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"Best Mecha-Giant Robot rules?" Topic

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28 Dec 2017 3:50 p.m. PST
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Personal logo optional field Supporting Member of TMP25 Jun 2012 12:57 p.m. PST

What is your favorite Mecha ruleset?

CmdrKiley25 Jun 2012 1:07 p.m. PST

I've really come to like the latest version of Heavy Gear: Blitz.

sharkbait25 Jun 2012 1:28 p.m. PST

What kind of "Mecha" do you want to game? Or what kind of battles do you want to have.

I use mecha/giant robots in Giant Monster Rampage. There's a lot of options for building giant robots (and monsters, of course).

For a quick playing mech game, I like Mech Attack from Armor Grid Games. This one has construction rules, too. It also includes vehicles and infantry.

As CmdrKiley said, there's Heavy Gear, plus Battletech, CAV, and others that I can't remember.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP25 Jun 2012 1:39 p.m. PST

Huge personal bias, but Y.A.G.R.A.G. comes in first mostly because its more about the story arc than the robots.

Space 1889's land walkers are pretty fun to play, mostly because of the kith and kin of reasonable peer opponents.

The Monsterpocalypse robots are pretty fun for a kaiju type experience.

Jovian125 Jun 2012 1:52 p.m. PST

Heavy Gear Blitz – very, very good set of rules with some complexity, but still makes for a good and fast-paced game!

Chef Lackey Rich Fezian25 Jun 2012 2:06 p.m. PST

For versatility and coverage of the whole gamut of the mecha genre, R Talsorian's Mekton is still unbeaten after all these years. Others might be better at specific settings, but Mekton can handle everything from gritty Heavy Gear/VOTOMs stuff to the wonderful silliness of Tranzor Z/Great Mazinger.

I liked playing Mecha! from Flagship Games too. More limited, but they had a good feel for the niche and the game mechanics were innovative.

Lion in the Stars25 Jun 2012 2:19 p.m. PST

HG Blitz if you like the setting (or smaller, VOTOMs-scale mecha)

Jovian Chronicles for Gundam-scale mecha.

JC or earlier HGB to be able to design your own.

ordinarybass25 Jun 2012 2:25 p.m. PST

I love Mech Attack. It plays really fast and is extremely customizable in terms of your mech's weapons, weight, speed, heat control, etc. Despite the fast play, it's got enough depth to keep it interesting It's also really cheap. It's a PDF that comes with free printable 2.5D mechs in 15mm, but we use rebased mechwarrior clix figs.

Here's a recent battle report.

and an older one


You can buy it here:

John Leahy25 Jun 2012 2:28 p.m. PST

I like Meka Tac which has been around for a while. It has a great support page. I converted almost all the 3025 Innersphere BT Mechs to it. Great, fast and fun rule set. Plus you can put a LOT of Mechs on the table and still play quickly.




Ron W DuBray25 Jun 2012 3:31 p.m. PST

CAV by reaper minis

michaelsbagley25 Jun 2012 5:12 p.m. PST

Remarkably I have always favoured Mekton, despite their lack of widespread popularity.

ordinarybass25 Jun 2012 7:40 p.m. PST

Ooh, CAV is definitely worth looking at. Troll and Toad currently has all three of the Original CAV books (rulebook and Journals of Recognition 1 and 2) for one buck each. I've not played it yet, but it looks like a pretty elegant system and the books are pretty good read.

CAV second edition was only available as a PDF, but it can be downloaded for free via Reaper.

The beta-but-not-released "CAV:Strike Operations" is also free from Reaper, but I wouldn't mess with it as it's got no support yet and the couple reviews I've found have been less than favorable.

Broadsword25 Jun 2012 9:00 p.m. PST

Mekton is a very good mecha combat system wrapped in a fairly good Role Playing Game. Not much paperwork and played pretty fast. Mekton Zeta (the latest incarnation) is available in print at R. Talsorian Games . The PDF is available at RPGNow: Mekton Zeta PDF

I'm currently using Meka Tac: Giant Stompy Robot Edition for my mecha wargaming. It's fast, easy to learn, minimal paperwork (a 4" x 6" card for each mech and some counters for special situations), point-based construction system, and optional cards for player-activated events like extra attacks, extra damage, dodged attacks, extra movement, etc. I've run it successfully at a couple of conventions. And it's FREE!

Al |

SonofThor26 Jun 2012 6:52 a.m. PST

I still play Classic Battletech, they may not be the best but I like them.

Personal logo optional field Supporting Member of TMP26 Jun 2012 8:58 a.m. PST

I love the overall feel of Battletech, but I've never been able to accept that a 120mm AC/20 has less than half the range of a 20mm AC/2, the ablative only armor, or the fact that until recently artillery had a muzzle velocity of 100 meters per second.

At the other end of the spectrum, I really like the Dirtside 2 rules for big battles. They're not mecha rules per se, but they do a good job for big battles, and the design rules are very easily learned, although the weapon choices are a bit limited.

