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Author Topic: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired  (Read 24890 times)

Xotl

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BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« on: 19 January 2017, 21:11:45 »
This thread is for all issues and problems with the open beta of the BattleMech Manual.

Product Link: https://store.catalystgamelabs.com/products/battletech-battlemech-manual-open-beta

What is the BattleMech Manual:
http://bg.battletech.com/news/news-and-announcements/what-is-the-battlemech-manual/


EXTRA NOTE: Unlike most Catalyst betas, if you purchase this, you do NOT get a free upgrade to the final.

Additionally, I'm extremely interested in things like how do reduce word count or make an bit of rules or example text clearer, things we're normally not looking for in an errata thread.  If you have a suggestions as to how to make a sentence or even whole section shorter, by all means please post that here as well.
« Last Edit: 03 February 2017, 11:45:39 by Xotl »
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Xotl

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #1 on: 19 January 2017, 22:01:17 »
QUIRKS:

Unlike most products, we're looking for more than just error reports here.  We're actively soliciting feedback on the quirk list.

If you want to suggest that a mech should or should not have a quirk, please give your reasoning (be succinct, please).  The best support would be based on TRO fluff, but art and other canon sources are good too.  Please provide any page numbers with your arguments, where applicable.

Note that this list is only meant to contain quirks for mechs that did not previously have them, rather than being a list of every mech ever made.  Mechs that had quirks in their TROs (so TRO Protoypes and later) are not included here.  Also note that any quirks applied are meant to be universal for that base machine; we are actively avoiding quirks that apply only to one or two specific variants of a given design.

Thanks!
« Last Edit: 21 April 2017, 14:10:56 by Xotl »
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pheonixstorm

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #2 on: 19 January 2017, 22:25:54 »
Quick question. When looking at TRO sources, can this include older sources such as TRO 2750 and TRO 3025? I know there is some material that has not been passed up to TRO 3039. Weather due to space considerations or due to retcon (neither of which I am familiar on what happened, if anything). It would be helpful to know if there are any sources we should stay away from or how much weight the older sources may have when providing suggestions for quirks.

Thanks for the hard work Xotl!

Xotl

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #3 on: 19 January 2017, 22:32:11 »
Basic canon rules apply: if it's been specifically superceded, then it's to be ignored.  If it hasn't, then it's valid to mention.  So while TR3039 trumps TR3025 in general, there's lots of stuff in 3025 that 3039 didn't specifically contradict that's still a possibility.
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Bren

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #4 on: 19 January 2017, 23:07:21 »
Suggestion: Narrow/Low Profile for the Uller and Puma (and perhaps the Dragonfly and Black Hawk).

The lack of a functional 'waist' (torso twist) is precisely what lets them get low. Their hips are in the same axis as their shoulders.

Xotl

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #5 on: 19 January 2017, 23:14:04 »
I should add the caveat that we're being extremely stingy with narrow/low profile, as it's an absurdly powerful quirk.  That having been said, your report is still good.  Thanks!
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Tai Dai Cultist

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #6 on: 19 January 2017, 23:26:23 »
I'm gonna get pedantic here, but I feel like it's still worthwhile because it just may remove a quirk from a mech that's already got a bunch: The Locust!

I'm going to argue that it doesn't need the "No Torso Twist Quirk".  My only justification is the Artwork.  Then again, pretty much the only justification any mech should GET that quirk is also purely artwork, so I don't feel baseless in continuing.

So the artwork for the Unseen and "NuSeen" LCT-1V both have the Medium Laser in what is clearly a chin turret.  The Locust has a general body plan similar to many other mechs that justifiably get the "No Torso Twist" quirk, but in this particular case that "chin turret" could/should provide an arc of fire as wide as a torso twist itself would have.  And since 100% of the torso mounted weapons (in this case, 1 medium laser) have the wide arc of fire, even though a LCT-1V doesn't torso twist in a conventional sense it seems like there's no reason to say it has to have the No Torso Twist quirk.  Especially when it's already loaded with a bunch of them already.

Rebuttals to possible quibbles:
"But what about the arms?" Those things are basically sponson turrets.  Heck, it probably ought to be able to "flip" arms like a Rifleman.  Even without such an ability, the arms could/should be able to execute the angle of fire that'd be possible in a conventional torso twist.

