1200 Days - Gramps' run at a Kerensky rated career

1200 Days - Gramps' run at a Kerensky rated career

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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

MarkDey

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You moved a Firestarter to storage? Will you equip it in your next transit?
Maybe? As it is, I'll probably need most of the travel time to do structure repairs, and the default Firestarter loadout is a mish-mash of things that doesn't fit well with my play style. Once I have time to refit it with a good loadout, I may already be running a lance of medium mechs, but I just don't know.
 

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the default Firestarter loadout is a mish-mash of things that doesn't fit well with my play style.
I agree that the stock loadout is ... not optimal, but with a few changes it'll be the most efficient 'Mech in your lance.

I'd suggest either stripping the flamers for four more MGs (making for a loadout of 2xML, 6xMG) - anything that has been stripped of armour gets 35 x 3 damage with increased crit chance on all 35 hits. It's a sure way to crit components out, and will result in a lot of ammo explosion kills.

Another popular build is to swap both MGs and all four flamers for six small lasers; that one is just a beast, but can run a little hot.

A third popular build is to swap the MGs for two more flamers, making the total loadout 2xML, 6xFlamer. It will add 60 heat to the target if all flamers hit, and is a real stunlocker. Its only weakness is the limited ammo for the flamers, but for five turns it will shut down anything you point it at.

All these builds combine well with the zero-weight +10 melee damage mods, as both SLs, flamers, and MGs fire after making a melee attack. The Firstarter has increased melee damage for it's weight, putting out 45 damage from a 35-ton chassis. With a couple of + melee damage mods, that can easily be increased to medium 'Mech levels.

In short, the Firestarter is a versatile little 'Mech, useful for spotting, close combat, finisher, and shutdowns. It's arguably the best light in the game.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 010: 1 Skull Battle____Employer: Local Gov____Target: Capellan____Biome: Lunar
Contract: 1/4 Pay, 3/4 salvage (2/9)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Moose), Javelin (Jingle), Vindicator (Hangover), Vindicator (Jalopy)

Report: Move to contact, and enemy reinforcements are detected as soon as we get pings. COM-1B (CT kill), FLE-4 (CT kill), FLE-15 (CT kill), JVM-10A (CT kill). FS9-H (melee kill), JR7-D (CT kill), JVN-10A (CT kill), SHD-2D (pilot kill). Phoenix Hawk overheats thanks to the Firestarter getting too close. Jingle, out of LRM ammo, lands her Javelin on a DFA attack against the Shadow Hawk, knocking it down and enabling the pilot kill. Hangover takes an LRM to the head.

Damage: Phoenix Hawk overheated once. Javelin suffered 95% RL structure damage, and minor LL and RT structure damage. Vindicator has minor RA and RT structure damage. Hangover is wounded for 18 days. ____Salvage: 2x SHD-2D as priority.
Advancement: Moose, Piloting 5 to 6. Jalopy, Tactics 5 to 6. Jingle, Gunnery 4 to 5.
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____"Wish we could have had more of that salvage, a Shadow Hawk would be a great addtion.", Darius said.
____I nodded, worried about Hangover, and the amount of damage we took in that fight. Highlighting a name, I handed the hiring hall list back to Darius with my selection.
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New Hire: Scrub, 2/2/2/9, Sensor Lock & Master Tactician.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 011: 1.5 Skull Recovery____Employer: Capellan____Target: Magistracy____Biome: Lunar
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (4/19)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Moose), Javelin (Jingle), Vindicator (Scrub), Vindicator (Jalopy)

Report: Move to base and jump past the guards. Phoenix Hawk evades after securing the asset, using it as bait while the rest of the lance attacks the guards. ENF-4R (pilot kill), CN9-AL (CT kill), TBT-7K (CT rear kill).

