Register Register

Author Topic: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers  (Read 6534 times)

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« on: 10 May 2018, 00:08:00 »
A number of conversations have gotten me thinking about how to improve the game. It seems to keep coming down to the math involved: both in calculating and the high to-hit numbers. These are stumbling blocks to the speed. However, I personally want to preserve the stats and the meta of the game.

BattleTech works very differently than a lot of other mecha. In anime, you tend to have the main characters in their 'mechs, but the enemy are in fragile machines that collapse easily and blow up. BattleTech is the gradual reduction in combat capabilities of units: either through loss of limbs and weapons or through soaking up so much damage that a critical event happens which causes the destruction of the unit. Keeping in mind tactical movement, positioning, and advantage of the terrain, what I propose is basically a left shift in terms of numbers.

Some of these ideas come from what we see in Alpha Strike and to an extent the new PC game.

I have attached a PDF to this post to allow ease of printing. So far this includes just the core mechanics with regards to combat, buffed AC stats, and introtech play. An expanded document with quirks for weapons will be added later.
« Last Edit: 30 December 2018, 14:15:16 by abou »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #1 on: 15 May 2018, 23:35:31 »
Just an FYI, I'm part of this journey, and the first game we played showed a lot of promise.  We also added a boost to Autocannons:

*** See first post for stats ***
« Last Edit: 03 June 2018, 19:21:57 by Fear Factory »

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #2 on: 16 May 2018, 00:39:30 »
So yeah, as Dan said, we just played a game with these rules. There were already some tweaks as we went, but it certainly sped things up. Tomorrow I'll edit my first post with what was changed or added.

We played using the first scenario in the Lakes & Rivers mapset. The autocannon buff made a noticeable difference, but wasn't overpowering. It helped the AC/5s of the Banshee and Clint to punch through armor a bit better. And quite quickly we noticed how much the game sped up when you use the semi-Alpha Strike TMM rules and the simplified ranges. The reduced math of the game meant you weren't number-crunching as much; however, the game still kept that feel of the reduced effectiveness of the units as damage mounted. There were several tense moments where that one punch or stray shot could cripple your 'mech.

So for us, it was a lance of lights and low-end mediums versus two assaults that took about and hour and a half. Not bad. We're going to keep working on this.

I totally understand that there are a lot of other threads about speeding up the game, and this is just one more idea. But I actually want to put this concept through its paces to see what works.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #3 on: 17 May 2018, 13:05:53 »
Updated the initial post with new rules for clubbing, altered ranges, changes to partial cover, jumping, and extreme range.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #4 on: 17 May 2018, 14:34:13 »
I also want to post some of my weapon ideas here because I think it would actually make them feel unique, opposed to the current vanilla feel they all have (NOTE:  Introductory Tech, for now):

Lasers

These are basically fine on their own.  We're working on a system for PSR's for taking 20+ damage.  So far, we're thinking lasers can still force a PSR but they won't have a stacking bonus.  This quirk gives more of an incentive to utilize a mix of weapons or unit types.

Quirks:
No PSR bonus on their own.  EDIT:  Their high heat for decent damage and lack of ammo is enough.  Lasers are fine.

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Small Laser   1     3     3       0.5   1      -
Medium Laser  3     5     9       1.0   1      -
Large Laser   8     8     15      5.0   2      -

Particle Projector Cannon

By itself, the PPC is a really powerful weapon.  In order to balance it, and keep it competitive with other weapons, giving the same bonus AC's get for forcing PSR's should work.

Quirks:
+1 bonus for forcing PSR's, stacks per unit  EDIT: The bonus crit mechanic is just too much.  PPC's are fine on their own.
Minimum Range 3

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
PPC           10    10    18      7.0   3      -

Autocannons

The damage boost is really needed.  Ammunition explosions and damage always comes up when comparing to energy weapons, especially with smaller AC's.  Boosting their damage, and giving them a bonus for PSR's, gives them the extra umph they need.  Now you can actually compare the AC/5 with the Large Laser AND PPC as a worthy replacement.  The AC/2 still keeps its niche role, but it can now at least do more damage than a Machine Gun.  Autocannons, with the damage buff, now have a good balance between damage and heat AND this also justifies the risk for carrying ammunition.

Quirks:
(Class 2 and 5) -1 bonus for targeting airborne units
(Class 10 and 20) +1 bonus for forcing PSR's, stacks per unit  EDIT: The bonus crit mechanic is just too much.  The boost in damage is actually enough to achieve this.

Autocannon 2 Minimum Range 4
Autocannon 5 Minimum Range 3

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Autocannon 2  1     3     24(4)   6.0   1      50
Autocannon 5  2     7     18(3)   8.0   4      20
Autocannon 10 4     12    15      12.0  7      10
Autocannon 20 7     24    9       14.0  10     5

Missile Launchers

These guys are already somewhat fine on their own.  However, the SRM-2 always got shafted.  Without having to change the missile hit chart, I figured giving them a bonus in their specific range bracket would help.

Quirks (LRM's):
+1 on missile hit chart (long range)
-1 on missile hit chart (short range)
EDIT: With the new way we handle woods it seems like too much.  They're fine on their own.
Minimum Range 6

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
LRM-5         2     1/m   21(6)   2.0   1      24
LRM-10        4     1/m   21(6)   5.0   2      12
LRM-15        5     1/m   21(6)   7.0   3      8
LRM-20        6     1/m   21(6)   10.0  5      6

Quirks (SRM's):
+1 on missile hit chart (short range)
-1 on missile hit chart (medium range)
EDIT: With the new way we handle woods it seems like too much.  They're fine on their own.

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
SRM-2         2     2/m   9       1.0   1      50
SRM-4         3     2/m   9       2.0   1      25
SRM-6         4     2/m   9       3.0   2      15

Point Defense

They are really only useful for fighting off infantry, but this is a game about BATTLEMECHS.  Why not make them better against 'Mechs?  Let the Flamer do heat and damage to the target instead of picking one or the other (I always thought having to choose was stupid).  Give the machine gun a bonus for critical hits since it's firing a cluster of bullets.

Quirks (Flamers):
2d6 damage against infantry
Causes both heat and damage to the target

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Flamer        3     2/3ht 3       1.0   1      -
Flamer (Veh)  0     2/3ht 3       0.5   1      20

Quirks (Machine Guns)
2d6 damage against infantry
+1 bonus for critical hit checks

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Machine Gun   0     2     3       0.5   1      200

I have not play tested any of this, but it was an idea that I tossed up that we may or may not try.  I want to make the game faster, but I also want to see some actual differences between weapons instead of it just being numbers.
« Last Edit: 03 June 2018, 19:08:35 by Fear Factory »

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #5 on: 25 May 2018, 21:41:10 »
I'm watching this thread with much interest. Can you clarify #6 about the hex side facing changes? Are 2 and 3 hexside facing changes both 1MP? Also, +1 bonus for forcing PSRs does what exactly? And is it stackable?

Also is the -1 for SRMs supposed to be for Long Range not Medium?

I like what I'm seeing here. Keep it up. I'd really like to come up with a rule to simplifying missile and cluster hits. Maybe have the number of missile hits be based on the to-hit roll? FREX, an LRM might look like this:

ToHit: 8                   20                       15                        10                    5
Roll              number of missiles
6                             4                         3                          2                      1
7                             8                         6                          4                      2
8                             12                       9                          6                      3
9                             16                       12                        8                      4
10+                         20                       15                        10                    5

If I need an 11 or 12... it's a tough shot so unlikely all the missiles would hit anyway.
 

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #6 on: 25 May 2018, 21:48:02 »
Also, +1 bonus for forcing PSRs does what exactly? And is it stackable?

Also is the -1 for SRMs supposed to be for Long Range not Medium?

SRM's would get a bonus at short range, but a decrease at medium.  This is because of the new range brackets.  They don't have a long range.

I like what I'm seeing here. Keep it up. I'd really like to come up with a rule to simplifying missile and cluster hits. Maybe have the number of missile hits be based on the to-hit roll? FREX, an LRM might look like this:

ToHit: 8                   20                       15                        10                    5
Roll              number of missiles
6                             4                         3                          2                      1
7                             8                         6                          4                      2
8                             12                       9                          6                      3
9                             16                       12                        8                      4
10+                         20                       15                        10                    5

If I need an 11 or 12... it's a tough shot so unlikely all the missiles would hit anyway.
 

Hmmmmm... maybe.

ColBosch

  • Lieutenant Colonel
  • *
  • Posts: 8353
  • Legends Never Die
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #7 on: 26 May 2018, 00:32:20 »
I am very interested to see how this shakes out.
BattleTech is a huge house, it's not any one fan's or "type" of fans.  If you need to relieve yourself, use the bathroom not another BattleTech fan. - nckestrel
1st and 2nd Succession Wars are not happy times. - klarg1
Check my Ogre Flickr page! https://flic.kr/s/aHsmcLnb7v and https://flic.kr/s/aHsksV83ZP

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #8 on: 26 May 2018, 16:09:29 »
I'm watching this thread with much interest. Can you clarify #6 about the hex side facing changes? Are 2 and 3 hexside facing changes both 1MP?

For right now, I am leaning toward a cost of only 1 MP for hexside changes of 2 to 3 sides.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #9 on: 26 May 2018, 16:39:27 »
So I am kind of struggling with water. I don't think anyone is particularly happy right now with how it works.

I'm tempted to actually flip how PSRs work: increasing the difficulty for standing, but removing the PSR for entering a water hex. Perhaps ignore running restrictions as those units cannot fire their weapons anyway. Modify TMM by -1 for moving units.

For 'mechs in Level 1 water, the question is what else is changed. The BattleMech Manual uses the standard partial cover rules which is +1 and leg hits cause no damage. What I have in the first post is a +2 modifier with leg hits re-rolled. I am inclined to do something similar for water.

But maybe the +2 partial cover modifier is too much?


Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #10 on: 26 May 2018, 17:07:44 »
Water is hard.......

- Prohibit running, cannot run into a water hex.
- PSR required only for jumping into a water hex, jump jets submerged in water cannot work.
- Unit only gets Partial Cover (+2) and can only generate 1/2 of its TMM (round down, min. of 1?)
- Leg hits are re-rolled
- Unit dissipates extra heat (heat sinks in legs rule)

OR, you could even make it where you just don't get a TMM for using water, but you get a HUGE boost for heat dissipation.  Maybe heat sinks operate at +50% efficiency?  It would be more in line with the novels, IMO.

Probably worth noting how we're thinking of handling woods too.  We're juggling having them provide some kind of bonus cover for weapons that use the cluster hit chart (like a -2 modifier on the chart).  Woods would basically be nice for avoiding missiles/indirect fire or cluster weapons.
« Last Edit: 26 May 2018, 17:10:26 by Fear Factory »

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #11 on: 27 May 2018, 09:10:50 »
I'd be careful with those woods rules. That suddenly feels like more rules rather than less.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #12 on: 27 May 2018, 12:29:13 »
I'd be careful with those woods rules. That suddenly feels like more rules rather than less.

I'm going to go off on a tangent here to explain my train of thought.

The main focus is time, which is why Abou and I are trying to build a system around using movement inspired by Alpha Strike and range brackets used in AeroTech.  We did play test this and it took a lot off of the time to play.

I feel BattleTech in itself is a complex game with simple ways to resolve things.  I do like the grit of the game, but I also like how fast Alpha Strike is in some aspects.  IMO doing things like giving woods an ability to take some clusters off of a shot, giving water better heat dissipating ability for a TMM trade off, isn't really going to bog the game down.  I feel it is a subtle enhancement that could make terrain hexes unique.  The goal is to enhance the need to use terrain hexes outside of stacking modifiers and blocking LOS.  This is kind of required if you think about how some of these hexes work in Alpha Strike.  Think about it, would a fast moving 'Mech really want to scoot in water (like in Alpha Strike) if a huge chunk of its TMM is sacrificed?

A lot of time was cut off by using a different movement and range system.  If we take off an hour of game play, and then add 15 minutes total because of some subtle changes that improve on things, I think it is worth it.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #13 on: 28 May 2018, 09:09:53 »
Saturday we ended up brainstorming other changes -- shifting the meta of the game and making things more important. A couple of the things we were thinking could be divided into base game changes and then weapon quirks. I will update the post above at some point when I get the chance.

For woods, we were thinking about missile weapons as getting a kind of berf, to borrow fighting game lingo. The idea is that LOS and to-hit modifiers stay the same, but missile weapons behave something different. For missile weapons in woods, rather than taking a to-hit modifier, that modifier instead alters the cluster hits table. This would also have huge implications for Artemis- and NARC-equipped units.

For example: a unit attacking a 'mech behind two lights woods may need an 8+ to hit with direct fire weapons now only needs 6+ for missiles, but take a -2 on the cluster table.

Water: For L1 water: 1/2 TMM for moving unit. +2 to hit and reroll per leg hit. Heat dissipation is vastly improved. In addition to number of submerged heat sinks to a maximum of 6 extra points of sinking ability, each leg generates an additional -2 sinking ability. This was reasoned that a 'mech being made mostly of metals, which are excellent conductors, would likely be able to dissipate more heat than the rules allow.

This means a 'mech like the RFL-3N would now sink a total of 5 heat for being in L1 water. -2 for each leg and an additional -1 for the single heat sink in the left leg. Quad 'mechs such as the Scorpion would tremendously benefit with a total leg bonus of -8 for sinking ability, but would also suffer because of leg re-roll rule, which means any successful attack will only hit the torsos or head.

