BattleTech is one of the iconic war games of the American gaming scene. While usually overshadowed by more popular miniature games, it has managed to survive countless pitfalls that would have killed many other properties. Starting in the early 1980s, it has since spawned a massive universe of novels, one of the most highly respected video game franchises of the 90s and early 2000s, and countless alternative game play systems to simulate everything from epic space battles to massive army movements to the classic combat of the original game. Unfortunately, the one area that the game seemed to fail on was the RPG front, with the various systems being clunky and overly complex for fun and dynamic table top experience. Further, within the system when you got into a Mech, the rules switched from MechWarrior to BattleTech. While these rules are excellent for a war game, for cooperative RPG play, they can be very slow and learning both systems can be offputting to new players. Enter Savage Worlds, an exceedingly modular and flexible RPG that, like BattleTech, is built on a low number-system. Already popular with our gaming group, it had a further advantage of having an inexpensive core rulebook compared to the heavy investment that is BattleTech. The Ninja and Peregry had been kicking around the idea for years of trying to get the group to play BattleTech, but had always been stopped by the scaling issues associated with the system and the lack of good role-playing supplement. Finally, they struck on the idea merging the two, embracing the Savage World’s mantra of “Fast, Furious, Fun!” while maintaining as much of BattleTech as possible, though filtered through the pulp science fiction feel of the novels. Thus was born Savage BattleTech. It did not take long for VaMinion, likely our groups best game master, and Peregry’s little brother, who had one of the best heads for balancing numbers, to join the conversion team. We began by focusing on figuring out Mech combat rules for use with Savage Worlds, focusing on allowing turns to progress faster and actually increasing the lethality of the system to enable kills to occur quicker. This increased lethality was compensated for by making the pilots, now the main player-characters, more important by giving them tricks and edges they can use in their Mechs. Later, as the Mech rules stabilized, classic BattleTech equipment was converted to Savage Worlds rules and the conversion expanded to enable more extensive out of Mech play, with the goal of allowing any type of game set in the BattleTech universe. So, years later, we present Savage BattleTech, a BattleTech conversion for Savage Worlds.
The population of BattleTech is as wide and varied as the real world, from the farmer, to the factory worker, to the teacher. The area of interest to players though is none of the common everyday jobs, but rather the soldiers, mercenaries, adventurers and those that aid them in their exploits. Most of all, held in the highest esteem within the Inner Sphere, the Periphery and the Clans, is the MechWarrior: pilots who control enormous legged war machines with more firepower than a 20th century tank battalion: the BattleMech. Joining them are the basically suicidal infantry, the less suicidal but still brave battle armored infantry, the crews of conventional vehicles and tanks and the pilots who fly aerospace fighters. This conversion is oriented towards enabling players to both have adventures within the BattleTech setting, and to pilot the iconic war machines, from BattleMechs to Aerospace Fighters. This document contains three main ingredients essential for a Savage BattleTech campaign. First rules for character creation, including new and revised skills, new Hindrances, Origins for PCs and a host of new Edges. Second, equipment from the BattleTech setting that supplements replaces and expands the gear outlined in core Savage Worlds, as well as an abstract wealth system to help handle the more modern and complex economy that is owning a multi-ton war machine. Finally, and most importantly, rules for piloting and fighting in the iconic machines of the BattleTech setting.
Savage BattleTech works on two primary scales: Savage Worlds scale and BattleTech scale. Savage Worlds scale runs identically to any normal Savage Worlds game, though with new setting specific gear. Within this document, activity on this scale will be known as Out of Cockpit scale. BattleTech scale, on the other hand, is generally played using the hex maps and miniatures from the BattleTech war game, and is played with a new set of rules that serve as a total conversion of the BattleTech system into Savage Worlds. This scale is known as “Mech Scale” and uses the rules outlined later in this document.
TERMINOLOGY In Savage BattleTech, the term VCS (Vehicle Control Skill) refers to any of the skills needed for controlling and maneuvering the various fighting machines of the future. For AeroSpace and atmospheric fighters and VTOLs this is the normal Piloting skill. For ground based vehicles and hovercraft, this is the Driving skill. For BattleMechs of all shapes and sizes this is the Mech Piloting skill. If an Edge has a requirement involving VCS, only one of the specific skills need meet those requirements; however, that Edge can only be applied to units that are controlled via that VCS.
Solaris Skunk Werks, http://www.solarisskunkwerks.com/
Official BattleTech Site, http://www.battletech.com/ Official Savage Worlds Site, http://www.peginc.com/ Sarna, The BattleTech Wiki, http://www.sarna.net/
Skills in general are from Savage Worlds and are used normally, though a couple skills have been compressed, a handful of skills added and Repair expanded. NEW SKILLS
Athletics: (Agl) This skill covers most physical activities, from swimming to climbing. Under circumstances where a Climbing or Swimming skill roll would normally be used, this skill replaces them. Gunnery: (Smt) Gunnery is used to resolve any ranged attacks made using mounted weapons on a BattleMech, vehicle or other large, emplaced weapon; from direct laser attacks to indirect missile volleys and everything in between. This skill is primarily an In Cockpit skill, though can come up in Out of Cockpit situations when firing from fixed emplacements that use target control systems similar to those in vehicles. Hacking: (Smt) Sometimes various computer systems and security systems need to be broken into. This skill is used to hack into any computer and computerized systems. When used by a pilot in a vehicle equipped with special communications gear this skill can be used to gather information from passing satellites that might not be normally available to the pilot as well as perform special Electronic Warfare maneuvers as outlined later. Mech Piloting: (Smt) Mech Piloting is used for any rolls that involve controlling a BattleMech, from advanced maneuvers to maintaining balance when hit. It also is used in resolving physical attacks between BattleMechs. Further, the Defense TN of a Mech is also based off the Mech Piloting skill.
Design Note: Gunnery and Mech Piloting Why have the Gunnery skill in SBT when in core Savage worlds mounted weapons are fired using Shooting? Two main reasons: the first is game play balance, as we determined that we did not want a character designed as a MechWarrior to overshadow a dedicated Infantryman in firing personal weapons, and to build in an obvious cost. The second reason is plain and simple fluff. The firing control systems in BattleTech are very different from those even in modern tanks, and using them reflects a specific set of skills that are unrelated to Shooting. Likewise, Mech Piloting was created due to both mechanical balance and the fact that piloting a BattleMech is a very unique skill that is completely unrelated to driving a tank, car of hovercraft, and involves years of specialized training.
Repair: (Smt) Repair is used for any work on vehicles, from customizing weapons and layout, to actual repairs. Weapon Salvage: You can use the repair skill to salvage weapons that have taken critical hits but not been completely destroyed. For each critical hit that is damaged, you must make a successful repair roll, with any raises counting as a success on an extra damaged critical slot. You can reduce the time this salvage takes by rolling all the critical slots at once with only one wild die, similar to the Autofire rules. If any of the rolls fail, the weapon is rendered useless as if it had taken a single critical hit. Making Field Repairs: You can use the Repair skill to make field repairs to weapons that have taken critical hits so long as you have either parts from or a working model of that weapon. For each damaged critical slot you roll one repair dice for each critical slot you need to repair and only one wild die. A failure means the time and parts used are wasted.
Characters are created as per normal Design Note: Origins Savage Worlds with the addition of having the Origins are created using the race rules from option of selecting an Origin for the character. Savage Worlds, but unlike Origins reflect the culture they are from. races their modifiers Mechanically, origins are the same as a Race specifically come to a total as outlined in Savage Worlds, though may of 0 rather than a total of +2. This is because all contain some further customization options. characters in Savage Going into great detail concerning every BattleTech still get a free faction and group within the BattleTech Novice Edge at character setting is well outside the scope of this creation, due to being Human. document; however, the BattleTech Wiki provides an excellent overview. Fundamentally though, humanity can be divided into three main regions: the Inner Sphere, the Periphery and the Clans. Within the Inner Sphere, the cultures can vary wildly from Successor State to Successor State, but the quality of life is generally highest and human civilization the most settled. The Periphery is the frontier of human space, the settled states fewer and pirates roam the space ways raiding colonies with near impunity. Finally the Clans are an almost alien warrior culture founded by the long lost Star League Defense Force after they left the Inner Sphere at the beginning of the Succession Wars, and while very similar at first glance, posses many differences between each Clan. All characters in Savage BattleTech are human; there are no aliens, only a massive diaspora of humanity. While some cultures seem completely alien to one another, at the end of the day, humans are humans. As such all characters gain a free Novice Edge of their choice, and then gain the additional effects of their origin.
The cradle of human civilization, centered, literally, on our homeworld: Earth, the Inner Sphere is where the vast majority of humanity lives, divided into the five Great Houses, and a handful of smaller states, these Successor States vie to reestablish the Star League with their head as the new Star Lord. Origins Capellan Confederation Citizens of the Capellan Confederation, a totalitarian state with the trappings of ancient Imperial China, are taught from birth to live their lives for the greater glory of the State and Chancellor. This leads to a fanatical devotion within the population, but a heavily oppressive society. For the Greater Good: The Capellan obsession with family, the State and honorable living is driven into everyone from birth, giving most from the Confederation the hindrance Code of Honor and the Minor Hindrance of Vow: Serve the Chancellor. Trapping of Ancient China: Modeled on Ancient China, the Confederation encourages the practice of Martial Arts for all people within its borders, granting them a d6 in Fighting and the Martial Artist edge. ComStar/Word of Blake Controlling all interstellar communications ComStar and, when it later split off, the Word of Blake holds the keys to HPGs and other LosTech. Using mystical trappings to make themselves seem more than glorified technicians, they keep communications open, but often work towards their own goals. Secret Keepers of Technology: Members of ComStar and Word of Blake are under strict training to not reveal secrets to the outside world; as such members have a Major Hindrance in Vow: To Keep the Secrets of the Order. Further, they cannot take the hindrances Big Mouth or All Thumbs. Technical Training: As keepers of LosTech, all members of ComStar are at least familiar with the maintenance of their equipment, granting them a d6 in Repair. There’s Always an HPG: On nearly every world colonized by humanity, ComStar or Word of Blake runs an HPG, and if the other one is there, they assuredly have spies within their ranks. In fact, the only place they have nobody in is the Clans, who run their own HPGs. While not in Clanspace (including occupied Clan worlds in the Inner Sphere), members of ComStar and Word of Blake have all the benefits of the Contacts edge.
Draconis Combine Archenemies of the Federated Suns, proud samurai of the stars, the Draconis Combine is a heavily feudalistic society founded on the ideals of ancient feudal Japan. Ruled by the Coordinator, the Combine is one of the most powerful Successor States, and sees itself as the proper heir to the Star League. The Code of Bushido: All members of the Draconis Combine are ruled by the complex honor code of ancient Japan, and so all members of the society are considered to have the hindrance Code of Honor. Further, this obsession with ancient Japanese traditions has lead to widespread practice of martial arts, granting a d6 in Fighting to individuals from the Combine. Ancient Grudges: The long history of the Combine and obsession with complex honor has ignited more than one blood feud throughout its history. People from the Combine have the minor hindrance Vengeful, though the resolve to keep these grudges and see them through grants members of the Combine the Strong Willed edge. Federated Suns A strong as the Draconis Combine, but with a bent towards the western values of chivalry and honor, the Federated Suns is a ruled overall by the First Prince, a position with some check and balances on its power, while planetary governments are frequently elected representative governments. One of the freest societies in the Inner Sphere, the Federated Suns believes itself to be a bastion of freedom, civilization and right ways. Always on the Line: Citizens of the Federated Suns believe themselves to be great upholders of traditions of freedom, and are always ready to jump out to help the downtrodden. Collectively, they suffer from the Heroic hindrance. Fortune Favors the Bold: While often seen as poking into affairs they should not and often taking greater risks than others, something often seems to smile on them and give them a little help even at the worst times. To reflect this, whenever someone from the Federated Suns spends a bennie to reroll a failed skill check, they add +2 to the reroll. Federated Commonwealth A super-state formed by the union of the Federated Suns and the Lyran Commonwealth in the 3030s, the Federated Commonwealth defined the political landscape of the first half of the 31st century. However, it is still to new (or did not last long enough) to truly define its own culture and people. Citizens of the Federated Commonwealth can choose to use either of the Federated Suns or Lyran Alliance/Commonwealth Origins, regardless of which member state they came from.
