Leetskeet, on 29 January 2012 - 01:40 AM, said:
And that's what people fail to comprehend. The original design of that thing is a pitiful adaptation of a japanese cartoon mecha. What's made MECHWARRIOR games stand out is that they kept the designs realistic and functional, for the most part. Old school battletech unfortunately simply does not because in its inception it was a copy and paste of Macross and Robotech. It's a sad but true reality and people need to accept it. It's moved on since then and has set itself apart as being a mostly realistc mech franchise.
Gundams and the like are all fun and good, and though I always found their little god-tier mobile suits, aka gundams, to be ridiculous, I still enjoyed stuff more on the Zeon side. But Gundams and Mobile Suits don't keep that aura of a feasable reality that modern Battletech has.
The concept art that the developers have released so far is easily the best thing that could happen to this franchise. I'm sorry, and I know that you like your unrealistic dingy centurion that looks like it couldn't even walk and operate let alone shoot at something, but it's time to embrace the fact that Mechwarrior is shedding the baggage and moving towards logical and functional designs. The games have always done this, because contrary to what you may think, the old designs look PATHETIC. They can't FUNCTION.
It's interesting how people seem to think that just because it's science fiction anything goes and is completely fine. It's fiction, right? Just because the Centurion looks like it weighs less than a car and couldn't outshoot a news helicopter doesn't mean there's anything wrong, this is fiction! Anything goes! Fortunately the Mechwarrior franchise escaped from that sad trap long ago. There are varying levels of realism, and modern Mechwarrior happens to aim for a more realistic and believable style of mechs. The new Centurion looks like it could rip whatever is infront of it apart. It would rape and pillage the old Centurion, if the old Centurion could even manage to move.
It's time to understand that you're attached to http://www.sarna.net..._Centurion1.jpg
because of some loyalty you hold for OLDschool macrobattlerobotech. It's an unrealistic and flimsy design, and it just plain looks like crap. Realistic mechs don't run at each other with hatchets and swords. Realistic mechs don't have paper thin designs that clearly cannot function. Realistic mechs are bulky, functional. and full of weapons.
To the quoted poster (who is either trolling, or just writes in such a manner as to sound like it) and the rest of the "anything that doesn't look like an Abrams on legs is BAD":
is an original BattleTech BattleMech.
The 'Mechs directly adapted or derived
from anime - collectively known as "the Unseen" - are listed here
All of the other BattleMechs may have been inspired
by (among other thngs) designs found in anime, but they are not adaptations or derivations
in the same way as the Unseen.
One of the things that makes BattleTech's BattleMechs - the predominant symbols of Western mecha - different from a lot of other mecha is the fact that they use obvious, occasionally head-like cockpits.
In that sense, BattleMechs are less like the tanks to which most are made, and more like the fighter aircraft of the era in which BT made its debut (the mid-1980s), with Mechwarriors being the equivalent of Top Gun-esque
"fighter jocks" (a fitting analogy, even though BT has actual fighter pilots for AeroSpace assets and Top Gun
itself came out in 1986, two years after BT).
The much smaller "gears" of Heavy Gear
place the bulk of the control system in the chest of the machine, but the pilot's head is placed in that of the gear (see images here
), despite the fact that 1.) the head is a vulnerable and obvious target and 2.) there are no windows in the head (the pilot's helmet has a HUD that feeds them images from external cameras). Even some of the larger Heavy Gear
machines (called "striders") feature "obvious cockpit" detailings
Then there are the mecha of Robot Jox
(1990) and Robot Wars
(1993), with their large and obvious, aircraft-like cockpits (and, in the case of the former, use of something rather like a conceptual precursor to the "mobile trace system
" from Mobile Fighter G-Gundam
By contrast, the original RX-78 Gundam from 1979's Mobile Suit Gundam
(as well as the majority of the other mecha from the same series) featured a windowless monitor system that displayed images taken from exterior cameras
that was buried in the machine's torso, underneath the torso armor.
The RX-78's cockpit was also built in the form of the "core block system
", which would allow the pilot to eject and escape in a small fighter-like aerospace craft
Later mobile suits (MS) featured windowless "panoramic cockpits
" buried within the machine's torso (usually in the belly or chest area), underneath the torso armor.
