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Author Topic: Conventional ACs and making them useful  (Read 1042 times)

Retry

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #30 on: 02 May 2020, 13:20:09 »
TacOps... not worried about it.
Well, I and my group do use Tac Ops, so I'd prefer the solution fits snugly in it.

Fear Factory

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #31 on: 02 May 2020, 16:00:42 »
Well, I and my group do use Tac Ops, so I'd prefer the solution fits snugly in it.

It's all optional anyway. Use as you see fit.

Atarlost

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #32 on: 15 May 2020, 02:31:22 »
Not really. Low Tech BattleMechs and IndustrialMechs still track heat and can't mount DHS.

Tracing the quote chain this is about LAC-2s.  There's damning with faint praise, and then there's invoking industrialmechs too small to mount an AC-5 as a military platform important enough to design and put into production a weapon that is bad everywhere else. 

Also Engine Type can change if DHS are used or how they're used. An XXL Engine generates 6 heat when running. With 10 DHS included leaves 7 DHS that can be used for weapons. That changes how you'd do things.

Again, this quote chain is about the LAC-2, which is 5 tons if you want ammo for it.  So, what energy weapon is 5 tons and has range brackets equal to or better than the LAC-2?  The ERLL.  So 6 movement heat plus 12 weapon heat?  Yeah, still under the 20 free freezers. 

Not really. 5 AC/5s only generate 5 heat. A single PPC generates 10 heat. A mech with a damaged SFE can fire all 5 AC/5s and still be heat neutral. Or it could run and fire 3 AC/5s. The PPC though will generate an extra 5 heat on the first shot and it'll be climbing from there unless you don't fire.

You're taking ratios as concrete mech designs.  If you're heat balanced and you lose an engine crit not firing a PPC half the time or a LL 62.5% of the time or dropping 1.67 MLs rebalances your heat.  It takes not firing 5 AC-5s or AC-2s or 1.67 AC-10s or 0.71 AC-20s to cover the same heat.  If you take 2 engine crits on a base heatsink only energy mech you'll cook off your ammo from movement heat.  If you take 2 engine crits on an energy boat you're down one PPC or 1.25 LLs or 3.33 MLs. 

An autocannon boat that isn't wasting heatsinks is always going to have some AC-10s or AC-20s so the real ratio of damage lost to heat lost is not as bad as the pure AC-5 ratio, but it's always going to be worse than the LL/PPC ratio. 

True but energy weapons also generate more heat than autocannons. Unless you've got a low tech Mech you're more likely to overheat with energy weapons than you will with Autocannons.

If you're overheating to a degree that negatively impacts your performance you're either firing when you shouldn't, being hit by heat generating weapons, passing through +5 and +8 heat on your way to +9 to activate your TSM, you have a particularly stupid heat cycle that puts you to +5 (the Marauder or a mech that's taken an engine hit), or you already know your next turn will be spent jetting behind an obstruction to cool off.  There's no reason to ever go over +9 heat other than if you know you will not be in the fight next turn or if you have been hit unexpectedly by inferno or plasma weapons and the only other reason to go to over +7 is to activate TSM.  If you're having trouble with energy boats overheating the fault lies not in your mech but in yourself. 

Light units worry about being hit by everything. Obviously being hit by an AC/5 is better than being hit by an AC/10 but it still takes a big chunk of a light mech's armor.


A hit that doesn't penetrate doesn't much matter when you get hit on an 10+.  Getting hit twice in the same location when the enemy needs high rolls to hit is a lot less likely than getting hit once with a 10 point gun that will crit or will crit anywhere but the center torso. 

Actually, Advanced Tech began being introduced during the Reunification War. By the time the Star League fell, all these technologies were commonly available. The Terran Hegemony just used them more often as they had more funds. And while DHS were the first to be reintroduced. True DHS weren't commonly available outside the FS until 3045. Before then there's DHS-P. They don't fit in the engine. That changes how much heat reduction you have.

If you are designing a Terran Hegemony mech between 2487 and 2567 it might be possible for crit concerns to push the AC-10 over the PPC.  The InterOps common dates for all advanced tech are after the recovery.  I'll admit I have misread the date for Endo-steel by a decade, but it's a very unusual design that can run out of crits with just endosteel, but you might be able to contrive one that makes sense. 

Being able to fire your weapons all the time is better than just firing them in a bracket. DHS also means you can use more powerful energy weapons without overheating. You can easily go from 2 PPCs to 4 ER MLasers using Bracket Fire and DHS.

Bracket firing means using the same heatsink twice (or in extreme cases thrice).  You need 12 heatsinks to fire two LRM-20s.  You need 12 heastinks to fire four MLs.  You don't need 24 heatsinks on a mech with two LRM-20s and four MLs.  You only need 12 plus any you want for movement.  With DHS the weapons may change, but between two ERPPCs and 10 MLs with 15 freezers or two ERPPCs and 4 MLs with 20 freezers the former the former does 50 damage at short range while the latter does 40 just by assuming the ERPPCs won't be fired at short range and putting on MLs at 1 ton each instead of 2.5 tons each by double counting the heatsinks. 

True but if you're trying to match heat with autocannons to energy weapons you're doing it wrong. Lighter units are also less likely to mount heavier weapons. You're looking more at MLasers, SRMs, and LRM-5s. Occasionally you see AC/2s but they're not common. Their low heat also means they can fire all the time.

If your heat doesn't match you aren't using your heatsinks twice.  Autocannons thus can't benefit from bracket firing as a practical matter except with AC-10s and AC-20s.  This is a response to theagent, who was not talking about lighter units.  His example was a 50 tonner.  He was claiming that one AC-5 and three ML constituted a bracket fire setup.   

Whether you can fire a weapon every turn depends on whether you have the heatsinks for it and how much ammo you have.  It also doesn't mean you should have the weapon at all.  The ur-example of a weapon you fire every round but would be better off without is the AC-5 on the Marauder.  If you had 4 heatsinks instead you could fire your PPCs more and do as much damage while having 5 tons for whatever you want. 

3 Medium Lasers generate 9 heat. An AC/5 generates 1 heat. A PPC generates 10 heat. A Mech can jump 5 hexes and fire the AC/5 and not generate the heat just firing 3 MLasers or 1 PPC will generate.

Heat generated doesn't matter.  Damage output over time without suffering heat penalties matters.  They're related, but not identical. 

A PPC and AC/5 have the exact same ranges. There is no range advantage unless you want to disengage the PPC's inhibitors and risk damage.

Not a range advantage, an advantage at range, ie. 10-18 hexes where the shorter ranged MLs aren't applicable.  The advantage being that a PPC puts out 10 damage every round it fires and fires 7 rounds in 8 for an average potential damage per round of 8.75 while an AC-5 only does 5 potential damage per round.  Multiply both by your odds of hitting, but since the range brackets are identical they cancel out in the comparison. 