Lyran Alliance/Commonwealth The economic powerhouse of the Inner Sphere, the Lyran Commonwealth (later, briefly, called the Lyran Alliance), is loosely ruled by the Archon through a vast quantity of nobles, leading to major differences between the governments from a region to region and even world to world basis. Money, Power and Prestige: The Lyran Commonwealth runs on money and politics, more so than any other realm. Most from the Lyran Commonwealth are concerned with money in some way, shape are form, and so generally suffer from the minor hindrance Greedy. However, the realm’s constant wheeling and dealing leads to considerable experience with negotiations, even for common folk, giving them a d6 in Persuasion. Living the Good Life: The general wealth of the Lyran Commonwealth compared to its neighbors is no small feat; the realm has been an economic powerhouse since its inception. This manifests in that the general population gains the Rich edge (or, if in a game that abstracts wealth and money they may start with a d6 in one attribute to reflect the higher quality of life). Unfortunately, this has generally made the population soft, making them squeamish about war and threats in general, afflicting them with the minor hindrance Pacifist and a -2 penalty to resist Tests of Will. Mercenary Though the standing armies of the Great Houses are vast, they often need to supplement their forces with mercenary forces. Some of these mercenary companies have existed for generations and so have their own culture that reflects on generations of being soldiers for hire. There are three main types of Mercenary companies, each with their own way of doing things: Heroes for Hire who seek to right wrong, fight to the last and save the civilians regardless of cost, Soldiers of Fortune who are professional and proper in their contracts, and Ne’er-do-wells who might not be the best money can buy but get the job done, though you may not like how they do it. A character that uses the mercenary origin must choose to be a Hero for Hire, Soldier of Fortune or a Ne’er-do-well. Action and Adventure: Mercenaries have frequently seen action all across the Inner Sphere and Periphery, and have seen more than most in their time. This has led Heroes for Hire to embrace fighting for the little guy by gaining the Heroic hindrance. Soldiers of Fortune, who know they are the best and were hired because they are the best, gain the Arrogant hindrance. While Ne’er-do-wells often go overboard and gain the Bloodthirsty hindrance. That said, all this action has made them alert for danger, they gain the Danger Sense edge and a d6 in Notice.
Held to a Gold Standard: Mercenaries are held to high standards within the Inner Sphere, and rated according to their actions and performance on contracts. Heroes for Hire embrace this, and gain the Code of Honor hindrance; Soldiers of Fortune generally fulfill the contract, but rarely go out of their way to do so and do so carefully and meticulously, and so gain Cautious and minor hindrance Greedy; however, Ne’er-do-wells only want the gold, gaining the major hindrance Greedy. However, mercenaries are some of the best warriors around, and can choose one skill from the following list to begin play with d6s in: Driving, Fighting, Gunnery, Mech Piloting, Piloting, or Shooting. Free Rasalhague Republic A state originally conquered by the Lyran Commonwealth and the Draconis Combine, before it finally managed to reform for a brief time before then being mostly conquered by the Clans, Rasalhague has a hard history. A strong Swedish current to its society was tempered by many years of Combine rule. Ruled by a parliament and led by an elected Prince, the people of Rasalhague have a strong sense of independence and a great love of country. Constant Troubles: People of Rasalhague remember its difficult founding and betrayal by mercenary companies whose contracts had inconveniently lapsed. Due to this, all citizens display visceral hatred towards mercenaries, taking the form of a minor Quirk. Of course, this was only the first of their troubles; to the point where characters from Rasalhague start with one less bennie per session, though they can still take the “Luck” and “Great Luck” edges, ending up with three or four bennies per session. Jarls of Iron: All this difficulty has led the citizens of Rasalhague to never break and always soldier on, making contacts throughout their society; they gain the Strong Willed edge and a d6 in Streetwise. Free Worlds League Internally divided, externally united, the Free Worlds League is technically a representative federation that has existed in an official state of emergency since the fall of the Star League under the Captain-General. All these internal power struggles generally make the Free Worlds League more insular than the other Successor States, and people are often more loyal to a specific member unit of the Free Worlds League than to the League itself. Locally Focused: People from the Free Worlds League tend to be up to date on events happening within their realm, but are likely to be unaware of what is happening to their neighbors. They take a -2 penalty on any Knowledge rolls and Common Knowledge rolls that deal with the history and events outside of the Free Worlds League.
Wheeling and Dealing: The Free Worlds League is almost as open and free as the Federated Suns, though it varies from member state to member state. Further, long traditions of elective representation permeate the culture, leading everyone from the League to gain a d6 in Persuasion and a d6 in another skill of their choice. St. Ives Compact A region that broke away from the Capellan Confederation during the 4th Succession War and now closely allied to the Federated Commonwealth, the St. Ives Compact has managed to keep a distinct culture and people, though it may not last for long. Maintaining Traditions: Despite leaving the Capellan Confederation, the Compact tries to maintain much of the traditional Chinese culture without the totalitarian overlays. As such family, duty and honor are heavily emphasized, granting the hindrance Code of Honor. Better Lucky and Good: The citizens of St. Ives have historically been in a bit better circumstances than the rest of the Capellan Confederation, their rulers a bit more sane, and they were spared almost all the fighting of the 4th Succession War. To reflect this bit of extra luck they’ve had over the years, they gain the Luck Edge. PERIPHERY
Beyond the Inner Sphere lays the Periphery. Less densely colonized than the Inner Sphere and divided among dozens of independent States, from the well developed and settled Taurian Concordant, to mysterious JàrnFòlk far beyond most of the bounds of humanity. Perhaps there is even more in this region of space than is known, lost colonies from the Star League or even earlier and hidden caches of advanced weapons and LosTec. However, this is also a realm of pirates, petty warlords and limited to no heavy industry, making every day a struggle. THE CLANS
The Clans provide a unique challenge in roleplaying, as either an opponent or for characters. In most Clan campaigns, the GM will want the PCs to be from the same Clan, but even within the same Clan there are stark differences. Unlike Inner Sphere and Periphery characters, Clan characters must take an Origin due to the unique eugenics program of the Clans dividing the society into Freeborns, those born through natural methods, and Trueborns, those bred via the Clans’ eugenics programs and grown in the artificial Iron Wombs. Freeborns are generally looked down upon, but the exact attitude varies from Clan to Clan with some being very open while others extremely oppressive. The Clans are divided into five distinct castes: Warriors, Scientists, Merchants, Technicians, and Laborers. The Warriors are the ruling caste, and how important members of the other castes are is reflective of how closely they associate with the warrior caste. Among the warriors, the ones who actually make decisions are those that have
earned Bloodnames, a surname that indicates they have ensured their place in the Clan eugenics program via honorable trial. All Clan Trueborn characters come from a specific genetic legacy and are members of a Bloodhouse, those that share this genetic legacy. When creating a Clan Trueborn character, a Bloodhouse should be chosen. If the Bloodnamed Background Edge is selected, or later gained in gameplay, this is the surname the character gains. Covering the full scope of Clan society is outside the scope of this document, and once again, the BattleTech wiki provides a good starting point to learn more about the Clans. Origins Clan Freeborn Those born of traditional methods within the Clans are known as Freeborns, or derisively as Freebirths, and are generally considered inferior to the eugenically selected and artificial womb grown Trueborns. Freeborns can end up in any caste of the Clans for the most part, from the lowly laborers to the ruling warriors, though they may never become part of the ruling elite of warriors. Freebirth Stigma: Even among Clans who are open to freeborns there is still a generally hostile attitude. Freeborns have a -2 Charisma when dealing with others within the Clans. Further, Freeborn warriors can never earn a rank higher than Star Captain and may never earn a Bloodname. Normal Lives: Clan Freeborn, unlike the Trueborn, have what would considered a more normal upbringing, and spend their childhood and adolescence making friends and meeting people. This grants them the Contacts edge so long as they are within Clan space. Clan Trueborn Aerospace Pilot Clan Aerospace warriors are instantly identifiable by their small stature and large, oversized head and eyes. Considered by most to be an unimpressive display of Clan eugenics, they are not without their advantages. Sibko Training: Like all Clan Trueborns, Aerospace Pilots are raised in sibko, and there they pick up one of the skills their Clan is noted for. Clan Aerospace Pilots may choose one skill from their Clan’s skill list to begin play with a d6 in (see Clan Affiliation Table). Keen Eyed: Clan Aerospace Pilots are noted for their overly large eyes compared to normal humans. This keen eyesight grants them a d6 in Notice. Lithe Build: Aerospace pilots are small and quick moving to better react in the harsh environment of space. They gain the Small hindrance as well as start play with a d6 in Agility. Bound by Honor: As Clan Warriors, an Aerospace pilot is bound by the traditional honor code of Zellbrigen and automatically gains the flaw Code of Honor: Zellbrigen.
Clan Trueborn Elemental Warrior Clan Elementals are an impressive display of the Clan eugenics program. Massive soldiers who wear the iconic Elemental Power Armor, even outside their metal skin, these warriors are powerful and dangerous. Massive Built: Elementals are significantly larger than others, and receive a +1 Bonus on size. However, this size is a hindrance if put into the tight confines of a vehicle, Elementals suffers a -2 penalty on any Driving, Mech Piloting or Piloting checks due to being too big for the controls. Resilient Build: Due to their size and training, Elementals are exceptionally tough, gaining the Background Edge: Brawny. Sibko Training: Like all Clan Trueborns, Elementals are raised in sibko, and there they pick up one of the skills their Clan is noted for. Elementals may choose one skill from their Clan’s skill list to begin play with a d6 in (see Clan Affiliation Table). Small World: Everything seems small and weak compared to an Elemental Warrior, even an enemy BattleMech. Elementals automatically gain the flaw Overconfident. Bound by Honor: As Clan Warriors, an Elemental is bound by the traditional honor code of Zellbrigen and automatically gains the flaw Code of Honor: Zellbrigen. Clan Trueborn MechWarrior Clan Warriors are the most common form of Clan Warrior, and are not far removed from their normal Inner Sphere counterparts. Their real advantage is the vigorous and dangerous sibko training, which trains them to be MechWarriors from a much younger age than any comparable training program. Sibko Training: The governing attribute for Gunnery and Mech Piloting, skills is treated as if it is one die size higher for the purpose raising skills during character creation and raising skills via XP. Further, they may choose one of their Clan’s skills to begin play with a d6 in. Bound by Honor: As Clan Warriors, a MechWarrior is bound by the traditional honor code of Zellbrigen and automatically gains the flaw Code of Honor: Zellbrigen. Further, due to expectations of this code, Clan MechWarriors are adverse to and less skilled in Mech melee combat than their Inner Sphere counterparts, and suffer a -2 on Mech Piloting to make any physical attacks (including Charging and Death from Above), though they do not take any penalties when defending against them.