Punching: restrict to 1 arm only

Rough terrain: +1 for PSR fall check

Side hit locations: Allow for rear torso shots for the corresponding side. So for hits to the left side and right side, change die result 9 from the opposite torso to the corresponding rear torso. For punch location, change die roll 1 to the corresponding rear torso.

Additional AC weapons characteristics: this gets into a gray area where this may or may not complicate the game further, which is what we want to avoid.

AC/2s and AC/5s get a -1 to-hit bonus against flying units: eg VTOLs and fighters. That is probably easy enough. Gauss rifles, AC/10s, and AC/20s generate a +1 penalty that does not stack for forcing a PSR if a unit takes more than 20 points of damage in a round. So if you take more than 20 points of damage in a round and a large caliber autocannon or gauss rifle hits you, your PSR to avoid falling is now a +2 instead of just a +1.
« Last Edit: 28 May 2018, 09:19:09 by abou »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #14 on: 28 May 2018, 11:55:36 »
For those who need a visual, this is our hit location chart (idea is influenced by Scotty and iamfanboy):

Code: [Select]
BattleMech

Roll     Left Side          Front/Back           Right Side
2        Left Torso (Crit)  Center Torso (Crit)  Right Torso (Crit)
3        Left Leg           Right Arm            Right Leg
4        Left Arm           Right Arm            Right Arm
5        Left Arm           Right Leg            Right Arm
6        Left Leg           Right Torso          Right Leg
7        Left Torso         Center Torso         Right Torso
8        Center Torso       Left Torso           Center Torso
9        Left Torso (Rear)  Left Leg             Right Torso (Rear)
10       Right Arm          Left Arm             Left Arm
11       Right Leg          Left Arm             Left Leg
12       Head               Head                 Head

Code: [Select]
BattleMech Punch Location

Roll     Left Side          Front/Back           Right Side
1        Left Torso (Rear)  Left Arm             Right Torso (Rear)
2        Left Torso         Left Torso           Right Torso
3        Center Torso       Center Torso         Center Torso
4        Left Arm           Right Torso          Right Arm
5        Left Arm           Right Arm            Right Arm
6        Head               Head                 Head

Code: [Select]
Quad BattleMech

Roll     Left Side          Front/Back           Right Side
2        Left Torso (Crit)  Center Torso (Crit)  Right Torso (Crit)
3        Left Leg (R)       Right Leg (F)        Right Leg (R)
4        Left Leg (F)       Right Leg (F)        Right Leg (F)
5        Left Leg (F)       Right Leg (R)        Right Leg (F)
6        Left Leg (R)       Right Torso          Right Leg (R)
7        Left Torso         Center Torso         Right Torso
8        Center Torso       Left Torso           Center Torso
9        Left Torso (Rear)  Left Leg (R)         Right Torso (Rear)
10       Right Leg (F)      Left Leg (F)         Left Leg (F)
11       Right Leg (R)      Left Leg (F)         Left Leg (R)
12       Head               Head                 Head

Code: [Select]
Quad BattleMech Punch Location

Roll     Left Side          Front/Back           Right Side
1        Left Torso (Rear)  Left Leg (F)         Right Torso (Rear)
2        Left Torso         Left Torso           Right Torso
3        Center Torso       Center Torso         Center Torso
4        Left Leg (F)       Right Torso          Right Leg (F)
5        Left Leg (R)       Right Leg (F)        Right Leg (R)
6        Head               Head                 Head

Vehicles already have charts like this, which is also where some of the influence comes from.

There are a few reasons for doing this:

1 - Arcs are now more concentrated.  The damage spread is going to stay on the side you're in, with maybe a few strays.
2 - More damage = less time to play.
3 - New tactics.  Flanking maneuvers are now way more effective and you can shield your bad arcs.

I have also been working on weapons up to the helm memory core.

Pulse Lasers

They are a hybrid of laser/machine gun.  I think the -2 modifier needs to go for game balance purposes, but I am also thinking about extending their range...  it's been a complaint for a while on the boards.

Quirks:
-1 to hit
+1 bonus for critical hit checks
(Small) 2d6 damage against infantry (point defense)

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range  New Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Small Pulse   2     3     3      3           1.0   1      -
Medium Pulse  4     6     6      8           2.0   1      -
Large Pulse   10    9     10     13          7.0   2      -

ER PPC

Quirks:
Same as PPC, no minimum range

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
ER PPC        15    10    23      7.0   3      -

ER lasers

The ER Large Laser is another weapon that I feel might need a boost in range.  Not much though, 20 should be enough.

Quirks:
Same as Lasers

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range  New Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
ER Large      12    8     19     20          5.0   2      -

Ultra Autocannons

The blown circuitry rule is just such BS.  We found a way to keep it, though...  so it is still in line with fluff.  So if you double-tap and roll a 2 the weapon jams.  When you roll a check to unjam it (Pilot skill +3 is the mod, I think?), if you roll a 2, the circuitry is blown.  Our logic here is that the jam is just so bad it kills the circuitry and it needs to be repaired after battle.

EDIT:  We are considering having a roll for each shot on a double tap.  The 2nd shot gets a +1 modifier.

Quirks:
Same as Autocannons
Jam on 2 (can be unjammed on PSR +2, unjam result of 2 blows
the circutry)
Class 5 minimum range 2

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Ultra AC/5    1     7     20(2)   9.0   5      20

LB-X Autocannons

Quirks:
Same as Autocannons (standard ammo)
Cluster Rounds use number rating (Example:  LB-10 cluster does 10 damage, uses 10 on missile hit chart)

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
LB 10-X AC    2     12    18      11.0  6      10

Gauss Rifles

Abou already explained this a post up.

Quirks:
+1 bonus for PSR checks  EDIT:  The bonus PSR was too much.
Minimum range 2
Ammo does not explode, weapon does.

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Gauss Rifle   1     15    22(2)   15.0  7      8

Streak SRM's

The trick here is how woods might be handled.  They are going to be a shield from missiles, so it would force you to use the missile hit chart for streak SRM's.  Woods would help out a lot if you're being chased around by a Streak SRM boat.

Quirks:
All missiles hit if the target is in clear/open terrain.

Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Streak SRM-2  2     2/m   9       1.5   1      50

And this is just a rough draft.  We are already brainstorming how to make some changes to things like Active Probes and AMS...  things that really are not used or feel under powered.

For AMS, you would basically only use 1 shot of ammo and roll a number of d6 to find out how many missiles are shot down.  This would be per launcher.  So larger missile weapons are going to fare a lot better against those who choose to spam multiple SRM-4's or LRM-5's (which is a common thing in this game).  Smaller missile weapons are going to work terribly against AMS, but they will drain it's ammunition at a much higher rate.  If the ammo gets hit, it's treated like machine gun ammunition.  We are also considering giving AMS a "range bubble" like ECM or Active Probe, so they can shoot down missiles that cross their path.  This would make mechs that carry multiple AMS systems way more useful and appealing.

Eventually, we are going to mess with Clan weapons.  There are a lot of things that need to change...  like LRM minimum range.
« Last Edit: 03 June 2018, 19:12:45 by Fear Factory »

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #15 on: 28 May 2018, 14:37:30 »
If you are using absolute ranges, why when I look at your charts above is their a S/M/L range listed for weapons like ER Lg Lasers? Am I missing something?

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #16 on: 28 May 2018, 15:27:41 »
If you are using absolute ranges, why when I look at your charts above is their a S/M/L range listed for weapons like ER Lg Lasers? Am I missing something?

Just as a visual reference.

EDIT:  Yeah, I just fixed all of it.
« Last Edit: 28 May 2018, 23:01:47 by Fear Factory »

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #17 on: 31 May 2018, 09:55:08 »
Attached is a PDF with the current rules for modifiers and AC buffs. A more comprehensive guide with the weapons quirks will be added later.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #18 on: 31 May 2018, 13:20:48 »
If any of you guys playtest this PLEASE tell us what you think.  We plan on getting some games in very soon.

I feel like we're on the right path of compromise without drastically changing the game.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #19 on: 03 June 2018, 19:33:33 »
We played again today using the above rules. Minus bathroom breaks, the game took just over two hours. At no point did either of us feel bored or wondering when the game would end. The forces were as follows:

Abou:
Rifleman (veteran)
Dragon (regular)
Hatchetman (regular)
Locust (regular)

Fear Factory:
Jagermech (veteran)
Ostsol (regular)
Cicada (regular)
Commando (regular)

Start time 2:23 pm; end time 4:37 pm

Observations:
1. The buffed autocannons make them particularly lethal. Although I was only able to hit with my Hatchetman's AC/10 once before he went down, the Jagermech, Dragon, and Rifleman pumped out a lot of damage. Even with just a buff of two extra points of damage, the AC/5s were noticeable more capable weapons. We both think they are in a good spot. Still bummed about that Hatchetman... never seen so many threes, fours, and fives before.

2. The quirks of woods helped quite a bit with missiles. It made them certainly more unique. It is an interesting mechanic to play with.

3. Water heat dissipation buffs were a major boon to the Rifleman.

4. The change to movement and ranges sped the game up considerably. The game's movement becomes more tactical rather than the knife fight a lot of matches gravitate towards. Considering how just the medium laser sees a decrease in the needed to-hit by 3 to 4 on average, it gave the game a much snappier feel.

5. The lovely nature of the crit table helped the character game immensely, which we have been missing from Alpha Strike. Two particularly great moments stand out from this:

5a. The Cicada falling down after having a forced PSR. When attempting to stand, a failed PSR destroyed what remained of the left leg with damage transferring to an already exposed left torso that took a medium laser crit. When check for potential crits, FF rolled a 12 and all three crits transferred to the center torso taking out the gyro. God, that was great to watch.

5b. The Ostsol pulled a Charlie Brown when going for a kick against the Rifleman and fell on its face.

To conclude: this is looking good.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #20 on: 03 June 2018, 20:32:04 »
I'm still feeling it...  rolling a 12 for your own crit is so demoralizing.  Whiffing the kick didn't help either, but man...  the crit.   xp  I guess it was karma for my Assassin kicking the head off your Cyclops in our last game.

I want chime in:

1) Having hatchets (or clubbing attacks) force a PSR created some well needed tension.

2) The new woods mechanic feels good.  LRM's/SRM's connect a lot more for a trade off in damage.  I really think they will be useful for pinning down those high TMM's.

3) Yes, Autocannons feel good.  I purposely put my veteran pilot in the JagerMech to see if I could break it.  I had some bad dice rolls, and even being on the receiving end of that Rifleman, they felt right.  I don't think the boost is overpowered.  It was just enough to make you fear the AC/5.

4) Water makes a HUGE difference.  That Rifleman parked and was slinging damage like no tomorrow.  I tried my best to knock him over but failed miserably.  Breaching is the key balancing factor.

5) Re-rolling leg hits for partial cover feels a lot better.  It is a sweet spot between the old BMR rule (+3, punch location) and latest (+1, leg hits do no damage).

***

I think the real winners here are Autocannons and the changes for Movement/Range.  I tend to play designs with big engines that generate high TMM's and that score better on physicals (Ostsol and Cicada).  However, these changes pushed me to maneuver a lot more than normal.  We spent a lot of time pushing the bell curve around at medium range, utilizing terrain, then moving in for the kill.  You would think this would make the game drag like it normally does, but it didn't.  Two hours is pretty fast.

Woods and Water also felt pretty unique and I feel is a welcome change.  Woods worked for shielding against the ballistics and lasers.  Water, we were debating over possibly changing the partial cover modifier and even lowering the amount of heat dissipation to -1 per leg.  Giving the Rifleman that boost though...  it was needed.  Only time will tell.

Also, these changes to terrain and damage actually made each weapon feel unique.  Boosting AC's gives them better damage penetration that deviates from LRM's and SRM's (or 2's and 5's).  LRM's and SRM's can zone in on fast movers but lack the solid punch of other weapons.  Lasers are...  well...  lasers.  The medium laser is still great.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #21 on: 06 June 2018, 17:18:41 »
A few other ideas we were thinking about:

1. Bring back the hit location and motive hits system from the BattleTech Compendium/pre-Maximum Tech. We may possibly use the simplified 1D6 crit table.

2. Trying to figure out how to utilize remote sensors deposited by vehicles to allow for indirect fire. This was tech that never got a satisfying use. My current idea was something along the lines of two remote sensors at a certain distance would allow you to triangulate an enemy position for direct fire without needing a spotter. Just can't quite make it come together.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #22 on: 09 June 2018, 13:19:38 »
I've been tossing this around too:

Buildings

Proposal:  Make damage reduction a flat rate per building class (it's a 10% reduction in TW), also give ballistics and infantry an advantage.

Code: [Select]
Type        Max CF  Damage Reduction        MP Cost  Piloting Mod
Light        20     2/Hit, 0 for ballistics 2        +0
Medium       40     4/Hit, 2 for ballistics 3        +1
Heavy        90     8/Hit, 4 for ballistics 4        +2
Hardened    150    12/Hit, 8 for ballistics *Only Infantry can enter

The idea is that terrain will offer different protections from weapons.  This would make designs that carry a variety of weapons make more sense.  So with the current rules we have come up with, cluster weapons have an advantage when firing at targets that use woods for cover.  They're super accurate because they ignore the modifiers for the to-hit calculation, but take that modifier on the cluster chart for a slight damage reduction.  This would also apply to streak launchers.  They would basically be forced to use the cluster hit chart because all missiles wouldn't hit.