You're assuming an average number of missiles will hit, or you're firing from an Aerospace Unit. And 1 point isn't much. Being able to fire indirectly is an advantage however, you also have less ammo than the AC/5 while generating 4 times the heat.

I'm assuming that over many rounds on an average round an average number of missiles will hit.  That's how statistics and probability work. 

And how does any of this make for a better Autocannon?

Defending the validity of the exercise against people who don't want there to be a better Autocannon because they refuse to do the math.  Identifying when the autocannons fall short: people who mistakenly believe the problem starts with DHS may suggest solutions that only apply to the Star League and Foundtech eras instead of solutions that apply to all problem eras.  Identifying the magnitude of the problem.  AC-10s are close on mechs and are The tank gun so they need little if any buffing.  AC-5s need serious help, but many of the boosts would make them overpowered in the lostech era.  I'm of the opinion that AC-2 damage doesn't matter because they're primarily for lawndart and crit fishing, but they're also not in danger of becoming overpowered.  I'm also of the opinion that AC-20 damage is chunky enough to give value apart from their unimpressive damage per ton, though in the advanced ammo era their small ammo bins that lose 20% to roundoff prevent them from making the comeback relative to LBX that the other standard autocannons do. 

To avoid overtuning the AC-10, especially on tanks, I would avoid a damage increase.  For the sake of the AC-10 and in the advanced ammo era the AC-20 I'd like to see an ammo bin size increase to at least 120 damage and possibly 160.  And I'd like to see an ammo explosion fix.  Something fairly extreme like rolling on the number of crits table again (probably penalized by CASE) to determine how many individual rounds explode.  I'm somewhat resigned to there not being a good fix for the AC-5 that isn't individual to it. 

RifleMech

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #33 on: 15 May 2020, 04:27:33 »
Tracing the quote chain this is about LAC-2s.  There's damning with faint praise, and then there's invoking industrialmechs too small to mount an AC-5 as a military platform important enough to design and put into production a weapon that is bad everywhere else.

Again, this quote chain is about the LAC-2, which is 5 tons if you want ammo for it.  So, what energy weapon is 5 tons and has range brackets equal to or better than the LAC-2?  The ERLL.  So 6 movement heat plus 12 weapon heat?  Yeah, still under the 20 free freezers.   

Nope it was about units that don't mount DHS. Industrials and LowTech Mechs don't mount DHS. A Mech with a FCE or ICE is going to have to mount enough single heat sinks to deal with the heat. So that 5 ton ERLL is going to weigh 17.5 tons vs the LAC/2 at 7 tons.

Also while the XXL with 10 DHS and ERLL will generate a total of 18 heat there's not much else it can do without overheating. It's also more vulnerable to Flame Weapons and an XL or SFE.


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You're taking ratios as concrete mech designs.  If you're heat balanced and you lose an engine crit not firing a PPC half the time or a LL 62.5% of the time or dropping 1.67 MLs rebalances your heat.  It takes not firing 5 AC-5s or AC-2s or 1.67 AC-10s or 0.71 AC-20s to cover the same heat.  If you take 2 engine crits on a base heatsink only energy mech you'll cook off your ammo from movement heat.  If you take 2 engine crits on an energy boat you're down one PPC or 1.25 LLs or 3.33 MLs. 

An autocannon boat that isn't wasting heatsinks is always going to have some AC-10s or AC-20s so the real ratio of damage lost to heat lost is not as bad as the pure AC-5 ratio, but it's always going to be worse than the LL/PPC ratio. 

How are the heat sinks wasted when they allow you to keep operating even under full heat? That's like saying a Mech with just a PPC and DHS would be wasting heat sinks. When really those extra heat sinks allow the PPC to continue firing long after heat would have shut the mech down.


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If you're overheating to a degree that negatively impacts your performance you're either firing when you shouldn't, being hit by heat generating weapons, passing through +5 and +8 heat on your way to +9 to activate your TSM, you have a particularly stupid heat cycle that puts you to +5 (the Marauder or a mech that's taken an engine hit), or you already know your next turn will be spent jetting behind an obstruction to cool off.  There's no reason to ever go over +9 heat other than if you know you will not be in the fight next turn or if you have been hit unexpectedly by inferno or plasma weapons and the only other reason to go to over +7 is to activate TSM.  If you're having trouble with energy boats overheating the fault lies not in your mech but in yourself. 

Some mechs have more heat sinks than other though. It's a lot easier to remain under 9 heat with a Fussion engine and DHS than it is with a ICE and singles.



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A hit that doesn't penetrate doesn't much matter when you get hit on an 10+.  Getting hit twice in the same location when the enemy needs high rolls to hit is a lot less likely than getting hit once with a 10 point gun that will crit or will crit anywhere but the center torso. 

Every hit matters. Some just matter more.


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If you are designing a Terran Hegemony mech between 2487 and 2567 it might be possible for crit concerns to push the AC-10 over the PPC.  The InterOps common dates for all advanced tech are after the recovery.  I'll admit I have misread the date for Endo-steel by a decade, but it's a very unusual design that can run out of crits with just endosteel, but you might be able to contrive one that makes sense. 

Prototype Endo takes more crits. Depending on the year DHS aren't available so that could mean more singles being installed.


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Bracket firing means using the same heatsink twice (or in extreme cases thrice).  You need 12 heatsinks to fire two LRM-20s.  You need 12 heastinks to fire four MLs.  You don't need 24 heatsinks on a mech with two LRM-20s and four MLs.  You only need 12 plus any you want for movement.  With DHS the weapons may change, but between two ERPPCs and 10 MLs with 15 freezers or two ERPPCs and 4 MLs with 20 freezers the former the former does 50 damage at short range while the latter does 40 just by assuming the ERPPCs won't be fired at short range and putting on MLs at 1 ton each instead of 2.5 tons each by double counting the heatsinks. 

That's true but your're also not using all of your weapons a neutral unit can.



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If your heat doesn't match you aren't using your heatsinks twice.  Autocannons thus can't benefit from bracket firing as a practical matter except with AC-10s and AC-20s.  This is a response to theagent, who was not talking about lighter units.  His example was a 50 tonner.  He was claiming that one AC-5 and three ML constituted a bracket fire setup. 


Again using heat sinks like that means you're not using your mech's full weaponry.
 

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Whether you can fire a weapon every turn depends on whether you have the heatsinks for it and how much ammo you have.  It also doesn't mean you should have the weapon at all.  The ur-example of a weapon you fire every round but would be better off without is the AC-5 on the Marauder.  If you had 4 heatsinks instead you could fire your PPCs more and do as much damage while having 5 tons for whatever you want. 

