UACs vs RACs

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Karagin
06/02/05 04:58 AM
63.157.234.163

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Of the two versions of the autocannon listed in the subject, which would you be more willing to have on a mech and why?

For the why please tell us what about one or the other is more useful to you and if you would mount more the one please explain why.

Loooking forward to the discussion.
Karagin

Given time and plenty of paper, a philosopher can prove anything.
CrayModerator
06/02/05 05:38 AM
147.160.136.10

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(I'm only speaking of IS UACs...)

Let me eliminate the non-contenders (for my units) on a case-by-case basis:

UAC/2: It's still an AC/2, and thus a waste of tonnage compared to an LRM system.
RAC/2: See UAC/2, though you definitely need a bigger LRM system to compete.
UAC/5: While noticeably more effective than ye olde AC/5, it's still outperformed by an LRM system and has the misfortune of being an L2 system, meaning it's also competing with DHS+PPC combos. Again, a waste of tonnage.

Semi-Useful:

UAC/20: This has its place on specialty close-combat vehicles and omni-units expecting close-quarter damage. Otherwise, it's too short ranged to be regularly useful. Get a gauss rifle or pair of PPCs.

Useful:

RAC/5 & UAC/10.

I suppose in terms of sheer efficiency, the RAC/5 is the superior weapon. It has the advantage in tonnage, damage, and heat. It's only got 3 less hexes of range than the UAC/10. And its jams can be cleared.

But I like the UAC/10. I was an AC/10 fan in L1 games, and the UAC/10 does everything better (except the jamming part). It has nice 18-hex range, good heat, and excellent damage (up to 20pts).

YMMV, of course.
Mike Miller, Materials Engineer

Disclaimer: Anything stated in this post is unofficial and non-canon unless directly quoted from a published book. Random internet musings of a BattleTech writer are not canon.
Grizzly
06/02/05 05:52 AM
64.9.50.200

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To be honest, I have never been a huge fan of Ultra's, the jamming was too much of a turn off, I would rather use an LBX. Yeah, rolling for the hits is annoying, but against a vehicle or mech with some open internals, they are great crit finders!
I have had great luck with the RAC5. I especially like the RAC5 variant of the Jagermech. You can decide just how much firepower you need, and if it jams you can unjam next turn. They can be an ammo hog depending on your rate of fire, but they are a low heat alternative and make ACs a little more usefull in the age of DHS.
"I am but mad north-northwest, when the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw" Hamlet
Greyslayer
06/02/05 08:44 AM
216.14.198.61

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I agree with Grizzly on this. Though I would add one more advantage to cluster rounds:

3. coming around the corner coming toe to toe with an Atlas and pressing the trigger hoping it works does usually go better using cluster since the chances of either breaching the armour or doing one or more head hits with a single weapon is pretty good. That being said on a fast chassis you get more out of a pair of Streak 6s.

Where the real advantage of RACs come in is the targeting location bit. Firing all 6 RAC 5 rounds and having an average of 4 hit is nasty but having all 4 go to the same location is just plain brutal. UACs also have this ability but the weight for damage ratios (even including the longer ranges of UACs) just don't really cut it in this. Throwing targeting comps on LBs don't help much if you are trying to fire cluster as well.
chez
06/03/05 09:01 AM
62.173.81.122

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I agree with Cray mostly but the issue now is that there are so many weapons systems that the lines are blurred as to what is useful in a given situation and what is not.
The RAC20 in an urban campaign would be brutal but almost useless in open flat terrain.
I never really liked UACs as there is a 56% chance that the second round misses even though the to hit roll was successful.
I suppose vehicles are the biggest winners with this new stuff but as a mech pilot I would prefer energy weapons or maybe a GR
I still shed a little tear at the devaluing of the original AC20 in lvl1 as there are now so many other systems that are a lot better in more situations. The poor old Hunchback would be obliterated before it got anywhere near 9 hexes.
I like Hunchbacks

chez
"In order to stab someone in the back it is first necessary to get right behind them" Sir Humphrey Appleby
Greyslayer
06/03/05 09:27 AM
216.14.198.61

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The FedSuns special ammo types on something like a Saladin though is a fairly nasty combo . AP or gyro ammo it doesn't matter both are nasty stuff.
CrayModerator
06/06/05 06:48 AM
147.160.136.10

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Quote:

I never really liked UACs as there is a 56% chance that the second round misses even though the to hit roll was successful.




Look at this way: if the target number is 8 or higher, you're more likely to hit with the second shot of a UAC than if you fired two separate ACs.
Mike Miller, Materials Engineer

Disclaimer: Anything stated in this post is unofficial and non-canon unless directly quoted from a published book. Random internet musings of a BattleTech writer are not canon.
Nightward
06/06/05 05:43 PM
203.173.18.58

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The RACs. You can clear jams from Rotaries.

The RAC-2, I find, is like having an SRM-6 with an 18-hex range. The cannon itself is a little heavy for what it does, so I'm not a huge fan.

The R-A/C-5, though, is nasty. It certainly outperforms the MRM-30.

Clan tech wise, though, the LBs are generally a better proposition than the Ultras, except for the Ultra Twenty, and that only in certain cases. Things like the Widowmaker and Stormcrow C get the nod, but I'd love to see a Timber Wolf packing an U-A/C-20...
Yea, verily. Let it be known far and wide that Nightward loathes MW: DA. Indeed, it is with the BURNING ANIMUS OF A THOUSAND SUNS that he doth rage against it with.
Greyslayer
06/06/05 11:43 PM
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Quote:

Look at this way: if the target number is 8 or higher, you're more likely to hit with the second shot of a UAC than if you fired two separate ACs.




How do you work that out? You have to assume that the first round hit (which would mean 8+ for the first shot).

Ultra 20 vs 2 x AC 20 shots:

at 8s
Ultra 20 :- 41.7% with one shot but requires the first shot to hit for the second shot to have a chance at hitting (so it only gets a go 41.7% of the time in this instance). This blows out to 17.4%.
2 x AC 20:- 41.7% with one shot and 41.7% for the second shot to hit. Double the chance to hit at 41.7%. Chance of both hitting is 17.4% and about 66% chance of possibly one hitting.

at 9s
Ultra 20:- 27.8% for the first shot and 11.6% that the second shot hits.
2 x AC 20 :- 27.8% for either shot to hit... but only 7.8% chance for both to hit. About 47.8% chance that one round will hit.

at 10s:

Ultra 20 :- 16.7% for one. The second shot has 6.9% chance of hitting.
2 x AC 20 :- 16.7% for either one, 2.8% chance of both hitting but 30.6% of one hitting.

The trend we start to see as we get higher is that the ultra has a better chance of BOTH rounds hitting but is entirely reliant on the first shot whereas two of the same are more likely to hit with one round but less likely to both hit at those higher numbers.
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