RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by toysdream » Wed Dec 21, 2016 1:01 pm

Again, if the Guncannon has technical limitations compared to a Zaku, I don't think they were made evident in the animation. If it truly had been "a lumbering cannon-hauler straight out of a classic 3025 Battletech scenario" then I think this could have been shown more clearly. The idea that the Guncannon was based on a faulty doctrine is interesting but I'm not sure it was conveyed onscreen.

To some extent, this may be an inevitable consequence of Yas's decision to push back the Guncannon's debut in his original comic. If the Federation had deployed a company of Guntanks and seen them go down in flames, that would make the point more obviously (and it would be pretty cool besides). But the trusty Guncannon, which fights pretty credibly alongside the Gundam as part of the White Base team, is a harder sell as a Zaku patsy.

As I recall, the comic largely skips over everything from the Antarctic Treaty to the Side 7 attack - we don't see the details of the Earth invasion or the months of stalemate. If the Federation has Guntanks and Guncannons before the start of the war, I wonder if it would deploy them in these battles? The blank middle of the war might look very different in Origin-land from how we've previously imagined it.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Zeonista » Wed Dec 21, 2016 4:51 pm

As a note here we are still kicking the RCX-76 Guncannon. The RX-77 is a better machine, a true support MS whose improved potential is much shown in the original series. Also part of Operation Victory in their own right, since Guncannon data could be used for newer support MS in addition to the task of laying down fire for the all-important Gundam. I am certain the Mass Produced Guncannon would have likewise showed some similar potential if its narrative purpose wasn't to be a super-sized clay pigeon. (Zeonista high-fives his MG Kampfer. :P)

toysdream: The curb-stomp battle of a Guntank force has already been depicted, courtesy of Packard Norris. Been there, done that, bought the 1/144 model. On to the rout of the Guncannons, whose narrative purpose has become clearer to me.

1. Loum is not a fluke. For better or worse, that point has to be slammed down like Operation British. The MS force not only pulls Dozle's fat out of the fire, they turn a desperate battle into a trophy hunt. The Origin story has to take that into account. So, on the dark side of the Moon the EFSF high command gets a last-minute warning that the ZMF is capable of changing the dynamic of the battlefield. Organizational inertia being what it is, no doubt some intel weenies were still finishing the incident analysis report as the Luna 2 fleet launched in support of Revil.

2. Parity is not enough, superiority brings victory. That is part of the problem with the EFSF as of the end of 0078. They have succeeded in making a MS that has performance equal to the ZMF's currently issued MS. That is great...or would have been great a year earlier. The Gundam and the GM have the ability to achieve superiority in performance, especially since those designs utilize the Minovsky tech that had been held back from Zeon MS due to production priorities.

3. For new tech, is it better to have a fresh user as opposed to one with prior experience? UC shows tend to give this answer as an affirmative. The RCX-76 pilots were doubtless skilled pilots selected to be test pilots for that reason. But they still had to un-learn old skill patterns while learning new ones. The n00b pilots of White Base learn to pilot their MS with little prior experience & kick much butt once they overcome their learning curve versus the Red Comet and the Nice Zabi. A few years later Kou Uraki gets selected as the GP-01 pilot even though he has less MS experience than any member of the Immortal Fourth.
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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by toysdream » Wed Dec 21, 2016 5:12 pm

Since you mentioned the rout of the Scarlet Team by the Kaempfer - which I mentioned earlier as well - it bears noting that this was an even *more* humiliating rout than the Mare Smythii battle. And yet, for some reason, nobody blames the GM Sniper II and Mass Produced Guncannon for being inferior mock-mobile suits; it's clearly a combination of bad tactics, bad pilots, and contrived writing. The three classic nemeses of Federation mobile suits...

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Dark Duel » Wed Dec 21, 2016 10:37 pm

toysdream wrote: As I recall, the comic largely skips over everything from the Antarctic Treaty to the Side 7 attack - we don't see the details of the Earth invasion or the months of stalemate. If the Federation has Guntanks and Guncannons before the start of the war, I wonder if it would deploy them in these battles? The blank middle of the war might look very different in Origin-land from how we've previously imagined it.

