Bad ‘Mechs – Scorpion

Bad 'Mechs Scorpion

Courtesy of Eldoniousrex

“Oh no.” 


Private Buckley turned her datapad over with a look of utter despondency. Private Kleber took it, scanned down the assignment list, and then handed it back as sympathetically as he could. “Oh, man. I’m so sorry,” he said.

“What am I going to do?”

“Well, first you’re going to make sure your neurohelmet is extra padded,” he suggested and then ducked as Buckley threw the datapad at where his head had been just a moment ago. The tough plastic managed to prevent the screen from shattering when it struck the wall, although that didn’t help Buckley’s mood.

“I’m serious! Have you ever driven a Scorpion? The thing is a death trap! You can’t move without tripping over your extra legs, and gods help you if you want to bring a mug of coffee into the cockpit.”

“I know,” Kleper sighed. “I’ve got a friend over in the Sixth. She got assigned a Scorpion–got concussed after her second shakedown. Tripped and fell, tree almost went straight through the command chair. She hasn’t been the same since then.” 

‘You’re not helping,” Buckley whined.

“Alright, then what about sabotage? We could pull the board, tweak a few resistors, see if that throws up an error, then they hand you a shiny new Quickdraw.”

Buckley shook her head. “I even come near the ‘Mech bay, chief Gilles will have my head. He still hasn’t forgiven me for that time I accidentally dropped a burrito from the gantry.” 

“You knew you shouldn’t have brought your lunch into the cockpit for neuro-synchronization. You’re lucky he didn’t have you court-martialed.” 

“I know. Wait. You don’t think this is revenge, do you?” Kleper crossed his arms and shrugged, but his expression told her that was probably it. 

Later on the proving grounds, Buckley’s Scorpion fell out of line with the rest of her lance. With the ‘Mech’s wildly wobbling gait, everyone expected her to fall spectacularly. Instead, the 55-ton machine just came to a stop and then seemed to sink to the ground–almost like the pilot had simply given up.

“Kleper!” Gilles shouted over the radio. “Get up there and see what the hell Private Buckley is doing! She’s not responding to comms.” 

Kleper brought his Lancelot to a stop beside the apparently stricken Scorpion and hopped down using a rope ladder. Getting to the Scorpion’s cockpit proved relatively simple as its torso was resting on the ground like a dog whose owner had just whapped it on the nose with a rolled newspaper. Cracking open the hatch, Kleper peered inside and then immediately recoiled so far he fell backward off the resting ‘Mech. 

He came too in the medical bay. Beside him was Private Buckley, bruised and pale, broken nose set in a splint, but otherwise fine. Then he remembered the sheer quantity of blood and barf that covered the inside of the Scorpion’s cockpit. It looked like an abattoir. 

“They’ve given me my callsign,” Buckley said, staring blankly forward.

Kleper managed to mumble, “What is it?” 

“Comet. It’s short for ‘Vomit Comet’.” 

Kleper tried to laugh, but his concussion made even the slightest jostle too painful. 

Days later, when Buckley returned to her freshly-cleaned Scorpion, she found a drawing painted to the barrel of its PPC. It depicted a cartoon cat wearing a cowboy hat riding a putrid green asteroid freshly ejected from an old-timey cannon. 

Scorpion 3025

As with many ‘Mechs, the Scorpion started with a sound concept. Four legs provide a far more stable platform than two, so the Scorpion was initially conceived as a fast-moving sniper. Unfortunately, the Scorpion was one of the very first quad ‘Mechs ever designed, and the engineers at Brigadier Corporation hadn’t yet figured out how to make a four-legged chassis move as fast as the Scorpion without making the ride intolerable for its sole human occupant. As such, the Scorpion was a reviled machine throughout its history and only survived the Succession Wars because nobody wanted to pilot it into combat.

Originally designed for the Terran Hegemony in 2570, the Scorpion seemed to be a fine ‘Mech on paper. With a top speed of 97.2 kph, the Scorpion could easily fire its long-range PPC and then reposition to avoid return fire. Seven tons of Star Slab armor was sufficient for a 55-ton medium ‘Mech and a backup Marvel Six-Load SRM-6 could keep the Scorpion safe from anything that managed to get too close. Ten heat sinks allowed the SCP-1N to remain relatively cool, although continued repositioning after firing its PPC would eventually lead to problematic heat buildup. 