Damage: Only armor. ____Salvage: 3x ENF-4R, 1x CN9-AL as priority. ENF-4R assembled, sending Jenner to storage.
Advancement: Scrub, Gunnery 2 to 4. Moose, Tactics 4 to 5.
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____Smiling, I told Yang, "It's not a Shadow Hawk, but that Enforcer should be a great boost for us - especially with this terrain. Go ahead and put my Jenner into storage... feels sad to do it, but we need the firepower. That last fight took way longer than I'd like."
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 012: 2 Skull Assassinate____Employer: Free Worlds League____Target: Local Gov____Biome: Lunar
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (3/15)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Moose), Enforcer (Jalopy), Vindicator (Jingle), Vindicator (Scrub)

Report: Target only has one supporting group, LCT-1V (melee kill), SHD-2D (CT melee kill), Striker NARC (ranged kill), Manticore (melee kill). Target sighted, QKD-4G (pilot kill!).

Damage: Only armor. ____Salvage: 3x QKD-4G as priority. QKD-4G and SHD-2D assembled, sending the Vulcan to storage and scrapping the heavily damaged Javelin.
Advancement: Scrub, Guts 2 to 4, Piloting 2 to 3. Jingle, Piloting 5 to 6. Jalopy, Guts 5 to 6.
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____Yang's excitement matched my own. "A Quickdraw and a Shadow Hawk! Boss, these will be great for keeping down our repair bills."
____"That's what I'm betting on! They both need more armor though, and we have two more contracts to finish before we leave the system. What can you do real quick like?"
____"Pulling the SRMs off of the Shadow Hawk should be enough, but the Quickdraw is a tougher choice. How'd ya feel about no jump jets?"
____I nodded slowly. "Yeah... let's try it. Moose likes to fly, but I think Jalopy would be a better pilot for it anyway. Maybe Scrub once he learns how to become a defensive Bulwark like Jalopy."
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 013: 2 Skull Battle____Employer: Pirates____Target: Free Worlds League____Biome: Lunar
Contract: 1/4 Pay, 3/4 salvage (3/12)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Moose), Quickdraw (Jalopy), Enforcer (Jingle), Shadow Hawk (Scrub)

Report: Target vehicles receive reinforcements as soon as we make contact. Schrek SPPC Carrier (ranged kill), SRM carrier (ranged kill), LRM carrier (ranged kill), Bulldog (melee kill), PXH-1 (CT kill), BJ-1 (CT melee kill), GRF-1N (CT kill).

Damage: Enforcer RA 60% structure loss thanks to the LRM carrier's surprise entrance. ____Salvage: 1x BJ-1, 1x GRF-1N, 1x PXH-1 as priority.
Advancement: Scrub, Piloting 3 to 4, Guts 4 to 5 - Bulwark. Moose, Tactics 5 to 6. Jalopy, Piloting 4 to 5. Jingle, Piloting 6 to 7.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 014: 2 Skull Target Acquisition____Employer: Capellan____Target: Local Gov____Biome: Lunar
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (5/23)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Jalopy), Quickdraw (Scrub), Enforcer (Jingle), Shadow Hawk (Moose)

Report: Swapped Pilots around to have a better balance, and to move the Quickdraw's initiative up to the rest of the lance. No contact for two turns, and deployed one beacon shortly after contact. GRF-1N (pilot kill), 2x LCT-1M (both CT kill), COM-1B (CT kill), COM-2D (CT kill). Scrub does too good of a job drawing fire and takes an LRM to the head. Enemy reaction force will land before we can extract, so we set up a killbox. PNT-9R (pilot kill), JVN-10A (CT kill), JR7-D (CT kill), LCT-1M (CT kill).

Damage: Scrub wounded for 18 days, only armor otherwise. ____Salvage: 3x PNT-9R, 2x GRF-1N as priority. PNT-9R, COM-2D, COM-1B, JVN-10A, LCT-1M assembled and moved to storage. GRF-1N assembled and moved into the bay, sending a Vindicator to storage.
Advancement: Jalopy, Piloting 5 to 6. Moose and Jingle, Guts 4 to 5.
 
