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Author Topic: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?  (Read 5711 times)

abou

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Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« on: 07 September 2018, 12:07:21 »
I know some people have really been down on the cluster hits table complaining about the die rolls. But having experienced the nastiness of SRM boats -- floating crits, head hits, and general crit seeking -- has me thinking. And that thought is whether the maligned Gargoyle Prime is actually... good. Although unlikely to actually have all 23 individual strikes hit, that is a lot of location rolls. We all know the Prime would tear apart vehicles and infantry, but would it disable 'mechs through die rolls of 2s and 12s rather than simple destruction?

Has anyone experienced this in game?

Sartris

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #1 on: 07 September 2018, 12:21:06 »
I guess the one thing it has going for it is that the BV is about the same as an IS medium - which is only about 200 more than the gold standard of Mr "All the Missiles" Arctic Wolf.

In general, I've used a lot of SRM/shotgun boats. They're great sandblasters for vees or crit seeking but if your plan is to TAC someone to death, you're putting your fate in the hands of the fickle, fickle dice gods.

23 individual strikes hit,


statistically improbable. you're probably only getting 5-10 plinks depending on shot difficulty.

Colt Ward

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #2 on: 07 September 2018, 13:28:41 »
Couple of things to consider . . .

are you comparing it to dueling other Clan mechs?
are you comparing it to IS mechs it was likely to see in the original invasion (mostly 3025 stuff until late)
are you comparing it to IS mechs it would see in the invasion retcon?

Against other Clans . . . the Gargoyle is going to run into the problem of the ERPPC, Gauss Rifle and cERLL having nearly the same or better ranges and most mechs will have the same speed or better- those that do not will typically be armed with those same range/more damage weapons.

Against the original 3025 using invasion?  It can keep up with many light mechs and will massively outrange them while the 5 pt LBX slug hit matches what they could do with MLs if the Gargoyle ever let them get close.  Against meds, heavies & assaults?  Good luck getting your PPC in range on the 3/5 or 4/6 mech- AC/10s, LL and ML batteries have a worse problem.  Its sort of like a heavy cruiser with the armor/firepower reversed- it can outrun (and range) anything that is better armed and catch anything with less armor/structure.

Against Invasion retcon?  Well . . . how well its going to do is dependent on what you allow the IS to field in that campaign and how its employed.

But I still hold with the Gargoyle Prime BEING the Prime as a anti-veh & AA platform b/c it was the best option among common configs to deal with the massed armor of the AFFC's RCTs.
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Sartris

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #3 on: 07 September 2018, 14:37:44 »
AA it's a good platform. Good vee hunter (though I'd probably take a Black Hawk B or an Arctic Wolf if given the option). But against mechs except those that it heavily outweighs? ish.

i don't factor the indefinite clan range advantage because i've never been in a place that allows me to set up a map that large or devoid of enough terrain to allow a unit to fire every turn from 20+ hexes while the enemy closes. assuming long range + 3 gunnery + walk, that's 8s. probably 9s or 10s if it's retreating from a 4/6 or 3/5 heavy / assault. So you're hitting with 40% on average with the slug at best. that's optimistically 40 damage - which, barring optimal clustering isn't bringing down shit.  you're actually better off closing with most IS mechs  in the early invasion because they either can't hurt you as much as you hurt them or suffer from heat issues. in a Tukayyid-type scenario, stay away from units that will end you like a Black Knight or Flashman.

Colt Ward

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #4 on: 07 September 2018, 16:04:01 »
Yeah, its a 3025 light & medium mech hunter with a pair of 8 hex short range MLs backed by some SRMs.  Its got about the same damage potential as the Griffin 2N- just the PPC dmg is split.
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Sartris

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #5 on: 07 September 2018, 16:21:51 »
a role that always perplexes me. a light / medium pilot has no obligation under zell to accept a challenge from an assault mech. Also I think a Dragonfly or Vixen is far better suited to that role.

personally, i *love* the D config. i think that's where ceding the tonnage to the 5/8 engine actually makes sense.

