Head to head, two iconic mechs, similar but different, which one is best…

Tactically I’m a big fan of big gunin BATTLETECH, anything that can push out ten or more points of damage in a shot gets my attention…

…and with BOTH the Warhammer and Marauder having dual PPCs, they have my attention, after all with SO many cool mechs in the game one can’t play an Awesome mech every time.

Both heavy mechs, Warhammer = 70 tons, and the Marauder = 75 tons mount two PPC weapons as main weapons. First question is can both mechs fire them each turn? Two PPCs at medium or close range a turn, with a heavy mech’s armor is not a fight of attrition one want’s to play.

But with 18 heat sinks on the Warhammer and only 16 (!) on the Marauder one isn’t firing the PPCs every turn…

MAYBE on the Warhammer if you are not moving, you can fire both for two turns and then “rest”, but potentially at that point your opponent will be close, forcing you to switch to secondary weapons and not rest your firing for a turn.

And with the Marauder, even with the best of heat management, two PPCs a turn doesn’t work without extreme care.

So what is the pace of fire on both these mechs?

With the Marauder as soon as I’m in range I’ll start shooting with the autocannon regardless of any movement modifiers- start putting some ammo down range to put pressure on enemy mechs and vehicles.

When we close to PPC range I’ll start firing one every other turn on the Marauder.

When we get to the sweet spot on PPC range- close range, but not under the minimum, I’ll stop moving with the Marauder and fire both PPCs.

Following this at close range, shots will switch over to the autocannon and medium lasers.

Ironically for a mech that has two PPCs they don’t get fired as much as you think.

Pace of fire for the Warhammer…

One PPC a turn as soon as I’m in range, followed by two every other turn once we get to medium range and maybe short range if there is still time. From there switch over to medium lasers, and the SRM pack, and closer range with the small lasers and machine guns.

I find I get to fire a few more PPC shots but not many more  vs. the Marauder.

Armor is “ok” for both, but I find the weapons load-out on the Warhammer can often lead one to trouble- taking on heavier mechs or trying to engage multiple mechs at closer ranges with the medium/small lasers, missiles, and machine guns.

Both mechs (stock) are vulnerable to ammo explosions, but double so for the Warhammer, and double that if you close in for close range fighting.

Bad mechs?


Both can be used to good effect, perhaps the Warhammer more so, but like many of the reseen unseen there are “better” matched mechs with respect to weapons and heat sinks.

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Categories: Blog Post: Battletech


Jordan Hubbard · January 3, 2018 at 11:45 AM

Perfect summary. Guys like me who are old enough to have gotten into Battletech by watching the Robotech cartoon and feasted upon the 1st generation of Battlemechs and the 3025 TRO are probably at a little bit of a disadvantage. If I can play a Warhammer I will play a Warhammer. But I also know that there really are better mechs out there that can fulfill the role of the Warhammer or Marauder. Younger guys who don’t have nostalgic 80’s induced blindspots will take Grasshoppers, Guillotines, Cataphracts, or the like. I like that you specifically mention the trouble you can get in with a WHR-6R up close. Firing the missiles, medium lasers and small lasers combined with the PPCs can get you into heat trouble REALLY fast.

    Wargamer Fritz · January 3, 2018 at 1:15 PM

    I tend to also play a lot of the unseen for the same reason, something magic from being a kid and the impact visually they had on my at the time. Battlemaster, Rifleman, Longbow, Warhammer, Marauder, etc. I am sometimes hampered by that 80’s baggage vs. a new player coming into the game right now.

    But it’s all good!

      JR · January 3, 2018 at 5:49 PM

      True. I’m the same way. But I cheat and use 3050 era tech. That typically resolves many of the issues I have for my favorite unseen mechs.
      Of course IS only

        Jordan Hubbard · January 3, 2018 at 9:59 PM

        What else is there? 🙂

    Trevor Reeve-Newson · January 18, 2018 at 11:31 AM

    Yes, Robotech, Harmony Gold does its best to bring BTech down, but the classics are the best.

DaNuker · January 4, 2018 at 8:41 AM

The Warhammer usually gets me into more trouble as it draws way more fire because of its more potent payload and thinner armor. It also has notably weak leg armor for its tonnage, which combined with the kicking rules, draws fast medium ‘Mechs to its side arc like a moth to a flame.

The Marauder tends to sit back a little further which makes it less likely to get hit and lacks the heat sinks for a constant barrage, meaning it is also lower on the opponent’s priority list. It also has heavier armor which makes it last longer, with a big caveat… The left torso which only contains AC/5 ammo will explode when critted.

Given that the Marauder costs more BV, I take the Warhammer as it’s a more straight forward, if fragile, weapons platform for the price and doesn’t waste tonnage on a AC/5. The Marauder is probably a better pick as a campaign commander’s ride for its extra protection and still do some significant ranged damage. That said, take a look at the variants for both machines. The WHM-6D is as close to an ideal Heavy ‘Mech there is.

P.S Also I really hope the Harmony Gold lawsuit for these guys get settled, or at the very least by 2021 HG rights to them will finally end and we get to see remade models of the originals.

    Jordan Hubbard · January 4, 2018 at 11:18 AM

    Your lips to God’s ears. I’m hearing that the lawsuit that Harmony Gold got slapped on it is really really hurting their case. Turns out that the company that gave Harmony Gold the license might not have actually had the rights to give to HG in the first place.

      Wargamer Fritz · January 8, 2018 at 9:52 AM

      Every long time BT player secretly hopes HG gets hit with a big dose of KARMA.

    Trevor Reeve-Newson · January 18, 2018 at 11:35 AM

    It’s hard to determine which is the best ‘Mech, for stock ‘Mech vs. stock ‘Mech I’ll take the Marauder for effectiveness, but not by much. Just on looks I’ll take the Warhammer and variant ‘Mechs I’ll take the Warhammer 6K or 6D. The variant Marauder ‘Mechs don’t do much to improve the ‘Mech even 3M or the crazy 3L, and the 3D just makes it worse.

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