The idea with Buildings is damage reduction to all weapons, but Ballistics penetrate better.  Hardened buildings would also be restrictive terrain to all units except infantry.  Because of how much cover buildings offer per weapon, 1/2 TMM might also be a thing (like water hexes).

Also:

Pulse Lasers

Proposed Quirks:
-1 to hit
+1 bonus for critical hit checks (rapid fire, like Machine Guns)
Pulse Lasers ignore the partial cover modifier (does not stack with their -1 to hit)
(Small) 2d6 damage against infantry (point defense)

Inner Sphere
Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range  New Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Small Pulse   2     3     3      3           1.0   1      -
Medium Pulse  4     6     6      7           2.0   1      -
Large Pulse   10    9     10     13          7.0   2      -

Clan
Code: [Select]
Type          Heat  DMG   Range  New Range   Tons  Crits  Ammo
Small Pulse   2     3     6      5           1.0   1      -
Medium Pulse  4     7     12     10          2.0   1      -
Large Pulse   10    10    20     18          6.0   2      -

One of the biggest complaints I see is how powerful Clan pulse lasers are.  I do love playing Clan, bias aside, I really think this is because of the -2 modifier.  It is really is way too much.  Another complaint is just how underwhelming IS pulse lasers are.  The idea here is that pulse lasers keep their ability as super accurate rapid fire weapons.  With the way range is handled now, a -1 modifier should be enough.  Also, giving them an ability to ignore partial cover modifiers (and still re-roll leg hits) and get a bonus for critical hits (like machine guns) makes them unique from other weapons.  I 100% stand by increasing the range of IS pulse lasers.  It needs to happen.  Clan weapons?  Not sure.

I think the only change we would make for sure is giving Clan LRM's the same minimum range as IS LRM's.

Still a rough draft.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #23 on: 16 June 2018, 15:03:34 »
Abou is going to give a bat rep for a battle we did between 1 lance of 'mechs and a company of vehicles.  We busted out the old compendium rules to get a better feel of what we are working with, using TW locations with compendium critical hits...  yeah, they're still too squishy.

The main appeal with the old system is that 'Mechs are definitely the apex predator and that the tables are much easier to look at.  One thing we agreed on is that this system is also unfair.  It seemed like unlucky shots are far too prevalent.  We want vehicles to be squishy, but not so much that if you're playing them it's not fun.  We're working toward that balance.

So, today I took a shot at rebuilding the old tables for Vehicles/VTOL's:

Code: [Select]
Ground Vehicle Hit Location Table

Roll (2d6)   Front/Rear    Right/Left Side
2            Front(Crit)   Side(Crit)
3            Front1        Side1
4            Front2        Side2
5            Front3        Side3
6            Right Side    Front
7            Front         Side
8            Left Side     Front
9            Front         Rear
10           Turret        Turret
11           Turret4       Turret4
12           Turret(Crit)  Turret(Crit)

NOTE:  If the unit has no turret, transfer damage to the main arc's location

Code: [Select]
Hit Location Damage Effect
1 - Motive system destroyed (Immobile)
2 - Motive system damaged (-1 base MP)
3 - (HOVER) Motive system damaged (-1 base MP)
4 - Turret locked in position

Code: [Select]
VTOL Hit Location Table

Roll (2d6)   Front/Rear    Right/Left Side
2            Rotor1        Rotor1
3            Front(Crit)   Side(Crit)
4            Front         Side
5            Front         Side
6            Right Side    Front
7            Front         Side
8            Left Side     Front
9            Front         Rear
10           Rotor         Rotor
11           Rotor1        Rotor1
12           Rotor2        Rotor2

NOTE:  Damage to rotor = Total damage taken / 10 (Round up)

Code: [Select]
Hit Location Damage Effect
1 - Rotor system damaged (-1 base MP)
2 - Rotor system destroyed (Immobile)

Code: [Select]
Critical Hit Effects (1d6)
1 - No effect
2 - No effect
3 - No effect
4 - Ammo destroyed (no effect if no ammo)
5 - Engine/Fuel destroyed (unit destroyed)
6 - Crew Killed (unit destroyed)

Mind you, I just came up with these tables this morning so they are just an idea/rough draft.

There are some things I removed like the "crew stunned" and "weapon jammed" effects because I always forgot to track this stuff in my old games.  They feel out of place, IMO.  The result is something that takes up almost no space on paper and it is very easy to understand.  I also kept some things from Total Warfare and threw in rear locations for the flanking arcs (right and left).

Abou had these ideas that I really liked (regarding movement):

Cruising speed is basically like standard Alpha Strike movement.  If you move in this mode, you suffer no modifier to fire weapons.  Flanking speed we're both stuck on, but the idea is that vehicles will have an advantage of pushing high TMM's and firing weapons because of multiple people behind the wheel (crews).  We played the game having it like cruising speed (no modifier to the attack roll), but it ended up making hovercraft terrible to fight against.  So, we might have this mode be like "jumping."  Units that flank will add a +1 or +2 modifier to their gunnery but get the full TMM for that mode.  OH, I thought of this as typing, might be a good idea to have it where you have to move at least 2 hexes to achieve flanking movement AND restrict movement into difficult terrain.

EDIT:  I fixed a mistake I made on the VTOL hit location table.  I used an old version I came up with on accident...
« Last Edit: 17 June 2018, 01:07:52 by Fear Factory »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #24 on: 22 June 2018, 13:43:09 »
Ideas for current weapon systems (up to helm memory core/3039 tech).  The goal is to make the weapons much more unique and improve the actual meta of the game without bogging it down.  Maneuvering and terrain is key, not something like a -2 modifier on pulse lasers that really unbalances the game.

Some of the proposed ideas:

- Range boosted on ER Large Laser (IS) up to 21
- Range boosted on IS pulse lasers
- Flamers cause both heat and damage to targets
- Machine guns get a bonus on critical hit checks
- Pulse lasers get a -1 to hit bonus for targeting units in clear terrain, also ignore the partial cover modifier (does not stack with -1)
- Standard missile launchers apply the woods modifier to the missile hit chart, not to hit, and get a bonus on the chart for their primary range.
- Clan LRM's finally get a minimum range...
- Streak launchers retain their lock ability when firing into woods but have to roll on the missile hit chart like standard SRM's.
- All autocannons get a boost in damage.  Class 2 and 5 get a -1 to hit bonus against airborne units.
- LB-X cluster rounds do damage equal to the AC rating.
- Ultra Autocannons jam on 2, can unjam with a PSR, and if that result is 2 it blows the circutry
- Physical attack weapons force a PSR on a hit
- Active Probes provide a -1 to hit bonus for targeting infantry/battle armor and targeting units in cover terrain (within hex range).
- AMS shoots down 1d6 missiles within short range (so missiles that cross through can be shot down), uses 1 ammo, and ammo explosions are treated like machine gun ammo.

NeonKnight

  • Catalyst Demo Team
  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 4208
  • YES! that is ME and My Wife!
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #25 on: 24 June 2018, 13:19:11 »
A number of conversations have gotten me thinking about how to improve the game. It seems to keep coming down to the math involved: both in calculating and the high to-hit numbers. These are stumbling blocks to the speed. However, I personally want to preserve the stats and the meta of the game.

BattleTech works very differently than a lot of other mecha. In anime, you tend to have the main characters in their 'mechs, but the enemy are in fragile machines that collapse easily and blow up. BattleTech is the gradual reduction in combat capabilities of units: either through loss of limbs and weapons or through soaking up so much damage that a critical event happens which causes the destruction of the unit. Keeping in mind tactical movement, positioning, and advantage of the terrain, what I propose is basically a left shift in terms of numbers.

Some of these ideas come from what we see in Alpha Strike and to an extent the new PC game.

1. walking is now a +0 modifier for the attacker


If I may, I am assuming by Walking being a +0, that Jumping is reduced by 1 (so instead of +3 it is now +2), and Standing Still is -1 instead of the normal +0?

Also, I've found in my home games, that limiting running to the +1 to TMM but also attackers get the -1 to hit them, works well, but further running units cannot spot for Indirect fire. This allows is one is using it the Gun It special Command Ability (Combat Manual: Mercenaries, page 91, which normally allows a combat force to use the Run Movement mode, but still make attacks at a +1 but for 1 heat. In my home games we allow in Regular Battletech but at +1 to Hit and +10 Heat on the heat Scale.

Again, just some rules to try and keep the two rule sets as similar as possible.
AGENT #575, Vancouver Canada

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #26 on: 24 June 2018, 17:32:18 »
If I may, I am assuming by Walking being a +0, that Jumping is reduced by 1 (so instead of +3 it is now +2), and Standing Still is -1 instead of the normal +0?

Also, I've found in my home games, that limiting running to the +1 to TMM but also attackers get the -1 to hit them, works well, but further running units cannot spot for Indirect fire. This allows is one is using it the Gun It special Command Ability (Combat Manual: Mercenaries, page 91, which normally allows a combat force to use the Run Movement mode, but still make attacks at a +1 but for 1 heat. In my home games we allow in Regular Battletech but at +1 to Hit and +10 Heat on the heat Scale.

Again, just some rules to try and keep the two rule sets as similar as possible.

You're correct.  We've basically brought in the movement rules from Alpha Strike and built on it:

All units:  Facing changes more than 1 hexside costs 1 MP, must move 1 hex to generate a TMM.  This gives more incentive to move backwards and reduces situations where you can stand still and constantly rotate like a turret.

BattleMechs

Stand Still, -1 modifier, no TMM
Walking is standard movement, +0 modifier
Running is sprinting, you can only move, +1 modifier on TMM
Jumping is lowered to +2 but you generate full heat no matter how far you jump (Full TMM means full jumping power, so full heat).  It will change as the jets are destroyed or submerged in water.

Vehicles:

Cruising is standard movement, +0 modifier
Flanking speed, +2 modifier, vehicles can flank and shoot

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #27 on: 26 June 2018, 13:22:59 »
About a week and a half ago FF and I played a match of vehicles against 'mechs. I wanted to do this recap earlier, but life kept me away. For this, we used the original vehicle rules as published in the Compendium.

I ran a company of vehicles:
Demoliser - veteran
3 x Vedettes - regular
Lance of Condors - regular
Lance of Strikers - regular

FF ran a lance of 'mechs:
Catapult - veteran
Dragon - regular
Jenner - regular
Vindicator - regular


Overall, FF won the match, but it was relatively close. This game took us about 2:45 hours, but was called for how late in the evening it was and I had to be up early. I was left with my lance of Strikers, but two were immobile from damage. Of the 'mechs, there was a badly damaged Jenner and a Catapult low on ammo.

Observations:
1. Buffed autocannons still seem to be in a good spot -- significant striking power without being overpowered. The fast speed of the Condors especially is a good combination (In the PC game, ACs do more damage, but they also have a recoil effect that offsets this).

2. The modified side-location table with that rear torso hit is a powerful change to the meta. It makes side hits more viable options. FF almost lost his Dragon early in the match due to his rear left torso being penetrated. Had I landed a crit, he would have been out of a 'mech within the first exchange of fire.

2a. Damage transfer for side hits should probably be an arm or leg strike goes to the corresponding front location, but a rear torso hit transfers to the rear center.

3. The original vehicle rules make them way, way too fragile. This was known, but I wanted to see how badly it was. Losing a fresh Demolisher to a medium laser hit on the front resulting in a crew killed critical... that sucks. FF came up with his own charts, but my proposal would be to take the location hits from the Compendium (including the motive hits as is), but take the 2D6 crit table from Total Warfare. This way you aren't adding extra die rolls, but still increase the durability. Essentially a compromise between the two.

Wildonion

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 710
  • I'm just a few onions short of a patch.
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #28 on: 27 June 2018, 11:36:34 »
Have you given much time over toward melee attacks for 'Mechs? I am less certain on the existing balance for things like charges and shoves, but I have grown to dislike that kicking almost always feels like a better option than punching when it comes to built-in melee options.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #29 on: 27 June 2018, 13:35:08 »
Have you given much time over toward melee attacks for 'Mechs? I am less certain on the existing balance for things like charges and shoves, but I have grown to dislike that kicking almost always feels like a better option than punching when it comes to built-in melee options.

Physical attack weapons now force a PSR.  We ran a Hatchetman and it was a little scary knowing that it could make a 'Mech fall.  Outside of that, no, but I'm open to ideas.

I think kicks, DFA, and charges are fine.  Punches are tricky because you can punch with both hands with a 1 in 6 chance to whack the cockpit.  That is pretty powerful, but I can understand why people think they're underwhelming.  Maybe we can flip the modifiers so punches are easier than kicks?

Kick -1
Punch -2


abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #30 on: 28 June 2018, 00:09:31 »
If anything with the easier to-hit numbers kicks, punches, and clubbing attacks might just be -1 across the board. Each of the three have (or would have) pros and cons:

Kicking: higher damage and can force a PSR, but are limited to the legs
Punching: lower damage, but much more likely to strike the cockpit
Clubbing: same damage as the kick, uses normal hit location table, and can now force a PSR

My only comments to add are that I am not really a fan of being able to punch twice in one round. I would say that if a 'mech is going to punch, it is going to put it's weight behind it and swing with one arm. FF disagrees with me on that, but I understand his point and yield to that.

Maybe a bonus on critical roles with clubbing attacks is something to consider to represent the crushing or cutting action of clubs/hatchets/swords. Even something as small as a +1 would help giving clubbing attacks a greater than 50% to score a critical hit. This way kicks are still totally viable, but not so strong as to disregard other options; and 'mechs with hatchets get a boost to make the tonnage worthwhile.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #31 on: 28 June 2018, 11:38:54 »
If a single punch can do more damage, like a kick or maybe +50% more than what they do now, then sure.

