Monday, 13 May 2013

MechTalk - Heavy Battlemechs

The heavy could be summed up quite simply as a up-armoured medium with more guns, but that would be doing this weight class of 'mech an injustice.  The heavy is a brilliant platform for players who enjoy firepower without the cost of mobility, capable of moving across the battlefield at a decent pace with default engines the heavy is the true frontline brawler.  Featuring a wide array of combat options with the ability to mount some extremely powerful weapon combinations the heavy chassis can really net you some kills quickly if used properly.

The current lineup of heavy 'mechs does allow for a nice mix of playstyles with brawlers, LRM support platforms, snipers and in the case of the Dragon, reconnaissance and fast striking.  The main benefit is of course the extra tonnage the heavy brings to the field which allows for much greater weapon flexibility.  The extra armour also allows for better survivability on the field, but the downside is that you will be a much easier target compared to medium and light 'mechs.  Heavy 'mechs are large and easily spotted making them prime targets for coordinated fire, especially for the likes of the Jagermech and Catapult both of which have distinct profiles.

Tactics ÷

It would be easy to say that getting stuck in quick and doing damage is the most straightforward tactic with any heavy but again this dismisses many aspects of their use.  On a chassis by chassis basis each brings a different style of play and these will become apparent as you experiment in the mechlab.  The main tactic is tanking, taking damage and giving it back in equal measure.  You have the mobility to outmaneuver assault 'mechs and keep hitting their vulnerable sections while also being able to move with mediums in a running gun battle.

Dragon 'mechs are a slightly different kettle of fish due to it's emphasis on speed.  The Dragon cannot mount as many weapons as other heavy 'mechs but it's speed can quickly get it out of danger or even allow a dragon pilot to flank around targets and do big damage before melting away to rejoin the rest of the team, bringing back vital targeting information and enemy composition.  Dragon's commonly mount lasers and ballistic weapons so expect to large laser/Gauss combinations for that quick one, two punch.

Always remember that as a heavy pilot you are the firing line.  Working in conjunction with your scouts and supporting your medium 'mech allies is essential. 

Build Basics ÷

The orion is unreleased
Endo Steel is recommended for express purpose of putting more armour and weapons on your heavy.  XL engines on the other hand are purely a personal choice here.  The only time they work are for Dragon 'mechs simply to allow it to further emphasise it's speed and allow for more heavier weapons.  Outside of this XL engines aren't really necessary unless you want MOAR guns!  Jagermechs with dual Gauss rifles need XL engines, but don't expect to survive for long if you.  It's a double edged sword really, where you need to balance damage over survivability.   If you have the room you should invest in double heatsinks to keep your 'mech firing for as long as possible, as much as possible.  Ferro Fibrous isn't a viable option simply because of the number of critical slots it takes up.


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