Course 4: Pilot Training

Welcome to Pilot Training...MechWarrior.

This room contains all of the tools necessary to hone your BattleMech piloting skills. Learn the information well, as the same information will save your skin in the heat of battle.

Pilot Skills

Torso twisting

Torso twisting is the most important skill you will use outside of learning to press the trigger. The reason is that when you are charging, your opponent only has to pull the trigger and does not have to move the targetting reticle one inch. When you are running horizontally across your opponent's line of sight, the targetting reticle must always be moving horizontally and the weapons must be fired simultaniously.

The drawback to running forward and looking to the side is that you have no idea of what is in from of your 'Mech. Sometimes, you will need to quickly snap the 'Mech's torso towards the front.

Keep the torso twisting controls handy, like on a joystick hat. One of the other two 'emergency straightening' controls is handy in a pinch. Consider also putting one of those on your 'Mech controls.

Action Keyboard sequence
Turn turet left ,
Turn turett right .
Snap turret forward /
Legs turn to turrett m


Looking around

When the heat is on and lose sight of your opponent through the front view of your cockpit, it sure would be nice to continue your view around, even after the torso is completely over. This is also called looking around and can be a valuable asset. Unfortunately, most pilots only use this functionality for screen shots and sight seeing on their way home from a mission. This is particularly useful when fighting fast moving 'Mechs and you need to quickly pan right to see which way they were going.

Looking around is the most usefull when assigned to a hat on a digital joystick. The performance of loking around on the Seitek X-36 hats (in digital mode) ranks as one of the best.

Action Keyboard sequence
Pilot Look Up Ctrl+Arrow-down
Pilot Look Down Ctrl+Arrow-up
Pilot Look Left Ctrl+Arrow-left
Pilot Look Right Ctrl+Arrow-right

Lag shooting

Lag shooting is shooting ahead of your target to compensate for the time delay between computers in a multiplayer battle. The weapons fire from your 'Mech should hit ahead of the enemy 'Mech. The distance that you want to lead is anywhere from 1/2 'Mech to 2 'Mechs distance in front of the enemy. Here is the procedure for finding the lag spot, or the spot that your wepons should be striking to cause damage to the opposing 'Mech:

Get your opponent into the position of having to horizontally run across your line of sight.
Start firing 2 imaginary 'Mechs in front of the target.
In 1/2 'Mech increments, slowly bring the leading fire closer to the targetted 'Mech.
Once your IR display registers damage to the targetted 'Mech, that is the lag spot.

Pilot Tactics

Circle of Death

An excellent green to elite level tactic is the Circle of Death. A Circle of Death is when two opponents do battle while walking around in a circle. Both pilots stay at either side of the circle and both are going the same direction. So no distance is closed, but each mech is always moving horizontally across the opponent's line of sight. Moving horizontally across a line of site greatly improves the chances that your opponent will miss the shot.

Use of Range

All advantages must be exploited during a battle, especially the proper use of range. If you can use range to your advantage, your opponent will be seriously damanged by the time the the battle actually begins. Here are some tips for using range effectively:

Get situated before distance is closed. Many battles begin at more than a distance of 1 kilometer. Use this wisely by getting cover behing a building or a natural barier. Shoot at the opponent and close the distance as you protect your 'Mech on the way into battle.
Use of Long Range Missiles (LRM). When from 750 to 1000 meters from your opponent, attemp to damage your opponent's armor with LRMs. See if the enemy is protected behind a structure by firing a rack once and see if damage occurs. You also want to be protected behind a structure or natural barier.
Stay in range that your mech is configured for. If your 'Mech has many LRM racks, then try to stay more than 500 meters away from your opponent. If you have many SPLAS and MPLAS, close the distance to about 100 meters.

Jumping during Battles

Moving horizontally across the opponent's line of sight is a good tactic, but why not confuse your opponent more by travelling horizontally and vertically? This tactic is easy to learn but hard to master. The simple explaination of jumping during battle is to jump up and down (about 10 meters high) while moving horizontally across your opponents line of sight. This means that the enemy pilot will have to aim up, down, left, right on top of firing the correct weapon group.

Multiple attackers

In the unfortunate incident of a 2 on 1 or a 3 on 2 situation, multiple attacker tactics must be used. There is really only a few:

Manuver the two opponents into a straight line. This forces the furthest oponent to have to shoot through his/her wingman if he/she wants to hit you
Be aware of the second opponent...for that pilot is probably shooting at you from 6 o'clock.
Use all of the cover you can find.

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