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Ok, I was thinking of sending the PC's to steal a prototype suit of Powered Armour, you know, shoulder mounted toys, forearm mounted toys, enviroseal, rigger controlled while in the suit of Armour, basicaly it adds about a foot to the overall height of the wearer and about 2 tons of weight. However, i'm trying to work out a Power System. Short of the Eva like armoured power cable dragging out the back of it, which I really want to avoid at all costs, then I'm looking at either some kind of electric batteries using 2060 ultra efficient technology or there are a pair of some sort of chemical reaction motors (for and aft to balance) on it. With servo motors providing the motion and the rigger controlling everything through their VCR, not muscles, then that wont be a problem, but I need ideas for a power supply, or would Batteries be enough to power such a suit for 3 hours?

As for those saying "no mechs" this isnt a mech, it's effectively an Arthropod drone which has the rigger along for the ride rather than be remotely pilotted. Thus, from the Corp's point of view, no intercepts by enemy Riggers, and the ability to send shielded, heavy combat forces into tactical areas such as Irradiated Zones, Areas affected by Toxic waste and the like, with minimal affect to their personel who will most likely be confronting some sort of nasty there. As well, moving sufficient firepower in on each Suit, to deal with multiple simultaneous threats in a combat heavy area. this is also the Prototype.
Admittedly, remembering back to Rigger 3, i could increase the price and decrease the weight using "modern smart materials" and so on, but it still comes down to power source.
Any Ideas?
i'd say "whatever the JIM uses". highly efficient batteries, likely.
Dim Sum
JIM energy source would be insufficient to power the various gizmos and weaponary on such a sucker.

Finbar is actually on the right track trying to make a rigger-controlled manned anthroform "drone". One of the players in my group dedicated SIGNIFICANT time and effort in trying to design one because the GM at the time threw what appeared to be people in power armour on our tails (turned out the GM just made it up and they didn't conform to any rules biggrin.gif ).

Anyway, the player (his DS moniker is SykoBear) was unsuccessful in building something efficient so I doubt it can be done (he's very meticulous and if he can't do it ...). SykoBear, wanna add your 0.02 nuyen's worth? (If he happens to be checking out Dumpshock, I'm sure this thread will attract him like a fly to doggy-doo!)


[edited for spelling]
If your powersuit doesn't have to face any huge pressure changes (specifically huge increases) a fuel cell or a micro turbine will out perform batteries. The advantage of the batteries is that they can be pressurized.

That's just one of the other issues with the vehicle part of the game. Fuelcell vehicles still use electric motors. Anyone researching battery/fuelcell vehicles would know that. It should be something this:

Engine output/power consumption: Pick a type say accell 10, load 1,000 and max speed 100kph/ 5ph per km
Fuel source: Battery power or fuel cell (fuel cells in turn rated at BAR per ph).
What are the rules in SR3 for *adding* a seat to a vehicle? How much CF does it take up?
A fuel cell or a micro turbine would both be completely inacceptable in a suit of armor. One well placed shot near the fuel cell's hydrogen supply and you can wave goodbye to a whole squad. And the turbine gets worse from there.
Herald of Verjigorm
In R3, page 150 (for ejection variety) or 153 (for regular).

Haven't you heard or armor? I know it's strange concept to put armor on things that are important to you, but people do it all the time.

Not only that, but you really need to go out and do some research on the subject prior to postings. Since we are talking about something that a person goes inside of, we have some room to work with. Hydrogen tanks can be quite small. It all depends on how much you want to spend on the fuel. From a large tank with low pressure to a small tank with liquid hydrogen, both have there advantages and disadvantages. Those are just canisters. Hydrogen can be stored inside of some compounds, making it even safer.

Now micro turbine generators are even easier as those can be run on diesel fuel, take up very little space and the fuel can be compartmented around the body. So really it's not that big of a deal. Before you even say it, diesel fuel is pretty safe. It has to be pressurized before it can explode, it's not nearly as flammable as most other fuels and it can be easily stored inside a liquid fuel cell. Much like those used in racing.

Now then, the important items on the armor that are just as much at risk are sensors, servos, air intake/air tank/etc. Besides armoring said items, how do you propose to keep people from shooting out other vital areas?
When you need a suit of armor for a person, adding more to armor the fuel creates more problems that a soldier on a battlefield does not need to deal with. Even if it's statistically well protected, that's a liability I would just not want to have hanging over my head. With APDS and EX-EX rounds flying, that last thing I want to worry about is the structural integrity of my fuel supply being compromised. Hydrogen storage in a combat situation is hardly safe, much less storing it inside of something that is intended to get shot a lot.