-- Mark
IIRC, you are correct in that the major battles and the Earth Invasion themselves are mostly skipped.
As for the rest, my personal impression - both reading the manga and watching the OVA - was that the ill-fated deployment of the Iron Cavalry(to use the OVA's name for the squadron) in Mare Smythii was the first actual combat deployment of the Guncannon - though I'm not wholly sure where I got the idea.
So as to the earliest battles of the war, It's probable that IMO there would have been a fair number of Guntanks, I would imagine that Guncannons probably would've been much fewer in number, especially given that truly disastrous first outing.
At the same time though, during the infiltration of Side 7 by Char and his flunkies, when said flunkies saw the remains of GunCannons in the closed-off portion where the RX-78-01's combat test was being conducted, they recognized them as old-model units, so it's highly probable that at least a small number of them were produced and fielded in other areas.
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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Erisie » Thu Dec 22, 2016 12:57 am

toysdream wrote:Since you mentioned the rout of the Scarlet Team by the Kaempfer - which I mentioned earlier as well - it bears noting that this was an even *more* humiliating rout than the Mare Smythii battle. And yet, for some reason, nobody blames the GM Sniper II and Mass Produced Guncannon for being inferior mock-mobile suits
As a matter of fact, MAHQ's Burke's profile for the GM Sniper II describes it as "the most powerful GM variant built during the war". So a puny mock MS it ain't.
toysdream wrote:To some extent, this may be an inevitable consequence of Yas's decision to push back the Guncannon's debut in his original comic. If the Federation had deployed a company of Guntanks and seen them go down in flames, that would make the point more obviously (and it would be pretty cool besides).
I might be alone in this, but I do like the decision to make the V Project solely focused on the RX-78 and turn the Guntanks and Guncannons (plural) into failed attempts from the Federation at making mobile weapons. A part of this is because those two units were part of the "70s super robot" legacy that 0079 still carried. In the original series, the Guntank, Guncannon and G-Fighter were basically sidekicks: funny-looking units that mostly serve to make the protagonist (ie. Gundam) look good. The most well-known example is Boss Borot from Mazinger, but you also have Galva FX-II from Daimos, Bluegar from Raideen, Mach Patrol/Attacker from Daitarn, et cetera.

Throughout The Origin, the Guntanks and Guncannons are mostly liberated from their silly 1970s heritage in order to become combat vehicles with their own merit. The redesigns (especially the Guntank's) help quite a lot.

I will give you, Mark, that seeing Guntanks being annihilated on the lunar surface by Ramba, Char and the Tri-Stars would've been a lot more fun than the Guncannons.
toysdream wrote:But the trusty Guncannon, which fights pretty credibly alongside the Gundam as part of the White Base team, is a harder sell as a Zaku patsy.
It's clear that the White Base's Guncannons aren't the same units that got mauled on Mare Smythii. The chart on the official The Origin website finishes the Guncannon timeline with the RC-77, which I assume to be the new designation for the White Base's Guncannon models, in lieu of RX-77. The key upgrade is that those units are equipped with beam rifles.
toysdream wrote:As I recall, the comic largely skips over everything from the Antarctic Treaty to the Side 7 attack - we don't see the details of the Earth invasion or the months of stalemate. If the Federation has Guntanks and Guncannons before the start of the war, I wonder if it would deploy them in these battles? The blank middle of the war might look very different in Origin-land from how we've previously imagined it.
-- Mark
There's another factor to take into account: in The Origin, mobile weapons aren't made by the Earth Federation, but subcontracted to Anaheim Electronics. It is possible that, in the immediate aftermath of Mare Smythii, the EFSF decided that the Guncannon is utterly worthless as a weapon to deal with Zeon's MS forces. Like so, the brass decided to rip their contract with Anaheim and halt production for any more Guncannons, use those resources to order more "conventional" weapon platforms (tanks, fighters and so) and wait for Project V to be completed.
And then the war starts...

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by toysdream » Thu Dec 22, 2016 1:33 am

Still and nonetheless: The Origin comic established that the Mare Smythii battle took place in January of U.C. 0078. That's a whole year before the start of the One Year War, and 20 months before the debut of the Gundam. If the Federation is truly so hard-pressed by Zeon, it's hard to believe they wouldn't go ahead and build more Guncannons - if only to gather data and get some pilot experience - rather than letting Zakus stomp tanks for month after month.

