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Author Topic: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa  (Read 4667 times)

GreekFire

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ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« on: 25 July 2019, 20:56:53 »
Svartalfa, from TRO: Prototypes

There's a reason why I took a break from my ProtoMech of the Week articles, even if only the Svartalfa remained. While I did have some rules questions that needed answering, and while there were some unreleased record sheets, the real issue involved the difficulty in tackling a unit like the Svartalfa. Firstly, it is the only canon Glider ProtoMech currently in the game. As Gliders use WiGE movement as a base, this alone makes the Svartalfa more of a hassle for certain players as, in my experience, many are unfamiliar with WiGE units or how they work. If that weren't enough, Glider ProtoMechs behave slightly differently from standard WiGE vehicles, and it is important for me to note these differences for the sake of this PotW.
 
  • It takes 4 MP to take off, 4 MP to hover, and the ProtoMech needs to move 4 hexes each turn in order to stay airborne.
  • Gliders can increase their elevation like a VTOL - but have to pay more MP for moving at those higher elevations, as a WiGE vehicle would when traversing a ravine.
  • Gliders cannot sideslip, even when using Flaking speed, as they do not have a piloting skill.

On top of that, Gliders also behave differently from other ProtoMechs. Instead of having a near miss hit location, they instead have a motive hit (which reduces their cruising MP by one). Additionally, any Torso critical hits will have the same effect, meaning that Gliders tend to see their MP drop rather quickly once they start getting shot at.

With all of that out of the way, lets start looking at the Svartalfa.

~ ~ ~

Code: [Select]
SVARTALFA
INTRO: 3083
FACTIONS: Hell's Horses
WEAPONS: 1 Streak SRM-6 (10 shots), 2 Medium Chemical Lasers (30 shots total), 1 Machine Gun (50 shots)

         ARMOR                 INTERNAL   
          (9)                    (4)      Arms -> Cored: 47 pts
          / \                    / \      Legs -> Cored: 60 pts
      (6 / 23 \ 6)           (4 / 14 \ 4) Torso -> Cored: 37 pts
         | | |                  | | |      Legs -> Destroyed: 23 pts
        (  15  )               (  8  )

  MG:(6) MG:(2)

There's not much that is said on the Svartalfa in terms of overt fluff, but much is insinuated. Firstly, the Svartalfa is clearly a result of technologies developed by the Society being adapted for use within Clan Hell's Horses. We don't, though, quite know what the progenitor of the Svartalfa looks like, as none of the purported Society Gliders have ever been shown or named in a TRO entry. Secondly, the Svartalfa, as a 14-ton ProtoMech, is piloted via specialized PA(L) suits and assigned purely to the best ProtoMech pilots within the Touman. This alone should vastly prolong the lifespan of these top-tier pilots (especially since, if going by the rules, the pilots automatically "eject" from their UltraHeavy Proto once the torso location is destroyed as opposed to just...dying). And more ProtoMech pilots surviving means their skills can most likely be passed on a bit easier than before, which should theoretically increase the skill base of the entire ProtoMech roster over time.

The Svaltalfa is interesting in both its efficiencies and its inefficiencies. As a 14-ton Glider ProtoMech with a 4/6 WiGE speed, it isn't exactly fast - in fact, it's dangerously slow. With Gliders having to move 4 hexes every turn in order to stay airborne (or spend 4 MP to hover in place), two motive hits will ground the Svaltalfa and reduce it to one MP for the rest of the game. However, its speed could be actually be considered a bit of a design cheat. Having a standard, bipedal ProtoMech moving a ground-based 4/6 would cost it an additional 1000 kg in weight (in the form of an 85-rated engine) versus the engine it actually uses. So even if the speed is rather poor for a Glider, it works in the context of a semi-mobile bruiser - one like the Svartalfa.

With that said, the weapons layout is definitely sub-optimal. Having both Chemical Lasers in the arms is a serious nerf - one of, if not the, biggest flaw a ProtoMech can have. It can either use the Streak system or the Medium Lasers in a turn, but never both. Even worse, both weapon systems charge their full value in BV, meaning that in a point-based game, you're paying more for weapons that you'll at best be using only half of the time. But don't be fooled: the Svartalfa is built around the SSRM-6, not the lasers. Your attack plans need to focus around using this weapon as your opener, as counter-intuitive as that sounds.

