>>44760459 The single best system for running a Mecha game was a re-skinned 4e. This is especially true given that the most common criticisms of the system are >It's not D&D. It's more like a RPGified battletech with plot-shield. To which you'd reply >Yeah... we're running a mecha game, not D&D, so that's perfect.
Really depends what you're after. The best mecha GENRE game that is rules light enough to flow reasonably well but crunchy enough to not just be a reskin of something is Battle Century G in my opinion.
But say, if you try and run Battletech with it you'll have a horrible fucking time and fail because its for games satisfying mecha genre conventions, not so much for simulationist management of a setting in which mecha exist but PCs are basically just normal soldiers.
>>44760948 Regardless of whether you think it works for whatever you define as "classic D&D" it really does work for mechas as long as you're willing to accept the conciet of mechas with melee weapons (which if you're willing to accept the conciet of mechas to begin with, isn't much more of a stretch.) >Gurps Ugh, GURPS is good for some things, mostly simulating hyper-crunchy gritty realism. Unless you want to run Starship Troopers (the novel) but larger, exploring the psychology of being nameless Zaku pilot with nothing more than a tin-can protecting him from the horrors of mechanized war (which sounds like a fine game) GURPS is not going to do you very well. Granted, that's a valid game that could have quite the potential for storytelling, but not what most people think of first when the word "mecha" is mentioned.
>>44760459 There's tons, depending on what you're looking for in a Mecha game.
What style of Mecha do you want? Do you want blocky tanks with legs? Flippy ninja robots? Something in between? VOTOMs? Macross? Gundam? Front Mission? Patlabor? FLAG? Manzinger? Voltron? Chromehounds? Knights of Sidonia? Gurren Lagan?
All these things are different in style and function, and different games handle some things better than others.
A shitton of Mekton Zeta and other books and rules, and some homebrew by me and my group.
Includes: Zeta Core Zeta Advanced Technical Manual Zeta Tactical Display Zeta Errata v1.1 for the above three Zeta build and character sheets Zeta - Mekton Wars - Invasion Terra Zeta Mecha Manuals 1 and 2 Mekton Alpha 3 different Fuzion rules and plugin books Jovian Chronicles Operation Rimfire Homebrew Mek and weapon systems for Zeta (some by me and my group, others not) Links to Googledocs automatic calculating Mek and character sheets (as done by me, you'll need to make a copy to test it) And finally, a folder of screencapped references of the Zeta rulebook for easy access and reference during play
Anyone interested in chatting about Mekton or looking for info about rules can email me at [email protected], I'd be more than willing to walk you through using the enclosed automatic sheets I coded or making a Mek if you're confused or looking for pointers.
>>44764198 That's pretty accurate. D&D players are like the guy who only buys playboy instead of Penthouse because it's classier even though he never reads the articles and only brings them out when it's time to jerk off.
Just play Descent: Journeys into the dark already.
>>44763659 Maybe a lot of people think 4e works for mecha. I've posted it a couple times when (I assume different people) asked the same question, but I'm not on nearly enough for it to be "every time this question comes up."
Honestly, I just think 4e works really well for mecha games, and I hope others try it. Maybe it's just because all the other mecha options I've tried are so lame, but 4e is the easiest to pick up, build a character, chose a refluff, and go.
As far as the posts I've made about it, it's not a meme or a copypasta, just a guy who finally found a game that lets me play OTT animecha action-hour, and think others should try before settling for what I've found to be a genre that's riddled with needlessly fiddly point-buy systems, trap options, unheroic one-hit-kills, and no easy means of crafting encounters.
>>44765889 Strike! is similar to 4e, but is easier to refluff because you don't have to deal with stats and shit like that.
I'd recommend giving it a read if you enjoyed mecha 4e. I'd only recommend 4e over it, if your players are already familiar and like 4e and don't want to learn a new system or like the crunchyness of it, you need to have the plethora of options 4e has already worked out for you and don't want to brew some of your own, or if you want to prove a point about 4e refluffability, which is why I'd do it.
>>44765889 Not the other anon, but it does get brought up a lot, with claims of it somehow being better than most other dedicated Mecha systems, but not once have I ever seen anyone actually post any home brew materials or house rules about it.
Not that I don't believe people have done it, I just want to see it, because I don't personally believe it's somehow any better than all but the most pointlessly fiddly mech systems.
>>44765997 >or if you want to prove a point about 4e refluffability, which is why I'd do it. It is true that one of the main reasons I wind up running 4e mecha is to show curmudgeons how fun 4e combat-based-games are when you stop focusing on how much it isn't 3.PF.
I haven't tried Strike! yet, but from what I've heard, it's most of what I like about 4e, but streamlined. However, 5e has made me weary of "streamlining." Once I find a PDF, I'll probably try it out.
>>44766023 >not once have I ever seen anyone actually post any home brew materials or house rules about it. IDK about others, but my house-rules for 4e-mecha can be summed up in a few lines of greentext
>Race represents basic chassis >Class represents advanced function/loadout >Simply accept that skills are basically just an avenue to skill-powers, because your 4e mechanics represent your mecha. Your pilot is more freeform.
I think the reason you haven't seen house-rules posted is because it doesn't actually need any MECHANICAL house-rules, just some refluff, and that's better handled one-one-one between DM and Player during character/mech creation.
>>44766280 Hmm, I actually would have had skills (skills refluffed to make more sense, so knowledge:arcane would have been knowledge: computers or something) and stats of the pilots stay, with race being their "job".
Of course that game would have been mostly about civilian mechs restructured for combat use on mars, so "construction worker" could have been a "race".
>>44768076 >>http://lmgtfy.com/?q=mecha+rpgs >>first ten results are forum threads with some variation of the title "What are some good mecha rpgs?" >each one of those threads has boatloads of answers and suggestions
D20 Modern has the expansion D20 Future that covers Mecha, Ships, Cybernetics, etc. I know there are some that don't like D20 Modern, but I think it has a lot of tools available for running a mech based campaign.
If you want to play in something obscure/exotic use Eoris essence.
It's roll system is acutally pretty serviceable and fast.
Only issue is that you need to fiddle with how many points the players need for their mechs to operate on a presumed level. And that is the XP as if building a regular character instead of the fiddly nonsense of the vehicle making rules
But other than that it's just a matter of applying the size multipliers on certain things and if you're making your robo super add one of the other power levels.
