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Author Topic: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker  (Read 37485 times)

William J. Pennington

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #30 on: 21 April 2013, 03:29:25 »
It's the similar problem as with the old HBK-4G Hunchback in 3025 games - BRZ-C3 simply attracts disproportionate amount of enemy fire because of those 40-points Hatchet swings.

I fear 40 pointkicks more. Minimum of two piloting checks at +1, plus any leg criticals..if there still is a leg left.

StCptMara

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #31 on: 21 April 2013, 03:32:09 »
I remember one game where thunder munitions had put a minefield between my Berzerker A3 and its target....The target
actually moved around to put the mine field between me and him. Tactically, a smart , since that also put 7 hexes between
us(in a Straight line!) What sort of maniac would try to close with that, right? This sort of maniac, actually. After all, mine fields
are actually fairly hard to get to pop (needing a roll of 9+ on 2d6). So...I kicked on the MASC, and declared a charge. My opponent's
second mistake was that he landed on the spot of terrain with a sheer drop on the other side, and I did the math that a Charge plus
the fall would do the most damage I could inflict.

Imagine the poor enemy pilot: He sees the Berserker barreling straight towards him at top speed, mines blowing up
as it passes past them(I actually had 2 hexes go off in the run, but they were 10 point fields) to charge him for 70 damage,
plus a 3 level fall....

I fear 40 pointkicks more. Minimum of two piloting checks at +1, plus any leg criticals..if there still is a leg left.

Only if you are using those advanced rules, otherwise it is just one pilot check at +1, plus leg criticals if there is still a leg
left. Frankly, the trick is you have to know when to kick, and when to hatchet. Sometimes that 40 points on the full body chart
is better then 40 points to one leg.
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A. Lurker

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #32 on: 21 April 2013, 03:48:03 »
Only if you are using those advanced rules, otherwise it is just one pilot check at +1, plus leg criticals if there is still a leg
left.

It's two checks even under the standard rules, actually. One for the kick, one for taking 20+ damage in a single phase, and it's the latter where the +1 modifier to both comes from.

If you do go with the TacOps PSR rule for damage, then getting kicked for 40 is actually two rolls at +2, though then the weight class of the target will also figure into it.

martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #33 on: 21 April 2013, 04:38:26 »
Your 'problem' is my 'at least they are shooting a heavily armored assault Mech'.
It's pretty expensive (both BV-wise and C-Bills-wise) decoy, then.

Also, IMO, all melee Mechs benefit from using Tac Ops.  A Berserker with the ability to walk and axe someone after the movement phase gives a whole new meaning to 'bubble of doom'
Tactical Operations rules are optional, so you should announce your intent to use them to your opponents before the game starts - which means that you "disclose" your tactics. Moreover, they may say (and rightly so) that you are trying to secure additional advantage just for yourself because no one else brought Melee 'Mech to the battle.


martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #34 on: 21 April 2013, 04:44:53 »
I fear 40 pointkicks more. Minimum of two piloting checks at +1, plus any leg criticals..if there still is a leg left.

Kicking may be hazardous. Miss your kick and consequently your PSR roll - and and you will be lying at your enemy's feet.

StCptMara

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #35 on: 21 April 2013, 04:46:29 »
Tactical Operations rules are optional, so you should announce your intent to use them to your opponents before the game starts - which means that you "disclose" your tactics. Moreover, they may say (and rightly so) that you are trying to secure additional advantage just for yourself because no one else brought Melee 'Mech to the battle.

Yeah, my usual rule is: If you want to use something from TacOps, then I can use something from there, as well. This is why, in my
group, Ghost Targets really does not slow our games down much..seems everyone loves that one.
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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #36 on: 21 April 2013, 05:18:14 »
Kicking may be hazardous. Miss your kick and consequently your PSR roll - and and you will be lying at your enemy's feet.

