A bit of context is in order here before I delve too deeply into this discussion.
For starters, we don't technically have a "No mechs" rule in place.
But in true Star Wars Chaos tradition, we have been colloquially calling the"All submissions need to conform to the general idea of Star Wars" rulethe "No mechs" rule. And for the longest time, there was no difference, because there were no canon 'mechs' in the same way as we refer to them in pop culture. The Wookieepedia "Legends" article that defined Star Wars 'mechs' labeled the AAT as well as "modified domestic animals" as mechs. We're clearly not thinking of mechs in these terms in this discussion, and this really seems more aimed at the modern warfare concept of mechanized infantry based in IFVs and the like. Using "Mechs" in that context is and has been an non-issue for the board. This is for why a long time we have an operated on a "I know it when I see it" principle, but that will likely be changing soon.
Recently, there has been a Star War comic book that has come out with something that is very similar to a MechWarrior mech, and it looks like we'll be seeing another example soon with a new animated Star Wars film. The community will evolve to accept these and other very similar technologies. So to be clear, there is nothing right now to stop anyone from making something like the canon Carnelion IV mechs.
Here's where we start to have issues though.
Yes, mechs are allowed, but they are only allowed in the context of what a Star Wars mech already is. When people try to introduce mech technology that doesn't already neatly fit into the existing canon lore, we run into problems. We are a Star Wars board, and we will remain a Star Wars board. The Factory is not a backdoor means to change the setting and ambience of the Star Wars universe. I remember seeing one of these recent mech submissions trying to 'revolutionize' ground warfare. That's approaching this issue from the wrong direction, because the majority of the board (including some commentors here) aren't interested in turning this Gundam Wing. At the end of the day, we do prioritize conforming to current Star Wars universe ambience over personal freedom. This isn't any different than Americans valuing "freedom" but following rules and laws. Creativity isn't unlimited here, while we do encourage creative freedoms, these aren't unlimited rights. Our current approach does and will continue to limit some creativity, not only with mechs, but with other technologies and ideas as well. I realize that this is subjective, and that controversial subs have slipped by because we no longer review subs in the traditional manner (and it hasn't been reported yet), or because one judging team's subjective view was different on the matter compared to a different judging team.
Because of this, the Factory staff will be drafting a set of guidelines to make the issue of what is and isn't acceptable for a mech, and that will be included as a link within the General Factory rule section. In the mean time, I will be placing two already publicly commentaries on this issue here for ease of reference as a temporary substitute. I want to be clear of one thing that isn't in these commentaries. I currently do not see any biomemetic or articulated hands and arms on Star Wars mechs right now, and because of that, I do not want to see any of them on Chaos canon mechs right now either:
On human like mechas, such as Gundams:
Here's a handful of things to consider for your next design
1) General shape: If it is very close biomorphic in shape (shaped like a human, animal, etc) with fully functioning limbs, especially arms and hands, there's a good chance that this going to be considered a mecha. The further away it gets from looking like a person or animal aesthetically, the less of an issue that this is. As an example of this, you could make an argument that the AT-AT has a mammalian sort of shape, but it's pretty difficult to trace it back to one species of animal.
2) Skeletal Movement Pattern: Related to its body shape, we also think about how it moves. If it's particularly fast or agile, or otherwise uses the movement patterns of an organic being, it further increases the likelihood of it being considered a mecha by most people. The next thing to consider is size.
3) Size: If it's very biomorphic, but really pretty small in the grand scheme of things (usually no greater than 5 meters in its biggest dimension), this could be okay. If it's animal shaped, there's the <a data-ipb="nomediaparse" data-cke-saved-href="https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Bes"href="https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Bes" uliik"="">Bes'uliik andMULE Droid for canon predecence. It's notably that these are more like steeds rather than traditional vehicles, since the person 'rides' them from the outside. If the submission is humanoid shaped, it could be considered to be a type of power armor instead. The largest examples of power armor include Zero-G Trooper Armor, AV-1A Armor, and Phase III Darktrooper Armor. In general, power armor shouldn't be much larger than an actual person (probably about one meter taller than a typical person at most).
Usually, you can make a sub that one or two of these characteristics, and it could be okay. When you all three characteristics (biomorphic shape, animal movement pattern, and large size), it's likely to be considered a mecha. Some examples of okay combinations.
1) biomorphic shape and large size: AT-AT
2) biomorphic shape and skeletal movement pattern: Power Armor, Bes'uliik
3) Skeletal movement pattern and large size: AT-ST
Tanomas Graf | Immortal Cyan | Kor Vexen | Cyrus Tregessar | Jerec Asyr | Matsu Ike
Edited by Gir Quee, 17 April 2019 - 10:11 PM.
glitch didn't show animal mech commentary