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Author Topic: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players  (Read 5794 times)

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Offline Etah dna Evol

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Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #25 on: November 28, 2015, 07:37:07 PM »
Any movement on this?

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #26 on: November 29, 2015, 12:12:43 AM »
So far I've got three character concepts submitted.

EDE had an interesting idea that I refuse to take credit for.

" the world was a resource rich world in the Periphery and it was constantly being raided by bandits and was under threat of acquisition by several successor states. So the planet invited tertiary nobles from all five great successor states to the planet. They gave them land, title and control over one of the planets industries in exchange for producing a single, fully operational battle mech which could be called into service by the planet at any time, usually to defend the planet from bandits.

This would protect the planet because it would import a formidable military to the planet and no successor state would be able to take over the planet without declaring war on every other successor state. Each of the minor nobles could be Lords in the planets legislative body where much intrigue would take place.

That way we could be from any House we wanted to."

This works and gives characters from more than one house a reason to work together.  I'm willing to run this scenario, if everyone likes the idea.  It will require me to juggle the current stock of NPCs to rebalance the factions but that is no problem since I've got them all set up in an Excel spreadsheet.

Offline Primarch

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #27 on: November 29, 2015, 07:01:43 AM »
Sounds good to me.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #28 on: November 29, 2015, 03:21:28 PM »
Sounds good.

As far as tanks go - the Manticore I would be my first pick as the core fighting-unit of a tank battalion, with decent armor and a good all-round weapons package. 60-ton heavy vehicle.

If there's some reason that can't work, the Marsden II is also a decent platform. Being dependent on solid (and volatile) ammunition is a drawback. Also a 60-ton heavy.

Last-resort, the Drillson (older I.C.E. variant) would be acceptable; a lighter weapons package, but the hover capability could be an interesting tactical option depending on the planet's geography.

Considering a modern-day M1 Abrams weighs 68 tons, I really can't consider anything less than 50 tons to be a 'tank',but I'm welcome to other suggestions for a MBT to command a group of. My ideal 'formation' for this RP would be a core group of one of the above, in descending order of preference, with some light vehicles for scouts and some long-range artillery. I would be 'controlling' a dozen or two dozen 'units' (in a very loose sense of control, since this is narrative-driven and combat-light), but the fun benefit of having a bunch of relatively fragile units is the ability to gleefully kill your own stuff during battle scenes when it makes for good story while still having backups.


As far as the character, definitely a Dispossessed noble, but one who's come to accept and embrace his new position in life instead of constantly dreaming of returning to Mechwarrior status. Resentful of the elite status of the Mechs and their pilots relative to how little they actually matter on a battlefield (as he sees it), so ripe for internal intrigue if it means earning more prestige and funding for his tanks.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2015, 04:35:17 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #29 on: November 29, 2015, 04:52:01 PM »
Manticore is a bad-ass tank.  I have NO problem with it.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #30 on: November 29, 2015, 05:00:43 PM »
Manticore it shall be then - one Company's worth (three 4-tank platoons and a command tank), two scout platoons of something light and speedy (Skulker scout cars look good), and one platoon of LRM carriers for support.

Tentatively going to have Lyran Commonwealth loyalties, even if I can't have any Lyran Scout Mechs to back me up.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2015, 05:26:52 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #31 on: November 29, 2015, 09:01:02 PM »
You're probably got a mixed platoon with some infantry if you're lucky.  You might have a second Manticore under your command but you're more likely to have something like a bulldog, a couple of Strikers and a Pegasus. The missile carriers are too vulnerable to be used in the field, seeing as how they are slower than molasses and their armour is pretty much tissue paper on three of four sides.  They're set up for base defense but not more than that.  They're likely parked at the star port in carefully constructed bunkers that give them a well protected firing position at the expense of limiting their range or fire. 

I'm sure I could find several scout mechs available to give you things to shoot at... or maybe that should be find you things to shoot at.  How does a lance of stock Chargers sound?  Sorry, no modifying NPC mechs....


Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #32 on: November 29, 2015, 09:09:40 PM »
We're really that hard up for combat-effective firepower? Having mechs be rare and valuable is thematically appropriate to the game, but if a Great House can't even muster a full platoon of matched tanks, let alone a company or a battalion...will our infantry be fighting with swords and shields next, because bullets for their sidearms are priceless relics? :D

And the best use for Chargers is stacking them in rivers to make a bridge for real fighting vehicles.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2015, 09:12:38 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #33 on: November 29, 2015, 09:20:46 PM »
What?  You don't see Chargers as Lords of the Battlefield?  But they're so well armed.....

The Grand Armies are pretty much made of tanks.  The problem is, you're on some backwater planet with no major strategic value.  You're working with the dregs of the armed forces, not battle hardened front line units....

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #34 on: November 29, 2015, 09:39:24 PM »
Would you prefer I downgrade to all Bulldogs then? Having a tank unit - even if it's just a platoon - all be of one model is kinda crucial for it to actually function as an effective fighting unit, by means of only needing fewer spare parts if nothing else. Run-down, old tanks with occasional maintenance issues I can see for backwater dregs, but they've got to be of similar enough design to be capable of using swapping out parts or drawing from a single stockpile of spares. Else I'd just be some sort of bandit chief taking a House's money, not a serious (however marginalized) member of an actual House military.

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #35 on: November 29, 2015, 10:54:36 PM »
Stick with your Manticore.  You're not going to be part of a full company.  There is at least one other Manticore but there certainly isn't going to be a company of them.  The best you're going to get is a lance but most likely just a pair...

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #36 on: November 29, 2015, 11:24:59 PM »
Honestly, I'm feeling this less and less as a game I want to play in at this point. I get that you want to limit how much firepower player characters have, to encourage the politicking, but a tank commander without tanks, plural, to command is just as much of a non-character as a Mech pilot without a Mech - I think you're overcompensating on the low-supplies/weapons front, and it's making it extremely discouraging to try and make concepts that keep having their teeth retroactively pulled. Mechs are supposed to be priceless, to the point where it takes our entire planet to maintain and supply one, but none of the five Houses can bother to contribute more than junkyard scraps to protect said Mech and its supply base from bandits or raiders.

If you're really not willing to budge on this, even to the point of a single platoon/lance of identical combat vehicles, I'll have to withdraw interest - the strictures of the game will have moved too far away from anything I can reasonably accept as Battletech for me to have fun.

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #37 on: November 30, 2015, 05:22:17 PM »
So you're wanting to control twelve times the firepower of any other character?

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #38 on: November 30, 2015, 08:03:36 PM »
I did point out that half the fun of multiple fragile units is the freedom to kill them off easily for a more compelling narrative - yes, far more firepower, but on a number of vastly more fragile platforms - any Medium 'Mech can survive the firepower it'd take to obliterate four heavy tanks, so it's entirely justifiable for me to lose an entire tank, or two, in the same fight where I might suffer a badly damaged arm with a Mech. I don't know how much more clear I can make it that I'm not interested in trying to 'win' with super combat ability, especially since you said this is an intrigue/politics game (which implies there won't be a great deal of fighting, making the amount of firepower anyone controls not impactful). Heck, if Battletech is Game of Thrones with giant mecha, I'd be more like Gregor Clegane - has the most 'firepower' of any single character in the cast, but is a political non-entity compared to physically weaker but better-connected nobles. I liked the story potential of a tank commander who prefers a balance of power/prestige slanted towards combat vehicles, and thus has a ready built-in reason to intrigue against Mechwarrior nobles and disrupt the status quo. But a commander without anything to his name to command...isn't. I even offered to downgrade the unit if you weren't comfortable with a full lance of Manticores, to something lighter/smaller.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2015, 09:30:02 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #39 on: November 30, 2015, 10:03:57 PM »
I've always been of the opinion that tanks should not be popcorn.  Hell something like six out of eleven hit locations produce a critical of some sort, which is utterly ridiculous.

I checked my notes and yes, there is another Manticore in one of the factions armoured assets.  Even with only a pair of Manticores, with the other tanks under your command, you'll have control over a greater tonnage than if you commanded a lance of mechs.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #40 on: November 30, 2015, 10:15:49 PM »
I am too - I don't think anyone should be building Mechs at all when you could be building Bolos instead. But it's a core conceit of the setting, so I just run with it unless told otherwise.

