Sarna News: BattleTechGear.com

User talk:LRichardson/Essays/Anti-Spalling Buffer

This is a house rule that my group came up with back in 1993. Basically, players were loading up their Mech's with MG's or small lasers not for use as weapons but as something ELSE to hit in a location rather than ammo or engine ect. The idea behind the buffer was to have something to hit that took up more critical hit spots per ton than any other equipment but was not actually useful for anything. Basically, it represents high strength packing foam, heavy quilted cargo nets/blankets, and that foam in a can stuff for filling plumbing holes. It playtested well being simple to understand and keep track of. It was useful, but not unbalancing. Not allowing carry over from one location to another was simply to avoid additional record keeping. The melting heat and fire heat levels were picked because there was nothing else on that line on the heat table and the buffer rolls could be written in as a reminder of the rule. Buffers were only successful in Mechs that had really open sections with only a few critical slots filled, but important stuff in those slots, hence the fluff about it being originally from light security mechs with ammo based weapons. There would not be much point in putting buffering into a section that only had a medium laser or was an arm that had no weapons. As this was a LONG time before battle values or the ill fated combat value I have not made any guess as to what an appropriate value might be. I am totally open to anyone's estimate on this.

I would be interested in hearing here from anyone else who tries these rules or has comment about them. Thanks for reading. : ) <<< - L Richardson >>>