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March 4, 2009

Battlebrik posted today with the title “Size matters not.”  It was in relation to the size of one force in Mechaton verses the other.  The title itself got me thinking about what several people have said lately about the size of mecha models, and their corresponding suitability for use in mechaton.  I then remembered a thread on the Forge about the size of infantry and civilians in mechaton, and that was it!  I knew I was writing about scale today.


If you look through the Mechaton rules you won’t find anything about scale.  Nothing talking about ground scale, or mech scale, or even the scale of a turn in relation to the passage of time.  I thought about this for some time, and I think I have the reason why.

Because Vincent is BRILIANT!

You see because the rules work in relation to themselves, not in relation to some arbitrarily decided scale.  By letting you decide the scale, the size of the battlefield, the size of the mechs, even the measurement for the range ruler; he has made the rules system suitable to any scale you choose to apply to it.

Vincent says this game is about “Giant Fighty Robots,” and so it is, but what is giant?  I found three pictures online that might help us decide. 


These photos are much more detailed than they look.  If you save them, and open them in another program you can zoom in and see much more.


 This second photo divides the mecha into two groups the one on the left is the “Super Robot” group, and on the right is the “Realistic Robot” group.

Group shot 2

Group shot 2

 The third photo is not of animated robots, but robots from live action shows.

Group shot 3

Group shot 3


As you can see by looking at the height lines on the left of each shot, the size of mecha can vary wildly.   
Lets look at infantry scale now, and how it affects our perceptions of the mech models. This first pic is with an infantry model of the scale that Vincent says he prefers for his games.  The soldier figure is seven plates high, making it 7/8 of an inch.  Let’s make our soldier with his boots and helmet come to six feet tall.  At that scale the “Clasic” mech next to him which stands 1 7/8 inches tall becomes a  13 foot tall mech, or 3.9 meters tall.


micro plus scale

micro plus scale

The second pic is in a classic micro fig scale.  At five plates high the soldier model is more of a location and height marker for the infantry unit, not an indication of width.  At this scale the mech is now 18 feet tall, that is 6 yards or 5.49 meters tall.

micro scale

micro scale

The third shot is at “Two plate scale.”  This increases the height of our mech to 45 feet, 15 yards, or 13.72 meters tall.  At this scale our “infantry marker” can represent a whole squad of soldiers.

Two plate scale

Two plate scale

The fourth picture is at one “Tile” scale.  Our mech becomes 90 feet, 30 yards or 27.43 meters tall.  As you might have predicted our infantry “Tile” can represent an entire infantry platoon if we so choose.


Tile scale

Tile scale

We are not limited to just these scales.  I have found photos on line of people playing Mechaton in Mini-fig scale.  They each built cart-like battlewagons, bristling with weapons, and “open-air” minifig drivers.  They looked to be having a blast.  I also have read about another group using the rules with their plastic Gundam models.

One final thing, if you look at the first group shot of mecha up top, you will notice that the bottom 5 meters of the chart got cropped off at some point.  With our measurements of the “Clasic” mech at the four different scales, the fist one might not even be visible because of the crop, and the last one at 27 meters is still on the smaller end of the spectrum.



Keepin it “Stompy!”

I will post more on the topic of scale soon, but I think you must now be starting to see the full scope and magnitude of Vincent’s radiant Brilliance.


3 Comments leave one →
  1. Mantisking permalink
    March 5, 2009 2:28 am

    Personally, I always thought the “basic” Mechaton mech from the rulebook was comparable in size to a Patlabor.

    But yeah, not tying the game to any one scale was a stoke of brilliance on Vincent’s part.

  2. March 5, 2009 9:51 am

    I think I can name everything from the second one, and probably a good 75% of the first one.

    Also, Armored Trooper scale FTW!

  3. battlebrik permalink
    March 6, 2009 4:14 pm

    Wow, thanks for putting this together…I’ll just bask in your “scholarly” knowledge on this one…

    It seems that I naturally gravitated to the micro scale.

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