Sunday, April 25, 2010

New Art for New Machines!

Hey hey!

Promising news on the progress of our Technical Readout:

- Lee Madison is working on his assignments; he promised something by the end of Sunday, I think, but we’ll see. At least he is working on them.

- Eric Ou (Eriance) has completed the illustration of the new Scorpion II. What was interesting about this pieces is that about halfway through it, Eric emailed me with the request that I change the warload and its arrangement a bit. He has never done that before, but I believe it was necessary to balance the design.

What is more, Eric also delivered an updated version of the Culverin, a Capellan OmniMech. His earlier version apparently did not please him and so, like the Nightsky, he redid it. My son John thinks the new version is smokin’ hot – ‘made out of 24 karat win’.

- My co-author Geoffrey Butler is presently working on the second draft of the Scorpion II writeup, polishing what I have sent back to him from the original rough draft. He has to work with a single computer in the house (his Apple is belly-up) so it takes a little while.

- There is a new artist I have been watching – rockman_forte - and he has taken some of Eric’s artwork from (including a few of my commissioned pieces) and colorized them. He does a very good job and I have approached him on the idea of commission work. However, I have to ask you all – are you interested in at least a few pieces being in color?

and another piece done by theplasticone over at Classic

The Changes to the Scorpion II

The warload of the Scorpion II changed, as I noted above. We dropped an ER medium laser and added two standard medium lasers. We moved the dual AMS from the center torso and head to the left torso. Finally, we dropped a ton of gauss rifle ammo.

There are still eleven double heatsinks so we don’t have any problems there. We now have two pairs of lasers – one medium in each side torso with the twin ER mediums in the center torso. After discussing it with Chris, I decided to drop that ton of gauss ammo and leave the Scorpion II with sixteen shots. That should be plenty for the average engagement. Due to the nature of the quad, it has no ability to torso-twist and so one of the anti-missile systems remains facing the rear.

Bill Burt has decided to join our evening game this next Saturday. Should be interesting to see what he does with his machines.

Catalyst Games Update…

It would appear that there are some lawsuits aimed at Catalyst Game Labs and InMediaRes, LLC. Don’t look here for details, though. There are plenty of references out there for those interested in the current state of affairs. I find the company announcements to fall between annoying and amusing. They continue to talk about events at GenCon 2010 as though CGL will retain control of the BT license. Folks still discuss the release date of Interstellar Ops and the Boxed Set as though there was enough money remaining to pay for producing and shipping this product. From what I hear, their original shipping computer left with its owner, an employee who was fired due to undisclosed circumstances.

Finally, I find it the height of hubris that the company is ‘in negotiation for the rights to BT and Shadowrun’ – especially as I have reason to believe their chief negotiator is none other than the man who (allegedly) stripped the company of nearly a million bucks, Loren L. Coleman. I am not sure what the result will be.

Who knows? Maybe there are folks at Topps who so admire Coleman for his chutzpah that they will allow him to retain said licenses. It could happen. It would be a travesty, of course, but after witnessing the antics of Goldman and Sachs, Enron and Washington Mutual, it’s clear to me that if nothing else, the Inner Rings are aware of each other and do what they can to preserve the status quo.


Bill and I attended an airsoft event yesterday hosted by a local group, the First Sword. It rained most of the day and I am afraid that my green raincoat did not provide much of a camo effect. I went out three times and got shot three times. Each time, I got a clear shot at my opponent, but I fear that at least two of them considered themselves bulletproof because they refused to count my shots. The second fellow I caught unawares; I am positive I nailed him, but he just dropped and then he and his fellows returned fire. I took a pellet to my chest and retired from the field for lunch. Meh. Like Bill says, any practice is good practice. And any exercise is good exercise.

The really goofy part was that for about two hours, neither side realized that the objectives for the game were actually behind the American side’s respawn zone. Every time we Russians got near the respawn zone for the Americans and stood a chance of advancing far enough to discover the real objectives (besides shooting American soldiers), the referees called in an ‘airstrike’ and killed our patrols. They considered us to be ‘spawn-camping’. So it was the Americans who discovered the objectives and eventually, with the help of renegade Russians, overcame the snipers and captured the pilots who had the lock combinations.

