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Author Topic: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units  (Read 1164 times)

Church14

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I was flipping though the Jade Falcon Sourcebook. Basically, getting an idea of what they would have at Tukayyid. In the force rosters, they show the Solahma units have old IS designs. No new designs like a hatchetman or a wolfhound.

I was trying to figure out if these would be ancient mechs or recent isorla. Ones still operation in spite of centuries of war or mechs picked up from recent inner sphere conquests.

For example, one of the mechs listed is a crab. I was pondering if it would be an old CRB-27, -27b, or -27sl. It could also be a newer, lower tech CRB-20.

It’s not an important question, just more of a curiosity.

glitterboy2098

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #1 on: 14 October 2019, 14:34:13 »
most of them would likely be old star league era mechs pulled from the Brian caches. the clans would not have salvaged a lot of inner sphere mechs at the time, given how hard they hit the IS, how fast they moved, and the way they cut through IS forces like a hot knife through butter.

odds are these were the non-royal/less advanced tech units from the SLDF proper, just a bit above succession wars level tech and liekly roughly on par with the best of the hardware the IS was using in 3050.
since that is the worst and most disposable the clans had at the time.

Frabby

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #2 on: 14 October 2019, 14:50:39 »
The Clans, in particular Clan Jade Falcon, refitted captured Inner Sphere factories to produce souped-up "-C" versions of Inner Sphere designs such as the Griffin, Marauder, or BattleMaster (not to be confused with IIC designs). Essentially, they took existing IS production and tweaked it a little, as a stopgap measure. Such units would the appear in garrison forces, and thus I reckon a, say, Griffin, Marauder, or BattleMaster listed on a garrison/PGC/Solahma roster would likely be such a -C variant.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #3 on: 14 October 2019, 16:44:23 »
The Falcon Sourcebook mechs are the TRO:2750 models brought from the clan homeworlds & dating back to the SLDF Exodus.

The "-C" variants listed in the Twycross book were not Brian Cache or Factory mechs to my knowledge.

They were salvage from the unit the Falcon Guards destroyed & repaired with some Clan weaponry.  Originally listed as "Mixed Tech".  At least I seem to recall that being the case.
 All were illegal for being under weight as well.  Most of them sucked due to the original # of SHS that were on the mechs.

I seem to recall only the ShadowHawk, Victor, & Atlas were even remotely usable in regards to heat management.

Though TPTB later said you could get similar mechs brought from Brian Caches back home to match those stats, but its not what was originally intended.

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #4 on: 14 October 2019, 16:49:06 »
JFSB suffers from IRL timeline problems, just like Battle of Tukayyid SB- namely that no secondline designs were out at that point (some do come out by Tuk SB IIRC) and no advanced Star League designs we now take for granted were out.  I built my own list of Clan secondline, for Diamond Shark Omegas, and ComGuards (TRO58/60, Royals) to revise the lists we were given in Tuk SB.

The Falcons would probably scrap a Hatchetman for its dezgra physical attacks.  Wolfhound?  Well, that whole Wolf-Falcon rivalry might be enough to get it scrapped as well.  I want to say what you see in the JFSB would be the old 3025 mechs, but its been a while since I looked at it.  You can make the solahma and Eyrie clusters a lot more interesting now with Clan secondline machines (even if old) and the 'new' good Star League designs that would have survived to the Invasion.

