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Author Topic: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder  (Read 6966 times)

Weirdo

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #30 on: 25 April 2018, 10:30:53 »
The point of RetroTech was that the factories in question were civilian-grade, and even 3025-level stuff was too much for them to handle without unacceptable retooling delays.

To extend your metaphor, you don't have enough M1s, the factory currently putting out Ford Mustangs can start giving you M4s as early as next week, but if you want M60s you won't see a single one for at least a year...and the enemy army is a month away.
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smdvogrin

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #31 on: 25 April 2018, 12:55:23 »
Out of universe, not really. It'd be like producing M4 Shermans to supplement M1 Abrams production. Sure you can do it, but it's pointless.

Yes, the in-universe reason for the primitive tech is that it can be built with industry that is incapable of producing standard tech components.

M-1 vs M-4 is actually a very good comparison - If you need to start tank production in some backwater country, their industry is unlikely to be able to produce Chobham armor (which is a highly classified composite), but can probably roll out large amounts of face hardened steel (which is used in civilian industries).

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #32 on: 25 April 2018, 13:04:39 »
In all honesty, my best thoughts would be, as a field upgrade, to replace the Primitive Armor with 4.5 tons of Standard (slight armor increase) and throw a Guardian ECM in one of the Torsos. I haven't speced it out yet.
But that kind of upgrade should be with in most militias capabilities, shouldn't it?
The Armor would be one thing, it makes difference such as in case of another RetroTech mech, like the Rook.  There standard tech version and high tech one. Given they lost like 100 primitives trying stop an invasion, i think upgrading Pathfinder would add it more life on the field.
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JadeHellbringer

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #33 on: 25 April 2018, 13:06:26 »
The Armor would be one thing, it makes difference such as in case of another RetroTech mech, like the Rook.  There standard tech version and high tech one. Given they lost like 100 primitives trying stop an invasion, i think upgrading Pathfinder would add it more life on the field.

You run into a sort of primitive version of Apollo's Law then though- if upgrading to standard tech is the only way to make this thing useful, is it worth those resources to begin with?
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Weirdo

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #34 on: 25 April 2018, 14:25:26 »
My ideal fate for the Pathfinder would be for the primitive model to remain in production for local militias, and any updated model be produced solely for export, selling them to mercs, Periphery militaries, and in true Lyran fashion anyone with the cash.
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UnLimiTeD

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #35 on: 25 April 2018, 14:32:19 »
You run into a sort of primitive version of Apollo's Law then though- if upgrading to standard tech is the only way to make this thing useful, is it worth those resources to begin with?
Well, no, it isn't.
But, in the case of a light scout, it is useful to begin with - you're just making it a bit more useful, or in this case, more survivable, so that it can be useful for longer.
I see an armour upgrade in that light - whenever something breaks, replace it with the equivalent standard armour, and the whole cover once that happens often enough; Armour takes damage first, and if that militia is in any way actually using their Pathfinders, that damage will accumulate, so, in relative peace, why not supply it with milspec plate that the militia hopefully has access to, anyways. I could see them not even using the freed up weight, just the durability would be a boon already.

If you think about a serious upgrade, I think we indeed reach the point where it is more sensible to replace the entire machine. Could just take an old Commando and pull a missile launcher for a probe and ecm.
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JadeHellbringer

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #36 on: 25 April 2018, 14:33:22 »
My ideal fate for the Pathfinder would be for the primitive model to remain in production for local militias, and any updated model be produced solely for export, selling them to mercs, Periphery militaries, and in true Lyran fashion anyone with the cash.

That WOULD make it a handy addition to the mini-factions that sprung up in the Republic post-blackout, actually. A Pathfinder working alongside cobbled-together industrials and combined-arms forces, maybe with a 'real' Battlemech (Panther, Arbalest, etc.) at the head of the force, would be pretty solid for a standard attack force in that era.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #37 on: 25 April 2018, 15:58:16 »
Heh, funny how a simple scout actually creates quite a lot of talk.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #38 on: 25 April 2018, 16:22:53 »
The stuff that generates the most conversation are usually the ones with odd in-universe situations, or ones that are more than just frontline direct combat units.

There's only so much conversation you can have about Devastators when nearly everything revolves around walking one onto the board and shooting stuff, or having same done to them. Eventually someone tries to spice things up by mentioning cerulean whips, and that's when you know the thread's pretty much done.

