockpit was standard tech. The superheavies mount Super heavy cockpits, IIRC.

Also a bunch of their Uniques have small cockpits as well, IIRC.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 26 September 2019, 13:32:24
Commando, Eidolon, Flashman, Guillotine variants, a Gurkha variant (the one that FINALLY gets TSM), King Crab variant, Lancelots, their Ostroc and Panther variants, a variant of each of the White and Blue flames, a couple of the Vanquishers, all of their LAMs, and the Raptor IIs.

That I can think of off hand.
So there is a fair selection going on here.  I forgot about the LAMs and the Raptor IIs.  LAMs only showed up in the defense of Earth right?  Weren't the MD basically out of the picture by then?  The Regulans just used buckets and buckets of sunsine until everyone had a nice, even tan. 

According to Jihad Secrets, there were never reports of the MD using Raptor IIs, which is a bit odd because that kind of sneaky stuff is kind of up their alley.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 26 September 2019, 13:48:04
The Raptor II isn't designed for combat.  That was probably the issue.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 26 September 2019, 13:52:06
I think the Society might have out-nastied the Word. They were better at science, more inventive, and just as ruthless.

They were mad scientists playing at being a military.  They were good at coming up with nasty toys, but not so good at using them efficiently or at keeping secrets.  The only reason they lasted as long as they did was because the Clans couldn't conceive of one of the other castes trying to turn on the Warriors.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 26 September 2019, 14:08:08
They were mad scientists playing at being a military.  They were good at coming up with nasty toys, but not so good at using them efficiently or at keeping secrets.  The only reason they lasted as long as they did was because the Clans couldn't conceive of one of the other castes trying to turn on the Warriors.

I figured this was the case as well.  Engineers can make fun, nasty toys to play war with, but they can't necessarily use them efficiently.  The WoB had a specific force dedicated to efficiently and effectively using all the nasty stuff that their research and tech department developed.  Not to mention more experience with espionage, sabotage, assassinations, and all the other methods of ending their enemies from experience in Comstar. 
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 26 September 2019, 15:31:08
And for some mechs, it's not even that big a penalty. Lights that tend not to survive taking 20+ damage per turn don't really need to worry about that +1 PSR. Arrow IV platforms aren't expected to take much damage. Quads get a free -1 PSR, so null out that penalty and take the extra ton.

Small cockpits mean that even good pilots have to slow to walking in the city. It isn't a small consideration in a mech that can and needs to move fast.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 26 September 2019, 15:55:12
They were mad scientists playing at being a military.  They were good at coming up with nasty toys, but not so good at using them efficiently or at keeping secrets.  The only reason they lasted as long as they did was because the Clans couldn't conceive of one of the other castes trying to turn on the Warriors.

I wasn´t thinking about straight-up military nastiness - unless you count nuclear weapons and nerve gas. I was thinking bioweapons, computer viruses and the like. Like a suite of malware programs that specifically targets MD equipment, but then lies dormant and can be triggered remotely to fry the hardware? Heck, I can even see them giving the Inner Sphere (and certainly the IS-based clans) the trigger once the Word double-crosses the Society.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: MoneyLovinOgre4Hire on 26 September 2019, 16:02:42
The Word practiced cybersecurity against every intelligence agency in the Inner Sphere.

The Society practiced cybersecurity against the sort of people who call tech support because they can't find the "any" key on their keyboard.

I think the Society could try coming up with something like that, but actually pulling it off without getting caught was probably beyond them.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 26 September 2019, 16:51:04
Small cockpits mean that even good pilots have to slow to walking in the city. It isn't a small consideration in a mech that can and needs to move fast.
How is someone with a 4 piloting skill any different from a 3+1?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 26 September 2019, 17:05:37
How is someone with a 4 piloting skill any different from a 3+1?

It isn't. 3, however, is different than 3+1. I'd like to get the pilot I'm paying for.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: mbear on 27 September 2019, 08:52:50
I wasn´t thinking about straight-up military nastiness - unless you count nuclear weapons and nerve gas. I was thinking bioweapons, computer viruses and the like. Like a suite of malware programs that specifically targets MD equipment, but then lies dormant and can be triggered remotely to fry the hardware? Heck, I can even see them giving the Inner Sphere (and certainly the IS-based clans) the trigger once the Word double-crosses the Society.

Like MD-specific iNarc Haywire pods? RISC Viral Jammers?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 27 September 2019, 11:56:10
It isn't. 3, however, is different than 3+1. I'd like to get the pilot I'm paying for.
What if Small Cockpit + VDNI + one more heat sink lets you take your PPC boat from a 3-2-3 salvo pattern to a 3-3-2-3 pattern? Or maybe you only need one more ton to squeeze in a targeting computer.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 05 October 2019, 23:15:15
Okay, threw a sort-of veteran choir against a veteran battalion of Lyran regulars- Lyrans had about 10k more BV . . .

