Re: Some questions about EPACs, ECAPS, and magnetic bottles

Mark Simmons (
Tue, 15 Dec 1998 16:45:10 -0800

Probe writes,

> Don't Megabeam cannons _also_ fire Mega-particles? Then what is the
>difference between a beam cannon (Gundam) and Megabeam cannon (Zugock)?

  None whatsoever. Beam cannon equals mega beam cannon equals mega particle
cannon. Some instances of these may have E-caps, but it's seldom made clear
which do and which don't.

> One thing I've always wondered is that if EPACs store M-particles in a
>super-compressed state... well, isn't it _stupid_ to store them on your
>SHIELD!? I mean, your shield is getting pegged by Beam weapons left and
>right, what do you think is going to happen if your EPACs get hit by a
>stray shot?

  Kaboom! In later series, where E-packs are more plentiful, you often get
to see a beam rifle being hit and its E-pack(s) exploding. Big ol' bang.

> I was also wondering if any Gundam mecha has ever used its spare EPACs
>as jury-rigged explosives for use in getting into a colony, etc...

  Not so far, but it's surely possible, just as crippled mobile suits can
be used as reactor bombs...

> Hey, when does Gundam make the shift from rocket-based bazookas to
>energy bazookas? I was under the impression that the Mk.II's 'zook still
>fired shells.

  Yes, it did. Beam bazookas don't appear until F91; even the Nu Gundam's
hyper bazooka is a shell-firing weapon.

> It has to, otherwise the whole reliance of beam-weapon stregnth on
>reactor power goes out the window. I think we've talked about this before
>and I've theorized that the EPAC power gives the shot 'punch' while the MS
>power gives the shot 'accelleration'. I.e., the more EPAC juice, the more
>powerful the 'burst', the more MS-generator power, the longer range (and
>better accuracy_ of the shot.

  The Perfect Grade Gundam instruction manual actually has a graph charting
power input (horizontal axis) versus range (vertical). There are three
lines, each of which starts at zero-zero and then curves up to the right,
ultimately leveling off at the edge of the graph. The lines are minimum
damage, maximum damage, and effective firing range, in order of longest to
shortest range. Since the accuracy increases with the influx of power, it
seems clear that more power yields faster particles. And since there's a
single "maximum damage" line, it appears that this is constant regardless
of power input.

  In short, the PG Gundam manual exactly echoes your theory. The weapon
design determines the damage, by releasing whatever quantity of particles,
and then the power input speeds up the particles and thus determines the
effective range. Congrats, Probe!

  (FYI, the manual indicates power inputs of up to 10 MW, with the accurate
firing range leveling off at about 10 kilometers and the maximum damage
range leveling off at about 20 kilometers.)

> You'd have to, especially to explain how the heck "Funnels" are supposed
>to work without generators. Could really explain why their range is so
>short though, right?

  Yep! Not only would they be they limited by their E-cap capacity and
propellant supply, but by the size of their electrical battery as well.

> I mean, it seems really odd to me that we would have all these
>structures such as EPACs and ECAPs to be resivours of M-particles for use
>in firing, and suddenly we have this old mass-production MS that somehow
>seems to be able to pipe out M-particles through its hands! Don't shake
>hands with a GM! It just seems wierd to me that the GM should have this
>kind of feature while no other MS does... doesn't it seem like if a GM
>could do this then the Gundam should be able to _recharge_ its rifle
>(Slowly) through its hands?

  Yes, exactly. Either beam rifles can be very gradually replenished via
the mobile suit's hand, or the GM's beam spray gun should be an E-cap
weapon, despite the claims of the MSV books. That one's still in the
mystery file.

> One could argue that the GM's gun must have therefore been
>super-underpowered, but then why does the GM-GS require a big cooling
>bottle on its beam-pistol?

  My assumption would be that the GS gun's bottle is a funky-looking E-cap.

> It does _more_ damage if it spreads out and goes slow? That seems
>counterintuitive to me!

  More precisely, the damage is delivered over a greater area. A VSBR shot
can pierce just about anything, but it'll be a pretty teeny hole.

-- Mark
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Mark Simmons <>
MacAddict: the magazine! <>
Gundam: the Project! <>

Collecting is for butterflies and stamps.
And at least butterfly collectors take 'em out of the jar.

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