Clan Affiliation Table Clan: Blood Spirit Burrock Cloud Cobra Coyote Diamond Shark Fire Mandrill Ghost Bear Goliath Scorpion Hell’s Horses Ice Hellion Jade Falcon Nova Cat Smoke Jaguar Snow Raven Star Adder Steel Viper Wolf
Attitude to Freeborns: Liberal Liberal Liberal Liberal Liberal Conservative Liberal Liberal Liberal Conservative Conservative Conservative Conservative Conservative Liberal Conservative 2 Conservative/Liberal
Zellbrigen The Code of Honor that defines Clan Warriors is known as Zellbrigen. Zellbrigen is complex, and has some specific rules mainly dealing with In Cockpit combat: Each Point3 will issue a challenge to a different enemy Point. If one side outnumbers the other, then the extra Points on that side will stand aside until one of their comrades is defeated. A Point can challenge more than one unit at a time. A Point has a right to refuse challenges from Inner Sphere units, especially if underhanded ploys are suspected.4 A warrior has the right to refuse a challenge from a unit of differing weight class if other unengaged units are available. No artillery or other Area-Effect Weapons shall be employed by either side. Systems that require multiple units to operate, like C3, are forbidden. Fleeing from combat is prohibited unless granted hegira; a form of honorable withdraw. Further, a warrior is also expected to not retreat from inferior foes, or to engage his opponent in melee combat, though these are not part of the formal rules of zellbrigen. As to how Code of Honor governs daily life for a Clanner that varies not just from Clan to Clan, but from Warrior to Warrior. Some Warriors hold to a form of Zellbrigen that embraces their role within Clan society, that as the head of their society it is their responsibility to protect and rule wisely. While other warriors use their position to lord over the lower castes. In general, a Clan that is liberal 1
The Fire Mandrills are internally divided into factions known as Kindraa, each which follows its own interpretation of Zellbrigen. 2 Originally Liberal, once the Wolves split into the Crusader Wolves and the Wolves-in-Exile the CWs are Conservative while the WiE are Liberal. 3 A Point is defined as a single Mech, two Aerospace Fighters or Vehicles, five Battle Armors or Protomechs, or a full Squad of unarmored infantry. 4 This only applies post the Battle of Tukayyid in 3052.
towards Freeborns will embrace a more benevolent approach, while ones that are conservative towards Freeborns will act more arrogantly. How strictly this Code is held to varies from Clan to Clan as well, some Clans hold to a more loose form of Zellbrigen, only using it when fighting other Clanners and taking every opportunity to push it to its limit, while others hold to it strictly, even against opponents who they should probably break it against.
Wildcards often have a knack above and beyond the normal for pilots and soldiers. Years of fighting and piloting their machines have led them to be able to better control their vehicles and know just where to place their shots. As Wildcards they gain a bonus to any skill or trait rolls made while on Mech Scale: Experience Tier: Novice Seasoned Veteran Heroic Legendary
Bonus: +0 +0 +1 +1 +2
Legendary Defeat (Major/Minor) This Edge cannot be taken by Novice characters, but may be taken when creating a character with higher than Novice XP, or it may be gained during gameplay. You have suffered a terrible and widely known defeat that not only was a military fiasco, but also one that impugned your honor and forever stained your reputation. If your defeat is known you are treated with suspicion and your ideas are generally ignored while planning, and you may not be allowed honorable positions in battle or social situations, as well as taking a -2 penalty to Charisma. This is a Minor hindrance in the Inner Sphere and Periphery, which tend to be more forgiving, and a Major hindrance among the Clans, where such a defeat may earn you the title dezgra, honorless and effectively end your career. This Edge can only be bought off after ten years in game or after a glorious victory in the face of overwhelming odds. Transit Disorientation Sickness (Minor) Travelling faster than light instantly is an unsettling experience. Most people report various feelings of unease, ranging from startling to seeing the universe spread out and then compressed to a single point. However, some people experience much more than simple discomfort, and instead become debilitating sick.
When making a hyperspace jump, you suffer from TDS. For the next day you generally feel nauseous and ill, suffer severe migraines, or are otherwise debilitating sick. You take a -2 penalty on all rolls until you get a full rest. In a campaign focusing on Jumpships and exploration, this Hindrance may be considered Major at the GM’s discretion. Sheltered (Major) You have been fortunate in your upbringing and brought up on a world or in circumstances generally isolated from the normal chaos of the Inner Sphere or Periphery. Of course, this has led to a lack of knowledge of the events of the worlds around you. You may not make any Common Knowledge rolls outside of your homeworld. This hindrance is especially useful to people new to the BattleTech setting to help them introduce themselves through their character to the expansive universe. This hindrance may be replaced with another major hindrance at any time. Clan characters may not take Sheltered. Sleeper Agent (Major) Sometime in the past one of the various intelligence agencies caught up to you and put you through subtle indoctrination and brainwashing. For now, your programming is lying dormant until activated. Upon activating, the character gains the hindrance Oath (Major) to the intelligence service and will attempt to fulfill their mission. Upon completion of the assigned mission, the Oath Hindrance is lost until the Sleeper Agent is again reactivated.
Bloodnamed Prerequisites: Clan Trueborn Origin, GM Permission Benefits: You have proven yourself to be one of the best Clan Warriors in a Trial of Bloodrite, and earned a surname, known as a Bloodname, in the Clans. This honor ensures that your genetic heritage will be passed on to future warriors of your Clan, and grants you +2 Charisma when dealing with other Clanners. Further, you are treated as the superior officer when dealing with other Clan Warriors of equal rank who do not have a Bloodname, and may gain rank above Star Captain. Finally, earning a Bloodname allows the character to sit on their Clan Council, and vote on matters governing the Clan, and makes them eligible for special ranks within the Clan, such as Khan, saKhan, Oathmaster and Loremaster. If not taken at character creation, this Edge may only be gained in gameplay via a Bloodname Trial. If gained in this manner, it does not cost an advance. Manei Domini Prerequisites: Vow (Major): To serve the Word of Blake, GM Permission Benefits: You ignore the penalty for having a Small Cockpit. Further gain a +1 on Mech Piloting and Gunnery.
Arc Master Prerequisites: Smarts d8, Gunnery d8 Benefits: You no longer take a penalty for indirect firing.
Deadeye Prerequisites: Seasoned, Gunnery d8, Notice d6 Benefits: Once per turn while in Mech Scale combat when you miss with a weapon group, you may immediately make a Gunnery roll at -2 at the same target. If this second roll would hit the target, choose one weapon from the weapon group and treat it as if it had hit. This attack does not threaten critical hits on raises and may not be used with weapons that roll on the Cluster Hits Table or any weapon that fired more than one shot in the turn. Improved Deadeye Prerequisites: Veteran, Deadeye, Gunnery d10 Benefits: You no longer take a -2 penalty when using the Deadeye Edge. Design Quirk Prerequisites: d6 Repair Benefits: Your gain a pool of 2 Design Quick Points to spend on Quirks for your vehicle. You may take this Edge multiple times, each time adds 2 more points to your pool. Enhanced Mech Melee Prerequisites: d8 Mech Piloting, d8 Fighting Benefits: When making a melee attack you add +2 on your Mech Melee rolls. BattleMech Frenzy Prerequisites: Enhanced Mech Melee, Seasoned, Mech Piloting d10 Benefits: You make two swift physical or melee attacks with the same weapon or limb on your Mech against a single target. You roll two Mech Melee attacks and one Wild die, taking a -2 on all rolls. Improved BattleMech Frenzy Prerequisites: Veteran, BattleMech Frenzy Benefits: You ignore the -2 penalty when making a BattleMech Frenzy attack.
Focused Fire Prerequisites: Seasoned, Agility d8, Gunnery d10 Benefit: Once per turn when rolling to determine the hit location of a non-cluster weapon, roll 3d6 and select which two die determine the location. Gunkatta Prerequisites: Seasoned, Gunnery d8, Mech Piloting d10 Benefit: You may make attacks with weapons mounted in limbs the same round you make a melee attack. It's Cool
Prerequisites: Seasoned, Mech Piloting d8, Wildcard Benefits: You immediately dissipate heat when dealt the Joker as if it was the end of your turn. This is in addition to normal end-of-turn heat dissipation. Knife Fighter’s Focus Prerequisites: Agility d8, VCS d8 Benefits: During your turn, while in Mech scale combat you may choose one target within five hexes; increase your defenses by one for attacks from that target. This bonus expires at the same time as Movement Bonuses to Defense. Improved Knife Fighter’s Focus Prerequisites: Knife Fighter’s Focus, Seasoned Benefits: The defense bonus against your selected target increases to two, or you may designate a second target and receive and increase your defenses by one against attacks from both. Mech Ambush Prerequisites: d6 Stealth, VCS d6 Benefits: You may make a Stealth check without shutting down so long as you do not move for one turn. Mech Infiltration Prerequisites: Mech Ambush, Seasoned Benefits: You may make a Stealth check so long as you only walk in a turn. Silent Running Prerequisites: Mech Infiltration, Veteran, VCS d10 Benefits: You may make a Stealth check while running, even without cover. Out of the Blue Prerequisites: Silent Running, Heroic Benefits: You may make a Stealth check while jumping, even without cover.
Mech Block Prerequisites: Seasoned, d8 Agl Benefits: When hit you may make a Piloting Roll with a TN of the enemy's Gunnery or Melee roll. If you succeed you may change the location of damage to one adjacent location. Mech Marksman Prerequisites: d8 Gunnery, Smarts d8 Benefits: When you do not move, you ignore one point of penalty on attack rolls from cover or range. Improved Mech Marksman Prerequisites: Seasoned, Mech Marksman, Gunnery d10 Benefits: When you do not move, you ignore ranged penalties to attack rolls. Further, if you only walk or move cruise you ignore one point of penalty on attacks rolls from cover or range. Run and Gun Prerequisites: d8 Agl Benefits: Running in a Mech or moving Flank speed in a vehicle, no longer applies a penalty. Shot on the Run Prerequisites: Run and Gun Benefits: You may attack at any point during your movement in a Mech or Vehicle, as opposed to before or after moving. Grasshopper Prerequisites: Run and Gun, Seasoned Benefits: Using Jump Jets no longer applies a penalty. Smooth Operator Prerequisites: d8 Agility Benefits: When attempting to stand, you may automatically stand for 1 movement point rather than 3. In addition, gain a +2 bonus on Piloting Skill checks to prevent falling in a Mech. Stop Blowing Holes in My Ride Prerequisites: Seasoned Benefits: When spending a Bennie to force a reroll on the critical hit table, instead force two rerolls, using the better of the results in place of the original roll.
Prerequisites: Heroic, d10 Gunnery Benefits: When firing at an enemy, you may spend a chip to move a hit from a limb inwards to the appropriate torso section. This edge cannot be used if it would result in the hit striking the center torso, and it must be used before any critical hit rolls are made. Tracking Trigger Prerequisites: d8 Gunnery Benefit: If you're firing more than one weapon group and you first weapon group misses, you gain a +1 bonus on the next Gunnery roll. Tough in the Cockpit Prerequisites: Vigor d6 Benefits: You may immediately make a spirit roll to avoid becoming shaken when
your Mech’s head is hit or due to an ammo explosion. Trademark Ride Prerequisites: Seasoned, VCS d8, 5 missions run in your vehicle Benefits: So long as you are in your, specific, personal vehicle (not just one of the same class) you get a +1 bonus on Gunnery, Mech Piloting, Mech Melee, Piloting, and Driving as appropriate. If you get a new vehicle, or your old one is destroyed, you may transfer the benefits of this edge (and any edges tied to it) to a new vehicle after running three to five missions in it (GM’s discretion). Improved Trademark Ride Prerequisites: Veteran, Trademark Ride Benefits: So long as you are piloting your Trademark Ride, you get a +1 bonus to your Defense. Legendary Warrior Prerequisites: Legendary, Improved Trademark Ride, GM Permission Benefits: When you first fire at an enemy while in your Trademark Ride the target must make a Spirit roll or be Shaken. Further, add +2 to Charisma, as you are well known warrior who people either respect, or fear.
