Head to head, two iconic mechs, similar but different, which one is best?
Tactically I'm a big fan of big guns 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? No. 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.