True you can replace the AC/5 with heat sinks and other stuff.


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Heat generated doesn't matter.  Damage output over time without suffering heat penalties matters.  They're related, but not identical. 

And yet overheating makes delivering damage more difficult.

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Not a range advantage, an advantage at range, ie. 10-18 hexes where the shorter ranged MLs aren't applicable.  The advantage being that a PPC puts out 10 damage every round it fires and fires 7 rounds in 8 for an average potential damage per round of 8.75 while an AC-5 only does 5 potential damage per round.  Multiply both by your odds of hitting, but since the range brackets are identical they cancel out in the comparison. 

 :blank: And the point would be?


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Defending the validity of the exercise against people who don't want there to be a better Autocannon because they refuse to do the math.  Identifying when the autocannons fall short: people who mistakenly believe the problem starts with DHS may suggest solutions that only apply to the Star League and Foundtech eras instead of solutions that apply to all problem eras.  Identifying the magnitude of the problem.  AC-10s are close on mechs and are The tank gun so they need little if any buffing.  AC-5s need serious help, but many of the boosts would make them overpowered in the lostech era.  I'm of the opinion that AC-2 damage doesn't matter because they're primarily for lawndart and crit fishing, but they're also not in danger of becoming overpowered.  I'm also of the opinion that AC-20 damage is chunky enough to give value apart from their unimpressive damage per ton, though in the advanced ammo era their small ammo bins that lose 20% to roundoff prevent them from making the comeback relative to LBX that the other standard autocannons do. 

To avoid overtuning the AC-10, especially on tanks, I would avoid a damage increase.  For the sake of the AC-10 and in the advanced ammo era the AC-20 I'd like to see an ammo bin size increase to at least 120 damage and possibly 160.  And I'd like to see an ammo explosion fix.  Something fairly extreme like rolling on the number of crits table again (probably penalized by CASE) to determine how many individual rounds explode.  I'm somewhat resigned to there not being a good fix for the AC-5 that isn't individual to it.

I have done math and DHS do have an effect. A Mech with 11 DHS and 2 PPCs can run and fire and not worry about overheating and take only 15 tons. The same Mech though  may not be able to mount 2 AC/5s with 2 tons of ammo would as it'd weigh 18 tons. If the Heat Sinks were singles though the 2 PPCs and 22 heat sinks would weigh 26 tons. The 2 AC/5s still weigh 18 tons. So yes, DHS do give a big advantage to Energy Weapons.

The issue goes back even further though. It used to be all heat sinks required critical slots. So even if a mech had the tonnage for energy weapons and heat sinks it may not have the critical space to mount all of them. That gave the lower heat Autocannons an advantage over Energy Weapons. Placing HS in the engine gave the advantage to Energy Weapons. Essentially they got free crits.

Personally, I'd love for their to be Improved Autocannons. In fact we do have Improved Autocannons. What would be nice is if they were more available and a more improved MK II model was available.


Atarlost

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #34 on: 16 May 2020, 00:56:19 »
Nope it was about units that don't mount DHS. Industrials and LowTech Mechs don't mount DHS. A Mech with a FCE or ICE is going to have to mount enough single heat sinks to deal with the heat. So that 5 ton ERLL is going to weigh 17.5 tons vs the LAC/2 at 7 tons.

Trace the quote chain again.  You'll find you said:
The LAC-2 is good for units that can't mount a larger AC and still want to reach out to 18 hexes.
You're just meandering into crazy places where industrialmechs are important enough combat units to design weapons that are garbage on everything else including ICE powered vehicles. 

Also while the XXL with 10 DHS and ERLL will generate a total of 18 heat there's not much else it can do without overheating. It's also more vulnerable to Flame Weapons and an XL or SFE.

Again, this is your response to my response to your response to my claim that LAC-2s stand out as bad among other autocannons.  The only justification you or anyone else provided for LAC-2s was that something doesn't have the tonnage for an AC-5 but wants to fire out to 18 hexes.  This thus assumes a mech that can't do *anything* other than run and fire its ERLL because the 5 tons for the ERLL or the LAC-2 and ammo are all it has to spare.  You're trying to move the goalposts without providing any reason why anyone should ever mount the gun in question if there's enough tonnage to mount anything else. 

How are the heat sinks wasted when they allow you to keep operating even under full heat? That's like saying a Mech with just a PPC and DHS would be wasting heat sinks. When really those extra heat sinks allow the PPC to continue firing long after heat would have shut the mech down.

Yes.  If a mech has DHS and only mounts a PPC as its sole weapon it is wasting heatsinks.  Unless it's also mounting a PPC capacitor and 5 or more jumpjets or the PPC is a heavy or ER model or it's mounting stealth armor or otherwise making use of all of its heatsinks.  If it doesn't jump it's leaving heat dissipation worth 4 tons on the table.  I don't see how this is even under contention.  If you buy a year subscription to a streaming service and only use it for one week of binge watching that is also waste. 
 
Some mechs have more heat sinks than other though. It's a lot easier to remain under 9 heat with a Fussion engine and DHS than it is with a ICE and singles.

You keep coming back to ICE.  The only real combat units that use ICE are vehicles that can never overheat at all by definition.  It is not hard to remain under 9 heat with single heatsinks.  You just have to do some simple arithmetic instead of blindly smashing the big red Alpha Strike button. 

Every hit matters. Some just matter more.

Hardly.  Impaired functionality matters.  A hit that doesn't contribute to impairing functionality because the target is too evasive for you to hit again may as well not have happened.  If you're tracking C-bills repairing armor has some cost, but because of the weight multiplier 5 points of armor cost less on a 20 ton mech than on an 80 ton mech. 

Prototype Endo takes more crits. Depending on the year DHS aren't available so that could mean more singles being installed.

No one uses prototype endo.  Theoretically the Hegemony must have built a prototype, but it was never a deployed unit, doesn't have stats, and likely wasn't armed with anything but load simulating weights because its job was to test a skeleton not to fight.  And it's rare to run out of crits on just endo without either ferro or the really hot running ER energy weapons, which are not required to make medium autocannons look bad. 

That's true but your're also not using all of your weapons a neutral unit can.


 

Again using heat sinks like that means you're not using your mech's full weaponry.

Because you spend less on heatsinks you can only use where the ranges intersect you have more weaponry.  For every 1 ton of ML you aren't firing with your LRMs at 7-9 hexes with your LRMs you're saving 1.5 tons of DHS that you weren't going to use either past 9 hexes or within LRM minimum range.  That's not waste.  That's trading at an advantage.  Because of those savings you wind up with more guns.  The heatsinks you don't need if you stop firing your low efficiency long range weapons like ERPPCs or ERLLs leave the mass to mount far more higher efficiency short range weapons like MLs or, if working with clantech, cERMLs.  Such designs do the same long range damage and more short range damage than designs that attempt to sink the alpha strike. 
 