I did say I'm not concerned with tonnage so much as verisimilitude; if the other tanks I'd control are close enough in design to the Manticore/Bulldog/whatever for them to all reasonably draw from a similar store of spare parts - unless you're suggesting that I'd be 'commanding', at least in theory, the units of multiple Houses in one formation. I've been assuming my company would be drawn purely from the reserve assets of a single House, which was why the motley mix hurt immersion; being unwilling to provide a matched set of hulls, but happily willing to keep three or four entirely separate designs supplied with parts. But if 'my' formation is supposed to be a patchwork Frankenstein of hulls from multiple Houses, that makes a lot more sense.
« Last Edit: November 30, 2015, 10:18:41 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #41 on: December 01, 2015, 04:07:50 PM »
When you look at how the typical mech battalion is put together, you begin to realize that the lunatics are running the asylum.  The dregs are sent here, to work together to defend the planet from pirates.  Obviously something valuable but not too rare is on this planet, otherwise they wouldn't be cooperating.....

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #42 on: December 01, 2015, 06:22:56 PM »
..was that a yes then? Or is it an intentional mystery/plot point as to why a single House detachment is being made up of four+ disjointed tank patterns with wildly different supply and parts needs, when it'd be more economical to standardize?

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #43 on: December 01, 2015, 07:26:42 PM »
When has the military EVER been economical?

I can see the 'ground troops' being a far more unified force than the mechwarrirors, if for no other reason than survival.  I'll give you that the tanks are a unit mixed form the houses or potentially mercenary....

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #44 on: December 01, 2015, 07:35:26 PM »
Well, there's not-economical due to negligence/laziness/graft and then there's "just plain crazy" when it comes to deliberately and intentionally complicating supply requirements (increasing vulnerability and cost at the same time), which is why I was asking. As long as there's a reason for them to be acting that illogically (a mixed-House unit, or a merc detachment, or whatever), it's workable.

I'd imagine this universe's ground troops are much more professional both for survival and because, in most cases, they really are the ones doing the brunt of the fighting (and the dying). The Mechwarriors just show up to steal the credit and engage in duels with each other.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2015, 07:40:58 PM by TheGlyphstone »

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #45 on: December 01, 2015, 10:05:52 PM »
Which is why the infantry stops fighting each other when the mechs show up....

I think we've got enough to get the ball rolling on this.  One day either this week or next I'll be posting a link to the RP thread.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #46 on: December 01, 2015, 10:11:41 PM »
Cool. I'll have a character profile up by the end of the week then.

Can you reiterate the other units in my lance/platoon alongside the Manticore? I can draft up thumbnail NPC descriptions of the other tankers I'd be interacting with on a regular basis to lighten the load a bit, but I'd need to know their crew complements.

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #47 on: December 01, 2015, 10:56:54 PM »
I have the npc profiles already.... something in the neighbourhood of 60.   I'm only detailing the tank commanders.

Manticore "Chimera" - Jaswinder Patel (used to be  a doctor - stripped of his license for drinking) - favours <cough> surgical strikes, knows when to stop arguing for a different plan

Striker "Molly's Hatchet" - Molly Green (Rumoured to be a serial killer that beat the charges on a technicality) - will tenaciously harass anything she's told to attack, doesn't like being called off before the kill.
Striker "Heaven's Rift" - Brody Delaney (Army brat who grew up with tanks) - not much of an original thinker.  does what she's told

LRM 10 and SRM 6 ammo for both tanks......  NO energy weapons on the Striker but it is faster than the Manticore

This is the information you have on the tank 'lance' you'll be taking command of.  Any other personnel files you'll need to get from Colonel Newburg, your counterpart in tank command.  Decorated war hero.  He just doesn't play politics particularly well, mainly because he has a low tolerance for bullshit.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #48 on: December 01, 2015, 11:04:29 PM »
A second Manticore, a pair of Strikers. That's pretty good - will they all be from the same House?

Also, any real scouts/outriders? Maybe a couple of Darters or Skulkers?

Can I detail my own tank's crew?

Offline Captain WhitebreadTopic starter

Re: Battletech - When Politics and Power Collide - Looking for new players
« Reply #49 on: December 02, 2015, 05:23:09 PM »
You can detail your crew.

The majority of the tanks are from separate Houses.  The Strikers came as a pair from Davion.