The Mech Touch Chapter 885
883 Set Piece Battle
No more doubt plagued the Vandals and Swordmaidens. Now that the Vesians arrived at their doorsteps, the unruly mech pilots all calmed down.
In a battle for survival, doubt led to defeat!!
With roughly four to five-hundred mechs deployed on each side, the frontline stretched for kilometers. The temporary headquarters only managed to keep in touch with all of their mechs through the use of relays.
The environment imposed many restrictions on the battle. The interference in the air this close to the red zone hindered communications and discouraged both sides from spreading their mechs thin. It would be too easy to become isolated and cut off from backup.
The heavy gravity also complicated the fighting. The Flagrant Swordmaidens previously tore apart the Caged Tongs by surrounding their mechs and taking out their gravitic backpacks first. Without their personal antigrav fields, the afflicted mechs became forced to fight against six times normal gravity.
This practically crippled a mech's combat effectiveness!
Not only that, the high energy consumption of gravitic backpacks discouraged long, drawn-out engagements that typically happened when hundreds of mechs clashed against each other on land.
Most landbound engagements actually took place over multiple days. Battles in virtual games such as Iron Spirit didn't serve as an accurate example of how they were ordinarily fought because their endurance and supply situation were subject to artificial restrictions in order to hurry them up.
The main reason why the Vesians moved ahead with a frontal clash was because they couldn't sustain the enormous energy expenditure of lengthy medium-intensity battle. They would rather prefer to fight a quick high-intensity battle and end it quickly to prevent any accidents concerning their energy reserves!
"What a grand occasion." Ves remarked quietly as he saw the seismic sensors continuing to display a vague blob of heavy objects moving towards the prepared battle lines of the Vandals and Swordmaidens.
Neither side played any maneuvering games. The Flagrant Swordmaidens were forced to draw a line in the sand because of their duty to shield the camp and supply train. The Vesians deliberately attempted to cross that line because a straightforward confrontation suited their needs.
Thus, a rare occasion occurred where both sides willingly pushed for a set piece battle!
Such glorious battles regularly entered the annals of history. No matter if a side won or lost, as long as they fought at their best, the entire mech regiment received an immense amount of honor. Their performance would be turned into a glorious battle record and be added into the archives. and in turn enrich their martial tradition.
A mech regiment with a long list of battle records carried much more weight than a mech regiment with few notable battles to their name!
One of the hidden sources of inferiority to the Flagrant Vandals had always been their dearth of battle records. Small, inconsequential raids and trade interdiction didn't deserve to be turned into a battle record.
Only major engagements such as the Detemen Operation turned into a point of glory.
Ever since the Vandals embarked on their historic journey into the Vesia Kingdom, they continued to fight arduous battles that sacrificed many of their brothers and sisters.
Yet their sacrifice was not in vain! Not only did they accomplish their mission or survive time and time again, the battles also contributed to the elevation of the Flagrant Vandals.
No one would dismiss the Flagrant Vandals as the scum of the Mech Corps after the war. Every Vandal veteran could easily bring up honors they earned with their own flesh and blood. Some mech regiments wished they fought as frequently against the Vesians as the Flagrant Vandals!
"Look at our battle records! Tell me if we haven't fought as valiantly as the mech regiments in the frontline!"
Right now, many Vandal mech pilots fought not just for their own survival, but also to leave behind their legacy!
The Mech Corps always treated the descendents of fallen mech pilots generously. Those affected by the loss of a warrior received preferential treatment and subsidies. This was a way of motivating mech pilots to battle without fear and to sustain popular support for the war.
In fact, the Bright Republic only copied the Vesians in this manner. Vesian commoners generally didn't receive good treatment in their society, but it was wholly different once someone in their family became a mech pilot.
Any commoner could become a knight if they distinguished themselves in battle! This was also why the Vandals expected the Vesians to fight just as hard if not harder.Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
The Vesians held the upper hand, after all.
"The main force is coming into range."
"Hold your fire. We won't hit much at this range."
Due to the interference in the air, the effective range of laser weapons practically halved. There was no question about their power, but accuracy suffered a severe impact after a range of more than a couple of kilometers. Combined with the integrated ECM systems incorporated in any modern mech, perhaps only five to ten percent of laser beams landed on a mech.
Both sides expected the main battle to be decided in a melee clash. This suited the Swordmaidens just fine, as they always held utmost confidence in their mech swordsmanship.
For this reason, their main line consisted of Swordmaiden mechs. The Devil Razors and Silver Valencias were especially conspicuous. Mayra's designs all took the forefront and inspired the rest of the Swordmaidens into an unprecedented amount of battle lust.
This was a battle for the ages for the Swordmaidens!
As for the Flagrant Vandals, they positioned their mechs at the flanks and at the rear. Their mech roster was a mixed bag and lacked cohesion. However, this also granted them a lot of flexibility, and for this battle they decided to plug up the gaps the Swordmaidens couldn't fulfill.
Ves likened the deployment of the Flagrant Swordmaidens mechs as a strong fist surrounded by wings. It was the job of the fist to slam straight against the enemy, thereby providing enough opportunities for the wings to cut the enemy from the flanks.
Therefore, the Swordmaiden mechs played the most critical role. The longer they held out against the Vesians, the larger the chances of cutting the Vesians apart!
