Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Day in the Life...


Progress this past week has been incremental but steady.

Thus far…

- Eric Ou is still working on the Isometrus and is about halfway finished.

- Ian Stead has some money in his account and I expect the finished Roland image within a few days.

- Geoffrey Butler is still busy re-writing certain Notables sections; the most recent are the Fafnir and the Panzerfaust. They look good. Not only do they reflect events current in 3063, they are more focused on battle accomplishments. Several of our Notables sections have concentrated on quirky personal characteristics and this is NOT Geoff’s fault, as I instigated several of them and approved of them on a wide scale.

However, Paul Skowronek (Skiltao) over at Skiltao’s Xanga ( pointed out that the Notables sections should be about the pilot/Mechwarrior’s ability as it directly related to combat and represent a pilot one might actually meet in the field. Any quirks included were fine, so long as the major thrust of that section was combat-oriented. So Geoff has a new direction and I have learned a valuable lesson BEFORE the TRO goes to print!

- Karl Olson has been hard at work on the Lyran Panzer X. He has been beating away at it, intent on a masterpiece and I can only hope he does not get sick of it before it is done. This has happened with a few of the other artists – the commission has been returned for correction so many times, they are heartily sick of seeing it when it is finished.

- Chris Seymour is working on the Lyran Mongomery II. He submitted three prototype designs and I selected the one I felt held the most promise, added several suggestions and sent it back. Doing tanks is not easy!

- Mike Sullivan has some personal issues to resolve but is meanwhile hard at work on the Draconis Combine’s Katana. No firm date from him as to when he will finish it, but he has promised a prototype in the next few days. Good going, Mike! Stay with it, buddy!

- DaveCrypt did the original art for the Draconis Combine’s Nemera, and has expressed interest in selling the piece. I am sending him some changes to his original that will hopefully not be too hard to implement. He may just decide to sell the rights to the image and let us work with what we have. I hope not, as he has done very good work on the original.

- Speaking of Paul Skowronek, he responded a couple of days ago and said that while doing reviews on a commission basis had not occurred to him, he was not sure he could manage 107 writups! He suggested that I send him three samples and he would see what was involved before committing himself in any capacity. I obliged with two ‘Mechs and a Vehicle. He is a busy man with many irons in the fire, but last night he sent me an email giving those three pieces a clean bill of health. I can only hope he will consider taking on more. We write well, but our organization could use some polish.

Spit and Polish

For those of you who are not writers, let me elaborate: it is not just getting words on paper, though that is the first step. We have to write stuff which is interesting, informative, not redundant and which does not violate most canon (the enormous established body of work which already exists for the BattleTech universe). Once all of this is attended to, we also have to make sure we get the right information into the right sections of the entry.

When I finished the original introductions, I submitted them to Geoff, then made corrections and sent them to another proofreader, who added his stuff. I was pretty happy with the result. Then Paul got hold of it and the next thing I knew, I was hammering away at a truckload of corrections I had never even considered. I don’t know – maybe I just don’t have the trained eye. But I could tell from each correction that Paul had a point, it was a good one, and that the only appropriate response was to make the change and fast, before I lost his attention.

As a consequence, the introductions are as good as, or even better than, the kind which come from the game company itself. To be honest, I expect similar results with the individual writeups but look forward to any changes Paul suggests. I wish he were working for Catalyst Games, because he has an exceptionally clear eye when it comes to structured writing - which is the essence of a good TRO.

There are a few other Vees that still await art commissions. I have not had the time to get out and nail down more artists, but would frankly prefer to pay down the ones that are in the works before starting on the final pieces. Meanwhile, Daniel Cherng has submitted a choice in tanks for the replacement of the Katana.....


We are going out on Saturday morning to battle over in Seabeck with about twenty other players. This will not be the massive multi-day gathering we are accustomed to, but a more comfortable scale which should last four or five hours. I have decided to replace the new M-120 spring in my M-14 (*sniff*) because it makes the gun too hot for play in the big groups. 427 fps with .20 pellets may sound great, but over 400 and you can’t legally shoot anyone closer than 100 feet. And my M-14 is not a sniper rifle.

With an M-110 spring, I should drop to about 380 feet per second, but keeping the .26 pellets will ensure that while I do not have the range, I will still retain the accuracy of my long rifle and can use it in close quarters. I will not change the spring until after this Saturday, however, as their rules do not include checking the gun for speed.

Thanks for stopping by.



Reinwood99 said...

Keep up the great work, I can't wait to see the finished product.

skiltao said...

I wanted to elaborate:

The focus should be on the Mechwarrior's career, which does tend to be combat-oriented. But even when a personality quirk doesn't relate directly to combat, it can still affect how the MechWarrior behaves in combat, or otherwise have some influence on (or be a reflection of) the person's career. And then there's people like James and Hugo Green, who are notable because their 'Mech (a specific Jenner) has a reputation strong enough to change the course of combat or the course of their careers; or people like your Jurgens (Champion II) whose career is mysteriously absent.

And that's why you don't bother with people (kings, khans, CEOs) whose political or economic careers overshadow their military career - sure, they're notable, but as something more important than a MechWarrior. (Though like Kerensky, they can occasionally make for a notable battle.) Members of Team Banzai can be notable MechWarriors because they regularly split their time between careers; besides which, you always get a little more leeway when adopting characters & events from non-BT shows & movies.