The same boost should then be applied to physical attack weapons and clubs.

The new ranges makes brawling far less appealing so some changes could be good.

Wildonion

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 710
  • I'm just a few onions short of a patch.
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #32 on: 28 June 2018, 17:48:51 »
After having played the new computer game, I think it would actually be better for the game if punches and kicks were rolled into a single attack. Call it a "Melee Strike" or something along those lines, set the damage somewhere between punches and kicks, give it a -1 to hit, and use the full body chart. The idea being that the MechWarrior is punching or kicking as fits the given situation.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #33 on: 28 June 2018, 21:35:06 »
Eh, I'm not feeling a damage increase either. I would rather there be serious pros and cons to attacks that force a player to make a choice of either/or rather than all options are great. I think being able to attack twice with a 1 in 6 chance of striking the head is super powerful. I'm just not convinced that the possibility of a miss with the second punch is enough of a con. And then if we increase the damage by 50% on the punch, then that puts anything 65 tons and higher in the threat range for killing a fresh 'mech. But I get it: allowing a 'mech to punch twice isn't that big of a deal; it's just one I don't like.

Wildonion, in regards to just letting there be a melee strike, that is an interesting point. But then I don't know if I like the reduction in options. The other problem is in the math; however, I see your point. It definitely gives favor to 'mechs with melee weapons.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #34 on: 28 June 2018, 22:37:24 »
How about this as a compromise between the video game and board game.

Punches:  Roll for both arms, -1 difficulty modifier, damage = (weight/10) per hit
Kick:  -1 difficulty modifier, damage = (weight/10) * 2
Clubbing:  Requires 2 hands, -1 difficulty modifier, damage = (weight/10) * 2
Charging:  No modifier, damage to target = (weight/10) * hexes moved, damage to attacker = weight of target/10, all damage is in 5 point clusters
DFA:  No modifier, damage to target = (weight/10) * hexes jumped, damage to attacker = (weight of target/10) * 2, all damage is in 5 point clusters

For the punch location table, reroll leg hits (like we do now for partial cover)
For the kick location table, reroll arm and cockpit hits.

All of the math is similar.

There are now 2 less tables to look at.  For punches, the odds are now different enough where cockpit hits are not as likely.  For kicks, they are no longer an instant-death to legs, and can now damage torso locations.  To make clubbing/physical attack weapons better, make it where they can choose either chart to their advantage.  I imagine a hatchetman unloading its weapons a few turns, opening up a location, and choosing a chart for the hatchet to connect a good hit.

Considering the new charts, and movement rules, I would also change how death from above attacks work.  To keep them deadly I would make them work like a charge attack.  The further you jump, the more damage you do to the target and to yourself.  Charges would also require movement restrictions like the DFA, meaning you would have to move in a straight line or limited to a facing change.
« Last Edit: 28 June 2018, 22:41:41 by Fear Factory »

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #35 on: 28 June 2018, 22:43:13 »
Eh, I'm not feeling it. And I don't see much of a benefit in kick damage being weight/10*2 over weight/5.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #36 on: 28 June 2018, 22:49:08 »
What I'm saying is that just because there is something I don't like, I also don't think trying to gut & remodel the whole thing is the answer. I do think reducing the kick advantage from -2 to -1 has merit because suddenly it means that punches and clubbing attacks have more of a tactical advantage in game.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #37 on: 28 June 2018, 23:13:39 »
Eh, I'm not feeling it. And I don't see much of a benefit in kick damage being weight/10*2 over weight/5.

It's all the same thing (except for DFA).  All I did was make everything based off of dividing by 10.


Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #38 on: 06 July 2018, 18:45:13 »
Abou and I were discussing a change that probably needed to happen for a long time; making the 7 result on the 2 cluster hit chart a 2 instead of 1.  This would boost a lot of underwhelming weapons that use that chart, like the SRM-2.  We both agreed to it.

Because of that discussion, and seeing other threads about reducing rolls for LBX cluster munitions, I thought a good idea would be to increase cluster damage for LBX 10 and 20 autocannons to 2 instead of 1.  Something like this:

LB 2-X = 2 damage total, use 2 on the cluster chart, 1 point clusters
LB 5-X = 5 damage total, use 5 on the cluster chart, 1 point clusters
LB 10-X = 10 damage total, use 5 on the cluster chart, 2 point clusters
LB 20-X = 20 damage total, use 10 on the cluster chart, 2 point clusters

Two ways to handle this.  Either 1) Old rules, roll on cluster hit chart then roll each location OR 2) use a to-hit roll for each cluster.  Using option 1 or 2, smaller autocannons will still get their bonus to hit airborne units AND cluster munitions still get a -1 to-hit bonus.  For larger autocannons, keep their crit-seeking ability, provide a bonus on the critical hit chart (either a +1 or +2).

We probably won't do this, but we're throwing it out here so we can get some outside input on this.

Retry

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 293
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #39 on: 06 July 2018, 21:45:50 »
Abou and I were discussing a change that probably needed to happen for a long time; making the 7 result on the 2 cluster hit chart a 2 instead of 1.  This would boost a lot of underwhelming weapons that use that chart, like the SRM-2.  We both agreed to it.
I feel this is more aimed at UACs than the SRM-2, since a large UAC hitting less than half the time with both rounds on a "hit" is indeed underwhelming, a bit less so with 2-point plinkers.  However, the SRM-2 and the 2 column in general actually has a higher % of its barrage hitting on average than other cluster weapons.

The SRM-2 hits with ~71% of its full barrage on average, the well-liked SRM-6 hits with marginally less at 2/3rds of its barrage on average (66.67%), and the SRM-4 hits with a smaller percentage than both.  If you make the 7 result result in a 2, cluster barrages for 2-chart cluster weapons would hit with more than 79% of its barrage on average which would eclipse other cluster weapons which usually average in 60-65% of their barrages hitting.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #40 on: 06 July 2018, 22:03:32 »
I follow your logic, Retry, but my counter would be that all cluster weapons cross the 50% mark at or before a roll of 7. Because an SRM 2 only has two missiles, it is a 50:50 weapon. Of course, you could say that you should just replace all of your larger SRM weapons with several 2 racks, but you then have to hit with all of those racks AND consistently roll a 7 or greater. You might replace your SRM 6 with three SRM 2s, but only connect with one or two of the three in a round.

But maybe you are right and a jump in damage on average is unbalancing. It is something we intend to look at next time we play and report back. In my head, I don't see the bump in damage being that unbalancing from SRMs though.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #41 on: 06 July 2018, 22:52:59 »
I follow your logic, Retry, but my counter would be that all cluster weapons cross the 50% mark at or before a roll of 7. Because an SRM 2 only has two missiles, it is a 50:50 weapon. Of course, you could say that you should just replace all of your larger SRM weapons with several 2 racks, but you then have to hit with all of those racks AND consistently roll a 7 or greater. You might replace your SRM 6 with three SRM 2s, but only connect with one or two of the three in a round.

But maybe you are right and a jump in damage on average is unbalancing. It is something we intend to look at next time we play and report back. In my head, I don't see the bump in damage being that unbalancing from SRMs though.

However, we could have it where you roll for each UAC shot, which would address his concern.  I would prefer rolling for each, with a +1 modifier on the 2nd shot.  The risk is increased for a jam but there is a much higher payoff.

Retry

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 293
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #42 on: 06 July 2018, 23:11:00 »
I follow your logic, Retry, but my counter would be that all cluster weapons cross the 50% mark at or before a roll of 7. Because an SRM 2 only has two missiles, it is a 50:50 weapon. Of course, you could say that you should just replace all of your larger SRM weapons with several 2 racks, but you then have to hit with all of those racks AND consistently roll a 7 or greater. You might replace your SRM 6 with three SRM 2s, but only connect with one or two of the three in a round.

But maybe you are right and a jump in damage on average is unbalancing. It is something we intend to look at next time we play and report back. In my head, I don't see the bump in damage being that unbalancing from SRMs though.
I wouldn't say it's unbalancing, usually just not necessary, unless you compared the effectiveness of ex: a MML-3 firing SRMs vs a (modified) SRM-2, but that's an edge case.

If you want to bump, say, UACs, I'd recommend something almost exactly like Fear Factory's suggestion with rolling for each UAC shot.  Doing it like that has the added bonus that you don't miss ~50% of the time on the valuable 2nd shot when you're firing at the broad side of a barn, which is nice.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #43 on: 06 July 2018, 23:39:13 »
That is a possible solution for UACs. But what about rotaries? Are those left using the cluster hits table?

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #44 on: 06 July 2018, 23:50:58 »
That is a possible solution for UACs. But what about rotaries? Are those left using the cluster hits table?

It could work for Rotary AC's as well.

1 Shot = No modifier, no jam
2 Shots = +1 to hit, jam on 2
3 Shots = +1 to hit, jam on 2
4 Shots = +2 to hit, jam on 3
5 Shots = +2 to hit, jam on 3
6 Shots = +3 to hit, jam on 4

The end result, both RAC's and UAC's hit more often but have a higher risk of jamming per shot.  I think it works out nicely considering that we made it where UAC's can unjam.

The UAC rule is something that has been in MegaMek for a LONG time and it works.
« Last Edit: 07 July 2018, 00:00:50 by Fear Factory »

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #45 on: 07 July 2018, 00:01:38 »
True. My one concern is the number of die rolls. A full burst rotary where all shots hit is something like 12 die rolls versus 8.

Otherwise it is a wash in bluffs versus nerfs.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #46 on: 07 July 2018, 11:25:28 »
I know.  It's one of those cases where some more dice rolls can be a good thing.

I really think the box of doom should be part of the game.  It's one of those things where a bunch of rolls seems like a problem, but it is a simple enough solution that works without compromising how a simple game mechanic works.  It was a staple for me after I got sick of rolling LB-X clusters.  I understand having LB-X clusters/HAG's/SRM's/LRM's use the cluster table because those would be random scatter shots.  I don't think weapons like UAC's or RAC's are as random, hence why I feel they should roll for each shot.  The dice rolls might be a wash, but it's enough of a bump that I think will improve how they work and make them feel way different than cluster weapons.

Yes, we're trying to eliminate dice rolls, but if we have to add a bit more or move them around to improve the meta, I think those dice rolls are welcome and justified.  Sometimes a little complexity can be good, and we did experience this while we were testing out some of our new rules (like missile weapons firing into woods).

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #47 on: 07 July 2018, 11:46:11 »
Just some more examples where I think some complexity helps.  We had a quick discussion a while ago on how HAG's and ATM's could work.

HAG's.  They really don't feel much different than LRM's because they do 5 point clusters.  So I had an idea that gave them the same amount of damage clusters per weapon, but the damage for them increased per class:

HAG-20 - 4 point clusters, 5 clusters total
HAG-30 - 6 point clusters, 5 clusters total
HAG-40 - 8 point clusters, 5 clusters total
They will use 5 on the cluster hit chart.

They work the same, but each weapon now has a unique feel that makes them feel different than LRM's.  There are reasons to take each

ATM's.  Like HAG's, they don't feel much different than LRM's.  So instead of doing 5 point clusters, group them by 3 missiles and adjust damage.

ATM-3 uses 3 on the cluster hit chart
ATM-6 uses 6 on the hit chart
ATM-9 uses 9
ATM-12 uses 12

All hit in 3 missile clusters.
ER does 1 damage per missile (so 3 point clusters)
Standard will do 2 per missile (6 point clusters)
HE does 3 per missile (9 point clusters)

They work the same, but now like HAG's, they feel different and are a competitive alternative to LRM's.  Now each class of missile has a different penetration value which makes each type of ammunition useful.  On top of that, the damage spread makes way more sense.

EDIT:  There is probably a better way to explain this.  I would also argue that this kind of stuff is OK considering the crazy amount of weapons that exist now, which does actually over complicate things.  Part of our goal is improving the meta.
« Last Edit: 07 July 2018, 11:52:26 by Fear Factory »

Retry

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 293
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #48 on: 07 July 2018, 15:07:12 »
The alternative ATMs look like gold to me, I might use that.

The modified HAG/40 sort of looks like a rotary LGR.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #49 on: 07 July 2018, 17:11:03 »
The alternative ATMs look like gold to me, I might use that.

Right?  I even suggested it when they were getting TW together.  I guess they decided on 5 point clusters because it's easy, which is fine, but it is also the reason no one really uses ATM's over LRM's.  AND if they do, the only use HE or ER ammo.

A lot of decisions like this are why so many weapons feel vanilla.  It's why you see certain weapons being spammed in custom designs, why you only see certain units on the field, etc.  If the core game mechanics are easier more time can be spent on making weapons and equipment unique.

It's why I spent so much time here trying to make weapons and terrain more than a +1 or -2 modifier.

The modified HAG/40 sort of looks like a rotary LGR.

That was my intention.  It was scary before, but now it's really scary.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #50 on: 08 July 2018, 00:25:25 »
The SRM-2 hits with ~71% of its full barrage on average, the well-liked SRM-6 hits with marginally less at 2/3rds of its barrage on average (66.67%), and the SRM-4 hits with a smaller percentage than both.  If you make the 7 result result in a 2, cluster barrages for 2-chart cluster weapons would hit with more than 79% of its barrage on average which would eclipse other cluster weapons which usually average in 60-65% of their barrages hitting.
Question: how did you come up with this math, Retry? On the current chart for an SRM-2 to get a full barrage you need to roll an 8 or higher. That is only a 41.67% chance. So on average across a match, I don't see how an SRM-2 achieves a 71% chance of two missiles striking.

