Company A, 2/3rd MID reporting for inspection, Sir!

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
I have been working on five boxes of Exosuits on and off (mostly off :wink:) for over two months now and I'm finally finished with the 17 trooper models. Instead of permanently fixing the weapons to the figures, I decided on a project to mod the arms of the Grizzlies and the Cougars and the Atlas Rigs of the Grizzlies with tiny neodymium magnets. By doing the same to the various weapon options, I now have a force that can switch its weapons before a game, and that force will be represented in miniature as it is used within the game (can you say, "Action Figures"??? :roll:).

By countersinking 1/8"x1/16" ND disk magnets into the arms and Atlas Rigs and the weapons, I can switch weapons into combinations that would make Dizzy Flores, well, dizzy! :wink: The project didn't display its flexibility as much with the Cougar suits as there is only one held weapon that is carried in either of two choices- a Rotary Sixgun or a Firestorm missile system. Counting for weapons and modding both arms (for any "lefties"- hey, why not?), I used eight magnets per Cougar model. I decided early-on that I didn't want to mount weapons with a single contact point, as they could then too easily spin on the arms like a turret (a feature not yet authorized by the rules!). In using pairs of contact points in the arms and the weapons they easily attach and dismount for game use, depending on what you pay for. The mod system really shines on the Grizzly though, considering that there are three weapons in combinations mounted on two of either the arms or the two 'magnetic holsters' (magnetic, literally!) on the Atlas Rig of the Grizzly. Thus, I can have dual Sixguns, dual Firestorms or even dual Thermic Lances in either action mode on the arms or in Close Combat hand-to-hand (maybe that's hand-to-pincer!) 'holstered' mode.

In using two boxes of Cougars to mostly represent corporal, NCO & officer cadre, I then gathered up my firepower projection in three supporting boxes of Grizzlies. This made up a collection of seventeen Exosuit models that I decided I had enough models of to then form into a Company-level force. I therefore present you with Company A, 2nd Regiment of the 3rd Mobile Infantry Division!

* * * * * * * * * *

Graduating from an advanced Exosuit tactics course at Camp Currie, in Iowa, titled "Back to Boot, a course on advanced tactics using the M-4A1 and M-4A2 Combat Exosuits", these photos were taken of the two reinforced platoons of three squads comprising Alpha Company of the 2/3 Mobile Infantry Division. Adopting a phrase used normally with the K9 Corp "We Fight as One", this Company although incorporating various mixed MOS units operates at a level above what is normally expected of a force of the Mobile Infantry.

Capt. Stewart has lost most of his Company headquarters unit in previous battles, but has not requested replacements. It seems that he is one of the "hands-on" types, and has taken direct control of one of his three squads. Capt. Jeffery "Jeb" Stewart let it be known that he favored "the smell of burning Bugs in the morning", so his personal squad became adept at the use of the Firestorm Missile System. Capt. Stewart excels in fast, accurate direction of fire and has had SICON military intelligence training. Not one to be impressed by the Fleet's "glassing" of Bug masses from their relative safety in the sky, "Stewart's Stormbringers" (as they were to be so named) do it 'up close and personal' and sometimes make use of the M-998A1 Pee-Wee atomic warhead.

2nd squad, 1st platoon, Alpha Company or "Grissom's Gunslingers" is headed up by Sergeant Major Glenn "Gus" or "Gunney" Grissom. "Gunney" Grissom prefers to disassemble his targets with his dual sixgun rotary cannons. He has inspired his charges to specialize in the use of this deadly weapon, and every member of the squad is so armed. If the name of Gus Grissom sounds a little familiar to readers, it is because a distant relative of SgtM. Glenn Grissom was one of the early space pioneers of Earth's past. "Gus" as he is called only by close friends with higher rank or just "Gunney" by his squad, has a "True Grit" and "Can Do!" quality that makes him an irreplaceable asset to Capt. Stewart.