Stuff like the Pathfinder? You gotta think when you use one, and that leads to...ideas.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #39 on: 25 April 2018, 16:33:32 »
Stuff like the Pathfinder? You gotta think when you use one, and that leads to...ideas.
Ideas? This doesn't have anything really weird on-board. Heck, it weighs too much to be easily thrown.
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JadeHellbringer

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #40 on: 25 April 2018, 16:40:22 »
Ideas? This doesn't have anything really weird on-board. Heck, it weighs too much to be easily thrown.

Time to design a support vehicle trebuchet...
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Weirdo

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #41 on: 25 April 2018, 16:53:24 »
Time to design a support vehicle trebuchet...

That's easy. After all, the Lyrans already have Luftenburgs...
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #42 on: 26 April 2018, 08:55:23 »
The point of RetroTech was that the factories in question were civilian-grade, and even 3025-level stuff was too much for them to handle without unacceptable retooling delays.

To extend your metaphor, you don't have enough M1s, the factory currently putting out Ford Mustangs can start giving you M4s as early as next week, but if you want M60s you won't see a single one for at least a year...and the enemy army is a month away.

And the M-4s mount a modern main gun.
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glitterboy2098

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #43 on: 26 April 2018, 16:30:11 »
And the M-4s mount a modern main gun.
M-50 Super Sherman's basically, with the long 75mm guns.

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #44 on: 28 April 2018, 01:24:54 »
While the talk about armor is interesting . . . if I was a merc buying secondhand Pathfinders, its that Prim engine I would look at replacing.  IMO that would increase its viability as a scout- after all, you do not really want them getting shot at much.  After you can go faster to avoid those who might try to shoot at you, then we start talking about improving their scout ability by improving how much they can risk being shot by improving the armor type.

Trying to do the math but . . . if you drop a 175 LFE in you can move up to 7/11 . . . and a 225 XL actually gives you a half ton back to zip at 9/14.
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glitterboy2098

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #45 on: 28 April 2018, 04:43:02 »
to do that though is a lot more work (practically a rebuilding) compared to replacing the armor. since IIRC the engine is generally going to include the mass of all the myomers and other motive system components spread around the mech.

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #46 on: 28 April 2018, 05:59:32 »
I'd never heard of this little thing, its a cute lil scout and a rather high end retrotech thanks to its weapons and sensors.  Nice write up!
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #47 on: 28 April 2018, 09:55:05 »
Also, engines are the most expensive component in the machine. I am certainly not going to drop the C-Bills on a massive engine upgrade without addressing the crit prone armor. As a Merc I am buying these as a cheap picket line, and putting in the kid who has yet to prove to me he can hack it. A scout is a skill set, and information is ammunition. If I have something better, my scouts going in it. Even if it's just a savannah master or a Packrat. These things are tripwires and force multipliers. That's about it. That being said, they do the job well.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #48 on: 28 April 2018, 10:18:13 »
Yeah, but what other electronics loaded scout would be available on the merc market?-  Not that I am saying not to do the armor as well- heck if you are removing things to get at the engine, then it would also be the time to be swapping the armor.  This thing came out during the scarcity of equipment of the Jihad and was followed by the Battlemech to AgroMech Stoner program . . . so while there might be better dedicated scout mechs out on the general market for mercs, first are they available and second do you want to spend the c-bills for a all up scout or would that money be better spent on general combatants- if you can get either?

IMO you also have to wonder how many Pathfinders might be in Merc ranks with the BAPs stripped out to go in something that is a better scout- be it a vehicle or something like a Firestarter FS9-S or such- for those at the ends of logistical lines.  How many of these made it into the periphery areas like the Marian Hegemony and Rim Collective/Able's Aces?  At least as training mechs . . .
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glitterboy2098

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #49 on: 28 April 2018, 14:27:10 »
Yeah, but what other electronics loaded scout would be available on the merc market?
according to the MUL, during the early republic era, Mercenaries had easy access to the following Probe equipped Mechs..
Mercury MCY-97
Hermes HER-3S
Firestarter FS9-S2
Ostscout OTT-9S
Owens OW-1A
Owens OW-1B
Owens OW-1D
Raven RVN-4L

adding the IS general list adds the Firestarter FS9-S.

[the MUL Search]
« Last Edit: 28 April 2018, 14:29:09 by glitterboy2098 »

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #50 on: 28 April 2018, 14:49:53 »
Well, no, it isn't.
But, in the case of a light scout, it is useful to begin with - you're just making it a bit more useful, or in this case, more survivable, so that it can be useful for longer.
I see an armour upgrade in that light - whenever something breaks, replace it with the equivalent standard armour, and the whole cover once that happens often enough; Armour takes damage first, and if that militia is in any way actually using their Pathfinders, that damage will accumulate, so, in relative peace, why not supply it with milspec plate that the militia hopefully has access to, anyways. I could see them not even using the freed up weight, just the durability would be a boon already.