"But what about the artwork for the ReSeen/Project Phoenix Locusts?"  Yeah, that's a problem.  A) they clearly dispense with the chin turret.  B) Saying some variants get certain quirks but others dont appears to be opening a can of worms that is as of now left sealed.   I figure B is inevitable, but until it does happen, A remains a valid point.  Still, given the artwork for the ReSeen/PP Locusts appears less often than the Unseen/NuSeen, I think the weight of preponderance is actually against the ReSeen/PP, and therefore against the entire series deserving "No Torso Twist".

"What about other variants with more than 1 medium laser in the torso?"  Along the UnSeen/NuSeen paradigm, I'm not sure we have artwork for any variants.  Unless shown otherwise, who's to say any of the not-PP Locusts don't have all their torso weapons in that chin turret?
« Last Edit: 19 January 2017, 23:28:44 by Tai Dai Cultist »

Bren

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #7 on: 19 January 2017, 23:49:34 »
Suggestion: The Owens, Fire Falcon, Cauldron-Born and Linebacker don't appear to be able to torso twist based on their art and miniatures.

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #8 on: 20 January 2017, 00:15:11 »
Open Beta
Page 62, LIGHT > Searchlights:

"A searchlight illuminates all target in a chosen hex that the ..."
suggested change:
"A searchlight illuminates all targets in a chosen hex that the ..."

Deadborder

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #9 on: 20 January 2017, 00:26:31 »
Question; the Obsolete quirk is only used in a few cases in the Quirks list, and those few cases are rather oddly applied. For example, the Coyotl has Obsolete (2943) but similar quirks are lacking from the Lupus, Woodsman or, for that matter, Celestial OmniMechs, where it would make sense.


Archer

Should have the "Difficult Ejection" quirk; the difficulty in ejecting from the 'Mech was in the flavour of the original TRO3025 entry

Bushwhacker

Should not have the "No Torso Twist" quirk; the 'Mech has been depicted with a torso twist in past accross various sources (Computer game, its early appearnces in the cartoon) and the structure does not seem to preclude it. The legs are mounted on a seperate hip "box" below the torso, much like the Vulture

Goshawk

Should have the "Nimble Jumper" quirk; the original TRO3055 entry explicitly describes the improved aerodynamics from its shoulder baffles and better jumping mobility

Griffin IIC

Should have the "Nimble Jumper" quirk; pretty much the same as above

Hellstar

Should have the "Barrelfists" quirk; TRO entry specifically describers how the weapon housings are reinforced for use in physical attacks

« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 01:17:08 by Deadborder »
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Deadborder

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #10 on: 20 January 2017, 01:30:44 »
Not an errata but more of a question

Directional Weapon Mount (pg 83)

Given that Heavy Gauss Rifles (and Improved Heavy Gauss Rifles) need to be mounted in BattleMech torsos, and cannot be mounted in BattleMerch Turrets and vehicle turrets, should they be restricted from the Directional Weapon Mount? If anything, the rules make it out to be an even weaker mounting then the aforesaid

EDIT: Fixed my wording
« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 10:36:06 by Deadborder »
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Xotl

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #11 on: 20 January 2017, 01:38:50 »
Yes.  Good point.
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Liam's Ghost

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #12 on: 20 January 2017, 03:39:59 »
I'd suggest giving the Brigand the Bad Reputation quirk, since it's reputation is inextricably linked to pirates and allies of blakists.

Maybe distracting for the Firestarter? Just as a nod to the preoccupation with and fear of fire that was sometimes mentioned as being common among mechwarriors.
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Tai Dai Cultist

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #13 on: 20 January 2017, 04:35:54 »
The Rifleman doesn't have the Hyper-extending actuators quirk?

The Rifleman is the original posterboy for flipping arms...  I want to say the first rulebook that ever had that as an optional rule used the Rifleman in its contextual example.  Before the Unseen brouhaha and they started using Quickdraws for the example instead...


Never mind.  A case of being too fatigued to read and comprehend the whole thing.  A Rifleman doesn't need the quirk b/c it doesn't have lower/hand actuators :)  Never mind me... need more sleep clearly
« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 04:42:02 by Tai Dai Cultist »

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #14 on: 20 January 2017, 10:54:21 »
Open Beta
Page 90, Battlemech Quirk Table

Missing Atlas III

Command BattleMech
Distracting
Jettison-Capable Weapon(RAC/2)
Protected Actuators
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nckestrel

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #15 on: 20 January 2017, 11:25:16 »
Open Beta
Page 90, Battlemech Quirk Table

Missing Atlas III

Command BattleMech
Distracting
Jettison-Capable Weapon(RAC/2)
Protected Actuators

The list is for units that have not already been assigned quirks, Atlas III, along with the other TR3145, TR3150, TR3085 and TRPrototypes already have quirks assigned.
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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #16 on: 20 January 2017, 11:30:29 »
The list is for units that have not already been assigned quirks, Atlas III, along with the other TR3145, TR3150, TR3085 and TRPrototypes already have quirks assigned.