I'm aware that diesel is quite safe. The problem with that is lack of sufficient fuel supply for extended operation, not to mention lack of any subtlety whatsoever.

And you are right that servos, sensors, and breathing aparati become problems as well. Still, servos can be sufficiently armored even with present day tech, and should said armor fail, the results would not be nearly so catastrophic as a pressurized hydrogen explosion. Sensors, likewise, seem to be viably armored according to what I see coming out of Rigger 3 (which is limited, I'll admit; I haven't read the book). Air is another issue entirely, and one that can be at least partially solved with rebreathers.

All that said, power armor is, for a variety of reasons, very much not suited for real life, and, as far as I can tell, not even viable in Shadowrun. Guess I'll have to go back to playing Fallout 2. Mmm, .223 pistol.
Hmmm...what if ya had a mage make an ally spirit with the form of power armour? biggrin.gif Then Dikote it!

Heck, if ya give it multiple forms you could have your very own transformer!

Or for a battletech thing, you could dub said power armour "elemental armour!"
But then you'd need a compact, lightweight reactor plant that you could strap to your back. And I know SR tech is a bit nuts, but it's not that nuts. But, then again, I haven't read SOTA 2063.
Hi Dim Sum,

Yes, it's me! The guy who tried to design power armor. Now, before I go on, I'd like to point out that what I did was according to Rigger 3 rules. This is in no way a comment on the feasibility of technology, only the rules.

Finbar, you're pretty much on the right track. You want an Anthroform Body 3 as the chassis and either the battery or the electric fuel cell as the power source. Stick in a seat into the chassis and you are done (all possible under Rigger 3 rules).

Now the real problem I had with designing the Anthroform are as follows:

1) You need significant space to stick the pilot in. IIRC it consumes a CF of 4. The maximum CF you are going to get out of a Body 3 Anthroform chassis is 10. You will also need decent sensors if you intend to use this "power armour" on soft fleshy things. Hence, you really don't have that much space to work with. Consider that "Power Armour" brings to mind at the very least a sealed cockpit for the pilot and you will see how little space you actually have.

2) Some bright spark would no doubt go by now, "AHA! I'll just hand-carry my weapons!". Well that sucks too. Under Rigger 3 rules, you essentially have to make 2 rolls (1 Mechanical Arm Operation, 1 for the relevant skill) and use the WORSE of the two in order to get your mechanical arm to do anything. Nasty GM's *may* want to extend that to arm-mounted guns as well (because the Anthroform's arms can contain guns just like a Cyberarm). Which means, you can either have a nice bunch of small but inaccurate guns in the cyberarm, or use up even more of your limited space on mounted weaponry.

3) Has anyone else noticed that there is no manuever score listing for anthroforms? It was a significant rain on my parade because, as a vehicle pilot, I would be worried about other vehicles (since it is likelier to find anti-vehicle weapons on...vehicles).

4) Fire elemental + Unawakened Rigger in Power Armour = Very dead rigger. Nuff said. (I suppose you could stick a ward around the passenger compartment though, not sure how much that would help).

So yeah, I think it's doable, but you're probably going to have some interesting design flaws, like an unsealed cockpit or inaccurate weapons or both. My opinion is that this accurately reflects the state of Shadowrun technology at the moment (ie it's possible, but all the kinks haven't been worked out yet).

Besides, an Anthroform drone can't mount an ERPPC...err...ANDREWS system so why bother? cyber.gif
Instead of you the pilot actually aiming or any of that other drek, you could have a expert computer do all the targeting. The basic idea is you stick a dedicated drone computer to take care of the tracking and targeting for you, all you do is select the target. Takes care of the robotic arm and a shooting test for you, all you do is a sensor aided gunnery test, and your problem is fixed.
Hey Hero,

Mind showing me a reference in the sourcebooks where what you have suggested can be done?
You add a pilot system that is restricted to surtain functions to this powered armor and equip the pilot system with Autosoft called a Sharpshooter. This auto soft adds it rating to the drones gunnery test, thus increasing its chances of hitting the said target. Autosofts have program multipliers, the one for Sharpshooter is multiplier: 8, use the table in SR3 or Matrix, don't have either on hand so I cant give the page numbers. Now all you have to do as the pilot is either select the target or let the computer do it for you, really simple if you think about it, its just going to cost some heavy amount of nuyen.

