Saturday, September 24, 2016

BattleTech AU: Compressed Century

Some years ago I struck on a number of ways to reuse BattleTech's existing material to generate alternate universes with a minimum of brain sweat. Here's the first one:

The Compressed Century
1960s: race to the moon.
1970s: race to the stars.
1984: Terra's governments collapse under the strain of supporting ~150 colonies. All Terran assets are withdrawn or abandoned.
1989-1990: Admiral McKenna consolidates power on Terra, then reconquers a swath of the colonies. He's eventually stopped by ex-Terran Militia who were abandoned in the 1984 withdrawal.
All years: the events described in a given book happen in the year it was published. The 'Mechs published in 1984 are available in 1984, the ones published in 1990 are available in 1990, and so on.
If you've looked into BattleTech for any length of time, you may, on occasion, have heard someone complain that certain aspects of its history are hard to swallow; the "Compressed Century" sidesteps all those issues, is extremely straightforward to implement, and (since you simply take things in the order they were published) completely negates any need to refer to Word of God.


  1. I had never heard of people picking at the backstory, but it's Battletech--a game whose premise is fighting wars with giant robots while whining about war and fans bitch about the physics of made-up weapons--so I have no doubt that's a thing.

    1. FASAnomics, "a dynasty/empire shouldn't last this long," "technological backsliding is unrealistic," etc.

      Heh, "fighting wars while whining about war." Yeah, that's dead on.