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Author Topic: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc  (Read 3499 times)

Savage Coyote

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Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« on: 15 September 2014, 12:23:52 »




http://www.masterunitlist.info/Unit/Details/1345/guillotine-iic-standard

The Guillotine was a rugged Star League BattleMech that served the League and later Clans well from 2499 onward.  Mobile, loaded with firepower, and very tough, the Guillotine was a great heavy ‘Mech for just about anything you’d need done.  It’s not surprising that the Clans decided to upgrade the old warhorse and man did they ever.  Debuting in TRO 3060 with an introduction date of 2889, the Guillotine IIc  was brought in by Clan Coyote to bolster second line forces.  It takes the standard template of the 3N Guillotine and pumps it full of Clan goodness.

The Original

Clan Coyote looked over the original Guillotine and decided that the armor, speed, and jump capability was adequate and left it as is, while switching the Inner Sphere/Star League Endo Steel to Clan standard.  The radical change that makes the Guillotine IIc tick?  Changing out to sixteen clan double heat sinks.  This frees up nine tons to play with and the Guillotine IIc makes excellent use of that weight.  The right arm medium lasers are switched out to two Clan Large Pulse Lasers and then… oh, what?  Still picking your jaw up off the floor?  Me too.  So it gets two of the Clans ace-in-the hole weapons, and then switches out the large laser for an ER PPC to provide some head capping ability.  In case you are keeping score at home, firing those three bad boys will over heat you by three without movement.  The backup weapons are somewhat sparse, with two ER Medium Lasers replacing the old medium lasers in each torso, and a Clan-spec SRM 6 launcher and a ton of ammo in the center torso.

This is the design that soldiered on, serving the Clans, especially the Coyotes, Star Adders, and Cloud Cobra’s, faithfully.  Typically a Star Captain would pilot one of these ‘Mechs in Clan Coyote in a second line or solahma unit.  Beyond those three, all Clans field small numbers of the ‘Mech, enough that the MUL has it listed in the Clan General List for the Jihad era.  So you could theoretically expect to see this guy anytime you fight second line forces.

What to expect?  Well, in my limited experience with the design, the Guillotine IIc differs from its parent in that it wants to engage you at mid-to-long range and preferably keep you there.  It heats up pretty quickly when firing most combinations of it’s weapons, though as long as you don’t hit the big red button you aren’t too bad off.  If you are standing still, you can run the heat up for four turns before needing to drop something to cool down and avoid the +2 to hit.  The standard engine and adequate armor will keep the ‘Mech pretty well protected, though Clan warfare will mulch through the armor quicker than the Star League’s day.  I would also want some skirmishing units to keep the bulk of the bad guys force away.  Sure it has some guns, but in the few games I played, it had a hard time truly putting stuff down as you had to watch your heat.

Fighting against one?  If your opponent is using it as a sniper or mobile turret, closing to bring more firepower to bear seems prudent.  And you can exploit one of the weaknesses of the design with a lucky critical, namely touching off the SRM ammo stored in the center torso.  Clan CASE isn’t worth a thing if you put ammo in the center torso or head, so it’s a head scratching decision, especially since the 3N had it in the right torso according to TRO 3050U.  Beyond that, you still have to chew through the design, as it’s still just as tough as it’s parent.  Standard engine and enough armor covering it that you’ll need to mash it up good.

Second in Line

So, the Guillotine IIc went on for a long time before a variant came out in 3070.  As a thank you to the numerous volunteers that contribute to FanPro/CGL, we were offered the opportunity to submit two designs for Record Sheets: 3060 Unabridged.  You weren’t guaranteed to get them accepted as someone else might design another ‘Mech and the designs were selected from that pool.  You were guaranteed to get two designs in at least.  So I started off with the Canis and Guillotine IIc 2.  The only requirement was to use some of the new Total War tech in the designs, updating them to the current Jihad time period.  I designed and designed and designed trying to come up with something I felt the Coyotes would do minus ATM’s.  I finally gave up on the Canis and did up the 4F Blitzkrieg (I can talk about that in another article!)  I still wanted to influence the Coyotes though so I stuck to the Guillotine IIc, but it was pretty hard.  I didn’t feel the anti-infantry/vehicle weapons fit the Guillotine’s mold (so no AP Gauss or Plasma) while the HAG just didn’t work either.  I wanted to go back to the original Guillotine’s close range focus and went with Improved Jump Jets.  The Guillotine IIc 2 drops the large pulse lasers for two more ER Medium Lasers while dropping the SRM-6 for a Streak SRM-4.  Six IJJ’s let it keep pace with jumping Phoenix Hawks, Conjuror’s, or most Griffin IIc’s or Shadow Hawk IIc’s.  I also crammed all of the jets in the torso just in case someone wanted to jump into water, which would in turn help the heat sinks in the legs. The mobility cost the design raw firepower and the -2 from the pulse lasers, though a Targeting Computer gives everything a -1 instead.  I tried my best to slip a Streak SRM-6 in, but just couldn’t do it by the deadline.  The armor was upped to maximum ferro-fibrous while the heat sinks remained the same.  I did not playtest it in MegaMek or even really consider much else.  I submitted it and it was accepted (I doubt there was any competition for the design to be honest.)