The comic basically doesn't address this; there's no explanation of what the Federation Forces were doing for all those months while they were waiting for the Gundam to be completed. The anime seems to be sticking closely to the comic, and probably won't address it either, and the kit manuals have so far been extremely skimpy on these kinds of background explanations.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Erisie » Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:35 am

toysdream wrote:Still and nonetheless: The Origin comic established that the Mare Smythii battle took place in January of U.C. 0078. That's a whole year before the start of the One Year War, and 20 months before the debut of the Gundam.
Based on Kycillia's words, I always believed that Mare Smythii happened mere weeks before the war's breakout. But, as you well say, it happened a whole year before the war began, on January 7th, 0079, according to a digital calendar on Kycillia's hotel suite (Vertical, volume VI, page 269). At least in the manga, that is, since the anime is never specific on the date, except for it taking place before October 24th.
toysdream wrote:If the Federation is truly so hard-pressed by Zeon, it's hard to believe they wouldn't go ahead and build more Guncannons - if only to gather data and get some pilot experience - rather than letting Zakus stomp tanks for month after month.
As a general rule, armed forces tend to be skeptical of new technologies. Troops on the ground prefer to use "whatever does the job properly" instead of dealing with the troubles of some shiny new toy, In the Guncannon's case, a toy that suffered a miserable defeat on its first combat deployment. It is likely that a small force of Guncannons was kept for testing and training to prepare a future MS deployment (maybe throw a Zanny or two into the mix), but not as frontline combatants.
I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of senior officers in the EFF wouldn't want to have anything to do with the Guncannon and just keep using their old Saberfishes, Type 61s, Depp Rogs and Flyarrows.
toysdream wrote:The comic basically doesn't address this; there's no explanation of what the Federation Forces were doing for all those months while they were waiting for the Gundam to be completed. The anime seems to be sticking closely to the comic, and probably won't address it either, and the kit manuals have so far been extremely skimpy on these kinds of background explanations.
So now The Origin has two gaps (Mare Smythii to OYW breakout) instead of just the OYW's (Antarctic Treaty to Battle in Side 7). Terrific...
It is commonly established that the battle in Side 7 happened on September 18th, 0079. Are we sure that it is the same date in The Origin? I'm asking since a number of dates were changed in the manga, compared to the ones in your master timeline. For instance:
- Island Iffish fell on Earth on January 16th / January 10th.
- Revil's fleet sails towards Loum on January 23rd / Loum happens on January 16th.
- M'Quve is ordered to take charge of the Antarctic negotiations after February 15th / Antarctic Treaty signed on January 31st.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:06 pm

I'm still inclined to think that the main fault of the RCX-76 was its heavy weight and bulky armor, indeed making it more of a walking tank than a proper MS. Just take a look at the case of the RGM-79L, which ditching just a few armor sections supposedly becomes a more agile MS than the vanilla GM.

I think we are forgetting how important of a plot driving tool luna titanium is for the series: without it the Gundam would have been destroyed inside Side 7 or the Guncannon would have easily been destroyed by Magella Attack Tanks. The RX-77-2 design worked because it used luna titanium alloy which provided it a high degree of defense while also allowing the unit to retain a certain degree of mobility thanks to its lower weight.

On the other hand we have the Bugu, a machine that has been stated to have really high performance only matched by its high cost, leading to the development of the more production friendly MS-05, which is noticeable more lightly armored than its predecessor, a fact that should allow it to retain better mobility than its successor, the MS-06.

As for the case of 0080, since a rookie like Christina Mackenzie has been assigned as the test pilot of the Gundam, I'm inclined to think that the pilots of the Scarlet Team might also be unexperienced, a direct result of the war taking a toll on the fighting force on both sides, which likely result on rookie pilots being assigned to a base that in theory shouldn't be attacked due to being on a neutral zone.

Back to The Origin, I'm also concerned about the "elite pilots" that conformed the EF's Iron Cavalry. My first question would be: what they used to be elite pilots for before? Were they former Guntank pilots, former fighter pilots, former tank pilots or were they trained from scratch solely for the Guncannons? Them being former pilots of a different vehicle poses a problem that they could base their battle tactics around their know how of their previous machines. If they were trained form scratch, it also poses a problem since at the time the EF doesn't have much to base their MS training and tactics on.

Given the way the line up and fire consecutively, I'm more inclined to think that they were former Guntank or tank pilots, and such they were more skilled at ranged artillery battles, but they weren't prepared for engaging and enemy that would be jumping around and fighting them at close range.