Here is my make on the powered armor thing, I am using Rigger 3 the none revised edition some something might be off. You can fit quite a bit in if you use external cargo mounts, I went over the limit by six so I compensated by adding 6CF worth in external cargo mounts.

HAA-3 Mk. III Powered Armor
Hand: 4
Speed: 46
Accel: -
Armor: 6
Sig: 5
Auto: 4
Pilot: 5
Sensor: 4
CF: 0
Load: 316
Seat: 1
Entry: 1b
Fuel: 60PF
Econ: 1.5
Chassis: Large Anthro
SI: *
Avail: *
Cost: 685,140
*GM descretion

-> There is a special drone computer that takes over much of the target tracking and control, it also is can take control of the vehicle when the pilot is not activily piloting or is incapacitated. The drone computer takes over all of the primary functions of tracking and firing at the target, the pilot only must make a gunnery test, and has a Sharpshooter 6 program installed. The advanced software package includes Robotic Reflexes 3, Robotic-Pilot Advanced proggraming, Fuzzy Logic 5, Improved Neural Network Algrorithms 5. Treated as a robot with adaptation pool 10 (+10 to adaptation pool to comprehension test), when not controlled by a pilot.
-> Rigger Adaptation
Enviro Seal Gas/Over-pressurized
-> 2x Fixed Mounts (one located on each outer forearm, with 1CF ammo bin under the forearm)
-> ECM/ECCM (mounted on back section in container pods)
-> Sharpshooter Autosoft (rating 6)
-> 2x Mechanical Arms (Strength 9)
Hi Hero,

Just one question. How do you rig (or more accurately, "jump into" this drone) and use your nifty autosofts (which, by my understanding implies that you are commanding the drone through the captain's chair mode) at the same time? It's a nice idea that you have, and I will be the first to concede it's darned possible but

Nice idea, and a good workaround, but it's *still* a drone (and a very smart drone) that just so happens to be carrying 4 CF worth of soft meat cargo, and not "power armour" which should be (in keeping with the spirit of things) rigged by a person who is in the armour.

Incidentally, the workaround you've proposed still runs into the same problem I've mentioned, which is that you would still have to roll mechanical arm operation and gunnery and take the lower of the two (assuming for the sake of argument that you are going to mount them guns on them hands), except its the drone's skills we are talking about instead of the rigger's.

So yes, nifty design, but the fundamental problems are still the same. I note that targeting computers don't come around till the Clan Invasion in 3050. cyber.gif

Good idea with the cargo mounts though. You've given me an idea about those mounts, which would expand the space to about 20 CF. Essentially, what you are looking at is an Anthroform chassis which is built to carry the pilot, sensors etc, some basic stuff in the arms and that's it. Every other piece of hardware gets stuck into a modular "External Cargo Mount". Want a recon module? Get an "External Cargo Mount" loaded with sensors and ECCM. Want an anti-air module? Get an "External Cargo Mount" loaded with anti-air missles and a turret. But, again I note, that would be dependent on a GM ruling that says that CF from cargo mounts are able to be used in that manner. Dim Sum, can we have cargo mounts doing that in our game? So, I do take it back, OmniMechs are possible in 2063. eek.gif

Also, I noticed that I've highjacked the original question, which was "what's the power source"? It's either an electric fuel cell or by batteries according to Rigger 3 rules. I like mini-fusion plants myself, but those don't seem to be available just yet. I want my ERPPC dammit.
I know, a lotta folks will slap me down saying this doesn't work, but... try rigging a JIM suit. Rating 6 Vehicle armor, minimum strength of 7... Plus, you can carry whatever guns you want. Talk it over with your GM about modding a JIM to use as Power armor if you're that hell bent for leather to be Johnny Rico...
John Campbell
I'm pretty sure that you can't mount vehicle equipment on external cargo racks. External cargo racks are roofracks and stuff that you can tie down cargo on, not OmniPods.

However, it does seem to be possible to build a reasonably functional armor suit out of a Heavy Anthroform without resorting to such shenanigans. I've just put one together. I ended up going with electric fuel cell because battery wasn't providing enough power to carry the armor, weaponry, and electronic gear it needed to be really effective.