I want to make sure I understand this since understanding the math is pretty important if we are going to change rules.

Retry

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 293
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #51 on: 08 July 2018, 11:48:37 »
Question: how did you come up with this math, Retry? On the current chart for an SRM-2 to get a full barrage you need to roll an 8 or higher. That is only a 41.67% chance. So on average across a match, I don't see how an SRM-2 achieves a 71% chance of two missiles striking.

I want to make sure I understand this since understanding the math is pretty important if we are going to change rules.
Not a 71% chance to hit with its full barrage, hitting with 71% of its full barrage on average.  8+ for a SRM2 is 100% of its full barrage, 7- is 50% of its full barrage.

Basically you do a weighted average based on the missiles that hit per roll.
1*1+1*2+1*3+1*4+1*5+1*6+2*5+2*4+2*3+2*2+2*1=51 missiles
/36rolls=1.4166667 missiles/roll (avg)
/2(missiles/full barrage)=.708=70.8% full barrage/roll hits on average

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #52 on: 08 July 2018, 12:58:06 »
Ah.  So changing the chart probably isn't a good idea because it would give the SRM-2 and advantage over the 4 and 6.  From a custom design perspective, it would encourage spamming the SRM-2 to achieve better results.  Yes, you would generate more heat, but it would still greatly increase average damage over an SRM-4 or 6.  I think the short range bonus for SRM's (+1 on the cluster chart) is enough.

Depending on where we want to go with UAC's or RAC's a bonus on the cluster chart would fix this:

Ultra AC's
+1 bonus on the 2 cluster chart
Weapon jams on 2
Weapon can now unjam, but a result of 2 disables it for the game (blown circuitry)

Rotary AC's
2 Shots = +1 mod on chart, jam on 2
3 Shots = +0 mod on chart, jam on 2
4 Shots = -1 mod on chart, jam on 3
5 Shots = -1 mod on chart, jam on 3
6 Shots = -1 mod on chart, jam on 4

RAC's would basically be efficient firing 2 to 3 shots, giving them an edge over UAC's, however recoil from firing more than 3 shots makes it harder to hit.  This would make them feel different from LRM's/SRM's and balance them considering RAC's 2 and 5 now do 3 and 7 damage per shot with our new rules.
« Last Edit: 08 July 2018, 13:00:18 by Fear Factory »

garhkal

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 4890
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #53 on: 08 July 2018, 14:05:25 »
A number of conversations have gotten me thinking about how to improve the game. It seems to keep coming down to the math involved: both in calculating and the high to-hit numbers. These are stumbling blocks to the speed. However, I personally want to preserve the stats and the meta of the game.

BattleTech works very differently than a lot of other mecha. In anime, you tend to have the main characters in their 'mechs, but the enemy are in fragile machines that collapse easily and blow up. BattleTech is the gradual reduction in combat capabilities of units: either through loss of limbs and weapons or through soaking up so much damage that a critical event happens which causes the destruction of the unit. Keeping in mind tactical movement, positioning, and advantage of the terrain, what I propose is basically a left shift in terms of numbers.

I look forward to reading what you have come up with..


1. walking is now a +0 modifier for the attacker

Interesting.  Was this, to counter those who either ran or just sat there?

2. units cannot fire when running (optional trait to allow firing when running)

That sounds strange?   Are they allowed to fire when jumping? 

3. TMM is the same as in Alpha Strike with running generating an additional +1 modifier

So running makes it harder to BE hit, but you can't shoot back..

4. jumping gives a +2 modifier for the attacker, but always generates full heat because it always generates the max TMM of movement +1

So whether i jump 3, or 8, my spider always gets a TMM of +4??

5. standing still gives a -1 bonus to-hit for the attacker

I've always wondered why there wasn't a rule for that as is..

6. one-hexside facing changes do not cost a movement point; 2 or 3 hexside facings cost one point in order to force 'mechs to use backwards movement and their restrictions for level changes.

Kind of gimps quads with their side stepping movement then..  Or do quads get something better?

7. water reduces TMM by 1 to a minimum of 0 in addition to their movement reduction and increased cover bonuses

8. Woods for line of sight purposes are not changed -- i.e.: three light woods or one light and one heavy woods block line of sight. However, only the occupied woods hex affects the to-hit modifier. Intervening terrain such as a level 1 hill for partial cover still applies. Credit to iamfanboy for this idea.[/color]*The more I think about this, the more unsure I am about it as woods provide not just a LOS impediment, but a physical impediment of firing between objects.

Not sure i like this one, but i will have to see how it would play out, before making a call.

9. Skidding is removed

Do vehicles still get their 'skidding'?

10. Partial cover gives a +2 modifier to hit. Roll 2D6 for hit location, but leg hits are re-rolled.

So as is now, but upped from just +1..  Nice.

11. Clubbing attacks force a PSR on hit. This gives more viability to hatchet and sword carrying 'mechs when compared to just kicking instead.

VERY nice.  Do clubs/hatchets still roll on the full body chart? 

12. Ranges are calculated based on absolute ranges rather than each weapon's traditional range bracketing. For example, a small laser only has a maximum range of 3 hexes, but because it is within the new short-range bracket, it will only ever generate a +0 range modifier. This is similar to Alpha Strike, but keeps intact individual weapon maximums.

Not sure i like this one..

OR, you could even make it where you just don't get a TMM for using water, but you get a HUGE boost for heat dissipation.  Maybe heat sinks operate at +50% efficiency?  It would be more in line with the novels, IMO.

If you have leg heat sinks, don't they already dissipate twice their heat, when in water as is?  Or was that removed from the rules?

Punching: restrict to 1 arm only

Wouldn't that make punching even Worse, compared to kicking?

Side hit locations: Allow for rear torso shots for the corresponding side. So for hits to the left side and right side, change die result 9 from the opposite torso to the corresponding rear torso. For punch location, change die roll 1 to the corresponding rear torso.

Now that makes it more worth while to get into a mech's flank..

Physical attack weapons now force a PSR.  We ran a Hatchetman and it was a little scary knowing that it could make a 'Mech fall.  Outside of that, no, but I'm open to ideas.

I think kicks, DFA, and charges are fine.  Punches are tricky because you can punch with both hands with a 1 in 6 chance to whack the cockpit.  That is pretty powerful, but I can understand why people think they're underwhelming.  Maybe we can flip the modifiers so punches are easier than kicks?

One change i'd love to see, is for quads, when making a charge, their +2 quad PSR bonus, APPLIES to the charge roll..  Similar to how having a lower piloting than the target, gives you a bonus does..

It's not who you kill, but how they die!
You can't shoot what you can't see.
You can not dodge it if you don't know it's coming.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #54 on: 08 July 2018, 14:35:03 »
Interesting.  Was this, to counter those who either ran or just sat there?

That sounds strange?   Are they allowed to fire when jumping? 

So running makes it harder to BE hit, but you can't shoot back..

So whether i jump 3, or 8, my spider always gets a TMM of +4??

I've always wondered why there wasn't a rule for that as is..

The idea here was to combine Alpha Strike, the PC game, and the classic system.  You still count hexes, but the need to keep track of that for the combat phase is removed because you get the full TMM for at least moving 1 hex.  There is no more waiting for someone to figure out how to get the highest TMM.

Stand Still = Like Alpha Strike, no TMM, -1 to hit a target.  If you turn more than 1 hex side you don't get stand still and your full TMM (prevents turret tech).
Walking = Standard movement like Alpha Strike
Running = Basically sprinting/evading, you get full TMM plus a bonus.
Jumping = +2 modifier to fire, full TMM for the movement with full heat.  Critical hits, water, things of that nature will lower this TMM and adjust heat.  This was decided to prevent getting a full TMM for minimal heat (3).

Kind of gimps quads with their side stepping movement then..  Or do quads get something better?

I didn't think of that.  I think giving quads a bonus for facing changes, like 2 hexsides without losing stand still, could work.

Not sure i like this one, but i will have to see how it would play out, before making a call.

This was changed because of how we decided to handle missile weapons.

Woods apply their modifiers the same way as standard BattleTech.  Missile weapons do not suffer woods modifiers on their to hit numbers, they apply them as a negative modifier on the cluster hit chart.  This gives woods hexes a tactical advantage outside of stacking modifiers.  Missile weapons hit more often than other systems but will do less damage.

If you check out the weapons PDF I posted you'll get the idea.  Even pulse lasers changed.

Do vehicles still get their 'skidding'?

Skidding is gone.  Vehicles are a little more squishy, using the old BMR hit locations combined with TW's critical hit system.

So as is now, but upped from just +1..  Nice.

Yes, as it is now, but you re-roll leg hits so weapons still connect.

VERY nice.  Do clubs/hatchets still roll on the full body chart?

Yes. 

Not sure i like this one..

We were skeptical too, but it'll impress you.  Games stay between medium/short range, there is more tactical maneuvering (see our new flanking charts), and games are A LOT faster.

If you have leg heat sinks, don't they already dissipate twice their heat, when in water as is?  Or was that removed from the rules?

Yes they do.  We decided to give water a boost with this because we're trying to make terrain more than a to hit modifier.  This is also more in line with fluff/novels.

Wouldn't that make punching even Worse, compared to kicking?

He dropped that rule.  It did make it worse.

Now that makes it more worth while to get into a mech's flank..

Yes.  After two games using these charts, maneuvering was more of a thing.

One change i'd love to see, is for quads, when making a charge, their +2 quad PSR bonus, APPLIES to the charge roll..  Similar to how having a lower piloting than the target, gives you a bonus does..

That seems like a really good idea.  Thanks!   :)

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #55 on: 08 July 2018, 19:53:53 »
So a simple change I thought of that could speed up play would be to make the hit locations for the legs be 3 and 11 rather than 5 and 9. I've found when playing MWO, or Mechawarrior or even the new PC game that rarely do my legs take appreciable hits because typically center mass is aimed for. This will likely drop units faster as those side torsos pop sooner and it makes a great deal of sense that arms would get hit appreciably more often.

As to your above Cluster and Rotary thoughts, it's obviously your game, but all those added die rolls scare me. I'd much rather see MOS used as a factor.   

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #56 on: 08 July 2018, 21:02:07 »
As to your above Cluster and Rotary thoughts, it's obviously your game, but all those added die rolls scare me. I'd much rather see MOS used as a factor.

How so?  Just curious.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #57 on: 08 July 2018, 21:31:27 »
I'm going to answer these out of order.

As to your above Cluster and Rotary thoughts, it's obviously your game, but all those added die rolls scare me. I'd much rather see MOS used as a factor.
I admit I'm not a fan either, but I am willing to give it a shot. I think the rapid fire nature of the autocannon makes the cluster roll chart the most appropriate. I think if we used the +1 recoil effect on the UACs that could work, but leave the cluster for the rotaries.

Then again, we haven't played with those rules yet. We are in the part where easy fixes don't really work anymore for a lot of things. Playtesting is going to bear out here.

Quote
So a simple change I thought of that could speed up play would be to make the hit locations for the legs be 3 and 11 rather than 5 and 9. I've found when playing MWO, or Mechawarrior or even the new PC game that rarely do my legs take appreciable hits because typically center mass is aimed for. This will likely drop units faster as those side torsos pop sooner and it makes a great deal of sense that arms would get hit appreciably more often.
This I wouldn't change mainly because this makes leg hits too rare. Currently leg hits are 11.11% with arm hits being 13.89%. If we flip those numbers how you suggest, then arm hits are only 8.33% and leg hits 16.67%

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #58 on: 08 July 2018, 21:37:45 »
Not a 71% chance to hit with its full barrage, hitting with 71% of its full barrage on average.  8+ for a SRM2 is 100% of its full barrage, 7- is 50% of its full barrage.

Basically you do a weighted average based on the missiles that hit per roll.
1*1+1*2+1*3+1*4+1*5+1*6+2*5+2*4+2*3+2*2+2*1=51 missiles
/36rolls=1.4166667 missiles/roll (avg)
/2(missiles/full barrage)=.708=70.8% full barrage/roll hits on average
I have not taken enough statistics in school.

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #59 on: 09 July 2018, 12:22:41 »
I'm going to answer these out of order.
I admit I'm not a fan either, but I am willing to give it a shot. I think the rapid fire nature of the autocannon makes the cluster roll chart the most appropriate. I think if we used the +1 recoil effect on the UACs that could work, but leave the cluster for the rotaries.

Then again, we haven't played with those rules yet. We are in the part where easy fixes don't really work anymore for a lot of things. Playtesting is going to bear out here.
This I wouldn't change mainly because this makes leg hits too rare. Currently leg hits are 11.11% with arm hits being 13.89%. If we flip those numbers how you suggest, then arm hits are only 8.33% and leg hits 16.67%
I explained poorly. I advocate making arm hits more common.

2  CT Crit
3  R Leg
4  R Arm
5  R Arm
6  R Torso
7  CT

Etc. You get the point. That would change leg hits to about 5% and an Arm hit about 20%.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #60 on: 09 July 2018, 13:37:23 »
No, sorry, I goofed on my labeling. Arm hits would be 16.67% and leg hits only 8.33%

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #61 on: 09 July 2018, 14:35:15 »
No, sorry, I goofed on my labeling. Arm hits would be 16.67% and leg hits only 8.33%
These numbers feel better to me.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #62 on: 09 July 2018, 15:33:03 »
Yeah but then arms become more fragile and get hit more than side torsos.  They can't carry as much armor as legs.  Partial cover is for protecting legs.