Phantom Mech Prerequisites: Heroic, Spirit d10, GM Permission Benefits: At the start of your turn you may take an action to make a Spirit roll. Add the result to your unit’s Defense until the start of your next turn.
These Edges are from normal Savage Worlds that have special case applications in Savage BattleTech. General Edges
Checks made on Mech-scale do not benefit from the Ace profession edge. MacGuiver Benefits: This edge allows a person making repairs to use parts from across technological base to repair damaged weapons systems. LEADERSHIP EDGES
Due to the advanced communication equipment on BattleMechs, the leadership default “command radius” (SWDE 37) is 7 spaces. Further, all units connected by C3 or C3i systems are considered to be in the command radius. Command Benefits: In addition, when allies within the Command Radius spend a bennie to force a reroll on the Critical Hits Table, the new roll takes a -1 penalty. Command Presence Benefits: This edge extends the “command radius” from 7 to 14 spaces while in Mech-scale combat. Fervor Benefits: In addition, allies within the Command Radius add a +1 bonus on critical confirmation rolls. Hold the Line! Benefits: In addition, apply a -1 on Critical Confirmation rolls against allies in the Command Radius. Inspire Benefits: In addition, when allies within the Command Radius spend a bennie to force a reroll on the Critical Hits Table, the new roll takes a -2 penalty. This replaces the benefit from Command.
BASIC MECH SCALE OVERVIEW
The rules presented here are the absolute bare bone essentials for playing Savage BattleTech and allowing player characters to pilot BattleMechs. This section provide rules specifically for “in-cockpit” combat referred to as “Mech Scale”, which is done generally on the BattleTech scale with BattleTech damage and record sheets and often on BattleTech hex grid battle maps (though miniature combat is possible). It is strongly suggested that players first master the rules provided in this section before including the Advanced Mech Scale rules, as this section covers all that is necessary for basic Mech on Mech combat.
Unless otherwise noted, most bonuses and penalties from BattleTech can be converted to Savage Worlds by simply multiplying by -1; in other words a -1 bonus on a Piloting Skill roll becomes a +1 bonus on a Mech Piloting check. The inverse also holds true for penalties, where a +1 penalty on Gunnery Skill rolls would become a -1 penalty on Gunnery checks unless otherwise noted. Many of the BattleTech tables have already been converted and provided. If the modifier does not appear there use this conversion convention.
Initiative in Mech Scale is determined as per Savage Worlds rules. BattleTech turn order is not used. A Savage BattleTech turn on Mech Scale can be divided into three main phases: Initial, Action and End. In the Initial phase, all heat penalties are determined and applied. In the Action phase, the character takes all their actions. The player may move their unit at any time during this phase, but can normally only take other actions before or after movement is complete. In the End phase the Defensive values are calculated, heat buildup due to damage is applied and then cooling is resolved.
PILOTING PILOTING SKILL CHECKS:
Certain events force a pilot to make a VCS skill check. This is made against the standard Target Number (TN) of 4. However, damage to a Mech, terrain and other circumstances can affect penalties to the check either modifying the Mech Piloting roll or the TN.
Most vehicles have two movement types each given a numerical value; for Mechs these are Walk and Run while for vehicles they are Cruise and Flank. A unit must choose what type of movement it is using when it begins moving, after that is chosen, the unit can move up to the number of hexes that is indicated by the Walking/Cruise or Run/Flank value. Unlike normal BattleTech, turning and changing facing do not cost any extra movement; however, if a unit has no movement points at the start of its turn (due to damage or heat), it cannot change facing that turn. Moving is free and does not count as an action; however, if the pilot decides to move at Run or Flank they take a -1 penalty on all other rolls made in the round. Friendly units cannot move through a hex occupied by an enemy unit, but can move through an allied unit’s space. Some Mechs and Vehicles have jump jets as standard equipment. These devices allow the unit to jump through the air ignoring normal terrain penalties and even moving through hostile vehicles’ hexes. When jumping any further rolls made by the pilot takes a -2 penalty. When a Mech is knocked over due to damage or other circumstances, the pilot must spend 1 walking movement point and make a Mech Piloting roll. On a success, they upright their Mech, on a failure they do not. Alternatively a pilot can spend 3 walking movement points or its entire walk MP if it has less than 3 to stand without the piloting roll. Once the Mech is standing, any remaining walk movement points can be expended to move, though the unit cannot Run or Jump. Otherwise, movement is handled as per BattleTech rules.
All units have a Defense stat. Their base Defense is calculated by taking the relevant VCS, dividing it by 2 and then adding Edge bonuses. In a given turn, however, more can be added to this value, giving the unit a higher Defense in any given round. The primary value that is added is the unit’s movement defense bonus. When units move a certain amount, they gain a bonus to defense as follows: Distance Moved:
9 - 10
11 - 12
13 - 14
This bonus lasts until they move again or until the end of their next turn, upon which time it is recalculated. A unit on hold loses its movement bonus to
defense when its card comes up on the next round; a joker is treated as a Two of Clubs for this purpose. A unit that uses Jump Jets adds an additional +1 to their Defense value in addition to the bonus gained from the distance moved. ATTACKS AND DAMAGE:
All ranged attacks using weapons mounted on a Mech or vehicle are resolved with a Gunnery roll vs Defense. Charging and Death from Above attacks are resolved with opposed VCS rolls. Punches, Kicks and Mech mounted melee weapon attacks are resolved with a roll of Mech Piloting -2 against Defense. All of these attacks are modified by the appropriate circumstantial modifiers as listed in attack modifier tables (see below and Appendix A). If the attack is equal to or surpasses the Defense score, but is not a raise, the weapon deals its damage to the appropriate location as determined by rolls on the Hits Location Table. Unlike normal BattleTech, damage is inflicted when the attack is made. When a Mech takes enough damage, it may fall over and become prone both due to the sheer amount of force it was hit with as well as the sudden change in weight due to loss of armor and mass. A bipedal Mech can take 40 points of damage in a single turn before it falls over, while a quadruped Mech can take 60 points of damage. If a quadruped Mech loses a leg, this threshold drops to 40. If damage would result in a wildcard pilot being killed, the pilot immediately gets an Agility roll. On a success, the pilot survives, but their unit is “combat killed”, and they are treated as an individual infantry unit on Mech Scale. On a failure the pilot survives and is in the space behind their vehicle, but is Incapacitated with Four Wounds per Savage Worlds rules. CRITICAL HITS
Within Savage BattleTech, there are three types of Critical Hits chances that can occur. The first is a Penetrating Critical Hit, which may happen when a Hit with a Raise is rolled by an attacker, this type of Critical may only occur to Mechs; Vehicles and Infantry are immune to Penetrating Critical Hits. The second type is a Location Critical Hit, which may happen when a specific location is rolled on the Hit Location Table (typically from the roll of a 2 on the Hit Location Table). Finally there is a Structural Critical Hit, which may happen any time a unit takes internal structure damage. For Penetrating Crits each Raise after the first you add a +1 bonus on the roll on the Critical Hits Table. All circumstances that cause critical hits are cumulative, so if an attack hits with a raise, rolls 2 on the Hit Location and does inner structure damage to the target, three separate rolls on the Critical Hits Table are made. Critical Hits are resolved in the order they are inflicted after damage is applied: a Penetrating Crit is resolved first, then a Location Crit, and finally a Structural Crit. All crits are lost if the section is destroyed by damage.
If a critical hit occurs it is recorded on the critical hit location table on the record sheet and damage marked appropriately, and any other effects from the critical hit are immediately applied. A Bennie can be spent to force a reroll on the Critical Hits Table from any of the types of Critical Hits, and the roll resulting in the fewest critical hits is always used.
BattleMechs carry many varied weapon systems, which often have different ranges and effects. Firing all these weapons individually are an arduous task in the middle of combat, so pilots group weapons together to allow quicker and easier triggering. WEAPON GROUPS:
Design Note: Weapon Groups In BattleTech each weapon’s attack is calculated separately and individually. Very early in design, we determined that doing this in Savage BattleTech would both cause confusion concerning actions and multi-action penalties, as well as greatly slow down game play. The solution was drawn from the portrayal of triggering weapons from the MechWarrior video games and occasionally references in the BattleTech novels: grouping weapons to be fired together.
Up to six ranged weapons can be placed in one weapon group and fired together with no penalty. However, the ranges of the weapon group are considered to be the ranges of the weapon with the shortest range in the group. If a weapon grants bonuses to hit, like Pulse Lasers, the benefit is only applicable if all the weapons in a group all grant the same bonus; however, if any one weapon grants a penalty to hit, including from damage, it is applied to the entire group. When you hit with a weapon group, each weapon's hit location is determined separately by rolling on the hit location table. If the attack group threatens a Penetrating Critical, the most damaging single hit location weapon in the weapon group is considered to have threatened, if multiple Design Note: Quicktrigger weapons are tied for the single largest hit, Up until Revision 8 of the rules, there was an Edge known as or if all the weapons deal identical damage, Quicktrigger that allowed the the first hit location rolled is threatened firing of two weapon groups with the critical hit. without taking a multi-action penalty. It had become obvious Firing a single weapon group is free through play testing to us that and does not count as an action. So pilots this Edge was basically essential can fire a weapon group and take other to speedy game play, between actions, like Taunt, make a Skill check, call heavier Mechs needing it to fire all their weapons with no in an artillery strike or fire a second penalties, to giving more options weapon group. Firing a second weapon to Mechs with only a handful of group is considered an action, so you can weapons; most characters had it. This lead to the functionality of fire more than two weapon groups or fire the rule: the firing of a single two weapon groups and take another action weapon group without it causing a in a given turn by taking a multi-action multi-action penalty, to be made penalty. However, any single weapon can into a core mechanic. only be fired once per turn.
If a weapon group goes beyond six weapons, and they are all the same type of weapon they can still be fired as one weapon group; however, trying to orient that many weapons is difficult, and even then some of the weapons may still miss. When such a weapon group hits, roll on the cluster hits table to determine how many weapons actually hit the target, and then roll locations as normal. WEAPON MODIFIERS:
All weapons have three range brackets, Short, Medium and Long, that carry with them benefits or penalties for firing. These modifiers are similar to those in BattleTech, but due to the system differences, are slightly different. Further other circumstances may affect the Gunnery roll, as determined by a wide variety of circumstances. It can seem intimidating at first, but the vast majority of these modifiers are highly situational. If the tables provided in this document do not show the modifiers needed, use the General Conversion Rule and apply them as necessary, though nearly all common modifiers have been accounted for. For weapon modifiers, ones that add to “Mech Piloting” rolls only apply when making physical attacks with those weapons, and they do not apply to any other Mech Piloting rolls.