And yet overheating makes delivering damage more difficult.

That's why you exercise some expletive trigger discipline. 

:blank: And the point would be?

That a gun that does 10 damage is better than a gun that does 5 damage.  If you don't like the example blame theagent.  He's the one that proposed example mechs with a PPC and a single AC-5.  While trying to defend the AC-5 no less. 

I have done math and DHS do have an effect. A Mech with 11 DHS and 2 PPCs can run and fire and not worry about overheating and take only 15 tons. The same Mech though  may not be able to mount 2 AC/5s with 2 tons of ammo would as it'd weigh 18 tons. If the Heat Sinks were singles though the 2 PPCs and 22 heat sinks would weigh 26 tons. The 2 AC/5s still weigh 18 tons. So yes, DHS do give a big advantage to Energy Weapons.

This is irrelevant to heat bracketing weapons.  For weapon bracket heat management what matters is that heatsinks have some mass (and when relevant crits) which can be used for other things if you contrive to need fewer of them.  Yes, DHS make high heat weapons better, but that was a response to you disputing the existence of bracket heat management in the DHS era. 

The issue goes back even further though. It used to be all heat sinks required critical slots. So even if a mech had the tonnage for energy weapons and heat sinks it may not have the critical space to mount all of them. That gave the lower heat Autocannons an advantage over Energy Weapons. Placing HS in the engine gave the advantage to Energy Weapons. Essentially they got free crits.

The stated premises are true.  The unstated premise that this made a difference is not.  The conclusion is thus false. 

If a Shadow Hawk trades its AC-5 and ammo for a PPC and two heatsinks it winds up with 33 open crits.  11 heatsinks are hidden in the engine.  That's 22 crits open even under Battledroids. 

If a Rifleman trades its two AC-5s and ammo for a PPC and 10 heatsinks it winds up with 31 open crits.  Only 9 heatsinks are hiding in the engine.  Again, 22 crits open under Battledroids. 

If a Wolverine trades its AC-5 and ammo for a PPC and two heatsinks it winds up with 32 open crits.  11 heatsinks are hidden in the engine so it "only" has 21 crits upen under Battledroids.

If a Marauder has its AC-5 and ammo removed for the 4 desperately needed heatsinks to fire both of the PPCs it already has and say a gratuitous large laser (ie. the MAD-3D) it has 31 open crits. A whopping 12 heatsinks are hidden in the engine which under battledroids leaves it with *drumroll* 29 open crits. 

That's it.  Those are the mechs from Battledroids that have the only autocannon in the Battledroids rules.  None of them are constrained to use it by a lack of critical slots for heatsinks.  The change makes ammo bin crits more likely, but ammo bin crits are the tiebreaker that makes the PPC better than the AC-10 on mechs.  The AC-5 is worse without needing to go to a tiebreaker. 

Personally, I'd love for their to be Improved Autocannons. In fact we do have Improved Autocannons. What would be nice is if they were more available and a more improved MK II model was available.
Improved autocannons, unless introduced in 2370 and retconned to replace the autocannons we have, don't fix the problem because the problem for the AC-5 starts once both LRMs and SRMs exist.  The problem is worst in the SHS era because for most of the DHS era the AC-5 and AC-10 are supposed to be eclipsed by the LB-10X so it doesn't much matter if they're also eclipsed by other weapons or weapon combinations.  If you see anything with a standard autocannon (other than class 20s on aerospace units purely because they're disallowed from using slug ammo for no rational reason) with a design date when LBX autocannons are available you know you're looking at an intentionally bad design like the joke units with tank rifles.  It's okay for weapons to be obsolete.  The problem is when the setting pretends they aren't even though they obviously are. 

RifleMech

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #35 on: 16 May 2020, 03:56:04 »
Trace the quote chain again.  You'll find you said:You're just meandering into crazy places where industrialmechs are important enough combat units to design weapons that are garbage on everything else including ICE powered vehicles. 

Here's the chain.
The catch is that in its era you're looking at freezers and if you can't mount an AC-5 you also aren't mounting enough stuff to use up your free sinks, which makes energy weapons a lot more efficient.  The precision bonus is nice, but you could have an ERLL doing four times as much damage and that's probably better in most cases. 

That depends on the unit though. There are units that can't mount DHSs.

I thought I addressed that.  Units that can't mount DHS also don't track heat from missiles.  A LRM-10 averages around 20% more damage than an AC-5 and more than half the time rolls twice on the location table.  An SRM-4 averages closer to the same damage as the AC-5, but usually rolls 2-3 locations.  Slightly more damage at all ranges and more crits at all ranges.  The AC-5's crit density advantage only applies to mechs, which can mount DHS.

Not really. Low Tech BattleMechs and IndustrialMechs still track heat and can't mount DHS. Also Engine Type can change if DHS are used or how they're used. An XXL Engine generates 6 heat when running. With 10 DHS included leaves 7 DHS that can be used for weapons. That changes how you'd do things.

Tracing the quote chain this is about LAC-2s.  There's damning with faint praise, and then there's invoking industrialmechs too small to mount an AC-5 as a military platform important enough to design and put into production a weapon that is bad everywhere else. 

Nope it was about units that don't mount DHS. Industrials and LowTech Mechs don't mount DHS. A Mech with a FCE or ICE is going to have to mount enough single heat sinks to deal with the heat. So that 5 ton ERLL is going to weigh 17.5 tons vs the LAC/2 at 7 tons.

The chain is about heat sinks. Not every unit can mount DHS. BattleMechs can also use ICE engines. Not every place is advanced enough or rich enough to use Fusion Engines. Not every planet has ER weapons either. They weren't even available for a long period of time. Not every unit can mount a 5 ton ERLL, 12 heat sinks and a .5 ton Power Amplifier. Even with a Fusion Engine a unit might not have the 7 tons required to mount a ERLL. A LAC/2 or LAC/5 can be installed though as they're both lighter.


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Again, this is your response to my response to your response to my claim that LAC-2s stand out as bad among other autocannons.  The only justification you or anyone else provided for LAC-2s was that something doesn't have the tonnage for an AC-5 but wants to fire out to 18 hexes.  This thus assumes a mech that can't do *anything* other than run and fire its ERLL because the 5 tons for the ERLL or the LAC-2 and ammo are all it has to spare.  You're trying to move the goalposts without providing any reason why anyone should ever mount the gun in question if there's enough tonnage to mount anything else.


No movement of the goal posts on my part especially as I have said why one would mount such weapons. Not every unit has the tech or the tonnage to space for a ERLL. Or even a LL. All those heat sinks take up a lot of weight.


