treads

Medieval fantasy mechs powered by steam, magic, or the labor of a thousand slaves.

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modus666
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treads

Post by modus666 » Sun Dec 09, 2007 10:56 pm

one or two mechs detailed in the dragonmech setting have been drive by treads rather than legs, like the orcish terror tower from the mech manual.

there is a steampower which can add treads to an item, but what i'm thinking about it more permanent use of treads on a mech and how to rule them. logically installing treads should make the mech slower, but probably a lot more stable on rough terrain, yes?

what would be the cost and mechanical differences of using treads on a mech instead of legs?

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Post by mythfish » Mon Dec 10, 2007 6:56 am

As you say, I think using treads would provide the mech more stability at the expense of speed. Specifically, the mech should receive bonuses to resisting things like bull rushes and trip attacks...maybe it should even be immune to trip attacks. The downside would be perhaps it only moves at half the speed it would otherwise, and cannot trample.

Treads should overall be worse than legs, I'd think, or else everyone would be using them instead of legs (and we'd have a world full of tanks instead of mechs). I'd say the systems are probably simpler than legs too, so make them a bit cheaper and perhaps even lower the mechcraft DC. But again, I think in most cases the disadvantages should outweigh the advantages.
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modus666
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tread stuff

Post by modus666 » Mon Dec 10, 2007 10:33 pm

mythfish wrote:As you say, I think using treads would provide the mech more stability at the expense of speed. Specifically, the mech should receive bonuses to resisting things like bull rushes and trip attacks...maybe it should even be immune to trip attacks. The downside would be perhaps it only moves at half the speed it would otherwise, and cannot trample.
i agree with you there on most points, EXCEPT for the trampling part. wwi and wwii have some pretty mean examples of tanks doing bad things to people. in fact, trampling with treads should probably be more a factor of normal movement than an actual attack action.

also, treads make it pretty easy to turn, so perhaps increasing the maneuverability for purposes of turning, and reversing would be apropriate for treaded mechs?
Treads should overall be worse than legs, I'd think, or else everyone would be using them instead of legs (and we'd have a world full of tanks instead of mechs). I'd say the systems are probably simpler than legs too, so make them a bit cheaper and perhaps even lower the mechcraft DC. But again, I think in most cases the disadvantages should outweigh the advantages.
ok let's see. here's the laundry list of ideas so far.

1) bonus vs bull rish and trips
2) decrease in speed
3) no ability to jump or climb regardless of maneuverability
4) no ability to step over obstacles whatsoever
5) easier to turn and put it in reverse
6) easier to pilot across rough terrain, assuming you dont bog down in tall obstacles (certain obstacles should be harder for treads to overcome.)

anything else ot add. i plan on working up a mechanic or two for them and i'll post it here for your perusal when im done.

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Post by Arek » Wed Jan 16, 2008 9:52 pm

I considered a steam-driven wheeled van for party transport, and thought the pros/cons might come out to this:

1) Very, very easy mechcraft DC. It's just a big box using the pressurized steam from the engine to turn the wheels very, very quickly.
2) Big capacity, stable build. Gets a good rate of speed, and you can run people over. (Insert picture of dwarven coglayer cackling madly while mowing people down).
3) You can't turn that well, and you can't climb/jump and rough terrain's kinda risky.
4) For this design, you're basically giving up all your weapons. It might have a steambreather or flame nozzle on it.
5) Having the party live out of it has a certain cameraderie.

I know an automobile really shouldn't be in this setting, but they *did* experiment with steampowered-cars for awhile, but in this case it's a simple design, surely something a clever coglayer might think of and see the uses in getting people from point A to point B quickly. In a setting where clever design is encouraged and rewarded, I'd allow a coglayer to build it and have fun doing 2 or 3d6 to people he plows over.

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Charke
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Post by Charke » Thu Jan 17, 2008 11:59 am

I would think that treads would let you move faster than legs, over flatter terrain but make it darned near impossible over rougher terrain.

We really should try get the idea of a 4th ED Dragonmech into Joseph's head.... :)

When I get my hands on the minature's game I'm certain my thoughts will be looking at compatability with the original game with an eye towards a 4th ED dragonmech game.

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Post by Laughingcarp » Mon Feb 04, 2008 7:23 pm

Yeah, treads on rough terrain = owie. It would work well enough for short and long mechs (like tanks) but with your average mech, which is much taller than it is long, and has a higher center of gravity, it would tumble in a heartbeat.
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modus666
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treads

Post by modus666 » Tue Feb 05, 2008 9:56 am

Laughingcarp wrote:Yeah, treads on rough terrain = owie. It would work well enough for short and long mechs (like tanks) but with your average mech, which is much taller than it is long, and has a higher center of gravity, it would tumble in a heartbeat.
i see mechs with treads lookiung something like johnny five from the short circuit movies. he was pretty stable except on real rough terrain, despite having a pretty high vertical base. course... it was just a movie. but then agian... this is a fantasy game...

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Post by Laughingcarp » Sun Feb 10, 2008 10:07 pm

I guess that could work, but then the treads would have to be absolutely massive in proportion to any mech they were built on. It could probably be pulled off, but I dunnoe.

Definitely thinking of building a tank now, though.
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modus666
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big treads

Post by modus666 » Tue Feb 12, 2008 10:01 am

well, YEAH they'd have to be retty massive, but that goes right along with the feel of dragonmech anyway IMO, everything bigger and badder.

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