Handling: 1
Speed: 40
Body: 3
Armor: 5
Sig.: 8
Sensor: 3
Cargo: 0.5
Load: 43
Seating: 1
Entry: 1h
Fuel: EFC(60PF)
Econ.: 1.5km/PF
Chassis: Heavy Anthroform
SI: 3
Avail.: -
Cost: 559,360Y
Features (deep breath...): 2 x Mechanical Arm (Str 9), Rigger Adaptation, Remote Control, External Hardpoint (Ares Victory Cannon, 0.8 CF Ammo Bin, Recoil Adjust 9), External Firmpoint (Ares MP LMG, 0.2 CF Ammo Bin, Recoil Adjust 4), Smartlink 2 Integration, Smart Materials, Structural Agility 3, Drive-By-Wire 3, GridLink Power, EnviroSeal (gas/water/engine), Life Support (10 man-hours), RAM 3, 2 x Spotlights (Visible + IR), ECM 4, ECCM 4
(I think that was everything....)
A electric fuel cell uses the electricity generated from the reaction on combining hydrogen and oxygen, the waste product if you would call it that is water. There are two ways to get rid of this "waste," one put it in storage tanks and later flush then out at home base or where ever, or two have it vented out constantly from an exhaust system. I know there are others electric fuel cell types out there but I only know of this one.

And as my drone computer idea, I mainly consider the robotic arm test used when there is a weapon in the armors hands. It also gets around the little problem with taking skills, you yours self does not have to have skill because the advanced drone computer takes the test for you. But if you do decide to go manual you need the robotic arm skill, but I would rather have the drone do it because it other wise why would spend the time putting the drone computer in. But if you are using the two fixed mounts on the forearms I just treat those as a really advanced turret, I kinda house ruled that because it made it go a bit faster.
Dude read it all. The weight savings from the battery being removed and replaced with a fuelcell and/or a micro turbine generator would easily cover the armor being added to protect key points. So in no uncertain terms batteries weigh more than fuelcells and micro turbine generators. That's why the military is looking to go with something besides batteries to run their electronics. Let alone a power assisted or fully powered suit of armor. The battery power required for that is going to be more than the armor required to cover the hydrogen bottle (can be as small as .5l water bottle). To add to that, there are many fail safe systems in place already for hydrogen. So the safety issue just becomes moot. It's no more dangerous than having ammo on your body. Figure out how small you can get a hydrogen tank, both liquid and gas. Then tell me it’s not practical.

DO SOME RESEARCH. Your lack of knowledge is appalling. Do you have any idea how long a micro turbine generator can last on 1 liter of diesel fuel? For the that amount of weight, you can outlast more than 3 times it's weight in batteries. So how is it that weight is even an issue? Talk about power armor in a long-term campaign and you're talking about logistics, not tech.

Now as APDS and EX-Ex as you put it flying around the battlefield. I got other issues. Namely someone blowing my head off, someone hitting me with a real anti vehicular weapon and blowing me into lots of small pieces, small stuff like that. I am not worried about some grunt blowing a hole in my armor and then hoping that my hydrogen tank or diesel fuel cell does as it’s supposed to. That has got to be the least important thing on my mind. You have got to be forgetting the big picture. SOMEONE JUST PUT A HOLE IN YOUR DAMN ARMOR…WHILE YOU’RE STILL IN IT. Besides which if you want to use game terms power armor would probably be an Anthroform …thus making it a vehicle and pretty immune to small arms not using AV ammo. But hey that’s just me.

You mention that servos can be protected…but yet you leave the fact that a fuel tank can be armored. Must be nice to have selective reasoning.

Elemental Fire Damage against a vehicle or heavy fire retardant armor isn’t that big of a deal. Lightning poses more of a risk.