Honestly the only thing I really houseruled was the action point thing it had, grapple rules, and I guess ignore the way how it does called shots because it discriminates against bigger melee weapons which means less shenanigans
Also not even shitposting I actually am doing and the results are surprisingly amusing and fun.
Combat is to my surprise quite lethal and applying the power level mods of Damage to weapon was eye opening to that facet since the test combat sessions had everyone two shotting or oneshotting each other.
>>44764771 Do you have some houserules on speeding up the mech building cuz holy fuck I don't give a shit about having to calculate fuel and the dumb math with figuring out how many thrusters you need to slap on of your frame for flight or the obligatory scaling down of your weapons so they can fucking fit because damage=bigger size and some other clunky ass 80's design bullshit
>>44768922 House rules, no, but that's exactly what the sheet I made and provided in that download does. It's hosted on a Googledocs Excel spreadsheet, but I coded it so that it does all the autistic math for you. I've made Meks with that sheet before without even consulting the rulebook.
We're currently doing a mecha game inspired by (among other things) The Super Dimension Fortress Macross. We're using a variation of the mecha options for CAMELOT Trigger from Fate Worlds Volume 2: Worlds in Shadow. We're having a good time.
Chris Perrin's Mecha is actually a slick narrative combat system that's easy to teach to people.
Fate has a mecha vs kaiju splat that I haven't read yet. Its free though.
I like Heavy Gear, but its more about powered armour than mechs.
Battletech is a labour of love. If you like that weird era of wargame where there are paper sheets that track damage on your mech, random tables and fiddly rules for all kinds of shit it might be for you. I like it, but usually when I'm feeling masochistic.
>>44769853 >Funded: June 2013 >Est. Delivery Date: Dec. 2013 >Current Date: January 2016
They're having "file incompatibility issues" and haven't made any visible progress towards getting the book to print in over a year. The last news update that wasn't simply randomly selected pages from the (ostensibly finished but unable to be printed) book was offering refunds due to backer outrage.
However, their new licensed RPG based on The Witcher is still on track to come out in mid-2016, though and totally isn't taking resources away from the the backers' two-year-late book. At least they're offering refunds to unsatisfied backers (though I'm not sure if anyone has gotten a refund yet), which is more than can be said for another "successful" mecha-based kickstarter.
I'm still holding out for my rewards, as I'm unlikely to ever see a copy otherwise, but I'm sure as hell never buying anything from R. Talsorian again.
>>44769018 You know tg keeps touting BCG like its the fucking cream of the crop of Mecha games, so I went and checked it out.
Man, it is NOT all it's cracked up to be. At all. What a massive disappointment.
It reminds me of those "anime RPGs" of the 90s where they concentrate on making mechanics out of sight gags and tropes to try to make things feel "more anime" and completely fucking fail to emulate any actual anime at all.
>>44777241 Those are actually the same rules they used in d20 Future.
I'm the guy from the other thread other anon mentioned, and they work ok (JUST ok) for Large Mecha, power suit size, but once you try to go Gundam size the whole thing falls apart as HP/DR scyrocket and weapon damage doesn't even scale at all. It's a fucking retarded system that I swear wasn't even play tested before it was printed.
If you MUST play d20, which I personally don't recommend, use the d20 Mecha construction rules. They're fucking easily the best Mecha rules for d20 outside M&M.
>>44778206 It just blows my mind that at no point between the write up for Polyhedron and the reprinting for d20 Future did anyone play test those rules, nor did anyone who did step up and say "hey, these rules completely stop working if a Mecha is bigger than Large."
I was in the process of making a d10 Front Mission and VOTOMS game, ripping the crit table shenanigans from Dark Heresy. I wanted the whole "you've got your arms blown off and your cockpit is on fire but you can still fight" thing going on until I saw how incredibly convoluted combat heavy games can get.
Mechanically it was d10+stat+bonuses+/- situations with a check on a 'yes and, yes, no, but, no, no and' table for most things with 'higher is better' winning in opposed rolls.
I was spending a lot of time making illustrations and worldbuilding lore and could never settle on a system that wasn't book-keeping heavy or mechanically clunky so it really bummed me out to the point where I considered just ripping systems off directly despite wanting to eventually sell it as a product. I just wanted to make an easy and fun realrobot game ;_;
I've been playing Mekton Zeta with a group for the last 6 months or so and I love it. Admittedly there is allot to learn, and building can be quite demanding at times as >>44768922 mentioned. But it is all worth it. You can do anything from gritty realistic power armour to time travelling super robots. The combat is extremely cinematic as well when you want it to be.
I think a big problem a lot of Mecha games have is that Mecha aren't often up to the pilot to build and upgrade, often being given to the main character either as a stock war machine or the creation of some noble scientist or whatever, yet Mecha games always seem to want to put in some kind of point buy or level up system for players to go nuts with.
That's not how the grand majority of mecha work, and the shows where the main character has that kind of control over his machine are a minority.
Haven't got the chance to try it yet but I always wanted to see how well a mecha game that used MHRP would work. Just make the mecha and all its features and capabilities one of your two power sets; you get to model anything with just how good it is compared to any other with the whole scaling from d4 to d12 thing.
>>44779358 The shows, yes, but the shows aren1t the entirety of the mecha genre; see Armored Core.
>>44779326 The problem with that is IMO that it's hard to make that game fit multiple players. It's really about incredibly powerful individuals doing battle, not about a group. Much of the theme of the game is that you are fucking alone, and the only one who can do this shit.
>>44761281 >Ugh, GURPS is good for some things, mostly simulating hyper-crunchy gritty realism. Unless you want to run Starship Troopers (the novel) but larger, exploring the psychology of being nameless Zaku pilot with nothing more than a tin-can protecting him from the horrors of mechanized war (which sounds like a fine game) GURPS is not going to do you very well. Granted, that's a valid game that could have quite the potential for storytelling, but not what most people think of first when the word "mecha" is mentioned.
Nah, it's really a bit less bound to crazy detail than that.
There're three ways of doing mecha in 4th edition at the moment. Only one of which is especially autistic.
Another bonus of using GURPS is that it can handle the out-of-mech side of things, where a lot of mecha games really fall flat and handwave it at best.