Shouldn't we have them all in one place? Isn't that the point of this book?
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nckestrel

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Re: BattleMech Manual
« Reply #17 on: 20 January 2017, 12:42:59 »
Shouldn't we have them all in one place? Isn't that the point of this book?

In my opinion, no.  Since quirks aren't tournament legal, and the point of this book is to cover TL rules.  It's a bonus. 
But certainly the Atlas III by itself is not missing.  If you want to request all units, go for it. You're welcome to your own opinion, and they've asked for your opinion.
« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 12:44:49 by nckestrel »
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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #18 on: 20 January 2017, 13:18:18 »
Okay, a first pass on my thoughts:

Open Beta
Page 90, Battlemech Quirk Table

-BattleAxe: Bad Reputation (Jump Jets and the No-crash version), Possibly unbalanced
-Blackjack Omni: The non-standard parts ended in not long after initial production.
-Fennec: Command BattleMech?
-Hammerhands: Static Ammo Feed (SRM6) it's only got 1 SRM6 and 1 ton of ammo.  Quirk is essentially pointless
-Hellspawn: Extended Torso Twist (had 360 twist in MW4)
-Marauder II: Exposed Weapon Linkage (LB-10x)?
-Wolverine II: Should it take some of the quirks from the standard wolverine? Jettison, Proected Actuators?
-Woodsman: Bad Reputation(Clan).  If it had a good reputation, it would still be in production.
« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 14:13:07 by Stinger »

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #19 on: 20 January 2017, 15:23:50 »
1) Questionnaire:
Quote
How interested would you be in self-contained BattleTech products that are playable without additional miniatures or rulebooks?
Is this in reference to many other games which shall remain nameless, that would require a non-proxied-unit be used, and thus any new manual that's released, requires the purchase of corresponding game-pieces? (Less, comment about Rulebooks).

Quote
Have you purchased the recent Open Beta of the BattleMech Manual?
Seems out of place early on in the questionnaire considering there hadn't been a reference to indicate that the questionnaire itself isn't solely related to the OpenBeta: BattleMech Manual. (Could have just been my perspective of reading through it).

Quote
How interested would you be in tabletop BattleTech products geared specifically to players of the electronic games, such as MechWarrior Online or the upcoming Harebrained Schemes BattleTech game?
Hopefully this is in reference to Catalyst possibly producing new products, and NOT modifying TableTop rules to match that which the video-game players have been forced to use.


2) The manual art depicts elementals... This might be misleading for the BattleMECH Manual(?)


3) Pg34: Physical Attacks: Grappling
Grappling rules are missing from content of Physical Attacks, and needs to be reinstated.


4) pg36: Death From Above Attacks
DFA might need to clarify that the attacker must still be able to jump as high as the off-set difference of terrain-elevation plus two levels:
While covered under the statement:
Quote
All that is required is that the attacker can legally enter the hex the target occupies, and has enough Jumping MP to reach that hex. An attacker must have at least 2 Jumping MP to make a DFA on a standing ’Mech, since a standing ’Mech is two levels high."
This could indicate that a target atop of a L2 hill could be DFA'd by an attacker from a L0 terrain, 2 hexes away. (This may be valid).
However,
"... must have a Jumping MP of at least two levels greater than the target's underlaying terrain, minus the difference of the attacker's original elevation".



5) pg55: Displacement:
Quote
DFA Attacks: If a ’Mech launches a death from above attack (see p. 35), and all the hexes surrounding the target ’Mech contain impassable terrain, one of the ’Mechs will automatically be destroyed. If the target ’Mech is hit by the DFA, it is destroyed. If the DFA fails, the attacker is destroyed instead.
While not as likely to occur as with Grappling, is the reason one 'Mech (specifically 'Mech, and not described as any other type of unit) would be out-right destroyed due to impassable terrain for the purposes of ease-of-gameplay?