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Yes.  If a mech has DHS and only mounts a PPC as its sole weapon it is wasting heatsinks.  Unless it's also mounting a PPC capacitor and 5 or more jumpjets or the PPC is a heavy or ER model or it's mounting stealth armor or otherwise making use of all of its heatsinks.  If it doesn't jump it's leaving heat dissipation worth 4 tons on the table.  I don't see how this is even under contention.  If you buy a year subscription to a streaming service and only use it for one week of binge watching that is also waste.


Adding more items. Goalposts?
 
You talk as if having extra heat sinking is a bad thing. I would think better to have too much than not enough.


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You keep coming back to ICE.  The only real combat units that use ICE are vehicles that can never overheat at all by definition.  It is not hard to remain under 9 heat with single heatsinks.  You just have to do some simple arithmetic instead of blindly smashing the big red Alpha Strike button. 

Theirs also Fuel Cell Engines and Fission Engine, and Support Vehicle Engines of all kinds. The first two come with 1 heat sink and 5 heat sinks. SV Engines do not come with any heat sinks, even the fusion engines. If you put any LL on a unit with those engines you're going to pay in tonnage with heat sinks.


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Hardly.  Impaired functionality matters.  A hit that doesn't contribute to impairing functionality because the target is too evasive for you to hit again may as well not have happened.  If you're tracking C-bills repairing armor has some cost, but because of the weight multiplier 5 points of armor cost less on a 20 ton mech than on an 80 ton mech. 

For the want of a nail the war was lost.
A single 1 point hit can be the difference between all the armor in that location being lost and an internal hit being made.


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No one uses prototype endo.  Theoretically the Hegemony must have built a prototype, but it was never a deployed unit, doesn't have stats, and likely wasn't armed with anything but load simulating weights because its job was to test a skeleton not to fight.  And it's rare to run out of crits on just endo without either ferro or the really hot running ER energy weapons, which are not required to make medium autocannons look bad. 

It would have been used during the Reunification War. It was used during the War of 3039. That we don't have stats for it does not mean that it wasn't used. It means that TPTB didn't care to create any units with it. So far the majority of units using such prototype tech are in SB:Sword and Dragon. As for running out of crits it depends on the era and equipment used. 14 crits for ES, 6 for XL engines, 3x?-DHS. It's not hard to run out of crits.



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Because you spend less on heatsinks you can only use where the ranges intersect you have more weaponry.  For every 1 ton of ML you aren't firing with your LRMs at 7-9 hexes with your LRMs you're saving 1.5 tons of DHS that you weren't going to use either past 9 hexes or within LRM minimum range.  That's not waste.  That's trading at an advantage.  Because of those savings you wind up with more guns.  The heatsinks you don't need if you stop firing your low efficiency long range weapons like ERPPCs or ERLLs leave the mass to mount far more higher efficiency short range weapons like MLs or, if working with clantech, cERMLs.  Such designs do the same long range damage and more short range damage than designs that attempt to sink the alpha strike. 

It still means that you can't use all your weapons. It also means that any heat from damage or heat weapons will be more of a problem.


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That's why you exercise some expletive trigger discipline. 

Hard to do when you didn't have enough heat for your weapons to start with.


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That a gun that does 10 damage is better than a gun that does 5 damage.  If you don't like the example blame theagent.  He's the one that proposed example mechs with a PPC and a single AC-5.  While trying to defend the AC-5 no less. 

I wouldn't say better. It does more damage but better? That'd depend on other things besides just damage.


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This is irrelevant to heat bracketing weapons.  For weapon bracket heat management what matters is that heatsinks have some mass (and when relevant crits) which can be used for other things if you contrive to need fewer of them.  Yes, DHS make high heat weapons better, but that was a response to you disputing the existence of bracket heat management in the DHS era. 

Brackets don't matter if you don't have the tonnage available to mount the equipment.


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The stated premises are true.  The unstated premise that this made a difference is not.  The conclusion is thus false.  (snip)

That's it.  Those are the mechs from Battledroids that have the only autocannon in the Battledroids rules.  None of them are constrained to use it by a lack of critical slots for heatsinks.  The change makes ammo bin crits more likely, but ammo bin crits are the tiebreaker that makes the PPC better than the AC-10 on mechs.  The AC-5 is worse without needing to go to a tiebreaker. 

Battledroids does not mount heat sinks in the engine. The engine comes with 10 free heat sinks but they all have crits. The example used for construction , the Merlin has 18 heat sinks. The RS for the Merlin shows 18 slots taken for heat sinks. Each of those heat sinks is vulnerable to damage. That's going to effect energy boats and bracket firers before it hurts AC boats.


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Improved autocannons, unless introduced in 2370 and retconned to replace the autocannons we have, don't fix the problem because the problem for the AC-5 starts once both LRMs and SRMs exist.  The problem is worst in the SHS era because for most of the DHS era the AC-5 and AC-10 are supposed to be eclipsed by the LB-10X so it doesn't much matter if they're also eclipsed by other weapons or weapon combinations.  If you see anything with a standard autocannon (other than class 20s on aerospace units purely because they're disallowed from using slug ammo for no rational reason) with a design date when LBX autocannons are available you know you're looking at an intentionally bad design like the joke units with tank rifles.  It's okay for weapons to be obsolete.  The problem is when the setting pretends they aren't even though they obviously are.

I don't see Autocannons as inferior to Missiles. For units that track heat, Missiles generate more which means more weight, crits for heat sinks. They also don't do as much damage. You might have all of them hit, odds are though you won't. So to equal AC/s you need more missile launchers. Or they're mounted on Aerospace for a solid number. SRMs also have a shorter range. So I wouldn't say Missiles are superior. A better option depending on the unit and the era but not superior.

massey

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #36 on: 01 June 2020, 11:02:00 »
What I was hoping for was an easy change that wouldn't require any more complexity, but would mollify some of the AC critics.  I didn't really want to re-hash the "PPC vs AC-5" debate, instead I wanted something that would bypass it.

Specialty ammo is cool and all, but the downside is that in a pickup game you never know which one you need.  If standard AC ammo worked as a passable anti-air and anti-infantry round, then you're never really unprepared if your opponent brings out an unusual unit type.  No, you aren't specialized against heavy armor like the PPC is, but you're a true generalist.  You could leave the weapon's stat line alone, and just by changing a handful of optional rules (that have themselves been changed several times already), you have a plausible explanation why people keep putting the damn things on Battlemechs.

Sadly, my tabletop gaming group has long disbanded since we're all old married guys now, so I don't have an opportunity to use such a suggestion.  In the event I find myself running a mechwarrior campaign (which would probably mean I had gotten divorced and was a bachelor again), I may try it.  But as far as head-canon explanations, it's probably what I'm going to go with for now.

