Chapter 3443: A New Countermeasure
Inspiration worked in different ways.
In the previous case, Ves became impressed by the design concept of the BDX-35F-3.
He decided to copy the idea behind this design and refine in his own way in the hopes that he could succeed where the original designer failed.
This was a different case.
The Checkered Gabardine presented him with another attractive design concept, but that did not mean that Ves should copy it wholesale.
What he should really be asking first was whether it fit the needs of his target audience.
Ves quickly ran through the requirements he set for the second light mech of the Flagrant Vandals.
First, it needed to be a light mech that could keep up with the Ferocious Piranha.
Second, it should be able to exploit vulnerabilities generated by suppressive glows.
Third, it had to possess the capability to mess with opponents with its own form of suppressive glow.
He concluded that he should be able to hit all of these targets if he designed a light ranged mech that possessed the ability to project its glow from a distance.
In situations where the Ferocious Piranha could not close in to a suppressed enemy mech unit, his new light ranged mech should be able to inflict at least some damage in this favorable circumstance.
The ability for this new mech model to mess with enemy mech pilots at range also made it easier for the Ferocious Piranhas to approach and even attack enemy positions.
In other words, combining the capabilities of the Ferocious Piranha and this new proposed mech model should result in significantly greater results than if they were deployed on their own!
All of this fully satisfied the goals that Ves wanted to meet.
With just a single additional mech model, the Flagrant Vandals turned into a truly formidable mobile mech legion that excelled in battlefield disruption and decapitation strikes!
The only remaining fundamental shortcoming of the Flagrant Vandals at this point was the lack of specialized scouting and detection functionality.
Ves could address this missing piece by designing a third light mech, one that truly fulfilled the scouting and reconnaissance role.
“Ill think about that later.”
Every mech legion needed a lot of new specialized mechs, and it was too much for Ves to tackle them all at once.
It was better to take it one at a time, especially when just a single new addition to the mech roster already sparked a lot of changes to the battle methods of a mech legion.
Now that Ves set an overall framework that his next light mech design should fit into, it was time to flesh it out into a well-defined mech concept.
His imagination already presented him with a possibility.
Ves envisioned a light rifleman mech that was not as effective at longer ranges but made up for it with superior performance at closer ranges.
Such light mechs ordinarily werent called rifleman mechs but rather harassers or by other terms.
Harasser mechs were usually armed with carbines, sub-machine guns or even light sniper rifles.
Due to their lighter armament, they didnt pack as much of a punch as regular medium rifleman mechs.
Their damage also fell off harder at longer distances due to lack of precision and lack of assisting systems.
Yet harasser mechs worked well as long as they leveraged their superior mobility correctly.
They werent supposed to attack an enemy force from the front.
Instead, they circled around and used their light weapons to direct their firepower at the weaker sides or rear of an enemy formation.
Since the targets at these orientations were usually more susceptible to damage, the lighter calibers of the weapons wielded by the harasser mechs should still be effective.
It was even possible for harasser mechs to pressure or take down heavily-armored mechs when attacking from the rear!
Of course, this was only an ideal scenario.
In practice, this proposed light harasser mech shouldnt be able to tear through enemy mechs as easily as the Olympus Mons ripped apart the Avatar mechs with its light machine gun module.
“Lack of offensive punch is a persistent problem of every light mech.
This is not a unique problem.”
It was why every light mech from the Ferocious Piranha to the Dark Zephyr preferred to attack their targets from the rear.
Ves ultimately accepted that his proposed light harasser mech wouldnt carry any heavier armament.
Not only did such weapons impose a greater mass burden and decrease the handling characteristics of a light mech, they also demanded a lot more space for ammunition or energy cells.
Though Ves could technically design a light mech armed with a cannon, the mech frame possessed so little capacity that the weapon would run out of shots in just a couple of minutes or less!
This was way too wasteful and inefficient for a light mech that was supposed to go behind enemy lines and operate away from the main elements of the Larkinson Army.
It needed to be able to possess a decent amount of endurance and operation time in order for it to fulfill its role in a single deployment.
After Ves settled the basic parameters in his mind, he moved on to defining its special sauce.
If he took the Valkyrie Redeemer as an example, then the maximum effective range a glow could reach was a couple of kilometers.
Ves couldnt come up with a more precise figure because it depended on how he interpretedeffective range.
In general, he took that to mean a distance from 2 kilometers to 5 kilometers.
Any further than that and the impact on an enemy mech pilot was too negligible to achieve a substantial change on the battlefield.
“This is enough distance.” He concluded.
In space battle terms, a range of 5 kilometers was pathetic.
Melee mechs didnt need to take too much time to cross this relatively short distance.