1st squad, 2nd platoon, Alpha Company or more commonly named "King's K'nights" ("Knights" pronounced with a non-silent "K"!), is one of the Mobile Infantry's squads that is also considered as a platoon in its own right. Lt. Arthur Lancelot King ("It's not my fault!" he is often heard to say) is a very experienced Mobile Infantry officer, and has mastered the skill to direct fast and accurate fire down upon his squad's enemies. With specific and specialized training, his squad has been cross-trained in the use of the powerful and deadly Thermic Lance. Some say that the ghost of Merlin himself follows and protects the 2nd platoon of Alpha Company. As if cast-on by a horrific and powerful spell, some of the Bug swarms facing "King's K'nights" have totally and completely vaporised under the devastating fire of just three Grizzly-suited troopers armed with twin Thermic Lances. Some without seeing it say it must be a jest and just another MI urban legend but if you are an Arachnid that happens to be charging these lance-wielding "knights", it will most-likely be your last joust. Someone once told Lt. King of the curiosity that the name of the Grizzly suit was named for a bear, but interestingly enough one possible etymology of the word Arthur was Welsh for "bear-man". Curious thing, that. Yet another etymology links the name Arthur to the star Arcturus, Lt. King was told. The word Arcturus is in classical Latin, and would have been Arturus in the late Latin of the 5th – 6th century. Arcturus has been called the "Guardian of the Bear" and is near Ursa Major as viewed from Earth. Ursa Major is also called the "Great Bear constellation". If the man we know as Arthur had used Arturus or Artur-os as his alias, its meaning would have been easily understood by both the Romano-British and native British alike; a stout bear-like defender against the invaders. The strangeness of this story does not end with this prophetic description of the Arachnid threat. It ends with the knowledge that the main R&D locale and the first prototypes delivered to SICON originated at the Federation research and proving grounds on Arcturus III. The curious link between Arthur and Arcturus can only add to the legend that is growing around Lt. Arthur King and his Grizzly-suited lance-wielding armored "knights". Guard them well, Merlin!

32GRAD_EXO_S.jpg


32GRAD_EXO_G.jpg


32GRAD_EXO_K.jpg


EXO_COMPANY_A.jpg

COMPANY A, 2/3rd Mobile Infantry Division
Shown at completion of "Back-to-Boot" Advanced Tactics Training

Dedicated to Scipio, a "fan of fluff" :wink:
 

Turtle

Mongoose
Using a Russian camo scheme of all things. Bah, my martian Hardcases could take them. :p

Still, I love how these models look, they're bulky, armoed, and bristling with weapons. I always liked the mongoose original designs over the ones they had to base off the cartoon and movie.
 

tneva82

Mongoose
Sorry to dissapoint but company is 4 platoons each 4 squads 5 strong :D

So you are 63 exosuits short :lol:

That or that is one HECK of a under-strenght company :wink:

Still. Models look good :)
 

Rob_A

Mongoose
That is a lush looking army.

Are they dipped in mahogany wood dye? They look like it... Awesome.

I must get some exos, they are so awesome.
 

crucible_orc

Mongoose
a company could be 3 platoons of 2 squads(of 3 exosuits) pluis at least on officer per platoon nad a captain. so a minimum of 22 exosuits for a company, nad a maximum of something like 92.

REmeber, a platoon is ANYWHERE From 2 squads of 3 and an NCO, to 4 squads of 5 plus 2 NCOs and an LT.
 

Ragnarok

Mongoose
This looks like a good thread for my first post!

The exosuits are well done, BuShips! I'm also placing magnets in exosuits, so I appreciate your comments about using them.

BuShips wrote that he would use Cougars to mostly represent corporals, NCOs and officers.

Towards the end of Chapter 13 of SST (Ace HB, p. 191), Rico tells Zim to send one scout to his position and "the other three scouts to relieve the listening posts farthest forward." It seems that, somewhere amid the six eight-man squads of his platoon, there are four troopers in Scout suits - our Cougar suits. In the previous paragraph, Rico remarks that "A scout's suit is as fast as a command suit, twice the speed of a marauder." If we're using Cougar suits as command suits, perhaps they should also be used for the 4 scouts per platoon (the question of whether Cougar suits should be given twice the speed of Grizzly suits should probably be posed on another thread!).

tneva82 wrote that Company A, 2/3rd MID was 63 exosuits short of the 80 needed for the TO&E he quoted.

In the novel, a MI platoon has 53 suits (LT, PLT SGT equivalent, 2 Section Ldrs (SGT), 2 Asst. Section Ldrs (CPL), 6 squads of eight, each lead by a squad leader (CPL) with a Lance CPL for flexibility (essentially, this allows use of two fire teams).

