list, which was that his new mech had to come with a low skill floor.

”Aside from affordability, a low skill floor is the most important selling point of my new mech! ”

According to the news and all of the market research he studied, the military and a lot of outfits were frantically trying to retrain their mech pilots.

Since deploying melee mechs against the sandman was an absolute waste, a lot of melee mech pilots were made redundant in this crisis!

Though they didn ’t like it, mech pilots who specialized in melee mechs had no choice but to undergo hastily-organized crash courses in how to pilot ballistic rifleman mechs.

It took years for mech pilots to gain an adequate amount of proficiency in a new mech archetype.
A couple of months of intensive training was not enough to turn a random melee mech pilot into an expert marksman.

”This is especially the case with melee specialists who aren ’t good at marksmanship! ”

A lot of mech pilots specialized in one or the other.
Rarely did they attempt to pursue both.
Those that did were often elites among mech pilots.

If it was so easy to become good at both, then hero mechs would have been regarded as a legitimate mech type instead of a joke!

As a Larkinson who spent a lot of time alongside Larkinson mech pilots, Ves knew very well why mech pilots specialized early in their academy days.
It took this much in order to become good enough to be trusted to pilot a war machine that cost at least several million credits.

Any mech pilot who committed much less training in a chosen piloting field was likely to form a liability in the battlefield.
In most cases, a melee specialist forced to pilot a ballistic rifleman mech could still contribute to a battle if it left most of the aiming to the automated targeting system.

”This is actually not that big of a downside. ”

Against mechs piloted by competent human opponents, a melee specialist would fare extremely poorly if forced to pilot ranged mechs.

Against the typical sandman threats, the prevailing rules no longer applied.
The sandman admirals who led most of their fleets were very unimaginative and inflexible.

The extent of their tactics mostly amounted to dispatching their sandman brethren at their enemies in the form of large amalgamations in a straight line!

Due to their overall mass and size, sandman vessels were as large as regular starships and were very poor at dodging enemy fire.
This meant that most automated targeting systems were accurate enough to deliver good results against typical sandman vessels.

Of course, this was not a good solution against all sandman threats.
Most sandman admirals attacking human space appeared to be newborn and operated according to a standard manual.

However, as long as they grew older or accumulated more experience, they began to vary the deployment of their sandman.
They might adopt different configurations such as splitting up their large and vulnerable sandman vessels into other forms that fared better against mechs!

In fact, a small number of sandman admirals in the border states had already adapted to the prevailing opposition.
They began to deploy thousands of smaller sandman drones that were as agile as human-built mechs!

Ves shrugged.
”I can ’t handle everything.
It ’s enough if my rifleman mech fares well against standard sandman vessels.
As for anything else, the Mech Corps will probably deal with the more troublesome sandman fleets themselves. ”

What the market demanded was a mech that did not impose too much of a burden to off-role mech pilots.

”I only have to make sure that the weapon system is easy to work with.
As long as my mech is simple, I don ’t have to dumb down anything else.
The operation of the limbs and the flight system of the mech can stay on the same level, as most of the users of my new mech will easily be able to carry over their skills from piloting melee mechs. ”

Ves had no illusion that the mechs he designed would be used as cannon fodder.
Their affordability and ease of use came at the cost of skill expression.
There weren ’t many ways for skilled mech pilots to make a cheap mech to outperform its expected parameters.

”Not that a lot of skilled ranged specialists will pilot my mech in the first place.
There are better alternatives available that do a much better job at drawing out their potential. ”

This was something very opposite to his first three commercial mech models.
The Blackbeak, Crystal Lord and Aurora Titan models only performed properly in the hands of advanced mech pilots.

Ves suddenly realized that his product strategy was very suited in times of stability and abundance.
However, during a crisis period, many customers had to tighten their belts and try to do more with less.

”There is no place for luxury during an existential crisis! ”

Due to the abnormal circumstances of the current market environment, a lot of unskilled mech pilots desperately required simple ranged mechs.
Only a small number of mech models in the markets met their needs, but even then these machines excelled mainly against nimbler human mech forces rather than sluggish but overpowering sandman fleets.

”There is a hole in the market, but this window of opportunity will only last for a brief amount of time before my competitors publish their new designs! ”

Though Ves wasn ’t used to targeting the lower end of the mech market, he believed he was still up to the challenge.

”However, if I can come up with this list of criteria, every other clever mech designer can do so as well! ”

He discounted the competition from low-ranking mech designers and solely regarded Journeymen and Seniors as his main rivals.
The latter were especially formidable due to their abundant experience, extensive knowledge base and highly-developed specialties.

”If I want my product to stand out from the crowd, then I need more than a basic mech concept.
I have to tie all of the requirements together into an attractive and compelling vision! ”

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