Terrace

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #6 on: 07 September 2018, 16:42:13 »
This discussion just makes me think that the Inner Sphere first spotted the Gargoyle fighting vehicle and infantry-heavy formation, and called the configuration it was sporting for that the Prime.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #7 on: 07 September 2018, 17:34:45 »
It isn't worthless, but its load out is one that isn't useful unless you are dealing with vehicles.  I played one last year in the world wide event and used it to deal with vehicles and infantry.  The force commander was giving me crap for it but I turned two tanks into pill boxed which later got waxed.  If one of those lbs been a ppc or large laser that would give the design a bigger bite.  An ATM even makes sense, but they didn't exist in 3050.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #8 on: 07 September 2018, 17:42:01 »
This discussion just makes me think that the Inner Sphere first spotted the Gargoyle fighting vehicle and infantry-heavy formation, and called the configuration it was sporting for that the Prime.

Which is why I said . . . AFFC . . . RCTs . . . considering we are told there are 3 or 4 armor regiments per single mech regiment- a configuration set to go after armor so that Timberwolves, Ice Ferrets and Adders go after mechs.
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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #9 on: 08 September 2018, 23:23:37 »
The Man O' War Prime is an utter waste for an 80 ton mech.  It's an okay vehicle and BA hunter, but that's really a job for a mech half its size.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #10 on: 09 September 2018, 01:26:34 »
I'm not sure that the Gargoyle Prime is good per se; it would be more correct to say that there are things it's good at. But it is, as other's have pointed out, a waste of an assault 'Mech. This is not a thing you use assault 'Mechs for; there are a million better ways to do the things the Gargoyle Prime is best at better than it does.
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Sartris

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #11 on: 09 September 2018, 01:38:02 »
I’d say the A should be the prime but the clans already have enough dual erppc hell machines.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #12 on: 09 September 2018, 02:22:35 »
Well it should be noted that the A was almost as common as the Prime in the fluff, IIRC.

And as Colt pointed out, this thing is the Primary Wolf-Assault mech & the Wolves are smart & knee deep in facing FedCom RCTs & FRR Militias in their invasion corridor.

You can say that a mech 1/2 its size would be just as good, but I'm not so sure, an Adder lacks the Armor to tangle with more than 1-2 tanks like Manticores before it has to retreat & lacks the pod space to pack in lots of LBX cannons.

The Gargoyle-Prime would have little difficulty facing off against a Lance of them & immobilizing them all before they landed enough shots to hurt it.

Something fast like an IceFerret-Prime is IMHO more useful striking & retreating from IS Heavy's with its ERPPC & tearing holes in them for the Elementals to then crit hunt it to death.

T-Wolves just crush anything in their path & aren't "that" much better than a Garg-A but if I have to put 1 of my 2 5/8 Cav monsters into "Anti-Vehicle" duty, I'd rather it be the Garg than the sheer perfection that is the T-Wolf.

My only real complaint about the Garg-Prime is that they went just a tad too far to the point that it doesn't use those 16 fixed engine Heatsinks.
I think dropping off 1 of the LBX's for an ERLL & a trio of ERML's would go a long way to making it a much more potent machine & give it something to fall back on when the AC's & SRM's run dry.
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Sabelkatten

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #13 on: 09 September 2018, 05:35:27 »
Some years ago I noted that there is one 5/8 clan mech that's perfect for the Gargoyle Prime's config - the Hellbringer!

Underarmored as it is sniping at tanks is really the perfect job for the Hellbie. And it's even got enough pod space to add a third AC to the armament! ;D

Ruger

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #14 on: 09 September 2018, 08:54:56 »
Some years ago I noted that there is one 5/8 clan mech that's perfect for the Gargoyle Prime's config - the Hellbringer!

Underarmored as it is sniping at tanks is really the perfect job for the Hellbie. And it's even got enough pod space to add a third AC to the armament! ;D

Hmm...that brings to mind an evil idea...

Yep...that works...maybe not as many SRM's on one of the ideas, but with two big long range guns to make big holes for the rest...

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« Last Edit: 09 September 2018, 15:20:17 by Ruger »
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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #15 on: 09 September 2018, 15:00:47 »
Some years ago I noted that there is one 5/8 clan mech that's perfect for the Gargoyle Prime's config - the Hellbringer!

