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Old 12-21-2017, 04:13 PM   #1
ColBosch
 
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Default Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

A little while back, someone asked if any Ogres mounted howitzer-type weapons. (It was in an unrelated thread and caused quite a bit of drift, which is why I'm posting a new topic.) Clearly, all of us checked our well-worn copies of GURPS Ogre and concluded that no, no Ogres ever mounted artillery pieces.

But.

We were wrong. In the update for Ogre Miniatures (page 69 of the combined edition), we find a very different Ogre Mk VII from the beast described in GURPS Ogre. Here's the basics of each:

GURPS Ogre: 4 MB, 12 SB, 24 AP, 4 missile racks, 32 internal missiles. Starting MP 2 (i.e., 30 mph off-road), no hints as to number of tread units.

Ogre Miniatures Update: 4 MB, 8 SB, 24 AP, 12 external missiles, 2 howitzers. Starting MP 2 (i.e., 4"), with 96 tread units. Ogre howitzers are evidently ATK 6, RNG 5, DEF 3. It's also got some weird special rules which I'm ignoring for now.

So there's a thing. The GURPS Ogre version is two Mk Vs glued to the back half of a Fencer. It's slow, but straightforward to use - to, honestly, the point of boredom. It's just a Mk VI+. The Ogre Minis version is odd, to say the least. I really don't know what to make of it. For instance, why don't the howitzers replace any of the regular batteries, why is their range truncated, and why double-up on external missiles but drop racks entirely?

I'm not sure I like either take. Adding howitzers to an Ogre would break up the rather linear progression of increasing weaponry, but Ogre Miniature's version just feels weird and wrong, even before we get into the special rules.

Thoughts?
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Last edited by ColBosch; 12-21-2017 at 04:16 PM.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

It may be related to the aspect of a 'true' Ogre minis game where you don't have hexes, and thus, your shots can (and do) fall short at times. It may not work on a board with hexes, since you'll always know the ranges you can fire upon.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:32 PM   #3
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

Mounting the howitzers on the back makes sense for obligate high angle fire pieces. Isn't the shorter range consistent with mobile howitzers?

I will need to look at the special rules later though.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

No, the range on the Ogre howitzers is 2-3" (the rules do not match the record sheet), or one hex, shorter than a regular MHWZ.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

Here's the real kicker on the howitzers: they're inferior to a regular missile rack. They have the same ATK and RNG, but are 1 DEF lower. Sure, they have unlimited ammo, but I've found you have to really work to get all your internal missiles out of a Mk IV, VI, Fencer, or Dopp before all the racks are wrecked. They're basically multi-shot external missiles; so why then does the Ogre Minis version also mount a dozen regular missiles?
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:57 PM   #6
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

Quote:
Originally Posted by ColBosch View Post
Here's the real kicker on the howitzers: they're inferior to a regular missile rack. They have the same ATK and RNG, but are 1 DEF lower. Sure, they have unlimited ammo, but I've found you have to really work to get all your internal missiles out of a Mk IV, VI, Fencer, or Dopp before all the racks are wrecked. They're basically multi-shot external missiles; so why then does the Ogre Minis version also mount a dozen regular missiles?
That is a pretty good answer to why a) the thing wasn't canonically deployed and b) why you don't need to bother with Ogre mounted howitzers.
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Old 12-21-2017, 06:45 PM   #7
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

I think you're correct. The other thing is that base MP 2. It's really going to take all the finesse out of games involving a Mk VII. Ogres, at least at the start of the game, are as fast or faster than anything except GEVs. With 2 MP, that Mk VII is going to just have to start chugging away towards its objectives, and there's not going to be much room for tactics beyond choosing which guns to shoot at which enemies.
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Old 12-21-2017, 08:13 PM   #8
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

Not at all coincidentally, we've already pulled the VII stats out of the upcoming edition of Ogre Minis, leaving only a mention that a monstrosity like that was considered and designed but apparently not built. We now canonically deny everything we said before about those stats. Maybe it was fake news :) Maybe they put an Ogre brain in it in simulation and it said "Lose these big guns and give me more missiles or an escort."
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Old 12-21-2017, 08:44 PM   #9
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

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Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Not at all coincidentally, we've already pulled the VII stats out of the upcoming edition of Ogre Minis, leaving only a mention that a monstrosity like that was considered and designed but apparently not built. We now canonically deny everything we said before about those stats. Maybe it was fake news :) Maybe they put an Ogre brain in it in simulation and it said "Lose these big guns and give me more missiles or an escort."
That's for the best, I think. The Mk VI and Doppelsoldner should be enough for players who love the dakka. I can't think of a situation where I'd want either of the Mk VIIs we've seen over a pair of Mk Vs. That goes for both tactical and game play reasons.
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Old 12-22-2017, 12:43 AM   #10
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Default Re: Howitzers on the Ogre Mk VII

MK IV / Fencer and the MK V / Huscarl pretty much do it for me. I can see MK VIs and Dopps for really big or special scenarios, but that's all. HWZs on Ogres? Even if their range wasn't truncated, I would still have to ask "what's the point?" I agree. MK VIIs (and whatever the Panueros might have been contemplating) should never canonically happen as they should be waaay past the point of diminishing returns.
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