>>44779583 >Another bonus of using GURPS is that it can handle the out-of-mech side of things, where a lot of mecha games really fall flat and handwave it at best
Silhouette is one of the best games for combined arms action, probably the only Mecha RPG where you can have infantry, mecha, tanks, and aircraft all work in the same combat with the same mechanics, seamlessly.
Personally though I recommend running mecha combat the same way as character combat instead of using the tactical rules.
>>44779758 Jap games tend to have limiter mechanics that work against the notion of continuous longterm play with one set of character, because real life shit. Which is evidenced by the low numbers and simple maths and is reinforced in a metaway with these limiter mechanics that force a game over before you break the game's balance by leveling up too high.
To get around it you either rewrite the math to handle it, lowball the gains/make losing it easier, or ignore.
Just because the GM let you easily cycle through fates doesn't eliminate any of the issues related to over leveling nor is it how it's supposed to work. For something serious I'd rather not use some janky kludge rules to keep it running beyond its limits.
Also Double Cross has something similar gauge mechanic to TBZ's Karma where you lose your character when it's full. It's measures how infected you are by the magical virus which gives your powers and I call it space aids.
The only real games that come to mind as being naturally able to do something beyond a couple of session is Sword World because it's D&D.
And Meikyuu Kingdom because despite the low level cap you got to do a bunch of dungeon crawls to afford to buy new territories and slap housing on them because your character level is limited to your kingdom level which is tied to a certain population range which has a cap and etc.
Even then it's a bit wonky because it depends on GM fiat/how generous he is with giving you shekels to pay taxes which start increasing quickly based on turns in the dungeon and your territory. Which means at higher levels you need more money cuz you're gonna be paying a bunch already for the territory you got which is needed to boost your population so your kingdom level can be high so you can have a higher level on top of presumably going into bigger dungeons which take longer to complete.
>>44781511 Not that anon, but I don't see the problem with an enforced level cap like that. It means the game knows the playstyle and power level it knows best and enforces it so things don't get broken.
Unless you want to emulate something like GL and its ilk, manageable escalation and advancement should be fine for mecha.
>>44774161 Same system as Heavy Gear. Works fine actually. A bit more 'gundamy' than Heavy Gear though: Exo-Armors are popular because they look good on posters and thanks to their cockpit system you can get athletic jarheads with half the training as any other kind of pilot in there to great effect (they're quite the moneysink however), and the books that WERE out basically decided to do the gundam thing: ANY AND ALL R&D FOREVER ENDS FOR ANYTHING NONCAPITAL THAT IS NOT THE EXO-ARMORS the moment they start putting the things out.
small fightercraft can kinda keep up (luckily it's a TV system after all, so if you have points to spare, custom the fuck out of it) with exos that are easily twice their size and mass, but they're a good generation obsolete.
>>44783013 although most groups usually have one player who practically gets off making those things.
mine is scary on that front. he'll make himself an ideal line of vehicles he wants to use/upgrade/get, but not only will they be perfectly in-line with the rest of the designs (BV, TV, whatever) but he won't allow himself to do so without an entire fucking faction (usually more) being completely themed around this, so it even becomes fluffy.
then he goes and does the same for one or two other players (the last two usually couldn't give a fuck about vehicles if their lives depended on it and so give him no input, but they'll get something that fits them anyways).
But it's still creepy, anon. Because it's his Magical fucking Realm. It has to be.
>Every model and upgrade after the first explicitly built with that pilot's abilities or specifications in mind. Half the time they're outright created BY the pilot too. I'll give you this one: "What is the majority of Gundams"
>Directly evolves and basically a part of you Too many to count, but you might remember A certain... "gurren" something, and a certain "getter" something...
>Created by family and/or someone who has a pretty good idea just how you are and what you'll want out of it Many of the supers, including Mazinger.
Even total stock models occasionally get this treatment: Kai gets a massively modified Gespenst Mk-II. The original Gespenst was a super-unit used by its creator (actually, if you go REAL back, it's his power-armor), The MkIII's pilot was pretty much born to use the thing (you do need to be *that* lucky for it not to be a death trap), And so on and so forth.
If anything, other than the "falling into one" moment, there's usually a *massive* amount of input that can only be considered "player input" for all of these mechs, from protagonists to rather minor characters.
It's just that some players go "whatever I don't care just gimme something cool", Chirico's player DEMANDS as stock a model as he can get OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER again, and other players have all sorts of their own ideas about just what the tech team should be doing to ...
>Seriously guys? Another combiner yet again? And it's made of WHAT this time? What's that even supposed to run on? Oh yeah, yeah I BET it's held together by courage. . . . . . Wait. ... Guy what did you say your character had found a way to actually max out at level 1? Oh. Oh no. Oh gods. Oh my fucking god..... I hate you all.
>>44787643 I don't know who that is, but I just want to mention the core rulebook had fantastic art and design, I wish I knew what happened to all the splats because they went STRAIGHT DOWN THE SHITTER in terms of quality.
Rifts is "exactly like AD&D" if only AD&D was bloated with hundreds of classes and skills spread out through dozens of splats each filled with new rules that may or may not supersede or completely conflict with previously published material and power creep so bad it's more like power snowballing, with a designer who refuses to ever do a new edition despite admitting he doesn't even use his own ruleset because of how bloated it's become, all despite micromanaging every new publication so bad they get delayed MONTHS at a time, is such a douche he can't keep an employee for more than a few months, refuses to believe it's not 199fucking5 anymore and his business model doesn't fucking work, and still has the audacity to wonder why his business is constantly on the verge of bankruptcy.
>>44787749 It's okay, people can hate things you like and think they're stupid and it doesn't take away the joy those things give you. The Rifts system is stupid, but it doesn't mean you're stupid for liking it, OK buddy?
>>44768922 Have the GM do it ahead of time. That's what I did for my campaign. Started them with a squad of GMs and they moved up to ace custom units as mid-season upgrades.
Make a standard unit for them to use and give them a set of customizations that they can requisition for each mission. I gave my players GMs and then gave them either a slightly improved all-round loadout, a striker loadout, sniper, demolition, heavy gunner, ect.