When we submitted our variants, we had to also submit a 1-2 sentence statement telling what faction we designed it for and any backstory.  The one I submitted read something like, “Clan Coyote refit used to test IJJ’s.”  Of course by now, either WoR was released or it was just about to be released, and the authors decided to focus just about everything in the Inner Sphere.  My Coyote Guillotine IIc 2 became a Clan Wolf-in-Exile variant during the Jihad, and then according to the MUL, spread to the Lyrans, their mercenary lapdogs the Kell Hounds and Wolf Dragoons, the Republic, and Clan Wolf.  By 3145, it shows up on the Marik RAT table in the 18 position, and that’s the only mention of it in the ‘Mech RATS for that book.  The original Guillotine IIc only shows up once, in the Wolf Empire RAT’s, so neither design is wide-spread enough to force its way into those tables.

So, using the Guillotine IIc 2.  As I said previously, I did no play testing with it.  I put it together, played some TheoryTech in my head, and called it good.  First things first, it has an outrageous Battle Value for what it can and can’t do.  2721 is a little too rich for my tastes, even with the increased jump range and heavy armor.  The original version is a nice 2377, so you have more wiggle room with it in a sense.  Still “high” but it’s workable.  The next problem?  While all of the weapons are Clan spec and the heat isn’t terrible, in the recent testing I’ve done, the firepower doesn’t have as much oomph as we would like in a Clan heavy.  While the original suffers somewhat from the same problem, it can still take large chunks out of opposing ‘Mechs.  The 2 is left with a load out that makes a Stormcrow snicker (4xERML, ERPPC, SSRM-4, ton of ammo, 17 DHS, and 6 jump jets for 2553 BV can be crammed onto the fifty-five tonner.)  Sure the ‘crow loses out in the armor department, but the point is the firepower is a bit light for a Clan heavy.  My testing proved this out time and again.  You just couldn’t drop the hammer on someone and make them go away.   In hindsight, I toyed with maybe replacing the ERPPC with a large pulse laser but at the time liked the headcapper and wanted to shy away from standard Clan Munch Combo’s.

But, with all of that said, you have a fully armored, standard engine heavy ‘mech that can generate a +3 TMM by jumping five or six hexes and only generate three heat as opposed to our Stormcrow’s six.  This tends to make the Guillotine IIc 2’s job as one of a harasser, though I’ve kind of envisioned it as a commander’s ride in a strike company.  I’ve used it just like a psychotic Phoenix Hawk pilot, jumping from cover to cover and trying to keep the TMM’s as high as possible while dishing out damage.  In the post-Clan dueling world (or in Inner Sphere pilot hands) being able to work with other ‘Mechs is a huge perk and can help shore up some of the anemic firepower.

If you are facing one, you still have to respect the guns as they are ClanTech.  It will try to get in your face and your rear, so you do have to pay attention and will probably have to invest resources to putting it down as the maximum armor and standard engine require focusing.  Someone could also use it as a long range sniper, hoping 5-6 hexes a turn using the ERPPC exclusively, but it seems to be pretty high-priced for that kind of business.  If you are facing one in a BV 2.0 game, rest assured that depending on your cap, a significant chunk of BV has been invested in a design that probably won’t turn the tides with raw firepower.


Bonus Round:  Alpha Strike!

Alpha Strike offers a chance for ‘Mechs to reinvent themselves (or gives us another metric to compare apples to oranges) and the Guillotine series is no different.  To start off, we’ll look at the parent, the 3N Guillotine.  It has six armor and six internals, making it fairly robust compared to other ‘Mechs while also moving at eight inches with the option to jump.  This allows for it to get a +2 TMM if it uses the jump ability, though it will incur a +2 penalty to it’s own fire.  It has a damage spread of 4/4/0 as well as the CASE special and is labeled as a Skirmisher for its Alpha Strike role.  For 37 points, it compares favorably with multiple Inner Sphere heavy ‘Mechs.  The abstraction process helps to focus its damage and help it lay a smack down on its opponents.

