Last night was my first chance to play since a couple of big changes were patched into the game.
Artemis Fire Control was added. This adds to any LRM or SRM and improves their targeting and grouping to result in better hits and hence more damage. However (and its apparently being patched tonight) this has resulted in LRMs that follow a very ballistic path and create plunging fire on the upper part of the mech, with significant improvements in damage. They are patching to turn normal LRMs back to their normal flightpath.
They have changed the way premade groups work as well. As the first stage to their process, until Nov 20 you can only form groups of 4, but you will still launch with 4 more players on your team. I’m uncertain whether this can be another 4 group, or is only singles. A well drilled lance (in BT universe, 4 mechs are collectively organised as a lance, 3 lances to a company etc) can still work well on this field, but it is more difficult and harder choices must be made about what mechs to field prior to drop.
I noticed one other change, they’ve added a great big busted container ship to the Forest Colony map. Effectively they’ve added cover on the long water side of the map. As a scout or indirect fire support mech, I love it. I imagine the long range direct fire mechs don’t.
So last night I grouped up with some AMC mates and ran a Jenner. They already had an LRM Cat, an Atlas and something else that I can’t remember, so another LRM Cat would have weakened the lance too much. At least for general work. If we could have been sure that we would have been fire support, I think it might work well.
We played about 5 (maybe 6) games. I died once after getting legged in their back line. Was never going to be pretty. Another game I spent running and hiding in the broken ship trying to keep a Cat and an Atlas in view for the FS. The ship actually. gives really good cover if you’re in close enough.
I need a lot more practice to be an effective scout, plus I really need to spend some time as a brawler, simply so I can bring more options to the team if required.
Overall, no problems with Artemis, I like the new ship and I think the 4 man rule will do two things. Drive people crazy as its annoying as its really frustrating after weeks of the full 8 man. However a tight lance will only improve their game. So I recommend for the organised players to get in there and practice with this limitation.