Testing the Waters for Battletech Interest


  • Pitcrew

    So it's no secret that the active MU* community is always hungry for new Superhero and World of Darkness games that step past the sins of their fathers, even if keeping that momentum can be a bit of a hat trick-- but without my finger on the pulse of what's come and gone, what's strong and weak right now in a broad sense, everything else seems a bit more of a crapshoot.

    I've been mulling over the possibility of a new Battletech MU*, and wondering if the resurgence in interest in the setting is enough to draw (and sustain) a playerbase. I'm thinking we just run FS3 for the character-level interactions and offer resolution via MegaMek (a multiplayer-enabled, awesome, rolls-for-you Battletech tabletop client) for 'mech combat, posing as battles unfold. This part excites me greatly, it's both more user friendly and more compelling than options have been in the past, as well as relatively accessible (since everyone and their mother knows FS3 a bit, and MegaMek makes the tabletop rules far less daunting in numerous ways).

    Which brings us to what I think is the complicated part (beyond finding a motivated coder): Setting. My gut check says the "best" setting choice is one of several eras focused around Solaris VII. You have your seedy noir, neo-corporate settings represented from scum and villainy up to... well, really polished scum and villainy! With all the heroes-against-the-grain, gumshoes, and pragmatists a gray setting like Battletech encourages. 'Mech combat becomes sport, giving easy excuses but low(er) stakes for conflict. Thing is, it's not what I like, it's the consumer.

    This setting has the 40k, Star Wars, Game of Thrones issue where everyone who knows it loves different aspects of it, different eras, different factions, and different locales. Do we need to be focused on a more military op hotspot? Backwater fringers removed from Inner Sphere -or- Clan politicks and wars? Perhaps center a player-driven narrative around a chunk of one of the larger Mercenary operations. What do people think holds the broadest interest? What would -you- in particular be interested in RP'ing or not RP'ing? What are the most important pitfalls in settling on this main narrative thrust and setting?

    I realize this is all vague, partly because I'm mulling numerous directions, partly because I'd like to see where shots land -without- a whole lot of my own fleshing out off the bat. Thanks in advance for thoughtful input!


  • Pitcrew

    If you're like "What is this Battletech Thing?" here is my favorite quick synopsis of its flavor and nature: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnMA1CYOoHw

    If you want some lore deep dive gloriousness, you want Tex Talks Battletech on Youtube.


  • Pitcrew

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  • Pitcrew

    I'd be down for Battletech, certainly. If you weren't set on using the tabletop rules for Mech combat, you could certainly do it well enough in FS3.3 (although Heat would have to be handled via Ammo or GM fiat).

    Solaris VII is a great setting, but it definitely has both upsides and downsides. It misses some of the grand space opera feel of the greater setting, but it also skips out on the travel time and brings all of the factions together in one place. Personally, I would prefer having everyone working together in a single Merc Company with its own JumpShip, so you can go place to place but everyone has a reason to be on the same side, but I think Solaris VII would work too.



  • There is also a significantly less-crunch-y RPG ruleset that came out recently, but it's weird and I don't remember all of the stuffs. Dibs on Aerospace pilot.


  • Pitcrew


  • Pitcrew

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  • Admin

    @hamstersonPcP said in Testing the Waters for Battletech Interest:

    So it's no secret that the active MU* community is always hungry for new Superhero and World of Darkness games that step past the sins of their fathers, even if keeping that momentum can be a bit of a hat trick

    I think a lot of us are waiting for the Next Big Thing; an ambitious, well executed project whose creators won't abandon it to its fate by calling it a sandbox after it opens.

    If it's Battletech or anything else I'm not sure it will matter too much. Make it obvious it's something you're invested in, and people will come.



  • Clan Jade Falcon? The Federated Suns? The Draconis Combine?

    Please.

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  • Hey now. Only one group has space battle nuns.

    Clan_Cloud_Cobra.jpg


  • Pitcrew

    @Ganymede Dia-mond shark! (Do do do do do do do)



  • Preferrably a game pre-clan but either way I am a proud member of the Black Pants Legion and supporter of the Steiner Scout Squad. Atlases march!

    black pants legion.jpg



  • @Killer-Klown said in Testing the Waters for Battletech Interest:

    @Ganymede Dia-mond shark! (Do do do do do do do)

    dancing battletech


  • Pitcrew

    Now, now. Don't get all Crabby...
    Ahem. But seriously, Battletech was my first gaming system - like, I started with a couple of the books still bearing the 'Battledroids' name in the early/mid-80s. I always loved how unique the mythos and technology was; for example, jumpship travel is actually instantaneous; but jumps can only cover so much distance, and it takes weeks to recharge between jumps. Or the fact that the mech reactors run on water as part of hydrogen fission - which makes it one of the most valuable resources in the galaxy. Or the fact that as far out as humanity has explored it's never come across another sentient race.


  • Pitcrew

    Just my opinion, but I think that something like Solaris VII would be an ideal setting for a BattleTech MU. You have lots of chances for cross faction RP that doesn't have to involve shooting at each other (either Mech or personal combat).



  • You intrigue me with this.


  • Pitcrew

    While the replies CERTAINLY seem to rep the range of interests that I was worried about, it's also heartening to see how much love's out there for this awesome sci-fi galaxy.

    In lieu of stepping deeper right this minute (siiick), I just want to tangent briefly onto what an awesome bit of fluff the origin of Clan Diamond Shark is-- with the organism actually created by their arch-rivals to destroy their original namesake (the Sea Fox). At which point Clan Sea Fox (and all of us ever) were like "Shit yea, the Diamond Shark is badass, we're down with this change."

    In the Game of Clans, you Win, or you seethe like a chump.

    RE: Pre-Clan and Post-Clan eras... the issue I have mechanically with the Clans is they kind of break the system in some noteworthy ways. What I -dig- is that it opens up a lot of cultural clash and other interesting RP.... and let's be real, awesome shinies. It's hard for me to argue that the 3025 phase (before Targeting Computer Gauss omg) isn't the sweet spot of mechanical pace and precision... and a bit less pilot-lethal.



  • @hamstersonPcP

    Honestly, I think you would get a lot of traction with a game based on a fictional mercenary company that is going across the galaxy "getting into adventures." The Hare-Brained Studios Battletech game is pretty popular, and could serve as a template on which to base the game's activity.

    I'm okay with no Clan activity or backstory, as there is more than enough Inner Sphere politics to play with. I'm not sure how tasty or appealing a game would be with too many factions, which is why I think a PvE game might be a good place to start.



  • @Seraphim73 said in Testing the Waters for Battletech Interest:

    I'd be down for Battletech, certainly. If you weren't set on using the tabletop rules for Mech combat, you could certainly do it well enough in FS3.3 (although Heat would have to be handled via Ammo or GM fiat).

    Ironically maybe, I think a super crunchy tabletop game like Battletech is actually way easier to code into Ares then any given RPG system. Reason being that it has pretty clear cut rules you just have to translated into code rather then the layers upon layers of exceptions that make up most RPG rules.

    The biggest question would be if you would want mech combat on an actual grid or abstract it to be more text friendly.


  • Pitcrew

    You guys are aware that Battletech MUX exists, right?


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