That's generally a chance I'll take unless my to-hit roll really sucks (in which case there'd be little point in trying a physical attack at all in the first place). Kicks are magically accurate, meaning I have a good chance of simply not missing, and even if I do the required PSR is usually easy. Plus they usually cost me nothing. I can't punch with an arm from which I've already fired weapons that turn, so there's a tradeoff there, and dedicated physical weapons have to be designed into my 'Mech in advance at the expense of tonnage and space...but a kick at an enemy in front of me I can basically always make unless (a) I've lost a hip actuator already, in which case I've got bigger things to worry about anyway or (b) I'm sitting in something called Crusader.

Free accurate bonus damage of opportunity plus a shot at forcing a PSR in exchange for a fairly miniscule chance of falling myself? Sure, I'll take that. (And that is, basically, the problem with kicks in a nutshell.)

Now with a designated physical combat design like the Berserker, sure, I'll make a point of not simply always falling back on kicks if I can help it. I paid for that weapon, so I'll do my level best to get some mileage out of it, too. But in general combat I see and use at least two to three times as many kicks as I do all other physical attacks taken together, and there's good reason for that as well.

William J. Pennington

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #37 on: 21 April 2013, 05:34:27 »
Kicking may be hazardous. Miss your kick and consequently your PSR roll - and and you will be lying at your enemy's feet.

If you miss. kicking is a lot more accurate, and who takes physical oriented design without a good piloting roll?

The downside to kicks--legs, especially on other assaults usually have lots of armor and internals, while the 40 point hatchet can hit a nice crunchy side torso.  but anything medium and light--and soem heavies..are going to be on the ground ready to finish.

Now if kicks didnt have the -2 modifier, hatchets would be a lot more attractive. But they do, so there we are.

martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #38 on: 21 April 2013, 05:36:05 »
Yeah, my usual rule is: If you want to use something from TacOps, then I can use something from there, as well. This is why, in my
group, Ghost Targets really does not slow our games down much..seems everyone loves that one.

That's correct and it should be this way.

However, I took common 'Mechs to the game and I don't ask for additional rules (I am okay with the tournament legal ruleset as is)- it's him who seeks additional rules that will benefit only him.

That's generally a chance I'll take unless my to-hit roll really sucks (in which case there'd be little point in trying a physical attack at all in the first place). Kicks are magically accurate, meaning I have a good chance of simply not missing, and even if I do the required PSR is usually easy. Plus they usually cost me nothing. I can't punch with an arm from which I've already fired weapons that turn, so there's a tradeoff there, and dedicated physical weapons have to be designed into my 'Mech in advance at the expense of tonnage and space...but a kick at an enemy in front of me I can basically always make unless (a) I've lost a hip actuator already, in which case I've got bigger things to worry about anyway or (b) I'm sitting in something called Crusader.

Free accurate bonus damage of opportunity plus a shot at forcing a PSR in exchange for a fairly miniscule chance of falling myself? Sure, I'll take that. (And that is, basically, the problem with kicks in a nutshell.)

Well, I have thought we have been discussing the Berserker.

My personal preference is usually to "play it safe". If I fall down, it may be difficult to get up, and even if I will get up, I will spend my precious MPs doing so.

Now with a designated physical combat design like the Berserker, sure, I'll make a point of not simply always falling back on kicks if I can help it. I paid for that weapon, so I'll do my level best to get some mileage out of it, too. But in general combat I see and use at least two to three times as many kicks as I do all other physical attacks taken together, and there's good reason for that as well.

If I have a 'Mech with a Melee weapon - be it Hatchet, Sword or even Club - I almost never kick.

My personal bad luck means that I miss the kick any time I try.

A. Lurker

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #39 on: 21 April 2013, 06:02:50 »
My personal preference is usually to "play it safe". If I fall down, it may be difficult to get up, and even if I will get up, I will spend my precious MPs doing so.

*nod* While I tend to figure "hey, I'm on a battlefield here, 'safe' kind of just went out of the window!" and not sweat the small risks so much. Yeah, I might manage to overbalance and go down from a badly misplaced kick, my MASC might freeze both hip actuators at once, or my UAC might seize up and become useless if I double-tap. But usually these things don't actually happen when I take the chance, and if and when I do end up turning out to be wrong about that for once, well, I'll just deal with that when I get there.