What soon became clear, however, were terrible flaws in the Scorpion‘s actuator systems and gyro alignment software. At low speeds, the Scorpion gave its pilot a rolling motion not too dissimilar to a rocking chair, but at high speeds, that motion became violent enough to earn the Scorpion the unflattering nickname of “bucking bronco.” Any sudden stops or changes in direction would fling the pilot around in their command chair, making tight safety bindings an absolute necessity. Many MechWarriors even went so far as to purchase additional padding for their neurohelmets to prevent cranial injuries. 

Scorpion 3050

But those suggestions were only given to Scorpion pilots who had no other option. Soldiers with even a hint of prestige begged to use any other ‘Mech, even ones perceived as lesser or outside of their trained specialty. The Scorpion received such terrible reviews that Brigadier ceased production before the First Succession War and instead opted to use the Scorpion‘s development data to create the Goliath, a far more successful quad ‘Mech.

It seems the Scorpion‘s development showed signs of trouble right up until the first ‘Mechs rolled off Brigadier’s assembly lines on Oliver. A small swivel tube mount just below the cockpit on older-model Scorpions would be the perfect place to mount a small support weapon like a machine gun or laser, but none was ever mounted. It’s speculated that this curious cosmetic feature was intended to be a support weapon but was removed just before Brigadier began mass assembly in order to streamline production. 

Before giving up on the design, Brigadier Corporation attempted to use the Scorpion as the basis for a new Land-Air ‘Mech, thinking that pilots couldn’t complain about the ride if the ‘Mech was actually flying. While that seemed sound logic to Brigadier’s marketing department, the company’s engineers were never able to get the Scorpion‘s conversion system to function properly and the project was abandoned. However, in attempting to get the Scorpion to fly, those same engineers upgraded the Scorpion‘s leg suspension, actuators, and gyro software. The net effect was the Scorpion LAM was actually much better at walking than any Scorpion that had come before. 

Scorpion 3025 TRO

Tragically, the technology that could have saved the Scorpion (and the stomach contents of many Scorpion pilots) was literally buried in a research and development facility that was later lost during the Succession Wars. It wasn’t until 3065 that the schematics and even a semi-functional prototype were uncovered by Defiance Industries. Unaware of Defiance’s discovery, Brigadier Corporation Licensed the Scorpion design for a pittance, and Defiance started producing new Scorpions for the first time in centuries. 

Brigadier produced thousands of the original SCP-1N, with most of them mothballed or sent to the furthest reaches of the Inner Sphere. As such, few saw intense combat and many survived the Succession Wars. With the rediscovery of Star League technology, Brigadier offered a basic upgrade package called the SCP-1O in 3049 that replaced the PPC with an extended-range version and gave it double heat sinks to keep the machine cool. 

It wasn’t until the late 3060s that Defiance introduced the redesigned Scorpion. The SCP-12S offered improved defense and firepower, with two tons more armor, an LB 10-X autocannon with two tons of ammo, and CASE for its ammunition bins. A Light 330 engine provides the necessary weight savings for these improvements and 10 double heat sinks are more than sufficient to keep the SCP-12S ice-cold in nearly all combat encounters.

Scorpion SCP-12S

It wasn’t long before Brigadier found out about Defiance’s new design, either as part of its license agreement or through industrial espionage, leading to the SCP-12C in 3067. Having relocated its main manufacturing hub to the Free Worlds League, Brigadier’s main customers for the 12C were the FWLM and the Word of Blake, which would go on to launch its deadly Jihad mere months after the design’s inception. The SCP-12C upgraded the PPC to an ER PPC but drops the SRM-6 in favor of an ER Small Laser, an Improved Narc Missile Beacon, and a C3i computer. An XL engine and ferro-fibrous round out this Scorpion‘s improvements. 