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Hibuarius and the 1st Career Score check

MarkDey

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____"You sure we have enough space for all this salvage, Yang?"
____"We saved space! Having six mechs put together instead of sorted into salvage compartments is way easier to deal with."
____I looked at the parade of mechs cramming into the mech bay. Never in all my years had I seen such a choice pick of salvage. That would certainly be worth a few more points to the MRB. After confirming the mechs we would keep ready and signing off on some work orders to repair them all back up to full strength, I headed for navigation. Sumire would know the latest profiles of the nearby systems, and I wanted to check on what options we had for jump paths.
____If we were going to vist 170 systems, I only wanted to stop at the ones that were worth it. Alloway looked promising to me, but Sumire shook her head.
____"It's not a bad place, Commander, but the jump point is a week and a half away from where the action is. Any other system we can get to from Joppa would take a week at most, and several are half of that time."
____It took until chow time to sort through the options, but by the end of it I'd decided on a plan. We would head to Hibuarius, which was probably a little too tough for us right now, but there were bound to be some easier contracts to start with. After that, we would make a long arc through Magistracy space. It'd probably take us several months to clear those systems, but I didn't see any big roadblocks.
____Before getting underway, I asked Darius about the markets for equipment and local recruits. The salvage from a Cyclops caught my attention, but it was the variant without the advanced combat computer, so I decided to leave it be. As the engines pushed us out of orbit, I checked on the latest feedback from the MRB. Not a bad start, I thought.
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Days Remaining: 1190 ____ Career Points: 64,107 ____ Career Rating: Unknown
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____I looked down on the green planet as we entered orbit of Hibuarius. Much better than fighting on a moon. Decent pick of contracts too. The Free Worlds League had a recovery mission, the Capellans also had a recovery mission and an assassination contract, and the local government had postings for three battles and a convoy ambush. We'd start with the easier missions and work our way up.
____Sugar was feeling better, and had been working on her gunnery during recovery - enough to quality for a 5 rating. Hopefully, nobody would catch any shrapnel on these missions; the local talent pool was full of raw recruits with the exception of a master mechwarrior that wouldn't even consider us until our MRB rating was about quadruple of where it was now. Repairs should be easier than before though with that new scaffolding being fully operational. Farah's next project was the power system - she seemed optimistic that it wouldn't take much longer than a week and a half to bring everything up to a safe standard.
 
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Na'Shar

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Still loving the reports, please keep em coming. Just a thought though, maybe add a week/day note to each report? It wasn't clear if you took time for repairs between some of the battles or not. But its your story, tell it how you please :)
 
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MarkDey

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Still loving the reports, please keep em coming. Just a thought though, maybe add a week/day note to each report? It wasn't clear if you took time for repairs between some of the battles or not. But its your story, tell it how you please :)
Glad you're enjoying it! If I do take some time between battles for repairs/refits, then I'll definitely note it. So far, I have not done so. My mechwarriors have one very busy day every week or so. Ideally, I want to only do repairs while I'm traveling between planets, but if there is any part of the game where I'll need to spend some time in orbit fixing my mechs, it'll probably be during this early game period.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 015: 2 Skull Recovery____Employer: Free Worlds League____Target: Capellan____Biome: Jungle
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (4/19)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Jalopy), Quickdraw (Sugar), Shadow Hawk (Moose), Griffin (Jingle)

Report: No contact for two turns as we moved around the flank for a better approach. Made contact with the secondary location defenders first, PNT-9R (CT kill), SDR-5V (CT kill), 2x LCT-1M (CT kills). Primary location defenders arrive to reinforce them as the last mech is destroyed, SDR-5V (CT kill), TBT-7K (pilot kill), Inferno Carrier (ranged kill), Striker (melee kill). Quickdraw gets shut down by the Inferno Carrier.

Damage: Quickdraw overheat damage, only armor otherwise. ____Salvage: 3x TBT-7K, 1x PNT-9R as priority. TBT-7K assembled and moved to storage.
Advancement: Sugar, Tactics 5 to 6. Moose, Guts 5 to 6. Jalopy, Gunnery 5 to 6.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 016: 2 Skull Battle____Employer: Local Gov____Target: Pirates____Biome: Badlands
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (3/15)____Lance: Phoenix Hawk (Jalopy), Quickdraw (Sugar), Shadow Hawk (Moose), Griffin (Jingle)

Report: Initial approach around the right flank. KTO-18 (CT kill), CDA-2A (pilot kill), VND-1AA (CT kill), LCT-1E (melee kill). Reinforcements detected, PXH-1 (CT kill), PXH-1K (CT kill), SHD-2H (CT rear kill). Sugar takes a hit to the head in the closing salvos, and Jalopy jumps over the undamaged hostile Shadow Hawk, sending precise shots to the rear center torso that ignite the SRM ammo and torch the mech.