I would disagree with Glitterboy about how much salvage the Falcons may have ended up with- remember some of the mercs & regulars they fought in the early waves surrendered when they were out positioned, expected to be ransomed as was the practice.  Additionally, even in combat bits & pieces will be recovered . . . think of the odds, 1 in 36 enemy mechs will be headshot!  Now, I do not expect many light mechs or lightly armored mediums survived brushes with the Clans (how much of a Stinger survives that draws the attention of a Hellbringer Prime?  Adder Prime?) but pieces will be spread and the Clan techs should be masterful scavengers.  IMO figure 20% of what they faced could be repaired enough to be fielded or become Cs.
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RifleMech

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #5 on: 14 October 2019, 23:05:59 »
As the others said the Jade Falcon sourcebook was printed before the creation of Clan secondline Mechs, and Royals. So originally they'd be old Star League Mechs. That said we often upgraded them with Clan Tech. As one of the more powerful Clans, the Jade Falcons  would of had the resources to upgrade their second line mechs. It also wasn't until later that losses would have made them pull mechs out of the caches. The book doesn't exactly say though what variants they are or where they came from though. So that gives you a lot of options for the second line mechs.

They could be:
Any Star League Era Variant brought to Clan world by the SLDF in Exile, used as is.
Possibly a Pentagon Power variant brought out of storage, used as is.
An upgraded C variant, Star League vintage or captured mech.
A captured IS variant, used as is.
A Clan IIC variant.

You can use any or all options. A Star Commander might a Royal and a Warrior a Regular design. A Star Caption could have a C model while a bloodnamed could have a IIC. Or they could be using a captured mech as punishment for having lost their own. Or they could have been upgraded to a C variant as a reward for battlefield actions. There's all kinds of reasons to have all kinds of mechs. I let all the options help give the unit a good background story.


Any newer design like the Hatchetman and Wolfhound would have been taken as isorla as they originated long after the Exodus. They wouldn't have been used initially as the front lines were moving too fast. PCGs would have been going around collecting salvage though. The techs also would have been busy repairing and/or upgrading them as well. Waste not, want not, and all that.

The Hatchetman would have been looked down upon because of the physical weapon but there's no reason the Clans couldn't simply either leave the hatchet off - Most likely - or modify the design to match it's original TRO:3025 stats. It didn't have the hatchet. That was retconned in later. Of course after the Falcon Guards were destroyed any assignment to a Hatchetman would result in a Trial of Refusal. I would guess the Jade Falcons would ultimately trade or scap them once replacements from the Homeworlds arrived.
 
The Wolfhound wouldn't have taken on as much stigma in the Falcons until Phealan became more predominate in Clan Wolf. Then I think they'd want to get rid of them.

Church14

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #6 on: 15 October 2019, 12:13:35 »
Hm. So real life timing of sourcebooks throws a wrench into things. Basically, I should just headcanon something reasonable.

I think I’ll use a 2 step program for my own headcanon.
1) Assume that if there is a IIC version, that it is it.
2) if no IIC, I’ll assume it is inner sphere isorla picked up to replace losses as the omnimechs were pulled from Solahma clusters to replace losses in frontline units. This is my iffy assumption, but it makes things easy.

Seem like a reasonable approach?
« Last Edit: 15 October 2019, 12:16:59 by Church14 »

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #7 on: 15 October 2019, 12:51:16 »
Most solahma would never have Omnis- only one that ever represented one was Conal Ward, and bloodname still counts . . . as did giving the baddie something bling.

As for the assumption . . . sort of . . . for example, the Great Wyrm is a Clan version of the Dragon supposedly.  We also get mechs that never were based off a IS equivalent- for example, the Falcons would have some Matadors somewhere in their touman b/c they were a Viper secondline machine and they would have salvaged some b/c of the rivalry.  Against the IS, a Matador is brutal- even in open field against 3025 mechs while against a Clan opponent its going to get hammered.

So as Riflemech said you could have that mech in JFSB represent- a Clan standard mech (be it IIC or new creation like the Matador or Vapor Eagle), Star League era design, Star League Royal, IS mech refit with Clan weapons (the 'C' types, but more had to exist), or . . . its the frigging solahma, you are lucky to have a mech rather than a just a rifle dezgra trash!

The Falcons are pretty successful among the Clans, and the Invading Clans put their best foot forward so I would expect a mech in serviceable condition.

