Remembering Nuts And Bolts

  • Last Post 4 weeks ago
Thunder posted this 18 November 2022

Ok, What does anyone remember about how Nuts and Bolts was run?

I mostly remember being set up in lance sized teams.  Build a level 1 mech.  Get points. Upgrade your mechs.  Move on to the next weight class.

I Dont remember how points were awarded, or the cost of upgrades.

Also dont remember missions types/objectives.

Asking because I'm being asked to set up a campaign.  Figure the nuts and bolts framework was fun.

There was another tournament involving using points to buy more tonnage and tech.  Dont remember what it was called.  Do remember preforming fairly well using a 25 ton ER Small laser boat.  Mostly looking for the point costs for Ideas.

And now to wait 2 weeks for someone to see this 

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Thunder posted this 20 November 2022

Meanwhile, coming up with a point value list based on stuff's tech level and availability.  Works pretty good.  IS DHS, XL engines, and endo steel cost 1 point.  Clan cost 2 points.  Common level 2 weapons cost 1... clan version cost 2.

I think I'll start everyone with a 20 ton mech.  They can pay 1 point per 5 extra tons.

Omni is interesting.  Costs 1 point to make a mech an omni.  Think I'm going to expand upon that.  Any equipment added to the omni in an omni pod will cost +1 point.  But Can be transferred to any other future omni unit, or between players.

So,   Tonnage + structure + Engine + Gyro, cockpit, Special musculature (TSM for the most part) etc + equipment.

If mech is lost have to buy a new one.
If Tonnage changes, have to buy a new one.
If equipment or structural components changes, have to buy new equipment.  If you buy ER Medium lasers and remove them, they're still available to be added back on to that one mech. (And if you paid for omni then those lasers are available for the next omni mech too)

Pilot upgrades.  Upgrading a skill level costs double the previous level.  Start with 5/5 pilots with 1 free point given for upgrades.  (So ideally they'll go 4g/5p.)  From 4 to 3 costs 2 points.  3 to 2 costs 4.  Then 8, then 16 to get down to zero.  Piloting and gunnery are done separately.

If pilot dies they get to start over.

For our next trick.
How much to pay out for winning a scenerio
Proportional support.  Aka the player got killed early and I need to keep them entertained.  SAR for pilot retrieval,  Salvaging truck,  covering artillery, Air strikes.

Thunder posted this 22 November 2022

Ok, SARs.
Player loses their mech.  Their mechwarrior needs to be picked up.
Tiered system.  Player can pay for upgraded evac options. Payment is per scenerio, though costs can be split between players.
0.  Motorized infantry squad is sent to get you. 
1. Ground APC
2. VTOL APC (limit 1)
3. An unarmed support mech is sent to get you. (Limit 1)

APC's and infantry take up an initiative slot, and automatically move last.  They will not willingly end their move in LOS of a hostile mech.  Though they will face off against hostile infantry in proximity to the mechwarrior that needs to be retrieved.  The player with the downed mech will control these units.

only 1 rescue mech and VTOL per scenerio.  If anyone goes down after that a ground APC is sent.  If the battle is being won.  If its being lost then the rescue units are required to forced withdraw.

If 50% casualties are sustained and the enemy force outnumbers the survivors (aka you're losing.) then protective artillery will be applied. namely Smoke rounds to cover the withdrawal.

Thunder posted this 22 November 2022

Battle field support.  Pay before the battle.  May only be used for that battle.  Wasted points are wasted.

Artillery (Arrow IV).
1 point: 1 tube available 5 rounds of ammo available.  Limit 2 tubes per player.
1 point: upgrade to homing.  Only have to pay once per tube.
1 point: add 5 more rounds.

Bombing.  There is a bond for the aircraft.  1 point per 10 tons of fighter.  If the fighter doesn't die you get the bond back at end of mission.
1 point: 2 bombs
2 points: Strike attack. (Pay as you go.)
3 points: Strafing run. (Pay as you go.)

