Mark Simmons (scorpio@best.com)
Mon, 4 Oct 1999 09:19:22 -0700


Kev K writes,

>Second, the beam scattering weapon. I don't know much about this little
>gadget except for the very few usages seen in the Second Gundam
>Movie,"Soldiers of Sorrow" and the gouf battle episode in 8th MS team.
>Supposely it's used to blind the opponent during the battle but it doesn't
>seem to be quite effective in the shows.

  True, but I've heard (and you've confirmed) that it's murder in the CCA
game. Seems a bit unbalancing - if it were that good, everybody would
want one. :-)

> I mean how many rounds can you shoot with a bazooka?!? Five? Or Ten
>rounds? And after that, no reloads. Unless you go back to your mothership
>or base to get another one. Beam rifles and machine guns can be reloaded
>since the battery packs and magazines are usually attached to the waist.

  Actually, One Year War-era beam rifles can't be reloaded - the first
beam rifle with a swappable energy pack is the GP01's rifle. The Gundam's
rifle is good for 12-15 shots, which is better than the 5-7 of a typical
bazooka, but neither can be readily reloaded.

>Most of the time I see Mobile Suits evading a bazooka
>warhead more easily than a gun.

  Hm. As you point out, you do see Doms using machine guns as well (at
least in the later shows), just as Zakus sometimes use bazookas.
Presumably the bazooka isn't intended as the be-all and end-all of
weapons. But, given its limited ammo and poor accuracy, is its real
purpose? After all, even the Gundam uses a bazooka on occasion, instead
of its trusty beam rifle.

  For one thing, there's range. In space, shell weapons keep right on
going indefinitely, while beam rifles scatter to the point of
near-harmlessness over a distance of perhaps 20 kilometers. By the time
the bazooka shell hits a target at that range, it's had ample opportunity
to move out of the way, but it should work great against relatively
immobile targets like ships. (And the damage will be the same at any
range.) In atmosphere, beam weapons dissipate even faster; shell weapons
have to worry about friction and gravity, but bazooka shells at least
appear to be rocket-propelled, so they should do pretty well for range.

  As compared to machine guns, bazookas obviously pack more punch. Mobile
suits are vulnerable enough that you'd be better off spraying 'em with
bullets and hoping for a lucky hit, but we've never seen anybody take out
a warship with a machine gun, have we?

  So at first glance, it looks like the bazooka is best suited for
long-range attacks on large, heavily-armored, and slow-moving targets
like ships and base defenses.

  In the original series, we see bazooka-equipped Doms battling the
Gundam (which is nigh-invulnerable to machine guns) and attacking Jaburo
(full of tanks, stationary defenses, and miscellaneous buildings). Both
occasions seem to call for bazookas rather than machine guns. The
consistent use of bazookas in space is harder to justify, since we see
lots of Rick Doms engaging in general-purpose skirmishing rather than
attacking ships, bases, or indestructible mobile suits...

-- Mark

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