Saturday, November 11, 2017

Equipment Review: Core of the Dragon By Kenneth Hicks ID 846092

Curtis was down in the hanger deck swearing and throwing parts across the bay.
“What the living frakk are we supposed to be doing with more of these!!!??”
Captain Carlos looked over at Colonel Hicks with a raised eyebrow.

“I dunno! Go in there and find out what’s got his undies in a bunch! I have IT techs that need to get in and run diagnostics, but are too afraid to enter the bay.”
Carlos sighed, rubbed his eyes and went in.

“Officer on the Deck!”

Sgt. Curtis stopped just long enough to see who it was, then threw a spanner at a group of loaders just for good measure.
“Curtis! Just what in holy Hockey Sticks is going on down here!”
“Load tests sir.”
“Wha? NO! No, don’t you give me that you ugly Ambershard Gizzard! I want to know just why you all of the sudden feel like tearing up our bay when the Colonel has some eggheads coming in!”

“It’s supply sir, they sent us more.”
“More what?”
“More mid-sized engines sir.”

Again, Carlos sighed, rubbed his eyes, and started from the top.
“Okay Curtis, I know these don’t help the main troop, but what’s wrong with them?”

Curtis thought about it a minute, shuffled his feet, then sullenly replied,  ”Nothing sir. Actually, these are pretty handy.”
“Okay Curtis, start from the top. What are they , what do they do, and what are they good for?”
Curtis rubbed his hands together, warming to the subject.

“Well, these are a load of Core of the Dragon engines. They’re made for 40 – 70 ton mechs, giving a speed of +8, but throwing it on with a 13% boost to fire damage and 5% trample. Too small for an Inferno, but perfect for a Cindrons, another good use would be specialty builds on Nephs, Ogguns, Daemons, or any other mech up to 70 ton that you want to give some fire damage and some trample to.”

“So what’re you complaining about, they’re awesome for our mid-sized specs!”
“I know, I just got those cleaned up though and didn’t want to open up the engine compartments again.”
“Dammit Curtis… alright, stack them with the other mid size gear until you have time, but make them a top priority to install then.”
“Yessir!” Curtis walked away with a bit of a swagger after that.

“Frakkin deck Sergeants…bunch of Divas.”

Friday, November 10, 2017

On A Cold November Night By Kenneth Hicks ID #846092

Lance Corporal Johnny Mathis was huddled up in the frozen footprint of one of the 90 ton death machines that wreak hell on his planet on a regular basis.

Cupping his cigarette to hide the glow, he remembered his dad telling him the story of the Cogwerk Industries, and how they used to actually care what happened around here.

Down by Beggar’s Bay, they had a flight station set up big enough to handle multiple drop ships. Several of the colorful Clan Banners would wave over multitudes of troops who had trained to keep the peace.

That was then and this is now. Now the Clans seemed to be all wrapped up in portals, looking into something called a Meta something or other. In their absence, Pirates, smugglers, and low life’s had moved in. Gang wars rage back and forth with no control. The Military Police iMech’s all lay in salvaged over ruins. The only ones left, are those who only want their damn planet back.

Resistance fighters, usually not very coordinated, certainly not well armed, try and take on the Pirate Gangs, trying to make the planet too expensive to care about. It’s hard though. And ordinary folks with hunting rifles and farm supplies get used up quick when fighting the gigantic Mechas that roam the countryside.

Down the hill, Johnny heard or rather felt the leg hydraulics of an Eighty Tonner known as a Ballista that he’d scouted previously as it ransacked barns and outbuildings, looking for scrap.

Johnny put out the smoke and breathed in his hands for a brief respite from numbness, gathered his gear and ran at a crouch parallel to the machine, just over the rise so that there wouldn’t be any site confirmations.

The Ballista had seen better days. Skull and crossbones painted with white wash across the front of it, rusted holes where bullets had entered at some point in its existence. On its left armature was the faded insignia of the old Overlord Clan, now but a distant memory.

Still, even in its state of disrepair, the pilot inside caught movement on his sensors. 50 meters off his 3 to 2.5. Looking at the size and speed, it could be a deer, or just a big dog. He should check it out anyways as he might get a meal out of it, if it is a deer, or even better, get to shoot one of the frakkin farmers that have been sabotaging their equipment as of late.

The Ballista topped the hill and stood still, waiting for his foe to make a move.

Johnny was crouched down in another muddy foot print. He’d taken a couple of knee length socks out of his pack, along with gunpowder, fertilizer, and some fermented orange squeezins in a mason jar that he’d packed carefully.

