Sunday, May 26, 2013

Mekton House Rules

It looks like the Mekton Zero Kickstarter funded. It's gotten me on a Mekton kick (I should be planning stuff for my Tribe 8 Fate Core game, which I've promised myself I'll do this week). I was able to retrieve a numer of house rules from my old website via the Internet Archive. Some of these will likely make it into my Mekton Zeta Plus Google Docs spreadsheet I'm working on.



Face it - there are times when Luck points aren't enough, and you have to take out the alien battleship with one shot or face the destruction of the your planet's defenses and subjugation of your people. Fortunately, you have the ability to draw on some of your hard-earned experience in times like this. By directly spending 5 IP you can gain either a +1 bonus to your skill roll, or the ability to roll an additional die and take the highest result (not adding them together). The IP are permanently spent and do not count towards advancing your skill. Up to 25 IP can be spent on any one roll in this manner, and there should always be a good description and justification (such as, "I overheard Dr. Tokugowa talking about a possible weak point near their ship's sensor array...he wasn't sure, but it just might work!"). Gamemasters are encouraged to not let this rule become abused, and to make characters permanently increase skills if Anime Points are used too often.


Fumbles work exactly the opposite as critical successes - when a 1 is rolled, another d10 is rolled and the result is subtracted from the character's Stat + Skill. If a 10 is rolled on the second die, yet another d10 roll is added to that. If the character's Stat + Skill total reaches zero, the character has a critical failure - dropping or breaking a tool or weapon, tripping and falling flat on her face, accidentally insulting somebody, etc.


Specializations represent extra time and focus within a specific area that a larger skill covers. For example, Handgun may Specialized in revolvers or Mecha Piloting in a specific weight class of mecha. Specializations may not be too broad (for example, specializing in "Hitting people" with the brawling skill), but they can be fairly narrow (specializing in a specific handgun or a specific model of mecha). In game terms, Specializations grant a +2 to the character's rolls only when the task falls under the Specialization, but a -2 to all other applications of the skill. Specializations have no additional cost, but additional Specializations within the same skill costs 1 SP (for starting characters) or 10 IP (after play starts). The number of times a skill may be Specialized is limited to three, but this is up to GM's discretion. A minimum skill of 3 is required to Specialize a skill. Skills that require Specialization, such as language skills, do not gain the benefit of the bonus - although they may be Specialized further (for example, a character with the skill Speak German might specialize in ancient German, or a dialect).



All ranged weapons except for missiles (which use the standard Zeta Plus ranged rules) have four range bands: Point Blank, Close, Medium, Long, and Extreme. Each range band has its own hit modifiers and (in the case of Point Blank and Extreme) damage effects.

Point blank: The weapon is very close to (1m or less than 1 hex) or in actual physical contact with the target. It will almost always hit, receiving a +5 on the attack roll

Close: The weapon is attacking from greater than 2m/1 hex up to 1/4 the listed range. The attack receives a +3 on the attack roll.

Medium: The weapon is attacking from greater than 1/4 to 1/2 the listed range. The attack receives a +1 on the attack roll.

Long (or combat): The weapon is attacking at greater than 1/2 up to the listed range for its type. There is no bonus on the attack roll.

Extreme: Extreme range is equal to the weapon's listed range squared (for 1/1 and 1/5 scale weapons), and is equal to the weapon's Combat range x25 for 1/10 scale weapons. In both cases, firing at Extreme Range works identically. Extreme Range is broken into range bands equal to the weapon's Combat Range. Projectile weapons receive a -1 to hit per range band (or portion) beyond Combat Range, and -1 Kill (-4 points for 1/10 scale, or -8 points for 1/5 scale weapons) per 2 range bands beyond Combat Range. Energy weapons receive a -1 to hit per 2 range bands beyond Combat Range, and a -1 Kill to damage per range band. It is entirely possible for a projectile to have more range than it has stopping power...for energy weapons, if the beam can do no damage at its maximum range, it is assumed that the last range band that it can do damage is its maximum range.



Beam and Projectile Weapons may be built with Autofire BV - shots from weapons with Autofire BV will always strike the same location of the target. Autofire BV has double the normal multiplier for the weapon's BV.


Various components of a mecha design may be armored individually from the rest. This armor is purchased normally; the only restriction is that an additive system may not have more than 1 SP armor more than it has Kills. The following systems may be armored: Wheels, Treads, Weapons, Ammo, Sensors (but not Recon Systems or Electronic Warfare), Spotlights and Nightlights, Storage Modules, Escape Pods, Fuel Tanks, Propulsion Systems (only up to 1 Kill per location), Powerplants (again, only up to 1 Kill), and Cockpits (only up to 1 Kill). Component armor cannot be RAM armor. Component armor requires 1 space from the servo the armored system is in, unless it is an external component. In addition, component armor systems or weapons inside Command Armor may not have Component Armor.


Fire control computers help to offset the mecha's MV penalty. They are cost multiplier systems and take no spaces or add weight. However, since the fire control computers are tied to the mecha's main sensor suite, if that is destroyed the computer is also and all benefits are lost. Even if you have backup sensors, the fire control computer is disabled when the main sensors are lost. The fire control computer offsets the effects of Maneuver Value for ranged attacks only, and does not increase the pilot's base rolls (i.e., a mecha with -3 MV cannot take +4 fire control to get a +1. Only the -3 MV can be reduced).

Targeting computers offset the penalty for firing at Extreme ranges. They are also a cost multiplier system (with the same cost as Fire Control Computers), and are similar to Fire Control Computers with regards to sensors. Targeting computers only offset range band penalties from Extreme range. The bonus from a Targeting computer cannot exceed the penalty for the range that the weapon is firing to (i.e., a weapon firing with a -2 due to range cannot get the full benefit of its +4 Targeting Computer). Targeting computers also do not add their bonus at Combat Range or less (they're not calibrated to target that close).

It should be noted here that Long Range weapons have an inherent +2 to hit at Extreme Range and a -2 to hit at Combat Range or lower. A Targeting Computer will add its bonus to the Long Range weapon's Extreme range bonus, but will not offset the Combat Range penalty.

FC/TC Bonus
Weapon Cost


Some weapons are made to pack a greater punch at higher ranges and not lose damage. This is expressed as a bonus to out-of-range damage. Note that a High Energy Weapon's out-of-range damage may never exceed it's base damage.

Damage Bonus
Weapon Cost


Wheels may be purchased with Improved Off-Road Ability. This is considered to be improved shock-absorbers, suspension, tire and wheel design, etc. They are considered to be Mated Wheels and Treads of identical Kill value, with the extra weight of the Treads efficiencied to nothing. The net effect is that the Wheels cost the same as Treads of an equivalent level, but only have the Kills of a Wheel system. Note that Superlight Wheel movement systems cannot be mated with treads for improved off-road ability.


Missile launchers are assumed to be capable of firing their entire payload in one salvo. However, launchers may be purchased so that they can only fire a fraction of their warheads at once. More than this number of missiles cannot be fired from the launcher. Missiles are assumed to automatically reload within a launcher.

Fraction of Missiles


A Head Servo may be purchased as a 360 degree universal turret. Heads configured as Turrets cost 1 CP per 3 Kills; in addition, the additional motors, gimbals, etc. for the turret take 1 space from the servo it is mounted on. Tank forms do not have to pay these costs for their main turret.


Wings actually do more to make a vehicle more stable/maneuverable than to make it faster (which is more a factor of its streamlining), so a pair of wings add a +1 to the mecha's flight MV instead of its MA.