Battlefield Intelligence
1 point:  +1 modifier to any initiative roll.  Single use.  Any player may use this modifier once per turn from the pool bought for this scenario.   May be used After the dice are rolled.

Random rule in weird places.

The initial roll for initiative will determine things like "Do they know you're coming."  which will have impacts on things like hidden units and mine fields.   Probably need to make a MOF and MOS table for this....

Thunder posted this 22 November 2022

for the record. 1 turn travel time for artillery strikes.

Air strikes are declared at the end of the movement phase.

Aircraft thrust values for turn around times before next attack.  Go find the rules somewhere.  Think you need 10 thrust for 1 turn turn arounds.

Thunder posted this 22 November 2022

SARS changes.

Response changes based on how far from home edge. Cost is taken from mission rewards.

Thunder posted this 22 November 2022

Need to add mech recovery. Add 1 point to air support Cost for fuel.  Per fighter.  Just in case 2 fighters seems to be the way to go.

Wondering how to pick available fighters.  Probably just force them to pick from stock units.


Back to SARS.

Cost increases the farther the unit moves into the battlefield.  Players may elect to hold off on sending in the Evac team.

For a normal set of 2x2 maps,  1 point for every 5 hexes from their home edge.  We'll call these zones.

Zone 1, motorized infantry squad
Zone 2 and 3.  Armored APC's
Zone 4 and 5. VTOL
Zone 6. Mech recovery unit.

1D6-2  Rounds of smoke artillery will be fired between the downed mechwarrior and the nearest enemy the turn after they eject, exact locations chosen by the downed player.  Flight time of 1 turn.

Motorized, and vehicles automatically move last for the players initiative.  The mech can move whenever it needs to.  The player may not do anything offensive with the recovery mech...

In combat Mech Recovery.  1 point to reserve.  5 point deposit in case it is lost.  Costs 1 point per zone traveled.  Will not come closer then 10 hexes from the enemy.  Moves last or second to last if a SARS team is out.

Thunder posted this 23 November 2022

Lets go fight space nazis

Pirate campaign. 

Intercept the pirate raiding force.

Attack the pirate base.

Spider trap, Defend the pirate base.

Who is supplying them campaign.

Quick Reaction Force Mission.  The main attack went wrong.

Second scouting mission.

Hold the base entrance.

Attack the inside of the base.

Planetary assault Campaign.

Secure a beach head.

Battlefield rescue.

Break a defensive line.

Base assault.

Defend against Orbital counter attack.

Retreat under fire.

Thunder posted this 23 November 2022

Pirate campaign - Intercept the raiders.

Initiative roll.  Win = set up ambush, Lose = Stop them from escaping.
Critical win/loss threshold of 3. Win = command detonated mines.  Loss = counter ambush.
Note to self... make a chart with more options/bonus and more information given out if they win.  LIke at what point do they get hidden units?  At what point do they achieve so much surprise the NPC's are shaken?

Enemy forces: 2 Mech. 4 upto Medium Vee's, 2 upto assualt Vee's.  2 Medium Cargo haulers 1 heavy cargo hauler.  Like mech recovery vehicles.  3 platoons foot infantry in the cargo haulers.

Gallion Light tank with an active probe.  Probe is broken on a higher initiative success.
Hetzer.  Always moves first for initiative.  Bad comms gear.
Light SRM Carrier
Goblin medium tank

2 Rommel Sealed variants.

Brigand XPR 3
Thunderbolt 5S for the pirate leader. Or an MRM hawkwolf.  That'd be interesting I think.