Physical Attack Modifiers Mech Damage Shoulder Hit Arm actuator hit (each) Hand actuator hit
No punching or physical weapon attacks with arm, no clubbing attacks, -2 to pushing attacks (each) -2 to punching and physical weapon attacks with arm; half damage for punching with arm -1 to punching attach with arm; no clubbing attacks; no physical weapon attacks No kicking attacks -2 to kick attacks and half damage from affected leg -1 to kicking attacks with that leg
Hip actuator hit Leg actuator hit (each) Foot actuator hit Target Infantry -3 on kicking and DFA attacks Large Vehicle or Grounded Craft +2 Range Modifiers: Minimum Range -1 Per Space At or Below the Attacker Conditional Modifiers Minimum Ran/Flank -1 on all other rolls Short Range ±0 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Jumped -2 on all other rolls Medium Range -1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Prone -1 Gunnery on non-Quads Long Range -2 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Skidding -1 on Gunnery Weapon Modifiers: Autocannon Ammo: LB-X Cluster Munitions+1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Precision Munitions +1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Lasers: Heavy Lasers -1 on Gunnery Rolls Pulse Lasers +1 on Gunnery Rolls Missiles: MRMs -1 on Gunnery Rolls Rocket Launchers -1 on Gunnery Rolls Melee Attacks Backhoe -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Club +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Combine +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Hatchet +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Heavy-Duty Pile Driver -2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Kick +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Mining Drill +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Retractable Blade +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Rock Cutter -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Sword +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Wrecking Ball -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Equipment: Targeting Computer +1 on Gunnery Rolls for nonmissile weapons
Indirect Fire -1 on Gunnery IndustrialMech -1 on Gunnery Targeting Dropship +2 on Gunnery Target Conditional Modifiers +2 from adjacent, Prone -1 otherwise Immobile +4 Skidding -2 Airborne unit at Alt. 1 -1 (Attacker in flight path) Airborne unit at Alt. 1 -3 (Attacker not in flight path) Mech Damage for Attacks Sensor Hit -2 -4, overrides arm actuator Shoulder Hit damage Arm Actuator Hit -1 per actuator Terrain Modifiers -1 per intervening hex, Light Woods -1 if target is in hex -2 per intervening hex, Heavy Woods -2 if target is woods Depth 1 Water -1 Depth 2 Water -2 Partial Cover -1
ADVANCED MECH SCALE OVERVIEW
The rules presented in this section are for more advanced play using various special equipment and units from BattleTech. It is suggested that players first master the Basic Rules before using all the advanced equipment and expanded units from this section. These rules are not considered optional, as they cover specific actions that can be taken by players in the field or matter for specific types of units and equipment. The following rules are presented in alphabetical order.
Even in BattleTech when the going gets tough, the tough call for artillery. To do this artillery must first be available to be called in as a unit in the battle. With the exception of TAG Guided Arrow IV missiles, most artillery is called onto a specific hex. When a spotter calls in an artillery strike they immediately make a Gunnery (or Shooting in the event a ProtoMech or Infantry unit is calling in the strike) skill check that is unmodified by Edges or abilities that would normally modify the check. It is further modified by the following conditions: Condition: Spotter Does Not Have Line of Sight to Target Hex Spotter is Effected by an ECM field Spotter can use a TAG to spot on the target hex Spotter has called a strike on the hex before and missed Spotter has Satellite Telemetry
Modifier: -1 -2 +1 +1 per +2
If the check fails, the artillery is still called in, but it drifts off target. The direction of the drift is determined by rolling 1d6, with a result of one being towards the artillery, a result of 2 being one hex clockwise from the result of 1, etc. The distance of the drift is determined by rolling 1d8 and adding the amount by which the call failed by. On a normal success, the artillery still has some drift. Direction is determined as above, but distance is instead determined by rolling 1d4-1. Drift dice do not ace. On a success with a raise, the artillery strike lands precisely on the targeted hex. Once the targeted hex is successfully struck, and so long as a new hex has not been targeted, artillery strikes can be called on that hex without making the Gunnery check or having any drift. Next transit time must be determined as artillery can take significant amounts of time to get from the firing position to the targeted area. For artillery that is on map, there is no appreciable transit time, the artillery arrives in the same round it was fired. For off board artillery, the following travel times apply: 29
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Number of Maps: 1–8 9 – 15 16 – 21 22 – 26 27 – 30
Rounds: 1 2 3 4 5
Once the number of rounds is determined a d6 is placed on the map where the strike will hit with the number of rounds until the strike face up. At the start of each new round, reduce the die by one, when the die can no longer be counted down, resolve the artillery strike.
Battle Armor in Mech Scale is generally at a severe disadvantage compared the heavier armed and armored BattleMechs. Unlike a Mech, however, Battle Armor always works in squads of between four and six. Battle Armor moves as normal in BattleTech, though they can freely mount an allied unit when it moves through their hex even if they have not acted or already acted in that round of combat. In the event that a Wildcard is a member of a Battle Armor squad, they are not assigned as a specific individual within the unit record sheet; rather, the Wildcard is always the last member of such a squad to be destroyed. For the purposes of Edges and rolls, the entire squad of Battle Armor is considered to be a part of the Wildcard character while in combat on Mech Scale. All trait and skills are rolled as if rolled by the Wildcard. A Squad of Battle Armor, for instance, would only make one Shooting roll for the entire unit, and, if led by a Wildcard, roll a Wild Die along with all their skill rolls. Swarm attacks by Battle Armor is resolved as a Fighting attack vs VCS. If the Fighting attack succeeds with a raise, the swarm may immediately deal swarm damage to the enemy unit. Battle Armor, because of its nature as a worn rather than piloted piece of equipment, do not have special skills required for its use. Ranged attacks using all weapons utilize the Wildcard’s Shooting Die. Swarm Attacks against larger vehicles use the Wildcard’s Fighting Die. When on Mech Scale, a Battle Armor squad has a Defense calculated by taking the Wildcard’s Agility, dividing it by 2 and adding 1. All Gunnery and Piloting based attacks are resolved against this value, as well as Battle Armor on Battle Armor melee attacks. 30
SAVAGE BATTLETECH In the event the last member of a Battle Armor squad is destroyed, the Wildcard makes an Agility roll. On a success, the Wildcard survives, but is “combat killed”, their equipment destroyed, and they can only move one space of movement on Mech Scale a turn under their own power though an ally vehicle could pick them up and carry them with them. On a failure the Wildcard survives, but is Incapacitated with Four Wounds per Savage Worlds rules. Rules for Battle Armor on Savage Worlds scale is provided in Equipment chapter of this document.
ELECTRONIC WARFARE Electronic Warfare is not unheard of on the fields of BattleTech. From brute force methods like saturating all common radio channels with the wailing of bagpipes, to more subtle methods designed to confuse a single enemy’s IFF transponder, many different methods are available for warriors to disrupt and dismay their enemies. To engage in Electronic Warfare on Mech scale, a vehicle must be equipped with Communication Gear and have the pilot must have the Electronics skill. Each ton of Comm. Gear the vehicle carries grants one power point per turn to be used on a specific list of powers. Some of these powers further require the unit to mount either an ECM (ECM Suite or Guardian ECM) or Probe (Active Probe, Beagle Active Probe or Light Active Probe). For the purposes of activating powers, any device that has or can function as an ECM or Probe counts for these. Advanced versions, the Angel ECM or the Bloodhound Active Probe, as well as duplicate of the base units grant a +1 bonus on Electronics checks that they are tied to. If an ECM is being used to activate a different system (for instance Stealth Armor) it cannot be used in EW attacks and grants no benefit. EW powers can be divided into three main types: Scan, ECM and Networking. Scans are powers that require a Probe and generally grant bonuses to allies. ECM are powers that require an ECM unit and generally debuff enemies. Networking powers require no special equipment, and generally grant bonuses to allies. Beyond these distinctions, EW powers have two main forms of targeting: Pings and Bubbles. A Ping affects a single unit (this may be a little as a single BattleMech or as large as entire squad of Power Armor), while a Bubble affects an area around the activating unit. Range is tied to these abilities; a Ping's range is given in normal BattleTech style, with each longer range increment taking the normal penalty for that range. Pings cannot be maintained, but last until the end of the affected unit's next turn. A Bubble's range is a single number, which is the radius in hexes that the Bubble affects. Bubbles normally last for one round, but may be maintained at full cost (including any variables). 31
SAVAGE BATTLETECH All powers that are activated against a single hostile target are resolved as VCS vs Electronics, while powers that affect an ally are activated via an Electronics check vs TN 4. When a power has an effect via a fumble, fumbles are defined as the rolling of a 1 on the VCS, regardless of the result of the Wild Die. ELECTRONIC WARFARE POWER LIST:
Advanced Terrain Mapping Cost: 5 Type: Probe Target: Bubble Range: 4 Effect: All friendly units that start their turn in the radius gain +1 to their Walk/Cruise MP (recalculate Run/Flank accordingly). On a raise, they reduce the cost of leaving a hex by 1 MP, to a minimum of 1 MP. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex, for each additional hex the sustain cost of the power increased by 1. Area Targeting Jam Cost: 4 Type: ECM Target: Bubble Range: 3 Effect: All friendly units (including the initiator) gain +1 to the Defense. On a raise the bonus is raised to a +2. Further, any attack that passes through a hex affected by Bubble suffers -1 on gunnery, -2 on a raise. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex, for each additional hex. Guidance Enhancement Cost: 2 Type: Probe Target: Ping Range: 5/10/15 Effect: On a failure missile attacks on the target gain a +1 on their Cluster Hits roll. On a fumble, this increase to a +2
Guidance Interference Cost: 4 Type: ECM Target: Bubble Range: 3 Effect: Missile attacks against friendly units inside the bubble take a -1 penalty on their Cluster Hits roll. On a raise, this increases to a -2. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex. Jamming Field Cost: 3 Type: ECM Target: Bubble Range: 3 Effect: All units within the field may make a stealth check without being shut down. On a raise they gain +2 on the Stealth check. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex. If the field is not maintained, the affect is lost, and units that do not qualify to be hidden without are immediately revealed. Paint Target Cost: 3 Type: Scan Target: Ping Range: 4/8/12 Effect: On a failure, the target takes a -1 penalty to Defense. On a fumble they take a -2.
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Sensor Network Cost: 2 Type: Network Target: Bubble Range: 3 Effect: All units within the field gain a +2 bonus on Notice. On a raise they gain a +4 bonus on Notice. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex.
Targeting Sensor Network Cost: 4 Type: Network Target: Bubble Range: 3 Effect: All friendly units (including the initiator) gain a +1 bonus on Gunnery checks. On a raise, the radius of the effect is doubled to 6 hexes. The field can be extended at the cost of 2 PPs per hex.
Targeting Sensor Jam Cost: 2 Type: ECM Target: Ping Range: 5/10/15 Effect: On a failure, the target takes a -1 penalty to all Gunnery Checks. On a fumble they take a -2.
Mech Quirks can be purchased any time a new Mech is acquired or when a Mech is modified. Under normal circumstances a Mech’s positive and negative design quirks must be in balance, with the total value working out to zero. Due to the differences in system, some Mech Design Quirks, if allowed by the GM, function differently as noted in the General Conversion section. However, some Quirks have further changes, and those are listed here: Battle Computer (5 points) This Quirk functions like the Quick background edge, except that it applies to the pilot and all allies, and it only allows cards 3 and below to be redrawn. Command BattleMech (2 points) This Quirk functions like the Quick background edge, except that it applies to the pilot and all allies, and it only allows 2s to be redrawn. Easy to Pilot (2 points) A MechWarrior with a Mech Piloting skill of less than a d8 in Mech Piloting receives a +1 bonus on Mech Piloting checks made in this BattleMech. More skilled pilots receive no benefits. Multi-Trac (3 points) A Mech with this Quirk allows the pilot to fire an additional weapon group without taking a multi-action penalty.
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Narrow/Low Profile (3 points) A Mech with this Quirk adds +1 to its Defense.
ProtoMechs occupy a space between Battle Armor and BattleMechs. Like BattleMechs they are treated as an individual unit on the field of combat, and a single Wild Card pilots a single ProtoMech. Pilots can only pilot a ProtoMech if they have the Enhanced Imaging cybernetic implants. Due to the nature of the interface between ProtoMechs and pilot, Ranged Attacks are resolved using the pilot’s Shooting, and Melee Attacks are resolved using Fighting. Defense is calculated by taking the pilot’s Agility and dividing it by 2. All attacks are resolved against this value. Because of the nature of integration with the ProtoMech systems, the pilot receives significant neurological feedback when the unit takes damage. Any time a ProtoMech loses a limb, the pilot takes damage equal to their Toughness. In the event a ProtoMech is destroyed, the Wildcard makes an Agility roll. On a success, the Wildcard survives, but is “combat killed”, their equipment destroyed, and they can only move one space of movement on Mech Scale a turn under their own power though an ally vehicle could pick them up and carry them with them. On a failure the Wildcard survives, but is Incapacitated with Four Wounds per Savage Worlds rules.