Underarmored as it is sniping at tanks is really the perfect job for the Hellbie. And it's even got enough pod space to add a third AC to the armament! ;D

Yeah, I can get behind this.

My favorite custom pods for the Hellbringer all involve lots of long range guns,  LPLs, LRMs, ERLLs, LB5X's, & Arrows abound.

This is also why the E is my favorite cannon configuration  (I think that is the one w/ HAG, ERLL, & LRM)
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Colt Ward

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #16 on: 09 September 2018, 15:46:02 »
One thing to also remember is the way the Gargoyle is set up, it can haul Elementals to the fight without sacrificing any of its firepower- if you are going after armor & infantry formations, this becomes important since it keeps any faster armor from being able to rush as well.
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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #17 on: 09 September 2018, 16:00:21 »
Again, that's still not a job for an assault mech.

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Sabelkatten

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #18 on: 09 September 2018, 16:02:29 »
Yeah, I can get behind this.

My favorite custom pods for the Hellbringer all involve lots of long range guns,  LPLs, LRMs, ERLLs, LB5X's, & Arrows abound.

This is also why the E is my favorite cannon configuration  (I think that is the one w/ HAG, ERLL, & LRM)
I equipped one with, IIRC, one ERLL, 5xATM3 and 2xLB2-X. Did pretty well with something tougher in front of it. Essentially a clantech Jagermech... ^-^

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #19 on: 09 September 2018, 16:55:37 »
Again, that's still not a job for an assault mech.

Agreed, but I also don't consider the Gargoyle to be an "Assault" mech.

It has the weight class but its the same as the rest of the Clan Heavy Cavalry mechs.

When I make "Assault" stars they might have a Gargoyle in them, but its not the anchor, that is always a DireWolf & usually with some WarHawk & Kingfisher backup.

Its more like the 3050 Charger than a proper "Assault" mech.
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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #20 on: 09 September 2018, 17:18:33 »
When I field an 80 ton mech, I want it to be able to use it to take on other mechs of a similar size.  Hence why the Man O' War Prime is terrible: it's stuck doing anything but fighting other mechs.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #21 on: 09 September 2018, 23:40:35 »
Keep in mind that your own preference for what you want to use a mech for is different from what it's supposed to be used for; Even if it is an 'Assault-weight' unit, doesn't necessarily mean it was ever built to fulfill the same role as your typical assault. Kind of the polar opposite of a Gunboat light. Just use it as an excuse to broaden your tactical options.
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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #22 on: 10 September 2018, 00:35:31 »
When I field an 80 ton mech, I want it to be able to use it to take on other mechs of a similar size.  Hence why the Man O' War Prime is terrible: it's stuck doing anything but fighting other mechs.

Which is why there is the A & D configurations,  plenty of mech hunting in those.

I've used the A to hold off a Warhawk-C, Guillotine-IIC, & FireFalcon-B at the same time, mostly based on good cover & fear of twin ERPPCs pulling off a box cars & removing something early.

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MoneyLovinOgre4Hire

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #23 on: 10 September 2018, 01:24:57 »
Keep in mind that your own preference for what you want to use a mech for is different from what it's supposed to be used for; Even if it is an 'Assault-weight' unit, doesn't necessarily mean it was ever built to fulfill the same role as your typical assault. Kind of the polar opposite of a Gunboat light. Just use it as an excuse to broaden your tactical options.

That would work if it was bringing something to the table that a lighter mech couldn't.  However, the answer to that question is no: a lighter mech can carry the same or better firepower at the same speed and meet or beat the Man O' War's armor level. Therefore, the Man O' War Prime especially is objectively a bad mech.  This doesn't make it a useless mech, it still can do the job, but the question being asked was whether it was a good mech, not whether it was a useful mech.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #24 on: 10 September 2018, 02:04:18 »
a lighter mech can carry the same or better firepower at the same speed and meet or beat the Man O' War's armor level. 
1 OmniMech does that in the same era.   The TimberWolf.
Hardly some tiny smaller useless light/medium.

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #25 on: 10 September 2018, 02:34:13 »
The fact that the Vulture and Loki also have glaring flaws does not make the Man O' War's go away.