Damage: Sugar wounded for 18 days. Phoenix Hawk took 50% CT structure damage from a rear melee attack by the Cicada. Quickdraw is at 50% structure damage on both arms and LT.
Salvage: 3x CDA-2A as priority. CDA-2A assembled and moved to storage.
Advancement: Jingle, Guts 5 to 6. Moose, Gunnery 5 to 6.
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____I shook my head as I read Yang's estimates for repairs. Four days for the Quickdraw, and two days for the Phoenix Hawk, and that's not even including any weapon refits. Hangover and Scrub should be cleared for action again in a week, but I really didn't want to just sit around not running contracts. I could hire a rookie from the market and use the other mechs, but the rest of the contracts were likely going to be harder than the last two. I sighed, and wished that I hadn't agreed to stay out of the cockpit. Time to press our luck.
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New Hire: Goth, 4/4/2/4.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 017: 3 Skull Recovery____Employer: Capellan____Target: Free Worlds League____Biome: Jungle
Contract: 0/4 Pay, 4/4 salvage (4/19)____Lance: Shadow Hawk (Jalopy), Griffin (Moose), Enforcer (Jingle), Vindicator (Goth)

Report: Only the undamaged mechs are dropped into battle, and pilots are rotated accordingly. Looking at the avenues of approach, we go far to the right for the mountainous high ground. Jalopy baits the defenders, and then maneuvers away and around to recover the scientist while the rest of the lance remains engaged. The Orion is saved for last, with precise shots picking away at it until the pilot eventually loses consciousness (5 pilot hits!) from the consistent damage of our surrounding forces. CRB-2D (CT kill), ON1-V (pilot kill!), TDR-5SS (CT kill).

Damage: Only armor damage. ____Salvage: 3x ON1-V, 1x TDR-5SS as priority. ON1-V assembled, sending the Vindicator to storage.
Advancement: Goth, Guts 2 to 5 - Bulwark. Jingle, Gunnery 5 to 6. Moose and Jalopy, Piloting 6 to 7.
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____"Gramps - you can breathe now", Darius said. Realizing that I hadn't been, a deep inhale and slow exhale released some of the tension I had been holding.
____"Was pretty worried about that drop, but it went far better than I expected. That mountainside really let us keep our range. Let's see if the next drop goes as well as this one."
 

MarkDey

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Mission 018: 3 Skull Assassinate____Employer: Capellan____Target: Local Gov____Biome: Jungle
Contract: 2/4 Pay, 2/4 salvage (3/13)____Lance: Shadow Hawk (Jalopy), Griffin (Goth), Enforcer (Jingle), Orion (Moose)

Report: Our target is in a Cicada. The lance moves along the coast, avoiding the escorts, and catching the target with several salvos. It makes a break for it, and melee attacks weaken it more, with Jalopy connecting with a Death From Above attack to eliminate the mech. CDA-2A (CT melee kill). Enemy forces are near our extraction zone, and one lands an early hit on the Orion's armored cockpit. 2x GRF-1N (one CT kill, one survived), ASN-21 (survived), TBT-5N (CT kill), LCT-1E (survived), DRG-1N (survived), AS7-D! (survived). At the last moment before extraction, Moose finishes off the enemy Trebuchet, and then is struck in the rear armor with several missles - this detonates the AC/10 ammo and blows off the right arm and torso.

Damage: Moose injured for 35 days. Orion RT & RA destroyed. Only armor damage elsewhere.
Salvage: All salvage recovered. 1x GRF-1N, 1x CDA-2A, 1x TBT-5N as priority. GRF-1N assembled and moved to storage.
Advancement: Goth, Tactics 4 to 5 - Sensor Lock. Jingle, Piloting 7 to 8 - Ace Pilot.
 