Into the sock, he poured equal parts of gunpowder and fertilizer, then using the fermented oranges to bind it all together. For a makeshift ignitor he reached into his cargo pocket and pulled out a thin flask full of magnesium shavings. Very carefully, he squeezed the socks between his numb fingers mixing up the odd mixture. Once this was done, he tied the socks off, then thickly coated them in axel grease. Once done, he reached into his other pocket and pulled out a small, silver dog whistle. Putting it to his lips, he blew in the direction away from the mech.

In the Ballista, the Pilot saw his audio signals peak on the high end, somewhere near the tree line. He then caught movement scuttling around.

“There we go, there’s those lousy milk saps. Time to cook some farm hands.”

<thump> <thump>

Wha? What was that? The pilot shown a spot light around his mech. Seeing the frozen prints, he reasoned that his hydraulics made a funky adjustment on the frozen mud. Time to go light up the tree line.

Johnny was sweating bullets. This was not good as the sweat trickles turned to ice in the most inconvenient places. He had thrown his “sticky bombs” right into the leg gears that were right beneath the ammo cannisters for the Ballista. Now hopefully, that mech makes it far enough away before the grinding of said gears sparks the magnesi FOOM, KERWHUUUM!!!

Blackness. Cold. Ringing. The sense that a giant had just punched him right in his babymakers with its giant fist. Johnny cracked his right eye open. Pain. Blindness. Then faint light. Luckily it was moonlight or Johnny wouldn’t see a thing.

About fifty feet down the hill the Ballista lied in ruins. Johnny thought hard now, because he was pretty sure he only heard one soul-sucking explosion. Folks don’t realize that it’s not the explosion that hurts, it’s the shockwave caused by all the air leaving the vicinity at once. To emphasize the point, Johnny could see a piece of his leg about ten meters away. He looked at it with clinical curiosity. Watching as it spasmed, but just a little.

Wait, oh yeah, was there only one explosion? Johnny looked over towards the Ballista with his only working eye. Sure enough, most of the mech was splintered and in pieces, but the left leg and fuselage was still intact. And on fire. Well now, at least he’s taking one of the monster mechas with him.

On this cold November night, a second eruption of flames and carnage erupts, disturbing the countryside. Then all was silent again. And so it goes.

Weapon Review: Focus Jet By Joshua Bourne ID #702128

"Tight tolerances during manufacture ensure a focused high power jet of fire."

Once more, the Craftsmen have given us another limited time weapon, this time in the form of the "Focus Jet". Let's take a look at it and see if it's worth the investment...

It's stats are as follows:
Damage Type: Fire
Damage: 140
Speed: 104
Burn: 35%
Splash 20%

This is a very high powered Fire weapon that will toast nigh on any mecha that it crosses paths with, only the fire cautious won't need to worry about this all too much. To pick up one (or multiple) of these weapons, they cost the following:

Ferrite: 1937
Bioptics: 1300
Niodes: 59

Or a bulk buy..
Niodes: 236

Now it's important to note that this weapon is limited to pilots level 102 and higher, meaning you have to be highly qualified to even get a chance to buy it, never mind purchase it to use it on your mecha. Also you are limited to how many you can purchase, currently set at 25.

Do I think this weapon is worth the investment? Well the Burn and Splash stats are fantastic, giving it plenty of long lasting damage along with multiple targets being caught in the spray of heat, but I can't help but feel it's outclassed by the Prometheus that's purchasable 8 levels later. It has a touch less damage, but it's faster, has more burn percentage and has innate double damage, making it hit well above it's weight.

All in all, I'd give this weapon a 7/10. It's a great piece of kit, but for the price, and the competition it's got in the Fire category, it's a bit too difficult to say it's better than the existing weapons.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

My Honest Opinion: By Spike Shepard Player ID: #846030

My honest opinion of Faction Wars is that the prizes never match the experience gain. In the last clan war, I gained 3 levels then struggled for the next month to find enough niodes to level up my niode mechs. It was only down to a rent party and having to sell my Megazome that I won for being in the top 5 in the faction for wins.

It then took me another 2 months to afford the equipment to fill the slots on the niode mechs. That's just my personal problem but better prizes to match the effort and experience gain would be much appreciated.

As for the factions themselves there was a lot of fixing on the levels front! Currently you must have at least 35 pilots BUT only the bottom 2 don't count. That's a world of hurt for many clans there as certain clans (trying not to mention a certain clan) who whack in their high-level players with their low level campers and POW instant gold!