To each their own. :)

glitterboy2098

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #40 on: 21 April 2013, 06:07:21 »
It's the similar problem as with the old HBK-4G Hunchback in 3025 games - BRZ-C3 simply attracts disproportionate amount of enemy fire because of those 40-points Hatchet swings.

which a savvy player can use to their advantage.. one time years back when i was not as good a tactician, i was in a game where my opponent had a Berserker and some Marauder II's heading towards my own assault lance. not being very tactically smart at the time, i kept focusing my fire on the beserker, fearing it's hachet.. while the Marauder II's just kept up a steady barrage of fire pounding my mechs.

eventually a lucky shot took the berserker down, and his marauder's wound up too close to survive against my mechs (i was limited in mech choices at the time, so i had assaults with more close range than long range firepower.)

if you know your opponent is likely to make the mistake of focusing fire on an enemy for its 'potential' rather than its actual current threat level, you can use that to trick them into wasting their firepower or pull them into a position more favorable for you.

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #41 on: 21 April 2013, 06:10:49 »
which a savvy player can use to their advantage.. one time years back when i was not as good a tactician, i was in a game where my opponent had a Berserker and some Marauder II's heading towards my own assault lance. not being very tactically smart at the time, i kept focusing my fire on the beserker, fearing it's hachet.. while the Marauder II's just kept up a steady barrage of fire pounding my mechs.

eventually a lucky shot took the berserker down, and his marauder's wound up too close to survive against my mechs (i was limited in mech choices at the time, so i had assaults with more close range than long range firepower.)

if you know your opponent is likely to make the mistake of focusing fire on an enemy for its 'potential' rather than its actual current threat level, you can use that to trick them into wasting their firepower or pull them into a position more favorable for you.


So, the BRZ lets you force the enemy to make a choice: kill it from a distance before it closes and creates mayhem or ignore it and risk an axe to the face  :-\


In many ways the most interesting part of these articles is the "how to kill it" part and with this 'Mech it seems to be quite hard as you are either ignoring too many other 'Mechs to take it down or risking some one-axe-blow-kills once it's closed
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Kotetsu

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #42 on: 21 April 2013, 06:32:36 »
OUCH...  But since you need 2 slots free in each location (bar the CT and head) and with the hatchet you only get one in that arm, you could not do it.

There is a solution to that... Actually two. Three if you are a real evil bastard with it.

Null Sig, Chameleon, and possibly Void if you read it as you are unable to be seen unless you move.

Try that last with your TSM active... and some poor shlub doesn't see you and stops right in front of you... with his back turned.

A. Lurker

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #43 on: 21 April 2013, 06:34:01 »

So, the BRZ lets you force the enemy to make a choice: kill it from a distance before it closes and creates mayhem or ignore it and risk an axe to the face  :-\


In many ways the most interesting part of these articles is the "how to kill it" part and with this 'Mech it seems to be quite hard as you are either ignoring too many other 'Mechs to take it down or risking some one-axe-blow-kills once it's closed

That's really a pretty general problem. In the abstract, your opponent has some long-range platforms that keep taking potshots at you for a given amount of firepower A, while his or her short-ranged fighters are trying to work their way closer so they can add their own firepower B to the mix. Obviously, you want to minimize your exposure to the combination of A and B over the course of the entire scenario while still achieving your own objectives -- so, do you try to stop B from ever materializing while not doing anything about A for a while, or do you try to reduce A as the immediate threat now and worry about B later?

I think I'd personally tend more towards the latter on the principle that it's probably better not to give the currently active threat part of the OpFor any more chances to get lucky than I absolutely have to, but I'm not 100% convinced that that's already the go-to general purpose answer.

UnLimiTeD

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #44 on: 21 April 2013, 12:59:42 »
Doesn't that really depend on your own force?
If you got mostly long range armament, you won't survive B, so it has to go first, if you get short ranged armament, you don't have the choice, if it's a mix, it's preference; I suppose if the force has homogenous armament, A is the bigger threat.
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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #45 on: 21 April 2013, 13:03:36 »
Your 'problem' is my 'at least they are shooting a heavily armored assault Mech'.  Also, IMO, all melee Mechs benefit from using Tac Ops.  A Berserker with the ability to walk and axe someone after the movement phase gives a whole new meaning to 'bubble of doom'

Just to clarify, one could sprint for 10 MP and still have the ability to axe somebody afterwards?

martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #46 on: 21 April 2013, 13:23:11 »
Just to clarify, one could sprint for 10 MP and still have the ability to axe somebody afterwards?
No, you can't do that.