The best way to consider the Svartalfa is almost as a Battle Armor unit with its own integrated transport. The WiGE movement profile forces this. 4/6 speed means that the Svartalfa stands a very high chance of being grounded once it starts closing with its target(s), while the movement profile also means that making slashing attacks, turning, and coming in for a second go is a long and dangerous process. As such, I find that you're best off sending the Svartalfa directly into the thickest combat, wherever it will stay relevant for the longest amount of time. The integral +1 to-hit that WiGE ProtoMechs get while airborne will make the Svartalfa a bit harder to hit while it closes, and makes it a bit less attractive as a target even if it hovers in place. And if the Svartalfa does get grounded, it has incredibly thick armor - it will take a full turn of focused firepower for a heavy 'Mech to take it out.

Once you're within firing range, I find that using the SSRM-6 against particularly vulnerable targets is the best way to go. Remember, you cannot fire the Medium Chemical Lasers and the SSRM-6 on the same turn - it's one or the other. But if you use the SSRM-6s to land motive hits on vehicles or to get leg/gyro/cockpit crits on 'Mechs, you can then follow up by using the Chemical Lasers in order to use aimed shots to quickly finish off a target. It's a somewhat unusual approach, but it works wonders.

~ ~ ~

Code: [Select]
SVARTALFA 2 - LRM
INTRO: ???
FACTIONS: Hell's Horses
WEAPONS: 1 LRM-15 (MG), 1 LRM-15 (Torso) - 20 ammo total

         ARMOR                 INTERNAL   
           (4)                     (4)      Arms -> Cored: 35 pts
          /  \                    /  \      Legs -> Cored: 45 pts
      (2 / 15 \ 2)            (4 / 14 \ 4)  Torso -> Cored: 29 pts
         |  |  |                 |  | |     Legs -> Destroyed: 16 pts
        (   8  )                (   8  )
MG:(6) MG:(2)

There's not much to say about the Svartalfa 2. It's basically what the Bane 3 is to Clan 'Mechs, what the Longbow is to Inner Sphere 'Mechs. I shouldn't have to spell out how to use the Svartalfa 2. It's an LRM boat, use it accordingly. The biggest advantage of the Svartalfa 2 is that the Glider WiGE movement profile not only allows it to quickly reposition if needed, but also lets it boost up multiple elevations whenever needed to quickly assume an overwatch position or gain vision of any vulnerable targets that may be attempting to break line of sight. This is something more akin to how VTOLs operate, although the Svartalfa 2 can also use this to pop itself into some heavy woods if it so chooses.

~ ~ ~

How should you use them? I'd recommend using them in conjunction with a heavier assault force. Play them alongside things like Hellstars and Cygnuses, or Athena or Mars Vehicles. Let the heavier forces savage a target for a turn, then allow the Svartalfas to finish the weakened unit off. This obviously works best in an environment where zell has been thrown out of the window; if you're forced to work under the confines of zell, then make sure you choose your engagement location carefully. I'd recommend abandoning any pretense of maneuver warfare, and force your dueling opponent to come to you by hiding in a canyon or something similar. Either that, or go for the vehicles.

For the Svartalfa 2 - find a good location. Shoot LRMs. Rinse and repeat. Hanging behind some level 3 hills can be pretty handy - if you start drawing too much attention, drop behind the hills to cut line of sight and use that to reposition elsewhere.

~ ~ ~

How do you beat one? Relatively easy - if you come prepared. If you have LB-Xs, especially 5 or 10s, use them. It only takes two motive hits to permanently ground a Svartalfa, and the to-hit bonus from LB-Xs makes it easier to ground Svartalfas before they can get too close. After that point, they've got a full one MP to spend every turn; focus them with their biggest weakness: fire. You can get a very quick kill for very little investment by using infernos or setting the right hexes on fire after the Svartalfa is immobile.

If those aren't options available to you, then simply rapidly changing engagement angles can be a bit of a pain for the ProtoMechs to deal with. They work well when their targets are pinned in place, but just like battle armor without any available transports, they can suffer if their targets can move beyond their threat bubble. Mobile forces will be useful here.