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT Special equipment has specific rules for using them in BattleTech. While many of these convert simply enough by replacing the BattleTech skill check for the Savage BattleTech equivalent, there are some special cases that are outlined below. ACTIVE PROBES
Active probes are enhanced sensor packages that are used in Electronic Warfare, but more commonly used by scouts to aid in detecting hidden enemies units. A unit with a Clan Active Probe, Light Active Probe or Beagle Active Probe (or any system that is said to give the same benefits) gains +2 on Notice rolls. A Bloodhound Active Probe gains a +4 on Notice rolls. 34
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Further, all forms of Active Probes continually search for hidden units. A unit mounting a probe makes a Notice roll to detect a hidden unit as soon as the hidden units enters Probe’s range, even if the pilot had previously failed the Notice check to detect them no matter who’s turn it is. Also, if a unit mounting a probe begins its turn with a hidden unit in range, it may immediately make a new Notice roll to detect them, even if a previous Notice check had failed. MASC AND SUPERCHARGERS
For every round MASC or a Supercharger is used, the pilot must make a VCS check with a TN of 2. For each consecutive round the equipment is used, the TN of the check goes up by one. On a success with a raise the TN does not go up that round. A failure on any of these checks results in the normal penalty. This TN is reduced by 1, to a minimum of 2, for each round the devices remain unused. MECH STEALTH EQUIPMENT
Mech scale stealth equipment, Stealth Armor, Null Signature System plus Chameleon Light Polarization Shield or Void Signature System help cloak a unit on the field, granting bonuses dependent on the systems used. Normal BattleTech rules for equipping and functioning apply to these systems; however, the benefits are slightly changed. It should be noted that only Null Signature and Chameleon can be used in conjunction with each other, Stealth Armor and Void Signature can only be used by themselves. Stealth Armor allows the equipped unit to make a Stealth Check even without shutting down when activated, though other conditions still apply (must remain stationary and have some kind of cover). If a unit can hide without shutting down by some other means (due to Edge or being under the cover of a Jamming Field EW power), this system instead grants a +2 bonus to Stealth rolls. Further, while active the system adds +1 to the unit’s Defense. Normal BattleTech penalties for Stealth Armor still apply. The Null Signature System grants the same benefits as Stealth Armor. Further the system also prevents Active Probes (though not a Bloodhound Active Probe) from detecting the unit, meaning the unit mounting a probe does not get the extra Notice checks normally granted. Normal BattleTech penalties for the Null Signature System still apply. The Chameleon Light Polarization Shield adds +1 to Defense when activated. Further, if used in conjuncture with a Null Signature System, it allows the equipped unit to make a Stealth Check even without shutting down and without cover so long as the mounting unit only cruises or walks. If a unit can hide without cover by some other means (due to Edge), this system instead grants a +2 bonus to Stealth rolls. 35
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Void Signature System allows the equipped unit to make a Stealth Check even without shutting down and without cover when activated so long as the mounting unit only cruises or walks. The system also prevents Active Probes (though not a Bloodhound Active Probe) from detecting the unit, meaning the unit mounting a probe does not get the extra Notice checks normally granted. If a unit can hide without shutting down by some other means (due to Edge), this system grants a +2 bonus to Stealth rolls. Further, if a unit does not move, the Void system grants a +3 bonus to Defense. A unity that moves 1-2 hexes gets a +2 bonus to Defense, and if the unit move 3-5 hexes it gets a +1 bonus to Defense. A Mech that moves 6 or more hexes gains no bonus. Normal BattleTech penalties for the Void Signature System still apply. LAMS (LAND-AIR MECHS)
The main piloting skill for a LAM depends on what mode the vehicle is in at the time. While in Mech mode Mech Piloting is used, while in Fighter mode Piloting is used, and while in AirMech mode the lower of the two skills is used. Defense also varies depending on which mode the LAM is in at a given time. In Mech mode it is calculated via Mech Piloting, in Fighter mode Piloting is used, and in AirMech mode the lower of the two skills is again used. ROTARY AUTOCANNONS:
When using the rapid fire mode on a Rotary Autocannon, treat it as an attack with a Rate of Fire equal to the number of volleys fired (between two and six). However, the attacks must target the same thing and there is no -2 penalty for the attack. Further, when firing with a Rate of Fire above two, Rotary Autocannons cannot be grouped with other weapons except other Rotary Autocannons; though when fired normally they can be grouped with any weapon and when fired with a rate of two may be grouped with Ultra Autocannons. ULTRA AUTOCANNONS:
When using rapid fire mode on an Ultra Autocannon treat it as an attack with a Rate of Fire of two. However, the two attacks must target the same thing and there is no -2 penalty for the attack. Further, when firing with a Rate of Fire of two, Ultra Autocannons can only be grouped with weapons that have a similar Rate of Fire; though, when fired normally they can be grouped with any weapon.
SPECIAL MANEUVERS FOCUSED ATTACK
Mechs are in constant motion even within the space they occupy, trying to avoid being targeted and fired upon as much as possible, or even dashing to try and make themselves a hard to hit target. Sometimes, though, hitting the target is more important than avoiding damage. When the shot is more important, pilot can choose to take a -2 penalty on Defense. In return they gain a +2 bonus on Gunnery. HIDING BATTLEMECHS:
BattleMechs are difficult to hide, between the constant output of the fusion engines running and their sheer size. In order to hide a BattleMech two conditions must be met. First, the Mech must be in terrain that offers some sort of cover from general observation, and second, the Mech must be shut down. If both these conditions are met, the pilot can then make a Stealth check for their Mech to hide the machine from general observation. This stealth check is opposed by a Notice check by opponents. Certain Edges and equipment may modify these conditions. SHUTDOWN MECHS
A shutdown Mech, either voluntarily for ambush or through overheating, is in a precarious situation. While shutdown a Mech cannot maneuver, and so it has a Defense of 2 for all attacks made against it. Further, the pilot cannot make any Mech Piloting Skill rolls while in a shutdown Mech, and so automatically fails any piloting check. Restarting a Mech from a voluntary shutdown takes an action, and the Mech cannot be piloted nor weapons fired until the pilot's next action. SITUATIONAL RULES CONVERSION
Some of the various Situational Combat Rules from core Savage Worlds can be used in Mech Scale, though with minor modifications to reflect the differences in fighting on that scale. If it is not listed here, the rule cannot be used. Aim: Functions per normal Savage Worlds. Defend: Works as normal, but grants a +2 Bonus to Defense, while restricting movement to Walking or Cruise MP. The Drop: Works per normal, though the bonus only goes to the Attack Roll, and grants no bonus on damage. Full Defense: Works as described, but requires an appropriate VCS roll. 37
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Test of Wills: Works as described; however, communication with the opponent must be established before the Test of Wills can begin. If this communication is cut off, no further Tests may be initiated. Tricks: Tricks work as described, but have significantly more ways of being preformed. A trick may be made using any of the piloting skills (Driving, Mech Piloting, or Piloting) or Gunnery. If using Gunnery, the weapons used are treated as if they had been fired for the round, using ammunition and building heat per normal. This check is opposed by Smarts or Agility, depending on the GM’s ruling. Two Weapons: Mechs carrying two melee weapons do not take any of the penalties normally associated with wielding two weapons. All other rules for Mech Melee weapon attacks apply. Unstable Platform: May occur if the GM rules it.
The weapons and armor in Savage BattleTech are designed to introduce BattleTech equipment and weapons for the out of cockpit combat using core Savage Worlds combat. However, the weapons and armor from core Savage Worlds can be used unmodified, though it should be understood by the players that the stat block they are using are not necessarily for that specific weapon, as weapon and armor technology of BattleTech are light-years ahead of modern weapons and armor. Instead, consider them as setting specific version, for instance the stat block for the M-16 might instead be the stats for a Federated Automatic Rifle. It should be noted that, as a science fiction setting, there are more advanced weapons and armors available. The stats for Infantry Battle and the Hard Armor from Savage World should be used to represent most infantry standard armor, though specific BattleTech armors are also available. However, the more “advanced” Powered Armors of Savage Worlds are pale comparisons compared to the highly developed Battle Armors that populate the fields of BattleTech, and so should be generally disregarded in favor of the more flavorful armor outlined below. You will note that most of this equipment lacks a cost. This primarily has to do with simple notions of scale. Most characters in the game will be piloting a multi-million C-bill war machine, with the costs and pay scale associated with that. Compared to that, the cost of a personal firearm or even Battle armor pales in comparison. GMs should use common sense when allowing players to acquire the equipment listed here (most of the military specific power armors would not be available on the market, even for major mercenary companies), but not sweat the relatively minor cost of a laser pistol and a few power packs. Finally, many of the weapons presented below in place of typical ammunition, use standardized power packs. 39
In addition to the regular Savage Worlds properties, due to the unique nature of some BattleTech equipment new traits for them have been added: Advanced Sensors: Armors with this property feature have an enhanced array of sensors, granting a +4 bonus on Notice. Advanced Stealth: Armor with this property features exceptional sensor defeating technologies and camouflage. This grants a +4 bonus on Stealth checks. Mimetic Armor: Armor with this property has a chameleon like property to blend itself into its surroundings as well as highly advanced anti-sensor equipment. This gives the armor a +6 bonus on Stealth checks. Mounted: Mounted weapons can only be used if mounted on an emplacement or power armor. Powered: Powered weapons utilize a power pack that can range in size from a small coin to the size of a backpack. Each round these weapons are fired or are active, they drain the amount from the power pack listed after the Powered value. Silent: Silent weapons have very little audible sound when they are fired, adding +2 on the TN of any Perception check to notice them being fired. Sensors: Armor with this property feature have built in sensors that enhance the senses of the wearer, granting a +2 bonus on Notice. Spread: These weapons fire a Spread of ballistics at the target, much like a Shotgun. This grants them a +2 on Shooting rolls when fired with a RoF of 1 (though this is lost if fired at a higher RoF) and deal one less die of damage for each range increment beyond Short they are. Stealthy: Stealthy weapons are easy to hide on a person, granting a +2 bonus on attempts to conceal them. Stealth Armor: Armor with this trait is equipped with enhanced camouflage and sensor defeating materials. This grants a +2 on Stealth checks. Unwieldy: Unwieldy armor is not designed to be worn in the heat of combat outside of very specific circumstances. Unwieldy armor grants a -1 penalty on all Agility rolls and Agility based skills when worn outside the conditions it is designed for.
The BattleTech universe is vast, and not everything is available to everyone. The Availability field gives a general idea of how easy equipment should be to come by by various characters: Common items are widespread across inhabited space, without any restrictions. Most normal Savage Worlds equipment falls into this category. Uncommon items are relatively rare, usually reserved for highly developed regions, often a form of LostTec or highly expensive. High end military weapons from core Savage Worlds (like sniper rifles and heavy machine guns) also should fall in this category. Military indicates that only actual House military forces can get their hands on this equipment, depending on faction, and can be further specified by which faction utilizes the equipment. These are: CapCom (Capellan Confederation), ComStar, DracCom (Draconis Combine), FedCom (Federated Commonwealth), FRR (Free Rasalhague Republic), FedSun (Federated Suns), FWL (Free Worlds League), LyrCom (Lyran Commonwealth), LyrAll (Lyran Alliance), and WoB (Word of Blake). Clan items are only available to Clan Warriors and are generally unavailable otherwise.