6) pg55: Displacement:
Quote
’Mechs can be displaced downward any number of levels, though this results in an accidental fall (see p. 57).
Old DFA-rule:
TW pg150:
Quote
FALLS
A successful death from above attack may cause both ’Mechs to fall. Both MechWarriors must make Piloting Skill Rolls, the target adding a +2 modifier and the attacker  adding a +4 modifier.
If either unit fails this roll, the unit takes damage as from a 0-level fall.
On an unsuccessful attack, the attacker automatically falls, taking damage as though the ’Mech had fallen 2 levels onto its back (see Falling, p. 68).
Does the BattleMech Manual correct the condition created with TW-rules to where a target of a successful DFA being displaced off of a higher elevation to one lower (off of a building or cliff, for example), would only suffer a 0-level fall?
Does this also infer a greater PSR to remain standing, or prevent pilot-damage, due to further falling?


Thanks!
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NeonKnight

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #20 on: 20 January 2017, 15:33:24 »
OK, so if you are catching up on questions, I do have one from page 31, Indirect Fire and TAG. I will quote the rules here:

This leads to my question.

Mech A is TAGging enemy Mech 1.

If Mech A then spots Mech 1 for Mech B to indirect fire on (using Semi-guided missiles because otherwise TAG is useless for IF), does this mean that Mech B has the follwoing Modifiers for Attacking (Using  G.A.T.O.R.):

G: Base Gunner
A: Mech B's Attacker Movement Modifier
T: Not calculated as Using Semi-Guided Missiles with TAG elimiates (page 31)
O: +1 To hit for IF not calcuated (page 31, Semi-Guided), +1 for Spotter IS added because the spotter is the TAGger?
R: Range Modifiers

If that is indeed true, then I am correct in assuming if the TAGger does not then spot but say Mech G spots instead (and performs no attack) then the +1 for Spotter attacking is not added at step O of G.A.T.O.R.?
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Xotl

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #21 on: 20 January 2017, 15:57:24 »
OK, so if you are catching up on questions, I do have one from page 31, Indirect Fire and TAG. I will quote the rules here:

Not sure I'm following entirely, but does the statement on p. 113 clarify this?
"a ’Mech can both be a spotter and TAG-designate a target in the same turn; if so, the ’Mech counts as firing a weapon that turn when calculating indirect fire Target Number modifiers."

If so, do you think any sort of clarifier is needed on p. 31?
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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #22 on: 20 January 2017, 16:02:19 »
Okay, so a few more things:

Page 5: Change Artist credit from Matt Cross to Matthew Cross (I know, because, well, I am Matthew Cross)

Quirks:

-Ocelot: Jettison Capable Weapon(s): ER Medium Lasers
-Mad Cat Mk II: Ubiquitous - It's used everywhere during the Jihad through dark age.
-Cicada: If it does get no-minimal arms and no torso twist, can we get errata placing the lasers in the arms?
-Chimera: Bad Reputation? It had one to a degree in real life for being a crummy mech in MW4, might be a fun nod
-Crimson Hawk: Nimble Jumper, just due to this awesome art and the directional jump jet ports: http://isa.pl/mechwarrior/tapety/FFE_desktop_CrimsonHawk_800x600.jpg
-Dervish: Barrel-Fists
-Spider: Dark age variant has fine manipulators

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #23 on: 20 January 2017, 16:09:09 »
Not sure I'm following entirely, but does the statement on p. 113 clarify this?
"a ’Mech can both be a spotter and TAG-designate a target in the same turn; if so, the ’Mech counts as firing a weapon that turn when calculating indirect fire Target Number modifiers."

If so, do you think any sort of clarifier is needed on p. 31?

It does (for the spotter/TAG), just the new way this whole TAG and Spotting is phrased in the new manual leads to the question of maybe a qualifier of other units may spot as normal on page 31.

For instance as written on Page 31:

However, a ’Mech can spot for indirect fire and TAG a target in the same turn;

Leads to a further question, Can Mech A TAG Mech 1, and Spot Mech 2, and if so, does the +1 modifier for Firing then count against Mech 2 but not Mech 1?
« Last Edit: 20 January 2017, 18:04:50 by NeonKnight »
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Bren

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #24 on: 20 January 2017, 16:23:55 »
Suggestion: I don't think the Marauder 'Mechs should get the Narrow/Low Profile quirk. The "target area" of the 'Mech doesn't appear to be any great reduction over other designs. And this is at 12 and 6 o'clock. At any other angles(facings) the Marauder line is displayed further, and is a suitably large target.

This is especially considering smaller designs that don't have the quirk - such as the Fire Falcon.


Tai Dai Cultist

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #25 on: 20 January 2017, 16:29:16 »
Suggestion: I don't think the Marauder 'Mechs should get the Narrow/Low Profile quirk. The "target area" of the 'Mech doesn't appear to be any great reduction over other designs. And this is at 12 and 6 o'clock. At any other angles(facings) the Marauder line is displayed further, and is a suitably large target.