The panoramic cockpit system has been retained for the majority of all later MS across the Gundam metaseries.
In these mecha, the head serves as a sensor platform, much akin to the sensor pod/turret found on modern drones like the Predator
and the Global Hawk
In terms of the Eastern mecha, many of the "real robot
" type mecha (Gundam
's "mobile suits", VOTOMS
' "armored troopers", Macross
' "variable fighters" (in their humanoid configuration) and "battlepods", Patlabor
's "labors", Nadesico's , Gasaraki
's "tactical armors", Code Geass
' "knightmare frames", Chromehounds
' "HOUNDs", Front Mission
's "wanzers", the eponymous mecha of the Metal Gear
series and Steel Battalion
's "vertical tanks" among others) and many "super robot
" type mecha (the mecha of the Mazinger and Getta Robo series, the mecha of Godannar
's "guymelefs", RahXephon
's titular mecha, Evangelion
's titular mecha, Eureka Seven
's "LFOs", several of Gurren Lagann
's "gunmen", and Armored Cores, and others) feature windowless cockpits buried within the heavily-armored torso
(which, for a combat vehicle, is generally a better idea than an obvious cockpit if one can viably do so).
In a few cases (most notably, the mecha of Tetsujin 28-go/"Gigantor"
), there is no cockpit
and the mecha are controlled remotely (much like modern UAVs).
Hands have been in BattleTech and Mechwarrior from the beginning - grabbing and carrying salvage or passengers or cargo, grappling, punching (without needing to have retractable cowlings, like the Stone Rhino
)) and use of melee weapons (purpose-created hatchets, a streelight or tree, or the severed limb of a lighter 'Mech) are several of their uses.
A 'Mech without hands would have great difficulty in any of these tasks (assuming said task can be performed at all without hands), thus limiting their flexibility-of-application both during and outside of combat situations.
"Realistic mechs don't run at each other with hatchets and swords. Realistic mechs don't have paper thin designs that clearly cannot function. Realistic mechs are bulky, functional. and full of weapons."
"Realistic mechs" are not combat-worthy weapons platforms - instead they are either something like an anthropomorphic fork-lifts, or promotional or novelty items, like the Landwalker
or the Toyota i-foot
(longer i-foot promo video here
About the closest one would get to viable and practical military mecha with modern technologies are powered exoskeletons/"powered armor"
for infantry- basically, have a soldier wear something like the HAL exoskeletons
(see videos here
, and here
) or the Raytheon/Sarcos exoskeleton (see videos here
) or the Lockheed Martin "HULC" exoskeleton (see video here
) in addition to their normal combat attire.
Even with futuristic technologies, the best one is likely to do in terms of practical and viable military mecha is something like the Mjolnir armor
or SPI armor
, or something like the Gray Death (Scout)
Between the capabilities of infantry (exoskeleton-equipped or otherwise), armored combat vehicles (tanks, APCs), combat helicopters, and ground attack aircraft, something on the scale of a BattleMech is too poorly balanced, too slow, too complex, and too maintenance-intensive to fill any role or niche related to ground combat that can't be filled as well or better at lower cost by something else.
With all that said:
The point of the BattleTech/Mechwarrior universe is that, for whatever reason, large and vaguely (to varying degrees) anthropomorphic robot-things have become one of the preferred weapons platforms for a society that's harnessed the power of fusion in a mobile powerplant, achieved superluminal interstellar travel, terraformed and colonized several planets in several solar systems, and decided to arrange itself into a set of hereditary feudal nation-states, so that that we as players can take control of one or more of these large and vaguely anthropomorphic robot-things and blow stuff (usually someone else's large and vaguely anthropomorphic robot-thing(s)) up.
If one of the large and vaguely anthropomorphic robot-things is too anthropomorphic for your tastes, then use a different large and vaguely anthropomorphic robot-thing.
If all of the large and vaguely anthropomorphic robot-things are too anthropomorphic for your tastes, then perhaps a re-evaluation of one's interest in the franchise, or even mecha in general, may be in order, yes?