Aquagea

MarkDey

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____"We were fine right up until the end." I shook my head. "Time to move on."
____"Looks like it", Darius replied. "The rest of the contracts are for the local government anyway. No big loss."
____I nodded. The Orion was a big loss though, and Moose would be out of action for over a month. There weren't any good recruits here, but there were some interesting things on the market. After buying the LRM15+ and some mech parts to get us closer to having all of the chassis the MRB cared about, I met with Sumire. About ten minutes into our discussion, Darius joined us.
____"We have some more opportunities." Highlighting a few systems, he continued, "These are flashpoints - limited time offers where we can make a good amount of money. This one in Fagerholm is from House Marik about some Prototype, the one at Adrar is from House Steiner about a Joint Venture convoy, and this one way over here at Tarragona is from House Kurita for some rescue operation Of Unknown Origin."
____"That better be a great contract for that much travel", I said. "The other ones though, they're pretty close."
____Eventually, we set course for Aquagea. There would be easier contracts, Scrub and Hangover would be back in action, and the Quickdraw and Phoenix Hawk would be fully repaired. That Orion though... maybe it'll be ready by the time we get to a flashpoint.
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____Aquagea looked like it would be good for us. Four local government contracts, two from the Free Worlds League, and one from the Pirates (we were one contract away from having a bad reputation with them.) When Darius arrived with the monthly financial report, I gave everyone extravagant bonuses, which did a lot to boost morale. Farah had also upgraded the power system, which cleared the way for the mechbay automation project to begin. Hangover healed up stronger than before, and had improved her Guts to a 6 rating. There was also a potential recruit on the market - we needed a 200 MRB rating first, but that seemed well within our capabilities. I was optimistic as we started planning the first drop, even if it was going to be in a hot environment.
 
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MarkDey

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Mission 019: 1.5 Skull Battle____Employer: Local Gov____Target: Magistracy____Biome: Martian
Contract: 1/4 Pay, 3/4 salvage (3/12)____Lance: Quickdraw (Scrub), Shadow Hawk (Hangover), Griffin (Goth), Enforcer (Jingle)

Report: Sumire reports that the enemy engine signatures appear larger than normal; I'm just hearing that as better potential salvage. As Scrub moves up and gets a ping of a 45 ton mech, we all hear the approach of another dropship. The lance keeps sprinting towards a whirlwind area for cover as a Kuritan lance touches down on the opposite side of the Canopian mechs. Looks like comms have been compromised. On the upside, we now have temporary allies against the Magistracy forces. JVN-10F (CT kill), COM-1B (CT kill), GRF-1N (pilot kill), BJ-1 (CT kill). JVN-10N (CT kill), SHD-2D (CT kill), JVN-10F (CT kill), SDR-5V (pilot kill).

Damage: Only armor. ____Salvage: 2x GRF-1N, 1x BJ-1 as priority. BJ-1 assembled and moved to storage.
Advancement: Scrub and Goth, Guts 5 to 6. Hangover, Piloting 4 to 5.
 

MarkDey

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Mission 020: 1.5 Skull Destroy Base____Employer: Local Gov____Target: Magistracy____Biome: Desert
Contract: 1/4 Pay, 3/4 salvage (3/12)____Lance: Quickdraw (Scrub), Shadow Hawk (Hangover), Griffin (Goth), Enforcer (Jingle)

Report: The drop zone is in a canyon that leads to the base. After a quick review, we plan to have Scrub advance through the forest while everyone else jumps up to the right to get into long range firing positions. A Spider and Jenner flank Scrub and land some solid hits through the rear armor, damaging the SRM4. BJ-1DB (CT kill), JR7-D (CT kill), SDR-5K (CT kill), PNT-9R (CT kill). Turrets are in place around the base, 2x Lt Laser, 2x Lt Shredder, all are destroyed.

Damage: Quickdraw, RT 60% structure loss and CT SRM4 damaged. ____Salvage: 1x BJ-1DB, 1x JR7-D, 1x SDR-5K, 1x PNT-9R as priority.
Advancement: Scrub and Goth, Piloting 4 to 5.