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Author Topic: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?  (Read 1878 times)

Korzon77

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Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« on: 10 March 2013, 07:15:01 »
So, many plans exist to make IS protomechs that aren't as good as clan tech-- but here's a question. Does it really hurt much in teh way of balance to just, say that protmechs, much like BA, tend to have more effecient weapons weight wise, IE let them use clan equipment even if they're built by the IS?  It doesn't seem to make them invincible weapon systems, especially if you rule that IS armor is less effective and don't let them use the big clan weapons. Micro lasers and LRM/SRM's can always be fluffed as lighter simply due to the nature of the suit.

SCC

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #1 on: 10 March 2013, 15:34:56 »
I doubt it. And given that Proto's are a new thing to the Clans as well and that the IS were probably the first people to get a look at them it makes sense

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #2 on: 10 March 2013, 15:57:31 »
Are we talking about using the IS equivalent weapons here, or the Clan ones? With IS weapons it might be okay balance-wise, but I don't want smaller IS units being able to rock 7 damage medium lasers just because.

Ratwedge

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #3 on: 10 March 2013, 16:22:04 »
Honestly sounds like a terrible idea purely because of balance. The thing is Protomechs are already ignored enough that many people ignore how powerful Roc's can be, last thing we need to do is make them cheaper and give them to the IS.

Col.Hengist

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #4 on: 10 March 2013, 20:12:06 »
Without the lighter weight clan tech i don't think IS protos would be all that great. you get a proto that would probably be better off being a  BA suit. The only place that would probably use them is the CapCon too considering the mental instability that happens from piloting one. I seriously doubt any person from any other great house would willingly do that to themselves other than them for the glory of the Confederation.
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Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #5 on: 10 March 2013, 21:47:04 »
The thing is, how do protomechs stack up against an equal mass of vehicles, say Myrmidons?  Protos are a sop to the Clan's individual warrior fetish.  Even with a poorer techbase IS vehicles tend to be better designed than their clan counterparts.

Stormfury

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #6 on: 10 March 2013, 22:53:54 »
Depends on the ProtoMech in question.

I would back a Point (plus a few extras, sometimes) of Centaurs, Rocs, Gorgons or Delphynes against a Myrmidon without question. I'd also expect 22 Sirens to be able to take one down, despite how bad they are on an individual basis.
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Mohammed As`Zaman Bey

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #7 on: 10 March 2013, 23:20:02 »
The IS would definately love the Protomech -It is a cheaper, stopgap weapon that even the most resource-strapped Clan could produce. There would definately be a great demand as a weapon that could be fielded when a full-sized 'Mech isn't available.

Diablo48

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #8 on: 10 March 2013, 23:23:48 »
Without the lighter weight clan tech i don't think IS protos would be all that great. you get a proto that would probably be better off being a  BA suit. The only place that would probably use them is the CapCon too considering the mental instability that happens from piloting one. I seriously doubt any person from any other great house would willingly do that to themselves other than them for the glory of the Confederation.

The combine might also use them for penal units, but even so they would have to be built for normal people instead of aerospace washouts which would add weight and bulk to the cockpit.  Given the amount of work required for something that will chew up troops weather they are in combat or not, I cannot see any IS faction investing in them when they could just churn out cheap ICE-powered vehicles instead.


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Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #9 on: 10 March 2013, 23:53:12 »
The combine might also use them for penal units, but even so they would have to be built for normal people instead of aerospace washouts which would add weight and bulk to the cockpit.  Given the amount of work required for something that will chew up troops weather they are in combat or not, I cannot see any IS faction investing in them when they could just churn out cheap ICE-powered vehicles instead.

Or looked at another way, the IS already has a protomech like unit.  It's called the Savannah Master.  ;D  Only without the need for a specialized eugenics program, needing fifteen years to train the operator from cradle to combat, or the control interface eventually driving him insane...

Depends on the ProtoMech in question.

I would back a Point (plus a few extras, sometimes) of Centaurs, Rocs, Gorgons or Delphynes against a Myrmidon without question. I'd also expect 22 Sirens to be able to take one down, despite how bad they are on an individual basis.

Gorgons will be slow, but that single PPC can nearly remove the legs, two hits core the torso, and one will more than amputate the arm or destroy the main gun.  Even losing an arm will rapidly degrade the effectiveness of the Gorgon's LRMs (+2 to hit).  The Roc has similar armor, and weakness of having a main gun armament to the Gorgon.   The Centuar has it even worse, that single PPC hit will take off the arm, and completely strip the armor off the torso, legs are gone on the first hit.  If you took a Centaur 3 the PPC can OSK with a torso strike.  The Delphynes I will admit is a tank as far as Protomechs go, and the torso mounted MPL forces you to dig through the proto the hard way.  But my main point the protomech point's combat power will suffer rapid attrition.  And this is facing bleeding edge Clantech against a tank with equipment that was available even in the depths of the Succession Wars.