This is especially considering smaller designs that don't have the quirk - such as the Fire Falcon.



I'm going to hazard a guess that the Marauder is meant to have the quirk due to the highly sloped armor rather than volume.  Look at the Dragon... it has the quirk and high angles of deflection has to be the explanation.

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #26 on: 20 January 2017, 17:03:53 »
-Ocelot: Jettison Capable Weapon(s): ER Medium Lasers
-Mad Cat Mk II: Ubiquitous - It's used everywhere during the Jihad through dark age.
-Cicada: If it does get no-minimal arms and no torso twist, can we get errata placing the lasers in the arms?
-Chimera: Bad Reputation? It had one to a degree in real life for being a crummy mech in MW4, might be a fun nod
-Crimson Hawk: Nimble Jumper, just due to this awesome art and the directional jump jet ports: http://isa.pl/mechwarrior/tapety/FFE_desktop_CrimsonHawk_800x600.jpg
-Dervish: Barrel-Fists
-Spider: Dark age variant has fine manipulators
Ocelot should probably get that, yeah.
Mad Cat Mk. II? MW4 isn't canon, it was still mostly in Clan hands.
Chimera: I like the mech :P
Crimson Hawk: If you can find a description of it, I wouldn't care.
Dervish: Paddle hands, not reinforced barrels. I don't wanna start slapping people with infernos loaded

I'm going to hazard a guess that the Marauder is meant to have the quirk due to the highly sloped armor rather than volume.  Look at the Dragon... it has the quirk and high angles of deflection has to be the explanation.
Uh... yes, let's go with that.

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #27 on: 20 January 2017, 17:08:34 »
The Mad Cat Mk II is available to damn near half of the Inner Sphere during the Civil War, and expands all the way onto the Inner Sphere General and the Mercenary list by the time the Jihad wraps up.  It's pretty everywhere.

The exact shape of the Dervish's hands are pretty irrelevant, the idea is that it's not harder to punch something with its paddle hands than without hand actuators (which is what the quirk represents).

Seconding the suggestion to break Narrow/Low Profile into two different quirks.
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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #28 on: 20 January 2017, 17:16:03 »
Suggestion: Distracting perk for the Night Gyr due to its laser heat sinks - perhaps only during the Clan Invasion Era, or perhaps only at night?

TRO3058 (corrected 3rd printing, 1995), p182: "These laser heat sinks also have an interesting side effect that the Jade Falcons, of all the Clans, surely must appreciate. When firing its weapons at night, the Night Gyr appears to be shrouded in plumage of light beams as the 'Mech exudes its converted heat ... the sight of it can be extremely frightening to green troops."

CampaignAnon

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Re: BattleMech Manual Beta: Feedback desired
« Reply #29 on: 20 January 2017, 17:39:42 »
The Mad Cat Mk II is available to damn near half of the Inner Sphere during the Civil War, and expands all the way onto the Inner Sphere General and the Mercenary list by the time the Jihad wraps up.  It's pretty everywhere.

The exact shape of the Dervish's hands are pretty irrelevant, the idea is that it's not harder to punch something with its paddle hands than without hand actuators (which is what the quirk represents).

Seconding the suggestion to break Narrow/Low Profile into two different quirks.
That the Mad Cat Mk. II is available to them is one thing, but Ubiquitous means that design is produced in large numbers or has lots of parts available, which is why it's on stuff that has that fluff. Just because it has a wide availability doesn't mean it has large production.

As for Barrel Fists, the impetus for the quirk was that units with weapon barrels and limbs that were noted as being reinforced, either through art or fluff, which the Dervish hasn't received, unless I missed something.

Suggestion: Distracting perk for the Night Gyr due to its laser heat sinks - perhaps only during the Clan Invasion Era, or perhaps only at night?

TRO3058 (corrected 3rd printing, 1995), p182: "These laser heat sinks also have an interesting side effect that the Jade Falcons, of all the Clans, surely must appreciate. When firing its weapons at night, the Night Gyr appears to be shrouded in plumage of light beams as the 'Mech exudes its converted heat ... the sight of it can be extremely frightening to green troops."
I actually did add this quirk initially, but according to the TRO and the RS, the Night Gyr doesn't actually have Laser Heat Sinks. So I set it aside. If we're going to retcon the LHS back on to the Night Gyr, then it should have that quirk.