2 Mech Recovery vehicles
1 Heavy Mech recovery vehicle.

Ok... Table....
MOF 10  Its a trap.  Add extra enemies, extra hidden units, Infantry is upgraded.
MOF 9 Enemy commander recieves -1/-1 to p/g.  +2 victory points.
MOF 8 Infantry upgrade
MOF 7 Hidden units may deploy anywhere.
MOF 6 upgrade enemy commander skill increases to 3/4  +1 victory points upon destruction.
MOF 5 Counter ambush 2 hidden unit on their half of the map.
MOF 4 +1 turn head start
MOF 3 Counter ambush.  heavy units may deploy from their home edge.
MOF 2 +1 turn head start
MOF 1 2 turn head start.
Reroll Duh.
MOS 1 Enemy force list revealed
MOS 2 Deployment on from any home map edge, may wait to deploy
MOS 3 Hidden units players may deploy from hidden positions anywhere on their side of the map.
MOS 4 Perk Roll
MOS 5 Perk Roll
MOS 6 Perk Roll
MOS 7 Perk Roll
MOS 8 Perk Roll
MOS 9 Perk Roll
MOS 10 20 point Command detonated mine per player

Per rolls
1: Active probe is broken.  Reroll if already awarded
2: Hetzers communications are out.  Must declare movement first for their team.  Reroll if...
3: 5 point mine field deployed per player
4: Poor maintence.  Assign 1 critical hit to the commanders mech.  Ammo simply counts as the bin being empty.  reroll cockpit 2nd gyro and 3rd engine hits.
5. Poor training.  A random combat unit excluding the commander, cargo trucks and infantry has +1/+1 p/g
6. Pre Existing damage.  The commander's mech takes 30 points of damage in 5 point clusters. Ignore any critical hits that would cause unit destruction. (They just go away)  Reroll head hits.

light units 1 point
Medium 2 points
heavy 3
assault 4.
Bonus points.

Thunder posted this 26 November 2022

Aiming for 40 points per scenerio.

5 points Lights: Galleon, 3x infantry, light mech.
6 points Medium combat Vehicles
4 points.  MRM hawkwolf. upto 3 bonus points available.  (May be added if initiative is won)

7 points.  Recovery vehicles (2 medium, 1 heavy).  Worth Double if captured when the first initiative roll is lost.  (Capture by being in adjacent hex before killing the vehicle.)  If initiative is won +7 bonus points.

meh. +2 bonus points per non crippled friendly mech. aka not in forced withdrawal from damage.  If they win.

Thunder posted this 27 November 2022

Have a seat.
Getting Introductions out of the way each one of you is the leader of a small team that wants something.  Be that the freedom and resources to test your Mech design or a desire to test your tactical theories in the real world; each of you and your teams has agreed to our offer.  We give you the support you need, and you do the hard jobs for us.  And while we are staffed and funded to the point where you don't need to count C-bills, resources are not unlimited.  To that end we use Points.  Just Points.  No one has come up with a better name yet that has stuck.  I am informed that each "Point" is a very scientific conglomeration of the lifetime value and costs of an item or service.  And once again, you don't need to worry about it.  Each team will start out with 5 points.  This will not let you fully test out some of your Ideas, I am aware, but as a newly formed unit you're going to have to prove yourself and pay your way before you're given even more resources.  Though Lets be honest, this is still an amazing deal.

Which brings us to our next point, where is all this funding coming from?  The answer to this is ancient history from the days of the old Star League.   There was a special operations unit under the name "Nuts and Bolts"  Though details from this end of history are fuzzy they operated on much the same principle as we're trying to copy here.  Talented design teams being given free reign to innovate.  Teams with better results were given more resources so the next iteration of mechs produced were even more bleeding edge.  And the results of these battles?  One story says a lance of light mechs took down an entire reinforced company with zero losses.  We're trying to recreate that kind of Effect.  Our Backers are counting on us getting those kind of results. And you're the ones chosen to help us do it.

Thunder posted this 04 December 2022


Need to pick map.
Print all units.
Print trap units.  Pick trap units...

Print SARS units.
Find suitable minis for all units.

Where are the folders I got to organize this....


Prince posted this 23 January 2023

I Dont remember how points were awarded, or the cost of upgrades.

Also dont remember missions types/objectives.

Asking because I'm being asked to set up a campaign.  Figure the nuts and bolts framework was fun.