Did not play it all the way out, but I oopsed a bit on the TSM- was just too hard to try to regulate it, it maybe more of a 'strategic' feature than a tactical for most loadouts.  While the Shadow troops lost, they managed to kill a Devastator, Black Hawk KU, Grand Titan (woo, ammo TAC, lol), Shadow Hawk IIC w/PCs, Thanatos 4S, LB-20X Thanatos and I think 1 more heavy.  Managed to cripple a Ottscout, Hollander, Ostol, Phoenix Hawk 7S, and Stinger so they were either in forced withdraw or KO'd from falling.  Still in the fight but badly torn up were a Phoenix Hawk 3S, Warhammer 7S, Valkyrie, Shadow Hawk C, and another medium.

The above were the results before I called it where the Archangel and IJJ/ERML Preta were all that remained . . . so five mechs, 6 BA and a vehicle to put a battalion to a bit better than 50% strength.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: OpacusVenatori on 06 October 2019, 00:26:34
Did not play it all the way out, but I oopsed a bit on the TSM- was just too hard to try to regulate it, it maybe more of a 'strategic' feature than a tactical for most loadouts. 

Which variants of the celestial did you deploy?
The seraph needed a variant with multiple types of lasers to help it manage the heat to maintain active the TSM. In Alpha Strike it's more easy to use. In fact, of all its variants, I think that the seraph invictus is the best of it's kind.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 06 October 2019, 00:47:54
Comminus and Caelestis- I wanted to see how MRMs worked with the C3i.

To be fair, part of its problem was that Shadow Hawk IIC got close enough to be hitting regularly with the double plasma cannons during a turn I was trying to activate the TSM.  I did not pay attention to which Shadow Hawk IIC it was- pretty sure it got close to maxing the 15 external heat, and I think I had a DHS crit on the arm the same turn so my +9 went to +11 and then another 13-15 heat from the dual Plasma Cannons.

Now it WAS fun to see the MRM rack hit with a high roll, I think 35+ missiles which was why the Ostol & a Thanatos got hurt.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Greatclub on 06 October 2019, 01:08:42
Some mechs have TSM so they can move fast an plummel things. A relitive few have it so they aren't affected by heat as much. Most Seraph seems to belong in the second group to me.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 06 October 2019, 11:15:20
It took me a long time to see TSM in that light
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Weirdo on 06 October 2019, 11:42:16
Yeah, the Seraph is pretty clearly in the second category. It's not a mech that tries to overheat and then go nuts. It's one where if it happens to overheat it gains a nice bonus(but it's not a primary strategy), and you send it after plasma/inferno units. Use the heat, I dare you.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: grimlock1 on 07 October 2019, 11:15:18
Okay, threw a sort-of veteran choir against a veteran battalion of Lyran regulars- Lyrans had about 10k more BV . . .

Did not play it all the way out, but I oopsed a bit on the TSM- was just too hard to try to regulate it, it maybe more of a 'strategic' feature than a tactical for most loadouts.  While the Shadow troops lost, they managed to kill a Devastator, Black Hawk KU, Grand Titan (woo, ammo TAC, lol), Shadow Hawk IIC w/PCs, Thanatos 4S, LB-20X Thanatos and I think 1 more heavy.  Managed to cripple a Ottscout, Hollander, Ostol, Phoenix Hawk 7S, and Stinger so they were either in forced withdraw or KO'd from falling.  Still in the fight but badly torn up were a Phoenix Hawk 3S, Warhammer 7S, Valkyrie, Shadow Hawk C, and another medium.

The above were the results before I called it where the Archangel and IJJ/ERML Preta were all that remained . . . so five mechs, 6 BA and a vehicle to put a battalion to a bit better than 50% strength.
Between their Veteran or better gun skills, VDNI, C3i, a bit of skill by the player, and they rarely miss. Yeah, another mech mech might have 1/3 heavier throw-weight, but if the conventional mech has a hit rate of 50% and the MD his hitting 75% of the time, the MD is dealing more damage per turn.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 07 October 2019, 11:54:37
Yeah, the Seraph is pretty clearly in the second category. It's not a mech that tries to overheat and then go nuts. It's one where if it happens to overheat it gains a nice bonus(but it's not a primary strategy), and you send it after plasma/inferno units. Use the heat, I dare you.