Finally, as always, make sure you have good awareness of the battlefield. The WiGE movement means Svartalfas can show up faster than you think, over rocky, hilly terrain that would take ground-based assets triple the time to traverse. Make sure you don't neglect keeping an eye on waterways either - if you can catch them over a body of water, focus them down there and then.

And a final aside before I let you all go - look at the Svartalfas introduction date, then take a look at the Parash 3's. I guess ProtoMech development wasn't such a waste after all, huh...

Master Unit List: http://masterunitlist.info/Unit/Filter?Name=svartalfa
Iron Wind Metals - Svartalfa: http://ironwindmetals.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=8865
Iron Wind Metals - Svartalfa 2: http://ironwindmetals.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=8864
« Last Edit: 19 May 2020, 00:37:05 by GreekFire »
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Empyrus

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #1 on: 25 July 2019, 21:12:51 »
Flying horseman!



Cool to read yet another ProtoMech article! And that note about Parash 3 intro date... hmm hmm, interesting, very.

But seriously, it cannot used but the Streak or the lasers? Argh! I hate rules like that, so very annoying especially since it doesn't come with a BV discount. I suppose the lasers are basically a backup weapon in the even the SRM somehow runs out of ammo or gets blown up?
EDIT Torso and main gun can fire at once, right? Or torso and arms.
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UnLimiTeD

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #2 on: 25 July 2019, 22:11:21 »
I never actually looked up what they were. Mentioned often, but I never really looked. That is certainly one unusual machine.
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Natasha Kerensky

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #3 on: 25 July 2019, 23:28:18 »

Thanks for getting around to this.

Any idea on the stats for the Svartalfa 3?

Are its extra Chemical Lasers nerfed in a way similar to the original’s weapons layout due to conflicting locations?
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GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #4 on: 25 July 2019, 23:48:38 »
I suppose the lasers are basically a backup weapon in the even the SRM somehow runs out of ammo or gets blown up?

A back-up, yes, but also a follow-up. You don't want to keep firing the Streaks if you target is immobile or incapacitated, since aimed shots will be worth more than the slightly higher damage potential of the Streaks. It is worth mentioning, though, that both lasers + the machine gun brings you right up to 12 points of damage...not bad if your target is a shutdown 'Mech.

Quote
EDIT Torso and main gun can fire at once, right? Or torso and arms.

Yes and yes. So in the case of the Svartalfa, it could have mounted both Medium Chem. Lasers in the Torso to be able to fire all of the weapons at once.

Any idea on the stats for the Svartalfa 3?
Are its extra Chemical Lasers nerfed in a way similar to the original’s weapons layout due to conflicting locations?

Sheesh, I haven't built a ProtoMech in years...but lemme give it a try. Assuming the armor stays the same and the machine gun remains, the Svart-3 most likely moves 5/8, has four Med. Chem. Lasers, with about 12 shots of ammo per laser. Weight and crit allowances would let it carry the two additional lasers in the Torso if needed, which would turn it into a pretty potent flanker.

Only downside would be the loss of the main gun, which is a huge necessity on the Svart-1. Not as big of a deal here though since the theoretical Svart-3 would move faster.
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Fallen_Raven

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #5 on: 26 July 2019, 01:17:05 »
The Hell's Horses touman is blessed with an abundance of maneuverable units, which is great for fast strikes an sweeping advances, but a relative scarcity of heavy brawlers. I would argue that the Svartalfa is best as the anvil portion of a pincer movement. The moderate speed and WiGE terrain crossing let it get into position in some form of cover, then start blazing away at anyone who approaches. Meanwhile the traditional units have gone around the long way and push the enemy into the rough terrain where the Svartfala is.

The weapons mix is suited for this as it is short ranged, but heavy enough to damage vehicles and 'mechs. An entire point could conceivably cripple a heavy 'mech in one turn, and certainly do severe motive damage to a tank. That's enough to stall an enemy force with some favorable terrain, and the armor is enough that even a Guass Rifle doesn't give free kills.
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #6 on: 26 July 2019, 05:17:23 »
Oh man, I'm so thrilled to suddenly see this article appear. Great stuff as usual, GreekFire, awesome to see you back in the saddle.
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grimlock1

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #7 on: 26 July 2019, 10:06:32 »
Thanks for getting around to this one, GreekFire. 