Also by the novel's TO&E, a MI company has three platoons, a CO (CPT) and a First SGT/Career SGT.

Therefore, a company at full strength has 161 combatants: CO, 1st SGT, 3 LTs, 3 Plt SGTs, 6 Section Sgts, 6 Asst Section CPLS, 18 Squad Leader CPLs, 18 Lance CPLs, and 105 Troopers.

Using BuShips' Cougar breakdown with the novel's TO&E would mean 38 Cougar suits (not counting Lances) with 123 Grizzly suits for the rest of the troopers and Lance Corporals.

If four Scouts in each platoon were also given Cougar suits, then there would be 50 Cougars suits and 111 Grizzly suits. Buying such a company at current prices should make Mongoose very happy (let's see, 17 Cougar boxes and 37 Grizzly boxes at $30.00 per box ... :shock: :cry: $1,620! )

Er .. any possibility of plastic exosuits coming out? :)
 

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
Thanks to all for the feedback; even the "friendly fire" is appreciated :D . I plan to next paint up at least a third or maybe even a fourth Platoon of Pathfinders that should be able to support and expand Company A of the 2/3. I am aware that compared to a 'real world' TO&E my force comes up short, but these are game pieces and I will expect to see more gamers than I not deploying a full-strength collection, short of owning a winning lotto ticket :wink:. I assembled my force based not so much on the original book as the game materials. Exosuits are a powerful and expensive asset and are not counted the same as lesser armed units (and with less training investment). As you flow down from Exosuits into Pathfinders, Power Suits and Light Armor Troopers, I would expect to see 'Quantity replacing Quality" as an equalizer of force within units. According to the TO&E of the Army Book, a standard Exosuit squad is composed of three units. One sergeant and two troopers is standard, but can be reinforced with up to three additional troopers. So based on a minimum TO&E (of the rulebook), I'm only one unit short of having six squads. I decided on a more condensed organisation because if I had done triangular squads a full third of my force would have been sergeants (!) and I wanted a different 'personality' mix. At present, I have one Captain, 1 LT, 1 Sergeant Major NCO, 3 Sergeants, 3 Corporals, 2 Lance Corporals (really an RPG rank, but this way I can use them as either pvts. or cpls.), and 6 Privates. I just liked that mix better, and even at that level they are not yet full strength squads(!). I want to thank Ragnarok for filling us in on the canon infantry info, as I enjoyed that bit of research very much. Yes, based upon discussions on the Forums here I decided that the Cougar was better suited (pun intended) as a Command suit. It would be great if Mongoose added a third suit (Command) and then we could use the nimble Cougar as a Scouting unit (or offer a new sleek Scouting unit). I suppose there is nothing to stop a gamer from using Pathfinders as "Scouts", as that is their official function you know. A slightly beefed-up Pathfinder would make a decent Scout suit maybe. My long-range goal is to complete a full Regiment, with mixed Exosuits, Pathfinders, Power Suits and Light Infantry, basically grouping my entire Federation collection under a single banner. As far as the Marauder 'suits', I will probably use them as support for the Power Suits, as they are fewer in number and are used that way in the CGI series. If I collect enough, I may form them into their own Company someday. I'll end this little spurt of typing with something that I read from the Mobile Infantry Army Book, but this might change with the new rules design (maybe not though)- "Your army may include a single Mobile Infantry Captain, as long as the army includes at least two platoons (and is therefore considered company level)." Therefore, you can call your collection of MI Exosuit miniatures a 'company' with a minimum of two platoons, and even those two platoons only have to contain a single squad (like how my 2nd platoon is composed). Therefore an 'official' game legal company can be only seven models if at absolute minimum strength (2 3-man squad/platoons with an officer). I have three beefed-up platoons of 17 models, so I'm well above those minimum force levels. While way short of the original book canon TO&E, as a game there has to be some consideration given for condensation or we'd hardly ever see an LT and never see a Capt. on the gaming table. Here is another rules quote from the Exosuit section: "Your Exosuit platoon may include up to two Exosuit squads for each officer in the platoon. You must include a minimum of one squad in the platoon." Again, I want to thank even the friendly criticism because I might be able to help those look at their modest model collections now in a new light and allow the owners to 'promote' a few squads to platoons, and a few platoons to companies. :twisted: Heck, it might do wonders for the models' morale and carry them 'over the top' to victory against the Bugs. :idea:
 

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
Rob_alderman said:
That is a lush looking army.