When they each figured out what they wanted, I made them Gundam-like units that specialized in their favorite customization. One guy essentially got the Burning Gundam, someone else got the Alex, and someone else just got a Veritech fighter because fuck it, why not?
It was a great campaign. By the end of it the guy in the Veritech could travel at a fraction of the speed of light in Fighter mode.
>>44791003 Well, should make sense, as Macross advances its fighters quite a bit as time goes on - especially compared to the snail pace of the Universal century.
If I recall correctly: by the time of the Thunderbolt, Variable-Fighters had had enough thrust (fuel hasn't been a problem with the fusion engines) to break orbit on their own for a few generations, and while it's kinda big, you could install foldspace drives on them like oversized fuel tanks.
Starting with the Alpha/Omega projects (The YF-19/21, eventually produced as VF-19 and 22) VFs even had pinpoint barrier systems; the same shields found on the original SDF-Macross and later capital vessels.
>>44796414 GURPS can but it's not the most "in a vehicle" friendly for the area between "starships" and "people on foot". I love GURPS for a lot of things but it can get clunky there.
the Silhouette system (Heavy Gear, Gear Krieg, Jovian Chronicles) has similar "crunch": Fairly simple at the surface to learn, often almost as deadly, but gets very deep (not HARD though, it's simple calculator work, half a highschool diploma required at the most) if you start actually hand-designing vehicles.
Chromestrike lets you piece things together fairly well, but it's also - last I checked - limited to "for some reason we have mechs instead of Abrams and HINDs" mostly-modern-ish warfare, so no lasers and drones and other fun shit like that.
The hardest part honestly is finding people willing to play mech RPGs, in my experience.
Everyone wants to either do pathfinder, fantasy, pathfinder, mechwarrior, or pathfinder.
>>44790764 The main enemy faction in my first BCG game made use of a bunch of high energy gimmick builds that complimented one another. The main grunt unit was pretty much useless on its own, but it had a bunch of support abilities that made the rest of the army pretty formidable.
The best pairing was the grunt + the heavy mech. While the heavy mech had all energy weapons, it didn't actually have any energy to use them with. Instead, the grunt had to use a support ability to pass battery packs to the heavy mech so it could use its weapons. The result was that the heavy didn't need to invest any points into energy capacity and could instead dump all those points into pure damage. So when that particular enemy showed up, the prostrat was to blitz his battery carrier before he gets charged up and ruins your day. Those heavies were some of the few grunts that managed to shoot down PCs in that campaign.
Pretty much all of the enemies I designed were weird gimmick builds like that.
>>44796808 Uh, partly depends. Silcore (blue book) is a good way, but it's also kinda dry, being just the system rather than a world,etc like heavy gear. Jovian's the old 1st edition, for most of the books, but it's good stuff.
It was ESPECIALLY good stuff before a dev got butthurt about engines and decided that the massive plasma torches at the back of a ship should NOT be anywhere near as powerful as the tiny hand-held one with so little output it doesn't even cause any thrust.
yeah, back in the day, a tiny little fighter's hyperthrust setting could cut a frigate in fucking half.... IF you could get all the way past its defenses, more or less park your ass directly on the hull, and not explode or pass out from pushing your engines to twice their max accel.
>>44797753 no no you can do it with just that if you don't want setting books.
But it's not QUITE right to say it's made with mechs in mind. I mean that in the best way, though.
Silcore is an effects-focused system, so you can make whatever. there ARE values for things like walker vs hover vs wheeled, etc movement modes (they've all got their advantages actually!)
But other than "this one's a walker and this one's a fighter" two vehicles could be entirely identical.
Although a bit unlikely in that case as speed quickly gets very expensive (it's worth it though) so things that fly tend to be very expensive in comparison... but a walker with the same speed would be no less.
>>44798253 one thing though: the setting books have entire fleets of designs, and that really helps put designs,etc in perspective.
Things work on Threat Value, balancewise, but you do have to be careful (what system must you not be?): SOME things can really jack threat value up without actually making something more dangerous or useful in combat. Passengers, for example. A minibar, etc etc etc etc... Those are all things that can up the miscelaneous value. Speed is basically exponential, so it skyrockets the TV even though it won't be THAT helpful (still helpful though) a defensive boost, in particular within certain parameters (at higher speeds there could be a few hundred or even thousand TV worth of defensive, even though both speeds are still exactly in the same targeting penalty bracket, and/or you're already overshooting the entire map each turn anyways already).
Good starting mass produced models in heavy gear, for example, are around the 450-600 range. The Silhouette system is fairly permissive in terms of matchups, too; while the odds become less and less in your favor as the difference enlarges, a solid hit or dodge fumble (these happen, I suggest 1-2 fate points per session if this becomes a problem in your group; no one likes losing XP for a reroll) can ensure that Zaku 1 oneshots the Double-Zeta... but he'd have to roll REALLY well and the other guy really badly to pull that off.
Flyers, spacecraft and the like are probably more comfortable with a lowball around 750: in space, particularly, you have to remember that life support, etc are all included in the TV too, and the increased maintenance times,etc ensure you tend not to make designs quite as ball as a Ball.
From there though, the sky can be the limit. Black Talon gears can reach mid 2000s, air superiority fighters can have easily twenty times that (but that's mostly a matter of "corporate/state budget" rather than game balance then: cost is based on size vs threat value vs production type)
>>44798507 The reason the air superiority fighter has that cost: Speeds listed in Mach. So you could be looking at 60k defensive threat value (final TV is average of Defense/Offense/Misc) because it's speed in ground hexes squared.
This is really only a matter if you're trying to balance ground and air units together, or mechs and air support: you have to accept that the planes will naturally have a much higher one, and keep an eye on offensive/utility comparisons, armor, and other aspects, as even slightly higher speed on a weaker overall unit could quickly lead to extreme costs.
All that is mostly just a worry for advanced multi-vehicle design though, and probably not something you'll ever run into.
>>44799000 sure thing. fun fact: creativity is the pilot stat for fighters, so the 'smart guy' and ECM types may want to fly one instead.
fighters main drawbacks are that they're about a generation old (it got Gundamed as I said earlier) so kinda lack maneuverability by default, usually slightly thinner armor, and less fuel/loitering-time.
Most of these are due to a generational difference however, and a smart tech could easily add a couple of battle-arm 'turrets' to Einhander the fuck out of a fighter, giving it AMBAC capabilities and so on.