Sheesh, I haven't built a ProtoMech in years...but lemme give it a try. Assuming the armor stays the same and the machine gun remains, the Svart-3 most likely moves 5/8, has four Med. Chem. Lasers, with about 12 shots of ammo per laser. Weight and crit allowances would let it carry the two additional lasers in the Torso if needed, which would turn it into a pretty potent flanker.

Only downside would be the loss of the main gun, which is a huge necessity on the Svart-1. Not as big of a deal here though since the theoretical Svart-3 would move faster.

Okay, now I'm getting really interested. 5/8 WIGE is Roc speed. Don't remember the virtue of having a main gun on a proto, though.

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #8 on: 26 July 2019, 10:06:52 »
Quote
The best way to consider the Svartalfa is almost as a Battle Armor unit with its own integrated transport.

Self-deploying battle armor with a WiGE movement type would be awesome.

On a different note: Deployment. Regular non-UltraHeavy Protos deploy in Points of five. Does that hold up for Ultraheavy Protos or do they move to a vehicle/ASF style two-unit Point? Having a pair of Svartalfa's flying around being a total PITA to hit is bad enough; I think having five of them doing a circle of death would be terrifying.

(For some reason I keep thinking UltraHeavy Protos are limited to 2 but I can't remember why.)

GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #9 on: 26 July 2019, 10:21:25 »
Okay, now I'm getting really interested. 5/8 WIGE is Roc speed. Don't remember the virtue of having a main gun on a proto, though.

They give ProtoMechs a 360 degree field of fire. It's not something that's useful for every ProtoMech, but it's definitely useful on the oft-grounded and difficult to maneuver Svartalfa.

Quote
I want to ask a question but I won't because this isn't the place for customs.

Here you go: https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=66231.new#new

On a different note: Deployment. Regular non-UltraHeavy Protos deploy in Points of five. Does that hold up for Ultraheavy Protos or do they move to a vehicle/ASF style two-unit Point? Having a pair of Svartalfa's flying around being a total PITA to hit is bad enough; I think having five of them doing a circle of death would be terrifying.

Still five.
You know, I just noticed that the Hell's Horses now have access to the Hobgoblin and the Sprite - definitely wasn't the case when I first started writing these. A single Sprite supporting four Svartalfas via smoke rounds could be particularly annoying..
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Sjhernan3060

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #10 on: 26 July 2019, 23:34:09 »
Oh man, I'm so thrilled to suddenly see this article appear. Great stuff as usual, GreekFire, awesome to see you back in the saddle.

2nd! A great write up on an interesting unit!

UnLimiTeD

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #11 on: 27 July 2019, 05:51:02 »
Can't the svartalfas be covered by a svart2? Though I guess a Sprite is an even better anchor.
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GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #12 on: 27 July 2019, 08:23:56 »
Can't the svartalfas be covered by a svart2? Though I guess a Sprite is an even better anchor.

They could, but I'm mostly thinking of smoke rounds here. Using a Svart-2 for smoke just seems wasteful.
You could, though, use a Point of Svart-1s in conjunction with a Point of Hippogriffs for pretty good effect.
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #13 on: 27 July 2019, 10:01:25 »
Excellent stuff as always! The link between the Svart and the Parash 3 is a very clever thing to point out and its one I missed entirely so well done for putting those thread points together :)

I still wonder how the hell the Svart actually does its Wigie movement. I assume it just zum's along like its got a jetpack and instead of jumping it does an Ironman and flies along that way, with downwards thrust coming from vents in its chest and wings to stop it tumbling into the dirt. A true WiGIE uses its lifting body but the Svart looks about as aerodynamic as this lil guy - https://imgur.com/gallery/vSfGFEH  and I simply can't see any other way of doing it.

« Last Edit: 27 July 2019, 10:03:51 by marauder648 »
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #14 on: 27 July 2019, 10:21:00 »
Because Protos can assign their ammo by individual salvo instead of by full ton, I wonder how much fun it would be to load a Point of Slartibartfast 2 with normal rounds...except for two shots of Swarm as a rude surprise. >:D

It'd be particularly useful against other Proto users or other small unit swarms(hitting BA like this would practically be a war crime), and ironically enough you'd get even more mileage out of them if there are AMS or APDS in the target area...
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #15 on: 27 July 2019, 10:35:55 »
So what's this connection between the Parash 3 and the Svartalfa, other than the intro date?

