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/AKM/ - Guns, weapons and the art of war.

"War can only be abolished through war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is necessary to take up the gun." - Chairman Mao
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Ok, I'm going to make the dreaded question.
Could normal size mechas (like, 1.5 storey tall) be actually viable in warfare?


They’re easy as shit to see, easy to down with ordinary artillery, aircraft and drones and perform l the same functions tanks do but worse
It’s not that they can’t be built it’s that they’re fundamentally worthless in combat.


Two more important reasons
They’re bipedal meaning if you took down even one of the legs they’d fall instantly and become effectively fucking worthless to the pilot
Again they’re bipedal which means they’ll consume far more energy than wheeled or winged transport simply because they constantly need a force to move their legs since the force of rotation or gliding can’t just substitute in whenever the pilots foot is off the pedal


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To an extent but not really, Gundam explored that, having them face off against tanks. The primary practical use of big mecha have are
A) In space
B) Against kaiju (there's an interesting analysis by an artillery guy I read a couple years ago about using artillery against Kaiju - in the case of Pacific Rim - and he explained the inadvisability of massed artillery as a tactic).
C) Large powered combat exoskeletons
None are really relevant at the moment. Explore the "mech" thread on /anime/ for more on that.


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No, just no. The big reason is that in terms of engineering, standing is one of the worst things you can ever do since we might not notice it cause our legs are automated by our brains for our own sanity, but it requires thousands of minute adjustments a second to constantly balance, account for inertia etc. In practice this would mean a fucking giant gyroscope which would take up a massive amount of space, energy and expense along with the motors, wiring, plating for the legs all for what would otherwise be accomplished by caterpillar treads or roadwheels, AKA you're wasting a lot on just being on par with existing systems while still retaining vunerabilities like exposed legs which can be knocked out from under you, whereas all that effort could go towards improving actual practical designs.
It's just a lot of effort for not a lot of gain, like what does it actually offer? Height? Flexibility? Not really since mech fingertips don't have nerves or hairs so they can't grip stuff like how you think they would and have a hand->trigger interface is just redundant when you could build it into the mech's systems proper which then makes it basically the same as any other armoured vehicle. Layers upon layers of redundancies.
>In space
Even then not really, what benefit would a huminoid shape offer over say a sphere? Shape doesn't matter because there's no drag in space(I know technically there is but it's so minute it hardly matters) and the chassis can still can grip, maneuvers better, more efficient armour layout, more compact so smaller silhouette etc etc which is funny since those ball mechs in Gundam were considered hopelessly outclassed lol


>what benefit would a huminoid shape offer over say a sphere?
mobility in terms of form, I'm not talking bout like a ship, but as a literal exoskeletal bot.
>Shape doesn't matter because there's no drag in space
That's the reason a humanoid form is viable in space, it can be as heavy and non-aerodynamic as it could be, but would be unrestricted in maneuverability.


Bro we get it you like anime but just face facts
You will never pilot a real mecha
The design is stupid in conventional settings and it’s stupid in space compared to just using small and hard to hit probes that could detect and down anyone of your shitty bots in a single hit thousands of kilometres away


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>yOu LiKe AnImE
Are you retarded or a faggot? Nevermind, I know that answer; you're both.
I literally point out in my first post in the thread that
"To an extent but not really" and explained the limited roles of a mecha IRL. It has nothing to do with "hurr u liek animu," and "fess de facks!"
>You will never pilot a real mecha
And? Are you 5 years old to be using literal /b/-tier "snide" remarks?
>just using small and hard to hit probes that could detect and down anyone of your shitty bots in a single hit thousands of kilometres away
Clearly you have a 'probe' with (in) you at the moment, given how hard you're over exaggerating their capability.


Ahaha triggered mechangger can’t handle the reality his precious retarded robots turned out to be retarded ahahahahah


Go back to school /b/tard


You clearly need to be the one to be reviewing kinematics and designing
That other anon said it himself, walking and standing is a far more complicated and needlessly painful effort to design for any machine than to simply roll glide and fly. Not to mention having giant mechs in combat is a large ass target for anyone on earth to simply see and strike at, and for the space probes think of it this way

What’s harder to design
A sphere containing a beam or missile that can be produced on an industrial scale and doesn’t require a pilot to be controlled
Or a bipedal exosuit hard to mass produce that likely needs a pilot trained for years while having to be equipped with the same weapons while only having a chance of hitting its target with limited range


Yugo-anon actually understands the shit they are talking about, you are just repeating reddit-tier "arguments" and ignoring the point made utterly. People have made entire essays addressing your "points", but there's not point posting them, since you're not reading.