« Last Edit: 09 July 2018, 15:35:55 by Fear Factory »

Papabees

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 951
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #63 on: 09 July 2018, 18:14:56 »
Yeah but then arms become more fragile and get hit more than side torsos.  They can't carry as much armor as legs.  Partial cover is for protecting legs.


Well that's kinda the point. The faster the arms go the faster the Torsos go.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #64 on: 09 July 2018, 18:25:29 »
I see what you mean, but arm hits are already more likely on the current chart. If leg hits become even less frequent I think that changes things in ways that don't feel right.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #65 on: 09 July 2018, 19:27:54 »
Well that's kinda the point. The faster the arms go the faster the Torsos go.

And the faster the legs go the torsos will go too.

I don't want this game to be like MechWarrior 2 where your arms constantly fly off...  I honestly think the hit location tables are fine now (with our changes for right/left side).  In this case, if you want to speed the game up flank your target and get those rear torso hits.

garhkal

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 4890
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #66 on: 10 July 2018, 02:43:34 »
The idea here was to combine Alpha Strike, the PC game, and the classic system.  You still count hexes, but the need to keep track of that for the combat phase is removed because you get the full TMM for at least moving 1 hex.  There is no more waiting for someone to figure out how to get the highest TMM.

Never seen the rules for alpha strike, so didn't recognize the basis..

Jumping = +2 modifier to fire, full TMM for the movement with full heat.  Critical hits, water, things of that nature will lower this TMM and adjust heat.  This was decided to prevent getting a full TMM for minimal heat (3).

So, why can i fire when i jump, but not when i run?  That's what i am not understanding here..

I didn't think of that.  I think giving quads a bonus for facing changes, like 2 hexsides without losing stand still, could work.

That might be nice..

Yes, as it is now, but you re-roll leg hits so weapons still connect.

Sort of a crossbreed of the older crit rules (only punch chart) vs new rules (impacts the hill if you rolled legs)..

Yes they do.  We decided to give water a boost with this because we're trying to make terrain more than a to hit modifier.  This is also more in line with fluff/novels.

But if btb, they are already at double, how is putting them to just 1.5 heat per sink, being a 'boost'?  OR is that 1.5 on TOP of the doubling?

That seems like a really good idea.  Thanks!   :)

Glad you liked it..

It's not who you kill, but how they die!
You can't shoot what you can't see.
You can not dodge it if you don't know it's coming.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #67 on: 10 July 2018, 07:40:45 »
So, why can i fire when i jump, but not when i run?  That's what i am not understanding here..
Simplification of movement based off of the BattleTech PC game and Alpha Strike. There are trade-offs to each decision. So running gets you more distance and a higher TMM, but you can't fire. Jumping gets you through terrain and you can fire, but the higher TMM also gets you a higher to-hit modifier and full heat.

To be honest, you are the only person who has questioned it. In Alpha Strike, there is no running at all: just walking and jumping.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #68 on: 10 July 2018, 08:47:56 »
So, why can i fire when i jump, but not when i run?  That's what i am not understanding here..

Abou beat me to it.

Sort of a crossbreed of the older crit rules (only punch chart) vs new rules (impacts the hill if you rolled legs)..

Yes.  The only difference is that leg hits don't whif and the odds are not as high (1/6) for hitting the head.

But if btb, they are already at double, how is putting them to just 1.5 heat per sink, being a 'boost'?  OR is that 1.5 on TOP of the doubling?

If you have no heat sinks in your legs and you stand in water you can dissipate more heat.  Having heat sinks in the legs also adds to this.

Code: [Select]
For L1 water: 1/2 TMM for moving unit. +2 to hit and re-roll per leg hit. Heat dissipation is vastly
improved. In addition to number of submerged heat sinks to a maximum of 6 extra points of sinking
ability, each leg generates an additional -2 sinking ability. This was reasoned that a 'mech being
made mostly of metals, which are excellent conductors, would likely be able to dissipate more heat
than the rules allow. Example: A Rifleman 3N standing in L1 water would dissipate 5 heat due to the
two legs and one heatsink in the left leg. A Scorpion would dissipate 8 additional heat, but all limb
hits would be re-rolled for the torso.

The main advantages of water is the amount of heat you can dissipate and the partial cover modifier.  The disadvantage is that leg hits are re-rolled, so damage becomes more concentrated, which means armor breaching can happen a lot faster. 

Reglor

  • Recruit
  • *
  • Posts: 6
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #69 on: 10 July 2018, 16:59:01 »
Simplification of movement based off of the BattleTech PC game and Alpha Strike. There are trade-offs to each decision. So running gets you more distance and a higher TMM, but you can't fire. Jumping gets you through terrain and you can fire, but the higher TMM also gets you a higher to-hit modifier and full heat.

To be honest, you are the only person who has questioned it. In Alpha Strike, there is no running at all: just walking and jumping.

It might be easier to understand if you call it sprinting.  That exists in both the tabletop and PC and you can't fire in either.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #70 on: 10 July 2018, 17:31:08 »
Understandable, but my goal is to avoid changing stats and terms as much as possible. You open a TRO, it says running not sprinting. Plus traditional sprinting has it's own movement distance, but a lower TMM because a lack of evasive movement.

Reglor

  • Recruit
  • *
  • Posts: 6
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #71 on: 10 July 2018, 17:40:23 »
But you are by making running the equivalent of sprinting.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #72 on: 10 July 2018, 18:23:17 »
Not really. The movement isn't the same and sprinting makes you easier to hit compared to distance moved. This was an area we wanted to simplify to speed up the game. Running is a movement mode for distance and tactical advantage.

If you guys want, you can fire if you run and it can generate a +1. I just wanted to make this part of the game faster and snappier, but force the player into key decisions. I find it more interesting if your decisions have trade offs. If you have an elite pilot, they can do almost anything they want. Here though, the player weighs the pros and cons while also speeding up gameplay.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #73 on: 10 July 2018, 20:08:27 »
*** EDIT ***

I'm going to elaborate a bit more on this so you all can understand what Abou and I are trying to accomplish.

These are the movement modes (per unit type) as it stands:

All units must end their movement 1 hex outside of their starting hex to generate a TMM.  Stand still cannot be achieved if units turn more than 1 hexside (quads 2 hexsides).  This prevents turret tech.  We also decided that making movement modes work differently prevents running 1 hex, getting full TMM, and firing weapons for really no drawbacks.

BATTLEMECH

Stand Still = -1 modifier for firing while standing still.  Cannot turn more than 1 hexside (2 for quads).
Move = Walking MP, no modifier for firing while moving.
Sprint/Evade = Running MP, cannot fire weapons or perform physical attacks (except charge), +1 to the units TMM.
Jump = Jumping MP, +2 modifier for firing while jumping instead of +3.  Jumping provides a full TMM with full heat no matter what distance is traveled.  Critical hits, or jump jets submerged in water, will lower total heat and TMM.

VEHICLES

Stand Still = -1 modifier for firing while standing still.  Cannot turn more than 1 hexside.
Move = Cruising MP, no modifier for firing while moving
Flank = Flanking MP, +2 modifier for firing weapons while using this mode.

We have been debating on what to call these modes, but playtesting a few games does show that this system works really well.  It took a significant amount of time off of games without making it feel different.
« Last Edit: 12 July 2018, 00:35:50 by Fear Factory »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #74 on: 12 July 2018, 00:31:18 »
A while ago I tried redoing vehicle charts.  Here's what I propose:

1 - Bring back the simplicity of the old rules
2 - Ensure better survival of vehicles and their crews by giving them a "vehicle check table" that works for major critical hits and for consciousness checks (like 'mechs and fighters)
3 - Change some of the meta for them to justify the fluff (like using ballistics and missiles over energy weapons).

First, the chart:

Code: [Select]
Ground Vehicle Hit Location Table

Roll (2d6)   Front/Rear    Right/Left Side
2            Front(Crit)   Side(Crit)
3            Front1        Side1
4            Front2        Side2
5            Front3        Side3
6            Right Side    Front
7            Front         Side
8            Left Side     Front
9            Front         Rear
10           Turret        Turret
11           Turret4       Turret4
12           Turret(Crit)  Turret(Crit)

NOTE:  If the unit has no turret, transfer damage
       to the main arc's location

Code: [Select]
Hit Location Damage Effect
1 - Motive system heavily damaged (-2 base MP)
2 - Motive system damaged (-1 base MP)
3 - (HOVER) Motive system damaged (-1 base MP)
4 - Turret locked in position

Code: [Select]
Critical Hit Effects (1d6)
1 - No effect
2 - No effect
3 - Power converter hit (energy weapons disabled)
4 - Engine hit (see vehicle check table)
5 - Crew hit (see vehicle check table)
6 - Ammo explosion (unit destroyed)

All of the modifiers would stack.  To make a vehicle immobile you have to stack the modifiers for motive hits.  Once it hits 0, you're immobile.  Hovercraft are slightly more affected by hits.  I also modified the charts for the right/left side so there is a chance to hit the rear (like we did for 'mechs).  Critical hits are also no longer a death sentence under the 1d6 rules.  A vehicle can still die from an ammo explosion if it carries ammo.  If not, it's no effect.  Abou also had the idea of throwing in a hit that disables energy weapons so it improves the meta of the game.  Combined with the new vehicle check chart, it makes sense why some vehicles have fusion engines (the survive engine hits a lot better) and carry ballistics (energy weapon converters get whacked, this will be for both fusion and ICE engines).

Code: [Select]
Vehicle Check Table

Crew hits   Effect 
        1 - 4+ consciousness check, +1 modifier to fire
        2 - 9+ consciousness check, +2 modifier to fire
        3 - Crew killed

OR

Crew hits   Effect 
        1 - 4+ consciousness check, +1 modifier to fire
        2 - 7+ consciousness check, +2 modifier to fire
        3 - 10 + consciousness check, +3 modifier to fire
        4 - Crew killed

Engine hits Effect
        1 - FUSION - can only move OR fire weapons  ICE - unit immobile
        2 - FUSION - unit immobile                  ICE - Fuel explosion/unit destroyed/crew killed
        3 - FUSION - unit destroyed/crew killed

The vehicle check table would be required for all vehicles and would be used on a roll of 4 or 5.  Crew hits work like consciousness checks for 'mechs, but there is a modifier for firing weapons that go up each hit.  The only change I might make is bumping it up to 4 (reason for 2nd chart).  This is much easier to track than a stunned crew or some of the other effects that float for a few turns.  Also, the meta improves for considering Fusion engines over ICE engines.  They can take an extra hit.
« Last Edit: 12 July 2018, 00:34:58 by Fear Factory »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #75 on: 27 July 2018, 23:17:34 »
Here is another option for vehicles.  The idea here is to make things less complicated and remove stacking effects.  These are based on the rules in Total Warfare:

Vehicles:

- No more skidding!  Vehicles are not required to perform driving skill checks while cruising.  While flanking, instead of skidding, perform a driving skill check and the failure results in a motive system damage check with a -3 modifier.
- Remove the following critical hits:

       - driver hit, the effect is almost identical to a commander hit, see below
       - stabilizer, why have this when having a stuck turret is enough?  It's another thing to track.
       - weapon malfunction, it's like the crew stun mechanic for weapons...  ANOTHER thing to track.
       - crew stun mechanic, easy to mess up.  Tracking stun per turns is silly when a consciousness check is easier.

- For crew stun, remove this mechanic and add a consciousness table to the crew data section of the record sheet (the same one on fighter and 'mech record sheets).  The consciousness table is the same one that 'Mechs and Fighters use.  This is so much easier to do, and less to figure out, because it already is part of the game.
- 'Mechs performing physical attacks against vehicles cause double damage.  This is inspired from the video game.

New Ground Combat Vehicle Critical Hit Tables

Code: [Select]
Roll      Front/Side/Rear               Effect
2         Fuel Tank/engine              Unit destroyed if ICE, engine hit if fusion
3         Ammunition/Weapon Destroyed   Ammo explosion, weapon destroyed if no ammo
4         Engine Hit                    Unit immobile, cannot fire energy weapons
5         Cargo/Infantry                Cargo destroyed and infantry take weapon damage, re-roll if none
6         Weapon Destroyed              A weapon is destroyed, determine randomly     
7         No critical hit               No effect
8         No critical hit               No effect
9         Crew Stunned                  Crew took damage, follow the Consciousness check table
10        Sensors                       +1 modifier to fire per hit, unit can't fire weapons on 4th hit
11        Commander Killed              +1 to gunnery and piloting rolls, also counts as crew stunned
12        Crew Killed                   Crew is killed so the unit is destroyed

Code: [Select]
Roll      Turret
2         Turret locked                 Turret stuck in position for the game
3         Ammunition/Weapon Destroyed   Ammo explosion, weapon destroyed if no ammo
4         Crew Stunned                  Crew took damage, follow the Consciousness check table
5         Turret Jammed                 Turret stuck in position, can do a piloting check to unjam in the next attack phase
6         Weapon Destroyed              A weapon is destroyed
7         No critical hit               No effect
8         No critical hit               No effect
9         Turret Jammed                 Turret stuck in position, can do a piloting check to unjam in the next attack phase
10        Sensors                       +1 modifier to fire per hit, unit can't fire weapons on 4th hit
11        Turret Locked                 Turret stuck in position for the rest of the game
12        Turret blown off              Turret destroyed

EDIT:  Also, forgot the hit charts:

Code: [Select]
New Ground Combat Vehicle Hit Location Charts

Roll      Front/Rear          Sides
2         Front (Critical)    Side (Critical)
3         Front +             Side +
4         Front +             Side +
5         Front               Front +
6         Right Side +        Side
7         Front               Side
8         Left Side +         Side (Critical)
9         Front               Rear +
10        Turret              Turret
11        Turret              Turret
12        Turret (Critical)   Turret (Critical)

+ Motive Checks

Only 2 charts needed.  In the front arc, swap the "Side 5,9" and "Front 6,8" results in order to spread damage a bit more and make vehicles a little more vulnerable to motive hits.
« Last Edit: 28 July 2018, 12:28:37 by Fear Factory »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #76 on: 31 July 2018, 17:07:34 »
Here's a PDF with a lot of the ideas we have.  A lot of it is stuff I used to do, or wanted to do, that I incorporated into this.  Stuff like handling buildings, very basic infantry construction, most of it we already talked about here.  None of this is final, but it's all house rules, so you can do whatever you want.