Fighters do however tend to be superbly suited to lightning strikes (when you DON'T slow down your space travel to starwars-or-anime-dogfight the other guy), being ways smaller, often packing stronger main engines, and used by pilots more likely to be capable of programming an alpha-strike macro to fit the situation on the fly.
>>44800802 I wouldn't say with flying colors. It's kind of like when you use 4e for Final Fantasy Tactics. It works, but it's oversimplified things a little bit.
There's quite a few weapons and systems that are VERY much "the better option", especially stuff like missiles last version I'd gone through were not too hot (many cases you'd only get one shot AND after using it some kind of penalty like "never again add tension against that guy for the rest of the encounter") It is decent though overall.
>>44799000 One thing to note before you go cross eyed at a lot of the space travel and combat shit is that JC tried very hard to be Hard Scifi with mechs. Personally I think it was a poor decision.
But, if calculating delta-v and thrust to mass ratios is your thing then don't let me stop you. However if they're not then don't let those sections turn you away, JC has more "cinematic" ways of handling space built in too so you can just use some slightly modified air combat rules for space combat and hand wave travel time.
So we've discussed mecha focused systems, how about systems where giant robots are just another viable option? I want to run Giant Robo where martial artists are on par with mecha and they're all in the same party.
>>44801639 That's a lot harder, if for no other reason than the giant robot under most systems will not only require more skills (you need piloting AND engineering AND gunnery AND/OR martial arts) but you then have to pit the bot/pilot pair against people who've got all their stats on a character just as powerful as the pair.... and therefore probably stronger.
I hope everyone interested in Mecha RPGs here gives this blog series a read. It's done in GURPS, called Mecha Against the Giants. Players play as pilots of mecha made in an otherwise medieval Germany, fighting waves of Giants who have stone age tech. The blogger is the GM and he details how his sessions go, including adding maps.
>>44801795 yeah except then there's none of the fun you'd have with mechs left at all.
... you can probably pull something off with GURPS actually; a wise pilot will spend more points on skills,etc as said, but will get them back through gear packages and the such; what with the mechs,etc being point pools they can purchase.
>>44801639 Not sure what you mean. Like super powered characters fighting alongside mecha?
Silhouette and GURPS have both already been mentioned as doing different scales seamlessly, just make the super strong character have attacks capable of punching robots in half. Mutants and Masterminds and HERO are super hero systems where you can build mecha like any other gadget and still have them fight side by side with superpowered heroes.
>>44800802 I played on roll20. Used hexagon maps and tokens, so yeah.
>>44801313 To be fair, the missile weapon you're talking about is meant to be used as a late battle finishing move. It doubles tension which is a big deal, especially if you combine it with other powers and such.
>>44801639 I mean, it's a mecha system, but you can do that in BCG. Just let PCs have the boss ability that allows humans to do battle with mechs.
>>44777654 What? CEGA is totally the Zekes. The only thing is that they're on Earth while the Jovian Confederation Feddies are in space. That's literally the only difference. The Jovians took the EF color scheme, CEGA took the Titan color scheme and all their war crimes, and their puppets in the Martian Federation straight up have the Zeke uniforms.
>>44805114 Indeed Especially when you consider the reasons for the Zeon movement, which started before Zabi killed its originator and turned it into what we know.
It WAS an independence movement caused for reasons all too similar to the american revolution: Earth was bleeding the colonies dry with stuff like resource quotas, but was very quick to tell them they were on their own and they should be thankful for their freedom anytime they needed help.
And like ANY revolution, when people are pissed off and looking for an outlet, if the leader happens to get offed and replaced by a power-hungry dictator type, he's ALREADY got a frenzied mob just waiting for a target to be pointed at.
Once you've become a nation, nationalism will help and do the rest... Especially with megacorps like Zeonic and Anaheim behind the scenes making mad mad dosh speeding entire prototype phases through in an arms race through the stars.
>>44805114 It was in the Mekton version of the setting. Basically it was Zeon is on Earth and are now the Titans, and the Earth Federation is in colonies orbiting Jupiter, with some other Gundamy stuff everywhere else.
When DP9 picked it up they expanded on the lore A LOT. It was great in 1e especially as they fleshed out every faction immensely. 2e started to get a little rougher though as it was clear DP9 was trying desperately hard to keep things at status quo while trying to progress the timeline, making the whole setting feel stagnate.
They should have taken a page from Harn and just released tons of fluff and teasers for events that could happen after a certain point in time, but never actually progress past that point in time, leaving it open for every GM's own interpretation.
But because they tried to make it both an RPG AND war game they couldn't do that. The setting really would have benefited if it dedicated completely to the RPG side because no one gave a fuck about the wargame side.
>>44762560 >What style of Mecha do you want? Do you want blocky tanks with legs? Flippy ninja robots? Something in between? VOTOMs? Macross? Gundam? Front Mission? Patlabor? FLAG? Manzinger? Voltron? Chromehounds? Knights of Sidonia? Gurren Lagan?
And this, right here, is what I think is the biggest issue among mecha RPGs. "Mecha" has become such a broad spectrum of things that trying to make a single all-encompassing system just ends up not doing any of them particularly well. The best mecha RPGs are the ones that focus on a specific style of play and dedicate their efforts on doing that style well.
>>44808525 closer to "3e vs 3.5" level of difference if you were to put it in D&D terms.
Silhouette for example had Fire Control and weapon accuracy separate (and actually I preferred that: you could have a really capable mech using panzerfausts like they were regular weapons, or a mech that's REALLY bad with most guns except this one ultra-accurate rifle that was built for it, etc.
Either way, removal of the FCS stat is one, lot of minor rule tweaks, etc.
>>44808525 Pretty much as >>44808567 said. The Silhouette Vehicle Construction System was more robust, but SilCore's was more streamlined. There were a couple of combat options that got streamlined in SilCore as well, IIRC grenades and called shots particularly.
Silhouette also had a WAY better skill system, where "complex skills" just cost more XP to buy and level, but functioned the same as any skill otherwise. SilCore did away with "Complex Skills" and replaced it with "Skill Complexity," where skills all cost the same but were instead split into two ratings, Complexity and Rating, where Rating was your actual skill score and Complexity was.... the depth of your knowledge with the skill... maybe?