Speak for yourself fag
If mechs were conventional they would’ve been built ages ago


>If mechs were conventional
more goalpost shifting


Then pick one concept you fucking want you fucking faggot
Either these machines are actually useful to you or they’re wishfulment that amount to actual garbage in any real setting


>pick one concept
I'm not the one jumping to conclusions and arguing against scarecrows
>Either these machines are actually useful to you or they’re wishfulment
Go back to school and learn to stop speedreading


I think they could work in urban combat.
Better than a Tank, I think.


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reminds me of the bathysphere


cool and eerie, that shit is terrifying


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Ok but what about aeromorphs


This shit is disturbing.


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Do you feel uncomfortable anon-kun?


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post yfw china makes mechs real


Seems extremely impractical. Realistically if there was a move away from wheels instead you would see crab like designs rather than bipedal humanoid designs due to their maneuverability.


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Ghana circa 2011


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>Mobility of an infantryman
>Armour and Firepower of an IFV
>Drone/AI controlled
>Lower reliance on fuel to simplify logistics
>Additional features for anti-infantry urban warfare
War… had changed…


>crab like designs
it all returns to crab.


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Nah. Super expensive to build. In fact the technology isn't there yet. Look at Boston Dynamics for the best legged robots out there.

Especially in our age of rockets and drones there is no place for them. If anything maybe you'll see a Spot with a ATGM strapped to it.

Right now they're mostly developing them as pack mules.

Any robot taller than a tank would be absolute garbage.


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So what real advantages could a mech possibly have? Really the only one is mobility, that a legged robot can get over terrain a wheeled vehicle can't get over.

But actually, in my opinion, legged robot is actually way better than an exosuit. Exosuits are garbage because they still limit the user to the normal movements and movement speeds that the human body is capable of. You're going to be torquing your joints like crazy.

So this is a mech design I came up with for my own IP. Basically the person just sits huddled up in the fetal position on the back of the mech. The mech is only large enough to carry the person, which still leaves it shorter than a tank. The reason for having a humanoid shape is because hypothetically it's easier to control a machine with the same general form as a person, with your mind.(not saying that's actually true but it sounds plausible enough)


Nah too small.


>Basically the person just sits huddled up in the fetal position on the back of the mech. The mech is only large enough to carry the person,
Why not just have it be an autonomous weapon at that point?


Well why not make every vehicle autonomous? Being remote controlled makes it more susceptible to electronic warfare. Delay issues as well. Story wise because it's cool. I dunno maybe in the future every tank will be autonomous.


Or I should say unmanned. Autonomous is a different question.


So bets on when Russia and China build actually existing crab tank mechs?


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Kek it reminds me of pic rel


OBTW, start carrying an ace of spades on you if you're really into this shit.

/k/opers won't know what this means.


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Would smaller exo-suit type mechs be more viable (e.g. the suits from the Second Renaissance Animatrix, Alien franchise, etc)?


Very likely so, the mechas from Aliens, Avatar and other similar ones are not much taller than a tank, narrower and have specific advantages. Starship Troopers (the book) had such limited mechas as a primary soldier's exoskeleton.


>the "mech" thread on /anime/
>>>/anime/845 for ease of access


Theoretically Titanfall mechs can be made IRL.


>start carrying an ace of spades on you if you're really into this shit
The fuck does Bl*cked have to do with mecha?


>Could normal size mechas (like, 1.5 storey tall) be actually viable in warfare?
Likely no, because they'd be extremely vulnerable.
ATGM's have insane penetrating power and you're now exposing huge areas to direct fire meaning you need a truly absurd amount of armor plating.

Tanks already struggle with weight while using pretty efficient mobility systems and they have to be designed with minimizing the area they expose to get thicc armor plating (which is why top-kill weapons are being developed.)

A realistically armored mech would die to an RPG-7.


Maybe exoskeleton like stuff could be of some use. Things that are not much larger than infantry.


begone coomer


It's a valid question, Ace of Spades is more of a fighter-aircraft use… or /pol/s favorite fetish porn.

Not quite a mech tho


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The problem is hitting a target, most vehicles we see hit are either standing still or moving linearly. A legged vehicle will have vastly different mobility as long as it isn't too big. Alternatively creating something massive enough to carry insane amounts of armor (such as a Pacific Rim Jaeger) would negate even the insane penetration of modern AT weapons. Throw in regenerative nano-tech that's being explored and you get a damage-soaking mechanoid like the Armored Cores. Moreover considering the future of energy-weapons a thick armored, maneuverable mech would be useful in dissipating impacts. Additionally soft and hard-kill active protections systems like shtora, arena and ERA like Relikt are easy to apply and would additionally provide protection. Additionally a large mecha is not likely to just be humanoid in shape, at least not entirely, as digitigrade stances would be likely.

The advent of space combat in the future is also a consideration. Gundam's idea of mechs also made sense, as unlike a tank or fighter jet, they can operate in space and maneuver like a giant space suit (since friction is a non-issue in space). Being able to operate on land would be an additional bonus. They may not be as armored or low profile as a tank but the same can be said for IFVs and BTRs which are no match against RPGs or air strikes. There's no such thing as an invulnerable defense, at least for now. Transformative abilities would also be useful.