Hptm. Streiger

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #37 on: 02 June 2020, 07:29:30 »
What I was hoping for was an easy change that wouldn't require any more complexity, but would mollify some of the AC critics.  I didn't really want to re-hash the "PPC vs AC-5" debate, instead I wanted something that would bypass it.
the simplest way would be to hone the flexibility of an AC.
So you could trade to hit modifers for damage
NameR-3R-2R-1R0R+1R+2
LAC--13-4
MAC-13678
HAC125111215
AAC2510202227

yes i upgraded the base values for the 3 smaller cannons

idea weenie

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #38 on: 03 June 2020, 05:34:34 »
What I wish you could do is let conventional AC use LB-X ammo, but the LB-X autocannons can use a variable choke setting.  The tighter the choke, the more damage you deliver, but the looser the choke, the more likely to get the to-hit bonus.

Examples, assuming all the shots hit:
AC/5 fires standard ammunition, and does one hit of 5 pts of damage
AC/5 fires LB-X ammunition, rolls on the cluster table, and on average does three hits of 1-pt each

LB-X-5 fires in full choke mode, doing a single hit of 5 pts of damage (no cluster rolls or to-hit modifier, since it is over 1/2 the AC base damage)
LB-X-5 fires in 3-pt choke mode, doing one hit of 3 pts, and one hit of 2 pts of damage (no cluster rolls since the choke mode is greater than half the AC base damage)
LB-X-5 fires in 2-pt choke mode, doing two hits of 2 pts each, and one hit of 1 pt of damage (it does roll on the cluster table since it is less than half the AC base damage, but the choke setting it is more than 1/4 the AC base damage meaning it does not get the bonus to-hit)
LB-X-5 fires in no choke mode, doing five hits of 1 pt of damage each (it does roll on the cluster table for number of projectile that hit, but gets the 1 pt targeting bonus since the choke is less than 1/4 the AC base damage)

But for existing AC, I would want to reduce the mass of the smaller autocannons (AC/2 and AC/5).  Maybe AC/10?

***

Another idea could be putting some ammunition as on-mount instead of storing in ammo bays.  On-mount ammunition cannot be used by other autocannons, but does not need a critical slot.  The down side is that if the autocannon gets a critical hit, there should be a chance for the on-mount ammunition to be destroyed.

Now to figure the max amount of ammunition can be stored on-mount.  Maybe weapon mass/4, rounded down to quarter tons?  So an AC massing 5 tons could store up to 1.25 tons of ammunition on-mount.  That ammunition could only be used by that autocannon, or it can be dumped over the side (in case the armor is getting thin).  If the Mech stores 2 tons of ammunition, the remaining .75 tons is stored in a critical slot and is subject to normal ammunition explosion rules.

RifleMech

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #39 on: 03 June 2020, 15:46:49 »
What I was hoping for was an easy change that wouldn't require any more complexity, but would mollify some of the AC critics.  I didn't really want to re-hash the "PPC vs AC-5" debate, instead I wanted something that would bypass it.

Specialty ammo is cool and all, but the downside is that in a pickup game you never know which one you need.  If standard AC ammo worked as a passable anti-air and anti-infantry round, then you're never really unprepared if your opponent brings out an unusual unit type.  No, you aren't specialized against heavy armor like the PPC is, but you're a true generalist.  You could leave the weapon's stat line alone, and just by changing a handful of optional rules (that have themselves been changed several times already), you have a plausible explanation why people keep putting the damn things on Battlemechs.

Sadly, my tabletop gaming group has long disbanded since we're all old married guys now, so I don't have an opportunity to use such a suggestion.  In the event I find myself running a mechwarrior campaign (which would probably mean I had gotten divorced and was a bachelor again), I may try it.  But as far as head-canon explanations, it's probably what I'm going to go with for now.


Thing about specialty ammo is you never know what you need until you've engaged the enemy. You can make some educated guesses knowing your opponents armor preferences but its still a guess.
What I wish you could do is let conventional AC use LB-X ammo, but the LB-X autocannons can use a variable choke setting.  The tighter the choke, the more damage you deliver, but the looser the choke, the more likely to get the to-hit bonus.

Examples, assuming all the shots hit:
AC/5 fires standard ammunition, and does one hit of 5 pts of damage
AC/5 fires LB-X ammunition, rolls on the cluster table, and on average does three hits of 1-pt each

LB-X-5 fires in full choke mode, doing a single hit of 5 pts of damage (no cluster rolls or to-hit modifier, since it is over 1/2 the AC base damage)
LB-X-5 fires in 3-pt choke mode, doing one hit of 3 pts, and one hit of 2 pts of damage (no cluster rolls since the choke mode is greater than half the AC base damage)
LB-X-5 fires in 2-pt choke mode, doing two hits of 2 pts each, and one hit of 1 pt of damage (it does roll on the cluster table since it is less than half the AC base damage, but the choke setting it is more than 1/4 the AC base damage meaning it does not get the bonus to-hit)
LB-X-5 fires in no choke mode, doing five hits of 1 pt of damage each (it does roll on the cluster table for number of projectile that hit, but gets the 1 pt targeting bonus since the choke is less than 1/4 the AC base damage)

But for existing AC, I would want to reduce the mass of the smaller autocannons (AC/2 and AC/5).  Maybe AC/10?

***

Another idea could be putting some ammunition as on-mount instead of storing in ammo bays.  On-mount ammunition cannot be used by other autocannons, but does not need a critical slot.  The down side is that if the autocannon gets a critical hit, there should be a chance for the on-mount ammunition to be destroyed.

Now to figure the max amount of ammunition can be stored on-mount.  Maybe weapon mass/4, rounded down to quarter tons?  So an AC massing 5 tons could store up to 1.25 tons of ammunition on-mount.  That ammunition could only be used by that autocannon, or it can be dumped over the side (in case the armor is getting thin).  If the Mech stores 2 tons of ammunition, the remaining .75 tons is stored in a critical slot and is subject to normal ammunition explosion rules.

There is the fluff ammo for the Partisan AA Tank. Functions as normal against ground targets and Flak against Aircraft. It wouldn't be too hard to make it work against infantry too.


What I wish you could do is let conventional AC use LB-X ammo, but the LB-X autocannons can use a variable choke setting.  The tighter the choke, the more damage you deliver, but the looser the choke, the more likely to get the to-hit bonus.

That sounds complicated. How about a -? on the cluster chart for the standard AC? That way they wouldn't be better than LB-Xs.


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Another idea could be putting some ammunition as on-mount instead of storing in ammo bays.  On-mount ammunition cannot be used by other autocannons, but does not need a critical slot.  The down side is that if the autocannon gets a critical hit, there should be a chance for the on-mount ammunition to be destroyed.