Somehow the Draconis Combine also got a hold of the Scorpion‘s design and produced the SCP-12K. This one vastly improved the Scorpion‘s protection with 10 tons of ferro-fibrous armor and also replaced the weapons with a Snub-Nose PPC, an MML-9 launcher with two tons of ammo, and an ER Medium Laser. A C3 computer allowed its MechWarrior to share targeting data as part of a C3 network, and an XL engine provides the necessary weight savings.

Scorpion IlClan Recognition Guide

Following the Jihad, Defiance and Brigadier would continue to offer additional variants of the Scorpion. The SCP-1TB, built by subcontractor Bander BattleMechs, paired a Light fusion engine with a MASC system to give the chassis a top speed of 120 kph. It also replaced its weapons with twin Light PPCs and an MML-9. Meanwhile, the SCP-10M uses an endo steel chassis and a larger XL engine to naturally skitter at the same speed without the need for a cumbersome MASC system. It also featured an XL gyro to provide enough space for a Heavy PPC, an LRM-10, and nine tons of standard armor.

Brigadier’s latest offering, the SCP-2N, retains the speed of the 1TB model but opts for a Supercharger instead of MASC. It also provides the Scorpion with maximum armor protection for a ‘Mech of its size, CASE II for its ammo bins, and replaces its armament with a Plasma Rifle and two MML-3 launchers. A TAG system is fitted to the left torso to allow the SCP-2N to assist in artillery spotting. 

Despite these new and altogether robust redesigns, it’s hard for the Scorpion to escape its centuries-old reputation for being a rough ride. It’s further hampered by a general disdain many MechWarriors still hold towards quad ‘Mechs. However, with multiple manufacturers now providing multiple variants of the venerable design, it seems the Scorpion will be a far more common sight on the modern battlefield.

And as always, MechWarriors: Stay Syrupy.

stay syrupy

Share this:

This entry was posted in Art, Editorial, Historical on by .

About Sean

Hooked on BattleTech at an early age, Sean honestly can't remember whether it was the cartoon, the serial novels or the short-lived TCG that did him in. Whatever it was, his passion for giant shooty robots never died, so now he writes about the latest and greatest in 'Mech related news.

56 thoughts on “Bad ‘Mechs – Scorpion

  1. Beemer

    It’s a good thing that the fluff doesn’t always translate to tabletop unless some quirks are at play, otherwise I wouldn’t have used this ‘mech as much as I have. I only wish the SCP-1N either downgraded the PPC to a large laser for either more armor or more missile launchers, but otherwise it’s 6/9 movement profile does allow for the PPC to be fired at a run for a few turns with some heat gain, but still have enough speed to get to cover to cool off.

    And like all other quads, the Scorpion can drop prone and gain the prone-at-range defense modifier against attackers with no prone to-hit drawback of its own, making it actually a good sniper. Park one on a hill in heavy woods and drop prone and enjoy a +3 defense modifier until the other side’s artillery gets zoned in!

  2. Sword_of_Light

    Well, since the complaint against the Scorpion is all fluff, I’ll take a Scorpie over a Quickie any day of the week. While not the worst mech in the game, the Quickie is the worst of the heavy class, and any time I encounter one, it drops to the bottom of my threat list.

    Having played quad mechs in Roguetech, the Scorpion and more recently, the Bishamon, they’re good mechs in general, and have one specific trait that gives them an edge. A lot of quad mechs mount turrets – giving unlimited fields of fire. For its size, the Scorpie has decent weapons systems as stock, comparable to a Griffin, and later versions mount MASC, making it an excellent scout and skirmisher.

    1. Joshua Bressel

      Apparently, you’ve never played against advanced Clan Invasion Quickdraws. While I can tell they were originally designed for 3058, with ERMLs, and shoehorned into 3050 with std MLs, the QKD-5K, 5K2, and C variants are nasty. They have great mobility, can alpha strike and jump every single turn, even covered in Inferno missiles, and barely break a sweat, and their solid armor coverage, paired with TONS of DHS to absorb crits, means that they arent easy to kill!