Are they dipped in mahogany wood dye? They look like it... Awesome.

I must get some exos, they are so awesome.

Oops, I forgot to answer your question in my last post. While I've seen discussion of the 'dip' method here and on TMP, I have combined a method of using almost pastel colors (really it's geniune arcrylic vinyl cartoon paint!) and then washing the painted figure with varying amounts of acrylic artists ink. Depending on the figure, I'll either do a watered-down brushed on ink wash or in some cases use the ink at full strength. For these figures, I used several coats of a somewhat thinned down mixture of black and brown ink. Any craft store of art store will have an array of colors, including brick red and grey and black. It's really 'antiquing' the model, and although using different materials is probably similar to the dip method using water-based wood stain. Dry brushing is so time intensive that I came up with this about 17 years ago when I was finishing some custom models for my personal collection of 1/48 Omnimechs that FASA had hired me to cast. If you have ever seen a copy of the 1990's Omnimech rulebook with all of the full-color illustrations inside, you'd have seen models of those pictured. Of course, these days they draw them on computers (beautiful, what a shame!, heh).
 

tneva82

Mongoose
crucible_orc said:
a company could be 3 platoons of 2 squads(of 3 exosuits) pluis at least on officer per platoon nad a captain. so a minimum of 22 exosuits for a company, nad a maximum of something like 92.

Check S&P wargamer 33. You have MI organisation right there :lol:

Albeit it's for fresh no casualties organisations but then again these were supposed to be pictures of fresh company straight out of training :lol:

But then again: Who has money to buy full company :wink:
 

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
tneva82 said:
crucible_orc said:
a company could be 3 platoons of 2 squads(of 3 exosuits) pluis at least on officer per platoon nad a captain. so a minimum of 22 exosuits for a company, nad a maximum of something like 92.

Check S&P wargamer 33. You have MI organisation right there :lol:

Albeit it's for fresh no casualties organisations but then again these were supposed to be pictures of fresh company straight out of training :lol:

But then again: Who has money to buy full company :wink:

Well, there some inconsistances bouncing around, to be sure. Matt's write-up and the rules have a few incongruities, but that's not any bad thing. For example, in S&P #33 he says: The basic Exosuit squad consists of one Sergeant, one Corporal and three troopers. Four squads go to make up an Exosuit platoon, led by a Lieutenant and Senior Sergeant.

That is 22 total for Exos, but that's for a platoon and not a company. Somewhere above, I think I quoted out of the MI Army Book that the basic Exo squad is three troopers (one sgt. and two troopers). According to the unit options, up to three extra troopers can be added. This makes a total of six for a full platoon, led by an LT (for seven then). But on the previous page in the opening descriptions of Exosuits, an Exosuit platoon contains one or more squads and an LT, though they can swell to include two NCOs, and an additional five units.

I'm not sure what is meant by "an additional five units", as it doesn't sync with the per-squad allowance to add three units. Since they were talking about platoons there, the "five" should be "six" then to match the next page, with the two NCOs on top of that total. So really, according to the Army Book (which should even trump Matt's good article in S&P #33), a literal "platoon" (not even a squad) could be a skeleton force with an LT, a SGT and two troopers (4!). According to the Captains info, a company level force has at least two platoons (8 guys now) at a minimum level of organisation. Not realistic, but like you said (and me I think) good if you are short on money and long on pride, lol. Of course, all of this might go out the airlock the first time we see the Evo rules, heh. Oh, one additional bit of trivia- Matt said in the S&P article that:

Exosuit platoons are never recruited directly from boot camp. However, they are generally formed far behind the lines where extensive training
and analysis can be performed, so a newly commissioned Exosuit platoon is likely to begin with the ‘standard’ number of troopers, though
replacements are notoriously hard for Lieutenants to requisition.