At the end of the day the problem becomes the human factor, but at that point we're just going for a Terminator situation with automated or remote drones and hunter-killers a la Star War's droid armies.


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Actually to add to this, alternative to a terminator situation or a droid situation, with the development of sentient AIs that are learning to be sapient through empathy rather than just sentient through laws of robotics, we may be looking at a Cybertronian type situation of intelligent mechanical beings imitating organic life.


You've also made your target so huge that it can't make use of a lot of cover that is afforded to vehicles while suffering from a serious armor issue. There really just wouldn't be any reason not to make ATGMs that have higher maneuverability and less focus on penetration.

Or I mean just like a 20mm autocannon.


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>You've also made your target so huge that it can't make use of a lot of cover
Prone position. Also cover is subjective here and a lot less useful for AFVs today considering top-attack munitions and loitering drone surveillance.
>afforded to vehicles while suffering from a serious armor issue
Tell that to Bradley's and MRAPs and other NATO tech that in typical Western fashion, are as large and taller than MBTs.
>There really just wouldn't be any reason not to make ATGMs that have higher maneuverability and less focus on penetration.
Except the fact that they're Anti TANK Guided Missiles which means they can't lower penetration capability. Unlike an RPG-7 which can switch warheads easily, an ATGM cannot have a heavier warhead swapped out for a more maneuverable set up in combat, it's excessively unwieldy. Also ATGMs are not like Air to Air guided missiles or ever Air to Ground guided munitions, they're not very maneuverable because of the need to remain compact, thus their fin stabilizers and adjustors are small, even on Fire-and-Forget missiles (which are much more susceptible to jamming). Top attack munitions would also have trouble hitting a target that is much smaller from a birds-eye-view compared to a tank's large flat surface.

The mistake is to consider mechs as replacements for tanks and BMPs, they're not. They're super-heavy infantry, capable of operating in areas that are problematic to tracked and wheeled vehicles (such as mountainous terrain) or as highly mobile strike forces. Their versatility would also lend themselves as ideal support units for many different missions and units, including tanks. Negating ground-pressure issues is also easy, utilizing retractable snow-shoe or ski-like additions to pedes.

>a 20mm autocannon

20mm autocannons were deemed insufficient back in the early 70s, which is why everyone uses 30mm autocannons in armored warfare.


>They're super-heavy infantry
Just to expand on this with something I saved a while back that elaborates my point
>Mechs are not universally superior. Advancing on a dug-in unit of tanks on flat terrain is every mech pilot's worst nightmare, because they will suffer heavy casualties (and possibly not take the objective at all). No competent commander would force them into a spearhead role like that if they had a choice; tanks would be used for the linebreaking, and mechs for long-range fire support and holding the flanks.
>Where mechs really do shine is on uneven, forested, and otherwise obstructive terrain. River in your way? Ford it; water levels that would submerge a tank are quite passable in a mech. Mountains can be climbed, forests navigated, and obstructions stepped over. This makes them quite formidable in crossing otherwise poor terrain to strike unprepared positions and encircle enemy units.
>The ability to quickly alter weapons carried by dropping and picking up a different weapon guarantees a degree of tactical flexibility not seen in tanks. Note, however, that weapons tend to be lighter than their tank counterparts of a similar mass. (Side note: In this setting, mechs carry their weapons in hand-like grips, not fixed to the main body as they do in battletech.)
>Perhaps surprisingly, mechs do reasonably well in medium- and dense-urban environments. This has more to do with specific design than any general factors. Carrying all your weapons on highly flexible mounts and the ability to fire with most of your body hidden behind a building are valuable. Cooperation with infantry is still necessary to prevent ambushes at point-blank range from within those buildings, though.
>Overall, mechs are not the be-all and end-all of warfare. Infantry, aircraft, tanks - they still have their purposes. Like any other piece of equipment or vehicle, mechs have their role.
Mechs can be their own combat engineering vehicle - capable of digging positions, clearing obstacles, and lifting equipment into position, something the soviet AFV doctrine had which is why all Soviet tanks and many of its other armored vehicles had dozer blades inbuilt. Also a mech can literally refuel and re-arm itself like a human soldier, which means that in a CBRN environment, a mech can get around a main problem of AFVs in contaminated environments - leaving the vehicle or opening it to resupply.
Additionally Gundam stumbled into the most reasonable explanation for mech use I've seen. The requirement to transition from open vacuum and microgravity environments to earth/earthlike gravity and atmospheric pressure can be handled well by thrusters gimbled on walking legs. A demand for weapon modularity and utility may as well be met with arms and hands. There's also a case to be made for Macross-like transforming mechs that can take different forms.

