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46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13297 Members Latest Member: - Shane786 Most online today: 19 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Mechaton Rules Questions  (Read 8737 times)
Keith
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Posts: 35


« on: February 16, 2011, 03:08:04 PM »

So the book says when calculating VPP, for ties, both people bump. So if we both have the most mechs, we both bump down one. Cool. What about in a two-player game: say we both have 6 mechs. Do we both bump up, for having the fewest mechs, or bump down, for having the most mechs? It equals out, I understand, but it does affect our VPP as far as what the attachments did to it.

And also: Let me know straight up if I'm just playing with bad strategy, but in the games where I was the attacker - and these are two player games, mind you - I've tended to trail considerably behind the defender. This game today, I started with 30 points to her 70-something, and the leap is just massive, it feels like there's no way to make a dent. For reference, I was at 3 VPP, unluckily having the most attachments and most mechs, and she was at 7, getting the upper hand by default. It's starting to look like "Defender Wins" no matter what. Any advice?
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- Keith Blocker
lumpley
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2011, 07:24:21 PM »

I love answering rule questions!

1. For 2-player games, I think neither bump. Try that and see how it seems.

2. Attack like crazy, and mean it. You can't afford to waste a single mech's single turn. Concentrate your fire, know when to seize a target of opportunity and when to ignore it, have a solid strategy and follow through without hesitating or flinching. It's the only way to win as the attacker. No hanging back, testing, probing, waiting for the right time. The defender can win just by settling in and waiting you out; you have to bring the fight.

The worst position to be in, at the start of the battle, is one mech ahead. Try bringing 6 mechs next time, see how she likes it.

The good news is that even so, her 70-something will drop precipitously as you blow up her mechs and take her stations, and your 30-something won't.

-Vincent
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Keith
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Posts: 35


« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2011, 04:50:00 PM »

Awesome. I have some more, just recently!

1) So I can name a mech outside of my direct fire range with a direct fire weapon if, after I move, I believe I'll be within direct fire, right? All that happens if I don't hit it is I just don't hit, not a problem. Okay, does spotting work the same way? You can only spot at direct fire range. What we've been doing, and I can't really say why, is that I can name someone in direct fire range if I might be within range to hit them after the move, but I can't do that with spotting. Is that totally wrong, can I do the same move trick with my spot attachments?

2) Can I spot without a spotting attachment, and just not get the benefit of the yellow dice?

3) Cover - is there some general measure for when a mech is behind real cover versus just some terrain? Like, we've been building our cover four bricks high, because it's just enough for the mech to peek over it and maybe stick some guns over the top, and that's cool, and it feels right that you might get popped still from stray shots, flavor-wise. But how much cover needs to be in front of the mech to still count? If I pop off two bricks, and it's just like this little fence now that only comes up to the mech's waist, is that still cover? Single bricks don't count, but where exactly do you draw the line? What's the consideration?

4) With each of us fielding, generally, 6-8 mechs each, keeping track can be confusing. Is there anything in specific you do to remember which mech lost one of its white dice?

5) "Draw a line the long way through the cover, extended out onto the field, to determine whether the cover’s between you and your attacker."

I think I get what you mean for determining cover, but I actually don't understand this line at all. Could you clarify that a bit?

6) Quick and dirty: what should I consider when deciding how many attachments to put on a single mech, as well as what attachments to put on them? What my strategy is, sure, but is there some synergy between: "Always have a guy with a move and at least two hand to hand, overloaded, and always make sure to have a guy that has this and that, or this many attachments" (just making stuff up here) - or is it all completely dependent on you and your opponent?

7) I actually have around a thousand questions about all those optional rules that popped up in your campaign development posts, about "no declared target = +1 move" and getting additional goes with extra initiative dice, and also questions about the campaign stuff in general, but I realize that goodness kind of sputtered off and if you're not fielding questions for it all, I won't ask. If you are though, I'd appreciate dropping some more your way!



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lumpley
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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2011, 09:56:02 PM »

1) Yes, you can. I don't recall what the rules say, precisely, but in play around here we've just gradually dropped all the restrictions on spotting range and target anyway, and not missed them. If you roll a yellow die, you can spot whoever you want.