My guys are not from boot camp, they have returned for an advanced course on Exosuit tactics, so the photos are of that '2nd graduation' (I just wanted them on a parade ground, looking good for the pics, lol). Since Matt said that replacement Exosuits are hard to get, my 'under-strength' company makes sense. Hey, it could be worse. I could have shown eight Cougars (a single box) as a game-legal "company". :wink:
 

tneva82

Mongoose
BuShips said:
Somewhere above, I think I quoted out of the MI Army Book that the basic Exo squad is three troopers (one sgt. and two troopers). According to the unit options, up to three extra troopers can be added.

But is the unit choise in army book UNDER STRENGHT squad or normal squad?-)

Afterall normal cap squad is 8 men strong yet army book has 5 as minimum choise...

The army books gives options to create both under and over strenght squads/platoons with text book squad/platoon being somewhere in the middle. In exosuit case platoon is 4 squads of 5 plus 2 officers. Until it starts to suffer casualties in which case it goes to lower until it gets merged with other platoon to make it viable in combat again at which point the other platoon is over strenght etc etc etc.

So really, according to the Army Book (which should even trump Matt's good article in S&P #33),

Not really since army book is about giving options :D It isn't there to give you text book platoon as basic force but to allow you to represent platoon in understrenght, normal and overstrenght(when remnants of other platoon has been merged with it) state.

But we'll call your company very, VERY understrenght one of extreme elite troopers :wink: Die hard elites with plenty of combat experience :D
 

crucible_orc

Mongoose
Given the description of Exosuits never coming from training, i think a full squad of exos 'in reality' so-to-speak is probably pretty rare. With reinforcements hard to com by, not to mention them basically having to be veterans in the first place, I'd think you'd see minimum squads more often the maximum squads.

Go do some research on wars. Paper strength and actual strength formation are two totally different thinks. in ww2, Germans had a paper strength panzer company size of about 22 tanks, yet they rarely got above 10 or 12 in reality.

HTE only time you get paper-strength units is during peace, or occasionally fresh out of training. since SICON is at war, it isn't a stretch to assume that many units are not paper strength. especially considering the casualties rates the MI seem to build up, at least, around here :)
 

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
tneva82, the Army Book is a rulebook, and updates rules that were even printed in the original rulebook. For example, the original rules set the cost of an LT at 120 pts. and the Army Book changed it to 115 pts. Considered a big change at the time, the Army Book has the cost of a cap trooper set at 25 pts., while the original rules were printed with the cost set at 30 pts., nearly a 17% drop in cost for the basic power suit cap trooper. Even though there is background info (fluff) dispersed throughout the Army Book, what I'm referring to are the rules for building game-legal squads, platoons and even a company with a Captain leading it. There are differences between the earlier S&P article and the Army Book on how to form the troopers. Where the S&P description states that the core squad is a sergeant, a corporal and three privates for example, the Army Book states the basic Exosuit squad is a sergeant and two 'troopers'. I'm going to take a leap and say that this was done to place the rules more in line with the release of the boxed Grizzly models which come in 'threes' :wink:. Heck, there are some places in the rules that state differences with even the basic cap power suit platoon. In the original rulebook (page 76 of the softcover), a power suit squad is defined as consisting of one sergeant (unit leader) and four cap troopers (220 points total). Up to three extra cap troopers may be added to the squad at +30 points each. Breaking down the unit with the original costs then, the four cap troopers @ 30 pts. (120) and a sergeant @ 100 pts. equals the 220 point figure perfectly. So the basic cap power suit squad will range from 220 to a maximum of 310 points. With the official changes listed in the Army Book, the basic trooper became 25 pts. and the sergeant dropped to 95 pts. They also added a points cost for a corporal at 50 pts. (or promoting a pvt. at +25) as a backup unit leader should you lose your sergeant (good idea). So if we now consider the modified lower and upper cost range of the revised basic cap power suit squad, we get a range of 195 pts. (lower, with 5 in the squad) to 270 pts. (upper, with 8 in the squad). Adding the optional corporal promotion at +25, we can get as high as 295 pts. As a small point of trivia, they forgot to mention that you could add up to three additional troopers in the Unit Options section in the Army Book, but I'm sure that the option is still offered. Now let's consider the points value of the ("elite?") Exosuit squad. Our low range is a basic squad of two Exo troopers (100 ea.) and a sergeant (125) for a minimum value of 325 pts. This minimum level three-man Exo squad is 30 pts. more than a maximum strength cap power suit squad of eight. I think that is what Mongoose intended here, by the way. You can however go to a full size squad and then the upper range of the Exo squad becomes six maximum at 625 points. If adding a corporal as we did in the cap power suit squad example above, we can value the squad at 635 pts. What I took from my study of the Army Book's TO&E was of course a way to balance units to fit into multiples of 1000 pt. groupings for battles (duh), so you can vary your tactics using different force levels and extra equipment and weapons (drop capsules, nukes, heroic traits, etc.). It will become interesting as to how the new rules may alter this. They might even have no effect at all on the TO&E that has been already established. My point is that the Army Book did indeed alter the TO&E that was established in the first book. It's not a big thing, but it does show that there are several ways to field "legal" units in the game. Besides, I couldn't have bought my Captain if I didn't have a "Company" for him to lead, lol. :lol:

Just for trivia sake, here is the "first" published TO&E out of the original rules (before the Army Book, which should supercede it)-

MOBILE INFANTRY FORCE ORGANISATION

A power suit squad consists of eight cap troopers (including 1 Corporal and 1 Sergeant).
A platoon consists of four squads (including 1 or 2 NCOs and 1 Lieutenant).
A company consists of 4 platoons (including 1 Captain).
A battalion consists of 4 companies (including 1 Major).
etc...

Oh, here is my TO&E just for fun (hey, it's pretty!) :wink:
If anyone sees an error, please alert me :D.

EXOcompany3.jpg
 

tneva82

Mongoose
BuShips said:
I'm going to take a leap and say that this was done to place the rules more in line with the release of the boxed Grizzly models which come in 'threes' :wink:.

Maybe. Maybe not. Concider LAMI. Why is basic squad in army book 8 strong, in S&P article 10 strong and box comes with 20 model...

Army book gives options, S&P gives fluff(and thus size of textbook organisation) and box sets have as many models as they think makes for viable product releases.

With the official changes listed in the Army Book, the basic trooper became 25 pt

This has something to do with ORGANISATION...What?

I'm talking about organisation of company. Not point costs.
 

BuShips

Cosmic Mongoose
tneva82 said:
Maybe. Maybe not. Concider LAMI. Why is basic squad in army book 8 strong, in S&P article 10 strong and box comes with 20 model...

That sounds like two squads to me, with an NCO and officer model maybe added. They need that many because they die at a faster rate :lol:. Oh, they upped the number in the Army Book to as many as twelve (eight still being the basic unit).

tneva82 said:
Army book gives options, S&P gives fluff(and thus size of textbook organisation) and box sets have as many models as they think makes for viable product releases.

With the official changes listed in the Army Book, the basic trooper became 25 pt

This has something to do with ORGANISATION...What?

I'm talking about organisation of company. Not point costs.

Well, you mentioned before (and in your comments just above) that the Army Book is for options. I'm just commenting that it's also a rulebook, with updates to the rules of the main rulebook, and my comments on points were to explain that it changed some rules also. Besides fundamental things like unit points costs changes, it also altered the TO&E of the first rulebook as well. So it's a rules change to the organisation options :wink: . I was trying to say that I used legal choices from the rules and it's a game-legal 'company' with a Captain leading it. As far as the actual numbers of troopers present, I'd agree that they're at platoon strength. Imho, what Matt said in S&P #33 is great fluff, but it and the main rulebook was updated by the Army Book. If someone wanted to use the S&P info, I wouldn't wish to stop them, though. It all works, even if it isn't all in perfect sync.
 

tneva82

Mongoose
BuShips said:
That sounds like two squads to me, with an NCO and officer model maybe added. They need that many because they die at a faster rate :lol:. Oh, they upped the number in the Army Book to as many as twelve (eight still being the basic unit).

10 is the textbook squad training camps aim to get them.

Well, you mentioned before (and in your comments just above) that the Army Book is for options.

Yes. So they give you options to create both understrenght, overstrenght and anything in between strenght squads.

Army books smallest minimums gives you understrenght squad/platoon/company whatever. Then you can start adding more trooppers/squads/platoons/whatever to get the varying degrees of full organisation and even overstrenght squad/platoon/company.

If bare minimum army book would allow would be textbook squad/platoon/company that would be very bad as it would create artificial view that no squad/platoon/company would enter battlefield without casualties from previous battles. Huh?
 
Top