Combine a flawed MS design and pilots that tried to handle a MS battle as if it were a tank battle, and suddenly the 12-0 death toll (not including fighters and the ship) suddenly makes more sense.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by toysdream » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:42 pm

Serious question: Does Luna Titanium even exist in The Origin? The prototype Gundam seems pretty bulletproof in the opening scene of the comic, but I don't remember if the armor material is ever mentioned in the story, and it hasn't come up in the kit manuals either. It's hard to see why the White Base version of the Guncannon (whatever its model number turns out to be) is superior to the one we see at Mare Smythii, and I dunno if we have any solid basis for assuming it has better armor.

Anyway, as has been pointed out, the ho-hum reaction of the Zaku pilots to the old Federation mobile suits they discover when they invade Side 7 suggests that they've seen these things before. So it's entirely possible that the Federation did deploy Guntanks and Guncannons earlier in the war; because The Origin makes so many changes to the technical history, we can't assume that its version of the One Year War would necessarily resemble the depictions we've seen before.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Fri Dec 23, 2016 3:42 am

Even if luna titanium alloy isn't actually named in The Origin, its undoubtedly that the Gundam can take direct hits from the Zaku machine gun without taking damage despite its slim frame, while many of the bulkier RCX-76 units were easily destroyed with just a few 120mm rounds. As such it's undoubtedly that the Gundam do has a much better armor material, even if it's not actually referred to as luna titanium alloy.

As for the RX-77 Guncannons from The Origin, I'll have to check my volumes later to see how resistant those units actually are, though I do seem to recall that the White Base did lose at least a couple of them during their journey to Jaburo, which would indicate that they aren't as durable as their original counterparts.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Zeonista » Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:24 pm

toysdream: Erisie put his finger on it. The big brass hats at Jaburo and Luna 2 did not understand, did not [want to understand, what the Mobile Suit coud mean in combat. They were ready for the last war, which in this case hadn't even been fought yet. It was all supposed to be a pay-out scenario of Jutland In Spaaace! (Or maybe a series of Falklands-Dogger Bank-River Plate actions among the Sides.) Feel free to cast any and all aspersions at a military command structure bunkered up on Earth and blinkered on likely outcomes. One also suspect the incident was covered up ASAP to prevent a loss of face in the Side colonies.

Now, the prologue chapters naming Anaheim Enterprises as the actual developers of the RX-78 series, it is all the explanation required as to why a cutting-edge MS was ready to go only a year past the incident. AE had the ability through its component companies to put all the bits together, especially with some crib notes from the late Doctor Minovsky. (It also explains where all those gaiden Gundams come from too. AE can put 'em out like Crown Vics. :P) The EFSF just took wartime control of a tech project which was already in place. The post-war acquisition of Zeonic by AE is further explained...as is their growing irritation over the Federation's ingratitude and disrespect.

I will agree that in the Origin rewrite the ZMF has encountered Guntanks and Guncannons before September 0079 and found them to be no great threat as a known commodity and much rarer than Type 61 tanks and jet fighters. It would be a convenient explanation for the recon team to go into action. Feddy MS, bah! Light 'em up and let Char-taichou sort through the wreckage. Then they get to the RX-78-2...

Gelgoog Jaeger: See the history of the first Luftwaffe units to deploy the Me-262 jet fighter. They were made up of aces who could operate Me-109 and Fw-190 fighters in their sleep. The learning curve was steep, with a high non-combat loss rate due to technical issues and learning that jet aircraft that could approach Mach 1 speeds handled a lot different than than propeller aircraft. Closer to now, the Osprey was a hassle not only to the all-or-nothing conversion process, but also in getting aircrews who could last long enough make the airplane work as intended.