So, coming from that, the Guillotine IIc keeps the same armor and movement profile.  What changes is the damage.  Clan Tech allows it to gain four damage at long range for a total of 4/4/4 and a role change to Sniper.  Due to the new weapons load out, it also has OV 2, which means it can go to 6/6/4 damage for two heat.  The point cost rises to 42, which is a great price for a Clan heavy ‘Mech honestly.  It compares well to the Orion IIc with the jets giving it enough distinction to argue for picking either one if you were in say Clan Wolf.  Outside of that, it’s still a fairly tough beat stick for a Clan second line force while the role reinforces the changes that were made to the design.

Finally, the Guillotine IIc 2 has one extra armor point over its parent and sibling, while its brackets are 5/5/2 for damage.  An OV of 1 can tie the originals over heat brackets though is more forgiving.  The thing to look for here is the IJJ’s, which give the Guillotine IIc 2 the ability to post a +3 TMM against enemies.  While +1 increase might not be much in your books, in mine, it can make the difference between a hit and a miss.  This version of the IIc goes back to the roots and reestablishes the Skirmisher role and has CASE like the rest of the family.  At 46 points, it ties the Orion IIc and is getting into the “average” band of price for Clan heavies in Alpha Strike.

In my experience with Alpha Strike the ability to stick around in the fight is one of the most important traits and all of the Guillotine IIc’s are able to do so.  It takes at least two ‘Mechs firing on it at medium/close range to make one disappear (baring the Turkina Z and it’s 15 damage at short range) so just like BattleTech, some resources have to be dedicated to eradicating the unit.

I’ve rarely seen either Guillotine IIc fielded and fought against them maybe twice.  Hopefully this article has exposed you to a unit that isn’t seen all that often and given you some more options in your own game!

To view painted examples of this unit, check out http://camospecs.com/MiniList.asp?Action=Detail&ID=585

To purchase directly from IWM:
http://ironwindmetals.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=6607

God and Davion

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #1 on: 15 September 2014, 13:42:55 »
Thanks for the article! I love this mech, the original one is a tough bastard. The twin LPLs are wonderful for flyswatting and.. just for dealing damage. The ERPPC is a nice adittion for range. The famed Masakari C has just one more ERPPC and it doesn't jump, it weights 15 tons more and the engine is XL.

 It has light heat issues but some careful management (the secondary weapons help a lot) and you won't notice it. It is slower than the usual omnimechs, but it is also tougher and the BV is great, too. I miss a MASC variant but it would be too evil. The IIC2 is good but the high BV is a great burden, just use a Dire Wolf Prime instead.
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GreekFire

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #2 on: 15 September 2014, 17:21:42 »
Very nice article, I always like it when 'Mech designers come in and share the thought processes that went into designing their 'Mechs.

I've never had much of a chance to use the Guillotine IIC, but this certainly makes me want to give it a run!
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cold1

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #3 on: 15 September 2014, 21:06:04 »
I love this mech!

This one is my go to for "I need to fill out a secondline unit"
Clan secondline forces are scary at 4/6; match a Guilly up with Grizzlys, Mad and Whammer IIC's.  Watch your opponent live fast and die terribly.

I actually like the 2 because it doesn't suffer from new toy syndrome as bad as some others.


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UnLimiTeD

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #4 on: 16 September 2014, 06:58:15 »
I never really understood how the Abstraction in Alpha strike works.
The mech is decent, though. The IIc 2 is.. well, what exactly does make it that expensive? The Jump?
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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #5 on: 16 September 2014, 16:08:51 »
The mech is decent, though. The IIc 2 is.. well, what exactly does make it that expensive? The Jump?
A bunch of expensive stuff and no real BV discounts.  Only the Streak launcher gets a heat discount, and the ammo isn't in a location where it gets a discount either.  There's no engine discounts with a standard engine either.  As for expense, 4/6/6 is rather expensive movement profile, and the ERMLs and ERPPC were already expensive pieces of equipment before the Tcomp BV increase. 

WarGod

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #6 on: 16 September 2014, 20:00:20 »
I rather like the Guillotine IIc, I even own one (painted in clan ghost bears colors).  I like using it as a heavy skrisher, and the jump jets give you so many options.  Hell just the LPL's , and jumping from cover to cover makes it a Pain.  Throw in the ERPPC, for some brown pants factors, and its a fun ride. 
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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #7 on: 16 September 2014, 21:11:25 »
I always loved driving the Guillotine and then getting to have a clanner version to drive that somehow does everything I like better...  yeah, I can put away my bias long enough to drive this thing and still be happy.   It wasn't too munchy or optimized, it wasn't too abusive, and in general made for a great mech to toss around in garrison units as a GM to help add some alternate flavor for players to encounter for an opponent that isn't always just the usual round of premier units that seem to always get tossed about when dealing with clanners.

