I'm listing out my top Inner Sphere mechs by weight class. This is for the Classic Battletech Tabletop game, although I have not used all of these mechs within the game, they are still my favorites for various reason that I'll get into in this post. I'll start with the lights, and work my way up to the assault class. Anyway, on with the show!
The Commando - I've been piloting one of these in MWO from the start, and up until a month or so ago, pretty much exclusively. I've had a love/hate relationship with this mech in the game, but it still remains one of my favorite lights. I think this is due to the fact that it often considered a Lyran mech, but it is also probably one of the worst light mechs in the game, and sometimes I like playing the underdog. It performs in the tabletop much like it does in MWO. A "glass cannon" is a bit of stretch, more of a "glass .45". It can perform well up close when behind its target, but one solid shot and it's cored!
Honorable Mention: Raven.
Medium Mech -
The Uziel - There's just something about this one I like, and I think it stems from it's unique looks, speed, and array of weapons. It's also another Lyran mech, which as you'll notice from my list, I tend to gravitate towards. The downside is that it's from the 3067 TRO, which means I'll probably never use it on the tabletop as I don't really like to get past 3060 in the tabletop.
Honorable Mention: Centurion.
Heavy Mech -
The Axman - Oh look, it's another Lyran mech! It was really close between this, a Cataphract, or a Catapult. This one is on my list because of the unique feature that it derives its name from, the GIANT AXE! I also think I may have been influenced by the old Battletech cartoon as well. I've never used one in the tabletop, but I'd love to just hit something in the face with his axe. I'm not sure which load out I'd prefer, the AC/20 or the LRM variant. The LRM version would let me fire missiles while I slowly advance for the death-shot, while the AC/20 packs a solid punch but would require me to be up close before I could use it. Plus with the slower speed I could end up not being able to catch a fast moving mech if it came down to a final 1v1.
Honorable Mention: Cataphract.
Assault Mech -
The Zeus- No question here, my favorite mech by far is the Zeus! If I had to pick just one mech to pilot, it would be him. If I ever played a 1v1 game on the Tabletop, this guy would be my 1st choice. He was the 1st model I painted for my 3rd Royal Guards, and even I picked up second Zeus to be the 1st model to my Wolf's Dragoons army as well. He's also another Lyran mech as well. It's got that nice array of weapons that work in multiple ranges which I like. Just makes him a bit versatile. Not mention, he just looks COOL imo! It's the one mech I really wish was put into MWO. I've used him on the tabletop in almost every game, and he performs pretty well for me, although he's definitely NOT the greatest of the assault class. Once again, it's that slight underdog mentality as well.
Honorable Mention: Atlas. (Simply for the iconic factor)
So, there you have it! My favorite Inner Sphere mechs in the tabletop game by class. A lot of factors went into affecting my decision on these, from background, to loadout, to looks, to what I pilot in MWO. I have not yet had a chance to run all of these on my list yet, but I do intend to at some point, with the exception of the Uziel due to the era it's from. I'll be doing another "Top mech list" from the clan omnimechs next, and just as my choices have been heavily Lyran influenced, so too will choices probably be influenced by Clan Jade Falcon.
Got a couple of favorite IS mechs you use in the tabeltop game? If so, what are they and why?