These things were in my mind when I mentioned the lack of expertise in a training squadron filled with experienced pilots. Scarlet Team might also have been relatively inexperienced in real battle use of MS, despite the quality issue MS. I will cut them some slack,though. The Kampfer was an unknown design, of a level of performance beyond anything else encountered. Misha was in front of them and shooting before the Scarlet Team pilots were ready to hunt him down. Which no doubt was what the Zeon veteran had in mind. ;)

Lunar titanium armor was definitely an effective technology in pilot protection. Mere rolled steel, no matter how good, would not stop the Zeon weapons. The laminate compound armomr mentioned in 0080-era designs (space chobham) was better, yes, but not as good as the Gundam's plating. Just remember the Red Coet himself reduced to ramming the RX-78-2 out of frustration! (A Giant Baz might overcome the armor, but by then Amuro had become a rather agile pilot. Beam weapons or nothing!)
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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by JEFFPIATT » Mon Jan 09, 2017 4:18 am

ironically one of the two -01 units of the RCX-76 Guncannon was basically an early prototype for the later RX-78 style ms the RCX-76-01A Guncannon Mobility Test Type seemed to to be an test of an more general use MS While the RCX-76-01B Guncannon Firepower Test Type was basically an literal Walking Guntank with the large Cannons and one arm having the Gun Pod hand from the guntank even down to keeping the Head Gunner from the Guntank on it. the RCX-76-02 Guncannon First Type seems to be more of an compromise giving it an shorter cannon and giving it the better Mobilty the only real issue is that the EFF is treating it more like an MBT and it's crews are not as well trained to fight in an MS while the Zeon Forces are Experts at the Zaku II units they are using.
http://gundam.wikia.com/wiki/RCX-76-01A ... _Test_Type
http://gundam.wikia.com/wiki/RCX-76-01B ... _Test_Type

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:33 pm

Zeonista wrote:
Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:24 pm
These things were in my mind when I mentioned the lack of expertise in a training squadron filled with experienced pilots. Scarlet Team might also have been relatively inexperienced in real battle use of MS, despite the quality issue MS. I will cut them some slack,though. The Kampfer was an unknown design, of a level of performance beyond anything else encountered. Misha was in front of them and shooting before the Scarlet Team pilots were ready to hunt him down. Which no doubt was what the Zeon veteran had in mind. ;)
I want to point out that Misha likely had never piloted a Kampfer before, and before it there were not many Zeon MS that could come close to match its mobility (and even if there were, they would most likely end up assigned to Steiner instead, as in the case of the MSM-07E). In contrast, the GM series and Guncannons are based existing EF designs, with the RGM-79SP even being considered the best OYW GM variant, so they certainly have an edge on that front. I'm more willing to assume that much like Christina Mackenzie, the EF MS pilots using machines without Amuro's combat data might simply be too green to make a stand.
Zeonista wrote:
Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:24 pm
Lunar titanium armor was definitely an effective technology in pilot protection. Mere rolled steel, no matter how good, would not stop the Zeon weapons. The laminate compound armomr mentioned in 0080-era designs (space chobham) was better, yes, but not as good as the Gundam's plating. Just remember the Red Coet himself reduced to ramming the RX-78-2 out of frustration! (A Giant Baz might overcome the armor, but by then Amuro had become a rather agile pilot. Beam weapons or nothing!)
The durability of luna titanium alloy tends to change as the plot requires it to. For instance, a more heavily armed RX-77-2 could have its armor penetrated by a Rick Dom's giant bazooka (Hayato's unit), but in 08th MS team RX-79[G] only partially protected with the leftovers of the RX-78-2 armor seem able to sustain even direct hits from 175mm ballistic cannons.

That being said, at least in the case of the Zaku machine gun we could presume that the particular type of weapon and round that was ineffective against luna titanium alloy were a M-120A1 model Zaku machine gun loaded with shorter rounds meant to be used against soft targets (vehicles and infantry), something which I pointed out on this thread:

http://www.mechatalk.net/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=16673

My point is that while luna titanium alloy do remains the better armor material, it might not be the as durable as the plot of the series tends to make it look like.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Zeonista » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:42 pm