If you discount 2 pilots for a minimum of 8 then you need to discount the 10 lowest pilots for factions of 35 of more to even the playing field in all fairness and to stop certain clans from walking to gold. If they want a Gold they should be made to fight for it. Those are my main gripes, but fingers crossed you'll take them on board Nick Shapiro.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The Tower: By Kenneth Hicks ID: 896092


I stood back looking at our unit’s new Tower mecha. A full 105 tons of fire and projectile throwing fun. It’s Fortress A.I. is perfectly suited for enhancing these qualities. The one weird thing is the Thunderstorm cell system.

With a mech this huge, it’s obviously going to be slow. With the Thunderstorm, it actually diverts power into the weapons, giving it some nice x2 and x3 percentages. So basically, kill smaller mechs before they kill you.

To help with this, the Splash and Trample defenses are naturally cut down by 70%, has a ton of shield slots, and it’s ablative armor cuts down the effectiveness by 40%. Oh, and a point missile defense system to boot. So all together, extra power to massive weapons, slower speeds, but massive defenses. Nice mix!

My test pilot actually told me that a wing of Dilo’s trying to gang up on him actually started shooting a rock outcropping, mistaking it for the Tower, thanks to the Ablative armor. Defense that makes you shoot rocks…muahahahahaaaaa

So, recommendations? Trick this pony out in solid niode shields, give it a few cockpit slots with the VR Target Tracking so it has some freeze capability,then slap in an equal amount of Nebula and Cerberus drives for fire damage, x2 and x3 enhancements, and a few auto repair points.

Until we get some better gear built for the 105s, this is about the best you can hope for. So slap that baby into your formation, because if nothing else, it takes the attention off of your other mechs.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Faction Time By Kenneth Hicks; ID: 896092

Ladies and Gentlemen, Start Your Engines!

Word on the grapevine is that we have a Faction War coming up this month!

Now, what this means to those of you that have only been playing for six months or so is that your clan will be looking for other clans to make one gigantic faction with. That means people who used to be your enemy are now sided with you against others you may or may not of fought before.

To the common player, that’s about the biggest deal that they deal with. Racking up major xp with tons of wins per round, Faction War Analytics tend to get redonkulous.

Now for the Leaders and Officers, here come the headaches and intrigue. Major deals made from shadowy areas. Rumors thrown around, sometimes to throw off the scent of what’s actually happening, sometimes spot on the money.

Oh, and the headaches. You ever notice how your Leaders get all grumpy three or so days before Clan Wars? Well take it times ten as they now have to deal with player placement based on level, and sometimes diva like attitudes. The moving and shaking in it’s own right is almost as fun to watch as the contests themselves.

So here, in the comments of this article, I’d like to see a few things. I’d like to see clans looking to join other clans, I’d like to see stories of past Faction Wars, and I’d like to see some opinions on what’s about to happen. Always remember, all stories, opinion pieces, and strategy breakdowns can be posted on the

Galaxy Gathering Page so as to put some niodes in your pockets and get your name known as a mover and a shaker!

Good Luck everyone!

Monday, November 6, 2017

JP's Rowdy Bunch Clan Logo By Carlos Hicks ID# 905078

Headquarters By Kenneth Hicks ID# 896092

As I walk up the trail, I have my machete swinging in one hand, my laser pistol in the other. Jungle had grown across the trail and it was being a particular bitch to get through. Finally, after sweating through my nav suit, I reach the slightly rusted door that heads into the side of the ridge. The com link/keypad was on the right with a dull, green glow over the panel.

“Oy, open up you geezers!”

I wait about ten seconds then thumb the intercom again.

“HEY! Wake up out of your nasty, funk filled slumber and someone come answer the door!”

Again, nothing except the rustles of the Jungle around me.

After the next 10 seconds, I type in the old passcode into the keypad and hit enter. Red light.

“Frakking derpterds, never home when you need them.”

I open up my old manual to see if I can find the “Back Door Code” which I had purloined from Patrick’s diary the year before.

Ate675309! *green light, click*

The door opened up and the smell of foul, stale air came wafting out. Shortly after, I could hear electronics powering up inside and vent blowers kicking in.

I sat down, loaded, and smoked a pipe for a bit, letting the scrubbers clear out the old atmosphere and let the internal systems power up and start doing their system checks.

Finally, after ten more minutes, I knocked out the pipe and went inside to see just what sort of disrepair and funk was in the old G.G. Headquarters.

Old pizza boxes, check, Chow Mein spilled on the floor, check. Tons of Lager cans and liquor bottles, definitely check.

I check Patrick’s old room and it was sealed up and fairly clean like I remember it. Things in a semi order, his dolls (excuse me, collectibles) lined up on his council, papers in place (I’ll go over those later), so pretty much good to go.