It was fun and a lot of exercise. Just the same, I think the host group should probably think carefully about this event and maybe plan the next one a little better. The Russians, despite their numerical superiority, never really stood a chance. No one knew where the boundaries were and we all assumed the respawn points at either end defined the end of the playing field. It turned out the American respawn point was actually in the middle of the actual playing field!

I heard the snipers were getting mighty lonely until just near the end. Serves those gillie suit-clad sneaks right to have to sit for two and a half hours in the rain waiting for us. I wanted to use my M-14 in this game, but they chrono’d the guns at the start and I made the mistake of assuming they wanted us to do the test with .20 gram pellets. My gun had been upgraded to shoot .28g pellets at 385 feet per second (fps).

Naturally, when I used .20g pellets for the chrono test, it registered at 427 fps. I could not shoot anyone who was closer than 100 feet with the M-14 and with the relatively light .20g pellet, I could not reliably hit anything at that range. So I left it in the car, using my backup G36K instead.

In hindsight, I should have just left my .28g pellets in the gun. They would have tested below 400 fps and I could get out there and fight. Even though we were supposed to use eco-friendly pellets, the small amount I would have shot would not have made much of a dent in the ecology. Besides, I just got a couple of bags of .26g eco-friendly pellets – the heaviest I could find – and they should do a bit better in future games.

Well, better luck next time.

Thanks for stopping by.



Electromage said...

I like the Scorpion Pic a lot!!!!!!

The colour Pics not so much, yes they are nice to look at & would be good as PC wallpaper or the cover of the book, but not "in" the TRO (just my opinion), at the end of the day you’re the one that has to pay extra for the colour pages to be printed so it's your call.

It's all looking very good & I'm getting more and more anxious to finally see the finished product.

Yu Kigono said...

Great, the new Scorpion looks fantastic. Another great piece from Eriance/Eric Ou.

As far a CGL is concerned, I'm not as pessimistic as yourself. I'm still hoping they pull through. I think comparing this to Enron or Goldman is absurd. Also, as far as I'm aware that rumor about the shipping computer is untrue.

Steven Satak said...

I think things have gone too far, even discounting the rumors, for CGL to pull through. Also, as far as I am aware, the rumor about that shipping computer IS true. Randall Bills' wife is now working the shipping end. So we cancel out.

Eh. We'll just have to wait and see.

Doug said...

Color would be cool, just like the first un-updated, un-revised TRO 3055 that had a few color mechs in it.


Doug said...

That first color mech looks rather anime, the Scorpion does look cool.

Steven Satak said...

I have a copy of that. It does look very good, but was apparently not successful because I don't recall seeing anything like it again.

Even the Revised version, with the Unseen removed, had several color plates.

'Spawn-camping' is a phrase my son uses in his Xbox 360 play. He plays Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and in it you fight against other players in one of several settings.

As soon as you are killed, you begin over again with a new life and the place you appear on the game map is your 'respawn zone'. It is an accepted (though not appreciated) tactic to locate the enemy's respawn zone and, secure in a safe vantage point ('camping'), shoot the enemy the instant they appear, effectively shutting down their play at the source.

Thus, spawn-camping. There were several airsoft players who were positioned so that the instant a group of American players left the respawn area to go back to play, they were shot dead. Thus, the airstrikes by the referees to keep the area clear.

Steven Satak said...

Yes, well, for better or worse that is our Gallowglas. I think the color pattern accentuates the anime look, but I am not sure I could afford to produce a printed version which had many more color pages. They are expensive.

On the other hand, the PDF version could have color throughout and not cost a nickel.

That is why I put the question up.

Shepherd Gunn said...

I think some color pictures could be nice. I will admit, though, I've always preferred the black and white of the TROs. One of the reasons is I kinda of do some mental coloring when I'm looking at a mech in a TRO. I play with ideas while I'm looking at the pictures kinda trying to get a feel for what paint scheme I'd want to apply to a mech before I paint.