2) You can spot only if you have a spotting attachment. In that way it's like a ranged weapon.

3) We draw the line at a single brick. Two bricks together is cover.

4) For mechs that have lost a white die, we love to bust off arms or legs or heads.

5) No! I had a picture in my head, but who knows now what it was. The general principle is: be generous to the attacker about whether he can attack, and be generous to the defender about whether it counts as cover.

6) Make your guys support each other, as flexibly as you can. My own preference is 6 identical mechs each with 1 move, 1 armor, 1 spot, and 1 direct fire weapon. But, like, I win only my share of games, and maybe not quite that, so maybe it's not a great choice. What doesn't seem to work is a single scout with move, armor and spotting, in support of a more weapon-heavy assault or artillery force.  The poor scout too often goes too late in the turn to really pull his own weight.

7) I owe you (and others) an up to date set of rules, with a new edition to follow. One of these days I'll find the time to put it together. Meanwhile, sure, ask away.

Oh, and so you know: those campaign rules look good and start strong, but they're broken. Plain old straight up mechanically incompatible with the game's scoring rules, and the strong start just disguises it.

-Vincent
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Keith
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Posts: 35


« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2011, 04:50:23 AM »

Quote
1) Yes, you can. I don't recall what the rules say, precisely, but in play around here we've just gradually dropped all the restrictions on spotting range and target anyway, and not missed them. If you roll a yellow die, you can spot whoever you want.

As in, I can just spot anyone, anywhere on the battlefield, at hand to hand or artillery range as well?

Quote
For mechs that have lost a white die, we love to bust off arms or legs or heads.

I hit a mech in a game, and it lost its move attachment - the player decided it was all four of its legs, and now the thing is just scooting across the ground, grinding metal, sparks everywhere, still firing its weapon as it slides around cover. I think we've been to afraid to screw with the main frame of the models themselves, and kept it to just attachments, but that's awesome.

Quote
Oh, and so you know: those campaign rules look good and start strong, but they're broken. Plain old straight up mechanically incompatible with the game's scoring rules, and the strong start just disguises it.

Really? That's unfortunate! We were looking forward to trying them out in a few weeks. The game is great, but I think we'd (me and my opponent, strictly) benefit from some kind of battle-to-battle cohesion. Right now it's just shootin' some mechs, battles in limbo, not much story or point. This isn't a complaint with the game, mind you - we're not looking at the game's rules to do that for us, it'd be like complaining that Uno isn't giving us any character development. Rather, it's just a personal itch I'm trying to find a way to scratch.

Quote
I owe you (and others) an up to date set of rules, with a new edition to follow. One of these days I'll find the time to put it together.

There's an adorable bunny pet in it for you if it's done by this summer. He's fuzzy and floppy, and his name is Li'l V.

Well, I still have questions about optional rules and things:

1) I'd like to know more about the stuff you guys were trying out during campaign development, specifically;

- no declared target = +1 move
- an additional initiative die = an extra go with no move (very curious about this one)
- area-effect rules

So did these get tested, can you endorse any of them? I'm keen on asking, before each match, "Okay, do we want the green d8, or the +1 move thing this match?" But I'd really like to know the state of those rules, if at all possible. Are there any problems with them, or any new rulings?

2) Similarly: are the vector rules good for use, collisions and all?

3) What about the Not Lowering Your Defense and Spot By -1 you were mentioning? We've played using that, and we've been getting a surprising number of 6s on defense, but it's fizzled just about as many attacks as, say, a 5 defense, so I haven't seen a problem. It sucks facing down two 6-defense assault dudes, but great fun charging towards them with a 6-defense runner while they've got massive spots on their heads and I just happen to get lucky with my attack roll. Did that turn out okay?

4) Oh, hey, a basic thing: if I declare a mech as my target but never fire on him for whatever reason, does he still get to go next according to combat order, just by being the declared target?

This has all been you-don't-know-how-helpful, and tons of thanks!
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- Keith Blocker
lumpley
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« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2011, 05:42:49 AM »

Sure! My pleasure.

Spotting: Yep, anybody. The restrictions in the book aren't bad, we've just gradually stopped caring about them, and they aren't going to be in the next edition.