In practice no one had any fucking idea how Complexity was really supposed to work, not even the fucking designers.
Also, is the system really THIS deadly? I'm running a simulation with the Archetypes in the 1E JC book, and man, things get really ugly really fast! Am I doing something wrong, or is it really like this? I'm liking it a lot so far, just don't know which to run for my group, we love both VOTOMs and Gundam equally.
Silhouette is a system where you CAN NOT just run into a room full of enemies and expect to survive. Tactics are your friend. Cover is your friend. Body armor is a godsend. You milk EVERY defensive mod you can, if you can't duck behind cover, you move, and fast, to cover. And if you can't do either, you make damn sure you shoot first.
Yeah, I'm really surprised at how simple it is, yet detailed. I really like how being stationary gives you a negative modifier to defense, something I don't remember seeing in any other game. It really makes you duck for any kind of cover to AT LEAST get a 0 modifier in your dodge roll.
I like how the dice pools are reduced too. When I found out it was a d6 dice pool system I immediately thought of Shadowrun and its rolls with over 10 dice at a time, but you end up rolling 4 dice tops in this game, and that's if your character is really gifted, if I'm getting the rules right. It hits perfectly the sweet spot I was looking for between game pacing and crunch.
>>44809111 It's the art of Dodge Dodge Plink Plink BOOM. Damage is Margin of Success x Weapon Multiplier, so it's all about the opposed rolls. Worst case scenario, someone gets 6+ and the other guy fumbles. It's very very rare, and if you have one, maybe two rerolls a game (our recent campaign used the command point system of the minis game) you should come out fine even with heavy combat, so long as you weren't stupid.
When someone gets like 8x their weapon's multiplier, somebody's gonna end up overkilled. Even an MBT will be severely damaged by a light autocannon that got just that lucky, and particularly unmaneuverable units might even be better off not dodging at all, because 0 is bad, but -4 could be insanely worse.
However when you add in obscuring, cover, speed, smoke grenades and all the other stuff you can use, things get considerably less lethal, and this is a game where average rolls can mean a LOT of "-1 to one system" stacking up before the degenerating armor rating finally gets you killed.
Despite the sudden explosions that happen every so often, I can't count the number of times my group tried to pilot-snipe something they really wanted, only for it to only finally stop shooting back after they've systematically annihilated every last bit of it, or the heroic "last stands" resulting in a gear that only gets scrapped after it somehow made it home and got written off by the techs for being more expensive to completely rebuild than just getting a new damn mech.
>>44809616 Well it's no perseus, but the Jerboa in its SMS mode looks pretty decent. It's really not built for walking as its main mode of movement, it's all about the wheels,it can just stumble around when it needs to climb really steep terrain or down a cliff.
Basically character points, fate points and karma points are all wrapped into three inseparable values with no clear demarkation.
You spend Akai chits to get kiai chits to boost your rolls, but also on character upgrades which increase your background karma score which also gets boosted when you spend your fate point analog.
This promotes a bunch of degenerate behaviors; Players don't like wasting their points on one-off bonuses, Even if they "get" the system, they'll quickly decide to hold back the "audience system" or set it into overdrive to get their angst/glory on.
The limiting factor is actually rather neat, but doesn't work well for the actual setting; No one wants to go Akuma for any reason.
It works in double cross because half the game is supposed to be managing your emotionally wrecked bio-weapon's social life to keep him in social contact and powerups. The fact you can't keep up is the point of the setting.
The best TTRPG i've played for mecha games, hands down. It can cover real as well as super and 'super real' like some Gundam series. Very well designed and balanced with a small but dedicated team that keeps pumping out content and does a lot of beta testing with the public.
Here is a screen shot from my own BCG game, run in MapTools. We're developing a simple framework for it using token macros and whatnot to help aid and speed up combat. All of the art assets are ripped from Super Robot Wars, they are not mine.
>>44795422 Default but it can work for any setting where small mecha are a thing, if you want to refluff it. The standard setting is wide enough for it to be used for anything, really. There's mech arena battles, and national armies are still a thing.
>>44811283 Running it myself. It's great fun, although I do wish that jackass with the super-speed melee mech was less overpowered. Any tips for dealing with him/stuff that will actually make him sweat?
Guy has Speed 8 and that lance weapon that lets you add half your movement to damage in a charge attack, the reactive booster that lets him boost his Defense to 14 and Duellist Model/Skirmisher Frame, so he's pretty good at closing into combat first and keeping an enemy locked in a fight with him. I did surprise him with an RX-78 ripoff that not only managed to survive a charge with him but countered by beam sabering him in the face, but I'm looking for something a bit nastier.
>>44811298 First, ignore your usual group they'll suck, play with us instead. NO ulterior motives I assure you.
Other than that, for a first time keep things relatively simple. A few handfuls of the standard model options, with a few extras here and there as options to keep the TVs relevant (for example a lancer with the cheapest mission pod might be able to fit a +1 handling on there to keep the value roughly in line with vindicators or whatnot in the party Just calc and offer stuff within about 10% of each-other for a first time if they aren't already).
Should they lose their home/capital, all is not lost: they might have several days left of autonomy. Although that's more for long campaigns; smart players can survive a lot.
Give options for several roles, and don't be afraid to look at the current HG Blitz minis game if you feel some of them are too empty or complex, especially stuff like ECM and Command. Our current game has a guy who's having a blast in heavy gear that way in a Chatterbox. Fucks up the other side's ability to spot, give/receive orders or even call for help. He SUCKS at dealing damage, but enemies are basically left afraid and alone for the rest of the squad to murderfuck with rockets
>>44813004 He laughs at extreme terrain due to his obscene Speed, but I like the idea of using something Crippling to fuck him up. Anything else? Recently the PCs split into two teams and fought each other and the nerdy NPC with the support mech came out the ultimate winner because everyone overlooked him, and they found the Lux Cannon was reasonably effective on him.