The only Clan mech the Falcons would not have during the Invasion would be a Orion IIC and a Kodiak would be rare.
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Church14

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #8 on: 15 October 2019, 13:42:58 »
Most solahma would never have Omnis- only one that ever represented one was Conal Ward, and bloodname still counts . . . as did giving the baddie something bling.

As for the assumption . . . sort of . . . for example, the Great Wyrm is a Clan version of the Dragon supposedly.  We also get mechs that never were based off a IS equivalent- for example, the Falcons would have some Matadors somewhere in their touman b/c they were a Viper secondline machine and they would have salvaged some b/c of the rivalry.  Against the IS, a Matador is brutal- even in open field against 3025 mechs while against a Clan opponent its going to get hammered.

So as Riflemech said you could have that mech in JFSB represent- a Clan standard mech (be it IIC or new creation like the Matador or Vapor Eagle), Star League era design, Star League Royal, IS mech refit with Clan weapons (the 'C' types, but more had to exist), or . . . its the frigging solahma, you are lucky to have a mech rather than a just a rifle dezgra trash!

The Falcons are pretty successful among the Clans, and the Invading Clans put their best foot forward so I would expect a mech in serviceable condition.

The only Clan mech the Falcons would not have during the Invasion would be a Orion IIC and a Kodiak would be rare.

JF Sourcebook lists usually 1 Omni per star. Usually a common as dirt one for JF like Kit Fox, Hellbringer, or Summoner. Nothing new, nothing hard to get a hold of.

If I had to write the fluff to justify that, I would say that pre-invasion, Jade Falcons has enough omnimechs to outfit their frontline forces. So after there was a minimal stockpile of critical spares for the frontline clusters, the extras disseminated down into second line forces. The best pilots of those clusters fought for and won the right to use them, which is why you normally see the Star Commander rocking an Omni if anyone. Other second line mechs would be IICs or refitted SLDF models.

Once casualties start piling up, those Solahma clusters aren’t going to have their omnimechs appropriated. The only source of mechs at that point would probably be IS isorla.


I dunno. It’s a good enough headcanon to work woth

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #9 on: 15 October 2019, 14:06:42 »
except that seconds line and solhama aren't the same, which you are implying. the progression is
Front line
Second Line
Solhama

Solhama units sit below the second line units and get the cast offs from the 2nd line units. you might find a few Omnis in the second line units, but probably not at all in the Solhama units.


Church14

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #10 on: 15 October 2019, 14:12:30 »
except that seconds line and solhama aren't the same, which you are implying. the progression is
Front line
Second Line
Solhama

Solhama units sit below the second line units and get the cast offs from the 2nd line units. you might find a few Omnis in the second line units, but probably not at all in the Solhama units.

Edit: I wrote a comment but had it wrong. There were 3 Solahma clusters with a total of 42 mechs and 3 second line with a total of 105 mechs. I’ll need to look at each set of 3 separate. I hadn’t realized that
« Last Edit: 15 October 2019, 14:17:37 by Church14 »

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #11 on: 15 October 2019, 14:30:29 »
Well, again . . . at the time there were no Clan secondline machines, so giving them Omnis to mark officers and give them a slight edge up fits.  The clusters also being attached to fronline invading galaxies also provides some reasoning . . . The Falcons end up with some very solid standard Battlemechs you could assign out- Incubus, Horned Owl, Griffin IIC, Shadow Hawk IIC, Hellhound, Vapor Eagle, Rifleman IIC, Warhammer IIC and Phoenix Hawk IIC among others.

Really the breakdown of Invading Clan forces at the time should be . . .

Frontline-  All Omni, all the time!  This is the latest & greatest Omnis which IMO means for Falcons some of their Turkina/Night Gyr/Black Lanner/Fire Falcons should be involved while say the Jags are strutting Shadow Cats and Cauldron Born.  The galaxies used to invade will not be pod-limited, though ammo did turn out to be a problem for some Clans and even varied by cluster.  Per other discussions in previous threads they will also be IMO newly built Omnis- nothing over 10 years old or 10 major rebuilds, at least.  Where do old Omnis go you ask?