  3. SilverCyanide

    The two “Base” scorpions (the 1N and 1O) are just good enough to see play, especially when you want to go with a fast sniper one more “level” ground, while a jumper like one of the 375 Mafia (Shadow Hawk, Griffin, Wolverine) is better if you get in hilly or holly terrains. If you add the Quirks, the Scorpion gets more awful, obviously, but that’s a fluff thing mostly. It’s not a terrible ‘mech, but has reasons to be called “bad” storywise.

    Once the quirk gets fixed and advanced technology is available, oh boy, the Scorpion becomes a nasty customer. The C version loaded with Clan-tech? This is a top-tier mobile sniper. You can get it with a C3. You can get it with a C3i. You can get it with an LB-X if you think PPCs are for chumps. Of course, the price tag is there to, but still.

    1. Salty Mariner

      Being pedantic here but surely you mean the 275 club? I was extremely confused as to what the number 375 had to do with those ‘mechs, lol!

      1. SilverCyanide

        275 you’re right, I was writing this post fairly quickly and forgot to edit it properly.

        275 Mafia: Shadow Hawk, Griffin, Wolverine. The ‘mechs that have been around since forever, that everybody has access to, that you can find spare parts for everywhere in the Inner Sphere AND BEYOND without any issues. The mafia has friends too, with the Kintaro and others using the 275 engine, but those are the Real Mafia.

        1. Salty Mariner

          I loved the Shadow Hawk and Wolverine starting out, but mostly because of the original 3025 artwork. Wasting 9 tons on a 55 ton mech for a weapon which does 5 damage + the ammo is foolish, even if it is long ranged (by 3025 IS standards) and relatively heat-free.

          1. Plasma3034

            Any autocannon is foolish in 3025 teck unless its a 10 or 20 and backed up by 2+ tons of ammo. As much as I love my baby the Cataphract, it’s garbage with its 10 shots, same as an Enforcer.

    2. Joshua Bressel

      I wish there was a C3 version before the Jihad. Unfortunately, the lightest C3M mech, not completely Kurita, is the Avatar, which sucks.

  4. Sean

    Odd thing about games made in the 80s and real world robotics and large walking machines. Quadrupeds, hexapods, and octopods are much easier to stabilize and have a smoother ride than bipeds. Now I know neurohelmet tie the control computer into the human brain and balance system so for many pilots controlling non humanoid mechs is harder for many, but today that’s all handled by the control computers on the machine itself. As such a Scorpion would probably rely more on the the mechs control systems based on 21st century developments by companies like Boston Dynamics and less on the neurohelmet for somethings, its lower profile and wider stance also makes for an easier ride and more stable firing platform than the tall Goliath I would think. But what would I know my military career mostly involved bouncing around in a tracked metal box.

    1. Dutchman

      The big thing really is just directly attaching the legs to the main hull instead of to a separate hip to allow for at least some stabilization. That is the really odd design choice at play here since few mechs have a directly connected hip joint to the primary hull that would make stabilization essentially hell to try and do.

  5. pokefan548

    Another rather iffy entry for a ‘Mech that performs well on tabletop. Sure, it had issues in lore, but I feel those were overexaggerated here. Out of curiosity, what’s your source for MechWarriors needing padded neurohelmets?

    Still not as bad as the Behemoth/Stone Rhino article, at least.

    1. Sean Post author

      All neurohelmets had some padding. I just exaggerated things a little bit for the sake of humor.

      This is a good opportunity for me to say that while these articles are based on as much canon information as I can find, characters, events, and specific details mentioned in the Bad ‘Mechs series are not canon. At least, not until CGL says so.

      1. Owl

        If you want lore related bad mechs, try the Marauder. IIRC, it was a very good mech until something gets below it AND it had vulnerable hip actuators that are located… guess where? lol.

        I can’t find it right now but there was old lore regarding it that stated one House, think it was Liao, that tried to field an all Marauder unit. It was awesome until their enemies got smart and ambushed the unit while it was on a ridgeline. That “nose” of the Marauder prevented the pilots from being able to see the enemies and the whole unit got toasted. It was stated that this was why Liao has the least number of Marauders among all the Houses.