Now to figure the max amount of ammunition can be stored on-mount.  Maybe weapon mass/4, rounded down to quarter tons?  So an AC massing 5 tons could store up to 1.25 tons of ammunition on-mount.  That ammunition could only be used by that autocannon, or it can be dumped over the side (in case the armor is getting thin).  If the Mech stores 2 tons of ammunition, the remaining .75 tons is stored in a critical slot and is subject to normal ammunition explosion rules.

On Mount? Do you mean externally or you do mean giving AC's get a free amount of ammo? Either's okay with me but I think a quarter of the weapons weight is a bit much. That'd give the AC/20 3.5 tons of free ammo. That would change Mechs like the Hunchback IIC as it'd have 3 tons per UAC/20 free before ammo in the bay. The Rifleman wouldn't be low on ammo either as it'd have a total of 5 tons of ammo. I know the point is to make AC/s better but I think that's overdoing it. I can see a quarter of a ton rounded down of ammo being free. Kind of hot loading the AC. That way the Rifleman would have 5 extra rounds per gun. It's still low on ammo but it would last a bit longer and the Hunchback IIC is still a last shot at honor/suicide machine.


edit
After thinking about it for a bit, I think going by weight of the weapon opens the door to munchkinism. For example, you could eliminate the Marauder's ammo bomb and still double the amount of ammo the AC/5 has.
« Last Edit: 03 June 2020, 16:17:31 by RifleMech »

Daryk

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #40 on: 03 June 2020, 18:30:02 »
I like the choke idea!  :thumbsup:

Just to be clear, you're saying normal ACs firing cluster ammo have no choke, right?  ???

Hptm. Streiger

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #41 on: 04 June 2020, 03:03:15 »
After thinking about it for a bit, I think going by weight of the weapon opens the door to munchkinism. For example, you could eliminate the Marauder's ammo bomb and still double the amount of ammo the AC/5 has.
This amount of rounds, than yes. However a couple of rounds might be ok.
Although as you said munchkin might drop the AC2 rounds on the BlackJack and are ok with say even 20 rounds per gun - so it could not be a fixed value like half a ton worth of ammunition.

Instead, you could say you get 20% per ton of ammunition for free no matter how many guns you deploy... so the KGC gets 2 rounds free, the Atlas as well. BlackJack gets 9 rounds extra... and so on.

 or alternatively remove the extra criticals for some ammunition when you mount a AC. (unless its the AC2), in general storing the ammunition near to the weapon would be a great fix for all ammunition dependend systems.

idea weenie

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #42 on: 04 June 2020, 13:48:56 »
That sounds complicated. How about a -? on the cluster chart for the standard AC? That way they wouldn't be better than LB-Xs.

The choke on LB-X would be to allow it to fire the pellets as different sized clumps.  Full choke from an LB-X-20 would be almost all pellets being aimed at a single location on an enemy Mech.  You don't get the bonus to-hit from any spread, but you also shouldn't have to worry about rolling snake eyes on the cluster chart.

Perhaps 3 scales for each autocannon (well, only 2 for the LB-X-2):
  • Full choke - no to-hit bonus, no roll on the cluster chart, and only hit the selected location.  Treat like a single hit of the autocannon's value
  • Partial choke - you get the to-hit bonus, while rolling d6+3 on cluster table, and the hit locations have to be adjacent to each other.  More reliable damage than no choke, while more accurate than full choke
  • No choke would be getting the 1 pt bonus to hit, while rolling 2d6 on the cluster table, and hit locations can be anywhere.  For when you need to sandpaper someone

For regular autocannons, the penalty on the cluster chart does make better sense than getting the same benefit as LB-X.  To me the regular AC was designed for firing solid shells, and shotgun slugs would be an ammo change for a weapon that was not originally designed for it.  LB-X was designed from the beginning to exploit the capabilities of the shotgun-style ammunition

On Mount? Do you mean externally or you do mean giving AC's get a free amount of ammo? Either's okay with me but I think a quarter of the weapons weight is a bit much. That'd give the AC/20 3.5 tons of free ammo. That would change Mechs like the Hunchback IIC as it'd have 3 tons per UAC/20 free before ammo in the bay. The Rifleman wouldn't be low on ammo either as it'd have a total of 5 tons of ammo. I know the point is to make AC/s better but I think that's overdoing it. I can see a quarter of a ton rounded down of ammo being free. Kind of hot loading the AC. That way the Rifleman would have 5 extra rounds per gun. It's still low on ammo but it would last a bit longer and the Hunchback IIC is still a last shot at honor/suicide machine.

edit
After thinking about it for a bit, I think going by weight of the weapon opens the door to munchkinism. For example, you could eliminate the Marauder's ammo bomb and still double the amount of ammo the AC/5 has.

It would not be free ammo, you still have to pay in tonnage, C-Bills, and BV.  The only advantage is that you could save a critical slot if the amount of ammo carried is small enough.  So if the weapon is 2 tons, and you want to carry half a ton of ammo, the ammo could all be listed as on-mount, and you don't need to allocate a critical slot for the ammo.  If you were carrying a full ton of ammo, only a half ton could be carried on-mount, but the remaining half ton would need a critical slot.

I would like to include another limit where on-mount ammo is for that weapon only, and cannot be shared with other guns.  So the Marauder with a single aC/5 would not care, but a Piranha with 12 machine guns might want to think twice about putting as much ammo as possible on-mount.

You are right, the on-mount would need some other upper limit than 25% of weapon mass.

I like the choke idea!  :thumbsup:

Just to be clear, you're saying normal ACs firing cluster ammo have no choke, right?  ???

Exactly right.  Regular AC are designed for firing regular ammunition, so if a choke is on the gun and the choke gets hit, the regular ammo could not be fired.  Rifleman's idea above about the penalty on the cluster chart would also reflect a gun trying to use different ammunition than what was originally designed.
« Last Edit: 04 June 2020, 19:38:18 by idea weenie »

RifleMech

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #43 on: 04 June 2020, 14:46:26 »
This amount of rounds, than yes. However a couple of rounds might be ok.
Although as you said munchkin might drop the AC2 rounds on the BlackJack and are ok with say even 20 rounds per gun - so it could not be a fixed value like half a ton worth of ammunition.

Instead, you could say you get 20% per ton of ammunition for free no matter how many guns you deploy... so the KGC gets 2 rounds free, the Atlas as well. BlackJack gets 9 rounds extra... and so on.

 or alternatively remove the extra criticals for some ammunition when you mount a AC. (unless its the AC2), in general storing the ammunition near to the weapon would be a great fix for all ammunition dependend systems.

I used 25% of the ammo but 20% would work too. It does help smaller ACs but not so much that I'd go without ammo. It just means I can take more shots I might not otherwise.  I'd still go per gun as it'd be easier and make more sense than per design. That ends up being more math and nerfs designs with more ACs. I'd also require at least a ton of ammo but I think that's in the rules any way. We can't preven't people from leaving the bins empty but we can't make them wish they'd loaded them.  >:D

If I were to do this I'd apply it to all AC types and Rifle Cannons.