Secondline-  To the next tier!  Used and abused Omnis get rotated out of frontline units when new production is delivered . . . along with damaged/rebuilt weapons or other components.  New mechs can be found here for Bloodnamed and/or Ristars or taken as isorla from Trials, usually as the defender sometimes the attacker.  Which Clan it is determines how many Omnis, Clan standards, refit IS machines, or Star League left overs for the clusters.  Some secondline galaxies are hard to distinguish from frontline galaxies (Wolves' Tau in '57) and occasionally one makes the leap to frontline status.  IIRC only one secondline galaxy actually was included among the invading Clans, which was Epsilon . . . though their description also sounds like a garrison galaxy.  Most were left in the Homeworlds until after Tukayyid.

Garrison-  Depending on the Clan (IE, smaller) the line of difference between Secondline & Garrison galaxies/clusters can be narrow, and its usually that secondline is barely better than the garrison formations.  Garrison galaxies typically include the solahma troops.  Omnis that make it this far would probably be in bad shape and be assigned only to officers or disgraced bloodnamed (Hey Conal!) with the better garrison clusters getting Clan standard machines while those on the bottom of the pile (poor Clans) get barely functional Star League or Invasion isorla (when its available).

As I said, one of the quirks of the Falcons during the invasion is that their frontline galaxies included eyrie (training) and solahma (suicide) clusters along side their veteran flagship clusters.  Not sure much of that survives Marthe's reorganization during the Coventry campaign or the Jihad.  It may have also been a slight-of-hand that Showers winked at for the Falcons Invasion bid.  'What?  They are solahma, of course they do not count in our bid- we just said all of the Peregrine Galaxy is all.'
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Frabby

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #12 on: 15 October 2019, 16:38:47 »
We've had a discussion on this forum recently about wether solahma is a proper designation for a unit, or just an attribute that will pop up more the lower a given formation is on the pecking order totem pole.
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Colt Ward

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #13 on: 15 October 2019, 17:36:40 »
And some solahma will not be in the force listings.  The Ice Hellions have entire clusters of cast off equipment called Flurries (aka speed . . . bump maybe too strong, slight raises?) though we have not really gotten what they are spelled out- think broken down SL vehicles, damaged infantry rifles and a old Star League Firestarter whose only working weapon is the rear facing Flamer- which can be thrown in front of another Clan's advance while Hellion regulars ready themselves for the next round.  The Malthus that got Aiden a spot among the Freebirths ended up with a rifle along with other solahma & dezgra to be pointed at a mech advance to buy time.  Conal Ward's solahma cluster, he had the only Clan mech, his Gargoyle, while the rest were fitted out with IS salvage- again a period without a lot of secondline designs- and it did not appear in the Wolf OZ assignment list though they did have it in their title- 31st Wolf Solahma.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #14 on: 15 October 2019, 23:55:26 »
The other way that you can find omnimechs in low-end units is if the omni itself is not very well regarded by that Clan.  The Crossbow is the mech that immediately comes to mind, but the Hellions might stick a Vulture or Thor in a second-line or Solahma force, for example.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #15 on: 16 October 2019, 01:13:13 »
Hm. So real life timing of sourcebooks throws a wrench into things. Basically, I should just headcanon something reasonable.

I think I’ll use a 2 step program for my own headcanon.
1) Assume that if there is a IIC version, that it is it.
2) if no IIC, I’ll assume it is inner sphere isorla picked up to replace losses as the omnimechs were pulled from Solahma clusters to replace losses in frontline units. This is my iffy assumption, but it makes things easy.

Seem like a reasonable approach?

Sure. You can do that. Some mechs should be pretty rare in the FedCom though. Add in the Aerospace Fighters and I'd think the're more likely to be SLDF vintage, upgraded or not. But they could be FedCom salvage from the War of 3039.