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mbear

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #26 on: 10 September 2018, 09:29:52 »
In general, I've used a lot of SRM/shotgun boats. They're great sandblasters for vees or crit seeking but if your plan is to TAC someone to death, you're putting your fate in the hands of the fickle, fickle dice gods.

But unless you're JadeHellbringer, this may not be a bad thing. ;)

abou

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #27 on: 10 September 2018, 10:51:01 »
It is a shame that the invasion was at the same time fleshed out and yet so limited. Between the Jade Falcon, Wolf, and Invading Clans sourcebooks, they closed the door on a lot of things so quickly by giving so much detail on what forces were present and how the conflicts went down. It would have been nice if that was going to happen, we saw more fighting against conventional forces -- even just a blurb in a sourcebook or a few paragraphs in a novel. Something to justify the Prime config.

Colt Ward

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #28 on: 10 September 2018, 10:55:04 »
The fact that the Vulture and Loki also have glaring flaws does not make the Man O' War's go away.

And neither have twin LB-5X in any canon configuration . . . if you DO take them in range to use the SRMs, then their thin skin is going to get poked at pretty hard . . . additionally, as I mentioned, most of their weapons are in the torso which means they are masked carrying Elementals in close.

Finally, the primary user of the Gargoyle- the Wolves- were facing those RCTs and did not have very many Hellbringers or Mad Dogs compared to their neighbors during the invasion.  The Gargoyle is still going to be fast enough to have a edge on the masses of 3/5 and 4/6 armor the Wolves were likely to face and left Ice Ferrets and Adders to hunt down light & medium recon/strike mech lances.

Plus after wrecking the armor formations, a short stay in the mech bay gets that Prime switched around to a A, C or D to go break the mech forces.  Or vice versa.

abou, look at the details of each world's invasion.  For example, WCSB has a Wolf supernova or so hitting a 12th Star Guard merc regiment and a armored brigade as the defending force on Icar.
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massey

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Re: Weird question: is the Gargoyle Prime actually good?
« Reply #29 on: 10 September 2018, 20:11:31 »
That would work if it was bringing something to the table that a lighter mech couldn't.  However, the answer to that question is no: a lighter mech can carry the same or better firepower at the same speed and meet or beat the Man O' War's armor level. Therefore, the Man O' War Prime especially is objectively a bad mech.  This doesn't make it a useless mech, it still can do the job, but the question being asked was whether it was a good mech, not whether it was a useful mech.

I'm going to disagree with you a bit here.  The Man O' War isn't a perfect design.  It's an 80 tonner, after all.  And there's basically nothing an 80 tonner can do that can't be made more efficient by going either up or down 5 more tons.  So it isn't perfect, but that's a standard that very few mechs can ever achieve.  A mech can be "good" without being 100% optimal.

It seems to me that the Man O' War Prime would have been a response to Inner Sphere vehicle units.  Especially under the old vehicle damage rules, two LB-5 Xs would be murderous.  The Man O' War's job would have been to engage vehicles outside of their range and fire until its ammo bins ran dry.  It could engage with Warrior VTOLs as well, since the LB-5 has the same range as the AC-2.

From that standpoint, it's pretty good.  It's not the absolute best -- it'll never be a MadCat, that mech is just a better chassis.  The MadCat hits all the design sweet spots and the 80 tonner doesn't.  But you really don't want to equip your MadCats for the limited role that the Man O' War Prime is fulfilling.  It is serving a necessary purpose in warfare, but not a glorious one.  But it's still necessary, and it's very good at that job.

What it boils down to is the Man O' War is a solid design in most of its configurations.  It's just not quite a MadCat.  So when you invade the Inner Sphere and find they've got hordes of vehicles, you need a heavy cavalry mech that can tear apart a tank company and swat away VTOLs.  So you take your "almost a MadCat" mech and give it a very specialized loadout.  And then it ends up being so useful that the Inner Sphere commanders think of that as its prime configuration, not knowing that it was basically an ad-hoc solution to the vehicle problem.

So is it good?  Yes, it's very good at what it's supposed to do.  But it's not the most efficient mech possible, because of in-universe reasons.