Stormfury

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #10 on: 11 March 2013, 01:06:15 »
Quote
Gorgons will be slow, but that single PPC can nearly remove the legs, two hits core the torso, and one will more than amputate the arm or destroy the main gun.

Gorgons will also be dropping as much firepower as a Myrmidon onto it each as it can offer at range, and with four Gorgons to each Myrmidon weight-wise it can only shoot at one per turn, suffering the "Near Miss" locations to boot. Between them, they're also tougher than a Myrmidon if a little slower, but they can move through terrain a tank can't.

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The Roc has similar armor, and weakness of having a main gun armament to the Gorgon.

There will be 5 of them, generating high target movement modifiers and capable of quickly carving a Myrmidon up once they close.

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The Centuar has it even worse, that single PPC hit will take off the arm, and completely strip the armor off the torso, legs are gone on the first hit.

Six of them dropping 18 LRMs per turn on the Myrmidon with the option of Infernos in their SRMs. And again the Myrmidon can only shoot at one per turn.

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But my main point the protomech point's combat power will suffer rapid attrition.

As will the Myrmidon, which will be outnumbered and outdamaged by ProtoMechs, sometimes also outranged.

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And this is facing bleeding edge Clantech against a tank with equipment that was available even in the depths of the Succession Wars.

Whilst everything on the Myrmidon is SW technology, it's a design that would have been difficult if not outright impossible to build in that era- the fusion engine it uses would have been an extremely unlikely option on a tank back then. The tech is old, but the Myrmidon is very much a product of its era making such a unit possible, same as the ProtoMechs.
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Col.Hengist

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #11 on: 11 March 2013, 02:11:26 »
Don't forget the Svartalfa II... 10 lrm 15's/pound...
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SCC

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #12 on: 11 March 2013, 03:43:36 »
Are we talking about using the IS equivalent weapons here, or the Clan ones? With IS weapons it might be okay balance-wise, but I don't want smaller IS units being able to rock 7 damage medium lasers just because.
Normal IS weapons, with the current allowance about IS forces using Clan weaponry

Not too sure about armor weight but, the weight per point in the fan designs thread is clearly too high, but would they be able to make Clan armor, or should it be based off of LFF or something?

Not using the other stuff in that fan thread that only seeks to nerf them, the Clans haven't had this technology for long, they should have that great of a leg up

The IS also has a greater genetic pool to draw from and a slightly different technology that might mean they can work around the problems that the Clans face

Stormfury

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #13 on: 11 March 2013, 04:01:41 »
Quote
Not too sure about armor weight but, the weight per point in the fan designs thread is clearly too high, but would they be able to make Clan armor, or should it be based off of LFF or something?

Clan ProtoMechs make extensive use of Endo Steel and Ferro-Fibrous. The Inner Sphere cannot duplicate the former without doubling the bulk (a problem with things as compact as a ProtoMech) and while their Light Ferro-Fibrous is as bulky as Clan Ferro-Fibrous the problem there is that it doesn't provide as much protection. As a result, an IS ProtoMech should have more mass required for its chassis and per point of armour. The added bulk may also cause them to lose one or both "Near Miss" result on the hit location table, especially since EI links pilots more closely to their machines than the Inner Sphere alternative.

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The IS also has a greater genetic pool to draw from and a slightly different technology that might mean they can work around the problems that the Clans face

The gene pool doesn't matter. ProtoMech pilots need to be small and robust no matter where you get them from, and (Buffered) VDNI is the only thing the Sphere has that's akin to the EI needed for ProtoMechs.
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Colonel Sanders Lite

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #14 on: 11 March 2013, 04:12:08 »
The gene pool doesn't matter. ProtoMech pilots need to be small and robust no matter where you get them from, and (Buffered) VDNI is the only thing the Sphere has that's akin to the EI needed for ProtoMechs.

Well, while the clan has warriors genetically engineered to be small, the IS has dwarves, which I'm guessing have been at least mostly weeded out of the clan gene pool.  IE, the clan wants every warrior, with the sole exceptions of proto pilots, to be physically imposing, but there's plenty of talent to recruit from in the is.
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SCC

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #15 on: 11 March 2013, 04:22:38 »
Proto's have the same IS weight as 'Mechs using normal IS and while the fluff seems to suggest that Endo is involved somehow it doesn't state it outright. I was asking for a reason, but this might be an Ask the Lead Developer question, do Proto's use Endo-Steel and FF?