Campaign rules: Me too. I have some ideas, but nothing concrete enough yet to share.

1) The game has great tolerance for little optional rules like these. We've played with all of them, variously, and none of them are broken. Try the ones that grab you!. Make up your own! Share what you come up with!

The additional non-move go for each extra initiative die looks like a bigger thing than it is. Give it a try for sure, if you're interested in it.

2) There is an important change to the vector movement rules. When you're thrusting, each 1 on your move die counts as only half a thrust, not as a whole thrust. To move your vector marker 3 units, in other words, you need a 5 or a 6 on your movement die. (Round up.)

3) In the new edition, a) you won't lower your defense or spot dice, and b) spots will add directly to the attack roll. A spot will turn a miss into a hit, a weak hit into a strong hit, and a strong hit into holy cow!

4) If your target needs a defense number, you switch to combat order and it becomes your target's turn next. This is so that your target can roll dice to get that defense number. If your target turns out to not need a defense number after all, your target doesn't roll dice and you just keep going in initiative order.

-Vincent
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Keith
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2011, 06:08:11 AM »

Quote
3) In the new edition, a) you won't lower your defense or spot dice, and b) spots will add directly to the attack roll. A spot will turn a miss into a hit, a weak hit into a strong hit, and a strong hit into holy cow!

Yikes. Do spot dice work the same way, then? Do they just add to attack now? Or do they add to attack, PLUS you can choose to nab them and roll that many damage dice instead, the way you can now? Or did we ditch the old method entirely?

A and B are fighting. B has a spot on him. A targets him! Does A automatically have to use the spot, according to the new rule, changing his, let's say, 2 attack to a 5 attack, or does he get to decide to let it stay on there? Also, does the spot go away once used, like before, or do you have this horrible target on your head the entire game? I'm guessing it's exactly as before - you use the spot and it's gone, just now you add it to your damage roll instead of rolling X number of damage dice.

Oh, and this tiny little thing: It's legit to target someone who has a spot on them with another spot, right? We've been playing that you can do that, but that you HAVE to use the new spot, even if it's not as good as the first.

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lumpley
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« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2011, 06:55:07 AM »

Yeah, in all other respects the same. A shoots B, B has a spot, A chooses to add the spot to his attack roll, and so discards the spot. If B's defense is 4, A's attack is 5, and the spot is 3, now A does 5+3-4=4 damage dice. If B's defense is 6, A's attack is 4, and the spot is 3, now A does 4+3-6=1 damage die.

We don't ever use rules that require you to remember which spot is the newer one or who placed which spot die or anything like that. If you're attacking someone with a spot, you choose whether to use it; if you're attacking someone with multiple spots, you choose which to use, if any.

My instinct is to say that heck, you can use all of them if you want, just add those suckers up. Why not? Their whole purpose of existence is to turn into damage dice.

-Vincent
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Keith
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2011, 08:48:20 AM »

Okay, I've got like one more that I forgot in the last post, and then I'll be out of your hair, at least until we go play after our next shipments and come back with a thousand more Qs.

So, using the optional rule that a mech gets an additional go on each initiative die they roll:
- Are these additional goes optional, as in, if my mech rolls a 2 and a 7, I go on 2, can I get to 7 and choose not to take that next go?
- You mentioned in the Mechaton posts about re-rolling your defense on each additional go. How does that work? Do you gather up two white dice and whatever blue dice you have and roll them and pick, or do you just straight pick up your defense as it stands and reroll it?
- Can you spot and stuff still, seize stations, or is it only attacking?
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lumpley
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« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2011, 09:10:14 AM »

Let's see.

Yes, you can skip your second go if you want to.

You roll all of your dice again, and assign a new defense die, plus make an attack and a spot (in both cases, that's if you have the requisite attachment and a legit target, of course). It's just a regular go, except that you don't get to move.

The reason you might skip your second go is to preserve a high defense number.

Good luck!

-Vincent
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Mantisking
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Posts: 37


« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2011, 08:41:15 PM »

3) In the new edition, a) you won't lower your defense or spot dice, and b) spots will add directly to the attack roll. A spot will turn a miss into a hit, a weak hit into a strong hit, and a strong hit into holy cow!