Gelgoog Jager wrote:
Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:33 pm
Zeonista wrote:
Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:24 pm
These things were in my mind when I mentioned the lack of expertise in a training squadron filled with experienced pilots. Scarlet Team might also have been relatively inexperienced in real battle use of MS, despite the quality issue MS. I will cut them some slack,though. The Kampfer was an unknown design, of a level of performance beyond anything else encountered. Misha was in front of them and shooting before the Scarlet Team pilots were ready to hunt him down. Which no doubt was what the Zeon veteran had in mind. ;)
I want to point out that Misha likely had never piloted a Kampfer before, and before it there were not many Zeon MS that could come close to match its mobility (and even if there were, they would most likely end up assigned to Steiner instead, as in the case of the MSM-07E). In contrast, the GM series and Guncannons are based existing EF designs, with the RGM-79SP even being considered the best OYW GM variant, so they certainly have an edge on that front. I'm more willing to assume that much like Christina Mackenzie, the EF MS pilots using machines without Amuro's combat data might simply be too green to make a stand.
I beg to differ, since the Kampfer was definitely a veteran pilot's MS, a high-speed, high-manuever hot rod made to run and gun, not slug it out. Misha had plaenty of time to get familiar with the MS's specs while they were assembling it, and he used it as intended. And I do recall him greeting the Scarlet Team with a barrage of baz rockets & fausts while they were still in launch trajectory. Not their fault, since the Cyclops battle plan had been made with the goal of Misha skeet-shooting EFSF MS before circling back to deal with with the NT-1 if needed. I am not sure if Scarlet Team could have saved themselves at that point, skill & familiarity or no skill & familiarity.

Compared to that fight, the skirmish between the Guncannon team and Ral team was more open to variables and the positioning which skill and training (and pure luck) gives in a fight. So in the end, I suppose we can say the RCX-76 was not really inadequate, but was deployed in an inadequate manner. They got slaughtered, but upon reflection blaming them for not being ready was not fair. Not that we the viewers were supposed to think of it as being fair though, the Universal Century laughed fairness to scorn as a military condition.
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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by JEFFPIATT » Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:23 am

Zeonista wrote:
Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:42 pm
Gelgoog Jager wrote:
Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:33 pm
Zeonista wrote:
Fri Dec 23, 2016 4:24 pm
These things were in my mind when I mentioned the lack of expertise in a training squadron filled with experienced pilots. Scarlet Team might also have been relatively inexperienced in real battle use of MS, despite the quality issue MS. I will cut them some slack,though. The Kampfer was an unknown design, of a level of performance beyond anything else encountered. Misha was in front of them and shooting before the Scarlet Team pilots were ready to hunt him down. Which no doubt was what the Zeon veteran had in mind. ;)
I want to point out that Misha likely had never piloted a Kampfer before, and before it there were not many Zeon MS that could come close to match its mobility (and even if there were, they would most likely end up assigned to Steiner instead, as in the case of the MSM-07E). In contrast, the GM series and Guncannons are based existing EF designs, with the RGM-79SP even being considered the best OYW GM variant, so they certainly have an edge on that front. I'm more willing to assume that much like Christina Mackenzie, the EF MS pilots using machines without Amuro's combat data might simply be too green to make a stand.
I beg to differ, since the Kampfer was definitely a veteran pilot's MS, a high-speed, high-manuever hot rod made to run and gun, not slug it out. Misha had plaenty of time to get familiar with the MS's specs while they were assembling it, and he used it as intended. And I do recall him greeting the Scarlet Team with a barrage of baz rockets & fausts while they were still in launch trajectory. Not their fault, since the Cyclops battle plan had been made with the goal of Misha skeet-shooting EFSF MS before circling back to deal with with the NT-1 if needed. I am not sure if Scarlet Team could have saved themselves at that point, skill & familiarity or no skill & familiarity.

Compared to that fight, the skirmish between the Guncannon team and Ral team was more open to variables and the positioning which skill and training (and pure luck) gives in a fight. So in the end, I suppose we can say the RCX-76 was not really inadequate, but was deployed in an inadequate manner. They got slaughtered, but upon reflection blaming them for not being ready was not fair. Not that we the viewers were supposed to think of it as being fair though, the Universal Century laughed fairness to scorn as a military condition.
The exact issue in 0080 with the Kampfer was it's Crippling Overspecialization it was basically a glass cannon a high-speed unit with low armor coverage equipped with mostly ranged weapons and by the timer it got to the Rx-78NT-1 Gundam Full Armor all it had left was the Chain of Mines and the beam saber only for the Gundams Full armor parts absorbing the blast damage and got the jump on it with its Arm Guns where Chris fired first before the Zeon unit could attack with its beam saber. With the Guncannons it was more of a combo of the Guncannon's line suffering from Crippling Overspecialization being an mid range Support suit that lacks any close combat equipment but being the first true EFSF MS deployed it suffered the same issues the RX-78-2 did in the early episodes of 0079 Char held his own in an MS-06S and Ral in a YMS-07B both lesser units technically but it's Pilot Amaro Ray was inexperienced in operating it with most of his early victoried being due to him facing lesser Zeon troops while his better Equipment protected him.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Geoxile » Tue Apr 11, 2017 3:31 am