        For a game mechanics “Bad Mech”, the Warhammer is one. It has so much excess weapons that have all different ranges that it ensures that there is at least two weapons it can’t use at any range and all that dakka came at the cost of paper thin armour. If it was not one of the Unseen, I doubt it would have been an actual design. Think it actually has the weakest armour of all the Inner Sphere mechs in that tonnage bracket. They “fixed” the weapons with the Thug and the

        1. Owl

          Found the House Liao reference, TRO: 3025

          An early example of Successor State use of Marauders was in 2828, when Duchess Ilsa Liao sent Barton’s Battalion of the 1st Regiment, McCarron’s Armored Cavalry, against House Marik on Pella II. Barton’s Battalion consisted of 90 Marauders massed together with 18 Warhammers.

          This experiment, tantamount to Duchess Liao placing all her eggs in one basket (House Liao possessed only a few hundred Marauders at this time, and Barton’s unit represented a large portion of them), was a success. The Marauders annihilated the inferior ‘Mechs placed in their way by the beleaguered Mariks, while losing only four of their number.

          Barton’s Battalion continued to be extremely successful, until Marik forces, falling back on Graham VI, caught them in a gorge outside the city of Gijia. Realizing that they had finally cornered the infamous Major Barton, the Mariks threw two full battalions of Archers and Riflemen against him. Unable to close in on the Marik ‘Mechs, and with their field of fire restricted by the rock walls and the Dalban optical system, the Liao Marauders withdrew with heavy losses.

  6. AlanthePaladin

    I’m getting into tabletop Battletech with the mercs kickstarter, why is it that almost every IS mech in the force boxes I purchased have bad mech articles?
    Is this the way of saying that mercs just make do with the “Bad” mechs the great houses don’t want?
    If it’s on purpose, I find that great, if it’s not well its at least funny.
    Anywho the scorpion, is pretty much what i turn the Griffin into in MW5 because i feel it needs to have some short range punch to go with the PPC. So on paper its fine.

    1. JustSomeGuy

      The Succession Wars and the SLDF Exodus (which led to the formation of the Clans) removed the most advanced mechs from the Inner Sphere. By around the 2860s the Inner Sphere’s knowledge and production capabilities had both taken a nose dive, and the few new mechs (advanced or not) went to House armies. Mercs were left with whatever they inherited or could salvage from the battlefield themselves, as even the House armies would quite often have to make do with what they could salvage.

      Fast forward to the 3040s and both production and technology were being recovered. Now House armies were rebuilding with new production mechs (even if most didn’t use LosTech), and the military was looking at what to do with their centuries-old walking scrap piles. Quite often they got sold off to Mercenary units or Periphery powers, and quite often they were still an improvement over what they previously used. Once the Clans invaded, House units started to focus on salvaging from the Clans, allowing some even relatively advanced units to become available to Mercenary outfits. Mercs quite often fought against the Invasion and as such they needed some Lostech themselves in order to keep up.

      Mercenaries always end up with the shorter stick unless you start talking about the legendary units like the Eridani Light Horse or the Northwind Highlanders. Even still, many of the downsides of mechs mostly impact the Succession Wars era when there was either no knowledge or time to fix issues. After centuries of use many problems would finally be resolved in the 3040s.

      1. Jasin Moridin

        Which is why Wolf’s Dragoons showing up with stuff like pristine Annihilators and other ‘Mechs no one in the Inner Sphere could field anymore is so hilarious. “Ah, they haven’t had much new development back in our old homeland, we should give our recon force some plausibly old crap that we don’t need anymore thanks to OmniMechs.”

        I’m just picturing Steve Buscemi with the skateboard, but instead of “Hello, fellow teenagers…”, it’s “Hello, fellow mercenaries, we too have antiquated equipment!”

    2. Cupra

      Because surpisingly no one else mentioned it: the “more liked” mechs where mostly taken for the clan invasion kickstarter. So this time more of the “odd” ones fill the lances.

      Have a good day Mechwarrior!

  7. Pietor Malthus

    The phrase “In- universe Joke” gets thrown around a lot where many bad ‘Mechs are concerned, but the Scorpion definitely takes the crown.

  8. Mattias42

    With the slow push for LAMs being slowly~ reintroduced into the setting, I’d love to see the Scorpion LAM get another shot one day.