This feels the best so far:

- Alpha Strike/PC game inspired movement
- Aerotech 2 ranges with a max range cap
- Terrain meta (Woods, water, and partial cover)
- Hit chart changes (rear torso in side arcs)
- A lot of the weapon meta (specifically autocannon damage buffs, hatchets/clubs forcing PSR)

Vandervecken

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 250
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #77 on: 09 August 2018, 23:28:33 »
idea:
Eliminate the cluster table and replace it with a fixed number (per cluster size) where the amount of pieces that hit are based on how much you beat the target number by.
Removes one die roll and stays logical - the more you beat your die roll by, the more missiles hit.
You can give them a bonus to hit to compensate and make the math work out.
This would also keep them interesting and different alternatives to direct fire weapons.
« Last Edit: 09 August 2018, 23:32:34 by Vandervecken »

Vandervecken

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 250
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #78 on: 09 August 2018, 23:39:01 »
Another idea:
Allow players to slave direct-fire weapons together if they are the same weapon type firing into the same arc. Weapons hit or miss together, and hit the same location. Aim is to reduce die=rolling and increase realism.

Issue: How to make sure that my 4 slaved medium lasers are somehow distinct from your AC/20.
Or maybe it's already balanced?
Let's see: 4 medium lasers + associated HS = 16 tons, while an AC/20 + 2 tons ammo = 21 tons, so maybe not.

Maybe there's inspiration from the Mechwarrior games that we can use?
What distinguishes an AC/20 from 4 MLs in Mechwarrior Online?

Vandervecken

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 250
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #79 on: 09 August 2018, 23:56:57 »
Third idea:
A lot of people have played around with the idea that cluster weapons hit a particular location and spread damage to nearby locations. Is that something that could potentially speed play?

At the very least we should make LBX autocannons clump damage into 5 point groups like missiles no?

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #80 on: 10 August 2018, 08:42:02 »
Those are all points I have read and I have thought about them. In fact the grouping rule is one thing I did mess around with when I was younger (actually misreading the rules) and I'll let you know why I came to the decisions I did. By all means, Vandervecken, if you find this stuff works for you do try it and let us know.

1st idea: the cluster hits table is actually very, very powerful in the meta of the game. Yes it means more die rolls, which for some can be a bit of a turn off. However, the damage it can do is extraordinary. A Commando can really wreck your day because of how many times damage is rolled. That means the possibility of hitting the head, rolling a 2 for a floating crit or just a torso crit, or finding a location stripped of armor increase each round. That's really part of the BattleTech meta and can end a unit on the table faster than straight destruction -- or force a unit to retreat.

And I think that is my main argument: it really has a very direct impact on the game the way it is. An LB-X cannon by advanced players is often used with cluster ammo over slug ammo for that very reason.  I've taken out a lot of relatively fresh 'mechs with gyro hits. And the accumulation of head hits can lead to pilots being knocked out -- or a floating critical to the head can take out the cockpit. Not that that has ever happened to me... ever...

*glares at FearFactory*


2nd. Maximum Tech has a rule for grouping weapons. It may have showed up earlier in Tactical Handbook, but I can't remember. I had used those rules incorrectly and played the way you suggested, but you already noticed the problem. However, the original rules actually work like this:

- Weapons can be grouped together however you want
- The roll to-hit is based off of the weapon that would generate the highest to-hit factoring in range or minimum range (that would encourage grouping weapons of the same type)
- Hit location roles are rolled normally. So a grouping of four medium lasers may score a hit, but each laser's location is rolled individually

This may speed up the game or it may not. If you have a run of bad rolls, you've may have only sped up that specific round of game play rather than the game as a whole. Grouping, I think, also favors elite pilots as those pilots are less likely to miss what becomes an all-or-nothing firing phase.

3rd: See my response above. I recognize it can speed up the game, but with BattleTech's effects in regards to critical hits, I think it is more powerful than recognized. But I just don't think I have seen an effective enough alternative to cluster hits that doesn't end up using its own table.

Vandervecken

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 250
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #81 on: 10 August 2018, 12:10:33 »
Great points re: 1 and 3. I guess the Box of Dice it is.

Re 2: how does MWO balance AC/20 vs 4 Medium Lasers? Maybe there are pointers there. Because I'm pretty sure you can group weapons and have them all hit the same spot.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #82 on: 10 August 2018, 12:43:00 »
You can't group weapons and hit the same spot.  The AC20 has concentrated damage, whereas 4 medium lasers have to each roll to hit then spread to different locations.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #83 on: 10 August 2018, 12:53:13 »
Great points re: 1 and 3. I guess the Box of Dice it is.

Re 2: how does MWO balance AC/20 vs 4 Medium Lasers? Maybe there are pointers there. Because I'm pretty sure you can group weapons and have them all hit the same spot.
I actually don't know. I don't play MWO. My guess would be balancing heat and damage differently. I know MWO uses a "ghost heat" mechanic when it comes to laser boats.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #84 on: 10 August 2018, 13:58:53 »
I really don't want to go down the rabbit hole that is MWO game balance (which is pretty damn bad).  BattleTech doesn't suffer from mass energy weapons fire hitting a single location, and any rules that support this would undoubtedly unbalance the game.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #85 on: 19 August 2018, 00:55:02 »
I have an idea for expanding piloting skills a bit. It's inspired from the PC game. A little more to track but it could make things interesting:

Base MechWarrior stats:

IS

Gunnery: 4
Piloting: 5
Guts: 5
Tactics: 4

Clan

Gunnery: 3
Piloting: 4
Guts: 5
Tactics: 5

Here's how it works.

Gunnery

Used for ranged attacks. No changes, except for indirect fire and called shots (see tactics)

Piloting

Used for all piloting rolls and physical attacks. No changes.

Guts

Used for consciousness checks and willpower for shutdown overrides. The charts would look like this:

Hits taken: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Target Number: -2, +0, +2, +5, +6, dead

If you have a guts rating of 5, your chart would be the normal chart (3, 5, 7, 10, 11, dead). As the number lowers, it is harder to knock out the pilot, but they still take damage normally.

Shutdown overrides: 4+, 6+, 8+, 10+
Target Number: -1, +1, +3, +5

Like consciousness, a guts rating of 5 means you have the normal chart.  The lower the rating, the better the pilot can avoid a shutdown. Again, they still suffer damage normally from heat.

Tactics

This ability assists with called shots and designating targets (indirect fire).

For indirect fire, use the tactics skill as the base to hit.

For called shots, same thing. Base to hit is the tactics skill.
« Last Edit: 19 August 2018, 23:52:54 by Fear Factory »

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #86 on: 04 November 2018, 20:10:37 »
Been a long while since we last played. Finally broke out the dice again this morning. I had been thinking about our autocannons and Dan agreed with me on this front.

My goal with ACs is to not make them super powerful, but to make them viable. So the question is how do you make them effective in regards to their nearest competitors. To that end, we upped the damage of the class 2 and 5 again.

So now an AC/2 does 4 damage, which gives them more consistent output compared to the LRM-5. Now with longer range and our range brackets I think they are serious threats to lighter mechs at distance. Even more so with SPAs like range master. I would also give them a -1 bonus for flying targets. I recognize though that compared to the LRM-10 it is a bit if a wash, but it is more heat efficient.

For the AC/5, we would bump it another point to 8. So now it has this spot between the large laser and PPC. In fact, once you get past the 10 base engine heat sinks, it is less tonnage to mount an AC/5 than a large laser factoring in additional heat sinks.

We put these ideas to the test in a new scenario that pitted an elite Jagermech pilot on a mountain against three light mechs. It was certainly an interesting fight. I think in a stand-up battle with proper screening elements, the Blackjack, Jagermech, and Rifleman would now be very effective snipers. The Blackjack in particular would probably fare well against 'mechs of comparable or less weight being able to fire multiple times while the opponent closed. In fact, there would be little reason to not fire as long as there was line of sight due to the amount of ammunition.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #87 on: 11 November 2018, 16:50:48 »
Repeating a bit of what Abou said, here...

I know that there has been a lot of threads talking about Autocannons. After increasing their damage and play testing it, I'd say that it is necessary. When we play it just feels right. I know in MegaMek there is even an option to increase damage for class 2 and 5 cannons.

Autocannon 2 - Increase damage to 4
Autocannon 5 - Increase damage to 8
Autocannon 10 - Increase damage to 12
Autocannon 20 - Increase damage to 24

The only exception to this damage increase would be for LB-X cannons. Standard ammo would get the increase, but cluster rounds would do damage equal to the class.

Autocannons really, really, deserve this. Even when you get into Clan designs, those light Autocannon carriers start to make some sense. All of a sudden that Mist Lynx with the Ultra Autocannon 2 is a threat.

These are also rules I would say we're both comfortable with:

- Flat weapon ranges, like that of Aerotech 2.
- Alpha Strike inspired movement. However, the ONLY thing I have been considering is keeping movement like that of Classic, where you still have to count all hexes and account for facing changes, but you get he full TMM for the movement mode. So you can still walk/run/jump and fire, and physicals like Charging won't get a boost.
- Changing the 7 result on the 2 cluster chart to 2 missiles instead of 1.
- Adding rear torso location hits on the right/left arcs.

I think we got a lot of the 'Mech stuff figured out. Vehicles and Infantry are still a toss up. I'm still a fan of the older rules because of how less complicated they were. I still think removing multi turn effects and making them more squishy is a good idea, but we'll see.
« Last Edit: 12 November 2018, 11:55:56 by Fear Factory »

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #88 on: 14 December 2018, 10:24:13 »
Removing skidding from the game means that the Driving Skill for Vehicles does nothing... I've revisited some of my old ideas regarding how vehicles are handled.

I've attached a PDF of some modified hit charts. My goal here is to remove multi-turn effects that you have to track, which in my experience, over-complicates the game. This allowed me to combine all critical hits on ONE table and essentially make vehicles much easier/faster to handle. I have also removed the table for motive hits and made them static on the hit table, meaning (for example) if you roll a 6 in the side arc, your hovercraft is going to suffer a motive hit. With the removal of a motive hit chart, and simplification of the critical hit tables, I also added a consciousness table to vehicles. This makes them work just like the other ground units in the game which makes them much easier to use. If you take a crew hit you mark it off and roll to avoid going unconsciousness, just like 'Mechs and Fighters. Each hit also applies a modifier to fire which is there to replace other vehicle effects like fire control or stabilizer hits that just complicate the game.

My main reason for revisiting the simplification of Vehicle rules was because of an idea Abou tossed out regarding motive hits/turret locks. Instead of using the driving skill for skidding, a modified Driving Skill roll is used to attempt to override the effect. In this case, everything under motive damage effects. The modifier for the roll is the opposite of the modifier of the effect. So if you suffer a -2 MP hit, it would be driving skill +2 to avoid it. If you beat it you override the hit. If you fail, the hit is permanent. The easiest one to avoid would be turret locked which would be a +0 mod.

Another reason I've revisited this was because I wanted to make vehicles a little more squishy... but not to a point where it is unfair or unfun to play them. So I made Vehicles more vulnerable depending on what arc you attack them in. The front arc has a -1 mod for critical hit rolls meaning you can't insta-kill them, and it's a lot harder to get motive hits. The side arcs are more vulnerable to motive hits, more so for hovercraft, and more vulnerable to critical hits. The rear arc is more vulnerable to critical hits than all the arcs, but the same for MP hits as the front. With arcs handled like this, maneuvering is key to their survival. I think this system is a lot easier, and is a happy alternative to the current rule set for people who want to have vehicles supplement their games without having to track a bunch of multi-turn effects.

It's a lot to explain and I know I'm not good at explaining things, but if you look at the charts you can see how it's all in one place and seems to flow a lot better than the current system. I plan on play testing this, so this may or may not be changed.

EDIT: I notice I screwed up on the VTOL table... changed the file.
« Last Edit: 15 December 2018, 13:29:59 by Fear Factory »

idea weenie

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1942
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #89 on: 15 December 2018, 16:18:24 »
I know that there has been a lot of threads talking about Autocannons. After increasing their damage and play testing it, I'd say that it is necessary. When we play it just feels right. I know in MegaMek there is even an option to increase damage for class 2 and 5 cannons.

Autocannon 2 - Increase damage to 4
Autocannon 5 - Increase damage to 8
Autocannon 10 - Increase damage to 12
Autocannon 20 - Increase damage to 24

How about using Solaris 7 rules that allow for firing AC faster, but for the battlefield you roll on the cluster chart.  So an AC/2 can fire up to 4 times per turn, and the player chooses to fire all 4.  The player rolls on the '4' column of the cluster chart, to see how many hit (4 rounds of ammo are used up).  The AC/5 can fire up to 2 (or 3?) times per turn, and the player chooses to fire only 2 times.  The player marks off 2 shots of AC/5 ammo, and rolls on the '2' column.