Or are we sort of assuming that the Ultraheavy's "modified PA(L)" suit is what gave them the idea/knowledge to do the Clan Machina Domini system?

marauder648

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #16 on: 27 July 2019, 10:42:09 »
So what's this connection between the Parash 3 and the Svartalfa, other than the intro date?

Or are we sort of assuming that the Ultraheavy's "modified PA(L)" suit is what gave them the idea/knowledge to do the Clan Machina Domini system?

I'd assume thats what the link implies. And if the Svart's pilots wear some kind of 'suit' unlike the normal Proto pilots it could be no stretch to think that the two programs are not linked.
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Empyrus

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #17 on: 27 July 2019, 11:14:57 »
The Republic thinks the Hell's Horses might've obtained the Machina Domini system from the Word of Blake (salvage or something like that), but it might be further development from the ultra-heavy ProtoMech control systems. Convergent evolution.
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #18 on: 27 July 2019, 12:13:49 »
given that it takes 4mp to take off, and you have to move 4 hexes to avoid landing at the end of the movement, how the heck can a 6mp max unit manage to even get airborne?

Empyrus

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #19 on: 27 July 2019, 12:55:14 »
given that it takes 4mp to take off, and you have to move 4 hexes to avoid landing at the end of the movement, how the heck can a 6mp max unit manage to even get airborne?
You have to spend 4MP per turn to stay airborne once you've taken off, the turn with take off doesn't require moving 4 hexes.
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GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #20 on: 27 July 2019, 19:08:55 »
Or are we sort of assuming that the Ultraheavy's "modified PA(L)" suit is what gave them the idea/knowledge to do the Clan Machina Domini system?

In Ultra Protos, you have gyroless units that needs EI implants and a modified PAL(L) suit in order to function.
Clan Machina Domini have the same requirements.

There's no way that's a coincidence, especially when you consider that both units have the same introduction date, especially since both technologies come from the same faction within the Inner Spere.
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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #21 on: 27 July 2019, 23:10:37 »
ultra-heavy proto's came from the The Society originally, in the homeworlds.

i would say that both technologies (machina domini and ultra proto) played a part in the clan interface cockpit.. most likely the ultraheavy proto's forced the basis for the technology development, but it is also pretty clear that they were trying to replicate the WOB system's capabilities using more clan society friendly methods.

GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #22 on: 28 July 2019, 09:32:57 »
i would say that both technologies (machina domini and ultra proto) played a part in the clan interface cockpit.. most likely the ultraheavy proto's forced the basis for the technology development, but it is also pretty clear that they were trying to replicate the WOB system's capabilities using more clan society friendly methods.

Disagree. I wouldn't be surprised if the Horses didn't even know about the WoB's version of the technology. I would be more apt to believe that they took the Society tech they had salvaged, began to reverse-engineer it, then went "hey, what if we tried this with 'Mechs?"
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Wrangler

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #23 on: 28 July 2019, 10:50:09 »
For some crazy reason, I thought the Svartalfa 2 had Streak LRMs.  That certainly would have been a improvement for it being sniper and being able stay in the move hitting its targets.  Nice see you write up something, GreekFire.
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Maelwys

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #24 on: 28 July 2019, 11:16:12 »
In Ultra Protos, you have gyroless units that needs EI implants and a modified PAL(L) suit in order to function.
Clan Machina Domini have the same requirements.

There's no way that's a coincidence, especially when you consider that both units have the same introduction date, especially since both technologies come from the same faction within the Inner Spere.

Okay, I was just making sure I wasn't missing anything in particular.