Yeah, I was just trying to get the heat up to get a walk of 3 hexes +1 facing change.  While my ECM was in ECCM mode to keep the Lyran ECM from cutting off my network, I was also trying to drop the Thanatos & other ECM carriers when I had good shots.  I have not played with- or even against that much- Celestials, MD or really large C3i networks b/c of BV usually so my last few experiences were more for experimentation/learning and to scratch the BT itch while I finish some MM maps & table top terrain.  It also lets me know some of the ratios . . . if I can send a single choir after a veteran battalion and give it 50% casualties then that is a significant data point.  Really, with it being Lyran Regulars I should have given it a more even split between veteran & regular lances which might have addressed the 10k+ BV advantage the Lyran forces had when it started.

The other question it raised to me was . . . the mentality (or how to RP) a Manei Domini.  While they are from the Inner Sphere culture, the MD are absolutely fanatics as evidenced by their agreement to having parts of their bodies replaced by augments . . . prosthetics to regain abilities rather than be crippled is one thing, sacrificing a functional arm/eye/ear for a cybernetic replacement is a very different matter.  To me they would not have the same sense of self-preservation other IS troops exhibit, best expressed about 'living to fight another day.'  Clan warriors exhibit that sort of zealotry but they do so in search of glory and are less likely to go on a deathride for something that does not further that goal.  So the MD are a different flavor- as an example consider Avitue ordering her lights to kill the enemy mechs no matter what before her last battle- condition black?  The light L2 commander approached it with drim determination IIRC.  It also matters who they fight I think, against a Clan opponent the MD are going to be more fanatical (rabid?) than against a IS force IMO.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 07 October 2019, 12:31:28
the mentality (or how to RP) a Manei Domini.  While they are from the Inner Sphere culture, the MD are absolutely fanatic... To me they would not have the same sense of self-preservation other IS troops exhibit, best expressed about 'living to fight another day.

In my mind it really depends on the soldier.  The way I play them out is as follows (this is only my opinion, and probably not canon):

WoB Militia:  These guys are for the Word, but are not overly fanatical about it.  They won't take highly unnecessary risks to win a fight, are willing to surrender if they see it is for the best or if it is a losing fight, but probably wouldn't talk to much during interrogations.  In the end, many of them are rank-and-file ex-Comstar employees, or planetary militias that the Word gave equipment and training to.

WoB Manei Domini, rank and file:  These guys are super fanatical.  They are the ones that call in artie or air support danger close because screw the enemy.  They use anything at their disposal to win a fight, and would rather die than surrender; usually they do die while they surrender as they blow up a suicide vest in the hopes of killing their captors.

WoB Opacus:  Fanatical, but not as much as the Venatori.  Probably a bit more sense of self preservation since they are the elite of the elite, and would rather abandon a mission than be taken captive, but were not willing to get implants to replace body parts.  Most of this group can probably hide within public fairly easily since they don't have any significant implants, or none at all for most of them, so they could abandon their equipment and disappear.

WoB Venatori (excluding Berith):  Super fanatical.  Again, willing to use any means at their disposal to win a fight.  I think these guys are a bit more willing to die fighting than the Opacus or the Militia, however it depends on the situation.  If they are hunting a high value target perhaps retreat and fight another day.  If it is defending something highly critical to the success of the Word, then defend or die. 

Berith:  I don't see him as willing to die for the cause unless it is specifically ordered by the Master.  In my mind, because of his station and status within the Word of Blake, I would say this dude is going to live to fight another day.  Otherwise, similar types of tactics as the other fanatics; WMDs, oribital bombardments, whatever is at his and his teams disposal to win will be used.  This dude is willing to kill anyone, including his allies, if it is commanded by the Master.

Again, just my thoughts on how to RP them during combat.  I have never played the RPG, so I don't know how I would RP them in non-combat scenarios.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 07 October 2019, 12:49:56
I would shift/squeeze in at the bottom . . . what you describe would be the Protectorate militia to me with the WoB Militia- regular line force militia like 2nd or 4th Division- being a half-step up in fanaticism.  The other side of it is, IMO, as the Jihad grinds on the Allies might be less inclined to accept surrenders (particularly the Clans) which will cause the WoB Militia to be less likely to surrender . . . and if word of that spreads, the idea that you cannot surrender could take hold.  Additionally, after the Clans I cannot imagine the Blakist Militia would like to surrender to Dracs or Cappies.

So yeah, Word of Blake Militia is going to behave like a lot of the various faction's elite commands.  Shadow Divisions and their MD is more what I was getting at . . . their fanaticism is going to feel a lot like the Clans but will be different in subtle ways.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Wrangler on 08 October 2019, 06:42:14
Protectorate Militia to me were National Guard for the planet, locals for locals with very BAD bosses.
Word of Blake Militia  to me were regular forces which was strongly dabbled with fanatics, especially units that came out the dark and storied ones that fought in Operation Odysseus.