I guess that probably he meant the Physical Defence rule.

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #47 on: 21 April 2013, 13:42:10 »
No, you can't do that.

I guess that probably he meant the Physical Defence rule.

Ah. I was starting to wonder.

Well, if that's the one, then I'm not overly impressed. Most of the time I'd be grateful to somebody who voluntarily turned his or her 'Mech into a stationary target for a turn just to delay its movement (with a possible physical followup attack) until the Physical Attack phase.

Probably not grateful enough not to shoot at them while I can and they're not allowed to, but you can't have everything. ;)

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #48 on: 21 April 2013, 13:54:41 »
No, you can't do that.

I guess that probably he meant the Physical Defence rule.

Ah ok. But even if one could do it you'd still have the issue of not being at +9 heat anymore unless one would switch off every single heatsink.

martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #49 on: 21 April 2013, 13:56:13 »
Ah. I was starting to wonder.

Well, if that's the one, then I'm not overly impressed. Most of the time I'd be grateful to somebody who voluntarily turned his or her 'Mech into a stationary target for a turn just to delay its movement (with a possible physical followup attack) until the Physical Attack phase.

Probably not grateful enough not to shoot at them while I can and they're not allowed to, but you can't have everything. ;)

Well, the rule (if it is that one) may have some uses when fighting in a city or a broken terrain. Just imagine you won initiative, you and your opponent did your units movements, and then during the Physical Attack phase the Berserker or the Neanderthal moves out of some gorge or sidestreet into the contact distance with its Hatchet ready.

One positive fact: This rule forbids weapons attacks and therefore, it effectively neutralizes TSM 'Mechs such as those two aforementioned units since they need weapons to keep themselves hot. They can attack, but it will be standard damage only.

Arkansas Warrior

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #50 on: 21 April 2013, 14:02:48 »
Unless they were already running hot and turned off enough sinks to stay there.
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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #51 on: 21 April 2013, 14:04:56 »
[legal]

TSM disables at the end of the turn.  It's still going to charge out of ambush and hit you for 40 points that first turn.  And if he's planning to pull a stunt like that, like AW just pointed out, there's every chance your opponent has decided to disable heat sinks ahead of time, meaning he's going to have plenty of TSM vigor afterwards.

martian

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #52 on: 21 April 2013, 14:09:41 »
Unless they were already running hot and turned off enough sinks to stay there.
Yeah, that's possible. But when I am weighing the pros and cons, I am not sure if that all is worth it. Because the proper recon ought spot something (hopefully).

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #53 on: 21 April 2013, 14:12:14 »
Well, the rule (if it is that one) may have some uses when fighting in a city or a broken terrain. Just imagine you won initiative, you and your opponent did your units movements, and then during the Physical Attack phase the Berserker or the Neanderthal moves out of some gorge or sidestreet into the contact distance with its Hatchet ready.

One positive fact: This rule forbids weapons attacks and therefore, it effectively neutralizes TSM 'Mechs such as those two aforementioned units since they need weapons to keep themselves hot. They can attack, but it will be standard damage only.

Yeah, I thought of that while I was AFK for a few minutes. As a special-case ambush tactic in terrain that offers a lot of cover and forces short engagement ranges it can work from time to time.

What it's not (and that's the impression I came away with from rereading Scrollreader's post again) is any sort of way to end up with extra MP to position one's 'Mech for a physical attack. In fact, since it's its own movement mode that only allows you to spend up to Walking MP, you're actually potentially slower than if you just ran up to your target shooting as you went and then took a swipe with your hatchet as well.