It just does it's job, it lends to actually driving it like an older style battlemech, it requires a bit of skill to actually drive but still is forgiving.  If you knew how to drive the original, the IIc variant is not too hard a machine to push around.  All and all, I am happy with the basic design.

As for the variant...  I have not really driven it to be honest...  It didn't bring enough to the table that was superior to the original IIc variant.   The improved jump jets ultimately didn't seem that appealing.
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Colt Ward

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #8 on: 17 September 2014, 01:16:08 »
I have used them as often as I could . . . as a Wolf, that list of units someone gave just gets worse when the Orion IIC is following behind the Guillotine IIC in the first wave.  Its the IIC star of nightmares, Orion IIC, Guillotine IIC, Marauder IIC, Warhammer IIC and Wolverine IIC- er Vapor Eagle!  (I joke)- Hunchback IIC . . . 8 headcappers, enough pulse to keep backstabbers away, and with SFEs its hard to drop the Clan monsters.  Hmm, does the TBolt IIC deserve the 5th point in that star?

While I know you wanted something different than slapping ATMs on it, it was one of the old IICs that I always wanted to see it attempted on.  The IIC 2 did not appeal to me, while it did not suffer the new toy syndrome as badly I have always favored ERLL over ERPPC and dumping both LPL sort of lost the feel to me.
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cold1

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #9 on: 17 September 2014, 22:09:36 »
Yeah the Wolves are jerks for hogging the Orion IIC.  It really does work perfectly with the Guillotine IIC.

I like the 2, you just have to realize its a totally different mech.  It's meant to get close and hit hard.  Maybe taking it a step further and dropping the PPC for an HLL would have made it stand out as an infighter a bit more (yes I know how insanely better the ERPPC is than the HLL).  The HLL's range brackets match perfectly with the ERMLs and they do work well together, especially with a TarComp.  You could use the extra tonnage for freezers (if you have the crits) to balance the heat increase as well.

Not trying to knock your design Savage, I like it, just thinking about how to make it more of a one trick pony.


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Colt Ward

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #10 on: 17 September 2014, 22:24:09 »
See, I sort of saw it as one of those mechs (like the PXH IICs) that you would not feel too bad about hot dropping right on top of the enemy defensive line or formation.
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Savage Coyote

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #11 on: 17 September 2014, 22:46:33 »
Oh, no, I fully realize the 2 nothing like the original Guillotine Iic and between the high BV and lower-ish damage output, it has issues.  That was the point (at least as far as changing it up from the original!)  I felt like I was trying to go back to the Star League Guillotine's game plan, just with clan tech.  It's also not everyone's cup of tea, and thats cool too.  Ultimate munch would have dictated a LPL in the left arm, but as I said while designing it, I felt it was over done.  HHL didn't occur to me as I was thinking Warden/Coyote while creating it.  Live and learn.  I need to try to use it some more, though I have a good 15 games under my belt against the bot with it and the results tend to be about the same:  hard to hit and doesn't die fast, but firepower can't turn the tide like other rides.

As far as the abstraction, all of the damage hits or misses on one roll and is taken out at once.  There is no "Oh, I hit the RA, LL, LT, RT, and LA with my medium lasers and large laser.  So you make your pilot check and we tray again next round."  Instead, it's "Oh look, you just took four damage to your six damage profile and now have two armor and three internals left and I can kill you next turn!"  Designs that rely on batteries of smaller weapons do very well (as long as they have the sinks to use them) compared to stuff that carries head cappers.  Now that ERPPC/20-class AC/Gauss/HLL just do two damage and won't take your head off.

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #12 on: 18 September 2014, 18:06:00 »
I have always liked the mech and I would say its best as a commanders ride more then enough firepower but not so much that you feel the need to rush into combat and the LPL really keep light mech's honest

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Re: Bonus 'Mech of the Week: Guillotine IIc
« Reply #13 on: 20 September 2014, 03:40:21 »
While the IIC2 is obviously cannot match the splendor of its predecessor I do appreciate it acting something along the lines of a Second-Line Linebacker.  In that it acts as an anchor to its lighter brothers like the Crismon Hawk,  Pack Hunters of all stripes and the Urusus 2.  It really does fit nicely in CWX second-line forces despite being a Coyote inspired design.