HeavyMetal Lite Features
HeavyMetal Lite is the Official advanced ProtoMech design program, that is
capable of designing all ProtoMech sizes, as described in the latest releases of
BattleTech Master Rules. Level 3 equipment from Maximum Tech is also included,
In addition to designing ProtoMechs, HeavyMetal Lite allows you to select and
modify all existing Battle Armor and Infantry platoon designs, adding options
and equipment, also provided for by Maximum Tech. You can even enter (but not
really design - see below for an explanation) your own custom Battle
Armor and Infantry platoons or squads.
Record sheet printouts not only have all the information needed to play, but
additional gaming aid information, making the sheets great looking and the
ultimate tool during game play.
As you've come to expect from all of the HeavyMetal programs, HeavyMetal Lite
gives you all the tools to design, including custom weapon design, manufacturer
and model of equipment information, professional quality record sheets and
Technical Readouts (both with pictures, if desired). All available weapons and
equipment are included, and are updated as more are published. A Selection
utility assists in choosing ProtoMechs for games, full mixed arms
BattleForce2 printouts and support is included, and much, much more!
With HeavyMetal Lite, you will have available every official design published in
all of the tech readout and record sheet books, which are constantly updated as
more are published. HeavyMetal Lite includes all of them on the CD, along with
high quality pictures of each ProtoMech design and more, along with dozens of
Please check out the specific features and screenshots (click on the screen
Total Warfare Rules and Equipment Now Included Using Custom Weapons Files
With the rules and equipment used in BattleTech changing, please be sure
to check out the Total Warfare A & Q page for
information on how this new series of publications affects the HeavyMetal
programs, and when/if the new weapons will be included.
Update: In the meantime, custom weapons data files have been created that
add almost all of the new equipment from not only Total Warfare & the TechManual,
but also the advanced equipment from Tactical Operations. You can download a
single setup program that places all of the custom files in place for all of
your programs from the Data Files for
The CD Package
HeavyMetal Lite has been packaged for sale in out our
New Slim DVD case, a high-quality DVD case, which
looks better, is much stronger, ships better and has more convenient room for
the instructions insert, than standard CD jewel cases. The thumbnail shown below
is from a scan of the package; click on it to see an enlarged version. Click on
the Order button at left to purchase HeavyMetal Lite.
The Main Screen
HeavyMetal Lite has a somewhat simpler interface than HeavyMetal Pro and HeavyMetal Vee, and therefore can manage quite handily with a single screen mode. This means HMLite runs well on lower resolution 640x480 monitors with small fonts, 800x600 with large fonts.
The Main Screen, shown to the left below, opens when HMLite first starts.
Weapon selection is done with the same basic screen as used in HMPro, except the locations are displayed separately, as on the main screen, for the four valid equipment locations on a ProtoMech: Main Gun, Left Arm, Right Arm and Torso. Per standard ProtoMech rules, the mass of weapon that can mount at each position varies; therefore, the available weapons listed will display only those which are valid to mount at the selected location. Of course, the main screen displays all the weapons and equipment on the ProtoMech as soon as it is loaded, as well as throughout design.
After selecting your weapons, you probably want to take a look at the armor distribution. The armor and damage graph tab has this information, as shown below to the left. HMLite will can automatically add the maximum armor possible, if you want. Just click on the Maximize button. Of course, you can still fine-tune it, by varying the armor at each location, up or down. If a Main Gun is chosen, the Maximize button places
armor there as well. If you do not have a main gun weapon, there is no need to place armor there. A Damage Graph is also visible, which gives the maximum, probable and heat-limited damage for the 'Mech up to a 30 hex range.
HeavyMetal Lite allows you to associate or include a picture of your design, in a variety of formats, with the ProtoMech data file. It will be displayed on the third tab of the main screen, as shown above on the right. From this tab, you can also enter all the standard "fluff" text, such as Overview, Capabilities, Battle History, etc., plus a Personal Notes section where you can place added info about your design (such as source of info or designer) which while saved with the 'Mech and visible, does not print along with the normal fluff text.
From this tab, you are also able to select the ProtoMech usage, in other words, specify the various Clan or Clans that have access to the design.
Below to the left is shown the Select ProtoMechs screen. You can specify a total based on Battle Value, C-bill cost or Tons, and optionally specify the number or tonnage of ProtoMechs desired as well as many other criteria, and HMLite will select what it feels are the best units. You can even define "best" as the highest Weapon Value (HMLite's special rating, used also on HMPro and HMVee), Short-, Medium- or Long-Range Factors (again, special to HeavyMetal products), BattleForce2 or other ratios. You can even select "Random" to make up listings of random ProtoMechs, but ones which still meet all your criteria. Selecting ProtoMechs for matches and campaigns was never easier!