I do sometimes believe that the Horses are the new scientist Clan...

glitterboy2098

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #25 on: 28 July 2019, 11:29:59 »
Disagree. I wouldn't be surprised if the Horses didn't even know about the WoB's version of the technology. I would be more apt to believe that they took the Society tech they had salvaged, began to reverse-engineer it, then went "hey, what if we tried this with 'Mechs?"
the horses had forces involved with the war against the world of blake, including several places where their advanced technology was involved, like Terra. even if they never obtained salvage of a Gestalt, they certainly would have received threat updates from the coalition fighting the wob, which would certainly include any details on the hardware involved to be obtained from review of salvage.

and frankly, the fact that their interface PAL suit is a near carbon copy of the WOB interface suit, including the glaring flaws in design that grew out of the WOB's focus on using the Gestalt's pilot as a terrorist/covert special operative. roles the clans do not do. would indicate they are copying the WOB system a fair bit.
« Last Edit: 28 July 2019, 11:34:24 by glitterboy2098 »

GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #26 on: 28 July 2019, 11:52:52 »
and frankly, the fact that their interface PAL suit is a near carbon copy of the WOB interface suit, including the glaring flaws in design that grew out of the WOB's focus on using the Gestalt's pilot as a terrorist/covert special operative. roles the clans do not do. would indicate they are copying the WOB system a fair bit.

Once again, I have to disagree. I would argue that the Horse's interface PA(L) suit is instead a near carbon copy of the Society interface PA(L) - and the Society certainly developed that independently of the WoB. And of course, the Society suit used EI as a base, whereas the WoB used VDNI as theirs, so it would make more sense for the Horse's to start their work from the multiple physical examples they recovered from the Society revolt as opposed to the suits they theoretically may have heard about or captured in super-limited numbers from the WoB.
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glitterboy2098

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #27 on: 28 July 2019, 12:09:54 »
You mean the one we have zero stats about and most players didn't realize existed? I'm talking printed stats here. Same size, same protection, virtually identical weapons, even the same art/appearance! At this point i'm saying if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it is a duck, while you're going 'well maybe its a platypus?'


GreekFire

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #28 on: 28 July 2019, 14:39:02 »
You mean the one we have zero stats about and most players didn't realize existed? I'm talking printed stats here. Same size, same protection, virtually identical weapons, even the same art/appearance! At this point i'm saying if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it is a duck, while you're going 'well maybe its a platypus?'

In this case, there's only so many ways you can stat out a duck. It's not like PA(L)s have a ton of customization options available to them, and even the art isn't enough to convince me in this case - re-appropriated art is a common thing for XTROs, and I would prefer new art for a more interesting unit than an interface suit that few players will ever actively field unless they eject from the 'Mech they're piloting.

The developmental path just makes more sense. We know for a fact that the Horses got their hands on Society ProtoMechs, and we know that those included Sprites and Hobgoblins. We know those used modified PA(L) suits that used EI as a base. We know the Clan Machina Domini system was first field tested by the Hell's Horses the same year as their first homegrown Ultra Proto came out, and we know that both systems (the 'Mech and the Proto one) follow exactly the same formula (EI + PA(L) suit + no gyro).

We don't know anything that supports a WoB link though. Were the Horses on Gibson, or part of the Regulan campaign to eradicate the last remnants of the Master's forces in FWL space? No. Was the Gestalt said to have been used beyond Gibson or within the Master's entourage? No. Does Clan Interface technology have the same base requirements as the WoB version? No. Do we have a precedent that shows that they traded advanced tech with the Regulans or RotS? No. This link just seems like much more of a stretch to me.
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Maelwys

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Re: ProtoMech of the Week: Svartalfa
« Reply #29 on: 28 July 2019, 14:44:06 »
Only Mechs in the XTROs got new art, which explains the same look.

They're both PA(L)s, so that's going to limit the difference between the two, especially in terms of armor. High ground movement is a given, especially since jumping has been fluffed as being harder to teach/do.

The WoB suit has a Firedrake needler and an A-P Mount, while the Clan suit has 2 A-P Mounts. Further the Clan suit has 60kgs dedicated to mission equipment. They're similar, but not the same.

There's also a bit in XTRO Republic III about how the WoB suit had a Terror component to the design, while the Clan version is designed to keep the pilot alive.

Now, I couldn't say one way or another which way it went. Its possible that the Horses heard about the suits and then got to the same point the WoB did, utilizing the research from the Ultra-heavy ProtoMechs.

Some points in favor of this are that the fluff of the Clan Interface suit states that the WoB came up with the Machina Domini interface based on captured ProtoMechs, so if the WoB could do it, the Horses certainly could, especially since there were rumors of it already being done.

Its also possible that they somehow got the information from  the WoB (salvage, tech data, etc) and built it on their own, though most of the fluff indicates that the Republic clamped down on the technology pretty hard.