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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #16 on: 16 October 2019, 08:16:20 »
The Malthus that got Aiden a spot among the Freebirths ended up with a rifle along with other solahma & dezgra to be pointed at a mech advance to buy time.

Ter Roshak.

Church14

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #17 on: 16 October 2019, 08:52:22 »
The other way that you can find omnimechs in low-end units is if the omni itself is not very well regarded by that Clan.  The Crossbow is the mech that immediately comes to mind, but the Hellions might stick a Vulture or Thor in a second-line or Solahma force, for example.
JF Sourcebook lists:
Jade Solahma:12 Omnimechs, all well thought of designs. Summoners, Hellbringers, Kit Foxes, etc.
Gyrfalcon Solahma: No omnimechs
Peregrine Solahma: 1 Kit Fox, 1 Executioner

The Eyries appear to be a command star of omnimechs, with most stars being an omnimechs commander and SLDF or isorla for the other 4 mechs.

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #18 on: 16 October 2019, 10:03:47 »
Again, this is in the early stages of Clan development when we only had the 16 Omni in TRO3050, the 8 specific Omnis in JC/Wolf, and the secondline/Omnis associated from Invading Clans- so what you ended up with in that solahma are the Falcon 'commons' which can be explained away as frontline cast offs.

If what is there suits you and you want to go with it- go with it.  If you want to give the solahma Royals or Star League vintage designs equipped with Clan weapons (b/c they no longer produce SL-spec ER Large Lasers obviously) then go for that . . . it your game, whatever you feel suits your table is what you should do.
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Church14

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #19 on: 16 October 2019, 10:43:31 »
Again, this is in the early stages of Clan development when we only had the 16 Omni in TRO3050, the 8 specific Omnis in JC/Wolf, and the secondline/Omnis associated from Invading Clans- so what you ended up with in that solahma are the Falcon 'commons' which can be explained away as frontline cast offs.

If what is there suits you and you want to go with it- go with it.  If you want to give the solahma Royals or Star League vintage designs equipped with Clan weapons (b/c they no longer produce SL-spec ER Large Lasers obviously) then go for that . . . it your game, whatever you feel suits your table is what you should do.

I agree. I think the oddities of the roster lists in JF Sourcebook are from it just being old (1992).

I think SLDF designs with upgraded weapons is probably most “canon” for lack of a better word. It also makes for some pretty amusing mixed-tech customs that cannot manage their heat well at all.

Though the stinking JF Sourcebook has the Baboon, Hellhound, Kraken, and Vixen. They could have used those. All are listed as second line mechs found in Jade Falcon garrison forces but aren’t used in the rosters.

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #20 on: 16 October 2019, 10:54:55 »
I thought they had the Night Gyr, Black Lanner, Fire Falcon and . . . Turkina? like the Wolf SB had 4 new Omnis.  But yeah, IMO it was a product development problem b/c they never listed them in the 'phone book' even though they were printed in the same book.

Heh, a Thug 11E with Clan ERPPCs . . . and for giggles, Prototype Clan Streak SRM4s . . . hm, might have to play with that for a Invasion character.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #21 on: 16 October 2019, 11:38:40 »
Rather than full on Clan ER PPC, the enhanced or improved version.  I mean, it's possible some weapons ended up misrouted to a solahma unit, but most of their stuff would be straight from Brian caches formed from the Clans in the Golden Age.  Which kind brings up a question: would most, if not all, of the originally cached royal designs have been pulled by the factions during the second exodus/pre-Klondike?
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #22 on: 16 October 2019, 12:11:53 »
I thought they had the Night Gyr, Black Lanner, Fire Falcon and . . . Turkina?