Maybe a less obvious answer as to the failings of the RCX-76 is software? They don't have learning computers right? And without the Gundam's combat data the Guncannons wouldn't really have any data for close-range combat. Meanwhile Zeon had a sizable headstart and a certain deliberation in designing their MS, unlike the federation which seemed to be pushing out a sloppy counter without understanding the full benefits of a MS. Then again, that one GM that karate chops the tank probably didn't have the learning computer data either, so maybe it's not a big deal.

There is one thing that did strike me as strange in The Origin though. In MSG it really seemed like Zakus and most of Zeon's suits weren't actually designed for close combat. The Zaku IIs don't start carrying heat hawks until after the initial encounter with the Gundam and not all of them carry heat hawks afterwards either. IIRC it's also true for the MP goufs we see on dodais, I don't recall them carrying heat swords into battle like Ral did. It seemed to me that Zeon never intended for their suits to have to fight other suits.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by JEFFPIATT » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:56 am

Geoxile wrote:
Tue Apr 11, 2017 3:31 am
Maybe a less obvious answer as to the failings of the RCX-76 is software? They don't have learning computers right? And without the Gundam's combat data the Guncannons wouldn't really have any data for close-range combat. Meanwhile Zeon had a sizable headstart and a certain deliberation in designing their MS, unlike the federation which seemed to be pushing out a sloppy counter without understanding the full benefits of a MS. Then again, that one GM that karate chops the tank probably didn't have the learning computer data either, so maybe it's not a big deal.

There is one thing that did strike me as strange in The Origin though. In MSG it really seemed like Zakus and most of Zeon's suits weren't actually designed for close combat. The Zaku IIs don't start carrying heat hawks until after the initial encounter with the Gundam and not all of them carry heat hawks afterwards either. IIRC it's also true for the MP goufs we see on dodais, I don't recall them carrying heat swords into battle like Ral did. It seemed to me that Zeon never intended for their suits to have to fight other suits.
In MSG Zeon hadn't put any thought in to MS close combat and the heat hawk was more aimed at hacking in to tanks. fighters. and Ships then another MS the first MS Zeon had built with any concept of MS to MS combat was the Gouf with it's sword and handheld shield where the Zaku II only had a shoulder mounted shield with a swivel mount. By the time we See the first RGM-79 units in MSG Jaberio had gotten the combat data from the RX-78 thanks to Revel sending out the Resupply missions to white base. MSG Origin is a rebooted UC timeline where the Guntank and Guncannon were being tested while Zeon was doing there own early ms trials and not after the Zaku II like the Prime UC timeline.

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by J-Lead » Fri Apr 14, 2017 5:33 pm

toysdream wrote:
Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:42 pm
Serious question: Does Luna Titanium even exist in The Origin? The prototype Gundam seems pretty bulletproof in the opening scene of the comic, but I don't remember if the armor material is ever mentioned in the story, and it hasn't come up in the kit manuals either. It's hard to see why the White Base version of the Guncannon (whatever its model number turns out to be) is superior to the one we see at Mare Smythii, and I dunno if we have any solid basis for assuming it has better armor.

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If it's worth anything, I have the RX-78-02 FIX Figuration Metal Composite and the packaging/manual DOES list Luna Titanium, and considering the armor doesn't behave any differently in the comic as it does in MSG, it's probably safe to assume that info is accurate.
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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by False Prophet » Sat May 06, 2017 10:57 pm

Say, how will you guy rate the Guncannon to the Zaku Cannon and its variants?

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Re: RCX-76 Guncannon: Why did it suck so bad?

Post by Gelgoog Jager » Mon May 08, 2017 7:44 pm

It depends on what kind of Zaku Cannon we are talking about:

Perhaps the first issue to tackle is that regular Zakus can actually just equip a weapon that could be held comparable to the Guncannon's weapons: a Zaku bazooka, Magellan attack or even an anti-ship rifle would give a standard Zaku similar firepower to a RX-76 cannon, while most MS-06 units would also be able to equip leg missiles or even hip "big guns" (hip mounted rocket thrusters like those of the MS-06K or MS-06D). In short, a regular Zaku could fulfill the role of a cannon variant by just swapping its weapons.