The Print screen, shown above right, provides for several different printout types. The standard record sheet can be printed, in a layout similar to (but better than)
the original record sheets, and you can print up to five of the same, or even five different, ProtoMechs on the same, or you can also include the movement grid and special missile hit, which are especially nice for ProtoMechs, with their odd missile configurations (like an LRM 17!). Several versions of the TRO (Technical Readout) can be printed, with optional ProtoMech picture, fluff text and manufacturing data, in addition to all the technical information. Battle Value calculations may be printed, and a separate movement grid with space for recording movement and other information for up to 5 ProtoMechs is available. Of course, you can enter specify the ProtoMech pilot's skill, and modify Battle Value accordingly, and even specify special scales for tabletop miniature use, such as 1 hex = 2 inches or 5 cm.
Battle Armor and Infantry
First off, I want to make this very clear: HeavyMetal Lite does not design Battle Armor and Infantry. It is basically a ProtoMech design program. So why doesn't it design battle armor and infantry? Simple: no official rules exist for designing them. But that doesn't mean you can't have fun with and make modifications to them, add them to BattleForce2 rosters, and print out excellent and useful record sheets for use in game play. HeavyMetal Lite helps you in that area. All standard battle armor and infantry units are included in the HMLite database, and the sheets it prints are amazing! Plus, all the Level 3 options in the publication Maximum Tech are available to you. Take standard units, make them paratroops or submersible, add heavy armor to infantry, add TAG or ECM, change the number of men in a battle armor squad or infantry platoon. Even add field guns to your motorized infantry! All the costs and Battle Values are calculated and displayed automatically, and included in the printouts along with the modifications. The screen from which you choose, modify, add to the BattleForce2 roster and print battle armor and infantry is shown below on the left.
Just because there are no rules for designing battle armor and infantry, that doesn't mean you can't have fun creating your own custom units. Using any rules that you like, or just making up the figures yourself, you can add your own custom units, specifying all the information, and then print high-quality record sheets for them, just like standard units. You can also include them in BattleForce2 rosters. This is done from the Custom Unit screen, shown above right. You can even choose a symbol to represent your custom unit from a selection of all symbols used in standard units plus more.
HeavyMetal Lite has a Tech Info screen comparable to HMPro, which displays a mini Tech Readout, showing the exact tons and cost of every item on the ProtoMech, armor distribution and much more. This is shown on the screen below on the left.
The screen at the right above is a Print Preview screen, which gives a snapshot of what the completed printed record sheet will look like for the current ProtoMech. Although its resolution is much less than the printout will be, it is an excellent method of checking out your design. Of course, optional hit tables, movement grid and other such options that are available during printing are not shown on the preview.
HeavyMetal Lite does not have a Distribution screen, as HMPro has, and it doesn't need it. As crits are not specified as such, it is only important to specify where equipment is located. This is done by showing separate listings for the four possible weapon location on the ProtoMech. Each location, the Main Gun, Left Arm and Right Arm may carry a single weapon, while the Torso may can carry up to two weapons. Specifying rear-mounting for Torso-mounted weapons or shots of ammo for ammo-consuming weapons are done from a pop-up menu on the Main or Weapon selection screens.
There are many more screens and features in HeavyMetal Lite. Many of the features in HeavyMetal Pro have been included in HeavyMetal Lite. Great care has been taken to make these two programs operate as similarly as possible, even to being able to use the same hot-keys for operation. Once you know the operation and features of HMPro, you can pick up HMLite and go right to work (or play). You already understand the program! If you are unfamiliar with the screens and features in HMPro, please go to the HMPro page and take a look at the screens and features displayed there.
Naturally, designing ProtoMechs is no fun unless you can print the results of your work. HMLite provides many options for printing, as shown on the screens below. You can specify the pilot's gunnery skill, manually or using the included ProtoMech roster feature and include pictures on the printed Tech Readouts (but not the record sheets - there just isn't room). Samples of the printouts are shown below. The printout to the left below shows an enhanced record sheet, with movement grid and missile hit tables. This is extremely useful during play, keeping track of your ProtoMech's operation and provides a ready reference for play. Notice that the example shows five different ProtoMechs; you can choose any combination for your sheets, even print them automatically in Batch mode after making up a ProtoMech roster. You can even print a separate movement grid which records movement for several ProtoMechs on a single sheet, to go along with the sheets without the tables.
The center printout above is for Battle Armor. Up to five points or squads of battle armor can be located on the record sheet, and it also includes handy tables to assist in game play. The printout to the right above is for infantry. Up to five platoons of infantry can be printed on a record sheet, and once again, handy tables are included. Note that even battle armor and infantry record sheets can include the tabletop ranges (such as 1 hex = 2 inches). No movement grids are included as options with the battle armor and infantry record sheets, as they aren't as necessary. However, if desired, you can print out separate movement grid sheets and use them for game play.
There are many other screens and features available with HeavyMetal Lite, but I've probably already taken up too much of this page and your valuable time. If you still want to know more, since HMLite has so much in common with HMPro, take a look at the HMPro screenshots page for more information and screens. I hope that this will give you a good idea what HMLite can offer you, in the way of an easy-to-use yet extremely powerful and comprehensive ProtoMech editor. I can safely say that there's nothing else like it, and feel that once you try it, you will be hooked!
Order HMLite Today!
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