If you think about a serious upgrade, I think we indeed reach the point where it is more sensible to replace the entire machine. Could just take an old Commando and pull a missile launcher for a probe and ecm.

The thing is, the Lyrans already produce a ton of different mechs that fulfill that role, so there's not a whole lot of incentive to retool the armed tractormech to be a real battlemech.  Might as well just sell the basic version to dirt-poor militias that can't afford anything better, and focus on producing Commandos, Wolfhounds, and Razorbacks to fill the demand for better equipment for themselves.

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Colt Ward

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #51 on: 28 April 2018, 15:36:59 »
I knew there were some, but of those how many are still in production during the end or after the Jihad? 

Three of those are Omni which are going to be in a different buying pool than a merc commander considering a Pathfinder to supplement his C or D rated unit.  The Raven maybe on the merc list in the MUL but it does not mean its common or available on the market to anyone not near the CapCon.  And I would not be thinking about the Pathfinder unless I was in or near the Lyran borders- Noisiel, Arc Royal (and not intend to face the Clans), Galatea or Solaris VII.

Honestly, looking at a purchase, would you rather buy a Thunderbolt 7M & two Pathfinders or a Gallowglas 1 & a Firestarter S as a merc commander if you were not facing the Clans?

And I rechecked the math . . . you could drop a 200 LFE in for the same weight of the Prim 180 and go 8/12- much better for a scout, and just a mil c-bills, it still comes out cheaper than a FS9-S and certainly less than a Omni.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #52 on: 29 April 2018, 00:42:41 »
primitive equipment is always kind of a hard choice for me-sure, i love me cheap 'mechs but frequently the drawbacks irk me. the engine is always the worst offender though. it's just never really worth the effort to refit that. at least the armor is an easy swap..... this is alright though. a scout with an active probe and literally no reason to play hero. finally a ride to convince the most "enthusiastic" pilot to map the area and bug out!

Ideas? This doesn't have anything really weird on-board. Heck, it weighs too much to be easily thrown.

Wait, that all depends on what we can throw it with. How do dropship captains feel about external winches? And loop the loops?
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #53 on: 02 May 2018, 01:59:11 »
/snip
Owens OW-1A
Owens OW-1B
Owens OW-1D
/snip
Isn't listing all three superfluous? I mean, Owens already mount BAP as hard-mounted kit, so every Owens already comes stock with it-even customs that some enterprising tech didn't turn into standard battlemechs with ill-advised "Improvisation".
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #54 on: 05 May 2018, 01:45:07 »
replace Pathfinders with Wasps/Stingers/Locusts and that pretty much sums up scouting in the 3rd and 4th succession wars..
It defines scouts in just about every wargame of some sort and I'm pretty sure real life as well, and it also raises the question of why people build scout 'Mechs, after all life is cheap, 'Mechs ain't.

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #55 on: 05 May 2018, 06:11:04 »
It defines scouts in just about every wargame of some sort and I'm pretty sure real life as well, and it also raises the question of why people build scout 'Mechs, after all life is cheap, 'Mechs ain't.
Well, most of the "detect enemy by blowing up" scouts were made during the Star League - when mech were cheap... ;)

The more practical scouts are usually well enough protected to actually survive contact.

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #56 on: 05 May 2018, 07:09:34 »
It defines scouts in just about every wargame of some sort and I'm pretty sure real life as well, and it also raises the question of why people build scout 'Mechs, after all life is cheap, 'Mechs ain't.

Because airborne scouts are easy for hostiles to spot(yes, even compared to four-story robots) and can be disrupted by weather. Of the various ground-bound scouts, mechs can traverse more terrain than any other machine, with even non-jumping mechs able to handle things that will stop any conventional vehicle cold. Above all else, your scouts need to be able to go everywhere.
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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #57 on: 08 May 2018, 07:43:25 »
You know the Pathfinder might make a good civil defense unit. Replace the laser and BAP with a fluid gun and ton of ammo...wait. Can't. Need another half ton. Crap.

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #58 on: 08 May 2018, 11:09:32 »
You know the Pathfinder might make a good civil defense unit. Replace the laser and BAP with a fluid gun and ton of ammo...wait. Can't. Need another half ton. Crap.

Take it out of the armor. A single half-ton of armor isn't gonna make any real difference in how fast this thing explode under enemy guns.  xp

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Re: MOTW: PFF-2 Pathfinder
« Reply #59 on: 08 May 2018, 17:09:50 »
Not sure what the advantage over a tracked vehicle is in that case, though.
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