Bushwhacker Medium Mech Background
“Bushwhacker” is a term often used to describe guerilla fighters who don’t belong to a regular military unit. These fighters usually do not directly engage the enemy, but rather, hide in and among the terrain (and friendly population) to attack targets of opportunity. The so-call “insurgents” in the Iraq war is an modern example of a bushwhacker. Although they may not win many battles, their actions are nonetheless important because they have the effect of wearing down the enemy, and never allowing him/her a moment of peace. Those who have been bushwhacked can become demoralized because they don’t know when/where/how/why they were attacked, and who the attacker was. If this happens enough times, morale diminishes, unit cohesion breaks down, and dissent increases. In war, breaking your enemy’s will to fight is sometimes better than killing him. For these reasons, the Bushwhacker mech from the Battletech universe is aptly named.
Unless most other battlemechs, the Bushwhacker mech is not designed for close quarter fighting. Almost all its weapons, except for a pair of machine guns, are intended for long range attacks. To inflict maximum damage at maximum range, Bushwhacker mechs are armed with two LRM-5 launchers, an extended range large laser, and an autocannon. A good tactic for their pilots is to work in small groups, with one acting as a spotter for the others. The spotter can be exposed with his/her lance mates remain concealed by the terrain. They can attack by using their indirect fire weapons, such as the missile launchers. A Bushwhacker mech engaging an enemy mech must not close in unless absolutely necessary. Although the mech is well armored (over nine tons) for a medium class mech, it only has machine guns for close combat. Machine guns are only useful for defense against light infantry and will only cause paint peeling in mechs. Bushwhacker pilots who take full advantage of their mech’s long range capabilities can take out heavy or assault class mechs by chipping at them from afar.
One well-known fact about the Bushwhacker mech is that it was one of the Inner Sphere’s first attempts at stealth-like technology. It has long, tapered cockpit design that would look normal on an aircraft but is unusual for a mech. The idea being that a slim profile would present a smaller, less visible target. This radical design caused a lot of teething problems and almost led to the cancellation of the Bushwhacker mech project. The electronics and the engine were crammed too close together. The inadequate engine shielding caused the electronic components to fail at a faster rate than expected, often at the most inopportune times. Ironically, it was the Clan invasion that saved the Bushwhacker mech from oblivion. Inner Sphere scientists were better able to integrate the electronics suite into the Bushwhacker’s torso when they reviewed and learned from captured schematics of the Vulture mech.
Check out the video below of a Bushwhacker mech in action. It’s long, but the graphics are cool, and the ending is hilarious.
The Bushwhacker Mech Lego Model
The Bushwhacker mech Lego model was designed by Primus. It is the variant that appeared in Mechwarrior 4. I had my eye on building this Lego model for a long time, but waited patiently for many months while I collected all the necessary pieces. The Bushwhacker mech Lego model did not disappoint, because it turned out excellent. It’s unmistakable aircraft-like fuselage was well realized, and mostly free of studs. So far, every one of Primus’ Mechwarrior 4 Lego models has been fantastic. There are quite a few more that I’m looking forward to building. I followed the plans closely, and only substituted a few Lego pieces here and there, but nothing drastic. I also added lights because even tactical vehicles need lights. For my own reasons, I find the absence of lights on the mech models to be disconcerting, and always try to include them whenever possible. Darkness is still a fact of life and must be dealt with, even in the 31st Century.
Build your own LEGO battlemech models like the one featured above! Boost your collection and buy new sets here.