However, since his proposed light harasser mech was designed to be fast, it should be able to outrun nearly any enemy mech!
Even if an enemy force deployed a light mech that flew fast enough to catch up with his harasser mech, that only meant that the enemy frames ought to be too thin and light to resist much damage!
Dispatching light mechs after his harasser mechs might just end up feeding the former to the latter!
The survivability of the light harasser mech shouldnt be in question.
It was even better than that of the Ferocious Piranha as the new mech model didnt have to get close to any threatening enemy mech in order for it to perform its role!
At this short distance, weapons such as carbines and maybe sub-machine guns should be able to achieve a good effect.
Ves just had to pair the light harasser mech model with a glow that complemented its role.
This was why Ves sought out the Checkered Gabardine instead of other masterwork light mechs.
It presented him with an idea on how his next suppressive glow should work.
The Devious mech that he had designed for the Hex Army a while ago proved that he could develop glows that specifically messed with other peoples perception.
Ves wanted to create something similar that was effective at range and combined well with the Ferocious Piranhas disorientation effect.
“A light harasser mech that can make enemy mech pilots make misjudgements should do the trick.”
The Checkered Gabardine employed an ingenious arrangement of ECM systems to fool and mess with its enemies to such an extent that it got struck a lot less times than it should.
Ves intended to integrate similar ECM systems in his own light harasser mech, but he didnt think his implementation would be as good.
What he could do was to develop aspiritual countermeasure or SCM system that specifically aimed to disrupt mech pilots instead of their mechs!
He already created several different SCM systems in the past.
He just didnt label it with a fancy new name back then.
Now that he had reached this point, he was ready to add substance to this newly-formalized concept by taking its performance to the next level!
He could see how implementing an SCM system that could alter an enemy mech pilots perception would be able to yield great results.
Even if a mech pilot was only a little bit affected, a slight misjudgement might cause an enemy mech to miss a ranged or melee strike that should have hit its mark!
Ves wasnt sure how effective this new suppressive glow would be.
If the enemy was prepared, then the results might not improve as much as he hoped.
“What if it combines with the glow of a Ferocious Piranha”
A grin slowly appeared on his face.
Now that was an interesting prospect.
A mech pilot that was distracted or encumbered by the glow of the Ferocious Piranha should have much less capacity left to resist the glow of the new light harasser mech!
“It can work the other way around as well!”
A mech pilot that was trying his best to overcome the distortion to his perception and observation should be in an even worse position to resist the disorientation generated by the Ferocious Piranha!
The two glows were both suppressive in nature, but attacked from different angles.
Just like how a typical army became a lot more flustered if it was attacked from two sides instead of one, the combination of the two malicious glows should produce a much stronger impact than if they worked in isolation!
“This can definitely become the core battle strategy of the Flagrant Vandals!” Ves concluded.
Just as with his proposed rationality-based rifleman mech, he became enthused about designing this new SCM-oriented light harasser mech!
It presented a set of different challenges to Ves that not only excited him, but would also advance his design philosophy a few steps further if he resolved all of the advanced problems!
This design project did not seek to explore his design approach from a different direction.
Instead, it sought to deepen his current direction and push it further than he had gone before.
Regardless, Ves stood to gain a lot if he completed both projects.
He was not lacking in passion and was confident he could turn each of them into the new mainstays of their respective mech legions.
A part of him even wanted to head straight back to the Spirit of Bentheim so that he could work on a couple of draft designs!
He quickly controlled himself.
He was still on a vacation and had only toured a tiny fraction of what Chance Bay had to offer.
If only a single venue was able to provide him with two novel mech concepts, he would definitely be able to obtain further harvests if he visited other places!
He still needed to complete a couple of chores before he left the Masterwork Gallery, though.
In the next twenty minutes or so, Ves pretended to study the Checkered Gabardine, the Husk Maker and a few other random display pieces.
The museum didnt have a clue that Ves had secretly dispatched Blinky two more times in order to harvest modest spiritual fragments from the aforementioned masterwork mechs.
Ves already had a good idea on how he should make use of the spiritual fragments of the BDX-35F-3 and the Checkered Gabardine.
He didnt have an immediate use for the spiritual fragment of the Husk Maker, though.
It was a solution looking for a problem.
The only reason why Ves claimed it was because he sympathized with the poor fate of the masterwork mech and because he saw potential in its strength.
Currently, there was little reason for Ves to design a doom crawler for the Larkinson Army.
Not only was it a model that was useless unless it was deployed on the ground, it also took up a lot of mech capacity that his diminished fleet simply couldnt spare!
“Still, that doesnt mean that other customers are working under the same constraints…”
Perhaps… his next commercial mech design project might center around a doom crawler mech!
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