Then you have the Shadow Divisions, the elite and the hand pick ones on the higher number one like the 51st Shadow Division.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Colt Ward on 08 October 2019, 10:47:33
Yeah, but to get back to it, how would you play Shadow Divisions differently than the line/regular Militia divisions?  They are going to be more fanatical, but when does that fanaticism come to the fore to override military realities?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Tangoforone on 08 October 2019, 11:13:16
For me the fanaticism comes in to play with risk taking to win the game. 

It helps to have additional tactics up one's sleep; aerospace or artillery support, minefields, Arrow IV, FASCAM.  Let the opponents close in assuming that you aren't dumb enough to dump 4 Arrow IV missiles on the space in front of you, then dump said missiles on their face and run the risk of getting hit yourself or eat the splash damage.

Fight in cities and willingly risk the lives of civilians by fighting in that city.  I would argue by the 3070's most factions should not be as willing to enter into city fights due to the various Combat Accords.  Let your army sit just within the city and roll for the opponents missed return shots.  Heavy PPC hitting a skyscraper?  You can bet as the WoB I am going to send out a Public Relations report that the Lyran Alliance killed civilians while assaulting a city held by the Word of Blake.  It may not have an effect on the actual game in regards to numbers, but if you are RP'ing a bit that should be taken into account a little bit.

Or, set up games that occur in zones that have been affected by nuclear or biochemical weapons and use infantry.  Most forces, as far as I am aware, don't send infantry into these types of conditions due to equipment.  The MD infantry have implants specifically to be able to survive in these areas from what I recall. 

That's just what I would do I guess.  Never being in the military, I don't know too much about military protocols and what is/isn't allowed in combat scenarios, barring the few obvious ones.

Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Church14 on 08 October 2019, 11:14:42
Yeah, but to get back to it, how would you play Shadow Divisions differently than the line/regular Militia divisions?  They are going to be more fanatical, but when does that fanaticism come to the fore to override military realities?
I would think it would manifest as an increased willingness to engage in otherwise abhorred behavior.

Take city fighting: I feel like Shadow divisions would be more inclined to destroy infrastructure to gain an edge. They’d be more willing to call heavy artillery down on settlements. More willing to use infernos to burn down buildings or a nearby forest for a tactical advantage. More willing to bulldoze through a building full of civilians to get a flank. I don’t feel like Protectorate Militia would do much of that.

 Though I am admittedly not well read for the fluff yet
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sir Chaos on 08 October 2019, 11:51:00
I would think it would manifest as an increased willingness to engage in otherwise abhorred behavior.

Take city fighting: I feel like Shadow divisions would be more inclined to destroy infrastructure to gain an edge. They’d be more willing to call heavy artillery down on settlements. More willing to use infernos to burn down buildings or a nearby forest for a tactical advantage. More willing to bulldoze through a building full of civilians to get a flank. I don’t feel like Protectorate Militia would do much of that.

 Though I am admittedly not well read for the fluff yet

The reason Protectorate Militia wouldn´t do that is that they´d be doing it on their own worlds. Would YOU call artillery on a neighbourhood in your home town? Maybe on a place where people you know and care about live? Would YOU stomp a ´Mech through your kid´s school building, not knowing if the school was evacuated before the fighting started?
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: dgorsman on 08 October 2019, 12:30:32
At one point, I had a crippled Celestial stuck on top of a building, otherwise useless because of line of sight restrictions.  I had another Mech shoot the building out from under it so it could be a ground level turret.

Another instance was using a Seraph with improved jump jets facing down an enemy Awesome, possibly the best pilot in their group.  It could have used weapons and dented some armor, but instead went for the DFA.  With the vastly superior piloting skill, it easily pulled it off (even with incoming fire).  Not just crippled Awesome but dead pilot as well.

In general, a willingness to soak damage to cripple the enemy.  Not stupidly, though; risky but with good odds for the payout.  Think of the 47th Division's combat drop onto Galatea.  Dropping through the DropShip drive plumes but the surprise pretty much ensured success.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Caedis Animus on 08 October 2019, 18:00:43
At one point, I had a crippled Celestial stuck on top of a building, otherwise useless because of line of sight restrictions.  I had another Mech shoot the building out from under it so it could be a ground level turret.
I can only imagine the verbal communication in that moment, in-universe.

It's just such an odd idea that I don't think the pilot on the building or the pilot on the ground would've even normally thought of it, so one of them would've had to come up with the idea in the first place, or have command order it right away depending on how you view it; Whichever sounds funnier to you, really.
Title: Re: So the celestial series... how to and why?
Post by: Sartris on 09 October 2019, 11:59:44
the idea of a mech standing on a building without causing some kind of collapse is ridiculous enough in the first place. resorting to blasting the building to get your buddy down is just acknowledging that fact and playing along.

also it's funny.