    IMHO, it just seemed like a minor tragedy. That team got so close to fixing the problems with that variant, only to need to run and hide. And not only do I have a real sweet-spot for that art with the racing stripes, but that multiple centuries shaggy dog that actually made it eventually story would be cool.

    Besides, the tears of hot rage from the LAM and quad mech haters unifying into a hot, salty soup of loathing? Would be hilarious.

    1. KCKitsune

      I personally LOVE LAMs, and I’m annoyed that CGL nerfed them so hard. Not to say that LAMs are perfect. The conversion gear weight hampers them quite a bit.

      The main problem people have with LAMs is they don’t know how to fight with them. They are NOT your main front line trooper mech. They are your scout mechs and spotter mechs. They jump in, lase the target with TAG, and then watch as semi-guided LRMs and Arrow IV. Also with C3 they can get in close and are DAMN hard to hit (jumping 10 plus hexes makes for a NASTY target number)

      1. Waffleydoom

        I feel like most of the playerbase ranks mechs based on how well they are able to stand toe to toe and blast each other point blank. Anything that is designed for scouting, recon, target acquisition or anything else is automatically seen as bad because it doesn’t have high damage output or heavy armor.

    2. JustSomeGuy

      Personally I would like to see them make the Scorpion into a Quad Vee, that way both disappointments can be combined into one!

      LAM Scorpion would be interesting, but I don’t think you can use Light or XL engines on a LAM. can you? I think it’d be hard to make it better than what it is as a sniper platform.

  9. Ike

    I got one of these in my current MekHQ campaign and I’m impressed by it. The ability to sidestep at 6/9 speeds means that it’s often able to slip out of more trouble spots than it seems like it should and a PPC+SRM-6 is basically ideal for what it’s trying to be. Just get some less whiny pilots and you’re good to go!

    And yes, LAMs are criminally underrated and underused, and many of the more common/basic models lack the bomb bays needed under current rules to give them the air-to-surface potential to make converting to full aircraft mode worth it in several cases. That said, that same MekHQ campaign I just mentioned has also shown me that even without the mechanical difficulties, actually finding even average pilots that are equally good in aerospace fighters as they are Mechwarriors cam be a quest in and of itself. I should pay her more once she’s out of the infirmary.

  10. Zerin

    My friend wanted a custom one for our Battletech game, so I designed one in Blender for him. The problem is it doesn’t fit on a hex unless super small so right now I made a custom three hex base for it. I think he’s a nut job. LOL we’ll see how it does.

  11. Craig

    Always fancied the Scorpion, never tried on the tabletop. Speed and weapons combo is interesting.

    Bad mech? No, just overweight. 40 tons 7.5 tons armor should yield 11 tons for PPC and SRM-6 plus ammo. Yes a reduction in weight of 15 tons brings more armor!!!

    LAMs are a neat idea but in practical terms (and in game terms) it doesn’t make much sense. Sure the prospect of a hot LZ makes the concept _seem_ viable, but why land your forces into the enemy when you can skip over the atmo for an 5 extra seconds and land 50 miles away? The fiction seems to reflect that the planetary attacker has the initiative in that it’s far easier to move above then move below.

    And of course ‘Guardian Mode’ hovering in the air versus strafing fighters and VTOLs would make for good fun in a video game. But when I’ve tried it the extra 10% is a real hit to the equipment / armor equation and they end up a weak aerospace fighter, or worse a weak mech.

    Blame the original FASA laziness of making aerospace design and weapons identical to the mechs. And just how the hell are heat sinks supposed to work in zero pressure environments??? It would be all mass drivers all day and maybe missiles. The heat from energy weapons in this universe could not be dumped in space, like it could in an atmosphere.

    1. Natalie

      > Bad mech? No, just overweight. 40 tons 7.5 tons armor should yield 11 tons for PPC and SRM-6 plus ammo. Yes a reduction in weight of 15 tons brings more armor!!!

      my excel spreadsheet giving available weight (after structure, engine, cockpit, gyro) as a function of walking MP and tonnage suggests that for a 3025 mech, a tonnage of 45 or 50 tons is even better, with 20 tons for armor + payload. While you could do 9 tons of armor with the same loadout, I might consider adding a heat sink to allow it to walk and shoot without accumulating heat, or alternate running and perching while shooting continuously. At 50 tons, the added heat sink wouldn’t even be vulnerable to critical hits.