Next, I check my room. Sealed, close to the condition of Patrick’s only the dank smell of something familiar. I look through my desk drawer and find an opened bag of Vupinian Stench Spice that I distinctly remember as being sealed, and in a different location for that matter. Mental Note: Throw McCallum’s bunk into the swamp for a couple days then put it back.

Finally as I went down the hall, I get the whiff of something dreadful. David McCallum’s door is wide open. Worse than that, there is what appears to be an Ambershard nest made up of pizza boxes and beer cans in the middle of the floor.

I pull out my laser pistol so as to be ready if “mommy” comes back in for a looksee.At the bottom of the pile, I find a foot. Ew… Just. Ew. As I try to pull the foot from the debris, a low, guttural growl comes from the pile.
“Dear Prophet, we have a live one.”

As I dig into the nest, I start to realize that there aren’t any eggs. Odd. Then the rubbish heap talks at me!
"Oy! Get off me ya wanker!”
“And quit shouting, frakk…”

As David sat up, I try asking questions as to just what the hell happened.
“Writer’s Block mate. Plain ‘ole writer’s block. But now you’re hear so we can get this heap up and running again. Grab a broom!”
“No, YOU grab a broom you nasty misfit, I have writing to do as I haven’t been under a pile of rubbish for three months.”

“Not yet boy, not yet…”

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Tiamat Dragons Clan Heraldry By Kenneth Hicks ID 846092

Hot Garbage: The Yallan Written By Notwillard ID# 953947 on kong

For long time I was looking forward to scavenging a Yallan from some Drochah minions, hitting raid after raid, with the carnage piling up around me, thinking one day I'll hit that One in Fifty chance and finally get me a sweet 95ton ride. Even though I didn't have any 95 ton mechs so far, bigger has always been better, and I remember looking at this mech early on in my piloting career, thinking that with all that shielding it's got to be one strong mech. Room for 5 shield modules at lvl 17? I don't think any other crystal mech can compare to that. Plus, they can equip some of the biggest, baddest shield modules in the game.

Recently I finally nabbed one. Best day ever! Or so I thought. 

At 95ton, seems any kind of flaw in a mechs design just gets magnified many times over. Test driving my Yallan was the most frustrating experience of my piloting career. It couldn't dodge any shots fired at it. From my early testing, and even after retrofitting it with some black market chassis unavailable to the masses to correct this, it under-performed immensely. Too slow it seems, and hardly any noticeable damage. Definitely not worth putting my limited collection of spikes on it to correct the dodge issue.

In the Yallan's defense, when configured with mostly niode equips it's almost not completely useless...except for that speed of 11 proved to be a killer in testing situations at my level. Compared to the top speed of similar mechs like the Magnus, which can readily hit 40, and has other similar stats, this Yallan really earned it's nickname of "Hot Garbage".

Hot Garbage

Tons: 95
Level: 60 / 60
Armor: 790
Proj. Damage + 4% 
Laser Damage + 13% 
Fire Damage + 46%
Speed + 11 
Fork 30% 
2X Damage 16% 
Trample 12% 
Crit-Kill 14% 
Dodge (50) 
Precision (52) 
Auto Repair (3) 
Shield (256) 

Saturday, November 4, 2017

The Piker and the Chicken Dancer by Kenneth Hicks; #846092

“Nothing like having down time, pfft.” I was in a ripe mood today. A number of Clans had been ordered from the last excursion to beat feet over to Vupa 6 in case of another Gateway anomaly. This was not taken well by the men as it cancelled R&R, made them put in extra hours readying things from the last battles, load onto and off of the drop ships, and now 84 hours later, sit in cold mud waiting for something to happen.

Colonel Ken Hicks was sitting on the foot of his Pike, trying to keep his feet dry. While he wasn’t in the mud itself, the mist was so heavy that everything was still a bit soaked through.

“Ay there, Cochese! You look so down, I’ve seen the arse end of a Dingo look prettier than you!”

Ken looked to his right and saw the slanted smile of Joel Parras walking his way. The crazy Aussie was always good for a laugh, but a devil in the field, always boasting some great kills for the Northwind Dragons.

“If I’m the arse end, you must be what I sicced up last night you belligerent Dundee.”

“Aw, don’t be that way big fella, I brought ye somthin’ nice!”

In Joel’s left hand, an amber bottle appeared that had a green wax seal and a set of fangs on the label. In his right, a white bottle, red wax, and a Gargoyle on the front.