Rolling above the to-hit would give a bonus on the cluster chart (half?).  Would allowing for harder to-hits for guaranteed damage be a good idea (i.e. the to-hit is '2', and the player takes a 1 pt penalty (increasing the to-hit to '2') for a guarantee that one of the shots will hit.  The Mech is firing an AC/2 at max rate (4 shots per turn), so with 1 shot already a guaranteed hit, they would roll on the '3' column (4 total shots minus 1 guaranteed hit = '3' on the cluster chart).  But the player instead rolls a '2', meaning none of the shots hit, and the autocannon jams.  (I got this idea from Legend of the Five Rings, where you can choose to make your to-hit harder in exchange for a better result.  But if you miss the harder to-hit you miss completely, instead of being safe at the lower original to-hit)

Ultra weaponry would merely give a bonus on the cluster chart, to reflect that it is designed to reliably fire faster to begin with.

RAC would allow for much faster firing, effectively landing 2 shots instead of 1 (and using up 2 round of ammo).  So a RAC/5 firing at full rate would use the '3' column, but the number of hits listed is doubled.  It doesn't get the Ultra cluster benefit, as it is designed for more shells, rather than more accurate shells.

So yes, RAC/2 could have up to 8 shots landing on a target.  (If it fires at max rate, the controller marks off 8 shots from its ammo, and rolls to-hit.  If it hits, it rolls on the '4' column of the cluster chart, and if all 4 hit, the target has a total of 8 hits of 2 dmg each).  If spreading the damage, each location takes 2 hits of 2 damage each.

All autocannons can jam, but all would use the RAC rules for unjamming.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #90 on: 15 December 2018, 17:44:30 »
I don't know... it's a nice idea but I think it may be a little too much for the introductory setting. But hey, if it works for your game, go for it.

The boost we gave to AC's in our games really has a good feel and it's not a huge rules change. It also affects the meta so it makes since out of AC/2's and 5's on 'Mech designs. I mean, we've actually discussed how cool an AC/5 Awesome design would be... that say's a lot.

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #91 on: 30 December 2018, 14:56:00 »
Someone over on one of the Facebook pages offered an alternative for ammo explosions that I think is worth exploring. Essentially, ammo explodes with only 1/10th of the total potential (round up). So a full ton of machine gun ammo would explode with 40 points of damage rather than 400 points. In general, this would make ammo explosions potentially survivable rather than the general death blow they tend to be. I think this meta change is good overall, but I know that some would think that maybe it is too much of a reduction. So let me explain a bit more.

1. CASE and CASE II are still viable and useful. Damage transfer from ammunition explosions transfer directly to the internal structure (eg. right arm internal to right torso internal) and therefore can cause further critical hits. CASE mitigates that.

2. This rule makes the 2 points of pilot damage from an explosion an actual factor in game play in the 3025 era and later eras for Inner Sphere 'mechs mounting XL engines. It is totally possible that a mechwarrior could be knocked unconscious from pilot hits rather than 'mech destruction.

3. As a boost to the potential damage effects, I would propose a +1 bonus to determining critical hits. This means at a 7+ you can get a critical, which pushes that probability to greater than 50%.

4. Gauss rifles still cause the full 15 points of damage. After all, they are long-distance head-cappers and only produce 1 point of heat.

So as a result, an ammo explosion is still a nasty event that can ruin your day, but it won't necessarily destroy your 'mech. It is more likely to knock your pilot unconscious thus giving those rules a greater impact on the game than they had before. It gives you a better chance at salvaging your opponent's 'mechs as well.

So take those torso bomb 'mechs and field them with pride.

Garydee

  • Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 166
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #92 on: 27 January 2019, 18:28:22 »
With all weapons having their short ranges extended to range 6 wouldn't that make the medium laser even better than it already is?

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #93 on: 31 January 2019, 21:28:07 »
With all weapons having their short ranges extended to range 6 wouldn't that make the medium laser even better than it already is?
Sort of. Within the meta, the damage-boosted ACs perform well. But considering that medium range extends to 12 hexes your large lasers, missiles, and autocannons have a larger window of efficacy that can out-range the medium laser. So your Enforcer has a better time dancing out of range of the Hunchback while still having its guns at a medium range compared to the long range it would be in standard play.

I think the real big winners are the small lasers, flamers, and machine guns.

But overall, in all the games we have played, we didn't notice that medium lasers suddenly outperformed other weapons in efficiency compared to before. If anything, we noticed that the games take a bit longer to get to knife-fight range.

Does that make sense?

Garydee

  • Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 166
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #94 on: 01 February 2019, 13:22:29 »
Sort of. Within the meta, the damage-boosted ACs perform well. But considering that medium range extends to 12 hexes your large lasers, missiles, and autocannons have a larger window of efficacy that can out-range the medium laser. So your Enforcer has a better time dancing out of range of the Hunchback while still having its guns at a medium range compared to the long range it would be in standard play.

I think the real big winners are the small lasers, flamers, and machine guns.

But overall, in all the games we have played, we didn't notice that medium lasers suddenly outperformed other weapons in efficiency compared to before. If anything, we noticed that the games take a bit longer to get to knife-fight range.

Does that make sense?

That does make sense. Thanks!

abou

  • Lieutenant
  • *
  • Posts: 1291
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #95 on: 08 February 2019, 00:30:08 »
Tonight we played a game and we wondered about whether hatchets could use one more buff. So the idea is that while punching, kicking, and clubbing are all now to-hits of -1, hatchets still don't quite have enough power despite the added PSR to the target. So we are considering the idea that for hit location we treat hatchets similar to partial cover: standard 2D6 roll, but leg hits are re-rolled. This avoids the 1-in-6 for a head hit, but focuses damage to the torso and arms.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #96 on: 16 July 2019, 21:27:10 »
It's been a while, but I've had some random thoughts about this thread... some ideas for minimal improvement without changing stats (starting from a clean slate here).

Fixing Autocannons

I know in this thread we liked increasing damage to 4/8/12/22 (from 2/5/10/20). I thought of something different, using a bit of fluff to justify it. Autocannons have recoil and sometimes they don't do full damage.

Rule: When making your to-hit roll against the target, a result that is equal to the TN causes listed damage. This means if you roll a 7, and the TN was 7, your Autocannon 5 did 5 damage. Any to-hit roll above the TN increases damage by +1/+2/+3/+4. So in the case of the Autocannon 5, if you rolled an 8, it would cause 7 damage. This only applies to standard autocannon ammunition (for all types of Autocannons). Rotary autocannons can only do this up to a rate of fire of 2.

The dreaded 2 column on the cluster table

We changed the 7 result to 2 missiles hitting and liked it. SRM-2 makes more sense now.

Weapons that have really short range

Basically a way to make machine guns and flamers better. Any weapon that has a long range value of 3 or under treats all range brackets as short range. So machine guns and flamers fire in short range no matter how far.

Boosting machine guns and flamers (again)

Machine guns get a +1 bonus on critical hit chances. Flamers cause both heat and damage to the target. Simple enough.

Melee weapons act in the weapons attack phase

This is a way to give them a chance to cause that little bit of damage to force their opponent to fall. Melee weapons would basically fire/take effect in the weapons attack phase instead of the physical attack phase, but still count as a physical attack. These weapons are specialized, and I figure a buff like this would give them an edge over a punch and kick in some cases.

Frantic Pryde

  • Corporal
  • *
  • Posts: 99
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #97 on: 20 July 2019, 08:56:14 »
This actually looks pretty fantastic!

A small idea to consider: Remove cluster hit table rolls and instead modify the chart to use the margin of success of the to-hit roll. I can see that cutting 30 minutes out of a game easy :)

Sartris

  • Lieutenant Colonel
  • *
  • Posts: 8598
  • Hear me now and believe me later
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #98 on: 20 July 2019, 14:52:43 »
We changed the 7 result to 2 missiles hitting and liked it. SRM-2 makes more sense now.

finally someone brave enough to do it

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #99 on: 20 July 2019, 15:26:53 »
finally someone brave enough to do it

You can thank Abou for that one. He's more keen on math than I am. It's not really that big of a deal... even if you spam SRM-2's instead of 4's now it is way more heat.

beachhead1985

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3267
  • 1st SOG; SLDF. "McKenna's Marauders"
    • Kilroy's Wall
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #100 on: 20 July 2019, 17:38:13 »
This actually looks pretty fantastic!

A small idea to consider: Remove cluster hit table rolls and instead modify the chart to use the margin of success of the to-hit roll. I can see that cutting 30 minutes out of a game easy :)

I am intrigued by your ideas and wish to be subscribed to your newsletter.
Epitaph on an Army of Mercenaries

These, in the day when heaven was falling,      Their shoulders held the sky suspended;
The hour when earth's foundations fled,         They stood, and earth's foundations stay;
Followed their mercenary calling,               What God abandoned, these defended,
And took their wages, and are dead.             And saved the sum of things for pay.
     
A.E. Housman

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #101 on: 20 July 2019, 18:03:11 »
A small idea to consider: Remove cluster hit table rolls and instead modify the chart to use the margin of success of the to-hit roll. I can see that cutting 30 minutes out of a game easy :)

You could just use Variable Damage like this:

SRM's: Roll to hit, then Roll 1d6 per missile fired. 3+ is a hit, 2 damage minimum (per launcher).
LRM's: Roll to hit, then roll 1d6 per cluster (see below). 3+ is a hit. (minimum damage is per launcher)
                LRM-5: 1 damage minimum, 1d6 per missile, apply in 5 point clusters.
                LRM-10: 2 damage minimum, 1d6 per 2 missiles, apply in 5 point clusters.
                LRM-15: 3 damage minimum, 1d6 per 3 missiles, apply in 5 point clusters.
                LRM-20: 4 damage minimum, 1d6 per 4 missiles, apply in 5 point clusters.

Mine is more intricate than DFA Wargaming's method. Theirs is more focused on raw damage for faster play, mine is focused on matching the odds on the missile cluster chart.

Do the same for LB-X AC's... 1d6 per cluster, hits on 3+

List goes on.

idea weenie

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1942
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #102 on: 20 July 2019, 23:59:24 »
This actually looks pretty fantastic!

A small idea to consider: Remove cluster hit table rolls and instead modify the chart to use the margin of success of the to-hit roll. I can see that cutting 30 minutes out of a game easy :)

How about rolling 3d6 for missiles, subtracting the target number from the total on the dice, and looking up the result on the cluster chart?  So if you have a difficult to-hit, you are not likely to fire unless you have a lot of ammo.  But if the to-hit is relatively low, then that Archer will be volleying LRMs as much as possible.

An idea for Flamers was that they would ignore terrain modifiers

For Machine Guns firing on internal structure, imagine if they got 2 rolls on the critical chart (where you determine if/how many critical hits are rolled)?  So Mechs with Machine Guns become vultures trying to attack units that have lost armor, in order to crit them to death.  Makes the Piranha scary to an armor-stripped Atlas.

Nicoli

  • Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 191
Re: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #103 on: 18 August 2019, 16:00:44 »
I know.  It's one of those cases where some more dice rolls can be a good thing.

I really think the box of doom should be part of the game.  It's one of those things where a bunch of rolls seems like a problem, but it is a simple enough solution that works without compromising how a simple game mechanic works.  It was a staple for me after I got sick of rolling LB-X clusters.  I understand having LB-X clusters/HAG's/SRM's/LRM's use the cluster table because those would be random scatter shots.  I don't think weapons like UAC's or RAC's are as random, hence why I feel they should roll for each shot.  The dice rolls might be a wash, but it's enough of a bump that I think will improve how they work and make them feel way different than cluster weapons.

Yes, we're trying to eliminate dice rolls, but if we have to add a bit more or move them around to improve the meta, I think those dice rolls are welcome and justified.  Sometimes a little complexity can be good, and we did experience this while we were testing out some of our new rules (like missile weapons firing into woods).
The issue with the box if doom is that it is not just a very brute force way simulating something, it a brute force way to poorly simulate something. If I shoot a person standing spread eagle in the hand with a shotgun from a foot away, the pellets don't mystically shift and spread out like I aimed at the chest. This is how the cluster hits system works. This gives it the double problem of being time consuming on the large scale and being a poor abstraction of what should happen.

As for melee attacks the only reason not to combine them is when you want a different non-damage effect to it. This would limit it to just Melee, Push, DFA and maybe a Trip attack.

Fear Factory

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3525
  • Designing the Enemy
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #104 on: 21 August 2019, 13:07:17 »
For cluster weapons, if you want to concentrate damage a lot more, you could go with DFA's hit location method.

1d6 pilot die, 1d6 per cluster that hit, combine the results.

Example, LB10 hits with 7 clusters:

Pilot die result: 3
Cluster results, 3,4,3,2,5,4,4

Hits: RT,CT,RT,RL,LT,CT,CT

Results should spread around a central location. The only thing that gets weird are head hits and TAC's since their on the far sides of the bell curve.

wolfspider

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 581
Re: BattleTech 2.0: New rules for modifiers
« Reply #105 on: 23 August 2019, 22:56:08 »
I really like what your doing here with the rules, any chance that you have an updated pdf with the rule changes to this point? I think using this in the RPG would provide a faster resolution to combat between PCs and NPCs.
I may have a low amount of posts but I have a PHD in Battletech and mechs older then most people on this board!

 

Register