ARMOR Type: Combat Suit Combat Vest Combat Vest, Reinforced Cooling Vest Cooling Suit Infiltration Suit Tornado Neurohelmet
Armor: Coverage: Availability: +4/+8 Body Uncommon +2/+4 Torso Common +4/+8 Torso Common +4 Torso Common +1 Body Uncommon +2 Body Uncommon +4 Body Military: ComStar/WoB +4 Head Common
Note: Negates 4 AP, See Notes Negates 4 AP, See Notes Negates 4 AP, See Notes on Combat Vest Negates 2 AP, Unwieldy -Sensors, Stealth Armor, Powered (Special) Advanced Stealth Covers Head, Unwieldy
Combat Suit Full combat armor usually worn by heavy infantry and made a materials similar to the Combat Vest with full reinforcement, granting it +4 armor points and +8 against energy and projectile weapons, while negating 4 AP from them. Combat Vest The Combat Vest is the successor to the lower tech Kevlar Armor. Like Kevlar, it grants +2 armor points, but specially fibers bind bullets and reduce laser penetration, granting it +4 armor points against energy weapons and projectile weapons and negating 4 AP from them. This protection can be further upgraded by adding small plates made of material similar to BattleMech armor, increasing the protection to +4 armor points overall, and +8 against ballistic and energy weapons. Cooling Vest This is the standard clothing for a MechWarrior in the cockpit, often matched with a simple pair of shorts and low cut boots due to the extreme heat of piloting a Mech. Worn over the torso and filled with small tubes for cooling, it is made out of high grade anti-ballistic polymers to protect the pilot from stray shrapnel in event of a hit to the cockpit. While not effective against heavy weaponry, in a pinch, it serves as passable armor. Due to its robust design and use of advanced polymers, the Cooling Vest negates 2 AP from Ballistic and Energy Weapons. Cooling Suit The Cooling Suit is whole, tight fitting bodysuit designed to keep a MechWarrior cool in the cockpit. It often includes a neurocowl, a tight fitting hood that replaces the bulky and uncomfortable neurohelmet. While more effective at these jobs, it is not as tough as its less advanced cousins, and provides significantly less protection out of cockpit, but it is much easier to move in. 42
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Infiltration Suit Covering everything from the specialized gear of the infamous DEST Commandoes or Rabid Foxes, the Infiltration Suit is designed to give some light protection to the wearer, but more importantly help aid them in hiding and infiltrating. The sensor dampening and sensor array in the armor takes a continual charge, and so consumes 1 point of power per 15 minutes of usage. Tornado The Tornado is a precursor to the Inner Sphere’s later Battle Armor, designed and used by ComStar and later Word of Blake. Equipped with Stealth armor for concealment, it offers no enhancements for the wearers, but allows them to use any normal weapons. Neurohelmet Worn by most MechWarriors in the cockpit, this heavy helmet features an advanced HUD that compresses a 360 degree field of view into a 270 degree arc, as well as sensors over to the skull to transmit the pilot’s sense of balance and motion to the Mech. Like the Cooling Vest, it also features heavy reinforcement to protect the pilot in case of cockpit hits, but also shares the downside of being bulky and uncomfortable to wear outside of cockpit conditions.
BATTLE ARMOR Type: Achileus Elemental Armor Golem Gray Death Scout Gray Death Standard Infiltrator Mk 1 Infiltrator Mk 2 IS Battle Armor Kage Kanazuchi Purifier Adaptive Raiden Salamander
Armor: Coverage: +6 Body +14 Body +18 Body +5 Body +12 Body +6 Body +7 Body +12 Body +6 Body +17 Body +8 Body +10 Body +10 Body
Note: Advanced Stealth Heavy Armor Heavy Armor, Immune to Fire Advanced Sensors Heavy Armor Stealth Armor Stealth Armor Heavy Armor Stealth Armor Heavy Armor Mimetic Armor Heavy Armor Immune to Fire
Armored suits bearing the same kind (if not quantity) of armor used on BattleMechs, with reinforced strength using advanced myomer muscles, Battle Armor allows infantry to move from a joke on the battlefield to actual threat to the monstrous war machines. Battle Armor are advanced powered combat suits, often with anti-Mech weapons and highly advanced sensors. These sensors grant an inherent +2 on Notice rolls against Stealth. Further these suits have advanced power supplies and ammo reserves that allow greater use of Powered Weapons attached to them, Powered Weapons do not use any charge when used on Battle Armor, and the ammo reserves for non-Mounted weapons is tripled. Achileus As the first offering of the Free Worlds League, and designed with aid of the Word of Blake, the Achileus is an advanced scout and stealth armor that is thought to have lead directly to the development of the later Purifier Adaptive armor. Wearing the Achileus armor grants the ability to jump Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. It carries a hard point underslung on its right arm (leaving the right hand free) capable of mounting a Small Laser, Gauss Rifle, Battle Armor Flamer or Machine Gun as well as a Battle Armor Submachine Gun on the left arm, with a free left hand as well.
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Elemental Elemental Armor is the standard by which all other power armor is judged, and for good reason, it is a highly versatile and heavily armed and armored platform that also retains excellent mobility. Wearing an Elemental Suit grants a bonus of +4 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), adds +2 to Pace, and allows the wearer to jump their Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. Its advanced HUD also grants a +1 on Shooting rolls. Further, the armor is heavily armed, carrying a variable weapon hardpoint at the end of the right arm capable of carrying a single Small Laser, Battle Armor Flamer, Machine Gun, Heavy Machine Gun, or Gauss Rifle. This is backed up by a Battle Armor Submachine Gun for anti-personnel use and Battle Armor Claw on the left arm. Further, it is usually equipped with a detachable backpack containing four single shot SRMs. Unfortunately, the Elemental does have one significant disadvantage, and that is it has no free hand to be able to do fine manipulation. Golem Originally developed by Clan Ghost Bear, the Golem is the heaviest battle armor deployed by forces anywhere. While nowhere near as mobile as its lighter brethren, its sheer durability ensures that it survives to attack its target. Wearing Golem armor grants a bonus of +4 on Str based rolls (including melee damage). Its advanced HUD also grants a +1 on Shooting rolls. Finally, the armor was specifically designed to be immune to Fire and Heat based weapons. Built into the armor are two Battle Armor Heavy Machine Guns. These two weapons are backed up by a truly massive load of ten single-shot SRM launchers and two Battle Armor Claws. Like its lighter predecessor, the Golem cannot perform fine manipulation due to the Claws. Gray Death Scout The Grey Death Scout armor was one of the earliest developed power armors in the Inner Sphere designed and developed by the Gray Death Legion. It is one of the lightest Battle Armors available, offering protection barely above regular body armors. It carries no weapon hard points, instead keeping both hands free to use whatever weapons the operator wishes. However, what it lacks for in protection it makes up for in mobility, granting the ability to jump their Pace plus 6d6 horizontally or 3d6 vertically.
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Gray Death Standard A more refined variant of the Inner Sphere Battle Armor, this armor forgoes the jump capabilities, and instead enhances the speed of the wearer. Wearing Gray Death Standard Armor grants a bonus of +2 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), and grants a +2 bonus on Pace. The suit carries one weapon hardpoint on its right arm capable of mounting a Small Laser, Gauss Rifle, Battle Armor Machine Gun, Flamer or a SRM with three shots. On its left arm, along with a Battle Armor Claw, it carries a Battle Armor Submachine Gun. Infiltrator Mark 1 Another of the early developed Inner Sphere Battle Armors; it is not considered a highly effective design. Its main draw is the basic Stealth armor. It carries one Battle Armor Submachine Gun. Infiltrator Mark 2 A great advancement over the original design, the Infiltrator Mark 2, nicknamed the “Puma” is an excellent sniper and scout combat armor. It carries a short range ECM generator on par with those carried on BattleMechs. While no faster than normal infantry, it instead features jump capability. Wearing this armor allows the wearer to jump their Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. It comes equipped with a Gauss Rifle on the right arm and a Battle Armor Submachine Gun on the left, though the left hand remains free. IS (Inner Sphere) Battle Armor Developed in response to the Clan Elemental armor, it is inferior in almost every way to the original. Wearing IS Battle Armor grants a bonus of +2 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), and allows the wearer to jump 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. The suit only carries one weapon hardpoint on the right arm, capable of mounting Small Laser, Gauss Rifle, Battle Armor Machine Gun, Flamer or a pair of SRMs. The only backup is the Battle Armor Claw on the left arm. Like its more advanced cousin, this Battle Armor cannot perform fine manipulation due to the weapon mount and claw.
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Kage Developed by the Draconis Combine, Kage light power armor is primarily designed for scouting and infiltration. Unlike many others, it carries no integrated weapons. Its unusual design includes a distinctive wing over the shoulders that enhance its jump range. Wearing Kage light armor allows the wearer to jump their Pace plus 6d6 horizontally or 3d6 vertically. Kanazuchi Designed and primarily deployed by the Draconis Combine, the Kanazuchi is possibly the heaviest armed power armor deployed by any force, with its only real weakness is its lack of mobility. `Wearing Kanazuchi armor grants a bonus of +4 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), but removes -2 from Pace. The armor comes equipped with the devastatingly powerful Medium Laser on the right arm, four single shot SRMs, two Battle Armor Submachine Guns, and a Battle Armor Claw in its left, granting it unparalleled firepower. Unfortunately, due to all this equipment, the wearer cannot perform any fine manipulation. Purifier Adaptive Designed originally by ComStar, but deployed primarily by the Word of Blake, Purifier Adaptive armor is one of the most advanced power armors designed and includes highly effective mimetic armor that grants the armor unparalleled stealth ability. Wearing Purifier Adaptive armor grants a bonus of +2 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), and allows the wearer to jump Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. The suit carries a single hardpoint on its left arm, capable of mounting a Small Laser or Particle Cannon. The right arm ends in a Battle Armor Claw. Like other Claw- equipped Armors, the Purifier is incapable of fine manipulation. Raiden Designed in tandem with the Kage and Kanazuchi, the Raiden is the Draconis Combine’s take on the Inner Sphere Standard armor. While lighter armored and incapable of mounting missiles, it instead has superior hand to hand capabilities. Wearing Raiden armor grants +4 to Str based rolls (including Damage) and the ability to jump Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. 47
SAVAGE BATTLETECH The suit only carries one weapon hardpoint on the right arm, capable of mounting Small Laser, Gauss Rifle, single shot LRM Launcher with four reloads Battle Armor Machine Gun, or Flamer. The only backup is the Battle Armor Claw on the left arm. Salamander Designed to combat the major bane of armored infantry, the Salamander stands out for one reason: its utter immunity to fire and heat based attacks. Wearing Salamander armor grants a bonus of +4 on Str based rolls (including melee damage), adds +2 to Pace, and allows the wearer to jump Pace plus 4d6 horizontally or 2d6 vertically. Its advanced HUD also grants a +1 on Shooting rolls. Also, as noted above, the Salamander is immune to any Fire or Heat based attack. The Salamander carries two Battle Armor Flamers underslung on each arm as well as one singleshot SRM. Both arms end in Battle Armor Claws. Like other Claw equipped Armors, the Salamander is incapable of fine manipulation.