“Snarvum Venom and some Olde Stoney. You are a sick man sir. Get over here and I’ll start the tunes.”

After about three hours of drinking, both bottles were gone and both pilots were feeling a bit sassy.

“Hey Hicksey, we need to do something to break up this monotony. Got any ideas?”

“How about a friendly Point mech challenge?” Ken said with a sidelong glance.

“That’d be fun, but the ground crew’d have my guts for garters if I get any damage to her.”

“Who said anything about damage? We have a set of that Mecha M.I.L.E.S. gear for training shave-heads. We could whip that up in a jiffy. It’d be fun!”

Now to the layman, M.I.L.E.S. stand for multiple integrated laser engagement system. Where this becomes interesting is it’s a giant harness that fits your mech with sensors, and has low output lasers that shoot in the place of your armament.

So both pilots go and abscond with a mule (transport platform), sign out two sets of gear, then head back to their Point Mechs to get them harnessed up.

Needless to say, when you have an outpost of bored pilots, grunts, and techs, tongues start to wag. Pretty soon, there was a 10 square click grid sectioned off with seating and bets being placed. Both the Brotherhood and the Dragons were present, whooping it up, eating BBQ, and generally making a party out of it.

While Ken was Piloting his massive Pike, decked out with shiny niodes, Joel was suiting up in his old reliable Dreadnought, the Chicken Dancer.

Bets had the Pike at 3-1, but Ken knew better. Joel was a frakkin’ demon when it came to Chicken Dancer, putting through paces that normally an 85 ton machine has any right to be performing. This’ll be tough.

Both pilot’s went to their respective ends of the grid and came out when the Beacon sent a ping. Ken looked for a nice piece of outcropping to put his back to. That way he could keep Joel in his front 180, cutting down on where it could run.

As if on cue, Chicken Dancer came sprinting out from his left, racing headlong down the ridge line, turning at the waist to try and get some shots off with his massive Chronysis Rails.

Expecting this ploy, Ken let loose with a volley of ten Omen Barrels in a back to front sweep pattern. This drove the Chicken down the hill even faster so as to outrun the barrage.

“Ah you sneaky bastard, you set that up, dintcha!” Ken heard over his com.

“Aw c’mon Parras, you know I’ve been hit in the head too many times to use strategy!”

At this point, the Pike’s gears finally kicked in and he was able to dodge out of his nest. And not a moment too soon as pings started going off in his sensors from multiple hits being sprayed with Joel’s Arbitrator shots.

Four Meson Drives started to whine as The Piker ran out of the line of fire much faster than what Joel was expecting.

“Shooo! Lookit you! You spent some credits after the last war!”

Right then, Joel’s sensors started sending off massive pings as three Blue Dragons went straight across his hull.

The crowd was screaming as the two mighty mechs squared off. Several times, you’d think that Chicken Dancer was pinned down, only to leap to safety and cut up the Piker’s hull.

“I’ve gotta do something different or he’s going to continue to pick me apart” Ken thought.

Running straight at Chicken Dancer, Ken shot volley after volley at the legs of Joel’s mech driving him to the South East corner.

“He’s gonna run him right out of the zone!” many cried. Members of the Brotherhood shouted warnings as Dragon’s whooped with glee.

Ken stopped running forward just in time to avoid a particularly marshy field, then set loose with every missile to the rear of the Chicken Dancer.

“Now, dammit!” thought Ken. And just as expected, at the last possible moment, you saw the Dreadnaught come to a halt, leg hydraulics popping with the strain as the mecha transferred the energy of it’s run into a crouch, then leaping backwards through the air.

Everyone gasped as 85 tons of mecha flew (not unlike an ungainly chicken), it’s arch clearing 25 feet.

Ken backed up and ran to the right, keeping his Ieye on the Dreadnaught as it flew backwards, came down, and landed in the marshy field that he’d avoided earlier.


All the way up to the cockpit.

“Nooooo!!!” everyone heard over the com as Joel screamed in dismay.

Kem walked his Pike up gingerly behind the Dreadnaught, took his mecha’s cannons on his left arm, held them up to the cockpit, and opened up his external speakers.”


They crowd fell about themselves laughing as hard as they could. Gales of laughter flooding the field.

“Ha, ha, ha Mr. Smart Guy. Now help me outta here.”

“what, and get my mech stuck? Sorry man, my groundcrew would have my…”
“I know, I know!!! Just help me out of the cockpit, I’ve gotta go explain this!”

After it was all said and done, everyone had fun, no one got hurt, and we remain ready for when the enemy does show their faces. And maybe just a little fresher than before.