With regard to shutting off heat sinks, I see one possible way to get tripped up -- Physical Defense presumably (it doesn't actually say so, but it's treated pretty much like walking otherwise as well) only builds up 1 heat per turn. Modern TSM designs generally have double heat sinks. Staying at the magic 9 without weapons fire might just prove a bit tricky here. :)

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #54 on: 21 April 2013, 15:00:52 »
Yeah, fine control is lacking when you start talking about toggling DHS.  However, until you hit 15 heat, you're still moving at least as fast as the 'Mech would without overloaded cooling systems, so I'm willing to eat that and do some juggling to fix it up a turn later in the right circumstances.

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #55 on: 21 April 2013, 15:18:12 »
There is a solution to that... Actually two. Three if you are a real evil bastard with it.

Null Sig, Chameleon, and possibly Void if you read it as you are unable to be seen unless you move.

Try that last with your TSM active... and some poor shlub doesn't see you and stops right in front of you... with his back turned.

One of those will work, but you could not do both chameleon and null.

I remember one game where thunder munitions had put a minefield between my Berzerker A3 and its target....The target
actually moved around to put the mine field between me and him. Tactically, a smart , since that also put 7 hexes between
us(in a Straight line!) What sort of maniac would try to close with that, right? This sort of maniac, actually. After all, mine fields
are actually fairly hard to get to pop (needing a roll of 9+ on 2d6). So...I kicked on the MASC, and declared a charge. My opponent's
second mistake was that he landed on the spot of terrain with a sheer drop on the other side, and I did the math that a Charge plus
the fall would do the most damage I could inflict.

Imagine the poor enemy pilot: He sees the Berserker barreling straight towards him at top speed, mines blowing up
as it passes past them(I actually had 2 hexes go off in the run, but they were 10 point fields) to charge him for 70 damage,
plus a 3 level fall....

Sounds almost as bad as someone deciding to park himself 9 hexes in front of an 80 ton quad with a 400xl engine, not realizing i had MASC for a 10 hex charge (well 9)...

Quote
Now if kicks didnt have the -2 modifier, hatchets would be a lot more attractive. But they do, so there we are.

It is kind of strange that kicks, something NOT designed for actual physical combat are better off being used than hatchets which are..
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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #56 on: 21 April 2013, 17:29:35 »

So, the BRZ lets you force the enemy to make a choice: kill it from a distance before it closes and creates mayhem or ignore it and risk an axe to the face  :-\


In many ways the most interesting part of these articles is the "how to kill it" part and with this 'Mech it seems to be quite hard as you are either ignoring too many other 'Mechs to take it down or risking some one-axe-blow-kills once it's closed

Depending on the rest of each side, maybe try devoting enough firepower each turn to force a PSR due to damage?  Not only does a fall get a bonus ten points of damage, but getting back up burns MP the Berserker needs to close on someone.  An Awesome or Dragonfire has fair chance of doing that at range.  As I noted other than the B3 model (which has issues of its own) the Berserker has issues when the fight is larger than a phone booth.

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #57 on: 21 April 2013, 18:40:52 »
Thinking about it, a Fafnir could kick after it fired two heavy gauss into someone's face, if at a penalty, no?
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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #58 on: 21 April 2013, 19:06:21 »
Thinking about it, a Fafnir could kick after it fired two heavy gauss into someone's face, if at a penalty, no?

Well, there'd be no penalty to the kick. Assuming the Fafnir was still upright after taking those two shots in the weapon attack phase (fired while braced or just passed the PSRs), it could then kick during the physical attack phase just like any other 'Mech.

Of course, trying to hit a target with both HGRs and then kick it in the same turn kind of necessitates eating that +4 minimum range penalty on each shot first...

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Re: ’Mech of the Week: BRZ-*3 Berserker
« Reply #59 on: 21 April 2013, 19:20:06 »
True, it's not particularly likely, but it goes to show that just resorting to kicking after unloading with actual weapons definitely has advantages over a melee design that could certainly still kick if the opportunity presented itself.
Maybe a King Crab is a better example of the problem.
So wouldn't a Berzerker be massively improved by carrying a shield instead of the Hatchet, and maybe getting spikes and short ranged boomsticks?
Sure the concept is there and all, but the rules really don't support it with sense; Even if there's a reason to use a Hatchet over the legs, there's not really a reason to have a Hatchet in the first place.
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