      Once advanced tech kicks in the higher mass is viable. XL engines mean that you get increases in available tonnage up to 60 tons for a mech with six walking MP. so the original Scorpion’s real problem is that it was ahead of its time and the engine tech needed to make it viable wasn’t widely available yet.

  12. Eric

    Sean, do you even play the tabletop game? If you did half of your reviews based on the fluff would not rate the mechs as bad. The fluff is just that fluff. Even it doesn’t stop the mechs from being used in the universe setting.

  13. Bertuccio

    I think “Kleper brought her Lancelot to a stop beside the apparently stricken Scorpion ”

    Should be “Kleper brought his Lancelot to a stop”

  14. Eric Karau

    Quad Mechs had a bad rep, but apparently the larger Goliath did quite well against the Clans during the Invasion, and that led to the creation of Quad Mechs like the excellent Tarantula light Quad and the larger Bishamon! Even the Clans have Quad Mechs in their Toumans, so the Quad Mech as a concept is still alive and well! I only wish they had new LAM designs, built using advanced tech, because LAMs are still a workable concept, and my favorite type! Imagine if someone built Aerospace Mechs…..?

    1. Skigress

      LAM ‘Mechs are aerospace capable, it was the whole idea. They would drop without a dropship and scout or clear a landing site, sometimes just do a quick strike mission then return to the carrier. I can’t remember if they can achieve orbit on their own easily or not, but they have a fusion engine with the same type of fuel used by other aerospace fighters and all fusion powered ‘Mechs and I think vehicles are vacuum sealed by default as long as their armour is intact even with one point left. Though with the light armour of most LAMs it’s highly likely that the cockpit may not be that sealed after a mission.

      1. Flashfreeze

        Early in the game’s history, LAMs were capable of transitioning between Battletech, Aerospace, and BattleSpace maps assuming you played on all three. The major limitation would be fuel consumption as you would burn up a huge chunk of your fuel going from atmosphere to space or vice versa. The price to pay for maximum flexibility and the theoretical option to suddenly drop a lance of ‘Mechs literally behind your enemy (or two ASF elements suddenly appearing behind a DropShip).

        It was a wild time.

  15. Steel Shanks

    LAMs are still friggin terrible… I really wish people would forget they exist. Even the Blakist Nut-Bags couldn’t get them too work…

    Favorite Quad-Mech though is the Thunder Fox, that is a sexy Mech…

    I like how the Scorpion looks, I’ve never used it in game… Never fought one either. It’s one of those odd Mechs that come up, and yer like “Oh yeah… The Scorpion exists… How bout that.” I could see it moving like a spider maybe, that’d be a jarring gate for sure…

  16. Max

    If my local game friends see this you’re in for it! Quad mech fans are fanatical, I think I mean that as a compliment.

    I like them, in theory, but the TT it doesn’t sit with me. Even later ones with new tech goodies. As far as quads go, Scorpions are one of my favorites, it’s so simple. Open a hole as they close finish with the SRMs, and if you need at the right range fire both and enjoy making Smores on your cockpit dash.

    I will say due to BT feeling things out early and “borrowing” from other Mecha, I think having both Quads and LAMs was good for the franchise, despite the long history, well at least Quads have always been around and still are.

  17. Eric Karau

    Speaking of Scorpions and LAMs, there’s only the one pic of the Scorpion LAM on this website: does anybody know or have pic of the Scorpion’s other two modes? (LAMs transform/reconfigure, you know!)
    I’d like to see how you could make a QUAD mech FLY as a LAM!

    1. Skigress

      Unfortunately, on that very same article you’ll find that the conversion system is nonfunctional. So it never could convert to either aerospace or airmech modes. So no images need to exist. However in universe concept art would be cool to see. Like the design plans on a screen while some techs and designers are arguing over the thing.