There was another tournament involving using points to buy more tonnage and tech.  Dont remember what it was called.  Do remember preforming fairly well using a 25 ton ER Small laser boat.  Mostly looking for the point costs for Ideas.

And now to wait 2 weeks for someone to see this 

It was point's style, with 1 point being awarded for mech kill or completion of a task. An XL engine was 3 points, I think Endo was 2, CASE was 1, DHS was 2. Lots of 2s I recall. Most mission types were really "destroy" missions or holdout type.

You can also consider the warchest system that catalyst has, I think they have rules/overview in TacOps? Maybe Stratops? Not sure, but it was like a "cash" system of warchest points that could be spent on difficulty level AND 'mechs.

This is pretty relevant to me, because I've never ran a game before but I'm planning one and I'm looking for a good system that isn't just using A Time of War.

Thunder posted this 23 January 2023

Week!  2 Weeks!  Not Months! 

As such I went ahead and built my own system based on what I could remember from nuts and bolts.

Nuts and Bolts Rules

Nuts and Bolts Costs

Admittedly I need to go read my own rules again.  And pick a map.  And come up with back extra forces just in case more then 4 people show up.  And go read ejection rules just in case.  Game is next week.

And of course ask if you have questions or want explanations.

Prince posted this 30 January 2023

Fluff reads similar to Brigador, which is good

Thunder posted this 31 January 2023

So game day tomorrow,  First a summary of the training day game that we got in:

quoting myself from a discord conversation:

2 matches were ran that day.

Opforce was other 5 point designs presumably from other "Teams" within the organization thats hired you. So this was a training exercise.


3 on 3 matches.


Round 1 had


a 10/15(20) 30 ton Booby trap mech. (It turns out that 25 ton mechs can not take 150 damage... each.)

a 1/2 20 ton RISC Hyperlaser platform (Which did nothing.)

And a 9/14(18) 30 tonner with a Large vibro sword. (Head shot with sword)


That match ended quickly...



Round 2. 30 ton 5/8 mechs with C3 network

first 4 er mediums and a c3 master.

second 4 MML-3's with C3 slave

Third 10 Clan LMG's 6 IS LMG's using rapid fire. C3 Slave.


A fairer fight, they got the Machine gun boat.


They were using.

2x Brigand LDT-5

and a 25 tonner with a clan large pulse laser. Apparently. Its been a few weeks so I'm fuzzy on it.


First match was mostly to set the tone of the type of things I can pull out of my hat.


Second was a demonstration of what can be done with 5 point mechs when they are designed to synergize with each other.

And the point of that set of matches was to give the players experience with what is possible.

It should be pointed out that actual missions will be both more and less challenging. I'll be roleplaying the NPC's more then bringing my own skills to the game. But the Opforce will be story driven more then game balance driven, so finding you're overmatched is not an impossibility. As I mentioned in the fluff, you've been hired to do the hard jobs.

Thunder posted this 31 January 2023

2nd.  The "its a trap" reinforcements.
 4 Strikers with vehicle stealth, Environmental sealing, 2 MML 5's and 4 tons of cargo.
4 BA squads. 3 walk. 10 Advanced armor.  MRM-1 with 4 shots a flamer and a machine gun.  And an AP weapons mount I won't be using.

Main point being I want vehicles to ambush from the water, because surprise!

In the likely event they're not used in this scenario they will be in the next.

Still need to pick maps.  On one hand the new mat with the tall hills and road going though it would be good, but I want lakes or rivers available just in case.

Thunder posted this 01 February 2023

Point Split

Thor-4 (3 mml 3 assassin 7/11) Jon-6 (ER LPL with TCom 25tons) Carter-7 (9 medium laser 7/11 jenner) Cameron-8 (medium laser, mml3, medium vibro sword. 40 tons 7/11) Josh-8 (25 ton mrm10 ferro-lam armor)

CNC mat with a classic battletech map on the non water side. Cbt map raised by 1 level so vehicles could level change onto it.

Pirates were allowed to move across the map for 2 turns before the players deployed.

2 more turns until contact.