I thought those debuted in the Coventry scenario book.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #23 on: 16 October 2019, 12:44:21 »
Well, each Clan only had at most 40 mechwarriors- and consider not all the founders were mechwarriors- for a total of 803 (both Kerenskies & Winson) maximum number of mechs being used . . . and the Star League left with more.  As they expanded and discovered more of the hidden caches, sure . . . but they also started building their own designs with post-Star League tech, and then when their R&D yeilded fruit started building their own designs like the Imp, Guillotine IIC, Griffin IIC, Horned Owl, etc . . . and then finally produced Omnis which made the lowest tier of designs get cached which would IMO be lower end Star League forces.  Royals and what might be considered the better Star League designs were kept in use by garrison forces while others were stored, FREX a garrison cluster has a Warhammer 7A and 6R as part of their TO&E but they get sent a 'new' Hellhound.  Well, I would expect that if the choice came down to those two Warhammer models, the -6R would end up getting sent to the Brian Cache or recycled.

But we also circle round to once the Clans started producing Clan-spec weapons, why would they produce Star League spec?  Sure, they may have some stockpiles of SL ERLL, PPCs, etc but eventually they will run through them . . . or it would be more waste to go down to sub level 3 of Cache #52, pull a old Donal PPC from a stack on a pallet, take it over to the tech shop, let them stress test it for functionality (hope it holds up after shipping), then send it on the next merchant or touman JS going to Backwater where that garrison cluster's Warhammer is waiting . . . or do they get sent a new Large Pulse Laser from a Trial of Possession over a production run one jump away.

Down side of that for the garrison warrior is, if a frontline unit is on planet and finds itself short a large pulse laser guess where that cluster's head tech is going to find a functional large pulse laser?

MLO4Hire, could be . . . its been years since I looked at JFSB (got all the target info I need) either way the point of the left hand not knowing what the right was doing in  either of those books (or heck, Invading has the same problem?) still stands.
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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #24 on: 16 October 2019, 21:28:19 »
I thought they had the Night Gyr, Black Lanner, Fire Falcon and . . . Turkina? like the Wolf SB had 4 new Omnis.  But yeah, IMO it was a product development problem b/c they never listed them in the 'phone book' even though they were printed in the same book.

Heh, a Thug 11E with Clan ERPPCs . . . and for giggles, Prototype Clan Streak SRM4s . . . hm, might have to play with that for a Invasion character.

JF sourcebook has those. They are all in the first galaxy though. 5 Black Lanners, 6 Night Gyr, and 4 Turkina made it to Tukayyid per the book

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #25 on: 17 October 2019, 12:56:44 »
Well, each Clan only had at most 40 mechwarriors- *snip*

And this also brings up another issue. Even at full strength for REVIVAL an invading Clan would have at most a few thousand warriors in their galaxies that carried out the initial fighting and attacked worlds during REVIVAL. To hold onto their worlds the invading Clans would have had to have brought with them far more PGC's and spread them out across their OZs. So the PGC's would have probably outnumbered the front line clusters by two or three times if they wanted to actually hold their worlds.
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Colt Ward

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #26 on: 17 October 2019, 13:40:00 »
Sometime in IIRC Wave 2 ilKhan Showers authorized PGCs into the OZs since it would help the Crusaders more . . . Ulric stole a march on him and had his PGCs waiting in the Periphery- 26 PGCs deployed into the Wolf OZ before Jag or Falcon PGCs ever left the Homeworlds for their 6 to 7 month trip.
Colt Ward

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RifleMech

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Re: Invasion era Solahma clusters and other second line units
« Reply #27 on: 18 October 2019, 10:54:16 »
I think there were a whole lot of mixed tech SLDF units. How mixed tech though I think depends on the clan and the unit and time. I think the richer the Clan, and the closer to the front lines the more upgraded the mech would be. The most upgraded would be full clan tech while the worst would be using standard tech. Anything in between could be SLDF tech to mixed tech.


Personally though I think they were originally intended to have the Improved Weapons found in TRO:3050. They're availability has since been errata'd though so it's up to what works in your game now.