Yes, but the Clan were/are limited to scouring their Aero lines which might not have the best genes for the up-link. The IS also has the Direct Neural Interface, which may be better

Stormfury

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #16 on: 11 March 2013, 05:33:32 »
Quote
Well, while the clan has warriors genetically engineered to be small, the IS has dwarves, which I'm guessing have been at least mostly weeded out of the clan gene pool.  IE, the clan wants every warrior, with the sole exceptions of proto pilots, to be physically imposing, but there's plenty of talent to recruit from in the is.

Problem is whether or not a dwarf will have the other required abilities to pilot a ProtoMech. There are a variety of medical conditions that can cause dwarfism, some of which would rule out a candidate immediately; piloting a ProtoMech is quite physically demanding.

Whether or not a given pilot is from the ASF phenotype, they still need to be able to handle some serious physical punishment in addition to the psychological and neurological issues that come with the job. ProtoMech fluff in TR: 3060 makes reference to the physical and mental demands of piloting a Proto and notes that ASF phenotypes are particularly well suited to the role.

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Proto's have the same IS weight as 'Mechs using normal IS and while the fluff seems to suggest that Endo is involved somehow it doesn't state it outright. I was asking for a reason, but this might be an Ask the Lead Developer question, do Proto's use Endo-Steel and FF?

Per the design chapter intro from TM on p.77, they use a combination of Endo Steel and standard chassis materials. The Sphere cannot duplicate the technology by 3067, with the best available alternative too bulky to make up the difference. The armour used on ProtoMechs is only referred to as an alloy; Light Ferro-Fibrous is suggested as an option, but is stated to be both heavier and more bulky, to the point it would cause problems given the advantage of a ProtoMech lies in its size. The following page indicates that using Endo Steel (even their Mark II) or Ferro-Fibrous (even Light) will expand the ProtoMech's size to that of a normal 20-tonner.

The Sphere, with the information Sharon Bryan bought back from Huntress, expects to only be able to duplicate ProtoMech engines, heat sinks, and jump jets. Everything else is out of their reach, even if they get around the VDNI and pilot issue.

The Jihad won't exactly have helped their R&D efforts, especially since the facility from that text was captured by the Word of Blake.
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Col.Hengist

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #17 on: 11 March 2013, 13:31:06 »
Yea, if anyone in the sphere could have done it it would have been the wobblies and they( that we know of ) couldn't or didn't.
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Mohammed As`Zaman Bey

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #18 on: 11 March 2013, 21:43:50 »
Well, while the clan has warriors genetically engineered to be small, the IS has dwarves, which I'm guessing have been at least mostly weeded out of the clan gene pool.  IE, the clan wants every warrior, with the sole exceptions of proto pilots, to be physically imposing, but there's plenty of talent to recruit from in the is.
  Clan pilots aren't dwarves or midgets, just smaller, the same way the Soviets designed their tanks to be crewed by shorter Asians. Heck, Protomechs could be piloted by angst-filled teens.

SCC

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #19 on: 11 March 2013, 23:24:46 »
The Lyran research suggested that starting training the pilots young was a good idea

And what's the minimum entry age for military in the IS any way?

SCC

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #20 on: 12 March 2013, 01:54:59 »
One thing that would have to be worked out is: Can they carry C3 and what are the rules for it?

cold1

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #21 on: 12 March 2013, 13:32:46 »
The clans also had to genetically engineer a new phenotype in order to make it really work.


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Arkansas Warrior

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #22 on: 12 March 2013, 13:37:23 »
The Lyran research suggested that starting training the pilots young was a good idea

And what's the minimum entry age for military in the IS any way?
IIRC, some nobles' children entered military academies as young as 12-14.
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Col.Hengist

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #23 on: 13 March 2013, 12:18:38 »
The clans also had to genetically engineer a new phenotype in order to make it really work.

 Let's give credit where credit is due. It wasn't the clans, it was one clan  8)
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cold1

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Re: Letting the IS have clan tech protomechs?
« Reply #24 on: 13 March 2013, 13:14:27 »
Let's give credit where credit is due. It wasn't the clans, it was one clan  8)

Ok, the Blood Spirits in all their emo-angst-awesome developed the Proto phenotype which, essentially, creates a superior Proto pilot that can withstand the Neuro-interface much better.



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