You’re right that’s just one of the many fuelcells out there. Just as a side note you can use that reclaimed “waste” water and use a solar panel to break it back down into hydrogen and water. Not to mention power the pump that would force the hydrogen back into the storage tank for later use and the oxygen into a separate tank for pilot use.
Halloween Jack
Seriously, what would be the use for this thing outside of a full-on military campaign?
Kanada Ten
The Arcology? Then again, that could be called a full-on military campaign.
you dont seem to realize the fun a rigger could have with such a device
i mean i salavate on the mention of powered armour the sheer idea that it could be posible makes me happy
how ever i feel that any troops going up against a powered armour unit would be screwed if thaey had anything less than anti-tank countermeasures
John Campbell
Why rule out full-on military campaigns?
Quick question - given that rigging translates your body's motions into the vehicle's, why would an anthroform need a 'walker' or 'mechanical arm' skill at all? It seems like it'd just do whatever you wanted it to do, just like your own body (except maybe a bit slower and with a bit less fine control).
Accordng to Sprawl Survival Guide, power armors might have an use outside of a full-on military campaign if you plan on playing hockey during the next season biggrin.gif
Ok, Basically, as I have it, this is an Ares prototype design, which they plan to use to aid in certain areas. The idea is that a heavy lifter cargo plane (similar to a Herculese or such) drops a half dozen on these into a very hostile area to provide heavy covering fire while their grunts come in to do mop up. Why one of these and not say, a hover tank? Price and intimidation factor. Plus the offshoot benefits of this research can be applied Underwater, a design modificatin for underwater action. Space: If anyone is going to plan for armed, hostile invasions of space based areas, it's Ares who have the Facilities and oppostunity to study this. Variations of these suits will be able to go in to confront Toxic Mages without suffering the massive radiation/toxin exposure that is so sadly normal, It is also what is providing back up to the Magic crew who are combatting it. Less personel in hospital equals nuyen.gif saved. Finally, throw in the Protective Services aspect. It costs alot, but a pair of these loaded up with Sensors could be what detects the next Presidential Assasin, kudos and sales for Ares, even if they need to arrange for it themselves.
This is one of the possible next steps in the ever growing Sota Curve, I imagine Ares has a hundred different facilities around the world who are looking into what the "Next Big Thing" in military sales will be.There is nothing to say that this is long term Viable, however, if a Megacorp dont investigate it, they will never know.

I'm liking the designs we have here so far, the only query I have, is These are considered Vehicles? So as they stand, APDS ammo will not be particularly effective, you need anti-vehicular weapons against them.
I am a big proponent of powered armor here on these boards, but not this kind. This kind of large bulke expensive armor is wholly pointless in Shadowrun because of drones.

Drones can 99% of the time do any role these suits are intended for for less cash, in a smaller size, and without the need to train more specialized personnel.

I would like to know wht someone would use these instead of a drone, since they are larger, would cost more, have less accessability.
In an environment that prohibits remote drone control -- massive EM that jams radio signals.

Prohibits or significantly impacts where precision and finesse is required, I suppose.

I agree siege that an area that prohibits drone control would qualify, but with pilot 5 drones with pilot upgrades that can operate a mission as good as any human. [edit]generally speaking.[/edit]

And "finesse" isn't going to be accomplished with a hardened armor vehicle with robotic arms biggrin.gif
I agree. In most applications a drone would be better. However if I could take out your drone army with a massive jammer or force engagements in remote locations (forcing the rigger to be out in the open to get a signal) I can see the use of the human element.

You can also trust the that you aren't going to loose signal, get hacked, or jammed in critcal applications.

Plus with a combination of a rigger in power armor and several drones under his control, you can have an effective mobile combat team.
Bear in mind, I'm just playing devil's advocate.

But, this "mecha" could function as mobile artillery (hence precision) on the battlefield without worrying about massive ECM or someone pinpointing the transmissions of the drone rigger.

Basically, everything that infantry does -- this enhancing mecha could do as well, but with enhanced strength (sabotage, building obstacles, clearing obstacles)

And so on.

As I said earlier, the signal is irrelevat... for combat missions a drone pilot with adaptation pool will work just fine on its own. Give one a skillsoft module and have it run IVIS for all the other drones it can connect to and they will ALL kick a boatload of ass without a rigger even being onvolved, or being close by.

I don't disagree that something like this is within the bounds of SR's technical limits, but when a Great Dragon ATGM is available and as cheap as it is, along with other cheap anti vehicle soloutions, I don't think that putting the rigger on the front like is something you want to do. I think that virtually all of the roles this thing could fill can be filled better by already existing technology. A rigger is singnificantly more expensive to replace and train that a footsoldier.