Pirates entered from

Thunder posted this 01 February 2023

Jon set up a hill on the btech map nearer the main mat.

Carter and Josh rushed the center. The assassins trailed a bit behind.

Contact began with the Brigand. Jumping on top of a level 4 hill the pirates discovered they were not alone. Both from the erlpl shot and the jenner hitting it with 3 lasers.

The tanks moved up to their nearest ridge. He brigand backed up to be supported by the hetzer and srm carrier the gallion went into reverse and backed up along the edge of the hill.

The jenner was having none of that and pushed onto the gallion. The jenner took a few shots and ripped the engine out of the gallion.

Meanwhile the assassins where coming around their left flank.

Thunder posted this 01 February 2023

In our next turn the combat tanks pushed up onto a ridge freeing up their line of sight. The jenner retreated briefly. The gallion's crew abandoned their useless tank. The goblin started moving towards them to pick them up.

And a battlemech recovery vehicle was vaporized by an ERLPL killing the infantry along with it.

With the tanks for support the brigand went to engage the assassins. Shots traded, on the next turn, The brigand would get behind the second assassin shooting it in the back and getting a mace hit. The assassins responded with a medium vibro sword cleaving through the side torso killing the xl engine.

About this time the hawk wolf was entering range launching flights of 60 mrms. The first Salvo did almost nothing but the second strongly connected on Josh's 25 tonner. Which didn't die.

Suffering from overheating the players converged on the hawk wolf.

The jenner positioned itself in the rear while Cameron's assassin took the more dirrect approach.

But let's back up a bit.

Remember the Goblin that was going to pick up the gallion crew? It got them. Only for that jenner to strip the right side armor and get a critical hit.... infantry bay.

The hetzer meanwhile taken a mobility kill. Either from that erlpl or a stray missile. Don't remember. Occasionally it would get a shot off when someone strayed in its Los, but for the most part it was being taken apart by large laser fire. A rommel had also taken minor mobility damage.

Back to the present.

The jenner did a good job of ripping the back out of the hawk wolf. Cameron and Josh added to the damage a bit.

Thunder posted this 01 February 2023

But in going for the back stab the Jenner made a technical blunder.  It was in short range of the 2 rommels with their heavy PPC's and the light SRM carrier.  It did not survive the experience.


Meanwhile by this point the heavy recovery vehicle and the normal recovery vehicle had sprinted for their map edge and were gone.  The goblin was also working on extricating itself, doing its best to get off the hill that was slowing it down.

The Hawkwolf was firmly in the opinion that it was an assault mech and was going to kick these upstart mechs apart.  It continued to follow Josh's 25 ton mech.  Cameron took the opportunity to get behind the hawkwolf going for its exposed rear torso.

Thor had diverted his targeting to the man battle tanks for the moment, using his MML's LRM ammo to get some plinks in.  The Rommels were not impressed.  Jon had begun to move up to engage more closely.

The Hawkwolf fell to an ammo explosion.  Josh survived yet again and proceeded to find a nice hill to hide behind.  Cameron dirrected his attention to the SRM carrier, killing it also.  He was taking substanial damage to do it though.  Thor had moved to engage the goblin at long range trying to prevent it's escape.  He failed.

Cameron's final act was to attack the rear of one of the Rommels.  Between him and other fire he got a turret locked to the rear. and reduced it's mobility to 1/2.  The other rommel went from pristine to Almost pristine but immobile.  Mobility hits suck.  Cameron died to multiple Engine crits, though he did manage to keep both side torso's.

effectively leaving only Jon and Thor to face 2 mobility impared rommels,  A final turn of fire ripped off Jon's non gun arm as the last notable bit of damage in the game.

The rommels surrendered when it was pointed out that Jon could just bounce out of range and snipe them to death with his ERLPL and they didnt have the range or mobility to do anything about it.

Game took about 5 hours.  I was exhausted from so much batlemath.  Also I didnt think to keep records.  So the exact timing of things in the story are probably off.

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