Solaris VII: The Game World
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|Solaris VII: The Game World|
|Primary writing|| Anthony Pryor|
|Cover artwork||John Zeleznik|
|Illustrations|| Earl Geier|
L. A. Williams
|MSRP||25.00 US $|
|Era||Succession Wars era|
The Solaris VII - The Game World boxed set describes the game world of Solaris VII and its famous Solaris Arena Games. It was designed as both the next step of the BattleTech board game rules, and to serve as a complete game in itself, providing new rules for arena combat - the 'Mech Duel Rules - that later became known as the "Solaris rules".
Essentially, under Solaris rules each game turn from the classic boardgame was cut down from 10 seconds to 2.5 seconds and the supposed width of a hex on the gameboard was also divided by four, allowing for micromanagement of what was previously covered in a single turn. This led to a distinctively different performance of some weapons and system under Solaris rules. TICs and additional range brackets were introduced for weapons, as were some new "show" weapons designed specifically for arena combat such as the Claw.
Twelve dedicated arena 'Mechs were presented along with record sheets.
The set also provided background information for role-playing adventures on Solaris VII.
From the back cover
|“|| "Let the Games begin!"
The bay door swings up and away, revealing your opponent across a labyrinth of obstacles rising from the arena floor.
Welcome to the Game World, where war is a business and life is a gamble.
Solaris VII is a supplemental for use with BattleTech and MechWarrior, providing everything needed for a MechWarrior to experience the life of a gladiator up close and personal. From the deadly 'Mech duels to the nightly intrigues at Thor's Shieldhall, Solaris VII challenges all the skills your characters possess.
How good are you?
On Solaris, finding out will get you rich or get you killed.
As indicated by the back cover, the boxed set contained two rulebooks, a booklet including record sheets and a brief "Technical Readout" for 12 new 'Mechs, a set of Trading Cards by Jeff Laubenstein for the 12 new 'Mechs (presenting one famous example of each type), a large map of Solaris City with a poster map of the Inner Sphere on the backside, three large double-sided arena maps (each twice the size of other game maps) and a descriptive overview leaflet and numerous counters.
- Solaris VII (The Game World) Gamemaster's Book
- Running Adventures
- Roleplaying Hints
- Solaris Adventures
- Getting Started
- Reputation Rating
- Finding a Patron
- 'Mech Cooperatives
- The Fight Games
- Major Stables
- Major Cooperatives
- The Top 20
- Solaris Encounters
- 'Mech Duel Rules
- Integrating MechWarrior Rules
- New Action Rules
- Integrating BattleTech Rules
- Physical Attacks
- Optional Rules
- Duel Weapons Table
- Arena Combat
- Solaris VII (The Game World) Player's Book
- Record Sheets
(The Daedalus and Morpheus were spelled correctly in the Technical Readout section and on the Trading Cards.)
Arena-Planet Solaris VII
Published by Fantasy Productions GmbH (FanPro Germany), Arena-Planet Solaris VII, the German language edition of the boxed set, was expanded over the original with additional content. There were also minor changes to the record sheets.
Only the rulebooks and the record sheets were translated. The maps, counters and Recognition Cards from the German boxed set were virtually identical to those in the original set.
The rules section contained two designated House Rules ("Hausregeln") which were not in the original set, namely rules for the ECM 3025 and the Dual Cockpit ("Doppelcockpit"). These rules had previously been published by the MechForce Germany who enjoyed close contacts and a good working relationship with FanPro Germany.
Rote Dämmerung Cooperative
To expand on the house rules, an additional major Cooperative was introduced called Rote Dämmerung ("Red Dawn"):
- Formed practically overnight in a surprise move, this Cooperative is rumored to have been formed by officers from various Great Houses who are suspected of having maintained contact with each other during their active time already, which may have been the reason for them to flee prosecution by their respective secret services. They seem to possess significant amounts of money and are also thought to have contacts to ill-reputed circles. Finally, they are rumored to possess one 'Mech equipped with the rare Dual Cockpit. They are reported to have 5 MechWarriors and 6 'Mechs. The Cooperative's initiation fee is 1,200 C-Bills and the percentage fee is 30%.
Changes to Record Sheets
Several record sheets were changed in the German edition. The changes included alterations to the ammo loadout and moving critical slots around most of the time (such as moving the MASC critical lines from the legs to the right torso section on both the Mantis and the Cudgel). The changes are discussed in detail in the respective 'Mech articles.
The Record Sheets booklet from the German edition did not contain the Technical Readout section; instead, it presented four new 'Mechs on the pages:
- RVN-1XL DC Raven - A dual cockpit version of the Raven, equipped with the ECM 3025
- DRG-1GKDC Grand Dragon - A dual cockpit version of the Grand Dragon, dropping the rear-firing medium laser
- MAL-1PT5 Mauler - A variant downgraded to 3025 tech, identical to the (apocryphal) Linesman previously published by the MechForce Germany except for two extra tons of ammunition (where the original design was two tons underweight)
- Vulture D - A different loadout from the canonical "D" version, this one sports 3 medium pulse lasers, 2 LB-X Autocannon/2 autocannons, a LRM-20 and a Streak SRM-6
It should be noted that the expansions and alterations in the German edition, while presented in an official and properly licensed source, are not considered canonical for the BattleTech universe because they were never translated and published in an English source, irrespective of the fact that FanPro held the license to the entire BattleTech line at the time and produced the US product line as well.