>>44802237 Other techniques have the no-tension-for-it drawback as well. But only the Missile Massacre has ONLY permanent drawbacks to go with it:
>Zweihander gives the guy two advantages against you for the round if it doesn't kill him (basically one attack), but as a Melee weapon you automatically got an advantage for engaging or being in a duel with it too
>Radiant Fist has overheating but also a second advantage when you boost it (so you're picking from at LEAST 3 dice)
>Reactor Overdrive has boost/overheat as well, but gains Line and Long Range
>Missile Massacre gives a disadvantage against the target for the remainder of the operation, and nothing else. It requires the aim action to get advantages
>>44813064 Crippling IS good, since obviously that's the nastiest effect you can put on someone trying to move as fast as possible.
Superheavy Machineguns are extra crippling.
Secret Equipment can let you load a bunch of nasty things on without having to worry about losing them, while the Expansion Pack can be purged to save you from a particularly nasty hit so long as it's not a technique.
Expert support is your friend. Er, rather, ON your friends, if you're the one getting shot at in melee. It becomes hilarious when used to heroically, non-coward-like radiant fist a guy in the back while he's busy with someone else.
the 10pt support systems can be surprisingly evil counters. Airstrike will automatically cause damage. EM Detonator will screw his energy a bit and damage him lightly, but he'll probably just tank that to avoid a nastier shot. It's more meant against beam users and the like. Ensnaring Trap can probably get him killed.
Get enough advantages (convert some) behind a Resonance Cannon and you can probably tear him apart: he doesn't sound particularly resilient when you DO hit him, so he could lose 2-3 threshold layers in a single hit.
A Beam-Ripper is a nastier beam saber. Same price, but for 2 energy on the boost it also cripples though it gets slow.
I still don't know why ALL techniques, rather than the one used, get the drawback after you've used one in this version. It sucks. I hate that.
>>44813259 He's not very tough: 5 Guard and Might, 3 Threshold. The problem is while he's moving he's incredibly hard to hit thanks to Skirmisher Frame and the option to activate Reactive Booster. But yeah, anything that does get through his defenses fucks him up pretty brutally.
>>44793320 >The VF-27 carries a macross-cannon of its own. The YF-29 uses a heavy quantum beam cannon as well, though presumably stronger since it's engines are all higher output than the VF-27's. The YF-30 uses the same model the YF-29 does but has less engines again so it's probably weaker if they didn't increase the efficiency or something.
We see the SV-262 destroy a capital ship bridge with its gunpod in Delta and we haven't seen the VF-31 actually use is 2 gunpod yet so who knows how strong it is.
>>44814020 Skirmisher Frame was added in the Battle Century Z playtest stuff, I added it because there's far too much cool shit in there not to. It basically gives you an advantage on initiative checks and gives all incoming attacks against you a disadvantage if you move five zones or more. And yeah, he has both.
>>44814046 I'm aware, I was just listing the 'first use' level. I should probably have mentioned the Messiahs no longer being all mechanically linked for transformation, further saving on cost and complexity, though. Probably tougher as well, less gears to gum up or wreck with incoming fire.
>>44814106 Yeah, units like that are murderous; one thing I did find is that if you can outlast him for 5+ turns (with your big guns waiting in a 'black box' system perhaps), things will end real badly for him. A technique can probably also do terrible things.
Use a commander type to snare him, and hit him with probably a radiant fist if he's already engaged you, assault rifle if he's attacking allies and you don't have Expert Support, or combine the tension-doubling special with bombardment otherwise: he'll take damage no matter what at least.
>>44814158 A lot of gerne power combinations with this. When you want to kill a speedster early, it's this or waiting it out until the tension starts to catch up to them... but it can be too late by then. However, the following can break a guy in half and/or are excellent combos in and of themselves:
>My pain is your pain An HP sponge with this (assistant if need be to always have at least a GP there) can make that lance striker shatter itself directly on impact.
>This is my Battlefield + surprise minefield: Double tension to Extreme terrain.
>Assistant types: My Style is Impetuous + Bombardment + You are Already Dead A very expensive 'one-shot' that can seriously fuck up anyone, or even a group and their leader.
>Aimed Sniper Model's Sniper Rifle: That alone is already 4 advantages, which can easily put you back in the positives. Should be able to get at least one shot of that off before he closes in >Anti-air Missiles: if he's antigrav or flying, you can have 3 advantages without even aiming
>>44814334 Thanks. >>44814705 I was actually thinking the Anti-Mecha Cannon and an extra reload for it in an Expansion Pack. Either the mech lasts long enough to pull it out and let him have it, or it ends up ejecting it to save its own ass when he charges it. Either way it's a win-win, right?
>>44814854 The replacement powers were a godsend: my game has the mechs as part of a Build Fighters-style VR game, so Live Another Day was kind of pointless. It's been unilaterally replaced by Parting Shot. Had hilarious results when they fought their first boss: it used Bullet Hell to take several of the players down, only for them to -all- activate Parting Shot and blast it to hell in return.
>>44815009 Well maybe not roll20. As someone who's in a couple of games on there I can tell you that you'll have HUNDREDS of applicants for a single game, MOST of them won't understand why it is their mech can't be a level 3 tiefling arcanist/paladin "with a dark past", and the hardest part is getting people to actually show up on the actual game night.
>>44815065 Personally, I've only used it for a couple of private sessions with a group that normally plays via IRC. We wanted to try having an actual map to play around on. Of course, the local Light pact Warlock/Paladin immediately started drawing bonfires everywhere.
Oh, and there was also that handful of Harpoon games during ye olde naval wargaming threads.
If you don't have to interact with the main playerbase (say, by recruiting through another channel) it can work just fine.
Reading through the Jovian Chronicles rules, I really want to try a bit of this, probably using already-existing unit designs. Fortunately, I've found at least one other gentle/m/an who'll probably give it a try.
Currently, I'm thinking of making the PCs (probably all Exo/Fighter pilots) part of a long-range patrol, where they encounter a derelict vessel containing some very sensitive info. After a first battle against some enemy rookies for the derelict, they'd be pursued by enemy forces on the way home. Might toss an enemy ace int here as well.
All of that would be pretty generic, but adding a few twists should make it a decent introductory storyline.
>>44815150 >Bonfires? Praise the sun! He pretty much built the character around that idea.
Also, I specifically made a messing-around area where the players could try out how the site works before I dropped them into the actual gameplay map. Certain amounts of phallic imagery did appear there.
>>44816430 This. The book actually encourages letting players take stuff like tanks or choppers instead of a mech. Also, tanks are scary opponents unless you know what you're doing and can lock down its main gun.