Oh.  Oh my.  That's going to be interesting.
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Keith
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2011, 09:31:10 PM »

I think it helps in two ways:

a) not that the old version of spot was at all complicated, but this is simpler. It manges to do basically the same thing with fewer words.

b) it fits in more thematically with what spotting attachments are trying to do: make your shots more accurate. Targeting lasers, floodlights, tactical calldowns, all that good stuff, they're trying to help your army find the enemy and hit them good and well. Old spot kind of did that, kinda-sorta, but it didn't also make your misses turn into hits the way this does.
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Mantisking
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Posts: 37


« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2011, 08:39:48 AM »

I think it helps in two ways:

a) not that the old version of spot was at all complicated, but this is simpler. It manges to do basically the same thing with fewer words.

b) it fits in more thematically with what spotting attachments are trying to do: make your shots more accurate. Targeting lasers, floodlights, tactical calldowns, all that good stuff, they're trying to help your army find the enemy and hit them good and well. Old spot kind of did that, kinda-sorta, but it didn't also make your misses turn into hits the way this does.

And I think it will change the way people use them.  Generally when I play I'd throw high Spot rolls on low Defense mechs.  Makes sense, right?  Now, with Spot rolls adding to Attack rolls, I'll be throwing them on high Defense mechs in hopes of getting past the Defense roll.
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Robert Beckett
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« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2011, 08:24:36 AM »

Hey Vincent


After reading the planned changes you mentioned in this thread, I created a one-page Play Aid to help me & my boys incorporate the changes into our Mechaton battles. I'm posting it here (the formatting is a little wonky trying to post it to a forum reply, but it's still reasonably readable).

Do you notice anywhere where I got your changes (or even the original rules) wrong?


 
Mechaton – One Mech’s Go

1.   Discard your initiative die.

2.   Name your targets (one Attack and one Spotting; can be the same mech):
  • “Attack” Target: You must have  at least one weapon attachment left (unless targeting at HtH range)
  • “Spotting” Target:  Any mech anywhere, but only if you have a working Spotting attachment

3.   Roll all dice except for range-inappropriate red attack dice. Remember the following:

•   ...your automatic green d8 if you have only HtH weapons
•   ...your red d8 if you’re firing a one-shot rocket (and detach & discard the rocket)
•   ...your red d8 for a second weapon at the targeted range (in lieu of a 2nd pair of d6’s)
•   (DO NOT SUBTRACT ONE from defense or spotting dice!)



4.   Assign one blue or white die to your Defense; put a tiny blue defense die next to your mech (good for the entire turn)

 
If you have an unresolved attack against you, stop now and let your attacker resolve it now; you must wait to complete Steps 5 through 8 until after your attacker finishes her go.


5.   Assign one red or white die to your Attack; assign one green or white die to your Move.

6.   Choose whether to move first, then attack, or attack first, then move:
 
WHEN YOU MOVE

•   Move a number of hexes equal to your Move die, or less.
•   Cover and Movement: Your mech may not move through or stop in a hex containing cover UNLESS you rolled a green die this turn.

WHEN YOU ATTACK

a)   Verify range; if target is not within the targeted range, then no attack is possible (skip steps b thru e below )
b)   Determine target’s Defense number (i.e. allow her to do steps 1 – 4 of her go if she hasn’t already)
c)   Add your Attack number PLUS any one of the target mech’s tiny yellow spotting dice (discard the spotting die), then SUBTRACT target’s Defense number.
d)   Roll that many damage dice
       •   Exposed target: each 5 or 6 is a hit
       •   Target Behind Cover (and within HtH range/one hex of cover): each 6 is a hit; each 5 destroys 3 bricks of cover (or is a hit on a covering mech). Note that even two pieces together count as cover.
e)   For each hit, target chooses  one attachment+die combo to lose
       •   For white dice, remove arms, head, etc
       •   Remember: A destroyed weapon means BOTH red attack dice are lost


7.   If you named a Spotting Target in Step 2, assign one yellow or white die to your Spotting; put a tiny yellow spotting die next to your Spotting Target.

8.    Seizing an station: If you’re the only mech within HtH range (one hex) of a station, replace the marker belonging to objective’s former owner with your marker.
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