But let's focus on the actual Zaku Cannons: the MS-06K has its origins in the MS-06J-12, which was designed for anti-air support. The 120mm gatling gun backpack from MSV-R is supposedly the one used for such purpose.

Now, the actual cannon type Zaku Cannon was supposedly introduced as a response of Zeon learning about the Guncannon as per the original series. However, what we know today indicates that the MS-09B Dom began production by late September (around the same time the events at Side 7 take place) and that the MS-09A (a production version of the YMS-09) was likely mass produced even before that, since it served as the base for the YMS-09D and the MS-09K-1/MS-09K-2. Taking into account that, personally I'm more inclined to think that the MS-09K units fit better the role of "response to the Guncannon", specially the MS-09K-2 which has a twin middle range cannon. Even the MS-14C, which had an older style beam cannon that required direct energy feed from an auxiliary generator installed on the backpack itself, could be considered a response to the Guncannon if we assume that the YMS-14 were roll out in October (when the Chiemra Corps began training and testing) and that Zeon's handheld e-cap based beam weapons didn't enter production until the last few weeks of the war.

Back to the topic at hand, what about the MS-06K? Well, some sources actually show it using the same cannon as the MS-09K-1, namely 08th MS team, as well as the PS3 games Crossfire and 0081. I mention this since the MS-06K supposedly had balance issues due to the recoil of its backpack cannon, but the commonly depicted cannon is actually rather small and odd in several ways. On the other hand, the aforementioned cannon is much larger and would understandably have recoil issues.

I mentioned all this because Mark has pointed out how unique the MS-06K is: externally you can see traits form the YMS-09 (legs) and MS-14C (head and backpack), while its chest pipes are trait that seems to have been passed down to the RMS-106. Anyway, let's focus on the standard MS-06K cannon's barrel: The commonly depicted version doesn't look like a proper ballistic cannon, and closely resembles other Zeon beam weapons, such as the MS-14C backpack cannon or a Gelgoog's beam rifle. There are actually some obscures mentions of the MS-06K supposedly was meant to equip one a beam cannon, so Mark one hypothesized that the design we are more acquainted with is that over the beam cannon backpack version.

For some context, late in the war California Base was also working on developing the MS-05L, another MS that would carry a beam weapon powered by an external generator in the backpack. Then there's the MS-14GD, which was essentially the last MS developed at California Base before Zeon abandoned it, which already incorporated a custom beam rifle which can be speculated to have been built at the base. In short, California Base was working to have their last few MS designs fitted with beam weapons, so a MS-06K with a beam cannon could actually exist under such context. Incidentally, the EF also produced the RX-77-4, its own artillery support MS equipped with a backpack beam cannon, at the recaptured California Base. Coincidence?

On the other hand we have the MS-06JK, which is essentially the result of Zeon producing K-type equipment kits that could be fitted into regular MS-06J units instead of producing new units from scratch, these included ballistic cannon backpack and gatling gun backpacks.

The point I'm trying to reach is:

If we compare the Guncannon to a MS-06JK or a MS-06K with a ballistic cannon in middle range combat, the Guncannon would likely take the cake: the MS-06JK is a ultimately a half-measure and even the MS-06K was supposed to have recoil issues with its ballistic cannon. However the longer cannon I mentioned do could provide a range advantage to the these units. Supposedly this would be the difference between the MS-09K-1 and Ms-09K-2: the K-1 single long barrel cannon is meant for long range firing, while the shorter twin cannons of the K-2 are meant for middle range combat. Still, the Zakus do have one trick under their sleeves: the can actually ditch the cannon backpack in mid combat if necessary, either for retreating, or simply to reduce their weight and increase their ground mobility, potentially granting them a chance to counterattack at close range.

However, if the MS-06K in question actually was equipped with a beam cannon and perhaps even some hovering capabilities as hinted by its legs that have a thruster arrangement similar to the YMS-09, then the MS-06K would be the better model. In such case it would be understandable why the EF/Titans would adopt the MS-06K among their ranks after the OYW, with units seen in space on board the Alexandria class Hario and at least one at the Kilimanjaro base.

But even then, a MS-09K units would likely be able to outperform both on the ground, thanks to their better mobility, and a MS-14C would likely do the same in space.

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