>>44814334 I'm sure VF-25 mechanics love the minority of contacting moving parts the transformation mechanism has compared to earlier fighters.
What a nice and elegant design...which is immediately ruined by the VF-31 having a ton of contacting mechanical parts in the form of the weapon container pod. That was okay for the YF-29 and YF-30, as they were prototypes with only a handful of known airframes in existence (4 or 5 for the YF-29 if you count the Percival and only 1 for the YF-30) and absolutely no hope for anything more than MAYBE a limited production run, but the VF-31 doesn't have that excuse.
Oh well, at least the VF-31 holds to the VF-25's design philosophy of being modular with mission specific loadouts.
>>44816677 The complete rules SRD is on the Gimmicklabs blog (that I probably can't link to, just Google it) for free. If you like how it works and/or want more of the optional rules try and save for the book, it's well worth it.
Other than the optional rules there's not a lot of difference, the full book has some SRW ripoff setting and premade bad guys you can probably do without, but the options and advice kinda outweigh that for me.
>>44816677 >>44816748 As for a grittier, 08th MS Team style campaign, there are two options for you in the corebook's list of possible houserules:
Big Heroes, Small Mecha (when building mechs your players get only 50 starting points instead of the usual 100, the same as a Grunt enemy. This sort of thing makes Genre Powers and clever tactics a lot more important)
and Mecha Resources per Episode Arc (instead of getting reloads and repairs between sessions it's now every 2-5, so your players seriously need to consider every time they use a One Shot weapon or exposing themselves to enemy fire) Happy mecha-stomping
>>44816581 The Sigfried is a beautiful machine, though, at least.
>>44816677 It can work perfectly fine, just that technically 08th would be starting at a lower power level than most other gundams, is all.
Just ask the players to try and keep their attacks fluffed a little less.. uh... G-Gundam, if they go for shit like ground-zero, god-finger or funnels.
Well some weapons might not fit the 08th narrative particularly well if you really want it that low-tech "mooks in a jungle with the cheapest mechs around", but then again players can get very creative, and it might make more sense than one thought at first.
Many of the weapons are perfectly suited to that even with their basic fluff though; autocannons, bazookas, rocket pods and whatnot are all in there.
>>44817475 It depends on what you see your mech doing. Systems has become kind of a dump stat for my players (Sanic the Mechhog has a Systems of 0) so I figure you might want to leave it alone if you aren't using it for anything particular. Generally you want decent stats though, so stick about half to three quarters of your points into them unless you have an upgrade integral to what you want to do with your mech or something.
Weapons are cheap but unless you have some form of integration don't expect to keep 'em all for long. Save about fifteen to twenty points for weapons, a variety is useful for catching enemies unawares or making sure you have a backup.
>>44818770 Yeah, that boss with Bullet Hell tore him a new asshole. Well, it tore everyone a new asshole but especially him because it was a base unit (it was a mini-BOLO with mech bays) so his standard tactic of locking it in a duel didn't work.
>>44818204 Silhouette Core is the 3rd Edition of the Silhouette system. Most of the Heavy Gear books are 2nd Ed. SilCore books are usually hybrid books with D20 stats included, and aren't as well received as the older books.
>>44823171 Don't bother with weapons, of course, unless you want to hide the fact you're piloting a berserk rapemech until you're already in mid-murder. Or the weapon does something cool. Crank up your Might and Threshold and maybe take Invincible Alloy once you can afford it.
You -want- to get hurt and get stuck in when it comes to a fight because it makes you more rip and tear, so if you are going to take weapons feel free to get Overheating ones.
>>44823327 BCG does this pretty well. It's good for super robots, it rewards that kind of ballsy attitude in PCs and it's chock full of references. I'm sure there's a power literally named Who the Hell Do You Think I Am? somewhere.
>>44826032 The thing that I think gives people that "complex" impression is that Silhouette follows the (old?) Mechwarrior model where it's really just an RPG tacked on to a wargame. There's a lot of complexity in the wargame rules because that's what people wanted from a wargame.
I honestly think Silhouette works best when you scrap the wargame rules entirely and run all combat, be it between characters or vehicles, using the RPG character combat rules.
>>44826826 No, not really. The tactical combat rules go into a lot more depth with action economy, movement points, terrain and LoS, command points, movement speed levels, tactical rounds are a much larger timeframe than character rounds so actions work differently, and are just overall designed to function as a tactical miniatures wargame. The RPG "Character scale" combat runs like traditional RPG combat, if you've played DnD you know how the basic round structure works, with 6ish second rounds and generally not being built around miniatures and hexmaps.
Though, granted, the majority of the "vehicles in character combat" rules consist of movement being handled differently and actions being based around 6 second rounds, but actions and terrain also get a lot faster, looser, and easier because it doesn't assume you're measuring shit on a wargame table setup.
>>44827423 >But once you jump into mechs the rules say something like "just play a game of Battletech but with these abilities" Ok, so things are still pretty much the same. But yeah, that's essentially how the Silhouette rules worked, you've got traditional RPG combat for characters, but once you jump into a Gear it's basically "just play a game of Heavy Gear Minis (this was all pre-Blitz) but with these pilot skill levels."
>>44827542 They can be significantly slower than character combat. Do I think they're worth using? Maybe. As said there's way faster and easier ways to run vehicle combat, but they're also really detailed and have a lot of depth to them if that level of simulation is your thing.
I understand they're slower, but are they TOO slow? If they're just as slow as any other tactical RPG, then I'd give it a try. I just feel like using the abstract vehicle rules would be missing the point of using JC at all.
>>44828521 >How long does it take on average to get through an encounter using the tactical rules? Depends, honestly one of the more controversial parts of the Sil rules is how crazy swingy they are. That combat could take anywhere from five minutes to an hour depending on how smart one side or the other is about milking bonuses, spending whatever bennies they've been given, and, most of all, how well they roll.
>>44828521 Also, it's already been said earlier but I'm gonna repeat it:
JC's space combat tactical rules are SUUUUUUUUUUPER crunchy and simulationist (DELTA-FUCKING-Vs, SON!), for a faster and more cinematic way of running things I highly recommend doing what the book says for "cinematic games" and just using "bigger scale" air combat rules for sake of speed.
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