The only useful implementation of powered armor I see in shadowrun is a powered version of MilSpec armor as was hinted at in a previous sourcebook. It could be taken places any human can go with increased stamina and carrying capacity, resistance to small arms fire, a far better signature than a vehicle, and would not need a rigger to operate it. Even this would have limited uses and be pretty damned expensive.

also there isn't anything wrong with this if someone wants it in their game, whatever makes them happy. I'm just saying ot doesn't make all that much sense from a practical point of view. It has a cool factor right there with transforming jets, which are cool but also serve no purpose militarily.
I wouldnt call these Mechs, mainly because of the size, I imagine the feet to be about 2ft long and a foot wide, each, otherwise humanoid, and with multiple "hands" depending on the job. In a combat situation, i'd put a hydraulic powered claw, for repair, i'd put an ultra-fine rigger controlled set of tools etc.
Remember, the main advantage of these these suits is The cannot be overtaken by another rigger, they can operate in areas where Drones cant go because of environmental conditions and at the same time, the Pilot can make on the spot judgement calls that you cant program into a Drone into doing.
If it's just a seek-and-destroy mission, sure.

But if it requires some thought, then deploy a squad of amplified Troopers that are smaller, more mobile and packing a hell of a lot more firepower than a squad of SEALs or Green Berets.

Although I suspect in the world of SR, you'd see a lot more of these (more being relative) being deployed against soft targets where the security is unable to fend off a fast, armored assault inside the building.

The "Personal Pesonnel Enhancing" models you mentioned earlier.


Edit: ACPA then?
Actually drones are capable of making fully autonomous judgement calls with the robotic rules, as long as they stay withing their prime directive. That's why drones are so sick and nasty with the R3 rules. These also cannot be overtaken by another rigger because they do not require a network presence. They also can be built into a VTOL chassis, are smaller and don't directly risk a rigger's life dropping their potential risk loss a good deal.

My line of thinking is this. The anthroform body your are using starts the size of a troll, then you are adding enough room to fit an average human inside that and a sensor suite that takes up another half meter by half beter by a meter. This is a pretty fricking huge device in the end, not counting weapon space and so forth and so on, you're looking at something the size of an ED-209 with a pilot's cockpit in it.

I have power armor in my game I just didn't build it off of the vehicle rules, I could post my take on it if you want.
Not for me, thanks -- I'm just arguing because I can.


I agree with you there biggrin.gif this doesn't really impace me either way smile.gif
John Campbell
I disagree with BitBasher's position that there are no useful missions for these things... given the nature of Shadowrun conflict, heavy infantry that's basically immune to small arms fire, packs enough firepower to deal with an AFV, can run as fast as a car for hours without tiring (longer if they can get a recharge), can maneuver in tight spaces as well as a troll, survive in environments that'd kill any unprotected infantryman almost immediately, and still perform the standard infantry tasks seems to me to be a very useful thing. And they're not vulnerable to jamming the control link, and they're capable of operating completely autonomously, which drones are not. (I don't care how smart they are, they do not get to run around shooting things without a metahuman in the decision loop. (You mentioned ED-209?) A drone pilot smart enough to make that just a Bad Idea rather than a Really Really Bad Idea is more expensive than an infantryman, even an infantryman with a VCR, anyway.).

However, I've just discovered that I read the wrong line in the table in back of R3, and was using the Heavy Walker max CF to design my armor rather than the Heavy Anthroform one, so on closer consideration, it appears that it is not, in fact, possible to design an effective suit of combat armor on the Heavy Anthroform frame, which makes the whole discussion a moot point. A Heavy Walker might be a possibility, but because it doesn't get the CF-free mechanical arms the anthroforms get, they still end up with fewer CF than I thought I had, which means that while it might be possible to build a combat-effective suit, it'd have crappy sensors and electronics, and would probably have to drop useful things like the life support...
If we're talking about a major Corps or a Goverment, then yes drones do make sense. If you have to foot the bill for each program you want load into a drone that really adds up.

AV weapons included theses will have a practical use much the same as any Special Forces would have. From Attack missions, defense missions where rigging drones isn't practical for one reason or another, to picking up a fallen pilot. Human agility, human reasoning and deception cannot be ruled out. Drones acting on their own can't match that.
John Campbell
On even further consideration, it is possible to build an effective suit of combat armor out of a Heavy Anthroform. I had to drop the secondary weapon, the ECM/ECCM, the life support, and reduce the comm gear and ammo bins more than I like, but I did manage it.