AP 6, Snapfire, HW AP 6, Snapfire, HW, Powered 10 AP 6, Snapfire, HW, Mounted AP 6, Snapfire, HW, Med. Burst AP 6, Snapfire, HW, Powered 10 AP 6, Snapfire, HW, Med. Burst
Item: Power Pack, Standard
Power Pack, Micro
Power Pack, Satchel
Power Pack, Military
Description: A small general use power pack slightly smaller than a pistol grip A very small power pack used for concealing or powering noteputers or other portable electronics. A waist worn power pack usually used for industrial tools and connected to the device with a cable. A backpack worn power pack usually used by militaries for powering weapons for long engagements
Battle Armor Claw This heavy claw is mounted on Battle Armors allowing them to easily ride on Mechs equipped with carrying handles, and allowing them to grab and tear armor off of vehicles and Mechs in a swarm. Also an effective melee weapon, its largest drawback is that it makes fine manipulation and use of man-portable weapons impossible in that hand. Battle Armor Flamer This terrifying weapon designed mainly for anti-Mech and vehicular use, is utterly terrifying to use against infantry. It functions like a military-grade Flamethrower, but is mounted on a Battle Armor. 49
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Battle Armor Machine Gun This is a heavy anti-personnel and anti-light armor machine gun designed to be mounted on a Battle Armor. Battle Armor Heavy Machine Gun This is anti-armor upscale of the Battle Armor Machine Gun is effective against heavy armor. Usually carried by heavy and assault weight Battle Armors, it is also mounted on vehicles and fortifications. Battle Armor Submachine Gun This anti-personnel weapon is mounted on Battle Armors for use against unarmored opponents. Gauss Pistol This Clan designed large pistol uses a series of magnets to accelerate a nickel-iron bullet to high velocity, allowing high penetration of everything but the heaviest armors. This power comes at a price though, ammo capacity limited due to the high energy demand of the weapon. Gauss Rifle While called a rifle, this heavy anti-armor weapon is typically supported by a sling and fired from the hip like a support weapon. Like its smaller brother, it uses a series of magnetic rings to accelerate a nickel-iron bullet to penetrate any armor and devastate the targets. Further, this weapon is capable of being mounted on Battle Armor, removing the Snapfire property while mounted. Gyrojet Pistol Firing an unusual round, a small rocket instead of an inert bullet, Gryojet pistols are easy to wield and have low recoil without sacrificing accuracy. Further, the unique firing system has low audible noise, and a long range, making it an ideal sidearm. Gyrojet Rifle A rifle firing the unusual gryojet rounds, its long range, penetration and quiet nature make an ideal sniper weapon. Laser, Medium Only found mounted on the heaviest Battle Armors, vehicles and fixed emplacements, this is the same weapon found in some variant on nearly every BattleMech. Devastatingly powerful, it is only limited by the power requirements that make unusable as a man-portable weapon that cannot be fired off of the standard power packs. 50
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Laser Pistol The common Laser Pistol is nearly as ubiquitous as its mass driving cousins. Firing a beam of coherent light, the main advantage of the Laser Pistol is that its primary “ammunition” is the standard power pack. Laser Pistol, Pulse Usually only found among the militaries of the galaxy, the Pulse Laser Pistol has more in common with SMGs and is often used in place of them. Laser Rifle The powerful and versatile Laser Rifle has seen use on nearly every world humans have visited. Using relatively common power packs, it packs a punch comparable to the best hunting rifles with an excellent range. Laser Rifle, Pulse The assault rifle of the small arms lasers, the Pulse Laser Rifle is a devastating weapon typically deployed only by militaries. While it can be fired off common power packs, its heavy power consumption make it impractical to be used without either a satchel or military power pack. Laser, Small Like its larger cousin, this is a Mech scale weapon that is often found mounted on Battle Armor or as infantry support weapon. When used on Battle Armor, with their advanced power supplies, the weapon has effectively unlimited power. LRM Launcher Firing a single long range anti-armor missile, like those found on Mechs, this weapon is typically used for long range fire support against hardened targets or vehicles to keep vulnerable infantry well out of harm’s way. Needler Pistol One of the most effective weapons against an un-armored target, the Needler fires a spread of razor-sharp plastic flechettes. This unusual ammunition makes the weapon very quiet, but ensures it has no ability to penetrate even the lightest armors. Further, its size makes it an ideal carry weapon outside of combat zones Needler Rifle A scaled up and automatic version of the Pistol, it retains its smaller cousin, it attempts to alleviate the penetration problems of the pistol with an unrivalled ability to put flechettes in the air. 51
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Neural Whip This powered weapon is often banned or restricted due not to its capability as a weapon, but rather its potential for use as an implement of torture. Unlike most melee weapons, it does not add Str to its damage rolls. However, whenever it would normally deal a Wound, instead it increases Fatigue. SRM Launcher A man portable anti-armor missile like those carried on Mechs; this weapon is highly effective against most armored targets. A man-portable launcher carries a single reload. For reloads on those mounted on Battle Armors, see those Armor’s description blocks. Vibroblade A highly destructive melee weapon, a vibroblade is the size of a combat dagger and when activated the cutting edge oscillates at a high frequency, allowing grievous wounds and even penetration of heavy armor. When deactivated, the weapon functions as a dagger. Vibrosword Like its smaller cousin, the vibrosword is highly effective against all targets. Aesthetically, it can appear as almost any variety of swords, the most notable variant being the vibrokatana used by the Draconis Combine. When deactivated it functions as a longsword.
OPTIONAL AND EXPERIMENTAL RULES INTRODUCTION
This section contains two main types of rules for Savage BattleTech. The first is Optional Rules. Optional Rules are rules that we (or perhaps others) have come up with to enhance the play experience, but are not suited for all types of play. Some may be fairly minor changes, while others may completely overhaul an aspect of gameplay. You should feel no pressure to use these rules, as the Core Rules presented here are completely functional and suit a good general style of gameplay. The section type of rules presented here are Experimental Rules. These rules are proposed major changes to the Core Mechanics that we feel need further playtesting before they can be implemented. If you feel comfortable with the system as written, we ask you to use these rules and give us feedback.
OPTIONAL RULES CLASSICALLY BATTLETECH
Overview Savage BattleTech does quite a few things off from originally BattleTech, mostly done to adapt the system to Savage Worlds, but also to emphasize the “Fast, Furious, Fun!” attitude that Savage Worlds is supposed to bring. Classically BattleTech rules take Savage BattleTech and move it closer to Classic BattleTech than Savage Worlds, while still keeping some of the streamlining. Unlike most of the other Optional Rules presented here, it is possible to mix and match which changes are used. If used all together, game play should be very close to BattleTech, except using Savage BattleTech target numbers. Rule Changes Turning now costs 1 movement point per facing change. No Weapon Groups, roll and resolve each weapon attack roll separately. These attacks do not accrue multi-action penalties unless a different additional action is taken in the round. EXTRA SOFT
Overview In Savage BattleTech Extras piloting Mechs and Vehicles are much tougher than when they are out of their vehicles. While this is partially intentional as there will generally be fewer Extras in a Mech scale fight than in a normal Savage Worlds scale fight, they can feel too tough, as the only real advantage a Wildcard has over them in Mech Scale is the Wild Die. This rule seeks to make Extras softer on Mech Scale, while still ensuring that the toughness of the vehicles they pilot is maintained. It is best used when you want players to face larger numbers of enemies or you wish to draw a further distinction between the toughness and skill of Wildcards as opposed to Extras. 53
SAVAGE BATTLETECH Rule Changes Critical threats from to-hit raises on Mechs and Aerospace fighters piloted by Extras automatically inflict a single critical hit to the appropriate location. For each raise after the first, an additional critical hit is inflicted, to a maximum of three. Bennies may be spent to reduce the number of critical hits inflicted at one bennie per critical. STARTER VEHICLES
Overview Many people have noted that there are no rules presented in the character creation section to determine a character’s starting Mech. This is an intentional, as there is no easy way to determine what Mech a character should start with, between variances in technology over the long timeline BattleTech allows play in and character concepts varying widely between players, our original group always found it easier to simply talk with the GM and decide together what an appropriate Mech would be for our characters. These rules are best used by groups newer to the BattleTech setting and system, as they help keep people on a more equalized playing field. Rule Changes Novice Player Character start play with a light vehicle (whether it is a BattleMech, Aerospace fighters, or Vehicle) of their choice as restricted by the GM’s decision of Tech level and Tech base. For each rank above Novice, the character may have a vehicle of one weight category heavier. If a character has Rich or Noble, they may choose to forgo the normal monetary benefits of the Edge and instead choose a vehicle one weight category heavier. A very rich character may also choose to forgo the normal monetary benefit of the Edge and instead choose a vehicle two weight categories Heavier.
None at this time.
APPENDIX A: TABLES MOVEMENT BONUS
Distance Moved: Defense Bonus: 0-4
9 - 10
11 - 12
13 - 14
PILOTING SKILL MODIFIERS Damage to Mech Reactor Shut Down Leg/Foot Actuator Destroyed Hip Actuator Destroyed Gyro Hit
-3 -1 per* -2 per -3
Physical Attacks Against a Mech Mech successfully Charged or DFA’d -2 Building Movement Entering/Leaving Medium Building Entering/Leaving Heavy Building Entering/Leaving Hardened Building Special Case Avoiding Damage while falling Avoid falling Crit damage to IndyMech Quad Mech with all Legs Intact Small Cockpit Unintentional Charge
-1 -2 -5
-1/level -1/level +2 -1 -3
Unit’s Actions Mech Made a Successful Charge Mech Made a DFA Attack Mech Entered Depth 1 Water Mech entered Depth 2 Water Mech Entered Depth 3+ Water
ARTILLERY TO-HIT MODIFIERS Condition: Spotter Does Not Have Line of Sight to Target Hex Spotter is Effected by an ECM field Spotter can use a TAG to spot on the target hex Spotter has called a strike on the hex before and missed Spotter has Satellite Telemetry
ARTILLERY TRAVEL TIME Number of Maps: 1–8 9 – 15 16 – 21 22 – 26 27 – 30
ATTACK MODIFIERS Physical Attack Modifiers Mech Damage Shoulder Hit Arm actuator hit (each) Hand actuator hit Hip actuator hit Leg actuator hit (each) Foot actuator hit Target Infantry Large Vehicle or Grounded Craft
No punching or physical weapon attacks with arm, no clubbing attacks, -2 to pushing attacks (each) -2 to punching and physical weapon attacks with arm; half damage for punching with arm -1 to punching attach with arm; no clubbing attacks; no physical weapon attacks No kicking attacks -2 to kick attacks and half damage from affected leg -1 to kicking attacks with that leg -3 on kicking and DFA attacks +2
Range Modifiers: Minimum Range -1 Per Space At or Below the Minimum Short Range ±0 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Medium Range -1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Long Range -2 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Weapon Modifiers: Autocannon Ammo: LB-X Cluster Munitions+1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Precision Munitions +1 on Gunnery Skill Rolls Lasers: Heavy Lasers -1 on Gunnery Rolls Pulse Lasers +1 on Gunnery Rolls Missiles: MRMs -1 on Gunnery Rolls Rocket Launchers -1 on Gunnery Rolls Melee Attacks Backhoe -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Club +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Combine +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Hatchet +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Heavy-Duty Pile Driver -2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Kick +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Mining Drill +1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Retractable Blade +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Rock Cutter -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Sword +2 on Mech Piloting Rolls Wrecking Ball -1 on Mech Piloting Rolls Equipment: Targeting Computer +1 on Gunnery Rolls for nonmissile weapons
Attacker Conditional Modifiers Ran/Flank -1 on all other rolls Jumped -2 on all other rolls Prone -1 Gunnery on non-Quads Skidding -1 on Gunnery Indirect Fire -1 on Gunnery IndustrialMech -1 on Gunnery Targeting Dropship +2 on Gunnery Target Conditional Modifiers +2 from adjacent, Prone -1 otherwise Immobile +4 Skidding -2 Airborne unit at Alt. 1 -1 (Attacker in flight path) Airborne unit at Alt. 1 -3 (Attacker not in flight path) Mech Damage for Attacks -2 -4, overrides arm actuator Shoulder Hit damage Arm Actuator Hit -1 per actuator Sensor Hit
Light Woods Heavy Woods Depth 1 Water Depth 2 Water Partial Cover
Terrain Modifiers -1 per intervening hex, -1 if target is in hex -2 per intervening hex, -2 if target is woods -1 -2 -1