Chapter 4326 Significant Growth
Ves mentality towards the expert candidates and expert pilots had changed over the years.
The Larkinson Clan was no longer awfully deficient in high-end combat power.
Sure, the Larkinson Army was still far away from obtaining an ace pilot let alone a high-tier expert pilot, but it wasnt easy to fill up these gaps in the short and medium term.
Though most of the Larkinson expert pilots were still young and fairly early in their careers, the clan was able to provide them with the equivalent combat power of a mid-tier expert pilot by providing with much more powerful expert mechs than normal.
Ves simply overcame the weakness of one by cranking up the strength of the other in order to shore up his high-end combat power.
The overall results they attained in this battle largely vindicated his strategy.
Pretty much every Larkinson expert pilot overperformed compared to their peers in the Sundered Phalanx.
It was not as if the expert pilots of the Gauge Dynasty were piloting crappy mechs.
Ves had a lot of respect for their mid-tier and high-tier expert mechs.
He gained a lot of inspiration from watching mechs like the Tensars, the Shockshell and the Skorpion Kommando in action.
Yet even though Ves was more than willing to admit that they had all been well-designed, they ultimately possessed limitations due to their limited design budgets.
The Fridayman mech pilots would have been able to put up a much more difficult fight if their mechs were as extravagant as those of the Larkinson Clan.
In short, the Battle of Pima Prime definitely proved that it was possible to defeat high-tier expert pilots and high-tier expert mechs by investing a huge amount of funding and resources in the development of his own expert mechs.
Even the incident where the Shield of Samar fell after fighting the Skorpion Kommando was not necessarily a repudiation of his chosen approach.
The Skorpion Kommando managed to break out with much more strength than usual because the Fridayman had partially adopted the same idea with regards to this specific expert mech!
If not for the sudden crisis that had overtaken the Pima Prime System, the Gaugers would have never agreed to invest at least a kilograms worth of phasewater on consumable ammunition!
The Skorpion Kommando literally sprayed away a fortunes worth of phasewater each time it struck with its Skorpion Tail!
The overall lesson that Ves derived from this battle was that spending lots of money most definitely made life easier for the Larkinson Clan.
As Ves thought about whether he should pimp his expert mechs even further, the discussion of the ongoing virtual meeting turned to the expert candidates and expert pilots of the Glory Seekers and the Cross Clan.
Just as with the Larkinsons, their allies also welcomed a bunch of new heroes.
Naturally, Ves wasnt familiar with any of the names, though he guessed that he would probably get familiar with all of the new expert pilots in due time.
“The Glory Seekers have only gained 2 new expert pilots, which is within the range of our expectations.
Their mech capacity is the smallest out of our alliance, so it is rather improbable for them to gain more demigods in a single battle.”
Ves furrowed his brows.
He distinctly remembered that many Glory Seeker mech pilots had access to the MSTS for a long period of time.
The only problem was that the Glory Seekers didnt possess a lot of expert candidates to begin with, so the pool of pilots that were eligible to jump to the rank of expert pilots was too small.
“The Cross Clan is in a much better position as they have gained 4 expert pilots over the course of the battle.” General Verle continued.
“It is rather notable that their breakthroughs mostly happened in the later stages of the battle.
From the moment Patriarch Reginald and the Mars began to demonstrate their might, the Crosser mech pilots fought as if their favorite sports team was crushing the opposition.
The breakthroughs happened quickly during this period.”
That fell in line with Ves theoretical framework.
“It is easier for mech pilots to break through when they are highly stimulated by external factors.
Though our clansmen most definitely gained a lot of courage from seeing the Mars holding its own against the Neo Amadeus, it is a pity that the ace pilot ultimately belongs to the Cross Clan.”
The Cross Clan undoubtedly entered an accelerated revival period after its forces played a decisive role in winning the Battle of Pima Prime.
The addition of four new expert pilots at once would most definitely fill up the schedule of Master Benedict Cortez.
Ves had a feeling that he could forget about receiving an invitation to contribute to the design of the Cross Clans latest batch of expert mechs.
The Crossers had already maintained a policy of limiting their dependence on living mechs.
The fact that Patriarch Reginald brutally murdered the personality of his living mechs showed that the Cross Clan most likely dropped any further interest in exploring the possibilities of making use of synergistic living mechs at any level!
“Gloriana is about to receive big business.” Ves softly muttered.
By hollowing out the Mars and turning it into his incarnation, Patriarch Reginald inadvertently converted to vision espoused by Gloriana!
Master Benedict would most definitely invite Gloriana to apply her own design solutions to the new expert mechs of the Cross Clan.
Her specialty and her latest innovations were all extremely suitable for high-level mechs.
As long as the Crosser mech pilots wanted to obtain expert mechs designed in a similar style to the Mars, then Glorianas contributions were essential to make their dreams come true!
“At least the Glory Seekers should still be fans of my work.”