That does make better sense.  To me the regular AC was designed for firing solid shells, and shotgun slugs would be an ammo change for a weapon that was not originally designed for it

Cool :
I'm not sure about which weapon is designed for what as there'd different ammo in the fluff before the LB-X was introduced. Once it did seem that the LB-X was the shotgun to the AC/s rifle but that's changed. Now it just seems like the LB-X is an improved AC with a limited selection in ammo types.

 Should the -# on the cluster hit chart increase with the size of the AC or just be a single number?


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It would not be free ammo, you still have to pay in tonnage, C-Bills, and BV.  The only advantage is that you could save a critical slot if the amount of ammo carried is small enough.  So if the weapon is 2 tons, and you want to carry half a ton of ammo, the ammo could all be listed as on-mount, and you don't need to allocate a critical slot for the ammo.  If you were carrying a full ton of ammo, only a half ton could be carried on-mount, but the remaining half ton would need a critical slot.

I would like to include another limit where on-mount ammo is for that weapon only, and cannot be shared with other guns.  So the Marauder with a single aC/5 would not care, but a Piranha with 12 machine guns might want to think twice about putting as much ammo as possible on-mount.

You are right, the on-mount would need some other upper limit than 25% of weapon mass.

So it's more like weapons on small vehicles? The ammo is included in with the weapon for critical slots.

Cool :)  I think ammo would work. I'm not sure what else might.

Daryk

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #44 on: 04 June 2020, 16:50:14 »
I think adding the choke to the LB-Xs keeps them more than "better enough" than regular ACs, though I'll say I also support allowing LB-Xs to fire alternative ammo...  Ultras I'm less sure of, but honestly, why not?

idea weenie

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #45 on: 04 June 2020, 19:12:14 »
I used 25% of the ammo but 20% would work too. It does help smaller ACs but not so much that I'd go without ammo. It just means I can take more shots I might not otherwise.  I'd still go per gun as it'd be easier and make more sense than per design. That ends up being more math and nerfs designs with more ACs. I'd also require at least a ton of ammo but I think that's in the rules any way. We can't preven't people from leaving the bins empty but we can't make them wish they'd loaded them.  >:D

If I were to do this I'd apply it to all AC types and Rifle Cannons.

I originally went with 25% because it made the math easy (quarter tons, instead of fractional accounting for .2, .4, .6, and .8 that would result from 20% of weapon mass).

Cool :
I'm not sure about which weapon is designed for what as there'd different ammo in the fluff before the LB-X was introduced. Once it did seem that the LB-X was the shotgun to the AC/s rifle but that's changed. Now it just seems like the LB-X is an improved AC with a limited selection in ammo types.

Should the -# on the cluster hit chart increase with the size of the AC or just be a single number?

I'd prefer if the number was a constant, to make a lot less need to look up on a table vs a per-weapon penalty.  If autocannons are rifled, would there be a greater penalty based on range bracket?

In this fan rule, ACs were found to have the ability to fire LB-X shells, while the LB-X autocannons were designed from the beginning to use shotgun-style ammunition?

So it's more like weapons on small vehicles? The ammo is included in with the weapon for critical slots.

Cool :)  I think ammo would work. I'm not sure what else might. 

To me ammunition would be the only thing that could work.  Everything else would require its own system.  I hope I am wrong, and more ideas come up


Of course now I am thinking of integrated systems, where you save on critical slots, but lose out on tonnage or effectiveness.  (i.e. heat sinks dump more heat, but only for the weapon they are linked to; or targeting computers fit into the weapon's crannies needing fewer critical slots, but require more tonnage since they are calculated on a per-weapon basis rather than total tonnage of appropriate weapons)

RifleMech

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Re: Conventional ACs and making them useful
« Reply #46 on: Today at 06:10:13 »
I think adding the choke to the LB-Xs keeps them more than "better enough" than regular ACs, though I'll say I also support allowing LB-Xs to fire alternative ammo...  Ultras I'm less sure of, but honestly, why not?

I don't know if chokes on guns are a real think or not but it sounds dangerous to me. Even if it isn't, I think it'd be complicated to implement and use. Allowing LB-Xs to use other ammo though I got zero problem with. Ultras... why not?


I originally went with 25% because it made the math easy (quarter tons, instead of fractional accounting for .2, .4, .6, and .8 that would result from 20% of weapon mass).

I'd prefer if the number was a constant, to make a lot less need to look up on a table vs a per-weapon penalty.  If autocannons are rifled, would there be a greater penalty based on range bracket?

In this fan rule, ACs were found to have the ability to fire LB-X shells, while the LB-X autocannons were designed from the beginning to use shotgun-style ammunition?

To me ammunition would be the only thing that could work.  Everything else would require its own system.  I hope I am wrong, and more ideas come up


Of course now I am thinking of integrated systems, where you save on critical slots, but lose out on tonnage or effectiveness.  (i.e. heat sinks dump more heat, but only for the weapon they are linked to; or targeting computers fit into the weapon's crannies needing fewer critical slots, but require more tonnage since they are calculated on a per-weapon basis rather than total tonnage of appropriate weapons)


That's cool. I just got a lot of free ammo that way. That's why I used 25% on the amount of ammo instead.

Thing is with a flat number between all the autocannons a Jackrabbit gets 11 rounds for its AC/2. A Blackjack would get only 5 for each. A Mech with 4 would get 2. The Hunchback IIC wouldn't get any extra ammo since you can't split that 1 extra shot. On the other hand if its a flat % of the ammo its easier to figure out and every AC/ benefits.

I don't think rifling would add much to range. Maybe a little but I think it'd make the weapon more accurate. I'm not sure how much it helps bigger weapons like cannons either.

Should extra ammo be given to MGs, Gauss Weapons, and Chemical Lasers?

If it were me, I'd allow but the AC and the LB-X to fire all kinds of ammo. The LB-X just does it better at longer ranges. I'd also change the ammo so cluster rounds are more like shot rounds. They inflict more damage up close and less further away because of the shot spreading out but the spread does increase the chance of a hit further out. The LB-X "cluster" rounds wouldn't really change but would be made clear that they're timed proximity rounds that explode when near the target. I'd also let LB-X rapid fire standard rounds at least. Of course if it were up to me, the Partisan AA Tank's ammo would be available too.

So far I haven't thought of anything better. Ammo still seems the best option.

I did toy with having some weapons be more "externally" mounted so they take less crits but are outside the armor and more vulnerable to hits. I never got to test it though. I still like the older targeting computer rules too so I could have a computer on just a few weapons instead of all.