  18. Hugo Bossk

    I just used a Scorpion C in a Star-on-Star fight earlier today and it’s a nasty little beast. You can run ten hexes, drop prone and still have one MP left over for a turn, and pull off a combined defensive +5 to-hit. Then you can stand up for free facing any direction the next turn, skitter away behind some cover and recharge your PPC capacitor.

  19. Eric Karau

    Can the Scorpion retract/extend it’s legs upwards-and-downwards and go hull down like a modern tank? THAT would be a really cool feature for a Quad to have!

  20. Eric Karau

    Can the Scorpion retract/extend it’s upwards-and-downwards to go hull-down like a modren tank and present a smaller profile? That would be a really cool ability for a Quad like the Scorpion!
    “More than meets the eye….”

  21. Crazy_Borg

    I like the little bugger.
    A little weak on the armor for my taste, but a useful sniper nonetheless.

    The Panther is the better choice, with just half a ton of armor less, you get more heat sinks and jump jets. Plus, the lesser BV / tonnage.

  22. Club

    Still waiting for bad mechs: Bushwhacker

    Seriously, I’ve despised the thing since I first saw the stats in original 3058

  23. Chuck

    It’s funny reading the carping about these EDITORIALS (i.e., ‘opinions’). I’m waiting for Sean to take on the BJ-1 Blackjack, which is actually my favorite `mech. It seems for many to be a Love-It! or Hate It! I know some people out there utterly detest the Blackjack, while others want to bear its children. It would be fun to hear the howls of protest over his assessment of that particular beast

    1. Pyro

      I’ve never liked the BJ-1 or BJ-2 models, but the BJ-1DB is extremely effective against other introtech mediums or as a “filler” mech in a heavier lance. Its even has effective spiritual successors, in the BJ-3, which delivers Warhammer-level punch on the cheap, and the BJ-2r which is good for dealing with exotic armors.

  24. Eric Karau

    How about for bad Mechs the Viper(Dragonfly) OmniMech? Great for speed and agility, but sucks in a firefight: no decent weapons, even though it’s modular!

  25. John Campbell

    Lots of focus on the fluff for a ‘Mech that has plenty of *actual* problems. Too heavy for its speed — it would actually *gain* two usable tons by dropping to 50. Not enough armor. Not enough heat sinks. Ammo bomb in the LT, with not nearly enough armor over it. The PPC and 6/9 combination is nice, but no jump jets means that speed doesn’t go as far as it looks on paper, and the combination of no arms, no torso twist, and no jump jets means that you end up burning a lot of it just trying to keep targets in your narrow arc of fire. (Though the sidestep does help with that.)

      1. John Campbell

        I’ve been playing since 1985. I am well aware.

        The Scorpion isn’t just a ‘Mech with ammo, though. The Scorpion is a ‘Mech with explosive ammo in an *otherwise empty* side torso. Any crit into the left torso is an absolutely 100% guaranteed dead Scorpion.

        You could make it significantly better just by moving the ammo to the same side as the launcher it feeds. That’d mean that crits into the empty LT would transfer to the CT, which is not great, but it’s better than guaranteed boom. And, I mean, it’s a quad. It can pretty much shrug off the first gyro hit. It’d also mean that the Scorpion doesn’t have to have *both* side torsos to use its SRMs.

        Better would be to move the SRM rack over to the side with the ammo, which would both crit-pad the ammo and make it so losing the RT doesn’t mean you lose *all* your weapons, but that wouldn’t match the original Dougram art. Still better would be to replace the SRM rack with a pair of medium lasers and some armor or heat sinks, but same problem.

        (The Scorpion isn’t the only offender on this front. The original Marauder and Crusader have the same problem — the Crusader in *both* sides. The Crusader, at least, is well-enough armored and burns through its limited supply of LRM ammo fast enough that by the time you start taking crits, its bins are often empty.)

        1. Owl

          Ah yes, the “strange ammo location” quirk. I suspect that you’re right in that it was to match the design with the art.

  26. Eric Karau

    Actually, CASE DID exist in 3025, just not with the Inner Sphere: the Clans had it, and so did Wolf’s Dragoons and Snord’s Irregulars who both came from the Clans originally, but they didn’t show or use it until much later.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.