Archives of Nethys

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Mechs / Building Mechs

Building NPC Mechs

Source Tech Revolution pg. 109
As a GM, you can create mech combatants to challenge the PCs using the rules in the Building a Mech section on page 97. When doing so, calculate a mech’s challenge rating by adding 2 to its CR if it has one operator, 3 to the CR if it has 2–3 operators, and 4 to the CR if it has 4 or more operators. Assume an operator’s Piloting ranks equal the mech’s tier. Be aware that mechs designed in this way have statistics best suited for PCs, and as a result, such mechs have fewer Hit Points, stronger defenses, lower attack bonuses, and slightly lower damage per attack than a creature of comparable CR.
As a recommended alternative, use the following rules to create NPC mechs that are both quicker to design and better designed for use as antagonists. These rules borrow many of the modifiers, values, and design recommendations from Appendix 1 of Starfinder Alien Archive, especially the Everything Is Optional sidebar on page 127. If you want a mech that feels faster, hardier, or deadlier, increase the appropriate statistics, and consider reducing a few other statistics to compensate.
Challenge Rating: Select the mech’s CR. Remember that PCs in their own mechs are much stronger, and an enemy mech’s CR must be approximately 3 higher than normal to provide an equivalent challenge.
Operators: Because a mech’s number of actions depends on its number of operators, an NPC mech’s statistics depend on its number of operators; a larger number of operators results in the mech having lower bonuses to compensate. Use the instructions below for a mech with 1 operator. For a mech with 2–3 operators, treat the mech’s CR as 2 lower for the purpose of calculating its attack bonuses. For a mech with 4–6 operators, treat the mech’s CR as 3 lower for the purpose of calculating its attack bonuses.
Statistics: Follow the instructions for building a creature, using the EAC, KAC, saving throw bonuses, attack bonuses, and ability DCs for a creature of the chosen CR. Use the skill bonuses for a creature whose CR is 3 lower than the mech’s CR. NPC mechs use the combatant array (Alien Archive 129–130).
Hit Points and Shield Points: Use the listed number of Hit Points for a creature whose CR is 2 lower than your mech’s CR. Give the mech a number of Shield Points equal to one-fifth the mech’s Hit Point total. Each turn, the mech regains a number of missing Shield Points equal to its CR.
Weapons and Damage: Rather than use the damage listed in the combatant array, give the mech several mech weapons (pages 102-106) whose levels are each 3 lower than the mech’s CR (minimum 1). A typical mech should have weapons whose combined Mech Point cost per level is approximately 9, providing it with about three weapons. Use the weapons’ level and type to determine their base damage dice, per Table 4–5: Weapon Damage on page 104. For ranged weapons, add the mech’s CR – 3 (minimum 0) as a damage modifier. For melee weapons, add an additional damage modifier of 5, representing the mech’s extraordinary strength.
Hardness: The mech has a hardness value equal to half its CR, rounded down.
Speed: A typical mech has a speed of 40 feet. Optionally, increase the mech’s speed by up to 40 feet, give the mech a fly speed of 60 feet (average), or a swim speed of 60 feet.
Power Points: A typical mech begins an encounter with 3 Power Points (page 113), regains 1 PP per turn, and can store a maximum of 5 PP.
Auxiliary Systems: The mech can select up to 4 auxiliary systems. Depending on the role the mech plays in the encounter, it might not need all of these systems. In general, limit the mech to one auxiliary system that’s restricted to a particular mech frame, such as a cloaker or teleporter.