What're people's opinions on whether a drone that's had an operator installed in it could have the "Removed Manual Controls" design option? I'm currently operating on the theory that it can't, because it never had manual controls to begin with, but if it could, that'd get me an extra 2CF that I'd dearly love to have. That'd be enough to solve the comm gear and ammo problems, and probably add full life support, too...

Model: Ares Spartan Combat Suit
Handling: 1
Speed: 40
Accel.: -
Body: 3
Armor: 5
Sig.: 7
Pilot: 1
Sensor: 3
Cargo: 0
Load: 103.5 (43.5 with full load of AV ammo)
Seating: 1
Entry: 1h
Fuel: EFC(120PF)
Econ.: 1.5km/PF
Chassis: Heavy Anthroform
SI: 4
Avail.: Ha!
Cost: 541,580¥
Features: Rigger Adaptation, Remote Control Interface, 2 x Mechanical Arm (Str 9), External Hardpoint (Ares Victory Cannon, Recoil Adjustment 9, 0.4 CF Ammo Bin, Smartlink II Integration), Smart Materials, GridLink Power, Drive-By-Wire 3, Structural Agility 3, EnviroSeal (gas/water/engine), RAM 3, Spotlight, IR Spotlight, BattleTac Receiver, BattleTac IVIS, BattleTac FDDM, Personal Tactical Communicator (Rating 2), Laser Designator

I figure that, given a trained operator, it should be able to use troll-modified equipment with its hands, if it needs weaponry more subtle than the Victory cannon, and it's got the Load available to carry stuff in its hands or strapped to the outside, or "cyber"-guns in the arms...

Avail.: Ha!


John Campbell
Y'know, there's something seriously wrong with the vehicle design rules when I can build a fire support version of this thing with a fragging heavy mortar on it (Armor 3, swap the Victory for a Heavy Mortar, Load 148.5 without ammo, 418,980¥ - otherwise identical to the standard model), but can't build worthwhile command and scout suits because the necessary electronics are so bulky.
Make the necessary electrronics external -- kinda like an ACPA backpack. Of sorts.

Don't forget to mount external cargo points to save space on ammo bins. If its outside and explodes it won't do anywhere near as much damage as if it takes a hit inside the vehicle. External cargo mounts can be added to with normal ballistic armour just to make them a bit tougher without straining the vehicle load.

I've developed a few of these just to see if it was possible, from people carrying small mech suits (because lets face it, its what they are) which cost a couple mil each, to similar ones with diesel engines but no pilot, the extra CF packed out with electronics, robotic pilots, autosofts etc etc which then all function as a unit because of FDDM and IVIS, fuzzy logic etc etc etc which usually end up firmly in the double digit millions each drone, sold as a unit of five with different weapon configurations etc.

So far I've never used either of them, because I've figured they really are too state of the art to be in active service except in very secret or secure locations and neither team is at the level where they want to be going to that sort of place for a job yet! They ARE pretty close to seriously hacking off Shiawase though, who excel at this sort of thing. If they push them too far they may well find the corp breaks its usual 'screw their reputations' approach and starts breaking out the hit teams...

Anyway, the stats are in my paperwork, just waiting for an excuse. But the arguments about who would use them and where are all very valid ones. I don't think you can say they WOULDN'T build them, but they'd really be at the rarest of places and would not be encountered often.
John Campbell
Okay, I think I've finally managed to do this without too badly bending too many rules. The resulting description and specs are, uh, long, so I'll just link to them on my site rather than posting pages and pages of stuff here.

Ares Spartan Combat Suit
how big are these things in your mind? they are already the size of a troll before you even make room for a person or add CF for sensors ect...
I'm imagining these things at about 8' to 9' tall, maybe 6' wide, and 6' deep, and the first generation looking something like the MADDOX.
John Campbell
Uh... I added all of nine CF. That's all that the chassis can take. That's not a lot... two-thirds of it is for the operator. And it's designed from the ground up as a suit of armor... the space for the operator is not, as you seem to be visualizing, a cockpit pod welded to the outside, but distributed through the body and limbs of the suit. These things shouldn't be significantly larger than your average PC troll, and the added CF would make up maybe a troll-sized backpack. And they're flexible - smart materials, maxed structural agility - look at the Handling on them. They should be able to operate indoors without too much trouble - most buildings will be Tight terrain for them, but I think their main problem would be getting the frickin' assault cannon around corners (and the Scout Suits don't have that problem - that's one of their reasons for being).
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