The Meandering Monkeys began to flit back and forth at the edge of medium range. The Vandal and Swordmaiden ranged mechs itched to fire their lasers at the annoying light mechs that made their lives hell in the past week, but their commanding officers firmly held them back.
"The Meandering Monkey mechs are taunting us to fire at them. Their dodging patterns are too exquisite for us to hit them at this range. We'll only be draining our energy faster." Captain Byrd emphasized.
Even though the Vandals prepared a decent stockpile of batteries and energy cells, that didn't mean they could do whatever they wanted. They also faced some energy constraints.
"The vanguard of the Hostland Warriors are coming into view!"
Ves recognized some of the mech models of the Hostland Warriors from archival footage. However, the Bright Republic never paid much attention to the disposition of the Hafner Duchy. The territory's placement on the opposite side to the Vesia Kingdom meant that the Hafner mech legions rarely deployed against the Bright Republic.
Therefore, Ves spotted many new mech models. The Hostland Warriors resembled the Flagrant Vandals in that they didn't specialize in a narrow role. They fielded knight mechs, swordsman mechs, rifleman mechs, light skirmishers, striker mechs, frontline mechs and more.
They didn't field any heavy mechs, either because they didn't own any or because their energy budget couldn't sustain such an enormous burden.
Despite that, the battle lineup of the Hostland Warriors immediately made it clear that this was a mech regiment that could stand toe-to-toe against other frontline mech regiments!
"The reputation of the Hostland Warriors don't do them justice." Someone said. "They're fully geared for pitched battles."
The tragedy of the Hafner Duchy was that a mech regiment like the Hostland Warriors rarely had the opportunity to flex their muscles. They neighbored the Reinald Republic, a state that never formally declared war against the Vesians.
That didn't stop their unruly mech pilots to form completely unrelated pirate gangs and raid the Hafner territories. Most of the time, the Hostland Warriors split up their forces and took up garrison duty, waiting for an attack that almost never came due to the formidability of the Warriors in direct battles.
Therefore, the Hostland Warriors also looked forward to this coming battle. The Flagrant Vandals may not enjoy that good of a reputation among mech regiments, but they more than proved their valor against the Vesians in this latest war. Defeating the Vandals and their formidable-looking pirate allies would also earn the Warriors a lot of glory!
As more and more of the Hostland Warriors moved into range, neither side sent any envoys. A normal tradition in set piece battles was that both sides would send out envoys to parlay or champions to duel to the death.
Neither side felt the need to resort to such artificial traditions. This was a fight to the death. This deep into the storm lands and this close to the Starlight Megalodon, neither side could afford to let any of their adversaries escape.
The success of their missions hinged upon eliminating their greatest rivals on the surface of Aeon Corona VII!
Perhaps other pirate ground forces lingered in the vicinity. Even if any of them made it all the way to the red zone, the Flagrant Swordmaidens and Vesians doubted they retained much combat effectiveness.
Only they themselves were the kings of the battlefield. Yet this region was only big enough to support a single crown.
Neither side could abide each other's presence any longer!
In the end, Captain Byrd issued out the first command. "Akkara mechs, suppress the enemy battle line!"
The ten heavy cannoneers lessened the disparity in strength for the Flagrant Swordmaidens. They possessed an unimaginable amount of firepower, but could only play out their full advantages over time. The earlier they unloaded their firepower, the more the enemy suffered!
Therefore, Captain Byrd did not hesitate to employ the Akkara first! Their laser cannons possessed considerable range and their targeting systems were all top-notch. Their mech pilots all specialized in piloting both heavy mechs and ranged mechs and consisted of a rare group of elites among the Vandals.
Thick laser beams streaked across the battlefield with the speed of light and instantly scorched against the exterior of the enemy mechs.
At this range, a significant amount of laser beams hit their mark! The Hostland Warriors hadn't prepared to come under fire at this moment, so most of the stricken mechs had been slow to dodge to the side.
Detecting elevated heat signatures among the Hostland Warriors. They're firing back!
The Vesians quickly retaliated with hundreds of smaller laser beams. The Vandals and Swordmaidens already moved their mechs beforehand, causing fewer of them to be hit.
The battle commenced in earnest now!
"Ranged mechs, spread your wings!"
While the melee mechs slowly converged upon each other, the rifleman mechs from both sides started their dance with each other. Just like with the battle against the Caged Tongs, the duel between rifleman mechs played out like an elaborate dance.
It was like a magnified skirmish encompassing more than a hundred mechs on each side. The ranged mechs of the Hostland Warriors proved themselves to be remarkably skilled and solid in their marksmanship and dodging abilities.
The Vandal ranged mech pilots on the other hand each displayed an inconsistent amount of skill. Their backgrounds were too varied and most of them underwent their basic training outside of the Vandals.
Nonetheless, the varied means of the Vandal ranged mechs also prevented the Hostland Warriors from honing in on a specific weakness. The Vandal rifleman mechs each acted independently, but also stuck to a general strategy that could only clearly be seen from an overview.
The Vandal ranged mechs spread to the flanks and forced the Hostland Warriors to send their own ranged mechs in pursuit lest they leave their flanks open against ranged harassment.
The Vandal rifleman mechs successfully drew the bulk of the ranged mechs of the Hostland Warriors away from the Swordmaiden battle line!
"The rest is up to you now, Swordmaidens!"