The Glory Seekers along with other Hexers valued his approach to mech design a lot more due to his ability to tie the Hexer design spirits such as Helena and the Superior Mother to their exclusive mech models.
In addition to that, they also did not object to their own mechs coming alive and developing personalities of their own.
Many of them even started to believe in the nonsense that their living mechs were actually proto-gods in the making.
“If we leave aside the plunder we will be able to obtain from the surface and the assets we will be able to salvage from the orbital battlefield, the biggest gains we have obtained from this battle is the growth we have attained and the experience that we have accrued from fighting against the Sundered Phalanx.” General Verle spoke.
“We managed to test what worked out well and what didnt work so well.” Ves affirmed.
“We have introduced a lot of new design concepts and applications that we were never sure would work in a major battle.
Sure, we have already collected a lot of data on the performance of recent mech models such as the Lucid Rage and the Bright Warrior Mark II, but their main purpose was to help us win the battles that truly matter.
While I still have to study the data and battle logs in detail, my preliminary conclusion is that all of our latest works have performed at least adequately in the last battle.”
Commander Casella also saw lots of gains.
“All of our mech pilots down to our rookies have fought thousands of simulated battles within the MSTS, but there is still a small but insurmountable gap with reality.
None of our rookies are rookies anymore.
Our veterans have also made massive gains.
Once we recover and internalize all of the lessons we have learned, our battle readiness will reach a substantially higher level in the future.
Our troops will be a lot better prepared to face the challenges of the Red Ocean by that time.”
The Larkinsons explicitly sought to make these gains when they committed to Operation Saturday Market.
In line with the Societal Revival Theory, Ves and much of the leadership thought that the only way to prevent their fellow Larkinsons from becoming complacent and falling into decay was to subject them to high-pressure situations.
Ves hated this treatment back when he was a small and insignificant Apprentice Mech Designer, but nowadays he held the opposite opinion.
He found it rather ironic that he turned out this way when he previously loathed the leaders of the Bright Republic for ascribing to this radical social theory.
It was as if someone who used to be abused as a child went on to abuse his own kids once he had become a parent.
Anyway, Ves saw nothing wrong with his approach as long as he controlled the risks.
He just had to make sure to never pick a fight with an overwhelming opponent.
“What is your evaluation of our new expert pilots, sir” General Verle asked.
“Huh” Ves snapped his attention back to the current discussion.
“It has been a long time since I personally paid attention to our expert candidates.
I dont particularly know the ones that have broken through today that well.
Can any of you give us more insight on the three lucky bastards that have managed to take a step forward”
“I can help you with that.” Calabast surprisingly spoke up.
“One of them happens to be a Black Cat.
Do you remember the circumstances where we picked up Zimro Belson”
Ves had to dig through the memory of his cranial implant to recall this particular event.
Zimro was one of the formerpirates that we picked up during the Nyxian Gap Campaign.
He has an intelligence background but was forced to flee from civilized space after running afoul of his own state.”
“That is correct, Ves.
Zimro has been serving in the mech wing of my Black Cats ever since.
He has taken to piloting numerous stealth mechs over the years including one that Gloriana custom-developed according to his needs.
He has played an important role in this battle by sneaking up on vulnerable and isolated ranged mech units before taking them out in an instant.”
Ves became a lot more interested all of a sudden.
So Zimro managed to break through as a stealth specialist”
“That is correct.
He has already expressed a desire to pilot an expert mech that possesses even stronger stealth capabilities.
He wants to fulfill the role of an assassin and a saboteur that is much better at silently approaching enemy positions than Venerable Tusa.”
“We shall see what we can do, but I can promise you that I will definitely take charge of this design project.” Ves promised his strategic partner.
He quickly developed an interest in designing his first true expert stealth mech!
It was a type of mech that he had never designed before.
Although his experiences with stealth technology was rather limited, he just happened to have upgraded his Stealth and Cloaking Skill to Senior-level after he coincidentally won the associated enlightenment fruit from the lottery!
Though Ves initially did not expect to make serious use of his improved competences in stealth technology, the emergence of Venerable Zimro Belson presented a lot of new opportunities!
Ves already became stoked when he thought about all of the fancy stealth tech he might add to this new expert mech.
The variety of stealth solutions was great and the introduction of phasewater technology happened to mitigate one of the biggest shortcomings of stealth mechs.
Traditionally, stealth mechs were extremely fragile in open combat as their armor simply couldnt withstand a lot of attacks.
However, by employing new phasewater-infused materials, stealth mechs had the option to actively reinforce their exteriors at the cost of deactivating their stealth measures.
Though this meant that stealth mechs wouldnt be able to toughen themselves up when they were sneaking around, they at least wouldnt fall apart after a single hit once they got exposed!
Naturally, expert stealth mechs were subject to less limitations because of the greater possibilities of high technology.
As long as Ves was willing to spend enough money, he could design an expert mech that was equally effective when operating in the dark as well as in the light!
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