Battletech Tactics: Powerful Models

An INTENSE game of BATTLETECH last night. So many epic moments…

…and we will get to them in Friday’s BT post.

In this post I’m going to share my ideas on using a powerful unit in your lance, and the cause and effect of taking such a unit in your lance.

While we are talking “Battletech”, the theory here can apply to a powerful alpha/deathstar unit in any wargaming system.

In my lance I took a Schrek PPC carrier as a support choice. This tank is a FANTASTIC battle value- three PPC’s you can fire every turn without worry of heat, mounted on a turred giving you 360 field of fire, and a low profile- important if you are playing on a full wargaming table with WYSIWYG terrain vs. a hex-map.

At lower battle values 5K or less the Schrek is a big threat- no mech can fire 3 PPC’s a turn without heat issues for under 1K BV.

Terrain for this battle as heavy hills with a mix of woods so getting my Schrek up and on a hill was KEY. Get that elevation and the turret so anything that shows itself gets zapped. Jump infantry surround it so it as *some* protection so my mechs don’t have to baby sit it.

“I have the high ground…”

So as an opponent what are you supposed to do about this? I have a powerful alpha tank and I’m going to be aggressive with it- on the receiving end you *have* to respond with overwhelming force.

How many turns can you let me zap out 10-30 points of PPC damage?

Schrek engages a Grashopper at range, taking return fire from the ‘hopper, and dedicated LRM fire from a Catapult. An enemy Spider runs up and starts zapping away.

I’m taking major heat, and dishing out some damage, but no where equal or more vs. what I’m taking back- the Schrek is getting pounded.

Motive hits, stabilizer hits, hits to the front and side, it blows out and explodes.

Should I be upset?

The tactica challenge here, with an alpha unit is not only to get in place where it can do the most damage based on the terrain, but also to take advantage with your other units- in this case my mechs and infantry while the Schrek was being focused fired on for 3-4 turns.

Those are turns of dice NOT going at my other units- giving them a break in game momentum.

How can one utilize that bit of breathing room.

I want the Schrek to do maximum damage, but the dice dictate that even as I try to get the best modifiers by not moving the tank, and bringing opposing units into optimal range.

But regardless of how the damage turns out, I have to capabilities on the momentum created for my other units.

THAT is the real hidden value of an alpha unit.


On a side note, I’ve been basing all my Battltech infantry on plastic generic poker chips since it gives them a more organic look, and saves the hex bases for my ‘mechs.

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