Also I forgot to mention synthetic musculature-imitators, gyro-stabilization and other advancements in exo-skeletons, that can be scaled up for a mech to create enormous lift-capacity and maneuverability without requiring immense pistons and hydraulics in vulnerable areas, which would permit more armor. If your mech is a lumbering beast slower than a tank and unable to do any manipulation with its hands, you may as well get a tank. Basically the concept of the Obsolete anime.

TL;DR: Mechs are best used realistically as super-troops capable of utilization in various mediums from under-water to ground terrain to space. Tanks are ground specialized vehicles, able to carry thicker armor, a heavier main gun, and can achieve a higher top speed over open terrain. Mechs are more agile in constricted spaces, carry a wider range of weapons, and can shoot around corners without exposing their critical systems. If you put a mech out in the open to fight against tanks, tanks will tear them apart from range. If you put a tank into an urban zone to fight against mechs, the mechs will tear it apart likely before it can even get a shot off. Fine manipulation of the hands and the possession of limbs allow for higher mobility and general use a variety of roles from digging in, to scaling and crossing obstacles.


Honestly prove that mechs have serious mobility. Show me even one of these human size Boston Dynamics bare-bones robots walking through thick mud for 5 minutes. Not even the 8m tall piloted mecha.

Then take a look at ground pressure and seriously convince me that they're going to be able to dodge a missile in soft dirt.

Caterpillar treads were put on tanks for a reason.


The problem with exosuits is they can only make you stronger, not faster. You can't just start running at 40 mph just because you have motors strapped to your legs. All your joints will be destroyed.


And then what kind of weapon could a small mech or person carry that would be effective against a tank anyways? Just the same kinda rockets people can already carry.


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>they can only make you stronger, not faster.
They can assist in return mechanisms and using gyros can increase fast-twitch reflexes, as well as aid in reducing fatigue increasing movement speed, reducing impact on stamina and increasing maneuverability. Upscaling this isn't hard, in fact downscaling it is harder. And this is just exo-skeletons, for a large walker you wouldn't need to take into account human musculature and reflex limits, you just need to have high-speed control interfaces and strong design + materials. Artificial muscles are potentially rated to increase strength by up to 50 times, and even if it was only by 5x, the increased force of pushing off the ground for an exoskeleton-human would permit immense sprinting power.


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>All your joints will be destroyed.
1) This is about mecha first, exoskeletons is just a real world reference to some of the technologies I was referring to that can be applied to mechs
2) The majority of wear and tear to the joints come from impacts and hyper-extension. An exoskeleton is likely to be used in bursts of speed that would not be fast enough or long enough to cause such issues. In a mecha such limitations are moot.

RPGs, 30mm autocannons, recoil-less rifles, mines. Additionally a taller mech could easily shoot top-down where penetration is easier.
>the same kinda rockets people can already carry.
Lugging RPGs is not easy, especially over rough terrain and over long distances. It's even harder when you have the weight of all the other equipment on top of you. Buy a weighted vest and go for a run, you'll see why nobody wants to lug around a sack of RPGs if they can help it.


>Show me even one of these human size Boston Dynamics bare-bones robots walking through thick mud for 5 minutes
People walk through such environments using snow shoes and similar things which I brought up. Equipping a large walker with similar capability is not impossible, not to mention that for a large enough bot such mud is going to be equivalent to a mud-puddle to us, especially since, rather than rolling through or over such unstable ground you walk over and through it, reducing friction as you step in and out, rather than slogging through. Elephants do similarly in the very unstable deserts of Africa or the Jungle territories, and where they still sink in, they just power through it.
It's part of the reason animals that slither, roll or crawl are always slower than those that can stand and run. And Boston Dynamics robots are literally doing flips and rolls at this point, and this is just full-body robotics, with experimental limb robotics such as remote limb technology controlled by impulses in the nerves.
>seriously convince me that they're going to be able to dodge a missile in soft dirt.
Sure, because dodging isn't the same as linear locomotion. A rocket can be ducked under, jumped over, leaned to the side from etc. because this is a reflex maneuver, not lateral speed across terrain. And tell me, how well a tank is going to do on a 60 degree gravel slope.
Also Booster Rockets are a viable realistic technology, temporary upward bursts of motion allowing for jumps even higher than artificial muscles would provide.
>Caterpillar treads were put on tanks for a reason.
And yet wheeled vehicles are still used and needed, and yet armored vehicles that aren't tanks exist, and yet lightly armored trucks and towed artillery exist. Everything has its niche and necessity, so just because tracks are better at soft-ground traverse, doesn't mean a tank is the best option for all territory. Like I stated, tanks are terrible in jungles and need heavy fire support in urban environments

No shit it's not infallible, nothing is in combat

Also as I said before, consider the roles of a mecha - it's certainly not a tank replacement.

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