I've never gotten to reading any of the Heavy Gear, Mekton, and CAV rules although I have a set lying around here somewhere that I ought to read.

How do the Heavy Gear and Jovian Chronicles rules mesh? Are the compatible? What are the differences between editions?

Isn't Mekton more an RPG than a wargame?

Do any of the Cav rules allow for mecha design?

GiantMonster26 Jun 2012 10:10 a.m. PST

I prefer Giant Monster Rampage, but I'm biased.

I designed Giant Monster Rampage (and Atomic Super Humans) to be more cinematic in the effects of the attacks and the powers with things like knock back and knock down as well as being able to tear off chunks of buildings and use the rubble as a weapon.

I even wrote a scenario titled Mechanized to better customize robotic battles.

If you're looking for a more anime style of robot battle GMR might be a good fit.

Radioactive Press

Broadsword26 Jun 2012 12:18 p.m. PST

optional field – Yes, Mekton is sold as an RPG, but the mecha combat rules are solid and may easily be used without the storytelling elements. I've run Mekton combat-only games at conventions and had good results – both "Gundam" and "Panzer World Galient" settings. I like running convention games where a table full of first-time players can pretty much take over on the third turn.

Al |

Lion in the Stars26 Jun 2012 2:19 p.m. PST

How do the Heavy Gear and Jovian Chronicles rules mesh? Are the compatible? What are the differences between editions?
There are essentially two versions of Heavy Gear. There's the current edition, Heavy Gear Blitz, which is scaled for player-as-company-commander; and then there's the older editions, which are geared for player-as-platoon-leader.

The older editions have more details (1st edition Heavy Gear even includes a roleplaying game), and some fun 'perks/flaws' that make the vehicles as much a character as the pilot. There's actually a flaw 'stale smell in the environment controls', for example. It's a 'minor annoyance' level flaw, but a couple 'minor annoyances' totally give your ride it's own identity.

Early Heavy Gear and Jovian Chronicles are the same mechanics, and offer vehicle and weapon design rules. The design rules are a bit complicated (cube roots? why the hell am I needing to take cube roots?!?), but there are a lot of already-designed vehicles you could use.

HGBlitz doesn't go into as much detail in terms of damage, but otherwise uses about the same game mechanics.

The only oddity is the dice mechanic: Roll one d6 per skill level, high die is your score. Unless you roll multiple 6s, in which case your total is 6+number of additional 6s.

Kealios27 Jun 2012 2:23 p.m. PST

Im in a state of disarray in my living situation, and have been in a weird limbo for the last few months, but with my move coming up a few weeks away, my first order of business is to get a game of Strike Legion in.

This is because it has an extensive build-your-own system, looks similar to Battletech in that it has a ton of rules additives that you can pick and choose from (ie use what you want), looks deep enough for immersive play, but also not so bogged down by insane record keeping.

Their website has a number of Battletech Assault Mechs already stated out, so I will use those once Im familiar with the game to see just exactly how feasible playing Battletech-turned-Strike Legion is. Im really looking forward to it, and have been for months. Darned move… is their site. As a 6mm player, I'm looking for a replacement/additive to Epic: Armageddon and this has been on my "looks really good, could be the one, gotta play it to verify" list for a while now.

Mechanical28 Jun 2012 1:14 a.m. PST

Another vote for Mekton. Fast and simple. We never bothered with the RPG side.

VND 1AA01 Jul 2012 11:12 a.m. PST

While not Mecha rules, I've been toying with using "We Can Be Heroes II" for Mecha. Basically, my thinking is to treat Mecha as characters with vehicle armor. My goal is to create something that captures the feel of cinematic anime style mecha battles that focus on heroes over hardware.

foxbat02 Jul 2012 1:06 a.m. PST

Battletech (no longer "classic", it regained its original name some time ago). That's still my favorite game, and the one I play the most, after 15 years. The rules are challenging and balanced, and achieve the very right mix of tactics and chance to attain victory.

Chrome03 Jul 2012 8:00 a.m. PST

Do any of the Cav rules allow for mecha design?

CAV 1's JOR (1) has rules for building new CAVs and modifying existing ones by removing/swapping weapons, engines, etc.

CAV 2 only had rules for upgrading models's stats, like +2 Movement or +1 armor.

Personal logo optional field Supporting Member of TMP04 Jul 2012 1:08 p.m. PST

Read and considered the following:
CAV 2, but didn't like the lack of design rules.
HG Blitz, but the design rules are too generic.
HG 1st ed, read it but didn't like the idea of mecha being just advanced power armor. I'll look in Jovian Chronicles and see if that's more my speed.
Mekton Z, liked it but it still seems too generic.
Meka Tak, I like quiet a bit actually, but it doesn't seem to give the level of detail I want.
Next up, Strike Legion, CAV 1, and anything else sitting in my pile of "oh, this is on sale at the FLGS" purchases.

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